Addiction and Unhealthy Relationships
When one deals with the issue of drugs and alcohol, one has to go beyond the surface problem. The real issue is the pain in the heart. Often pain is deeply present because of the person’s family background. Reduce the pain by showing someone how to have a personal relationship with God filled with faith and emotion, and the need for drugs sometimes disappears. Researchers have found that some teenagers are drug resistant. As they researched the teenagers, a common factor was found. Many of them came from happy homes, and they had deep sense of feeling worthwhile. In fact, they had a positive identity.
The teenagers who succumbed to drugs were different. Often they came from stressed out homes. Lacking a positive identity or any identity at all, their resistance was low. A counselor to troubled teens and their parents said that inevitably the parents of troubled teens never seemed to smile, and they carried a scorecard to keep track of their children’s failures in their pocket. They were always critical of their children. Unfortunately, even religion can be used as a defense. On the one hand, it provides a means of getting out of the family and preoccupying oneself. On the other hand, religious experiences can be used to induce pleasure in order to escape pain. Christianity, however, was not meant to be used that way.
What makes Christianity unique is how God wants to walk with us through pain so that we can discover a wonderful truth while living the life God intended. Oftentimes His comfort can go deeper than our pain. When the central symbol of Christianity is the Cross, it is no surprise that facing pain is a natural part of the Christian experience. Whenever religion is used to keep a person from facing life, it is unhealthy.