Trying to serve two masters

by Ned Wicker

At some time or another you’ve probably all heard the Bible saying that you cannot serve two masters.

“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other…” Jesus of Nazareth was talking about serving God and wealth, but for conversation, let’s shift it to mean you cannot drink and be in recovery.

Some believe you can still drink and be in recovery

There is a growing school of thought that suggests it’s OK to drink and be in recovery, or you can go into treatment and some day you’ll be able to drink again in moderation.

But what is true; does one drink while recovering from drinking? Of course it is understandable that the one abusing alcohol would want to get back to a point of balance in their life. You can read the blogs and on internet chat rooms. People want to drink.

This mindset is a form of denial

I believe the whole mindset is a form of denial. Through will power and some sort of behavior modification, I can still drink. I can partake in that which is killing me and ruining my life, because I am going to control my impulses. It’s like going out into a busy street and dodging cars.

You may not get hit today, or tomorrow, but someday you’re going to get run over. Or worse yet, you run over somebody else. It happens all the time in Wisconsin. Somebody who has his/her life under control and knows for certain that they can drink and drive, and goes out and kills somebody.

Why risk it?

If you’ve had a problem with alcohol, why would you even risk it? Is alcohol so important that life lacks joy and fullness without it? Or, are you so completely selfish that you insist on having it your own way?

Alcoholics Anonymous established a critical boundary over 70 years ago-- that people need to abstain in order to manage their disease. There is so much more to life than alcohol, yet there are those who insist that you can have it both ways.

Denial is SO powerful!

Denial is a powerful mechanism, because logic and truth have nothing to do with making a good decision. I’m doing this because I want to, and if I get into trouble with my drinking again, I’ll just go back into treatment until I can drink and not have a problem with it.

I’m not denying that somebody out there can do this. The probability says otherwise. If you don’t drink, you won’t have the problem while you are going through recovery. How long is that? It’s a chance in lifestyle. It’s permanent. Why play Russian Roulette with your health?

We all want to feel good!

We want to drink to feel good. What is missing from your life that alcohol is necessary to feel good? Can God help fill the voids? Or, is one’s own self-determination the only solution?

You can see that in the recovery field, there is a tug-of-war going on between the spiritual and the secular. People who have faith, regardless of their religion or denomination, have a completely different viewpoint, a different understanding.

Everyone has their own inner resources

People who do not believe in God have their own inner resources. They may have friends for support, and in that you can recognize or identify a “power greater than ourselves,” but it is still human driven power, and limited by its very nature.

Sadly, many people cannot accept the idea of a god of some kind, or God, as many understand him. They may be successful in curbing their drinking habit, but unlike those who are honest, open and willing to immerse themselves in a 12-Step program, there is no transformation from being battered and broken into being whole.

You cannot serve two masters. If God, as you understand him, is your master, there is no room for the other master who is destroying your life.

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and Finally Remember:

"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened."
- Matthew 7:7-8

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