It is interesting how religious people deal with the issue of lust. We know how secular people and pre-Christians deal with it. But when the issue of lust becomes the main topic of the day for religious people, you find it some fascinating perspectives.
There was a news report by the Associated Press that appeared on Fox News with the title “Cleric: Women’s Sexy Clothing Distracting Muslim Men from Sleep, Prayers.” You can read the article here.
In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, there have been greater attention draw to the fact that a growing number of Muslim men have been suffering from sleepless nights and their inability to pray due to the increase of women who are wearing sexy clothes in public.
Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, one of the Muslim clerics even went as far as to say that the men were facing “emotional abuse” due to this situation. Hmm… this was the same cleric who said that women should stop wearing lipstick and perfume to lower the risk of being raped.
The kind of dress that he recommends for women are: “long, flowing headscarves covering their hair and chests… baggy and loose long-sleeved, floor-length dresses.
The reason that this article caught my attention is how so many people love to play the victim. Whenever a person plays the victim in a situation, it absolves them of their “responsibility.” The problem is that whenever a person loses their sense of responsibility, then they will never take steps to get better or change their life.
So should men blame the women for their lust problems? Is it really the fault of women and how they dress that causes men to lust, hence we can blame the women for our struggles?
I have always believed that part of being a man of God is to learn how to take responsibilities. We need to stop blaming people and accept the fact that we have played a role in feeding our lust. As we think about all the things we have seen on T.V. and the internet, we should take the responsibility of entertaining those images in our minds for too long. We should take the responsibility of looking at women as objects instead of women made in the image of God. We should take the responsibility that we have not confessed our sins to another brother-in-Christ and honest dealt with the sin. We should take the responsibility that some of the things that we experienced from the past (our pre-Christian days or even in our Christian days of disobedience), we did not repent of and have taken measures to draw clearer boundaries. We, men are all guilty.
But I have a side note to women in the church…
Even though we, men will pledge to take responsibility for our own struggles and actions, we are asking for your help. We are not asking you to go radical or dictate to you how you should dress like the Muslim cleric. But all we are saying is that we are weak and that we need some help from women who it is their desire to see godly men raised up in the Church.
Certain images and things do affect us and the less we are confronted it, the greater the momentum we will have to fight through some of our weaknesses and struggles.
Thank God, the Church does not have to put rules and regulations about how we should dress. It is awesome when we can be free to be who we are but yet always thinking about mutual edification in the Body of Christ for the glory of God.