Barnabas Network International | Online Resources for Churches


Can We Solve The Drug Tsunami?    


On a TV programme some time back I watched a young heroin addict talk of the enormous emotional pain he felt in his life and the way that he used heroin to dull the agony. In stark contrast, I then listened as a group of people told us that the answer is to be found in education. Inform these young people of the dangers and that will go a long way to solving the problem.  


The amazing thing to me is that these same 'experts' listened to yet another addict in the studio tell how he was well informed about the dangers of heroin usage. In fact, he was probably better educated and informed on the problem than were those so-called experts. He even acknowledged that he could die with his next hit.   No one seemed to hear the heart cry of the addicts who spoke about the pain and brokenness in their lives and relationships and how they turned to drugs to deaden the pain.  


So much of the rhetoric on this subject seems to me to be directed at finding a solution rather than first identifying the causes. It's as though we consider our only option to be controlling the epidemic rather than addressing the underlying causes.   If it's true that prevention is better than cure, what can we do to prevent people of all ages from experiencing the kind of relational and emotional pain that causes them to turn to drugs in the first place? If we can prevent the pain or heal that pain, then we minimise the need for such drugs.  


Sure, education and information are part of the overall strategy. Let's eliminate as much ignorance as we can. That's vital. But let's also realise that neither education or information provide what is really needed - transformation! More data does not empower people to change.  


I long to find a way that enables me to say to our city, "Don't you see that emotional pain and relational breakdown are all the result of our spiritual alienation from God. There is no rest and peace until we find it in God".      

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