I think it's pretty common for us whenever we're in those places of discomfort, of pain, of not really sure where the future is going to take us, for us to want to rush to the next thing – that thing that may fulfill us.
Whether it's the job promotion, or the spouse, or the kids or the house or whatever it is, it's easy for us to lose track of where we're at, by focusing on what we want. That's kind of where I was.
See, I was raised in the church, but like many people, whenever I went to college, I completely walked away from my Christian faith. I started looking for "What is that next thing that will fulfill me? What is that next thing that will give my life purpose?"
So I started experimenting with drugs and partying and all the things that people would say, "If only you tried this, then your life will make sense, then you will be fulfilled."
My life quickly spiraled out of control as addiction and substance abuse began to take hold in my life. I started hiding more and more – unsure of how friends and family would respond if they knew about my addictions.
By the grace of God, my family found out. My parents who love Jesus deeply, in that moment, didn't respond in anger or in judgment. They responded like Jesus and I began to seriously reconsider the Christian faith because of how they had responded. Maybe there was something to this.
This led me on an incredible journey where I ended up living in the woods of Tennessee, for almost a year. It was there living under a tarp with five other men all working through their own struggles and addictions that I found community I found purpose. I found fullness, I found what I had been chasing.
And I remember on October 17, I remember I got on my knees and I said, "Jesus, I don't really like church. I don't really like Christians. If I'm honest, I don't even really like myself – but if you say my life has value, you can have it all."
Jesus, I don't really like church. I don't really like Christians. If I'm honest, I don't even really like myself – but if you say my life has value, you can have it all."
It was from that point that I started being healed and being restored. But living in the woods, eating the same food, living under a tarp, seeing the same people you start thinking and hoping for "I can't wait to be done. I can't wait to get my car back. I can't wait to have my cell phone. I can't wait to go get a job, get an apartment."
You start kind of pining for the next thing – and it was in that place that Jesus taught me to slow down. To learn the lessons that he was teaching me, to allow him to do the deep work of healing and restoration that he needed to do to my soul.
It's in that place that it's so important. even though it is uncomfortable, to allow your sin, your addiction, and your brokenness to come to the surface.
Being in that place and allowing Jesus to do the deep work – that is where the healing is found.
STRUGGLING with addiction?
We believe that God has so much more for your life – you don't have to live in the cycle of shame & addiction. There's always a place for you at CTK – we'd love to come alongside you and pray for you as you seek healing & restoration.