Infidelity of the Heart

I want to expand on what I concluded with last time – infidelity of the heart. It’s a very real temptation and sin, and I don’t think many people are talking about it. So I’m going to suck it up right now and confess.

I’m guilty. I have been tempted by infidelity of the heart from the time I dated my husband until now. I’m disgusted to say I have fallen into its evil snare more than once. I’m sure I will be tempted by it for the rest of my life.

The only thing I think I can liken it to is a male’s lust. Yes, infidelity of the heart is my pornography. It carries the same thrill, the same shame, the same disasters, the same let-down that makes you crave more.

I hate it. And I’m fighting it. Just like lust is a daily battle for a man, guarding my heart is a daily battle for me.

If you are single, you can’t write this off. While you’re single, Jesus is your only bridegroom. Your devotion. When I was single, I absolutely gave me heart willy nilly to men rather than to God. It’s a sin, ladies.

I want to share the warning signs with you, just in case I’m not alone here. And at the end (skip down if you like ;)), I want you to see the biggest weapon I use to slay this sin.

The Warning Signs

If you are in danger of succumbing to infidelity of the heart, a relationship with a man (or a woman, if that is your struggle) might have some of these characteristics:

  • You try to catch his eye often; you look for and want more eye contact than really necessary
  • You become really helpful (your design is to HELP your husband, so when you give your heart away to someone else, you try to HELP them)
  • You make flirty jokes or laugh extra at his (remember how you laughed like this with your husband while you were dating?)
  • You hang out where he is or is going to be instead of staying in your usual spaces
  • You purposefully allow physical contact; you stand/sit closer than you would with someone else
  • You communicate more than necessary, rationalizing it. “I need to email him because he would want to know I heard that song we were talking about.”
  • You check communications constantly – Facebook, Twitter, Email, Voicemail
  • You put more effort in your appearance
  • You avoid talking about your husband or children; OR you talk excessively about them to mask what’s really going on
  • You go early and stay late when you know you will be in the same place
  • You do anything with him that you would not do if your husband were there.

How to Slay the Beast

If you want to fight this temptation successfully, you need accountability. Yes, pray. Yes, read your Bible. But just as a man needs accountability to successfully fight lust and the sin of pornography, a woman needs accountability to fight infidelity of the heart.

It was only after hearing Mark Driscoll in the Song of Solomon series talk about the “foxes” in our marriage that I realized how disastrous these sins were. My husband offered the grace of God, and God has been so gracious to rebuild our marriage. But I needed someone else to know, someone else to pray for me, someone else to show me my ugly heart.

So I fessed up in a very embarrassing meeting with my accountability partner. It was the best thing I ever did.

Being able to tell her when I was struggling with this issue – or when I was struggling with not accepting grace for my sins of infidelity – kept my heart safe and sound in my home, where it belongs.

You need this in your life for so many reasons. Find someone you really trust; someone to whom confidentiality is a BIG DEAL. See if they want this kind of relationship too. If they don’t, move on until you find the right person.

You must.

I miss you, Laura.

10 thoughts on “Infidelity of the Heart

  1. Jenilee

    I’ll be praying with you about this. What courage you have to share and to hold yourself accountable in this way. God will strengthen you and help you get rid of the “fox”. Hugs!

    1. Stephanie Post author

      Thanks Jenilee! He’s so gracious and has given me strength these past several months. But I know it is a struggle I will always have. Which is why accountability and a strong marriage and living daily in the Spirit is so crucial.

  2. L

    It sometimes can be even more removed…
    Admire the person from afar.
    Compare your spouse to the person…wish, even fantasize, your spouse was more like them…put them on a pedestal above your spouse.

    1. Stephanie Post author

      Yes – these are excellent points! It can definitely manifest itself in myriad ways. Thanks for contributing.

  3. Mel

    I think this is a very real temptation that NO ONE wants to talk about. I appreciate your candor on this. You are definitely not alone in this, regardless of the “silence” that seems to cover this sin.

    Over the years, I’ve been able to cover this struggle with layers of fat in my attempt to be invisible. But that doesn’t truly reach the heart of the problem at all. Now that the fat is starting to go, it’s something I’m going to have to face at last.

    Is my relationship and identity as Mark’s wife solid enough in the face of actual temptation?

    1. Stephanie Post author

      You definitely have to face it. Remember that we can only see the power of God’s grace by facing our temptation. Satan would love for us to bury it and pretend it doesn’t exist.

  4. LeEtta

    This is an interesting post and it continues to make me wonder how many women really do struggle with this sin in agonizing silence. With that said, I admit that I have had to check myself in this area to make sure my satisfaction is in the Lord and his ways. I have to remind myself that it is indeed a privilege to love one man for a lifetime, and to be loved by one man for a lifetime; a blessing, not a battle.

    1. Stephanie Post author

      Most definitely – it’s not just a blessing; it’s a joy. And the enemy would love for our hearts to be taken away from that joy to feed our lusts instead.

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  6. how to get over the affair

    Lot of people build a lot of bitterness on the spouse because of the extramarital relationship. And this is tough to overcome if ignored. Coping with our own inner thoughts is really crucial and knowing the root cause which pushed the spouse or the partner to have the affair has to be known. In addition this gives a greater understanding of your situation.
    Have a wonderful day.

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