How I gave up social drinking

God showed me what steps to take.

When You're Tempted to do something against your principles, what's the best thing to do? I learned it's to turn to God with all your heart.

I did this several years ago, shortly before I became a member of the Church that publishes this magazine. One of the commitments to church membership we make is to be free drinking alcoholic beverages. I didn't have a serious drinking problem, but I was still drinking socially. I turned to God wholeheartedly and prayed earnestly to Him to show me how I could stop this activity. I knew He would answer me.

I felt directed to suspend judgement of my behavior, to put out of my mind guilt, struggle, and self-condemnation. While I had no intention to continue drinking, surprisingly, my prayers led me to change my focus from resisting what I was doing, to watching and questioning the reasoning behind my actions. I began to see that as I went through the motions of accepting a glass of wine, I didn't even like the taste. Then I realized that I was only drinking because I was afraid of what others would think of me if I refused. As I saw that the desire for drink wasn't native to me, it became easy to see that the reasons I had for drinking were just thoughts that could be dismissed. I have been free of even any desire to drink ever since.

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Are you a chicken or a Christian?
November 9, 1998

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