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Part One: The Highway to An Affair and/or Abuse

The vultures are circling, waiting, waiting, for the opportune time to come and pluck out your eyes.

“You look a little down today. What’s up?”*

“Oh, nothing,” she sighs.

“See, I can tell,” he prods.He looks at her with those eyes.Those eyes.Right in her eyes.His eyes are inviting.His eyes convey tenderness.His eyes shout longing.Her heart aches so much.She and her husband haven’t looked at each other like that for months.Actually, they’ve been bickering of late.The money’s been tight.Both have made accusations.Neither has been very nice.No tender eyes for who knows how long.She’s been wondering if she really wants to live this way.She knows she shouldn’t ponder those thoughts.She knows where discontent will take her if she will let it.Discontent sounds soooo good.Just nurse those wounds.Feed them with your hurts.That’s it.Lay the wood on the fire.Let the fire roar.See… it’s a nice fire.It won’t burn you.

“Something’s bothering you. Usually you are in such a good mood.” He touches her ever so gently on the arm. Her inner strength shrivels as the Wicked Witch of the East’s feet shrivel up when the ruby slippers are transferred from her to Dorothy.** She swoons just a little bit. She notices she’s nursing some wounds from some biting words of her husband. She knows better. But the resentful thoughts are juicy morsels in her brain. They taste soooo good. And now these words from Gus, her co-worker, add an au jus to her wounds, making them easier to swallow. She knows she shouldn’t.

“No, no, really. I’m fine,” she insists, ever so unconvincingly. Her mood belies her words. It doesn’t take a psychologist to see something’s amiss. Still…it’s none of Gus’ business. She knows this. She doesn’t need her counselor to tell her it’s none of Gus’ business. What is she doing, acting this way? It’s been so long since her husband touched her gently on the arm or asked how she was doing or looked her in the eye. Look me eye? What’s the deal with that? My husband can’t even look me in the eye?

“Hey, look. The Bible says that burdens shared make a lighter load. What’s up? You and I both know something’s bothering you.” The Bible? He quoted the Bible? Is that really in the Bible? My husband never talks about spiritual things. Is Gus a Christian? Wow. I never knew that. Certainly, opening up to a Christian would be Okay. He keeps looking at me that way. It’s so nice to have a man REALLY look at me. I’ve never felt so alone. He makes me feel complete. What is going on inside me? This is too weird.

“Well, ah, my husband and I haven’t been getting along so well of late.”

All of a sudden she follows him, as a sheep to slaughter.

There it is folks.The quickest way to Hell.Take a short cut through your integrity, straight into bondage and self-delusion.You think you can play with fire and not get burned?

I believe there are lechers out there that actually prey on single and married women, using tenderness, caring, spirituality, concern, eye contact, and touch to seduce and woo them away from their dignity.

What are you doing talking about your problems with this guy from work? Do you know what happens when you open up like that? You open up your heart to be abused by the worst of the worst. It feels so good. It’s can’t be wrong.

He knows you are hurting. You wear it on your face. He can see you are vulnerable. No one else asks. No one else cares. Gus cares? Are you kidding me? He’s a vulture circling, circling, ever so patient, waiting, waiting to come a pluck your very soul away. And then stomp on it and kick it and trash it and throw it away and then he’ll go find somebody else to ruin. It’s a game. And you are the ball, being kicked around.

Here’s the secret of an abuser and a philanderer (the methods are the same!): They go right for the heart. They know there are vulnerable women out there who are hurting and lonely and have no one to open up to, no one to talk to. They know if they ask these personal questions that it is flattering and feels good and it’s like water in a desert. They can tell who the hurting women are. They go right for the juggler vein. Suck the life right out of them and then leave them rot. The bodies of the deceived, were they to pill them up, would reach the moon.

This is called a boundary, people.And it can work the other way as well.There are women vultures too, preying on hen-pecked and/or lonely men.His wife is constantly on his case, reminding him of his faults, pointing out his shortcomings, on and on and on.He feels he can’t do anything right.He shuts down.The more he shuts down, the more animated she gets.The more animated she gets, the more he shuts down.And then this interesting gal at work praises him.He hasn’t been praised since…?And then she asks him his opinion.His opinion?And then she listens.Listens?A woman listened to me?She even portrays that she’s interested in him.Interested?She looks at him longingly.Longingly?He’s used to contempt at home.How is he supposed to handle eyes of longing?

And all of a sudden he follows her, as a sheep to slaughter.

Eyes.Touch.Spirituality.Tenderness.Listening.Acceptance.Concern.Knowing glances.These are what every heart longs for.Every marriage needs these things.Every heart needs these things.These are the tools of the seductress and seducer.These are also the tools of abusers and manipulators and the Devil himself.He comes as an angel of light.

Here’s a hint that the vultures are circling and your eyes are about to be plucked out, whether you are married or single: An interesting, vibrant person of the opposite sex asks you a personal question that is none of his business. This can happen online, on Facebook, through texting, or in person, at work or church. If this happens be very, very weary. Run away, run away.

Yes, even at church. So many affairs and so much abuse has happened in the name of the Lord, if we were to talk about it, it’d burn your ears. You can open up in your men’s or women’s Bible study or your accountability partner or your pastor in his office. You have no business opening up to your pastor anywhere else. I’m NOT kidding. No. He doesn’t come to your house when your husband is gone and give you advice. No. You don’t meet him for lunch and discuss with your pastor your husband’s affair. No, no and no. You tell your pastor this in his office and his secretary is 10 feet away. Boundaries people. Appropriate boundaries. He’s vulnerable, too. The rules apply to everyone.

If you are at work, you don’t go to lunch with any other person of the opposite sex alone. Whether you are single or married. EVER, unless it is strictly business related and your spouse knows what you are going to talk about and you talk about that at lunch and you tell your spouse what you talked about.

If you are single go as a group. No lunches alone until you’ve done your due diligence. By due diligence I mean that you don’t spend time alone with someone of the opposite sex who is NOT on your lists of possible marriage candidates.

EVER.

Due diligence is a huge subject by itself, but it simply means you don’t pursue any opposite sex relationship unless the other person has the characteristics that you seek in a future spouse. You’d never marry a smoker? Than don’t spend time alone with one, get emotionally attached and then think if you marry that person they need to stop smoking. That really isn’t fair. Don’t mess around with him in the first place. You want to marry someone who wants kids? Then don’t get involved with someone who doesn’t want kids, fall in love and then get all mad when he doesn’t want kids. If you haven’t made your due diligence list you’d better get out your laptop and start typing. Then don’t let anyone talk you out of it. It’s your list. And don’t go to lunch alone with them either. If you break this rule you are headed for a life of misery.

If someone at work or church of the opposite sex starts asking you personal questions, check your watch, tap it a couple of times and go crap, look at the time.Hey, nice talk to you, gotta go and and get the _____ out of there before the ____ gets into your heart.You don’t have to say why you are leaving.You don’t have to say what you are going to do.You don’t have to say anything.It’s NONE OF HIS BUSINESS.Don’t sell your soul for a pound of bread.

Don’t tempt yourself.

You have enough aches in your heart.

You don’t need any more.

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