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i just saw an anomalous blip on the stats for this blog.  so, i thought maybe i should say something to welcome the new (and re-welcome the old) visitors to this site.  i also read over some of my old posts here and i see that this blog is as much for me as for anyone else.  we need to be reminded from time to time of where god has taken us and who and what things, circumstances, events, etc. were present in our lives to point out north in times of dense cloud cover.  just this morning i’ve been reminded of authors, movies, articles, conversations, comments from you, and other things that have been my compass at different times.  so this is why people journal–i never took much to journaling.

i was talking with m last night and wondering, how are we going to protect our children?  i know that with my upbringing, desires, personality, etc., if i were about 14 right now i’d be done, surrendered, given over to an addiction so easily nurtured through available technology–i cringe at the thought.  yes, there are practical things we can set up but we can’t control access forever.  talking about it (which should be really fun), recognizing it instead of being in denial, staying in tune with culture, keeping open lines of communication (established at an early age) will all be important.  but ultimately it’s about a faith that god can and will do something miraculous in their lives.  i hope it’s more than enough, but the me of little faith thinks it might not be.

do parents of all generations think that god might not be big enough for their kids’ generation?



Teenagers spend an average of 31 hours a week online and nearly two hours a week looking at pornography, according to a study.

ok.  so 2 hours per week.  that’s 520 hours over a 5 year period–almost 22 days (without sleeping).  while i have my doubts as to the rigor applied in this study, i would not be surprised to learn that “nearly two hours a week” is conservative.

parents, don’t be naive.

i decided to write this post because i logged in to wordpress (after a pretty very long break) and noticed that there is still a steady stream of hits for this blog.  which surprised me.  maybe they searched for porn blogs and were deeply disappointed–or better yet, maybe got just a sliver of light.  anyway, i guess what i need to communicate is, expect long breaks between posts.  why?  because i’m a lousy blogger.  and, i don’t want to just post for posting’s sake.

i also write this post to encourage you and let you know that this blog did not come to a halt because the shinyness of the wagon wore off and i jumped out.  not to say that i’m perfect–far from it, actually.  but i still have hope (and now evidence) that significant, lasting healing can replace a porn addiction.  i don’t know how god will use this blog, but i hope i am participating in his kingdom through it.  i would like more people to comment, but what blogger doesn’t?  maybe i should just write a post on obama–or maybe atheism.  j/k freestyle and chill.

a final note about tv.  roll eyes.  big sighs.  here he goes again. we got rid of our tv about 6 months ago–not because we’re super holy, but because we didn’t want to move that behemoth, old school, nuclear reactor picture-box to our new house.  didn’t really have a good place for it and decided that we’d get a new fancy flat-panel when we finish the basement.  well, i can’t tell you how much of a difference it’s made for me.  m and i still watch our favorite shows online and s watches her videos on the computer.  but i don’t sit down and give myself over to it’s programming.  now that i think about it programming is an ironic and not-so-subtle term for what’s on.  i know, i sound like a huge prude, and i don’t think a little skin on an advertisement here and there will ruin you.  it’s the constant flow of images, desires of others and false promises of fulfillment.  The happiness of most people we know is not ruined by great catastrophes or fatal errors, but by the repetition of slowly destructive little thingsDimnet.  i thought i would miss it more than i do.  although i have two little ones that keep me pretty busy–and lots of hobbies.  i’ll stop short of telling you what to do.  i can only speak to what it’s done for me.

i know that many of you who read this blog are women living in a society/culture that is being radically transformed by the mainstreaming/mass availability of porn.  i’m really interested in your opinions of this article posted on

however, i think it’s an important read for the fellas out there, too.  how have you bought into this game of victim to victimizer?  does your objectification of others prevent you from experiencing intimacy?

when i read this, i realized just how much of a daily battle it is to fight/cleanse ourselves of the continuous bombardment of objectification of others.  on a much broader (than porn) scale.  “what can this person do for me?”  “how can they serve my ends?”

this is leading me on a tangent, but i think it’s worthwhile to consider:  why is it so hard for us to be genuinely happy for others when they succeed/are blessed/etc.?  i know that wishing failure on someone else brings me no happiness.  i know that being bitter toward someone else’s good fortune will only leave me more desperate and unfulfilled.  how can i move to a place of true happiness and fulfillment where i am equally or more excited for others than they are for themselves?

i think this is slowly happening for me.  and i don’t think it’s a coincidence that it’s growing as i’m moving away from an addiction built on the objectification of others.

i wanted to see hellboy when it came out about 4 years ago. it came to and went from the theaters and i never got around to seeing it. well, i saw it last week and must say it had a profound impact on me. for those of you who don’t know the story, hellboy came to earthly space/time through a portal as a baby demon (from hell) to fulfill a destiny integral to the destruction of the earth. he was adopted and raised by a roman catholic paranormal scientist working for the fbi nicknamed broom.

