Reader Q/A: How do I stop thinking about past sexual partners?

Additional Resources


The Bondage Breaker, Neil Anderson


Ransomed Heart Ministries, Soul TiesPart 1, Part 2, Part 3

Ask me a question
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Hey guys! Steve from Belt of Truth Ministries here. I want to start answering questions from you guys from video rather than just writing. I think this will be a little more personal, a little more fun to do it this way.

And actually the main reason I’m doing this is I got a question just last week from a woman and she didn’t leave her email address and so I couldn’t respond back to her directly. So I figured this will be a great opportunity to do a video first, because the question she had is a question that I’m sure a lot of you guys have and women that are checking this out as well.

Her question was she’s currently married and she finds she has a previous sexual partner, a boyfriend, before she was married and she can’t stop thinking about him. She loves her husband. She tries to connect with him but her mind is constantly going back to fantasies about this previous partner and she reached out to me and said “how do I stop? I don’t want to be thinking about him but I can’t stop” and I figured this is a question that a lot of you probably have.

And here’s the thing though, the bible talks directly about this. What we have going on here is what we call a soul tie. In 1 Corinthians 1:16 and 18, I love the way that the message translation puts it. It says “there’s more to sex than just skin on skin. Sex is as much a spiritual mystery as a physical act, as written in the scriptures, two become one.” There’s a union going on there. And actually Paul goes on to talk in verse 18. “There’s a sense in which sexual sins are different from all others.” In sexual sin we violate the sacredness of our own bodies, these bodies that were made for God-given and God-modeling love for again, becoming one, with another. When two people come together sexually, their spirits are united. They’re connected spiritually. This is awesome in marriage and this is why God created it, created sex for marriage. It will literally fuse you and your wife together in a unity. You become one.

The problem though is when that happens outside of marriage and it happens with multiple partners and I’m willing to bet that’s what’s going on here with this women that she still has that spiritual union going on with that previous partner. And this plays out in a lot of ways. If you find that you just can’t stop thinking about somebody, if you find that you’ve got letters from ex-girlfriends or photos of ex-girlfriends that you just can’t get rid of, that every now and then you just pull out and you want to look at them and maybe you’re still Facebook friends with a previous sexual partner or somebody that you’ve lusted after significantly and you keep going back to their site and Facebook-stalking them. All of that stuff can be signs of soul ties and they’re not healthy and they’re not beneficial. But the great thing is God wants to break them and He can break them and here’s how that works.

In order to break those soul ties, it’s a spiritual battle. It’s not something you can do on your own. It’s something that God must do for you. I encourage you to find some time to get alone, grab a notebook and sit down and just say “Lord, please bring to my mind any soul ties, any bondage that’s going on in my heart, any connection that’s going with another person that’s causing bondage. Please bring that to my mind.” And write it down, no matter how insignificant, no matter how little it seems, just trust that the Holy Spirit is bringing that to your mind and if you’re like me, you’re going to end up with a pretty big list. I remember when I did this the first time, I had all of my ex-girlfriends, the women that I had been with previous to marriage, lots of times looking at pornography, things like that. Even things as simple as playing Ouija board in middle school. It seemed totally innocent but the Lord brought it to my heart. I figured “okay, I’ll deal with it.”

Once you have your list, start going through those one at a time and just say “Lord, I bring to mind this specific instance” whatever it is, so let’s just say example A. It’s like “Lord, I bring to you example A and I confess that that was sin and I believe that Satan has gained some sort of access to my life through that. I believe that there’s been some sort of soul tie in my heart because of that and I ask that you break that Lord. You break it by your blood. I trust that the power of Jesus on the cross is strong enough to break that soul tie. Lord, please let there be nothing in my heart that is drawing me away from you, nothing that is connecting me in an unholy way to anything other than you. Lord, by the power of your name, I ask you to break that.” And just go through one at a time on every one of those and I guarantee you, you’re going to find tremendous freedom.

If you want to go much deeper on this, because this is a huge, I mean this is a big thing. It’s more than we can talk about in the five-minute video. If you want to go much deeper in this, there’s resources in the notes below this video on my page. Go to You’ll find the show notes for this page and I really encourage you to pick up a book, The Bondage Breaker by Neil Anderson and also I’m going to list some podcast, some from Ransom Heart Ministries, talking even more on soul ties.

