Purdue Pharmaceutical company developed and marketed a series of powerful opioids, using false claims, and deceptive and manipulative advertising to sell them to doctors and patients. Today, North Americans use over 80% of the opioids sold worldwide and the opioid crisis has exploded in the last few years.
I cannot believe there is more pain in North America than the rest of the world combined, but I believe it provides a statement to where we are as a culture and the spiritual reality it mirrors.
We were created for addiction. We are designed to be addicted to our creator. To long for His presence, to hunger after His voice and His Word. To desire above all else to walk in His light and depend on His strength and grace.
If we are not exchanging our distress, pain, confusion, disillusion, weariness, insecurity, you name the condition, with the peace, fullness, and grace of Jesus, we cannot help but turn to something else that not only numbs the pain, but steals the beautiful, intangible things received when dwelling in the throne room of God.
The alternatives the world markets come in countless forms and can be just as addictive, but like an opioid, do not lead to life and healing.
Westerners have an intense dislike for pain and its processes. The thing with opioids is they don’t fix the problem, they only mask the pain and the issue continues unchecked.
John 10:10 is so tantalizing, it is quoted often enough as to be so familiar it fails to truly reach us.
“The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy, but I came that you may have life and have it more abundantly!”
Culture has fed us line of BS when it comes to what life abundant looks like, telling us pain is to be avoided at all costs and consumables lead to happiness.
Jesus is not afraid of pain, nor is He unable to give us the grace we need to face difficult circumstances and come out better for the process.
Romans 8:28 says:
God works all things together for good for those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose. For those He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son.
Paul continues; we may go through tribulation, distress, persecution, disease – but none of them can separate us from the victorious love and abundant life in Jesus.
It is me turning to other coping mechanisms that separates myself from the Life God gives.
Surrendering to the Father’s gentle hand leads to life abundant – unadulterated by the numbing affects of dependance on something we were not made to depend on.
Purdue’s deceptive marketing netted only blood money;we truly have good news to share with a world in pain, and new life now and eternal treasure in sharing it!
Do you have coping habits that take you from the presence of Jesus? Do you know some one in pain that you can love extravagantly like Jesus?