5 minute read

When You’re Both Tempted by Porn: CJ and Shelley’s Story

Last Updated: June 8, 2021

Victory Stories

Every day at Covenant Eyes we hear inspiring stories of victory over porn. Here are just a few of them.

Though it’s been over 30 years since that day, I remember it well. I was eight years old the first time these eyes saw pornographic images and “Pandora’s Box” was opened. Two neighborhood boys came over to my house to play like so many other days before. Whispering, one of the boys pulled a Hustler magazine from inside his jacket and said, “Look what we found in my dad’s closet.”

I was immediately drawn to the cover image of a beautiful, yet seductive-looking woman. The three of us decided to hide behind a fence nearby where we wouldn’t be seen and proceeded to inspect the contents of the magazine. I remember how paranoid we felt about being caught while sitting there behind that fence in another neighbor’s yard. Upon finishing, we decided to bury that magazine right there where we sat. Unfortunately, I looked at girls and women differently from that day on. The enemy hooked an unsuspecting victim that day just as he does with countless others in their youth.

Through the years, there were numerous other exposures to porn. However, during my sophomore year in college, I made a decision to commit my life to Christ and walk with him daily. For the first time in my life, I actually wanted to read my Bible. I looked forward to attending the chapels that I had dreaded only a year earlier. I was spiritually hungry and enjoyed being fed by God’s word.

I Still Had a Lust Problem

The images were still in my mind. Though I wasn’t going out looking for porn, I still had a problem with lust and masturbation. I always felt so much shame and guilt afterward. Satan was always there ready to heap on more shame.

Fast-forward to January 10th, 1998. This is the day I stumbled upon Internet porn for the first time. Unexpectedly, a pop-up came onto the computer screen advertising for a casino in Vegas. It had three very scantily-clad women with a tagline that read, “Wouldn’t you like to see what else is in Vegas?” Immediately, I had a thought that was no doubt planted by the enemy. That thought was, “Wouldn’t you like to know what else is on the Internet?”

It was as if a whole new world was opened up that day. This would begin a cycle of stumbling off and on for the next five years. That means I struggled four-and-a-half years into my marriage. The Internet made porn a much more secretive habit than ever before in history. It was a dirty little secret I was able to hide conveniently.

Coming Clean to My Wife

Eventually, I had to face my dirty little secret and come clean with my wife. I also needed to have some accountability with other men as well as adding safeguards to our computer. These things can certainly go a long way in helping a person remain pure but the most important thing a person can have is a healthy fear of the Lord. God has to be our biggest Accountability Partner. Do we really want to please Him? Do we really want to obey Him? Do we believe He has our best interest in mind when it comes to sex? After all, he did create it to be good.

True freedom comes when we’re satisfied with God alone. When we choose to fill our minds with the truth of God’s word, we are better equipped to respond to the lies of Satan.

You have heard my story. Now my wife, Shelley, will share hers with you.

As a Christian Woman, I Found Myself Addicted to Porn Too

I was 25 years old and had been married two years. My husband, CJ, was in full time ministry at the time and I was involved in many ministries at our Church. To the outside world, I looked like I had it all together…I was the “good girl.” However, even “good girls” fall. And fall I did. I fell into an intense battle with an addiction to Internet pornography over the next two years.

How could this happen?

I even shocked myself. I couldn’t believe I was doing it, and yet I couldn’t seem to stop. Looking back, I can see that the main trigger to my porn addiction was loneliness. I was most vulnerable when CJ was gone for a week at a time at a youth event or training. Not only was I lonely and longing for emotional intimacy when CJ was gone, but I was also home alone. As you probably know, an addiction to pornography thrives in secrecy. Therefore, it was something I could easily hide from CJ when he was away.

Porn Never Satisfied

Although pornography and masturbation could never fulfill my longing for intimacy, it did give me a temporary high. This “high” gave me enough satisfaction to keep me coming back for more. And like most addictions, I needed more and more to keep getting the same “high.” Before long, I was no longer satisfied with looking at soft porn, I needed something more. This is when I started looking at hardcore porn.

And I was scared. I realized I needed help. I knew I was on a road to destruction that could eventually destroy my relationship with God and destroy my marriage if nothing changed.

I was desperate enough to reach out for help. I confessed my sin to my CJ and began Christian counseling. Through counseling and the help of God, I began the long road of recovery and healing. God provided an accountability and prayer partner for me, we started using filters on our computer and God slowly began to heal the wounds from my past.

It took time. And it was painful. I often took two steps forward and then one step back. But, it was worth it. And today, a decade later, I am free from the grips of pornography by the grace of God.

Pornography and Marriage: How It Impacted Us

I, CJ, have met many young men who believe their porn and lust problem will go away once they’re married. I’ve even met guys who try to justify looking at porn as a “healthy” way of dealing with sexual energy. Nothing could be further from the truth as my own life demonstrates. My desire for porn didn’t magically go away on August 15, 1998—my wedding day. As I would secretly look at Internet porn, my desire for my wife would diminish. I developed a distorted view of sex and women that lingered in my mind for years. It was a vicious cycle of viewing porn, masturbating, feeling immense shame, doing well for a while and then falling prey all over again. The more images I loaded into the “hard drive” of my brain, the more ammunition Satan and his demons had to work with and use against me.

Shelley and I are still a work in progress but the Lord is continuing to bring healing and freedom in the area of sex. He’s slowly restoring what the “locusts had eaten” in years past. I am so thankful for a God who gives us more chances than we deserve. His mercies are indeed new every morning!


CJ and Shelley Hitz have been ministering together since 1998. They currently travel and speak to teens and adults around the country. Their main passion is to share God’s truth and the freedom in Christ they have found with others. They do this through their books, websites, and speaking engagements. You can find out more about CJ and Shelley and invite them to speak at your event at: ChristianSpeakers.tv. Shelley published a book titled, A Christian Woman’s Guide to Breaking Free From Pornography: It’s Not Just a Guy’s Problem. Find out more at ChristianWomenandPorn.com.

  • Comments on: When You’re Both Tempted by Porn: CJ and Shelley’s Story
    1. Aaron Lindsey on

      Thanks so much for telling your story! Your brave admissions are a smack in the face to satan.

      Reply
    2. CJ on

      Thanks Aaron. “But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.” – Ephesians 5:13

      And Thank you Luke for hosting us on both this blog and your podcast!

      Reply

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