www.drphil.com noted the following: Acknowledge the purpose.
Why do you do it? You have to be able to answer that question. Is it to help you deal with anxiety and stress? It may be hard for you to admit that you have a drinking or sex habit, but you can’t change what you don’t acknowledge. Dr. Phil says, “What purpose does the behavior serve for you?
Now learn from this what you are doing wrong. When I am helping you I don’t have time to worry about what is not perfect in my life. When I pray intensely for the world to change I don’t have time to think about addiction. When I pray that God will help me change, so that I can help others – I don’t have time for addiction.
Negative emotions lead to relapse.
Which emotions lead you to addiction?
Write out what coping skill you will use when you feel each emotion that causes you to relapse. For example if anger is a problem say. When I get angry and am tempted to gamble I will read “Battlefield of the mind” by Joyce Meyer. Or say, when I am bored and tempted to gamble I will call Bill or play chess.
If you don’t have a list of 6 or 8 activities to do when tempted to fall you should do that today.
If your addiction is severe you should practice these coping skills with a group or with your counselor. If you are on your own practice twice a day for the next three days saying “if I am tempted to have sex or do porn because of being down after getting angry I will _________________ (read Battlefield of the Mind). Give specific coping solutions based on the emotions that get you the most.
You must take instant action when you see a warning sign that a lust temptation is coming. If you don’t you will fall.
Delay slipping up Delaying slipping improves your odds of success. I once had decided to throw in the towel. Instead of immediately giving up I went jogging. After I got back I starting thinking a little clearer. It was a day off and I wanted to have some pleasure in my day. With a clearer head I realized that just like Adam and Eve I had many choices and I only had my focus on one choice. The one I could not have. When I started thinking about the disaster that their decision cost them I started to think even more clearly about my own situation. So then I started to focus on other activities. Choices that did not involve disaster. Choices that did not increase the fire of my addiction. The more I delayed the clearer my head got. I could enjoy this alternative activity and be happy today and tomorrow. I could go forward in fulfilling my purpose by helping other people. I could get a good night’s sleep instead of the revved up wound up, frustrated mess that I would have become that night. I could avoid going back into the blackness and hopelessness that I had been overcoming. So – always delay slipping up, use hobbies exercise, call a friend, but do something to delay backsliding. You can give yourself a great chance if you can delay enough so that you begin thinking rationally again.
David Quackenbush said the following:
“Today we will look at “Temperance”.
1. TEMPERANCE DEFINED
The dictionary refers to it as:
1. moderation or self-restraint in action, statement, etc.; self-control.
2. habitual moderation in the indulgence of a natural appetite or passion.
It is true that Temperance means self-control. It is control over the whole man (spirit, soul, and body) which enables us to live a victorious life. As 1Cor. 9:25 implies And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things.
If you want to develop the fruit of self-control, you have to do a couple of things:
1. Stop believing the lie! The lie that giving up that which will bring temperance in your life will be too painful.
(1) “M. Scott Peck writes in his book “The Road Less Traveled: “I spent much of my ninth summer on a bicycle. About a mile from our house the road went down a steep hill and turned sharply at the bottom. Coasting down the hill one morning, I felt my gathering speed to be ecstatic. To give up this ecstasy by applying brakes seemed an absurd self-punishment. So I resolved to simultaneously retain my speed and negotiate the corner. My ecstasy ended seconds later when I was propelled a dozen feet off the road into the woods. I was badly scratched and bleeding, and the front wheel of my new bike was twisted beyond use from its impact against a tree. I had been unwilling to suffer the pain of giving up my ecstatic speed in the interest of maintaining my balance around the corner. I learned, however, that the loss of balance is ultimately more painful than the giving up required to maintain balance.”
2. You must honestly answer these questions:
A. What am I a slave to?
• Food? Lust? Power? Money? The Past? Drugs? Alcohol? Gambling? Jealousy? Anger? You fill in the blank?
