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Spiritual 'Rehab'

February 19 2008

Spiritual 'Rehab'

They tried to make me go to rehab but I said 'no, no, no.'
Yes I've been black but when I come back you'll know, know, know.
I ain't got the time and if my daddy thinks I'm fin,e
He's tried to make me go to rehab but I won't go, go, go.

Has anybody ever tried to make you do something that you didn't want to do? It's definitely not fun - and it's definitely the way Amy Winehouse was feeling a while back when she was riding a huge wave of success in her professional life, but crashing and burning in her personal life. And, as with most people, she had friends and family who truly care for and love her. When you see a good friend or relative in a downward spiral, you tend to get very concerned, which is why Amy's circle of friends advised her to check into a rehabilitation center.

Obviously things have changed since she penned those words, because as I write these words, Amy is in rehab - and evidently making great progress at beating the drug and alcohol temptations that threaten to take her down. Here's what her brother said:

Detox was tough, but she did it. She was as bright and vivacious as she had been before her demons took over. It (the night of the Grammys) was without a doubt the greatest night our family has enjoyed in a long, long time.

In my opinion, we all need a rehab of sorts. Of course, just like Amy - we don't want anyone to make us go. But when the people who love us give us straight up talk about the deadly and destructive paths we oftentimes walk down, it's time to listen.

That's what Amy Winehouse did.

That's what we need to do.

So perhaps you're reading this, and you're thinking "Dude - I don't smoke crack cocaine and get drunk all the time. In fact, I don't do any of that stuff - so why would I need rehab?"

Great point - and I agree, if that's you - you don't need a chemical detox - probably most of us don't. But... we ALL have another kind of poison coursing through our spiritual veins - and unfortunately, we are all addicted to this deadly venom.

It's called sin. It comes in all kinds of forms, but here's a list that might help you identify your particular toxins:

Sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these (Galatians 5:19-21).

These are things that need to be taken as seriously as a drug or alcohol addiction, because left unchecked, they *will* kill you. Maybe not physical death, but for sure they will poison your life to the point where you are trapped in an emotional and spiritual death state that sucks out any hope of finding joy and meaning in life. They all stem from what the Bible calls 'the flesh' - which is really the source of all our problems.

So what's 'rehab' for the flesh? Here's God's advice:

Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives (Galatians 5:24-25).

Rehab for our sinful flesh isn't a place, it's a Person. If you are a Christian, the Holy Spirit lives inside you. The power of God is at your disposal 24/7 to "crucify" the poisons and addictions that can and will destroy your life. Seek His help the next time you get the peer pressure to go to the wrong party, or feel the destructive feelings and temptations rising up inside you.

Nope, nobody can 'make you' check into spiritual rehab, but the Person who loves you most - Jesus Christ - pleads with you at this very moment to ask His help in defeating your poisonous flesh. Go to Him right now in prayer and begin the process of spiritual detox. Like Amy, I promise you will find the happiness you probably haven't enjoyed in a long, long time.

Head: What you need to know about this truth

Through the power of Jesus Christ, we can defeat the deadly power of sin and conquer the addictions that threaten to destroy our lives.

Heart: What you need to feel about this truth

It's easy for most to look at Amy Winehouse and feel strongly about her need for rehab - but how often do we take the same attitude with ourselves? Here's a critical verse from the Bible to reflect on this week:

There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death. (Proverbs 14:12)

Hands: What you need to do about this truth

Take some time this week and list out the sin 'addictions' that seem to cause you the most trouble. Is it lust? Pride? Anger? These are not 'personality problems' or simple mistakes - these are destructive poisons that will eventually ruin the amazing life God has planned for you.


© 2008 Dare 2 Share Ministries