JackI am a 47 year old male, married for ten years and have a son 8 years old. My two brothers and myself were raised by good parents who were semi-religious as we attended Sunday school as children but we were never religiously serious.
As I grew older I stopped attending church altogether and ended up having a stint with drugs, alcohol, fornication and all the usual sins of the flesh and a lot of us experience.
I moved to Florida in 1981, met my wife in 1989, married in 1991 and my son was born in 1993. Once my son was 2 we started attending church again so that he could become involved in Sunday school. I was a 'cultural' Christian back then; believed in God, attended church, gave a small offering, prayed in church, because I was 'supposed to'. I had a lot of reservations about religion then and was basically 'going through the motions'.
I sat down in front a computer for the first time in my life in February of 1998. It didn't take me long to become very addicted to it's technology. It started affecting my relationship with my son and wife. I can remember being online and playing cards and my son would come up and ask me if I could play cards with him. I'd tell him that I would later. He would go to bed and I would go to bed and realize that I never found time to play with him. I felt terrible and would tell myself that the next day I would pick him up from school, come home, and play with him and not even turn the computer on. Once I got home and saw it I couldn't resist the temptation and would end up getting on my computer and staying on until bed time. I never totally neglected my duties as a father and husband but it was getting to the point that I was spending all my spare time and even eating my meals at that machine.
Around the summer of 2000 I ventured into a world, online, that would change my life forever! I got involved and caught up in the world of porn, child-porn and cyber-sex. I had 'my world' (offline) with all the dos and don'ts and rights and wrongs, then I had my cyber (fantasy) world online. It was like I was an actor taking a script and going on stage every time I went into that sinful world. I could be anyone I wanted to be and could act out any fantasy I wanted to in that cyber world. I knew what I was doing was wrong and tried to stop on several occasions but the incentive wasn't strong enough. Satan was justifying my actions by convincing me that what I was doing was okay because it wasn't real! It wasn't adultery and sinful because it wasn't real. God was trying to reach and stop me but Satan wasn't letting me hear Him.
My relationship with my wife and son was deteriorating a little more each day. Finally when I ventured into the 'cyber' world of child-pornography it gave God an avenue to stop me. He intervened at that point and sent federal agents to my doorstep on April 19th, 2001. That is the day I came face to face with Jesus! Needless to say when I answered that door I was scared but relieved at the same time because I knew it was finally over! I lost my job in the process and remain unemployed while this legal process plays out. My mother moved in with us to help us financially and my in-laws, including my mother-in-law, father-in-law, 2 brothers-in-law and sister-in-law, all gave me complete verbal and financial support at a time when I needed it most.
Despite the shame, guilt and embarrassment I inflicted upon my wife, she decided to stay and support me only after being able to vent her anger and frustration towards me.
At that point I surrendered my life to Jesus and became a 'true spiritual Christian' and committed to walk with him forever. I started reading the bible, praying outside of church including the Prayer of Jabez, reading books with Christian themes such as the 'Left Behind' series, listening to different evangelists on television, became a member of the 700 club, attending church on Wednesdays, as well as Sundays, joined two small men's groups from church and became fascinated with the 'End Times' prophecies.
I mention the Prayer of Jabez because I was astounded to realize that despite the terrible sins I had committed, God still forgave me and loved me enough to provide me with numerous blessings at this point and time, simply because I had asked for them through praying that Prayer.
I can honestly say my life changed forever from that point and it has all been for the good. My relationship with my wife and son is better now than it has been at ANY point in our lives and the joy and grace I have in my life now is better than anything I have ever experienced.