I was uncomfortable with the idea of fearing God. I defended Him as One whose love is so great He needs not be feared. This was based on my own understanding of 1 John 4:18: “Perfect love drives out fear.” Today, I have come to understand that when the scriptures calls our attention to fear… Continue reading Where Wisdom in Recovery Begins – Damascus Way Recovery
Where Wisdom in Recovery Begins
Wisdom in recovery begins when we come to realize the love God has for us and are able to confidently find rest and peace. I know the truth of this reality. Such true understanding had to come by my own overwhelming awareness of His greatness, holiness, and power as they contrasted with my own sinful and carnal nature. There was nothing more fear-inducing than this. It is where I needed to begin. It is where healing and restoration of my mind, heart, and soul had to begin.
A Vibrant Fellowship Is Needed – Damascus Way Recovery
Over the years I have attended a variety of men’s fellowship groups within the Christian Faith. Some were quite small while others boast a good following. Some of these groups appeared to have died down and were no longer meeting. It was not until I stepped into a fellowship of those engaged in their own… Continue reading A Vibrant Fellowship Is Needed – Damascus Way Recovery
How Substance Use Counseling Ignited my Understanding of Salvation
The greatest deception of one who is living an active and sinful lifestyle is one who is imprisoned by their own denial. In essence, we lack the awareness and fortitude to admit there is something wrong with us. Because of this, we build systematic defenses to protect ourselves from the reality of our condition. For the alcoholic and addict, this defense system protects them from an awareness they have an inherent problem with drugs, alcohol, and/or other addictive behaviors.
Does a 12-step based recovery program work?
There appears to be some aversion to attending, participating in, and following the 12-steps of sober support meetings. The underlying question: does a 12-step program help people achieve sobriety? In Chapter 2, of the second edition of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, we read the following introductory statement: WE, of Alcoholics Anonymous, know thousands… Continue reading Does a 12-step based recovery program work?
Nature of Substance Use Disorder and Social Responsibility
Within the past year, we have heard stories from social media, news outlets, and ongoing conversations around the rise of the opioid crisis. Reading through the various commentary, there is a noticeable trend of individuals caught up in emotional responses. Yet, as a society, do we fully comprehend the nature of addiction and how individuals… Continue reading Nature of Substance Use Disorder and Social Responsibility
‘I Don’t Know Who I Am’: Establishing Your Sense of Self
Those who do not grow up in a healthy environment—perhaps one scarred by emotional or physical abuse, neglect, or over-parenting—may not develop a sense of self in the same way. Their identities may have been minimally acknowledged, if at all. When feelings and thoughts are ignored in childhood, children may grow up not recognizing that they have their… Continue reading ‘I Don’t Know Who I Am’: Establishing Your Sense of Self
Being a comfort to others
Recovery is a dark journey for most of us. Through our faith in Jesus Christ, we come to full knowledge of His light, love, and truth. Do we forsake others struggling in their own darkness and journey? God forbid. This is the heart and foundation of recovery support groups.
Recovery requires to live as though nothing else matters
Authentic recovery separates those who are being in recovery and those who are doing recovery. Much like the Christian faith - this means an individual cannot escape their Garden of Gethsemane. We are tasked to experience the painful awareness of our behaviors that were the results of our dependence on substances, sex, food, gambling, et al. It is the painful process of moving toward the new life. Putting to death the old man in order to rise up with a newness of life. Unfortunately, many rather be in recovery instead of actually doing recovery.
Recovery isn’t for you
Having been a moderately seasoned counselor for the last six years, I've come to realize that recovery isn't for you. Before you start drawing some conclusions, keep reading. Sitting in counsel with many patients, conducting and facilitating various therapy groups, and utilizing all the best practices and evidenced-based material, I've come to realize the strength,… Continue reading Recovery isn’t for you
How we love self and others reflects Christ
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. ~ Ephesians 4:32, ESV ~ We are actively influenced, and are influencing, those relationships around us. One of the greatest frustrations a person experiences in recovery is this: operating in the illusion we have control over, or others have control over… Continue reading How we love self and others reflects Christ
There is a stark difference between costly and cheap recovery. Cheap recovery is the single most deadly enemy. An enemy of one’s effort toward a healthy and well-meaningful and purposeful life. We are fighting for costly recovery. What is cheap recovery? It is a cut rate recovery journey where there is minimal cost with supposed… Continue reading Costly Recovery
Dealing with patience
Actions reflect our personal beliefs and values
But whoever has doubts is condemned ... For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin. ~ Romans 14:23 ESV ~ Recovery helps us rediscovery our own personal values. These values become our reflection of what we believe. They help us live a true, authentic, and practical life. This is not only demonstrated by our… Continue reading Actions reflect our personal beliefs and values
What do you see?
