Celebrate Christ Recovery Forum: "The Synergy of Addiction Science and Scripture."
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Anne Marlowe, a heroin addict wrote in her book, "How to Stop Time," "Heroin is an excuse for “not getting on with your life.” Marlowe notes that heroin “isn’t that wonderful: it’s a substance some of us agree to pursue as though it were wonderful, because it’s easier to do that than to figure out what is worth pursuing.” 

"Addiction is a behavior intended to reverse a profound, intolerable sense of helplessness. This displacement (addiction) is an attempt to regain some measure of self-control. Addictive actions are the result of an emotional process – an attempted solution to feeling helplessly overwhelmed. This helplessness is always rooted in something deeply important to the individual. The drive in addictive behavior is rage at helplessness. It is this particular kind of rage that gives addiction its most conspicuous characteristics of intensity and loss of control." ( Lance Dodes, MD 7-Step Handbook for Ending Any Addiction).

One of my children was a heroin addict. He would agree, getting high is easy, thinking is difficult.  Ann is right, when you think about it, life is all about Purpose or lack of it. Heroin or any drug can be abused as a quick fix or mood changer when we lack control and purpose in life. The very core of substance abuse is to avoid pain and seek pleasure. There is no twisted thought, without a twisted molecule. Corrupted or immature thinking, in the absence of strong moral values often leads to twisting one's own molecules. The greatest evil of any ADDICTION (hurt-habit-hangups) is that it separates the addict from God. The abuse becomes a false idol.

Anatomy and Chemistry of Addiction: Barry Solof, MD, (Therapist's Guide to Addiction Medicine) paraphrased says: "It takes two elemental factors to produce an addicted individual. First, it takes a substance or behavior that stimulates the reward center of the brain. The reward center is located in an area called the limbic system, in the midbrain. The midbrain lies below the prefrontal cortex , under the “thinking” brain that thinks consciously and makes decisions. Stimulating the brain reward center requires an action (for example, eating or sex) or the ingestion of a substance via smoking, swallowing, snorting, or injecting that is experienced as “rewarding,” or in other words, pleasurable. Second, life's ordinary pleasure system is usurped by chemical abuse. In other words life's every day pleasures are no longer rewarding."

Drugs ignite the neural flush of well being, without the requirement of a particular experience or an event.
Drugs trick the brain into dispensing the neurochemicals of REWARD, or they mimic those chemicals themselves. Drugs talk to the brain in the language of dopamine and peptides and neuro-modulators and receptors. Life events resulting in reward can and should be done naturally, these rewarding events and circumstances  require effort that starts in your mind - your thinking. When you lack genuine purpose in life, many are prone to take the synthetic road to specious pleasure - the easy way out, the quick fix, the mood changer. There truly is a better way. A natural way that involves self empowering choice, a change in thinking, attitude and behavior. You choose how to respond to life, to delegating control to God. Change your thinking and let God change your life. Let the power of the Holy Spirit change your reward system!

Peptide Prayer:
 

Father God, I invite you into my life.
Change my thinking, change my ungodly reward system -to a new system,
with an new purpose, and that purpose is You.
Help me make wise decisions in this tempestuous world, guide my footsteps at all times.
Allow me the ability to change my plans by being sensitive to Your Will by thinking, believing and acting, with the values of your son Jesus Christ.

Long Version:

Father God, we invite you into our lives.
Change our thinking, change our ungodly corrupted reward system, of finding dopamine in all the wrong places.
Help us control our displaced addictive behaviors that lead to Quick Fixes and Mood Changers - to a new control system, a Christ Driven System, with an new purpose, and that purpose is You.
Help us not to be conformed of this world but instead allow the transformation of our minds to new thinking, Christ Driven Thinking (Romans 12:2). For your grace is sufficient for me, for there is power in weakness (2 Corinthians 12-9).
When confronted with the inevitable circumstances in our life that make us feel helpless, trapped, powerless, and lacking control, keep us from exercising displaced addictive behaviors, in a brief attempt to reverse control of our helpless situation; instead, we delegate control to you Father (Intelligent Delegation) so that that control may be returned to us in the form of the Holy Spirit. (Reciprocal Facilitation/Innervation). For it is God who works in us to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose (Philippians 2:13). 

