Pornography isn’t that big of a deal …that’s what I used to think. But I was wrong. It’s a life and a marriage destroyer.
How I Got Addicted to Pornography
When I was 14 years old, my dad and I bought one of the first satellite dishes. It gave me access to hundreds of channels including pornography nearly any time I wanted to see it.
We didn’t keep the satellite dish forever—but it began my pornography addiction. All throughout high school I purchased magazines and developed a very unrealistic view of sex. Plus, I had an extremely unhealthy view of women. I didn’t see anything wrong with what I was doing.
I Wanted Out of the Pornography Trap…
That all changed in May of 1990 when I accepted Christ …and my life was changed.
I knew pornography was wrong and it was not what God wanted for me; but I had sown the seeds of a porn addiction into my life for over five years. I wanted the desire to look at pornography to go away overnight; but it didn’t.
In fact, I struggled with it for the next 10 years.
Pornography was my “secret sin” no one knew about. The struggle was real and emotionally and spiritually intense. I doubted my salvation, and I almost walked away from the ministry. I thought that God hated me, and I just could not get control of the addiction.
When The Internet Happened
In 1996 I was introduced to the Internet. And that’s when things almost spiraled out of control. It wasn’t a big deal at first. I was just going to “research and see” what was out there. That way I could be a “more effective minister.” What a lie!
I lived a roller-coaster life with my porn addiction. I would do really good for a while, even going months without looking at porn. And then BAM! I would surf the Internet for several days in a row, yielding to the lure of the enemy’s voice.
Finally in March of 2000, I decided I was done. Somehow I was going to get free from this addiction. Because I was getting married in April of that year, I knew a pornography addiction would destroy my marriage. I couldn’t let this happen.
Thankfully, I can honestly say for the past 14 years I have been free of my porn addiction. Above all, I thank God who has provided me the strength. Without His help I wouldn’t be a free man.
I know I am not alone in this struggle; and the good news is you can be free from it too.
So, here are 5 steps that helped me overcome this addiction and that I still follow today. They are simple steps, and yet they are not. But they are important.
1 – Ask for accountability.
I am not talking about finding someone who has the same problem as you and you both confessing that you “messed up” that week and then feeling OK because you were not the only one to sin. I am challenging you to find someone who does not struggle with the problem. Ask them to get in your face.
One of my best friends, Clayton King, and I made a pact. If he or I view porn, we have to write the other person a check for $1,000. It might not work for you; but there have been times I have been tempted and thought about my checkbook!!! [Determine together what will work for you.]
2 – Get away from the web.
This is tough for an Internet junkie… but it is SO important. Jesus said if your right eye causes you to sin then gouge it out. So I don’t think it is a stretch to say if your computer causes you to sin then get rid of it. I had to take this step. For five years I did not have the Internet in my house. That’s because I did not trust myself. This may be the first step you need to take.
3 – Do not travel alone.
Men, under no circumstances should you travel alone if you are struggling with porn. This is especially true if you are in the ministry. Temptation is real so having accountability with you when you’re traveling is such a big deal. [If this is not possible, figure out another realistic plan with your accountability partner.]
4 – Tell your wife of your pornography addiction.
She has a right to know …and she can pray for you in powerful ways. I told Lucretia about my struggles before we were married. She still prays for me and holds me accountable today. This will hurt her; and it will put a strain on things. But if she finds out in some other way —and she will —then not only does she feel like you cheated on her but she feels lied to as well.
5 – Ask God to help you to develop a healthy view of women.
I realized, “That woman is some man’s daughter. And when I have a little girl I don’t want other men viewing her in a lustful way!” I have to admit—this one really impacted me. I have a daughter and I want her to be treated with respect and not as an object for someone’s self-gratification!
Also, I have been there —I have struggled. And yet I have overcome it. You need to know that the same Jesus who lives inside of me lives inside of you. You don’t have to live with this addiction. In this struggle, please know that there are ministries, which can help you, in addition to the help you can get from others.
Accountability was key for Perry’s victory over his addiction. This article is provided by the web site at X3Pure.com. It may be worth looking into this ministry for your own pornography accountability plan.
You may also want to read through the Pornography and Cybersex articles we offer on this web site. We encourage you do join God in doing all you can do to beat this thing.
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One response to “5 Steps That Helped Me Overcome Pornography”
Hello, how are you today? I would like to share my personal success story. You see, earlier yesterday, I was “all in” into a plot to engage in sexual sin. I had planned out to pursue pornography, but instead reached out to my accountability partner and confessed out the plan I was going to take ahead of time and God granted me victory!!! I wanted to mention the huge strength of God using an accountability partner in an addicts life to help the addict to spiritual victory.
My addiction started when I was 16 years old. I gave my life to the Lord at age 39; and yes, the shame of being a Christ follower living in sin and being married was totally unbearable. I asked also for God to take it away for years and also had a huge willingness to give it away like flipping a light switch for my addiction to end, but God never has. I struggle with sexual temptation throughout my daily life. However, it wasn’t until I confessed to a mentor and the Lord, that this darkness was brought into the light. Now if I mess up, which is very, very seldom, the first thing I do is get on my knees and confess to the Lord and ask for forgiveness. The second thing I do without hesitation is to email my mentor/accountability partner, which is actually the Men of Honor director at the pregnancy care center in Wayne County, Ohio.
And as scripture says, God is faithful to forgive me. But like I said, this time and as others, I live in God’s victory in having a man of God in my life and being able to reach out to him ahead of time to avoid living in sin. It never ceases to amaze me how God puts people in our lives for His glory. And thanks and praise to the Lord for this!!!
One more thing…my wife Sheri is the most beautiful person in my life under the Lord. She is so, so forgiving, graceful, understanding and loving to me and I thank the Lord for putting her in my life! She is aware of my addiction and is so forgiving to me. Thank you Sheri.
Also, there are on-line accountability websites that will contact an accountability partner what an addicts’ online activity is. One i have been using for a long while now is called “Covenant Eyes.” It also has strong filtering to block things of adult material. it has been an effective tool in living in victory with sexual sin. Just wanted to say. :) have a blessed day and thank you, Mitchell.