The cost and consequence of alcoholism and drug addiction dependence place an enormous burden on America's society today. Substance abuse is America's number one health problem. It strains the health care system and the economy, and it harms family life while threatening public safety. Homosexuality is on the increase, often causing devastation to families as its insidious tentacles reach into homes and marriages and rip them asunder.
Is there hope for marriages suffering from the agony of addictions, alcoholism, and homosexuality?
Can this marriage be saved from addictions?
Substance abuse crosses all societal boundaries. The problem of addiction affects each gender, every ethnic group, and people in every tax bracket. America has become addicted to alcohol, drugs, pornography, and ideological concepts that have become a cancer on the soul of America.
The scope of the problem can be seen in the following facts. There are more debts and disabilities each year in the United States from substance abuse than from any other cause. About eighteen million Americans have alcohol problems. About five to six million Americans have serious drug problems. More than half of all adults have a family history of alcoholism or problem drinking. More than nine million children live with a parent dependent on alcohol or illegal drugs.
The consequences of addiction are as follows: one-fourth of all emergency room admissions, one-third of all suicides, and more than half of all homicides and incidents of domestic violence are commonly related. Heavy drinking contributed to illness in each of the top three causes of death: heart disease, cancer, and stroke. Almost half of all traffic fatalities are alcohol related. Between 48 and 64 percent of people who die in fires have blood alcohol levels indicating intoxication. Fetal alcohol syndrome is the leading known cause of mental retardation.
The cost of addictions to America is staggering. Alcohol and drug abuse cost the American economy an estimated $276 billion per year in lost productivity, health-care expenditures, crime, motor vehicle crashes, and other conditions. Untreated addiction is more expensive than heart diseased, diabetes, and cancer combined. Every American adult pays nearly one thousand dollars per year for the damages caused by the addictions of other Americans. Anyone involved in family counseling is going to confront the addiction problem immediately. Yes, there are people attending church, but yet are living in a literal hell because of their bondage.
Can this marriage be saved from alcoholism?
Quality research supports the fact that there is no alcoholic personality. Many people believe the alcoholic is more dependent, more anxious, more childish, more self-centered, and less self-controlled. Whatever common personality traits exist among alcoholics, those traits develop after the addiction, not before. Psychological similarities are a consequence of addiction...not a cause. Alcoholism has no known physical cause. Some scientific experiments have tried to prove that there are physical differences between alcoholics and nonalcoholics prior to addiction.
To date, no one has succeeded. Research on brain neurochemistry to determine if this is a cause has occurred, but there is no proof. An unhappy childhood is not a primary cause of alcoholic addiction. For every alcoholic who had an unhappy childhood, there is an alcoholic who had a happy childhood. Alcohol abuse is involved in most murders, assaults, child cases, traffic fatalities, drowning accidents, and fire accidents. Alcoholism destroys a person's health, marriage, children, and productivity on the job, and it enslaves that person in a literal hell. First, the person takes a drink, and then the drink takes the person. Most alcoholics don't stop drinking until the graveyard, but you can stop through Christ's help. Alcoholism, or drunkenness of any kind, is clearly forbidden in Galatians 5:19-21. According to statistics, sons of alcoholic fathers placed at birth in nonalcoholic homes were found to a nine-to-one chance of becoming alcoholics. Girls were found to have a three-to-one chance of becoming alcoholics.
There is a difference between an alcoholic abuser and an alcohol addict. The abuser is a heavy drinker or someone who drinks regularly until he or she experiences a mood change. The addict is a person who cannot control how much he or she drinks. An alcoholic cannot stop drinking without someone else's help, even if the alcoholic loses a job, loses his or her family, and even loses his or her physical health. The addict drinks to stop the pain, not to feel good.
There are several stages of drinking. First, the person drinks to be social, and then he drinks to relax. Then he drinks to go to sleep. Then he drinks to forget, and, in the final stages, he drinks to stop the pain. The physical signs of an alcoholic are obvious-the red face, the bulbous nose, sclerosis of the liver, morning nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, and hand tremors. An additional problem for men is impotence.
As the addiction progresses, the face flushes and the nose becomes enlarged and inflamed. The palms of the hand may turn red and take on the appearance of what is commonly referred to as "liver palms.“The late stages of addiction are withdrawals and severe headaches. Then come the shakes and delirium tremens. The alcoholic is tormented by his poisoned, malfunctioning brain and sees terrifying visions. An emotional indication of alcohol addiction is a rationalization. There's always a reason to drink. The alcoholic plans his or her day around drinking. There is the projection of self-hatred. A man will say, "My wife is a nag," when, in fact, she is an angel. He will continue the blame game saying things like: "My children are ungrateful." "My boss is a bum." The alcoholic goes into severe mood swings. An alcoholic can go from happy to angry in a moment's time. Alcoholics display the "Jekyll and Hyde" syndrome, there are two personalities in one body. Another manifestation of alcohol addiction is mental blackouts. The person can physically function, but has no memory of where he was or what he did.
The way out of alcoholism is as follows: Make an absolute confession that you are an alcoholic. Acknowledge your dependence on Jesus Christ, and ask Him to set you free from alcoholism. Find a support group. Let the alcoholic experience the consequences of his addiction. Almost every alcoholic suffers from the delusion that he is in control of himself. Let the consequences of his drinks run over him. If he gets a fine, make him pay it. Let him clean up his own vomit. Let him explain to his boss why he is late or sick again. If he gets arrested, let him go to jail where the reality can set in that he is out of control. The point is, his or her illusion of self-control must be shattered. Confront the problem. A well-planned confrontation with your husband and his boss, with a doctor or minister, is a valid way to bring reality to the alcoholic. You will not conquer what you will not confront. Do not allow your past to control your future.
Can this marriage survive homosexuality?
Nowadays, in America, we have the issue of same-sex marriage and have seen on national telecasts each evening. Sodom and Gomorrah are being reborn in America. The only hope has to survive in America is for a constitutional amendment to be passed stating that the only marriage recognized in America will be between a man and a woman of legal age.
What does the Bible call homosexuality? Lev 18:22 says, "You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination." 20:13 says, "If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them." The word "abomination" in Hebrew means "something disgusting, and abhorrent," the strongest Bible word for the denunciation of sin. It is impossible to call yourself a Christian and defend homosexuality. There is no justification or acceptance of homosexuality. How many ways can you say "abomination" in Hebrew? In Rom 1:18-22, Paul certifies homosexuality as rebellion against the Law of God.
The guests of Lot for their sexual pleasure in Gen 19:1-5 is the portrait of homosexuality out of the closet. In this story about the homosexuals who came to Lot's house to demand that he turn over to them his guests, the homosexuals came from every part of the city. They encircled the house. They had no intention of leaving without Lot's guests. They were as aggressive as a pack of wolves. They were even willing to break down the door (vv.6-9). They were willing to disregard the rights of Lot's property, the rights of his home, because they wanted sex with his guests.
The homosexuals attacked Lot for standing in the way between them and the two angels. They were very aggressive. Even after the angels struck them blind, they did not scatter in the fear of God. They wearied themselves groping about in darkness trying to find the door of Lot's house.
What was the result? In Gen 19:24, God executed an urban renewal program with fire and brimstone. Homosexuality means the death of society because homosexuals can recruit, but they cannot reproduce. Can your marriage survive homosexuality? Yes, you can by removing the roots in your past life that would bring you to reconciliation with God and with your spouse.