Nature and Power of Belief and Hope
Imagine you are walking along a very narrow path. The forest is thick and dark. As you struggle your way along the path, you notice a possible clearing up ahead. In haste, you rush along the path. The clearing becomes more and more welcoming. At last, you take your last step out of the darkness… Continue reading Nature and Power of Belief and Hope
Sharing the Wealth and Abundance
give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you. ~ Luke 6:38, ESV ~ When we think of abundance, wealth, and prosperity, we look to the materialistic things obtained. The greatest… Continue reading Sharing the Wealth and Abundance
Nature and Power of Honesty
When my daughter was younger, she'd love to watch Veggie Tales. I had a copy of one of her favorite VT videos. The title: Larry Boy and Fib from Outer space. The premise of the story line focused on dishonesty vs. honesty. Each time Jr. Asparagus told a lie, Fib grew larger and larger. At the… Continue reading Nature and Power of Honesty
A Right Way of Living
So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the name of the Lord from a pure heart ~ 2 Timothy 2:22, ESV ~ Making one's journey through recovery requires a right way of living. A true pilgrimage through the process is one where an individual strives… Continue reading A Right Way of Living
Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable - if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise, dwell on these things ~ Philippians 4:8, ESV ~ The Savior taught his disciples a fundamental truth when he responded to a… Continue reading Being Grateful
The Mystery of the Unmotivated patient
As a moderately seasoned counselor, one of the frustrating aspects of working with individuals suffering from substance use is the lack of motivation and engagement in their treatment and recovery. I become frustrated because they appear to be unmotivated, and underachieving. In my attempt to work with these individuals I am experiencing some consternation. This… Continue reading The Mystery of the Unmotivated patient
Addressing recovery from a Christian and Biblical worldview
Carl Jung (1865 - 1961) worked with a gentleman by the name of Rowland H. This gentleman was a gifted affluent young businessman. He suffered from Alcoholism and sought out any possible cure for his problem. Rowland's attempt to address his drinking problem failed. Traveling to Switzerland, Rowland sought out Carl Jung. In their conversations, Rowland… Continue reading Addressing recovery from a Christian and Biblical worldview
When we return good for reproach
Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake ~ Matthew 5:11 ~ One of the challenges facing each of us are those who continue to be torn with hate. They despise the turning and transformation of our lives toward… Continue reading When we return good for reproach
Growing in the light of recovery
That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter.... ~ Doctrine and Covenants 50:24 ~ Our recovery is about growth and development. It is a march that leads to maturity, peace, and freedom. It is a profound challenge… Continue reading Growing in the light of recovery
Possessing the right convictions
In this world so filled with problems, so constantly threatened by dark and evil challenges, you can and must rise above mediocrity, above indifference. You can become involved and speak with a strong voice for that which is right. ~ Gordon B. Hinckley ~ Standing a little taller in our recovery requires our voice. It… Continue reading Possessing the right convictions
Having become meek and humble
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth ~ Matthew 5:5 ~ Many people share their stories of brokenness. How their substance use caused significant loss in their relationships with family, co-workers, loss of employment, loss of health, and even loss of one's freedom. They refer to this moment of awakening to spiritual… Continue reading Having become meek and humble
Choose the right, always
Be faithful and diligent in keeping the commandments of God, and I will encircle thee in the arms of my love. ~ Doctrine and Covenants 6:20 ~ As we continue to stand a little taller in recovery. As we begin to embrace our journey and work toward a healthy lifestyle; we come to realize that… Continue reading Choose the right, always
Hungering and Thirsting after Sobriety
Addiction is an appetite of desire. It's powerful grip holds the individual captive. Our most inner drive moves us to hunger and thirst after alcohol and/or drugs. The greater our hunger and thirst, the deeper we sink into the abyss. In order to recover from this hold our addiction has on us, we must begin… Continue reading Hungering and Thirsting after Sobriety
The intensive battle before us
Put on the whole Armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places ~ Ephesians 6:11-12 ~ Recovery is an intense battle… Continue reading The intensive battle before us
What matters most is what sort of person you are becoming. Wise individuals care only about whom they are today and who they can be tomorrow ~ Epictetus ~ We must live by those lessons of the recovery life in order to become wise. Wisdom is not something that springs up overnight. Learning wisdom is… Continue reading Becoming Wise
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