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Defeat Lust & Pornography 3 minute read

How I Fight Porn Images in My Mind

Last Updated: April 18, 2019

I was suddenly filled with panic.

I clicked to see the profile of someone who started following me on a social media site, only to see a naked picture of her blasted right in front of my eyes. I scrolled down to get away, but saw even more. It quickly became clear to me that her entire feed was filled with porn.

I used to look at lesbian porn, so I panicked. I was caught off guard.

It had been a long time since I saw such a graphic picture. My heart started racing, and I was afraid of where my mind would go. As I put my phone down, my normal response would have been, “God, please help me.” This time I did something different. I started praying for her.

  • I prayed (out loud) that God would make Himself known to her.
  • I prayed that she would give her life to Him.
  • I prayed that the Lord would heal every wound in her heart.
  • I prayed that she would know how much God loves her.
  • I prayed that she would surrender her life to Him completely.
  • I prayed that she would one day share her testimony to help set others free.
  • I prayed that the destiny God has planned for her life would be fulfilled.
  • I prayed that God would help me see her the same way He does.

Porn is not just a physical battle, but a spiritual battle as well.

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Eph. 6:12, NASB).Porn is not just a physical battle. There is a very real spiritual side that presents itself behind the scenes, and this needs to be part of our battle plan as we fight against it. As I continued to pray for her, my fear and the racing of my heart and mind eventually subsided.

I was determined to see her as God does.

She is a real person with real feelings, not just a fantasy.

For a few days, her picture continued to flash through my mind. When this happened, I prayed for her again. Instead of being consumed by shame and guilt, I prayed for her until my focus changed again.

Several years after I stopped watching porn, I met someone who was in the porn industry. After meeting her, my heart started to break for the women many of us have seen in porn. The industry destroyed this young woman emotionally, and when I was watching porn, I never once considered the well-being of the women involved.

I began to realize many of the people in porn are trapped in the industry just as much as I was trapped by watching it. This young woman helped to humanize women I once thought of as only a fantasy. My conversations with her radically changed my heart.

If you have mental images of porn in your mind that you have been unable to erase, I know exactly what that’s like. They can exist for many years after viewing them. Ignoring them works for a time, but they always come back just as strong. The images can haunt you. They can entice you back into porn, and they can also cause agonizing guilt long after you stop watching it.

This is a heart issue, and Jesus heals hearts.

I encourage you to pray for these men and women when an image surfaces in your mind. Maybe you don’t feel like praying for them. This is exactly why you need to. This is a heart issue. When we see people as God does, we will not lust after them. (This is a process.)

Praying for these men and women not only helps to shift your focus away from what’s going on in your mind and body, but it helps to refocus the way you look at them. Even if the pictures in your mind are not of specific people you know or remember, praying for them invites God directly into the situation. He is a supernatural God who works supernaturally through our prayers.

As I have persisted in doing this, the clarity of the pictures in my mind and the allure they once had over me has diminished greatly. Prayer is powerful! Jesus not only works in the lives of those being prayed for, but He can change and soften the hearts of those who pray.

I encourage you to follow this process so Jesus can restore your mind. He can also restore the way you see others, so you start to see them as He does. Keep persevering! Do not give up. He can heal your heart and mind and set you free.

  1. Piere

    I thank you very much for this advice Amy and may God really bless you.

  2. William

    I appreciate you sharing this. I’ve been addicted to pornography for a long time. I had given up any type of fight. Then God was gracious to put brothers in Christ into my life and I am fighting the never ending fight. I like what you said about this being a heart issue. I see that more and more each day as I stay sexually sober. I also will start putting into practice praying for those women whose images come into my mind. I want to have the proper perspective which is Gods perspective. Thanks again Amy.

    • William…it is NOT a never ending fight. There IS victory at the end…but you do have to do the battle to win the wars. Some want a quick battle. This is not reality. Every time you see a woman that “appeals” to your carnal nature, pray for her relationship with God to flourish.

      My husband is leaving our home in less than two weeks. He is too lazy to fight the battle for “US”. So I quietly let him go. “US” is not the more important issue at hand…his sanctification is…the marriage just is the vehicle that revealed it more clearly. I do believe that as he is set “free” and sickened by his on going lust and what it has cost him, that he will be better positioned to fight for victory…or give in to utter defeat. His choice.

      This can take years…I am prepared to wait.

      I will accept nothing back except a man who hates the sin of lust as much as I do (you will know that you hate that sin when you have nightmares about it)…because it separates him from all that God intended for him to truly enjoy in marriage and in sanctification with Him. I will be waiting a long long time.

