How to pray to fight addiction
The first thing you say when you pray is the Lord’s Prayer. Matthew 6:9-13 9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen. Verses 12 and 13 are key verses for addiction. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
Our debts, are our sins we have committed. It is wise to confess every sin we commit specifically to God. Yes He knows what you did. But we need to remind ourselves what we did so that we can remind ourselves about the destruction that is always caused by sin. To start to get help from God the key is to repent of our past sins and be determined to change. Now verse 13: And lead us not into temptation.
Key point #1 Pray sincerely every hour “God lead me not into temptation. This is a prayer God loves to answer. If you pray this prayer and also ask God where He wants to lead you, then you are really on to something.
Next you may want to spend 15 minutes praying to be filled with the love of Jesus Christ. We need to spend some time experiencing the Almighty God. He is real and he will answer some of your prayers positively. He loves to answer the prayer to be filled with love because God is love and he wants you to be filled with love the way he is filled with love.
The next question is, will he answer your prayer to quit your addiction? The answer is yes he will, but the question is, when will He do it. If you never ever look back at your addiction and if you have committed to God to never look back, he will answer your prayer today. For 99.9% of people, we want to look back. If you want to look back it will take a lot of prayer to straighten out your thinking until you no longer need to look back. If you still have a stash of booze, drugs or other illicit items that drive your addiction, you are leaving the door open to look back. Get rid of everything that triggers your addiction before you tell God you are done for good. Despite the fact that you probably won’t get an instant miracle you should still prayer several times a day asking God to help you. As you pray you will start to realize that other things lead directly to your addiction. Things like anger, frustration, hopelessness and your refusal to forgive others, etc…
Key point #2 It is important to ask God to help you know what emotions lead to your continued addiction. This is another type of prayer that God loves to answer.
Key point # 3 Have a list of what negative emotions trigger your addiction and pray several times a day that God will help you to start to control them. For example, after thinking and praying about it you realize that your anger problem often is a trigger to your addiction. Now you can attack your anger problem with prayer several times per day. Ask God to help you control your anger. Ask God to take your anger out of you. You don’t get mad because something goes wrong; you get mad because you have the anger in you. We have all known someone who remains cool in a situation where we would have blown a fuse. They remain cool because they are not filled with anger like most of us are. When you discover what emotions tend to trigger your addiction you then pray that God will help you to control these emotions. God will be steadily answering prayers to control your emotions as long as you stay clean. As you see God taking these negative emotions out of your life you will feel a great increase of faith. For me, I don’t get a ton of prayers answered in my life, but when I consistently prayer for God to take my anger away, He starts to take it away and I begin to have more control in all aspects of my life.
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
1 Corinthians 6:9 King James Version (KJV) 9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?
Gambling almost always quickly leads to or becomes a sin. It is very wise to be aware that our addiction leads us in the opposite directions God wants us going in.
Why does 1st Corinthians 6 and Galatians 5 say the harsh things they say? It may be because when we accept Christ we join God’s army. There is a massive war going on. God has huge things for every person to do. At first He may only give us small things to do until we straighten up enough to do the huge things. But we need to train always to do the huge things while we do the small things.
If we commit the sins which waste our time and money the disobedience is a problem. But the real problem is God’s army went off to war and ____ stayed behind because of _____ . What should God do with the deserters? In 2017 in America virtually no one is taught about the urgency and importance of serving in God’s army. No one is taught to have a passion for winning the war. A passion for souls. A love for the people all around us dying and going to hell.
I focus on this passage regularly because I want to be fully aware of the war which is going on. I must quit any addictions so that I am able to do the task that God has for me to do. Quitting ________ shows the world you are fully aware of the war going on. It tells everybody that you will be as strong as you can be so that you can accomplish God’s plan for you.
Quitting an addiction is a lot like becoming a track star. To become a track star you must deny yourself certain things (fatty foods, extra rest etc). But just as important you must work at doing things (running, lifting weights and eating extra protein).
People who become track stars live their life like they are surrounded by a hard plastic bubble. They refuse to give any opening to excess foods like sugars, fats etc. They give no opening to the party lifestyle. They hang around with people dedicated to training not people who have a wild lifestyle. They read about and watch people who are successful in athletics. They think about how to train better, how to run more effectively, how to strategize a smarter race. They have a 100% focus on what they want to accomplish.
People who want to become track stars (but fail) do not take care of their bubble. They may train hard but their sexual lust opens a hole in their bubble. Or their pride opens a hole in their bubble and they don’t listen to their coach. Or they think more about other things and lose their focus on training. This opens up a big hole because they start to not even care about winning any more.
Other people pop their bubble right from the start because they don’t train consistently. They will run but not lift weights. Run and lift but consistently overeat. Work hard but do the opposite of what their coach wants because they insist on doing it their way.
When we repent of our addiction before Jesus Christ we are sealed in the bubble by His blood. But we carve openings in our protection through sins, habits, grey area’s, bad friends, looking at the wrong things, thinking about the wrong things etc. I can’t list the million ways you carve a hole in your protection. But it is vital that you list and understand the main things you do which ruin your protective shield.
It is just as vital that you list and understand the things that you are not doing which cause the bubble to burst. Maybe you are willing to read the Bible but you are going to think your way not God’s way. You are willing to pray but only pray that God will solve your problems not change you. You are willing to help others, but you are going to keep Christianity on the down low. You are not sure they will be all that accepting of that. You are going to work at quitting that addiction but you only put aside a few minutes a day to work on that. You have more important things to do.
Remember, when your bubble has openings in it – dark forces will slip in and cause confusion and temptation. The solution is rapid repentance and taking care that your shield is solid without any openings for the enemy to come in through. The permanent solution is to treat your quest to overcome addiction just as seriously as the track star takes winning. They allow nothing to come into their lives that will derail their training. They always do everything they need to do to prepare for the race.
Take 5 minutes to analyze what causes openings in your protection.
Read John 22, 2nd Corinthians 6 and Proverbs 20
Continue to read the Purpose Driven Life
Pray “Father keep me from temptation”.
Within your temple, O God, we meditate on your unfailing love.
Day one: Quitting addiction exercises
Day two: It is important to admit you are powerless
Day 3: Learn the right way to live
Day 4: Getting rid of negative emotions
Day 5: Remember – money lost is not yours. Don’t try to get it back or you will lose more.
Day 6: can you increase your pleasure by gambling?
Day 7: Staying clean in all ways helps you quit the addiction
Day 8: Decide what pain and pleasure you want
Day 9: Analyze what leads you back to your addiction
Day 10: Change your emotions and your mindsets. Stop believing that your big score will come in.
Day 11: Where the Spirit of the Lord is – there is liberty
Day 12: Learn how to worship God. Also try to develop positive addictions.
Day 13: Write out a letter saying why you want to quit
Day 14: Overcoming cravings and negative emotions
Day 15: You have some self control
Day 16: Have a list of coping statements. Have a list of substitute activities.
Day 17: How to find living water that will always satisfy you
Day 18: Do not have faulty beliefs abourt gambling odds
Day 19: Interview with a professional poker player
Day 20: What we can learn from Adam and Eve’s mistakes
Day 21: more great stuff from Adam and Eve’s mistakes
Day 22: Self control
Day 23: What to think about to develop self control
Day 24: What are your values?