FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2017

Diet for the Eyes

Pornography is a home-wrecker.  It robs the dignity and specialness of every woman in love with a man imbibing and/or addicted to its sordid flavor.  Men often are misled by the thought that pornography is not unfaithfulness. Ask any woman. She will unequivocally tell you that pornography is the sister to infidelity. It feels like betrayal because it is. No one in a relationship wants to be in competition with someone else, or “elses”—many “elses.”

As a Family Life FIX-IT Pro, I mentor many relationships plagued with the annihilations of this addiction. Pornography is not exclusive to hardships on married couples. The individual spiritual demolition is the most egregious of its offenses. The intrusive nature of the images seared into the minds of men—and yes, women—never fade. Most addicts were introduced at young ages, often as young as nine, and many times by the father. The lust it conjures up is insatiable. The damage it produces sometimes takes years to manifest, but to be certain, the destruction will come sooner or later.

So how does one break a habit that is all-consuming? A practice that seems “harmless” and private? How does one disengage from the magnetism of its lure? It’s an easy answer with a difficult method attached. It’s called a Diet for the Eyes.  Want to lose the weight of the burden of pornography before it erodes your family legacy? Then let’s get started today.

  1. Set a start date. Today is as good a time as ever. Diets are never easy to begin, but once your will is engaged, the process is set in motion. Without a beginning, there will never be an end.
  2. Exercise your self-control. God gives us two things in equal measure—time and self-control. It’s how much we put into the venture that determines the return on our investment.
  3. Partner for accountability. Choose a reliable source for monitoring your devices. Covenant Eyes is a reliable one, but there are many to select from. The important thing is to have a program—cost is not to be a consideration—to monitor your activity and help you stick to your diet.
  4. Discipline yourself. Stop pop-ups and ads. Get a stronger firewall so that invitations to your filter bubble will be sent directly to your spam folder. The only way to free yourself of the load of sin is to discipline yourself. In 2 Corinthians 12, the Apostle Paul reveals that he has “a thorn in his flesh.” To this day theologians can only conjecture as to what that was. He likens it to “a messenger of Satan, to torment me.” Earlier in 1 Corinthians 9:26-27, Paul tells us, “Therefore, I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” He was disciplined. We can be, too.
  5. 5 steps to lose the weight. Practice these 5 steps to help you lose the heaviness accompanied with pornography:
    1. Turn of the TV. Yes, you can change the channel, get TVO to bypass the commercials, choose user-friendly, modest programs to watch, etc. But with the inundation of sex-in-the-face-sells programming, it’s increasingly difficult to control what is flashed before you on most stations. If you’re really serious, turn off your TV. Believe it or not, life goes on.
    2. Avoid temptation. Yes, they serve great buffalo wings at many eye-healthy establishments, so avoid Hooters. Likewise, stay away lingerie stores. Leave that to your wife. You can’t starve eyes if you constantly feed them temptation.
    3. Stop the lusting linger. Scantily-clad women are everywhere. Cleavage has always been in, but it’s on display every day—at malls, schools, the workplace, even at church. And, yes, even soccer moms wear the spandex that leaves little to the imagination about how fit, or lack thereof, they are. Short of wearing patches over both eyes, you can’t avoid what’s coming at you 24/7. You can stop, however, the lingering looks. Don’t fixate. Don’t follow. Don’t fantasize.
    4. Toss the magazines. Don’t buy them. If they come to your home, stop the subscriptions and/or toss them immediately. If they are your wife’s stock, then let her get the mail and leave yours in a pile for you after she has sorted through hers. There’s always a way out of temptation. Back to Paul—such a wise Apostle—1 Corinthians 10:13: “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
    5. Starve yourself. Most therapists believe one should never go cold-turkey in breaking addictions. Some even say it’s impossible. I believe ALL things are possible through Christ who gives us strength. This is truly one diet where you must starve yourself in order to break free. The images are going to stick around in your mind for a long, long time. That’s food enough, but it’s also the energy that creates the craving. So, reject it. Focus your thoughts on the reasons why you want to break this habit: spiritual righteousness, love of your spouse, preserving your family legacy, freeing yourself from bondage. Starving yourself of the sin will allow more room for love. Hence, you’ll find every area of your life will improve.

There you have it. 5 tips with 5 steps for the Diet for the Eyes. Yes, you can free yourself of any addiction. Whether it’s food, pornography, alcohol, drugs, smoking, whatever. But, it takes a plan. Some addictions take stronger intervention. One thing is for certain, a diet never works without a whole-hearted effort. Get yourself a plan today to lose the weight that keeps you encumbered in your relationships—with your spouse and with God.

 

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