How can I trust God enough to be released from drug and alcohol abuse? I once heard a Christian speaker who had suffered from addictions describe how he found healing when he turned his life over to God. I've prayed for this, but I guess I'm not trying hard enough or don't really know what it means. How can I really give my heart to Him?
If you're currently struggling with an addiction we recommend that you get involved with a reputable 12-step recovery program. These programs emphasize the importance of dependence upon God or a "higher power" as an integral part of their therapeutic strategy. By walking with you through the recovery process one step at a time, your 12-step facilitator can introduce you to your need for God and assist you in your efforts to open your heart to him. For referrals to good 12-step programs in your community, feel free to contact Focus on the Family's Counseling department.
Another helpful resource is the Lighthouse Network, a clearing house for substance abuse referrals. They can help you locate a facility in your area that will help you take some positive steps in the direction of recovery. They can also provide information about insurance companies who are prepared to work with these facilities.
There are exceptions to the rule, of course, but for most people surrender to God is a lifelong process rather than a one-time event. Dramatic changes don't usually happen overnight. A deep and abiding sense of His presence in our lives comes only after an extended period of following Christ in disciplined commitment to His will. The adventure begins when we make a conscious decision to lay all our needs and concerns at the foot of the cross, confessing openly that our own attempts to "fix" our problems have fallen short. It continues as "a long obedience in the same direction" (Eugene Peterson) - a humble and patient daily walk with Jesus. It's not a question of "feelings," but rather of clinging to the promises of God's Word in spite of discouragement and adversity. A Christian on the road to redemption will experience many ups and downs, but that is not the final word on his situation. In Christ he has already become a new creation (II Corinthians 5:17). Nothing can change that while we keep our eyes fixed on the Lover and Redeemer of our souls.
If you haven't yet embraced the promise of new life in Jesus Christ, there are people here at Focus on the Family who would love to speak with you about God's plan of salvation. If this option appeals to you, call and ask to speak with a pastoral counselor. Both this service and the return call come at no cost to you; please accept them as a demonstration of our concern for you.
More Than a Carpenter
Substance Abuse (resource list)
How Can I Be Saved?