Monday, March 2, 2015

ARP: The purpose of our afflictions

The Refiner's Fire

Nothing tugs at my heart strings like those who have or are suffering great affliction...because there is so much 'shame' in affliction and pain.
I know this, because I've been there.
My addiction may have been short term, in the grand scheme of life and addiction, but it was enough to destroy my spirit and cause deep hurt.
I want to share experiences with people and help shine light on addiction for people that are suffering, know someone who is suffering, or do not understand those who suffer from it.

Why do some people find it easy to judge and point their finger at individuals who struggle? Why do we think we are 'better' than someone who is acting out amidst their hardships, such as numbing their pain with substance abuse?
Image result for the refiner's fire
It is stated numerously in the bible that affliction, referred to through the parable of The Refiner's fire, is what perfects and purifies us, and prepares us to meet God.
It is my firm belief that men, particularly strong souls, soldiers in God's army, are given the hardest battles to fight. Why? How does it make any sense? Why me?-people ask....Why do bad things happen to good people??
I have the answer:
It is through our afflictions that we are perfected and purified and prepared to meet God.
(Isaiah-the Refiner's fire-summarized)
Image result for the refiner's fire isaiah
It all started in the very beginning. Adam fell that man might be. What is considered the first, and one of the largest, betrayals of God, happened so that ALL OF US could come to earth. So how in the world can it be considered a sin? Well, I believe some of us do and will and have to sin in certain ways, in order for us to fulfil our worldly purpose. Think I'm crazy yet?? Think of the strongest people you know. Think of their afflictions. Maybe YOU are one of the strongest people you know. Maybe you have faced battles nobody you know has, and you feel alone, abandoned by God, or weak and picked on. Maybe you indulge in a sin because of this hardship. For example, most people who are happy and satisfied in their life do NOT become addicted to substance abuse. Correct? No...the addiction is a symptom of the real problem. If you think you're so much better than someone because you've, "Never taken drugs!!" I want you to reconsider. You've never felt such a crushing pain that the only way to survive was to temporarily numb it. ....
There is too much shame in addiction, or any affliction for that matter. People are looked down upon or shunned. In reality, these people are SO MUCH stronger and SO MUCH closer to being refined in the Refiner's fire than every one else....they are slowly being perfected. Purified. God is personally preparing them. He is personally preparing YOU.
The next time you are tempted to judge a hurting human, for their weaknesses, for their battles, for their addictions, or whatever 'sin' you find so much greater than yours..... I want you to ponder....which one of you is more prepared to meet God?
#addictionrecovery #arp

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