I have thoroughly enjoyed reading Ashton’s thoughts on this blog. Contending for the faith is indeed easier with a team, and it is an honor to be asked to contend along side my brothers in Christ. We are all presenting our testimony as our first blog:
There is only one word to reveal the sin that so strongly entangled me before I was truly saved. I say truly saved because for a long time I believed I was saved at the young age of twelve, but this word and how it imprisoned me showed otherwise: pornography.
Regretfully, the majority of the people who know me will be shocked at the thought of this word being part of my testimony. It is true that I kept this dark side of my life hid, very well hid, from the people who were close to me and from the people I served in churches, but not anymore. Even though this word has brought many miseries in my life, praise the Lord, this word is only a dark back drop for the beautiful Gospel of Jesus Christ in my life.
During the many years of my depraved state and imprisonment of pornography, I did study Scripture. My studies were for a job and strictly for knowledge, but when the Gospel of Jesus Christ truly reached down and saved my evil, wicked soul, my studies were not necessarily for a job or even necessarily for knowledge, but was now necessary for growing deeper in a relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The gospel started to truly show me how to live a life for Christ. The gospel started to truly cause me to sacrificially worship with a real understanding of Christ’s death and burial. The gospel started to truly give me hope and peace through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Studying Scripture as a redeemed sinner started to make more sense than when studying Scripture as a sinner addicted to pornography.
Do I still struggle with lust? I will always struggle with lust. Do I believe my struggle with lust is a curse from God? No! Do I believe my struggle with lust is a blessing from God? Absolutely! My struggle with lust and my God-given desire to not struggle with lust, causes me to strive to be filled with the Holy Ghost of God so I do not fall into the temptation of my flesh.
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ESV
My God is good because He has justified me in spite of my weakness. My God is good because He continues to sanctify me in spite of my weakness. And, my God is good because He will one day glorify me to His presence to worship and glorify Him forever, Amen. En Cristo Solo!