Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Finally Free

My Review of Finally Free: Fighting for Purity With the Power of Grace, bu Heath Lambert

Pornography is a big problem in the Christian community. You knew that, right? It used to be that a guy had to face the shame of going into a porn store to get it. Now it's widely available through the internet, can be viewed in the secrecy of the home, and a lot of it is free. Studies have shown that 30 to 50% of Christian men are looking a porn on a regular basis.

Heath Lambert is Executive Director of the National Association of Nouthetic Counselors, Assistant Professor of Biblical Counseling at Boyce College, a teacher at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and the Pastor of Biblical Living at Crossing Church in Louisville, Kentucky. In these roles he has extensive experience dealing with the scourge of pornography, and out of that experience and biblical knowledge has written a very good book on achieving freedom from porn.

There are lots of books out on overcoming porn. Most of them condemn the behavior as sin and point out its disastrous effects on users' spiritual lives and marriages. This one also does that. Many books offer techniques to overcome the sin, such as accountability partners, porn-blocking software, etc. This one also does that. However, there are not many books out that point to understanding God's GRACE, learning deep gratitude for that grace and increasing love and passion for Jesus, as the keys to freedom. This one does that!
"Transforming grace works when you believe that Jesus gives it to you.....If you want to change and be like Christ - whether in the area of pornography or anything else - you must believe that in Jesus you have the power to change. when you believe the power is yours, it is yours." (page 23)
"No matter how terrible pornography is, no matter how much trouble you are in, no matter ow flimsy and weak your resources are, you are never in a pit so deep that the grace of Jesus cannot lift you out. The great danger in your struggle is that you will devote all our your energy to thinking true and awful things about pornography and spend no time dwelling on the true and wonderful things about Jesus." (page 28)
I was impressed by the book's exposition of the connection between porn addiction and pride, and the value of HUMILITY in overcoming sin.
"If you look at pornography, you are arrogant....The choice is simple and clear: you can look at porn, or you can be humble. But you cannot do both." (pages 108-109)
"It's only when you rightly understand that selfish ambition is at the root of your sexual sin that the full power of grace will be set loose in your life to change you... As you fight to cultivate a heart of humility, you will also be severing the root of arrogance and selfish ambition that allows pornography to flourish in your life." (pages 110-111)
The emphasis on GRATITUDE as a weapon against sexual sin was also surprising and unique.
"Paul wants Christians to fight for thanksgiving in their struggle for purity because a greedy heart is at the root of sexual immorality and impurity" (page 125)
"Gratitude is the offensive weapon that destroys the enemy stronghold of greed that is at the source of your desire for pornography.' (page 126)
I believe that this book can be and will be a long-term key ingredient and resource in the counselling ministries of Christian leaders helping men (and women) get free from porn. I highly recommend it for men and women seeking freedom from porn, and for their spouses, friends and counselors who want to help them.

(Full Disclosure: I received a free copy of the book for review purposes. See my book review policy.)