I've been wrestling and praying about writing about this for several days now. Maybe longer. I wanted to make sure that this is something that God actually wants me to share. I fully understand that this is the internet and can be accessed by anyone, anywhere. There's that scripture that talks about not throwing your pearls before swine lest they may be trampled. I'm not always sure what it means and I think it's often used as an excuse not to be fully honest. But as I have been praying about it I have come to a place where I am willing to lay myself open for the freedom of even one person. If only one person sees that they are not alone in this struggle and 100 people think less of me and hate me or whatever, I'm okay with that. I lay down my life.
I simply want to speak about the freedom that the Lord has done in my life.
In my story I am going to reference a book from the Old Testament called Hosea. For those of you who do not know about this book I will give you a summary. Hosea is a prophet. God calls Hosea to take a wife by the name of Gomer. She's a prostitute. This relationship is a representation of God's relationship to Israel. For the Christian, we are Israel in this story. She then is unfaithful to him and bears him three children of unfaithfulness. She goes after other lovers. Then she is sold on an auction block and Hosea buys her back. This is all in the first 3 chapters. The next chapters are God speaking to Israel, telling her that she has betrayed Him and how and then in the last chapter it talks about how He will still, despite all she has done, redeem her.
My first taste of pornography was sent in an email to me my sophomore year of college. I had struggled with sexual fantasies throughout junior high and high school. Little things like television or magazine ads pricked my curiosity. Sometimes neighborhood kids would talk about stuff that they actually knew nothing about, but thought they did. By the time my mom had the sex talk with me she was really just filling in a few blanks. Growing up we had a filter on our computer and I am thankful for it, frustrating as it was at times when it would block sites that weren't bad, but had a wrong word or something like that.
I think Satan and his angels are pretty good at targeting us and finding us in our weaknesses and when we are alone. I'm not denying my sin nature and my own depravity, but there is definitely an active Tempter out there and he is just looking and watching for an in.
I had my own computer in my room at the time, no filter at school, just free to do whatever I wanted on the internet without anyone to hold me accountable. The times of going to these sites became more and more frequent. The first sights were shocking almost. When I would get off I would feel sick to my stomach. I felt dirty and just ill. I would repent and then go on. I would have a while of remaining pure in my thoughts, but then would stumble again. Along with it my computer was getting slower and slower. Those sites will bog a computer down with all the viruses that they load onto it. By the end of it my computer was completely trashed.
Finally, I felt so trapped that I knew I had to confess it. I was meeting with my mentor at the time and I confessed it to her. She was so forgiving of me and prayed that those images would be removed from my mind. Images like that can imprint themselves in your mind and then can be recalled at any time. I heard a guy say that he would be leading worship (while secretly struggling with a pornography addiction) and as he was singing images completely unsolicited would come to mind. After that I painfully confessed to my mom my addiction. Thankfully, my computer was so trashed I could hardly even use it. The next two years of my college experience I just went to the library to write papers and get on the internet.
I have more to share in this story. This is not the complete picture of how God has given me freedom. I have more struggle to share, but I don't think I can in this post.
Oh man, there is so much in me that I feel like I need to say in this area of pornographic addiction. The perspective from a woman, how it affects your thoughts, how it affects your marriage, your relationship with God, your self-worth and depression. Jesus, I am praying that you will speak. I know that many are locked in a prison of silence and hiding in this area. Wives are feeling betrayed, or trapped, husbands are full of guilt and teens are in depression... I feel really overwhelmed right now. I don't know why you have called me to do this, but I want to be faithful to what you would have me say. My life is worth nothing if it is not lived for Christ. Thank You for an understanding husband. Thank You for the gift of my son, I am amazed that You would give such a broken person these incredible gifts. Please speak.