Round table discussions can be very helpful for getting one’s finger on the pulse of what is going on in the lives of Christian women. I will occasionally convene a round table if I am working on a new book or material and I need mass input. One evening we were discussing sin and how sin loves the darkness and hates to be exposed. The conversation wound its way over to the avenue of sexual sin and how this particular sin is becoming more prevalent among women.
Sexual sin among Christian women is not new, but due to the internet, cable, and pay television it is now possible for us to view things that we otherwise would not have had the opportunity to see.
The viewing of pornography and sexually explicit material is a very disturbing trend I am observing among Christian women. It is a Pandora’s Box and once the lid is opened it becomes very hard to stuff the contents back inside. The brain is a wonderful organ, designed to recall sounds, smells and images with crystal clarity. What women are discovering is that once pornographic or sexual images are viewed, they are not easily forgotten. These images appeal to the deceitful lusts of the sinful heart.
It is not only married women, but college students and other single women who are struggling deeply with the sins of viewing pornography and self-gratification. Our societal climate has changed enough that folks almost understand when men begin to speak of their need for help with porn and masturbation; but for women it is uncharted territory, full of fear and shame.
There is tremendous fear of being discovered, of someone knowing what goes on when they are alone. The guilt is nearly overwhelming because as much as they know it is sinful, their desires have been awakened and they want to experience the sensations that come with these behaviors. It has a high rate of repeat offense and has driven several young women to the point of contemplating suicide.
All sin hates discovery but it seems that this sin even more so…this particular sin loves the darkness. One woman said this: “I was really ‘treasuring’ the darkness that I was in. When I would watch the movies, my house would be completely dark; just me and the tube…”
As with all sin, it takes you much further than you ever want to go. What begins as a curiosity can rapidly become an obsession leading to greater and greater debauchery. Quoting a woman who revealed her struggles,
“I was watching such utter junk and desiring that I could experience sex just once before I die. Most of what’s out there to see, either on the web or in the movies I would watch, was ALWAYS hooked up with roughness, rawness, etc., and almost never a display of the loving union between the two who were engaged.”
The things portrayed in these movies and video clips are the exact opposite of what God intends for the intimate relationship between a wife and her husband. God’s desire is that a woman overcome this sinful habit as she would overcome any other sin. She is told to “put off,” “throw off” her former conduct. This implies stripping off, or flinging it far away from her as though it were a rotting corpse tied to her back. It is not adequate to just change behavior, because what drives the behavior is still the same. Her mind must be retrained to operate biblically so that when she is presented with the same old temptations she thinks a new response.
Instead, there must be a spiritual renewal of your thoughts and attitudes. (Eph. 4:23 (NLT)
You cannot assume that new thinking by itself will lead to walking worthy/new living in the place of any sin. You must also deal with what is standing in your way of belief and action. Genuine change is more than stopping wrong behavior. There must be repentance that includes an understanding that the actions are not glorifying to God. There must be a change in the manner of life that you live. Genuine repentance is accompanied by a desire to obey.
By God’s grace, I have helped enough women overcome this sin to know it is possible. There is no reason for any woman to continue to live as a slave to sin. My encouragement for you who struggle: Come out of the darkness and into His wonderful light of repentance, forgiveness and righteousness! There is help available through our ministry, and I also recommend Pure Freedom.