That guilty feeling you get after giving in to the temptation. The sickening feeling in your chest, the wish to start over and take back your actions. The light goes on and the guilt and hurting starts, am I close? Probably because I am one of these people. Along with the 95% of other males that commit themselves to the screen and multi pound industry that is porn.
It’s everywhere. It’s a virus that’s spreading. Firstly it started with old magazines, videos on the top shelf, page 3 in the papers. Now it’s everywhere, from billboards with girls dressed in underwear or swimwear, to instagram, to now the internet where it is all so easy to access. No wonder we struggle right? We see enough imagery throughout our day that we are now almost immune to it, but little do we know what is going on in the background.
So a couple of weeks ago, I admitted to some people I don’t know very well about my struggles. I brought the darkness of my room into the light at a men’s pub study. The men there prayed for me, and prayed a blessing upon me. Additionally I got speaking to a guy there I’ve hardly spoken to before. He told me that he also struggles. He offered to be my accountability partner. Now this is something I have wanted for a while, because I know how effective they can be, so I was more than willing to accept the offer.
It started great, a week went by, hardly any temptations, I was like great, thanks God this is awesome, I am finally beating the temptation I have had for over 10 years. Then this week started. Started well, again no temptations, Tuesday came, the temptations started, I checked some things on Twitter, didn’t give in and Tuesday came and went. Friday came, now I went that bit further, I checked out some websites, again I was just doing my usual “Oh let’s see if they have uploaded any new videos” just about managed to not give in, but it was hard! Then today came, little did I know that each little thing I’d done, had slowly lowered my senses, again I went back to the websites, before I knew it, the deed was done, the guilt kicked in… 15 days of success GONE.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
1 John 1:9 NIV
WE ARE FORGIVEN, YOU ARE FORGIVEN.
Now I don’t know what your going through, you reading this, whether you struggled, are struggling, need advice, have a friend who suffers, or are just checking out my first blog! Yeah me!
But in my lowest point, or maybe my strongest; “That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
2 Corinthians 12:10 NIV
I will try and offer some tips to avoid giving in to those temptations and breaking the chains rather than giving in to the demon inside you late at night when you are bored or can’t sleep, or just have the urge. These aren’t from a professional, but from one Christian brother to another. Most people don’t know actually 50% of girls suffer to. So it’s to you lot as well!
Tip 1: Reading the bible & Prayer
It sounds simple right, maybe it’s something we should be doing already?! If we love God and want to know more, we have that hunger, then it should be a massive part of your day. I get it though, you have a busy lifestyle.
God understands, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it though! Pick up your bible now, or open the app on your smartphone. Choose a random page, open it, read it, write notes on it and what you think it means. God can use his word to talk to you, give you signs, help a friend or family member, or even just to strengthen you. For example at times of temptation remember;
James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Have it ready at any opportunity, like a secret weapon in your artillery. See how often it helps.
Prayer is massively important. Throughout your day pray thankful prayers. Thanking God for all the wonderful things in your life; Family, Friends, your health, your job, your car, girlfriends/boyfriends (obviously not plural haha) just for everything good in your life, be joyful. Thank him for protecting you against temptation and more importantly the temptation that will undoubtedly come your way later. This prayer keeps you joyful, it also is a prayer showing you trust God.
How often do you pray to Jesus? I was speaking to an awesome friend of mine, who in my eyes is so spiritual. She questioned me, which she does often, and said how often do I pray to Jesus? There is power in Jesus name, try it!
“In the synagogue there was a man possessed by a demon, an impure spirit. He cried out at the top of his voice, “Go away! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” “Be quiet!” Jesus said sternly. “Come out of him!” Then the demon threw the man down before them all and came out without injuring him. All the people were amazed and said to each other, “What words these are! With authority and power he gives orders to impure spirits and they come out!””
Luke 4:33-36 NIV
Tip 2 Accountability
This is pretty important to have; someone you trust, someone you know who will pray for you daily, if your tempted will distract you whether it be a phone call or coming round for a chat or going out for a walk with you. Someone you don’t want to let down, you know will always reply to texts/messages and most importantly won’t judge you. My recommendation for this is get someone you know well enough to be open with, but someone you would be ashamed to let down. You could also look into websites where they can see what websites you have been on, and it flags up.
Can’t really say much more than that on this, it just helps to open up to someone after you’ve prayed and be honest about your emotions and how your feeling. It may also be an idea to find someone who struggles or has in the past so that you can help each other out, go through the journey together and may have experienced say week 4 temptations compared to day 1.
Tip 3 Distractions
This leads me nicely onto my third and final tip, I could go on and on about different tips, but these in my opinion are the best ones.
Keep distracted. It’s as simple as that, whenever you are tempted; pray, stick on music after praying, whenever you have thoughts go on your games console, ring up a friend (accountable partner) go for a walk/run/bike ride. Go downstairs where your family are and you know you can’t give in to temptation here. Try and make sure you are busy on your days off and in times when you are normally tempted. So for example in the evenings go to a bible study, go to the pub, go bowling just do ANYTHING ELSE!
It may also be worth checking out XXXChurch, they are also on Twitter, definitely worth a follow.
So that’s it. Is it easy ? No, otherwise I wouldn’t have given in today. But remember Jesus loves you, he died on the cross for YOU So that you could be forgiven and to start again today.
When we sin knowingly it’s like we are stepping on Jesus blood and don’t care. Today is the day you break the habit. Leave the phone downstairs, open up your bible, find a verse, write notes and pray to JESUS. Start by acknowledging that you have done wrong and how sorry you are, how you want forgiveness and the chains to come off. Try the prayer below and then remember to pray joyfully and thankfully throughout the day, grab yourself someone as a accountability partner, go out of your comfort zone and admit to someone you struggle, bring the darkness to light. Finally distract yourself and maybe start listening to worship music in the car or on your way to work, to get you in the right mindset.
Jesus, I have done a lot of wrong things in my life. You died on the cross that I could be forgiven and have a new start, when I mess up. Jesus I have messed up, I have watched porn and been tempted to give in to my inner desires. Jesus I am sorry and repent, I wish for your strength and power to remove these feelings from me and break the chains that lock me. This is only possible with you Jesus, I need you now, help me Lord Jesus please! Free me and break these chains in your powerful and amazing name I pray.
I pray this in your name, Amen
Maybe make it your own, but you get the idea. My Twitter is always open for advice, a chat or anything else. Remember I’m not perfect, only Jesus was. I pray for you all now brothers and sisters. We will beat this together!
Have a blessed day!
Thanks for reading, Godly Gent.