Wednesday, March 28, 2012


Addictions are a horrible thing, they are not like a thief that suddenly breaks into your house and the swiftly takes all he can in a few passing moments. Addictions, although they rob you of everything that is good in your life, do so in a very gradual almost unnoticeable way. Addictions appear as harmless on the outside, and are often camouflaged by short lived pleasure which can be mistaken for happiness. Addictions are cowards. They like to hide their ugly face behind lies, closed doors and false confidence. There is one secret that addictions are aware of, but they will do everything they can to not let you in on the little secret. In order to hid the secret they will make you believe that once they have you in their grasp, you are stuck forever; you may be given moments to rest, but never will you be released from being their slave. It is time to set things straight and share the truth about addictions.
The truth is that addictions are like bullies. They like to seem strong and powerful, but when put up against something stronger, they shrivel. They want you to think they are strong in order to protect themselves from the weak selves that they know they are deep down. Their power is not self supporting but rather it is dependent upon the yielding of another. The perpetual yielding of one to an addiction eventually leaves one trapped. Addictions like to pretend that just a little bit more may finally be enough and so the slave gives in once more only to find once again that its master is never satisfied and always wants more.

How then is one ever to be freed from an addiction? It is simple. One must choose another master. Until this happens the addicted with give all its strength trying to break free only to hurt himself more. Spencer W Kimball shares a story that demonstrates how difficult and yet simple it can be to let go of an addiction. He first describes a group of monkey catchers who attempted to use nets to catch the monkeys but it would injure them. Instead they came up with a new strategy where they would place a nut in a box with a hole big enough for the monkeys to place their hand in. When the men left, the monkeys would come down and examine the boxes. Quickly they learned that there was a nut in the box and so they reached their little hands in and took hold. When the monkey tried to withdraw the nut from the box they were unable because their little fists with the nut inside were now to large for the hole. He goes by saying “At about this time, the men would come out of the underbrush and converge on the monkeys. And here is the curious thing: When the monkeys saw the men coming, they would shriek and scramble about with the thought of escaping; but as easy as it would have been, they would not let go of the nut so that they could withdraw their hands from the boxes and thus escape. The men captured them easily.” (The False Gods We Worship, Aug 1977) Monkeys are not stupid or powerless, but the problem was that their desire to have the nut was stronger than the desire to be free.
What is the nut of your addiction? Are you trying to be free but can’t seem to let go of the nut? Addictions can make it very difficult to see clearly, but with the help of leaders and loved ones who are not trapped, they can encourage us to let it go.
In choosing to let go, we are choosing to not work harder, but to walk away. We choose to leave our old task master behind and choose another who is more loving and even more powerful.
It is not enough for the monkeys to just let go of their nut. They must also flee from the monkey catchers in order to not be trapped. We too must flee from the dangers that surround us. If addictions are like the nut, them the monkey trappers are like Satan. They want us to focus on the nut or addiction in order to not be aware of his evil presence slowly approaching us. As long as he can keep us distracted, he can remain hidden and disguised and then ultimately take hold on us. Imagine he and his followers had us surrounded, even if we were to let go of the nut and flee we would ultimately fall right into his hands. The nature of a trap is that you have no way out. Satan is wise and he has mastered the art of trapping.
However, there is a power that can deliver one from the traps of Lucifer. He knows this too, and he is doing all that he can to make people believe that Jesus Christ was not the Savior of the world. Jesus Christ came to earth so that we could have a way out of the traps. It is powerful. It is real. A smart monkey would ask God for help. God would reach down his arms and swoop the monkey away from those who were seeking to destroy. He would not be angry at the monkey, but how many times do we resist asking God for help because we feel like He would be angry with us. God is a god of love, not of hate. Jesus Christ was sent to earth in order to save, not to condemn.
I love Jesus Christ. I understand his role, and I am grateful for His power. I have not used all of the power available to me, mostly because of my pride. It can be hard to let go and let someone else love you. Let someone else save you. Sometimes we want to do it on our own, thinking that once we have made it, then God will say. “Wow, you are amazing. I had to help so many people, but you? You, Sherry. You did it on your own.” Sure, that might be a great idea but the reality is that I cannot do it on my own. I depend completely on Jesus Christ. If I want to be happy and free, I must let him in. If the world wants to be happy and free, we must let him in. I write these things in the name of Jesus Christ, my brother, my master, my savior, my friend.

I love you Daddy!

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