After sharing “Single, Saved, & Struggling” a lot of people asked how I became “so strong”. Privately, readers shared how they too struggle with sexual sin and are wanting to experience victory in that area of their relationship with God.
So today I’m sharing five steps that can help you resist sexual sin.
For the record, I don’t consider myself strong. This is still a struggle and I am still 100% dependent on God for His help.
Over the years I learnt different techniques to resist the temptation.
Some of the steps you may know already. And none of them are difficult. They will however, require a lot of practice and your complete commitment.
I pray that as you incorporate these steps into your journey, you will begin enjoying life – single, saved, and no longer struggling!
Step 1: Change the way you pray.
Many times we underestimate the power of prayer. Other times, well, we just make it way more complicated than it should be.
Truth is, prayer in its simplest and purest form is simply verbalizing how you feel and what you think to God.
Admittedly, I was reluctant to use words like “horny” or “in the mood” while praying.
But if God already knows how I’m feeling or what I’m thinking before I even formulate those thoughts, then why couldn’t I express it to Him in my prayers?
Although it took some getting used to, I started asking God for specific help; nothing was off limit.
My prayers went from being vague and generic to:
“God, please help me not text or call (insert name of my ex).” or
“God, please help me to not masturbate tonight because I’m feeling horny.”
The more honest I became with God, the more strength He gave me to resist the temptations.
Maybe it’s time to change the way you pray as well? Don’t be afraid to be open about your struggle with God.
He loves coming to our rescue and is waiting on you to ask him for some help!
(Scripture verse to help you: 1 Corinthians 10:13)
Step 2: Avoid, avoid, avoid!
I used to be guilty of giving myself way too much credit when it came to my weaknesses and what I could handle.
I would do things intentionally – like wear a certain outfit, or shall we say not be as primp as possible- thinking that would be enough to stop me from taking things all the way.
Boy was I wrong!
No matter how many self-imposed restrictions I came up with, I still failed miserably.
Every late night conversation. Every date night excursion. Even staying in the house to just “chill” – they always ended in compromise and regret.
I had to stop trusting myself and start avoiding the situations all together.
I cut off all ties to every relationship I knew would get in the way of me remaining committed to God.
I blocked phone numbers; I blocked social media accounts. I deleted old text messages and voicemails.
For some, it may seem a bit extreme but I knew the only way to move forward was to get rid of EVERYTHING that reminded me of the past.
You may not be able to avoid every temptation but there are some things within your control.
Be real about what you can or can’t handle. And do whatever it takes to avoid, avoid, avoid!
(Scripture verse to help you: 1 Thessalonians 5:22)
Step 3: Learn to ride your emotions out.
Between work, mommy duties, and church activities to keep me preoccupied, the daytime was always the easiest for me.
It was at night and on the weekends when I would get into trouble.
Whether it was boredom, loneliness, or simply coming home to an empty apartment after a long day, my emotions always seemed to shift into overdrive at nights and over the weekends.
And since I was so accustomed to acting on how I felt, my emotions would always get the best of me. That was until I learned to ride out my feelings.
As women, we probably go through a million different emotions in a 24 hour period. But what’s certain, is that emotions come and emotions go.
Just because you get hit by an unexpected feeling doesn’t mean you need to act on it.
Riding out your emotions require self-control. It means stopping yourself even when you like doing the complete opposite. It also means reminding yourself of what happens if you give in to the emotion. (Like why you’re no longer with your ex….or what happened after the last time you gave in to that temptation.)
To this day I am still learning how to ride out the wave of emotions.
The highs. The lows. The in between moments. They will all eventually pass if you ignore the cravings when they pop up.
(Scripture verse to help you: James 4:7)
Step 4: Surround yourself with people who will keep you accountable.
Having a community around you is an important component in your Christian journey. But you have to make sure your community is made up of the right people.
You need the type of friends that won’t give you a pass every time you mess up. Friends that will provide that right balance of grace and correction.
Thankfully, God brought my mentor into my life almost five years ago to help me overcome my struggles. I know I can call or text her at any time of the day or night.
Instead of reaching for the phone to call an ex I text my mentor.
She encourages me to grow up and not give in to temptation. She reminds me of biblical truths even when I don’t want to hear them.
My accountability to her only works because I am comfortable with sharing all my truths with her.
Even though she won’t sugar coat her responses to me, I know I never have to worry about her repeating what I share, to anyone else.
Unfortunately not everyone can (or should) be trusted on this level.
But ask God to show you who you can open up. And if there isn’t someone in your circle now, ask Him to connect you with the right person.
(Scripture verse to help you: Proverbs 27:17)
Syep 5: Repeat as often as needed.
I believe God can deliver us from our struggles instantaneously, but He often allows them to remain to build our faith and dependence on Him.
If your struggle is like mine, then deliverance will take more than a few trips down the aisle for an altar call.
Instead, it will become an every day choice.
The enemy won’t leave you alone and your temptations may never completely disappear.
Keep praying. Keep avoiding tempting situations. Keep riding the waves of your emotions and keep surrounding yourself with people who will push you to resist the temptations.
Keep fighting to maintain your deliverance, remembering that God will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.
You can do this! I’m praying and rooting for you.
(Scripture verse to help you: Psalm 84:11)