The Pursuit of God

Serious Topics for Serious Christians

Category Archives: Addicts

Using Psychedelic Drugs in Your Search for Healing & Truth: Why It’s a Bad Idea

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Throughout human history, the use of psychedelic drugs has been enormously popular.  Because humans feel that their earthsuits are a central part of their existence, they have always been intensely fascinated by anything which evokes strong sensations in their earthsuits.  A strong shot of caffeine can quickly result in an improved mood and a higher level of energy—what’s not to like about that?  The right kind of sexual stimulation can result in an intense orgasm, and many humans find themselves addicted to that particular kind of rush, while others prefer a good massage or a terrifying movie.  Just as you can cause your car’s engine to rev by pressing down on the accelerator while you’re in a neutral gear, there are many ways that you can rev your earthsuit.  You can stimulate it physically, sexually, emotionally or mentally.  And once you rev one area, the others will be affected as well.  But here’s where we come to the important question: what’s the value in intentionally jolting your earthsuit?  What’s the value of revving your car’s engine while it’s in a neutral gear?  Because you’re not in drive, you’re not moving forward, you’re just forcing the machine to exhaust itself by going through useless motions.  What happens if you keep the accelerator pressed all the way down while the car is stuck in neutral?  Eventually you’ll do damage to the machine, because cars were designed for specific purposes and they have limitations.  If you don’t respect those purposes or those limitations, you’ll end up permanently damaging the car until it can no longer do what it was designed to do.  In the same way, if you don’t respect the purposes or limitations of the earthsuit God has given you and if you go through life forcing it to rev just because you can, you will end up permanently damaging it.  Read more of this post

Understanding Repentance

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TWO WAYS TO JUDGE

God judges you by your soul’s response to Him.  Once God establishes a relationship with you, you constantly make choices about how you will treat Him in that relationship, and those choices are what determine whether God is pleased or displeased with you.

Humans judge you by how you behave—especially by how you behave towards other humans.  Humans have strong opinions about how you ought to treat them, and if you don’t meet their expectations, then they dislike you.  Read more of this post

Facing Your Fear of Reality: Recovering from Extreme Psychological Escapism

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After a long day at the office, Frank likes to unwind with a couple of hours of gaming when he gets home.  Then he checks in with his friends and often hangs out with them, feeling recharged from his solo play time.  But when Mike gets home from work, he spends the rest of his evening glued to his computer screen.  The only friends Mike chats with are the crew members of his online gaming team.  He’s never met any of them, and they’ve never met him.  They’re all interacting with each other as their fictitious game personas and Mike loves it. Read more of this post

Understanding Your Perverse Fantasies: A Sign of Stress, Not Defectiveness

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There’s a widespread belief among Christians that if a man’s spiritual priorities were in the right order, he wouldn’t have certain kinds of thoughts, he wouldn’t be hooked on porn, and he wouldn’t have certain nasty desires welling up within him 24/7.  And yet the truth is that a man can have excellent priorities and be embracing all the right soul attitudes while he is being plagued with some very dark mental fantasies.  The psychological principles we’re going to discuss in this post can be very helpful to anyone who is feeling tormented with perverse fantasies of any kind.  When you’re obsessing over certain kinds of themes, you can easily end up shunned by both the mainstream Christian community as well as the world at large.  Happily neither of these human groups are accurately conveying God’s assessment of you.  And once you understand a few basic principles about where perverse fantasies come from, you can stop treating yourself like a worm and become more receptive to the compassion and help God is offering you. Read more of this post

Temporary Deliverance: How to Interpret the Return of Old Struggles

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For thirty years, John has been owned by his addiction to alcohol.  He just can’t stop getting plastered, and his addiction has ruined his life.  One day John is sobbing alone on the floor of his ratty apartment and feeling totally overwhelmed by his own worthlessness.  He cries out to Jesus in desperation and asks Him to have His way with what’s left of John’s shattered existence.  Much to John’s shock, a miraculous feeling sweeps through his body and suddenly the constant craving for alcohol is gone.  Not only that, but the horrible depression that’s always hanging over him also vanishes.  John feels like a crushing boulder has been lifted off of him.  He’s a new man, and for two whole years life is glorious.  But then John’s circumstances take a turn for the worst and he finds himself greatly stressed.  Much to his horror, that old craving starts rearing its ugly head again and soon John finds himself in a bar getting drunk.  What happened?  Has Jesus rejected him? Read more of this post

The Mindset of Trauma Rehearsal: Trying to Acclimate to the Unbearable

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Trauma is initially created by a lack of debriefing.  It wasn’t just that you experienced something overwhelmingly negative—it was that you were prevented from being able to emotionally depressurize immediately afterward.  It is the absence of debriefing or processing which turns upsetting experiences into crippling traumas.  Heather and Kim are  good examples of this.  Both women had terrifying drowning experiences when they were girls.  But in Heather’s case, she was able to run to a caring mother, cry it all out, and receive both sympathy and help in gaining a new perspective of her experience.  While she was being held underwater, unable to breathe, Heather was terrified.  Her mind was leaping to all kinds of overwhelming conclusions, such as the brother who she trusted was maliciously holding her under.  As Heather’s mother talks her through these feelings and helps her understand that her brother was not trying to harm her, overwhelming fears are put to rest, and Heather is able to quickly recover.  Read more of this post

The Mindset of Trauma Reversal: Pursuing the Unattainable

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No matter how many men Sonya dates, she doesn’t feel satisfied.  Rather than be faithful to her current boyfriend who treats her very well, Sonya flirts with every guy she meets and tries to get physical with them.  Sonya’s flirtatious behavior suggests that she really wants a man.  But she has a man, so why isn’t she happy?

