And so it was that the deacon found himself in an uncomfortable position. She was easily within his field of vision, but he dared not look:
[H]e wanted to look at her, but he did not. No, it would have been a sin to look at her. So he gritted his teeth and made damn sure his eyes did not touch her alluring form.
This is a half-step beyond my own avoidance technique: I end up sneaking the glance, which I then blame on hormonal action, and then spend the next several minutes looking in every other direction and berating myself for a weakness of the flesh.
Lust is when you let your desires completely take control of your reason, and you begin doing things that harm yourself and others in pursuit of that lust. The strange fact of traditional Christian teaching is that it does not take into consideration that most women enjoy being “lusted” after, if you take that to mean they enjoy the desires of a virile, masculine man who is not afraid to be a man. Women dislike prudish men. In fact, I have heard many women say that they find the sight of men preaching about chastity a little weird and creepy.
I suspect it reaches an apex of weirdness and/or creepiness right about the point where the guy goes into “Do as I say, not as I do” mode.
Still, I suggest that there are more working definitions of “prudish” than there are actual prudes: the word, over the years, has become more dismissively pejorative than actually descriptive.