Monday, December 12, 2011

All of us struggle with inherent sin. Satan exploits our weaknesses. How can we cope?

Below is a response to a request for help...


Dear Xxxx,
In truth, we are ALL in the same shoes as you. All of us, are born in sin. (Rom.5:12; 3:23)
We all depend on God's grace and His desire to be merciful, to even attain to the HOPE, of leaving our sins behind. (Luke15:4; Matt.6:26; 12:11; 1Cor.15:57)
In truth, we ALL "need help" (1John1:8,9,10; 1Pet.5:10).
The fact that the things which you practice, bother you, shows that in your case,
there IS hope (1Pet.3:21; Rom.2:15,16).
Leaving our sins behind, is quite difficult (Romans7:18,19,20). Don't think for a moment that I don't recognize that. But more importantly, don't think for a moment that God himself does not recognize how difficult this is for us (Psalm78:38,39; Matt.12:20).
Despite this struggle, we really do need to realize, that our best effort and commitment is required, if we are to make real progress (James4:8; 1Cor.9:24,25; Luke13:23,24).
Once we are committed, what aid and support is there?
If we really do use our free will to fight sin...Yes, there is aid and support.....enough so, to make our way, totally successful
(Prov.16:3; Josh.1:8; John17:17; 1John1:7; Eph.5:26; Titus2:14; Gal.5:16; John4:24).

Satan is no fool when it comes to spiritual traps (1Pet.5:8; Gen.4:7). He uses our natural make up, to ensnare us. We have to be very wise to beat him at his games (Ecclesiastes 7:12; 2Cor.2:11; 11:3). But thankfully, our Heavenly Father desires that we succeed, so He generously provides the very wisdom we need, to equip us (James1:5; Ps.143:8). Our needed response, is to learn it, and obey it (Isa.48:17,18; Eph.4:22; 1Pet.5:9). If we do, we will escape (John8:32; Luke21:36; Eph.6:11,16; Acts26:18). If we don't obey it, we won't escape death (2Thess.2:10; Rom.8:6,7,12,13; 6:21,23; Col.3:5,6; Eph.2:1,2,3,4,5).

Once we decide we want freedom (Ps.119:113; James1:8,7; 4:7,8,9,10; Isa.1:16; Jer.4:14; 1Pet.4:3,2; Rom.13:12,13,14), God does many things for us. Not only will he give us the wisdom we need, he will provide rules of engagement according to justice, limiting what Satan is allowed to do to us (1Cor.10:13). God will also provide us with a renewed sense of power, based in His spirit (2Cor.4:16; Col.1:10,11; 2Cor.12:9,10; 1Pet.5:10; Phil.4:13).
It may help if we examine all the support God desires to give you. In this way, you can be better equipped to fight and win your struggle to overcome our adversary, as well as your own sinful weaknesses (1John3:3).
The sources of life, (and therefore, the key to freedom from sin), lie within our own heart (Prov.4:23).
The best place to start then, is there.
I will use your own words, to start a limited tour of your own heart. By helping you to know it better; you will be better equipped at taming it, feeding it, supporting it, and leading it onto the road of life, rather than helplessly allowing it to drag you down the path of death (Jer.17:9; Psalm139:23,24; 32:8).

You have said:
"I suffer from chronic depression"
  And no wonder. You are trapped in a downward spiral of sin, disappointment, shame, and neediness. On top of that, you feel helpless, hopeless, and alone. True, there may be past trauma or physical factors which contribute to your depression. There are reasons for your depression that are both changeable and perhaps unchangeable. But once you effect what you can, there will be improvement. I will not waste our time on what we can not change, but rather I will focus on what you can change.

"and who knows what other emotional problems i have"
  Yes, we are all a tangled mess, aren't we? But a fatalistic viewpoint....is one of the things we can change.
Just take a moment to decide if that view is going to support and help you, or not. If you live in the head-space of "I am so defective that I'm hopeless", will you get on the road to life? (Prov.24:10)
Okay then :)
Truth be told, we all have a plethora of emotional, physical, mental and spiritual problems. But guess what?.....all we have to do is let the goodness in our hearts grow...weed out the bad...and very soon, God himself will make us new. Done.
So train your focus to be on what you CAN do (which is a lot), and God really will take care of the rest.
(1Pet.5:6,10; Rev.21:4,5)

"but i believe to have patterns of self destruction"
  Welcome to the human race. Yet I do not take this lightly. Guess where you learned those "patterns"? Remember the one who wants us to "self-destruct"? This is what I brought up before. Satan. He has set up snares that take us down....those "patterns of self destruction". He designed them. But you don't have to remain a pawn of them. (Rom.6:16,17,18,19,20,21,22; John8:34,36)
Drugs and pornography follow a very recognizable pattern of self destruction. They use the same resources Satan exploits....natural needs that are not being met (principle at 1Cor.7:5).

