Fight the New Drug

Fight the New Drug Video: My porn recovery story

***To see my featured talk "How Love Defeats Porn" given at the Catholic Information Center in Washington, D.C. click here. ***

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Today I decided to check my voicemail messages on the phone I haven't used in three months.  There were some friends and family who just missed me before I shut down my phone before I headed off to Costa Rica giving their well wishes.  Then I decided to listen to whatever old messages I had saved.  I apparently had a lot more than I expected---a whole year's worth.  25 minutes later of listening to various people, I felt a mix of emotions:

I felt loved.
A lot of people love you, Matt.  If you ever forget that, listen to your voicemail.  People checking up on you, saying they miss you, love you, saying Happy Birthday, all that jazz.  It kind of reminded me of a couple days ago when I arrived here, I received an influx of close friends saying we should hang out, which, by the way I'm already excited for our epic man-trip on New Years to PA.  I'm a blessed guy with great family and friends.  I consider myself one of the luckiest guys in the world because of this.

I felt like I failed.
There's one guy on there who called me a couple times and always tried to hang out with me, and I never got to hanging out with him.  He was a freshman at CUA and must've been lonely, and I hardly did much about it.  I'm sorry man.  Sometimes I feel that way at the school in Costa Rica, when there's opportunities or people I know I should reach, but fail to do so.  I can't reach everyone and sometimes it's hard to accept that.  But I have to remind myself that we can only do so much, God will take care of the rest.

I felt bittersweet.
Messages from my 'ol girlfriend---oh her sweet, annoying voice that I used to shake my head about (and still do).  I can say that on here because I always told her how annoying she was even when we were dating and much in love.  I deleted all her messages, except for one, one that she sang her whole message in the most annoying way knowing she was being ridiculous.  Maybe I'll play it for her one day when she's forgotten how obnoxious she is.

I felt like I shouldn't laugh.
One early message was from a high school friend who was updating me about her life, and how that included this "wonderful boy" named so and so.  I shouldn't be confused with the other boy she used to date who had the same name as the current boy she's dating but should be well-informed how this one is way much better.  Much later in my string of messages from other people, I get another message from this same friend.  How she broke up with said-boy and she doesn't know what to do.  What happened, girl?  Haha.

I felt sad.
In the middle of loving messages, interview call backs, and Happy Birthdays, I listened to a message that reminded me of a time I wasn't happy.  It was a call from the counseling center asking me about my appointment to come over there.  The fact there weren't any more messages from the 'ol loved one after that one isn't just coincidence.

I felt like a brother.
I received a couple messages from a couple true brothers who I started these accountability pacts with.  One left me a string of Irish whistle songs.  Haha, we were both in a rut and for accountability we told each other that we would do something productive for the week, so he told me how he would learn a new song on his Irish whistle and leave his progress on my voicemail each night.  So I have a string of three or four messages of him playing the Irish whistle on my phone.  Haha, he'll get a kick out of it when I let him hear it one day.

Another friend of mine left me a message this past summer.  We were both in a rut with prayer life, and we made an accountability pact how we would improve.  He left me a message during my week at Faithful Servant, a time I was incredibly happy, about his progress with his personal prayer.  I hope he's doing great still, as he's getting ready to get married soon.

Today I listened to my voicemail.  A whole year's worth of messages.  Thank you, Lord, for all of them.



  1. I'm glad you had all these voicemail messages to remind you of how loved and missed you are. Enjoy your time home. Merry Christmas!

  2. Love the post man, I've been trying to keep updated here and there on your updates and it's humbling to hear your stories and experiences and the kind of work (life/teaching/Godliness?) that's going on. I know I'm still working on hopping in and out of the rut, but I'm pretty sure I'm at least moving down the road and working to make sure it's in the right direction. Hope your visit back home is awesome and that you and your family have a Merry Christmas!