4 minute read

How God Gave Me a Future After Porn

Last Updated: June 9, 2021

Victory Stories
Victory Stories

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

I’m a free man! The joy of saying those words far surpasses any momentary pleasure that porn can give.

The chains that once bound me have been shattered into pieces. The joy that I have from this freedom is only surpassed by the joy I receive from helping others who struggle.

Today, I help men who struggle with porn and sex addiction as a BraveHearts Certified Sex Addiction Mentor. I also serve the Church through my ministry, Strengthen Your Brothers, where I lead small faith-based recovery groups, help organize an annual men’s retreat for purity, and share my story at local churches to raise awareness of the problem of pornography in the Church.

I have been given this beautiful mission by God after destroying my own life, losing my reputation as a believer and my ministry as a local youth pastor through my addiction. When I thought all was lost, hopeless, and no future remained, God had other plans.

When My Troubles Started

It all began like most of the guys that I work with: the same story, only different names. I was only seven years old when a neighborhood friend passed the first adult magazine into my hands. At first, this magazine seemed very wrong and even nasty to me. However, the excitement and allure of it was very real and powerful.

It didn’t take long for me to “discover myself.” By the age of ten, I was already in the beginning stages of developing a future sex and porn addiction.

I still remember my family getting our first home computer back in 1997. I was 15 years old and had already been sexually promiscuous for years. This new computer with internet access might as well have been a heroin dealer moving in. I soon discovered internet pornography and my developing addiction took on a whole new level.

I was truly living and acting like a junkie. I became a slave to this sin of isolation and shame. As I frequented internet porn more and more, I sank deeper and deeper into that dark abyss they call “addiction.” I would sometimes stay up all night viewing it and wouldn’t be able to go to school or work the next day.

Related: Shame’s Massive Role in Porn Use

A Constant State of Contradiction

Around this time, I had a truly life changing encounter with Jesus Christ. I began to immerse myself in the Bible, pray, and attend church services. I felt like a totally new person in every way except one: sexual immorality.

I thought somehow that this shouldn’t be! How was I so strong now in so many areas of my life, but still in complete bondage to sexual sin? I was still doing the very things that I hated! Was it me, or was it something else inside of me that had the control? My heart grew sad, confused, and desperate.

I did not understand what was going on inside. I only knew that I was out of control.

Out of shame and embarrassment, I kept my struggles mostly to myself. My porn and sex addiction were under the radar, while my public life was soaring ever higher. I went to a Bible college/school of ministry and soon became a very respected local youth pastor. In public, I was teaching, preaching, and praying for the youth. Behind closed doors, I was a regular junkie sneaking off to get his fix. I lived in a constant state of contradiction, which even confused myself! How could this be? I loved the Lord and his people!

The Power of Rock Bottom

My porn and immoral behavior, left unchecked, escalated to a higher level of sex addiction. When we do nothing about the problem, it doesn’t just go away, it only gets worse.

At my lowest point, I had a very public fall and my sexual sin was exposed to the world. This was the best thing that could have ever happened to me! Sometimes it takes people hitting rock bottom before they will ever look up.

This began the crisis and shock stage of my recovery from addiction. This very huge and public fall was just what I needed to get my attention and for me to start looking up. This problem had to be dealt with!

After losing my ministry, friends, and reputation, I felt defeated. I was in the most depressed state of my entire life. It took a while, but I slowly began to climb out of the dark pit of destruction.

The only problem was that I didn’t know where to go for help. I tried for a few years simply to pray harder, stay away from women completely, read books on the subject, and “white-knuckle it.” This gave me a little relief, but no lasting healing or real sobriety.

I still remember almost sinking into a state of numbness, where I resigned to the fact that I would just always be like this. I really felt that this was just something that I was going to have to live with for the rest of my life. Thank God I was wrong!

Healing Happened

The Lord eventually led me to a faith-based recovery group that got me out of isolation and gave me hope and connection with others like myself. They taught me recovery principles and gave me accountability. This is also where I learned about Covenant Eyes, which played a huge role in my recovery journey and still does to this day.

Finally, I was able to start seeing real results in my recovery and healing began to take place in my relationships. With the help of God, the recovery group, Covenant Eyes, and a good guide, I was able to see the light at the end of the tunnel!

