Monday, October 26, 2015

Death by Inches. . .

The past few weeks Jackie and I have been watching the series ‘Breaking Bad’ on Netflix. The scenario is of a high school chemistry teacher, who is diagnosed with lung cancer, and to help pay for his treatment, he turns to manufacturing meth as a way to make money.

I find a peek into this world, fascinating for the fact that I am in regular contact with the after effects of meth addiction in my personal life. . . my best friend Matthew Yeater was blinded by an explosion that occurred while cooking meth himself, and in my ministry. . . many many of the people we minister to in the jail a there via their use or manufacture of meth.

I don’t know how realistic the show is, in its portrayal of meth addiction, and the cooking of it, etc., but one thing I do find realistic, from my outside looking in perspective, is how this man thought somehow that he could just stick his toe into this world of meth, and so very quickly he was immersed up to his neck. This jives pretty closely with the stories I’ve heard of meth and crack users. . . Some I’ve known, have related how literally after one use, what they thought was a one-time casual use at at party, they were full blown addicts, out of control for years afterwards, and their lives completely dominated by these drugs.

A sequence from a recent episode, reverberated with me very strongly. A woman. . . maybe in her late 30’s or early 40’s, a heavy meth addict was portrayed. She had a young son 3 or 4 years old living in squalor. . . filthy himself, unattended, in the wreckage of a meth den. I say she was 40 or so, due to the age of her son. If I had no other clue, I could easily have guessed her to be in her 60’s. Her face disfigured by crank sores, or speed bumps as they are called. . .ugly vivid red sores caused by the severe addict’s malnourished, wrecked body just falling apart after months or years of abuse. . . The house had layers of garbage and filth everywhere. The child was left unattended as his mother, and boyfriend were out searching for more drug.

I am certain that there are similarly horrible scenes of just this scenario. . .Poor, pitiful, neglected children living hellish childhoods within our own community. . . very possibly behind drawn curtains of houses and apartments we drive by, mere yards away every day. . . I weep at the thought. . . I see men come into the jail. . .Absolutely GRATEFUL!!! for being arrested. . . . looking upon arrest as a blessing from God, for delivering them from the hell that was their life in bondage to meth or crack.

It strikes me that the addict portrayed in this episode of ‘Breaking Bad’, didn’t arrive in this state in a day, a week, or a month. This is the result of the chronic putting off dealing with an issue for years. . . .Never facing up to what needed to be done. . . ever deeper. . . ever deeper. This is an extreme example of the eventual outcome of procrastinating and putting off something that needs to be dealt with in your personal life day after day after day for years on end. . .

With regularity, you read of poor souls who weigh 500 or 600 lbs. . . confined to a bed, who cannot even rise up and leave their house any more. Their problem came about one bite at a time. . . one more spoonful. . . one more forkful. . .ignored. . . untended for decades until they are in peril of their lives, from a spoon and a fork.

How many of us have, maybe not as dramatic, but issues just as threatening facing us, that we somehow think we can put off forever with no consequences. . . Smoking. . . drinking. . . eating poorly. . . not exercising. . . all small step problems. . . one sip. . . one cigarette. . .one snack. . .one more day watching TV without exercise,. . . (if I may as a preacher. . . one more little sin). . . with fatal outcomes if not addressed at some point.

I’m speaking to myself. For months now I’ve been putting off getting my exercise bike setup, and using it. . . one more day. . . one more week. . . one more month. . . killing me slowly. . . invisibly, but just as certainly as a gunshot to the head, if I don’t tend to this. . .

I look down upon the lady meth addict, while at the same time in my own life doing a quite similar thing. A mental image of my face, covered with meth sores. . .really quite similar, in superficial appearance anyway, to ulcerated diabetes sores from long term ignoring of high blood sugar. . . amputated limbs. . .nerve death. . .non-functioning kidneys. . . heart attack. . . premature death.

I vow to get that bike setup tonight, and to pedal myself to better health. . . Problems don’t get any better by ignoring them. . .

I love you my God.
Thank you my Lord.


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