Time to Celebrate!

2 years. 24 months. 104 weeks. 730 days. 17,520 hours. 1,051,200 minutes. 63,072,000 seconds. No matter how I count it, the time adds up the same. Two years ago today I took my last hit. If you have read this blog for any amount of time then you know how hard this battle has been, how weary I grow at times and how desperately I fight. Sobriety isn’t always easy, but it always proves worth it.

But God…every good thing begins with those words. But God, being rich in mercy, provides a way of escape to every temptation (see I Corinthians 10:13). Being part of a 12 step recovery group that leans heavy into Jesus has been one of His routes of escape. Having a group of godly men and women who know my past, my struggle with addiction, and who respond with grace, love, and prayer has been another of the ways of escape God has provided. The loving women who meet me for coffee or chocolate shakes and french fries when I am in the midst of a bad craving are part of God’s provision for help during my time of need.

But God, being kind and loving, gave me all that I needed to live a life of godliness. (see 2 Peter 1:3) All that I need to stay sober in each moment of every day is found in the good news of Jesus Christ, His death and resurrection. As I have walked this beaten path, Jesus has taken every step with me. He is an ever present help in my times of trouble . (See Psalm 46:1) On those days when my faith falters and my pleas are desperate, God lovingly reminds me to not grow weary in doing good (Gal. 6:9), to not give up or give in, that His grace is sufficient for me, that His power is made perfect in my weakness. (2 Cor. 12:9)

In the midst of the battle, minutes have turned to hours that have grown into days when I did not think that I could make it one more step without poison coursing through my veins. But then God would remind me that withdrawal and detox are awful. His good and perfect Words would run through my head, a whispered reminder that He created me for good works that He prepared before hand that I should walk in them – and those good works did not and do not include heroin. (Ephesians 4:10) I am His workmanship – that means that He created me and knows me completely. He knows my every weakness and my every strength.

Today, as I celebrate God’s victory in my life, I am ever aware of not only the goodness of the Savior who has carried me, but also of how faithful He has been. I recognize how easily I could fall again if I take my eyes off the Savior. Sobriety is hard, especially on the days that memories are on replay in my mind or days when the lies won’t be silent. But with God, all things are possible. (Matt. 19:26)

And for you today? If you are struggling with addiction, I encourage you to fight the good fight and keep the faith. God loves you and is able to keep you when you are not able to keep yourself. Find a good recovery program that will help you build the resources necessary to lean into Jesus as you learn to walk sober. If you are in the midst of addiction, seek professional or pastoral help. Reach out. It is one of the best gifts you can give yourself. You are so worth the fight!! (I Timothy 6:12)

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