Either way, I wish you guys the best. I encourage you to do this. Don’t put this off. It’s a huge thing. If you’ve read my story, going through prayers like this was a major turning point in my story. I encourage you guys to do the same.

If you guys have any questions for me, as always go to and there’ll be a form there. You can send me your questions anonymously. I’ll either get back through an email or if you’re fine with it, check the little box so I can answer your question with a video and who knows, maybe your question will be next.

Thanks guys! See ya!

Reader Q/A: How do I open up to my wife emotionally?

Question: For the 9 years I’ve been married, I have been hiding, controlling, and emotionally closed off to my wife about my deep feelings or thoughts. Now that she knows my deepest and darkest secrets, some that hurt her very badly, how do I go about opening up to the emotional side? She wants me to share more than just what happened to me that day. How can I just open up to her like she wants to see?

Reader Q/AThis is a very common issue with men who are on a path to recovery.

When you are in the chains of an addiction, you learn to hide your emotions very well. It’s the inevitable result of the lies and deception that come with trying to hide part of your life. Over time, your emotions may shut down completely as you become more and more calloused. For many men, the eventual result manifests in two ways:

  • A lack of empathy (the ability to feel and understand the suffering of others). I personally reached a point in my addiction where I could lie straight-faced to my wife without any sense of guilt. I remember sitting on our bed, watching her weep because of my sin, and wondering why I didn’t feel badly about it.
  • A lack of ability to sense or understand your own emotions. When you ignore, stuff, or reject your emotions for long enough, they will begin to feel foreign to you. Learning how to understand (and eventually communicate) what you are truly feeling will be something you can only relearn through practice.

Because you’ve been emotionally closed off for almost a decade, your emotions have likely atrophied. You’re beginning to learn how to understand, identify, and communicate them effectively, but it’s going to take some rehab. In the same way an atrophied muscle is awkward and even painful to use at first, your emotions will need to be brought back slowly to a point of full strength through many clumsy, awkward, and potentially uncomfortable conversations.

Due to the newness of all of this for you, even sharing something simple with your wife (for example: how you felt emasculated at work when your boss belittled you in front of your coworkers), may feel like you’re being overly emotional. Over time though, as you become increasingly aware of your emotions and more comfortable sharing them, this will feel much less awkward.

Now that we’ve laid that foundation, let’s move on to your actual question: How can you open up to your wife like she wants to see. 

You mention in your question that you are no longer hiding, and some of your secrets hurt her very badly. I assume this means you have made the very painful but necessary step of disclosing your struggles to her. If you are like many men who have found the courage to do this, you probably felt immense relief at no longer having anything to hide. You probably felt closer to your wife than ever in that moment and were excited to see how this new lifestyle of openness and honesty would revive your struggling marriage.

Your wife, however, just had her life explode into a million pain-filled shards of shrapnel.

So as much as you want to be emotionally open with her, she may not be ready. Unfortunately, there are no formulas for this, but there are some things that remain true in all situations though:

  • You can only control yourself. You cannot control another person. Which means your best bet is to focus on the “How can I open up” side of the question rather than the “like she wants to see” side. She may not even know exactly what she wants to see yet. Even if she does know, she probably doesn’t trust you enough to even believe what she does see. So just keep sharing your heart with her as you feel the Spirit leading you. Your consistent willingness to share will likely speak more to her than your openness at first.
  • Jesus is always the answer. I know this sounds like a Sunday School cliché, but it’s the truest truth there is. At this point, your wife is most likely thinking more about the multiple years you were lying to her than the few recent days, weeks, or months where you’ve been honest. So, rather than attempting to convince her of your trustworthiness through your words, pray for her to see Jesus working in you. The odds are good she isn’t going to trust you for a while, but she may be willing to trust Jesus in you. Chase after Jesus first and foremost.

I can tell from your question that you are already starting down the path to recovery. So keep hanging in there, both in life and in your marriage. Remember, love always hopes. If God can raise Jesus from death, He can surely resurrect your marriage as well.

If you have a question about pornography addiction, my personal story, or anything else for that matter, you can send it to me here (or just click the contact tab to the right). I will do my best to answer every question personally and will never post your question without your permission.

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Reader Q/A: Is Laziness Contributing to My Struggle with Sobriety?

Question: “I get the connection between sobriety and spirituality but I drift into laziness and my self-interests and attractions cloud my decision-making whenever that happens. I think laziness is a trap that scuttles my desire to live soberly. Got any insights?”

