Be a victor, not a victim of an addiction
June 17, 2003
Radio personality Paul Harvey tells the story of how an Eskimo kills a wolf without endangering himself and using minimal resources. The account is grisly, yet it offers fresh insight into the consuming, self-destructive nature of abnormal appetites.
“First the Eskimo coats his knife blade with animal blood and allows it to freeze. Then he adds another layer of blood and another, until the blade is completely concealed by frozen blood.
“Next, the hunter fixes his knife in the ground with the blade up. When a wolf follows his sensitive nose to the source of the scent and discovers the bait he licks it, tasting the fresh-frozen blood, he begins to lick faster, more and more vigorously, lapping the blade until the keen edge is bare. Feverishly now, harder and harder the wolf licks the blade in the Arctic night. So great becomes his craving for blood that the wolf does not notice the razor sharp sting of the naked blade on his tongue nor does he recognize the instant at which his insatiable thirst is being satisfied by his own warm blood. His carnivorous appetite just craves more – until the dawn finds him dead in the snow.”
Thus far, I have never met anyone who said to themselves, “I am going to develop an appetite for _____ (you fill in the blank) that is so great it will destroy my life.” But that is exactly the result of addictions; whether it is addiction to drugs, sports, alcohol, sex, gambling, popularity or even food.
My wife, Suzie, once worked on a medical research team. They had a man with such a cavernous appetite that he would raid the deep freeze at night, retrieve frozen packages of hamburger and eat it raw, like a Popsicle, to satisfy his hunger. Needless to say, he was well over the 400 pound mark in weight.
One of the most tragic family destructions that I have known happened to a conservative and VERY successful businessman in Texas. He sexually molested his three elementary aged children. How could this happen? He said it started with a brief look at pornographic material. This led to the purchase of an “adult” magazine, then pay-per-view watching of movies in out-of-town hotels, then bringing rented “adult” video tapes home. The steps to his children’s bedrooms were then very close.
Can you be a victor, rather than a victim of an addiction? Yes. Here are some ways: 1. Guard your eyes. “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl (Job 31:1).” 2. Guard your heart. “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life (Pro. 4:23).” 3. Magnify the consequences. “… Surely you (O Lord) will reward each person according to what he has done (Ps 62:12).” 4. Learn the joy of contentment. “The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble (Pro. 19:23).” 5. Develop your hunger for the Lord Jesus. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled (Matt 5:6).”