Did you know that JP Ministries offers a free 6 day Bible reading plan on the YouVersion Bible app? (Click here to start the plan.) Attached below is a sneak peak of the plan. Here is Day 2: FREEDOM Through The Holy Spirit.
Without a relationship with Jesus, freedom from addiction is practically impossible. When you become a true follower of Christ, the Holy Spirit takes root inside of you and gives you the power to become who God created you to be and break free from addiction. The Holy Spirit connects us to God in the most intimate and powerful ways possible.
Have you wondered when sexual shame first entered the world? In this blog post we will look at the creation story and the fall to see how sexual shame entered this world. Then we will discuss how biblical community is a key factor in finding freedom from sexual shame. I pray that you will feel encouraged and challenged to enter into community and share your story with trusted and safe people.
In the Garden of Eden, God created Adam, and God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen. 2:18). Then God created Eve. Then, God saw all that he had made, and he said that it was very good (1:31).
Adam and Eve fully knew and loved each other. They walked around naked and felt no shame. They took pleasure in one another. God blessed them and commanded them to be fruitful and increase in number (1:28). God created them to have sex, to enjoy one another’s bodies, to live naked and unashamed.
Without other humans, they had only each other. They were fully known and fully loved. God saw the man and woman’s relationship, and he loved it. God loved their connection. Adam said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (v. 23).
The author of Genesis then explains God’s intent for marriage: “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh. Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame” (2:24–25). God’s first conversation with mankind included sex, yet churches fail to talk about it. God created husband and wife to live naked and unashamed.
Looking for a speaker for your next youth event? Invite Joy Pedrow Skarka to talk about pornography and purity with your youth group. Below is a video from a purity conference in Burleson, Texas. Joy spoke on freedom from pornography for teen girls.
To book Joy please fill out the contact form or send Joy an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and she will be in touch within 24 hours.
Over a year later, I still experience daily pain all over my body. Physical pain has followed me around for months like baby ducks following their mama. Pain has left me asking theological questions: How can I suffer well? How can I not give up hope for healing? I want to believe that God will use this season for his good. I want to believe that he has not forgotten about me. I want to cope and find comfort in the Creator of the universe instead of his created things like food, movies, and aspirin. But what do we do when those things are the only things that bring us a few seconds of relief?
Maybe you aren’t suffering with physical pain, but I bet you’re suffering from something. Maybe you are grieving the loss of a loved one. Maybe you’re struggling with depression. Maybe you feel stuck in addiction and chained to pornography. Maybe you are single and have sexual desires, and don’t know what to do with them. We all experience suffering.
I surveyed my friends on social media and asked them about suffering. I asked two questions: Do you suffer well? If so, how do you suffer well? The responses flooded into my inbox and comment section. Everyone is struggling. We must get out of isolation and share our pain with those around us. Their wisdom was so encouraging to me that I wanted to share it with you.
How do we suffer well? Let’s read their wise words:
Dr. Sandra Glahn invited me to write this 19 part series on rape culture for her blog, Aspire2.com. All 19 parts to the series are listed below. By the end of this series, I hope that you will be able to see examples of rape culture in your daily life, understand that these cultural narratives dominate media, and take steps to help change these dynamics.
Every 98 seconds an American is sexually assaulted. Women and girls experience sexual violence at higher rates than men and boys. Eighty-two percent of all juvenile victims are female, and ninety percent of adult rape victims are female. Sexual assault affects everyone around us, yet most of the perpetrators walk away. Out of 1,000 rapes, 995 perpetrators will not go to jail. Because of this fact and many other reasons which this series will cover, many people do not report crimes to the police. Only 230 out of every 1,000 sexual assaults are even reported to authorities. That means about three out of four go unreported.*
Do you minster to women who are struggling with different types of crises and traumas? The book, Crisis Counseling, is a great resource to turn to again and again as different circumstances are brought up. I frequently use the counseling skills listed below in my current ministry to women struggling with sexual brokenness and in my future ministry with college students. All ten skills listed below have been taken and adapted from Crisis Counseling. You can buy the book here.
Hello! My friend Cynthia Hester interviewed me for a profile piece for HeartStrong Faith. She wrote a beautiful article on how God changed my life and gave me a passion to help women. Here are a few of her words:
“I think if we can break women free from shame, they’ll have an easier time breaking free from sexual sin,” Joy Pedrow Skarka explains. An adventure-seeking millennial, she loves friend dates, Texas tacos, traveling adventures, and Florida beach time. Joy speaks about subjects on which some feel shame. Recently a young woman approached Joy after she spoke to high school girls at a youth conference and asked in a guilt-ridden voice, “Am I a horrible person because sometimes I think about having sex?” Joy answers hard questions on topics often considered taboo.
Joy’s ministry mantra, “creating spaces to free women from shame,” provides the focus for her multi-platform ministry and her doctoral dissertation research at Dallas Theological Seminary. Driven by the desire to see change face-to-face, Joy speaks at churches, seminary events, college retreats, and women’s groups. She especially enjoys disciplining women through online and in-person small groups. She created her joypedrow.com ministry blog six years ago, and currently sends it to 3,000 email subscribers. The blog covers many topics including singleness, body image, pornography, sexual abuse, and sexual addiction…
How many sermons have you heard on singleness and sexuality? Sadly, many churches fail to cover these topics in messages. Our singles are believing the lie that something is wrong with them for having sexual desires and curiosities. Can we free these women from shame and share the message that God created them as sexual beings? We need to talk about singleness and sexuality because our single members are asking questions like, “What do we do with our sexual desires?” If we don’t provide these answers, pornography could become their solution.
When the church views marriage as the ultimate goal, we are hurting everyone. We hurt the singles now and we hurt them again if they get married because they are entering marriage thinking that marriage is the solution. The real and lasting solution is Jesus. Yes, I’m married. And yes, I still have all the same issues I had when I was single. Marriage didn’t fix me. Marriage didn’t heal my addiction to masturbation and pornography, Jesus did. Marriage is not our highest calling, but rather following Jesus is our highest calling.
Friends, family, roommates, and strangers have asked me, “Why do you blog?” I smile and wonder where to start. There are so many reasons why I started this ministry. I think about my readers and the encouraging comments they leave, the community that has formed between other bloggers and myself, the pleasure I get in writing a post, or the excitement I feel sharing each post.