It’s February! The month to celebrate romance. The month to tell your spouse how much you love and appreciate them. The month to give your boyfriend or girlfriend a special gift. What a great month to celebrate romance, love, and God’s gift of sexual fulfillment in marriage.
Sadly, however, there is a dark side to romantic love in our day and culture. There is a distortion of God’s glorious gift of romantic love in marriage. There is a sinful scourge that is attacking our marriages and our families. It’s the scourge of pornography.
Specifically, Satan, who is a deceiver and a liar and a thief and a destroyer, is targeting our men with this temptation, deception, and lie. He’s trying to rob our men of God’s good and gracious gift of romantic love in marriage and of sexual purity in life. Statistics tell us that it may be as high as 80% of today’s men struggle with pornography. And many of these men are “men of God” who have found themselves entrapped in Satan’s tangled web of destruction.
In recent sermons, I have spoken to this issue through God’s word. While reading “The Story,” we discussed the sin of sexual temptation when “a man after God’s own heart,” King David, succumbed to lust for Bathsheba. And you will remember that the aftermath of this sin was horrific. And more recently, while reading through the prophets, we talked about their appeal to God’s people to get real with God about their sin, and then to get right with God through heartfelt repentance.
Sadly, the sin of pornography tends to remain a secret in the hearts of many men of God. They don’t tell anyone about it and they try to fix it on their own, but often fail to do so. Ultimately, they resign themselves to struggling alone while experiencing great shame while living with this addictive sin.
As a pastor, this scourge on our men has been on my heart for some time. We, as the people of God, need to come alongside our men and help them reclaim their sexual purity. If we don’t help them, who will? Thankfully, God has raised up several leaders to help us start a new ministry addressing the issue of sexual purity for men. This ministry will launch sometime next month. It is for the men of Calvary and for the men of the Little Rock community.
The ministry will provide a way for the men involved to protect their anonymity. Only the leaders and participants will know who is involved, and the group will be required to respect confidentiality. Even I will not know who is participating unless the person chooses to tell me they are involved. The reason for this is that we want to provide “a safe place” for courageous men to step out and get help with this issue. Most men cannot beat this sin on their own. They need a band of Christian brothers along with loving and supportive wives to win the battle. But, together, the battle can be won. I’m asking the Calvary family to join me in fervent prayer for this new ministry. More details will be communicated in the coming weeks.