Your Imagination Is Better Than Porn

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In this podcast, we are talking about your imagination. Your Imagination Is Better Than Porn.

We who are seeking sexual integrity know the problem of how our mind can get us into trouble with sexual thoughts, sexual fantasies, and sexual imaginings that lead us down a path. It can start with just a small thought that seems to kind of drift into our brain.

Then something inside grabs a hold of it. And we muse on it. And it grows and grows, until we’re doing things that we promised ourselves and others that we wouldn’t do.

So the imagination has been taken captive, and we’re doing it again.

What we want to remember in this podcast is that the imagination initially was not Satan’s idea. It’s something that he seeks to use to draw us away from God, but it wasn’t his invention.

The imagination is God’s invention.

Your Imagination Is Better Than Porn

But what did he design it for, and how can we utilize the way that God intended our imagination to be: to help us grow into the kind of people who are people of sexual integrity, sexual wholeness, and sexual maturity?

Can you think about ways to engage your imagination to fill your life with the good of your imagination as opposed to allowing it to continue to move towards vices. I’m gonna give you four or five different ideas to help you answer these questions.

  • Where are you using your imagination and creativity?
  • Where can you use your imagination towards moving towards that brighter future?
  • Where are you using your imagination for relationships?
  • Where are you using your imagination to help you grow in faith?

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Your Imagination Is Better Than Porn

