Youth Urged To Abstain From Sports Betting And Drug Addiction

The Pentecost Students and Associates (PENSA) Travelling Secretary for the Takoradi Sector, Pastor Emmanuel Opoku Mensah, has urged the youth to abstain from addictions, particularly sports betting and drug addictions.

According to him, addiction to sports betting and drugs has led to the destruction of many youth persons in the country.

Pastor Opoku Mensah made the call on Thursday, June 9, 2022, at the ongoing Shekinah PENSA Conference of the Youth Ministry of The Church of Pentecost. 

Speaking on the topic, “Dealing With Addictions: Sports Betting and Drug Addiction,” he stated that the Christian’s response to the grace that salvation brings is the ability to live a self-controlled life (Titus 2:11-14).

In defining addictions, he stated that it is a pattern of behaviour that causes negative consequences for the individual. He added that addiction can be a self-chosen slavery to something other than God.

“Addiction is a psychological and physical inability to stop consuming a chemical, drug, activity, or substance, even though it is causing psychological, emotional, health, spiritual, and physical harm,” he added.

He indicated that many addictions are often associated with the youth, however, the most common ones are alcohol, drugs, and sexual addictions.

“Alcohol is a substance that is widely used by people all over the world,” he noted. Nevertheless, he asserted, it is also a highly addictive substance that can cause several health problems.

Pastor Opoku Mensah mentioned that narcotic drugs are very addictive drugs that reduce the user’s perception of pain and induce euphoria (an exaggerated sense of well-being). Some of the drugs often used are marijuana, cocaine, heroin, shisha, vodka, tramadol, among others. 

He iterated that due to their adverse effects on the brain, they are either banned or used under strict regulations. He, therefore, said that the illegal use of these drugs is however common and the Christian youth must be very careful not to be lured into it.

On the part of sports betting and gambling, Pastor Opoku Mensah revealed that those who indulge in it enter in the hope of securing a ‘big win’, but as time passes by, they become obsessed with the thoughts of gambling and the anticipation of winning.

“Gambling addiction can lead to devastating consequences for the entire family,” he further said, emphasizing that as many of those affected ended up in massive debts, some even resort to crime in order to get their hands on money to continue gambling.

He noted that addictions leave dire consequences and effects, such as precious hours that can be engaged in profitable ventures being spent on addictive behaviours, leads to shame and guilt, and unnecessarily cost to individuals and the state. It is also not good for their health, he added.

He advised that in dealing with addictions, one must identify and acknowledge the source of the struggle and seek help. He further urged the addicted person to pray and confess it; confide in matured Christians like pastors, parents, youth leaders and counsellors, and develop the spirit of self-control.

“When you do not have self-control, it means you do not have protection. Hold on fast to the Word of God,” he admonished.


Tags: No tags

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *