My wife, Diana, was reading her Bible in our backyard and she shared with me what she remembers from a mentor we both shared in our lives at one time, “Satan can’t snatch you of God’s hand. But he can steal your seed if you let him.”
The very best place to receive seeds, be planted in one’s heart, is from the Scriptures themselves. The enemy is always there to try to steal away the blessing of our seed. Jesus spoke a parable to a large crowd and later explained it to the apostles. His explanation is in Luke 8:11-15:
This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it and persevering produce a crop.
As a Christ-follower, I am in a constant ebb and flow of what God wants me to do as it pertains to whether I am in His will. Should I watch this on TV, listen to this music, be with this friend that has different values than me? The list can apply to so many other situations and circumstances as we look at the needs we each have. There are many decisions we can make that will either yield fruit or not. If you follow the progression of any decision you make, you can find out very simply if it is positive or negative for you.
Part of our human sinful nature is to distract from the discomfort or distress we feel which can leave us in compromising positions. And for someone who struggles with sexual sin, this can bring devastating consequences.
Because we minister to those struggling with sexual sin from a Christian worldview, we find that many have a difficult time with being honest about the cares of this world and the impact it has on the relationships around them. This is the third seed that is choked by life’s worries, riches, and pleasures. Therefore, they do not mature.
Jesus said, I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds, John 12:24. Good point you may say, well, how committed is the seed? It is totally committed with both feet in. The life of Christ and what our expectation is for following Christ should be total commitment, surrender. A farmer doesn’t plant a seed and go check on it two days later to see if it is beginning to sprout. When he plants it, he trusts that it will do what it’s supposed to do. Grow and produce fruit. But does he just walk away? No, he waters the seed, uses fertilizers right for the plant he is expecting. He may set traps for varmints that will come to steal the seed from the ground or eat the plant as it is a small sprout. The point is that I will show my interest in the seed producing fruit by the action I take to cultivate it.
It is the same with walking away from sexual sin. There are many images throughout media that you don’t need to pervert your mind with. So turn it off. That might be the computer or the television. Then there is the music in your car. Most songs on the radio are about relationships or sexual. You will need to drop certain numbers from your phone. You may need to personally get a new phone number. Look at the way you dress and present your self to others when you make eye contact. Are you being manipulative or find that you have to look at others in judgmental comparisons? These are all things you can do now to start the process of change. Allow the seed of God’s word to grow deep roots into your heart so you can produce fruit. You will find out quickly that to be successful in recovery that this life is not your own.
If you are questioning someone in your life about their honesty in leaving sexual sin remember you can listen to words and trust behavior. A farmer doesn’t talk about what a seed can do. He does the necessary to yield the fruit. You will see him at work and at the end of the year harvesting the fruit. It’s important to allow him to do his own work.
Then as a person begins to walk away from sexual sin they will realize life is a lot better now than compared to when they were living in sin. There is freedom that one feels that is beneficial. What one does not realize is that the life they are planning to live is going to be different without their closest relationship, sexual sin. Now the sex addict has to relearn some basic principles with relationships starting with honesty. Honesty is transparent and saying more than what happened. Living an honest life is what you say and do is comparable to what you think and feel. Obviously there needs to be some filtering and not sharing all one’s thoughts and feelings to everyone. The point is that one doesn’t live behind a façade. That the level of understanding and sharing is not one that is hurtful or changing. Honesty breeds trust as well. It is all too often that I hear sex addicts telling me that their sobriety would be so much easier for them if others would just trust them. First, trust is earned by repetition over time. We have to build relationship with anyone in any setting to understand what we can place before them and what we shouldn’t. But if there has been repeated offenses where trust has to be rebuilt, it can be even harder to rekindle. Forgiveness is part of that trust building process but not at the cost of others lowering boundaries out of co-dependence or in a desperate hope that someone else will accept them. Spouses, parents, and friends of sex addicts beware of that tactic. Playing off your emotions to find an easier softer way is usually a starting place for the person to start slipping into behavior that is not healthy and could lead to relapse. It is important to stay the course and apply rigid boundaries that keep them and you safe. This might be the seed in your life where God is shaping you and He is allowing a sex addict in your life to push you to a deeper and more mature understanding of His grace and truth.
We, at Restoration Path, are not talking about a type of life that is analytical and bemoans the meaning of living life to it’s fullest potential. We are about calling on the name of the Lord and asking Him to purify our lives so that we will be Holy and blameless. We seek to know God more fully and share in the communion relationship He died for us to have. There are so many ways to describe how God will show Himself to you. He is always there and desires for you to call on Him. This is still a far reach from a thought that all roads lead to heaven. Loving God that much is not always going to feel okay. There will be seasons where you will be asked to get out of your comfort zone. Not only uncomfortable but even painful at times. According to the martyrs, even unto death.