Love. Oxygen. Water. Food. Relationships. Affirmation. Scientists and psychologists have concluded these are essential to our wellbeing. And they are all clear examples of how we, as humans, will always be dependent on something to live. But there is a difference between dependence and being a slave to something.
That is what I find addiction to truly be – it’s a twisting of basic needs into something terribly unhealthy. It takes an element of our lives where we naturally are dependent and distorts it into an unhealthy obsession that ends up ruining our lives.
Food is one of the more clear examples of this permutation. We all need to eat. But if there is an unhealthy obsession with what we naturally are dependent upon, it results in drastic problems – whether it be obesity, bulimia or anorexia. All of these conditions stem from an unhealthy relationship with a basic human need – food. There are some other factors involved, of course – like the basic need for affirmation that is twisted into despair, resulting in refusing to eat or trying to emotionally regulate oneself with food.
I struggled with an addiction to pornography that stemmed from a desire to be included and a desire to be fascinated. Both of those desires are pure and there is nothing wrong with them. But since I didn’t have much
But knowing the reason why I was addicted wasn’t enough. I know many friends that can tell me exactly why they are depressed. But if you simply stay there, you’ll end up justifying your actions rather than changing them..
This is where God comes in. I have not seen an example of true change without God in the equation. And I believe He truly is the only way I was able to break free from my struggle.
It’s important to firstly realise God is not in any way shocked or angry with you for your addiction. He is actually deeply saddened on your behalf.
Jesus Christ died for our sins once and for all, and if you accept His sacrifice you are immediately given grace – where you can find love and acceptance that you don’t deserve. But Jesus didn’t only die so that we can feel better for ourselves. He died so that we can actually be healed.
And that healing comes through a dependence on God.
The only way I was freed from my addiction was when I recognised I could not do it on my own. I recognised that I constantly need God to lead me from temptation. I need God to affirm me when I didn’t get it from my peers or family. I need God to highlight the detailed wonder of the life that He created. I need God when I’m tired and want comfort. I need God when I’m lonely and struggling with my thoughts.
And that’s a daily reality. I cannot be myself (who I was made to be) without God in the picture. In times of temptation, as I have prayed He has literally led me out of it. In times of pain and frustration, He has showed up and changed my perspective. When I have needed comfort, His presence has literally held me so close.
That is why I truly believe that Christianity is not just a belief system. Knowing Jesus is a relationship. And it’s a constant adventure that saved my life. I pray you experience it for yourself. Click on the link below to find out more.