Several years ago, God started showing me how attached I was to some of the very things I continued to ask Him to set me free from.
I didn’t want to be entangled with lust and fantasizing about other women anymore.
At the same time, though, I felt incredible comfort there.
I felt wanted and desired there as well.
Sexual sin seems to come deceptively close to filling voids that we have, but it is a counterfeit to the real intimacy God created.
I think some of us flirt with sin because we don’t see it for what it really is.
What we often don’t acknowledge, is we are flirting with death by doing this. It slowly kills us.
Sometimes we (knowingly or unknowingly) reserve a small corner in our hearts that guards that sin from being completely exposed. On one hand we hate it, but a small part of us is also comforted by that sin. It can temporarily provide us feelings of love, intimacy, security, comfort, value, or even acceptance.
Do you struggle with sexual sin? Have you struggled for so long that you don’t know who you are without it? That can be scary. I have been there. I held onto some strongholds long after I continued to ask Jesus to set me free from them, because I didn’t know who I was without them. I didn’t like what I was doing, but it seemed less scary than the unknown of who I would be without that sin in my life.
Are you holding onto sin or strongholds because it comforts you or out of fear of the unknown?
May I be completely honest, here?
Several months ago I found out something concerning my husband that shook me to the core. He said he doesn’t mind if I share about it on my blog, but I am not ready to do that, yet.
I will tell you, though, that this situation brought up that same old lie I often used to hear in my heart:
“It’s foolish to trust men. Only women are safe.”
That may not sound so bad to you, but that is one of the lies that once fueled the fantasies I had about being with another woman instead of a man.
That whisper started to sound real to me again. So convincing. The confirmation of, “I knew it!” seemed justifiable. Then those old familiar sins I broke free from years ago started calling my name with that convincing “promise” of receiving comfort and affection from women in ways I was never meant to have.
If I’m honest, I have to say that finding out this news caused me to stop and pause my heart there a few times.
I’m not saying I started looking at porn or fantasizing about women again.
Pausing my heart on that lie (even for a short time) is a dangerous place for me to be.
Thankfully, I heard someone else’s voice calling to me during that time, as well.
I heard God’s voice calling out to me.
It was almost as if when I paused to turn my head to look at that old sin calling my name, I heard God the Father calling out to me.
Suddenly that old lie was exposed for what it was, again.
We cannot afford to flirt with sin. It’s deceptive and slowly kills us.
Thankfully I know His voice, and I know where I ultimately find true comfort and fulfillment. I have learned (and am still learning) to trust Him, because my heart is safe with Him. The intimacy I have with Him is real, and it’s something I have developed with Him over the years. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world!
Below is something I wrote in 2011 when God was starting to reveal a lot of this to me. Even if your situation is different than mine, I pray that the Holy Spirit reveals any weeds that you have let grow in your mind and heart. This is something He has done with me over and over again throughout the last several years. This is not to condemn me (or you). It’s because He loves us. He extends His love and grace to help us overcome. Without Him, we could never break free.
He knows the sins that call our names.
He knows the sins that call your name.
We can mentally acknowledge them as sin, but in our hearts we can mistake them as beautiful flowers. They are weeds.
Reading this journal entry below makes me smile now. God has done so much since I wrote it, and I have that intimacy with Him, now. I had a lot of weeding to do, but I now have so many flowers where there were once weeds. With His grace I was able to break free and be restored.
The Flowerbed of My Mind (2011)
“The flowerbed of my mind has been taken over by weeds. Some of these weeds grew as a result of sexually explicit things I was exposed to without my consent. Other weeds grew out of experiences I had in my past, along with everything else I have been exposed to just living in this world.
The biggest weeds are the ones that I feel like I have watered, nurtured, and strengthened myself. These are weeds that have grown out of me using my imagination to think about sinful acts, pictures, videos, scenarios, stories and fantasies, and they have spread all throughout my mind.
These particular weeds have taken over my entire flowerbed. I have watered and cared for them, and for many years considered them beautiful flowers, not weeds.
These weeds are like dandelions. Dandelions are pretty little yellow flowers. They look harmless, and they don’t look like weeds at all. So once upon a time I let them stay. I didn’t realize they were starting to take over my garden, because they looked like a harmless flower. Once I realized they were weeds, I tried to pull them out of my garden – only to realize that they were growing right back.
I pulled them up again, but they grew again, all the while spreading their seeds all throughout the remainder of my flowerbed.
I need some serious weed killer for my garden! The problem is, I have become strangely attached to these weeds. I don’t want them, because they are choking out every new and good thing that I’ve tried to plant. But at the same time, they are all I know.
These dandelions used to bring me love, intimacy, security, comfort, acceptance, joy, and peace. It was all false, though; a counterfeit to the real thing that God created for me to have and enjoy.
I have yet to experience the true Godly love, intimacy, security, acceptance, joy, and peace because of this counterfeit. I’m so tired of these dandelions, but they seemed like real flowers to me for so long that now when I try to plant new flowers, they don’t even have a chance to grow. They get choked out before they even have a chance to bloom.
I don’t think I can finally kill these weeds until I truly see them for what they are. My mind knows they are deadly weeds, but my heart still remembers the time when I didn’t realize they were weeds, yet. I found so much comfort in them, and I still do.
How can I find comfort in a weed? I’m realizing that I’ve been waiting for the new, godly flowers to grow bright, strong beautiful and tall before I wholeheartedly get the strongest weed killer I can find and kill the dandelions. I have finally realized it’s not going to work that way, though. They both cannot exist in the same garden at the same time.
No good thing can grow in this garden until I first kill (not just mow over) ALL of these weeds. Only then can flowers with true life and beauty begin to grow. Only then will I experience the TRUE beauty that God created me to have”.
Difficult times will come, like I mentioned above. Keeping the flowerbed of my mind weed-free is something I need to maintain. It has been a process, but it has been so worth it. You can have this, too!
Ask Him to help you pull out all of the weeds, and do whatever it takes to do so. Those weeds are often based on lies that we believe. Ask God to expose those lies to you, and He will show you the truth as well. (When you know who He made you to be and how He truly sees you, this makes weeding much easier.)
You can have intimacy with Him that truly fulfills. It is far better than the counterfeit intimacy that sin throws our way. He loves you and wants to set you free.