Don’t abandon your plan or your course

Ship "Just as a ship without a helm is driven to and fro by the waves,  so a careless man, who abandons his proper course, is tempted in countless ways." — Thomas a Kempis

One of the reasons men blow it when tempted sexually is because they have no real plan.  So, here’s a plan:

1.  When you are tempted to objectify a woman, avert your eyes immediately, take 4 or 5 big breaths and count slowly to five.  You’ve gotten yourself into a very bad habit of gawking at women sexually, and you need to stop that.  Yes, even in this sexually saturated, sick society that behavior is not Kingdom behavior.

2.  After averting your eyes, repeat out loud your name, the names of your children, where you work and your responsibilities.  For me it works likes this:  "I am Don Follis; I am married to a beautiful woman named Jennifer Earles Follis;  my two children are Ian, 20, and Madeline, 16; I am a pastor at the Vineyard Church, where I oversee outreach and men’s ministry."  A man’s name has power and reminds him of his very precious connections.  (Repeating this mantra is sort of like like taking a cold shower.)

3.  Finally, analyze what just happened.  Ask — "Why was I so tempted to objectify that woman?"  "Did I get slimed, or did I go looking?"  "Why is my thought-life racing out-of-control?"  "Am I hungry, angry, lonely or tired?"  "Is there something that happened to me today that has gotten me on edge?"  "Do I need to call my accountability partner right now and tell him I need some help?" 

There’s a 3-part plan for you, brothers.  It’s not the end-all but it’s a start.  How many times will you have to employ it?  Oh, about 50,000 or so.  "50,000?" you ask.  That’s right, men.  Look, are we going to be men of God or not? 

I trust your answer is "YES."  So don’t abandon the course!

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