My life was a lie, hidden in the darkness of my shame and guilt from a lifelong addiction of pornography and sexual fantasy. I withdrew for fear that I would be exposed, hurt those around me and disrupt my twisted sense of peace and perfect image. My whole process of living life and of being in relationship with others (including my wife and God) was completely broken.
I thought God had abandoned me in the wilderness and left me to fend for myself. The peace He promised in the Bible and supposedly freely offered was not for me. Like Adam and Eve in the garden, He was calling me to come out of hiding. But I ignored Him, thinking my life would be more peaceful if I hid the wrong I'd done, though my life was never more self-destructive and blindingly dark. My perception of peace (defined as the absence of conflict and tension) and pursuit of it, led to exactly what I was trying to protect myself against: hurt, pain, relational destruction and mistrust.
Through ReGeneration Groups, God showed me He wants to meet me in the wilderness and grow me into experiencing true freedom and peace through complete surrender of the throne of my heart. Because of Christ, my life is different today. God drew me out of hiding and placed me in community where I am daily encouraged and have stable accountability. While I am still in the wilderness, I can rest in the unfailing love of my Father, who calls me as I am to surrender myself and trust Him completely. This leads to true peace.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world." – John 16:33
I’m not finished. If I live in the light, darkness has no room to settle, and I no longer have to fear being exposed. God is healing me, but this takes a daily commitment to the Lord and the structure of the ReGen steps.
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. – Galatians 5:1
I still experience fear of judgment and condemnation of others, but I know the most righteous Judge sees me as blameless through the finished work of Christ, and has adopted me into His family. I encourage you to speak out in truth that you have a new life in Christ. If you have put your hope and faith in Him, you do have a new life and are no longer shackled to the debt of your sin.
We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. – Romans 6:6