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Overcoming Addictions - Help for Christians

Christians and non-Christian alike battle with addictions and other behaviors that they find themselves struggling to leave behind. Through faith in Jesus Christ and placing emotional and spiritual health as attainable goals, we can all be overcomers.

This blog, produced by Certified Recovery Specialist Beth Livingston, is for people to exchange struggles and victories of breaking free from addictions and other hurtful behaviors.

Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

only one way?
By Donna Collins Tinsley
Contributing Writer

The number of fractured families grows daily. You may be part of this growing number and might feel overwhelmed in your situation. This is one of my favorite verses to read when I need motivation to press on:

“I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.” Psalms 27:13 NKJV

I have noticed that there are those who seem to be able to work a 12-step program, those who because of mental health issues still need medications, those who can do it with Jesus only, and then there are those who need Jesus and much, much more. We just don’t hear enough about the fact that there is no ONE way to recovery.  Sometimes it seems there are people in rival camps fighting against each other, saying that their way is the only way that works.

I believe that recovery can be attained if you do it the way that works best for YOU and your family. We are all individuals; we learn differently, have unique beliefs and certainly each have our own truths. That does NOT prevent any of us from accepting the pieces of the process that work for us and traveling a path less known or accepted if that helps us and our fractured families achieve our dreams, sanity and sobriety.

There is no One Way Only road to recovery.

This statement is becoming more true to me as I think about the uniqueness of our Lord and how He created each person individually. We let go and we let God; yet sometimes He gives us ideas to help ourselves and others and bring hope for each situation. What works for one family member may turn another one completely off.

A Radical Intervention

For years I was waiting on a daughter to walk herself into rehab, and all those years she felt unloved and unworthy until I took a legal step to help her – I Marchman Acted her.

According to Okeechobee Florida Clerk of Court, “a Marchman Act is a means of providing an individual in need of substance abuse services with emergency services and temporary detention for substance abuse evaluation and treatment when required, either on a voluntary or involuntary basis.” The process is initiated by petitioning the court and a judge decides if the person meets the criteria. (Not all states have adopted the Marchman Act into their laws.)

In my daughter’s mind, taking that step to insist she get help spelled love. The Bible says in Lamentations:

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” Lamentations 3:22-24(NIV)

I had to wait on the timing of the Lord before I took this legal step. The love was there all the time, but she was not able to receive it or even believe that it was there until the Marchman Act was served. My action allowed her to feel loved. That was her view; the Marchman Act spelled love to her.

Yet many have gotten treatment for their loved ones to no avail; there is a timing, and it is the Lord’s. That is when we breathe and pray, breathe and pray, breathe, cry out to the Lord and pray.

Return to your fortress, you prisoners of hope; even now I announce that I will restore twice as much to you. Zechariah 9:12 NIV

Prayer: Lord, we come to You today, praying Thy will be done. I can’t fix this situation or family member, I never could but it took me a while to figure that out. You Lord, love my children even more than I do, so I leave them with You, asking for serenity for my own life, protection for children and hope for the future. Yes, I will be a prisoner of hope for my family and loved ones who wrestle with addiction until the day I die or the day that You bring the healing needed. We thank You that although there may be more than one way to recovery, You are the only Way, Truth and Life and the only “one way” to live. We give you all praise and glory in Jesus precious name. Amen.

Donna Collins Tinsley, wife, mother and grandmother, lives in Port Orange, Florida and has been included in several magazines and book compilations. She is a lover of the Lord Jesus and a sister among you. Find her at Facebook,  or join Somebody’s Mother Online Prayer Support Group at Please email her at with CBN blog article in the subject.

Print      Email to a Friend    posted on Friday, February 14, 2014 8:31 PM

Comments on this post

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

As one who interacts with many different family members struggling with addiction, I would like to echo Donna's statement that "We just don’t hear enough about the fact that there is no ONE way to recovery."

The recovery community—just as "society in general" employs many different approaches to battling addiction. It is very common for those who are passionate about one particular venue to become extremely defensive and emotional when it comes to entertaining the thought that there may be alternate approaches that work for others.

