by Dr. Nicholas Goeders

July 6, 2017

I have just completed the 40-day challenge of the Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. It was amazing how reading this book, and praying and meditating about my life and how God has led me to this place helped to focus God’s purpose for me!

Then tonight we watched the first episode of Andy Stanley’s Follow series [Jesus invites you to Follow Him – no matter what you believe, no matter how you behave]

This was about Matthew the tax collector and how Jesus walked up to him and simply said, “Follow me.” [Matthew 9:9-13]

Being a tax collector, Matthew was an outcast, the worst of his culture – everyone hated tax collectors. But Jesus said to Matthew, “Follow me.” He went to dinner at Matthew’s house with other tax collectors and other sinners – imagine what everyone else must have thought of that! But Jesus felt comfortable with them – and people naturally felt comfortable with Jesus.

And He told Matthew, the tax collectors and the sinners, as well as His followers – and the Pharisees outside – that the healthy are not in need of a doctor, but the sick are. And he told the Pharisees [those learned scholars] to “Learn” what this means – I desire mercy, not sacrifice [from Hosea 6:6], and I have come to call on sinners, not the righteous.

Jesus came to earth to die for the sins of everyone. God wants all of His children to be saved. That is why Jesus spent His time on earth with tax collectors, prostitutes, sinners and the sick, including lepers. He did not spend  His precious time with emperors or kings or the rich and famous! He came to show us – to show the world – that everyone deserves forgiveness. We are all human after all – every one of us!

And Jesus loves all of God’s children – unconditionally.

God has placed a very specific calling in my heart – rooted deeply in my heart so that I cannot ignore it, even though I am also a sinner. Maybe it’s because I am a sinner. But I have been called to help women addicted to Meth. Many have lost everything to the evil Meth is – the devil. They often feel like today’s outcasts – at least that is how our society treats them. They are God’s lost children of today!

It seems to me sometimes like every other group of people has someone looking out for them – to help them or to call attention to their plight. There is the run for the cure for breast cancer (among many others), fundraisers for muscular dystrophy and the March of Dimes, Wounded Warriors, Alcoholics Anonymous, prison reform for unfair sentences – especially crack cocaine, legalization of marijuana, and millions upon millions of dollars being set aside to “fight” the opioid epidemic! Give me a break – do they really think that throwing money at heroin and oxycodone is going to really make a difference? Really?!

But my point is, who is looking out for the women fighting against the devil itself in Meth? People tend to look down on meth users. What about the junkie shooting heroin every 4 hours? What about the drunk neglecting his family at the corner bar? OK, people often also look down on the drunks and heroin junkies too, but there are treatments designed specifically for them. Is a Meth user supposed to go to AA? People in AA have no clue what demons a meth user is fighting. Neither do heroin users [although some people use meth sometimes and heroin sometimes]. Heroin injections and opioid pain pills produce that mellow, laid back, more relaxed kind of high, they say. Meth produces a speedy high, full of energy and euphoria, racing thoughts and paranoia, aggression and, of course, especially in women – those sexual feelings.

Is that the key? Could it be this sexual side – especially in women? Men are expected to be sexual and make conquests. When a woman is sexual she is a loose woman or a prostitute – a whore. Even today these stereotypes still exist. So women meth users often feel profound shame – not only because she has allowed a drug – meth – to control her, controlling her to the extent that she has lost her job, family and friends, children, money and even her dignity. But she also feels such shame because she also knows how meth makes her feel sexually and how society looks down on a woman and her sexuality (no matter how liberated our society pretends to be). She doesn’t go to the hospital due to her overwhelming shame; not because she is poor or alone – but because she feels like everyone is looking at her – looking down at her, knowing why she was shooting meth. And that she has allowed the devil – Meth – to control her for those very sexual pleasures that are also bringing her such shame.

And she looks around and she can see that the heroin users have treatments tailored for them; and even so our government and society is still spending millions upon millions more to fight this “epidemic.” Alcoholics go to their AA meetings and drink coffee and smoke cigarettes and socialize and have mentors and accountability.

Meth users are just forgotten. Many “scholarly” people will even say that meth is no worse than Adderall, a drug prescribed for children with ADHD. I have even had meth users try and convince me that they live normal lives, perhaps self-medicating their own ADHD or whatever with meth. Maybe that could describe some people…

But what about the woman who injects meth for the rush – that intense feeling that can only be described in sexual terms? She gets to the point where she does not even enjoy the rest of the intoxication anymore (the “high” where she has energy for hours and hours). She will inject/shoot meth over and over again, even with plenty of meth still flowing through her veins, just to feel that rush again – again and again until she is gasping for breath and her heart sounds like a freight train in her ears. Until she is so intoxicated that she cannot get up – but will not let anyone call for help because she does not want the people in the emergency room to see the track marks. They’ll know why she was shooting meth and she cannot bear that shame. She would rather die instead.

But none of that matters to God. Jesus loves her anyway – no matter how much meth she might have injected into various places on her body in the search for a vein that still works – or why she did it. And God has placed it firmly in my heart to bring her to Him – to teach her about and to show her the unconditional Love of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. That He died for MY sins and still loves me – and if He can love a sinner like me, He can certainly love her. It’s never too late! God doesn’t care what she has done and neither do I. She has never had anyone who would stand up for her, would serve her, and would love her after Meth got its claws into her. But I will! I will show her that Jesus is the way and the truth and the light, and when she believes that He died for her sins and was raised from the dead and is her true and Living God, she will be saved and all of her sins will be wiped clean – as simply as that.

This IS my mission. This is my passion. This is Loving Solutions!

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