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The 700 Club

When Desires Lead to Conviction and Guilt

Randy Rudder - 700 Club Producer
Robert Hull - 700 Club Producer

“It was really a cycle of going through guilt and conviction and then having all these desires. And so I’d feed those desires, and then crashing down with guilt and conviction again. It was just a rollercoaster.” 

Brady says he was 12 when he was first exposed to pornography. “One of my friends, he had taken a magazine from his dad’s collection. And even to this day, I can still remember that first image that I looked at. It opened up my mind to a world that I had never been exposed to.  And so I really wanted to just explore that. “

Not long after that, Brady and another male friend had their first sexual encounter. Brady says, “We began taking about sex and then eventually we did start experimenting with each other. It occurred to me that I should probably talk to somebody about this, but I never did, just out of fear of what they would think, fear of what my parents would think.”

After High School, he joined the Navy. “I had been stationed in Hawaii. My desires to be with men really kind of amped up at that point. There’s a lot of opportunities. There’s different bars and different hangouts and those kind of things,” says Brady.

Brady’s promiscuity was always in conflict with his Christian upbringing. “God was convicting me during those times that ‘Hey you know, this isn’t the right way.’ But after that guilt, and those convictions would wear off, you know, it would become more and more difficult to abstain from those things.” 

Brady was discharged from the service and returned to Oklahoma, where he married his high school sweetheart, and they had two children.  All the while Brady kept his secret life hidden. “I loved my first wife with my whole heart. I believed that. if I married this woman, if I had this woman with me, every day of my life, maybe those – maybe that would help, you know, stave off this desire.”

For many years, Brady was faithful to his wife and stayed active in his church. But in 2006, the couple made plans to celebrate their tenth anniversary.  He says, “We had planned an eight-day trip to Hawaii. And I should have recognized that that was gonna be a trigger for me. It was probably about three or four days into our trip, I went back to that first gay beach that I had gone to back whenever I had first moved to Hawaii. And I had a hookup with a gentleman that I had met on the beach.”

That trip set James back to his old pattern for several more years.  He says, “I had gone six years without cheating on my wife. I had made this commitment to God that I had now broken. Whenever we got back from our trip, I kind of had this mindset of I just didn't really care anymore about that, and about suppressing that. I had gotten my first desktop computer and, of course, that just opens up a whole new world as far as pornography is concerned. I did kind of go into this deep hole of pornography and just kind of buried myself in that. I started meeting other men.”

Brady and his wife began attending a different church, despite the fact that her health began deteriorating from diabetes. “She wanted to be at church. She knew that she wasn’t going to be here a lot longer and she wanted to make the most of it.” He says.

In 2013, Brady’s Pastor invited him to attend a conference. “I really had reached this point of hopelessness,” says Brady. “I would have thoughts of suicide because – just because of that despair and just that guilt that I had felt. I had really stopped hearing from God and I wasn't able to hear His voice anymore. All of a sudden, I felt like this desire to go to this conference, that I needed to be there. Looking back at that moment, I know that it was God, it was the Holy Spirit.” Brady’s life was changed that weekend. “I'd never been to a prayer conference. Pastor Cory Jones, that was one of his conferences. He's felt led to, you know, just bring the church back to praying, and back to a commitment of really crying out to God. And that's what his conference was about.”

At one point in the conference, Brady felt a hand on his shoulder. He says, “I connected eyes with the pastor. Within about 25 or 30 seconds, he was standing next to me. And he had his hand on my shoulder and he had just begun to pray over me. He said that whenever he was sitting there on the stage looking out at the crowd that my face was the only face that he could see, that everything else was kinda blurred out. God told Pastor Cory, ‘I want you to go and pray that he would be filled with the Spirit.’ for the first time in my life I began to feel the manifest presence of the Holy Spirit just falling on me. And it was a powerful, powerful thing. All of that sin, I could literally feel it leaving my body. And it was in that moment that I just began to weep uncontrollably, just tears pouring out of my face and, it was maybe about ten seconds later I realized that sin that I had asked God for 26 years to take out of my life, I could feel that leaving my body, literally leaving my body. And at that point I began to laugh uncontrollably because I was so happy and I was so excited to finally be free of this. You know, I knew that it was authentic. I knew that this was an actual encounter with the Holy Spirit, with God.”

He began being discipled at his new church and has never looked back. “The freedom that I felt from that encounter with the Holy Spirit was – it was life changing. I knew that this was different. I knew that this was, this was forever not just something that I did on my own,” Brady says.

Sadly, Brady’s first wife passed away in 2014 as a result of complications from her diabetes.  Two years later, Brady married Raquel. They now have a blended family of four and are both involved in ministry. Brady says, “If I could say anything to anybody that's struggling today with that, maybe suicidal thoughts, or maybe just depression, or maybe just hopelessness, I want them to know that Jesus is real, that Jesus is still in the business of changing people, that He cares about you deeply and that He doesn't want you to live this life that you're living. There is true freedom that is available to them. Just don’t give up on hope.”

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