Become a Bookworm

“I cannot live without books” – Thomas Jefferson

I believe the most underrated and under-appreciated way to improve your life is through books.  I have been an avid reader my entire life. Both of my parents were readers and instilled that value in me.

However, far too many men do not read at all.  They say they don’t have time, or they don’t have the attention span, or books are too expensive.   Yet they binge watch Netflix, stayed glued to a sports game for three hours, and spend tons of money on cable or streaming services.   They choose the instant gratification of digital media over the time tested method of learning from books.  

Besides, how many times have you heard someone say, “The book was better” when they adapt a book into a film?   You know why that is? Because a book is so much more personal. You form the characters in your mind’s eye and infuse the story with your own imagination.  

The best way to learn is through books.  If you’re looking for 2020 to be “your year”,  start reading books.  

In 2019, I read or listened to 43 books. Many were historical. (I’m a huge history buff).  Some were self help or financial. Others were religious. Some were rereads and some were just for fun. A few were classics, others are brand new.  One was over 800 pages. Another was only 80. The books I read on men’s issues and pornography were essential to helping me stay pure in my fight with sexual addiction. I also listened to the entire Old Testament on the Bible app during my commute to and from work.

I know my life is better in 2020 because I applied what I learned in the books I read in 2019.  

My brothers, I challenge you to read more books in 2020.  You don’t need to read as many I do. I know I read A LOT, but take the time to maybe just read one book a month. I enjoy using audible as well and listen on my drive to work or while at the gym. The best time I’ve found to read is right before bed.  Instead of scrolling through your phone and consuming all that blue light that will wreck your sleep, read a chapter in a book.  You’ll relax, your mind will be clearer, and you’ll sleep better.  

So here is my list in order that I read them.  If you’d like any recommendations for books on a specific topic, drop me a line.  

1. Lost Moon – Jim Lovell

2. Deep Survival – Laurence Gonzales

3. First Man – James R. Hanson

4. The Case for Christ – Lee Stroebel

5. Furnishing Eternity – David Giffels

6. Man on the Moon – Andrew Chaikin

7. The Pastor’s Kid – Barnabas Piper

8. Failure Is Not An Option – Gene Krantz

9. Can’t Hurt Me – David Goggins

10. Catch Me If You Can – Frank Abagnale

11. No Easy Day – Matt Bissonette

12. Rich Dad Poor Dad – Robert Kiyosaki

13. Talking With Catholics About The Gospel – Chris Castaldo

14. Walk in the woods – Bill Bryson

16. Total Money Makeover – Dave Ramsey

18. Pandora’s Box – Jörn Leonhard

19. History of France – John Julius Norwich

20. The Preacher and the Presidents – Michael Duffy 

21. Indestructible – John R. Bruning

22. A World Undone – G.J. Meyer

23. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen R. Covey

24. Sons of Freedom – Geoffrey Waro 

25. Destiny of the Republic – Candice Millard

26. Surfing For God – Michael John Cusick

27. 31 Days to Masculinity – Hunter Drew

28. I Will Teach You To Be Rich – Rahit Sethi

30. Crucial Conversations – Joseph Grenny

31. Wild At Heart – John Eldridge

32. Disciplines of a Godly Man – R. Kent Hughes

33. King David – Jonathan Kirsch

34. The Abolition of Man – C.S. Lewis

35. Reclaim Your Manhood – Ryan Felman

36. Devil in the White City – Erik Larson

37. Iron John – Robert Bly

38. Pilgrim’s Progress – John Bunyan

39. At Home – Bill Bryson

40. Walden – Henry David Thoreau

41. A Purpose Driven Life – Rick Warren

42. 1984 – George Orwell

43. Lincoln’s Last Trial – Dan Abrams

44. Draw Away The Drizzle – Ashley Reigle (shameless plug for my wife’s children’s book)


Subscribe to my Email List for my free eBook!

