When someone first comes to a recovery program, they put a lot of emphasis on abstinence—refraining from whatever it is that caused them to seek recovery in the first place.
But at some point in a recovery process that is based on faith in Jesus Christ and His atonement, we come to realize that recovery isn’t about abstinence. It’s about deliverance.
Mosiah knew this.
But behold, he did deliver them because they did humble themselves before him; and because they cried mightily unto him he did deliver them out of bondage; and thus doth the Lord work with his power in all cases among the children of men, extending the arm of mercy towards them that put their trust in him. (Mosiah 29:20)
It all comes down to trusting God and believing that if God doesn’t deliver me from my bondage today, He has a reason.
If I’ve made an honest effort to take Step 3, to turn my life over to God, and I still find myself in the bondage or temptation of my addiction, then there’s still something I need to learn by my own experience. In my case, it was to have patience and faith in Him, just as it was with the people of Alma in Mosiah 23-24.
Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith. (Mosiah 23:21)
To chasten does not mean to punish. It means to purify.
Sometimes we are left in bondage so that patience and faith may be cultivated within us. This is exactly what I have been learning while I wait upon Him to deliver me.
Nevertheless, whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day. Yea, and thus it was with this people. (Mosiah 23:22)
If I put my trust in God, even when He allows my bondage to continue long past the time when I would rather it be over, He promises that I will be lifted up—delivered—eventually.
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