If you thought our current topic of addictions wasn’t for you, I am glad you are reading because…Newsflash: we are all addicts. We are all addicted to comfort. We all have a difficult time dealing with discomfort, and especially with pain. Even though we say “no pain, no gain”, it’s amazing how quickly we run from discomfort and pain. You see, we are all born separated from God…and that is the ultimate pain. A temporary separation on the cross is what prompted even Jesus to ask God to have this “cup” pass from Him.
As kids, we develop strategies to deal with pain. Unfortunately, we aren’t mature and our “teachers” aren’t perfect. So developing coping mechanisms for physical, psychological, relational, emotional, and spiritual pain is random, faulty, and very short-sighted.
Our solutions are usually flesh-driven options, knee-jerk reactions, immediate relievers. These “solutions” are Addiction Objects…things we go to and rely on in a repetitive way to fill needs instead of looking to God for His answers. God might choose to provide other more appropriate objects to fill these needs. So, each time we should look to Him first, not to the object.
Addiction objects can be drugs, alcohol, food, pornography…but can also be anger (really any emotion), work, productivity, security, our intellect, kids, money, spending, “martyr complex”, exercise, our looks/physique, sports, TV, hobbies, fighting, control, a relationship, sex, texting, Facebook, Twitter…if it is something that comforts you or relieves some negative feeling, it can be an addiction object. People can find themselves obsessively and compulsively hooked on almost anything.
One of the great lies that Satan perpetrates on us is that addiction objects offer self-protection. But the truth is they are really self-destructive. Just look at Solomon’s experiences in Ecclesiastes, as he pursues everything under the sun for comfort, leaving out God. He becomes overwhelmed, lost, and depressed, and declares all objects to be vanity or meaningless without God first.
Today, let’s really do some honest reflection. When you are uneasy, lonely, stressed, etc, what do you go to first? Bingo! You found your addiction object. Next time, try to look to God first and see what He will prescribe for your pain. He is the Ultimate Physician and Healer and is always available for drop-ins.
Dear Father God, for many years I struggled with the pain of needing to be needed, accepted, valued. I turned to my addictions to soothe, but they caused more pain. You have freed me from my bondage to all addictions, but I still struggle with a need for control. Help me tolerate discomfort, because your grace is sufficient. Help me to grow the Mind of Christ and to look to You as my ultimate Lighthouse of refuge and sanctuary. In Christ’s freeing name. And all God’s children say – AMEN!
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience– among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9,10
1 Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near of which you will say, “I have no pleasure in them”;
8 Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher; all is vanity.
10 The Preacher sought to find words of delight, and uprightly he wrote words of truth.
13 The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.