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It’s Never Enough

It’s Never Enough

The desire of the sluggard kills him . . . All day long he craves and craves . . . Proverbs 21:25-26

Recently, a memory popped into my head of a late winter day, perhaps ten years ago, when I first began to realize I had a problem with pills. I was agitated and impatient for the spring that wouldn’t come, but my mood was particularly dark that year as I realized how pills had come to control my life.

My desperation for spring was my desperation to know joy and peace again. My despair deepened as I realized the hopelessness of my plan. Spring would come, but I would still be enslaved. No changing of the seasons could rescue me from the misery of my addiction.

I knew the only relief I was going to find was in the next pill. Yes, sobriety would have been the right choice, but I was unwilling to do what it took to get there. I had indulged so many times, that my brain was simply wired to use again and again. I learned what those in AA meant when they said, One is too many and a thousand is never enough.

Our choices build habitual behavior. If we learn to derive affirmation and meaning from our physical appearance, we will become dependent on that to feel good about ourselves. The same can be true for wealth, success, food, alcohol, or sex. When we indulge, we feel good and when we feel bad, we use the thing for comfort.

The problem is, that these things cannot provide lasting satisfaction and eventually, there is a price to pay. The ecstasy of the pill gives way to withdrawal and emptiness. The pleasure fades and we need more and more.  We stuff ourselves but never find satisfaction and then, one cold winter day, we look up and realize how miserable our lives have become.

Thank God that the opposite is true as well. As we daily discipline our minds to find our joy purpose and meaning in knowing him, we construct good habits. This is not a once-for-all choice. We must daily do this. Today God, I will turn from my destructive pursuits so that I may look to you for my purpose and meaning. Only in him do we find true satisfaction because he made us to be this way.

 

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