We always want to start with the good. We rarely want to share the ugly, the imperfect and the unsavory. But life does not know about perfection, only heaven does. The only way to get to that perfection, transformed into an eternal being, is salvation: the road to perfection, but it knows both the extremes and the mundane. I guess the only way to live through each is to live through each in Christ: To walk side by side, to follow when He leads and where He leads. Easier said than done. But once it’s done, then the testing of our faith produces something beautiful; something nobody can take away from you.
We always want to start with the good, but I am compelled not to. I simply cannot, knowing that a bigger elephant lies in the room, staring at me, flapping its conspicuous ears, wondering when I will acknowledge its presence. This elephant would rather I acknowledge it in the privacy of my thoughts, not in public. It whispers shame. But who am I? I am the hard-headed person who chooses to ignore these whispers. I cannot listen, because if I do, then it will cost me my life. I don’t want to die. So I choose to live. I choose to start with the bad. I choose to expose the ugly that I may have life. So here is the ugly.
I have watched porn for five years now. Starting out, I never thought that it would get this far. That I would find myself alone, in consultation with my brain about whether the urge to watch a clip would overpower the resilience not to. I always thought I was strong. I never thought that I would say I do not have resolve. I always thought I was immune, iron-clad, spirit-filled and therefore sin-proof; at least the ‘bad’, ‘ghastly’, ‘shocking’, ‘big’ sins that would have me drowning in guilt for days on end. I always thought I was different. I thought I was special, until I got into my first relationship.
That relationship served a number of purposes. It was wrong, but I learnt some things from it. One of the most important lessons I learnt was how to hear God; and how to hear Him so clearly that I could stand by it, unshaken and unmoved, no matter the outcome. But I learnt other things too. I learnt that I could get aroused. I learnt that my desire to wait till marriage to get my first kiss would not come to pass. I learnt that my body could be touched in ways that felt so right yet were so wrong. I learnt that, even Christians, no matter how mature and in tune with God they seemed, could make bad decisions and carry along others on that ride. In that relationship, I discovered porn….. in a Christopher Columbus type of way. It had existed, yes. But it had not existed to me.
Five years later, I cannot begin to explain the journey. I cannot even try to remember the turmoil that it has been, the numbness I have felt…..or not felt, the guilt, the indifference, the roller coaster that has been this battle. I no longer call it a struggle. A struggle is something difficult, something hard to overcome, something gruesome that probably ends in defeat. I choose to believe that I have overcome. I only need the daily testimony as proof.
I lost the piece of poetry below when my phone decided to nap on me in December of 2014. I promised God that if I was able to access it, and the other beautiful gems that went along with the demise of my handset without having to consult a repairman, then I would share it. I would share it because it was and still is my prayer. Not all my posts will be about porn or struggles or journeys. But on this maiden post, I make a prayer I made in 2013; A prayer I am sure is the cry in many hearts that are entangled in the web of lust (pornography, masturbation, sex addiction). The prayer may be muffled by the screams and tantrums that the flesh periodically throws, but it is a prayer that needs to be made all the same:
Make Sex Beautiful
this notion has left most of us in sex cells/
jailed to perceptions planted by sales made/
by TV, internet, radio and music played/
so our cells crave perversion instead of holiness/
holy messages cannot be received because of this lowly mess/
this twisted net/
this snare nest that has the children of God breeding in secret tents/
crying every night for deliverance/
hoping every day for the blessed assurance/
to be renewed…..
So now wedding nights are dreaded/
for how can I feel like I am sinning although I am wedded/
how can I be at peace when the memories flash/
these scenes obscene, the pictures seen-trash/
the noises etched as they resonate/
desolate, full of garbage/
We are delivered yet crushed under the weight of our baggage/
and though to the past we no longer pay homage/
these memories still flow sometimes, no shortage….
So today I lay down the weight of people’s expectations/
take a knee and openly ask, Lord correct this situation/
and make sex beautiful/
remind me that like worship in marriage it is dutiful/
let all the towers built as the enemy’s stint crumble/
before your name which is a strong tower, May they tumble over/
let them fade and vanish at the resuscitation of your truth/
let us not be robbed of the joys of our youth/ for mistakes we have made/
all these lads and maid-ens/
let their wait be intense/
waiting for the day, not with fear or regret/
but an anticipation of your freedom to be made manifest/
a total overhaul from the lust of the flesh/
to the blessing of marriage from God when they become one flesh/
Lord make sex beautiful again by your Word/
restore the sanctity and holiness robbed by the world and its standards.//