The Uncut Truth, Vol. 12

Taming Lust

The word ‘lust’ is often limited in its meaning. We should carefully consider this word and the broad spectrum of sin that it describes. It is likely that many of us are guilty of the sin of lust without ever realizing the bondage that it has placed on us. Lust is greed for pleasure and lack of contentment with what God has provided. It involves an improper desire for things that may not be wrong in themselves, but our focus on them takes us into sinful lust.

I was only 12 years old when I lost my virginity. My very first time, I fell in love with sex and couldn’t wait to get more of it. There were plenty of times when I returned home — well past my curfew — with hickeys around my neck. From my aunt Sylvia finding a naked woman hiding in her office to me running away with a woman to another state, I was out of control. Notice I said woman, not a teenage girl. Within that same year, I was cuddled up with a woman when her phone rung. “What did she say?” I asked the woman after she spoke to my concerned mother. “She told me that you were only 15,” the woman said with her head down. She was embarrassed given how she had just asked me to move in with her. Like the other women, I lied and told her I was 18. She believed me because to tell the uncut truth, I didn’t look like I was 15 in some areas. I became so obsessed with forbidden fornication that I wanted to be a pornstar, I even made a home sex tape.

Prior to my incarceration, I had slept with more than 30 women before I was 17 years old. I thought I was going to be totally deprived of sex, but I was wrong. Throughout my prison stint, I’ve expressed my sexual desires through masterbation, pornagraphy, and female staff. I’ve also had adulterous relationships with women that were married.

In James 1:15 tells us, “When lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”

No matter how hard I tried to ignore my sexual greed, I had to accept my harsh reality. In efforts to address my immoral behavior, I prayed and reflected on my actions. I asked myself, “You’re a sex addict, so what are you going to do to keep your urges in check?” Prayer helped but I needed to do something more. I knew that I couldn’t overcome this addiction without God. I knew that change wasn’t going to happen overnight. I had to find an alternative to discipline myself. “What can you do, Latif?” I thought privately. “If writing helped me discover a better me, why wouldn’t it help me overcome my sex addiction?!”

Erotic writing. I found something that helped me control my sexual cravings. Whenever I felt those evil desires coming on, I picked up my tablet and wrote. Erotic writing limited me from lusting towards and/or including a woman — who’s not my wife — in my filthy sin. Although erotic writing wasn’t going to cure my problem, it was an exercise that helped me to tame the animal inside me. Whenever I finished writing, I would pray and talk to God about it. Erotic writing placed boundaries on me, but it still wasn’t cleaning up my dirty ways.

I was beginning to lose patience with God, questioning my worthiness in His kingdom. “What is it?” I said frustratedly. I wanted to be 100% free from my sinful bondage. Then suddenly a voice inside me instructed me to grab my Bible. I opened it and began reading all the scriptures on lust. After I read Ephesians 5:3-4 countless times, it finally dawned on me. “… But rather giving of thanks.” That was it! The cure to lust is to show gratefulness for what God has provided, not for what you lust. Almost instantly I felt a combination of relief, cleanness, and joy.

It took me over two decades to learn how to overcome my bad desires. Better late than never, right? If you’re suffering from any type of lust, I recommend that you get your Bible and turn to Ephesians 5:3-4. The key to overcome lust in all its form is to develop a mentality of gratitude and contentment. It won’t be easy; however, I can promise you that it’s well worth it. And darn it feels so good.

I am neither happy with sleeping with a lot of women, nor am I proud of my selfish, lustful past. However, I have taken full accountability for my ungodly actions, and I am avoiding death by means of lust. As a follower of God, it’s my obligation to work on my imperfections. I have. I did.