There’s a reason why multiple case studies show that addiction is the highest during the holiday season. It’s the most difficult time to stay sober. I think in part because we’re surrounded by family that trigger all kinds of emotions. It’s also a time when everything around us says we should be feeling a certain way. For those of us who have always bucked up against conformity, we don’t like for people or things to tell us we should feel a certain way. Our natural response is rebellion.
This past October, by the grace of God, I celebrated 10 years of sobriety. I am now a productive member of society. The road was long and filled with twists, turns and dead ends. There were a lot of tears and pleading with my Higher Power. There was uncertainty among the rubble of my indiscretion. There were times when I felt hopeless. And then something changed.
I made a conscious decision to fill my mind with truth and courage. I stopped entertaining deception and falsehood. When I didn’t believe the truth of who I am and that I’m made in the image of God, I would repeat it over and over throughout the day, “God, I belong to you. Thank you that I belong to you. Thank you that darkness has no power over my mind, heart, body and soul. Protect me from evil and all who promote it.”
So if you are new to recovery or are exploring the possibility that you may have a problem with alcohol, food, drugs, pornography, sex, money… anything that is hindering you from living out your purpose, this post was written for you. If nothing else, please know that you’re not alone in your struggle. There are literally thousands of us within one city.
My prayer, in this moment, is that God will intervene and direct your thinking. I pray that you will find purpose in this season of busyness and overspending. When you are looking around for the most convenient numbing aid, I pray that you will see someone who needs your help. My hope is that you will become so caught up in helping others that you don’t have time to entertain the lies that blind. For me, helping others is key to avoid falling back into the snare of darkness.
If you’re an “old-timer” in recovery, a “newcomer” or something in-between and you’re feeling irritable and discontent (as I have been), may I encourage you take a moment and ask yourself why you’re so frustrated. Ask yourself why you cannot or will not find contentment in the current circumstances, and go from there. You don’t have to have any definitive answers, you just need to take the first step.
Are you planning your escape? What vice will you use to “check out?” Please talk to someone you can trust and remove all the power behind the lies. The first sign that I’m headed in a bad direction is when I’m conjuring things up in my mind and do not want to tell anyone. Can you relate? If so, please comment below. So many of us out there need to know we’re not alone.
Two excellent resources involving one of my favorite communicators on the planet, Jud Wilhite, are People of the Second Chance (@POTSC on Twitter) and Central Online. Check it out. You have nothing to lose.
Love and Light,
Well done and congratulations on ten brave years! I am one of those privileged to have worked with people in recovery.There is one particular lady who I feel that if I do no more in this life, I have made a huge difference, I am so very proud of her.
Thank you for being willing to work with us, though we can be the most challenging at times 🙂
Many blessings to you in the new year!
Thanks Joy..It has been over 25 years for me but I still need reminders and help. Thanks for being so open and willing to share your recovery.
Thank you Cathy.
You are one of the bravest women/human beings I know 🙂
Joy, I think Christmas is such a sad time for many of us because we see so clearly the juxtaposition of what things could be and what things actually are. Jesus represents perfection and my life is often such a mess. No wonder we seek the easy way out, not realizing that He is our only hope! Thanks for a great post and for reminding me that it all starts with that “conjuring’.
Thank you Pam.
I love you!
I do find it helpful to my soul when I am wallowing in self pity and mad at the world that I reach out and help someone. It brings me back from that dark pit of despair that nothing else really helps me out of. Trying to numb myself proves only temporary whichever way I try. So I mostly try not to do anything except either sit with the pain and enjoy the self pity or I reach out and try to help someone else. I think when I help someone else I am really helping myself.