Friday, August 27, 2010

The Bottom isn't far enough down

One of the idioms associated with addicts is this, "You've gotta find you're bottom" or "You haven't hit the bottom yet". For many of us it was 'in the mud-hole' that we found Jesus. It was 'from the pit' that He rescued us so we identify that as the bottom... the place where we made a turn. So... one of the great by-lines of outreach ministry is "when you get sick and tired of being sick and tired, you'll turn to Jesus". With respect to all of us who have said that and still say it, I'd like to make a proposition: the bottom isn't far enough down.

Here's what I mean. There comes a point in your life when you're fed up. You're just sick of it. Your marriage isn't working and you hate to go home, you can't find a job and you're tired of looking, you've gotten in so much trouble you don't think you'll ever get out of it... you're done. Fed up ta' here with it all. Right there is your pit. Your bottom. And right there is where many people want out. They want to change. They've run as far as they can run and they're done. They're sick and tired of being sick and tired. It's really a great place to be, very freeing, the fight is out of you, you're exhausted and really, really, really ready to go a different direction.

There is a subtle trick of the devil here but it is crucial and we must see it.

My friend Trenia (one of our town's true heroes) hit the bottom. After years of drug abuse and brokenness at every level imaginable, she was done. She was at the bottom. The destruction that drugs had done to her had turned drugs from her best friend to her most hated enemy and she had enough. So she changed. She went to meetings every day. She stopped abusing drugs. She worked the steps. She began to help others get off drugs. She knew what it was and knew how to fight it. For her the bottom was the place she turned around.

But the bottom wasn't far enough down.

One night eight years later, Trenia was standing in the middle of a rain storm headed to a bar, ready to give up eight hard fought years of sobriety. The pain of life was too much. Somehow for her, the bottom had been a false bottom. Although she had stopped the destructive use of drugs and had become a good person, something was missing. She went home that night, and like Paul on the road to Damascus, Jesus came to her and opened her eyes and she heard the gospel of her salvation and was brought from death unto life.

Friends here's the point, if you get sober and miss Jesus, you'll just go to hell sober.
If at the bottom you change your ways without finding "the Way" you'll die in your sin.

The bottom isn't far enough, unless at the bottom you find Jesus or should I say, Jesus finds you.