Step 03 – the big decision

October 13, 2006

Step 3

Decide to turn your will and your life over to the care of God the Eternal Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.

The first thing that you need to do, in order to complete step 3, is to make a decision. This will be tough for you because, as an addict, you are great at making decisions, but lousy at actually keeping them. By now, you have probably decided to quit your addiction at least a dozen times, but you never have. You’ve gone years, months, days, or hours without, but you have always come back. This has always been the reality of your addiction: you always come back.I recently read a book of getting one’s personal finances together and the fellow who wrote it counseled, more than any other investment, simply spending less. Even as he said that, he encouraged people to splurge occasionally. He said that saving all the time felt like holding your breath. One could do it for a long time, but eventually you have to breathe. So, have some planned silly fun with your money, but remain in control and (mostly) on budget. Fine and good. When I have some money, I’ll try it.

The thing is, when I read that, I realized that not giving in to my addiction felt like holding my breath. I could do it for a long time, but I really wanted that air. Now, it wasn’t (and isn’t) air. It is more like nicotine or tar or chlorine. It will kill you (and me). But I wanted it so bad that even when I was being good, I thought of it as a sacrifice, as going without. It was like I thought that in a perfect world I could look at p~rn, but in this mortal one I can’t. Sometimes, I would tell myself that I needed to fast from my sin as a show of devotion to God. Repenting isn’t fasting; you’re not giving up anything that you need. This attitude is a clear case of mistaking evil for good and good for evil.

So, getting back to the decision, the decision you need to make is not to give up your addiction. Instead, the decision you need to make is to give up your love of your addiction. You need to give up wanting it, even when you aren’t doing it. You need to give up feeling like a martyr because you are sacrificing your desires. You need to give up a life built entirely around managing this one sin. You need to give up your love of your addiction.

The problem being, of course, that you can not do this. You can not change your desires. Humans simply are not equipped to do this. But God is. And you have to trust him to do it.

In Alma 32:27 we read the following:

But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words.

I used to think that this was written for the weak people. It is. I just realized I was one of them. I am at a point where I can do little more than desire to believe. As an addict, it is a struggle to desire to do right. It shouldn’t be, but it is. This is where I am. And the promise here, is that if I desire this desire (the desire to believe) then I will be blessed with it. And if I desire to believe, then I can, because it is expedient to God that I believe. And if I believe, then I will be blessed with further desires: to plant the word, to keep faith, to prayer, to obey. It is all based on our desires, which are an expression of our will. And what God asks is that we give him our whole will.

That is a sacrifice, but it is the right kind. The kind that frees you from sin and addiction.

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One Response to “Step 03 – the big decision”


  1. I’ll be, that is a useful insight.

    Thanks.


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