Fast forward five years and a new man has emerged from the ashes. A broken and recreated man that is truly grateful to God and so many others that helped along the way. God has redeemed my life, forgiven me for my past mistakes, and given me a hope and a future. He can do the same for you!


Gary LeBlancGary LeBlanc •  Gary lives in the New Orleans area with his beautiful wife and three children. Gary works with men who struggle with sex and pornography addiction as a professional Certified Sex Addiction Mentor. You can connect with him at Strengthen Your Brothers.

  • Comments on: How God Gave Me a Future After Porn
    1. Daniel on

      Wow, this made me emotional. Mainly because I can relate so much to this story. Thank you for sharing these words.

      Reply
      • JEFFREY TAN on

        Remarkable Hands of God was working in your life when you were at rock bottom!

      • David S on

        Thank you for your story I have hit rock bottom.. And have damage my marriage because of this addiction. I hope God will get me through this.

      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Daniel,

        No problem brother. It is an honor for me to share my story as a means to help others see that they are not alone in their struggles.

        God be with you,

        Gary LeBlanc

    2. Arthur on

      Thank you for sharing your story. Pornography is a deep trap. Often many people struggle again and again but are AFRAID to call out for help. The first step is to reach rock bottom…a place where excuses and status no longer matter, a place where you are willing to do ANYTHING to help. That’s the first step in any addiction recovery process…to ADMIT that you have FAILED on your own and you now need outside HELP.

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Arthur,

        Amen brother! That’s “Step One” of the Twelve Steps. We must realize that we have a problem before we can really get help. Denial holds us back due to pride (not wanting to admit that we can’t handle it by ourselves) and even fear (fear of facing the problem). We must move out of the isolation and darkness of denial into reality and the light of truth and recovery.

        God bless,

        Gary LeBlanc

    3. bob on

      God Bless You – it is as though I am looking in a mirror when I read your post – God Bless Covenant Eyes as well

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Bob,

        Thank you my brother! God bless you too!

        Peace be with you,

        Gary LeBlanc

      • Sincerely Concerned on

        Hey Bob, glad to see that you are at least making an effort to get free-that’s a start.

        I hope you have found other Christian men to share your struggles with. Having a community around you that you can confide in without fear of judgement but that will still hold you accountable and urge you to do better makes a world of difference and helps you have so much more peace.
        If you are not in that place yet, I strongly encourage you to seek that kind of community and to open up to others about your struggle. It made a massive difference in my own life, and whenever I go a while without that kind of community it ends up hurting me. I hope you continue to pursue the freedom and purity that God makes available to us through His Son Jesus.
        God bless you!

    4. Renaldo Williams on

      Your story is very inspiring. I feel like you have lived my struggle through your life. Thank you for sharing it gives me hope.

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Renaldo,

        I’m glad that my story gives you hope! Freedom is attainable and hope is real: his name is Jesus Christ!

        God bless you my brother,

        Gary LeBlanc

    5. Beth Draper on

      Thank you Gary for opening your heart and soul.
      Hearing stories such as yours gives me some hopeful strength.
      My husband has watched porn for over 40 years.
      I discovered it 4.5 years ago…. we’ve been together 5 years.
      He’s given me many excuses…. lied… hides it…
      says he’s not watching….
      Our intimacy is non-existent. And he blames me for that.
      I’ve asked him to stop…
      I’ve told him how hurt I am… feeling betrayed and don’t trust him.
      I’m becoming indifferent about our love and relationship. I used to totally obsess with over his addiction, but now I’m tired.
      I don’t get anger or enraged anymore.
      Thinking time to move on….

      Reply
      • Heather on

        Beth, good job talking to your husband about this. Some women want actions to stop but don’t take the step to talk to him about it.

        Pray hard before you decide leaving is the answer. He is winning against you, yes. But Satan wants your marriage to fall apart. And satan wants you to think God can’t/won’t help you through this or change anything.

        You are a child of God. You have the Holy Spirit indwelling you. Feed that. Feed your own spirit and wait. See what God will do. He WILL guide you. He wants you to ask Him. You will find Him (and His direction) when you seek Him with all of your heart.

        If your husband claims to be a Christian, he is like a soldier in this spiritual war who needs help to make it out of that battle. Pray for him to accept that help.

