Most of you know that I was porn free for almost 2 years. Was….
I fell. I was tempted, as I had been tempted hundreds of times before and gave it. I gave in knowing what I was doing. I wasn’t tricked, I wasn’t lied to. I didn’t think it would just be ok. I knew I was going to look at porn and that it was sin.
The following isn’t me making an excuse for my actions, instead it’s me identifying what I think led up to me jumping head first into a sin that I had thought I killed. I gave up fighting, because I was tired of fighting.
In the last 3 months I have changed jobs to do something I have never done before. I bought a house, something I had never done before. We experienced an abnormal amount of rain which led to water damage and mold problems in my 10 year old’s room (in my new house). All of those were being taken into stride, I felt like I was managing and dealing with stress the best way I knew how. The straw that broke the camel’s back happened Saturday. My wife’s van finally crapped out. We needed a new car immediately and I was thrust into the capitalization of the stress I thought I was managing.
We spend our day off at a car dealership. I hate car dealerships. I don’t like the approach, I don’t like the sales methods people use and I just feel icky when I am involved in a sales pitch. I had to become someone I wasn’t in order to avoid being taken advantage of. My wife even noticed the change in my character while “wheeling and dealing” with these car-selling hoodlums.
By the time our day was over I was mentally and physically exhausted. This was my excuse. I knew it, I understand that I had no “umph” left in me to fight anything. In fact I had fallen asleep while watching a movie with my boys. When the movie ended I woke up and put them to bed. It was at this moment that I decided to break my porn-free streak and give in.
1 cup of Tired
2 dashes of stress
1 tbsp. of late night alone
Mix them together for the perfect cocktail of sin.
I know my triggers, I have been acknowledging them for almost 2 years. This was not one of those times.
I didn’t sleep well the rest of the evening. I wanted to confess to my wife immediately but I didn’t want to wake her up with that kind of news. I barely process anything that late or early anyway. I drifted off a few times only to be woke by my thoughts…first thing I did when we were both awake? I confessed.
I told her everything. I told her about the stress I’ve been going through and everything I just told you. She tried to take ownership of my sin. “If only I had been more diligent” and things of that nature. I assured her that my sin has nothing to do with her lacking in any area of our marriage.
Where can I have done better? Well I should have communicated my stress to my wife. I should have also let her know how much I had been tempted to look at porn in the last few months. I used the fact that I had been porn free for so long to allow my pride to keep me from admitting flaws. I had a sense of accomplishment that “I” had done something, I had a thing to boast about. I kept my struggles to myself….
Everything that happened on Saturday amounted to the perfect storm of temptation and I absolutely knew what I was doing. I hated myself. I hated my actions. I hated that I had people who looked at me as a success story for their own fight against porn and that I had to confess to them.
What I do know is that I’m not done fighting it. In fact I know more now that I am completely flawed in my ability to remain pure on my own. I also cannot use my sinlessness as a false badge of pride in my own accomplishments. I am a born sinner, saved by the grace of God by no work of my own. It would be wise for me to remember this in the future.