“Porn is a victimless crime”

Is porn a victimless crime? Culture has been exploring what is acceptable sexually since… well, forever. The truth is, everyone draws the line sexually somewhere. So, where do you draw the line? Is pornography acceptable?


Is porn a victimless crime? Culture has been exploring what is acceptable sexually since… well, forever. The truth is, everyone draws the line sexually somewhere. So, where do you draw the line? Is pornography acceptable?

In this episode of Spirit In Motion, Church on the Move Lead Pastor Whit George and Kids Pastor Adam Bush explore the statement, “Porn is a victimless crime.” We like to call a statement like that a true lie. There’s a hint of truth to it, but ultimately the idea has resulted in a misunderstood, broken concept… a true lie.

“Sex is for pleasure.”

Whit is extremely vulnerable in this week’s episode. He shares details about his past struggle with pornography to help the listener visualize the long-term effects of using pornography. He says, “if you only think about sex from the standpoint of pleasure, then it becomes a self-centered activity. It’s all about you. That’s really what happens with porn and masturbation. It’s a way to physically physiologically train yourself that your needs, your pleasure comes first.” It’s no wonder that porn and pride go together. It’s no wonder that porn and greed, porn and lust, all of these things happen together because it’s all about feeding a selfish desire.

Pornography is the enemy of intimacy.

The end game of sex is intimacy. The problem with pornography is that it destroys your capacity for intimacy. Think about it, is there any less intimate sex than porn and masturbation? There’s literally no one else there. So there’s no real investment that has to be made. You don’t need to know the name of any of the people involved, and they don’t even need to know that you exist.

So, who is the victim of porn?

The short answer is: You. There are a lot of pornography users, Christian or not, who would say pornography hasn’t benefited their lives. The individual pornography user suffers from pride, selfishness, and addiction. But beyond that, anyone who loves the user also suffers because porn destroys the user’s capacity for intimacy and real connection.

“But is pornography use really hurting me?” Porn is forming in you a more selfish desire. Pornography doesn’t just affect one private, secret part of your life. It is shaping every part of our life around your own selfish desires. In this episode, Whit says, “to think that I can contain pornography use in a little compartment of my life and it not bleed out into the other parts of who I am, is a mistake. I think you’re fooling yourself if you think that’s possible.”

Struggling with Pornography?

If you’re struggling with pornography, take a step. Text “OVER IT” to 23101 for a pastor from Whit and Adam’s church to connect with you. They’ll help you get connected to a community of people facing this challenge together.

In this episode, Whit and Adam talk about Whit sharing his story at their church, Church on the Move. You can hear his story here, Intimacy over Pornography from Church on the Move.

more episodes on porn

• Life In Motion: Porn is the Problem pt. 1
• Life In Motion: Porn is the Problem pt. 2
• Blog: Intimacy Over Porn by Blaine Bartel

Questions on Parenting and Pornography

Heather and Jamie love to bring people together. So naturally, their podcast is a place where they want to do the same. Every season, we set aside episodes to hear from YOU and answer your questions—this is one of those episodes. 

Heather and Jamie love to bring people together. So naturally, their podcast is a place where they want to do the same. Every season, we set aside episodes to hear from YOU and answer your questions—this is one of those episodes. 

In this episode, Heather and Jamie listen to voicemails from you and respond to your thoughts. They answer questions about the best time for kids to start dating and what to do when your spouse has a pornography addiction. 

Question One: When is the best time for your kids to start dating? 

What a great question! On the one hand, dating can help your children better understand how to have relationships with people, gain experience in navigating relationships with other people’s families, and better understand the opposite sex. But on the other hand, a breakup can be devastating, break up friend groups, and hurt your kids. So what should you do? Heather and Jamie explore the topic of when kids should start dating in-depth.

Question Two: What should you do if your significant other struggles with porn? 

When we hear about pornography addiction, we often hear from the person struggling, but what about their spouse? How did they handle it? How did they support their spouse? What would they have done differently? In this episode, Heather shares her experience navigating the tensions and heartbreak of porn in marriage. 

Questions? Leave us a voicemail: 1-539-215-9432.

