I want to talk today about a little bit of a dichotomy that a lot of people experience in their journey towards sexual integrity.
If you’ve listened to this podcast for any length of time, or been involved in our coaching, groups, or events, I hope that you’ve picked up on the reality that we seek to bring the love and grace of God into all things.
We believe that real life change happens through the kindness of God.
It is the kindness of God that leads to repentance. Where sin increases, Paul writes in Romans, Grace increases all the more. We really are transformed by God’s movement in our lives.
The more we can do to open ourselves to the kindness, the goodness, the love, the gift that God is, the gifts that God offers, the better off we’ll be. And in general, Legalism, being hard on ourselves beating ourselves up, doesn’t work, it actually can be counterproductive towards growing in virtue and growing in sexual integrity. And so you won’t experience that here.
I think there’s often a mistake that people make along the way, in believing that somehow temptation is just going to evaporate, that they’re just going to one day just stop sinning.
Sometimes You Gotta Fight
Now, I do believe that can happen. And I do believe it can happen over time.
That’s beautiful, wonderful, I think it’s going to happen for you as you continue to go.
But the journey to get there does include times of having to fight sexual temptation. It does include times where you will have a desire to act out sexually, a desire to go back to that same old well, and you will have to resist, you will have to work hard not to do it.
You will have to say NO to that temptation, I’m not going down this route, in Jesus name!
Tune in as we talk about ways to fight, without being hard on yourself or legalistic. Ways that aren’t a sexual integrity bootcamp.
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Sometimes You Gotta Fight Transcript
Hey, everybody, Hey, I want to talk today with you about a little bit of a dichotomy attention that a lot of people experience in their journey towards sexual wholeness. If you’ve listened this podcast for any length of time, or you’ve been involved in our coaching, regeneration, or any of our groups, or even any of our events, I hope that you’ve picked up on the reality that we seek to bring the love and grace of God into all things. We believe that real virtue, real life change in our spirits, or souls or bodies or minds. Real life change happens through the kindness of God, Romans two four, Paul writes, it is the kindness of God that leads us to repentance. Where sin increases, he writes later in Romans, Grace increases all the more, we really are transformed by God’s movement in our lives. And so the more we can do to open ourselves to the kindness, that goodness, the love, the gift that God is, the gifts that God offers, the better off we’ll be. And in general, Legalism, being hard on ourselves beating ourselves up, that doesn’t work, it actually it can be counterproductive towards growing in virtue growing in sexual integrity. And so you won’t experience that here. With that said, I think there’s often a mistake that people make along the way, in believing that, they’re going to keep kind of turning over these stones along the way, they’re gonna experience God’s love. And that somehow temptation is just going to evaporate, that they’re just going to one day just stop sinning. Now, I do believe that can happen. And I do believe it can happen over time. I’ve experienced that in some areas of my life. And I think some of the most profound stories I’ve heard from people that just kind of that they’ve wrestled and wrestled with, with wrestle with a certain area of sin. And then one day, they kind of wake up and like, wait a minute, we’re, you know, I’ve wrestled that for a long time, what happened to it? That’s beautiful, wonderful, I think it’s going to happen for you as you continue to go. But the journey to get there does include times of having to fight sexual temptation does include times where you will have a desire to act out sexually a desire to go back to that same old well, and you will have to resist, you will have to work hard not to do it. James puts it this way. And James for he says, Submit yourselves therefore to God, resist the devil, and he will flee from you resist the devil. He doesn’t say like, Hey, if you’re if you’re virtuous enough, if you if you do the right things, you won’t have to resist the devil, because he’s gonna leave you alone. He says, resist him. This is an act of defiance. Why? Because we live in a world that is at war with the ways and purposes of God. And so there will be times, whether it’s the temptation to watch something on TV that is just wrong. It’s just, that just feeds the old ideas that lights up a part of the old parts of your brain that you’ve worked so hard to shut down, or it’ll be a spiritual warfare, where the enemy is coming after you. Or it’ll just be your own kind of neuro chemistry that has been habituated to run down that old track and move towards sexual sin that you will have to stand up against and say, No, I am not doing this in Jesus name. No, you’ll have to fight. This journey is not just one where you uncover uncover this rock and then turn this rock over and then receive God’s grace and this way, and we see God’s grace in this way. And then one day, it’s all just better. Whether it’s part of the journey of maturity, or when you are mature, in both cases, there will be times where you’re just going to need to fight, you’re going to want to stay in bed. And you’ll need to say, No, I’m not staying in bed, I’m getting up and I’m gonna get moving. And I’m using, you know, stay in bed, both metaphorically. And literally, there’ll be times where you won’t want to draw on your god, you’re gonna want to veg in front of the TV, you’re gonna want to do something else. And certainly in the in regards to sexual integrity, there are going to be times where