Starving the Sexual Sumo
Editors Note: While I don’t become graphic in this post, it does refer to male sexual temptations in an honest way. Please feel free to skip, or not read it if you aren’t comfortable doing so.
A little over two years ago I was helping at a local computer lab ministry one afternoon with a group of boys. Somehow the conversation turned to girlfriends or physical relationships, and one of them asked me if I’d ever had sex. I told them that I was (and still am) a virgin, which led to their laughing hysterically.
In a room of early teen boys, I was the only one who wasn’t sexually active…
To be honest I’m not surprised by that because sexual activity is beginning earlier and earlier in todays culture. While there are many reasons for this, one of the greatest is young men don’t have male role-models that display sexual integrity. Therefore when they see someone living that way, to them it seems like a joke
The Lord through this and other experiences created a burden to not only live with this kind of integrity, but also challenge young men to do so, and give them tools necessary to do it.
One of the more useful tools for this is “Every Young Man’s Battle” by Stephen Arteburn, and Fred Stoeker. It deals extensively with sexual temptations a young man would face, and practical help for following God’s standard.
One of my favorite principles they shared in the book is what they call “starving the sumo.”
Obviously this refers to your sexual temptations as a sumo wrestler who you try to wrestle with (don’t give in, hold to God’s standards). The problem is, no matter how hard you try to overcome those temptations, they always win in the end.
Arteburn and Stoeker explain the problem isn’t you don’t desire this victory enough. Instead its far to easy to “feed the sumo of sexual temptation” constantly during the day.
While we normally view things such as pornography as things that feed our sexual desire, there are a huge amount of other things that can do so. Things I sometimes refer to as “look away moments.”
They aren’t openly sexual, but can definitely feed your lust. Sadly we don’t stop and think about how much of life is filled with “look away moments”, and every time we don’t, the sexual sumo gets a snack.
The answer to this problem is obvious but very difficult….
we must starve the sumo
This means drastically removing anything that can feed our lust (specifically television programs, places where we know there will be temptation, social media sites, etc). This will be VERY HARD at first! However, over time, the sexual sumo will go from a 600 pound behemoth to a 100 pound weakling (usually takes about six-weeks).
My heart breaks for the young men of this village who buy into the worlds lies about their sexuality, and many I believe who want to do better, but can’t. May the Lord allow me to help them “starve their sumo” (while keeping mine in a weakened state) and show sexual integrity is a life of fulfillment instead of a joke.