Pornography. Lustful Thoughts. Fantasy. Which one is your enemy, or do you battle with all three of them?
An important part of this whole process is nailing down what, exactly, is causing us an issue in this realm of the mind. We all deal with basic lies that discourage us from grace, but we also deal with a few sides of sin.
For women who have spent time in pornography, their primary enemy may be the fact that porn just does not go away. You cannot delete your memory, and during our walk in purity there will be times when those scenes play over again in our dreams, or in times of idle thought. How I wish my brain operated like my digital camera and I could just go through and delete all of the pornographic pictures, stories, and videos one by one. That would be fantastic, but it is not realistic. Instead, I have to find a way to flush those memories out and fill my mind with other things– with pure things. I also have to learn how to combat those memories when they do pop up.
For women who struggle with masturbation, it might be fantasy. You do not have photos or videos to turn to, but you are sure good at writing the story. Whenever there is a free moment, your mind wanders into the realm of the non-existent. You are the princess being rescued by your lover, swept off your feet to ride away into rapturous ecstasy. You play the part of the princess and the lover, and in that, you have found the perfect man. He gets you. He understands you. He is perfect; because you just invented him. Life is good, as long as it isn’t real.
Then there’s lust. Lust is more of an attitude than an action. It is a tendency, not a specific point in time. Still, it plagues us. It is a mindset we can have that can completely cripple our ability to find freedom.
After all, it’s a little difficult to win a battle when you are playing UNO with the enemy, right?
All three of these– pornography, fantasy, and lust– can be strongholds of both your body and your mind. You may not be looking at pornography, but that does not mean you are not watching it. You may think you cut off the air supply to your addiction, but that does not mean it has gone away. You may even feel your heart has healed so you don’t need it anymore, but that does not mean it will go away. Now begins the battle for the mind, the mind with which you are supposed to love God. You need to know who you are fighting.
I’ll be honest, my biggest enemies are (not were– are) pornography and fantasy. Fantasy, would actually be first. That may surprise you, it may not. I am a creative being, and if I get bored enough I get creative and daydream (the beginning of fantasy). Then lust comes along and completely screws up my creative process and my stored memories that I cannot delete pop up and add color to the whole scenario.
But there is freedom! Oh yes, there is freedom!
If we want true freedom, we have to tear down these strongholds in our mind. That starts with knowing what they are.
So, how about you? (Don’t answer out loud!) What is your stronghold? What is the one thing that nags at you the most? Maybe you have a combination of issues, which one is usually the first culprit? and lastly,