(You may not need Living Without Lust in your lifetime. But if and when you do, the following story demonstrates the kind of help we can provide.)
On a quiet Friday evening my sister called twice in a row during family movie night. After the 2nd call, she texted me, “Call me; it’s important.”
Thinking of my father’s heart, I called back. She asked me to sit down, and said “This is going to be life-changing moment.” She paused for one of the longest moments of my life. But now I think back longingly of that pause, as the last time our family was happy and safe.
“Our brother is in jail.
“The charge is child pornography.”
My brother was a happily married man with 3 sons, a nice house, and a white-collar job that was “going places.”. My brother was a good husband, and father. They were involved in their church. They seemed like a nice, normal family.
I watched my parents grow old before my eyes, and my siblings, our spouses and I reeled in shock. Our brother was addicted not just to porn, but the most deviant evil porn of all. I grimly absorbed the irony that we were relieved his deviance seemed limited to watching child porn and not acting on it.
My brother got out of jail and moved into our parents’ basement. His only reason for living was providing for his estranged wife and his 3 sons. He was suicidal and filled with self-hatred and despair. We all tried to help and all struggled with our own feelings.
The entire family turned to my husband and me, because we were friends with Jay. Living Without Lust had the resources we needed.
For the past decade, my husband and I had listened to Jay give several talks and believed in his ministry. Other than monitoring our own sons’ internet and phone use with the savagery of a tigress, Living Without Lust seemed like something other people needed. I had been a fool.
Now it was our turn to need Jay’s ministry.
And they were there for us immediately, with counselors, 12-step programs, and other resources. I distributed help to the whole family. I mailed a white book to my brother, who is now in the 12-step program and speaks with his sponsor and attends meetings every day. I spent over an hour on the phone with one of Jay’s connections – one of the kindest men on earth – who was in recovery and gave me compassion, and gentle understanding while he patiently answered all my many questions.
My brother’s future is grim. He has lost his family, and facing legal repercussions of his actions, and the evil of his addiction, which clearly had reached the point it was controlling him.
I keep thinking back to my brother when he was young. He was so…normal as a teen, with genuine healthy attraction to girls his age, and what seemed like a normal path into adulthood, marriage and a family. Looking back now, I realize that like so many others before him, my brother turned to internet porn to deal with his pain.
I’m sure the porn, so readily available on the internet, was meant to be a private relief, an escape, completely separate from his “real” life. But just as Satan meant it to, it grew, insidiously, growing more deviant and evil, and threatening everything that is good and whole in my brother.
We will give my brother as much help as we can. But so much is too late for him. He is now seeking forgiveness, grace, and any peace that can be found from his agony.
Living Without Lust faces head-on an evil our society tries to keep secret. We cannot allow it to remain so. How many can be saved before it is too late?…Be protected from ever seeing the first pornography, be given help, accountability, the grace and power of the Holy Spirit before they are lost?
Jay’s ministry is standing against a great evil. Protect the next generation. They are already under attack.
( Note: We have seen too many people recover, even from this kind of struggle, to give up on anyone. There is hope in the fellowship of recovery, no matter where the starting point.)
In Jesus, the Lust-Bearer,