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A Computer Scare at My Work Today

April 2, 2010

I had a computer scare at work today.  

One of our IT workers called and said I had a virus on my computer and they needed to do a sweep.  Our company has software that sweeps our computers daily, but something had happened to my machine that triggered a service call.  

No big deal, right?  But I got a little paranoid when I heard this.  


Only 3 years ago I was working in an office with an unprotected computer and surfing for porn.  I spend a lot of hours on their computer doing bad stuff.  I was caught when they did a sweep of that computer.  There was no question, I was guilty.  I eventually lost my ministry over this and it threw me into my current recovery. 

So you could imagine how sensitive I’ve been to computer slip ups at work.  I lost my job before because of a work slip-up, and have been very careful since then with my work computer.  I have built up accountability with others over it.  I have set personal boundaries as far as the personal use of my computer at work.   And I don’t do any surfing on the computers.  It’s just too dangerous.  

When I heard they were going to do a sweep of my computer I panicked.  The tech came by, took my computer, and told me it would take about an hour. 

All of these old fear rose up and paranoid questions: 

Q:  Are they going to find anything?
Q:  Did I go some place that was wrong?
Q:  Did I do something that would bring up a red flag?
Q:  Is it really a virus, or is it just a cover for, “This guys computer is red flagged.  We need to take it and do a check.”?  

I knew I had not gone to any site that would be questionable, but had I?  Maybe an email I sent to a guy in recovery was bringing up a question?  Maybe something I read on my Google Reader?  


All of these feelings of the past came up, these flashbacks.  Has this ever happened to you?  Accusations?  Fear?  Feeling guilty for not really doing anything wrong? 

I have spent a lot of time in my recovery pulling away from looking at porn.  I have broken a lot of trust and it’s taken a long time to rebuild those.  I couldn’t stand losing another job over computer indiscretions.  


  1. I got out of the office for a while
  2. I called a buddy in recovery
  3. I prayed about it
  4. I poured my fears into my journal
  5. I talked to my wife about it (later that night)  

The IT tech came by later and brought my computer back.  Apparently I had some malware that the company sweep had cleaned up, but the folder was still on my computer.  Strange.  

It was a simple problem with a simple fix, but there was a lot of fear and questioning on my part.  

I’m reminded today that the Devil is a very crafty Accuser, and that my own fears can easily overwhelm me.  I have a good recovery system for times like this, but even with good support, certain events can trigger a fear very deep inside.

One Comment
  1. April 2, 2010 2:52 pm

    I understand this entirely. I still have a panic when my boss calls me into his office. I had that happen in my past and was let go from the company I had been working in for 16 years. Fear can stick with us long after it should have no power in our lives. I stil get a hic-up of fear when my wife goes on my computer. Not that I should, I have accountability software that would catch me in anything I could do, but it is still there! Satan knows that if he can’t keep us bound up in our addictions he will waylay us with fear. Then we begin to doubt our freedom. This is the little lie that he needs to start the backward slide. I’ve found that, as you have, praying about it, and sharing it with my wife usually takes the fear and puts it back into perspctive.

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