Take My Addiction Away
Some men were bringing on a bed a man who was paralyzed, and they were seeking to bring him in and lay him before Jesus . . . Luke 5:18
It seems to me, that my life would be far easier, and that I’d be a better person, if I didn’t wrestle with lust, gluttony, pride, or drugs. In my addiction, I begged God repeatedly to take it from me. I didn’t ask what he wanted me to do. I already knew he wanted me to confess, get help, and change my life. I didn’t want to do any of those things. I just wanted the addiction to be miraculously gone.
It wasn’t until the misery became so overwhelming, that I was finally willing to obey God. This was the beginning of transformation, and without it, I’d never have found the true life that I now have. If I’d never struggled, I wouldn’t now get up early every day, desperate to spend time with God. I wouldn’t go to jail Bible study, and I certainly wouldn’t write a blog. My struggle, as miserable as it was, caused me to find authentic life in God.
Today’s passage tells of a somewhat similar story. In the narrative, a paralyzed man’s friends brought him to see Jesus. Unable to get to Jesus because of the crowds, the man and his friends, in an act of desperation, went up on the roof, made a hole, and lowered the man down in front of Jesus. Seeing the man’s faith, Christ forgave him of his sins and healed him. The man was transformed, physically, and more importantly, spiritually.
What if the man hadn’t been paralyzed? Would he have sought God? Would he have ever found a new life in Christ? He certainly wouldn’t have done what he did if his need hadn’t driven him.
The challenge for us, is not to become paralyzed or addicted to drugs so that we really need God. We all need God, right where we are. We all struggle and fail in some way that turns us from him and we all desperately need to turn from our path to follow his. The frustration is, that we often don’t do this until the pain of our way becomes so great that we can’t stand it anymore. If we desire life, faith, and recovery, we must recognize our continual need for God, and we must daily abandon our way for his.