First become enlightened as to what Satan is able to use against you....
Our desire for sex and the need to escape from anxiety, are natural (Gen.2:18; 1Cor.7:9; Luke10:41; 12:29,30; Matt.6:27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34). There are good and bad ways to meet these needs. Of course, Satan tries to deprive us of healthy clean ways of meeting those natural needs. He gets us to believe that we can not live without fulfilling our desires. Is this true? (Matt.19:12,11).
Exploiting what is a natural desire, Satan provides sick, filthy, easy ways of seeking satisfaction. All of us fall for it, while we don't know any better (Prov.10:23; 1Tim.5:6; 1Pet.4:3; James 5:5).
The problem with us, is not that we HAVE these needs and desires, but the way we are tricked into meeting those needs.
Your goal here, is to stop feeling ashamed of what is natural...and seek ways of meeting your actual needs, which ways, God will support.
I know this change is very difficult, especially at first. But with God, it is possible...and it grows easier (Eph.4:24; 2Tim.1:13). We will discuss how to do this later on.

"and make bad in the moment decisions"
  This reflects a heart that needs more faith. How so?
How many decisions did Jesus make on his own? (John5:19,30; 8:28)
Like Jesus, we need to learn to look to God our heavenly Father, through prayer to Him, concerning everything. This is not natural for you, but it CAN be learned. Start small. Say a little prayer every time you think of God. He will not mind what you say or don't say. Just start talking to him as often as you can. In time, it will become more natural to look to him. Like faithful men of old, you will develop a natural awareness of him (Heb.11:27). You will draw closer to Him (James4:8). In time, you will consult him in everything...knowing he is making everything smooth and straight for you (Prov.3:5,6). As you attain this faith and closeness with God, this problem of yours, will greatly diminish (Psalm119:165; 73:23,24,26,28; Eph.6:16).

"which i believe have led me to being disfellowshipped."
  Your standing with men is not the issue here. Men...whether they approve or disapprove of you, will not effect your salvation at all. You must get the focus off of your standing with men, and on to your standing with Jesus and Yhwh, if you are going to live (Prov.29:25; Matt.10:28; Col.1:13,14; Gal.1:10; Rom.2:29 B; Rom.14:12).

"Jehovah knows how stubborn i am"

DEFINITION:
Adj. 1. stubborn - tenaciously unwilling or marked by tenacious unwillingness to yield
obstinate, unregenerate
uncompromising, inflexible, sturdy - not making concessions; "took an uncompromising stance in the peace talks"; "uncompromising honesty"
disobedient - not obeying or complying with commands of those in authority; "disobedient children"
intractable - not tractable; difficult to manage or mold; "an intractable disposition"; "intractable pain"; "the most intractable issue of our era"; "intractable metal"
opposite:
docile - willing to be taught or led or supervised or directed; "the docile masses of an enslaved nation"

  You may notice that stubbornness is a force to oppose a different outside force. We can learn this at a very young age...usually from authority figures that are domineering. It becomes a habit.

Yet, in this case, it is important for you to discern the big difference...
 between opposition to tyranny,
and single-handedly destroying one's own self.
The only one actually asking your heart to keep living, is you.
The war you are in, is largely with yourself.
 You do have those spiritual forces on the sidelines...Satan hoping you lose...and he is providing all the reinforcements you need to fail.
Jesus and our heavenly Father hope you win...and they also will provide all the reinforcements you need to succeed.
The difference is that Satan already has the judicial basis to interfere...he has demanded to test all those seeking life (Job2:3: Luke22:31).
On the other hand, God is only allowed to interfere, based on your free will choice, when you sincerely seek his aid proactively (Psalm145:18: Isa.55:6; 2Cor.5:20; Eph.5:15,16,17; 6:13; Rom.12:2; 1Thess.4:3,4).

We only have two choices....either we fight to live, and then Yhwh God helps us;
or, we go with the flow, and die (Deut.30:15,19,20; Gen.4:7).

