Yesterday, John and I had our first experience presenting and sharing to a group reaching out to family and friends of those with addictive behaviors.
What a great group of support and listeners to us and each other. The leaders of the group both transparently shared their stories with us and you could have heard a pin drop for almost an hour as John shared so vulnerably about his life, also emphasizing his journey of having to come to terms with the fact of how his bad choices had affected the lives of others.
A powerful time of testimony, making wonderful connections with others who are going down the receiving part of other people’s bad choices.
They are not victims, they are also coming to terms with their own journey of bad choices in their own lives and also how their choices have influenced, and even added, to the addictive habits/sins/idols of significant people in their lives.
We are blessed and so humbled by this path we are on. How others allow us into some really deep and painful areas of their lives. We need each other. One lady shared that the main change in her life was joy. Her circumstances hadn’t changed that much, in fact she was still suffering but she had joy and peace in her Savior. It showed on her face. She put life into the verse in James where it talks about “Counting it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter trials of many kinds…” It is possible to have joy in the midst of really unpleasant circumstances and grow through them.
In fact, this is a purpose that God has for your life. I don’t believe He wills these circumstances. Life just has a way of creating painful circumstances, whether by our choices, another’s or just so. He has promised to grow us through these times as we surrender each circumstance to Him. Did you also know that emotions can be considered “circumstances?” Food for thought!