Have a question you want discussed on Life In Motion? Want to share your thoughts on a specific topic? We’d love to hear from you! Every season, we set aside episodes to hear from YOU and answer your questions. Use the number above to leave Heather and Jamie a voicemail—your question might be on our next Q&A episode.

Subscribe to Life In Motion on YouTubeSpotify, or Apple Podcasts

Listen to more from Life In Motion: Porn is the Problem.

True lies: “The church is not a building.”

With the rise of online gatherings, there’s no doubt you’ve heard someone say, “The church is not a building.” But if the church isn’t a building, then what is it? We live in a time with access to more churches, sermons, resources than ever before, so the question is, “Why church?” Why would someone physically go to a church building in 2021?

With the rise of online gatherings, there’s no doubt you’ve heard someone say, “The church is not a building.” But if the church isn’t a building, then what is it? We live in a time with access to more churches, sermons, resources than ever before, so the question is, “Why church?” Why would someone physically go to a church building in 2021? 

In this episode of Spirit In Motion, Church on the Move Lead Pastor Whit George and Kids Pastor Adam Bush, explore the statement “the church is not a building.” We like to call a statement like that a true lie. There’s a hint of truth to it, but ultimately the idea has resulted in a misunderstood, broken concept… a true lie. 

“YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE CHURCH SHOULD BE COVENANTAL.” 

What’s the depth of your relationship with your home church? Often, we treat our churches like we treat Apple. We’re big fans of Apple because their products work, but if we no longer like their product, we’d move on to the next best thing. There’s a commitment to the brand, but there isn’t a covenant. Our relationship with our church really comes down to how well the church can serve us or align with what we believe; it doesn’t take much to move from a fan to critic of the church. 

Like marriage, the church is meant to be deeper than a consumer-style relationship that’s based on wants, needs, and expectations being met. Your relationship with the church should be covenantal—based on deep, lasting commitment. A covenantal relationship says, “for better or for worse, I’m here with you.”

Accessibility to church content.

The mass amounts of content options and church options have caused us to view the church as a buffet line—our level of commitment is up to us. We think, whoever is meeting my needs at the time, whichever church organization, spiritual advisor, YouTube prophet, whatever is meeting my needs, I listen to them and get what I feel like I need. The problem is you never really end up being shepherded, pastored, or led. 

It’s more dangerous than you think.

We tend to listen to what we want to hear, but a healthy relationship means hearing things that you don’t want to hear from time to time. 

In Scripture, we see Paul talking about having “itching ears”. He says a time will come when people will run to teachers who soothe our ears. Simply put, we’ll only listen to people who say the things that we want to hear. That can be really dangerous because part of being in a healthy relationship is hearing things that you don’t want to hear. 

What’s the value of being physically connected to a church?

Gathering with other believers is an essential part of following Jesus. Let’s be clear: the building is not special; the gathering is special. Throughout scripture, we see God constantly looking for His people, His congregants, the people gathered in His name. 

God connects to us, not just as individuals but in a community. If you think about it from the very beginning, God tells Adam and Eve, “Be fruitful and multiply.” God tells Abraham, “I’m going to make you into a nation.” In other words, God is continually forming a group of people. The Old Testament story is God in search of a people—God looking for a nation. Israel becomes that people. The New Testament tells the story of a new people being brought into the body of Christ, becoming one body, one gathering, one group of people. 

To say that you can connect to God without the church is to cut yourself off from the assembly or the people of God, which is something that God has desired from the very beginning. When you cut yourself off from the people of God, you work against God’s plan, God’s desire, and God’s design. 

As a community, we grow so much more when we’re in deep relationships with one another. Being a Christ-follower is not just about taking in spiritual information; it’s about being connected to His body of believers, sharing stories, prayers, hope, and being challenged directly.

We are not just brains; we are spirit, soul, and body. 

Think about this: your body has knowledge your brain does not have. Most of us can’t list the keys’ arrangement on the keyboard, but our fingers know where they are. You probably couldn’t tell someone all the streets in the neighborhood you grew up on, but you would know your way around again if you went back there. Your body has knowledge that your brain doesn’t have. 

We are acquiring knowledge just by what we do. 

