His name came up over coffee. I held my baby girl on my hip and spread strawberry jam across a piece of toast. “Can you believe it? Hugh Hefner died…”
The sound of bare feet running on wood floor accompanied my daughter’s laughter as I set out her plate of eggs and toast. She climbed up the barstool and unloaded her arm full of toys on the counter. Her favorite pet shop ponies stood arrayed in a rainbow of color as she alternated between bites of food and pretend conversations.
All happy of course. This girl has no idea about Hugh Hefner or his empire of pornography. She is innocent as all children are and ignorant of this topic as all children should be.
But some aren’t.
I went to a conference this past weekend. My tears ran with hers as she stood in front of a room full of women and shared what had been done to her as a young girl. Other women shared their testimonies as well and the stories were painful and filled with brokenness. But they were beautiful and powerful and alive with freedom. The resurrection power of Christ our Messiah is at work people. I witnessed that.
But pornography was mentioned more than once and let me tell you, my heart is beating hard about it. I’m angry. I’m angry at what it does to people. I’m angry at the pain it causes. I’m angry at what it does to children.
I’m angry and I’m sad, and I pray, LORD please send Your spirit of truth, Your light everlasting to pierce these dark places. Send Your salvation to break these chains in the name of Yeshua.
Because the secret viewing of porn? It’s bringing death like a silent poison into the veins of our men and women. It’s killing marriages and attacking children. And I can tell you with every ounce of mama bear in me: I HATE IT.
I’m going to be honest here. I don’t know how to write about this nicely. I don’t know the politically correct way to word things so that I don’t push anyone further into darkness. Please forgive me if I misspeak, because shaming or pushing further into hiding is the exact opposite of what I want to do.
I want to fight this evil. And I don’t care who you are or how many years you’ve been sucked dry by porn or what you’ve done before, I want you to stop what you’re doing and fight it with me. I want you to take your secret addiction and bring it to light. I want you to know that the resurrection power of Jesus is real and He has power over all that holds you captive.
I remember in high school, sitting in the gymnasium listening to a speaker share about her story of hope. She had been a captive too. She was involved in the making of porn for a number of years and she had tears streaming down her face and her hand in the air as she shared the devastation that she subjected herself to in order to feel loved. My eyes grew wider and my heart a little softer as I caught a glimpse from behind the scenes. She hated it. She hated herself. She used drugs to work because no woman at her core wants to be treated this way. No woman wants to be used for her body when all that is beautiful is inside of it waiting to be really known. Really wanted. Don’t be fooled by an image or the pretense in her eyes. She doesn’t care for you and she knows you don’t care for her. It is self-love pitted against self-love in a twisted form of intimacy, to the destruction of everyone involved.
This is the exact opposite of what intimacy was created for.
Porn is not gender specific, nor am I limiting this to that industry. May the truth reach every college campus, high school and middle school hall: Girls, you are so much more than your body. You were created to love and be loved in the entirety of who you are. Let me cup your face and look you in the eye until you believe me: you are loved. You are loved in the biggest way possible. At the center soul and spirit of who you are. If anyone is looking for a glimmer of hope, a light in the darkness to get out of the cycle of use and abuse to feel loved, this is it. This is someone telling you: you were created for so much more than this crusty shallow version of love. No more striving and coming up empty. There is a love that is raw and real, and cares for the heart of who you are.
Boys, men: We need you. You are our strength and our protection. You are warriors. Which is why the adversary is so hell-bent on silencing you in shame. You don’t need to be bound anymore. You don’t need to be controlled anymore. In the power of Jesus there is freedom and life. There is forgiveness where there once was shame. Please. For the protection of our sons and daughters, I beg you. Stop this cycle. Darkness will only get progressively darker. You were created for so much more than this poisoned, empty version of love. There is a love that is raw and real, and cares for the heart of who you are. You can be free.
The reality is this: the greatest love available has come so that you can be free. Love made flesh has carried the weight of all this shame so that you can be made into a new man. A new woman.
“This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. But you have not so learned with Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.” Eph 4:17-24
Hugh Hefner is dead now. I don’t know if he experienced the freedom of Christ before he died or not. But here you are, and life is here now for the taking. Nothing can keep you from it if you really want it. Freedom.
Set Free Ministries is an amazing resource in finding freedom. You can’t do this alone.