Smoking and Drinking
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Last week I got the opportunity to see few of my friends smoke. That was the first time I saw one of my friends smoke and also that was the first time I had access to a cigarette, I mean, if I wished I could have smoked. It was really hard to avoid that temptation. It was unbelievable how much lame excuses they give to smoke and drink. I seriously don’t know why they at the first place want to smoke? One of their lame excuses was that they are “social drinkers”. Hamm? What on the earth is that? Will they drink poison saying that it is just for a social occasion? At some European countries one has to drink to survive the cold. But smoking can’t be justified at any cost. So in this post I would like to stress on smoking only. (Even though I treat smoking and drinking equally)
A few days back, in a news paper I read that Over 50% of pre-university Bangalore students are smokers. In the same research as much as 55.8% of students said that peer pressure had influenced them to use tobacco products.
I don’t know what bible says about smoking and drinking, but according to me it is a sin. It destroys/harms body, the temple of the Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 6:19)
A person’s body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, and, by receiving Communion, a tabernacle containing the Real Presence of Christ. There are many reasons for insuring the physical health of one’s body, but the most compelling is the respect due to the body which is created in God’s image. – R. J. Grigaitis, S.F.O.
But wait a second, it easier to tell these but only those who faced the situation can realize how much hard peer pressure will be to ignore or avoid. I have been there and I know. I was very much confused and troubled because of the fear that I might be out-casted just because I refuse to smoke or drink. Seriously it took few days to come out of the mental dilemma. I was clear only after attending last Sunday mass where in the second reading was: So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. – 1 Corinthians 10:31 I believe GOD spoke to me at that point, and strengthened me.
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I found out some way to escape those temptations. I learned from my mistakes. These steps are mainly to avoid peer pressure.
- Never be at the place where your friends are discussing or planning to smoke or drink. Physical presence may increase the temptation stronger.
- If you know that they are going to smoke in the future or talk about it, avoid it. But be careful, you might miss an important friends birthday. Go there and get out as soon as possible. Tell a lie if needed to escape from there. Getting your brother or mother to hospital would be a nice one.
- Remember if your friend compels you to drink or smoke, say no politely. If he persists say strongly. Most of them will stop at this point. If your friend continues, sorry to say, stop being friend with him. Because those who matter don’t mind and those who mind don’t matter. If a simple “No, thanks” won’t do the trick, here are some other tactics for turning down someone who offers you a cigarette: “I’m allergic to smoke.”, “The smell of smoke makes me sick and I don’t want to smell like that.”, “I know someone who died from smoking and I don’t want to do it.”, “I don’t want to start because I’m trying to get my parents to quit.” etc.,
- You don’t have to do anything that you don’t want to do. It’s perfectly okay to say no. You don’t owe anyone an explanation.
- You might even been threatened with the risk of loosing promotion or a rise because of not smoking, be strong. Remember your health is your greatest asset. Nothing in this world, not even money can give it back once lost. Tobacco Kills More Than All Other Drugs.
- Finally most important one, PRAY. One of my personal prayers is “Come Holy Spirit, Guide Me!” In my experience it is the best prayer at the time of temptation.
If there is a better way, please let me know.
I know its hard. But as St. Paul says, we can do all things through HIM who strengthens us. (Philippians 4:13)