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She’s not mine

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By Donny Pauling
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Editor’s note: Donny Pauling is a former, highly successful porn producer. He left the industry after experiencing a dramatic conversion. You can read more about his incredible story here.

November 8, 2012 (DonnyPauling.com) - When I speak, I have a goal to open up everything I’ve got, pouring my heart out and giving away all emotional energy to the audience. At the end of the time I talk I’m almost always exhausted, but happy. My style isn’t to “preach” at people, but rather share the mistakes I’ve made and what I’ve learned from them. Each listener is free to eat the meat and spit out the bones: take what applies to them, toss what does not. I’m convinced this is what God wants me to do.

Prior to taking the stage, I have the same very simple prayer I pray: “Your words, God. Your words.” I want to share the things He wants me to share, and nothing more. I’ll never doubt the passage in scripture where we’re told He can use all things for good… because I see the truth in that passage every single time He gives me the opportunity to share what He’s done in my life. Not long ago, I produced a product that tore lives apart in numerous ways. Now, He uses those experiences to start processes that put marriages back together, free people from perversion, even bring people to the place where they surrender their lives to Him for the first time. It’s sometimes so overwhelming that I literally sit in my hotel room and cry joyfully afterwards. I look in the mirror and can’t understand why the face I see is one He’s chosen to use to do this. It’s very humbling.

I’m very blunt in what I say, and try to be “real”. This often results in people sharing things with me that they’ve likely never told anyone… or at most very few others. For example, in one church a man walked up afterwards and asked to talk a bit. He needed to know how to forgive himself. The conversation started with something like, “After hearing what you said this morning, I’ll bet you’ve heard everything.” I nodded my head affirmatively to encourage him to say what he needed to say. He proceeded to tell me things he’d done to animals. Inside I thought, “Well now I’ve heard everything… I guess I hadn’t before!”

As I listened to his story, I learned he was deep in counseling and had come clean with his wife, who’d forgiven him. The major issue he faced was forgiving himself. To be honest, I didn’t much feel like talking to him. My stomach felt a little queasy. I was shocked and a little angry at the things he’d said. But I also had to remind myself that plenty of people feel the same way towards me when I share some of the things I’ve done. I kept praying silently in my mind while he spoke, asking God for words to give to this man. When the words come from HIM, I can tell by watching the face of the person I share them with – faces light up… that’s the best way I know how to describe it.

I reaffirmed a few things he’d told me: “You’ve asked God for forgiveness? You’ve been forgiven by your wife? You’ve been in counseling, and are continuing with that?” The first question is really the only one that mattered, yet each of them was answered with a ‘yes’, and I felt God wanted me to tell him this:

“God has given you an amazing present, gift wrapped with a beautiful bow on top of it. Inside the package is something called ‘grace’. If you can’t let go of this guilt it’s like you’re pushing God’s gift back at Him and telling Him you don’t like it… that it’s not good enough for you. Just accept his present, my friend.” The huge smile on his face let me know this is indeed what God wanted him to hear. The thing is, I also needed to hear those words, as I sometimes have problems forgiving myself, too.

Funny how God works like that.

One morning after speaking, a good-looking teenage boy came up to talk to me. He was very real with me when he told me about his struggles with sex: “I don’t have a girlfriend, but lots of girls like me so I sleep around a lot. It’s fun, but I know it’s not God’s ideal for me. How do I stop?” As always, I mentally asked God what to share with him as he spoke. I could tell this kid was a bit on the aggressive side, and fist fights were probably something with which he was familiar.

I asked, “If you did have a girlfriend, I bet you’d be willing to fight for her, wouldn’t you?” His chest inflated, masculine posturing at its finest.

“Of course!” he grinned.

“Well, in fist fights wounds heal quickly. Black eyes go away. In a few days it’s not a big deal anymore, and nothing to brag about. But what if you could fight a REAL fight… one that IS worth bragging about? Let’s say it’s two years from now when God brings into your life the woman of your dreams. Right now, with all the sleeping around you’re doing, you don’t really have anything special to offer her, sexually. But what if you could walk up to her and tell her, ‘The last two years I’ve been fighting the hardest battle of my life for you, for the thought of you, and I didn’t know you yet’? Isn’t THAT a fight worth winning? Keeping yourself sexually pure for her is the way you fight.”

A smile spread across his face. I challenged him to fight a battle that would actually test his worth as a man… to see as God’s daughters the girls who were so easily ready to give him what wasn’t his to take, and to fight for them, too, even when they weren’t willing to fight for themselves. When a girl threw herself at him, he could truly be a Knight in Shining Armor if he turned the opportunity aside, reminding himself that she isn’t his… that God has someone special for him (and for her) if he’d just wait patiently. They say every man needs a battle, and his would be fought not just for himself, but for all the girls willing to sell out so cheaply for a bit of his attention. He got it.

