Healing the Hurts Behind Your Addiction


What does addiction look like?

Johnny Baker compares it to a small water leak he discovered on the side of his house one day. He wasn’t sure of the cause, but the leak seemed small and posed little risk.

A few weeks later, the water stain had grown, and moss was growing.

A few weeks after that, Johnny’s wife called him at work and said, “You have to come home right now. Water from our house is flooding the neighbor’s yard.”

The small leak had grown into a full water line break.

Why? Because despite clear signs to the contrary, Johnny denied there was a problem.

He did the same thing when he was a teenager and began drinking to numb himself from his anger. He ignored signs that his appetite for alcohol was overtaking his ability to choose well, and he spiraled into addiction. Before long, his behavior isolated him and threatened his relationships.

Each of us has unresolved pain or unhealthy coping mechanisms of some kind. It’s part of who we are as human beings who live in a sinful world. The Bible says we’ve all sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). We’ve all hurt other people, and other people have hurt us.

That’s why addiction isn’t limited to drugs and alcohol. Some of the top coping mechanisms include overconsumption of caffeine, sleeping too much, overeating or undereating, gambling, overspending, and numbing out with social media or TV. We cover ourselves with a fig leaf and hide from each other.

Fortunately, Johnny reached out for help and is joining us on our Focus on the Family Broadcast “Healing the Hurts Behind Your Addiction” to share his story of recovery.

Johnny explains three main reasons that we don’t admit to having a problem:

Johnny also explains why none of that is true and outlines what you can do about it.

Whether you take advantage of a counselor, attend a Celebrate Recovery group, or talk to a pastor or a friend, freedom begins when you’re able to say, “I’m struggling.” You can only find help once you admit that you have a problem.

You can hear Johnny’s insights into healthy ways to deal with your hurts and bad habits and how to find freedom through Christ on your local radio station, online, on Apple Podcasts, via Google Podcasts, or on our free phone app.

In the meantime, we have caring Christian counselors on staff, and it would be their privilege to offer you a free consultation if you’re struggling. Call us, leave your name and number, and they’ll get back with you just as soon as possible. The number during business hours is 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459).

I’d also like to offer you a copy of Johnny Baker’s book The Road to Freedom: Healing from Your Hurts, Hang-Ups, and Habits for a gift of any amount. Give us a call at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459). Or visit our website for more information.

Johnny Baker is Saddleback Church’s pastor of Celebrate Recovery, a Christ-centered 12-step outreach ministry with a worldwide presence. The program was started by his dad, John Baker, as a result of his own struggles with alcoholism.

Photo from Shutterstock



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Jim Daly with Paul Batura

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