Josh
Everybody, welcome back. Glad to be with you this week. Hey, as we get started today, I want to talk to you about your imagination. We are most of us if we’re seeking sexual integrity, know the problem of how our mind can get us in trouble with sexual thoughts, sexual fantasy, sexual imaginings that lead us down a path. And we know, he can start with just a just a small, small thought that seems to kind of waft into our brain, something inside there, grabs ahold of it. And we muse on it. And it grows and grows, until we’re doing things that we promised ourselves and others that we wouldn’t do. And we’re doing it again. So the imagination has been taken captive. And it’s a problem for us. But we want to remember in this podcast, that the imagination initially was not Satan’s idea. It’s something that he seeks to use to draw us away from God. But it wasn’t his invention. Imagination is God’s invention. God designed the imagination. So what did he design it for? And how in our journey towards sexual integrity, can we utilize the way that God intended our imagination to be to help us grow into the kind of people who are people, men and women of sexual integrity, sexual wholeness, sexual maturity, as opposed to those whose imaginations are still captive to sexual thoughts, inappropriate sexual thoughts. So couple things right off the bat, we have to discard with the idea that whenever we’re imagining something, it means that we are that we’re imagining something that’s imaginary, something that’s not real, something that’s a fiction. That’s a kind of, in some ways, you might want to compare that I guess the to like, when we’re sexually fantasizing or looking at pornography, we’re using our imagination, to engage in a fiction, to try to make ourselves believe or enter into a fiction as though it is reality. Now, there’s nothing wrong with with entering into fiction kind of get lost in a story for a bit. But but not not to the point where we are disconnecting dissociating from reality, on a long term basis, that’s that’s actually stunting our growth keeping us immature keeping us people of sexual sin, people of sexual immorality, keeping us as people who are immature, rather than mature, it’s appropriate for a five year old to spend most of the day pretending. But the reason that’s appropriate for that five year old is because they are pretending that they are an adult, they are pretending in a way that’s helping them to dream about the life that they’re going to engage in. Now, if they’re 30 years old, and they’re still spending half a day, imagining about the life they might live, there’s a problem there. So our aim as adults is not to use our imagination, to dissociate disconnect, but is to point us in the direction of a preferred future of a life that we want have a life that’s better of the kingdom of God, for example. And that’s what our imagination is for. So, think about it this way, I heard a guy say years and years ago, that we spend so much of our time focused in on using our imaginations for amusement. But when he broke down the word he said, a meaning anti or against an muse, which is us thinking, pondering, dreaming, in a good way. And so we’re really, amusement is a distraction from our ability to think and dream in a productive, fruitful way. And so as as love has been defined, often, Love is Something that’s fruitful, love, something that’s total love is something that’s free, and love something that’s faithful. And so are we using our imagination in those ways for the good of others, and for the good of ourselves and for the good of the kingdom of God. Imagination that’s moving towards sexual sin or sexual fantasy, unwanted sexual behaviors. That’s easy, right? Because we’ve done that a million times, like that doesn’t require anything from us. It’s almost like we can just kind of hit play, and our imagination will just take a journey, right. And if it doesn’t like the way it’s going, it’ll kind of turn and go a different direction. We don’t typically need to work and using our imagination, when we’re fantasizing sexually, or moving towards unwanted sex behavior, but imagination that moves towards a brighter future, a preferred future, the kingdom of God, that’s actually a takes some work, it actually requires something of us. Now, it can be joyous work, it can be wonderful work. And sometimes there can be kind of just to the, you know, the flowing along, it seems to become naturally, then you might even find specific places in your life where that happens more easily for you. It’s a good sign. But, but But what is moving one is using our imagination towards advice. And that typically is just kind of like a descent, right? One is moving are using our imagination towards virtue, and that’s an ascent. And so that takes a little bit more energy in just as it does in the physical world. It’s not as hard to go down as it is to climb. Same with our imaginations. So if you want to be sexually mature person sexually Whole Person person sexual integrity, how can you use your imagination? Can you think about ways to engage your imagination? Spend your imagination, tire out your imagination, work out your imagination for good to fill space to fill your life with The good of your imagination as opposed to allowing it to continue to move towards device, I’m gonna give you four or five different ideas to help you with that. The first is where are you using your imagined? So this is not necessarily a prescription for like, hey, my imagination is going in some of those negative places in those bad places. What do I do now? This is not necessarily that response time, you know, I just shift to do this, but more like how can you include these ways to use your imagination in your life? How can you incorporate them in your life? So you’re building a train your imagination to move towards good to move towards reality at preferred future, as opposed to towards continuing down the path of vice and unreality and amusement, which is against thing? So? Number one, where are you using your imagination, creatively? Simply, where in your life? Are you creating anything right now? Where are you using your imagination, to dream and think about things that you can create? And then engaging in that creation? So maybe it’s creating music? Maybe it’s painting? Maybe it’s drawing? Maybe it’s writing poetry or fiction? Maybe it’s gardening? Maybe it’s something else. Maybe it’s whittling or carving? You decide. You might even think when you were a kid? What were some of the art forms that you liked? And when did you stop doing those things? Engage your imagination, your imagination is meant to bring beauty into the world. So where can you create beauty using your imagination? Secondly, where can you use your imagination towards moving towards that brighter future, this is a little bit more risky. This is a little bit more of an adult sized use of your imagination, but dream and scheme and conceive and construct ideas about where you want to be in five years or where you want to be next year. And here you also because you’re not dissociated, you’re not disconnected from reality. You’re trying to use your imagination towards a real reality. You also have to then think through using your imagination, maybe some help from other some other people. What’s the cost? What do you need to put in place? If you dream of, for example, if you dream of owning your own company one day, and you find yourself going that direction? Well, let’s get practical. What do you need in order to be able to own your own company, you might need capital, you might need more education might need to go back to school. What else do you need, you might need some people who can help you. So dream, conceive, use your imagination, to try to think about who who, when, and when what you need. That’s heavy lifting. But you notice how it’s moving towards the adult use of imagination, not just the childish imagination, which is, I’m always dreaming always thinking about what I might do. Wouldn’t it be great if, but never taking action on it, your imagination is meant to move towards reality. It’s designed to do that. Just a side note, I think I’ve mentioned here before, but I think that’s one of the reasons that we can never just fantasize and fantasizing fantasizing in their imagination, we always want to see our imagination become flesh. And so even when we’re imagination, imagining something sexual, it stirs up our body, we feel it in our body, right? And we end up either having sex with ourselves or pursuing somebody else, or like using our eyes to see pornography or using our ears or whatever, like your imagination wants to be wants to move into reality, because that’s what God designed it to do. And so thinking about your future, and where you want to go and imagining those things, will require some work on your part. Next, where are you using your imagination for relationships, I’ve got a new a guy who last year was kind of considering some of these things. And he designed this this beautiful, he loves to cook. So he he invited, I think was like three or four close friends over and he made them this elaborate meal from wherever he is he is from, and he invited them and shared this meal with them. And he had also used his imagination to think through a blessing you could save to each one of those friends, something he valued about each one of them. And it turned into this beautiful night. You see how you use his imagination to bring life not just to himself, but to a community of people? It was life changing for everybody. That’s what his imagination is for. So how might you use your imagination? For relationships? Is it preparing a meal for somebody? Maybe it’s inviting someone out for coffee. But having imagined come up with five questions you want to ask them just to get them talking about their life. I know somebody who got together with their one of their grandparents and sat down and recorded and ask them questions about their childhood was so life giving what a beautiful thing to do. Maybe it’s planning a road trip or some kind of adventure for you or for your family. I’ve got a good friend who used to do this kind of stuff all the time. And he actually for his small group at church was was not so small as a big group. They actually ended up renting like three or four Winnebagos these big you know, those those big trucks and taking a trip across the country together? What a great use of the imagination. And then lastly, where are you using your imagination to help you grow in faith in faith? And

