Bringing Them Back to Christ
Few people suffer further from God's love than those suffering an addiction to drugs or alcohol. Whether or not an addict professes faith, the cold realities of addiction and craving force the addict to worship drugs or alcohol above all else, even God.
There is little that God can do, for those that close their hearts to Him (regardless of what they profess) cannot feel His healing power, and without His healing power, they cannot get better. A negative cycle, and for those enduring addiction, there can seem no way out from this darkness away from Christ.
Sometimes, oftentimes, those caught in this negative and faithless cycle are powerless to break free on their own, and sometimes, they need a strong and concerted push towards God.
Christian interventions work, they can get an addict to accept of a need for treatment and get them into a safe and sober place where they may once again connect with Christ, and find peace through Him.
In a Christian intervention, all close to the using addict or alcoholic gather together, in love and faith, to show the addict that although they love him or her, that the addiction is causing too much pain - That only through a reunion with Christ and a separation from intoxication, can things get better. Family and friends will gather with the addict to share stories of addiction related hurt, to demand that the addiction get recognized, and to demand change. A pastor or minister will often guide the proceedings
Christian interventions work, but they can be emotionally difficult, and they need to be run well – a rashly organized and fractured intervention can actually do more harm than good. It's very important that all involved act with unity and love for any chance of success. Anyone living with, or around, a still-using addict knows full well what little good nagging, screaming or crying does; and so a new approach is needed.
Remember, you're dealing with an addiction here, and an addiction lives inside like a demonic possession. It will try everything and anything to stay alive, and it is the cunning of addiction that makes addicts such master manipulators. An addiction will not relinquish its hold easily, and you cannot expect success unless you get educated, get help, and stay focused on the task at hand. Pray for strength and wisdom, seek outside council (a professional, or clergy) and use your God given resources to prepare fully for a successful intervention.
Is an Intervention a Judgment?
Contemplating an intervention can be scary. We get scared of failure, scared of making things worse, and scared even of confronting a loved one with often very painful and sometimes buried truths.
It can be thankless, there are no guarantees, and it will be tough. It is also a deeply holy and Christian act. An intervention is not a judgment in the biblical sense; it is an act of love and charity. A well run Christian intervention lights God's lamp, bringing glory to God through good works, and a spreading of faith.1
Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction."
2 Timothy 4:2
Family considers an intervention out of love and concern, and an intervention has nothing to do with the rash judgment Jesus preached against at the Sermon on the Mount. In a Christian intervention, you teach of a better way before God, you demand of it. You do not judge harshly for actions in the past – you speak of them, but speak with love, making your recount an act of love, and not of judgment.
The righteous must fight against evil, it is the Word, and untreated addiction is surely a form of evil.
The Parable of the Prodigal Son – Dealing With Hard Feelings
Addiction creates pain, always, and this pain ripples deep through the family. Addicts can do horrible things while high, or while desperate to get high, and family members often bear legitimate hurt, legitimate anger.
But remember the parable of the prodigal son, and remember that the father does not rebuke the son for wrong living on his return; in fact he celebrates his arrival with a feast.
When his other, dutiful son, asks why he feasts for his badly behaving son's return, he replies:
But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found."
An intervention is not quite a time for a celebration, but it's getting closer to that day. We must forgive so that we may celebrate a rebirth. We do not need forget, wounds may need healing in times to come, but through a family intervention (a family and Christian expression of love) we encourage a prodigal return, and soon we too may celebrate!
Put aside for now that you are owed an apology. Forgive, for now, the wrongs that have been done and work together for the greater good. You will be rewarded.
The Golden Rule
A reluctant participant can often come up with any number of reasons why an intervention should not occur, and these reasons can seem at times convincing, even righteous, but at the core - remember the golden rule.
If it were you suffering, your soul trapped far from Christ, an addiction motivating all of your actions, good and mostly bad – what would you want done?
Would you hope that your loved ones would leave you free to keep drinking or drugging, ignoring your spiritual despair? Would they be wrong to push you back on the path of goodness, out of real love and concern?
A Christian intervention is a real good work, and it can make a real big difference. It can be hard, but it's the right thing to do.
Learn all you can about doing it right. Get some help if you can (a professional or clergy) prepare for the event, and pray for strength and guidance. There is nothing greater in this world than bringing a lost soul back to Christ, and when we love this lost soul as family, the reward is doubly sweet.
- 1. Matthew 5:16
Page last updated Dec 17, 2012