One of my dearest friends in the world sent me King and Country’s CD recently called “The Crave.” If every other song wasn’t spectacularly amazing, this one brought it home—
It broke me
If you’ve ever struggled with addiction or loved someone who has, then listen to this I beg you. You’ll get it.
See I’m a strong girl. These are the things I used to CRAVE:
- A Plan (see Control)
- Having “it” together (family, work, my house, appearance, finances….the list goes on)
And then The Beast came to our home. To my heart—an uninvited stranger who moved in without warning or permission—and foreclosed on my heart, and mercilessly tried to wreck my life, and that of my family.
We’re still processing and mending. But above all I’m still believing and I’m still loving. I’m living through something that nearly took away someone I love so much more than my own life and who all I wanted to do was :
Surely, if I craved fixing my addict just a bit more than this person craved a fix, I’d be able to:
- Convince them
- Change them
- Fix them
- Make it all better
But I failed. Or at least I thought I did. Because sometimes human love isn’t enough. I was so busy taking on the roles of detective, nurse, lawyer, and defensive lineman often simultaneously, that it took me a while for me to learn it isn’t all my fault. And it isn’t all theirs.
Addiction is two things: A genetic predisposition and a choice. The choice is the first time. The addiction is all the times that come after.
I know now it won’t be me that can fix this. Because THE FIX may be my goal, but it’s not my role. This is something only God can do as my loved one decides to get extremely intellectually honest or in street lingo: Keepin’ it real y’all!
“The others”–the ones what have walked this journey of one day at a time for some time now, through shared experience, accountability, and unconditional love, will have to help my loved one pick up the pieces that I could not.
This is what it’s like for the addict and the family: Excruciatingly painful. Isolating. Really scary. Exhausting. Sometimes you feel judged or are misunderstood by those who haven’t ever been exposed to this.
But the suffering is also something more. It’s redemptive. Beauty shines brighter thru wet tears. Appreciation for now comes when you lose so much and almost lose—well, everything. Every other problem becomes so small.
And now I know people, too many, that have lost this battle. People that suffer silently. And I won’t be doing that any more. My battlefield is becoming my mission field.
For I am not ashamed of the one I love who is getting the help they need. I will forever be their:
- Advocate, but not their enabler. I will speak the truth, but in love.
- Cheerleader, because encouragement is the seed that can blossom into confidence.
- Prayer warrior, because the biggest battles are won on our knees, and the biggest war is fought for our hearts and mind. If you think you don’t have an enemy bent to destroy both or either, you deceive yourself.
So devil take warning:
- I am unmoved by you.
- I am undeterred.
- Above all I am not defeated—not now, not ever.
Because I have the King of kings on my side. You have already lost. For I have tasted The Cure . His name is Jesus. He is not just our Saviour, He is also our Saver and Redeemer. He really does save the lost. He really does comfort those who mourn and are crushed in spirit. He does this not only because we first believed, but more importantly because He first loved us.
Without faith, it’s not only impossible to understand this; I think it’s impossible to see the everyday miracles that God decides to bless us with. Life is a mystery. It’s full of both joy and suffering, sometimes simultaneously. Deserving neither, we experience both as a gift of opportunity to question everything until finally we reach the end of our limited human understanding. That’s where we end, and God can finally begin.
And to the families touched by addiction? You are not alone. You do not have to walk this journey alone. May you find the courage to find a support group and attend meetings, find a supportive and empathetic church, and/or a close circle of true friends who get it, and may you come to believe and trust in a loving God who already has the power to heal all that ails you. After all, we could all stand to take a hit of a drop of grace.
Hope. Love. Believe. And you shall live.
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13
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