Sign up for my email list and receive a free copy of my eBook, Power Over Porn: 7 Habits To Crush Temptation.  Implementing these daily habits into my life gave me the strength, courage, and determination to fight back and finally defeat my 15+ year Porn Addiction, and they can do the same for you!

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I Offer One-On-One Coaching

If at any point you feel like you need a brother to come alongside you and support you, I’ll be there.  I’d be happy to get on a call with you to provide personal guidance to create a plan to fight your addiction and accountability to keep you on track.  I’ve already helped dozens of men overcome their addictions; all who thought they were helpless.  I’ve discovered that every battle with porn shares the same few threads that, once unraveled, release you from the chains of addiction.  I’d love for you to be the next success story!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at timothy@intothewildernessblog.com or Direct Message me on Twitter if one-on-one coaching could help in your battle to live Porn Free.

Screenless Sundays

Taking on the “Into The Wilderness” challenge is going to push you outside of the way the rest of the world operates.  I often reference Romans 12 when it says, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.”  We are to think, to act, and to live differently than the world does.

What’s a way that men can live differently from the world?

Institute “Screenless Sundays”.

We all spend WAY too much time on our phones, on computers, and in front of the T.V.  We think we have to always be “connected” or we’ll miss out on something; the dreaded FOMO (fear of missing out).  We can’t go more than an hour without mindlessly scrolling through social media or checking for likes. If you have an iPhone, go to Settings-Screen Time and take a gander and how much time you’re spending daily on your phone.  The results will shock you. It’s not just phones either. Many of us spend eight hours a day staring at a computer screen at work. Then we come home and scroll through our phones while the 55 inch flat screen on the wall is blasting at us in 1080p.  We KNOW we should put our phones down and turn off the screens more often and experience life around us, but we are addicted to them.  

I’m calling on men to take a weekly day off from screens.  Put down the phone for an entire day. It’ll be much harder than you think.  If you must have it on for work or other necessities, keep the ringer on and set it down someplace that you can hear it but won’t be constantly looking at it.  I have “on-call” hours at work myself and can’t completely turn my phone off. I often use the “Do Not Disturb” feature. You can silence all notifications except for calls and texts from certain people you choose.   But if you’re able to, it’s best to just turn the damn thing off. Take the day off from the computer too. Emails can wait. Same with the T.V. Turn it off and read a book. Play a game with your kids. Go for a walk.   If you’re taking the PornFree2020 challenge, it’s an added bonus of a full day away from any temptation to look at porn.

I began taking a Screenless Sunday a few months ago and it’s been amazing.  I look forward to it every week. I have created great experiences with my family by being focused only on them, not on my phone.  It also allows for some much needed peace and quiet. I take time to read my Bible or a good book.  

Why Sundays you may ask?  Because Sundays are a special day that were are already commanded to set aside as different from the other days of the week.  It is a day that has been set aside as special from the beginning of time, literally. On the seventh day, “God had finished his work of creation, so he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because it was the day when he rested from all his work of creation.”  Taking a day of rest was even spelled out in the Ten Commandments given to Moses.  

The world has increasingly diminished the importance of a Sabbath; a day of rest.  Sundays are no longer held sacred. Sure, we might go to church, but that’s about it.  How many other things do we cram into our weekends when we should be spending time with God and with family?  Many kids sporting events are now held on Sundays. People spend their Sundays almost like a second Saturday doing chores, running errands, and going to all kinds of different events. Or we spend all Sunday “relaxing” watching football and pounding back beers.  

I’m calling on men to fight against the behavior and customs of the world and spend the Sabbath as God intended it to be: a time of rest, refreshment, studying His Word, and spending time with those we love with the screens turned off.

“bUt i’lL MiSs tHe gAmE BrO!”

