Hi! This is Grant, and I’d like to tell you my story.
I grew up in church — attended all three services a week. I have the best parents. I was your basic “good kid” — a church kid. But there’s a dirty little secret about me that not many know. I was addicted to pornography. For a good while, I was living in the sin of pornography. I was completely enslaved to its hold, and I even still attended church three times a week. Nobody knew. I knew it was wrong, but I couldn’t stop.
I was first exposed at the age of about twelve years old through an anonymous email that only contained a link. I clicked on it. By the time the page had loaded I had already clicked cancel, but it wasn’t fast enough. The images had popped up, I had seen them, and they were in my head.
Skip forward a few months. I’m 13 now, and they are still fresh in my mind. I opened a browser and began viewing porn for the first time out of my own will. At that moment I became an addict. I became a slave, by my own choice, at the age of 13. And the thing is, I liked it. Nobody knew. I felt so guilty after, but I still did.
Over the next six months I continued. I continued to like it, I continued to view it, and I continued to hide it. But something began to change. It started to take more and more to satisfy me. It wasn’t quite the same anymore. I started to feel a little empty. But that didn’t stop me — I just kept on down that path — because I loved it. I began feeling less and less guilty after.
Another six months passed, and I was completely empty. It took so much, and I gave in so much. But it was all so empty — vain. Porn ran my life, and it was in control of me. I felt so guilty for not feeling as guilty as I should, but I found that actually that was guilt. I was ready to be done. I wanted out. I wanted to be free. But I couldn’t be. I couldn’t stop. I tried. Sometimes I could go like a day, or maybe two, but that was it. Sleep was terrible, and I was tormented with dreams and visions of people finding out. I felt like a monster. I wanted to tell my parents. I knew I needed help, but I just couldn’t bring myself to tell them. So one day I didn’t leave it as secure as I would normally. They found it, and we talked about it, and I repented.
We didn’t set any safeguards, though. I went without it for about another six months, but everything was still so alive in my mind. I prayed and prayed for healing of my mind and to be 100% free from it, but the images didn’t go away instantly, and after the the six months had passed, I slipped up and viewed it again. It was crushing afterwards — I was at the bottom again. Again, I had given in. Even with my parents helping and praying, I still fell. How could this happen? I had repented and prayed for freedom, and I know my parents prayed too. I wasn’t supposed to just relapse like that, but I did.
The core problem was that my heart hadn’t truly changed. It wasn’t very long this time though, and I decided that I wanted to be done for good, and maybe it wouldn’t be an overnight breakthrough, but gradual steps in the right direction. So I’d go two days without and then mess up. But then the next time I’d make it a week, and then two weeks, and then a month, and then a year, and then two years. Through lots of prayer and trusting God to forgive when I confessed my sins, I hadn’t jumped right out of my chains, but I had walked out — one step at a time.
That’s my story of my great sins and of grace that was greater. To anyone out there in bondage to pornography, I feel you. I know how hard it is, even when you want to stop. I want you to know that there is hope and power found in Jesus’ name, and that if you confess your sin He is faithful and just to forgive your sin. He wants to help you out — you just have to let Him. To the teens reading this, I hope and pray that you won’t fall into this as I have in the past, and I encourage you to guard your heart from even beginning to think about pornography. And to the parents reading this, know that porn is a real enemy to your kids — it’s out there. Even the best internet safeguards can be breached, but I still suggest them. The best safeguard for them is prayer, and to teach them to guard their hearts, and to equip them with the full armor of God so that they can withstand the wiles of the devil.