Tony is an extremely driven workaholic who has a long resume of impressive accomplishments.  He graduated top of his class at one of the best colleges in the world.  He’s a brilliant neurosurgeon who has revolutionized his field with some very innovative surgical techniques.  Thanks to Tony’s genius, the number of brain tumors that can be safely removed has skyrocketed.  The man is a hero in the medical field, he is adored by his community, and he is married to an exceptionally kind and compassionate woman.  But despite all of this, Tony feels depressed and inadequate.  He’s locked in a pattern of driving himself to exhaustion trying to accomplish some lofty goal, only to feel depressed and unsatisfied when he reaches his target.  Tony’s been the guest of honor at many awards ceremonies, but every time he returns home with his wife, he’s so upset that he locks himself into the bathroom to cry.  Why isn’t Tony feeling satisfied with his accomplishments? Read more of this post

The Inner Room: Understanding How God Judges You

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Suppose you have a newlywed friend named Chad.  Chad says that his wife means the world to him, but then you see him making out with another woman in his car.  Are you going to believe Chad’s claim to love his wife?  Not really.

Humans put behavior above words in importance.  Because we can’t see into each other’s souls, and because we know what chronic little liars we all are, we don’t put much trust in words.  We put very little value on intentions.  It’s what you actually did that matters, not what you wanted to do.  Mike desperately wants to kick his addiction to alcohol, but it’s just not in him.  How much does his wife Sara care about Mike’s desire to improve?  Well, all Sara sees is what a monster Mike turns into when he’s plastered.  It’s Mike’s behavior that Sara judges him by, and as far as she is concerned, his actions prove that his claims to want to get better are just a lie.  After all, if Mike really wanted to stop drinking, he’d find a way.  He wouldn’t just talk about it.  This is how humans judge each other: actions trump intentions.  When Marsha finds out that Joe cheated on her, she’s so hurt that she won’t even listen to his excuses.  As far as she’s concerned, there is no justification for his behavior.  If he really loved her, he’d be faithful.  And yet is life really this simple?  Is it true that merely wanting something bad enough will magically give us the resources to make that something happen?  No, it’s not. Read more of this post

Help for Sex Addicts: Understanding Symbolic Sex

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AUDIO VERSION: YouTube  Podbean

So, how’s your sex life going? Are you even supposed to be having a sex life right now? Most sex addicts are not. When we are addicted to sex, we can’t scrape up the self-control needed to fuss around with things like real love and marital commitment. We feel an overwhelming need to keep that intercourse coming, which is why many of us are mowing our way through a long list of sexual partners. We’re not in it for the relationship, we’re in it for the sex. Some of us will put some effort into the relationship in order to make it last so we can put off the trouble of having to find a new partner. But others of us couldn’t care less about the relationship.

Let’s talk about your sexual style. Perhaps you are the woman who just can’t wait to tear her clothes off and thrust herself into any available pair of male arms. Or perhaps you are the guy who is addicted to rape. Your favorite prowling ground is party scenes where you can get your victims looped on drugs and then have your way with them. Sexual addictions come in a wide variety of forms, and yet the irony is that when we’re this crazed for sex, it’s really not about the sex anymore. For sex addicts, sex has become a symbol of something else, and that something else is what they’re really after. The first step in healing from your addiction is to identify what it is that sex symbolizes for you. Read more of this post

Emerging From Darkness: Guidance & Hope for Malicious Torturers

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CAUTION: This post is speaking to active torturers. This is a dark, graphic subject matter which is not going to be edifying to a general audience.

Sadism is a mindset in which we derive pleasure from inflicting pain, suffering, and/or humiliation onto others. Sadism comes in different flavors. In sadomasochistic pairings, someone who gets off on inflicting pain finds someone who gets off on being degraded, and the two party on. Here’s where we get into the world of BDSM torture fests in which the many forms of “play” revolve around sexual arousal. In this post, we’re not talking to sadists who are toying around with willing victims. In this post, we’re talking to those of you who are addicted to dishing out hardcore pain. You don’t want willing victims, you want terrified ones. You’re out to inflict malicious forms of pain and suffering, and seeing some honest terror and agony being expressed by your victim is an essential ingredient for you. You’re not just in it for sexual arousal, although that can be a nice side effect. For you, the whole screaming, writhing, bloody freak out gives you a deep internal rush. For you, it’s all about dragging things out as long as possible, while constantly trying to push the boundaries of sick and twisted. Bring on the medical experimentation and anatomical disfiguring. You expect your victims to die—they’re totally expendable to you. Maybe you’ll keep a few souvenirs from their corpses, but then it’s on to the next one because you need to keep that rush coming. Read more of this post