QUESTIONS OF FAITH: More Hope for People Living with Addiction

HAVE YOU ALREADY came close to death?

When I was going to college, I was anxious about a 7am accounting test I had that morning.

On the way, I stopped at a gas station.

Someone knocked on my car window. I started to roll down the window and he opened my door and put a gun next to me.

He told me to slide. He got into my truck and closed the door. Now I was on the passenger side. He sat down with the gun pointed at me.

I knew trying to unlock the door and jump would take too long and give him a lot of time to shoot. Also, I thought that trying to snatch the gun from him could have killed me or him.

That morning, the crossing arms were malfunctioning and they were stuck. An officer was there to let one car pass at a time. We left the gas station and approached the officer. The policeman looked at me, then him.

Then he said, “Stop! ”

The next thing I knew, we were in a high speed chase. The policeman was on our heels. We reached the next main intersection and got stuck in morning traffic. The policeman was behind us telling us to get out of the vehicle by loudspeaker.

This guy then handed me his gun and jumped out of my truck.

The police surrounded us all with handguns, and I was in the truck with a gun. I put the gun on the seat and got out of the truck. I thought I was safe now.

The police shouted, “Spread the eagle on the ground!” ”

I kept walking towards the officer thinking he was talking to the other guy.

Again he shouted, “Spread the eagle on the ground!” ”

Now we were both on the ground. This guy then told me that he wanted to end this and that he was just going to get up and let them shoot him. I knew I could very possibly become a victim, so I dissuaded him.

They handcuffed him and took him to the station. I also had my fingerprints and ID photos, but they ended up believing my story.

I had failed the accounting test.

As I drove to college, I couldn’t believe what had happened. I was lucky.

Thinking about it and examining it with a more faithful eye, I think it was a tremendous blessing from Heavenly Father.

I think the angels protected me that day. It could easily have gone wrong.

I later found out that this person was only 25 years old. His life was apparently ruined. He was drugged. I wondered how he got there. I don’t know how or why he took drugs.

In my faith, we believe in the Word of Wisdom.

We do not participate in certain things that are bad for our bodies. It has physical and spiritual benefits. We are to treat our bodies like temples as it says in 1 Corinthians 6:19.

Alcohol and drugs can seem innocent until the grip of addiction takes hold.

How many families have been broken up and lives lost to drugs and alcohol?

Our life is the sum of daily choices.

Some of life’s sorrows can be avoided by staying away from things that can be devastating on this deadly journey.

My heart hurts for those struggling with addiction. Drug addiction is a scourge for our generation that leads to paths of regret and sadness.

There is so much joy to be had in life. Don’t sell yourself short.

If you’ve taken this route, there is still hope.

With faith and treatment, addictions can be overcome.

Keep trying. Lives can change.

God loves you.

_________

Faith issues is a revolving column of five religious leaders from the Northern Olympic Peninsula. Bishop Jason bringhurst is the Mount Pleasant ward leader of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Port Angeles. His email is [email protected]


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