Awhile ago I wrote about modesty, and as I thought more about the subject, I wanted to add an appendage to what I wrote:
The whole the idea that men are primarily visual beings and women aren't? It's a myth, an old-wives (or old-husbands?) tale. Quite frankly, women can be visual too, and the notion that they aren't is a lie, a laughably ridiculous statement probably originating from someone who didn't understand women very well. If a woman sees guys running around shirtless with perfectly sculpted muscles, she might feel butterflies in her stomach.
I'm not saying it's right. But it's true.
And yet, she can stop it.
No one can help their initial feelings--basic biological attraction, but they can help what they do with them. No one has to follow those thoughts down the steamy path they beckon them down, a path that objectifies human beings that are created in the image of God.
You can say no.
You can walk away.
Don't tell me men can't say no. They're made in the image of God too. They have free will. 1 Corinthians 10:13 says that "no temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it." There's a way of escape for me, for other women, and for men. People can feel attraction, and that's not inherently wrong. They have a choice as to whether it turns into sin or not.
Men are not weaker when it comes to resisting sin. To say so is an insult; it's emasculating, even. Nowhere in the Bible does it proclaim that men are innately weaker than women in controlling lust, in surrendering that sin to Jesus. The Bible just doesn't say that.
Patriarchy says that.
I initially titled this post "The Myth of the Visual Being," but I just went back and changed the word "Myth" to "Lie." Because that's what it is: a lie that harms both men and women.
God values each human being, for God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son that whomever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life. That Son invited women like Joanna, Susanna, and Mary Magdalene to be a part of His ministry. That God appeared to a woman first after He conquered death. The God loves women just as much as He loves men and men just as much as He loves women.
I think it's time the Church did too.