Satan is seeking to destroy marriage through pornography, but you should know for certain that God is bigger! “ . . . in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us,” (Romans 8:37)! One of the greatest lessons we have learned through dealing with porn addiction is that what Satan intends for destruction, God uses for construction. But, how does that begin when the use of pornography is revealed, either through confession or discovery?
When I was reeling with Todd’s shocking & devastating confession, my mind already began going through what my next step would be. I loved Todd and though his confession of his use of porn was excruciatingly painful, my love for him continued, and I knew our marriage would get nowhere if I chose to hold it against him, if I chose not to forgive him. I also knew that I would become a bitter and angry woman, so I chose to forgive him. I recognized that I’m a sinner in need of forgiveness too. Forgiveness is the essential first step to saving your marriage. Forgiveness does not justify the other’s actions or make them right; it doesn’t even erase the painful emotions. I was just beginning to feel them when I chose to forgive Todd. But it meant that every time I felt those feelings of pain, grief, & anger, I would turn them over to God and forgive him (in my mind) again.
Blockers & accountability are a must! I immediately put x3watch on my computer and I have K9 browser on my ipad. Get something for every device that has Internet access. I believe these tools help keep you from stumbling across porn; these alone won’t eliminate your porn problem. One critical aspect you must remember is that this is more about a battle of the mind than it is a battle of the Internet. You must locate ways to win that battle of the mind. Keep reading we will provide some additional ways to do this.
Another key approach to overcome this problem is to locate an accountability partner. I already had an accountability partner from church, but now that Diane knew she wanted to be one as well. This should be decided between both spouses though. I wanted out of it as much as Diane wanted me out of it, so she felt she could handle it (and thankfully, she never received a painful report). True freedom starts with wanting to get out of the darkness of porn & desiring purity. If you don’t have that longing, pray for it. God will give it.
An additional piece of advice regarding the battle of the mind is that it is not just the idea of allowing your mind to be on “things above”–you have to condition your mind to this! To do this you must be in the Word daily, that is every day! I have my Bible near the TV remotes and when I get the urge to turn on the TV, I pick up the Bible. The TV can be a way to not set your mind on things above and could lead to wrong thoughts. But the Bible has always helped me to set my mind on the right path.
Pray! Prayer is essential. Inviting God into the situation changes everything. I had already been praying Scripture verses for years, but after Todd’s confession, I prayed Bible verses like never before. Praying Scripture is praying God’s will, so He hears and answers. God is always faithful to His Word! I prayed numerous Bible verses for freedom, deliverance, victory, healing, restoration, and redemption, and I still do. Today, though, I pray them with thanksgiving and instead of out of desperation, but I’ve always prayed them with faith and passion. We cannot overstate the power of prayer!
Shortly after Todd’s revelation, I told him I needed three things from him. I needed him to pray for me, for my healing. I needed to hear him say that I was beautiful (it made me feel so ugly & worthless to him). Finally, I needed him to read/study the Bible every day, even if it started out with just one verse. We already prayed and shared a nightly devotional together each night. (If you’re not, do these things as well!). He agreed wholeheartedly and is now a godly man after my own heart!
Of course, Satan wants bad feelings to continue: guilt for the one addicted to porn and pain & anger, etc. for the spouse. God is bigger! I love 1 John 4:4: “ . . .the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” Don’t let Satan keep you from what God has for you and your marriage! Two months after Todd’s confession, I decided I would not even let myself think of it. So, I would sing praise songs, cry out “Jesus” repeatedly, or pray, “Move this mountain.” Choosing to face forward with my husband, not looking back, strengthened me and our marriage. I still have to do at times.
Talking about it is so freeing. Not that you need to tell everyone you know, but Satan loves a secret, so don’t have any. There is joy and freedom on the other side of disclosure—to your small group, pastor, parents, with whomever else you can share.
“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed,” (John 8:36). Give yourselves fully to the Lord and then fully to one another and receive all the abundance God has for you! Glory to God!