Marriage and Addiction Relief Part 3

Marriage & Addiction

Monkeys

Part 3

Marriage & Addiction

Step 3 Regular Usage

When addiction progresses it requires a regular fix. The substance abuser will now use others in their attempt to satisfy their addiction. This often leads to a multiplicity of dysfunction on many levels. Satisfying the addiction is often done in secrecy as well as with others. The frequency in which they do so has now escalated and impedes on their day-to-day life. The addiction can still go undetected because they cleverly camouflage or conceal their addiction of choice! As one looks closely the signs are all there. A spouse may not be aware because they can appear normal to a degree. A multiplicity of excuses is rendered when they are questioned? Deception comes along with addiction it can destroy your marriage and other relationships as well

Truth and intimacy are important components in building a good strong marriage!

Step 4 full-blown

Day in and day out the addiction has now taken over. The addict will now do whatever to satisfy his or her obsession that has completely taken control. Their life cycle is getting, using, doing drugs, alcohol or whatever the addiction is… They are now compulsively spiraling increasingly downhill… For many it takes hitting rock bottom before they will admit they need help!

They have indulged themselves to the point that their brain chemistry has changed! To attempt to stop means that they will go through a period of painful withdrawal! The high that they used to receive is now an insatiable voracious uncontrollable craving! A mere ferocious “monkey on their back!” They cannot feel normal unless they are under the influence or indulging in the activity! Their family, friends, job, talents, resources are all being destroyed by their inability to control their compulsive need for a fix!

How interesting that they so paradoxically “Need a fix!” What really needs to be fixed is their deep cavernous inner pain… Addiction is a vicious cycle. If your spouse is in any of these stages it is important to confront them in love. Redemptive confrontation is a way to begin to address whatever the addiction is. If not confronted your love one’s life will spiral out of control if in fact that is not the case already.

Marriage is a wonderful relationship God has created for us to learn how to properly relate to our spouses. It is the ultimate monogamous sacred partner/co-worker relationship! It is through a committed marriage with God as the center one can learn how to overcome their weaknesses. Truly GOD is OMNISCIENT! He is the ultimate source of Godly Wisdom. He knew when we were created that we would need Him in all areas of our lives. In a God Centered Marriage He keeps man and woman joined together for life. Ever growing in His wisdom as they both stay connected to Him. realizing that “we together become one.” “What God has joined together let not man put asunder.” Within the context of a committed marriage there is power and unity! With the Help o the Lord you can whether the storms of life and emerge Victoriously. Marriage to GOD IS SACRED!

Addiction is a weakness. Drugs, alcohol, illicit sex, pornography or whatever; are all used to help one to feel good! However as an addict they have no boundaries and they are constantly seeking more ways to alleviate their uncontrollable desires. This only drives them deeper into despair and uncertainty. With the help of the Lord you can overcome addiction. For with God “All things are possible!”

Marriage was wonderfully designed by God so we could get some of our needs met. There are some needs that can only be met by God! It is important to respect your marriage as well as the marriages of others. God honors marriage. When you honor your marriage you honor God!

A spouse can be a great facilitator in helping the cycle of the dysfunction of addiction being broken! It is difficult because it requires exercising good boundaries. Praying and interceding for your spouse is key.

An intervention is necessary! Once the addiction has been confronted it is important to seek healthier ways to cope. Remember there are many forms of addiction. It can be an addiction to just about anything. Not everyone has a tendency towards addiction. Yet keep in mind that we all are forever becoming. Therefore we all need to work on improving and increasing our own personal disciplines. Be compassionate and have empathy but not to the point you further enable them. Help remembering; addiction is a plea for help! There are healthier ways to fill that inner void.

There is absolutely nothing in your life that God is not aware of! He Loves you! He wants you to reach out to Him! Learning to surrender to HIM is important!

Developing a genuine intimate personal relationship with the Lord will help you begin to better cope! Here one must be careful as well There are those who develop an addiction to religion. They become very religious which also creates a void… It becomes just another escape. This is not the same thing as having a healthy personal relationship with the Lord. It is important to spend time in His Word getting to know Him through His Word. Here you can discover what life is really all about. Here you can discover your purpose and the Freedom God wants for you.

