Dear Father, it has been reported that over 20 million Americans suffer from a substance abuse disorder. Alcohol. Marijuana. Nicotine. Opioids. K2. Spice. Bath salts. Barbiturates. Benzodiazepines. Hypnotics. Meth. Cocaine. Ecstasy. Molly. GHB. Roofie. Ketamine. LSD. PCP. Inhalants.
The damage is staggering. People’s brains are being altered. They have decreased mental sharpness. Their pleasure and pain signals no longer function normally. Many people on drugs find themselves trapped – they can’t escape their craving for the drugs. They need to have more and more. They are wasting their skills, talents, and valuable time as they prioritize acquiring and consuming drugs and recovering from the use of them. They get into financial trouble as they purchase drugs they can’t afford. They often must resort to crime in order to pay for their drugs. They lose their jobs and alienate friends and family because of their inability to do work well and manage relationships. They risk the lives of their innocent neighbors by driving while under the influence. They neglect to care for themselves and those who depend upon them. They risk serious health crises, especially related to the heart and respiration. They may have trouble managing their emotions. They may experience seizures. Their skin might breakdown. They may catch a communicable disease from risky sexual behavior while under the influence. They may experience psychosis which can lead to violent behavior. They can experience paranoia, panic attacks, and hallucinations. They can have coordination problems, resulting in injuries. They can lose the desire to do anything worthwhile. Their vulnerability may increase, making them more susceptible to sexual abuse. They may commit suicide.
Father, the enemy knows what he is doing. People with diminished reasoning skills or psychosis are not able to think about their life and their relationship with you. People who are imprisoned by a craving for drugs aren’t going to take the time to examine their spiritual life. People who live a risky lifestyle accidentally kill themselves, take their own life, or are killed by someone else. People who are struggling to cope and survive are not going to prioritize serving the needs of others. In other words, America’s drug epidemic creates a sea of people who are spiritually lost, living without hope, in emotional crisis, predisposed to destructive behaviors, and rendered incapable to help their neighbors. Millions of people are exactly where our enemy wants them to be.
Father, please rescue our nation from drug and alcohol addiction. I know such a rescue begins with the church. Your church needs to confess and repent of our own rebellion from You. We need to surrender our lives to You. You will then build our characters, making us both more compassionate and courageous. We will then go into the streets and share our testimonies of how You transformed our lives. We will then roll up our sleeves and get to work, lifting up people who are lost in addiction and getting them onto the road to spiritual recovery. Father, intervene in the hearts of Your church. Get us back on track. Then, lead us all to volunteer in our communities, showing the love of Christ through incredible acts of compassion, kindness, mercy, and generosity.
Through You, all things are possible. The drug and alcohol epidemic can be defeated if Your people will do what You called them to do. Please, soften the hearts of every believer in every church in America. Their neighbors caught up in addiction need them desperately. Amen