All the different things you participate in are shaping you more than you know. The act of getting out of bed, getting dressed, driving across town, walking into a room, sitting in silence for a moment, singing songs, standing up and sitting down, and all the different things that we participate in when we go to a physical church service are shaping us more than we know. 

When we disconnect ourselves from community and physically being in church, we lose something more significant than we realize. We lose connection to the body. 

The church is not a spectator sport. It’s not a big show to be entertained by the latest song, dance, and great sermon. It’s an invitation, not just to attend but to be a part of a community. Church is an invitation to a more profound commitment to Christ by spurring one another toward good works.

Listen to Whit and Adam explore this subject in-depth on this week’s episode of Spirit In Motion on Apple Podcast, Spotify, or YouTube.

Listen to Episode One of Spirit in Motion, True Lies: “Christians should be ready to defend their beliefs.”

What do you do with grief?

In this episode of Life In Motion, Heather and Jamie share their personal stories of grief, how they drifted through it, and how they eventually got to the other side of it.

In this episode of Life In Motion, Heather and Jamie share their personal stories of grief, how they drifted through it, and how they eventually got to the other side of it.

Heather lost her mother when she was in her early twenties. Her mother was diagnosed with cancer, and Heather dropped out of college to care for her. She was her mother’s primary caregiver when the Doctors said there was nothing more they could do for her.

Jamie was believing for a miracle. She had people praying with her for the birth of her baby. But at 27 and a half weeks, Jamie’s baby passed away just a few days short of the doctors being willing to deliver her baby early to try to help her.

What do you do with grief?

That’s what Heather and Jamie are talking about in this episode. For some, grief is immediate, fully intense. For others, you feel like you’re drifting through life, not fully anchored to anything. Whichever side you’re on, grief is not necessarily something that you experience, and then it’s gone; it’s something that you experience, you heal from, and you carry the scars forever. And sometimes, it creeps back up.

So, what do you do with grief? What do you do when you don’t believe that God is good anymore? When you’re angry? How do you heal when you’re drifting? In this episode, Heather and Jamie discuss how they experienced grief, questioned God, and began to heal. 

Don’t be afraid of your feelings.

If you want to tackle your loss, there’s no way out but through. There’s no way to make it to the other side without going through all the emotion, without going through the pain, without really looking at it and dealing with it.

You’ve already lived the most painful part of losing somebody or something. In this world, that loss of the physical person is so hard to accept and come to terms with that you’ve already probably experienced the most challenging part, and now acknowledging those feelings, as painful and as scary as they might be, is the next step. Maybe you’re afraid because you don’t process emotion well… You are not alone in this. 

Share your Grief with God.

Many of us have such high honor and esteem for God (which we should) that it ends up preventing us from being completely real with Him. Our love for Him was never meant to separate us from Him.

When you pour your true self out to Him, He will come into that space and not condemn you or even correct you.

Bring your hurt, your disappointment, your anger to God.

Leave us a voicemail: 1-539-215-9432.

Heather and Jamie love to bring people together. So naturally, their podcast is a place where they want to do the same. Every season, we set aside episodes to hear from YOU and talk about YOUR thoughts. In each episode, you’ll hear Heather and Jamie mention their voicemail inbox; that’s where they hear from you!

Subscribe to Life In Motion on YouTubeSpotify, or Apple Podcasts

Read more from Life In Motion: Porn is the Problem.

True Lies: “Christians should be ready to defend their beliefs”

Today, we’re looking at the idea that, “Christians should be ready to defend their beliefs.” We like to call a statement like that a true lie. There’s a hint of truth to it, but ultimately the idea has resulted in a misunderstood, broken concept… a true lie. 

Defending our beliefs is an interesting topic right now. With the pandemic, the election, increased racial tensions, and government control questions, there seems to be so much more tension and division. In response to all of this, people feel like their backs are up against the wall, and if they don’t defend their beliefs, then they’ll be overtaken by the other side.

It’s unfortunate, but it’s tough to have honest and open conversations with people these days. In this episode, Whit George and Adam Bush explore how to have conversations with people… even the people you may disagree with.

