Addictions #118

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“Substance abuse and addiction thrive in the darkest corners; places where the only hope that remains is that everyone will stay silent, and the addiction will eventually fade away. We keep our loved one’s secret addiction from friends and other family members. We do things to “help” – like give money or bail them out of jail – and keep those actions from our spouses or other family members. We bottle up secrets and fight to keep them from being discovered.”

I have family members who would tell me that putting personal challenges on social media is wrong, but I say, in what way??  If it’s because it’s too personal, I would say, it’s all the more reason to air it out.  Hiding away our pain and discomfort is subjecting ourselves to enable the same behavior.  When it comes to family – there’s a certain duty to exhale and say, NO MORE!

I came from an extremely false childhood.  And what I mean by this is…in the open, my parents made it seem like ‘all is good,’ however, there were secrets and had there not been, I wouldn’t be without my immediate family today.  I’ve lost them due to not living as if ‘everything was okay.’  If we love our children and family unconditionally, we have to stop enabling dysfunctional behavior and keeping secrets.  ~C. L. Baker-Smith

 

“Addiction is a hugely complex and destructive disease, and its impact can be simply devastating. All too often, lives and families can be shattered by it.”~Kate Middleton

 

Open up one of your social media outlets at any given point on any given day and you will most likely find a news feed full of personal information: Friends spilling on their breakups or divorce, family members posting pictures of their ultrasounds for unborn children, old high school acquaintances taking big stands on religious or political topics. Turn on the television and you’ll see a long list of reality TV shows, delving into the personal problems in marriages, businesses and friendships.

Everywhere you look, people have become immune to sharing personal secrets and opening up their lives to others with little restriction or reservation.

 

The exception: Addiction.

How Can We Gain Victory Over Our Secret Sins?

The conquest of these persistent sins can only begin when we decide that we want to change. We are quick to say we want to be free. But we may derive “benefits” — pleasure, power, influence, ego — from these sins. Do we really want to live without these “friends”? Do we really want to be healed? We will never break free until we believe life without our secret sins is better, in every way, than life with them.  ~Taken from NIV Essentials Study Bible

“Lord knows
Dreams are hard to follow
But don’t let anyone
Tear them away
Hold on
There will be tomorrow
In time
You’ll find the way

And then a hero comes along
With the strength to carry on
And you cast your fears aside
And you know you can survive
So when you feel like hope is gone
Look inside you and be strong
And you’ll finally see the truth
That a hero lies in you
That a hero lies in you
That a hero lies in you!”  ❤

 

Families with drug or alcohol addictions are often families with secrets.

Substance abuse and addiction thrive in the darkest corners; places where the only hope that remains is that everyone will stay silent, and the addiction will eventually fade away. We keep our loved one’s secret addiction from friends and other family members. We do things to “help” – like give money or bail them out of jail – and keep those actions from our spouses or other family members. We bottle up secrets and fight to keep them from being discovered.

Keeping secrets doesn’t just make things worse, it keeps you and your loved one sick. The longer you hide their addiction, the longer they will continue to drink or use drugs. Keeping the secret allows the addiction to spiral further and further from the truth – and from help.

 

“It does not matter who you are or where you come from, we have all experienced hard times in our lives. Because music is one tool people use to reflect on the past and process emotion.”

 

The other ingredient to victory is inviting others into the struggle. The sin cycle is fueled by secrecy. We may have confessed these sins to God countless times, but we hide them from others because we are afraid to risk people’s esteem. But transparency and humility before others is an opportunity to put teeth to our belief that God has forgiven us. It provides accountability in our spiritual growth. And perhaps we need to care more about offending God with our perpetual disobedience and less about our friends’ opinions.
Sin grows in the dark. The psalmist said, “You have set our iniquities before you, our secret sins in the light of your presence” (Ps 90:8). The light destroys the darkness. The way to strike a fatal blow against secret sins is to finally decide we want to be free and then invite a trusted friend into our battle.

 

Psalm 103:2

2 Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—

 

 

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