I occasionally contribute marriage articles to Pressure Points Marriage Ministry. I love partnering with them in order to strengthen marriages and offer hope of reconciliation to couples in crisis. What makes Pressure Points unique is that they produce short films which artistically portray different marriage scenarios. These films serve as an incredible asset to marriage ministry in this media savvy world.
Last month they released this one:
Do you feel a little uncomfortable? The first time I watched this video, I honestly did not enjoy it because the ending was messy. There was no grand apology from the husband, no internet filters being purchased, and no clean-cut conclusion.
Upon further reflection, I have developed a deep appreciation for this film because it successfully captures reality.
1. Most pornography struggles pre-date marriage.
This can be a hard one to grasp, but most of the lustful demons that plague the husband (and/or the wife — it isn’t just a “man” thing!) began long before the marriage. We believe that if our marriage is fulfilling — then all of the temptations will disappear. Often times, that is not the case. They are just as real — and just as strong — after the honeymoon as they were before!
I appreciated in the video when the husband confessed that this was an issue for him long before their marriage. It is no excuse for the sin, but chances are it is the false hope that marriage will void the temptation that keeps this topic from being discussed during courtship.
2. There are no quick-fixes.
As much as I wanted the film to end with the husband’s victory over sexual sin — reality is rarely that easy and the film successfully portrayed that important truth. Pornography is a heart issue. You can rid your house of all computers, but if a spouse hasn’t dealt with their heart in the matter then not much will change. Changing one’s heart takes time, dedication, commitment, and the work (and Word) of God! There won’t be an overnight resolution, but there can be daily victories!
3. Be an approachable wife.
Notice I didn’t say be a tolerant wife! I am not saying we should excuse it, ignore it, or support it. The fact is: there is no room for a third person in your marriage and we should never, ever be an enabler for our husband if they struggle in this area.
Yet, we must be gentle in our response. If our husband fails, in any area, they should be confident that our love and commitment won’t change. In marriage their will be struggles, but there should never be secretes. How we respond helps set the tone for open communication. Remember, once sin is brought into the light — it loses its power! I respect the wife who, like in the video, desires for her husband to communicate his struggles with her! It will be uncomfortable and painful, but since pornography affects both parties in a marriage, a successful team will work hand-in-hand to keep their marriage bed pure (Hebrews 13:4).
Pray together for deliverance, purity, and forgiveness. Colossians 3:5, Matthew 5:27-30, Galatians 5:19-21, Ephesians 5:3, 1 Corinthians 10:13, Philippians 4:8, and 2 Corinthians 10:5 are excellent Scriptures that relate to this topic which you can pray specifically over your marriage!
Don’t forget to also pray for past images to be replaced with God-ordained thoughts. The husband in the film talked about how he wasn’t sure what to do with the images that were burned into his head… I have faith that same God who can move mountains can erase and replace past images!
From My Heart:
This post was difficult for me to write because, thankfully, pornography has not been a big issue in our marriage. However, I realize that for some of you, it is a daily burden. If that describes you, I pray that this post does not come across as insensitive or trite. I can’t image the pain a sexual addiction would bring to a marriage, but I do pray that the above video and advice offers you strength to keep fighting for your marriage!
To those of you who, like me, have a porn-free marriage, I want to encourage you to be on guard! No one is immune from sexual temptation or failure! For many years, I assumed this would never be an issue for us, but as we have matured, we see our immense need to be diligent against bedroom intruders!
Jason and I both have internet filters on our computers, we have removed the Safari internet app from our phones. Jason meets with an accountability partner regularly and I, over the years, have learned the importance of making careful choices not to read (hello, 50 Shades of Grey) or watch inappropriate content (Lifetime movies have, in the past, filled my mind with impure thoughts so I daily make a conscious effort to avoid them or anything like them. People have been talking about the recent VMAs and I still have no idea what they are talking about because I strictly monitor my media intake). I do not say any of this boastfully, but rather, humbly… knowing that I and my husband are capable of making a very wrong choice despite our sincere love for the Lord and each other. The words of 1 Corinthians 10:12 are often in the forefront of my mind,
So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall.
Satan wants to destroy the sexual purity in our marriages. Perhaps he has already won a few battles in your own home! Holy Spirit, help us as we navigate through this fallen world! Help us to be prayerful, watchful, and graceful as we come along side our husbands and fight for victory… together!
Praying for my marriage — and your marriage — right now!
Linking up to Wifey Wednesday