Have you ever grieved the loss of someone who was still alive?
Have you ever watched someone convince themselves they weren’t on fire, burning alive?
Have you ever looked someone in the face with bloodshot eyes and seen that they were in such denial that they believed their own lies?
Have you ever spent countless nights, days, months, years trying to save someone who didn’t want to be saved?
Have you ever been made out to be the villain in order for the addict to feel validated in their addiction?
Have you ever been hated because an addict loved you so much, they resented they had to give up their best friend for you?
Have you ever seen someone in love with their own prison and wish you were imprisoned with them?
Have you ever witnessed someone sweat, shake, cry, scream, and kill everything around them for one more moment of escape?
Have you ever seen someone you love go from the sweetest, funniest, loving person into someone you don’t even recognize?
Have you ever watched someone struggle to love you so deeply but the love of the addiction was deeper?
Have you ever seen someone so lost in their addiction that you finally lost hope?
Have you ever watched someone fight for their life, and all you could do was pray and trust that God was in control?
Have you ever seen someone attempt to quit 1000+ times, just to willingly go back into a circle of defeat by convincing themselves that it’s not that bad or they have plan a, b, c, d, z this time that will work?
This time I will only smoke at night. This time I will only drink on special occasions. This time I will only buy it on weekends. This time I will limit it. This time is different.
This time . . .
This time always leads to next time.
Watching someone put down substance abuse is like watching a live exorcism. It’s watching the biggest part of who they are leave their body—fighting, kicking, and screaming so hard to keep it in. They identify with that substance. It’s who they think they are. They don’t even know who they are without it anymore.
But . . .
Have you ever been told that with God, there is recovery in addiction?
Have you ever watched the impossible become possible in front of your eyes?
Have you ever witnessed the inside details of a true miracle of God?
Have you ever seen God make new out of what the devil meant to kill, steal and destroy?
Have you ever watched God’s plan unravel in your life with complete awe and shock?
Let me tell you, those inside details of the miracles of God are not pretty. The inside details of the miracle of God are dark, ugly, and terribly painful. They make you dig deep into who you are, throw it all out, and replace it with who God says you are.
But . . .
Once you trust God enough to get through those dark, ugly, and painful details, that’s when you see the light. That’s when you realize He loved you enough to not leave you like you were.
That’s when you realize you’re the one He left the 99 to save.
That’s when you realize the reckless love of God who chases you down out of the pits of hell to love you and make you like Him. That’s when you see that He was in the fire with you, keeping the flames from burning you alive. That’s when you see that His timing is not yours, and He was doing his best work in your weakness.
That’s when you can finally be thankful for the scars that are left because they remind you of what God brought you through and the testimony you have to save others.
That’s when all the colors of the rainbow are visible again. That’s when you can look back at it all and see that it was your choices, stubbornness, fear, lies, lack of faith, and trust that kept your rainbow in black and white, instead of vibrant and shiny.
That’s when you have the confidence to tell others to run to the Father, don’t walk . . . because over 100 people die of addiction every day