Out of the Darkness: DVD Documentary
Out of the Darkness tells the stories of Mark Houck, a former sex addict, and Shelley Lubben, a former porn actress, who have both found freedom in Christ. Houck, a "normal" guy tells how he discovered his first Playboy as a pre-teen and got hooked on the magazines, and later on Internet porn. Houck struggled with his addiction for 16 years before making the decision to break free. He did so mainly by recommitting to his Christian faith. And while that story isn't told in great detail here, Houck makes it clear that it was his disciplined pursuit of righteousness that made the difference—more than his decision to simply avoid the temptation. It was the pursuit of the good more than the fleeing of the bad that helped him prevail.
Lubben's devastating-but-ultimately-redeeming story is told in much greater detail. Neglected by her parents as a child and sexually molested by a teen neighbor when she was just 9, Lubben desperately sought love in all the wrong places. When her father kicked her out of the house at age 18, a pimp offered her solace and a quick $35 if she'd turn a trick. She ended up as a full-time prostitute and stripper, later transitioning to porn films. She ended up getting herpes and attempting suicide. When she finally met a man who fell in love with her, and not merely her body, she was confused. But eventually the love was requited, she left the porn industry, they were married, and started attending church. As she grew in faith, the old demons began to fall away, literally and figuratively. (Lubben believes that Satan has a field day with people in the porn industry, which she calls "a cult.")
The film's most moving comments come, not surprisingly, from Lubben: "When people view porn, they are really watching mentally ill and physically diseased people having sex." Puts quite a perspective on it.
Since Lubben has left the porn industry, she has founded the Pink Cross Foundation, a ministry to reach out to porn stars and sex workers. She has helped more than 50 people leave those fields and find hope and healing. There's a lot of hope and healing in this documentary. Refreshingly, it focuses not just on helping porn addicts, but on the tragic plight of those caught within the porn industry as well.—Mark Moring
Copyright © 2012 by the author or Christianity Today/Leadership Journal.
Click here for reprint information on Leadership Journal.