I have always found a nicely defined upper body an attractive trait on a man. Physically, it was always the first thing I noticed when spying a prospect from afar. . I am a girl who appreciates a nicely defined arm…not Mr. Universe over inflated…nicely muscled, proportion is important. That is the historical data.
So, with that history, there I was yesterday at the gym, pumping iron…or whatever the mineral that is a level below iron in weight would be more accurate…and when I was done I moseyed my way over to the bikes to do a brief 15 minute cardio cool down. My wonderful husband joined me minutes later on a bike next to me. I am rocking out to 18 Wheeler by P!nk getting into a groove and I notice a tall, nicely defined torso at the front counter, not too much of a moral struggle as the face was nothing special…reminded me of a Russian athlete. So I turn to my husband and, nodding my head in Nice Torso’s direction say “So, do you think the bottom half is teeny tiny or REALLY BIG?” (Seems like many guys at the gym focus a lot of their energy on their biceps and pecs and ignore their lower half and it just looks weird to me…or the upper half is okay and then the legs are freakishly over developed…but I digress.)
You see, my husband KNOWS what I am attracted to. As it turns out, when Nice Torso walked away from the front counter…we could not tell if the rest of him was proportionate because he was wearing track pants. The point of this is that I am trying to do something along the lines of honoring my husband by not eyeballing another man and pointing out that I noticed this guy to my husband helped me redirect my thoughts. So, Nice Torso moves out of my line of sight and I am good to go.
Seconds later…Nice Torso Revisited steps up to the counter (WHAT THE? The gym I go to has not before had a plethora of eye candy!) I am distracted yet again and then my eyes travel North of said torso and the face is cute and has a great smile! COME ON! At this point, I turn to my husband and I know – that he saw – me seeing – Mr. Revisited and so, I closed my eyes and focused on whatever P!nk was singing and finished my workout blind.
I kept thinking about the reason I was at the gym. Is it because I want to be healthy and get into shape? Yes, but also, there will always be that young girl that lives inside my head who can remember the looks on the faces of and hoots of excitement from all the boys when one of the boys in 6th grade brought in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition – 1981 with Christie Brinkley on the cover…yeah, that one, and thinking that I need to look like that someday and struggling ever since then and never EVER reaching that ideal.
I do not need my husband comparing himself to these guys and wondering if he measures up. He far exceeds them! How often have we said “married not buried” or “look but don’t touch” It is the attitude that one small thought cannot POSSIBLY lead to one small step, or lead to another step, or a leap and then the next thing you know…you are not happy with what you have.
Am I saying that comparison shopping leads to unhappiness in your marriage or even infidelity? No, yes, maybe. It all depends on the situation I guess. For me, I don’t think that it is God honoring for me to be looking at these other men, not to mention whether or not it is honoring my husband, even though I believe myself to have the best marriage EVER. This is not about that. I don’t want my husband to doubt that I am happy with him. That I love him and am attracted to him as he is; that he does not have to be any version of “ideal” other than his current self.
but Jesus holds us to a higher standard: Matthew 5:27-30
The NIV versions states it this way:
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’a]”>[a] 28But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.
I like the way The Message translates the same verse:
27-28“You know the next commandment pretty well, too: ‘Don’t go to bed with another’s spouse.’ But don’t think you’ve preserved your virtue simply by staying out of bed. Your heart can be corrupted by lust even quicker than your body. Those leering looks you think nobody notices—they also corrupt.
29-30“Let’s not pretend this is easier than it really is. If you want to live a morally pure life, here’s what you have to do: You have to blind your right eye the moment you catch it in a lustful leer. You have to choose to live one-eyed or else be dumped on a moral trash pile. And you have to chop off your right hand the moment you notice it raised threateningly. Better a bloody stump than your entire being discarded for good in the dump.