Donny's Ramblings

National Porn Sunday: Overwhelming

14 Comments

Today is National Porn Sunday. I was flown into Oklahoma City to spend the weekend with the XXXChurch team at LifeChurch.tv, who hosted this event. I have to tell you: Life Church overwhelms me. This church has done something no other has done before: they use advanced technology to broadcast to more than 40 services on 12 Campuses – more than 20,000 people. Each campus has a Campus Pastor, holds their own worship service, then tunes into a live broadcast from the main campus when it’s time for the sermon. Their incredible website also streams the service live to a worldwide audience.

Besides the 12 LifeChurch.tv campuses, almost 100 other churches participated in National Porn Sunday. Each of them was sent a kit which included a DVD, the same DVD that was shown here in Oklahoma. A few blog entries back I posted a trailer. Now you can see the entire production by clicking here.

Between services I had the opportunity to meet and speak with some of those in attendance. Such meetings always move me. At every service at which I’ve spoken, there are always people who thank me for being “so brave”, putting myself out there and telling my story, telling me how God touched them while hearing it, encouraging me to continue doing what I’m doing, telling me that God is going to use me in powerful ways.

I don’t feel brave.

I don’t know how to respond when someone tells me that I am.

I feel humbled that people are touched. I can’t put into words how it makes that part of the Bible come to life for me… the part where it tells us God can use ALL things for good. I’ve produced almost 2 million pornographic images and shot hours of video content. I’ve contributed to ruined lives, both of the people involved in my productions as well as the families torn apart by the pain caused by pornography. Yet God uses my story to touch others? I never get over that. I hope the day never comes when that doesn’t give me goose bumps. It’s easy to feel like I’m not worthy to be used by Him.

A man recently pulled me aside at a Porn and Pancakes event and asked how he could forgive himself for the depths to which he’d sunk. He told me that there was nobody he could talk to, but he wanted to tell me what was on his mind, because after 9 years in the porn world, I could probably listen without falling over in shock. He then told me of things he’d done. It’s not something I’ve heard very often, and I don’t want to share it here. I have to admit I didn’t expect him to say the words that escaped his mouth. But he also told me he’d repented repeatedly, asked God’s forgiveness, spoken at length with his wife about the issue, and was actively involved in personal counseling. I felt like God wanted him to know that he’d been given a gift of grace and forgiveness. Not forgiving HIMSELF was like taking that gift and telling God it wasn’t good enough.

I have to remind myself of the same thing sometimes.

Last evening and this morning thousands upon thousands of people saw my face and heard my story. Some of those who approached afterward acted as if I was some sort of celebrity. One woman thanked me for talking to her. To those of you who meet me in the future, please…please…please… don’t do that.

I am Donny. I’m hard headed. I’m stubborn. I’m a sinner. I often times have a short temper. I’m overweight because I like food more than I should. I’m a man who made a living hurting people for 9 years. I feel like thanking YOU for talking to ME. You show Jesus when you talk to me with respect and compassion, rather than venting your anger and frustration at what I’ve done with my life, especially if your own lives have been negatively affected by porn. I really want every reader to understand that.

If you want to encourage me by telling me that God touched you while hearing how He transformed my life with HIS power, I am happy to listen. When you tell me you’re proud of me for speaking out and for enrolling in Seminary, I am strengthened. You are my brothers and my sisters. I feel a love for each of you that I can’t describe. Those are not cliché words in a blog article, I mean them. I love you guys. I love PEOPLE. I love being introduced to your families. I love hearing your stories. Every story you tell me fascinates me, even when overwhelmed by crowds flocking around wanting to shake hands after services, I really like hearing them. They remind me that my life now has a purpose. They remind me, as stated earlier, that the God I serve is so powerful he can use anything to do his work. Even a man who produced pornography.

You inspire me.

—-

This morning I listened to a woman tell Craig Gross that she was inspired to work with the homeless after reading his book The Gutter. That was really cool.

—-

My first residency begins October 20th. Yes, Seminary has begun! I’m excited.

—-

To my dad…

Dad, you have been great. During all the years I was producing porn you stuck up for me to those who gave you grief about my decisions, telling them that I’m your son and you love me no matter what. I never felt like you were passing judgment on me. Not once. People ask all the time if our relationship has been restored since I surrendered my life to God. I am proud to tell them it was never in need of restoration. I love you, dad. I know you’ve always found reasons to be proud of me, ’cause that’s what good daddy’s do. But I’ve also seen the difference in you since this New Life has begun. I know you’re proud for many different reasons now, and I wish you could be at these events with me. Your efforts teaching the right way didn’t go to waste, dad.

“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he’s old it won’t depart from him.”
God knows what He’s talking about, doesn’t He?

You are a man I am very proud to call my father.

14 thoughts on “National Porn Sunday: Overwhelming

  1. donny – entries like these are why i love reading this blog…always touching and heartfelt…thanks again

  2. donny – entries like these are why i love reading this blog…always touching and heartfelt…thanks again

  3. AND YOU DO IT AGAIN… sheesh…. I didn’t wear waterproof scara today… talk about scara!!!

    I love you so much brother… I can only imagine what God has in store for you… that last note to your dad really struck my spirit… hmmmmmmm? Wonder if you and your dad will ever speak publicly together.