In my work with Changing Lives Foundation, I believe the best way for families to find help is to listen to others who "have been there" and utilize the resources and info they feel comfortable with (12-Step Groups, Church, Treatment Centers, Prayer, Books & DVDs, Peer Mentoring, Counseling and sometimes medication). Better yet—a combination of "whatever is effective."

Let's come together to help families.

Left by Judy Herzanek on Feb 20, 2014 4:14 PM

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

Judy thank you so much for commenting and you and your husband Joe have been part of steering so many people to God and recovery. May you be blessed in the work of your hands and I know that you continue to learn more each day and then share it with others. I thank you that y'all continue to pay forward the healing that y'all have found. May your tribe increase:)
Left by Donna Collins Tinsley on Feb 20, 2014 8:00 PM

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

Hello. 4 years ago, on All Saint's Day, I asked God for sobriety. I prayed the most heartfelt prayer of my life. I didn't beg, plead or cajole. I simply, with all my heart and being, asked God to please take my addiction away. He did.
I have attended A.A. and do believe the 12 steps are a wonderful way to live life. Even if you aren't battling addiction, the steps teach principles to live by. The 12 steps are a moral compass, that can certainly enhance anyone's life. That being said, God got me sober and keeps me there. I am now leading a sober, God centered life and I have never been happier, more grateful and more at peace.
Bless you all, I pray you will find your peace.
Left by Nikki on Jan 19, 2015 9:44 PM

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

My daughter has suffered severely as she has battled the addiction of alcohol, and for the longest time, I suffered right along with her. This article is "on the money" regarding what a parent can do and what he or she cannot do. We aren't God, and we need to leave the work to Him who is Faithful. It is SO very difficult to watch as your child lives his or her life in a way that is so destructive, but it is also one we have no control over. We can only pray, encourage, and wait for God's timing. Then? ACT! And, not one minute before that time either. Thank you, Lord, for salvation, for deliverance and for healing in this and all battles we wage against evil. Please pray for Courtney to be set free, and I will pray for your loved ones as I watch this site. Thank you and be blessed.
Left by Crystal Carte on Sep 09, 2015 2:09 PM

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

Don't miss this song as we pray on Thursday for those in Recovery. On the heels of the Saturday event, many have found new hope, resources and friends. Lord, have mercy on all who need help today and bring about family healing also. Reveal to those who are suffering what is the source of their pain so they may be healed. Praying for each person who commented on this post, especially Nikki and Crystal and their loved ones. I'm amazed that although I wrote it some years back, even I have to go back and refresh my memory of what the Lord was saying to me.
Go to a meeting, spread some love and hope and work your program! Make a gratitude list and truly think about what you are writing down and what you have to be grateful for, we ask for grace today as we pray for each family needing healing.
Left by Donna Collins Tinsley on Oct 01, 2015 7:58 AM

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

I've tried just attending church getting heavily involved and i didn't stay sober then i tried AA and church and i was able to maintain my sobriety for a yr n half but something happen with my mental illness ( depression,anxiety,ptsd not able to concentrate, cudnt keep a job, missplaceing things and feared up) the meds i was on werent working, my doc tried what we thght was everything. I picked up in oct of 2014 with 2yrs sober. I began using maybe 1 once a month then i would go with out using for a couple of months but being in a relationship with some one who lied to me and was never clean its been difficult to cut ties with him because all i have to say to him is can you get me something and he does most of the time..I haven't told any one about this so my fam n friends believe i will be celebrating 4yrs soon...i know the Lord forgives me and i pray Daley asking for a resolution. My bro died from alchol about 3 1/2yrs ago and his bday is my sobriety date and i cant/wont give it up😭
Left by atony missnu on Oct 05, 2015 8:09 AM

# RE: Only One True Way to Overcome Addictions?

I'll be praying for you and I know you'll make it this time with the Lord, Atony. You have a lot on your plate but it isn't too big for our Lord. Let Him bear your burdens, addictions and life.
Left by Donna Collins Tinsley on Jan 08, 2016 3:28 PM