Before I begin here, you should know that I’m an ordained minister of the Gospel in my small, predominantly African-American church in the Memphis, TN area.  With that said, let me get real.

I first became involved with pornography at the age of 14 or 15. I got the family mail one day; and I found a Playboy.  It was my first experience seeing a naked woman.  And so, after that, I made it a point to get to the mailbox around the time the magazines arrived.  And a little later, I had some friends who also knew about Playboy. We looked at the pictures together and would often go to the bathroom to relieve ourselves. 

Down the road of life, after I married, these patterns of porn pursuit and self gratification slowed down; but a few years into my marriage, I began to frequent strip clubs, jeopardizing my marriage.  So, after a few marital altercations, I didn’t go to strip clubs anymore; but I began to lurk around after dark at XXX video stores. I felt like a vampire waiting for night to come; and praying nobody I knew would see me.  Oh, the shame!! 

But soon thereafter I found out that I didn’t have to leave my house to pursue porn. The internet had all of the free porn I could ever desire. And I would spend hours on the internet going from porn site to porn site. I tried to tell myself I would cut back; but I couldn’t. I didn’t know what to do. I had prayed and prayed; but I kept doing the same thing over and over again.

Then, in God’s timing, a Dr. Bill Berry visited our church and spoke on sexual addiction with his testimony of deliverance. I didn’t want to talk to him because I didn’t know him and besides I was “Minister Rickey” in my church. What would people think of me if I confessed. One night, again spending hours into porn, I felt so convicted and broken.  I didn’t really care what people thought anymore. I only knew I had to stop this cycle. So, I contacted Dr. Berry, the founder of Battle Plan Ministries, and told him my story. I was so relieved when he didn’t make me feel like the world’s sickest pervert. He understood what I was going through and invited me to become a part of a local Battle Plan Ministry [BPM] discipleship group.

The impact BPM has had in my life is far beyond what I ever dreamed. I now have a sense of hope. BEFORE BPM, I had resigned myself to a life of porn addiction; but the support, encouragement, and restoration that God has doled out to me through this ministry has shown me that I do not have to yield to my flesh. I have a safe place to share my struggles; and BPM has become a source of brotherhood, accountability, and fellowship. I have never been a part of any group that has made me feel so accepted. And beyond all of this, Battle Plan Ministries has given me the opportunity to help others walk away, with the power of Christ, to freedom from the bondage of habitual sexual sin. 

... Will you help me celebrate here with a loud “AMEN!”