Question:

Hello,

I'm having huge problems with pornography and have a question about a girl I like, but she doesn't like me back. If you could, please read all that I will write and God give you wisdom to help me with this. Thank you.

I'm a male, age 25, and I've been struggling with porn and other things related to this subject, but I haven't had sex or had any sexual activities with anyone. I was born and raised in a Christian family and attend church daily. I am involved in many church activities. I was baptized at the age of 16 and still attend the same church.

I can't even remember now when I started this sin. I can say for sure that its been really serious closer to my 20's, but it has been going on for a while. At first it started as a "harmless" thing, as a teenager I was never into dating and all that stuff. I always played video games with my buddies. I remember looking up exotic cars, like Ferrari, Porsche and other cars of such sort, and of course you can only think of what the searches that brought up with the word exotic being in the search category.

Later it became searching for pictures online of what would be describe as "softcore" things. At that time I was probably thirteen and still attending middle school. I wouldn't say that I understoodd or even knew that what I was doing was a sin. I just did it because to me it was like, "Oh, look! It's a naked woman." It was more of a fascination of the opposite sex. It wasn't until later that I learned of masturbation and things related to it.

Of course, I learned later that this is bad and it's a sin. Still I didn't have anyone who told me why it's a sin. I wasn't reading the Bible much or did any actual praying; I prayed like many kids before bed and when I get up in the morning.

Forward to my 20's. At this point I was aware of my actions were a sin and that a sexually immoral person sins against his own body, though at this this point I still wasn't reading the Bible much. Every time I would sin, I would feel so bad and worthless. I would stop for a while and then again came the urge. These past 5 years I've watch porn and masturbated almost every day -- sometimes multiple times a day. I speak of this all with regret and shame. I just can't live like this anymore.

This year in January I said that I will read the Bible every day and pray every day. I did fasting multiple times this year already. I don't know, just something inside, I really have this feeling of getting married and getting closer to God. This year wasn't as bad as every other year in terms of how often I committed this sin.

In January I met a girl out of state whom I started to like a lot. No dating because I think it's wrong and not godly, but then again, my life isn't godly even though I understand many things in the Bible.
I told her that I'm serious, and I'm not looking to date. She said she is the same way. The thing is that I haven't met a girl that I like in a very long time, probably since I was 17. I always prayed on and off, so that God wouldn't let me even like a girl until I would meet the girl He has prepared for me. Although I haven't thought about this at that time. I know now that God doesn't listen to sinners. Now I'm thinking that my prayer was not heard because based on what I was praying, I was thinking that this girl was for me from God.

This girl and I continued to text and then we started talking on the phone. About a month into our conversations I told her that I liked her but didn't get anything in return. The next morning she said that she doesn't have the same feelings toward me. She said she felt mad at herself that she did have those feelings and couldn't tell me that she likes me. We continued to talk over phone and text and after couple months I went to visit her. After my visit she texted me and said that she doesn't think we should continue to talk because she thinks it's unfair to me. I'm talking to her and waiting for her. She feels bad for making me wait. I told her that if that is the reason then we should continue to pray about this. We both agreed to pray. After this point we only texted but less then before. At some point we stopped talking for a few months, at which point I said to myself and prayed that if I don't commit this sexual sin then I will write to her.

Back when we were still talking and I just met her, I stopped with this porn watching and didn't want to do any of that or even have any urges. But then I started having the urges again. I don't know, maybe because I stopped focusing on God and focused on the girl. So I still continued to watch porn sometimes and commit the other sin during that period of time when she and I were still talking.

I didn't watch porn or any of that stuff for over a month and I contacted her. We talked over text and we talked for a little. I asked her to talk over the phone and she said "sure," but what it seemed to me that she always would then say "Sorry, I was really busy at work and really tired. I have to wake up early" and so on. We still continued to talk over text for a couple of weeks. One day I again asked her about if she still remembered what I asked her about talking to her. She said yes, that she is sorry, etc. I told her that I don't want to bother her. I want this conversation with her to be mutually desired and not some kind of "just say it and be done with it" kind of thing. From that point she didn't answer me and I didn't write to her because I have a feeling that she doesn't want to talk to me. I could be just annoying her and I don't want to be that person. But again I assume things too much, and I don't want to assume this because I really want her to want to talk to me.

