If you or a loved one are involved in sexual immorality, please understand, you are incapable of changing our own hearts. Only the gospel of Jesus Christ understood and applied to the heart can begin that change! No “self-help” program will change the heart, all that does is modify behavior, but that is only going to bring about temporary change. That change will last only as long as the flesh holds out, that white knuckle flying I talked about in the woman’s session. This is the ability any of us demonstrates when we make a mental decision to abstain from our habits. The person who bites their nails does this, the person who overeats, or spends money or drinks all white knuckle fly. Once that self-determination gives in, and the desire of the heart takes over, the change is finished and the behavior resumes despite all the good intentions we start out with. It is important to understand here, that the change in the behavior of the immoral person is not necessarily the goal. The goal is to understand that sexual sin is sinful, and does not glorify God. “The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.” Westminster Confession The repentance that takes place in the heart of change must come from a conviction that the activity a person is involved in does not bring God glory. Now, to the spouse or parent of the person involved in sexual sin, you may not care as much about God’s glory as you do about them stopping what they are doing. For the single person involved in sexual sin, you may believe you are not hurting anyone, or affecting anyone by your secret sin life- but you are. Every time a person knowingly engages in sexual sin God is robbed of His glory. The picture of Christ and His Bride the Church is smeared in the heavens, and quite frankly, I think the devil does the happy dance as the beauty of the intimate relationship between husband and wife is made sport of and counterfeited. Everyone’s desires much change! Not just the person who is the one practicing sexual immorality. The person who wants them to change, their attitude must also change, and the desire of their heart must also be changed from how it will affect them to how God looks on their behavior. It must in every case, cease to be about “me” and become about God and His glory! This must all happen in the inner man before it is evidenced in behavior. Repentance comes as the heart is affected. We see this is true because where there is no heart change there is no repentance. This brings great frustration for parents whose children are involved in sexual sin. The parents react with lecturing, ground them, remove computers and privileges, and do all that responsible parents do but it makes no difference in them. The parent sees the need for conviction and repentance but the child does not. The kid is seemingly unaffected by his sin because his heart has not been affected. Oswald chambers says this: “Conviction of sin is one of the rarest things that ever strikes a man. It is the threshold of an understanding of God…conviction of sin, the marvel of forgiveness and holiness are so interwoven that it is only the for forgiven man who is the holy man, he proves he is forgiven by being the opposite of what he was, by God’s grace. Repentance always brings a man to this point: I have sinned. The surest sign God is at work is then a man says that and means it. Anything less than this is remorse for having made blunders, the reflex action of disgust at himself.” Once conviction and repentance takes place then an attitude of dependence upon the gospel and on living in Romans 6, 7, 8 must be developed.
About The Author
Julie Ganschow has been involved in biblical counseling and discipleship for more than 25 years. She is passionate about heart change for life change. Julie is a gifted counselor and teacher, has authored numerous books and materials for biblical counseling, and co-authored a biblical counseling training course. She is a featured contributor in GriefShare and a frequent retreat and conference speaker. Julie is the founder and director of Reigning Grace Counseling Center and Biblical Counseling for Women. She has been writing a daily blog about women’s counseling issues since 2008. Julie holds a doctorate in biblical counseling, in addition to an M.A. in biblical counseling and certification with the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC). She also serves on the Council Board for the Biblical Counseling Coalition. She makes her home in Kansas City, Missouri with her wonderful husband Larry. You can find her blog at bc4women.org and information about her ministries at rgcconline.org and biblicalcounselingforwomen.org
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We are not a licensed counseling agency, nor are we psychologically or medically trained therapists. We offer 'pastoral' counseling intended to bring life change through heart change.