“There, but for the grace of God, go I.” How often I’ve said that— especially when observing drug-addicted people. I think I say it humbly—but am I really sincere?
In John 8, Jesus told His listeners that His truth could make them free (v.32). But weren’t they free already, they protested? So Jesus tightened the screws a bit more: “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin” (v.34). In other words, sin is addictive. And since we’re all sinners, it’s the addiction of us all.
At the heart of every person’s sin problem is a “self” habit that can be kicked only through Christ’s help. Many recovered drug addicts have found that their “self” habit is a deeper problem than their drug habit. That certainly is Ken’s story. After years of running from his problems through drugs and alcohol, he finally yielded his life to Christ. “Since then,” Ken testifies, “things haven’t always been smooth, but Christ has been transforming my selfish way of life. I was shocked to find that I was completely addicted to me!”
We all battle that same addiction. Instead of flippantly saying, “There, but for the grace of God, go I,” we should say, “There go I.” No one is an exception. We’re all in need of the same grace.
All that we were—our sins, our guilt,
Our death—was all our own;
All that we are we owe to Thee,
Thou God of grace, alone. —Bonar
God's grace saves the best and the worst of sinners.