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[__ Prayer __] Where is my God?

AirDancer

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As Ecclesiastes 3: 1- 8 states, there truly is a time & purpose for everything, including hearing a specifically focused sermon on Christian radio!

There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every [a]event under heaven— 2 A time to give birth and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
3 A time to kill and a time to heal;
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4 A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance.
5 A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
6 A time to search and a time to give up as lost;
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear apart and a time to sew together;
A time to be silent and a time to speak.
8 A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace. (NASB)

Nine days & counting...you're doing great, one day at a time! You continue in my prayers, my friend.

Always remember, our Lord loves you!
 

sufferingUSMC

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Thank you all so very much. I'm sorry I don't reply directly to you.

Day 11. The feeling of utter disgust and hatred for myself came hard last night and this morning. Id love nothing more than to feel free and liberated but I feel God is letting me marinate in this feeling of discontent. I should have never strayed, should have never allowed myself to become such a disgusting example of a Christian or a husband. Free will is a curse for me but I thank God for it.

I work with a pastor from my church. I went to him yesterday, for the third time in 2 years about this. He said this time was different for him. I will tell you all, I cried hard. Not because of myself, but because I thought about everything God has done and the wonderful woman he gave me to whom I've essentially disregarded for so long. I ache friends. He laid his hands on me and we prayed for quite some time. We are going to start weekly sessions. I hope to sleep tonight.

Thank you all.
 

Claudya

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Yeah, kiwi is right. Be kind with yourself. Stop piling self-hatred onto yourself. Because self hatred is not helping you in any way. It's only making your heart vulnerable.
You have made 11 days, that's really awesome!!!
 

theLords

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Hi Marine. Reading your thread really broke my heart. I really felt the burden of the Lord for you. I felt as if I felt His heart just aching hearing about your struggle and so I want you to know that God is with you and for you.

I saw a pornographic film at the age of 8 while staying the summer with an older brother and his wife. They must have thought I was asleep, I was not. Since then, sex was on my mind. Im 31 and married now. I still struggle with this addiction. When Im alone, I look at porn and over the years tastes grew different and here I am today....dead on the inside. There was something constant about it though....I always felt conviction. I started to realize I had a problem years back and spent time talking with people about it. Nothing changed. I would spend many nights crying in the bathroom alone pleading and begging God to just help me. To no avail. Recently, when I look atmy wife, I fight tears it hurts me so bad to see her when I know what I do.I found myself contemplating removing myself from the situation and sparing her the pain and of knowing the man who loves her with everything he is, cannot get this fixed.

Im on day 4 of no pornography. Ive made it farther before. But im not happy. Instead I am more emotionally distraught because Im afraid its going to come back....the thoughts, the "just a quick peeks" . I know it has to be demons but it feels as though God doesnt here me, and if he does, whydoesnt he help me? Im crying now and just dont know what to do. Sorry to open up this way but I need prayer. I need God to intervene and fast.

The first thing I suggest is that you memorize Hebrews 13:5, "I will never leave you nor forsake you" with all of your might.

Your addiction is very much physical and spiritual, and by that I mean that your addiction is a learned brain, chemical-synapse pattern and that is why you feel like you can't overcome this, because you're brain is literally physically wired to need this addiction. Our brains are lateralized, your left brains knows (logic, reason, information) and your right brain experiences (senses, feelings, pictures). Your left brain knows about bark that it's the outer protective layer on a tree; your right brain knows about bark by picturing it's color, thinking of it's texture, etc.

That is why you can't feel the presence of the Lord with you. Your left brain tells you, "I've been in church all my life! I know God is with me, I know He never forsakes me! But, why does it FEEL like He's not here. Why can't I hear, sense, or feel Him?" Well, that's because the spiritual trauma of your porn addiction causes you to live out of one side of your brain, which is most likely the left because it just hurts too much to feel the shame, guilt, helplessness, etc. and you can't feel that way every day or you won't be able to function.

That is why you need to hold on to Hebrews 13:5. Because on this journey, there will be days you won't be able to feel God with you because your emotions are just way too chaotic, but if you trust in Him and lean on Him as your Father, your Savior, your best friend as you are doing now--you're going to make it! There is hope. Don't let go. Memorize as many encouraging Scripture verses as you can for the days when your pain doesn't allow you to feel God's presence. The more you heal, the more you'll be living out of your whole brain, and the more you'll be able to feel His sweet comfort. And when you come out of this, brother, you're going to know that God is with you because He promised so in His word, and you're going to know that God is with you because you've experienced Him in relationship.

That brings me to the reason for your seeming inability to overcome this. Now, I don't remember 100%, but in everything I've learned, I'm pretty sure that pornography addiction makes the same brain connections as does cocaine. I highly recommend the ministry by Ed Khouri "Thriving Recover Your Life." He's based in NC and runs classes that teach you how to overcome addiction. I also recommend the book by Dr. Karl Lehman, "Outsmarting Yourself: Catching Your Past Invading the Present and What To Do About It." He's a Christian doctor that explains the physical, psychological side alongside the God side.

