10 Core Competencies for Sexual Purity ~ blog
As I have been thinking about the top 10 reasons millions of men and women are addicted to porn, I had the thought what would be the value in that? You probably are already aware of why you have this highly addictive behavior. So, instead of focusing on the problem how about we focus on the solution?
What are the core competencies for finding freedom from sexual sin?
I believe that the first step is knowing and telling the truth. We all have this amazing capacity to compartmentalize. We are able to store our feelings or actions about porn into a box, store it all away down in our basement and go there when we feel the need. Unfortunately, it is not that simple.
What begins as a little secret we believe we have under control begins to have a life of its own. We find ourselves spending more and more time going to that box and getting our sexual fix or stress relief. What used to be a stash we had hidden has grown and our time with it has expanded not only in quantity but also frequency.
What began in my thoughts and imagination with fantasy became published in magazines with foldouts. Soon, I not only had an adult bookstore in my mind but had stacks of porn hidden in my room. Then one time I walked into a real adult bookstore and was shocked at what I found. There was not even a book in that bookstore. It was filled with magazines and video booths.
Today, we have instant access to any kind of sexually enticing material we might desire. It is all immediately available with our phones and can be accessed almost anywhere and anytime. And thanks to the new phenomenon of smartphone addiction we have developed the reality of never being without our phone.
And even though we no longer need to store our stash in the basement because there is a never-ending and almost infinite number of things we can see online, we do it in secret. It has become our secret sin. The companion who is always with us, always available, always willing, and able to meet our every sexual desire. But she always takes more than she gives.
So, the first core competency we must establish is we must know and tell the truth. Now I know that thought scares you to death but bear with me and I will walk you through this and you determine when and to whom you will tell the truth. The reason sexual sin has grown so powerful and destructive in your life is because you have kept it a secret. I am not saying see if you can put a notification in the church bulletin or have to wear a name tag saying you are a porn addict.
Let’s start with you being honest with yourself and with God. Sure, I know you know that God already knows everything about you, and you think you already know all there is to know about yourself. But do you really? We have this amazing capacity to rationalize, minimize, and forget. Sure, I knew I was addicted to porn for years but as long as I compartmentalized it, I could live with it. Which was a delusion. See what John writes in 1 John 1:5;
“This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth.”
If you are going to begin to experience freedom from sexual sin, we must follow the instructions God has given to us in His Word. And if this sinful behavior is something you are refusing to address out of fear and keep it in the darkness you will not be having fellowship with God, living in a lie, and you will continue to be walking in darkness.
Therefore, the very first thing we do in the 180 Recovery Program is we write down our sexual history. You have already tried to start your recovery by pleading with God for forgiveness and promising you will not go back to it…but you don’t, and you do. You don’t stop using sex and you do to back to it. That is why we call it an addictive behavior.
So, how do you do this? Let me make a few suggestions. I did this over a weekend. I went down into my basement, sat in my chair alone and undisturbed, and began writing down my sexual history. Find yourself a place where you can do this. It could even be in your car and follow these guidelines.
Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you and guide you through this process. Ask Him to help you remember the things you did and the things others did to you. Do not go into any details about what happened which might be triggering to you. I simply noted what age I was and the basics of what happened. Also, I did not rush through it. It took me nine hours, some on Saturday and some on Sunday. I made it a spreadsheet that took nine pages and locked it away as a file on my computer.
It was not easy but what happened after I finished absolutely blew me away. I read it over, start to finish, and by the end found myself somberly weeping. I saw for the first time how sexual sin had been a part of my life and ruined almost every relationship I had with the girls I dated. Then I saw the full extent of my sin against my wife and how unbelievably fall I had fallen, doing things that I never ever thought I would do.
I literally said to God my Father that I felt like a pile of shit, absolutely worthless and disgusted with myself. And it was at that moment that I heard my Father say to me in my mind;
“John those are the things that you have done…
but it is not who you are. You are my child and I love you.”
I literally felt waves of forgiveness wash over me. I felt the love of God for me deep into my heart and mind and as it says in Psalm 23;
“He restores my soul.”
If you really want to begin your recovery this is a good place to start. Be honest with yourself. Be honest with God. And tomorrow we will learn about being honest with others. Who? How? And When?
Take your time doing this. Ask for the help of the Holy Spirit so that you can know and write down the truth. Pray on the full armor of God and be filled with the Spirit and He will enable you to do it.