Grow up.  Deal with it.  Football isn’t God.  Sure, you might not be able to chat with the boys around the watercooler on Monday.  Who cares? You’re improving yourself as a man. You’re doing what a man is supposed to do and taking control of his life and his family.  I’ll be doing a post on what I call the “Goddess of Sports” at another time.

Men, establish Screenless Sundays in your life.  I promise your life will improve because of it. You’ll grow closer to God by honoring His Sabbath and spending more time in His Word, you’ll create awesome experiences with your family by giving them 100% of your attention, and you’ll find your mind less cluttered with the worries of this world.  You’ll be, “transformed into a new person by changing the way you think.

Start this Sunday, you won’t regret it.


Subscribe to my Email List for my free eBook!

Sign up for my email list and receive a free copy of my eBook, Power Over Porn: 7 Habits To Crush Temptation.  Implementing these daily habits into my life gave me the strength, courage, and determination to fight back and finally defeat my 15+ year Porn Addiction, and they can do the same for you!

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I Offer One-On-One Coaching

If at any point you feel like you need a brother to come alongside you and support you, I’ll be there.  I’d be happy to get on a call with you to provide personal guidance to create a plan to fight your addiction and accountability to keep you on track.  I’ve already helped dozens of men overcome their addictions; all who thought they were helpless.  I’ve discovered that every battle with porn shares the same few threads that, once unraveled, release you from the chains of addiction.  I’d love for you to be the next success story!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at timothy@intothewildernessblog.com or Direct Message me on Twitter if one-on-one coaching could help in your battle to live Porn Free.

The Silent Cancer

There is something silently running rampant through today’s society.  It is ruining marriages, destroying families, and weakening men. And not enough people are even talking about it let alone fighting against it.   This secret cancer of which I speak is porn.  

Pornography use in the world today is an epidemic.   Gone are the days where guys had to sneak into an adult theater or go behind the curtain at the video rental store.  You don’t have to steal your dad’s Playboy magazine anymore to get a glimpse. Hardcore pornography is accessible instantly, for free, from any device with an internet connection.  

A recent study showed that 68% of Christian men regularly view porn, including 50% of pastors.  The largest age group by consumption are minor males aged 11-17.  This is an epidemic destroying the fabric of American men. And we must fight back.  

I have battled with pornography addiction for almost my entire teenage and adult life.  And it didn’t stop there, it spiraled into a full on sex addiction and led to many sins that I am so ashamed to admit I hate even think about it.   I had tried for years to stop, to gain control, to turn my life around. I sought counseling. I prayed harder. I tried harder. Nothing worked. I couldn’t overcome it.  I was stuck in an endless cycle of addiction.  

Millions of men are fighting the same battle and they are losing.  Porn use is now just seen a “normal” thing that guys do. In fact, some “experts” are even saying it’s HEALTHY for men!  

Brothers, we cannot continue to sit silent while this cancer silently wreaks havoc on men.  I have seen what damage porn can do. It nearly destroyed my marriage. It almost broke up my family.  It leads to emotional, and psychological problems that the medical community is only beginning to understand.  It’s causing erectile dysfunction in teenagers! It’s affect on the brain is similar to that of hardcore drug users and has been shown to be equally as addictive. It is not “harmless”. 

It’s all based on a lie!  The lie is that porn is saying that YOU are having sex with that hot model.  Porn won’t reject you. Porn doesn’t care if you’ve put on a few pounds or are so socially awkward that you can’t even talk to a real woman.  It drives your further into isolation and further from reality. In many men, porn addiction, or any addiction, is covering up a wound that we just can’t deal with. 

The truth is that porn is sin.  It corrupts your mind, literally.   It is a gateway drug to other sinful behavior.  It is pure lust. The Bible tells us to FLEE from sexual immorality.  Not just turn it off. Not just turn a blind eye, but flee from it.  Run away.

Men around the world have found out the hard way that porn is a cancer and destroying their lives. They aren’t all from religious circles either. Movements like NoFap are gaining traction as well and ideas like semen retention.  

