Mike Pearl,
I know you don’t care who you make mad, so you are my last hope. Us guys need a voice.
I am 18. My church ministry is to teach eight guys, ages 13–15, guitar lessons on Sunday evening. We discuss the Bible and pray at each lesson. Here is our problem:

We have a fun youth group and a great youth pastor. At the youth meetings, one girl always wears a dress and usually during the meeting she opens her legs about five inches and creates the “shaft.” When she sits on the swivel stool it is really bad. Don’t laugh.

I talked to my mom and asked her to talk to the girl. Mom (divorced) just reasoned with me that you can’t really see anything but a flash of white, but mom just didn’t get it. It is like the most private thing of a girl and suddenly it is there in my face and it is REALLY distracting. I make an effort to avoid the girl, but I always forget and get shot with the shaft. Then my mind goes nuts and my body does its thing so I am freaked if suddenly called to stand up front. It is not that particular girl—it is just the shaft. Any female that spreads her legs would get the same unwelcome response. I am sick of the guys having to bear the pain. Girls need to know that guys don’t WANT every guy in the room to gawk at their girl’s shaft. It seems lowlife.

The guys in my class talked about how to avoid looking down the shaft. The 13-year-olds really struggle. They never participate in games due to the possibility of the bulge. I went to the youth pastor and then to pastor, but they each said they were sorry but their position was delicate because one word and the girl or her mother would probably get offended and accuse them of lusting and they would lose their job and maybe marriage. Us guys have prayed for an open ear from someone in authority, but so far we have not found how to fix the problem.

Now this girl wants to join our guitar class, and us guys are like, NO. No way. I took a stand, told WHY, and it did not come out the way I thought. I have been told all kinds of stupid nonsense about submitting to authority and how we should not be this or that against females. Heck, I like females. It’s just that church is not the place to be turned on. I don’t like being manipulated. Everyone says she doesn’t understand how guys are and thinks that when guys look at her it means they like her. Then all I have to say is SOMEONE in authority is failing to do their job in explaining things to her.

Everybody complains about cigarette smoke being blown in their face; well we are having something blown in our face. Just one girl controls all us guys. It’s wrong.

If the church doesn’t let me keep my guys’ guitar class, I am considering starting a church in my house so we can do it without the shaft!

It is hard being a young man nowadays with porn everywhere. It is even more discouraging when it sits across from you on a high stool and spreads wide just as you get ready to pray for the meal.

Tell them.

Mike Answers:

What can I say more than you have said? I have heard similar complaints a thousand times. I knew girls like that when I was your age. I avoided them like the plague—tight blouses, short or tight skirts, cleavage showing, etc. It is man’s greatest temptation, and it sometimes feels like the devil is in the skirt.

When I was a young pastor, girls would sit on the front row in a manner that distracted me greatly, so I brought some little towels to church and instructed some of the women to place them over the thighs and knees of the unknowing exhibitionists. The front row soon contained only young men.

“In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works” (1 Timothy 2:9–10).

Nearly all modern fashion is immodest. Long ago I gave up trying to effect real change. Although if I see that it is too damaging, I will not keep quiet, as you say, regardless of who gets mad. I do understand why pastors have to tuck their tails. I have family members who dress immodestly. I do not let that come between us. Some of the women and girls in our little church dress very immodestly, but at 73 years of age I am too old to be bothered by it. But because of testimonies like yours I am reminded of the need to address it. I remember being a teenager, and I remember fighting the battle and winning by the power of my position in Jesus Christ.

Although, you must know, no mother will understand your battle—none. It is a man’s war. Know that if you win this contest of flesh versus spirit, you can overcome any and all trials of life. It worked for me. Most men are in a constant battle due to women in indecent dress. I know because men of all caliber and ages come to me for counsel concerning the undress they are subject to every time they walk into church. They hate it as much as you do, yet no one dares speak up. You could just tell the girl that you do not want her in your class because she dresses immodestly and it is a distraction to the other guys.

The Bible says, “Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart” (2 Timothy 2:22). The key word is flee. Do not expect to be able to cease having such promptings. Only castration would diminish your drive. It is your responsibility to be an overcomer. Flee, and again I say, flee. If it means going to church with a bunch of old folk or starting your own church with old-fashioned dress codes, then do so.

The church has totally surrendered to lustful fashion. I do think that most girls are unaware of the effect they have upon men. They think they are just being pretty. If they knew they were viewed with disgust by righteous young men they would be horrified. I do not know that it can ever be reversed. Maybe it awaits a young preacher filled with the Holy Ghost and the power of God’s Word to turn things around. You could be that man—if you overcome.