Dennis first started our purity group while he was still a youth pastor at a local church. After he stepped down, the purity group continued. These are the core values that he’s learned when he was at the purity group at BSSM (Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry).
About the group:
The goal of the purity group is to empower each other, to encourage each other to walk in purity, and to be able to minister to people of the opposite sex without any issues. One of the goals we have in our guys group to be able to walk into a room full of naked women, to not be phased, and then minister from the heart of God to them.
Some of our core values:
- Practice radical transparency
If you want your purity walk to succeed, you need to bring things into the light. Your purity is like a plant; light will help it mature, and constant darkness will kill it. Opening up allows light to come in as we edify/empower/encourage each other.
This is also about creating trust between members in the group, and practicing transparency so that it will be much easier to pursue in marriage.
- The value of the trophy (purity) I give to my wife is in the blood, sweat, and tears it takes to get from the battlefield to the bedroom.
The value of a trophy is not in the cost in money, but the effort and time invested to obtain it (think about any sport). Pursuing purity is a demonstration of love for my future spouse… this is all for her; I want to give something of very high value.
- I radically pursue living in purity with eyes, thoughts , and actions.
Porn, lust, masturbation. The whole deal.
“If the eye is good, the body will be full of light” – Matt 6:22
“…put off... your former conduct… and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and… put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness” – Eph 4:22-24
“Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute… think about such things” – Phil 4:8
- I’m training myself to be sexually attracted to 1 person (my future wife).
If I train myself to be sexually attracted to only one person, that means that she will become the standard of beauty in my life. If she becomes the standard of beauty in my life, she will never feel the need to perform or feel the need to be someone else.
How to get free:
Before I start, you need to realize that it doesn’t matter how messed up your history has been. You can change right now. You’re forgiven (1 John 2:2, Col 2:13). You have grace to change. It doesn’t matter how bad your track record has been or even if you’re caught in this right now. You can get free, you are not condemned. Just like Jesus said to the woman caught in adultery, “…I do not condemn you, go and sin no more” (John 8:11).
Here we go!
1.) You are dead to sin.
Before you were born again, you were a sinner. It was your nature to sin. You sinned willfully and had pleasure in it.
When you got born-again. You died! Dead to sin! Old nature is gone! (2 Cor 5:17)
“How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?” – Romans 6:2
“For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death… our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin.” Romans 6:5-7
Dead people do not respond. If you are dead to sin, it is in your nature to NOT sin. You are dead. So that means that the thought to sin (temptation), is NOT yours. Why? You’re dead.
It’s actually an evil spirit tempting you, throwing thoughts in your mind to tempt you. The thoughts to sin (temptation), AREN’T your thoughts, they are the enemy’s, an EXTERNAL source.
If you can understand that, immediately you will realize that you are empowered to NOT submit to that temptation. Why? It’s the enemy tempting you. They are liars. You are now empowered to say, “No,” to submit to God and resist the devil.
As long as you think temptations are your own thoughts, you will always be fighting against yourself, and you will always lose.
If you can get through this video, it will help you significantly in this aspect.
If you can understand that you are DEAD to sin and that you are empowered to reject temptation, you will not have to deal with an “addiction,” because the premise of an addiction is “I can’t help it, I feel powerless to change” and I am saying, Christ has set you free, you are empowered.
2.) Internal control vs. External control
After reading Danny Silk’s Loving our Kids on Purpose, I became a huge promoter of internal control. I do not want [the majority of] my life to be driven by external circumstances or external influence.
- If the only reason I don’t cheat on a test is because I might get caught, there is an internal issue that needs to be resolved.
- If the only reason why I don’t murder people is because it’s against the law, there is a heart issue.
- If the only reason why I try to stay pure is because I must report to my “accountability” partner/group, then there is a heart issue.
I must have an internal motivating factor that can keep me integrous at all times, regardless of external pressure. If the only thing keeping me from lusting, watching porn, or masturbating is the fact that I have to confess it and maybe disappoint a friend, then I am setting myself up to fail when I am alone because the core issue has not been dealt with.
You can read a short version of my journey here, but this is an excerpt:
I don’t remember exactly how it came about, but I got a Holy Spirit download. God started showing me about the incredible worth of a woman. These pictures of women, I realized, were also daughters of the King, made in His image, in His likeness. I started meditating on the worth and the beauty that they carried, and it hit me like a brick in the face. I had been treating daughters of the King as if they were objects, for my personal lusts and satisfaction.
I got free from this by realizing that those women were not objects. They are people! God began to show me their potential, who God had called them to be, and I began to see them through His eyes.
As a result, I could no longer take pleasure in what I now saw as perversion. How could I do that to a King’s daughter? I am royalty, how could I behave like that?
I started to get free from this when I was reminded that “self-pleasure” was another term for “masturbation”. I realized that this was, in fact, an act of selfishness; it was all about me, me, me, how I felt, what I wanted…
One of the main reasons why many relationships fail is because most people get into relationships for what they can receive rather than what they can give. They are in the relationship more for themselves than for the other person. The outworking of love is humility (love does not seek its own; 1 Cor 13), and the nature of love is to give (John 3:16).
