"Everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart." Mt 5:28
Reconciliation, especially between and among family members, is critical not only for the people involved but for everyone. When we realize that one in every four women in the United States suffers domestic violence in her lifetime, and boys who witness violence in their homes are twice as likely to abuse their own partners, (NCADV) we know how important reconciliation is.
Moreover, the cost of domestic violence is enormous. More than four billion dollars is spent in medical and mental health visits as a result of domestic violence and we can only guess at its ongoing effects since most cases go unreported to civil or medical personnel. When Jesus tells his disciples not to look at woman lustfully, he is speaking to us as well.
Lust is a sin against justice. When we look at others as if they are objects, we strip them of their humanity and we need to seek reconcilation. The gospel is clear in this regard. It is an act of violence to look at and treat others as objects.
Today, ask God to help you look at yourself with honesty and integrity.
Who has helped you be honest about your own actions for the sake of community and the Gospel?