Monday, 5 September 2016

Real Freedom

I write this as a Christian man and on behalf of Christian men. I write this as a Christian man who is tired of doing church. I've had enough of meetings. And I suspect, you have too. Other guys who've been saved as long as I have, echo these sentiments. We desire the real. We want to see God's real power displayed. We want to experience real freedom. We want to bless the world with real demonstration. We have grown tired of hearing what happened in so and so's church in Texas and in India and in Ghana. We want to experience it for ourselves! 

I'm tired of having to put up with theologies that explain why God isn't doing. But I'm also tired of defending my theology of why God should be doing. I'm tired of discussions and debates. When Paul wrote to the church in Corinth, he said he hadn't come to them with wise words or eloquent speech. He had come to preach Christ crucified and demonstrate the power of the Kingdom. Please God, can we get back to preaching the simplicity of the Gospel and demonstrating the real power of God to and amongst it's hearers. 

One of the pressing issues on my heart at the moment is Christian men's struggle with their lust for pornography. I desire to see men, who dearly love Jesus and who long to serve Him with everything they have, be totally and utterly freed of this sin. Will we forever be caught in Romans 7:15 or can the promise of Galatians 5:1 become a reality?

Please follow with me, and keep in mind the context of addiction to pornography:

"How God anointed Jesus of Nazereth with the Holy Spirit and power, and He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, because God was with him." - Acts 10:38

"Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working." - James 5:16

The word "healing" (Acts 10:38) and "healed" (James 5:16) are the same Greek word. Both mean physical healing. The same word is used throughout the gospels describing the healing miracles JESUS performed. The point is this: Healing is a reality that scripture says we can walk in; here and now. Pornography is an oppression by the enemy, like sickness, and it can be healed! The brain can be rewired. The soul can be made whole. The pain that porn is being used to mask over can also be healed. Freedom IS possible. Healing IS possible! 

Men who are controlled by pornography and feel they are the only ones battling the way they are, are hugely mistaken. Did you know that 25% of all Google searches are porn related? It's an epidemic!! It's not just you my cuzzie. The problem is that with pornography comes the shameful and embarrassing stigma and men are wary about admitting what they do in secret, lest it comes out into the open. So men have been fighting it. For years. Alone. Is there freedom? If they are at all honest with themselves, they'll tell you, no. 

One of the keys that I've experienced to being free from porn is the decision to confess it. Having a pastor or a friend in whom you can get real with, is priceless. Confession of sin is bringing it out from the darkness and into the light. Sin doesn't have power in the light. It's exposed. It becomes unappealing and the mystery of it disappears. 

I believe that James understood this when he spoke about confession of sin. Healing, REAL healing (actual freedom, actual deliverance...the real deal) comes when we confess and are prayed for. The freedom that is available to the kids of the Kingdom is something we can experience and walk in. It's not just some pie in the sky that we will hopefully come into once we get to Heaven! No, sir. It's Heaven's reality that is available to us here on earth. Jesus was not lying when He said we can experience abundant life. That abundant life includes abundance of the soul. Freedom from pornography and the control of its lusts and evil desires. In my journey, a continued walk of confession and vulnerability with my Christian friend is important. Freedom from addiction doesn't equal never-sin-again. The flesh will always have its lustful appetites, but the confession of it in the light disarms it's appeal.

Yes my friend, with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible!

I'm challenging my fellow Christian men: Find a Christian friend you can trust with your heart. Open up to him. Confess your struggle with pornography. Pray together. Put James 5:16 into practice and believe God for the healing that brings freedom. We have an obligation to our sons and fellow men in our generation, to stand up against this epidemic that's destroying souls, ending marriages and polluting minds. May it begin with us. May it begin with us receiving and walking in the real demonstration of freedom so that we can be ministers of freedom to others.

Will the real men please stand up?

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