From the Blog

The Body of Christ; Light in the Darkness or Shadows of Gray?

When you read the bible, you realize that sexual sin issues and strongholds are NOTHING new. It is an area that will always be satan's battleground this side of heaven.  He horrifically takes the beauty of what God created for GOOD and twists it and darkens it only to bring destruction.  That is why, as followers of Christ, we need to hold on the the GOOD and expose the bad by speaking TRUTH about such things.

 However, most churches just skim the surface and/or avoid addressing these subjects all together and the TRUTH that brings freedom is being replaced with the LIES that are holding many captive.

 Unfortunately, it is so difficult for there to be transparency within the body of Christ when it comes to sexual sins and addictions. If an alter call is given for those struggling, the alter, in most churches, will remain empty.  It is far too shameful and 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 campus.  NO fear there!  Teenagers are talking about it and not even batting an eye.  Young girls are becoming comfortable sending pictures of their nude bodies or "selfies" to their boyfriends.  Sexting is now the "popular" was to communicate.  Our young people are being trained at an early age that sexiness is what's important and brings significance to who you are. Our young boys are believing it, as well! Girls bodies are only objects to be glorified! As a senior girl in high school if you are not happy with how your are built, parents are giving the gift of boob jobs to only confirm what the world is telling them.  UGH!!!! We are all buying into what the world says is important.

 NO doubt, the pathway to destruction is an easy one.  It starts with lust...with one look, with one selfish thought.  Why arn't we talking about these things?

Where is the LIGHT that the church is called to be?  Could it be that our light is being overshadowed by gray, luke-warm Christianity?

 WHY isn't the church a safe place to address such things?  Our young people WANT answers and guidance and WE as a whole are failing them in a huge way!  WHY do we make it such a taboo subject when it is ALL around us?

 These issues are REAL and they are destroying families and tearing our nation apart including "christian" homes.

 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, teaching our children, and even preaching from our pulpits.  Last I read was that 52% of the men sitting in our congregations are struggling with porn. That does NOT include all the young people who are struggling!! What? 52% is HUGE especially when you think of all of the wives, families and homes that are affected. These men are our spiritual leaders!

 Yes, satan knows exactly what he is doing!  It's the secret sin in our churches today!  You can dress your Sunday best, speak your christianeese, attend every church service, give a great sermon, all without anyone ever knowing about the bondage that holds you captive.  Sadly, even though the stats say that at least half of the men in our congregations are struggling, it seems that the church as a whole doesn't want to believe it nor address it!  What's it going to take?

 The TRUTH is, our men and boys are being bombarded with sexual JUNK everyday! How DOES a man live in this society and remain pure? Are they being equipped to handle the enemy's seduction or are they just being patted on the back and sent on their way as prime targets?

 The silence has left ALL of us vulnerable and an open door for the enemy and his destruction to invade us to the very core.  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. Now days you can't avoid it with the way the world blatantly displays it!!!  Our silence is allowing the dark seeds of this world to permeate and grow in the confines of our own churches and homes! Seriously, are we being courageous or cowards?  Think about it!

 Our culture handles it just the opposite.  NO guessing what the majority boldly proclaims!  They make it quite clear with no apologies!  The MORE skin the better.  Sex sales!  THEY are not ashamed of it at all!!  The bombard us with sexual images and innuendos day in and day out.  It's ALL over the TV, the movies, in the media, the news, sporting events, billboards, on the internet....it is EVERYWHERE! The world is portraying a twisted, tainted, view of sexuality and they have everyone's attentions, including those who claim to be followers of Christ.  They ARE influencing our hearts and we  just accept it without saying a word.

 The longer the church keeps silent the MORE casualties 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? ALL men need to be equipped BEFORE the addictions start and families are destroyed!! Isn't that what the church is for...the equipping of the saints? How about being PRO-ACTIVE instead of having to be reactive when a marriage is on the brink of divorce because of such things! Instead of practicing damage  control why not educate, encourage, and speak TRUTH in hopes to HELP them avoid the minefields and the traps that satan sets for them on a DAILY basis?

This rant is long, I know and I have repeated some things over. However, it is my heart's cry to encourage Pastors, leaders and parents everywhere to be BOLD, to speak the REAL hard TRUTHS, and to expose the LIES of the enemy when it comes to sexual sin issues.  Last time I checked, God takes it pretty seriously, why shouldn't we?

Let's get the conversations started!  Let's talk about the MANY consequences that the world ignores!  I won't go there on this rant but there are not only spiritual consequences but physical consequences, as well.  UGH!!! There is a high price to be paid alright for our silence and you can be assured that our future generations will be paying for it long after we are gone if we continue to put our head in the sand.  These issues are NOT going away, actually I am confident that the worst is yet to come! Then what?

 The TRUTH is 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!

 Sadly, 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.  If our alters are empty because men and women are afraid to admit they are struggling (because MANY are), then something desperately needs to change!  We need to create an environment of FREEDOM and HOPE where they can be REAL and transparent.  Where else can a man or woman turn who desires HELP and needs deliverance and support?  THEY NEED JESUS.  They need the church to act and be as CHRIST intended.  A place they can run to, not run from.  Just sayin'.  What do YOU think?

1 Cor 6:18  FLEE from sexual immorality.

Revelation 21:8  But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars--they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur.

 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5  For this is the will of God, your sanctification, that you abstain from sexual immorality, that each one of you know how to CONTROL his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the gentiles who do not know God.

 Ephesians 5:5  FOR YOU CAN BE SURE OF THIS, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure or who is covetous (that is, an idolater) has no inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and God.