“what is it that makes a man a man? is it his origins, the way things start? or is it something else, something harder to describe?”

under broom’s fathering, hellboy grows into the role of monster hunter. lots of bad stuff happens, and ultimately hellboy is about to bring forth the apocalypse. his father deceased, hellboy’s new fbi “keeper” throws broom’s old rosary and cross to him. “remember who you are,” as the cross burns into and brands hellboy’s palm. “you have a choice.”

so, downtrodden and at the point of greatest deviance, completely giving himself over to the forces of evil, about to say f*** it and bring about an end to the human race, a simple cross and a reminder of his true identity change the course of events for mankind (well, it is only a movie). but it begs the question asked above.

when i was initially seeking help for getting out of porn, a great man, mike babb, was willing to meet with me weekly. he gave me a sheet of verses to go over daily–verses that affirm the true identity of those in christ. it took several weeks for them to start sinking in. this was stuff i had read about a million times, but had never really applied to my own heart.

i think lots of times we just want give in and believe that we’re fallen souls, ultimately incapable of living apart from our broken down selves. we act saved around other christians, but we’re not really buying the deal about being a new creation–forgiven, blameless and all that jazz. i was so deep in this that i couldn’t even accept compliments or affirmation from others. i would shrug and think, “whatever, i’m not really worthy of your praise because i’ve got this part of my life that you don’t know about, and it’s pretty bad and i can’t control it–i don’t even want to control it anymore– which completely negates any positive thing you or anyone else could say about me.”

if you feel this way, all i can offer is that you read the following verses each day for a while. it’s hard. it’s positive stuff about you. and it’s true–yes, even if you have a porn addiction and you lie about it to those most important to you:

john 1:12
yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of god

colossians 1:13-14
for he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins

colossians 2:9-10
for in christ all the fullness of the deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in christ, who is the head over every power and authority

romans 8:1
therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in christ jesus

philippians 1:6
being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of christ jesus

2 corinthians 1:21-22
now it is god who makes both us and you stand firm in christ. he anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

2 corinthians 5:17-21
therefore, if anyone is in christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! all this is from god, who reconciled us to himself through christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that god was reconciling the world to himself in christ, not counting men’s sins against them. and he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. we are therefore christ’s ambassadors, as though god were making his appeal through us. we implore you on christ’s behalf: be reconciled to god. god made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of god.

romans 8:14,15
because those who are led by the spirit of god are sons of god. for you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the spirit of sonship. and by him we cry, “abba, father.”

a bonus question for those who are still reading: hellboy held his father’s cross many times before, and the cross had never burned itself into his hands. what does it mean to you that his identity was not so strongly revealed until that point where he had conceded to evil and was about to do something really, really bad?

*disclaimer: yes, i understand it is a movie. a movie based on a comic book, no less. that’s why i think it’s so great.

one of my heroes is peter gabriel.  he’s got this tune, washing of the water, that is for the downtrodden and weary.  on so many levels it’s just a fantastic song.  but the next to last line is “in the washing of the water will you take it all away”.  i heard this guy, sy rogers, speak a few years ago.  he’s the first person i remember talking openly, unashamedly, about his past as a gay man on female hormones on a waiting list to have a sex change.  the thing is, it wasn’t the very gay details of his past that shocked me.  it wasn’t that he was talking about it in a church.  it was his candid way of revealing his brokenness that allowed me to see someone who was unafraid and completely confident in his identity in christ.

he talked about living in our world as it relates to sex, desires, advertising, etc. and that by just being out in the world we get dirty.  i don’t know, maybe the cleaner we are the dirtier we are capable of getting.  we see lots of stuff that isn’t right.  depravity.   this muck builds up.  he said he has to pray every day for christ to wash him clean and take the layer of filth away.  a perpetual renewing of the spirit.

which leads me to the point that we are called to live in the world but we don’t have to marinate in it.  check out the links section and get x3watch installed on the computers you have access to.  not enough of a deterrent?  cancel your internet service then.  it is better for you to pay a little more and buy locally than to get it on ebay while allowing your whole body to be thrown into the fiery pit.  (yes, that was supposed to be humorous.) seriously though, you have to decide what’s important.  through a series of events not entirely intended to leave my house tv-less, my house has become basically tv-less.  (i do have a 13″ tv that i won at project graduation in ’93 that i can take out of the closet–duly stored because of its unsightly nature–if i really, really want to watch something.)  what i have noticed from this experience is that i feel like it’s allowing some of my wounds to heal.  sometimes we get some real healing and then don’t protect the tenderness that is exposed.  i don’t think we consciously realize the effects of daily bombardments of images and advertising that wear us down.  do i think it’s possible to overcome a porn addiction while having unchecked internet access and expanded cable tv?  i suppose anything’s possible, but damn, that’s the hard way to do it if you ask me.

