Magnets to Men's Eyes.

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Let us not therefore judge one another any more:
but judge this rather,
that no man put a stumbling-block or an occasion to fall in his brother's way.
Romans 14:13

This afternoon was especially lovely. The weather hovered around 65 degrees and sunny. The children were all occupied playing soccer, swinging on the swing set, or jumping on the trampoline with their Daddy. I had been working since Thursday cleaning up all manner of construction debris out of the yard and was sitting down at the picnic table with my mom enjoying my relatively neat yard, contented family, and beautiful sunshine.

I've been a bit concerned about getting a 'farmer's tan' before BJ's wedding... I don't want to end up immortalized in photographs as the matron of honor with two toned arms in my bridesmaid dress, and so I was sitting in the sun in a spaghetti strap shirt. I didn't really think twice about it, except to think to put it on.

But when my mom and I decided to run to Wal-Mart, it was a completely different story. I, oblivious as always, started to gather my things to get in the car, while my husband discreetly tried to get my attention.

There I am, running about, and my sweet Josh "Ahem-ing" himself hoarse. Finally, he managed to catch my eye and give a little tug on his shirt sleeve. It took me a second, but finally I caught on and boy, I was mortified!

I was about to not only wear something out that I was bought to wear as pajamas, but I was going to go out, on the busiest day of the week in our busy little town, which also happens to be the Sabbath (see me cringe, even now?) with some rather private property on display and I hadn't given it a second thought!

Such is the way of an adulterous woman;
she eateth, and wipeth her mouth,
and saith, I have done no wickedness.
Proverbs 30:20

What damage would I have done, unwittingly... sure, but done nonetheless? I don't want to be forward here, but nursing six children has left that particular piece of property a sizable investment! And unfortunately, I would have attracted a bit of the wrong kind of attention.

In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel,
with shamefacedness and sobriety;
not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly array;
But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.
1 Timothy 2:9-10

*This is me cringing again, BTW.*

I heard a fantastic sermon again this afternoon, after I had my usual elbow-length sleeves and below the knee shorts on, entitled "Ladies, Does how you dress cause men to lust?" by a pastor names Al Martin. In it he, very candidly, discusses all manner of (mostly) unintentional ways that women fail in dressing modestly. I wanted to share his list of common stumbling blocks with you, since they've left such an impression on me; and opened my eyes to several of my own shortcomings in my own personal attempt at modesty. I don't think that I can put it in a better perspective than he, so I am going to share some of the transcript of his sermon, straight from his own words.

These are the 10 Magnets for Men, written and seconded by men in men's language, for the women who walk amongst them and don't wish to cause another to sin:

#1- Dresses or Skirts with Lengthy Slits.
Anything above the knee causes men to think "Oh, a few more inches and what would I see?"

#2- Dresses or skirts that hug the bottom.
When you see pictures of prostitutes, one of the marks of a prostitute, she always has her
buttocks hugged, whether it is a mini skirt, whether it is jeans, whether it is tight slacks,
her butt is always hugged because that is what she is selling. And that is what she wants
men to buy.

#3- Any upper garment that hugs the bosom.
People should not receive an anatomy lesson in mammary glands when they
look at you women.

#4- Unbuttoned blouses or cleavage.
You not only unbutton here and here and here and here, but you unbutton down to one
button away from bearing your bra. And when a man sees only one button to go his mind
goes, I wonder what is under that one more button

#5- Sleeveless blouses or dresses with large armholes.
You look down on your sleeveless dress and you see nothing but your shoulder.
But if it is a large arm hole, a man sitting behind you looks up at the pulpit, sees through
to your bra. And his mind goes where he doesn’t want it to go.

#6- Low rise skirts or pants.
....flaunting their bodies in their gyrations with their so called music. They have made this style popular with the skirts that barely hang on the hip bones and with the jeans that barely come up and cover the crack of the buttocks. I have been in situations with Christian women where I have had to look at the crack of their buttocks because of the low rise jeans, skirts or pants.

#7- See through clothing of any kind.
Clothing that does not cover your under garments to the point where no one can see them. Some of you need to know the function of a camisole.

#8- Skirts and dresses that are just plain too short.
Difficult when you are seated to adequately covered yourself. And then you get engrossed in something in a public setting and you are not keeping your knees locked together and before long the legs are spread a bit and anyone just happening to glance can see clean up to your pants. That is not modest. It is immodest.

#9- Pants or jeans that hug the bottom, thighs, or crotch.
Slacks that either have spandex in them or they are a kind of material that is a stretch material that hugs the buttocks, comes around and hugs the thigh and presses up on your crotch and the crack of your buttocks and you have no idea what that does to many a man when he sees it. You draws the eye to the most erotic part of your body.

#10- A bared midriff and back.
You may look in the mirror and say, “Well, I am fully covered,” but all you need to do is to reach here a couple of inches of your belly are showing. All you need to is bend over and people can see your back and usually the top of your underwear and it has happened right in this assembly.
One man said to one of his elders, “I saw a woman bend over. I could see the top of her
panties and I wondered what it would be like to put my hand down her back,” a godly
young man, passionate to be a holy young man and caused to stumble in this place.

Aren't we all guilty of one or the other? So what should we do, then?

Pastor Martin continues:

Repent. Go to Christ in faith. Find the purging of his own precious blood.

Go to your dresser drawers, go to your closet and remove anything and everything that
has one of these 10 magnets embedded in it.
You say, “Pastor, I will show up in the same outfit for the next five weeks.”
Hallelujah! It is modest. We will rejoice.

Secondly, Pray for and labor to cultivate a sensitive and well instructed
conscience before God concerning this issue.

Thirdly, Welcome the quality control upon your modesty that should come from
your husband, from your father, from your mother, from the people of God and from your
pastors. You may judge something to be modest because you look at yourself through
your own eyes. Someone else is looking at you through a different set of eyes.

I am glad that I had a husband willing to be my own quality control when my good sense deserted me.

But exhort one another daily,
while it is called today;
lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
Hebrews 3:13

My exhortation today, for my dear blogging sisters, is to please, please, be aware of your own unintentional magnets for men's eyes. Be aware of the traps you set for others to fall into. We will all give an account for our sins, intentional or not... and I don't know about you but I don't want to be the one to cause another to fall short at judgment day.

Then He said unto them:
"It is impossible but that offenses will come:
but woe unto him,
through whom they come!

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck,
and he cast into the sea,
than that he should offend one of these little ones!"

Luke 17:1-2


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