About Relationships

Today's role for a Christian woman takes many forms working together - mom, sister, wife, home maker, career women, and more. All of these relationships demand your time and attention. At iBelieve.com we want to help you grow in healthy relationships whether you’re single and dating, newlyweds, married or widowed. Find encouragement and feel uplifted with the sharing of personal experiences from women in every walk of the Christian women’s life.

The Crucial Point Most Affairs Begin (And How to Avoid It)

  • Emily Massey
The Crucial Point Most Affairs Begin (And How to Avoid It)

Most little girls dream of growing up to be a mother, a wife, a teacher, a doctor, a marine biologist, a chef, an actress, a singer…

… but not an adulteress.

That’s not a title I thought I would ever carry, but at 19 years old, I found myself entangled in an affair with a married man.

He was nine years older than me and was cast to play my boyfriend in a musical at a local community theatre company. After rehearsal one night, he asked for my phone number because he was going costume hunting over the weekend and said he would call me to give me details if I wanted to tag along. We didn’t end up going together, but he did call me when I got back to my dorm room that Sunday night. He started to talk to me about his costume ideas for a few minutes, and then quickly said he didn’t actually call me to talk about costumes, but to just talk to me because he was lonely. There was an uncomfortable silence, and then I changed the subject quickly.

He ended the conversation by telling me that he couldn’t wait to see me at rehearsal the next day. The interaction during our scenes together started to become more believable as rehearsals went on, and he decided to add more physical affection during our time on-stage than what the script described.

The way he gazed into my eyes during our duets was so intense and passionate. He would sing his love songs to me and my heart would just melt. It was becoming very difficult for me to separate my acting abilities from my true feelings for him.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock/Diego Cervo

Choosing to Follow My Heart:

Choosing to Follow My Heart:

The show opened and closed, but our love affair continued on. During the day, I would skip class, so we could go on lunch dates. At night, he would drop his wife at choir practice at the symphony hall down the street from my dorm and then swing by and pick me up for our weekly date-night in the city. At restaurants, he would hold my hand from across the table and gaze into my eyes, telling me how much he loved me, how unhappy he was in his marriage and how his wife treated him so badly, but being with me made him forget about all of that. He promised we would be together in the end. I believed every single word, and at the same time felt ravaged inside. I had set it in my heart that I was going to rescue him from his mean and hateful wife. Oh, what a fool I was!

Photo Credit: Thinkstock/ViktorGladkov

Affairs Begin in the Heart

Affairs Begin in the Heart

In the sermon on the mount, Jesus boldly addresses adultery:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5: 27-28, NIV).

The sin of adultery – like most other sins– isn’t just an outward act but begins in the heart.

There are many verses in the Bible regarding the significance of the heart of man, butI wanted to highlight these three because I believe they give us clarity on how the sin of adultery (and others) can creep into our lives and what we can do to prevent temptation from becoming sin:

Photo Credit: Thinkstock/AaronAmat

1. We should never trust our heart

1. We should never trust our heart

“The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9 NKJV)

 

2. We are to protect our heart

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it” (Proverbs 4:23, NIV).

 

3. We are to trust the Lord with our whole heart

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6, NASB).

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Learning to Follow God:

Learning to Follow God:

I was “the other woman” for about a year, and when he was through with me, he moved onto someone else who played his girlfriend in another musical. It was all a blur of empty kisses and empty promises. I allowed the sin of adultery to drag me even further into the pit of self-destruction with other men while I was in college, creating more wounds and more soul-ties, but the story didn’t end there, praise God!

I eventually surrendered my life to Christ shortly after I graduated college, and the Lord delivered and healed me. It was a long process of learning how to walk the narrow road, but God’s grace gave me the strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other as I follow Him.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

God Can Redeem Your Mess

God Can Redeem Your Mess

I look back over this time in my life, now a very happily married woman of almost 10 years and a mother of two precious little boys, and I can’t help but thank God for His mercy and grace. Instead of feeling shame and guilt from my past sins, I can now glean from these wrong choices to help strengthen my marriage and ensure that it doesn’t become susceptible to the sin of adultery.

I believe the Lord can take my mess and turn it into a message for others, both married couples and single people. I never want to give glory to my past sins, but only give glory to the One who can redeem us from our sins and give us the strength to escape every temptation. Most of all, I long to lead you to truth and obedience to Christ one step at a time in the right direction.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock/TinnakornJorruang

Protect Your Heart

Protect Your Heart

I can say that in the case of the married man and I (who both claimed to be Christians), we trusted our heart over the Lord and did not guard it from our emotions, desires, disappointments, or fantasies. We not only ignored the boundaries that were set in place for our on-stage relationship and the boundaries for his marriage, but we also ignored the boundaries we should have had around our hearts.

The moment we let our guard down, we allowed our hearts to call the shots that lead us down the path of sin, instead of the straight and narrow path of righteousness.

It is our job to make sure that we are guarding our heart with all diligence to protect ourselves from deceit from our very own heart and only allow the Truth of God’s Word to be sown in it and take root (see the parable of the sower).

Photo Credit: Thinkstock/tommaso79

"This can also happen anywhere, especially in the work place."

"This can also happen anywhere, especially in the work place."

Now I know that not everyone is an actor/actress, nor do many married couples have to share their spouse with another person on stage or behind a camera. So I understand that my situation was quite different than most. That type of environment can create messy, fantasy-like relationships because you are literally acting as if the other actor/actress is your significant other.

But this can also happen anywhere, especially in the work place. Have you ever heard of a “work wife” or “work husband?” People jokingly use these terms to describe relationships between co-workers since most people spend more time at their job than they do at home with their own families.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Create and Keep Boundaries

Create and Keep Boundaries

It is natural for relationships to form with those whom you spend a majority of your time with, but we must stand firm to create and keep boundaries not only in those relationships, but most importantly, the boundaries around our heart. Our hearts can deceive us, and if we entertain certain thoughts that perhaps push those boundaries and ignore God’s ways, our actions will soon follow, and we will find ourselves taking steps in the wrong direction, down a path of destruction.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock/ipopba

"...God is faithful to always provide a way out when we are faced with temptation..."

"...God is faithful to always provide a way out when we are faced with temptation..."

We must follow God, as Proverbs 3:6 tell us to do. If we have embraced Jesus as our Savior and the Lord of our life, the Father has given us His Holy Spirit to lead the way and give us grace and strength to endure any temptation, including lustful and adulterous situations.

The Bible says that God is faithful to always provide a way out when we are faced with temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13), but we must trust Him, and yield our heart to Him alone. He knows what you need more than you do.

Friend, do not trust your heart, but instead, trust God with your heart and let him mold it to look more like His. 

Emily Rose Massey began writing short stories and poetry as a little girl, entered the blogging world in her early 20's, and published her first book, Yielded in His Hands: Becoming a Vessel for God's Glory (eLectio Publishing, 2015) before the age of 30. She now enjoys freelance writing while being a stay-at-home momma. Believing she has been forgiven of much, she loves much, and desires to point others to Christ and His redemptive and transforming power. If you would like to connect with Emily or learn more about her ministry, you can visit her website: www.emilyrosemassey.com.

Photo Credit: Unsplash/Marc Olivier Jodoin