Codependency and addiction can be a difficult concept to grasp. It is evident in most of our lives, especially those in the ministry, in one form or another. Codependency is a faulty, unhealthy coping mechanism that is devastating churches, ministries, families, and our personal lives spiritually, soulically, and physically.
Codependency is the excessive emotional or psychological reliance on a partner, typically one who requires support on account of an illness or addiction. 1
Codependency in all practical terms is when an individual is addicted to another individual. This can occur in several different ways as Bro. Burks and I discuss in-depth in our new book called, “Codependency: The Help That Hurts.”
In our opinion, there are two main forms of codependency. The first is called the codependent-dependent. This is an individual that is basically being controlled by another person. The second form of codependency is called the codependent-independent. This is an individual that is attempting to control others. The codependent-independent is also the type of person that is always coming to the rescue of others. They are always looking for “drama” or a crisis so that they may intervene and be the “hero” or “rescuer.” This individual must realize that they are not the Savior of the world; that position belongs to Jesus!
Codependency and addiction can also be looked at as a shifting of our focus from God to someone or something else. This is clearly seen in Romans 1:25 where the Bible says, “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever, Amen.” In this verse, we see that the individual is focusing on someone or something else besides the Creator. No matter where we may find ourselves in life our focus, our passion, or our worship should be directed at our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Codependency and addiction is a constant spiritual battle in which we are engaged moment by moment. The battle is between us “walking after the flesh” (which is codependency) or “walking in the Spirit.”
Codependent behavior is seen throughout the Bible. As we will detail in our book, codependency can be found in the Old Testament and the New Testament.
No matter how prevalent codependent behavior may be in our society, there is a way to live in a healthy relationship with others. This healthy relationship pattern is outlined for us in the Word of God. By following the Bible, we can have healthy relationships with others while being totally dependent upon God.
Join Bro. Burks and me as we explore this topic of codependency and addiction in light of the Scriptures in “Codependency: The Help That Hurts.”. May we find ourselves totally dependent upon God as we step out by faith as guided by the Holy Spirit of God to help restore brothers and sisters in Christ and lead lost sinners to the saving knowledge of the only Savior, Jesus Christ.