Now I will ask you to learn from an illustration of Jesus (from Luke chapter 8)
Imagine your heart is a little garden.
From the moment you are born, life presents both good and bad.
Imagine the good and the bad are seeds...seeds to grow good things, and seeds to grow bad.
The gift of our free will, gives us the power to decide two things regarding these seeds.
One...what will we plant (accept), cultivate, water, and feed?
Two...what will we weed out?
These two choices, cause our own heart's garden to take shape, and manifest what sort of Garden it will be (1Cor.3:13; Gal6:4).
Even if we have only cultivated weeds our whole life... we are not yet out of time!...we can start over! (Eph.2:3; 1Pet.4:3; Isa.55:6; Eph.4:22; Eze.18:21,22,23).
We can rake it all out and plant what we want to become...cultivate it, and weed out the bad. In a short while, we can become just what we wish (Eph.4:23,24). God promises to bless and make the good results we seek, grow strong (Phil.4:19; Rom.15:5,13; 2Pet.1:3,10,11; 1Pet.5:10).
If you really want the great joy of standing clean before God, and all the rewards to follow; it is within your grasp (2Pet.3:11; Heb.11:6; 6:12; 1Cor.3:14; 2:9; Col.3:24; 2John8; Rev.22:12; Prov.13:13,21; Psalm31:24; James1:12; 1John2:25; 2Cor.7:1).

You can stubbornly resist this joyous reward against your own interests (Prov.8:36)
 or you can in wisdom, be stubborn against your enemy, Satan.
(James4:7; 1Pet.5:8; Eph.4:22 --["his"/"its", is Satan]).

"i had forgotten how much hold satans grip is on flesh and it seems i need to understand it better or learn to hate even more than i do now, the things that are killing me and my relationship with Jehovah."
  Well, we have talked about the grip of the flesh, and how Satan will use our natural desires to pervert us. When you say, "the things that are killing me and my relationship with Jehovah"...you reveal that you already know and somewhat hate what is bad. You are trapped into satisfying your desires the way Satan wants you to (John8:34). Even though you sense the badness of your practices, you wonder how you can hate the only way you know of, to meet your desires.
You need to realize what Satan is doing to you. You need to realize that you have options.

"Smoking, marijuana use, pornography, fornication (heart and eyes), and other things are so hard to shake"
  If you are only meeting your needs in sinful ways, it will be impossible to break free from those ways. There are new things you must learn...
--what your needs really are
--how to meet your needs in healthy ways
--how to be contented and happy without death.

"and only Jehovah has helped me in the past"
  Remember this. He IS there to help you. But you need to grab on with both hands...
 If your free will is indecisive, you will be weak in a way that God can not compensate for (James1:7,8,5).
Yet even here, you can pray for the desire to be whole-souled, and God will help you.
You can not be feeding eternal life within yourself, and at the same time be feeding the monster (consider the principles found at Matt.6:24; 12:25).
You must starve the monster...Satan's pet...that lives in your heart and is killing you.
Stop feeding it and making it stronger.
Think about this reality when you are tempted. Your heart has grown accustomed to the monster that lives inside it. Your heart has become a slave to it, making it comfortable and feeding it. That monster is going to kill you. You can starve, weaken, and finally remove it. It is up to you.
 If you are going to be stubborn, I hope you choose the right enemy.

"but i felt moved to do it and it was easy"
  Of course you "felt moved to do it"! That monster you harbor is INSIDE YOU. We all know that Satan makes it "easy". This is his world...he will have total control over your environment, if you let him.
Again, the answer is not to leave an empty void by only removing these evil things...but also to replace these satisfactions with healthy alternatives that meet our natural needs (Luke11:24,25,26).
If we wish to stop walking according to our fallen flesh,
we must focus, and continue to actively walk by spirit
(Gal.5:16,25,24,22,23; 1Cor.15:58; Matt.7:24; Rom.12:13; Phil.4:9; Luke8:21).

"Am i just not ready?"
  Only you can answer this. But it sounds to me like you have been ready for a while, having recognized what slavery to Satan is leading to...death. What you may really be asking is...am I ready to succeed on my own?....and you fear you are not capable.
In this, you are correct. But if you are ready to fight with wisdom and support, you can succeed. Are you ready for that?

"have i truly hurt Jehovah so bad that he doesn't see me carrying his name?"
  First, no one really carries Jehovah's name, except his "Chosen" Ones
(Isa.43:10,21; 1Pet.2:9; Rev.14:1; Mal.2:7; Rev.5:10).
If you are not anointed, this is not your burden to carry. Let go of it.