    6. Maria Martin on

      I am a woman and I believe I’m addicted to porn. I view it about 6 times in a month. I’m a Christian and even though it’s not every day . I believe .I started when my husband did not like sex. I learned how to have it with my self. I thought maybe I could learn something and hopefully get his attention in the room. I soon figured that I didn’t care anymore and instead of being pushed away . I just do me. I’m not married anymore. I just learned to move on but I struggle
      Maria

      Reply
      • Heather on

        Maria, your post here tells me you hope to have someone read it. Maybe to shock them, but hopefully so you can find help as well. The imagery here is a bit shocking, and it’s too bad to be in a marriage where you don’t feel desired by the one you love most.

        My advice is always feed your Spirit, not your flesh. Memorize scripture. Ask God to help you love Him more and to hate your sin. Ask Him to help your view of salvation to be so intimate, so fulfilling, that you don’t want to sin. Be obedient to Him and what you know He wants of you. As you pour yourself into Him, you will have more strength of Spirit.

        Habits are super hard to break. Addictions are harder again. This is gonna take time a determination.

        The fact that your hubby isn’t interested in having sex with you is concerning and is a different issue altogether. I encourage you both to get some Christian counseling for that. This format is not conducive to helping you very much with that issue.

        May God meet you in your quest for a different life and may the deliverance He gives fuel much praise of Him!

      • Ezequiel Hernandez on

        Your a good example Gary, and inspiring with encouragement. If it be possible, look to hear from you and your story and account, a man to look up to. I’d like ot give my # to talk one on one personal like a counselor to help. I hope to hear from you Gary. Thank you for your example.

    7. Felix on

      Very helpful

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Felix,

        Thank you!

        God bless,

        Gary LeBlanc

    8. Jebpmarine J Hafey on

      I still struggle with porn to this day. I tell as many people as possible. The only response I get is every man has this problem, and that is usually it. That doesn’t help me. I need help not minimizing the problem.

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Brother,

        Minimization is a common form of denial in an addict mind. I am all too familiar with this (I used to live in this state of denial for many years). I am glad that you are taking this seriously, you should! If you would like to talk, please email me via my website: http://www.StrengthenYourBrothers.com

        God bless you,

        Gary

    9. Markus Gaines on

      This is an incredible story! I still struggle with this and lust problems but I’ve always believed that God and I would achieve the ultimate victory over this addiction, I believe this in my heart and I REALLY do want out and cut it from my life but from the looks of it, it will take awhile for me, but it will be worth it. God Bless you

      Reply
    10. Jim Gorski on

      Your story sounds eerily similar to mine. I don’t remember my first encounter with porn. However, my problems also exploded with internet access. I am a bit older than you. I had graduated college with a social work degree, and was working when I first got internet access. My addiction exploded. I was caught using work computers to look at porn, and was fired. Additionally, an ethics complaint was filed with the state licensing board. My license was suspended. Unfortunately, this “bottom” wasn’t enough for me. While I tried to secure a new career, I drove e my family into almost 70000 of credit card debt. I still was buried in porn. I attended counseling. I completed on line programs. I prayed, attended the Sacraments. I was active in my church. I had trouble getting the the Act of Contrition prayer, which says “I firmly resolve with the help of thy grace to sin no more, and to avoid the near occasion to sin. I tried and failed so many times
      I concluded that I was innately flawed. I figured I would be stuck until I died. I only hoped and prayed that this flaw would not keep.me out of heaven.

      4 years ago, for Lent, I went through Fr. Michael Gaitley’s “Consoling the Heart of Jesus ” a 33 day self directed retreat preparing for Consecration to Divine Mercy. I had no hope that this would ultimately release me from the hold porn had on me. About a year later, I realized that I hadn’t turned to porn in a long time. A year after that, I started talking about the miraculous extraction from porn that I had experienced.

      Initially, I didn’t realize what made the change. I have been involved with Integrity Restored, and Catholics In Recovery for the last couple of years. I am in the process of writing a curriculum to help others who are struggling. I am absolutely convinced that while thing like Covenant Eyes, Cognitive Behavioral techniques, connection with community, are all important, without a spiritual connection, and a growing awareness of God’s involvement in our lives, freedom cannot be experienced. Thank you for your story. Know that I am praying for you. Please keep praying for me.

