i’m so sorry beyond words that you’ve been struggling so deeply and so painfully with this. when i read your post, i have no thoughts of condemnation—my heart only aches and breaks for you, since you are obviously in pain. i agree with the poster who said that guilt is a good thing because it shows us where we’ve gone wrong. the fact that you’re feeling guilty shows to me that you are sincerely sorry for your sins and want to do better, and isn’t that what God asks for? i agree with everyone who has talked about God’s Love and mercy and how forgiving He is to all sinners. He wants to be just as forgiving to you, and completely restore you and heal you from all the sins that you’ve been struggling with for so long. when you say that you’ve committed some serious sins, i actually think of myself, because before i repented and gave my heart to Jesus a little over a year ago, after three years of darkness, i was caught up in extremely dark sins, from homosexuality to self-harm to suicide. i damaged my body in terrible ways, and hurt myself and others in ways that are still painful to remember. i want you to know that just as God healed me and restored me even after all i’d put myself, others and Him through, He wants to do the same to you from your addiction to pornography. just as i look back and see Him loving me and reaching out to me even through my darkness, i have no doubt that He’s doing the same to you—in fact, your desire to reach out and your courage to share your story may be a sign that He is touching your heart already. even though you’ve been struggling with this for years, i promise that there is hope—and it’s my deep prayer that i can encourage you in at least some small way that the hope God has for all sinners is available for you as well.
first of all, when you mention that it would be far easier to stop your smoking addiction, i definitely agree with the poster who suggested that you stop smoking first. it’s incredibly damaging to your health, and while i’m not sure if smoking is a sin, i know that it ruins the precious gift of the body, and the last thing we want is to see you hurting yourself or your body in any way. i actually wasn’t sure before reading the responses what a Catechumen was, but now that i know, i’m pretty sure that your sins will be washed away at Baptism, although i don’t know much about that, either. * i’m so sorry that i can’t be more helpful when it comes to the specifics. what i can help you with is the fact that God longs to heal and restore and forgive you—i hate seeing you in pain, and i know that He feels it even more intensely than i do. yes, you have sinned, just like everyone else. i’m not trying to downplay the seriousness of your sins—pornography is very serious, but at the same time, because you are sorry for your sins, there is so much hope for you, so much hope in God’s mercy and Love and the forgiveness He showed to me and shows to everyone, and wants to show to you. please be careful not to drown in so much guilt that you begin to beat yourself up and put yourself down. pornography must be such a hard addiction to overcome, and i will definitely pray for you in this post, tonight and every night, so please be sure to update us as to how you’re doing. it’s important that you do realize that you’ve done wrong and because you want to repent, that’s definitely a sign of hope and the very real possibility of restoration and healing. while you are embarrassed to confront your priest about this, i will pray that God gives you the strength to do it, because i think it’s very important that you talk to him about this. i’m sure he can help you, just as i long to help you through this, and God wants to help you so much. i can’t imagine God glaring at you with an expression of anger and condemnation—i can only see Him hurting because you are, and wanting so desperately to reach out and heal you. He doesn’t ignore our sins, but at the same time, He is a God of mercy and love and forgiveness as well as of justice. and because you want to repent, there is hope. i promise you, there is so much hope.
i’m pretty sure that your sins will be washed away at Baptism, but until then, i will definitely pray for you, that you overcome both addictions—smoking and pornography, and any other sins that you may have fallen into and may be struggling with. let me pray for you now:*