For Robert Friedman, 33, the story of his redemption began with the addiction that has caused many individuals, particularly men, to lose themselves in the “spiritual battle” of lust.
Statistics show that the number of Christians who struggle with pornography is equal to the number of non-Christians who suffer from this addiction, according to the online ministry Proven Men.
I realized that continuing in sin opens the door for other areas of your life to be dismantled and in the end, you’ll lose a lot more that you are willing to give.” Robert Friedman
As a former member of a local mega-church and a professing Christian, Friedman served as a young adults’ ministry leader.
“I realized that continuing in sin opens the door for other areas of your life to be dismantled and in the end, you’ll lose a lot more that you are willing to give,” Friedman said. “What started as a beautiful marriage, turned into a period of misery. This addiction in my life effected the one of the most important values I held near and dear and that was my marriage.”
As Friedman’s marriage continued on a downward spiral, his wife began to grow weary of their relationship. After Friedman’s wife threatened to leave him on several occasions Friedman thought about committing suicide by cutting himself. He continued to explain that his emotions were one of several areas in his life that were negatively impacted by this addiction.
As a result, Friedman inflicted minor injury on his wrist in a desperate attempt to maintain the marriage between himself and his wife. He was admitted into a hospital for suicide watch over the course of 24 hours. It was during this dark time that Robert Friedman believes he received a revelation from God, and it changed his life.
Because he was confined to a space and not able leave, Friedman asked for a Bible to read. For the duration of that time, he placed his focus on studying of the Bible.
“In the midst of losing everything, I found the one and only thing I truly needed: that was Jesus Christ,” Friedman said.
After gaining an extensive amount of revelation, he also lost the love of his life and was never to be seen from again. Friedman continued to feel the urging of Christ to let go of all worries and material possessions that kept him away from a relationship with God.
“God was pushing me to trust Him with all my heart,” Friedman said. “The only material thing I had left was my home. There was a family at my church that came from Nicaragua to America looking for a place to stay and was struggling to make it…I gave that family my house to stay in. For me, this was the ultimate test for me to trust solely of God from where my needs may come.”
After this, Friedman traveled to Puerto Rico to stay with his mother for a period of time until he reestablished himself.
“In the midst of losing everything, I found the one and only thing I truly needed: that was Jesus Christ,” Friedman said. “I went to many conferences and seminars, and I didn’t feel true hunger for God. What broke [my addiction] was pure hunger and thirst for God’s Word.”
Now a member of Jesus Ministries International, Friedman emphasizes that it is vital to be a part of a church community that desires to uplift each other, as well as keep each other accountable, by consistently implementing the Word of God in their lives.