 1 John 1:9  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

We need your help!

When I see the stats regarding “Christian” men who are struggling with an addiction to porn my heart breaks! Why? Because for every husband who is struggling there is a wife who is broken.  She is left hurt, isolated, full of shame… not knowing where to turn. Her husband’s secret is now her secret and she is being destroyed from the inside out.  These wounded sisters need help.  They need a safe place where they can be understood and encouraged.  I am SO thankful to share with you that Freedom Begins Here is offering such a place.  We have created a closed Facebook page for these women to find HOPE and ENCOURAGEMENT from other women who have experienced healing and wholeness in Christ.  The Facebook page is called "In Your Shoes" and can be found  by clicking on the link above.

We also have a support group of women in Northwest Arkansas who meet on a monthly basis.  You can find out more info about that OR encouragement for starting your own by visiting www.freedombeginshere.org and clicking on the contact tab.

SO……………. How can YOU help?

**If YOU love someone who struggles with a porn addiction, this ministry is for YOU!  It may be a husband, daughter or son.  It doesn’t matter.  This is your personal invitation to join us.  You do NOT have to walk through this difficult season alone.  There is HOPE in Christ and in community with sisters who will love you, support you and encourage you on your journey towards healing and wholeness! Friend, be courageous and join us today!

**If YOU are a woman who has experienced healing in Christ from this kind of betrayal, please carefully consider joining us in ministering to those who are wounded.  (2 Cor 1:3-4)  The pain in your past can be used for GOOD!  Friend, Trust me, you do not have to be a counselor or psychologist...all you have to be is available.  As God has comforted you, you can comfort others and give them HOPE.  You WILL be blessed by being a blessing!

**If YOU know of anyone who you feel would benefit from this ministry, please pass this information along to them.

**If none of the above applies to you, we STILL need YOUR support.  We ask for your prayers.  

Pray for our sisters, husbands, children, families, churches, and nation to be set FREE from the seduction of porn that is running rampant in our world today.  Pray that darkness would be brought to light.  Pray that the body of Christ will step up and address sexual issues as boldly and unashamedly as the world portrays them.  Pray that our churches, families and future generations will KNOW the TRUTH and be equipped to handle this war strategically and intentionally.

Together we CAN make a difference!

Sisters Supporting Sisters

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.

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"Start the Conversation" Discussion Questions

Jacob’s Story: Purity

  • Since God created sex and it is good (within marriage) why do we struggle to talk about it?


  • Why would it be a struggle having sex at an early age?


  • How do choices now affect future relationships?


  • What is purity? What are you told that it is at church? At school?


  • Do you want your parents to sit down and to be honest with you?


  • Why do we have so many misconceptions about sex and why do we avoid discussing it in church? How do we protect ourselves in this sexually saturated society?



Joy’s Story: Self-Image

  • What types of messages does culture send to us?


  • What does it mean to guard you heart?


  • How can relationships be difficult? Are Christians that are relationship more complex?


  • Is physical image the most important feature when you choose a boyfriend or girlfriend, or is it something else to you? What is it?


  • Why do you think God asks for sexual patience?


  • Besides just saying NO, are we being taught in church how to navigate through culture when God says one thing and culture says another?


Jamie’s Story: Talk About It

  • How are we supposed to help people who have struggles?


  • What did you do the first time you saw porn? Does that image remain with you?


  • Did you ever feel you were the odd man out in a conversation around sex? How did it make you feel?


  • Who have you had conversations around sex? Do you have an parent or adult to talk about sexual issues or questions?


  • If so many good people are involved in porn, sex, etc. why is it a touchy subject?


  • Who do you know that you can help that no on else is helping?


Kevin’s Story: Confronting The Issues

  • Do you prefer to confront big issues or to ignore them? Why?


  • Do you think porn and sex is rampant in our culture?


  • Do you believe 12 to 17 year olds are the largest users of Internet porn?


  • How is God view of sex different from our cultures view? What do you think?


  • How can we personally support purity and not come off as judgmental?


JD’s Story: Integrity

  • Discovery of porn on the internet…. how has it affected you?


  • How does porn affect relationships? Have you known someone affect by it?


  • So when we view porn or have sex does it affect other people?


  • What characteristic of Christ do you think that people see in you? What characteristics would you like them to see?


  • What is grace? Are there limits to grace?


Sarah’s Story: Vulnerable Situations

  • What did parents teach you? Baseball, swimming, instrument etc…


  • Have you been in situations that were uncomfortable with the opposite sex? How do we avoid these situations?


  • In you have a sex question, who do you go to?


  • James 5:16 “Confess your sins to one another that you may be healed”. Do you do this? Why or why not?


  • What does it mean that God is strong in our weakness? Does God give us more than we can handle?


Jimmy’s Story: Porn

  • Have you ever felt isolated with your struggles?


  • Have you every felt you were not in control of your sin?


  • Confession is good? Yes or No?


  • Has someone walked you through a difficult time? Have you ever been that “one” to anyone?


  • Why is it often harder to do right than to do wrong?


Wes’s Story: Sex

  • Does everyone struggle so why does everyone act perfect?


  • How is pornography addiction different from drugs and drinking? How is it the same?


  • Is purity good or bad … realistic or not?


  • Should we always avoid “awkward”? When should we not?


  • Is it awkward to talk about seex after we get started talking about it?

 

Video Blog: Episode 3

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IN THIS EPISODE:
- Hate Mail
- Find a safe place
- New Website
- Father+Son Update
- Iron Sharpens Iron


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