Reader Q/AWhen you use the term “laziness,” I assume you’re talking about spiritual laziness as opposed to physical laziness. In other words, you’re not talking about binge-watch Netflix instead of going to the gym. You’re talking about a lack of time doing the things that you believe are required to grow your faith.

Either way, let’s unpack both scenarios because one of them can be helpful, and the other is absolutely crucial—although not necessarily in the way you may be expecting.

Physical Laziness

It may not seem like it at first, but physical laziness and a lack of proper self-care can contribute to a pornography addiction. After all, it’s hard to find motivation to do anything in life when you lack the energy to even get off the couch. This is more than we have time to fully unpack here, but I did want to address a few things regarding exercise.

Physical exercise will allow your body to release mood-enhancing endorphins, relieve stress in a healthy way, and can even lead you to seek out healthy support communities (such as an exercise partner or a gym class).

Those are all good things of course, but many people make exercise their main focus on their path to sobriety, effectively trading their “negative” addictions for a “positive” addiction to exercise. After all, how many ultra-runners have a history of past substance abuse?

So yes, it’s important to take care of your body and move away from physical laziness, but make sure you aren’t forsaking the inward journey that will lead to true healing of your whole self. Having rock-hard abs won’t actually change your life for the better, no matter what the fitness magazines tell you.

“For while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”
1 Timothy 4:8

Spiritual Laziness

There’s a tendency many of us have to look at our spiritual lives and wonder if we’re being too lazy. If we’re not experiencing the level of sobriety we desire, then it must be because we’re not working hard enough spiritually.

I need to read my Bible more, pray more, follow God’s laws better…

Yes, it may be true that becoming less “lazy” in your approach to such practices will lead to deeper freedom, but what if such striving, as well-intentioned as it appears, is actually hindering your recovery? The answer lies in your motivation. Let me explain.

Bullock_yokesYou’re probably familiar with the verse in Matthew where Jesus refers to His yoke as “easy.” When we picture this scene, we typically think of the yoke a farmer places over the necks of a pair of oxen and see ourselves being yoked alongside Jesus as we navigate our journey of faith.

This may be a comforting picture, but there’s one problem with it: This type of yoke distributes the load between both oxen evenly, which means you’re still responsible for 50% of the work. Isn’t that how so many of us view our faith? Yes, Jesus saved me on the cross, but it’s up to me to pull my half of the weight from here out.

Water YokeBut what if the yoke Jesus is referring to in this passage isn’t an oxen yoke, but it’s actually a water carrying yoke? In other words, it’s His yoke to carry. He does the work for us, not with us. He takes the full load of our sin—our addictions, failures, shame, guilt, hurts, and hangups—completely on His own. Our only remaining job then, is to simply walk beside Him. That changes things, doesn’t it?

Look again at the image of the water yoke and notice how the weight of the buckets causes it to bend downward at the ends. When you’re standing immediately next to Jesus, the weight rests fully on His shoulders, but the further you move away from Him, the more weight will be transferred to you.

I’ve found in my own recovery, the more I tried to overcome my spiritual laziness through striving to do all the right things, the less I wanted to spend time resting in the love of Christ—the only thing that would lead me to true freedom. By striving to carry my own weight and overcoming my spiritual laziness in my own power, I was actually moving away from Jesus.

I was trying to work, and all He wanted me to do was rest—rest in the fact that He was doing the work in me.

So instead of looking at spiritual practices such as prayer and Bible reading as a way to become a better person, what if you looked at them as a way to draw you closer to Jesus? I think you will find that it becomes less about striving to do what you think you “should” be doing (IE: overcoming laziness), and more about doing what your soul truly desires to do.

And the more you feed your soul’s true desires, the less tempting your addictions will become. A rich and lasting sobriety will begin to flow out of your new heart as you experience your connection to Jesus more deeply every day.

Two Birds, One Stone

I’d encourage you to take a walk with Jesus, both physically and spiritually. Go for a hike in nature, or simply wander around your neighborhood for a while if that’s all you can manage. Talk with Him. Ask Him how He feels about you. Ask Him what He wants you to focus on. Imagine Jesus walking beside you enjoying every moment, because He is. Take these walks regularly, and you’ll find freedom from both types of laziness.

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
Matthew 11:28-29

Reader Q/A: My Husband Cheated on Me. Am I Justified to Leave Him?

