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In this episode, Leading Saints Executive Director, Kurt Francom, shares his closing session from the Liberating Saints Virtual Summit. He approaches the subject of supporting and mentoring someone through a difficult struggle with pornography, from a doctrinal standpoint.
3:00 Approaching the topic from a doctrinal standpoint
4:20 Behaviors vs doctrine/heart
5:15 “The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior. Preoccupation with unworthy behavior can lead to unworthy behavior. That is why we stress so forcefully the study of the doctrines of the gospel.“—Boyd K. Packer
6:40 Change the heart, leading to a change in behavior
8:00 How Satan tempts us, catching us in our own traps by creating contention in our hearts (Doctrine & Covenants 10:12, 26, 63)
- 11:10 Satan’s attack on our identity causes contention (Moses 4:11, Matthew 4:3)
- 14:00 Setting our own trap (example from The Lion King)
- 17:15 Steve’s story of overcoming addiction
19:40 Satan uses shame to alter identity
- “As a shame researcher, I’ve learned that wherever perfectionism is driving us, shame is riding shotgun.”—Brene Brown
- 22:20 “What does that say about you as a person?”—Sam Tielemans
23:15 The adversary’s work and glory is to destroy the agency of man. Shame leads to altered identity which leads to a lack of agency.
24:55 “I am an addict”
- “No one wants to be defined by their hardest struggle, and so we have to find this really interesting space between owning it and identifying it but reject being labeled by it and reduced by it.”—Brene Brown
- 27:00 Does this reduce or expand the individual’s identity?
29:50 Examples of Tom and Tim in the bishop’s office
33:10 A change of heart leads to good behavior
- Offer hope
- Explore doctrines (especially mercy and grace)
- Admit you can’t “fix” them
- Define the purpose of the behaviors (CPR: church, prayer, read scriptures)
- Turn them towards their Father
- Overwhelm them with connection
44:20 Story of James
47:45 Disappointment: another tactic of the adversary
- The principal’s office, the dentist’s office, and the bishop’s office
- 51:10 Contention created when we believe God is disappointed in us
52:30 Can God be disappointed? Can God be surprised?
- Doctrine & Covenants 3:1-3
- Doctrine & Covenants 10:67
- “Repentance isn’t His backup plan in the event we might fail. Repentance is His plan, knowing that we will.”—Lynn G. Robbins
57:10 Example of learning to walk and falling down
- “This shepherd, our Good Shepherd, finds joy in seeing His diseased sheep progress toward healing.”—Dale G. Renlund
- “A car is made to run on gasoline, and it would not run properly on anything else. Now God designed the human machine to run on himself. He himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other.”—C.S. Lewis
1:01:15 Kurt’s scripture study shame cycle example: “You could _______ and I’d still love you.”
1:05:45 “The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us.”—C.S. Lewis
1:06:20 John 14:16
1:07:50 The Heart of Man movie clip: Think of the violin as commandments and covenants
1:10:10 If ye love me, hold on to my commandments
- Abraham 3:26, Doctrine & Covenants 78:18
- Alma 33:16
- Romans 8:38-39
1:13:50 Luke 15:20 When he was yet a great way off
“The Atonement Works for Me”: One Couple’s Recovery from Sexual Addiction
Brene Brown TED talk: Listening to Shame
James’ story on the Unashamed, Unafraid podcast
The Heart of Man movie clip
The Heart of Man movie
Read the TRANSCRIPT of this podcast
I learned about your podcast from a friend several months back and have become a regular listener now.
This one was particularly poignant for me.
My name is Tommie Farrell. I am an addict recovering through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Due to my Savior I have been able to be worthy to serve as a Bishop, then an Addiction Recovery Missionary and now as a member of the Stake Presidency. In that context I strongly testify of the truths you taught in this podcast.
When we discuss the “mysteries of God” it is not the minutia doctrines that some research it is understanding well and expounding clearly the true meaning of the Atonement that the adversary has blurred and hidden in our culture. You have done this so well.
Thanks for giving such a great service with this podcasts.
I need to do more than appreciate and listen. I will be speaking to my wife about supporting.
If I can ever be a service to you let me know.
I loved this episode and listened to it multiple times. Thanks so much for you Ministering via this medium. This episode has so much beneficial content. One benefit, I was just thinking about, is it helped me understand myself better in this regard; I seem to have an addiction to constant intellectual input. I have an insatiable appetite to constantly learn something new. I call it an addiction because why is it that when I find some great new wisdom, why don’t I put focused effort on implementing that thing in my life? Why is it when I find that great source of information I’m digging for more content from that source or other sources equally as great? I think it’s because the content that truly is worthwhile, for me, changes my heart and then the behaviors follow. When I was younger and would try to implement the “10 steps to success” from whatever self help source, I found very quickly if a behavior is not motivated from my heart, it’s not sustainable. I could only “force” a behavior for a short time. So I keep searching for the content that touches my heart and results in an “unforced” change.
At times, I have wondered what is wrong with me. Am I just lazy because I’m not implementing so much of the so-called wisdom I have come across? Or do I listen to so much content so I can have something intelligent to say to others?
But then occasionally I come across something like this podcast that really touches my heart and instantly expands my level of compassion for my husband who has had struggles in his past with an addiction or for my young women who I see struggling.
I’d like to add my testimony to Elder Packer’s statement “The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior…” There is something miraculous that happens with this, particularly when it is scripture. The only way I can explain it is it has to have something to do with becoming like Jesus Christ and his mercy and grace being granted. In addition to this, I believe there is also something miraculous that happens when we share our hearts and stories with each other and grow in Jesus Christ together, so I will keep searching for the content that changes my heart.
Thank you so very much for making available a transcript for us visual learners.