One must seek to discover who they are without the addiction. To nurture the inner child that wants it way at all cost. To learn to better exercise self-control! Now that this is out in the open the addiction is exposed! This is what the road to recovery is all about. One must begin to monitor their feelings to see what triggers their desires. What is the root cause of them losing themselves into addiction? How do I begin to move from the addiction being the center of my life? God does have a better way! There is a way out of addiction. Focusing now on your spouse’s strengths is very important! Giving them encouragement without being controlling or manipulating. Giving them to the Lord. Encouraging them to allow the “JOY of the LORD to be their strength. God wants to be the center of your life. “Jesus came that you might have life and has it to the full.” John 10.

Next we will discuss some of the causes of addiction!
See Part 4

Jesus Christ is “More Than A Story”

Recently I’ve been spending quite a bit of time pondering what the world thinks of Jesus Christ. Just who does the world think he is ? At Christmas and Easter we see the world celebrate these days if they are just “social activities”. Parties, giving gifts, drinking etc. Some may even take a moment to think about the stories that surround these days, although often mixing Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny with the story about the birth, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Santa Claus and the Easter bunny are just kid stories. However, Jesus Christ is a way of life, everyday, every heart must hear.

It’s important to realize not everyone knows who Jesus Christ really is. The world doesn’t know why He came, why He died, and why He arose from the grave. The following lyrics to a song recorded by Donnie Harper and The New Jersey Mass Choir says it well. Take some time and ponder over these words, then tell the world that He is “More Than A Story“.

“More Than A Story”

People talk of a good man
Came to earth so long ago
In a manger he did lay
It’s the Christmas story they say
But it means more to me
Cause He set my life free
And he came to do the same for you
Cause He’s,
More than a story
That the world thinks of just one time a year
He’s more than a story
He’s a way of life, every day, every heart must hear.

Some have heard of a good man
Lived a life, did no one no harm
On a cross they killed him
It’s the Easter story again
But it means more to me
Cause he set my life free
And he came to do the same for you
Cause He’s
More than a story
That the world thinks of just one time a year
He’s more than a story
He’s a way of life, every day, every heart must hear

We’ve got to show the world
There’s so much more they must read
With every passing day
There’s less time for all to believe.

He’s more than a story
That the world thinks of just one time a year
He’s a way of life, every day, every heart must hear.
He’s more than a story
So much more!

PAINT ON THE CANVAS

Beach Scene

PAINT ON THE CANVAS 

God not only knows the very hairs that are on our heads. He determines how long we inhabit the earth. He is the ultimate Master Creator and Designer who weaves everything together in His magnificent canvas of life. When we grow in His grace, truth and knowledge He gives us the ability to spiritually discern. Spiritual discernment lights the foreground of our canvas as we venture out in life.

Quite often many adapt to the world and employ its principles for traveling   through this valley of the shadow of death. However, it is GOD’S wisdom that ultimately grooms our being. As children of Light our life’s canvas commences to reflect the light of His presence whenever we embrace HIS principles within our daily lives. Personality traits that are in general socially acceptable tend to make us conform in order to be accepted. God has created each of us as individuals with varying temperaments & personality traits. Personality is used in typical dictionary definition to distinguish behavioral, emotional and attitudinal tendencies, character traits and habits. It is by these traits that one is uniquely recognized. We as people are fundamentally a complex integration of physical and non-physical dimensions and attributes.

The spiritual facet of us should reflect the God like qualities within our nature. Interpersonal dynamics and environmental influences are primary, but not exclusive to developmental determinants of our personalities. As human beings we are living, learning and growing organisms. When parents have properly nourished us by providing sufficient freedom and are generous in positive reinforcement, children will achieve a sense of personal autonomy. On the other hand if parents have modeled much faulty behavior themselves, were too overprotective, demanding, too permissive or critical, children will learn to have doubts about themselves. They will become harnessed with feelings of shame. In God’s eyes we are all ageless children. His Holy Spirit’s presence in one’s life is able to override any inappropriate learning experiences which we all have to a certain degree. God who is the ultimate Sovereign Creator can paint new life onto our life’s canvas. There is miraculous cleansing & healing POWER in the BLOOD of JESUS CHRIST! HIS Holy Spirit HIS Comforter works within believers to give us a new nature.