But the other thought is personal for you....
Do you think you can be so sinful and hurt Jehovah so bad, that your clean standing with him has become impossible?
See what He himself says...
Eze.18:21 “‘Now as regards someone wicked, in case he should turn back from all his sins that he has committed and he should actually keep all my statutes and execute justice and righteousness, he will positively keep living. He will not die.
22 All his transgressions that he has committed—they will not be remembered against him. For his righteousness that he has done he will keep living. Do I take any delight at all in the death of someone wicked,’ is the utterance of the Sovereign Lord Jehovah, ‘[and] not in that he should turn back from his ways and actually keep living?’" (see also 1Pet.3:11; Heb.8:12; 10:17; 1Cor.6:11)

Once you become a clean vessel, leave it up to Almighty God, what He Himself will have you carry for Him. (2Tim.2:20; Isa.64:8; Rom.9:20,21)

"The things i do bother my conscience but i continue to do them, i need help."
  There is hope for you, IF you listen to that good conscience of yours.
You do not really need to continue practicing the bad, despite your feelings.
But to stop, you need to know how. That is where you "need help".

God stands ready to help you, when you make up your mind that you want to live, by evicting the lethal monster that has taken up lodging in your heart. You can gain the mastery over it. Jehovah stands ready to help you, with great power and wisdom.

Gal.5:16 reads:
"But I say, Keep walking by spirit and YOU will carry out no fleshly desire at all."

I and others have kept sinful desires at bay, and still increased our satisfaction and joy. The answer lies in the truth of this scripture...we must walk "by spirit".
How to do this?
The Bible tells us.
You are a babe in these things, but here is where you can start....

*Know that Satan is exploiting natural clean desires. Your only shame lies in letting him dictate to you how you will satisfy these things. Here is where it would be good to become stubborn...against Satan, and against the greedy monster he has planted in the garden of your heart. Starve the bastard...all it seeks is your death.

*Learn to stay close to Jehovah all the time. Develop the habit of praying to him constantly, as if he were a loving Father in the same room with you all the time. This will keep you walking "by spirit".

*Know that God wants to, and stands ready to help you...but Satan will not allow Jehovah to do it, unless justice is met...meaning that you have to WANT to change....you really have to choose God's help, and be willing to prove that desire. You can pray for this desire to grow stronger.
You will fall a few times, but don't let the monster win...keep reaching...stay determined, and you will reach the goal (Luke11:9,10,11,12,13; Prov.24:16; Rom.12:2; 2Cor.7:1; 1John3:3). When both Satan and God see evidence of this determination, God can then support and guard you, judicially. You will then have made your choice for good, evident to Satan. He will no longer be able to justly prevent Jehovah's helping you (principle at Rev.12:10) IF you actively oppose him (James4:7).

*Remember that all we need to prove in this life, is that we want a clean standing with God. It is life's only sensible pursuit (Matt.16:26; Ec.12:13). If we are found wise and faithful in this....any other present defects we may have are irrelevant, because they are soon to be removed (Rev.21:5).

*The "road of life" will bring "seasons of refreshing" directly "from the person of Yhwh God" (Acts3:19). This does not depend on your standing with mere men (1Tim.2:5; 1Cor.7:23; John14:6; Col.1:13,14).

*Those whom the Father and Jesus welcome into the Kingdom, will be those who have learned to cultivate/tame, their hearts. These have shown diligence...in filling the heart with the bread of life (Luke8:11,15)...and "weeding out" the wicked demonic things (monsters) that lead to death (Matt.18:9). God helps us in this.
Once we manifest our will to do this good work,
our heavenly Father protects us from things that are too difficult for us to deal with on our own. He also gives us the wisdom and strength we need to be successful (Phil.4:13).

*Bible reading is essential, and there is no substitute (Psalm119:14,15,16,17,18,97; John17:17). This helps replace the weeds in the heart with wheat. It fills our heart with things that crowd out the evil, and do not allow it to take up residence again. Read Luke 8, and strive to have a heart, made of "fine soil". Pray for the good things you desire, and God will really help you (Luke 11:9,10,11,12,13; Isa.41:13). Yes, you can cope with sin. You can win the race of life! 1Cor.9:24,26,27




You are most welcome to continue writing me for support through your journey to the real life (1Tim.6:19). Please feel free to write me anytime, at pearl144000@hotmail.com

Psalm130:3,4; Isa.41:13; Prov.18:10

You may find this song encouraging... (after the commercial...lol)
Link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPBliI7NXUE

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PART TWO

My reply to another reader:


I am sorry to learn of the miserable consequences you experience because of surrendering your self-control (1Pet.5:8), which is a natural and dangerous result of drugging the brain with alcohol. It is a blessing in disguise that you are aware of the consequences (2Cor.13:5).

