Addiction doesn’t come in single file; it contains multiple elements! As a result, the life-sucking tentacles of addiction sink deep and hold fiercely. Nonetheless, addictions can be broken.
I see the devastation of addictions on individuals and their families on a weekly basis. The visibly obvious comes in the form of chemical addictions to alcohol or drugs. With increasing regularity however, it is those entangled in the bondage of sexual addiction who sit before me with downward gaze.
Conservative figures record 48% of women and 78% of men battle this dragon. It is a battle originating from hell’s deepest recesses.
Addictions create a threefold cord that is difficult to break over the mind, the body and the soul.
I have been on this battle ground with sexual addiction in my home, family, church and community for decades. It is a battle worth fighting! It is a battle worth winning!
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In a faraway kingdom a quest was in progress to capture the great dragon that was attacking villages by night with fiery fierceness. The King’s own son was sent out to find and subdue the dragon.
When all alone, the prince came upon the sleeping beast. The prince found it difficult to envision this placid creature as the man-slayer the King described.
The dragon spoke first, “I’m not as fierce as the King has said. As a matter of fact, quite the opposite! I am the one to set you free. Come for one flight with me and I will show you.”
The prince was uncertain and confused. He knew he should be more cautious than he was now feeling.
“Sit upon my back and I will take you to unbelievable places. I will give you your heart’s desire.”
The prince instinctively knew he should not trust the beast. “Just one ride would not hurt!”
The prince dismounted his faithful stead and slipped himself between the spines of the dragons back. One swoop of the dragon’s powerful wings lifted them into the night. Upward they went with exhilarating speed. The dragon was true to his word. Never had the prince experienced such things.
As the prince entered the gates of his city, shame cloaked him. “Why was I so easily deceived? I, a prince, have befriended the enemy?”
Silenced by shame, the prince hid himself. Yet, he thought often of the excitement of the ride. Soon he sought out the dragon. Another ride…another night…then another…and another…
On the way into the city by the moonlight he noticed his hands were beginning to form scales. Quickly he covered them with his gloves concealing how much he was becoming like the deadly dragon.
Each night their journey would take them into more and more grotesque places. The prince rode secure upon the dragon as it breathed its fire into homes and villages. Blood stained the princes armor – the blood of his Father’s people!
Under cover of darkness, the prince attempted to slink back into the city. A crowd of angry villagers surrounded him, “He was there! He was riding on the dragon when it destroyed our homes!”
The King approached his son, “Is it true? Were you with the dragon?”
The prince’s secret could no longer be hidden. “Yes, Father,” was his hollow response.
He was sure the King would enforce the punishment he deserved – life for life. On his knees he waited for his Father’s angry blow. With the hand of mercy his Father touched his shoulder, removing the cloak covering the ugly spines growing on the prince’s back.
“My son,” the Father spoke tenderly.
Looking around, the Father asked, “Who else has ridden the dragon?”
To the prince’s surprise his older brother slowly stepped forward, then his young sister. One by one, many villagers came and bowed mournfully before the King. Few had escaped the dragon’s subtle lure.
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Princes and Princesses
In a culture like ours with tolerance and acceptance of sexual perversion, the dragon is constantly fed. As with any addiction a little taste draws one into ever deepening levels of attraction and bondage.
Apart from the grace of God the noose of addiction destroys completely!
The dragon of addiction is overcome through truth and a community of supporters. Don’t try to fight alone! Fight to win gaining victory over mind, body, and soul!
“But everything exposed by the light becomes visible –
and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.”
It is amazing to watch how those who have overcome “become a light” of help, hope and strength to others in the battle. A necessary but painful part of recovery is coming clean – letting God’s light shine into the secret place. There is no easy way. It will be difficult.
“All of us also lived among them at one time,
gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following
its desires and thoughts.”
“All” is an inclusive word. None of us have room to boast. We each have our own battlegrounds. We all deserve the full weight of punishment for our personal sins. Yet, God has made us for better as His princes and princesses.
There is good news!
“But because of his great love for us,
God who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ
even when we were dead in transgressions –
…For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith –
and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God –
not by works, so that no one can boast.”
Ephesians 2: 4-10
God’s love and mercy extends to all! To overcome will take work done through His grace alone.
The first step is honesty and transparency. Begin with a visit to a pastor or addictions counselor. There is an army willing to step into the battle with you. You will need to become accountable to others to help you through the process.
There are no quick fixes. It has taken you years to get to where you are. It will also take years to completely overcome.
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more
than all we ask or imagine,
according to his power that is at work within us…”
Your freedom awaits!
Parable taken from “Pure Desire – How One Man’s Triumph Can Help Others Break Free”