A member of LDS church. Studying Business Management in BYU-Idaho. Loves philosophy writing.
...I realized that I have to mend myself, that I have to be normal as possible. I decided to talk to my bishop, I have internalized that, what I am having is not normal and I desperately need help...
As an individual who struggles to overcome pornography is a challenge, this is but a raging storm in my head. I often asked myself how to overcome watching pornography and masturbation? Why would it happen to me? Could I really overcome it? Many children, youth, adults indulge some form of pornography prior to age twelve. Some will go back to look at more because they do not have enough knowledge and understanding the significance of procreation in their lives. Abruptly withdrawing and taking out pornography in your head is not easy however, gaining personal witness through spiritual strength ultimately helps you to recover from the battle you are in.
Being a convert and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints or commonly known as LDS church, is not really easy because at the very young age we were taught and live the principle of being chaste. There would be no sexual relationship between man and woman without legally and lawfully wedded, nor give in yourself to watching pornography, masturbation and just waste the power of procreation because of self-gratification. As a devout member, I strictly obey this doctrine. I have witnessed the changes upon me as a lived by it. We were taught as well to understand what is procreation. The dictionary defines procreation as the production of offspring; reproduction. This has something to do with our power to create a human being by the opposite sex. One of our beliefs is that God gives this power for his divine purpose to fulfill his great plan of happiness. Likewise, we believe the power of the opposition makes his every effort to disrupt us and pollute our mind that there is no harm on watching pornographic videos and anything that portrays nudity or could arouse sexual feelings. There is a battle between good and evil in this stage of mortality.
As I have learned for many inspired leaders, Satan’s power is pretty much ineffective because Satan cannot control our mind, only when we act on his cunning darts or temptations. As we come to think of it, we have our own agency – free will to choose, to reject, or to act on it, we know Satan is able to give temptation but as the Savior did “he yield not to the temptations” (Matthew 4:4-11). I have witnessed that human beings are getting more curious about everything and they wanted to discover some things that might give them pleasure or satisfy their wants and their appetite. That is what happened to me when I was about in my teenage life. I tend to discover appropriate movies and videos on the Internet. Watch them in my room and ended up to masturbation after the level of excitement burst out. I have chosen sensual, carnal over spiritual. It leads me to tamper myself and lead to feeling the guilt, burden, and wavering decisions. I felt that way and I tend to ask like why I have done it? Couldn’t I control my thoughts? Or perhaps leads to hurting myself because of disappointments. Discouragement is a common result or condition when I fail to follow the right choices. When I was really discouraged and could turn no help, I plan to cut my life because I was feeling depressed.
One day, I realized that I have to mend myself, that I have to be normal as possible. I decided to talk to my bishop. I have internalized that, what I am having is not normal and I desperately need help. When I was in the middle of pondering and evaluating myself, I thought deeply about four aspects on my own behalf: Physical, Intellectual, Emotional, and Spiritual. I then remembered that when we are physically fit and the other areas are not, then we are absolutely out of equilibrium. I supposed the most important is our Spiritual aspect. The scripture verse then flashed back in my mind in 1 Timothy 4:8 says “for bodily exercise profiteth little; but godliness is profitable unto all things, having the promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come”. When we exercise fitness then that comes from working out first our faith. When we are faithful and wanting to develop spiritual maturity, other aspects of life will follow. I list some essential things that keep me in tune with the spirit’s voice and that my thoughts would unceasingly capture good things.
• 1. Sing hymns – in this way the negative thoughts we have will be replaced by wholesome thoughts. ”for my soul delighteth in the songs of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.” (Doctrine and Covenants 25:12). We will be inviting the spirit to be with us and uplift our thoughts in the spiritual dimension, thus good and strong thoughts are irreplaceable with bad ones.
• 2. Search, ponder and pray – when you immersed yourself in reaching through scripture study, pondering them, and guidance by prayer, we will be guided by the spirit of the Lord and less likely to be tempted. Memorizing some uplifting verse in the scripture will also help you draw you’re your attention into inappropriate things. The book of Mormon and the Bible is a powerful scripture. I remember President Hinckley said, …as you read the scriptures every day there will be a “strengthened resolution to walk in obedience to his commandments, and there will come stronger testimony of the living reality of the Son of God”. (Ensign, June 1988, 6).
