Because of recent studies and investigations into the church, we know that many churchgoers are struggling with addiction, in equal numbers as non-churchgoers. This has raised a great deal of concern within the church about how to address and combat addiction, which affects a large number of church members in the form of alcohol, drug, sex or gambling addiction, as well as a number of other documented addictions. If a person is living their life resembling the teachings of Christ, there should not be a need for indulging in an addiction or escapism at all. This begs the questions: how can we bring an end to addiction within the church?
This is a complex spiritual matter that calls for intelligent analysis in order to resolve. Addiction is a prevalent part of the human condition and can be found in every demographic of society. If it were easy to conquer, it would not exist in the numbers that it does. Addiction cannot be defeated by going to church. Addiction can only be defeated through the love of a perfect God. God’s love can be discovered through church, but spiritual warfare begins with the individual, as does spiritual revolution. The choice to lay down one’s life before God is deeply personal and cannot be made for you.
Do not buy into the lie that you can indulge in your addiction and not hurt yourself and others. Addictive behavior is selfish behavior, and it will negatively impact yourself and those you care about. Because we are believers, we already know that there is no peace, freedom or happiness for us outside God’s will for us. God sets us on the path to freedom, and when we veer away from it in an attempt to control our lives, we wander into spiritual traps such as addiction. If this is the situation you have found yourself in, do whatever it takes to change your behavior, whether it is counseling, rehab or self-help literature, and recommit your life to Christ.