Helping Students Overcome Addiction

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In this training post, Ellen Garland, from Word of Life Fellowship, discusses the prevalence of addiction in many church youth groups and offers biblical, practical advice for helping teens who battle these destructive habits.

If you work with people for even a short time, you will probably encounter someone battling addiction. Begin this training by reading Romans 6:1–14. No matter what other steps you take, always begin the addiction battle by giving it over to the Lord.

Though we normally only attach them to substance abuse, addictions can occur with any sin. What addictions do you think are the biggest danger for the youth in your church?
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What are some of the warning signs for the addictions you listed in the previous questions? How can you create an environment where students feel safe to share their struggles with you?
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Read 2 Kings 22–23:25. Josiah took radical steps to repent for Israel's idol worship. What in your life do you need to burn and destroy so that it won't interfere with your worship? How will doing this help you to help others dealing with addictions?
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Remember that the problem with battling addiction is not method, but the absence of Jesus. Coach them in walking in the Spirit. He will enable the addict to focus on Jesus rather than the repetitive sin.

For more RightNow Media training posts and teaching videos with Ellen Garland, click here.