First and foremost when you have an addiction or are dealing with a friend or family member in addiction support is going to be the glue that binds the brokenness back together, and this is for the long haul it is not just for a season or until the symptoms are adjusted, addiction is more than patterned behavior it is a heart defect( in regard to the human soul and spirit) and healing in one’s heart first takes the transformation power of Christ (Rom 12:1-2) and then the unity of the body.
When I say unity of the body I am pointing towards two things. For any familiar with church speak, I am speaking of the church when I say the body so giving one with an addiction a good church is important. (check out Ephesians 1:22-23, Colossians 1:24). The other aspect I am pointing to regarding unity is within the individual himself. Addiction breaks an individual into pieces and will selectively piece them together again to reinforce the addiction, I realize this is not scientific but bear with me. This persona produced within an addiction is in no way who that person was or who they are meant to be it only is in place to reinforce and progress the behavior of addiction. This is also true regarding sin and strongholds that can be established within a person’s soul.
There are so many principles to cover regarding the Biblical correlation between strongholds of sin and addictions, but I will focus in on a few for the discourse today. The first principle to think about is the principle of sowing and reaping found in Gal 5:6-7. This please note is not the best principle to introduce in counsel of an addict, especially not at the forefront, but this is key to understanding where they are spiritually speaking. The second principle to keep in mind is regarding warfare against strongholds/addictions from 2 Corinthians 10:3-5. This is key to understand upfront because when you are dealing with any man or woman you are dealing with a human soul that is being influenced by spiritual not only physical atmospheres. So in adjusting the environment for an addiction to be removed, we must consider both the physical and spiritual. The third and final principle to consider is mercy. God does not deal with us according to our sin, likewise we should not deal with ourselves or others according to their addictions. Take a look at these for a moment…
Psa 89:14 Justice and judgment are the habitation of thy throne: mercy and truth shall go before thy face.
Isa 16:5 And in mercy shall the throne be established: and he shall sit upon it in truth in the tabernacle of David, judging, and seeking judgment, and hasting righteousness.
Isa 30:18 And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him.
Hos 12:6 Therefore turn thou to thy God: keep mercy and judgment, and wait on thy God continually.
Zec 7:9 Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and shew mercy and compassions every man to his brother:
Jas 2:13 …mercy rejoiceth against judgment.
God is a God of judgment and Justice but chooses to deal with us ( who by all definitions are sin addicts apart from him) in mercy first. Just as a flower can grow and bud among the rocks, a man caught in an addiction can grow and live again when given mercy.
But do not be ignorant to the truth, sin cannot be overcome by human effort or a simple 5-12 step program (although these should be utilized in giving them an atmosphere for recovery). As I mentioned at the preface, this is a heart issue, a deep rooted nature within all men that only the transformation power of Christ can change. So is that it, is that all I can give or offer an addict? RELIGION. Not at all, what we are to offer (as a Christian) to addiction is love.
Love that is longsuffering (in for the long haul)
Love that is rooted in truth:
You are not afraid of them or how they may react, therefore you give them objectively what they truly need, which in most cases is first a rehab center where they can be removed from the drug or stimulus along with those who would encourage it. so a good rehab center not just anyone, loving someone at this level is work but not burdensome.
Love that is merciful:
mentioned above, but for those who skim, you give and treat them according to who they are not what they have done or currently do or may do in the future. If you do not know who people are outside of personality or behavior, check out how God sees you and others()
Love that Endures:
different than long suffering, where one that endures is one that is determined in their heart to love regardless of response.So regardless of how they may relapse, struggle, take advantage of your love; You remain concretely secure in loving them. You may be able to bear them for a long time, but to endure their reactions, their lashback, relapse, whatever it may be takes an enduring love.
Love that is Eternal:
Eternal in its source not necessarily its duration (no man lives forever anyway apart from Christ). If you are not a christian, this is indeed strange to grasp but I have witnessed and I live in a love that only God can produce.
Healing, all jokes aside, takes time with addictions. So love them through it all give them Christ, give them unity and pray because only God can change the heart of man and you are dealing with a free volition that at any time could go right back into the rut they were in. There is no sure fire method,program, or even religious activity that can do this. But Christ with all surety can give healing, a sound mind, and even a new heart! Ezek 36:26
Be Transformed into His Way Today and help those who are dealing with addictions or seek help if you are within one yourself. God created us and knows our frame, know that HE can bring healing.
You can be saved no situation is hopeless.
Rom 10:9-10,13 Belief through faith alone can give you eternal access to Christ.
Eph 2:8-9 It is a gift of God