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  • Writer's pictureJanean Tinsley

Denial… the roadblock to recovery

In Jeremiah 6:14, God says,

You can’t heal a wound by saying it is not there!

How often in life do we deny issues that are affecting ourselves? I would bet that most people have done this at one time or another. Sometimes these avoidances can be about small things but often they are about much larger issues. The problem with denial is that the problem never goes away. And when that problem is addiction, it can be fatal.

Denial of our addictions allow us to continue our destructive behaviors. In fact, the very nature of denial encourages us to bury our feelings and emotions. Essentially, we just quit feeling anything. And when we can’t do that on our own, we seek “medication” to assist in that numbing feeling.

The first step in recovery is to “admit we are powerless over our addictions and that our lives have become unmanageable.” It can actually require a lot of work to deny this very basic step. Often times, others around us can point out where we fall short in managing life. But admitting it to ourselves is something completely different. It’s like looking in the mirror and really seeing all of the imperfections. We just don’t want to do that. So, avoiding that proverbial mirror seems the easier route. Actually, it can instill a lot of anxiety and stress, which in turn, prevents recovery.

Simply put, an addict cannot grow in their recovery until they embrace truth completely — no denial.

God made a promise in Jeremiah 30:17.

I will give you back your health again and heal your wounds.

That very simple verse can be the turning point for stepping out of denial into the truth. Until we fully believe that God will heal the wounds we have created through our addictions, shame and guilt will continue to fester, ensuring those wounds will never heal.

The first step is not an easy step to take. Many people joke about taking that “first step” but very few actually accomplish it. It’s the beginning of a new year. Why not take this new year and make it a new opportunity for a new life? Are you currently living in denial? Are you seeking fulfillment but unsure what that fulfillment is? Proverbs 14:12 says,

There is a way that seems right to man but in the end it is the way of death.

Lord, please forgive me for sinful pride. It can seem so much easier to do it my way and deny my life is unmanageable. Please help me to hand it over to you and begin a new life with you. I seek help from wounds that only you can heal. Amen.

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