When I studied “Art Appreciation” in school I acquired a respect for the various art forms. When I saw an original Picasso Abstract, my first reaction was “I don’t like it. After studying Picasso’s work I learned he was able to paint with a childlike simplicity. He was able to go inside, vicariously share and interpret on canvas the depth of his feelings. From an exterior posture for one to understand his work, a surface summation would not properly render what he was trying to relay. Despite the possibility of no one understanding he did not allow that to hinder His work. Whether he was aware of it or not He was given a God-given talent. It was largely after his death that the world really began to appreciate and understand his unique gift.

Our life can be quite like an abstract painting. Especially by those who really don’t know us. People usually fear what they don’t understand, or tend to label it negatively. Webster defines Abstract as; difficult to understand. Insufficiently factual. Expressing a quality considered apart from an object. Impersonal having only a generalized form with little or no attempt at precise representation. Quite often as Christians we too must risk being misunderstood. We must learn to tenaciously pursue our God given talent(s) with a steadfast devotion.

Each day that passes what we say and do and how we respond paints an array of events on our personal canvas of life. Much of our life’s paint is applied erroneously when we wander aimlessly about. When we stray from the narrow path that God has designed. God’s world is awesomely vast. A marvelous abstract spiritual venture awaits those who are obedient. Faith and Trust in Him are required companions that confidently paint the unseen path before us! It is easy to deter from our course because God allows us so much freedom. He has given us the power to choose. Other wise each individual canvas would yield a duplicate reproduction!

But once we really discover that life has purpose the strokes on our life’s canvas should be guided by our Creator. There is nothing in our life that has transpired that we can unpaint. When we find ourselves somewhere we don’t want to be or saying or doing something we don’t want to do what do we do? Do we continue to allow pride to lead us anyway? No, it will only lead us somewhere we don’t really want to go.

The hues of pride darken the spiritual path. It keeps the light of our direction deep in the background. So do we just waste precious time and continue to stumble around? Do we employ passages of scriptures to justify our sometimes wrong position? Do we erroneously mislead and gather others to support us in our wrong position? Ask yourself, do you hear a faint unspoken voice beckoning you to change your direction? Although painful, it is far better to move towards the Light. God knows your true motives. Do you know it is more important what God knows rather than what people think!

God our Creator knows all of our faults, shortcomings, misunderstandings and insecurities. His arms are wide open. But too often, pride, guilt and shame keeps us at His arm distance. It keeps us in the dark away from His marvelous Light! Too often we just don’t want to admit that we are possibly wrong or were wrong to ourselves especially not someone else! We are so reluctant to tint our canvas with the magnificent brilliance of humility! We would rather allow pride to paint our canvas and take us to a place that we will eventually dread!

If you are at a point in your life you don’t want to be, or if your life seems to be headed in a direction of uncertainty; If you have done something or said something you should not have (and we do from time to time) seek God’s direction. Really dedicate some time to being still and sincerely do some deep soul searching. Have your self a Gethsemane experience. Get quiet enough so you can actually hear what God is saying. Now that you have gotten His attention. Sincerely render to Him what is on your mind and in your heart. Remember He knows anyway. Once you have lightened your load. Ask Him for direction. Admit and repent (not repeat) of anything that is hindering your spiritual path.

Allow God’s yoke to be spiritually connected to lighten your burdens. I assure you He will direct you! Just know it may not be in a direction you want to go. You may just have to apply some humility to your life’s canvas. Humility can harness anger and impulsive rage will have to flee! Instead each painful step in His direction will be accompanied by His unexplainable peace! Did you know that when we are at our weakest point it gives God the opportunity to create a great work in us? Proceed cautiously knowing that anger and pride wants to darken disobedience. They only want to suppress and cover up the Light that wants to shine on your life’s canvas!

Once we humbly admit to God we are wrong, a flood of Light appears. It opens the door for the cleansing power of His Word to wash us thoroughly. God in His infinite wisdom is totally aware of the minutest speck of sin on each of our individual canvases. “All of us have sinned and fallen short of His glory”. But this does not give us the right to continue in sin. Christ did not die for us to be slaves to any sin in our lives. He even told us except we become as children we will not enter into His kingdom! He is the only Sovereign Master Designer! He can make each stroke of circumstances whatever they may be; mold and shape us into a vessel of beauty and honor in His sight. Commence to allow His Holy Spirit to guide you as you paint your personal canvas. Our life truly is “A work of art in progress.”

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