Some of you are doing better in your purity journeys. This article is for you.
To those who have experienced some victory in sexual purity:
There are plenty of times where we fail, fall, and falter in sexual addiction recovery. We take enough steps backward, and too many times we feel like giving up. It takes a while to gain traction in recovery.
What a wonderful thing it is when you start doing well! Struggles happen less frequently. Successes happen more often. Growth and strength become evident. And your good check-ins outweigh your bad check-ins.
Here are some encouragements to those of you who have experienced some victories in their sexual purity, along with some “next step” challenges.
1. Awesome! This is how it should be!
This is what healthy looks like. This is more in line with God’s plan for you sexually, emotionally, mentally, and physically. God wants your sobriety and success to be the new norm.
2. You’re building new habits.
It takes a while to stop and replace the old, bad habits. You’re doing the conditioning and the hard work that is required. In recovery, you go to the sexual purity gym. It’s hard at first. It’s not fun. But after a while the results come and you find yourself getting stronger.
Related: Hobbies and Habits–Fighting Porn with Purpose
3. Shoot for new bottom lines and new milestones.
Your bottom lines (behaviors you don’t want to do) need to change. Maybe a slip for you in the past equaled going to massage parlors or looking at porn. Draw some new bottom lines. Work on stopping masturbation and lustful thinking. Adjust your goals and the milestones striving for in your purity journey.
4. Make sure you know what’s working and why.
Why have you had this success? You need to repeat it. Write down your purity plan and boundaries. Take note of the things that have made your success possible.
5. Any loopholes in your strategy?
It’s very hard to cover all the bases. Covenant Eyes software helps you on your computer and mobile devices. Make sure you put protection on all your devices. Give another person your password. Get rid of sensual magazines, newspapers, videos, and DVR shows. Make sure your boundaries are strong. Ask your spouse or accountability partner about any blind spots you may have.
6. Growth and strengthening are happening in your life.
Growing in your purity journey is fantastic! It feels good. It’s healthy. Sit in it for a moment. Taste and see God’s goodness and provision for you at this stage. You can do it. Compared to where you were a few months ago, you’re a different person.
7. Bump up your helping of others.
The next big level of recovery is when you start helping others. God is comforting you in your struggles so you can comfort others (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). God is teaching you purity so you can teach others (2 Timothy 2:2). Others paid into you. It’s your turn to bear some children and grandchildren.
8. Build your general support team.
You need three types of people on your support team:
- General Support–People who care for you and are pro-you. They are happy when you are around and build you up. They know at least some of your story.
- Drill-Down Support–Your deepest relationships. They know you and your story and still love you. You give them permission to ask you the hard questions, keep you accountable, and call the B.S. when necessary.
- Specialty Support–People who help you with specific areas of purity and recovery. Counselors, ministers, doctors, and lawyers may need to be on this team. Specialty support people know your story and have special tools in their tool bags to assist you.
Make new efforts to continue building your base of support. The principle here is to keep adding to your support instead of subtracting.
What other encouragements or challenges would you offer? Leave them in the comment section below.
Thank you for this post. It was an encouragement! I think our entertainment and friend choices play a major role in hindering the process of purity. If we spend time with people who are a bad influence or who often make perverse jokes and are not Biblical in their actions, behavior, thinking and speech, obviously it will lead us astray somehow. Our entertainment choices are SO important. If we fill our minds with music that promotes sex or violence, and if we watch TV shows or movies which show the same, how can we expect to walk in genuine repentance? We must realize (and write down to be able to refer back to) the sort of entertainment and thoughts or fantasy we dwell on before we end up giving in to masturbation, wanting to view porn, etc. And then as difficult as it may seem, we must renew our minds through the regular reading of God’s word (the Bible), get rid of cable television, throw away movies or CDs that we know cause us to stumble, and pursue genuine accountability. We must be honest with our accountability partners, seek Biblical counsel if need be, and even use the Covenant Eyes software on all our devices. (This is a HUGE help!)
Please check out my blog which has articles, sermon notes, etc. on a variety of topics including: “God’s word”, “Purity”, “Quotes”, “About Masturbation”, “Self Esteem”, “Self-Injury”, “About Atheism”, “Homosexuality”, and “About Pornography.”
Emma – thanks for your additional suggestions. We can’t slack off in strengthening our purity strategies. We must continue to maintain, stretch and grow.
Thank you for this – its very welcomed and needed! I plan to pass it on to my group of 14 guys. I always tell them;
Praise God frequently, Pray unceasingly, Read the word daily, and be Obedient always.
Great, Tom! Say “Hi” to your 14 guys for me. I usually end my emails to my support group guys with “Stay engaged!”
Friend of mine came up with this idea. Place a calendar privately in the rest room of his bedroom where his wife could see and place a star on each day he was blessed with victory and purity. Opened the door of communication between them and disclosed his journey = accountability with his wife. May not be for all … “if we walk in the light as He is in the light …”
Neat idea. Could work for a lot of couples.
Thank you for yor words of great encouragement ! I tend to forget when I fail, that healing takes time and courage to keep working on the battle!
Amen Great stuff.
I would also say remember it is still a daily battle, remember where you came from , keep addind to your toolbox,, and adding your network.
This was something I needed.