Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Drug Talk

Top Ten Reasons for Doing Drugs

Written by Dr. Bill Bagents

About the only thing I like about Letterman are his top ten lists. It’s been my experience that most kids (and many adults) tend to turn us off as soon as they realize that our subject is drugs. They’ve already heard everything that we could possibly say. Maybe it would help us to repackage. Put it in a form that’s easier to hear. You heard our reading from 1 Corinthians 9. Paul worked at connecting with people. He talked to people in the language they could hear. I want to give you my Top Ten Reasons for Doing Drugs.

Ten: It’s only beer. It’s not grass. It’s not speed. It’s not coke. It’s certainly not heroin. It’s even legal. You can buy it at the grocery. Never mind Proverbs 20:1, “Wine is a mocker. Intoxicating drink arouses brawling. And whoever is led astray by it is not wise.” Never mind Proverbs 23:29-35. Never mind how many of the works of the flesh in Galatians 5 are commonly associated with drinking. It’s only beer. It’s not really a gateway into the world of drugs. Never mind that alcohol is the most abused drug in the world.

Nine: No one will ever know. You know how easy it is to keep things secret. Your friends won’t tell anybody. Never mind that God sees everything. Never mind Numbers 32:23. I mean that’s obviously too strong. “Be sure your sin will find you out” sounds like some kind of threat. You’ve never been hurt by a secret that got out, have you?

Eight: Even if people do know, that won’t matter. After all, everybody’s doing it. You’ve seen the statistics. Even the religious conservatives admit that two-thirds of all teens have had a drink. At least a quarter of all teens have tried other drugs in one form or another, and that’s “everybody,” right? And Exodus 23:2 just asks too much when it says, “You shall not follow a crowd to do evil...” You wouldn’t want to be known as an independent thinker.

Seven: And speaking of evil, maybe drugs aren’t great. But, that’s where religion comes in. Even if it is a sin, you can always get forgiven. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 talks about people being forgiven for worse things and when you’re forgiven, that automatically erases all the consequences that you might have faced – whether physical, legal, and spiritual; right? Think of a friend who got high and wrecked his car. As soon as he was forgiven, the car fixed itself, the insurance rates went back down, and his family forgot all about the wreck -- right?

Six: If you never try drugs, you won’t know how they feel. You’ll never know how cool it is to get high. You’ll never know what it’s like to take a trip to an alternate reality. Sure, some trips are bad. Sure, some of the major drugs do flashbacks. But, it’s worth the risk. I mean all these people who talk about “natural highs” are just kidding, aren’t they? Everybody knows you have to have chemicals to really feel great.

Five: Just once won’t hurt. There are people who use and never get caught. There are people who use and never get addicted. Situations like that Len Bias thing are rare. You remember him, the Maryland basketball star who was drafted by the Celtics. Cocaine interrupted the electrical impulses to his heart and he died. But that only made the news because it was rare. It’s not like drugs ever have any unintended consequences.

Four: You gotta remember: it’s your body. What you do with it or put into it is your business. Never mind what you owe your parents. Never mind what you owe God. Never mind 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own. For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.” After all, it’s not like you’re a Christian or anything.

Three: When it comes to trying drugs, I can promise you this: you’ll lose your friends if you don’t. You know how important friends are. You can’t have fun without them. They’re your best buds. They’ll never let you down. That stuff about “evil companions corrupting good morals” (1 Corinthians 15:33) is probably something parents invented. Get real. You don’t really know anybody who ever got hurt by having the wrong friends, do you?

Two: It never hurts to try drugs. Everybody knows you can quit any time you want. Most top insurance companies will even pay for your first two trips through detox and treatment. After that, you’re on your own. But that’s OK. It’s only a few thousand dollars per program. And some of the very best programs claim five-year success rates of better than 50%. One out of two puts the odds in your favor. And, it’s a sure thing that you’ll want to keep changing.

One: You know you’ll never be an addict. Just keep telling yourself, “I can handle it.” Forget all those studies claiming that some people have a genetic propensity for addiction. Even if that’s true of some people, you’re unique. You’re individual. You’re special. It’ll take more than drugs to hurt you. We wouldn’t want to over-apply 1 Corinthians 10:12, “Therefore, let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.” That couldn’t happen to you. You’re indestructible. Drugs can’t hurt anybody who’s indestructible.

It’s only beer. No one will ever know. Everybody’s doing it. You can always get forgiven. If you never try, you’ll never know how it feels. Just once won’t hurt. It’s your body – what you put into it is your business. You’ll lose your friends if you don’t. You can quit any time you want. And, just keep telling yourself, “I can handle it.” If you believe these lies, you need to see me later. We need to talk about this swampland in Arizona that’s for sale.

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