The tests and challenges we all face in life, may vary in appearance. But underneath those details, there is something basic and common (1Pet.5:9). The particular way in which we each face a satanic world and our own corruption, will determine our individual experience and consequences (Gal.6:7,8; Prov.10:21).

Though these temptations, weakesses, and sins vary among individuals; the greatest benefit, strategy, and solution, stems from perceiving what we all face in common (Rom.7:17). No matter what choices face us as individuals; the problem, and the solution, is the same (Gal.6:8; 5:16). If we complicate our view of this struggle, we complicate our solutions.

No matter where we live on the planet, we can take a look around us at the people we see. Each one of them presents an image to our eyes. I ask you for a moment, in your minds eye, to seek out one aspect of a person's image...
Their individual weaknesses, temptations, and sins.
These are more evident than what you may have previously noticed.

Are they overweight? Does their face depict anxiety or grief? Are they impatient with a young child? Obsessed with their appearance?
And then there are the secret sins, which only the individual is aware of.

My point is not to encourage a critical and unloving view of people, but to open your eyes to our common humanity. "All sin, and fall short of the glory of God". (Rom.3:23)

Now for a different view...
Why do those blemishes appear in all of us?
There are, basically two reasons...
What the world has done to us (Ec.9:11; Ps.37:32,14; 10:8), and what we have done to ourselves (Prov.23:29,30; 20:1; Isa.5:11; 1Cor.6:18).

No one can perfectly sort these two causes out in an individual, which is why we do not qualify as moral and spiritual Judges (Matt.7:1).
Thankfully, God who IS Judge, does not view a person according to how the world has victimized them, nor even according to how they have victimized themselves and others (1Sam.16:7; 1John3:20).
He views them according to what we each possess and no one can take from us...
our free will and how we are using it (Ec.3:17; Prov.4:23; Matt.15:18,19; Prov.23:19).

Our free will can not change others, nor the world, nor much of what will occur to us in our lifetime.
But in God's loving and merciful justice, He does not hold us responsible for those things, which we ourselves have not caused (Ps.7:11; Gal.6:7; Jer.31:30; Eze.18:17,18,19; Deut.24:16).
Despite this, we do control HOW WE RESPOND to the things beyond our control (Rom.12:21). This ability to do what's right, and rise above our victimization, grows with age, time, and use (2Tim.4:5; Heb.5:14).

Our earliest and ongoing inalienable choice, is whether or not we will take up this personal challenge...
to use our personal experience with the world's evil, to conquer it;

OR, if we will use it's abuse of us, to excuse our contributing to the total evil within it.

I know that was a mouthful, and I hope you can grasp the truth in what I say.
Although we can not change much in our lives, we can change how we choose to react.
That reaction can overcome the evil of the moment, and make us a Victor (John16:33; 17:16; Rev.2:7).
Or, we can abdicate our power, surrender to the evil, and thereby add to the evil. This becomes a cycle of unloving injustice and pain;
not only to ourselves, but to all those around us (Rom.12:21; 8:7,8,5; Gal.5:17).

Satan has a lot of power (1John5:19; Eph.2:2; Rev.12:9; 2Thess.2:9,10). Which choice of ours do you think he supports and craves?
If we do his will, we become his son (John8:44). He is not a kind father (John10:10 A).

There are only two choices before each of us. This makes our unique personal problems; and their solutions, simplified.
We CHOOSE to imitate and please Satan, or we fight the evil influence of Satan and his world of evil temptation, and the hurt which results (Deut.30:19; Jer.21:8).
If we choose the latter, we become sons of the Creator (Eph.5:1; Matt.5:48; Luke6:36; Eph.4:32; Phil.2:15), and brothers to Jesus Christ (John5:19; 1Pet.2:21; 1Cor.11:1; Mark3:35; Luke22:28; Matt.7:21; 25:40).

No matter what Satan and the world threw at Jesus, he used his free will to do the right thing (Heb.4:15; 7:26; John16:33; Matt.4:1,2,10).
Of course, he was a strong man. Stronger than we are. But no one can take our free will from us,
and the more we use it, the stronger it gets (Heb.5:14; 1Tim.4:7; Eph.4:13).

