Taking an Axe to the Root of Pornography Addiction | World Challenge

Taking an Axe to the Root of Pornography Addiction

Many of us deal with bad habits. Some are easy to talk about. We joke about how we need to cut out those “comfort foods” or watch less television. Other obsessions feel deeply private and difficult to discuss, especially in church. Every addiction is planted in a deeper heart problem. Too often, the church has addressed sexual addictions by simply telling us to “stop” without digging deeper to the root of the issue. Today, Gary explores some of the fears and heart wounds that can lead to pornography addiction.

Many of us deal with bad habits. Some are easy to talk about. We joke about how we need to cut out those “comfort foods” or watch less television. Other obsessions feel deeply private and difficult to discuss, especially in church. Every addiction is planted in a deeper heart problem. Too often, the church has addressed sexual addictions by simply telling us to “stop” without digging deeper to the root of the issue. Today, Gary explores some of the fears and heart wounds that can lead to pornography addiction.

What are the ultimate ramifications of being addicted to pornography?

Gary Wilkerson replied, “My personal opinion and belief is that what Satan is really after is not necessarily to get a man or woman to look at pornography but to start being so stuck in that pattern of shame, of relief from the shame, by viewing something that brings us temporary pleasure.

“That cycle continues for such a long time unbroken without victory that ultimately, I believe the enemy's after our faith, like, ‘Are you ever going to really be set free? Is God strong enough to help you with this? How come you've cried a thousand tears and you're still stuck? Why is there no hope? Why have you repented, and you still have this deep, deep drive to go back to the same thing that you kind of hate but you kind of love?’

“Ultimately Satan is after God. He's after our view of God: that God's not for us, he's not strong, he's not powerful, he's not on our side, he doesn't care about us, we’ve failed so much that he's forgotten us, we're such losers and such sinners that we're no longer in his grace or favor so he's cast us out. So, Satan, that's really when he gets his ultimate victory.”

 

How did you find freedom from pornography addiction?

“I think most people never get free because they're only dealing with pornography or masturbation or lust. "I've got to stop lusting." "I've got to stop masturbating." "I've got to stop looking at pornography." They're not dealing with what's underneath. They go to church, and they might hear a whole series about sexual sin or whatever, and it's almost always dealing with, "Don't do this." "Men, don't look at that." "Let's have covenant with our eyes." "Let's have an accountability partner." It can be good if used the right way, but they're looking at the surface issue.

“For me, my freedom came when I looked underneath the surface, and I realized there's loneliness there and that there was a sense of fulfillment. There was a sense of being insignificant and that gave me a sense, "All these women—" It’s a weird feeling in pornography. It's like, "These women want me. They're attracted to me. I must be really masculine. I must be really powerful." If you feel like you're lacking power and you go to pornography to get that, or you feel like you're lacking significance and you go to get that. "I must be of significance because these women seem to be just showering their love all over me."

“If you just deal with stop wanting that love, stop wanting that power, stop wanting that affection, stop wanting that intimacy, it's not going to be enough because you were built to be loved, accepted, and have intimacy. It's just that you're looking in the wrong places for it, and so to deal with the issue of “Why do I feel unempowered? Why do I feel less than? Why do I not feel masculine—or feminine, for women? Why do I not feel accepted?” As I started dealing with those issues, I realized that God created me as someone who is significant. He created me as someone who's sufficient, who's lovable, who belongs,” answered Gary Wilkerson.

 

About Gary Wilkerson

Gary Wilkerson is the President of World Challenge, an international mission organization that was founded by his father, David Wilkerson. He is also the Founding Pastor of The Springs Church, which he launched in 2009 with a handful of people. He has traveled nationally and internationally at conferences and conducted mission ventures such as church planting, starting orphanages, clinics, feeding programs among the poorest of the poor and the most unreached people of the earth. Gary and his wife Kelly have four children and live in Colorado Springs, CO.

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