April 11: Crack Crazy
When the hour had come, He sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. Then He said to them, "With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer." Luke 22:14, 15, NKJV.
Crack cocaine is made by heating a concoction of cocaine hydrochloride, baking soda, and water. Vaporization leaves behind a small rock. When this rock is smoked by an individual, within eight seconds 80 percent of the cocaine goes to the brain, causing the brain to release dopamine, a pleasure hormone. This results in a massive high that lasts for one or two minutes.
Upon having that first high, 60 to 80 percent of users are addicted immediately. Within hours they go back for another dose. When they try for a second high, they can't reach the level of the first because their brains have less dopamine to release. So they try more drugs and get less stimulation, finally falling into depression. Because the crack crash is very painful, addicts use other drugs to break the fall, such as marijuana, alcohol, or heroin. Addicts get high from anything that reminds them--money, jewelry--and they must have their high, even if it means killing someone.
What can be done? Dr. David F. Allen, a psychiatrist who has made the behavior of users of illegal drugs his lifelong study, sees that a spiritual approach holds the most hope for helping addicts. He uses as a model the Lord's last supper with His disciples.
The first component must be love. Jesus said, "I love you to the uttermost." If we are to help, we must open ourselves to become a vehicle of God's love. Second, Jesus had a time of communion with His disciples. It takes time, but we must meet the addicts' need for food; eat with them, listen.
Third, we must expect resistance. Judas resisted Jesus' love, but that didn't stop Jesus from His mission. We must not get discouraged. Fourth, Jesus took off His outer garments and did the work of a slave. We must not act "better than you." Fifth, simplicity. Our Lord took a basin of water, something very simple. Programs don't have to be expensive and complicated to be effective.
Sixth, service. Jesus washed His disciples' feet--even Judas'. Could it be that the real test of the healing power of God is when we can wash the feet of those who would destroy us?
Seventh, transcendence. This means simply that in spite of terrible problems, God is still on His throne--and if God is for us, who can be against us?
Lord, help me to model my life after Jesus and reach out to help others as He did. Amen.
from Fit Forever: One-A-Day Devotionals for Body, Mind, and Spirit
Kay Kuzma (editor) | Review & Herald (2005)
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