 

For I can do all things through Him who strengthens me (Philippians 4-13). Help us make wise decisions in this tempestuous world, guide our footsteps at all times.
Allow us the ability to change our plans by being sensitive to Your Will by thinking, believing and acting, with the values, purpose and character of your son Jesus Christ.

 

 

 


__________________
"I am a Surrendered Believer in Jesus Christ with Free Will and I CHOSE Surrender (Intelligent Delegation) in my victory over, “Recreational Chemical Abuse, my weekend, "False Idols."
"I chose DIRECT health assertive Christ Driven Behavior (CDB) instead of DISPLACED behavior in order to regain control over feeling helpless, powerless, trapped and lacking control. I changed my, "Thinking," and God changed my life."
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Your Neurochemical Self

I'm Grateful for Dopamine
Temptation is a surge of the chemical that creates joy.
Published on November 26, 2013 by Loretta Graziano Breuning, Ph.D. in Your Neurochemical Self

"As we begin the season of temptation, it’s useful to appreciate the dopamine that fuels it.  Rats ignore a feast in front of them if their dopamine is depleted.They’ll eat the food if you put it in their mouth, but they will not go toward it (or toward mating opportunity) when their dopamine is artificially depleted by experimenters. Without dopamine, we don't care about anything. With dopamine, we move mountains to get at things. "

The author is somewhat humorously referring to the, "temptation of food," during the Holidays.
Having said that, dopamine is a driving force produced when humans reward themselves with something pleasurable. Substance abusers, find reward (dopamine surges) in drugs.

If you keep choosing the thing that's good for your long-run well-being, you will eventually build a new pathways to your dopamine. 
At Celebrate Recovery we learn to change our reward system with the help of the Holy Spirit and the values of Jesus Christ. We change out thinking, we change our dopamine pathways, we change our lives.

Have you read the Word of God today?

Source: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/your-neurochemical-self/201311/im-grateful-dopamine


__________________
"I am a Surrendered Believer in Jesus Christ with Free Will and I CHOSE Surrender (Intelligent Delegation) in my victory over, “Recreational Chemical Abuse, my weekend, "False Idols."
"I chose DIRECT health assertive Christ Driven Behavior (CDB) instead of DISPLACED behavior in order to regain control over feeling helpless, powerless, trapped and lacking control. I changed my, "Thinking," and God changed my life."
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There is no reason why anyone with any hurt, habit, or hang up cannot be helped. The Person-God partnership simply needs to be more powerful than any hurt, habit or hangup.

Behind everything you do is a THOUGHT.

Every BEHAVIOR is motivated by a BELIEF.

Every ACTION is prompted by an ATTITUDE.

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With respect to behavior, life is about, emotions, beliefs, thinking and control.

"A fool vents all his feelings, But a wise man holds them back."Proverbs 29:11 (Displaced Behaviors)

"Do not be conformed by this world but instead by the renewing of your mind." Romans 12:2 (Direct Behavior)

When you think and empower yourself and surrender control to God, when you Intelligently Delegate Control to God (2 Corinthians 12:9-10),

God returns that control to you with a, “Helper," the Holy Spirit, (John 14:16) a form of Reciprocal Innervation.

You regain control: "the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.

No longer are you subject to corrupted displaced thinking but instead are transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2).

This is where science and scripture intertwine, where Christ Driven Behavior brings, values, control, cause, character and purpose driven behavior, the fruits of the spirit Galatians 5:22-23 .

“If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17.

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Proverbs 29:11 "A fool vents all his feelings, But a wise man holds them back."

Romans 12:2: Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

2 Corinthians 12-9:“My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.”

John 14:16: "He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—"

Philippians 2:13: "for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure."

Galatians 5:22-23 "the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Ephesians 4:22-23 "...put away the old person you used to be. Have nothing to do with your old sinful life. It was sinful because of being fooled into following bad desires. Let your minds and hearts be made new."

Life is about finding Purpose. When you have a, "Global Purpose," in life, healthy direct assertive thinking and behavior follow.

Change your thinking, change your life!

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