Basically, God created us to be in relationship with Him and others (this is what joy is: when we feel wanted, loved, and like we belong). These connections are physical and its "control center" is located in the deepest part of the subconscious, it's something we can't control. It's only once we find healing from the brokenness of sin through Christ, that our minds are transformed and our ways of thinking changed that the deepest levels of our subconscious are healed. This is where the basal ganglia is and guess what--it's one of the dopamine regulators. This is why you're addicted to porn. It's a vicious cycle, as a child you learned to equate pleasure with porn (dopamine release) and as you grew it was your "go to" to feel pleasure. You've trained your brain for over 20 years to go straight to this addiction to feel better. You feel like crap right? So, you go to porn because you need to somehow release dopamine in your brain to feel better, to function again, but it makes you feel worse, and so you need to keep going back to it. Vicious, vicious cycle.

You see, God created that "attachment" control center in your brain to be a source of healthy attachment and joy (secure attachment), but in our sinful, broken world we don't always get that secure attachment. When you are in the presence of another person and you make eye-contact, within only 6-seconds! the two brains sends signals through the eyes that tell you if that other person is happy to be with you. That's the amazing brain our God created.

When we are unable to connect to God or others we feel pain or "attachment pain." There are three different levels of attachment pain: (1) Dismissive - when someone we love dismisses/rejects us (2) Distracted - when we want to connect so desperately but can't (3) Disorganized - mostly comes from abusive relationships, when you want to connect but are terrified (think of an abusive father/child relationship).[The technical psychology names for these are different, but I can't remember them. I'm using the terminology these ministries I mentioned use].

When we can't connect in a holy, healthy way we turn to anything we can to connect to. We connect to religious performance, drugs, alcohol, sex, food, anything and everything really. The connection that should be made to a parent, sibling, spouse, or God for example is instead made to porn (in your case) and the same chemical reactions fire off training the brain to make that sinful connection instead of the holy connection.

I'm telling you all this because I want you to know that this is a 20 year learned behavior with a physical component to it, so please, stop beating yourself up. It hurts my heart to see and I know without a doubt that it hurts the heart of God.

Think of it this way, your Father tells you not to climb up on the roof of your house and jump off. You go and you do it anyway, the first time it's exhilarating, the next you feel guilty and almost get hurt, the third you fall and break your leg. You scream out to your Father in pain and repentance--and what does your Good Father do? He goes to your aid. He forgives you and then He does everything He can to comfort you and heal your leg fracture. Well, it's like this in your spirit. God has forgiven you, but if you keep hitting yourself in the leg (in your lack of "worth" because of your inability to overcome or because you feel like you "deserve it") because shame and condemnation tell you that you "deserve it", you're only delaying your recovery. You can't expect a broken leg to heal if you keep punching it where it's fractured, right? In the same way, you can't expect your soul and spirit to heal if you keep punching yourself in your place of wounding. God sees that your porn addiction is willful choice and sin, but also a chemical, pathway in your brain and He doesn't hold that against you.

I don't know if you've heard of Darren Wilson. But he has a trilogy of movies: Finger of God, Furious Love, and Father of Lights. I highly recommend all of them. As I was watching my "Father of Lights" DVD extras, a preacher whose name I don't remember told a story that goes like this:

He was preaching in a church and began to prophesy over a young man. He began to tell him that he was a "holy man of God, who sets his life apart for the righteousness of God." At the time, other than that prophetic message the preacher gave him they didn't talk. Four years later, the preacher meets this young man and hears his story. At the time, he was an unbelieving heroine addict who was dragged to church by his friends. He was similar to you in that he had a 20+ year addiction, started when he was 13. When God spoke to him through the preacher, he got saved and felt the Holy Spirit enter his body and his addiction was instantly broken.

That's why there is so much danger in self-hate and self-abuse. It's only when we realize that we are in Christ and that in Christ we are good, righteous, holy and worthy that we are able to change. You're not a "wicked" person like you identified with in another posting of yours. You are a holy person with a wicked addiction. God sees who we are in Christ and by embracing that identity we allow Him to work in our lives with much more fluidity then when we tell ourselves we're still worthless sinners. That guy I told you about overcome his addiction because he heard who he was in Christ. He knew who he was, there dead in his sin, and instead of God saying "Repent thou heroine addict," He told Him who he truly was, who he was going to be, and praise God he repented and accepted that identity. I encourage you to sit and make time for God and ask Him how He sees you right now in the middle of your crippling porn addiction.

Just as He doesn't hold a heroine addict for having a physical addiction to the drug, He doesn't hold it against you. God sees your broken heart of repentance, and "A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out" (Isaiah 42:3). Trust Him. You can't overcome this addiction? Rejoice! You're a perfect candidate for Jesus Christ's hope-filled Gospel of death and resurrection that brings transformation. You're not supposed to be able to overcome this, dear brother. That's why we need Christ. He is going to overcome this for you and with you. Your only "part/responsibility" in this is to "make room" for Christ to work in you. Make time for Him in prayer, in Bible reading, in sitting alone in His presence, and the more you're with Him, without even realizing it, you get healed and it's wonderful. The first hint of temptation of justifying your sin (just a quick peak), "flee from evil" and straight into the arms of God. The next time your mind says, "it's just a quick peak" you call out for your Father and go running into His arms and He'll be there for you as you go through the painful process of physically wanting the dopamine release in your brain that porn gives you to make you feel better, and in that struggle, you will re-wire your brain and train it so that instead of going to porn for pleasure, you run straight to God for pleasure and joy.