It’s time we fight back.  Through shame and guilt, this silent cancer has silently reaped wreckage upon men’s lives.  

Therefore, I’m asking men to join me in a challenge.  Live Porn Free. It won’t be easy. There’s a strong chance of falling short. But when men band together as brothers, when they seek God’s strength and forgiveness, anything is possible.   

I challenge YOU to join me in fighting back against the cancer of porn.  

PORN FREE 2020.  


Subscribe to my Email List for my free eBook!

Sign up for my email list and receive a free copy of my eBook, Power Over Porn: 7 Habits To Crush Temptation.  Implementing these daily habits into my life gave me the strength, courage, and determination to fight back and finally defeat my 15+ year Porn Addiction, and they can do the same for you!

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Success! You're on the list.

I Offer One-On-One Coaching

If at any point you feel like you need a brother to come alongside you and support you, I’ll be there.  I’d be happy to get on a call with you to provide personal guidance to create a plan to fight your addiction and accountability to keep you on track.  I’ve already helped dozens of men overcome their addictions; all who thought they were helpless.  I’ve discovered that every battle with porn shares the same few threads that, once unraveled, release you from the chains of addiction.  I’d love for you to be the next success story!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at timothy@intothewildernessblog.com or Direct Message me on Twitter if one-on-one coaching could help in your battle to live Porn Free.

My Story

The time must come in every man’s life where he looks himself in the mirror and decides to take charge.  For men in generations past, there was always a definitive moment for that to happen. They would go off to war, they would have to take on the responsibility of providing for their family at a young age or they would go through an initiation ritual to signify their passage from boyhood to manhood.  But today, many men are lost. Many of us have never had the need to face ourselves and man up. We can skate on by being weak and without purpose. We don’t have to go to war if we don’t want to. We can stay living at home with mom and dad as long as we want. And we no longer have the fraternal brotherhood of fellow men to push us toward what we’re capable of.  This has left us with many men who are still little boys well into adulthood.

But at some point, every man will have to shed the mask and face themselves.   My prayer is that moment has come for you. There’s a reason you’ve come to this page.  There’s a reason you’ve gotten to the point in your life that you’re willing to take action.  Maybe you feel like you’ve drifted away from God and you need to rededicate your life to him. Maybe you’ve let yourself get out of shape and you feel like you could lose a few pounds and gain some strength while you’re at it.  Maybe you feel like half your life is over and you’ve accomplished nothing. Maybe you’re not the husband you should be and are jerking off to porn instead of being a devoted lover to your wife. Maybe you’d rather throw back beers and watch football than spend time reading a book to your kids.  

I say all of this, because that was me.  My life in a nutshell was a phony Christian, cheating husband, absent father, fat and lazy lame excuse for a man.  

This is my story.

I grew up, almost literally, in the church.  My father was a pastor and I grew up under the spotlight of being a preacher’s kid.  I never had a relationship with Christ for myself. I was only a Christian (If I was even truly saved) because it was how I was raised.   I searched for meaning and purpose in life everywhere but through God. I sought fulfillment in music, sex, drugs, booze, and money. You name it, I tried it.  

I got married and had children, but I was still a rebellious teenager even into my 30’s.  .  I have battled pornography addiction almost my entire teenage and adult life.  And it didn’t stop there, it spiraled into a full-on sex addiction and led to many sins that I am so ashamed to admit I hate even thinking about it.   I disregarded time with my children to pursue my own selfish desires.  I had a secret life. I’d been caught a bunch of times, but it didn’t matter. I just got better at lying and better at not getting caught.