Like muscle...if we are not accustomed to using our willpower, it is weak (1Cor.8:10; 1Thess.5:14; Rom.15:1). That can change. In the beginning, we may need supports to carry through with the right action. But in time and with repetition, our strength will build. (1Pet.5:10; 1Cor.1:8)

There is support available for the weakness you disclose to me. In fact, many supports.
God can not help us while we are in a "making excuses" mode. He respects our free will, knowing we will always possess it. While in that excuse mode, that selfish choice is manifested, both to God and to the Devil. (James1:14,15; Ps.7:14)

If we decide with a complete heart that we want to do what's right, and we prove it by doing all WE can (Luke13:24)...
God will show us His supportive power! (2Chron.16:9; Luke11:13; Phil.4:13)...And Satan will be unable to justify before God, using his powerful influence over us. God then has the just right, to limit Satan (1Cor.10:13; Matt.6:13; 2Pet.2:9).

You have the gift of knowledge...the knowledge of what your choices have resulted in. This clarity is a gift to your power of choice. You now know it is unloving to yourself and others, to abandon your self-control to the demons. Your power of choice now has the gift of clarity.
The next step is to assess how strong your will is. Is it enough to perform a complete turn-around? (Acts3:19; 26:20; Jer.36:3; Isa.44:22) No? Then you can get support until it is.

Have you ever heard of A.A.? They are world-wide, and so is God's Holy Spirit.
A.A. is likely nearby to help support you.
A.A. did not exist in the first century. Yet men were still successful in using their god-given will to overcome that hurtful weakness (1Cor.6:10,11; Acts22:16; Eph.2:1,2,3,4,5; Eze.33:11) with God's support. The more we exercise our willpower, the stronger it becomes.
When we are building up our physical strength, it is often painful and requires persistence.
Our willpower is the same. (Rom.5:3,4; 2Tim.3:14,15,16,17; Matt.24:13)

But in order to have persistence and endurance, we need motivation. Keep your eye on the goal which your success will bring (Heb.12:2; Phil.3:14; 1Cor.9:24). Sons of God are loving to others (John13:35; James2:8). They will inherit the earth (Rev.5:10; Ps.45:16; Ps.2:8,9; Rev.12:5; 2:26,27), in a time where evil, abuse, and pain, (and those who cause it) will have been removed (Prov.2:22; 2Pet.3:7; Psalm37:34,38). Each of us have the power to choose our eternal future. Neither God, nor the Devil, can usurp that choice, no matter what our circumstances. This choice is yours alone.

You mention that once you start drinking, you cannot stop. What about before you start drinking? I would focus in on that moment of choice. Whatever anxiety, pain, craving, or sense of helpless distress you are feeling in that moment, it is your personal responsibility and choice, to cope with those feelings in an honorable way.
If you feel you are in too weak of a condition at this point, (to cope with those feelings in an appropriate way); then you need to CREATE OTHER CHOICES in your life, to which you can resort to, at that critical moment of test.

For example, if you aquire an A.A. sponsor, you will have the choice to make an S.O.S. phone call. Sponsors are on-call 24/7 for that particular need.
You are the only person in control of your legs. Why walk into a bar? Find other places to go to when you are feeling down...a garden, excercise, meeting at a restaurant with a positive friend, a meeting of AA, headphones with your favorite music, a hot bath, an inspirational movie about beating the odds, etc.
Arm yourself now with emotional ammunition. Make yourself a list of alternative activities, and start exercising that free will you were blessed with. In time it will develop a matured strength.
Don't just use those activities for emergencies only, but re-focus how you spend ALL your free time, and who you spend it with.
Can you choose to volunteer an hour or two to help out the less fortunate, by an activity you might enjoy for short periods? (Acts20:35; Matt.5:7) This will help you feel more positive about yourself.

Don't do anything out of pressure, concession, or approval. I do not recommend substitute activities that you are pressured into, such as increased field service and similar servitude to "elders".
You are A MAN, and have a god-given right to step into that role for yourself. Do what works for YOU, and your peace (not guilt) with God.
God desires acts of mercy and love, starting with your own (Matt.9:13; 1Tim.5:8; Mark12:31; Eph.5:28).
This does not translate into field service hours, in order to recruit more Organizational slaves (Gal.5:1; 2:4).

Prove yourself a contender for life, and don't let Satan win your soul (1Pet.5:8; Jer.7:23). He will chew you up and spit you out, along will all those who love you.
You can do the right thing! ...and as soon as you start, God is then justified in supporting you. He will do so, as long as you remain a fighter! (not someone using excuses)
(Psalm18:20-36) (click on scripture to open up verses)


Don't look at the elders. Don't look at your wife. Don't look at those still under Satan's control who may taunt you. Look only at yourself and your goal.

