“‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. ‘I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything… the body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 1 Cor. 6:12-14 (NIV)
Yesterday I wrote about how we can seek to fulfill our need for love and acceptance through the God-given gift of family, rather than God Himself. This subtle form of idolatry is easy to fall into because it seems right and legitimate. Today I want to address some obvious illegitimate ways that may be used to satisfy our need for love and acceptance.
Covenant Eyes estimates that 50% of Christian men and 20% of Christian women say they are addicted to porn.
Let’s review that again…50% of men and 20% of women who claim to be followers of Jesus are not just using porn…by their own admission, they are addicted to porn.
The potential for addiction to porn shouldn’t surprise us as we recognize the depth of our critical need for love and acceptance. Porn provides an illegitimate form of intimacy that feels like love and acceptance.
The same is true for sexual relationships outside of marriage.
G.K. Chesterton once famously said “…every man who knocks on the door of a brothel is looking for God.”
Today that could be rephrased to “every person who visits a pornographic site is looking for God.”
Our God-placed need for love and acceptance must be satisfied. If we don’t find that satisfaction in Him, we will find it elsewhere. The answer to our love-seeking addictions is not to exert more effort resisting them.
The answer to our need for love is to satisfy that need through the true source of love Himself.
We do that by intentionally drawing near to God and seeking greater intimacy with Him. It is a process that takes time and effort on our part, but as we draw nearer to Him, experiencing His love in greater measure, the addictions gradually lessen.
Take some time to evaluate how you are meeting your God-placed need for love and affection. Maybe there is some work to be done…
Prayer: Lord help me see any illegitimate ways I satisfy my need for love and affection, and help me turn instead to You.