The Christian Imperative of Chastity and Purity in a Depraved World - An Account of a Temptation

My husband was watching a feature film on NTV, and I just happened to turn to the TV and see a man on the screen. I began to consider his face, his appearance. "Who does he look like?", I thought. Suddenly, I felt extraneous prodigal thoughts begin to intertwine with my thoughts, so cunningly, carefully, afraid to scare me off, trying not to let me notice anything.

I was very embarrassed, I realized it was a temptation, and I said to them, "I'm so sick of you, I deny you, I deny you, I deny you, I hate these sins!" I was ready to spit, to blow on these thoughts, rejoicing that the Lord taught me to love purity, chastity, what treasures they are!

And to my great surprise, I, a sinful woman, heard a resentful, completely unconcealed voice to the side, as if spiritually, not with my ears, but as if mentally: "Don't you look then! What are you looking at?!" And I felt ashamed of myself. And really, why did I look then, stopped my gaze on the face of another man. 

You think about the words of St. Ephrem the Syrian. "Do you want to avoid temptation? Guard your eyes." If we do not overcome it in ourselves, we will not go anywhere. We will carry our enemies within us. Overcome them and you will have peace wherever you live.

Guard your eyes and your heart. Once again you are convinced of the truth of the words of the Holy Fathers, that it is all true. Thank you, Lord, for your guidance, for our salvation! Glory to You God forever!

Marina M., from the book "Stories from the Life of the Orthodox Church"

Source: (Russian)

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