Christianity fits well with 12 step programs. In fact, much of the content of the 12 steps is directly from the Bible. We don’t tell people this in early recovery, as so many have resentments against religion, especially Christianity. Sadly, many individuals have been damaged in the name of religion. Parents, teachers and religious leaders sometimes use religion, or “God” as a way to demean, blame, and intimidate children.
Christianity and 12 step programs
Many children feel threatened by the concept of a critical and punishing God. In addition, abuse, including sexual abuse, by clergy is all too common, often doing irreparable harm. Continue reading
The Stories in Who’s Your Higher Power? Finding a God of Your Own Understanding, Dawn V. Obrecht, M.D. Richerpressllc, due out July 2013 include some from addicts who have returned to or discovered and embraced a traditional religion, usually Christianity or Judaism. Some of them found their way out of addiction by becoming Christian; others, like me, have had a longer and more circuitous route. Some addicts have found their initial recovery from specifically Christian-based recovery programs. Men and women raised attending synagogue or church sometimes find they are able to incorporate old religious training with new recovery concepts. Others come to sobriety without having had previous religious or spiritual input at all. Continue reading
WHO’S YOUR HIGHER POWER? In the recovering alcoholic and addict communities across the nation and throughout the world, that question is asked almost every day. Many if not most men and women who begin the journey from drinking and drugging to living clean and sober struggle with just finding some concept of God, as they are strongly urged to do. Developing an active relationship with a God who will play a constant and critical role in their life in recovery is even more foreign. Continue reading
Jerusalem from Mount of Olives
Jerusalem N.A. was perfect for increasing my spiritual fitness after over two weeks of travel. My husband and I, both over 25 years in recovery, got centered, got our priorities in order, and got reminded to trust God and not worry about the little stuff. The bonus was that we met some awesome recovering addicts. The meeting we attended was in English, the first language of many of the addicts present. English was the second language for some, both Israeli nationals and expats or visitors from other countries. In the larger cities in Israel, there are meetings in Continue reading
The Wailing Wall
After traveling for about 2 weeks and attending only 2 meetings, my husband and I were both ready for another boost to our emotional health. In Jerusalem, the online meeting list included one or two English speaking AA meetings every day and only a few English speaking NA meetings each week.
Wanting to attend a meeting to get spiritually fit and centered, we planned our evening around the 6 PM AA. At 25 and 29 years of recovery, it is not likely that either of us will drink or use, but that is not all of what recovery offers us. There have been very few weeks in a total of more than half a century of recovery when each of us has not attended one or more meetings. (More on travel to Indonesia and other meeting-less places later. Hint: take a book and have your own.) Continue reading