Thursday, July 16, 2015

Overcoming Our Strongholds








Originally posted on GodOverPorn.org


"One time is too many and a thousand times is never enough" is how a lot of us feel regarding sexual sin and the habits or bondage we feel unable to escape from.


We greatly love our sin and can't imagine living each day without it, yet we hate the monster it is turning us into or the fact that we are held captive by our lusts and can't seem to deal with them on our own.


Whether it is pornography or masturbation, going to strip clubs or sleeping with prostitutes, viewing R rated films that contain sexual references or nudity, or a thought life filled with fantasy and the result being everyone we view becoming a sex object (or slave) to us...we realize life might be better if we were free, although we don't quite know how to go about dealing with our addictions.


As for pornography, I highly recommend using an accountability report and filtering service such as Covenant Eyes on all your devices.  It blocks sinful content from appearing and sends a report of the web sites clicked on and the keywords searched for to people of your choosing so they can see what you have been up to in your spare time.  I use Covenant Eyes on my computer (believe it or not, I don't own a smartphone!) and cannot even explain how many hours of excessive porn use it has spared me from.


The reality is, if we do not have a filtering service on all our devices, there will always be a reason (or excuse) we have for viewing porn.  Always.  It might be a coping mechanism, a distraction from the tasks we know we must attend to, or a way to feed our lust because simply put, we just love porn.  It produces lack of sleep, a perverse mind where these scenes and images are almost constantly playing in our thoughts, and an obsession with sex.


If you sign up for Covenant Eyes using my affiliate link, you will receive the first 30 days free.


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If going to strip clubs or sleeping with prostitutes is your sin of choice, you will never stop doing so if you keep these sins hidden.  You must bring them to light with trusted friends or mentors (or a Pastor or small group leader).  If you don't have genuine accountability or godly friendships, seek until you find godly friends and genuine accountability!  This will include laying aside your pride (and fear of embarrassment) and stepping out in faith, trusting that as you pursue conversation with someone or many at a Bible-believing church (and pray earnestly that God would lead you to the right friendships and people to speak to), that He is able to provide.  Accountability and surrounding yourself with godly individuals who will ask you the hard questions about sin is crucial and a must if you are to get a hold on giving in to these sins.


Read God's word daily.  Read it hourly.  Memorize it.  Ask God to give you a love for righteousness and all that is pleasing in His eyes and in accordance to His word and to remove your desire for anything unwholesome and filthy.  Romans 12: 2 states, "And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect."  What we are really in need of is not only abstinence from the sins we return to time and again (and a game plan to follow this through), but a change of mind and heart and a purging of our desires and often corrupt fantasy - which will take place as we renew our minds through the regular reading of God's word.  ...


Pray daily for God's intervention, asking that He would do whatever it takes in your life and heart to remove even the ability to continue giving in to your lusts (or secret sins).


Throw away all DVDs, VHS tapes, posters, magazines, books, articles, or movies/TV shows/three-minute scenes you have saved on the computer or laptop.  Get rid of them.  Do not allow any filthy temptation to reside in your home, office, or car.  There will always come a time when you will desire to run back to these forms of entertainment, so not having them around will enable repentance in a great way since they aren't easily accessible.


John Owen wisely said, "Let no man pretend to fear sin that does not fear temptation also!  These two are too closely united to be separated.  He does not truly hate the fruit who delights in the root."


Let us pray daily that God would open our eyes to the following words of John Owen and give us hearts that cling to Him at all times (knowing how far we would fall if He wasn't the One restraining us):


"Let our hearts admit, 'I am poor and weak.  Satan is too subtle, too cunning, too powerful; he watches constantly for advantages over my soul.  The world presses in upon me with all sorts of pressures, pleas, and pretences.  My own corruption is violent, tumultuous, enticing, and entangling.  As it conceives sin, it wars within me and against me.  Occasions and opportunities for temptation are innumerable.  No wonder I do not know how deeply involved I have been with sin.  Therefore, on God alone will I rely for my keeping.  I will continually look to Him.' "

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