It’s true – he does.
The Devil knows my desires.
The Devil knows YOUR desires too!
The desires that lie internally. Those desires that lie within me, Satan uses to trap me externally.
My desires may be different than yours or they may be the same. Either way, the Devil can only use the desires that “work” for each one us. Pornography may be a struggle of mine due to lack of love growing up, but may not phase someone else at all. The Devil knows that.
The Devil knows me and you VERY well just like God knows us. Except he is working against us and not for us like God.
Recently I was tempted – tempted to look at pornography (I’ll be honest) – and I thought, “let me reach out to my accountability group for help getting through this.” But I didn’t do that. I started to gather my thoughts as to why I wanted to look at porn. Was it because I was bored, hungry or tired?
Nah, none of those.
Rather, I was mad. Mad because I felt so alone coming back home from the dog park. I missed having someone to call, lean on and talk to. Someone to love me and listen to me. Someone like my mom and dad. But not my mom and dad of today; my mom and dad of 20 years ago. The mom and dad I could cry on and say “I need help.” Not a mom and dad who will say “You are a man now. Go seek therapy or go to church for your needs!”
It made me CRAVE love in that moment and I didn’t know what to do.
But the Devil did. At least he thought so by putting pornography on my mind. Making me believe that porn would fulfill my void of love.
Of coarse I knew it wouldn’t, but I am stubborn and felt out of options.
God knows that my mom and dad weren’t around as much, so I missed out on much needed love growing up. God knows that I felt my younger brother was favored over me and received more love than me growing up, which bothered me. God knows that I wanted to be loved and accepted by my peers at school.
But guess who else knows all of this? The Devil.
And guess what else? The Devil, just as God does, knows that I still desire to be loved by my mom and dad, in a way a child receives love from their parents and feel equal in love to my brother and be accepted and loved by my peers.
But filling those voids correctly is where I believe God needs to step in and take over.
Because I am a lonnng ways away from the ages where those needs originated. And God only knows how to go back in time and bring up those old wounds to heal once and for all.
But, I believe that you first have to realize that there are voids in your life. Maybe, like me, you didn’t receive the love you wanted from your mom and/or dad, or you weren’t accepted by your peers in middle or high school. Or maybe your older sister got all the praise and none was left for you. The list goes on of possibilities. What matters is realizing them and giving them to God and not allowing the Devil to capitalize on them any longer.
The Devil is throwing sins at you daily that he knows will attract you. Attract your unmet needs and desires.
21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 22 thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. 23 All these evil things come from within and defile a man.”
Mark 7: 21-23 NKJV
The keyword for me in that scripture is “within.”
These sins we struggle with all start from within us, not from the outside world in which we may think. The outside world only magnifies how badly our inner selves really need help by how much we attach ourselves to our “go-to sins.”
It’s sad, but true. At least I believe so.
Now the next step is either finding a Rick Warren sermon on YouTube (because that guy is the MAN!), continuing to read my Word daily or asking my pastor at church to find the correct escape route for all of this.
My innermost desires and needs have to be met; theres no question about that. I also know God and Jesus are going to have a HUGE part in addressing them. I just need to know how.
Yes, prayer is key. But is that it?
Rick Warren has a list as to what to do to overcome temptation in his book, “The Purpose Driven Life,” which I will list below. But I need to know how to address those unmet needs in the correct manner.
- Refuse to be intimidated.
- Recognize your pattern of temptation and be prepared for it. (“Ask yourself, ‘When am I most tempted? What day of the week? What time of the day? Who is with me when I’m most tempted,'”)
- Request God’s help (“Then call on me when you are in trouble, and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory. Psalm 50:15 (NLT)”)
So those are the 3 steps that Rick Warren outlines in his book to overcome temptation. I didn’t elaborate on numero uno (number one) for a reason. I wanted to do so here. Because the hard truth, ladies and gentlemen, is that we will never truly overcome temptation here on earth.
I know, right! You are pissed too, huh?
Even Jesus was tempted. We all will be tempted but us Christians even more so because the Devil HATES us! He despises everything we do and say; that is until we sin. He loves that. He doesn’t want us to glorify God, bring others to Christ and make it to God’s Kingdom in Heaven.
Those are the last things the Devil wants.
He wants us to keep on sinning, forget all about God and Jesus and to for sure not dig up the past by addressing our innermost needs and desires.
So we, as believers, have to do our part and Refuse to be intimidated by the Devil and his evil tactics. Show him whose Boss (Jesus), by asking The Lord to uncover those unmet needs you and I have most (some we may not even be aware of) and for God to show you and I a way to address them properly.
BREAKING (unfortunate) NEWS: The Devil is coming for you and he’s coming for me. He came for me earlier today when he put pornography on my mind. He might be knocking on your front door right now.
Temptation will be here as long as the world is here. But if Christ can abstain, so can you and I! We may not be as perfect and blameless as Jesus Christ, but we can do it!!!
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33 (NIV)
Not only did Christ overcome the world, He saved the world too!
He saved little old you and little old me by dying on the cross for our sins. “Thank you God and Jesus for that.”
Now let’s hit the Devil where it hurts by asking Christ to reveal our innermost needs and to have Him meet them. So that pornography doesn’t have such a strong hold over you or that coworker getting promoted over you doesn’t sting as much, reminding you of a sibling who was favored over you and so on.
Hopefully you and I will no longer feel like the Devil has our lives by a tight grip, but rather a light hold.
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
James 4:7 (NIV)
Let’s do this people! Let’s be vigilant, courageous and STRONG!
If ever you or I feel weak or that the Devil is getting to you, remember 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NLT). I know I will.
13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.
“Jesus, please help us uncover our innermost needs. We also ask that you please meet these needs as well, Lord. We ask this in your name, Amen.”