I try to remind myself of similar things when I walk around. I try to make a habit of bouncing my eyes up to the face of a beautiful woman, and often repeat “not mine” in my head or even verbally. She’s not mine. God has her set aside. She’s not mine. She’s His little girl, and she needs me to fight for her by keeping my eyes where they should be. Her Daddy God is always watching, and I really don’t want Him catching me visually molesting her. Any animal is capable of giving in to lust. Be a man, Donny. Be a real man.

I remind myself of these things often, and each successful battle fought brings more strength for winning the war.

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signs the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
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Indiana faces backlash as it becomes 20th state to protect religious liberty

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By Ben Johnson

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, March 27, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – On Thursday, Indiana became the 20th state to prevent the government from forcing people of faith to violate their religious beliefs in business or the public square.

Gov. Mike Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (SB 101) into law, saying the freedom of religion is a preeminent American value.

“The Constitution of the United States and the Indiana Constitution both provide strong recognition of the freedom of religion, but today, many people of faith feel their religious liberty is under attack by government action,” Pence said.

Gov. Pence, a possible dark horse candidate for president in 2016, cited court cases brought by religious organizations and employers, including Catholic universities, against the HHS mandate. “One need look no further than the recent litigation concerning the Affordable Care Act. A private business and our own University of Notre Dame had to file lawsuits challenging provisions that required them to offer insurance coverage in violation of their religious views.”

The new law could also prevent Christian business owners from being compelled to bake a cake or take photographs of a same-sex "marriage" ceremony, if doing so violates their faith. In recent years, business owners have seen an increased level of prosecution for denying such services, despite their religious and moral beliefs.

The state's pro-life organization applauded Pence for his stance. "Indiana's pro-life community is grateful to Gov. Mike Pence for signing the Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law,” said Indiana Right to Life's president and CEO Mike Fichter. “This bill will give pro-lifers a necessary legal recourse if they are pressured to support abortion against their deeply-held religious beliefs.”

“RFRA is an important bill to protect the religious freedom of Hoosiers who believe the right to life comes from God, not government,” he said.

The state RFRA is based on the federal bill introduced by Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, and signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1993. The Supreme Court cited the federal law when it ruled that Hobby Lobby had the right to refuse to fund abortion-inducing drugs, if doing so violated its owners' sincerely held religious beliefs.

In signing the measure – similar to the one Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed – Pence and the state of Indiana have faced a torrent of venom from opponents of the bill, who claim it grants a “right to discriminate” and raises the spectre of segregation.

"They've basically said, as long as your religion tells you to, it's OK to discriminate against people," said Sarah Warbelow, legal director of the Human Rights Campaign, a national homosexual pressure group.

The Disciples of Christ, a liberal Protestant denomination based in the state capital, has said it will move its 2017 annual convention if the RFRA became state law. The NCAA warned the bill's adoption “might affect future events” in the Hoosier state.

Pence denied such concerns, saying, "This bill is not about discrimination, and if I thought it legalized discrimination in any way I would've vetoed it."

The bill's supporters say that, under the Obama administration, it is Christians who are most likely to suffer discrimination.

"Originally RFRA laws were intended to protect small religious groups from undue burdens on practicing their faith in public life,” said Mark Tooley, president of the Institute on Religion and Democracy. “It was not imagined there would come a day when laws might seek to jail or financially destroy nuns, rabbis or Christian camp counselors who prefer to abstain from the next wave of sexual and gender experimentation. And there's always a next wave.”

The bill's supporters note that it does not end the government's right to coerce people of faith into violating their conscience in every situation. However, it requires that doing so has to serve a compelling government interest and the government must use the least restrictive means possible. “There will be times when a state or federal government can show it has a compelling reason for burdening religious expression – to ensure public safety, for instance,” said Sarah Torre, an expert at the Heritage Foundation. “But Religious Freedom Restoration Acts set a high bar for the government to meet in order to restrict religious freedom.”

Restricting the ability of government to interfere in people's private decisions, especially their religious decisions, is the very purpose of the Constitution, its supporters say.

"Religious freedom is the cornerstone of all liberty for all people,” Tooley said. “Deny or reduce it, and there are no ultimate limits on the state's power to coerce."

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Fight pornography. Beat pornography. And join the ranks of those who support their fellow men and women still fighting.
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Porn is transforming our men from protectors into predators. Fight back.

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By Jonathon van Maren

Since I’ve gotten involved in anti-pornography work, I’ve met countless men who struggle, fight, or have beaten pornography. Each person seems to deal with the guilt and shame that accompanies porn use in a different way—some deny that it’s “all that bad,” others pretend that they could “stop whenever they want,” many insist that “everyone is doing it,” and most, when pressed, admit to a deep sense of self-loathing.

