Integrity is defined as, “The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness.” So, it goes to reason that if you are a person of integrity, you are one who is truthful and aims to have “moral uprightness.” To help you with this mission, the following are 10 important tips to help you maintain sexual integrity:
1. Get Real
Recognize that sexual temptation is unavoidable in our sex-obsessed culture. Erotic images on billboards, films, television and a thousand other stimulants are bombarding you daily. Being a Christian doesn’t exempt you from temptation. The godliest of men can fall prey to it. So the first step towards maintaining sexual integrity is to get real. Admit to yourself that sexual temptation is a problem that you have to reckon with. Remember John’s warning: If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves.
2. Get Serious
You should know by now that sexual sin ravages everyone connected with it. What you may not know is that every sexual fantasy you entertain, every flirtatious conversation you keep up, or every “second look” you indulge in is the seed for AIDS, adultery, a broken heart, a shattered life. Get serious. If you’re entertaining lust, you’re dancing on a cliff. Take concrete action now while you can. “Lust when it is conceived, brings forth sin. And sin brings forth death.“ (James 1:15)
3. Get Ready
If you really believe an earthquake is coming someday, you prepare for it by developing an emergency plan. If you really believe sexual temptation is both common and can become lethal, you’ll make an “emergency plan” for it, too. Decide in advance what to do when you’re tempted. Decide how to distract yourself, who to call, and how to escape close calls. Even St. Paul admitted: “Like an athlete I train my body to do what it should, not what it wants to do. Otherwise, I fear that I myself might be declared unfit.“ (1 Corinthians 9:27)
4. Get Connected
Sexual sin thrives in the dark. If you’re caught up in any sexual vice, one thing is certain. The secrecy surrounding your behavior is what strengthens its hold on you. However ashamed you may feel about admitting your problem to another person, the reality is this: You can’t overcome this on your own. If you could, wouldn’t you have done so by now? Take a hint from James. “Confess your faults one to another. And pray for one another, that you might be healed.“ (James 5:16) Find a trusted, mature Christian friend to confide in. Make that friend a partner in your recovery. And NEVER assume that you’ve reached a point where you no longer need accountability.
5. Get Brutal
I believe there’s an eleventh commandment somewhere that says, “Thou Shalt Not Kid Thy Self.” If you’re serious about sexual integrity, you’ll distance yourself not only from the particular sexual sin you’re most prone to (fantasizing, pornography, affairs, prostitution) but you’ll ALSO distance yourself from any person or thing that entices you towards that sin. Sometimes, even a legitimate activity (certain movies, music or clubs, for example) may be OK for other people to indulge in, but not for you. Get brutally honest about your lifestyle. Anything in it that makes you prone to sexual sin has to go. “All things are lawful for me,“ Paul said, “but not all things are edifying. I will not be brought under the power of anything.“ (1 Corinthians 6:12)
6. Get Help
Sexual sins are often symptomatic of deeper emotional needs that a man is trying to satisfy in all the wrong ways. Repenting of the sin itself is a necessary first step. But recognizing the conflicts or needs that led you into that behavior may be the next step, requiring some specialized care from a Christian professional. Don’t hesitate to seek Godly counsel if you’re trapped in cycles of ongoing, out-of-control behavior. The answer you need may be more than just “pray and get over it!”
King David (who was no stranger to sexual sin) found refuge in Samuel’s wise mentoring. (I Samuel 19:18) If you’re willing to seek professional help for taxes, medical care or career counseling, surely you’ll be willing to do the same to maintain your sexual integrity.
7. Get Comfortable
The problem of sexual temptation isn’t going anywhere. It’s been with us since time immemorial. And there’s no doubt it will plague us until Christ comes. So get comfortable with the idea that you’ll need to manage your sexual desires throughout life. Always remember that your sexual integrity is but a part of the general life-long sanctification process all Christians go through. “I count myself not to have attained perfection,“ Paul told the Philippians. “I am still not all I should be.“ (Philippians 3:12-13) So learn to love the process of pressing on, not perfection.
8. Get Love
“I’ve been looking for love in all the wrong places,” an old song laments. The sexual sin you’re drawn towards may indeed be a cheap (though intense) substitute for love. You can repent of the sin, but not of the need the sin represents. So get love in your life: friendships, family, spouse, fellow believers. A man who truly loves, and knows he’s truly loved, is far less likely to search for what he already has in places he’ll never find it. “Why do you spend your money on that, which is not bread, or your labor on that which cannot satisfy?“ Isaiah asked. (Isaiah 55:2) Learn to be intimate and authentic. It’s one of the best ways to protect your heart and your integrity.
