How can I quit?
Many Christians who have been heavy smokers for years can readily empathize with the plight of anyone trying to quit smoking and can fully understand the struggle experienced by those who desire to quit. It’s certainly not easy, but it can be done. Many two-pack-a-day smokers are now smoke-free and can attest to the fact that it can be done when we turn it over to God and rely on His strength and power.
There are numerous reasons why quitting the smoking habit is a good idea for everyone, but especially for Christians. If a Christian is unsure of why to quit smoking and unsure as to whether or not it constitutes sin, our article entitled “What is the Christian view of smoking? Is smoking a sin?” would be a good place to start. The reasons outlined in the article should provide ample motivation to a smoker who is still unsure whether or not to quit. If one has already determined to quit smoking, it should be understood that stopping smoking is known to be one of the most difficult things to do. Research has shown that nicotine is a very addictive substance, even more addictive than heroin, some say.
But that fact need not discourage us. Paul tells us in Philippians, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” Philippians 4:13 (NKJV). Even though it is difficult, and full withdrawal may take time before one no longer desires cigarettes, as Christians we are to look to God from whom our help comes. We set our hearts on things above and pray the Lord will give us the strength to gain the victory in this trial. So many people leave the Lord out in their attempt to overcome bad habits, and that is a huge mistake. Prayer is expressly for these types of situations, where we can take our problems directly to the throne of God and to Him who can solve them.
Relying on the power of the Holy Spirit does not necessarily mean that medical stop-smoking aids cannot be used as well. Many have received great help through the various patches, gums, pills, etc. After prayer and consultation with a doctor, if God gives you peace about using a medical stop-smoking aid, there is no biblical reason why you cannot.
God has declared that His grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9). Where we are weak, He is strong. Our desire for cigarettes will be reduced as we grow and gain strength in the Lord. The power of God will work within us to alleviate the pressure to smoke, all to His glory. God will give us the strength to put Christ first and ourselves last. In this we will find that what we give up will be more than compensated by what we gain.