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    Q&A – When Does Being Attracted to Someone Become Lust?

    Question:

    When does being attracted to someone become lust?

    Answer:

    If you’ve ever seen a cute boy, then you’ve experienced attraction. Being attracted to someone simply means you find them interesting or pleasing in some way and you like them because of that.

    Attraction can be based on personality, looks or both. Generally, our first reason for attraction is looks because it’s usually the first thing we notice about people. Before we even learn another person’s name, we’ve decided whether or not we think they are physically attractive; attraction to someone’s personality comes later as we get to know them.

    Lust is different from attraction. Though it may begin as attraction, lust is an intense or overwhelming sexual desire for another person, like a craving or longing. Lust has its roots in selfishness and not in love. Lust is all about us–what we want and what sexual experiences we’d like to have with another person. It isn’t wrong to be curious about sex (many of us are before we get married), but it’s wrong to spend much of our time dwelling on how we’d like to satisfy sexual desire.

    Lust makes our own sexual desire and the object of that desire (another person) an idol in our lives. Attraction is an acknowledgment that we find another’s appearance or personality pleasing, but it doesn’t consume our thoughts, it’s not motivated by strong desire for a sexual relationship and most of all it doesn’t distract us from what is most important in our lives–God.

    If you find yourself distracted much of the time by thoughts (especially those of a sexual nature) about someone you’re attracted to or if nearly every thought of that person is accompanied by sexual thoughts or fantasies, then your attraction has or is turning into lust. If you find this happening to you, there are many ways to fight temptation, including prayer and evaluating the outcome of your decision.

    Attraction and love aren’t selfish. They aren’t about simply fulfilling our own sexual desires. Love is selfless. It’s about patience, kindness and putting the needs of others above your own (1 Corinthians 13). Desire, craving, longing–these are all words that should describe our relationship with God, not people. Even once we marry, our desire should still be for God first.

    PI girls, what do you do when attraction begins to turn into lust?

    Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul (1 Peter 2:11).

    Jenn Arman
    Jenn Arman is a youth pastor, freelance writer and blogger. She was born in San Diego, California and raised 2 hours north east in the Inland Empire where she lives with her husband David and their cats. Jenn desires to bring glory to God and a healthy dose of reality to Christians through both writing and preaching. Visit jenniferarman.com for more on her work. You can also connect with her on www.facebook.com/JenniferArman.Writer and https://twitter.com/JennArman

    20 COMMENTS

      • I think what they’re describing as lust is different from what you’re describing as lust. In most cases someone would at least be attracted to something about someone else (say, their laugh or their appearance for example.) to want to have sex with them. They’re just saying that it’s bad when it becomes something you dwell on, and takes time out of your day where you could be productive thinking about helping others and/or praising God.

        • I’m sorry, I didn’t describe what I meant clearly enough. One can’t control what pops into their mind initially, so if you see a guy and you notice that he’s attractive and your mind wanders a little, that’s not lust so long as when you catch yourself thinking this way, you ask God to help you control your thoughts better, and think about something else to keep your mind off it.
          It’s when you realize what you’re thinking and decide that you enjoy fantasizing about him so you keep doing it, that the thoughts become lust. It’s all about conscious intention.

          Of course, I completely agree with you that it’s wrong to have sex before marriage, and also to fantasize about it. It’s degrading to the object of your fantasies, and an affront to God.

    1. This was great! It helped me evaluate myself! I stopped looking at guys and sometimes avoided them, because I thought I was being lusty, but now I understand that i was just attracted to some guys. 🙂 I know now, the difference. 🙂 I’m glad I just feel attraction, and I’m going to pray for those who are confused, and I hope they find this fantastic article :3

    2. I find that it is very hard to resist lusting over someone during PMS. It makes it very very hard to keep my promise of purity, especially when they guy I am lusting over goes to my tiny school and I have to work in close contact with him every day. Does anyone have some advice for how to deal with this? I know that I can always talk to God about my problems, but I find myself in situations that could compromise my purity, and then it’s next to impossible to avoid going further. Although I have managed to stay as pure as possible up to this point, the more it happens, the harder it is to resist.

    3. I think its OK for a husband to admire, not lust after, his wife’s breasts .in song of Solomon ,Solomon admires his beloved’s breasts along with her eyes, teeth, and hair. They are just another beautiful part of her

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