It’s at this point I’ll begin to peel back the layers of why this transformation took place, why it was necessary, and why each layer is vastly important.
If you’ll notice, the picture above shows a partially naked woman. You are probably wondering why I would choose this photo and why. I’d like to start off this blog by saying that if you identify with my struggle(or know someone who does), I’d encourage you to share this blog so someone else can get free like I did.
So many things are wrapped up in this word. So many nights sneaking around at 3am looking up dirty videos on my computer.
I was 9 years old when I was introduced to pornography. I don’t remember exactly how I stumbled upon it, all I knew was that I liked what I saw. I liked the feeling of thrill I’d get anytime I’d sneak downstairs and look it up on my parents computer. This was back when we had dial up internet and if you know anything about dial up…that struggle was real. As the little Aol man ran to the internet wizard (or as I saw it in my head), I found myself daydreaming about what I might look up that night. Looking back, I never really understood the magnitude of what I was looking at; the exploitation of sex in its rawest form. As I got older, my desire for porn slowly but surely increased and I began noticing changes in my behavior and disposition. My aggression increased, I rebelled more often and almost felt a sense of entitlement with my classmates because I knew something they didn’t.
Fast forward several years; now I’m a full blown pornography addict. By the time I went to college, I was viewing porn every single day. My daily routine was go to class…daydream about porn…go home…look up porn sites for up to 12-14 hours until around 7 or 8 am when I needed to go to class again the next day. By this point, my addiction was so strong, I literally did not have any boundaries or concerns about my life or what I was doing. I was doing things that I never would have done had I not had the addiction. At the end of that school year, I was on academic probation, I had little emotional connection to my family and I was (unbeknownst to me due to the desensitization of the addiction) suffering from a severe case of depression that nearly killed me.
Looking back, I realize that this time in my life was a necessary part of my journey. Without this pivotal realization of the damage pornography had done to me, I would not have encountered the Father like I did. The Father specializes in redeeming our brokenness. His great pleasure is to give us the Kingdom. His greatest accomplishment was creating us; we are the literal personification of His creative essence. It’s my understanding that the Father sometimes will allow us to get to the deepest pit we can dig ourselves into, so that we have no choice but stop and look up; not to gage our progress but because we can’t go down any further.
Its in this place, where the Father does His most amazing and transformative work. And, it was in this place, where my journey began.
TO BE CONTINUED…
If you don’t know anything about pain, it often can be a extremely transformative force. Most people equate pain with something negative. But, there’s something to be said about experiencing a tremendous amount of pain and it not consuming you. For myself, I’ve found that in pain is where my true strength is discovered. It’s in the twisting and aching of a painful moment, that I came to discover who God truly is.
In my life, I’ve experienced some extremely painful moments. Molestation. Abuse. Lust. Betrayal. Rejection. These words haven’t made me bitter. They haven’t made me curl up into a ball and hide. They haven’t prompted me to give up. Each one of these words has served a real and incredible purpose in my life. Each one of these words have broken down some part of me so much so that the only one I could rely on was Him. I’ve learned that true strength lies in the arms of the Father. True strength is found in the beautifully broken moments; the moments of shame, guilt and sadness.
I’ve come to a place in my life where I’m not ashamed of what I’ve been through anymore. I’m not falling victim to a victim mentality. I’m not so damaged that I’ve convinced myself I can’t be used for His work. This was only achieved after years of sleepless nights, feeling undervalued and unimportant. Years of wasted time trying to fit in and be liked. Night after night of tears and snotty tissues asking God, “Why is this happening to me, again?” It was after years of awkward conversations and embarrassing moments. Years of sitting alone at the lunch table and attending school dances “stag”. Honestly, it wasn’t until very recently that I could look into a mirror and actually like what I see without nitpicking every stretch-mark and pimple.
What I realized is that as a daughter of the King, my self worth and acceptance could not be found in my personal appearance. It can’t be defined by how many awards I have or how many gigs I book. It isn’t found in my job title at work. It’s not in the level of happiness I have in my marriage.
It’s in Him.
He defines my created value. He redeems my spirit. He molds my character. I am beautiful in His eyes. I am worthy in His eyes. I am everything I am supposed to be and then some if I keep my focus on Him instead of on me. He taught me that I am a warrior whose weapons are only supplied by the artillery of Righteousness. He showed me that what happens to me is not always happening because of me. Nothing that ever happens to you, no matter what it is, has the power to destroy you. NOTHING. Your value doesn’t lie in the culmination of your life’s events. Your true value can only be discovered in the trenches; the horrific experiences that have been sent by the enemy to overtake you and overthrow your destiny. Your human strength alone is not enough to bring about any real change within your life. If you’ve lived long enough, you’ve more than likely found this out the hard way. Our own efforts are fleeting. Our own strength is ineffective. Our choices usually don’t lead us back to the Father. We are self absorbed, self assured, self defining and self projecting.
But, He is Love.
And we were made in His image. We are chosen royalty in the eyes of the Father. We are never failures. We are never mistakes. We are never an inconvenience. We are never a bedevilment. Not in the loving eyes of the Father. Over the past few months, God has taught me just how real and powerful His love really is. He has taught me the importance of putting myself aside and putting on the mind of Christ. I’d like to share some of the revelations He’s shared with me about Himself. Things I was unaware of for far too long. If you follow my posts on ViZion United, this series will seem akin to it. But, the difference will be in the stories, the context and the scenarios used. My hope is that you’ll get a stirring in your heart to discover the secrets of the Father like I did, or that you’ll just enjoy a different perspective on the matter.
If you feel led, please like, comment and share this blog with your loved ones.
Get ready for the transformation.
If you are not aware of who I am, allow me to inform you. I am a daughter of the Most High. I am a queen endowed with royalty and grace. I am the essence of my African and and Native American heritage. I am the culmination of thousands of years of pain, sacrifice, love and redemption. I am the personification of the atonement of Jesus Christ; the literal representation of God’s love. I was chosen, from the beginning, before my mother and father were even thought of, and my destiny and purpose was known. I am who I Am says I am.
I am Carina.
Welcome to my journey.