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Overcoming addiction – a mother’s perspective

When today’s contributor learned of her daughter’s substance abuse, she “reached out to God as never before” in a prayer-filled journey that brought peace and healing.

Some years ago my daughter was caught up in the dark and degrading world of alcoholism and narcotics, finding herself at the mercy of drug addiction. To calm my fears I found consolation in consecrated prayer.

Through the study and practice of Christian Science, I have experienced the real worth of prayers that affirm the supremacy of God, good. The Christian Science textbook, “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” by Monitor founder Mary Baker Eddy, states that “silent prayer, watchfulness, and devout obedience enable us to follow Jesus’ example” (p. 4). As this situation with my daughter emerged, my heart reached out to God as never before.

Some words from the Bible were particularly comforting: “If I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there” (Psalms 139:8). I realized that God, who is infinite Love, was right with my daughter, loving her as He knows her, caring for her, keeping her under His wing – no matter what the circumstances. I saw that God makes and knows each of us not as mortals vulnerable to addiction, but as His spiritual, pure offspring.

A peace and stillness came over me. Greatly heartened, I continued praying.

I remember this period as one of special growth. I began to realize that God is my daughter’s true Parent and that He guides her. I had been bearing a heavy weight of feeling that I was personally responsible for maintaining my daughter’s inclusion in God’s healing love, but this broke loose, and a sense of spiritual freedom filled my thoughts. I acknowledged her origin in sacredness, seeing her as the cherished offspring of God.

These words from Science and Health further uplifted me: “The foundation of mortal discord is a false sense of man’s origin. To begin rightly is to end rightly” (p. 262). I started embracing what was right, or true, about this dear daughter in the eyes of God. And what appeared to be wrong about her began to fade; despite what seemed to be endless tribulation, the shades of murky living began to lift. While the atmosphere was still dim, there were cracks in the shadows, letting in a touch of light.

Then one day I received a letter. It explained my daughter’s awakening to her true selfhood as a child of God. She wrote that while she was walking in a woodsy area early one morning, the words “God loves me” had suddenly come to her. She stopped and shouted, “God really loves me!” She was filled with joy. It was a true moment of clarity; she had found her way.

That moment became the open path for the long journey home. Through continued prayer, she gradually gained her dominion over substance abuse, and she has led a free, happy, and productive life for the many years since. Every day in my prayers I sing a song of praise to our Father-Mother God. This experience proved to me that nothing is impossible to God.

The Bible assures us, “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end” (Jeremiah 29:11). This promise, this gift, from God can inspire devotion, patience, and sincerity in our prayers. With the power of God behind them, such prayers are extremely valuable and powerful. They can heal and transform lives, lifting human consciousness to new heights.

Adapted from an article published in the Aug. 13, 2018, issue of the Christian Science Sentinel.

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