“Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul.” (1 Pet. 2:11, NIV)
“How is your soul doing?” A seminary professor, Dr. Tom, was the first person who ever looked into my eyes deeply and asked me that question.
Dr. Tom asked with this incredibly gentle strength—that is precisely why the question has stuck with me for more than 40 years. That is also why I ask that same question of the more than 20 pastors and leaders I counsel each month. The vast majority of them are struggling with sexual bondage, and their marriages are in crisis. It is critical that we understand that sexual addiction is not only a moral problem, but also a “soul problem.”
Peter expressed the battle in gripping terminology: “I urge you … to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul” (1 Pet. 2:11).
Your soul integrates, connects and binds together your heart, mind and body. When our soul is torn apart, or as James puts it, “double-minded,” then our relationship with God is blocked.
“That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do” (Jas. 1:7-8).
Prayer + Reflection
1. Today, many pastors are silently struggling with sexual addiction. Pray for our leaders and pastors to guard their hearts and minds, and for boldness to confront and repent of any sin in their lives.
2. Pray for your church to become a place where it is OK to not be OK, a place where the doors are wide open to experience the scandalous love of Christ.
3. Pray for God to put the kind of people in your life who would ask you, “How is your soul doing?”