Let me first begin with saying that this post is out of the ordinary for me. It does not go with the timeline at hand, but I HAVE to write about it. Other than salvation, this is the biggest thing that has ever happened to me. It’s so simple when it is laid out and you finally SEE it with unclouded eyes. But it was not that way for me – it took me 7 years to see.
I know that this is not a new concept, but it’s a breakthrough for me. It has changed my life, and thus the lives of everyone I know and will know in the future. I feel like I have been given a new life.
Freeing from Within
Do you have a sin, a
secret sin that NO ONE knows about? Do you dread anyone finding out? Are you married and even your spouse does not know about this sin?
You are in bondage to that sin. It eats you alive as you struggle to free yourself from its grips. Nothing works to free you from it. You feel as if God ignores your prayers. But still you are silent.
Time to break the silence. Confess it.
Even saying it out loud makes you cringe, or want to vomit. This will be one of the hardest things you will ever do in your life. But it is the way to freedom. It is the way to clean out your closet. You can be free of soul decay and depression. Your insides will no longer feel dead – they will be so alive it will feel as if your heart wants to burst from your chest. How do I know? I have been there. I have trudged for years of loneliness, searching for answers…going through counseling, pleading for God to remove the thorn. When it was in my own power to do so. All I needed to was to confess to my husband and my healing would begin.
It all started when Tony was in Iraq. I fell into a sin that I have spoken about before – porn. If you have not read my story until now, you will want to go back to the beginning to understand. After he returned home, I thought things would return to “normal” and we would live as a happy couple. Little issues here and there – but nothing major. I was wrong. It was rough. For years we struggled through marriage like many do. We went through phases of really good times and others that were so low that I had thoughts of ending my life (more on that another time though). It wasn’t just our marriage though that was bothering me. I kept secrets from my husband. I forgot them at times, but they would surface in ugly ways through thoughts or during fights. I would inevitably push them back, which would further disfigure the thoughts – twisting them into lies. I started being suspicious of everything my husband did. From where he was during the day to what he had been looking at online while I was not with him. It was a slow climb to becoming a dripping nag who thought less of her husband than I did of complete strangers. My very rigid and legalistic upbringing did not help either. My hypocrisy grew. I was guilty of a sin that I swore never to tell my husband, and here he was, just trying to be a good husband, lover, and friend to me. Not to say he was always without fault, we all sin and he did to, but this story is about me and my much larger part in the whole mess.
So my secret sin grew, and I started seeing the images I viewed when he was gone, in my head. Bit by bit any sexualized scene I had ever seen (my past before marriage was peppered with sin and sinful activities) started to make its way into my thoughts, especially when we would be intimate. I wanted to please him, so I would think on those images, movies, etc. to enable myself to be further aroused. The world tells us so many lies – especially about sex. Fanticizing about anything other than you and your spouse is opening the door to sin. It’s a personal invitation to it, and my door was open. As with many sinful patterns and struggles, I had good spurts of time, and bad ones. I would go through seasons of time where I would pray earnestly that God would free me from my sin. That He would remove the thoughts from my mind. That He would erase the images I had seen. But there were also seasons where I chose not to try. I just didn’t care. This went on for almost 7 years, start to end.
Until this week. (YES! This week! Crazy that someone can be that lost in something and they JUST KEEP GOING. – There IS hope for YOU!)
I had a choice. Either I could keep going with my cover up, adding to the pain in my life and our marriage (and every other relationship for that matter), or I could come clean and confess. I took the leap and confessed to my husband – it was one of the hardest – no it WAS the hardest things I have ever done in my life. Tears flowed down my cheeks, and I felt as if I would vomit from the sheer sound of the words exiting my mouth. Once I let go and started talking, the words flowed freely, as did the tears. I asked for forgiveness and appologized for what I had done. My husband graciously forgave me, held me, and continued to talk about what was going on inside me. We talked for a long time that night – into early morning. It was one of the best nights of our marriage. I feel like we grew closer that one night than we have in years of time. The sin that held me back was gone, and so were the walls I had been building up between the two of us.
The journey is not over, and I am taking the below steps to make sure that I stay focused and on track. I know there will be future failures, but as far as it is up to me, I will never withhold a securet like that from my husband. I feel clean inside and I am bursting with joy. It’s the best I have felt in YEARS. God is so good and so forgiving.
So how do you change? How do you even take the first step towards this FREEDOM?
Confess your sin/s to not only God, but also to the one whom you have sinned against. Is it your spouse? You have to say it to them – you have to be open and honest with them. It may hurt them, but it’s better than the hurt you and they are going through and will continue to go through if you do not confess.
Ask for forgiveness.
2. Determine the weak moments your sin takes place.
When are you most prone to fall? When do those thoughts or actions usually take place?
Recognize those moments.
3. Prepare your arsenal of defense.
Internal rolodex of truth words (scripture, spoken words from and to your spouse, etc.).
Personal photo book and personal video memories of spouse & self. (Ex. Intimate images, images of the way your spouse looks, etc)
When you need this defense, you will be ready with things to replace the negative/destructive images, etc that come to mind.
4. Practice this – put it to action!
5. Repeat and PRAY
*Add to your library every day
*Practice replacing thoughts/images
*Confess of failure if/when it happens
*Pray for help and partner with your spouse to heal
Looking on with N3w Hop3…