With that in mind, I purposed to set myself up for an awesome marriage. I no longer wanted to experience self-pleasure, I purposed to save that experience only for my wife. I realized that this experience was not for myself alone, but it is supposed to be experienced with another to whom I have given my life.
I got the most freedom from when I finally realized what it meant to have someone become the “standard of beauty” in my life…
…A few months ago, I was on my computer and then I saw a picture of a really good-looking celebrity. I searched this lady’s name on google and at the top of the “results page” there were few pictures of her. I was gawking at her for a few seconds and then something clicked. *Lightbulb*
It hit me so hard… I realized that I was actively making this woman the standard of beauty in my life. Whether it was her facial features or her body or anything else, I was unknowingly making her the standard of beauty in my life.
When that revelation hit, I immediately stopped. I couldn’t and didn’t want to do that to my wife. I finally understood what it meant to have my wife as the standard of beauty. It’s not that these other women aren’t attractive, I’m just choosing to not have them be the standard of beauty.
If another woman holds the standard of beauty in my life, my wife will have to perform to win my eyes, or she will feel jealous, or not good enough, or she will never feel like the apple of my eye.
So, if I purpose to have her become the standard of beauty in my life, then she will always know that my eyes are on her and not another.
If these tools do not help you, bring it to God. Figure out what those heart issues are so you can ask God to show you the way out. What God showed me is working for me, so if what I share doesn’t help, figure out what works for you. Get vision!
How to stay free:
4.) Maintaining Vision
In pursuing freedom, there must be a distinct goal. The goal cannot be, “to not watch porn” or “to not masturbate.” If the focus is on “not sinning,” you will reproduce what your focus is; you will keep sinning.
You do not get free from habitual sin by focusing on the fact that you’ve messed up “x-amount” of times. You get free by realizing the righteousness that has been given to you, and walking in that righteousness (Eph 4:22-24).
It is not, “Don’t submit to the devil, and he will flee from you,” it is, “Submit to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7).
It is not, “Don’t walk in the flesh, and you will walk in the Spirit,” it is, “Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Gal 5:16).
The focus is on the “doing”, rather than “not doing”.
I am living in more freedom because I have a vision and a desire to give my wife a trophy, and because I want her to know that she is the standard of beauty in my life. Those are the main driving forces and motivations for me to live in freedom rather than not living in bondage.
I haven’t had an absolutely perfect track record since these revelations, but it’s pretty darn close and a lot better than what I was stuck in before.
Now, if I get a thought to lust after a girl that walks by, I think, “Too bad, she’s not the standard of beauty in my life,” and my focus is now about my wife becoming the standard of beauty in my life instead of ogling a girl because it makes me feel good.
If the thought to masturbate comes into my mind, I think, “Nope, that pleasure is for my wife, I am building the value of this trophy,” so my focus is now about my wife and the trophy I want to give her, instead of how I want to feel good.
If the thought to watch porn comes into my mind, I think, ”Nope, I’m better than that, they’re daughters made in the image of the King,” so myfocus is now off of me, and my desire to please myself, and now on honoring daughters made in the King’s image.
As I said in the beginning, part of overcoming temptation learning to take every thought captive and casting down every argument that is contrary to the knowledge of God (2 Cor 10:4-5). You can choose which thoughts you will partner with. You can choose to partner with temptation (thoughts) or God’s righteousness. You choose whether you lust or walk in purity.
It is a choice. You are empowered. Temptation is from an outside source. It is not you. You are empowered. It is easier to choose what you are aware of. Allow your vision to be ingrained into you so any option that is contrary to the vision becomes easier to ignore.
It is a lot easier to get-in-shape/work-out when you have a strong vision to be cut, ripped, toned, without flab, compared to just saying, “I don’t want to be over-weight.”
“Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained…” – Prov 29:18
If you don’t have a clear vision, you will consider different paths, you will take bunny trails and allow yourself to be side-tracked; you will do things that will not get you closer to your vision.
Since these revelations, the ONLY times that I’ve goofed up are when I lost sight of my vision for a moment. About a month ago, I came across a very attractive picture of a girl on facebook (total stranger). I got carried away for about a minute lusting after her until realized what I was doing and snapped out it.
I knew where I slipped… I lost sight of my vision. So when I caught sight of my vision again, lust seemed like such a stupid option. As a result, I gained more resolve to always stay on track with my vision.
Surrounding yourself with like-minded people is one of the easiest ways to continually walk in freedom/purity. Your community should not be the sole reason why you pursue freedom, but they should help in maintaining your vision.
In our purity group, we do not solve each other’s problems. If people mess up, we edify them and then ask powerful questions that lead to self-discovery and self-empowerment. If someone messes up big-time, we do James 5.
“Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed.” James 5:16
We love them, remind them who they are [in Christ], and build them up. If they picked up any condemnation we kick it out and affirm them…
Any group that comes together to discuss these things requires a very high level of trust and transparency. “What happens in guys’ group stays in guys’ group.” It is like a second family, a brotherhood… it is priceless.
Start one if there isn’t one like it where you’re at!
Go and sin no more! (If Jesus said this, that means you can actually do it. He won’t command you to do something He didn’t empower you to do)
Enjoy your freedom. Freely you have received, freely give. Share away!
Be sure to message me and/or Dennis if you have more questions about purity or about starting a purity group.