Did God Make Me Sober?

Did God Make Me Sober?

I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. Luke 19:26

As much as I’d like to say that I chose, of my own accord, to get help for my addiction, that would hardly be truthful. I knew I needed help, but I also knew how painful it was going to be to get sober. I just couldn’t choose to do it on my own. I had to be dragged – kicking and screaming – into recovery. It’s clear, to me at least, that God orchestrated the painful consequences causing me to embrace the radical, painful change required to find sobriety. Without the proper motivation, I’m fairly sure I’d still be using.

In that sense, God did make me sober. Daily, I thank him for saving me from myself. He did what it took to get a hold of me and he provided a new life. He opened the doors to my prison and called me to follow him to freedom. At some point though, I was required to respond in obedience. I needed to follow Christ. Daily, now, it is my proper response to make a genuine effort to abandon my way for his.

In today’s passage, Jesus told a parable that illustrates this reality. In the story, a nobleman left his money in the hands of his servants, commanding them to engage in business in his absence. Upon his return, he met with those servants to surmise the current value of his assets. The first and second servants both multiplied their share and were rewarded accordingly. The third servant however, hid his share of the money, doing nothing with it. That servant was chastised as he had his money stripped away.

We have been given much by God. He loves us and has provided us the freedom to experience true life, joy, and peace in him. Now though, we must respond by doing something with this gift. We must choose, on our own accord, to be obedient to his calling, following him to freedom. This is our daily choice. If we insist upon going our own way, doing nothing with God’s gift, we will find it taken away as we return to the addiction and misery of the old life. It is only in responding to God’s work, following him in obedience, that we may experience true faith, life, and recovery.

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