• 3. Fasting – If you want the clearest answer, this will help you know what’s to be done. The spirit of the Lord will help you do what is right. Fasting is an essential thing to consider when you don’t know what to do. Your specific questions specifically answered.
• 4. Talk to someone who you can trust; (parents, church leaders). This will help you maintain closeness, friendship, and trust. You will be guided what to do by absorbing what their advice is and you will never feel that you are feeling abandoned.
• 5. Service – by losing yourself on serving others is just the same as you are serving the Lord. you will come to think that, it’s better to help people’s needs rather than thinking so much for yourself. If you look around, there are people who badly need your help. Even in small things, you can know that great things will surely come to pass.
• 6. Recreational activities – Involving yourself into wholesome activities like go on and play basketball, golf, chess, playing the musical piece in a piano, or anything that turns your thought away from temptation, these might help you maintain the so-called discipline in yourself.
• 7. Daily Tracking Record – When you record all your goals, priorities, and all your activities, you will have the ability to know how important your progressions are. You can make your own tracking record example like when you usually feel the urges, particular setting, time, event, and what did you do to overcome it. Just a simple tracking will somehow help you with what to improve more on.
These are just some things I have come to consider, but there are too many ways to improve our lives and attained real growth and be spiritually matured. I have learned a lot of things while I am writing. I always remind myself that I am not alone in this battle. I am now living with the great constant companion of the spirit. If I was not able to choose good thing, I would have not been experiencing a mighty change of heart. I wouldn’t have felt the blessing. I would have not been experiencing real spiritual growth.
This is what I always want to remind myself, that when I struggle with some things, it doesn’t mean I can’t get back and move forward. When I realize I am the literal son of my loving Heavenly Father and knows his character, I might change what I do – because knowing who really God is, changes my perspective in life. Sometimes I committed things that were offensive, immoral, and depriving, I felt that no one will ever help me to be normal and be cleaned again. Sometimes I have tried so many promises within me, but nothing happens. I tried to find a way out just to escape guilt, uncomfortable feeling, trying my best to pull out nasty thoughts and live according to the teaching of the gospel of Christ, but all were worthless. It was still coming back. Regrets and feelings of abandonment were always there.
After so many pleadings and praying for help, something struck me and a huge spiritual impression overcame me. There is someone whom I can lean and put everything on. The Savior Jesus Christ can heal me! Understanding and applying His infinite Atonement is a healing balm that repairs riffles, broken souls, regrets, uncomfortable feeling, discouragements, guilt, and other negative feelings. That moment on, I thought optimistically that I can be clean as I repent sincerely and forsake all the things I have done unto him. I know from the scripture that says, the true repentant will confess and forsake the wrongdoings he or she makes that is contrary to the gospel of Christ.
We can truly be clean by understanding the principle of repentance and learn his infinite Atonement for us. That is one way to get out of such a gross nightmare of temptation, immorality, and worldly performances. There is a help, he will help us, and he is begging us to use his atonement for our mortal happiness.
We can be pure and face Heavenly Father as spotless as possible. He really knows you and me and all of His children. When we messed up, He is always patient and loving still until we become an agent to ourselves. No matter how big or small our sin may be, we can always repent. Jesus Christ endure and sacrifice and atone for all us. The prophets have said countless times that no matter how small or big the sins are we can always have the help of our Redeemer and Savior.
The Savior wants us to fully repent and forsake our wrongdoings. He is ready to help us. I vividly recall the one-dollar bill, though it is used, crumpled, battered, tortured, it is worth a one-dollar bill and it is useful and worth it. Like us, when we think we have suffered so much because of our wrong choices, this is the right time to wake up, pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and back to the basic. Just always remember “no one is destined to fall”. Repentance through confession is one most vital element in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Elder Callister stressed “we need to face the wall and climb it. Eternal salvation hangs in the balance if we will choose not to obey”. We can be clean and become like our Savior. We have trusted church leaders who love and want us to be the best we can be. Have courage and face it! No matter what we have to endure, there is always a path of peace and happiness.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2019 Felmore L Flores