Do you know someone who struggles with an addiction? I am sure you do. We all do.
When Jennifer and I were in Daytona last week, I picked up a copy of a local paper. The front cover showed the dramatic increase in accidental drug overdose cases in the city since 2014. Do not quote me, but I believe it went from less than 100 per year in ’14 to over 400 in ’21. That is very revealing and sad.
Just a few years ago I lost a cousin who lived in the Jacksonville, FL area, to a drug overdose. He was only 38. Both he and his brother struggled/struggle with drug addictions. Knowing my uncle and aunt, of all of the burdens in life, I do not think any burden is as heavy as having a loved one struggle with a life controlling addiction. You know what they could be and have in life, if they could address their pain and stop medicating themselves. They were meant for more!
When I pastored in Pa, one of the most celebrated services of the year was when the Teen Challenge Choir came to sing at our little church out in the hills of north central Pa. We were blessed that one of the lead counselors at their headquarters in Rehrersburg, Pa- parents attended our church. The group of 25+ brought the most awesome music and testimonies to us.
Listen, there is no victory in sports or any other field that compares to the victory of a person who with God’s help/power defeats a life controlling addiction.
This Sunday we are glad to have the Dade City, Loving Hands ministry with us for our 9:30 am service. This is going to be an awesome service, filled with testimonies of men who are at different places in their journey over addiction.
This is the 3rd year in a row that they have been with us for a service, and I can assure you that you will be GREATLY encouraged by their ministry. You will be blessed.
We will be taking up a love offering for their vital ministry. Please begin thinking and praying about how God would have you give.
Also, as you pray, please continue to pray for:
The Serdinsky family as they heal.
The children who went to camp at Word of Life
The children who made decisions at VBS
Richard and Joyce Muller during his treatments.
Lastly, I am aware that many requests are shared in our Faith Groups. That is awesome. That is one of the vital roles that our small groups fulfill. Not every request needs to be, or should be shared with the entire congregation.
So, for those in those groups, please remember to continue to pray for your groups requests. And check in on your group members who have shared. That is how a church body loves and cares for itself.
In God’s Good Grip,