@GoldenNuggs42 Hey bud, I’m here to tell you that you are not alone. Some coincidences that caught my attention is that we are the same age and have come to a very trying place in our faith as we realize we’ve been serving our fleshly desires instead of the Lord. Also I’m tall and lanky as well, my brother had the same thing happen to him with his lungs and had to miss out on some of his college so I’ve seen the effects that takes and I am praying for that situation, just remember to be honest with people at UPS that you are serious about the job once you get released. Don’t keep them guessing.
Now to the major parts of our story. Like you, I claimed the faith but relied on myself and things of this world to bring satisfaction. I was raised in a christian home, went to church, played on the worship team, was homeschooled and looked like I had it all together on the outside. I got married 3 years ago and have a daughter that’s a year and a half. I’ve been incredibly blessed with a successful career no debt and at age 24 I was feeling pretty good about myself. This year, my mask was ripped off and the truth that I have been hiding behind finally came out. My faith, marriage, and who I portrayed to be was a fraud. Though I’m only 24, I have been dealing with a sexual addiction for 17 years that has consumed me in every area of my life as well as depression and suicidal thoughts.
This year, it all came crashing down like a tornado ripping through the forest. I had began to talk to women on social media sexually and was setting myself up to have an affair. After my daughter was born I had a lot of resentment towards my wife and we were always fighting. I was extremely mentally abusive towards her and one day after we had a fight I called her to apologize while I was at work. Then came the question, “are you cheating on me.” My heart sank, I was at the crossroads of pursuing my sin and continue covering up what I was doing or to come clean and face the judgement of God. At first, I began to deny it. Then, during the phone call, I came clean about messaging woman but still covered up and justified the majority of the issues.
That was over 5 months ago and I have been coming to an empty home (now RV) ever since. The last 5 months have been the learning process however. I began to dive into the scriptures every day and have not missed a day since. I got baptized and gave my testimony of living a double life in front of an entire congregation. I began counseling, talked to mentors, memorized scripture, got rid of social media and my smart phone, put a monitoring program on my computer for accountability. Went to church and joined a bible study. I convinced myself I was doing the right steps. People around me praised how I was turning my life around. I still took control of the narrative and based my faith off of the works I was doing. My focus was on God but still sought after the lusts of my heart. It has taken me this long to come clean of the sins I committed and to be honest and not hide the fact that I still have been struggling with this addiction. I was manipulating my wife, going behind her back lying to her as well as the people I was talking to. I found new ways to watch porn and to look for the approval of women as I committed adultery with them in my heart. I deceived my heart as I still claimed and poured myself out to God.
I share this with you because I am learning what true repentance looks like. We are to give God every area of our life and turn away from sin not just turn away but hate it and to realize our flesh is constantly trying to take us down the path of destruction. We cannot serve God and our flesh. Romans 7: 18-20 “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.” If we do not have a heart of repentance and hate the things that we do then we are living in sin and serving our flesh and the world which is the anti christ. To hate sin means we should be compelled to rebuke it in any form. The way to do that is to abide in christ, the Holy Spirit is our gift in salvation, we have a conscience of the things we should not do. It is not us who can overcome sin but the spirit and we have to give every part of our life to God, bear our sins, deny ourselves so that we are no longer living for sin but rebuking it and exposing it for what it is, not justifying what we have done. We have all sinned and fallen short every single day but that is no reason to except it and justify it. Thats why we should pour our hearts out to our Lord who has sacrificed and covered the magnitude of our sins. Even in trials we face, He’s trying to draw us to him to give us the gift of peace and eternal righteousness. We have to embrace His love and fear His wrath.
Hebrews 12:11 "For the moment, all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." Discipline is how we grow into better people. Even though it sucks, the fact that we have a Heavenly Father that cares enough to discipline us out of sin and into peace and righteousness is a beautiful thing. All we have to do is turn away from our sinful nature which is impossible without abiding in Christ. That means humbly confessing sin without giving excuses understanding that sin is what brings condemnation and turning away from it if it becomes a temptation again. Also making amends with the people you have miss treated shows a change of heart. Reconciliation is the biblical example of us returning to the presence of God.
This is the journey I have been going through and I hope it brings encouragement to your situation, everyone has a story that is unique and in the end we are either sanctified in our faith or cast into Hell for our disobedience. Matthew 7:13-14 “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”
I am praying for you friend, you are not alone in this. My challenge for you is to read the book of James, that has been one of my favorite books during this journey and puts faith into perspective for me and how to treat people. My heart goes out to you.