180 Basic Training # 4 – Taking Out the Garbage ~ blog
- For those of you who are new to my emails/podcasts, we are working through what I am calling 180 Basic Training. These are the most basic things you need to know and do if you want to begin a recovery that will work and will last.
I know so many people have started out with good intentions or wanting to stop but find themselves relapsing back into sexual sin. Listen, the statistics say at 68% of all addicts struggle with relapse. Sex is a highly addictive behavior that is also a drug addiction because of the chemicals our brains release when we become sexually aroused.
So, addiction to porn and sex is literally a drug addiction and you have all the drugs between your ears and thanks to the internet you can get your fix in a matter of moments using the pocket computer we call a smartphone. There is an unlimited supply at no cost and available 24/7. No wonder it is so common today.
The first three parts in the 180 Basic Training focused on what we need to know;
- God, no matter what you have done, STILL LOVES YOU!!!. (see the email – 3.18.19)
- All of your sins – past, present, and future are ETERNALLY FORGIVEN. (see 3.19.19)
- The HOLY SPIRIT dwells in you and will never leave you or forsake you. (see 3.20.19)
Now let’s get to work. Knowing these 3 things is super important to keep in mind because of the lies you will hear. So, here is the first step of what you need to do to seriously begin your recovery. I call it taking out the garbage.
All of us have a past we are ashamed of. We have done things we never thought we would do and live in shame and guilt as a result. God has given us a way to deal with this and it is tough work but once you have done it there will be a huge load lifted from your heart. We all must create our Sexual Sin Inventory.
This is actually the 4th step in the 12 Step programs and it is called the first “action” step. It says;
Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
I call it telling the truth to yourself and God. This breaks the chain of denial that has held us captive for far too long. I did this over a weekend, and it took me 9 hours to complete it. Sitting down with my computer I started at the earliest age in which I remembered doing something sexual. I wrote down how old I was and just the basics of what happened. I took 5 hours on Saturday and 4 more on Sunday and it was gut-wrenching … but necessary.
I simply created a spreadsheet and walked through my past 40 years of sexual sin. I asked the Holy Spirit to help me remember what I needed to write down and did not go into the details which could have triggered me. If you start and are being triggered, stop and do something else for a while. If you have been traumatized sexually in the past just put your age and no details.
After looking it over I realized how much sexual sin had been a part of my life and how it had been destructive in every almost relationship I had with girls and women. My self-loathing hit a new low and I sat in my basement softly weeping before the Lord. I literally prayed out loud;
“Father, I feel like a pile of shit.”
Then, at that moment I felt my Heavenly Father say to me;
“John, those are the things you have done but that is not who you are.
You are my son and I love you.”
I felt waves of forgiveness wash over me. I felt the deep and unconditional love of my Father and my Lord Jesus embracing me much like I imagine the prodigal son felt when he was embraced and welcomed home by his father.
I desire for you to have the same experience. This is where recovery starts by being honest with ourselves and honest with God. Over the years we have done things we are ashamed of. These memories are like piles of garbage tossed into the basement of our soul. Because of fear and shame, we have kept them locked away in the darkness and the stench remains.
This exercise is simply taking out the garbage. This is inviting God to go down with you into that garbage, turn on the lights and allow Him to take the garbage out.
If you really want to begin to experience God literally changing you and helping you recover this is the first step and it is a very difficult one. However, I urge you to do it. Again, it is very important that you ask the Spirit of God to guide you in the process and to protect you against any demonic interference. Make it a sacred time alone with Him and take your time walking through your memories and writing them down.
I promise you this is critical and once you have finished it you will feel far less guilt and fear and will be ready to move on to the next step in our 180 Basic Training.