I started masturbating at a very young age, I honestly don’t remember a time before it was in my life. At first I was just rubbing myself in an innocent way. I remember it felt good to touch myself that way and it was comforting. A few years later I have the memory of my dad sitting me down, telling me masturbation was a sin and not to do it. I didn’t know what masturbation was but I knew I didn’t want to sin so I agreed not to masturbate. Jump ahead a few years, I was 13 or 14 and finally had the awkward moment when I noticed myself getting an erection from the bra and panty ads in the Sunday circular (yeah i was a late bloomer in noticing this). In a defining moment of shame, embarrassment, and piercing guilt I realized I had been masturbating forever. I realized I was sinning, that I was going to Hell, and I was paralyzed with fear. I vowed to never do it again but didn’t understand that my body was so accustomed to the chemical response that breaking the habit would take decades.

Fast forward to me being 20, newly married, and naive. I was sure that since I was married and could be sexually active that I would stop masturbating immediately. The sad reality was that my married sex life was never as fulfilling as my fantasy sex life. I found myself sneaking off to masturbate occasionally in the beginning but as my marriage hit difficult patches I turned to my old source of comfort and slowly began to embrace my sin more and more as things became more difficult in real life. You see the fantasy world slowly crept into my real life. I found myself masturbating often, at work, at school, at church it got to the point where I was a real addict to the chemical rush. Much to my embarrassment I needed that rush to feel normal and get through my day.

My marriage suffered, I slowly began to resent my wife for not being the woman who was the star of my fantasies. I let the resentment grow to bitterness and eventually it became out and out anger toward her. I began to control and manipulate her, to convince her to act out the fantasies. She began to resent me for this and rightly so I had promised to love her for her and now I was placing ridiculous conditions of my love. Eventually she and I split. God allowed me to plummet into deeper sexual sins eventually bottoming out only after losing my job, my friends, my children, and everything I owned.

God has healed a lot of my wounds but I daily suffer the consequences of my masturbation habit. You see, the fantasies eventually need to be acted upon. God tells us in the book of James 1:14 & 15 “Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. These desires give birth to sinful acts. And when sin is allowed to grows, it gives birth to death.” (NLT)

Take a moment and reflect on how your own desires have led to actions, how has the fantasy world creeped into your real life through masturbation? What are some of the negative consequences that you have suffered? What has God done to heal/restore you?