The Fat Pastor
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Testimony of Todd Parker “The Fat Pastor” April 1995, I am sitting in my office at work and I am working late. I had no desire to be at home with my wife (who is 4 months pregnant) or my three-year-old son. My marriage is lacking communication and intimacy. I am in my office looking at pornographic pictures on my computer, as I would do every night. I would lustfully desire to have a relationship with these fantasy women or fantasize that my wife would do things with me that those women were doing in those pictures. Pornography was tearing apart my life, I would download picture after picture from the Internet and I was losing touch with reality. I was suffering from sexual addiction, I expected my wife to perform in my mind like the women in those pictures. I would get frustrated and angry when my sexual appetite was not satisfied the way that I wanted it to be. I was treating my wife as a sexual object not as a person. This caused my wife to withdraw from me. This made me feel inadequate and caused me to get deeper and deeper into pornography. My wife had no idea that I was involved with pornography, she just wanted to run from my sexual appetite, to the point it would make her ill and cry. She had no love for me and was miserable with her life. I had no way out from my addictive cycle. I was depressed and suffering from suicidal tendencies. That was until that wonderful night in my office when God came into my life. While in the midst of sexual perversion, lust and sin, the Holy Spirit came to me and spoke into my mind, “Go read your Bible”. I had received a small New Testament when I was in the Air Force and it was lying out close to my desk. I picked it up and started to read the little Bible and after about twenty minutes the Holy Spirit came to me and said, “Go home and pray with your wife and EVERYTHING WILL BE OK”. I ran out of my office and jumped in my car and drove home as fast as I could. I remember the love of God was on me as I drove home and how I was telling the devil to get out of my life and how I was filled with the Holy Spirit. When I arrived home I ran upstairs to my wife and prayed and confessed everything before her and God. The pornography and the lies were laid out in that prayer with her. From that moment God began to call me to read the Bible, I was absorbing scripture at a rapid pace. I was at peace, after all God gave me a promise “EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT”. I remember sharing scriptures with my wife (who was already a born again believer). I was so on fire for the Lord that I began to force scriptures on my wife on how she needed to improve HER life rather than look at my own. That coupled with the past betrayal of pornography and lies and my bible thumping she left the house. She also believed that she should not be married to me, but be reconciled to her former husband. She left 4 months pregnant, with no desire for me, or reconciliation of our marriage. I was now totally alone in a house that I had once desired to fulfill my dreams of a husband and a father. Things were looking bleak, but I now had a personal relationship with Jesus and I knew that He had made me a promise “THAT EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE OK”. I began to dedicate my life to prayer and to holiness. Jesus had delivered me from my pornography lifestyle. I was able to destroy all pornographic materials off my computer. I was now only interested in being addicted to Jesus and what I could do for him. During these months God put me in the path of Pastor Larry Maitlen. Pastor Maitlen took me under his wing and began to disciple me as a Christian, and would teach me how to heal from past addictions. Pastor Maitlen became my mentor and closest friend. He taught me the power of prayer and was an example of living a Spirit filled life. During the next 15 months I would pray to Jesus and ask Him to give me my wife and family back and claim his promise of “EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT”. My wife in the mean time had already begun to cultivate a relationship with her former husband. It began to look like things were never going to work out for us. I remember that we would have to exchange the children on weekends. I remember on one occasion that I began to doubt God’s promise of “EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT”. I was driving in my truck and praying angrily at God that He was not going to do what He had promised. It was late afternoon and it was raining as I was going down the road, and I began to cry. Just as I came over the mountaintop between Leesburg and Berryville there was a large rainbow and the Holy Spirit told me “MY PROMISE TO YOU”. As I continued to pray over these months, God began to change my heart and the heart of my wife. During this time my wife and I had our baby daughter and God began to give me favor in my wife’s eyes. It came to the point that she finally agreed to go through Pastoral counseling with the Maitlens. During this biblical counseling the Holy Spirit began to show her why she needed to be with me and what God’s will was for our life. At the completion of counseling my wife agreed to reconcile our relationship. Since that point we have worked hard to rebuild our life. This time we have been successful because we have asked Jesus to be the center of our relationship. God has since given me a wife who not only is beautiful, but also loving, caring, intimate and more special to me each day. God is faithful, He said “EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT” and He was right. What I didn’t count on was that He would make my wife and family better than I ever thought it would be. I Praise God for saving me and changing my life.