Remind your wife that you love her, and that it pains you to look at the ways you have hurt her.
Be determined to protect her from further demonic assault through you.
You don't have to be a bitter disappointment to her.
You can become her Hero.

I advise you to get support for yourself immediately. Not from clueless "elders", but from those who really understand your weakness and compulsions. We all have them, Malvin. Every last one of us. As you look around, the only difference between us,
are those who choose to surrender and die,
and those who fight hard, don't give up, and live forever.
No matter what our problem is, the choice IS ours.
You are not helpless!
2Cor.4:7,8,9; Phil.4:13

Remember that your standing with an organization or with men (elders) means NOTHING!
All that matters in the end, is your standing with your heavenly Father and Jesus Christ (Rom.14:12; 2Cor.5:10; Matt.16:27; Eph.6:8). Don't be fooled into thinking that approval with men means anything to God (Rom.1:25; Matt.6:18,19,20; Prov.29:25; Gal.6:4; Eph.6:7,8; 1Cor.7:23; Gal.1:10; 2Cor.5:20; 10:12).

If you start living a more functional, sane life; your choices and opportunities will widen out and open up. If you really want to go home, you will be able to make that happen. You can apply yourself to making and saving money. It CAN happen if you choose it, even if it takes some of your time (Prov.6:6; 30:25).

Regarding your relationship with our Heavenly Father, you said that you feel He has abandoned you. He only leaves us, when we leave him (1Chron.28:9). But if we "search for Him" and His help, he is there (Acts17:27). You believe that the reason for God's leaving you, is your past unfaithfulness, including adultery, which you partially blame on being under the influence of alcohol.

The truth is that Jehovah desires to support your recovery, no matter what your past sins are (Eze.33:11; James1:5; Isa.1:18,19,20). He has no interest in being spiteful or resentful. He only desires that YOU choose life and goodness, so that He can help you (Isa.48:17,18).
He NEVER abandons those who wish to be faithful and loyal, no matter what their past (Matt.12:20; Luke4:17,18,19; Acts3:19; Matt.18:12; Luke15:32). You can remove your heightened vulnerability to sin, by keeping sober control over your decisions. As I'm sure you already know and we have discussed, this requires an avoidance of alcoholic anesthesia at all cost.


I am here anytime. I hope you will keep in touch to let me know how your journey is going.
My email is pearl144000@hotmail. Talking often about our ongoing struggle is often helpful in our finding our path to success.

I am praying for you.
God bless your efforts to live a fuller life, now and forever,
Pearl
PS. I really want to meet you in the Kingdom.

           
_____________________________________

ADDITION:

A QUESTION I RECEIVED:
Can you help me? I have been stepping out on my husband for four years. Am I still saved if I die in an accident?
- - - - - - -
MY REPLY:
Hello,
Thank you for writing to me.
If you want help, real help comes from God, Christ, and the Bible.
I cannot really help people on my own. But I can give you the help from God, Christ, and the Bible.
If you accept that help, you will really be helped.

There are some things about your question that I do not understand.
When you say, "Am I still saved if I die in an accident?"; this sounds as if you believe that you are already "saved". Is this what you believe?
If that is so, then first let's look at what the Bible says about that.

Being "saved" has it's requirements. Those requirements are very difficult for us to meet and fulfill. Please think about these scriptures....

"Someone asked him, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?”
He said to them, “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to." (Luke 13:23,24)

There Jesus tells us that being saved is difficult. Many will try to be saved, but will not be able. "Every effort" is needed, and the door we have to squeeze through, is "narrow". Yet it would seem that Jesus did not answer the question directly. Are only a few saved?
Jesus answered this question directly in a different place, but we have to go to a different Bible writer to find out how many get through that narrow door....

