Havertown Seventh-day Adventist Church

THE “IT” TEST FOR PRIMARY ADDICTION
 
I have postulated that each of us, all of mankind, suffers from Primary Addiction (PA) – addiction to self.  This is identified by belief and behavior that evidences in self before God, and that results in ongoing negative consequences in our lives.  If in fact PA exists in you, then the IT Test should pick IT up.  Below I have substituted “IT” with some variation of self. See how many yes answers you get.  If you are honest with yourself (at this point your test results are between you and you) you will see how addicted you are to self, and therefore how prevalent PA is in your life.  (For those of you that actively practice turning your life decisions over to God prior to making them, these questions may not reveal addiction, as you may be in active recovery.)
 
  1. Have you determined that your egotistical behavior is not in your best interests?
  2. Have you made excuses or rationalizations for your egotistical behavior?
  3. Have you ever been egotistical, despite not wanting to or making effort not to be egotistical or are you more egotistical than you believe you should be?
  4. Has your egotistical behavior ever make you question your sanity or ability to remain in control of yourself?
  5. Has your egotistical behavior ever make you question the quality of person that you are?
  6. Have you ever been afraid about your egotistical behavior remaining in your life at its present level?
  7. Have you ever determined that God, or your moral center does not/would not approve of the manner and/or quantity of egotistical behavior in your life?
  8. Have you ever deliberated about whether your egotistical behavior is a problem, or do you know already that it is a problem?
  9. Have you ever done serious investigation of any kind to determine whether or not your egotistical behavior is a problem?
  10. Have you ever repeatedly wished or prayed that your egotistical behavior would go away, or not be so prevalent in your life?
  11. Have you been unsuccessful in limiting the amount of your egotistical behavior to levels that are acceptable to you?
  12. Have you been unsuccessful in limiting your egotistical behavior to levels that are acceptable to God?
  13. Have you ever tried to control or manipulate others to keep them from seeing the negative life-impact of your egotistical behavior?
  14. Have you ever made a decision to stop behaving so egotistically and then returned to being just as egotistical?
  15. Have you made the decision to stop behaving so egotistically more than once and then returned to being just as egotistical more than once?
  16. Have you ever lied about, downplayed your egotistical behavior, or hid the fact that you are concerned about it, from your closest friends or family?
  17. Have you ever lied about, downplayed your egotistical behavior, or hid the fact that you are concerned about it, from your spouse or partner?
  18. Have you ever committed to be less egotistical today, but were just as egotistical despite your commitment?
  19. Have you ever committed to less egotistical this week, this month, this year, but were just as egotistical despite your commitment?
  20. Have you ever engaged in specific egotistical behaviors despite consciously committing not to?
  21. Do you ever feel trapped by the manner or quantity of your egotistical behavior?
  22. Does the manner or quantity of your egotistical behavior bring you shame or guilt, or does it cause you ongoing distress of any kind?
  23. Do you ever feel consumed, or obsessed, or fixated, or even possessed by your egotistical behavior?
  24. Does your egotistical behavior interfere with work, school, church, or other endeavors, in any way?
  25. Do you ever think about or try harming yourself to get away from your egotistical behavior?
  26. Does your egotistical behavior seem to have a life or will of its own or does it seem to overpower or control you at times?
  27. Does your egotistical behavior cause any problems in your life that would not be there if you behaved less egotistically?
  28. Do you repeatedly waste your money on egotistical behavior or do you repeatedly spend money on yourself that you believe should be better spent?
  29. Do you repeatedly behave egotistically despite knowing, believing or suspecting that it might harm or have negative consequences for you or for others?
  30. Does your egotistical behavior, in any way, negatively affect your relationship with God, or your conscience, or your own moral standards? 
The point of a positive test result is not to condemn or frighten, but to open your eyes to what, up until now, has probably been unavailable for you to see – you are addicted to yourself.  A match between questions 7, 12, and 30 is – spiritually - a “stand-alone” diagnostic of addiction.  If your self-behavior violates what you believe God would have you do, or violates your own personal moral code, then it can be accurately characterized as “out of control behavior”.  Specifically, it is behavior that, despite your efforts, remains outside of what you believe is right for yourself.  That’s addiction! Let’s take a second to discuss this.  If God is powerful enough to create and maintain this universe, then that same God is powerful enough to lead you in your life.  If you have chosen to lead yourself, then you have chosen a power source – yourself – that is insufficient and woefully inadequate; unless of course it is your belief that you are more powerful than God.  
 
If you had enough power then all of your answers to all of the above questions, in every application, regardless of the “IT’, would always be “no”.  There would never be times that you believed that any given “IT” was problematic, because “IT” simply would not have ever been problematic.
 
Primary Addiction is the most cunning, baffling and insidious of all addictions.  For more information about PA, click the link.
 
Understand that since there is God, and that God is a source of tremendous strength, then it makes good sense to access and to use that strength.  The Journey to Wholeness Group at Havertown is designed to help us help each other to access, to use, and to share God’s loving power.

Click The 12-Steps to Wholeness to learn more if you haven't​.