The porn problem is one of those best kept secrets in the church. The truth is Christians are not immune. Pastors aren’t either, so any ministry to pastors would do well to address this issue. A great resource on the subject is http://vimeo.com/34346242. In this video, John Glisson, founder of Pure Community Ministries, addresses the cycle of addiction in a way that really applies to all forms of habitual sin.
Whenever we give in and indulge, we experience defeated thoughts. Doubts about God’s love, questions about the genuineness of our faith plague us. Guilt leads us to forms of penance. We rachet up our religious activity and re-enter another period of abstinence. We “white knuckle” it, making promises to God and ourselves. For a while it seems to work, until the cycle of temptation begins anew.
The truth is when we fail it’s not really the result of a deficiency of will power or personal strength. It’s a “grace deficiency.” Only Christ can transform us from the inside out. When we fail, it’s likely we are still trying to change ourselves. But it’s only His grace that “teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly passions…” Titus 2:11-12.
With a commitment to ministry to pastors, I am greatly concerned that we grasp this. May the Lord show us what it means to really believe that Jesus is enough and that the same power that brought Jesus back from dead is ours today. We trusted Christ to save us from sin’s penalty. Only trusting Christ can deliver us from temptation. May our love relationship with Jesus be so powerful and present in our lives that sin loses its grip over us. One day we wake up and realize that freedom has come, because God did the work.