"Enter through the narrow door. For wide is the door and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it". (Matt.7:13,14)

So, Jesus answer is "yes". Only a few get through the tight door. Why? Because to get through to salvation, the requirements are very exact. Jesus explains...
“Not everyone who calls me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does what my in heaven Father wants them to do." (Matt.7:21)

What does God want you to do?
We can read in the Bible where God actually spoke, and told us what he wants us to do...
"A voice came from the cloud, saying, 'This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.'" (Luke9:35)
Can you see that God wants us to listen to Jesus? Can you see that only those who listen to Jesus get saved?
There are other places in the Bible where God actually spoke, and told us to listen to Jesus.
Does that mean that if we listen to what Jesus taught, and we obey it, that we will be saved from death?
See what Jesus said...
"Very truly I tell you, whoever obeys my word will never see death." (John 8:51)

"'If you love me, keep my commands.' Jesus answered and said to him, 'If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home inside him. He who does not love Me, does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father's who sent Me" (John14:15,23,24)

"The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you--they are full of the Spirit and life." (John6:63)

Is it enough to read the words and teaching of Jesus? What must we do with his words and teachings, if we want to be saved?

James told us in the Bible...
"Do not only listen to the word, and just fool yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says, is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks deep into the perfect teaching that gives freedom, and continues to obey and do it, —not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it —they will be blessed by what they do." (James1:22-25)

Yes, they will be blessed with being saved, only IF they DO what Jesus teaches.
That reminds us of what Jesus said at Matt.7:21, remember? We have to DO what God wants.
We have to listen to what Jesus teaches, and then DO it.

There was once a man who asked Jesus how to get saved. The answer Jesus gave him helps us to see this clearly...

"Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, 'Good teacher, what things must I do to get saved?' Jesus answered, 'Why do you call me good? There is only One who is good, God. If you want to enter life, obey His commandments.'
'Which ones?' the man asked.
Jesus replied, ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not lie, honor your father and mother, and love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Matt.19:16-19)

We learned that in order to be saved, we have to listen to, and do what Jesus says.
Jesus says that we need to obey God's commandments. One of those commandments says that we must not commit adultery. This is what you are doing, if you are "stepping out" on your husband.
Can you see, that if we do not obey God's commandments, then we are not saved?
Those who do not listen to Jesus and God, are not saved. It does not matter how, or when, they die.
The only way we can get saved, is to stop our sinning, and start obeying God and Jesus.
Here is some good advise from the apostle Paul...

"...The time has come for you to wake up from darkness, because our being saved has come close... The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the protection of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in fighting and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the light of the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh." (Rom.13:11-14)

We just read from the Bible, that there is "light" and "darkness".
There are "deeds of darkness", which include "sexual immorality".
Instead of practicing those dark deeds,
the Bible tells us to "clothe yourselves with the light of Christ".
What is the "light of the Lord Jesus Christ"?

The apostle John talked about that when he talked about Jesus....
"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." (John1:14,4,5)

If we accept and obey the "light" of Jesus' teachings, and obey them,
it will shine into the dark places of our life.... those dark deeds... the sins of disobedience. It is more powerful than the darkness. When we turn a lamp on in a dark room, the darkness cannot make the lamp dark... but the light of the lamp makes the darkness into light.
It is the same with the teachings of Jesus. They are light to our life. They are full of spirit and life. If we get rid of the darkness, and fill ourselves with light,
we will become part of the light, and we will be saved.

"So Jesus said to them, 'For a little while longer the Light is among you. Walk while you have the Light, so that darkness will not overpower you; he who walks in the darkness does not know where he is going. While you have the Light, believe in the Light, so that you may become sons of Light." (John12:35,36)

Here is more of what Jesus said...
"The words I have spoken to you--they are full of the Spirit and life". (John6:63)

"When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (John8:12)

"I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness." (John12:46)

And the apostle Paul said;
"For you were once in darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light" (Eph.5:8)

It is good to remember what Jesus said at John12:35...
"he who walks in the darkness does not know where he is going"

Isn't that true of the ones on the road to destruction?
Remember what we read at Matt.7:13,14?
“Enter through the narrow door. For wide is the door and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the door and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it."

From all these words in the Bible (and the teachings of Christ),
we learn that being saved is not easy, and if we want it, we need to leave behind the work of darkness. That work includes adultery. Jesus tells us, that we must become children of light if we want to be saved. This means that we must obey the light of Jesus Christ. What is that light? It is his teachings, which, if we obey them, we will be doing what God wants. That means we will be among those who are saved. We will be among the "few", who squeeze through the narrow door, into the kingdom of eternal life.

"Now this is eternal life: that they know and obey you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent." (John17:3)

The Bible tells us, that we must get to know the teachings of Jesus.
Then we must obey them.
If we continue to DO this, we will be saved.

Thank you for inviting me to share the Bible with you.
I hope you continue to look into it, for the help we all need to be saved and get eternal life.
If there is any other way I can serve you, please let me know.
God bless your search for salvation,
Pearl

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