Drugs addicts get a bad rep. Yeah, I said it.

Yes, they make bad choices. Yes, those choices hurt themselves and others. But aren’t we all guilty of that?

Over the years, I’ve had several friends who struggled with addiction. Some of them had no desire to get clean. I’ve seen others who were desperate for help and had a hard time finding it because our society deems anyone with a drug addiction as “unfit” for normal interaction and exiles them to the land of lost causes.

I’m not talking about referring to someone as an addict for the sake of helping them understand what they are going through and finding a way to overcome it. No.

I’m talking about acting as if someone in the midst of an epic battle with sin is some kind of leper, incapable of ever holding a job or raising a family. We cast stones at them in hopes of redirecting the ones being thrown at us.

The irony is when we put people in a box; we put ourselves in one too. We chain ourselves to the invisible master of pride. While one addict may be a slave to drugs, we are a slave to our own self-righteousness.

We have to realize that we are all equal. We are all addicts.

Some of us are addicted to money. Most of us are addicted to pride.

I’ve heard people say that addiction to drugs is different because “those” people cant be functioning members of society. They cant have normal lives. They are hopeless and need to stay in jail.

But aren’t we ALL hopeless without The One who gives hope? Don’t we ALL need Jesus? Didn’t Jesus die for the sin of ALL men? Not just the “small” sins that we like to believe aren’t as bad as everyone else’s.

Addictions to pride ruin relationships left and right. Addiction to money is the number one cause of divorce! We cast drugs addicts aside like they are so different from the rest of the world, but they aren’t. We all have a sin problem.

 Chains are chains no matter the name!

My own addiction to control has caused me to miss family events, business opportunities and vacations. I’m deathly afraid of flying and failure. I’ve been so afraid of what might happen, I willfully ignore God’s ability to take these burdens from me and allowed myself to be chained to the “what ifs?”

My addiction to control, which manifests as severe anxiety disorder, is just as crippling as a drug addiction. I may not be addicted to heroin, but I am still enslaved. And so are you, especially if you think you are one of those Christian unicorns who have no problems.

(hint, hint. Your problem is pride. You’re welcome.)

I say all this because drug addiction is a REAL issue. Real people are hurting. And they need open arms from the church instead of eye rolls. We have to do more than “let” them worship with us. The church body doesn’t have that authority anyway.

Jesus died for all. The cross is our invite.

The only way to help people, with any form of addiction, is to show them that they are loved and wanted. We need people on our team showing us we have a reason to keep fighting!

If you were cast to the side every time you said a curse word, what would be the incentive to stop? When we don’t have people in our lives who love us unconditionally, it’s really hard to love ourselves that way. Or believe that Jesus does.

Once we accept the fact that our sin is just as bad as everyone else’s, we can walk hand in hand toward Jesus and let Him work a miracle in both of us!

There is no such thing as “good” and “bad” people. We are all screwed up. We all need Jesus.

When we stop putting ourselves in boxes of self-superiority, we free ourselves from our invisible masters and help our friends find freedom from theirs!

Published by Amanda Greer