One worry surfaces often in conversation: What do my past or current struggles with pornography say about me as a man? Can I ever move past this and have a meaningful and fulfilling relationship?

I want to address this question just briefly, since I’ve encountered it so many times.

First, however, I’ve written before how I at times dislike the language of “struggling” with pornography or pornography “addiction,” not because they aren’t accurate but because too often they are used as an excuse rather than an explanation. It is true, many do in fact “struggle” with what can legitimately be considered an addiction, but when this language is used to describe an interminable battle with no end (and I’ve met dozens of men for whom this is the case), then I prefer we use terminology like “fighting my porn habit.” A semantic debate, certainly, but one I think is important. We need to stop struggling with porn and start fighting it.

Secondly, pornography does do devastating things to one’s sense of masculinity. We know this. Pornography enslaves men by the millions, perverting their role as protector and defender of the more vulnerable and turning them into sexual cannibals, consuming those they see on-screen to satisfy their sexual appetites.

What often starts as mere curiosity or an accidental encounter can turn into something that invades the mind and twists even the most basic attractions. I’ve met porn users who can’t believe the types of things they want to watch. They haven’t simply been using porn. Porn has actively reshaped them into something they don’t recognize and don’t like. 

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Porn is this generation’s great assault on masculinity and the role of men in society. It is essential that we win this battle for the sake of society’s survival. Contrary to what the gender-bending and family-morphing progressive elites claim, good husbands and good fathers and good church leaders are necessary for a healthy society. But pornography is destroying marriages, creating distant and disconnected fathers, and, metaphoricaclly castrating men, hindering their ability and desire to make a positive difference in the society around us.

So, with this sobering set of facts in mind let’s return to the question: what do pornography struggles, past and present, say about a man?

The proper way to respond is with everything that is good about masculinity. We have to fight pornography as men have fought countless evils throughout the ages. We need to fight pornography to protect women, and wives, and children, and our society at large. This is how pornography threatens society, by castrating men, and turning them from protectors into predators. Rooting out the evil in our own lives allows us to better fulfill the role we are called to perform in the lives of others. Battling our own demons enables us to battle the wider cultural demons. Every day without porn is another bit of virtue built. Virtue is not something you’re born with. Virtues are habits that you build. And one day without porn is the first step towards the virtue of being porn-free.

Many men ask me if men who have had past porn addictions are cut out for being in a relationship or working in the pro-life movement or in other areas where we are called to protect and defend the weak and vulnerable. And the answer to that is an unequivocal yes. Our society needs men who know what it means to fight battles and win. Our society needs men who can say that they fought porn and they beat porn, because their families and their friends were too important to risk. Our society needs men who rose to the challenge that the evils of their generation threw at them, and became better men as the result. And our society needs men who can help their friends and their sons and those around them fight the plague of pornography and free themselves from it, too—and who can understand better and offer encouragement more relevant than someone who has fought and been freed themselves?

So the answer to men is yes. Fight pornography. Beat pornography. And join the ranks of those who support their fellow men and women still fighting. Lend them support and encouragement. We cannot change the fact that porn has left an enormous path of destruction in its wake. But we can change the fact that too many people aren’t fighting it. We can change our own involvement. And we can rise to the challenge and face this threat to masculinity with all that is good about masculinity.

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Red Alert!

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By John-Henry Westen

I don’t like having to do this, but we have always found it best to be totally upfront with our readers: our Spring fundraising campaign is now worrying us! 

You see, with just 6 days remaining, we have only raised 30% of our goal, with $125,000 still left to raise. That is a long ways to go yet.

We have no choice but to reach our minimum goal of $175,000 if we are going to be able to continue serving the 5+ million readers who rely on us every month for investigative and groundbreaking news reports on life, faith and family issues.

Every year, LifeSite readership continues to grow by leaps and bounds. This year, we are again experiencing record-breaking interest, with over 6 million people visiting our website last month alone!

This unprecedented growth in turn creates its own demand for increased staff and resources, as we struggle to serve these millions of new readers.

And especially keep this in mind. As many more people read LifeSite, our mission of bringing about cultural change gets boosted. Our ultimate goal has always been to educate and activate the public to take well-informed, needed actions.

Another upside to our huge growth in readers is that it should be that much easier to reach our goal. To put it simply: if each person who read this one email donated whatever they could (even just $10) we would easily surpass our goal! 

Today, I hope you will join the many heroes who keep this ship afloat, and enable us to proclaim the truth through our reporting to tens of millions of people every year!

Your donations to LifeSite cause major things to happen! We see that every day and it is very exciting. Please join with us in making a cultural impact with a donation of ANY AMOUNT right now. 

You can also donate by phone or mail. We would love to hear from you!

Thank you so much for your support. 

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