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Pornography: It’s Not Just a “Man’s” Issue Anymore

By Evangelist Michele “Mimi” Royster

Oprah did a show recently that featured Kirk Franklin sharing his story about how he was delivered, 5 years ago, from being sexually addicted to pornography.

Today, internet pornography is one of the biggest struggles Christians deal with. It’s easy to fall into because no one has to know about it. You don’t have to go out to a porn shop or store to purchase magazines and videos … you can engage in this secret sin right there in the privacy of your own home.

As a sister who ministers primarily to women, I hear from frustrated women who are wives of Christian men bound by Internet Pornography, but I was surprised to find that Christian men aren’t the only ones who struggle with this temptation … our sisters are struggling too.

One in six women in America struggle with pornography, and this number includes many Christian women. From the pews to the pulpit, sisters are caught in the grip of this addiction and are struggling to break free. One sister who sought me for a prayer of deliverance, expressed that the shame, the guilt and the feelings of hypocrisy are overwhelming. She felt extremely high while surfing the porn sites, but when she snapped back to reality, after hours upon hours of surfing, her low was lower than she could describe. She felt that she’d let God down, she felt filthy and unworthy of His love or forgiveness. Sisters are desperate to quit but just don’t know how.

Women who do not personally deal with this struggle may scoff at the sisters who do. But we must recognize that this is nothing to scoff at. The problem is serious. I for one, have noticed a dramatic increase in the number of sisters who are seeking prayer for deliverance from addiction to pornography. Today’s Christian Woman magazine recently polled its readers about whether or not they used pornography, and 34% responded that they’d intentionally sought out pornography on the Internet.

It is time to come together as Women of God and address this issue with prayer and compassion. NOT talking about it will fail our sisters who deal with this, and judging them only serves to keep them bound by it.

So where does a sister go for help?

Well you know my first answer is ALWAYS the Word of God, and I am aware that there are some web sites that are good resources for sisters who are struggling. But in my continued effort to keep things REAL and encourage sisters to be honest with and true to themselves, if the internet is where you are engaging in internet pornography, then steering you toward the internet for help may not be the best course of action.

Here are some suggestions that I am making as a sister who struggled with an addiction at one point in my lifetime. While it was not an addiction to pornography, it was an “addiction” none-the-less:

1) Rededicate yourself back to God. Truly breaking free of sexual sin takes a recommitment to God, for sin separates us from Him and the first step toward recovery will be to come to Him. Realize that God is a forgiving God, He loves you and has not left you. He is waiting for His daughter to repent, meaning you turn away from one thing and turn toward another. I encourage you to turn away from pornography and turn toward God. He is waiting to embrace you despite your faults and imperfections. Only God possesses the strength you need to break free … only the blood of Jesus has the power to deliver you.

2) Realize that you are not singled out … you are NOT alone in this. There are other sisters who are dealing with this too, and through prayer and God’s Word you WILL be delivered. You ARE a precious gift from God and you deserve to be free. Know that the enemy binds us in these types of traps as a means to distract us from our callings. Satan is terrified of you operating in the calling for which you were born, because when you do, you will draw so many men and women to Christ, he’ll have no companions burning with him in hell!! Listen sister, you have a Divine gift … a Divine Purpose. And from this day forward it is my prayer that you will not allow this addiction to keep you from using your gift for your purpose ever again.

Some would expect me to suggest that you consult a Christian Counselor at your church, or maybe your pastor. My reality is that it would probably be embarrassing to do so, because you simply do not want people to know. But if you feel comfortable consulting someone in your church, I encourage you to do so, for an important step in deliverance, is admission or confession to God about your sin.

3) READ GOD’S WORD! I simply can not stress this enough. For in His Word you will find wisdom and knowledge to help you renew your mind. A complete renewing of the mind must take place so that the images from pornography exposure are erased and pornography is no longer a temptation for you.

Romans 12:1 – 2

[1] I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

[2] And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Present your body to the Lord as a sacrifice. Give yourself, your addiction, your shame, your guilt … give all of yourself to Him. He loves you sister. He created you, He is your manufacturer and only He knows how to put your broken pieces back together again. By surrendering all to Him, you allow Him to be strong on your behalf. “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

Be not conformed to the things that are in this world, but be completely changed by renewing what enters your mind — totally changing what you think about. You don’t want to reform … you want to TRANSFORM. Alot of us confuse “reforming” with “transforming” and there is a difference between the two:

Reforming is stopping a behavior by using your own will to control it. While self-will can work for a while, it still does not clear the thoughts and images that have entered into your mind. As long as the mind has not been completely renewed, the behavior can and usually will continue at a later time. For example, a child that misbehaves. He can control his own behavior (reform) in the presence of his parents for fear of punishment, but as soon as his parents are out of the room, he engages in wrongful behavior once again.

Transforming means to become totally and completely different. You can no longer be influenced by old thoughts and habits because the old has been replaced with the new and you are no longer that person who was tempted by pornography. For example, a caterpillar “transforms” into a butterfly. Once it changes into a butterfly, it can NEVER become a caterpillar again. Renewing your mind transforms you from a caterpillar to a butterfly … you will be a completely new creature, incapable of returning to the person that you were before.

How do we transform by the renewing of our minds? By completely changing what we put into our minds. It may mean unplugging the computer and leaving it unplugged until your transformation takes place. It may mean consuming the Word 24 hours a day: in the car on the way to work; in your headset at lunchtime and even while you sleep at night! The point is to seek God’s Word. Nourish yourself with it daily, for God’s Word entering your mind and spirit is life-changing … GUARANTEED!

“A thorough separation from the pornography is necessary. This calls for a complete house cleaning. Get rid of any kind of magazine, video, or other pornographic stimuli within your home, car, boat, or other possession. Get rid of the VCR and television if you must. Watch out for covert pornography in Newsweek, Time, and National Geographic. They are not as innocent as they may appear. Take stock of your video collection; many PG and R-rated videos contain pornographic scenes (implicit as well as explicit.) Be honest about why you are keeping and viewing some of the videos you have.” (Doug Houck, Pornography – Attitude and Addiction, 2004)

The way we think determines how we will feel; the way we feel determines what we will tell our bodies to do (decisions/actions); what we tell our bodies to do on a consistent basis is what determines our habits. Think freedom and deliverance from this addiction. Think “I CAN DO THIS … I WILL DO THIS!” Feel empowered by the Holy Spirit within you. Make a habit of feeding your mind and spirit the life-changing Word of God.

The body can’t dictate to the mind what it ought to do … our minds dictate what the body will do. Ever notice a person who is brain-dead? They can’t talk, move their hands, wiggle their toes, feed themselves or control their bodily functions in any way? Why? Because their brain is dead therefore their bodies have no means of receiving instruction.

Godly thoughts —> Godly feelings —> Godly decisions/actions —> Godly habits.

You are an awesome, powerful, dynamic Woman of God, I don’t care what you’ve done or what someone has told you that you are. Bottom line, you are a Daughter of the Most High King and there is absolutely nothing that you can’t do through Him.

God bless you!

©2007 Michele “Mimi” Royster. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Published by: Christian Women’s Website.

Bio:
Evangelist Michele “Mimi” Royster is the Christian Women’s Website Director. Established in 2002, the Christian Women’s Network has grown from a small Yahoo! discussion group consisting of two members, to an evangelical ministry reaching thousands of women worldwide. See www.christianwebsite.com