• Unless we are prepared to be honest with ourself and acknowledge areas in our lives where we do not have this kind of “Spirit Control” then we will remain enslaved
B. What do I have to say “no” to right now?
• In order to be free there are somethings we need to say no to
• Some things need to be removed from our lives
• The abstinence of all evil as Ned Holmgren put it
• Paul says all things are lawful, but not all things are expedient
• Sometimes we need to say no to things that are not necessarily evil in themselves in order that we may say yes to the things that are best
C. What do I have to say “yes” to right now?
• The Spirit’s promptings are not just about removing things from our lives
• It is also about saying yes to the right things
o Like attending church or bible study regularly
o Like reading your bible daily
o Like prayer
o Like attending mid-week home groups
o Like tithing
o Like serving
o You fill in the blank… what do you need to say yes to…
3. Then we need to confess them to the Lord and ask for forgiveness and help in light of these questions.
God is waiting eagerly to respond with new strength to each little act of self-control, small disciplines of prayer, feeble searching after him. And his children shall be filled if they will only hunger and thirst after what he offers.”
Some people are alone with nobody and nothing left. You have reached day 37 and all you have is prayer, the Bible and faith. But today realize that you have something very few people possess. You are one of the rare people who are ready for righteousness (RFR). When we are RFR the Holy Spirit fills us. The Spirit flows through us like a mighty rushing wind.
Realize that even when we think we are committed Christians there is garbage in our life. When we are RFR and the Spirit blasts through us the garbage gets blown out at the same time. When the garbage is blown out we can start to help others.
Others still have people in their lives. Sometimes these people nag you to try to get you to change. This causes you to have constant negative thoughts about them. Today, think about what it is like to be around you! What it is like to support you. To put up with your moods and issues.
How would your life look without their support? Some of you would be eating out of dumpsters and sleeping in cardboard boxes. Now the fact is that they should love you more and nag you less. But you can’t do much about that. What you can do is to appreciate them for the support and help they do give you. When they are rude to you practice treating them with love. The Holy Spirit is looking for that 1 out of 100 Christian who He can flow His love through.
First John 3 says we are not even Christians if we don’t treat Christians with love. 8 the one who practices sin is of the devil; 9 No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. 10 By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother.
Pray: Father, help me to appreciate those who are helping me. Help me to repay them with love and understanding when they nag me. In Jesus name, amen.
Pray: Father, help me to be ready for righteousness. Help me to remember that only I can hold back the mighty rushing wind that you want to fill me with when I am ready. Pray this 5 times each day.
Read Matthew 9, James 5 and 1st John 1
Pray: Father show me what I need to say no to – so that I can make progress
Day 1: Overcoming cravings
Day2 : God is real?
Day 3: Quitting addiction exercises
Day 4: Getting negative emotions out
Day 5: You can never increase the amount of pleasure that you can have for the month by going back to an addiction
Day 6: Sin leads back to addiction
Day 7: Worshiping God helps us overcome addiction
Day 8: What causes you to stay addicted
Day 9: Develop positive addicitons
Day 10: Overcoming negative emotions
Day 11: You have some self control
Day 12: Always have a list of alternate activities to do when temptation hits
Day 13: Only living water can satisfy you for good
Day 14: Learning form the story of Adam and Eve
Day 15: Blessings and curses
Day 16: Self Control
Day 17: Self Control continued
Day 18: Learning to pray
Day 19: What kind of prayers does God answer
Day 21: Finding a Church that can help you
Day 22: Why is it so hard to quit
Day 23: plan plan plan
Day 24: Don’t condemn yourself
Day 25: Get the anger and negative emotions out
Day 26: Attack your addiction
Day 27: The mad cycle
Day 28: Practice coping skills
Day 29: Why we need to find our purpose
Day 30: We were created to worship, praise and serve God
Day 31: Addiction is a trap that takes our freedom away
Day 32: Learning how to start to live in God’s blessing
Day 33: Addiction has a life
Day 34 Learning to pray
Day 35: negative emotions lead to relapse
Day 36: covetousness