A note from Kelly King: In Kaye Hurta’s continuing series on addiction, today’s article reminds us of the hope in Christ. For someone struggling or enslaved in an addiction, there is always hope, and there is help. Having an anchor of hope and the resources of help can be the keys to freedom and community.
Addiction has been our focus in recent articles. Why? Addiction is a pervasive and devastating problem in our current culture. It certainly isn’t a problem that remains “outside the church.” Our discussions around addiction should never include the words, “Those people.” The truth is, we are those people. For people like us, there is help and hope.
The hope for anyone struggling with addiction is of course, Jesus. He alone has the power to rescue us, lift us up, and break every chain that entangles us. He alone can gives us the hope we need to face another day, to renounce our sin, and to replace our unhelpful desires with helpful ones. He is, in my opinion, the only higher power with real power. The hope I speak of is an anchor for our souls. The author of a book in the Bible called Hebrews spends time building a case for the trustworthiness of God and His provision of hope for a person’s future. Searching for a metaphor everyone in that day could grasp, the author writes this in Hebrews 6:18b-19a, “…we who have fled to Him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls…” (NLT). Everyone in that day reading those words knew the importance of having an anchor that held. The anchor I’m talking about is not an ancient creed or a ritual. It is not a list of do’s and don’ts or a religious system to hold to. The Bible teaches the anchor for human souls can only be found in God Himself—relational, personal, reliable, dependable, and available to all. This is our hope. Acknowledging our need for Jesus and engaging with Him in relationship is step one on the road to hope.
For people like us, there is also help. Standing firmly on a foundation of hope, the best next step is to ask for and ruthlessly pursue tangible help. If your addiction is to something chemical, you may need professional and/or medical help to see you through. If your addiction is severe, start with your medical doctor or a rehab treatment facility. If you are not sure of the severity of your addiction, most behavioral health hospitals will provide you with a free assessment. If your addiction is troubling, but not presently life-threatening consider the following:
- Make a call to a Bible-believing church in your community and ask about their Recovery program.
- Find a Christian counselor in your area who can provide help and referrals. Don’t know where to find one? A church in your area may have a referral list or try aacc.net and click on “find a coach, counselor or clinic.”
For people like us who are certain we don’t have “a problem” but love to drink wine with dinner every night, may I offer a challenge? Read and try The Alcohol Experiment: A 30-day, Alcohol-Free Challenge to Interrupt Your Habits and Help You Take Control by Annie Grace. It is a non-threatening way to challenge your thinking, find clarity, and perhaps even form new habits around alcohol. I would go so far as to recommend that women’s ministry leaders offer this as a small group. Why not?
It is time to shine a very bright light in a very dark place—the place of addiction. There is help, and there is hope. I am praying we avail ourselves of both!
Kaye Hurta has a Masters Degree in counseling from Liberty University and is a crisis counselor for Women’s Events through LifeWay Christian Resources. Whether speaking, singing, or listening, Kaye’s passion is to help others find intimacy with Christ and soul transformation through the living pages of His Word. Kaye met and married her husband Chris in Austin, Texas in 1987. They have two daughters through the miracle of adoption, Madison and Cami. They live in the Chicago burbs where they are both on staff at Willow Creek Community Church. Kaye is also a contributing author for the LifeWay resource, Women Reaching Women in Crisis.