Question: “I just found out my husband has been having an affair with another woman. I’ve felt something was wrong for a long time and now I know what it is. I’m shattered and want a divorce. I married a lie. My question is, am I justified to leave him, or is that disappointing to God?”

Reader Q/A

Thank you for reaching out. I’ve given this some thought and even though it’s not my place to tell you whether you can (or should) divorce your husband, I do have four questions for you to consider that may be helpful:

1. Do you have healthy people around you?

It’s vital that you surround yourself with trusted friends whom you can talk to about this. However, be careful who you are listening to. Many wives will confide in friends who are going through (or have gone through) their own marriage trauma and come out full of bitterness and anger. These types of friends can be the most damaging people for you to confide in right now, so please be careful. Find a counselor, pastor, support group, or trusted friend who can graciously pour healing waters of wisdom on the flames of your pain, not gasoline. (If you need help finding someone in your area, Pure Community is a good place to start.)

2. Is your husband repentant, humble, and actively seeking recovery?

If your husband is visibly repentant (in action, not just words), then I encourage you to give it some time to see what happens. Far too often I see wives give up on their husbands before they’ve given him a chance to truly find freedom—which is always a longer process than we’d like it to be. I know this suggestion won’t undo the pain of what he’s already done, but it may give you some hope for a better future together.

On the other hand, if he’s still justifying his sin, making excuses, or blaming others for his actions, it may be a sign that he’s not ready to change—at least not yet. This means you’ll need to decide wether you’re willing to (or called to) wait out some potentially tough years in hopes of him changing in the future. If this is the case, it’s not uncommon for wives to pursue separating for a season. Often, a separation will show him how serious you are about needing him to change, which may be the catalyst for him to start taking his recovery seriously as well.

3. Are you considering divorce as a response to your pain, or because it truly is the only option?

Try to resist the urge to make any major decisions in the midst of your grief. Rarely are those the best decisions. Many wives believe ending their marriage will also end their pain, but that is never the case. Even if you do decide to leave, you will still need to heal, forgive, and fight the temptation of anger and bitterness toward your ex-husband on a regular basis.

4. Have you asked God His thoughts on whether or not to leave?

Most importantly, have you prayed about your situation and sensed which direction you should go? I always advise people to seek the Lord first, especially with major decisions such as this one. Ask Him what road you should take, and be honest with yourself about what you hear. Once you believe you have His answer, confirm it by discussing it with the wise counsel you’ve hopefully surrounded yourself with already.

I do hope this helps. Feel free to contact me again if you have any further questions. Also, if your husband does want help, send him my way. I’d love to chat with him or at least send him a copy of 10 Lies Men Believe about Porn.

Either way, I’ll be praying for you, your husband, and your marriage.

In Christ,

If you have a question about pornography addiction, my personal story, or anything else for that matter, you can send it to me by filling out the form on the contact page. I do my best to answer every question I receive personally, and never post my answers without first removing all names and other identifying details.

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Reader Q/A: How Do I Deal with Triggers?

Question: “Sometimes I can’t hear the word ‘sex’ or ‘masturbation’ because it makes me think of past events and I become aroused. How can I stop and control myself from these reactions?”

Reader Q/AThanks for reaching out. I believe the issue you mention here is a common (and difficult) struggle for most guys who are trying to develop a healthy sexuality in today’s pornified world.

The term I would use for words (or anything) that awaken unwanted thoughts or behaviors in you is “triggers.” So your question then becomes “What should I do when I encounter triggers” and “How can I eliminate or reduce them from my life?”

What should I do when I encounter triggers?

Unless you live alone in the middle of the Arctic without wi-fi, there’s no way to avoid triggers in today’s world, which means you need to develop a plan of what to do when it happens.

The first thing I would recommend is to avoid giving them more power than they deserve.

You use the word “sometimes” in your question, and I think that is wise. Many guys would have said “always,” which may feel true, but that subtle shift in language shows they’ve already resigned themselves that their response to triggers is out of their control.

And that’s right where the enemy wants you.