Even when I was home and present, I certainly wasn’t leading my household.  I ignored my wife and kids. I’d snap on them if they interrupted me or dared to “bother” me.  My wife and I were roommates at best. My kids only saw me for a few minutes a day and when they did I was grumpy or dismissive.  I was pounding back beers like it was going out of style. I ate and ate until I hated myself; because I did. I used every opportunity and resource at my disposal to mask what I truly was, a fraud and a loser.  I spent thousands of dollars to keep up the appearances of being a great Christian, husband, father, and businessman, going into a ton of credit card debt in the process. Everything I did was to cover up who I was and keep anyone from discovering the truth.  I self medicated my pain with sex, alcohol, and money.

I tried for years to stop, to gain control, to turn my life around. I knew what I was doing was self-destructive behavior, but I couldn’t stop.  I wanted freedom. I sought counseling. I prayed harder. I tried harder. Nothing worked.  The hole just got deeper and deeper and deeper.  I was stuck in an endless cycle of addiction.

Then, finally, something changed.  To make a long story short, I was finally exposed.  The lies came out. My true, secret life in the dark was brought to the light.  I was revealed as a fraud. I wasn’t the good husband and father that I looked like I was on Facebook and I wasn’t the devout spiritual Christian that I showed myself to be at church.  

I had to look myself in the mirror and confess who I truly was.   And I hated what I saw. I decided that I finally needed to fight back.   It wasn’t a Hollywood style “I’ve seen the light” moment or anything like that.  I didn’t instantly give up porn or go right to the gym and lose 30 pounds. My marriage didn’t just heal itself and I didn’t all of a sudden become an amazing man of God.  But it was the start of God making a change in my heart. I finally stopped searching for my fulfillment and purpose in this world, and looked to God to lead my life. I found that when I turned away from the things I used to mask my pain and sought God instead, I found the peace I was looking for.  When I opened up about who I truly was on the inside, God opened up pathways for healing. When I confessed my sins to my family, they forgave me.   

Change is not easy.  I kicked and screamed and fought God every step of the way in my journey.  But the moments when I truly committed to change, were when He showed his amazing power.   I used to be afraid of change. I felt safe in the routine. I was uneasy with the unknown. What if I failed? What if people discovered my secrets?  However, when I committed to change and didn’t give up, amazing things happened. When I started to read my Bible every day and spend time in prayer, I found hope, peace, and the purpose I was looking for.  When I stopped looking at porn and sleeping with nameless women, I saw how truly beautiful my wife was and how deeply I loved her. When I turned off the TV and put down the phone, I created memories with my children that will last forever.  When I stopped eating and drinking like a slob and hit the gym, I felt healthier, stronger, and had more energy. When I became a husband, father, and man worthy of being respected, I earned the respect I had previously tried to demand.  

But in order to become the man I wanted and needed to be, I had to go through an initiation.  I had to face my demons. I had to go through a period where I was challenged, and instead of bowing to my selfish desires, I had to conquer the forces trying to take me down.

In the Gospel of Luke, chapter 4, the Holy Spirit led Jesus “into the wilderness” to be tested for 40 days.  Jesus faced the temptations that all men face. He was fully God, but also fully man. He faced physical hardship.  He faced emotional hardship. And he faced spiritual hardship. Each time he stood firm with His foundation in the Scriptures and fought back against the devil who was trying to take Him down.  

I’m calling on men to go “Into The Wilderness”.  In order to transform our lives, we have to face our demons.  We have to challenge ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  My mission is to help men overcome sexual addiction and challenge them to transform their lives by renewing their faith, re-energizing their families, and restoring their masculinity. There will be physical challenges as we need to treat our bodies as a temple and keep them sharp and ready.  There will be emotional challenges and tough questions that you’ll have to answer. You may have to come to terms with some issues that you don’t really want to face. And there will be spiritual challenges.  We have to ensure that we are spending time in God’s Word and in prayer, or all of this is pointless.   

So I ask you, no, I challenge you, to come on this journey with me.  I’m certainly no guru or expert, and I need this challenge just as much as anyone else.  But I’m asking you to fight alongside me, to stand up against the forces of this modern world that are trying to keep men from becoming the true men of God they should be.  

