Thursday, February 23, 2012

Drug

So, what is my drug? What makes me feel good when the going gets tough? What helps me faster than anything to get that high, that numbness, that sense of calm and relief?

The answer… pornography and masturbation.

Last night I went to bed feeling completely hopeless. And I woke up this morning feeling the same way. I felt like a zombie all day long, as though anything that mattered in the world was completely gone. And I couldn’t find God. I couldn’t bring myself to go to Him. And as the day went, the more tempted I became. Old memories, flashes of images I’d just assume forget, constantly popped up in my mind.

I kept trying to block out the idea, especially after getting home. But as I got on my computer to check my email, those thoughts seemed to pound upon me. I finished looking up my email, replied where necessary, looked at my blog for a moment, and then pushed my laptop away. It just seemed to put a trance on me though. I knew how easy it would be. I knew I wanted to. I knew it’d make the pain go away. I put my hand up on the screen to close my laptop, but it just sort of sat there. I couldn’t bring myself to turn it off, to run, to flee. And then my hand was back on the mouse pad. I froze. I couldn’t bring myself to go ahead in either direction. And I started crying and praying and yet those images and the pain kept darting across my mind. I prayed for God to give me a way out. My heart was pounding, I was breathing deeply, and before God could ever do that, my fingers started working and I was looking up pornography. And then that led to masturbation.

My drug…

An hour and a half later I seem to be thinking much more clearly than I was. For starters, I know I never should have got on my computer feeling as tempted as I was. And I should have done more throughout the day to reach out to God. I’m not going to make any excuses for myself. After five days of living without these things, I had to give in just for a few moments of good feelings? No. I took a cheap, sleazy, quick way out, instead doing what I should have done.

And so now that I’ve fallen, I will have to pick myself back up (more like God will have to drag me up), dust off, look back ahead down that long, narrow road, and start treading along once more.

5 comments:

naturgesetz said...

"And so now that I’ve fallen, I will have to pick myself back up (more like God will have to drag me up), dust off, look back ahead down that long, narrow road, and start treading along once more."

That's right.

And remember that you are walking along with God.

stanw said...

I want to say that it's gets easier but in reality those old feelings, urges and thoughts, have a way of disturbing us when we think we're past them. To pick yourself up, dust off and look forward to being stronger when those things that pain you threaten to sideline your walk. I've been through the same thing so many times as you have written. We really do have to carry on and focus on our walking along with God, he is the One who we can depend on and trust above all. Without Him, where would we be, that's a scary thought. Cheering for you brother.

Anonymous said...

Hi Brandon,

I'm a fellow Christian who has struggled with same-sex attraction like you have.

I'm debating whether to open up a line of commmunication with you, but from the heart of someone who cares about a fellow brother in Christ, hear me out. I won't elaborate too much for now. Just a simple point:

Don't fight this battle in your own strength. Your words sound like my train of thinking on days where I would backslide, and then the underlying, implied conclusion: "I just couldn't help myself. I should have done more, but I didn't." Be careful, because all roads on that train of thought are self-destructive in the end.

That's my thought for now. Take it for what it is, insight from one soul to another.

When and if we should start up an online dialogue, and get to know each other better, you can know my real name. For now, you can call me "Sophus."

God bless you, brother.

Brandon said...

Thanks for writing guys. One thing I know I need to keep in mind more often is that I'm not alone--that God is "walking beside me". Sometimes it just really does feel like I'm on the road alone, with God only as a spectator. I know that's not true, but, and this is especially if I'm not feeling the best in the world, it can just seem that way.

Sophus, I know what you're talking about. It's like I said, there are moments when I feel like I'm on my own though. I honestly did pray and want God to intervene, but it didn't happen. I just didn't feel his presence with me at all, and I felt like I had to rely on my own strength. How do you get beyond that though? What could I do different? I mean, I am open to ideas, because I know I'm not strong enough on my own.

And may God bless you as well. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi, Brandon.

I've taken some time to think about what you've said in reply.

To be honest, one crucial problem you have is that you live on feelings. I say that because 1) I've read several of your blog posts now, and 2) I speak from personally making that same mistake.

To answer your previous question directly: I get beyond feeling separated and absent from God by choosing to get over the feelings. I get beyond not feeling his presence by choosing to believe His insistent promises to be with me always, and to NEVER leave me.

But porn is another issue. Mainly because I've been so hooked on it for so long that underwear ads can be porn to me (they used to be, but by God's grace and self-discipline they're not the snare they used to be).

Quick testimonial tidbit about myself: I went through the Door of Hope course on Setting Captives Free, and keep in regular contact with the man who mentored me through the course. One thing I don't see you discuss in your blog is whether you've found someone who can keep in touch with you 24/7 to help you overcome the addiction to porn.

I'll say it in caps, not to yell, but for emphasis: IF YOU DON'T HAVE A DEDICATED ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER YET, GET ONE, AND DO IT FAST!

That's my answer to what you could do different: get an accountability partner who's not going to put up with you riding the fence. Because honestly, dude, you cannot stay in the middle forever. You need to decide once and for all where you stand in regards to what you will do with your sexuality. Surrender it to God (and get something better in return), or live a life worshiping beauty and pleasure, and miss out on the God who created them both.

Looking at this most recent post, You're contemplating a line of reasoning that I considered two years ago.

I concluded that the Bible is very unambiguous about sexual immorality, especially same-sex attraction. Even a committed, loving relationship between a same-sex couple still counts as outside God's boundaries for sexuality.

Not that I haven't seen the kind of love you speak of between two men or two women. I've seen it in my own family, so I don't speak my conviction lightly here.

For the sake of being honest, I will tell you I still struggle often with same-sex attraction. The major temptation now is to fantasize about the innumerable beautiful men who attend the university where I study. I'm learning to pray blessings over them and avert my eyes.

On a final note, I will tell you personally that I have had a dead month where God has seemed distant to me. But believe me, it's not because He's been distant. It's because my flesh has been fighting Him relentlessly to get back into its old habits.

Think of it this way: in moments of temptation, I've been like the guy in the story about prayer. He was drowning in a lake, and prayed to God for rescue. Several times he prayed. A canoe, a raft, and a helicopter each passed by him, and he kept turning them down, expecting God himself to come save him. When he died he stood before God and complained, "Why didn't You save me?" to which God replied, "What do you mean? I sent you all those people to help you, and you kept turning them down!"

Don't get so wrapped up in a preconceived notion of how God should deliver you from temptation that you miss out on the actual plan He puts in place for you. It's better than what you expect, and it's usually not what you wanted (at first).

a side note, btw: I'm 25. What little I've learned is God IS always there, regardless of whether or not we feel him there.

Anyway, thanks for replying to me. I hope I haven't rambled too much here. Only the comment size limit keeps me from writing any further lol. :P