A Moment of Insight

Putting together some pieces
The news was spreading, the grace was multiplying, and my faith was increasing, yet there was still a rather glaring question as I continued to think through my whole relationship: how did it ever go as far as it did?

Providentially, on one particular Sunday, as I wrestled with the new concept of morning sickness, I turned on Moody Radio in time to hear Dr. Lutzer talking about sexual sin. His words left me feeling like I’d had the wind knocked out of me. He defined illicit “soul-ties” and their consequences. He then moved to discuss the outcome of these “soul-ties:” primarily a guilt, shame, and anger cycle and its devastating effect.

“Finally, there is guilt – the restless conscience that leads to anger and depression. Now many involved in an alien bond might not feel guilty at first. Because they have been starving for a meaningful relationship, their initial experience of intimacy can be so euphoric that they feel no remorse, no guilt, no regrets. But just like poison might initially quench one’s thirst, eventually the guilt and shame will be on it’s way…

“Shame destroys the soul by cutting it off from the graces that are needed for healing and restoration.”

Finally, he spoke about how to stop the cycle …

“How is one restored? First, by cleansing the conscience through the forgiveness of Christ.

“Second, we have to recognize the soul-tie for what is is: a demonic ploy to keep us bound, to keep us paying our dues to past relationships and past sins. We should know that we do not have to do that; we do not have to be held hostage to the past.

“Third, we have to break off those relationships that keep us bound; those relationships that keep us going back to the people and things that have us bound. For some, the thought for being free from a controlling personality, who may also be taking care of us, is more than we can handle.

“Fourth, you cannot do this alone. Why? Because the only way to break polluted soul-ties is to develop healthy ties through friendship with people and with God. We are to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, with all our soul…this means that we will have to break the power of seductive spirits; we will have to fight for our right to freedom from the influence of those who would destroy and defile our souls.”

[These are longer passages, but I found them so insightful that I decided to put them up in their entirety. They are part of the third chapter (“Breaking Soul-Ties”) in a seven-part series, “Restoring the Soul,” by Dr. Erwin Lutzer, teaching pastor at The Moody Church]

Accountability! It was like a light bulb! Despite my head-knowledge of being in a bad relationship, and my heart-feeling that it was wrong, I was too ashamed to say that I had fooled around, or that I wasn’t a virgin anymore and so I kept silent and continued in a half-life.

Final thought for today
I am now convinced beyond a doubt that we rob the church, our friends, and our family of an integral function when they are not allowed to uphold us in prayer and hold us to the higher calling that we profess.

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” –James 5:16

  • Amber Hudson

    Ellie,
    Thanks for posting this! More and more, I’ve come to believe that one of the Enemy’s most effective tactics is to keep Christians believing that it is in our”best interest” to come across as though we “have it all together”. What an insidious lie! We put so much energy into trying to look like we’re “doing everything right” that we fail to focus our energy on dealing with the sin that is, of course, in every single one of us. Why are we trying so hard to pretend we’re perfect, when everybody else already knows that we’re not?! And, as you pointed out, we rob ourselves of the opportunity to bear one another’s burdens–to help, reprove, exhort, encourage, and genuinely love one another as God wants us to. Many times, over the years, I’ve decided to take a risk–to go out on a limb–and be vulnerable enough to be gut-level honest about a sin or an area I’m really struggling with. Every time I have, three things have happened: 1. That sin loses some of its power in my life. I’ve let the stupid thing out of the closet where it’s been free to grow rampantly, and I’ve shone light on it–which doesn’t make it go away immediately, but makes it much less all-consuming than I’d previously thought, and I find I’m able to actually to bring it to the cross and deal with it more effectively. 2. I find help to do so through the encouragement of those I’ve shared with. Others who have struggled similarly may offer valuable insight, I have the support of prayer, of words of truth and love and exhortation. Now I’m not in the battle alone! and 3. Almost every single time, I’ve had someone else then go on–either publicly or privately–to share how they’ve struggled with the same thing, or with something similar. My openness has helped them to deal with their sin as well. Now both of us are on the path to freedom! I think that’s exactly what’s at the heart of James 5:16 that you shared. Thanks again for sharing your heart!
    Amber

  • http://www.bobewoldt.com Ellie

    Amber, thanks for sharing your experience! It’s SO true – sin is unbelievably deceitful – even in telling us that we’re “the only ones” – but great is HIS faithfulness and mercy to us!!