Hi, my name is Doug. I’m nineteen. I am a new Christian and a sex addict who never knew his biological father. My mother placed me in foster homes when I was little, though later, when she removed me from the homes to live with her, she gave me a book on sex containing pictures that led me into a life of regular masturbation and pornography use. To compound the problems, I was sexually abused. I eventually became sexually active and addicted to drugs and alcohol. I didn’t want to live like this for 70 more years, so I made a deal with God. If I give my life to Jesus for 30 days, and do 100% of what He told me to do and my life improved, I would not kill myself.
It’s been thirty years since that conversation and I’m still living my life, following Jesus and over time, He has broken my sexual addiction. I have been clean for more than 25 years.
As a Christian and a licensed psychologist I have had the opportunity to help others break the bonds of sexual addiction by appearing on Oprah, Dr. Phil, Lifetime Network (who made a movie based on my practice), on numerous radio, and in magazines and newspapers all over the world. My latest book, Clean: A Proven Plan for Men Committed to Sexual Integrity is my newest weapon to fight this sexual war and uses strategies to teach you how to fight for purity.
Right now, as a young man or woman, you may be thinking about school, friends, social media, but it is at this time in your life that the enemy likes to strike his devastating blow seducing you sexually so he can reduce your chances of being the blessing to the kingdom you are supposed to be.
So, what’s your line of protection against the enemy’s attack? I want to give you some tried and true battle strategies designed to help you avoid the sexual mine fields that the enemy is even now already setting up for you.
1. Fear God: Respect goes a long way and when you have respect for who God is and know he is watching. Remember, God rewards his faithful people.
2. Pray and worship: God loves you to talk to him and worship him. Remain mindful that prayer and worship will bring you closer to his heart and his values.
3. Read and memorize the word: When you choose to read, know and memorize the Word, it can give you the mind of Christ and help you make choices that will be pleasing to him.
4. Commit to purity: Making a commitment to God and to others (parents, friends, youth group leaders) to remain sexually pure can make your success fighting the enemy that much more likely. Make this commitment a priority. Use a symbol, like a purity ring, to mark this commitment and its importance.
5. Pornography: Pornography is lethal, creating and encouraging lust that can easily move you to more sexual behaviors. Here is a simple solution: Block it! Block it from your computer and phone. Obtain accountability software in order to keep you honest.
6. Holiness: We are all holy because we are created by God to be holy. He didn’t create us wearing jeans and a t-shirt. He created us in our naked form. When you see the opposite sex naked, you are seeing God’s holiness. It is our responsibility to protect it, not consume it like it’s a soft drink.
7. Social networks: Be smart. Let your parents have access to your social media accounts. Make sure your Facebook friends are all real friends, ones you interact with face to face. If you don’t know someone personally, you don’t know their values or motives and this can easily become a trap.
8. Have physical boundaries: Think about what you want your boundaries to be when you are dating. Write them out and go over your list periodically . Think about how long you date before you hold hands, before you kiss, etc. I would be happy to send you the list I created; email me firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send it to you.
9. Be accountable: Ask a spiritually mature adult you feel comfortable with to help keep you accountable. You will need to be honest with this person about your behaviors now so when you start dating her your accountability person can help protect you from “accidents.” Your purity isn’t the only thing that you are in charge of, you are also responsible for protecting the purity of the person you are in a relationship with.
10. Stay public: The less time you spend alone with a friend of the opposite sex, the better. Spend time in public places during reasonable hours. This will increase your chances of successfully protecting each other sexually.
Sex offers the most powerful neurochemical experience you will ever have. But, like fire, it has its place. Fire in a fireplace is good and beneficial similar to sex inside of marriage. Fire outside a fireplace, though, can create damage to a person’s possessions just as sex outside of marriage creates damage to a person’s soul and body (in the form of guilt, shame, regret, pregnancies, STDs).
To enjoy a life of sexual success, you need to protect the gift of sexuality during this time. Oftentimes the battle of lust starts before sin (James 1:15). If lust is a problem, take a rubber band and put it around your wrist. Snap it every time you lust. The pain created by the rubber band snapping will remind you to master yourself, self mastery being a virtue that will help you reject lust in future moments. Doing this for 30 days will start to reduce your tendency to lust by strengthening your self mastery. If you continue to wear the rubber band for 90 days, you will see a dramatic difference in how often you lust. And you will be strengthened against the enemy’s attacks.
God made sex for you to enjoy in marriage and he wants you to have a sex life that is healthy and vibrant all your life long. When you choose to protect your sexuality, you are benefitting several people. First, you protect your sexuality for God’s sake. He really rejoices in those who love him more than their hormonal urges. Second, you protect your sexuality for yourself. Your purity will help your self esteem and confidence. Third, you protect your sexuality for the sake of your family and friends as sexual secrecy facilitates separation from loved ones. Finally, protect your sexuality for the sake of your future spouse. He or she has been making a commitment to purity and will appreciate that you are doing the same.
One final note on protecting your sex is to learn to guard your entertainment. If you are watching TV, reading magazines and listening to music, the enemy uses these as traps. Some of his favorite traps are to teach you that your sexuality is yours alone, not Gods, and that sex is separate from God and your relationships. These are lies but if repeated often enough, you could start to believe them. Be careful about your entertainment. Our future as a church and nation will one day be in your hands. Protecting your sexuality now is helpful so when it’s your time to lead, you can lead us well.
To learn more about living a porn free life purchase the book. While you are reading this book, it if any time questions come up we are here to answer any questions. Feel free to email us at email@example.com or give us a call at 719.278.3708.