A couple months ago I was at a retirement party, not my own unfortunately.
I ran into a former coworker whom I haven’t seen in several years. We were catching up and I asked how his wife was doing. He relayed that they had gotten divorced. I replied with, “Oh, I’m so sorry to hear that”. He said, “Oh, don’t be. It’s better this way. Neither of us were very happy.”
I think one of the worst lies of our modern culture is, “You deserve to be happy”.
You DESERVE to be happy?
What did you do that causes you to deserve that?
But that’s a whole other devotional.
My point is that this line of thinking is really saying, you are allowed to make decisions that are based solely on your feelings. I find that nowhere in Scripture. In fact, we find quite the opposite throughout the Bible.
But, this line of thinking has crept into how we choose to act, sin included.
In the category of pornography & lust, we can point to the biological release masturbation gives us or the chemicals released in the brain when we view certain images.
We can justify our actions by pointing to the frequency with which we want sex versus the frequency with which our spouse wants it.
We can normalize and minimize things to the point that we change the label of ‘sin’ into ‘relieving tension’ or ‘relaxing’. However, we aren’t the ones that get to do that . . . God is.
We as men have the capacity to hear things straight (and I think we value this). So, let me give it to you straight.
Your sin tendencies with lust & pornography are no one’s fault but your own.
Yes, we have things passed down to us.
Yes, we learn things from negative people & influences in our life.
Yes, we live in a society that normalizes a lot of things
but just because something is “normal” or legal doesn’t mean it’s okay. And it certainly doesn’t mean something is healthy.
God outlines what our behavior is to be as men throughout Scripture.
You may not like it, you may not agree with it, and you have the freedom to ignore it or apply it.
BUT YOU DON’T GET TO REDEFINE IT.
The good news is that while it’s your own fault you have this issue, God also gives you the capacity to work toward a solution. The key is we must stay focused on the source of that solution, Jesus. Imitation of Jesus is our calling as Christians and therein lies our path toward freedom.
I know, I know.
But God is patient, gracious, merciful, and tender. And the more you pursue Him, the more you open yourself up to see the impact He has on your behavior.
Focus on that.
Pray for that.
Thoughts to Pray/Journal:
- How & what have you tried to redefine recently? What sin have you called something else? How did you justify that in your mind?
- Who & what else have you blamed on your issues with pornography & lust? What have you been glossing over that you need to own up to?
- What do you need to do to imitate Jesus better? Make a list of 4 things and work on 1 per week or month. Then re-evaluate.