By recognizing it’s only sometimes for you, you’re admitting that you do have control over your response. You may feel like you’re in a boat being pulled by the current in a direction you don’t want to go, but you also know you’ve still got oars to paddle with. Sometimes the “oar” is to get up and walk away—to flee from the trigger. Sometimes it’s to ask God to remove an impure thought from your mind and replace it with something true and holy (the girl in this photo is not a sexual object, she is a daughter of God, loved by Him to the same extent that He loves me…)

The trick here, is to not only remember that you have these oars, but to learn how to sense the pull of the current as early as possible so you can begin paddling away before it’s too late. Which brings us to the second thing I suggest:

Learn to recognize your true triggers early.

For me, my biggest triggers have always been rejection and shame, but I wasn’t aware of that until recently. I thought I was being triggered by the sight of a certain “type” of girl, or by being alone at my computer. But what I eventually realized was these were only triggers for me if something deeper had already been at work in my heart.

Once I began to recognize it was rejection and shame that were making me vulnerable to surface triggers, I could deal with them before I came face-to-face with temptation. Learning how to pinpoint these true triggers gave me a map of the river currents, allowing me to paddle around and avoid the rapids before I was forced to fight against them.

How can I reduce triggers from my life?

We’ve just looked at how to rob triggers of their power over you, but even with these tools it’s still wise to reduce the number of triggers you encounter. After all, there’s no sense in fighting any battle you have the power to avoid.

You say you’re hearing certain words that, for you, are sexually charged. That makes me wonder where you’re hearing them. If it’s in a support group with guys sharing their struggles, that’s one thing. But if you’re hearing words like “masturbation” frequently in the movies and TV shows you’re watching, you may want to rethink what you’re letting in.

If you’re only a few months in to your journey, you will likely need to give up some things that are “okay” for others who are further along, until you’re in a healthier place yourself.

When I first began my recovery, I had a phone with no internet, got rid of my TV altogether, and was extremely careful about what movies I watched. It was a sacrifice for sure, but I knew I wouldn’t be able to handle those things yet. In the years since, I’ve loosened up a bit, but I still use a filter on my computer and won’t go see a movie or TV that has nudity (which means I’m probably the only guy on Earth who hasn’t seen Game of Thrones).

I just know that for me, it’s not worth having to deal with those triggers no matter how good a show is supposed to be.


So, to recap what ended up being a rather long response:

  • Recognize that you’re in control of triggers, they don’t control you.
  • Keep digging deeper to discover what your true triggers are and invite Jesus to heal those areas of your heart.
  • Set up boundaries to limit what you’re allowing in.

I hope that helps. Thanks again for reaching out.

Grace and Peace my friend,

If you have a question about pornography addiction, my personal story, or anything else for that matter, you can send it to me by filling out the form on the Contact page (or just click my picture in the sidebar on the right). I will do my best to answer every question personally and will never post your question without your permission.

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Reader Q/A: Why is Pornography a Sin?

Question: You obviously think that pornography is a “sin,” but I guess I don’t understand why. Why does God think it’s such a big deal? It’s not like it’s hurting anyone for me to look at pictures of women.

Reader Q/AI’ve received this question (in various forms) multiple times. In order to answer it effectively, though, we need to look at this as three independent questions, which will help us better understand why pornography is a sin.

Why do I Think Pornography is a Sin?

The question should never be “What do I think?” The questions should always be “What does God think?” And God has made it clear that pornography is a sin:

You must not commit adultery (Exodus 20:14).

But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart (Matthew 5:28).

Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body (1 Corinthians 6:18).

So, to answer the question: I consider pornography to be sin because God says it is.

Why Does God Think Porn is Such a Big Deal?

Ultimately, this question stems from a misunderstanding of God’s reasoning for putting boundaries on our sexuality. God doesn’t prohibit the use of pornography in order to rob us from something fun. He is doing it to protect us from the pain, bondage, and ruin that will inevitably come from us inviting it into our lives.

God considers pornography to be a big deal because He knows our lives will be happier and more fulfilling if we avoid its snare. He prohibits it out of love, not out of a desire for control.

Why is it Bad if it’s Not Hurting Anyone?

This is the lie Satan wants us all to believe—that pornography is victimless. It’s nothing more than pictures on a screen accompanied by natural, biological urges.

In reality, though, pornography is extremely destructive. Just look at some of the ways it affected my own life (and the lives of those around me):

  • I reached a point where I preferred pornography over my beautiful, available, real-life spouse.
  • By pulling away from my wife sexually, I led her to believe there was something wrong with her, destroying her self-esteem.
  • It became impossible for me to have conversations with women without thinking of them sexually.
  • No matter how many times I tried to stop, I couldn’t. It was more addictive than any drug I had ever used.

