Recently my wife Diane and I were discussing the problem of pornography. We both vividly could remember our first encounter with porn.
As a boy about of 8 or 9 years old I had a neighbor friend who had a father who subscribed to Playboy. Both of this kids parents worked during the day and so we had a free run of their home, including his fathers magazines. This was in the early sixties and what you saw in Playboy back then you can easily see on network TV today. But the impact of those images was profound on me as a young boy.
Diane too remembers her first encounter with pornographic images. It took place at a home where she was a babysitter. She too remembers the profound impact it had on her young, curious mind.
Well, over 30 years later folks all over the country are connecting to the Internet. Many of the homes your kids and my kids visit are hooked up to the web. The images readily available are a thousand times more graphic and depraved than they were 30 years ago.
It is well documented that the core of most addiction problems start during a person’s childhood. This is why it is so incredibly important for people to filter their Internet access. But even beyond that, it is important to be very careful where they allow their kids to hang out. Many researchers believe that for some men pornography is even more addictive than narcotics. And its implications for the family are frightening—wife abuse, child abuse, incest, infectious diseases, divorce, etc.
I read a story written by a minister who became addicted to pornography. It started very innocently. He had purchased a new home and while they were moving in he discovered a hardcore pornographic magazine left behind by the previous owner. Out of curiosity he looked through it. He was never the same.
He ultimately fell headfirst into pornography, then started visiting adult establishments, then got involved with prostitutes, all of which led to him becoming suicidal. Finally after a total breakdown and loss of his ministry, and near loss of his wife, he got into counseling and turned his life around. But it all started with one magazine.
What we are doing here at Hedgebuilders is critical. We very well could be saving many folks the heartache that can come with exposure to pornographic images. Can we stop all of the garbage accessible to people in today’s world—no. But we can help people protect themselves from the onslaught.
The pastor I mentioned above now is involved in ministry to those who have sexual addictions. He lists these eight steps to take for those who get caught up in pornography.
Change your environment—eliminate the avenues that allow you access to pornography
Discover God’s love—no matter how bad you have messed up God still loves you and wants to see you turn it around.
Develop Godly relationships—folks that will hold you accountable
Begin to think long term. Dont dwell on past failures. Develop a plan for your life from now on.
Discover servanthood. Most sin is rooted in selfishness. Learn to serve others.
Expect total deliverance—With God all things are possible!
Take up the fight. Pour your energies into fighting pornography instead of falling to pornography.
“I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out to of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; and set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand, He put a new song in my mouth, and a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear and put their trust in the Lord!”