Joshua Broome was the reigning king of the porn industry at one point of time but now he is a dedicated husband, father, and pastor who is telling his story to let them know of God’s mercy and kindness.
“Your story is powerful and your blessing is not only for you,” Broome said in a recent Instagram post. “It is to proclaim God’s glory and to let someone who is hurting know that there is freedom in the name of Jesus.
In a span of five years in the porn industry, Joshua Broome made over 1,000 adult films and was named Top Adult Male Performer of the Year, and earned over one million dollars.
Now in May, he was on the “Let’s Talk Purity” podcast and Fight the New Drug’s “Consider Before Consuming” podcast, where he spoke about his role in the porn industry, the damage he incurred, and how God rescued him.
Trapped in darkness
Joshua Broome’s addiction to seeing porn started when he was 13 or 14 and grew more and more. But he never thought that one day he would join the porn industry. He started modeling and continued to do so through college. He became so successful at it that he had to drop out of college, and move to Los Angeles, to be a professional model and actor.
In a restaurant in L.A., Broome met a group of girls who worked in the porn industry and suggested he join it. He met with an agent, who told him that because of his good looks and a need for acting experience, he could become a successful porn star.
There was a sick excitement in Broome and he says, “I knew clearly that this was a bad decision.” It could go well or go badly for him. He ended up becoming successful and remained in the industry for the next five years.
The initial hiccup soon diminished for Broome as a porn star. “The more numb I became to what it was, the less I felt conflicted about it,” he said. “It was just a transaction to me. A handshake was sometimes more personal than having sex.”
Broome explains that for men in the porn industry, “There’s so much pressure on you to perform.” And while what he was doing “was so not emotional in any regard,” at the same time, “there would always be repercussions from that because emotions are real. Intimacy is real.” He would feel the weight of his actions after he was done working when he went home.
Isolation and a sense of worthlessness
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Broome became increasingly reclusive and just did not want anyone around him when he was not working. “I exerted myself on an intimate level so much that the last thing I wanted to do was be around people.”
Broome also felt protected when alone because it meant no one could reject him. “I’ve always kind of been a recluse in a certain degree,” he said, “and I think because I felt rejected in some regards growing up…I believed that when I was by myself…I felt safe.”
Feelings of worthlessness stemmed from the feeling that he was able to perform sexually on command “was why I was valuable.” He said, “The deeper I got into the industry, the more I isolated myself from people because I didn’t feel like I had anything genuinely to offer.”
He felt used, useless, and dirty and believed that other people also saw him that way. “Every day I woke up and I was like, I better hide from the world because I’m not of any use. And that little voice grew inside my head and it got louder and louder and louder.”
In his last year in the porn industry, Broome says he never left his apartment and spent around $14,000 on takeouts so he wouldn’t have to go to the grocery store and interact with people. He felt completely trapped and couldn’t see a future for himself outside and because he believed that lie, he remained where he was.
“If you believe a lie, it will become true to you,” said Broome. “If I believe that I’m a failure, it’s going to be impossible for me to succeed.” He didn’t believe in God at the time, but even so, “I was just asking out into thin air, can I please die?”
Journey to Freedom
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Joshua Broome left the porn industry in a decision he describes as a modern-day miracle. “I had gone maybe a year without hearing my real name because I had isolated myself to the point where I was only interacting with people on set,” he said.
One day the bank as he was concluding his transaction and starting to walk away, the teller called out his real name, “Joshua.” She wanted to know if there was anything he needed? He was shell-shocked because it was so long since he had heard his actual name instead of his stage name.
The teller’s questions were odd as there was no help needed since he had finished his work there at the bank. He was so stunned that he is surprised he didn’t get hit by a car while walking home. He said, “I looked in the mirror and I didn’t recognize the person that I saw. There was just something about hearing my name.”
Broome instantly knew he had to get out of the porn industry, “I felt guilty,” he said. He also thought of his mom, who had sacrificed so much for him and had gone through so much suffering and pain throughout her life. He wasn’t there to help and support her and the feeling of failure crushed him.
He called his agent and broke his contracts, losing around $50,000, he found someone to take over his lease and left for Charlotte, N.C., where his mom picked him up for a reunion just like Jesus recounts at the end of Luke 15.
“I was afraid to hug her,” said Broome. But they did hug and they wept with each other. “She didn’t ask me a lot of questions because she didn’t care,” he said. “She didn’t care why I was home. She didn’t care why I quit. She was just glad that I was there.”
A new life in Jesus
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The next two years were not easy as he wasn’t making lots of money easily, and he was still carrying his guilt around. He struggled at keeping jobs because he would lie about his past; then employers would find out about it and fire him. He tasted success working at a gym where the employers chose not to hold his past against him.
But when it came to relationships, he hid his history and then the women would learn about it and the relationships would end. “Everything [was] going well except the inside of me,” he said. Soon he met a girl named Hope at the gym and asked her to go on a run with him.
During their run, Broome told her about his past and her response to it changed his life. She said, “I understand that you did all those things, but that’s not who you are.” That reaction was “so loving,” said Broome. “She approached me with such grace and elevated me at a time when I thought I deserved to be on the ground.” Hope also asked him, “Do you know who God is?” Broome said he knew that God had created everything. She asked, “Do you have a relationship with him?” He wasn’t sure what that meant.
He went to church with Hope and as the pastor preached on the story of Mephibosheth, Broome realized that Jesus loved him despite his brokenness. Broome always wanted a father’s love his whole life, and now he understood he did have a Father who loves him. Because of God’s love, He was able to let go of his shame and the burdens he had been carrying, “not just from the porn, but from my whole life.”
Joshua Broome married Hope and they now have two sons. The family lives in Ely, Iowa, where Broome is the lead pastor of KNWN Church. In an Instagram post last week, he wrote,
“What an incredible God. Thank you for those who prayed for me when I was lost years ago. Thank you for those who poured into my life and gave me opportunities I didn’t deserve. Thank you mom for never seeing me less than how God sees me. Thank you God for relentlessly pursuing me. My prayer is that God allows me to be the culmination of the grace that many has [sic] shown me and to be the light that He gives me to point many to Himself. Thank you Jesus for giving me new life. Death has no hold on me because of YOU!”