With social media, there’s more opportunity for echo chambers than ever before. You can surround yourself with people who affirm and agree with what you believe. The natural human tendency is to hang out with people who don’t disagree with you. It’s hard to be around people who are just wildly different than you. We tend to gravitate toward environments, message boards, communities, and friend groups that agree with us. So, when we put our opinion out there, it gets echoed back to us. The echo chambers powerfully reinforce what we believe. So when we encounter people who don’t believe the same as us, it can be shocking.

“WE MAKE A DEVIL OUT OF SOME PEOPLE AND JESUS OUT OF OTHERS.”

It can be difficult not to make a devil out of some people and Jesus out of other people based on how they voice their opinion. When you do that, you run the risk of alienating the very people you’re trying to talk to and building more consensus with the people who already agree with you. 

So, what do we do?

There’s a story in scripture where Jesus is in the garden, the night before He’s crucified. There’s a mob that comes to arrest Him. As they’re taking Him away, there is a confrontation between Jesus’ disciples and this group of people that want to arrest Jesus. Scripture says that Peter, Jesus’ disciple, grabs a sword and ends up cutting off a man’s ear. 

“WE END UP CUTTING OFF THE EARS OF PEOPLE WE’RE TRYING TO COMMUNICATE TO.” 

When we, as followers of Christ, go to the sword, when we come out with weapons, and we’re ready to fight or defend, we end up cutting off the ears of the people we’re trying to communicate to. They can’t hear us because we came with the sword. 

Jesus says, “put your sword away, Peter. He who lives by the sword will die by the sword.” Jesus’ Kingdom doesn’t grow through fighting; it expands through peace and compassion. Jesus said by this, all men will know that you’re my disciples, that you love one another. It’s the love that we have for each other that opens people’s eyes and ears.

Listening is never a bad thing. 

When people feel heard, they’re willing to listen so much more. The greatest way we can love the people we disagree with is to listen to them. When you find yourself in a conversation where you want to defend your beliefs, when tensions are starting to get elevated, ask yourself, “what’s my motive for continuing this conversation?” Is it pride? Am I trying to dominate and win this conversation? Or am I trying to share with someone something that I think?

Listen to Whit and Adam explore this subject in-depth on this week’s episode of Spirit In Motion on Apple Podcast, Spotify, or YouTube.

Listen to Episode One of Spirit in Motion: Have you met the real Jesus?

“Busy” is No Badge of Honor

Being busy is an issue underneath so many problems in our lives. We’re trained to fill our time. We wear “busy” as a badge of honor, but we have to learn to surrender our schedules if we want to love others well. In this episode, Jamie and Heather explore hurry and how you can slow down to love your friends and family well.

If you have 15 minutes between meetings, or classes, or tasks, do you fill those 15 minutes up? Think about the last free time you had … did you return some emails? Scroll Instagram? Start a new task list? Instead of filling your free time, you took that time to quiet your mind and think about how you can love people and contribute generously to whatever might be coming next.

BEING HURRIED IS INCOMPATIBLE WITH A TRUE RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS.

When we look at Jesus’ life, we see Him slowed down and ready to embrace the people He encounters each day. Being hurried is incompatible with a real relationship with Jesus. To call yourself a follower of Christ, you have to surrender the “busyness” badge of honor and follow His life model.

We are running on fumes, and we’re not getting anything more accomplished. Instead, we end up missing the people right in front of us—our family, our friends, our spouses.

Six Daily Resources

When you fill your schedule, you miss the people in your life that are the most important. In this episode of Life in Motion, Heather and Jamie talk about how we all have the same six resources to divide throughout the day/week: 

1. Time
2. Money
3. Relationships
4. Energy
5. Thoughts
6. Emotions

Do you have the bandwidth, the time in your schedule to manage each of these resources well? Or are you too busy? Each of the resources above is a gift, and you get to choose where you give them. Where are you going to spend your resources this week? Join Heather and Jamie as they have a conversation about schedules, feeling hurried, and wearing the “busyness” badge of honor.

Leave us a voicemail: 1-539-215-9432.

Heather and Jamie love to bring people together. So naturally, their podcast is a place where they want to do the same. Every season, we set aside episodes to hear from YOU and talk about YOUR thoughts. In each episode, you’ll hear Heather and Jamie mention their voicemail inbox; that’s where they hear from you!

Subscribe to Life In Motion on YouTube, Spotify, or Apple Podcasts. 

