My service as a church officer in a South American field went well until I fell to the temptation of pornography. The problem had started during my youth, but God had helped me overcome for some time. But then the problem started again, especially during work trips, when staying alone at night in hotel rooms. It was very awkward to fall asleep during the sessions of the division executive committee the next day knowing that I had stayed up late the previous night watching pornography on the TV or computer. I felt horrible knowing I was living in hypocrisy, and I desperately wanted deliverance.
Day after day, I cried to God for victory. And yet, I kept falling. I shared my struggle with my wife. For some months the victory would be won, but then I would fall again. Knowing I was trapped by the same addiction that many around the world face (51 percent of Christians admit pornography is a temptation, and 37 percent say it’s a current struggle) made me very discouraged. Here I was encouraging other pastors and church leaders to live holy lives, but I was unable to live this life myself.
As my family and I moved to another continent to work as missionaries, I prayed more earnestly for God to act powerfully in my life. With no work trips, the temptations were reduced to times after disagreements with my wife. Then with no TV and a heavy Internet control on computers, temptations were reduced to the cell phone, but still falling short of full victory and freedom. While I was trying earnestly, my heart was not yet fully yielded to the power of God, that is, until one evening, during a Wednesday night prayer meeting.
During this particular week, I heard two individuals talking about the devastating consequences of pornography. Then they began sharing ways to help one overcome sexual addiction, followed by a call for those in the audience to commit themselves to sexual purity and self-discipline, by signing a promise to do all in our power to keep ourselves morally and sexually pure. As I signed, I poured my heart out to God and asked Him, once and for all, to help me resist all pornography temptations. As I prayed I felt that God was touching my shoulder and telling me: “I will help you.” And help me, He did!
Almost five years have passed and I praise the Lord that I have not fallen a single time. Truly God is faithful to keep His promises when we cry to Him for help!
If you are among the 4 out of 10 Christians who view pornography daily, don’t give up, because Jesus has not given up on you. Pray earnestly and He will deliver you.
Santiago Dominguez is a missionary who is writing under a pseudonym.
Note: To view this week’s world church prayer requests, click here!