      I need a long long time to heal from ten years of torment. I cannot trust a man who will not allow himself to get the victory over the sin that tears down the fabric of marriage as well as his own soul. He is is denial…that’s okay, God will not deny Truth…and if my husband belongs to God, he will be dealt with in time.

    • "D"

      This is for “sweetz”

      My heart goes out to you, that’s a real shame that he would choose leaving. I thank God that I have resources to help me, and they are. “but” I would though disagree with the fight not being a never ending fight…it will “always” be an never ending fight. Porn is not going away, the world embraces it and is making tons of money with it. and as long as sex sells, we will always be bombarded with its images and temptations. Regular television has been using sex to advertise its shows, I do not have to point them out, we all see them advertised….it seems the raunchier they are the better the ratings….even food commercials have bowed down to this kind of advertising.

      I do agree that the longer on goes away from porn the easier it is to walk away from its temptations, but we will “always” have to guard our hearts and this is a “never ending battle.”

  3. Bethany

    Thank you for this post. I needed it. I have been fighting an addiction for the last year and 1/2 with God’s help, after being trapped for many years prior. Sometimes the fight is too much and I just want to give it all up. But then I know that I could not live with the guilt and shame and the thought of destroying my life for the “highs” that I’m seeking, that just scares the life out of me. I feel like I am in a deep dirty pit at the moment and crawling out is just too hard. I am scared, and I hate that my sin hurts those who are supporting me. Please help, what can I do, I am so weak and so much of me is wanting to give up and give in completely.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Bethany, I’d say one of the ways we get free is by letting other people in to help us. Breaking the silence and shame around these issues is hugely helpful in getting free. There are great groups at xxxChurch for women. Plus, we’ve got a whole bunch of resources HERE for women fighting to be free. Get connected, start talking to other women. I really do believe that Love is the great freedom-bringer in our lives, and I know that there are safe people who will help demonstrate that Love to you as you take responsibility and work toward recovery. Blessings, Kay

    • Hi Bethany! You are courageous for sharing this, and I want you to know that you are not alone. Shame can lie to us and tell us we will never be able to overcome this stronghold. That is not true. I recommend praying for some other women you can talk to about this. There are so many women who have battled this. There are those who are on this journey and maybe even a little further down the road that can serve as a great encouragement to you. There is freedom available for you, and this is all a process. None of us walk out of this perfectly. I definitely haven’t, but that is ok. With God’s grace, we all can get back up again, even when we feel like we are one millimeter away from giving up forever.

      Keep going, and I pray that you find some ladies (or even one) that you can talk to about this. You will not feel as isolated, which will help you as well. Thank you for sharing this, and I will pray that you find the support you need right now. Don’t give up! There is so much hope for your future. It is not too late! ?

    • Eric

      Amen sister!

  4. Marcel

    I had been in that position of fighting for those images to go away from me, and it is true they always come back a strong as they can and disturbs your mind badly. Even knowing they are not good to keep, they are there and you feel like you can’t escape, I want to truly thank you for I never thought of having to pray for the women and men involved in the act of porn. Thank you for sharing your story and method.

  5. steven hurd

    Thank you so much for posting this! It is a great reminder that, when we think about people the way Jesus thinks about people, with love and compassion for their souls, we look at them differently. Jesus would never look to a woman and try to take something from her. Jesus would never dehumanize a woman. Jesus cares about peoples souls and he desperately wants to see them repent and have access into his heavenly kingdom. By praying for them God gives me grace to think about them in this way. Thank you for reminding me of this!

  6. Reuben

    Great Article.

  7. joseph

    It’s really reflect my life

  8. Brett

    Thank you so much for writing this! This is something that happens to me frequently. More often, however, I get sexual images of people around me that haunt me – often my closest loved ones and it’s very difficult to go through at times for me and my fiancée. What would you recommend for a situation like that? I’ve been porn-free now for 856 days and my fiancée and I have went to great lengths to filter everything lust-related out of my life.

  9. Kenneth

    Prayer is one method of dealing with images from the past that I don’t use a lot. My weapons of choice have been taking my mind to the Cross of Christ, or pleading the Blood of Christ over the images. Thanks for the post.

  10. Janique

    Love this. I will do this from now on! Thanks for sharing!

    • Patrick Omoosagie

      Thanks for your spiritual understanding, it is important not to look down on anyone caught up in this lifestyle, because God is able to deliver such person and save them. It is more important to pray for them than judge them.

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