Read more from Life In Motion: Porn is the Problem.

If I follow Jesus, everything will be easy.

In this week’s episode, Whit George and Adam Bush discuss the questions, “What’s the point of pain?” “Why do bad things happen to good people?” We’re looking at the idea that “if you follow Jesus, everything will be easy.” We like to call a statement like that a true lie. There’s a hint of truth to it, but ultimately the idea has resulted in a misunderstood, broken concept … a true lie. 

 

In this week’s episode, Whit George and Adam Bush discuss the questions, “What’s the point of pain?” “Why do bad things happen to good people?” We’re looking at the idea that “if you follow Jesus, everything will be easy.” We like to call a statement like that a true lie. There’s a hint of truth to it, but ultimately the idea has resulted in a misunderstood, broken concept … a true lie

Adam shares his story of losing his dad at a young age, and they discuss that complicated question we all face at some point, “Why?

IF I FOLLOW JESUS, EVERYTHING WILL BE_____.

How do you fill in the blank? Do you think everything will be safe? Everything will be your idea of good. The journey of following Jesus means following Him into the unknown and into times where you will not be able to answer that question. In this episode, Whit and Adam talk about what to do when you don’t know that everything will be alright. When you doubt that God is really good because what’s happening to you is really bad.

IF I FOLLOW JESUS LIFE WILL BE BETTER.

If you’ve done any training or intense workout, you know that pain produces fruit. The same is true for following God. God may not orchestrate the pain we face, but He will use it to produce fruit in you. We can find comfort in knowing that with God, there is a point to pain. 

We do people a disservice when we say, “Follow Jesus, life will be easy.” What we really mean to say is, “follow Jesus. Life will be better.” Will it be hard? Yes. Will it be worth it? Yes. 

What is a True Lie?

Sometimes it feels like you’re not allowed to question the ideas you grew up believing. In this first season of Spirit In Motion, we want to look at concepts we’ve grown up saying and believing, ask questions, and discuss both sides of the conversations. Next week, we’ll be exploring the true lie: Christians should be ready to defend their beliefs.

Listen to Whit and Adam discuss the point of pain.

Learn more about Spirit In Motion here.

Peace Over Anxiety by Lyndsey Vigil

Let’s talk about putting peace over anxiety!  I’ve been actively working on putting peace over anxiety in my life for about 4 years now. God has worked through counselors, Doctors, Small Groups, friends, and family to introduce me to new practices and new thinking, and I want to share some of those practices with you today. If you attend Church on the Move in Tulsa, you might remember my story.
Listen to me tell my story at Church on the Move Tulsa.

Here are 5 practices for putting peace over anxiety:

1. Godly Friends 

It’s crazy how much truth there is to “don’t do it alone.” The first step in putting peace over anxiety in my life was surrounding myself with good, Godly people who listened to me and shared honest feedback. You need people who call out your faulty thinking and share different perspectives with you.

2. Cutting Out Coffee 

 The most recent change I’ve made is cutting out coffee! You can laugh at me, but this was a pretty big step for me. (I really loved coffee). I switched to tea—London Fogs are my favorite! The switch helps keep your mood regulated throughout the day. I really had no idea how much coffee was negatively affecting me. I’d highly recommend cutting it out!

3. Real Jesus Small Group

I can point to two HUGE steps toward peace in my life that happened in my Real Jesus Small Group.

• At the end of the curriculum, you write your real Jesus journey. When writing mine, I realized where some of my anxiety triggers came from.

• About midway through the group, you’re supposed to go to coffee with someone and tell them your struggles. I went with a young lady I barely knew and shared some of my deepest struggles. She did the same.

In that conversation, I felt totally liberated and ready to move forward. (P.S., I still go to coffee with that young lady once a week.)  Find a group at Church on the Move by searching “Real Jesus” on the finder.

4. Breathing

This one is super practical. A lot of people who struggle with anxiety live in FIGHT/FLIGHT mode, and one of the best ways to calm your brain is BREATHING.

 For 3-5 minutes, 3 times a day:

Breathe in for 4 counts
Hold for 2 counts
Breathe out for 6 counts

*Focus on counting; as random worries enter your mind, acknowledge them and go back to counting.