If this still doesn’t convince you, take a look at the harsh realities of life within the porn industry. It’s a world full of sexual abuse, human trafficking, drug addiction, and unimaginable heartache. The women on your computer screen may appear to be enjoying themselves, but they are more than likely living in a nightmare.

If you honestly look at how pornography is effecting your life, the lives of those who are close to you, and the lives of the women you are watching, it becomes impossible to claim that pornography is harmless.

Putting it All Together

The answer to our question should now be more clear:

God labels pornography as sin because
He wants to protect you from the destruction  
it will cause if you allow it into your life.

The more you come to see God for who He really is—a loving father who only wants what is best for you—the easier it will be to trust that His boundaries are set where they are in order to protect you.

He wants you to live a life full of happiness, fulfillment, and joy. And the bottom line is, pornography will not help you achieve such a life. In fact, it will only rob you of it.

Thank you again for your question. I hope this answer helped bring you more clarity.

Grace and peace to you in Christ,

If you have a question about pornography addiction, my personal story, or anything else for that matter, you can send it to me by filling out the form on the Contact page (or just click my picture in the sidebar on the right). I will do my best to answer every question personally and will never post your question without your permission.

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Reader Q/A: Do Men Who Deal with Their Pain in a Healthy Way No Longer Need Porn?

Question: In April you wrote an article on the site about internet filters. You said “Porn addiction is not the result of easy access to porn. Porn addiction is the result of trying to medicate deep wounds in your heart (rejection, abandonment, shame, fear of intimacy).” I’ve heard this idea elsewhere, and it has a ring of truth. However, I can’t think of anything in the Bible to support this, and I’m not sure what other reliable research/philosophy would support it, either. It sounds like psychoanalysis, the cliché “I never felt my mother loved me” sort of thing, and I mistrust that. Do you have anything to back up your claim? In your experience, do men who deal with their pain in a healthy way no longer need porn? I’m not trying to be a smart-alec, I’m just wanting someone to substantiate this for me.

Reader Q/A

Do Men Who Deal with Their Pain in a Healthy Way No Longer Need Porn?

Absolutely. My personal experience has validated this in my own life, as well as walking with many other men who have struggled and found freedom.

As long as I was focusing on porn as the issue and trying to overcome that, it never worked. In fact, the repeated failures only dumped gasoline on the fires of my shame. The issue with me, was deep down I felt like a failure and that I wasn’t worthy to be loved because of that. I didn’t think my wife would love me, and I surely didn’t think God could love me. At least not as I was.

Once God began to show me that porn wasn’t my biggest issue, but that my feelings of shame and misunderstandings of His unconditional love for me were my issues, that’s when I began to find freedom. Once I started to understand how God loved me even in my broken and messed up state, that’s when my heart began to be satisfied for the first time. The longing to be loved and accepted that I was trying to satisfy through the lie of porn went away, because they were being satisfied by God’s love instead.

It’s the same thing we see with the woman at the well in the John 4. She clearly had a “thirst” for intimacy that she was trying to meet through multiple relationships with men. Jesus used the analogy of her thirst for water to help her see that she was drawing from the wrong well. And what did he say was the solution? Did He tell her to stop sleeping around? No, He told her that He was the water of life that would satisfy her thirst permanently. He focused on finding a lasting solution to what was driving her desire, not the desire itself. He knew that was the only thing that would lead to lasting behavior change in this woman.

John Piper does a great job explaining this concept this short video: The Passions that Prevent Adultery

I appreciate your questioning and think it’s a healthy thing to test any claim you hear against Scripture. I do encourage you, however, to also be willing to ask yourself if you’re truly seeking clarification, or if you’re only looking for an excuse to not allow God into the deepest hurts in your life? I only ask because that was exactly what I was doing for quite some time. I knew God wanted to meet me in my deepest shame so that He could heal those places in me, but I kept looking for “Biblical” excuses not to go there.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any additional questions.


Ask me a question

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Reader Q/A: How Do I Know if My Husband Truly Has Changed?

Question: Wow! Your story sounds just like mine except I’m not sure if my husband cheated or not… I guess I might never know since he’s still in denial and escape lying mode. Anyway, he left me about a month ago because he got frustrated and doesn’t believe God wants to help him from his addictions.

