April 21st

Removing Lust from Marriage

25Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.  Ephesians 5:25-27 NKJV 

But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.  Romans 13:14 NKJV 

Much of breaking porn addiction involves battling lust.  Even after being freed from sex addiction, we may have to stomp out some remaining “brush fires” of lust in our lives.  For example, I had been free from sex addiction for several years, yet God showed me that I was tolerating lust in my marriage sex life, treating sex more like an a activity to satisfy urges instead of an expression of love.  Additionally, some of our marriage sex practices had been inspired from the porn I used to look at. I found myself craving these acts from time to time.   

The Lord used Romans 13:14 (see above) to convict me of pardoning lust.  God showed me that feeding my cravings only gave lust a bigger foothold in my heart.  Paul made it crystal clear that lust is to have no part of a Christian’s life.  As I considered what this would mean for my sex life, I was slightly fearful, because I started to realize that lust had been playing a bigger part in my sex life than I wanted to admit.  I wondered if sex without lust was possible, and if so, what it would be like. God reminded me that he is the source of true pleasure and could help us experience sex based on true love….without lust.   

In response to God’s conviction, I decided to follow his lead in making changes in our sex life.  One of the changes was for me to be patient for a mutually desirable time for sex.  In the past I would initiate it (responding to lust) whether it was a good time for my wife or not.  Though waiting for the right time took restraint, we found that sex was much more rewarding for both of us when we did. There were some other changes we made, yet it’s probably not appropriate to write about them here. 

There is a fine, but distinct difference between sexually desiring your spouse and lusting after him or her.  Healthy sexual desire is based on love.  God will help us detoxify from any lust exposure we’ve have if we ask him to.  He’ll also teach us how to truly love without lust.    

Along the recovery path, we’ll have to honestly evaluate whether we’re making idols out of our sex practices and/ or feeding lust through them.  Remember that just because an act is featured in porn, that doesn’t make it wrong.  We have to look at what we’re doing with the act.  Are we idolizing it?  Are we lusting over the act?  Has it become an essential event along with sex for us?  We can be sure that wherever lust is fed it will grow.  It is not content to remain the same, and will breed dissatisfaction and hunger for more activity to feed it.   

Questions for further thought:

Prayer:

“Lord Jesus, Thank you for blessing me with everything I need for life and godliness through my knowledge of you. Thank you for blessing me with the great and precious promises in your word.  Lord, please show me where I’m tolerating lust in my life, and convict me of the actions I can take to remove that lust.  If I’m idolizing anything, please convict me of that too and strengthen me to remove the idols.  Please help me re-learn true and uncorrupted love.  Thank you, Jesus!  I praise you now and forever, Amen.”