well, to summarize, a simple, genuine prayer for cleansing from all the daily yuck that we are called to wade through goes a long way.  i don’t know how it works–especially since most of the time i’m not aware of what i’m absorbing.  but somehow, through this process i feel a little more me, a little more affirmed in my identity, and a little bit stronger.

p.s.  i took a bit of a hiatus from the door due to general life craziness with 2 kids 2 and under, trying to sell an 81 yr old house, build a house, provide for my family, and prepare for moving into a new office building.  but, i have also thought of several more posts for the blog–this one was just kind of to get the wheels turning again.  thanks for checking in; i hope in some way that this blog can help.  (and i’m not saying that if you throw away your computer and your tv everything will be great.  for example, without a computer you would not be able to participate in this blog.  just try to be smart about it.)

question:  is it worth it to ease this burden a bit by sacrificing tv and/or internet?

bonus question:  if you have x3watch, who do you send your reports to?  (please don’t use names–use descriptions like a friend, my spouse, my accountability partner–i shudder a bit at the terminology, etc.)  how is it working out for you?

allinarow brought up, in an interesting comment to the previous post, a great point on which i’d like to expand. why is this subject talked about so little when it is such (sadly) a big part of the world around us? is there something more fundamental inside us that shys away from acknowledging porn? i’ll throw out a few more questions: do you think that 42.7% of the people you know look at porn on the internet? do you know anyone who contributes to the $13 billion porn industry? if not you or your friends then who?

i gathered up some statistics on porn:

4.2 million porn websites (out of date, i’m sure)

68 million daily pornographic search engine requests

42.7% of internet users view porn (72% male, 28% female)

80% of 15-17 year old males have had multiple hardcore exposures

usa porn industry revenue ($13.3 billion in 2006) exceeds the combined revenues of ABC, CBS, and NBC

70% of 18-24 year old men admit to visiting porn websites in a typical month.

i can, of course, provide you with references to these stats if you wish/ask. i’m posting this for a few reasons. first, to those of you who read this blog and feel alone in your struggle, you are not alone. second, to those of you living in la-la land, wake up! this is a real, humongous issue and if you want to help others, stop being afraid to talk about it. and to others, stop saying, “i struggle with lust” and just own up to it–call it for what it is. third, $13.3 billion is a large chunk of change–especially for one year. oh, and an additional $3 billion is made on the sale of illegal child pornography. ironically, the theme song from happy days just came into my head. some happy days.

a few weeks ago matches had a post that, through the numerous comments, brought up many questions concerning porn. one that stuck with me was, “what is porn?” i’m sure webster’s has a definition, and i’m sure different people have differing views on what exactly constitutes porn. for the purposes of this blog, i’m going to define pornography as images of the human form that, when viewed, cause one to move from the divine to the worldly–drawing our focus from god to self. in this way, it is defined by the viewer. however, while the line from art to porn may be blurry, there is a line, and i think it is clear enough on most things. it is not my intent to argue whether a particular image is art or porn.

i also want to say something else, although now i’m getting a bit nervous. i’m going to go out on a limb and say that porn implies masturbation. yes, it really does. always. (if you feel i am in error here, please comment.) to those of you who don’t struggle with porn, this might be somewhat of a shock. but it also presents an opportunity for you to grow in love, forgiveness and acceptance of others. while it’s difficult to admit to a “porn” problem it is so much more difficult to admit to a porn and masturbation problem. i also think healing is that much closer to those who are able to call their struggles for what they are–sugar coating our problems is not going to allow others to come alongside us and accept us for who we are. and this is really where the whole shame thing comes in. i don’t think people feel ashamed for looking at porn–it’s what they do with it. so…

now to what i wanted to post in the first place. how would you feel if someone you love and respect told you they had a “porn” problem?

when i was enslaved to this addiction i would lay awake at night afraid. my fears were one, that i would die and my wife would never know, and two, that i would die and she would later find out. but my biggest fear was that i would be on my death bed, unable to confess to a lifetime of hiding a part of me that i despised–basically that i would not be known for who i really was. which means i would not be accepted for who i really was. it’s hard to really relate to the strength of the emotions i felt at that time, but i do remember being consumed with fear and loneliness. over the last few years i’ve learned that i wasn’t alone in my struggle–that a really large proportion of men deal with this for all kinds of reasons. however, when in the midst of these emotions–unable to share them with the people closest to you–a person is truly alone. i’m sorry if any of you are dealing with this right now.

again, i hope this can be a place for healing–that people would feel comfortable in sharing their experiences (which usually ends up benefiting everyone). i guess the provoking question for this post is what are you most afraid of?