Life was designed to be lived with deliberate and intense passion.
You can go back and read that again because it is absolutely true!
The practical expression of that passion may look different from one person to another. Take for instance, the professional bodybuilder and the accountant. For the former, it may look like a rabid, almost scary obsession with ‘pumping iron’ and seeing muscles get bigger. For the accountant however, it may be sitting calmly in a swivel chair in an air conditioned office, reconciling figures. One thing is however constant. Both the professional body builder and accountant will be at their best only as they do these things with passion and a sense of fulfilment.
Make no mistake. This is not a career talk.
It is rather about the things we feel strongly compelled to do, and need to consume in higher amounts in order to derive some form of satisfaction, fix or craving, no matter how harmful; it’s about the discomfort we get when we fail to satisfy this compulsion; it is about ADDICTIONS.
What does this have to do with living life passionately or even bodybuilders, you say? Well, everything!
Let me just quickly point out that I’m a medical doctor- a Christian medical doctor. Hence, I live based on the word of God, and one thing that is cardinal to that is that we are expected to live the entirety of our lives (made up of habits) with passionate love and affection for God. Of course, this is to be a response to His own unchanging love for us.
Many of the negative habits that constitute addictions for us are actually expressly forbidden for us by this God. Frankly, many of them militate against human flourishing, and although some are necessary for living, their twisted use does more harm to the human. They range from unhealthy attachments to smart phones to internet surfing, sugar, pornography, sex, drugs, alcohol, etc.
We are thus stuck between wanting to please the Father and wanting to live our “best life” on earth. Guess what? We do not need to be in this dilemma. God is not a kill joy who is against a beautiful human experience. He literally created the beauty in the universe! We only need to learn to do all things from his thinking pattern.God is not a kill joy who is against a beautiful human experience. He literally created the beauty in the universe! We only need to learn to do all things from his thinking pattern Click To Tweet
There’s a book authored by Thomas Chalmers titled ‘The Expulsive Power of a New Affection’. The summary of this book is that the way to overcome negative tendencies is to replace them with positive ones. ‘Positive’ in this context will be God- glorifying habits and those that enhance human flourishing (for instance, wholesome relationships, soul-winning, academic and career pursuits, fun and relaxation etc.). Each one of these habits must be done passionately. The idea is to build positive habits the same way the bad habits were formed- repetitive practice.The way to overcome negative tendencies is to replace them with positive ones. ‘Positive’ in this context will be God- glorifying habits and those that enhance human flourishing (for instance, wholesome relationships,… Click To Tweet
Moreover, Christians must note that when they received the life of God, they got supernatural enabling to do godly things and they are to take advantage of that ability to do the ‘right’ things. Disciplines like meditation in the Bible, and prayer are seriously mind transforming. These disciplines are critical, because the mind is where it all happens. We are controlled by the most dominant thoughts in our minds.Disciplines like meditation and prayer are seriously mind transforming. These disciplines are critical, because the mind is where it all happens. We are controlled by the most dominant thoughts in our minds. Click To Tweet
Thus, a consistent routine of scriptural study and deep reflection is how we take advantage of that supernatural enablement. A regular prayer life also helps us keep company with the strong Spirit of God in us, strengthening us to break off wrong patterns in our lives. Getting a prayer partner is priceless in this instance. You can draw strength from others. Discussing your decision to change and your journey with a trusted more experienced spiritual person also helps.A regular prayer life helps us keep company with the strong Spirit of God in us, strengthening us to break off wrong patterns in our lives. Getting a prayer partner is priceless when it comes to this.You can draw strength from… Click To Tweet
However, you must remember to be deliberate and passionate about these things!
In the next post, I will share some things with you about bodybuilding (one of my passions) and how it relates to dealing with addictions. I have some useful metaphors from my gym sessions that will readily come in handy. I will also address the benefits of dealing with addictions. I’ve got this interesting word picture from Apostle Paul where he told a younger pastor to ‘train naked’. I’ve got some gems too from the book ‘Atomic Habits: An easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones’ by James Clear. I will also share some scientific methods that professionals have successfully used to help people out of addictions. Don’t miss the next part of this post for anything. Until then, remember to get a life and live it passionately.