I find it interesting how as the most intelligent species, we are also the ones with the most issues. If you have not noticed, we talk a lot about issues here. But I pose to you a question: Is your issue really your issue? For now, that may seem vague and redundant, but you will soon see otherwise. As you continue to read, I am going to challenge and dare you. This is not for the comfortable or faint of heart. Get ready…
First, I will share with you a glimpse of my life. I was a porn addict for seven years, and I am just now finding my way out of it—slowly, but surely. (My pride still hates to admit it.) With porn, I had many other smaller issues that seemed unrelated, but nonetheless I was and am a recovering addict. With other issues that I prefer not to delve into at this moment, I decided to seek counsel from a professional after being abandoned by many accountability partners. Upon going to my counselor, we discovered things I never imagined as an issue. Come to find out, my main issue, my root issue if you will, was acceptance.
That was my root.
Looking back over the course of my recovery, I can now see that as being my root cause. Maybe I hid my root problem or maybe I did not—I am not certain. But what does porn have to do with acceptance? I’m glad you asked. Porn is there for you when you need it, and when you do not. Porn is there—an ever-present “friend.” If you are lonely, it is there for you. If you are stressed, there it is again. If you are in the celebration of life, yet again, it is there. Porn accepts all individuals with or without one’s problems and issues. Porn is very accepting.
Mark 4:21-23 (NIV)
21 He said to them, “Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? 22 For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open. 23 If anyone has ears to hear, let them hear.”
You may be thinking to yourself that this is an awfully random text to pair with this topic, but I would disagree. Roots of a plant are hidden and from the roots all other parts (issues) get their life—hence calling it root issues. Root issues are almost always hidden. Before you jump to conclusions, I urge you not to distort this text and proclaim your issues to the people of the world. I believe that would pervert the meaning and value of the scriptures. On the contrary, I believe that you should pray this scripture over yourself, specifically verse twenty-two. What on earth do I mean by that? Again, glad that you asked. When you pray about your many issues in life, as I do, pray that the underlying “root” issues will be brought to the light so that you might recognize them and begin your recovery too.
For some, there may not be a root cause to their porn addiction as there was in my case. Not a one of us is the same. I turned to porn because it accepted me. Now for the uncomfortable part:
- Ask yourself, “Why do I look at porn/feel the need to look at porn?”
Asking yourself this may cause you to search for your root. If so, fear not. The next few steps in your recovery journey may be scary, but it is definitely worth it.
- Identify a possible root.
- (This one is easy.) Read the next two XXXChurch Teen blog posts for some good advice.
- Seek accountability whether with a friend, pastor, trusted adult or professional.
- Keep at it. It may take a long time, but persist and persevere! (see Hebrews 12:1-13 for more encouragement)
To those of you who are just beginning your journey and to those who are persevering like the rest of us, best of wishes. You are most definitely not alone. We are in this together. You can do this! I want to hear about your progress, so feel free to share in the comments below. I’m rooting for you! (See what I did there?!)