Step 3

Giving our addiction over to God?

Someone new to the program asked:

So let me see if I get this right:

Step 1: Admit that my addiction to porn is making my life impossible. Step 2: I am not successful at managing or curing this addiction. But God can manage it for me. I need to turn to Him. Step 3+: Living in the solution: I need to turn my addiction management over to God.

Now, since I need to turn my addiction management over to God, how do I actually do that?

An experienced member responds:
Dear friend,
The 3rd step is not really about giving my addiction to God.

If that was the main purpose of the 3rd step, then it would read completely differently – something like:

“We made a decision to turn our addiction over to the care of…”, or “We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him in order to be relieved of our addiction.”

How could focusing or directing our relationship with God on enabling us to be relieved of our addiction be a way to “live in the solution”? It can’t. So that is not what the 3rd step is all about.

Of course we give up our right to use porn and fantasy for self-medicating, but we give them up because we cannot afford to use them any more. Not because God or our wives or anybody else says we must. We cannot blame our sobriety on anyone but ourselves: we just stink at buying a great life using porn. It doesn’t work for us.

Then what is the primary meaning of the 3rd step? Reading it makes this crystal clear.

It is about turning our lives over to God’s care. Our entire lives, not just our addiction. He does not want ‘an addiction’, He wants us! He wants our hearts.

That is the 3rd step. Starting to give Him my heart by putting Him in charge of my life. It is about us realizing and admitting that He really is the Boss, Manager, Determiner of all outcomes and taking excellent care of us, indeed.

This is very different from what we have been doing till now. A person cannot be compulsively using any drug and yet trusting God to take good care of him. No way. We self-medicate precisely and exactly because our hearts tell us that God really does not know what He is doing and will fail us every time, unless we take matters into our hands.

Giving up the safety of our old and very familiar friends: porn and fantasy, is how we as addicts begin to learn to trust Him. We trust Him to take care of us even though we have given up our drug.

And it can hurt tremendously. And He can help us with that pain. And it’s perfectly OK and we should admit the pain freely and openly to Him and to our fellows, if we wish to be free of it…

Thousands of people are doing this program successfully and finding freedom and joy.

You can do it too.

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