I FEEL like I haven’t masturbated in 9 days. Not sleeping great, kind of apathetic, see my type of guy and want to start hugging him on the spot etc. And I remember why I’ve never gained consistent victory over this problem before.
I probably started masturbating when I was 11 or 12; didn’t even know what it was until an awkward lesson from my dad as he washed the dishes and I dried: ‘when you rub yourself…’ I can’t remember what else he said, but I’m sure it was equally embarrassing. Since I was about 15; I’ve been trying, seriously, to stop. People say it’s not outlawed in the bible, but I know for myself it is unhelpful and when I do it it is related to sin 99.9% of the time.
In 2006 I didn’t masturbate for 50 days, a couple of times. And probably only did it 30 out of 200 days or something in that period of my life. Then in 2007 and the first half of this year I was doing it pretty consistently and now I’m like; ‘I have to stop this’. It scares me that I’m like a 23-year-old who still needs his security wank before he goes to sleep, or so I can go to sleep. It definitely isn’t helpful for my Christian walk either.
So 9 days later here I am feeling withdrawal. I don’t know if anyone goes through this stuff when they stop? Like having a restless kind of sleep, feeling kind of monotonous and dull, saying stupid things to other people and creating long emotional needs meeting scenarios in your mind with a guy you just met? Argh. It’s like my alcohol; I need it to loosen up and live. At the same time lustful thoughts, as opposed to emotional desiring thoughts, haven’t been a problem.
Even though I think all these issues are coming to the surface because I’m not masturbating, it’s not like I’m really tempted to do that either. Once after I hadn’t done it for a while I almost forced myself to do it and then I created the need again and it was hard to stop. As of now I kind of have the opinion that masturbation is something that I just need to stop and then deal with the issues later. Though obviously I can stop masturbation through willpower or with and through the glory of God; hopefully I’m doing okay with the balance this time around.
I have a mate who can’t say masturbation; like he won’t, will not say the word masturbation. I don’t know what it is; shame, worried he’ll giggle. It’s kind of weird. But I think this is an important issue and something I need to beat, both to show I am mature and to become mature.
Btw I really like what Mark Driscoll says in porn again Christian about being manly men and that type of thinking is probably one of the biggest encouragements spurring me on.
I had a crazy/stressful weekend.
My younger sister brought her boyfriend to my parents for the weekend, which is where I also spent Saturday and Sunday. Nice guy. But it’s her first ‘serious’ boyfriend and until now we’ve both been single. Don’t get me wrong; I was happy for her and the way they looked at each other when they spoke made me glad they found each other. But it did make me think some thoughts in my mind. There we were out at dinner on either side of me were my dad and mum together and my sister and her boyfriend together. By the end of the weekend I was wishing I had someone special too. But if I’m following this path of holiness from SSA and based on my progress to date it’s going to be a few years at least before I’m partnered or comfortable to be partnered or feel I’m a man who can make a good boyfriend. The weirdest things about coupledom make me ache for it; like when a man and a woman are grocery shopping. “Should we get five pink lady apples?” “How about we get royal gala this time.” “Okay, still want five.” “Yeah.” I want to discuss purchasing produce with someone. haha.
On Saturday night I had my same sex attraction support group I hadn’t been to in about two years. We have to sign confidentiality forms, so I can only talk about what happened in me. But it was kind of helpful. It always makes me so very, very nervous going to these SSA things. I don’t know why it should. I would say it’s not even a social nervousness as I know I could just not go and never see these people again. But to begin with my heart was racing, my words were jumbled and my mind was going out of it. It says to me that in dealing with SSA I still have deeper issues that come up at times like these. Hopefully when I have counseling I’ll be able to work some of them out.
Then on Sunday I preached at my parent’s church to their average congregation of 15 or so for about half an hour. It’s my first time in about two years, after I had difficulties fighting sin and following God and thought I shouldn’t do it for a while. It was great to be back. Though it was a weight on me, the responsibility and so forth in the days leading up to the talk. I didn’t feel too nervous and did pretty well I think. I’m looking forward to doing more. It was on James 4:13-17 with a bit about the sovereignty of God as background. People said they liked it…but they would, haha.
How much does Chris hate it when he writes a longish post and then loses it…a lot. Doubly annoying when I was trying to find a way to copy it, in case I did lose it.
So I was listening to my favourite internet preacher, Matt Chandler (www.thevillagechurch.net) a while ago and he was talking about the ‘ask, seek, knock’ passage in Luke and he was saying that part of getting healing or if we wanted something from God we needed to seek it. So for example if someone was dealing with emotional issues part of the way they would seek their healing would be by getting counselling. It’s stayed with me. And helped me over the past month or so.
I was seeking more activities to fill up my time after work instead of exercise, cooking and internet time, and I did some seeking by asking about a couple of sports and seeking out information by talking to people. After a few closed doors and dead-ends, which kind of surprised me ’cause I didn’t think I would have to prove how strong the desire behind my seeking was, I’ve found a couple of activities. I’ve been to a Christian small group a couple of times on Monday night. It’s different, we watched Joyce Meyer and I’m not really a fan, but it’s good to be out of the house and with other people. On Tuesday I played lawn bowls for the first time ever in a team from work. I was a bit hesitant to join, but am glad I did. Once I got the hang of the bias in the bowl and where I had to aim it to make it go where I wanted to I was okay. It’s a five week season, so hopefully I get a few more games.
I could also join a volunteer visting service if I wanted to fill in another night and I offered my services to the kids church at church so if that comes off it will fill in some more time with preparation and thinking; probably meetings as well. Forcing myself to go to a church I didn’t really like has been good for me. Now I know some more people I like the church because of that even if some of its culture and teaching annoys me still.
The other thing is I am almost in counselling. Though it took a lot more seeking then I wanted it too. I sent a couple of emails to church and I got no response. So then I asked a Salvation Army pastor I did a story on if he knew any male Christian counsellors in the area. He did. So I emailed the counsellor’s office and about a week later got an email back. I was told that if I got a referral from the doctor to the counsellor I could get discounted sessions through Medicare. So I made an appointment with a doctor; I thought I would have to give him my life story to earn the referral, but I didn’t. I was only in there for three minutes. I called the counselling office to make an appointment today and left a message.
So seek your healing brothers…