Pornography Addiction and the Christian

In order to recognize the impact of a pornography addiction for Christians, it is crucial to first understand God’s plan for sex. According to God’s word, sex is not a bad thing! It is a beautiful act that serves multiple purposes. It is a sacred element designed specifically for humans with simple guidelines. After He created Eve, God’s first instructions to Adam were "be fruitful and multiply," (Genesis 1:28). It is within the confines of a marriage that God supports and condones sexual activity. Multiple times throughout the Bible, we are given examples of when sexual intimacy is acceptable; each one of those times is within the borders of the marriage bed. God loves and supports an active sex life, within the confines of marriage. It is when sex leaves the marriage equation that difficulties arise.

Pornography does just that. It removes the element of a marriage, of that committed and trusting relationship. The idea of pornography and its impact on men and women is not new. Although its form may have changed over time, it has been around for decades. What seems to be a little more common now is the admission of an addiction to that pornography by Christian men and women. Just because you are a Christian does not mean you are immune to the pull of pornography, nor does it make you a hypocrite. It simply means you are struggling with a temptation that is affecting you spiritually, physically, and emotionally.

Spiritual Struggles

When we sin, no matter the sin, we feel separated by God. Sin, by its very nature, limits any sort of relationship we can have with the Father. It is when we feel a slight disconnect from God that we allow sin to enter our lives in the first place. When we live our life according to God’s plan, we have a daily relationship with Him, a hunger for His word and understanding, and a feeling of spiritual fullness. An addiction to pornography slowly takes over that role in our life. You begin to spend more and more time with your movies, images, and stories and less time on your relationship with God. This separation causes a deep sense of loss, which may cause you to seek more time with your addiction.

Physical Struggles

Like many other addictions, an addiction to pornography is about personal satisfaction. The wonderful feelings associated with reaching a sexual climax are sought after time and time again. When this physical completion is reached using pornography though, the satisfaction is not nearly as good, which causes you to search more and more for the gratification. Over time, you may feel a decrease in motivation and energy. The secrecy of trying to hide an addiction to pornography also causes exhaustion and depression.

Emotional Struggles

Sex is a vibrant part of any marriage, but it is more than the physical act that calls to us. Relationships are built on commitment and trust and those emotions are what make sex special and whole within a marriage. It is an opportunity to physically show your partner how you love them, how they make your feel. In all meanings of the phrase, it is your opportunity to make love to your partner. When pornography is introduced into the equation, the emotional element quickly flees, leaving only the physical act. It is difficult to feel tied to your spouse when your mind is filled with the images you have recently watched. Although they may not ever say anything, your spouse will feel this emotional disconnect. Because of this, they will slowly pull further away from you, which may cause you to reach further into your addiction. Over time, it can become a vicious spiral that will be more and more difficult to break.

Unfortunately for many, simply making the decision to stop viewing pornography is not enough to end the addiction. As a Christian your first place to begin is on your knees. You know there is power in prayer and that will be your greatest source of strength. But, just as with everything else, God does not simply give you what you ask for. He simply agrees to partner with you and walk with you while you work to be free of the chains of your bondage. Seek support from others who are in your same situation. This can be in the form of a support group, addiction treatment, online supports, or individual counseling. Spend time reading books or other devotionals that deal with this topic to help as you readjust your way of thinking when it comes to pornography. Visit with your pastor or another individual you trust to guide you and not judge you.

However you seek support from your addiction to pornography, you simply have to remember you are not alone and there is hope. When you make the choice to turn away from your sin and remain committed to Christ, you will be forgiven and have the opportunity to start over.