It is vital that you win and not lose this battle. The future of your marriage, the well-being of your children, and your spiritual integrity depends on it. Recognizing the seriousness of the struggle you are facing, let us offer a few simple steps to deal with the intense allurement of temptation, when it strikes:
1. What to say to the devil.
If the devil whispers in your ear, “Isn’t she (or he) hot?” simply respond by saying, “Yes, and so is hell.” Remember, the devil hates you and hates God and only wants your complete destruction, not your happiness and fulfillment.
2. The wallet shield.
When tempted by someone else, immediately take out a wallet picture of your husband and children. Look at their faces carefully and then imagine the conversation, you will inevitably need to have one day, if you violate your marriage vows. Remember, these are the precious handful of people on earth, who have trusted you the most. Try and imagine packing the things you own in life, in your car and pulling out of the driveway, while your youngest child chases after you, screaming, “Mommy, please don’t leave. When are you coming home again? Please don’t go.” You’ll have to respond, “I’m sorry, but Mommy and Daddy can’t live together anymore. I can’t explain it all to you, but someday you’ll understand.” If you knew such an intensely sad and agonizing moment inevitably awaits you, wouldn’t it pop the powerful fantasy you’re toying with right now?
3. Think clearly.
Ask yourself a realistic question, “If the person I’m drawn to is willing to cheat on his spouse in order to have me, what’s to keep him from cheating on me in the future, if he meets someone more attractive?”
4. Remember the return of Christ.
When I stand someday in the presence of Jesus Christ (which we all will) and look Him in the eye, will He accept whatever excuse I’m using at the moment, to be unfaithful to my spouse?
5. Repeat this to yourself. When tempted by someone, literally repeat to yourself, “He cannot complete me. Only my Jesus can fill every empty place in my heart.”
You are not especially cool or hot. That is not why you are being tempted. After you’ve traded away your spiritual integrity and sexual purity, will you be more or less a person than you were before?
6. Run, don’t walk. When we’re faced with sexual temptation, the Bible tells us to run and not to look back.
Don’t slow down, until the other person is literally out of reach. Make whatever immediate (and even drastic) changes are needed to your schedule, friendships, job situations, home location, sports team participation, social circles, church small group, church attendance, church ministry, or Internet access to unplug the temptation. Then do more than what seems necessary to put hedges, walls, and safeguards between you and the person you’re tempted to pursue (or are being pursued by). No sacrifice is too great right now, to protect and save your marriage from ruin. Memorize appropriate Scripture.
7. Examine the hole in your heart.
Ask the Holy Spirit to show you the damaged portion of your heart that gives the world, the flesh and the devil the opportunity they’ve been waiting for. Once you see the real cause of your longing for someone other than your spouse, you’ll discover it has nothing to do with genuine love, fulfilling sexual experiences or emotionally intimate relationships. Instead it only has to do with the devil offering to meet a legitimate need in your life in an illegitimate way. Recognize the false intimacy he’s offering you and don’t allow him to rent any space in your head. It’s simple and plain S-I-N.
A friend of our’s told of stepping into an elevator in a hotel, on a business trip, far out of state. As the doors opened two attractive women approached him in a provocative way and said, “Do you like pretty girls?”
Without hesitation he replied, “Yes, and I am married to one back home.” The two women turned away and exited before the elevator doors closed. Yes, temptation may come, but recognize it and run.
“She caught him by his cloak and said, “Come to bed with me!” But he left his cloak in her hand and ran out of the house.”
Bob & Cheryl Moeller
From Chapter 6 from The Marriage Miracle: How Soft Hearts Can Make a Couple Strong by Bob and Cheryl Moeller.