“We make the decision not to resort to lust, surrendering it up to God, and then He gives us the power to be free of it.”
Every day I must make a definite decision not to resort to lust. When I surrender my lust to God, He gives me the power to be free. This same principle also applies to each of my character defects. Every day, in any number of situations, I must make definite decisions not to be self-righteous, angry, resentful, or greedy. When I surrender these shortcomings to God, He gives me the power to be free of them as well.
I cannot fix my character defects, and if I try to deny them or stuff them they will only get worse. It is also true that I cannot cling to a character defect while asking God to give me the power to be free of it. That’s exactly the kind of dumb thinking I used in my active addiction: Gripping pornography with both hands as tightly as I could while also asking God to ‘take it away’. He ain’t gonna rip it out of my hands!
I know I am not completely ready to give up some of my shortcomings; that’s OK. I believe that a desire for healing is enough, if it is genuine, to start a process that will one day result in healing. For example, God will not take away my desire to be lusted after today because I am not ready to give it up today. But part of me does want to be free, and that part of me asks God every day to prepare my heart for complete surrender. If my petitions are honest, I believe that someday God will turn my heart to the point where I will finally be ready to let go of the desire to be lusted after. When I get to that point and lay my shortcoming at His feet, then he will give me the power to be free.