I want to write to you frankly and honestly from a wife's perspective. A wife who has seen her porn addicted husband delivered and her marriage restored. A wife who has endured the brokenness of this kind of betrayal and experienced the healing, redeeming power of Jesus Christ. I want to give you hope. So let's start at the place where most husbands addicted to porn eventually find themselves........
You've been caught. Your wife now knows your secret.
Now what? Is there hope for your marriage? Will your wife always be this angry? Will your wife ever be able to forgive you? Will she leave you?
Being the wife of a husband who has struggled with an addiction to porn is a difficult cross to bear. Isolation and loneliness can become the norm in order to hide the shame this brings to the heart of a woman. I understand. However, as I have found in my own life, in order to become healthy, you MUST at some point, reach out to someone that can encourage you and help you to make sense of the emotions you battle everyday. Not only do you need a trusted Pastor and/or counselor but a woman who understands....one who can share the road to healing with you. One who knows what it is like to walk through this kind of betrayal.
How do you find such a person?
First and foremost is prayer. Pray that God would send that friend to you. A divine connection in which she can help you and you can help her. A woman who will encourage you and be quick to point you to Jesus. Chances are, you may already be friends with a woman who has been broken by her husband's addiction to porn, but too ashamed for others to know.
Beyond finding a sister to share this journey with you I want to encourage you to become involved with a support system, a group of women that you meet with on a regular basis who are passionate about becoming the women God has designed for them to be. Not in spite of their husband's addiction but because of it! No doubt, God will use these women to strengthen you and help you on your journey to wholeness.
Have you ever thought to yourself or told a friend that the reason you chose NOT to divorce your husband after betrayal, was because you wanted to "please God?" You are not alone. Over the years, I have read where many women have said that very thing, me included. That should be no surprise. After all, as women who have been saved by the grace of God, through Christ, pleasing God should be what motivates us all. However, Even though we may have stayed in a difficult marriage in order to "please God", the truth is we may not be producing fruit in our lives that is pleasing to him at all. Let me explain.
Betrayal in any form can cause deep rooted issues in the heart of a woman. Even though a husband is repentant and moving forward in Christ, wives can get stuck in the aftermath of such devastation. Our pain and wounds can lead to mindsets that we don't even realize we have. If we do not completely surrender our broken hearts to Christ, the pain can begin to produce fruit in our lives that is totally opposite from our initial intentions.
Think about this...do you secretly consider yourself a "martyr" for Christ for giving grace to your husband and not leaving him? Do you feel like your husband "owes" you something because you chose to stay with him even though he did not deserve it? Could it be that you are emotionally creating an unfaithful heart towards your husband by making an idol out of your "sacrifice" to stay married to him? I am only asking these things, sweet friend, because these are the very things that God brought to my attention not too long ago. Tough stuff, I know! Can I tell you that these are very dangerous mindsets? SO, how can you tell if, in your heart of hearts, these mindsets may have taken root? It is really simple...by your fruit.
You now know his secret. Your husband is addicted to porn.
More than likely, you caught your husband looking at porn or you found it by accident on the computer. You were hoping it was just a slip up, a wrong click of the mouse, a one time event. But as time has gone by and more truth has been revealed, you realize it wasn't a one time event but an ongoing obsession. The choice that you will eventually have to make is whether you should tell somebody or not.
Your husband, most likely, will not want anybody to know. He may be telling YOU to keep it a secret. After all, it is his secret not yours. It's his to keep. The truth is, you feel so shameful about this new discovery that you are okay with not telling anyone. What would others think? You begin believing the lie that it is best for nobody to know. It could destroy the "perfect" christian family image that you portray to those around you. So you hide your pain. You put your mask on every time you leave your home. You smile, determined to not let anyone see your wounded heart. You pull back from others. You seclude yourself, so fearful that those who know you best may catch you at a week moment and see your brokenness. You make excuses for not going out with your girlfriends. You cry yourself to sleep at night. Nobody knows what it is like to be you. And part of you is just fine with that. The other part of you wants so badly to be heard, to be understood, to be free from the secret that has left your heart so painfully shattered.
What do you do?
Whether you have stumbled onto this blog by accident or you are intentionally reaching out for some answers, please know that you are not alone. Whether you have "caught" your husband looking at porn or he has came to you with his confession, I understand. It hurts. Just to say it hurts doesn't really seem to equate to how you are feeling. It's deeper, way deeper. Something inside of you feels at though it's died and you are left grieving that loss. The emotions that you are going through, at times, may seem unbearable. I understand. I would love to take your beautiful face in my hands and tell you it has NOTHING to do with you!! I know that is so hard to believe, but it is true. I would love to hug you and tell you that you are loved deeply by the One who created YOU!! I would love to speak to your wounded heart and tell you there is HOPE. I long to carry you to the healer, to the ONE who understands rejection and betrayal like no other. It is in that place that I know you will find peace and comfort in the days ahead. His word tells us that He is close to the brokenhearted. He is close to YOU, my friend!!
