When I was trapped in a cycle of sin...I felt isolated and alone. In my mind I thought I just needed to pray more and try harder, spend more time in the Word, do more good things. I felt that I'd eventually win the battle. I didn't want anyone to know my secrets. As I took communion, sat in Church from week to week and worked harder to do everything else right, my secret life was eating me alive spiritually, emotionally and even physically. I thought I was alone. I prayed for help. Then the Conquer Series was announced, but like an idiot, I thought "I'm not addicted, I don't need that." But the fact that I couldn't stop on my own is the very essence of addiction. If I could stop on my own, why didn't I? I was only deluding myself and hurting those all around me in the process.
Once the 'crisis moment' hit <be sure your sin will find you out, Numbers 32:23>, I was forced to confront the sin and stand before those that I had impacted by my choices. Through the Conquer Series I learned that 'trying harder' alone is almost always a recipe for disaster. What I needed was truth, training, a group of men that would help me move past the sin, and forgiveness/compassion (help) from the one's who loved me the most. Through my wife, I learned a new appreciation for what God offers us with His love, sacrifice and forgiveness. Throughout this process, she has been amazing. I don't deserve her. She has become my hero. I'll never understand how she could love me...but her actions have given me a unique perspective on what God's unfailing and unconditional love must truly look like.
I wish I had been in the Conquer Series long ago. One of the things that really stood out was a video called "Helping Her Heal". As I watched that video a few months after my wife learned of my hidden life, tears came to my eyes and I realized how many mistakes I had been making as she was trying to come to grips with who I was and what I had done. That video and many things I have learned in the class both from the materials provided and the weekly discussions with other men in the trenches have been a blessing to my life and to my family. The belt of truth is the foundation of our armor. While I can't change the past, I look forward with hope to a bright future of living in purity and in the light. One of the men who had been through this before me told me early on to 'embrace the roller coaster', he couldn't have been more accurate. This has absolutely been a roller coaster, but I feel truly blessed today.
Eric B., Maryland