Not long after that I sinned again. My big problem is that I don't feel guilt, shame or worthlessness as I would before when I was younger. I don't know. Maybe I've been doing it for so long. I really hate it that every time I pray to God, I pray for forgiveness. I mean that is not the relationship I want with Him. I want my life to be for Him and I want His Holiness to be in me, like Paul said that he does things he doesn't want to do and things he wants to do, he doesn't do. I'm like having these double thoughts of committing this sin and not committing it. At time I will not and most times I will now. I really hate this sin, but I still do it. I know the Bible says that all sin is from within the person and not from God (putting things in my own word) so it means I'm sinning because I want to sin.

I even did a little research on the human body and this chemicals in human body and how this chemicals help us remember sexual things, or things we like, like food, smell or certain action or activity or feelings. I know that I've done this sin so many times that my body is just so used to it. I'm just so lost and hopeless now because I want to have a relationship with this girl, but I don't have a faithful relationship with God that a Christian must have. I keep feeling that that is the reason for all my "unluckiness."

How do I get rid of this urge and need or want to sin? I really want to have the urge to read the Bible and praise God and not sin. How do I get this feeling of hate toward sin? I'm really worried that at some point, God will say "enough trying of my patience, be done with you" to me. I'm really worried that I'm not truly repenting and but just feeling bad for sinning. I want to truly repent and turn away from sin. How do I do that? Please help me understand. I've heard many times to repent and turn away from sin, that those who truly repent they wont want to sin. How do I truly repent? I want to, but if I'm continuing to sin the same sin, doesn't that mean that I truly didn't repent?

And next, how should I approach this girl? There is a conference in their church, which is about 12 hours away. I was thinking of going there and was hoping to see her there and talk to her. I don't know. I was just thinking that if this wasn't from God that the feelings I have for this girl would be gone by now. But I always pray for her and about her and that if she isn't from God for me to see it and understand it and accept it. Should I approach this girl and ask her directly or how should I go about it because my intentions are to get married? Anything you can say or anything you can add will be appreciated.

I'm really sorry for writing so much, but its just that there are these two things in my life that I can't understand. I think these two life experiences are related. I was thinking: how will God let me get married now when my life is not in peace with Him? It says to seek God and everything else He will take care of (putting things in my words).

I was just reading through other questions people asked and how you answered them, and everything you said goes in line with how I believe, but sadly I'm not that godly of a person and I need guidance.

Please help me out here and with any other advice you can give me? Thank you very much God bless you in your ministry and give you strength and wisdom to stand strong against all the those who oppose God.†


Answer:

While you have connected these issues in your mind, they are actually separate issues. It is because you are combining them that you have added complexities that keep you from resolving your problems. I'm going to give you quite a few things to read because you are missing some basic knowledge that is critical to understanding what is going on.

First, you understand that pornography is wrong, but you don't know exactly why it is wrong. For that I would like you to read:

Make sure you go through all the passages cited and see for yourself what God says on this matter.

Masturbation is a separate issue, but many men tie pornography and masturbation together so tightly that they have a hard time discussing one without discussing the other. On this topic, I would like you to read:

There are links to a number of other answers, so you'll need to follow the links to get the full story. The big problem is that in trying to battle pornography, you attempt to stop all ejaculations which is required by the male body. The result is that you rarely can last more than a month before instinct takes over because your body is desperate to ejaculate. See:

You make a number of assumptions that are just not found in the Bible. God does answer the prayers of His people, but it doesn't mean the answer has to be what you expect for an answer. God teaches us how to select good spouses, but He only rarely selected a particular man for a particular woman. God expects us to apply His teachings to our lives and deal with the results of our choices in ways that are compatible with His teachings. See:

Because you decided that God answered your prayer with this one woman, you decided you are going to marry her and you have been ignoring what she has said. Marriage is about two people coming together in marriage, not one person. She told you numerous times that she isn't interested in marrying you, but you ignore it most of the time because you are certain God will make her change her mind. Notice that these are all your decisions. God never said this is the woman you are to marry.

Hello,

First of all I want to really thank you for replying to me. I hope Iím not bothering you by writing back and you donít mind. After writing you the first email I browsed your web site for different topics related to my questions and actually read all these links you just recommended me to read. I went ahead and read all of the links again hoping that I will understand it better.

When you said that Iím combining the issues, what exactly do you mean by that? I do understand that my sin and the issue Iím having with this girl are different things. But could it be possible that because I not yet separated from this sin that God is not allowing me to find the girl or in this case with this girl, God is not giving her feelings toward me?