you’re going to feel in your body sexual desire, when it’s not the right time, it’s not the place, either because you’re single, or because you’re married and your spouse is not. It’s not a right moment, a good moment to be sexually intimate with your spouse. And you’d have to, you’d have to resist, you have to work hard through those times. So my whole point in saying all this is just to allow yourself some grace to say, Look, I’m a human being. I live in a fallen world. I live in a world that we’re there, both the world, the flesh and the devil that are opposed to God’s will and God’s way, both in the world and in my individual life. And so there’ll be times where I need to fight. So one of my favorite stories in CS Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia, there’s so many Wonderful little vignettes in there. One of my favorite stories is the story of puddle glum as he’s traveling with the two children he’s and he finds himself in in the underworld and puddle. glum is a marshmallow wiggle. He’s kind of this combination of a human and a frog and he’s, he’s a pessimist but he thinks he’s an optimist. It’s he’s a very funny character. And in case, he and these two children find themselves in a place called underworld, they’re way deep under the ground. And they’re they’re trying to rescue a kidnapped prince who doesn’t know that he’s been kidnapped. He’s, he’s actually been bewitched, by the Green Lady. And in their process of trying to rescue him, they themselves encounter the green lady. And she begins to strum on this musical instrument, and below them through her music, towards becoming they, they start to kind of lulled to sleep and log low, they’re kind of lulled into, into, into believing her lies, and she throws some kind of magic powder into a fire that’s there. And they start to smell that and they start to become a kind of intoxicated with Luis is doing is he’s painting a picture of what it’s like for us sometimes in this world. We know what God’s will is, we know what’s true, we know what’s real. And yet we start to succumb to this. This fragrance in the air, this music around us that is intoxicating, begins to blur our vision begins to cloud our thinking, begins to to low our emotions away from the Lord and into this unreality that the enemy wants to weave around us. What ends up happening in the scene as they tried to debate the Green Lady and all her arguments just make more sense than what they’re saying. And you can kind of use your reading going on man, they’re gonna lose it. And then all at once the marsh wiggle puddle, glum, jumps up, and puts his feet into the fiery coals. And he does it to rouse himself from the spell. And he hops out. And as he does that his burning flesh actually kind of wakes the others out of their stupor a little bit too. But but it wakes him up. It’s this dramatic move where he burns himself to be kind of awakened from the spell of the enemy. Now, in no way am I advocating that you put your feet into a fire, I’m not saying you should do that. But there are moments as you’re resisting sexual temptation as you’re encountering something that feels like I’m maybe this is not so bad. Maybe I can just go down this route. Maybe it’s I’ll just give in for a little bit, where it’s gonna be important for you to be you for you to take decisive action to fight in that moment. So for example, one of the things that a therapist told me years ago is you can literally make a loud noise in that moment, clap your hands, bang your head on the table. Part of what that does is it it jumps the track. So where your neural pathways are kind of moving down that same old familiar path, you’re you’re you’re jumping the track that neural pathway, and you’re waking up your prefrontal cortex, which is the part of your brain that is responsible for decision making. Add to that, the name of Jesus, when he’s I, I’ve done at different times in the moment, cetacean is just in the name of Jesus, no, in the name of Jesus. No. I’m saying that to the temptation. I’m not going down this route, in Jesus name, no. Get up out of your seat, and move. Be decisive in those moments and fight. You’re, again, you’re fighting for the good of your body, you’re fighting for the good of your sexuality, your sexuality, you’re fighting for your deepest best desires. You’re fighting for your relationship with God, you’re not fighting against yourself, you’re fighting for yourself, against the toxication enemy puts around you. So what are the other ways that you know to fight is not about being hard on yourself, not about being legalistic? Not about being a bootcamp. But you do want to arm yourself for battle, recognizing that your battle is not against flesh and blood. It’s not against your body. It’s my alarm going off. You’re not You’re fighting not against your body. You’re fighting for your body. So consider like, what are the ways that you need to fight instead of just waiting for the temptations to dissipate. Recognize that you that you live in a world that is like underworld, you have an enemy that’s coming after you the world, the flesh and the devil are opposed to God’s purpose in your life and you will need to fight sometimes.
Now one last note about that. Don’t fight alone. Find some allies to fight with you. Some brothers or sisters, who you can call you can link arms with you can fight with. We’ve got programs and coaches here. We’d love to invite you to be a part of ticket that you can link arms with and fight with others. And most importantly, you want to fight with the Lord. You don’t need to fight to make your way to him. He has already made his way to you. So be at peace with him and fight with him against those things that would threaten your sobriety your entire gritty your walk with Him Lord would you help us to do that lead us away from temptation Lord deliver us from the evil one and teach us Lord in those moments that we need to fight to fight as you call us to in Jesus name amen