      Reply
      • Moriah Dufrin on

        Jim,

        Wow, what an incredible story of God’s faithfulness and power in your life! Praise him that you have been freed from porn and can now help others be free as well. Let me know when your curriculum is finished – I’d love to read it!

        Blessings,
        Moriah

    11. David on

      I see myself in this exact same position, I love God, I love serving in His, infact most people at my church know me to be a dedicated steward in the house of God. But I’m tired of this dark life I’m living, this particular issue has been my prayer point for some years now, yet I see myself going back to my vomit. Pastor even made mention of this issue and said if you are in that category come out so he could pray with us, but I was so ashamed of myself because of how dedicated I am that I couldn’t come out. I really need help

      Reply
      • Moriah Dufrin on

        David,

        Praise God that you are growing weary of your sin and want to change. I would encourage you to read our article titled, “Why the Church Must Be a No-Shame Zone.” I pray that it gives you the courage to step forward and ask a leader or friend in your church for help.

        Blessings,
        Moriah

    12. Jacob Thobatsi on

      I live in South Africa and had been struggling with this problem from a young age as well, the thing I’m married with kids now and I would to like to defeat this enemy called porn but right now I just can’t subsribe to covenant eyes because of money issues, but by just reading the stories of other came out of porn, I strongly believe that I too can beat this thing.

      Keep me in your prayers.

      Reply
      • Moriah Dufrin on

        Jacob,

        Covenant Eyes would love to help you defeat the enemy of porn! We do have a program for those who cannot afford our software at this time. I would encourage you to learn more about it and consider it as an option in your fight to overcome porn. You can find information on it here.

        Blessings, friend!
        Moriah

    13. Coach on

      At an early age of 9 or 10 I was sexually molested once by a male and two other times by females. I was the only blond hair blue eyes kid growing-up in a low income tough neighborhood where the majority of my friends had signal parents. Playboy magazines and videos where easy to find anywhere. By the age of 12 I was very sexually active both with girls and boys my age and with some of my friends moms. I knew I wasn’t gay because liked having sex with girls, but since in the videos it was okay to have sex at the same-time with a third or forth person of the same sex I thought it was “normal”. Pornography, sex ,and masturbation became something I had to have everyday. How I survived without getting some girl pregnant or catching Aids only God knows. My wife and I have been happily married for almost 30 years. Proud parents of 2 wonderful loving kids who are also both married with children.
      “BUT”…. Pornography still has a strong grip on me. It doesn’t take much for me to have fall in that trap. I’m working really hard to overcome this addiction. But I will WIN. God knows I hate it with a passion. I pray everyday and I have a good relationship with our Lord and savior Jesus Christ.

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Brother,

        Our Lord loves you more than you could ever know! I would love to talk with you more in a private setting. If you wish to, please email me via my website: http://www.StrengthenYourBrothers.com

        God bless you always,

        Gary LeBlanc

    14. Zach on

      This is truly an inspiring sources, much of what was said in this story was reflected in my own experiences. I am glad you found a way to the life God intended for you. I have Covenant eyes as well and am in the midst of battle for freedom. One day I will be able to be as free as you are and I will think back to this day and thank you for being a part of my recovery.

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        Zach,

        I’m so glad that God was able to use my wounds to help you on your journey to healing. He never wastes a hurt!

        God bless you brother,

        Gary LeBlanc

    15. K on

      Man, same here. Exposed to porn at about 10 or 11. Got a computer in 2001 or so and it didn’t take long to look at porn from there. It got to the point to where I was looking everyday, sometimes multiple times a day. Didn’t think it was a problem. But it affected my relationship with women, how I looked at them, what I was after when I spoke to them, etc. It hurt my eventual wife too and almost got divorced. Got clean over a year ago but everyday I say to myself “I will not look at porn today.” The guilt I feel afterwards isn’t worth it and the relationship with my wife is much better by giving it up. It’s way easier to live a life in which I’m not doing stuff behind her back. Keep on goin. Porn is poison.

      Reply
      • Gary LeBlanc on

        K,

        Poison indeed! God bless you on your path to freedom brother.

        In Christ,

        Gary

      • Kevin Butler on

        Thank you for your testimony Gary. It really touched my heart because I can relate to what you were going through very well. I believe that anyone who continually sins in any way has to be broken by the power and love of Jesus Christ. I’m so grateful that you were one of those who overcame. Thanks again brother. Please pray for me!

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