I’m not sure how it happened, but lately, I’ve become known as the Hallmark Movie Girl. I even have friends text me and ask, “Have you seen the show? is there any good?”
While I’m not always thrilled with this being my reputation, it made me think about why I watched Hallmark movies.
One reason is that I work really hard. At the end of the day, I like to sit down and relax and watch some TV. The truth is there’s not a lot on TV that is acceptable for a Christian to watch anymore.
I am a firm believer that Christians are responsible for the entertainment that they consume.
If a show or a movie goes against Biblical values, I don’t think we should watch it. Because of this, Jamie and I are very careful about not watching shows that have any form of magic or the occult in them. We are also very careful to avoid television shows with explicit sexual content or references to sexual content. We’ve shared before that we watched a popular TV show when the Holy Spirit convicted us, and we were never able to watch it again.
Basically, if a television show cannot fit into the context of Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things," then I don’t think a Christian should be watching it. We’re pretty serious about this.
Why do I think this is such a big deal?
I believe there is a rather significant problem inside the church that no one wants to talk about: Christian women hooked on pornography.
Yes, I know. This is supposed to be a men’s ministry topic. I’ve heard it talked about at plenty of Men’s Events. Yet, it is rarely (if ever) addressed at a Women’s Event. Still, the stats are staggering.
These are the stats who ADMIT using hard-core porn. It says nothing for those hiding that they use porn OR women addicted to soft pornography in romance novels, music videos, movies, and television shows.
Think about it: how many Christian women do you know watching “The Bachelor,” a show about one man dating and having sex with multiple women until he finds “the one?” That shows in primetime! Move to the ten o’clock hour, and you can watch a heterosexual or homosexual couple have sex right in your living room.
While society may not call these things pornography (and I don’t know the distinction because I am the 13% who hasn’t seen hardcore porn), I can testify (from my teens when I wanted to be cool and watch what everyone else was watching) that these types of shows are additive and they create appetites in your life. It makes you want to see more and experience more. If you continue to feed those appetites, it will lead to watching straight-out porn and/or living a promiscuous lifestyle against Biblical sexuality.
I genuinely believe that it is long overdue for Christian women to recognize the problem and start providing a pathway to overcoming it.
What is that pathway to overcoming pornography?
The same as it is for men:
1. We need to confess it
You need to bring your secret sin into the light. First, confess your sin to God. Find someone you trust—a godly, dependable person who can keep your confidence and confess your sin to them. Pornography thrives in darkness—like germs, the light kills it.
2. Find an accountability partner
Again, it has to be someone you trust. Give them permission to ask you what you are watching, listen to, and observe your browsing history anytime. One of the things that helped me overcome watching shows like 90201 when I was in my twenties was that I made my Mom my accountability person. Knowing I’d have to admit I was watching things, I’d said I wouldn't kept me from watching them.
3. Sign up for Covenant Eyes
Can’t afford it? I don’t think you can afford not to. It provides online accountability and blocks content that you shouldn’t see. We have used it for years, and I highly recommend it.
4. Do whatever it takes to stop watching things you shouldn’t.
Pornography is highly addictive and extremely dangerous. Go to extremes to keep it out of your life.
If you have to get rid of your t.v.—do it.
Throw out the romance novels, trashy music, movies, or anything else that causes you to sin.
As Jesus said, do whatever it takes.
5. Change your taste in entertainment.
Do I watch Hallmark movies and shows because they are brilliantly written and performed? Do I find the plots spellbinding? Is the CGI award-winning?
We all know the answer is “no.”
However, they generally fit the standards of Philippians 4:8. (Have no doubt—when they deviate into alternative lifestyles or magic—I don’t watch.) But 95% of the time, they are completely clean, free from obscene language, and have no sexual content.
They are generally uplifting.
Rarely do I have to repent after I watch them.
That’s what’s most important to me.
I like movies. I like stories. I enjoy relaxing at the end of the day.
Over the past twenty years, I’ve trained myself to enjoy entertainment that allows me to fall asleep with a clear conscience.
It’s a commitment I’ve made to myself and God that I do not want to even dance around the edges of pornography ever again.
I don’t know where you are today. Maybe you’re thinking, “You have no idea. Forget the Bachelor. I am addicted to internet pornography. What do I do?
The same things.
You need to repent, talk to someone about your addition—a pastor’s wife, a Christian leader, or a Christian counselor.
Like any addiction, you need to create a plan to gain freedom. Then you need to do whatever it takes to follow through with that plan.
Will it be easy? No.
But it is necessary for your soul, for your relationship with God, and all of your relationships and future relationships.
It’s time to stop pretending this isn’t a problem. Instead, Christian women need to stand up against pornography in all forms and gain victory.
Adessa Holden is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God specializing in Women's Ministry. Together with her brother, Jamie, they manage 4One Ministries and travel the East Coast speaking, holding conferences, and producing Men's and Women's resources that provide practical Biblical teaching for everyday life.
When asked about herself, she'll tell you "I'm a women's minister, a sister, and a daughter. I love to laugh and spend time with people. My favorite things are chocolate, the ocean, sandals and white capris, anything purple, summertime and riding in the car listening to music. It is my absolute honor and privilege to serve Jesus and women through this ministry.