With any addiction, stronghold, or habitual sin, something other than Jesus takes top priority. Consumes you. Defines you. Establishes your worth. Determines your sense of happiness and well-being. Rules your emotions. And everything is affected. The way you see yourself. The decisions you make about how others perceive and feel about you. Your marriage. Family. Your children, and how they see themselves. How they define themselves. How they cope with the world around them. Your sense or need for control. Your job, friendships, and other commitments.
Fear drives you. Fear of what will happen if you stop or if you don’t. Fear of what will happen if people figure it out. Fear of being exposed. Fear of what you’ll lose. Fear of not having control. Essentially, fear of man – which snares or lures us away from God’s best for us – trumps trusting God, where we are safe (Proverbs 29:25) and satisfied from above.
And here we arrive at the most recent defining moment in my battle with bulimia as I explain in this excerpt from my book, Holy His: Hope for a Life and a Nation Wholly His:
As I studied the fear of the Lord, He gave me a powerful revelation through Proverbs 19:23: “The fear of the Lord leads to life, and he who has it will abide in satisfaction; he will not be visited with evil.”
Each one of us is driven by the need to be satisfied. It is the very core of what we seek in life, and the Lord showed me that this central need for satisfaction that can only be met by the Lord Jesus Christ is what drives one to addiction. Either we will fear the Lord and find contentment in Jesus, or we will seek pleasure and fulfillment from the things of this world and remain empty, disappointed, and disgruntled.
The longer we continue to turn to anything or anyone but Jesus for the satisfaction only He can bring, the more likely we are to fall into the bondage of addiction. If we are walking in the ways of the Lord, fearing Him, and obeying Him, we will abide in His perfect satisfaction.
Proverbs 27:7 explains, “A satisfied soul loathes the honeycomb, but to a hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.” When the satisfaction of our soul is met through Jesus, we will be repulsed by even the best this world has to offer. We will not be driven to seek satisfaction from anyone or anything else, and we will not be visited with evil.
But if our soul is empty, anything the world offers, including that which brings destruction and death, will appear attractive. If we are Christians, and we are not abiding in satisfaction from above, we need to look at ourselves and see if we have lost the fear of the Lord and are looking to the world for fulfillment.
It’s more than just stopping or getting rid of sin in our lives. Yes, we must “put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts” (Ephesians 4:22). But we must also “be renewed in the spirit of your mind” (verse 23) and “put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness” (verse 24).
The Greek meaning conveys a picture of one sinking into freshly made, brand new, unworn clothes. Disrobed of the old rags, in the fear of the Lord, we must clothe our minds and therefore our actions in new digs made of righteousness and holiness.
If we don’t “put on the new man,” we are in danger of what Jesus describes in Matthew 12:43-45:
When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest, and finds none. Then he says, “I will return to my house from which I came.” And when he comes, he finds it empty, swept, and put in order. Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first.
In referencing this passage, I am not taking a theological stand on demon possession, and most especially of Christians. I’ll leave that for those much more scholarly than I. I am simple saying a life swept clean but left empty of Jesus is prime real estate for a devil’s playground.
To be satisfied from heaven is to fill the house with Jesus – Him as Lord, His word as the truth by which we live, breath, and have our being. Satisfied to the point where nothing else holds any attraction, not even the honeycomb, or the best this world has to offer.
Today, I am free. Really, really free. God’s word has proven true: Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life, and the truth has set me free.
“So if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed” (John 8:36).
Need freedom? Seek Jesus. Put your faith in Him and Him alone. Nothing else will do.
Lord, open blind eyes. Soften hardened hearts. Give us wisdom and understanding. Teach us to fear You, and satisfy us from heaven as we become more wholly Yours today.