I have been blogging on the “10 Essential Conditions for coming to know God’s truth and finding life” by Fr. Tom Hopko. I read these in a sermon a few weeks back and when I got to #5 there was not a sound in the church. We have about 125 to 150 people in church and a third of them are children. But, when I got to this essential condition it was completely silent. Here it is:
The person should abstain from all sexual activity unless they are married and expressing love (and not just having sex). There should be no TV or Internet porn. If sex is an addictive problem, they must take steps to get formal help.
Not everyone is bit by this bug, but almost. Sexual sin is rampant and it is debilitating. The Church needs to address this temptation more often than we do. I like #5 because it is refreshingly straightforward. I think most people consider porn an option. But it might be helpful to think of it like heroin: dangerous and not an option.
In times of sexual temptation it is helpful to distract and not engage the thoughts further. I did find this prayer rule for purity that might prove helpful.
The teaching of the fathers is also helpful: when we fall we get up and every time we fall we get back up.