Over the past six years I have been actively seeking recovery from my addiction to pornography and other sexual sins. (The 20 years before that I was living in addiction without really trying to overcome it). During those six years I have had several stretches of 60-180 days of sobriety. When I am living a clean life, free of pornography, I feel such peace in my daily life. I wake up without an ache in my heart. I feel no fear of getting caught. I take the Sacrament with my head held high. I pray and feel close to my Savior. My heart is at peace.
When I am acting out in my addiction...when I am sinning...I feel the opposite. I feel turmoil and pain. I feel constant fear that I will be caught or that I will just have to admit to my failings. I feel like a failure in nearly all aspects of my life.
Living a life without peace is very difficult. In fact, after having experienced so much pain, I would have to say that peace is one of the greatest gifts of the Spirit and of the atonement.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
When I have relapsed, along with all the pain of letting myself, my savior, my wife, and my family down. The loss of that peace is one of most difficult aspects. Peace is a true blessing from my Savior. And it comes from living the commandments and serving others.