I have been praying for one month for God’s will in my life. I’ve tried contacting my husband but he doesn’t really care to connect with me outside of marriage counseling.

Is it ok to wait in my heart about two more months and then back away completely to see if he really does want to change? How will I know if he does change? I’m so confused with his charm and his words. All trust has been broken and I have hope in God to move me forward but I just don’t know if it’s with him or not.

Reader Q/A

I’m sorry to hear about your difficulties with your husband. I hope you know you’re not alone in that. Your situation is more common than you may realize.

It’s not my place to give you any advice regarding timeline or what your next steps should be, although I will encourage you to cover every decision with prayer. If you seek the Lord’s will, He will make your path clear.

More often than not though, when I see these situations, they always take much longer than you would hope. So I also encourage you to wait patiently and pray for him as long as you are able. I strung my wife along for more than a year with my lies and controlling. Honestly, I’m surprised she stayed as long as she did. The sad part is, by the time the Lord humbled me and I began to truly find freedom from my sin, she was already gone.

That being said, sometime backing away is what it takes for a husband to recognize the seriousness of his situation. That doesn’t automatically mean divorce, but maybe a separation would be enough to wake him up. Just be careful there. Literally every time I’ve seen a couple separate, the enemy comes in with some new guy or girl who looks like the perfect person for you in an effort to take your mind off of reconciliation. So guard yourself if you feel led in that direction, and be prepared for your husband to possibly (but hopefully not) use the separation as an excuse to move on himself.

Either way, keep watching him and asking the Lord to show you how He’s working in your husband. You may not be able to trust your husband for a long time, but perhaps you will be able to trust God working within him.

I do wish you and your husband the best. I will be praying for you both. If he ever does become open to addressing the issues in his life, feel free to have him contact me. I’d love to talk with him when he’s ready.


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Reader Q/A: How Do I Find Freedom when I don’t even Know what’s Real Anymore?

Question: I feel like I was forced into church and into God. I believe in God but I feel like none of it was authentic. So now I’m asking what do I really believe and who am I really. I have found that I like myself deep down but I don’t really like my actions (usually). How do I find freedom in Christ when I don’t know what is real anymore? How do I get rid of habits that have been there all my life?

Reader Q/A

Thanks for reaching out. Your question is a valid question for sure.

I know a big part of my own journey was coming to realize that much of what I believed was real—especially about Christianity—was not actually based on the truth at all. It was based on a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding that I’d developed over the years. And, as you seem to have noticed, those realizations can cause anyone to question if anything they’ve previously believed (or been told to believe) is true or not.

Here’s the deal though…that’s okay.

It’s okay to ask questions.

It’s okay to have doubts.

It’s okay to be angry that some of the things you’ve been taught are wrong.

If you’re not sure something is real, or true…it’s okay to question it, but I’d encourage you not to stay there forever. Begin to pray about it, and seek the honest answer.

That, I believe, is the key to discovering the real truth: seeking the honest answer from God. If you’re willing to trust whatever God reveals to you as the truth, you will discover what is real and what isn’t. After all, He is the source of all truth, so asking Him would be going straight to the source. You can’t do much better than that.

Sometimes though, it’s tempting to hear His truth and reject it because it’s not what we want to hear, but that will only keep you spinning in your doubt. That’s where faith comes in though. Faith isn’t about fixing your behavior and trying to be a “good person.” No, faith, at it’s core, is simply trusting God.

Trusting that He will reveal to you what is true and what isn’t.

Trusting that He only wants what is best for you, and that He knows what you need better than you do.

Trusting that He will never leave you, abandon you, or give up on you—even if you stray far from Him on your search for truth.

When you begin to trust God for those things, the habits you’re asking about will begin to take care of themselves. Your heart will come alive to God and your desires will change. You will no longer be asking “How do I get rid of these habits?” You will simply realize one day that He has removed your temptation to engage in those habits by fulfilling the underlying desires in your heart with His unconditional love.

You’re already doing a lot of things right: joining a recovery group, being honest, desiring freedom, questioning your desires. Keep doing those things, but make sure first and foremost you’re trusting God to direct your steps.

I believe you will be pleasantly surprised where you end up.

Thanks for reaching out,

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Reader Q/A: Resources for Women who Struggle with Porn

Question: I’m a female who was addicted to porn. Is there any kind of help for the ladies?

Reader Q/A

One of the things that has surprised me the most from starting this ministry is the number of emails I receive just like this one. Clearly, porn is not just an issue for men anymore. 

