Note: this post has nothing whatsoever to do with Donald Trump. Or politics, for that matter. Well, I suppose it could, if politics make you want to drink / use … I totally get that, if they do. In which case I highly recommend fasting the news entirely. Is it important to be up on current events? Sure. Is it worth you sobriety? No freaking way.
By: Jana Greene
Just a little bump. That’s all I need.
A little something to get through this feeling of pain / elation / worry / regret / boredom. (Really, any strong feeling will do.)
Feeling are so…I don’t know…FEEL-FULL.
I never used street drugs, and I’m not bragging about that. It is purely by happenstance that I didn’t go that route. I do love me a good high. Alcohol was my drug of choice. But its a drug nonetheless.
A bump can be anything, really.
A drink. A pill. A random sexual encounter. A binge at a slot machine. An impulsive buy on Amazon to make yourself feel better. And then another. And then another and another. Anything to distract you from All The Feels.
Trading endorphins for guilt later is never a good deal.
The only thing I’ve ever known to trump the bump is a prayerful flooding of the Holy Spirit.
I have a theory, but it’s a working theory. And it goes like this:
High is the state in which we were born and built to function.
But not on drugs or drink, which are counterfeit, temporary conduits of “high.”
Kind of like the Texas saying, the higher the hair, the closer to God? I like to think “the higher the propensity to use drugs and alcohol, the more desire to be close to God.”
I’ve seen it too many times for it to be coincidence. The people most entrenched in addiction are the most sensitive to feelings and thought. They are usually Seekers. The hungrily fill the void with all manner of self-soothing behaviors.
Just a bump, you see. It always starts out with just a bump. And that’s the first lie to oneself, that shortcoming.
The thing about seeking is, there’s nothing wrong with it. We were born to seek, born to crave the high. The problem comes in when we use our own wits to fabricate it. It’s called “sin” in the Bible, but we don’t like to cal it that anymore. In truth, it doesn’t matter what you label it, so long as you realize what it is.
This is also known as Step 7 recovery work:
“Humbly asked Him to remove all our shortcomings.”
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)
My default setting is to numb out in lieu of asking for help to overcome my shortcomings. As an alcoholic, that’s what my body and mind want to do. I would love to say that after 15 years of sobriety, drinking never crosses my mind, but that would be such a lie. It’s sneaky, that addiction. Much like a computer that has been programmed to ‘default’ to a certain setting, something in me – the genetics for addiction? – There is a pattern of negative thinking that leads to default. I’m just wired that way.
But that’s not a mistake. I am also wired to bask in the presence of the Creator. That’s why ‘high’ is our preferred state, and that’s my story – I’m stickin’ to it.
I have to change the settings, ‘manually’ – reprogram.
The best high I’ve ever known has been Holy Spirit high. For those of you who are unchurched (or Baptist…a little humor there, I was raised Baptist, so I can joke….) there is this perfect state of nirvana that comes from being filled with the spirit of God.
Religion may be the opiate of the masses, as Karl Marx is famous for having said. But RELATIONSHIP with God is the Ultimate High.
God is, simply put, Love Incarnate. Jesus Christ came as God in a human body to show us how to do life on life’s terms – and with victory, even!
When you are too busy trying to figure God out or justify reasons not to believe, there is no room for the Spirit. Trust me, I’ve learned this the hard way.
Throw everything that turns you off to God from the table. It’s probably man-made anyway. The cheap stuff. Do yourself a favor and:
- Go ahead and feel your feelings.
- Ask the living and loving God of the universe for a little something to get through this feeling of pain / elation / worry / regret / boredom. (Really, any strong feeling will do.)
- Leave room for the Spirit of Love to move into the spaces that counterfeit, temporary ‘highs’ leave empty.
Lather, rinse, repeat … as often as your brain tries to default to numbness through any number of destructive behaviors.
SUCH PEACE can overcome you in God’s presence. Almost like you were MADE to seek it.
The thing about seeking is, there’s nothing wrong with it. We were born to seek, born to crave the high. The ultimate Good News is that it was planted there by a Creator who loves us more than anything, and who poured Himself over bone and under flesh to prove it.
Ain’t no high like the Holy Spirit High. Trumps the ‘bump’ every time.
Go ahead and be FEEL-FULL. It’s alright. No numbing agent required.
I’m so grateful for that.