We have all faced situations in life, which require decisions. We have proof that decision-making was one of the first things that God instilled in man from the very beginning. Eve had a decision to make after the serpent, in chapter three of Genesis, tempted her. Adam had a decision to make when God approached him, blame Eve or take responsibility for her actions?
The account of Adam and Eve in Genesis is proof that we will all fall at one time or another. Call it what you want—falling, failing, tripping, poor decision-making—it’s inevitable. We fall short of the glory of God. God created a standard for each of us to follow, but because of the very foundation we came from, none of us meet the standard. Yet, in spite of our shortcomings, God still loves us enough to give us the opportunity to seek forgiveness from Him. This concept proves God’s goodness.
For many of us, we cave into sexual temptation time and time again. Some may struggle with pornography while others are fighting to keep their dating relationship pure. Let’s be honest—falling sucks, especially when it comes to our sexual temptations. We’re no different than Adam and Eve. Genesis 3:6 states that the fruit of the tree was pleasing to the eye. Once Adam and Eve gave into the temptation, they were overwhelmed with guilt and shame. The same thing happens to us when we give into sexual temptation. We carry the guilt and shame while we’re down for the count.
Carrying this weight is one of the worst feelings in the world. It’s not what God wants for us. You and I are His children and He wants us to live in favor. However, we can only get God’s best when we do our best not to fall. So, what do we do when we fall again?
- Get Up – So many people choose to stay down because of the guilt and shame they carry. Pray, read scripture, and fill your mind with pure things. Get out of the environment in which you fell in. Being on your feet and attacking life feels great, but if you’re down, you’ve got to at least get to your knees to start crawling. That’s when God is most proud of you.
- Establish a Plan for Purity – If you find yourself constantly stumbling, then it’s time to put a plan together to protect yourself. For me, I put my laptop, iPhone, and all other electronic devices in my bedroom once my wife goes to bed. If you have unfiltered access to the internet on any of your devices, then your first step in your plan needs to be X3Watch. Any person with unfiltered access to the internet has a problem. Your plan should include boundaries. My wife and I had to establish a plan before we were married. We realized very quickly that lying on the couch together was too much for us to handle. Thus, we had to establish boundaries.
- Execute the Plan With Accountability – Let’s be honest, a plan without accountability is a plan destined to fail. You’ve got to invite someone into your story. You are not strong enough to fight this battle alone. Find a pastor, mentor, or trustworthy friend to share your struggle with. Share your plan with them and ask them to keep you accountable in executing the plan with excellence. If you don’t have anyone that you can rely on, then X3Groups is the best place to start! Michael Jordan had a plan to win championships. He couldn’t win them without Scotty Pippen and the other players around him. The same goes for you and me!
- Re-evaluate the Plan – You may establish a plan and execute it with accountability in place, but that doesn’t mean you won’t fall. If you find yourself tripping up, then you need to ask yourself if you’re really committed to the plan. Satan’s role is to seek, kill and destroy you. He will do everything in his power to make sure you don’t follow your plan for purity. It’s for this exact reason that you will need to step back and re-evaluate periodically.
- Find Your ‘Hot Button’ – Whether you classify yourself as an addict or not, we all have hot buttons that make our struggle or temptation come alive. It can be as simple as seeing a woman’s cleavage in a picture on Instagram. As silly as that sounds, you know it’s true. Whatever hot button makes your struggle come alive; eliminate it from your life.
- Celebrate Your Success – We live in a culture that is quick to come down on people when they fail. Be different. Set goals in regards to your purity and celebrate your success when you accomplish those goals.