Nellie was well into her forties when she started to drink. It was a difficult time for her. She had family problems, worked at a demanding job, and had constant back pain.
She had gone to church all of her life and considered herself a solid Christian although she seldom read her Bible or prayed. She started searching for ways to fill the ever-expanding, black hole in her life. Drinking seemed to offer a respite.
For years she could take it or leave it. But eventually she began drinking heavily and resorted to "closet drinking." She blamed everyone but herself for what was happening to her. She convinced herself that drinking was no different from taking sedatives or other medication. "I don't really have a problem," she reasoned. "I can quit anytime I choose. Besides, I'm not hurting anyone."
But as her drinking increased, God began to convict her. The guilt was so oppressive that she constantly felt like a miserable failure. She began to tearfully beg Him to help her overcome her desire to drink. "It's not enough for you to just want to stop," He seemed to gently whisper. "You must get rid of the alcohol. Pour it all out!"
Nellie fought this conviction for weeks. Then one day images began to float through her mind of being estranged from her family because of her addition. At last she admitted that she was becoming an alcoholic and was filled with alarm.
Weeping, she hurried to the cupboard, and before she could change her mind, grabbed the bottle and poured the amber poison down the drain.
Nellie says, "What a difference has been made in my life! I feel better spiritually, mentally, and physically. I found that I get through the day quite well without fortifying myself with alcohol. It's been two years since I've touched any. I'm sometimes tempted to buy a bottle, but I think, No, I won't let myself fall into that trap again."
Dear Lord, help us to remember that only You can fill the emptiness in our lives.
"Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise" (Proverbs 20:1).