Dear sister, no matter what you are facing today, God's Word is the place to turn for peace, comfort, and wisdom. His promises are for YOU!! His Word is HIS LOVE LETTER TO YOU. Please don't underestimate the power of His Word. It is alive and active and can bring healing to your wounded heart.
His Word will speak to you right where you are at. I want to encourage you to find a scripture or two that speaks to your heart and meditate on it until you believe it with all your heart. Cling to Jesus, He will not fail you! Here are a few to get you started.....
I see all of your hardships and I care about your sufferings. Psalm 31:7
My unending love for you will never leave you. Isa 54:10
You can trust me - I will never forsake you. Psalm 9:10
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. Isa 43:1
You are precious and honored in my sight, and....I love you! Isa 43:4
Let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in Him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the Lord loves rests between his shoulders. Deut. 33:12
Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Don't be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. 1 Chron. 28:20
The king (is) enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your Lord. Ps. 45:11
For you are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Eph. 2:10
Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares for you. 1 Pet. 5:7
I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me. Phil. 4:13
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Prov. 11:28
Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust". Ps 91:1-2
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness the prisoners. Isa 61:1
"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future". Jer. 29:11
Most churches make it difficult for there to be transparency when it comes to sexual sins. It's just not socially acceptable in our christian circles. These issues are seldom talked about or addressed. If they are, it's only on rare occasions. If an alter call is given for those struggling with porn or sexual addictions, the alter, in most churches, will remain empty. It is too shameful and too risky.
Why is that? In a world where we are bombarded with sexual images and promiscuity, it really makes no sense.
Just walk through the halls of your local high school. No fear there. Teenagers are talking about it and not even batting an eye. Why isn't the church a comfortable place to address such things? Why do we make it so taboo when it is all around us?
These issues are real and they are destroying families and tearing our nation apart.
Statistics prove that the majority of those addicted to porn are not outside the church any longer, but sitting in our church pews, leading our youth groups, and even preaching from our pulpits. So, why aren't we talking about it? This silence has left us vulnerable and as prime targets for the enemy.
Shouldn't Pastors everywhere be speaking TRUTH about these issues and WARNING the body of Christ about these types of seductions? Not just once a year, but continually? After all, let's be real....what do most men and, yes...even "christian" men, think about? What do most teenagers think about? SEX. And yet, it is the least thing talked about in our churches today.
However, our culture handles it just the opposite. No guessing what the majority boldly proclaims. They make it quite clear. And they are not at all sorry for it or ashamed of it. They bombard us with sexual images and innuendos day in and day out. It's all over the TV, the movies, in the media, on the internet....it is everywhere. They are portraying a twisted, tainted view of sexuality and they have everyone's attention.
The longer the church keeps silent the more causalities there will be in this war against the enemy.
How are our boys and men going to know how to handle this kind of assault if they are not equipped? How will they learn the proper way to view women? How will they learn the truths that will help them avoid the traps that satan sets for them on a daily basis?
No doubt, we are all being taught everyday by the world's standards. Standards which have lost the meaning of virtue and purity all together. What used to be unacceptable is now the norm. Could it be that the church is no longer grieved by the things that grieve the heart of God? The truth is, our hearts are being seared. Yes, we claim to be followers of Christ, but just look at the statistics. Not only is the porn statistics staggering but the divorce rate is as high in the church as those outside the church. Many of those divorces have porn and/or other sexual addictions at the hem.
Why is this? Is the church failing?
It is my opinion that we can no longer be silent.
We need to teach and equip with regards to these kinds of issues as boldly and unashamedly as the world portrays them.
We need to take back the values that exemplify the character of Christ.
I want to encourage, and to beg Pastors everywhere to be bold, to speak the real hard truths, and to expose the lies of the enemy.
Being the wife of a former porn addict I realize I am so much more passionate about this then most, but shouldn't we all be?
Not only are we not talking about these issues, but we are not helping those who need it. Instead of finding freedom from such things at the alters of our churches, in community with believers..... those held captive are walking away bound, wounded, and fearful of being exposed.
The truth is, if our alters are empty because men and women are afraid to admit they are struggling, (because many are), then something needs to change. We need to create an environment of freedom where they can be real and transparent. Where else can a man or woman turn who desires help and needs support? They need Jesus. They need the church to be as Christ meant for it to be. A place they can run to, not run away from. Just sayin'. What do you think?