I also offer one-on-one coaching if at any point you feel like you need a brother to come alongside you and support you. I’d be happy to get on a call with you to provide personal guidance to create a plan to fight your addiction and accountability to keep you on track.  I’ve already helped dozens of men overcome their addictions; all who thought they were helpless.  I’ve discovered that every battle with sexual addiction shares the same few threads that, once unraveled, release you from the chains of addiction.  I’d love for you to be the next success story!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at timothy@intothewildernessblog.com or Direct Message me on Twitter if one-on-one coaching could help in your fight to be a better man.

Join me, brother, as we journey “Into The Wilderness” to become the providers, protectors, and pastors that God has called Christian men to be. 


Subscribe to my Email List for my free eBook!

Sign up for my email list and receive a free copy of my eBook, Power Over Porn: 7 Habits To Crush Temptation.  Implementing these daily habits into my life gave me the strength, courage, and determination to fight back and finally defeat my 15+ year Porn Addiction, and they can do the same for you!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

I Offer One-On-One Coaching

If at any point you feel like you need a brother to come alongside you and support you, I’ll be there.  I’d be happy to get on a call with you to provide personal guidance to create a plan to fight your addiction and accountability to keep you on track.  I’ve already helped dozens of men overcome their addictions; all who thought they were helpless.  I’ve discovered that every battle with porn shares the same few threads that, once unraveled, release you from the chains of addiction.  I’d love for you to be the next success story!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at timothy@intothewildernessblog.com or Direct Message me on Twitter if one-on-one coaching could help in your battle to live Porn Free.

An Introduction

Into The Wilderness was founded to encourage men to live the lives God has called them to live. Our goal is to transform men’s lives by renewing their faith, re-energizing their families, and restoring their masculinity.

In the Gospel of Luke, chapter 4, the Holy Spirit led Jesus “into the wilderness” to be tested for 40 days. I’m calling on men of faith to put themselves to the test; to push themselves to be better men, better husbands, and better fathers. We need to go “into the wilderness” and come out stronger. We need to face our demons and conquer them. We need to face hardship and come out on top. We need to immerse ourselves in scripture and learn to apply it when we are tempted.

I want to strengthen the modern Christian man. I want men to renew and strengthen their faith by daily Scripture and prayer. I want men to re-energize their families by being the leaders we’re called to be. And I want men to restore their masculinity by fighting back against the powers of the world that want to diminish the Biblical role of men, husbands, and fathers.

I’m no expert.  I’m not a counselor, a pastor, or a therapist.  I’m just a man who went through the darkness and through the grace of God, came out into the light of His glory.  I lived a secret, sinful, and meaningless life for many years. Then, I took the lessons of Romans 12:2, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”   I had to fight back against the way the world wants me to live and transform myself into the person God wants me to be by changing the way I think.  Only then, did I find the meaning and purpose in life I so desperately sought through wordly means.  

So I challenge you to join me as we journey “Into The Wilderness” to become the providers, protectors, and pastors that God has called Christian men to be. 


Subscribe to my Email List for my free eBook!

Sign up for my email list and receive a free copy of my eBook, Power Over Porn: 7 Habits To Crush Temptation.  Implementing these daily habits into my life gave me the strength, courage, and determination to fight back and finally defeat my 15+ year Porn Addiction, and they can do the same for you!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

I Offer One-On-One Coaching

If at any point you feel like you need a brother to come alongside you and support you, I’ll be there.  I’d be happy to get on a call with you to provide personal guidance to create a plan to fight your addiction and accountability to keep you on track.  I’ve already helped dozens of men overcome their addictions; all who thought they were helpless.  I’ve discovered that every battle with porn shares the same few threads that, once unraveled, release you from the chains of addiction.  I’d love for you to be the next success story!

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at timothy@intothewildernessblog.com or Direct Message me on Twitter if one-on-one coaching could help in your battle to live Porn Free.