Josh
this is one of the reasons I think that our imagination is really ideal and awesome for us. So as you’re reading scripture are using your imagination to help you to actually understand so this morning for example, I was reading Galatians and I was imagining the tree Which installation was probably not that big. It might have been, I don’t know, 2030 4050 people, maybe it’s larger, I don’t know. But it’s kind of imagining, it wasn’t that big a group. And I was reading the words out loud kind of imagining that those people were hearing things about who they were. And knowing that Paul had written specifically to them, I was using my imagination to help me enter into it, the Scripture was were saying, it was powerful. Some people, other other people, as they read scripture, will actually put themselves in, in the scene. And so they’ll be blind Bartimaeus on the side of the road, saying, Lord Jesus, have mercy on me, a sinner, son of David, have mercy on me a sinner, they’ll place themselves, or maybe they’ll place themselves in the crowd and a watch it in the scene. Again, this isn’t doesn’t mean it was imaginary. They’re using their imagination to conceive of something that was real. And yeah, they’re adding some details that they don’t know necessarily were there. But it’s a way to engage in something that is very real. Jesus really was there, Paul really did write to that church. So they’re using your imagination to enter into into reality in a way that’s really powerful. You can also use your imagination when you pray. So often, we just use words when we pray, use your imagination, God can read your mind, Lord, would you do this? So often, my imagination comes up with kind of images or scenes, and there are times where I find myself, like thinking about a relationship or a struggle I have not as the actual struggle, but as as kind of in some metaphoric way. Like, Lord, I feel like I’m trying to hold this big rock from rolling down on my family right now. And my feet are slipping. This is what I see. Would you give me strength to push that rock? Or would you come and break that rock, and I imagine this thing’s in my brain. This is one of the ways that I can pray. You can also use your imagination to to grow in intimacy with the Lord. That’s another way to use it towards faith. And so what are the ways that you feel you would love the Lord to relate with you? Imagine Jesus meeting you on a path? What’s the expression on his face? What does he come bringing? Has he brought anything for you? Where do you sit? What does he say? Imagine those things, and let those be the longing of your heart expressed to God. And these are ways you can grow in intimacy with Him. Your imagination is a great, great tool friends, and is as long as we sit in front of YouTube, or, you know, Netflix and Netflix and Netflix and just allow our imaginations to be amused where we are entertained by those who have used their imagination. And we’re letting our brains be formed by them and their thoughts. And the more prone we are towards looking at pornography. We’re just letting our imagination before by somebody else, as opposed to using your imagination as God intended to be used, where you are moving towards a better reality, engaging with him as his Imago Dei, his image bearers, and he’s the great creator and we using our imagination to create alongside him partnering with him in his great work that he’s about on the earth. Lord, would You capture our imaginations with who you are, and who we are that we can actually help you be creators in art and beauty and relationships, and a brighter future for ourselves and in the good of intimacy with you and pray these things and even the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and bless you brothers and sisters.

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