If you've made it this far. Thanks for reading my very lengthy post. I applaud you. And, I encourage you to have patience with yourself. Mentally, your porn addiction is like a car that has traveled the same exact route for 20+ years. There are some substantial and deep tracks that you automatically gravitate to, and now you've got to transform your thinking, and find a new route. Everything must change, brother.

Start with forgiveness. You can never go wrong there. Examples: Forgive your brother and his wife for introducing you to something that destroyed your life. Forgive your wife. Forgive the Church of God for not being there for you when you needed them most. Forgive God for feeling like He abandoned you and left you helpless. Forgive yourself. Forgive your parents. Forgive your third-grade bully. Forgive everyone you can think of. Bring it to God in prayer. Make it a daily thing. Forgive and bless. Forgive and bless. Then, get forgiveness. You've already sought and got the forgiveness of God and it seems like your pastor, but not your wife. Right now you really need the forgiveness and support of your wife. Let her help you heal. You need reconciliation to her. If there are others you've hurt with this addiction, seek forgiveness and reconciliation from them too.

Now, I don't know how you're feeling and where you need to forgive, but our hearts are not exactly rational. So even though logically it doesn't make any sense to forgive a sinless God, your heart still holds it against Him and by forgiving Him you give Him the place to remove an obstacle between you two and you can grow closer in intimacy. Once you forgive Him, you'll see that He never really did any of the things you felt He'd done. Find every instance of "blame" in your mind and heart and thinking and forgive. It may not make logical sense to forgive your wife who's blameless in all this, but if you feel anger, resentment, anything--better to forsake the logic of "She didn't do anything wrong" and forgive so you can sort out your negative emotions and find peace. When it comes to forgiveness, "logical, rational, memory" doesn't really matter. Only what the hurt feels and believes matters here. So give yourself the room to embrace it all and give it to the Lord.

I hope everything I've said makes sense. You're welcome to PM me if you want.

And, lastly, I bless you, Marine, beloved son of the Living God. You are a worthy brother. You are a wonderful husband. You are a major blessing and asset to the body of Christ. You are a beacon of hope to the hopeless and source of strength to the down-trodden. You are greatly loved by your Father, your Savior, and your Holy-indwelling-Spirit. Amen.
 

AirDancer

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Release yourself of the 'free guilt trip baggage' that are hanging around your neck. As you pray & communicate with our Lord, visualize in your mind's eye the act of handing each and every one of those bags to the loving hand of our Father. Let Him know you are so serious to be in peace & harmony & in a loving relationship with Him. Our Lord will accept each and every one of those bags, and strengthen you. Believe & fully accept that He forgives you when you pray for forgiveness. And know without an ounce of doubt that He loves you so completely, so utterly, that He will never abandon you.

You are His son. You are cherished by our Father.

Be blessed!
 

Maedchen

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Thank you all so very much. I'm sorry I don't reply directly to you.

Day 11. The feeling of utter disgust and hatred for myself came hard last night and this morning. Id love nothing more than to feel free and liberated but I feel God is letting me marinate in this feeling of discontent. I should have never strayed, should have never allowed myself to become such a disgusting example of a Christian or a husband. Free will is a curse for me but I thank God for it.

Dear sufferingUSMC,

I found an applying comment in Billy Graham's little booklet "The Key to Personal Peace". That particular booklet is a summery of Mr. Graham's elaborations about how to accept Christ as Savior and Lord, and thus gain peace with God.

Here is a brief quote: "No matter how soiled your past or snarled your present, no matter how hopeless your future seems to be - there is a way out. There is a sure, safe, everlasting way out, but there is only one way! That way is Jesus Christ, who said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. The only way to the Father is through me" (John 14:6).
You can go on being miserable, discontented, frightened, unhappy, and disgusted with yourself, or you can decide right now that you want to be born again. You can have your sinful past wiped out and make a new start, a fresh start, a right start. You can decide now to become the person that Jesus promised you could be."

So I prayed the suggested prayer, I talked to Jesus in my own words and begged Him to please forgive me all my sins and especially my awful self pity. I told Him my desire to surrender my life fully to Him, as I had told Him before. And I felt at peace again, although I just have escaped the devil's attack.

If God again spared my life and gave me the strength to endure self hatred and helplessness, why sufferingUSMC, why wouldn't He do the same with you?

I remind you of your own words, "know that God is real, should you ever doubt".
Love, Maedchen
 

cozmoe

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Father I pray that you will help suffering USMC release his frustration's to you , help him with his thought life lord and and show him application's you would want him to follow to help break free from this and follow you the way that his heart want's to for you and your will for him, father show him your love and care for him , we ask in Jesus name Amen
 

Claudya

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It's been almost two weeks since he's been here last time, I really hope he's alright.
 
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