Ok, so if you don't know, I love to visit Post Secret.
Every Sunday morning my newsreader delivers the most recent artistic confessional gems to me over a cup of coffee. A quick warning here - be careful, at times there can be some fairly explicit imagery there. It's not safe for everybody, so be careful, k?

Now, look at this one. Have you ever been like that? Are you like that now? I could identify with this postcard so well, but I would have had to add one for church - what about you?

For so much of my life, I wore masks, or different personalities, depending on where I was. Have you ever been that desperate for people to accept you? Have you ever taken on personality traits that weren't really yours just to fit in? It used to be my life.

I was so convinced that nobody would like the real me, that I tried different personalities in order to be accepted. The worst part about that was that when I got alone again, I knew the "me" people liked was not really me. Then I was trapped. Because if they found out I was lying - they would reject me. The very things I was doing in order to be accepted would, in fact, get me rejected.

Luther wrote that if we could keep the first two commandments, we would keep all the others by default. Those first two, for those of you scoring at home, are: You shall have no other gods before me, and You shall not bow down to idols. (the second is a loose paraphrase)

I think Luther was absolutely right. Idolatry is a powerful force in our culture, and we have more idols than we realize. Just because they are not carved or something tangible does not mean we are not guilty of idolatry.

My god for so long, was my own image. When I chose to wear masks in order to get others to accept me, I was putting myself before God. I was, in effect, worshipping myself instead of God. I was denying the reality of the gospel in my life because I was finding my significance in the opinions of others instead of in Christ.

I was not accepting the fact that Jesus Christ died on a cross knowing full well who I was. That God created me in His image, and was so consumed with the pursuit of His own glory that He sent His son to pay the penalty for my fallen nature and reestablish our relationship.

God did not save me because He has good taste. He saved me because He is incredibly gracious and merciful, and it says much more about His glory that He would choose me.

So often we wear masks in church and in our community in an effort to get others to love and accept us. What more love and acceptance could we ever receive than the Gospel? How could we possibly have more acceptance than knowing that Jesus died for us knowing full well who we were going to be?

That is the intimacy of the Gospel! That is intimacy! True acceptance. Jesus knows the real you and the real me. Jesus loves the real you and the real me. He died for the real you and the real me.

This is why Paul instructs us to boast in our weaknesses - so that the Gospel can be magnified and God can be glorified. We are all imperfect. We are all broken. There is no point scale for sin, and none of us is better - or worse - than anyone else.

The freedom in the Gospel means we can drop all of the fake personalities. We can drop the masks and stop worshipping ourselves. How can we worship ourselves when we can not save ourselves? How can we not worship the true God who died for us, and rose from the dead to give us the gift of eternal life?

Drop the masks, and let them fall. Life gets much easier when we live out the Gospel.

3 Response to " "

  • Anonymous Says:

    I have been struggling with porn for about 16 years. What do you think of this guys approach. Can we direct some of this "energy" so to speak to our wives? In my case she doesnt know about my problem. I'm going to see if it works.


  • Tal Prince Says:

    Thanks for the comment. I am aware of Reverend Beam and his ministry. It's located not too far from where I live.

    A main problem for sex/porn addicts is that we think that more or "hotter" sex will fix our problems. That it will medicate our pain, and make us feel loved. Many of us think getting married will make the problem go away, because what could be better? Especially if we are believers, we think we will finally begin having "biblically approved" sex. And since we're married, we'll get to have sex whenever we want. Then we find out it doesn't work that way and we get angry and turn back to porn to fill the void.

    If you struggle with porn, your problem really has nothing to do with sex. I know that sounds counterintuitive, but your problem is not sex - you have a problem with intimacy.

    We sexualized intimacy, but actually they are not related. They are not the same. Sex/Porn addiction is actually classified as an intimacy disorder.

    A seminar on "hotter sex" will not help you. It will not help your wife. She is not your problem - a new outfit, technique or toy will not squelch your desire for porn.

    The Gospel is the only way out. The Gospel is not about our behavior - it's about our hearts. Your heart has trouble.

    If you physically had heart trouble, and you thought that having better sex with your wife would fix it, that would be ridiculous. It's the same here. Only intimacy with God, and with others can help this.

    The cruel joke in this is also that you will never have the type of sex with your wife that you desire until you have intimacy with her. As long as you have secrets from her, you can not have intimacy with her. It is not possible.

    How much energy have you spent keeping the secret from her?

    You can get help, and you can get out of this, brother. It's not easy, but you can do it. Your heart has to change, and then your behavior will follow. You have to let this part of you die.

    We can help you find a counselor in your area, if you would like. I'm here to help you any way I can.

    Reverend Beam's class would be a bit like going to dance class before learning to walk. Good information - just too early to really do anything about it.

    Tell your wife of your struggles, get help together, and then maybe get with Reverend Beam if you need to.

    Sex without true intimacy is never fulfilling. Get intimacy with your God, with your wife, and with some other men and the rest will follow.

    Thanks for reading and commenting!!!


  • Anonymous Says:

    Will be in touch