The congregation at ClearView Christian Reformed Church in Oakville (Ontario) took on the challenge of facing pornography use on the last Sunday in November.
Led by Rev. Geoff Vandermolen, the conversation both sought to develop awareness of the problem of pornography and to encourage those who are trapped by this vice, either personally or by way of friends or family members who use pornography.
In an interview format, therapist Janet Goodhoofd explained how pornography use can trap both young and the old, male and female, and how it slowly rewires the neurotransmitters, affecting the proper function of the brain. She noted that nine out of 10 pornography users access free material. The highest rate of usage is found among those aged 12 to 17 years, with exposure starting as early as 11 years old.
Yet “there is always hope for those who are living through this problem, for no matter how bad the situation appears, there is always victory in Christ,” she said.
Pastor Peter Roebbelen spoke on how pornography specifically affects our relationship with Christ. He explained that pornography use leads to a lot of brokenness, and it’s important that we take a close look at the problem. “Discipleship is a journey to become more and more like Jesus,” he said. “Pornography gets in the way of us being disciples and of our mission.”
Vandermolen wrapped up the conversation with concrete resources for addressing the problem. Those who are or who have been secretly using pornography, or those who love someone who is compulsively engaged in pornography, he said, should “come before your heavenly father and be naked and without shame before him, and receive from him his love and care and compassion, and refuse to be defined by brokenness, for we are defined by the redeeming work of Jesus Christ.”