Giving up bad habits was not an easy task, he agreed quite alright. He had come to realize that it was something he had to forgive himself for, and keep trusting GOD to do the work in him. It was not easy taking the first step, but he did. Then the healing began. He felt his body gradually clearing off from the crave for booze and other things. He found pleasure in reading, visiting friends, and talking to God when he felt down. The hope to live sprouted afresh in him; he was no longer the ravaged soul of yesterday, driven by guilt and shame. He could finally stand head tall…………….and he could feel God smiling down on him, and the Spirit of God encouraging him as he stepped on a new path in his life.
The end of the semester had finally come, she mused as she sat on the edge of the bed. Recounting her struggle to be free over the past few weeks, she noted that there were times she had to admit she went back to it herself. Ever since she testified in church of being free, she had felt in her spirit; a clear unyielding voice telling her, “you are free”.Accepting was the next step. She had always blamed herself for falling back over and over again, but now as she stared into the mirror, she just knew it deep down in her spirit: she was free, no longer feeling a hypocrite, no longer feeling unworthy, bold enough to reach out to those who were still trapped in the same act……………and she is doing just that, by writing this story you are reading now. Yes, I have been writing about myself all along. I was the girl who struggled for three long years with self-pleasuring after nearly being turned to a sex object at the age of 17. I know it sounds all weird and………..weird but one thing I have learnt: when you are over a bad experience, you talk about it with ease. I am not super woman, I do not have it all, but I want to use my story to encourage you out there: If I could come out of an addiction, YOU can also. In this concluding part I will be sharing the last of tips that helped me break free from such an addiction: First of all, very important- FORGIVE YOURSELF. Do not look down on yourself, do not beat yourself up over it. A bit of remorse is fine, but don’t just stay down there. Instead of looking at how badly you have fallen, start looking for how possible it is to get up again. God loves you, He has forgiven you already. He forgave you before you even thought of committing, because He knew you before you were born (Jer 1:5). The devil’s aim is to blindfold you with self pity and self-guilt so you do not see the precious love of God towards you. Stop beating yourself; move towards His love and you will see a change. Secondly, STOP TRYING ON YOUR OWN. Stop saying, I will today, I will tomorrow…..” because the truth is, YOU NEVER WILL. Times were meant to change, and with it change humans. On our own, we are inconstant factors in an inconstant world, and that is why we need a constant factor to lay our lives around, so as not to be swept to and fro by the changing world. And who better to be a constant pillar, than GOD? Instead, you can say stuff like, “I know by His grace, I will……” . It sounds a bit religious at first, but in the real sense, it is not. Nothing drives the devil crazy like you confessing the WORD, and making positive confessions in line with the WORD that will change your life by the day. when you open your mouth to decree and make confessions, the devil has no other option but to get confused and run, and with him run all the evil suggestions and evil thoughts that he has been trying to feed you with. So, get to the confession and get the deceiver confused! Thirdly, GET THE WORD. It is easier said than done, but a first step can change a lot of things. You cannot give what you do not have and you cannot confess or decree what you do not know. Follow the advice of Apostle Paul in Rom 12:2 and renew your mind daily by reading the scriptures. Get to know what God is saying about you! Refuse to be ignorant! Ignorance is the greatest weapon of the deceiver since the days of John the Baptist. Don’t just wait for “Sunday manna”; discover things on your own! Search the word! Take out some time, pause that film, leave that seasonal or game, you can always play them later; they won’t run away. Go through the Bible, and you will be surprised at what strength you will derive. Finally, as Paul said in Eph 6:10 (paraphrased) BE STRONG IN THE LORD. The road is not easy, the oppositions many, the urge to give up will be so great at times, it will seem like everything is in vain. Yes, change is not easy. The human mind fears change and would rather be in the comfort zone. Get yourself out of that mind box; keep trusting God. Let every new day begin with you telling God how much you trust Him to guide your steps. When you fall, do not whine and cry and do self-pity party; brush off the dust and rely on God’s strength to stand up again and continue your life’s journey. TILL I BRING ANOTHER LIFE-STORY YOUR WAY, REMAIN BLESSED. -Efunnuga Henrietta Adedayo.