What does victory in life mean to you?
Let me share my answer. The basics… I want to be a semi-expert at my career by the time I retire. I write song lyrics, and hope some get put to music. I hope my family thinks I’m easy to live with! I’m want to love well, and hear God say “Well done!” at the end.1
But I’m a pedophile. That’s part of my story. What’s a pedophile’s victory?
Part of it means never letting the sexual attraction lead to action – never harming a child. It means walking a path of deliberate choice.
The road can be rough! Temptation is always available. Sometimes, I feel lonely when nobody in my day-to-day life has the same struggle (I’m glad for online communities like VirPed). It can be depressing when those feelings towards kids pop up, unasked for.
In order to have a clear conscience before God, I’ve had to forgo relationships with children that typical people have, and I’ve limited my career options to avoid working directly with kids. It hurts.
I feel bitter at times, and there’s been tears. But, at least they are my tears and not the tears of a child victim. If you’re a pedophile and you want to love children, that is what love looks like!
But it’s also true that God “comforts us in all our troubles”.2 I like where it says, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is [his] faithfulness.”3
Life is really about each new morning, and I know God isn’t mad at me simply because I have this struggle. The Bible says that “he does not despise or scorn the affliction of the afflicted.”4 Instead, he strengthens me, helps me, and when I’m especially weak, he carries me in his arms!5 And, he promises to never leave us.6 This has been my experience, and God has been true to me time and again.
Therefore, victory means more than just never harming a child.
Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”7 His promise isn’t derailed by pedophilia. I am free to live for everything that God dreamed for me to be! And, you also. Each of us are like unique stained glass windows. We show his light in an array of hues when we ask him into our heart. God is not about to let pedophilia ruin that.
I am a pedophile, but my life isn’t defined by pedophilia. Foremost, I belong to God, and secondly, it’s what I do in life that matters.
Something else… I know that I’m suffering for Jesus. Does that sound crazy? Well, the truth is that we suffer for him whenever we follow him at a personal cost. Victory over pedophilia comes at a price, but it’s well worth it. It means your life can be something beautiful, a story worth telling, and a testimony of Jesus’ love and power toward the “least of these” – You and I.
Don’t give up! It may seem dark at times, but the Bible says “weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning light.”8 God promises to not let you be tempted beyond what you can handle. And, he promises to make you sparkle like a jewel in a golden crown9; he will “finish the good work he started.”10
These are two of my life verses:
Lord, how many are my foes! Many rise up against me, saying, ‘There is no help for him in God!’ But you, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, and the One who lifts my head high.11
I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.12
Let’s fight together for a pedophile’s victory.