Losing the battle before the battle starts. I played on a lot of bad teams in sports where the score was determined before the race or competition started. I ran cross country and swam in high school. These are two sports when you can just look at the times and figure out if it’s going to be close or not.
Our team wasn’t good, we went into a lot of meets having no chance. We went out there tried our best, our best wasn’t good enough. At times in life it can feel like we are running a losing battle. This is how I felt going up against porn.
I was never really tempted to have a drink that could lead to a drinking problem or smoking or drugs, but porn was something that consistently tempted me. I have to remind myself temptation is not a sin. In Mark 1 we see that Jesus gets baptized. Listen to what happens afterwards Mark 1:12, 13… “At once the Spirit sent him out into the desert, and he was in the desert forty days, being tempted by Satan.” Being tempted is not a sin.
I tried to run from it, it wouldn’t go away. The problem with me and porn, it is highly individualistic to look at porn. I wouldn’t want to look at it at work or public places but at home with nobody else around. Temptation can set in, and I would give into temptation time and time again. When we give into temptation, then the sin happens.
I felt that I was the one who gave into my temptation. I could overcome my temptation on my own. If you can do that, more power to you, if you cannot, get help. I found out I was running a race by myself rather than as a team. Defeating porn can rarely be done on one’s self.
In sports and a lot of hobbies you have coaches, captains, teammates and fans/family that are cheering you on, wanting you to perform to the best of your abilities. They are there to help you through your struggles, make you practice hard that way when the challenge comes up you can stand up to it. In order to defeat temptation, I needed help. I have accountability partners, software on all the computers and phones I use for accountability. When my wife and kids are gone, I have people purposely call me late at night just to check what I am doing. I need to stay busy. I am a firm believer in “idle hands are the devils workshop.” Staying busy prevents me from falling into temptation.
I wish I could say that I stopped cold turkey and never fell into temptation again. I did, time and time again. By having the accountability partners/programs and staying busy, it can and does prevent me from falling into the traps of temptation. God still gives us free will to do what we want and I had a decision to turn to porn or not. There was a movie called Minority Report.In the movie they could see crimes committed in the future and stop them before they would happen. They would overcome a possible temptation. Eventually they gave up on this system, human nature/desire can still stop a crime from happening.
Just because temptation happens, doesn’t mean falling into it. Being tempted will happen, what you do with that temptation is your choice and it is mine. I needed help and sought help.
It doesn’t have to be a losing battle. You can overcome temptation.