The topic for the daily embrace is addiction, specifically cigarette smoking. Beyond the subjective or biased nature, one needs to surpass the simple act of smoking and identify the deeper issue, addiction.
Moving from the state of Ohio, where smoking bans are everywhere, basically no one smoked; to an area of Indiana where it seems as though every other person does, and it’s socially acceptable. From bars to restaurants, the popularity is beyond disgust and annoyance.
Two concepts we need to realize:
For one, people know of the harmful effects smoking has on the body. We no longer live in the times of Mad Men during the 1960s where even doctors condoned smoking. We gratefully live in a research-filled society where almost every single harmful substance or behavior has been research thoroughly by scholars and educators alike.
Two, since people aren’t ignorant to the harmful effects, they are simply weak to a powerful force called addiction. And I’m not pointing fingers because it’s a compulsion we’ve all given into at one point in our lives. From watching too much television to giving in to that piece of dessert, addiction can be the demise to one’s character.
So what is addiction? “It’s the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice that is psychologically or physically habit forming.” This is a powerful definition, particularly ‘enslaved.’
Being enslaved to something is giving in to its pleasures and benefits. What may seem enjoyable and relieving today may be detrimental tomorrow. In our society today, we’ve been taught to inattentively enjoy the ever-appealing products ingeniously marketed directly to our “pleasure centers.” Once we become hooked, the power of addiction will take over. Smoking companies play off of this. Once the biochemical effects of nicotine take over, lifelong customers ensue.
So how can people overcome such addictions?
First, they must have a “slap in the face moment.” Whether that’s medical advice or family/friends telling them they need to quit to realize the detrimental aspects to their overall health. Two, they must be willing to change. They must be willing to let go and be willing to give up to gain. It’s so easy for people to talk the talk about changing, but it’s so much more difficult and honorable to walk the walk. And finally, there must be a healing source, where they will always have support and encouragement throughout the addiction elimination. The ultimate healing source is Jesus Christ. It doesn’t matter how strong the addiction, God will always see you through!
Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.-James 1:12-15