In fact, some estimates state that 20% of women today struggle with an unwanted porn habit. That’s one out of five women. If you are a woman who struggles with porn, you are not alone.

Belt of Truth Ministries may be geared towards helping men, but thankfully, there are quite a few resources available these days for women. I hope the following links will help you find the freedom and healing that is promised to you through Christ.

Note: Many of these links have been collected from the Covenant Eyes website. If you’re looking for additional resources or help with online accountability, they are a great place to start.

Start Here

Dirty Girls Ministries

Whenever a woman contacts me for help, the first place I suggest they go is Dirty Girls Ministries. Crystal and her team do a wonderful job walking this road with women.


Touching On The M Word by Craig Gross

“When we started working on the very first version of back in 2001, we developed a website aimed specifically at men who struggled with porn. Didn’t even think twice about that focus. Then we launched the site in 2002, and one of the first emails we got said this: ‘What about us girls?’”

How Does It Feel to Be a Woman Addicted to Porn? by Heather Lundy

“While each woman’s experience is unique, there are general themes for the woman addicted to porn and/or sex: shame and guilt, conflicting messages from church and culture, feelings of worthlessness, and a profound sense of being misunderstood.”

6 Reasons Men and Women Are Drawn to Porn by Luke Gilkerson

“What fed my love of porn more than anything was the lie that sex was life. I was single at the time, and I had bought into the lie that sex was a basic, fundamental ‘need’ of which I was deprived. To hear that God wanted me to give up porn sounded like God wanted me to give up life itself.”

Dirty Girls, The New Porn Addicts by Anne Marie Miller

“I frequented erotic chat rooms, watched movies and browsed through hundreds and hundreds of pictures. Soon my porn binges started affecting my performance at work and my relationships.”

Ashamed, Alone, and Addicted: Do Other Women Struggle with Porn? by Lauren Jacobs

“Where my story actually began is still a mystery to me. I don’t have a clear memory of the first time I was exposed to pornography or masturbation or even the idea of sex, but it was probably around the age of 8 or 9.”

Porn and Adultery: A Women’s Perspective by Sarah Markley

“Early in January of 2004 I confessed to an affair, both emotional and physical, that I’d been engaging in for a few years. It was the end of an old way of life for me (and for my husband) and the beginning of something amazing and grace-filled.”


Women Hooked on Porn: A Free Webinar for Christian Women

“Recently I conducted a webinar with three women who are very open with others about the pornography struggles of their past. The complete recording of the webinar is now available for you to watch.”

Girls Hooked on Porn: Battle Notes from a Weathered Fighter

“Four months ago, when my pastor approached me to film my testimony, my thoughts went something like this: “Share my testimony? You mean, I would be telling the entire church that I have dealt with an addiction to pornography?”

How Many Women are Hooked on Porn?

“Can a woman become addicted to porn? Marnie Ferree, founder of Bethesda Workshops and a specialist in the area of women with sexual addiction, talks about this growing and pressing issue.”

Women struggle with porn too…

“People are often fascinated that I, as a woman, would share so openly about having been addicted to pornography.”


Dirty Girls Come Clean Podcast, featuring Crystal Renaud and Jenny Miller

“The Dirty Girls Come Clean Podcast is a show created to break the silence on women’s struggles with pornography & sexual addiction.”

Porn Addiction Among Women, featuring Jessica Harris and Crystal Renaud

“You are not alone. You are one of the millions of women who are struggling. From the day you were born until the day you die, your sins are forgiven because of the grace of God…”

A Marriage Redeemed from Pornography and Adultery, featuring Chad and Sarah Markley

“I let it be a part of our bedroom life, and then it became a part of my life when I wasn’t in the bedroom…”

His Secret, Her Secret, featuring CJ and Shelley Hitz

“Eventually I started to get into some hardcore pornography, and that’s when I really started to get scared…”


Dirty Girls Come Clean, by Crystal Renaud

No Stones: Women Redeemed from Sexual Addiction, by Marnie C. Ferree

The Bondage Breaker, by Neil T. Anderson

Real Sex: The Naked Truth about Chastity, by Lauren F. Winner

Sexual Sanity for Women, by Jessica Harris

Finding Help

x3 Pure 30-Day Workshop for Women

Bethesda Workshops

The National Association for Christian Recovery

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