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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Dead End (02/06/14)

TITLE: My Newport's
By Kimberly Miller
02/13/14


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Even to this day my taste buds tingle for the potent flavor of Newport cigarettes to excite them, ignite them, and overpower them. Most people raise their eyebrows in intrigue when learning I had once inhaled at ease a pack a day of this cigarette breed-my white skin should’ve had me smoking some form of Marlboro.

I remember wandering the streets of Kansas City rambling to a God I couldn’t see. Temporary peace was found in miles of sidewalk, mouthfuls of bus fumes, annoying cat calls, continual conversation with Jesus, and my Newport’s-yes, I had to have my Newport’s.

We had no intended destination and no agenda to accomplish, yet Him and I would meander for hours throughout the city in a somewhat disjointed union as I desperately searched out His heart for the answers to the peace I was seeking-and yes, I had my Newport’s in hand.

Questions would arise and tears would flow from my eyes, angry outbursts would ensue and episodes of dissociation would intoxicate and leave me stranded, broken, hopeless, and alone as I would run from His presence into the cisterns that numbed my heart and shut down my mind from the feelings and thoughts I did not want to deal with-I might have smoked two packs on days like this.

I remember hiding from my husband in the bathroom to smoke a cigarette early in the hours of the morning. I would curl my legs up on the toilet seat and fold myself into the skin of Jesus, resting upon His breast as I engaged with Him in communion about the things I had done the night before that I just wanted to forget-I had the fan on to hide the cigarette scent.

I didn't mean to smoke. I didn't even want to. My father had died of lung and throat cancer from forty plus years of smoking, (you’d think such a catastrophe might have knocked some sense into my head), yet the need for something to pacify the anxiety riddling my body and threatening my mind lead me to the perceived least damaging route to temporary relief-my lovely Newport’s.

They went with me everywhere tucked into the pockets of my purse, hidden with superb disguise, and overladen with gross amounts of body spray. I brought them to church, to Bible Study, to my kid’s basketball games. They were especially prevalent during my lengthy quiet times as Jesus tended to bring up those unwelcome emotions that I was attempting to run from. It seemed that the only means of maintaining my weak emotional state was a hit or two of my self-prescribed treatment-I needed my Newport’s.

It’s not that Jesus wasn’t enough. He really was my everything, at least so I thought. But to a child or women who has been abused, trust is an essence difficult to obtain. I could come to Jesus, but only so close. If I came too close He might hurt me or allow others to hurt me. If I fully ran to His arms He might ask me to face the reality I had pretended was not real for far too long. Do you see why I depended on my trusty Newport’s?

But it was my Newport’s that were never enough. Their peace was momentary; their freedom surreal; their hope fleeting. They brought nothing, maintained nothing, and prospered nothing. They were worthless physicians that could offer no lasting antidote to heal my bleeding heart. With the click of my lighter I could hide behind their smoke’s shadow, but it would only dissolve to leave me once again in my sorrow. I needed salvation from another-my Newport’s couldn’t save or free me from my pain.

I remember the last time I smoked. The fear of the Lord bathed me like a fresh rain on a dismal day. Revelation of my inability to keep myself safe by means of cigarettes pressed upon my awakened mind. As I inhaled my last puff and discarded the used cigarette, watching it fade away and burn out on the ground, I knew with certainty that my Newport’s would forever be a dead end, a road that I could not walk again. Only Jesus can bring freedom and peace.


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Member Comments
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CD Swanson 02/13/14
Praise God! I loved the last paragraph. Thanks for sharing.

God bless~
Toni Hammer 02/13/14
Speaking as someone who has struggled with all of that as well, you absolutely nailed it. Great job.
LaCretia Peters02/18/14
As a survivor of domestic violence, my addiction was food. Thank God for helping me to find the strength to free myself from the abuse and to begin to heal my body! Excellent entry!! Thanks for sharing your personal struggle! They always make the most impacting testimonies!!!