‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty
If you’ve never battled with addictions it might be difficult to comprehend the vise grip that the object of your addiction has over your life. Its grip is ever tightening…all controlling…all consuming twenty-four hours a day. While entrapped in the stranglehold of your addiction you are absolutely convinced that you will die without immediate consumption of that object. Desperation drives you to get your fix, no matter the cost to you or others. You are so utterly deceived that you aren’t even aware that your obsession with the object is killing you – physically, mentally, emotionally, and/or spiritually.
Cocaine was my drug of choice as a young adult. It is an extremely addictive drug. The problem with it is that the high is incredibly potent, yet short lived. So, a person craves more within a short amount of time which leads them to ingesting more cocaine faster and faster. It is a vicious cycle that is not broken easily.
I had always prided myself on my strong will power. I was under the delusion that I had complete control of my life. Then I was introduced to cocaine. All my so called control went out the window. I was consumed with my need for my next fix. If I wasn’t doing cocaine I was thinking about doing cocaine. It was a horrific way to live.
I tried to quit doing cocaine on many an occasion. Unfortunately, quitting never stuck. I swore I was using all my will power…all my might…to stop. Yet, that was never enough! I remember thinking to myself, “You are pathetically weak. What is wrong with you? How can you let a stupid little bag of white powder control your life!!!” Over and over again I fought a losing battle with quitting. I would cry, scream, cuss, and fight with myself trying to stop. But nothing ever worked. All that happened was I started to use more and more.
Then the oddest thing happened. One day out of the blue I was in a counseling session when I blurted out to my counselor that I was addicted to cocaine. We discussed the problem trying to decide on the best course of action to take. It was decided that my parents would have to be told because I had no money to pay for treatment. I was terrified to tell them. All I could think was that once again I was going to be a disappointment to them.*
My craving for cocaine stopped that very day! I never went through withdrawal which my counselor and Doctors were concerned about because of how much I used on a weekly basis. Something inside of me was dramatically altered on that day. Cocaine lost its vice grip on me. It was truly a miracle – everyone involved would agree.
Looking back, I know without a doubt that the Lord intervened in my life that day. I don’t remember praying for help, but I had been silently crying out in desperation. I know that God heard my heartfelt cries. My might and power were insufficient for me to be able to quit my addiction. It was only when the Lord stepped in with His Spirit that I was set free! It was the Holy Spirit that gave me the strength to quit
This Scripture from Zechariah is my lifeline whenever I feel overwhelmed by things in my life. It’s great to pray over people who are struggling with addictions, but also with people who are struggling with any behavior patterns that are causing stress in there lives. If you are currently struggling with an addiction or feeling overwhelmed by a situation I would encourage you to pray that Scripture. You will find the Lord’s peace as you cling to the promise that He IS strong enough to
*This was my perception of myself…not theirs!