9. Get Grace
It isn’t the sinless man who makes it to the end. Rather, it’s the man who’ll learn to pick himself up after he stumbles. If your struggle seems relentless, remember this: when you commit yourself to sexual integrity, you commit yourself to a direction, not to perfection. You may stumble along the way. But that is no justification for sin. It’s just a realistic view of life in this fallen world. What determines the success or failure of an imperfect man is his willingness to pick himself up, confess his fault, and continue in the direction he committed himself to. Remember Paul’s approach: Forgetting those things that are behind, I press on towards the mark of the high calling. (Philippians 3:14)
10. Get a Life
Lastly, What’s your passion? What’s your calling? How clear are your goals? And, by the way, do you have any fun? The man who doesn’t have a life —a passion, a sense of meaning, an ability to play as hard as he works —is a man with an emptiness tailor-made for sexual sin. Life is about more than keeping yourself sexually pure, as important as purity is. It’s about knowing who and why you are, where your priorities lie, and where you’re headed.
In conclusion, if you don’t know that much about yourself, you have some serious thinking to do. Commit yourself to developing your life as a good steward of your gifts and opportunities. Make that the context in which you seek to maintain your sexual integrity. Sexual integrity for its own sake is a good thing. Sexual integrity for the sake of a higher calling is better. So by all means turn from your sin. But as you do, turn towards a goal-oriented, passionate, meaningful life. That is repentance in its truest, finest sense.
These tips come from the web site Everymansbattle.com. They have articles and blogs you can read, which can help you, concerning sexual issues. You will also find a number of resources you can obtain, as well to help you live in sexual integrity.
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10 responses to “10 Tips For Maintaining Sexual Integrity”
(NIGERIA) THIS IS A GOOD SITE FOR ALL BELIEVERS TO VISIT. PLEASE KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK. THE LORD IS YOUR STRENGTH.
(KENYA) Once down with sexual integrity, Christians have failed to get up and run back into God’s hands. Instead, we painstakingly hide and justify our acts, thus, courting more disaster where we risk to fail dismally. Often one is confused and slides into self-pity & isolation. I thank God for this site — a must for God’s children.
(ZIMBABWE) A well researched article and unbiased. Such information should be widely broadcast for the benefit of all. This is what will preserve our marriages. It cannot be denied or over emphasised that most of us men are at one one time or the other craving for sex. Forewarned is forearmed. Thanks bro.
(ZIMBABWE) Thanks very much for this article. It is very helpful and leaves no stone unturned as to what God requires of us in our marriage. If only we could listen to God’s guidance, great change would be seen and marriages would remain in tact. Thanks very much.
(ZIMBABWE) Thank you for this.
(USA) You are very welcome. May the Lord minister to your marriage in His amazing ways!
(ZA) I’m struggling with sexual purity, especially pornography. Recently after a pastor made an altar call after a service I went to be prayed for and the particular church leader who laid his hands on me asked me what I needed the Lord do for me and I thought to myself this is that one opportunity I have to cease to be honest with the LORD. I whispered in his ear while worship continued and I told him I’m struggling with watching pornography. He laid his hands on me & said a prayer and I believe that the LORD has broken the chain that bound me.
I haven’t gotten back and I’m not planning to. I’ve discovered that what triggers me to watch porn is that 90% of the time I would’ve had my heart broken, angry, sad or disappointed. When I traced back prior watching it, I’ve found that to be a pattern.
I need some help with regards to dealing better with my disappointments, hurts or anger… I don’t want to fall into this ditch again. The LORD knows how bad I need help. What can I substitute the urge to watch porn after I’ve been disappointed?
I’m not married and not dating currently. But I hope to soon. I need help so that this won’t be a burden to my future wife. Thanks, God bless you all as you respond!
(UGANDA) I’m so impressed with this new innotation and it has helped a lot to maintain our marrgage relationship JULIUS 44
(ZA) To my brother who is struggling with disappointments: Just tell yourself that you do not live by a relationship. We tend to tie our lives to such temporary relations. Also review your reason for getting into a relationship. If it’s marriage, ask God first for a partner before you meet anyone. He will guide you to the perfect match. If ever it breaks down, learn to thank God for He has plans to prosper you, and move on prayerfully!
(NIGERIA) This site is like a meal table to me.