10 “Gouge Your Eyes Out” Strategies for Winning the Battle with Pornography

It’s no secret the pornography is destroying marriages, families, and ministries. It’s also clear that Jesus told us to take drastic steps if necessary to overcome temptation in our lives. He did not mean these words literally, but His commands to gouge out your eye and cut off your hand (Matt. 5:29-30) surely show the importance of fighting hard against sin. Here are some drastic steps to consider if you’re losing this battle:

  1. Get rid of your cell phone. If that’s where you most face temptation, don’t have a phone. We survived much of our history without phones attached to us at the hip.
  2. Stop using social media. Close your accounts. If you must for some reason go to social media, have someone with you so your aloneness won’t invite trouble.
  3. Get rid of cable television. At a minimum, make sure you have no access to movies or programs that could tempt you. The safest step to take is to remove cable entirely.
  4. Ask your spouse to set all of your passwords—and not let you have them. Perhaps this one’s not so radical, though it does require enough humility and honesty to ask for help—and for your spouse, enough backbone to guard the passwords.
  5. Get rid of your television completely. If that’s a primary site of attack for you, none of us must have a television. For some of us, not having one (or two or three) would be good in general for our relationships and purity.
  6. Hold yourself accountable to someone who, according to a friend of mine, “can fire you or divorce you.” Even if the image sounds too strong, the point is that accountability works best when failure costs us something. Accountability only to others who are themselves losing the battle doesn’t help much.
  7. Get rid of your laptop. Life will be more complicated without one, but a laptop is seldom essential to our success. And, if you have a desktop computer, make sure it’s in plain sight of everyone in your home.
  8. In a hotel, ask the hotel clerk to remove the television from the room before you arrive. I first read of this option in Heath Lambert’s book, Finally Free. It’s a drastic step, but that’s the point.
  9. Daily ask God to make you hate pornography—to the point that it sickens you.  God wants you to be holy, and He can change your appetites. Our problem is that we too much like our appetites.
  10. Get Christian counseling. Swallow your pride enough to say to someone, “I need help, even if it costs me time and money to get it.”

What steps might you add to this list?


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