"No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation, he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it." 1st Corinthians 2:13
An Uncommon Love Trumps A Common Enemy
For those who struggle with addictions and those who love them:
A dear friend of mine recently died.
Like one who had an atrocious day at work, he was ready to go home.
I spent some time with him a few weeks after he received the news that his time here was ending. We talked about a couple of things that we had in common.
The first was that we both had a common enemy using a standard tool that could pervert what God had intended for our destiny.
Satan was trying to use addiction as that tool.
We bent towards using an outside agent to fit into an inside space designed to be filled and satisfied by God.
Like salty water, it initially seemed to quench our thirst but only increased it.
The solution came through not looking at the alcohol or drugs as the problem but as the solution.
Sounds paradoxical, yet, said another way, it asks, "What were we trying to solve using addictive agents?".
It meant looking at the root of the thirst, not at the fruit we were trying to quench it with.
If you struggle with common addictive agents, you are probably still reading this, but if you are tempted to stop because you don't suffer from these desires, consider all addictive agents aren't so tangible.
One can be addicted to relationships, work, praise, accomplishments, and good works.
A common enemy uses uncommon tools, and what works on one may not work on another.
The second thing we had in common made us friends and family.
I realized that it wasn't the common enemy or his weapons that held us together, but being together in the battle and learning that victory had already been won made us real brothers and friends.
We learned victory is won not by fighting in our strength but by surrendering to God's strength.
We accepted that the black hole in us could never be filled with anything other than God Himself.
He designed us so that only He could fill us so that we could fulfill the destiny He had planned and delighted for us to walk in here on earth.
We learned that we are designed to be loved, become love, and share love.
By sharing our lives in Christ, we learned that love not given away is like any other gift not given, inert.
So, we walked together and shared the news of the great Love we had found.
Our friendship was built upon an uncommon love from our common Daddy, not a common thief.
I grieve the loss of my friend and our talks together, but I have joy for him, for I know he is living the next part of his life in perfect love and, thus, perfect peace.
What addictive agent might you be wrestling with at this time?
After reading the above paragraphs, what is your next step?
Lord, there is nothing impossible for You. May Your will be our will. Amen