5. Prayer & Journaling

When I feel down or overwhelmed, I read and pray through Phil. 4v4-9, and add a little, “God help me to ____” in front of each verse.

 “Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice.”
— Philippians 4v9

After some prayer, I like to journal with these prompts from verse 9:

1) What have you learned?
 2) What have you received?
3) What have you heard and seen?

When I started this journey 4-years ago, I had no idea how God would use little, seemingly useless steps of obedience to bring peace to my life. These practices are almost involuntary for me because God introduced them to me slllllloooooowwwwwly, and through them, He has reshaped the way I think.

I hope these practices are beneficial to you and help you begin to put peace over anxiety in your life.

– Lyndsey Vigil

Read more about Anxiety: What to do when you don’t know what to do.

Intimacy Over Porn by Blaine Bartel

Let’s talk about porn—Have you ever held a loaded gun? I have. Except someone told me and swore on their life that it was unloaded. So I believed them and when they encouraged me to take aim and pull the trigger, I did. Can you guess what happened? BOOM.

Friends, the problem with playing with an unloaded gun is it might actually be loaded—a lesson I’ve learned the hard way. There are some things in life that you simply don’t take chances with.

How would Jesus approach the topic of Porn?

Jesus approached sexual lust with just such caution. His take on adultery in the Sermon on the Mount is direct… and should leave us all slightly unnerved.

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.”
(Matthew 5:27-29)

Jesus makes this point: If you even lust in your heart towards someone, you’ve already committed the act of adultery.

First, let’s be clear on what Jesus is not saying:
1) Jesus is not saying to go ahead and commit adultery since you’ve already sinned in your heart.
2) Jesus is not saying if you look at someone that is attractive to you, that you’ve sinned.

What is Jesus saying?

The Greek word for lust in this verse is epithumeó, which is defined as “focused passion.” A look becomes lust when we allow a thought to expand into a focused passion to illegitimately have them for ourselves.

Now here’s what Jesus is saying:
1) If you don’t control your fantasy world, your fantasy world will eventually dominate you.

Our lustful thoughts are not harmless.

Is porn harmless?

Don’t fall for the lie that porn is harmless. 

Those who believe porn is harmless are the same people who watch Jaws backwards, and believe it’s a heartwarming story about a shark who gives arms and legs to disabled people.

The truth is porn is devouring souls and marriages at the highest rate in history. 

The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers reported that 56% of divorces in America are a direct result of one spouse having an obsessive interest in pornographic websites.

IT’S ONLY A MATTER OF TIME BEFORE THE UNDOING OF A PRECIOUS PART OF YOUR LIFE … HAPPENS.

If you’re taking a spin in the porn world every so often or flirting with someone online or at work, trust me, it’s only a matter of time before the undoing of a precious part of your life… happens. 

Thoughts become actions. Actions have consequence. 

Jesus was also saying…

Jesus wasn’t trying to make it more difficult for us to keep the commandment against adultery. He was wisely saving us from ever getting there, by stiffening our resolve to rigorously guard our thoughts.

2) Sexual lust is so destructive that Jesus tells you to gouge out your eye if necessary.

Now, He isn’t literally saying we should get rid of our eyes, right? But let’s not miss the point. If you actually did gouge out your eye, we would all come to three conclusions about you:

a. You are pretty dang serious about overcoming sin.
b. You are ok with radical discomfort to overcome sin.
c. You are a tad unreasonable in finding ways to overcome sin.

That’s precisely what Jesus is saying about lust. Get serious!

Make uncomfortable decisions.
Be unreasonable if you have to.

People constantly ask me… “Blaine, what did you have to do to get free of your addiction?”

Are you kidding me? Everything! What didn’t I have to do??
I got serious.
I got uncomfortable.
I got unreasonable.
I threw away my laptop.
I threw away my smart phone.
I spent $30,000 on rehab and counselors.
I went to four men’s groups a week.
I changed my schedule.
I quit traveling.
I reported to advocates weekly.
I read and studied incessantly.
I could go on… and on.

I WOULD HAVE GLADLY HAD A DOCTOR CUT MY EYE OUT

If you want to know the truth… I would have gladly had a doctor cut my eye out and sport a patch the remainder of my life if that’s what it took to be free.

