Addiction

You Can Be Free

Maybe your own struggle has led you to think life is not worth living. But know this: you can be free. In Jesus, there is freedom. And because you can be free, there is more than enough reason to live.

 

Photo Credit: Free photo: Balloon, Hot Air Balloon Ride – Free Image on Pixabay …

Advertisements

Tapping into the Power Supply

Blog_PowerSupplyI thought TV without electricity was an impossibility until I lived for a short time in a squatter community in the Philippines. The community ran along the tracks—so close you could reach your hand out the window and touch a passing train. There was no running water, no refrigeration, and no electricity. You’d think that would mean no TV, but somehow the resourceful people of this community found a way to tap into the city power source so they could watch their favorite shows.

Considering the situation, I realize if we really want something, we’ll find a way to get it. We may live each day believing we’re stuck in our current circumstances. But if we really want to change, we’ll find a way to tap into the power that enables us to change.

One of the biggest lies of our generation is that change is impossible. What a hopeless, depressing thought—that no matter how much we desire to be different, we’re trapped for life, bound by habits that steal all life and joy, stuck in self-destructive ways, doomed for broken relationships.

The good news is that change is possible. People may say that you were born this way, and you can never change. But what is impossible with man is possible with God. The one who turns night to day and winter to spring can usher a new day and season into what man would call the most hopeless of lives. Change is not an impossible dream. It’s just a matter of tapping into the right power source.

“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.’” (Matthew 19:26)
 
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18-19)
 
“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah 43:19)

Our Help

Blog_HelpWe have a God who sympathizes with our every weakness and gives us power to change.

If we need help, all we have to do is ask.

Source: Where to Go When You Just Can’t Stop

Where to Go When You Just Can’t Stop

Blog_HelpAfter multiple times telling my daughter to shut down her video game, I was beyond exasperated. “If you don’t shut it down, I’ll do it for you,” I warned, hand poised to take control of the computer mouse.

“Would you please, Mommy?” She pleaded, hand glued to the mouse. “‘Cause I can’t STOOOOOOOP!”

The scene reminds me of all the times I’ve felt powerless to change apart from divine intervention. My attention is so easily divided, my affections so quickly diverted. It’s like the Apostle Paul said of his struggles, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”

The good news is that change is possible. With Paul, we may cry, “What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?” But God has promised to rescue us from the hand of those stronger than we are. In other words, those habits we hate yet can’t escape—God is able to set us free.

Just as my daughter recognized her inability to let go of that which so gripped her attention, and just as she asked me for help—we have a God who sympathizes with our every weakness, and gives us power to change. If we need help, all we have to do is ask.

“Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ my Lord.” (Romans 7:25)

Love and the Outcome

Heart and Hand from Bing Images It made the top headlines. A teenage girl encouraged her friend to commit suicide. Records say she had over a thousand texts to intervene, and who knows how many more phone calls and conversations. He said he was scared and didn’t want to leave his family. Even got out of the truck before the carbon monoxide took over. But she urged him to get back in. And now she’s been called before a court of law—responsible, in part, for his death.

I wonder what the outcome would have been had she chosen to be part of the solution, rather than the problem—had she chosen to intervene, for the good. And though I can’t imagine influencing someone’s suicide attempt, I can’t help but ask how my silence in certain situations has contributed to a tragic outcome. Had I intervened—would the outcome have been different? Though I may never know, at least I’d have the peace of knowing I tried.

When it comes to something like suicide, I think we’d all agree on the importance of getting involved on behalf of a friend. But in other areas—those with less immediate consequences, we often stand quietly by, watching and wondering if things would be different if we’d just speak up. Our society is built on a faulty notion of a love that doesn’t intervene. We mistakenly believe that if someone is happy doing something—however self-destructive, the loving thing to do is to keep quiet. We fear being considered narrow-minded, even hateful, for saying something that could help.

Maybe there’s constant news of shootings and mass murders and other violence because no one was loving ENOUGH to say something when it needed to be said. If we had spoken truthfully, in love, when we saw a hint of a problem—or just had that gut feeling that something wasn’t right…maybe things would be different.

When I was a teen, I flushed a loved one’s liquor down the toilet because I saw its potential to destroy them. My actions wreaked havoc, initially. But in the end, it was a wake-up call that helped contribute to the ending of a potentially destructive addiction. It’s a decision I don’t regret, no matter how hard it was at the time. As mentioned in a past blog post, we may be misunderstood in the process. But that should never stop us from intervening for the good of those we love.

True Love…INTERVENES (Day 20, #50ShadesOfTrueLove)