I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,)
1 Corinthians 16:15
Today I want to talk about the steps that it takes to become addicted. Again, I took them from a pamphlet of the American medical community.
Curiosity causes you to check it out. Sometimes seeing what someone else is doing for Christ will cause you to ask if you’re able to do something similar. You step out in faith and see what happens. After all, we’re encouraged in the Scripture to “taste and see that the Lord is good.”
Comparing your life with Christ to your life without Him. How has the Lord changed you? If you’re like most people, then you can look back on a life of death, sorrow, worry, and guilt. Now, in Christ, your path should be marked with life, joy, faith, and freedom.
You develop a taste for it. Most of the things that cause addictions start out tasting horrible. It’s only after people get used to it that they get “hooked.” It’s the same with the ministry. Sometimes it’s hard working with people. But as you get used to it, and especially the rewards of seeing changed lives, it gets better. Pretty soon it becomes normal. Experts tell us that it takes about a month for a habit to develop.
You start to become uncomfortable when it’s taken away (withdrawal). Being a blessing to others causes you to become a giver. When that happens, you have to draw on the sufficiency of Christ. If something happens to stop the process, you feel like something’s missing.
As problems increase, your usage increases. It’s easy to tell when someone is in the final stages of a “Christ addiction.” When the normal believer faces a crisis – the loss of a job or a loved one – you don’t see them around for a while. After all, they need time to sort things out.
Addicted people are different. During times of crisis or turmoil you find them seeking more fellowship, prayer, or worship. Their goal is use the strength of the Lord and His church to get them through the tough times.
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?
David understood the concept. In my estimation, an addiction to Christ is the best thing you could ever experience. It becomes your strength in weakness and your channel of blessing. It will keep your walk with God from becoming stale or stagnant.
Cultivate this holy addiction!
Question: What’s your strategy to developing an addiction to Christ?
© Nick Zaccardi 2013