A Testimonial: How Biblical Counseling Helped a Man Struggling with Pornography

July 24, 2012

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Pornography Testimonial

BCC Staff Note: This resource is part of a Biblical Counseling Coalition series of testimonies by people who have received biblical counseling. Though anonymous, each testimony is from a real person who is excited to share how biblical counseling has benefited them. For additional testimonies in this BCC series, click here.

Struggling with Pornography

I was struggling with the sin of pornography that flared up in my life from time to time and was busy destroying my marriage and made me useless and fruitless in ministry. By God’s grace, He allowed my sin to be exposed and I was lovingly confronted by a biblical counselor.

Prior to this confrontation, I was exposed to the biblical teaching of progressive sanctification. I was taught about the extent of our depravity, our need for continual dependence on God’s power, the responsibility we have to put in our own effort for growth and overcoming sin, and how we must utilize God’s Word so that we will not sin against God. It made perfect sense and it was biblical, but I didn’t apply it to my own life in relation to my sin. I was counseling others on the basis of this truth, but I did not apply it personally. It took a direct confrontation for my deceitful heart to turn the mirror to my own life and deal with this sin and see it for what it really was.

I was helped to see how sinful this sin is and how I was doing it not only against myself, but also against my wife, against the people I was serving in the church, and how it was an idol in place of the only true God. It was the idol that I chose under pressure to give me a quick fix and to escape from the pressure I was facing.

In Psalm 18 God showed me how He wants to be, and really can be for me: my Rock, Fortress, Deliverer, Refuge, Shield, and Strength. I was trying to manipulate my circumstances to suit me and when I realized that I could not control it, I ran to the idol of the lust of the flesh. I did not depend upon God to be in control, working out everything for good. As a part of submitting to God’s sovereign direction in my life, I have come to the point of realizing that the wife God gave me was part of His perfect plan of working out everything for His glory and for my good and that she was part of His perfectly sufficient provision for my life.

Counsel for the Inner and Outer Man

I was counseled in terms of handling the situational issues concerning this sin and my counselor helped me set up an accountability partner. This contributed to dealing with this sin and to continually working towards rebuilding my relationship with my wife and also in avoiding falling into this temptation. A software tool installed on my computer which blocked any pornographic material also helped in terms of the situational handling of this sin.

The counsel of God’s Word reached further than this in addressing the true relational issues in reminding me about what God’s purpose for marriage was. I am thankful for the fact that I could confess this sin to my wife and even more thankful that she was willing to forgive. I am experiencing what it is to enjoy my wife without guilt and always trying to hide my sin (Proverbs 28:13).

God’s counsel also addressed the deepest issue of every person’s heart which is finding joy in Him. I have been “captured by a better vision” (the title of a great book by Tim Chester that my accountability partner had me read). God’s counsel is very realistic about the corrupt state of our hearts and I know that it is a continual fight to keep my eyes fixed upon God (Psalm 37:4) while every idol is continually presented before us by the world.

During the whole counseling process, I became aware of the effectiveness of true biblical counseling. I experienced both the firm and urgent warning and rebuke against sin, but also the amazing grace that is available towards forgiveness and towards God’s power working in me to overcome sin.

I realize that the fight against sin is a fight to the death as I face temptations every day, but I praise God for the greater vision of Himself to flee to. I also praise Him for the covenant of marriage as the supreme expression of relationship with the opposite sex and for the wife He has given me.

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