Why? Because sexual lust kills.

It’s a loaded gun. My lust killed my marriage. It killed my relationship with my boys. It killed my career. It killed me financially. And it came close to killing me.

Jesus wasn’t threatening eternal damnation.

When Jesus said, “it’s better to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell,” I don’t believe he was threatening us with eternal damnation.

The word translated hell in this verse is actually “Gehenna,” which is was an actual valley outside Jerusalem where they not only cast all kinds of refuse, but the dead bodies of animals and of unburied criminals who had been executed. It was an awful real life reality.

Jesus was warning us, lust will literally destroy you right now. Don’t play with it. It will utterly dismantle everything you hold dear in life.

Now let’s end with a little good news.

Jesus can save us. Jesus can heal us. Jesus can set us free. Ten years after my personal Gehenna, life is better than I could have ever imagined possible. That’s the Gospel. That’s Jesus. Beauty for ashes. The oil of joy for mourning.

Brother or sister, if you are bound by lust, get help before the opportunity passes. I’ve met many a man who has looked back crestfallen with regret — and uttered the words… “If only.”

I said it myself. “If only I had reached out for help earlier… in one of those wake-up call moments… all the pain and destruction that could have been avoided.”

Do you have a porn problem? Are you having an affair? Are you flirting with disaster?

If you seriously want freedom, reach out for counseling or jump into a small group. Men, look for our brand new mid-sized group in the Spring called Katharos – The Jesus Path to Sexual Purity. 

– Blaine Bartel

 

Want more info on putting intimacy over porn? Watch Intimacy over Pornography from Church on the Move.

Have you met the real Jesus?

Have you met the real Jesus? One way to tell is by looking at how you treat people or think about yourself—it’s a direct expression of the way God is working in you. To put it plainly, our love for God is expressed in our love for other people.

 

Whit George, Lead Pastor of Church On The Move, and Adam Bush, Kids Pastor at Church On The Move, sat down for an honest and in-depth conversation about letting God change them. They call the experience, “meeting the real Jesus.”

Whit George on the set of, "Have you met the Real Jesus?" Episode One of Spirit In Motion.

Have you met the real Jesus? One way to tell is by looking at how you treat people or think about yourself—it’s a direct expression of the way God is working in you. To put it plainly, our love for God is expressed in our love for other people.

A lot of Christ-followers become more interested in gaining knowledge about interesting biblical facts or useful techniques for prayer than allowing God or those techniques to deeply change them.

Maybe you’re reading this and you’re puzzled by how often you’re able to disassociate those two things: loving God and loving people. You can’t figure out why you’re so short with the people in line at Starbucks. Or why you’re yelling at people to get out of your way. Or maybe you’ve become increasingly puzzled by people who disagree with you politically or socially.

So what needs to change?

The quick answer: your affections for Jesus and your willingness to let Him change you. If you were to ask Whit and Adam 1o years ago, do you love Jesus? The answer would have been, absolutely. They both worked at a church (and still do). Their affections for God were real, they just weren’t nearly to the depth that they are now, and because of that their relationships suffered.

We find God as useful.

It’s easy to think if you give God your good behavior, in return He’ll protect you. Or if we read the Bible or say a prayer every now and then, He’ll bless you. Sometimes we end up thinking of God as a sort of vending machine. We find Him to be useful, just not beautiful.

We need to find God beautiful.

God desires relationship with you, and there is life in that relationship. God is our creator, and connection to Him is connection to life itself.  In other words, the deepest, most meaningful thing about existence is that we’re connected to this Creator. So to get closer to Him, is like getting closer to the source of life and everything good. It’s like the sun on a plant, there’s growth. Finding God beautiful is really the journey of what it is to be human, to become fully yourself, and fully alive.

Little by little, as you begin to make Jesus the object and focus of your life the more you’ll begin to change. The strangest things will start happening! You’ll have more patience for people, more love for your family, and more grace for people who are struggling. You’ll begin to see in Jesus a more beautiful way to do things.

Listen to Whit and Adam discuss their personal experience with meeting the real Jesus.

Learn more about Spirit In Motion here.