Christian Perspective On Addiction
We live in a society of ‘now’. We want coffee now, food now, information now and the list goes on. We are all guilty of this mentality because we live in a selfish and self-centered society.
Falling Victim to the Cycle of Addiction
Instant gratification is an accepted part of society. The central message is “do what makes you feel good.” It’s human nature to want to feel pleasure and not be pain, even if it’s only temporary. Many drug addictions can start because of pain. A sprained wrist resulting in a narcotic prescription drugs may not seem out of the ordinary but what if when that wrist is healed the prescription doesn’t stop and it turns into seeking out the feel-good nature that opiates create?
The initial prescription drug was to help the patient deal with pain, to get rid of the pain that the patient felt ‘now’. In the long term, the idea of a quick fix doesn’t just stop, but perpetuates itself into a prescription drug addiction.
As a self-centered society, we want what makes us feel good no matter the cost. If it makes you feel good, then it can’t be bad – even if feeling good is only temporary. That’s where the line to addiction is crossed. Any recovering addict will tell you they started because it felt good when they started. But the selfishness that is rampant in our society makes things acceptable as long as they don’t hurt anyone else. That’s how people fall victim to the cycle of addiction.
Transformation after Recovery – Breaking Free and God’s Teachable Moments
People in recovery can tell you that a quick fix is never enough. It always starts out to either ease the pain or to do it just one more time but that always takes you right back into the grasp of addiction because the disease is always there ready to take hold of you once again. It’s easy to conform and take yourself back to the cycle of addiction and chasing your next fix.
When you become addicted to something like heroin, your brain chemistry changes, altering your instincts. It becomes something you need like food and water, sometimes even taking precedence over those things. Living in the ‘now’ and only thinking of yourself is conforming to the idea in society that instant gratification is always the best thing.
Jimmy Monaghan quotes from Romans
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Transformation of Recovery from Addiction
Scripture’s call to action here is to resist the conformation that society puts on you when you’re going through recovery and submitting to God as your higher power. Living in the ‘now’ doesn’t work. When we conform to the pattern of the world like Romans talks about we don’t allow ourselves to heal or truly recover from our addiction. God wants us to be transformed instead, thinking about the future and striving to do more than survive day to day live.
Through the transformation of recovery, God uses every hurt as a teachable moment. Recovering addicts know that their strength lies in their higher power to transform themselves to be successful in sober living. When you feel like you’re trapped inside of yourself and your alcohol or drug addiction, God shows you from your lowest point through your recovery that you can live a new life.
Monaghan uses Romans to demonstrate that God wants you not just to live but to thrive as you’re recovering. This transformation isn’t subtle either, it’s like a butterfly coming forth from a cocoon. It might sound cliché but your inner butterfly was always there to begin with, it just needed a little more time to grow because of God’s perfect timing. Being successful in recovery doesn’t require being perfect, it just requires a willingness to transform yourself.