I just donít understand this subject that much. I believe that I need to get right before God first before I even attempt to move on in this other question. Please, if Iím wrong tell me because I want to understand God better in my life. As I was reading and writing down my questions to you, it was as if everything was aligned so perfectly that the next sentence answered my questions I wrote, so I pretty much had to erase everything because the list of my questions piled up into two pages.

For me, I understand that porn, lust, etc. are big sins. What I'm struggling with are my desires. James talks about our evil desires. You also talked about our natural desires and how they will never go away, that is understandable because we are hardwired by God with those. We also will never get rid of temptations because as long as Satan is around there is temptation. All we can do is keep our sights on God and the more we do that the less we will notice temptations. I understand all that in my mind -- to want to please God and not myself.

In my mind every time before sinning, the day before or in morning, I say that I won't sin, that I want to serve and please God. But my desire for porn will just get so big that everything thatís inside me that is crying out not to sin, it is almost as I'm just moving on my own. I'm really struggling with how to get rid of these evil desires.

In these articles you are saying that God doesnít have just one girl prepared for a guy. I do agree with that and kind of disagree because Iím not sure where I stand on that yet. I always thought that God does guide you to the person that He sees would be best for you. With this girl that I like, would you then say it's just infatuation? Or could it be that like mentioned before that God sees me as not ready yet or some other reason; therefore, blocking her feelings toward me? I mean it could be any case, like you said we donít know when Godís plan is in motion or what is, but we do know that we canít mess up Godís plans. So let's say this girl will get feelings toward me. Is it from God or is it up to the two people to make their life work?

I understand that if I go only after beauty that isnít seeking what God is seeking; therefore, there most likely won't be happiness. But with this girl I only saw her first time for couple of minutes. I didnít ďcheck her out.Ē I really started liking her a lot based on our conversations and her view on things. She never told me she doesnít want to marry me, she only said that she doesnít have same feelings toward me, and we decided to pray about it. But with me being in my sin, God doesnít listen to a sinner's prayer. Or is this what you meant by saying that I'm combining the issues together? Is what I'm doing wrong to hope that maybe she will like me? Should I not do that and completely just leave it all alone? Or just not focus on her and do what it says in Proverbs 3:5-6.

I appreciate for you taking time reading and answering. I will take everything I read and learned and try to apply it harder in my life. So far I put a Windows Live Protect program and had my little brother put in a password and told him not to ever tell me what it is. So it blocks all adult web sites or any indication that it's not child friendly. I hope this will help me, when I have urges and go search something that it will block it.

Thank you very much for everything, God bless you.

The reason I'm saying you are not separating issues is because you inadvertently claim that girls, including the girl you like, don't have a choice in spouses. You see this only about you and whether God will allow a girl to like you or not. Yet, nothing in the Bible indicates that this is the way God operates. God made people with free wills to do right or wrong. God tells us how to pick goods spouses. Whether you or she select a good spouse is up to you. God does answer prayers, but He doesn't away person's free choice. You can't make this girl like you. You can encourage her, but the choice will be her own. But if she isn't interested in you, then continue to look for someone who is interested in marrying you.

Yes, you need to overcome your problem with pornography. You need to do so for your sake because it is a sin. I am glad you took the step of blocking the bad sites. That is a step in the right direction.

It is not true that if we focus on God, we won't be tempted as much. Jesus was perfect, yet he faced temptations, just like you and I. God teaches us how to deal with temptation. "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it" (I Corinthians 10:13).

I'm not claiming that girls, or this girl I like, don't have a choice in a spouse. I think you are getting the wrong idea here about what I was trying to say. I guess you can't phrase everything you want to, at least I can't.

But how do you explain the Isaac and Rebekah? When Abraham's servant asked God, to show him who was the one God prepared for Isaac. Or King David and Bathsheba, the women he saw from his roof. She was the mother of King Solomon, from whose line Jesus was born. We can see in this a picture or plan by God. Kind David also was free to choose, to sin with Bathsheba or not. But I believe that she was part of God's plan. I'm not saying God wanted David to sin with her. What I'm saying is that she would have been either way with David, through sin or not.

This is kind of how I'm looking at my situation with this girl. No, I'm not trying to put myself in the same shoes as people like King David and Abraham, but we are not serving a different God and God is not two-faced. I believe that if I pray to Him, He will answer my prayer, be it this girl or be it another girl. That's what I want, as long as the girl is from God. Yes, right now I like this girl a lot. But at this point, I'm wishing it's her, and if it's not, then it's not. But I'm not sitting here obsessed over her like a stalker.

I appreciate every input. You have given me a lot to think about.