We admitted we were powerless over compulsive/addictive behaviors-- that our lives had become unmanageable.

“Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak…” Alma 26:12

What is Step One?

For many, there comes a time when we find ourselves hopelessly wandering through life. Something seems to be missing, and we experience a sense of emptiness inside ourselves that yearns to be filled. This emptiness could be the resulting effect of loneliness, fear, abandonment, feeling unloved, past painful experience(s), or any number of other causes. Our natural response is to seek something, anything that will fill the emptiness, even if that “anything” is something outside our margin of values.

As time passes, the substances and behaviors we turn to in an effort to fill our emptiness become addictions. They take control of our lives, and we find our lives unmanageable as a result. Repeatedly we try, and fail, to stop our addictions. Our own will-power is not enough to resist the powerful temptation of our addictions. It is here that Step One is realized. We look honestly at ourselves and admit that we have an addictive dependence on a substance, on a behavior, or our minds are obsessed with out-of-control thoughts.

We have discovered that we are powerless to overcome our weaknesses alone. Through our admission we find ourselves free to acknowledge that we need help in order to bring control to our lives and peace to our souls. Admitting the truth about our lives today allows us to face things as they really are and to begin taking personal responsibility for our thoughts and behaviors.

Our lives have become unmanageable. We are ready for a change. We are willing to try another way.

(The Bible Dictionary defines the below scripture as: “By transgression, man loses control over his own will and becomes the slave of sin.”)

Romans 7:14 “For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.

In what way does your addiction relate to the above statement?

2 Nephi 1:13 “Oh that ye would awake; awake from a deep sleep, yea, even from the sleep of hell, and shake off the awful chains by which ye are bound, which are the chains which bind the children of men, that they are carried away captive down to the eternal gulf of misery and woe.”

Why do you want to awake from the deep sleep of your addiction?

How is your addiction like “chains by which ye are bound?” Do you feel trapped in a gulf of misery and woe? Describe your feelings:

1 Peter 4:12 “Think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you.”

Peter is telling us that in this life, we should not be surprised that we have been given trials to deal with. Trial and tribulation are a part of the mortal experience. Has there been a trial or experience in your life that caused you fear or pain that you are struggling with? Could your compulsive behavior be related to that problem? Has addiction been your way to deal with that trial? Explain:

Alma 36:18 “…O Jesus, thou Son of God, have mercy on me, who am in the gall of bitterness, and am encircled about by the everlasting chains of death.”

How does this scripture reflect your life as you have struggled with addiction?

Describe how your addiction has changed your character over the years:

Mosiah 3:19 “For the natural man is an enemy of God, and has been from the fall of Adam…”

In the process of admitting our powerlessness, we encounter terms such as “carnal, mortal, and natural.” How do these terms relate to your addiction?

Why does God deem us as His enemy when we revert to our compulsive behaviors?

What good will come from admitting to being powerless over your addictive behaviors?

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