Sermon: Whatever it takes
Jesus said, “If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.” Matt 5:29-30.
Those are strong words to say, do whatever it takes to stop the sin in our lives. We have become a nation of addicts whether it’s pornography (larger business than all combined national sports), alcohol (over 100 million abusers), opioids, (over 30 million abusers using 85 percent of the world’s supply), cocaine, meth, tobacco and the list goes on. Why are we surprised that an addict will do whatever it takes to get the next fix? As a community, we need to step out of denial and realize the magnitude of the addiction problem.
“They have healed the wound of my people lightly, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace.” Jeremiah 6:14. A wound cannot be healed by saying it is not there. This is not a just a skid row problem. As friends, family, and employers, we cannot afford to enable and support continued addictive behavior. But we need to do whatever it takes to help an addict who has stepped out of denial and is seeking support to stop the addictive behavior.
About 90 percent of the men and women in the Alamosa County detention center abuse opioids. They feel that 50 to 90 percent of the community is on drugs. Their question is “So where can they get help?” From the average hard working middle class stable family’s perspective, about 3-5 percent of the population is on heavy drugs. Their answer is “Hire more policemen and get the addicts off the streets (lock them up)”.
This is a big difference of opinion. So, for the addict that is sober enough to read this article - do whatever it takes to reach out for help. For the Christian - do whatever it takes to lend a helping hand to support a recovering addict. For all of us, our coins still proclaim “in God we trust.”
“Humble yourselves therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded’ be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” I Peter 5:6-8
Jesus came to proclaim Good News to the poor and liberty to the captives and oppressed — Luke 4:18. And He has a plan for you — Jeremiah 29:11. God is not pleased with our addictions but will forgive us if we repent and turn back to Him — I Corinthians 6:9-11, English Standard Version
Erwin Young, Alamosa Church of Christ