Teen boy looking at laptop in dark room

Overcoming The Pornography Trap

Not only have I counseled and mentored countless men – both adults and teens – who had opened the door to the pornography trap, I’ve had to deal with the same battle earlier in my life as well. There is no shortage of statistics, brain science, and online apps focused on the epidemic related to online sexual immorality. Notwithstanding, the addictive pattern continues to flourish in our society.

How I guide men and adolescents with their battle

I’ve certainly not found a magic cure for the personal struggle with pornography. But I have assembled a few practical elements that I utilize when helping men of all ages in this area.

Your healing journey must begin with a decision

“I’m just done!” You hear this statement used in a whole host of ways today. “I’m done with this relationship.” “I’m done with letting you treat me that way.” “I’m done helping you. You don’t even appreciate it.” The list goes on… “I’m done!”

The first and most critical piece that must be in place for all other remedies to be effective is that you must decide you’re “done” with giving into the lure of pornography. Not unlike other types of addiction, the individual will not truly overcome without several “relapses” — not able to stay quit. It takes the deepening awareness of our powerless and our addiction’s destructiveness. Only then are you truly ready to get well.

Your mind must be renewed

Once you’ve finally decided to get well, you must first renew your mind. The old must go to make room for the new to come.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here!”

2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV

The old creation – our fallen, selfish, sinful nature – must die. This can only happen by replacing the old false beliefs with the truth of God’s word. Attack one false belief at a time, putting under the scrutiny of the truths, principles, and commands from the Bible. Little by little, day by day, the old person diminishes and the renewed mind begins to emerge.

Your will must be disciplined and protected

The human will cannot master the human will. I sometime describe it like trying to sharpen one stick with another stick. Not sharp enough.

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”

Proverbs 27:17 NIV

To succeed in the battle against lust, temptation, and pornography, you must fully understand that you cannot do it alone. I recommend three specific disciplines consistently be in place:

  1. Accountability app on all screens and devices.
  2. Regular accountability to a small group of men who understand your struggle.
  3. Turn from people, places, and things that are toxic, not protective.

Your emotions must be transformed

Negative emotions that you have internalized over time ferment into toxic shame and self-deprecation in your soul. It is from this shame that your turn toward you addiction or compulsion – believing (unconsciously) that it will appease the rejection, loneliness, inadequacy, not-enoughness deep within you. Not only is this type of shame what is triggered, leading to your acting out. Shame is also the immediate effect of indulging in your drug of choice – pornography.

Your shame-based emotions have that enormous amount of power over you and your sexual immorality. Considering this, it is imperative you face and deal with the soul wounds and toxic shame in your life through a journey of soul work. This is impossible to do alone. I encourage you to seek out a Christ-centered counselor who has done this type of deep soul work in their own life. A person cannot walk with you on a journey to a place they’re not been.

Your identity must be made new

Lastly, but most importantly, your identity must be changed. Trust me, you do not have the capability to do this on your own. Only God your creator has the ability to make you new. Only through the cross, the resurrection, and the blood of Christ can a human being be made new.

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

Galations 2:20 NIV

To learn what it means to be transformed from the old, fallen nature to the new, Christ-like nature, reach out to me at Life Training, or someone who you trust and who has found victory over their addiction through Jesus Christ.


Contact us  to schedule an appointment or to learn more about soul work and Christian counseling at Life Training.

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