    Did I say I love you brother?

    Kudos!

  4. AND YOU DO IT AGAIN… sheesh…. I didn’t wear waterproof scara today… talk about scara!!!

    I love you so much brother… I can only imagine what God has in store for you… that last note to your dad really struck my spirit… hmmmmmmm? Wonder if you and your dad will ever speak publicly together.

    Did I say I love you brother?

    Kudos!

  5. Donny – Great post. When you begin to see yourself as God sees you, you’re getting it.

    I love this paragraph: I am Donny. I’m hard headed. I’m stubborn. I’m a sinner. I often times have a short temper. I’m overweight because I like food more than I should. I’m a man who made a living hurting people for 9 years. I feel like thanking YOU for talking to ME. You show Jesus when you talk to me with respect and compassion, rather than venting your anger and frustration at what I’ve done with my life, especially if your own lives have been negatively affected by porn. I really want every reader to understand that.

    There is something totally freeing about being open with the world about who you are and not putting up a front. There is more grace available than we would ever have imagined, and we need it more than we ever realized, no? God Bless.

    Dave

  6. Donny – Great post. When you begin to see yourself as God sees you, you’re getting it.

    I love this paragraph: I am Donny. I’m hard headed. I’m stubborn. I’m a sinner. I often times have a short temper. I’m overweight because I like food more than I should. I’m a man who made a living hurting people for 9 years. I feel like thanking YOU for talking to ME. You show Jesus when you talk to me with respect and compassion, rather than venting your anger and frustration at what I’ve done with my life, especially if your own lives have been negatively affected by porn. I really want every reader to understand that.

    There is something totally freeing about being open with the world about who you are and not putting up a front. There is more grace available than we would ever have imagined, and we need it more than we ever realized, no? God Bless.

    Dave

  7. This is a very special post Donny.

    I’m really glad to know you, and I’m proud of you!

  8. This is a very special post Donny.

    I’m really glad to know you, and I’m proud of you!

  9. Awesome. Hey, I’m very excited to learn more about Porn Sunday for next year at my church. It seems like such an awesome thing.

    I had a high school junior come up to me on Sunday basically asking for what Porn Sunday would provide: a forum to be open and honest. It was definitely a confirmation that what God has been working on in my mind NEEDS to become a reality at my church.

    Keep fighting the fight. Isn’t God amazing?

  10. Awesome. Hey, I’m very excited to learn more about Porn Sunday for next year at my church. It seems like such an awesome thing.

    I had a high school junior come up to me on Sunday basically asking for what Porn Sunday would provide: a forum to be open and honest. It was definitely a confirmation that what God has been working on in my mind NEEDS to become a reality at my church.

    Keep fighting the fight. Isn’t God amazing?

  11. I am totally blown away – in awe of God – that over 20,000 people showed up for this message. Divine appointment, speaking on pronography, this ministry merely scratches the surface of your call. Holy crap, donny. I can’t even imagine what lies ahead! 🙂

    That is what the Scriptures mean when they say,
    “No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
    and no mind has imagined
    what God has prepared
    for those who love him”
    – I cor 2:9 / Isaiah 64:4

    The Lord replied,
    “Look around at the nations;
    look and be amazed!
    For I am doing something in your own day,
    something you wouldn’t believe
    even if someone told you about it.”
    – Habakkuk 1:5 / Acts 13:41

    Then the Lord said to me,
    “Write my answer plainly on tablets,
    so that a runner can carry the correct message to others.
    This vision is for a future time.
    It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled.
    If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently,
    for it will surely take place.
    It will not be delayed.
    – Hab 2:2-3

    New Living Translation

  12. I am totally blown away – in awe of God – that over 20,000 people showed up for this message. Divine appointment, speaking on pronography, this ministry merely scratches the surface of your call. Holy crap, donny. I can’t even imagine what lies ahead! 🙂

    That is what the Scriptures mean when they say,
    “No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
    and no mind has imagined
    what God has prepared
    for those who love him”
    – I cor 2:9 / Isaiah 64:4

    The Lord replied,
    “Look around at the nations;
    look and be amazed!
    For I am doing something in your own day,
    something you wouldn’t believe
    even if someone told you about it.”
    – Habakkuk 1:5 / Acts 13:41

    Then the Lord said to me,
    “Write my answer plainly on tablets,
    so that a runner can carry the correct message to others.
    This vision is for a future time.
    It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled.
    If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently,
    for it will surely take place.
    It will not be delayed.
    – Hab 2:2-3

    New Living Translation

  13. Donny;

    I am constantly reminded that we are just caretakers of that to which God has intrusted us with. He has always been the potter in your life. I stand in awe of what God is creating. Remain plyable. The best is yet to come.

  14. Donny;

    I am constantly reminded that we are just caretakers of that to which God has intrusted us with. He has always been the potter in your life. I stand in awe of what God is creating. Remain plyable. The best is yet to come.

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