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Celebrate Recovery Is for Everyone's Hurts, Habits and Hangups

Updated on December 6, 2022
Mrs. Obvious profile image

I am a wife, mother, daughter, and friend to many. I care about issues that are both big and small, and I seek to spread truth.

Celebrate Recovery Has Birthday Coins Too!

CR I year birthday coin
CR I year birthday coin

Hurts, Habits and Hangups? You're Not Alone

Did you know that most people with drug and alcohol addictions got that way because of their hurts, habits and hangups? The substance abuse is just a symptom of a much deeper source of pain. That pain, and the concurrent substance abuse is a self-fulfilling cycle that is infinite. Even if you haven't acted out and started using or drinking, there is still a place for you in the recovery world. It's called Celebrate Recovery or CR for short. It is a Christ-centered recovery group for "users", "alcoholics", and "normies" alike. So, even if you are not "one of those kind of people" you will fit into this highly adaptive program of recovery that is literally for everyone. They not only use the familiar "12 steps" but have added in an additional 8 principals based on the Beatitudes. (The Beatitudes are blessings and teachings found in Matthew 5 of the Bible, and were given by Jesus during his Sermon on the Mount.)

A typical CR meeting includes a free dinner (donations are appreciated), group worship time followed immediately by a lesson or testimony, and finally separate men's and women's open share groups. CR also utilizes chips and birthday coins as markers of your time in CR and whatever achievement you may be celebrating. And of course like many other types of meetings, anonymity is required. We often repeat the saying, "What is shared in the group, stays in the group".

Getting Involved

My experience with Celebrate Recovery (CR) started out of jealousy. My husband was going to this group every Friday night and getting a free dinner, making new friends and feeling good about himself in general. I finally said, "Can't I come to this CR group?" He said, "I don't know, you're a normie." My husband is an ex drug addict with 12 years clean and sober. So the next week I went along with him just to see what all this was about. I was very surprised to find that they accepted me and told me that no matter what my hurt, or habit, or hangup, I was welcome to stay.

I soon found that CR was a very valuable and comforting resource as I worked through the pain and sorrow of having a child with severe mental health issues and the daily challenges that presents. There are just some things that can't be expressed in normal circles, things that most people wouldn't understand. In a CR meeting, it was a safe place to take of the mask we all show the outside world and just let our emotions breathe.

Learn, Heal and Serve While Recovering

After my first year of participating in a group for women's other issues, I started leading the group as a substitute for the regular leader. When she moved away, the job fell to me, and I have been leading now for eighteen months. Its not a hard job. In fact all I have to do is read the group guidelines at the beginning of the open share meeting and act like a moderator to enforce the rules I just read. Our group guidelines are very similar to NA and AA meetings. Because of the anonymity and confidentiality of our open share groups, everyone feels free to be transparent and vulnerable.

Personally, I see the group as a kind of self-therapy. You get to hear yourself talk out loud about your issues without interruption, and also spill some of the pain that eats at your heart. Hearing the other ladies talk about their issues is reassuring that I am not alone. I have been blessed greatly by all the women who have come through our group at one time or another. Eventually, as I became stronger emotionally, I found the courage and the will to quit smoking too. I had not intended to quit at first, but now I have been smoke free for two years! Both my children and I have benefited greatly in our emotional and physical health, and I owe it to the Lord and CR being such a big part of our lives.

What Makes Celebrate Recovery Different From Other Groups out There?

There are many other programs out there to help drug and alcohol abusers, or their families, but none that treat each individual no matter their user/abused status, as someone worthy of help and healing.

Most people have already heard of Alcholics Anonymous, or Narcotics Anonymous, but there are also seperate groups for Overeaters Anonymous, co-dependent groups, sex addict groups, gambling addiction groups and anger management groups. These are all good options, but none of them is all inclusive under one roof like Celebrate Recovery. Additionally, many CR meetings also have childcare available and that is an added bonus.

I love that I have found a way to get healing for my heart and can now mentor other women who need my encouragement and experience. Whether I am sponsoring women, or just being a listening ear in an open share group, I know that this is something that makes a huge difference in people's lives. I believe that true relief from "the ties that bind" is only found in Christ. At Celebrate Recovery, our higher power is Christ, and He is the bondage breaker that will save you from yourself; if you let Him.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2009 Willow Mattox


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