Can I talk girlfriend to girlfriend for just a moment?  It's about a very uncomfortable subject, and honestly, one most of us would rather pretend does not exist in "Christian circles."  It's sexual sin.

A woman is enticed by a syrupy word from a co-worker, an e-mail from an old boyfriend, an invitation on Facebook, or an alluring smile at a neighborhood gathering.  Loneliness fills the room and passion comes knocking at the door.   But when the smoke clears, loneliness returns with new hunger pangs laced with regret.

A sexual relationship outside of marriage can be highly addictive and the search for love in all the wrong places, insatiable.  It is a drink that never satisfies the soul and leaves the partaker only thirsty for more. Sex outside of marriage can lead to many things: unwanted pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, divorce, mistrust, regret, shame, loss of family and a whole list of undesirable dominos that tumble in succession.

In John 8, we read about a woman caught in adultery and brought before Jesus by a group of Pharisees.  In Jesus' day, a woman caught in the act of adultery faced possible execution.  In some parts of the world it is still enforced today.  So why would this woman take such a risk?   Was it worth it?  No.  The answer is always no.

There is no greater longing in the heart of a woman than to be loved, cherished, and cared for. It can cause the strongest to break a resolve and succumb to the tempter's lure. Adultery has been the cause for church leaders to crumble, ministries to meltdown, and families to falter.  Sexual sin has caused the most sensible to act like a fool, the most moral to march into madness, the most devout to be devoured by desire.  The desire to love and be loved can sometimes scream over the din of reason.

The yearning for love gnaws at the heart.  And then the brush of a hand, the glimpse of the eyes, or the stirring of a comment blows on a spark and sets it ablaze.  Loneliness echoes in the hollow soul just as passion comes scratching at the door. Never doubt this, my friend: Satan is an opportunist who takes advantage of the lonely heart (Luke 4:13).

To be loved is one of the strongest desires of the human heart.  God planned it that way because He longs for us to have that longing filled by a relationship with Him. But so many settle for a sip from the rusty tin cup when God offers an everlasting stream.

A woman can risk it all for a few moments of passion.  She can lie to herself that a sexual relationship or liaison is love.  Then after the brief pleasure lies exposed by the morning sun, she realizes what felt like love was tainted with the poison of shame.  It can happen. It does happen.  It did happen to the woman standing before Jesus with an angry mob of rock holding Pharisees gathered around.  It has happened to many women who e-mail me every day.

I sat in a movie theater with a friend who had succumbed to sexual temptation.  She had lost her husband, her family, and many of her "friends."  During a preview for another movie, the film showed a woman contemplating an affair with a suave Frenchman.  Martha (not her real name) spoke a bit too loudly for the moviegoers sitting in the darkened theater.  "Don't do it!" she cried aloud.  The words came out of her mouth before she could stop them.  Martha was living the devastation of yielding to sexual temptation, and her audible cry was the overflow of her pain-filled heart.

Can I shout with Martha for just a moment?  "Don't do it!"

I know this article is not for everybody.  But if there is one woman …just one woman who will turn away from the temptation that is knocking on her door today, then it is worth it.

As Paul wrote: "Flee from sexual immorality…Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God.  You are not your own, you were bought at a price.  Therefore honor God with your body" (1 Corinthians 6:18, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NIV).

Don't do it.  Turn to God and allow Him to fill the emptiness in your heart today.  He's waiting with open arms.

If this is a struggle in your life, let's pray the following prayer together.

Dear God, I pray that I will be alert to the devil's schemes today.  Help me to see when and where he is tempting me to sin against You.  Give me the strength to flee temptation and run straight into Your arms.  I cannot do this on my own.  I need the power of Your Holy Spirit to empower me to do what is right and good in Your sight.  Thank You for being all that I need.

In Jesus' Name,

Amen

Sharon Jaynes is an international conference speaker and the author of 16 books including Your Scars are Beautiful to God and I'm Not Good Enough…and Other Lies Women Tell Themselves.  She is also one of the writers of Crosswalk's Girlfriends in God daily devotion. Visit her website at www.sharonjaynes.com.  

Originally posted August 18, 2010.