Startling figures appear daily in the news about the amount of addictions we have in our country.
An addiction has been defined, loosely, as ‘The use of excessive pleasure to remove pain’.
Addiction renders individuals and families dysfunctional and often leaves them hopeless. Addiction takes many forms including the misuse of chemicals, such as alcohol, other drugs, excessive and compulsive relying on relationships with others, work, sex, self-pity, there are many more that could be added to the list.
It is, in the terms of our faith, an act of idolatry – depending on a substance, action, or person – that has powers that belong only to God. One of the great movements of the 20th century to combat addiction is Alcoholics Anonymous with its Twelve Steps to Recovery programme. These twelve steps are deeply spiritual and are used by millions of people, not only to control addiction to alcohol, but also to help exercise control over other negative dependencies.
The 12 Steps help rid us of false and harmful reliance on that to which we are addicted, and to help us turn in our need to our all-powerful Eternal Father who we call God.