Thursday, August 23, 2007

Recovery Group vs Self Help

Chris Rice has a great post on the difference between self help and recovery groups.

I tried to fix myself using a lot of books. I can remember as a teenager finding a twelve step Bible and even trying to do the fourth step (the “searching and fearless moral inventory”) at that time on my own. I thought that steps one, two, and three were obvious. I had a problem. I believed in Jesus Christ. I believed he could fix it. What’s next? (Wasn’t that easy?) Well, it didn’t work, for the simple reason that I was alone.

Twelve step recovery is hard work. It does not involve only stopping those destructive habits that we did not like. We had stopped hundreds of times. We couldn’t stay stopped. Recovery is a new spiritual way of life that involves a new connection to God through the group–those people who identify on the basis of their addiction.

Working the steps means working with a sponsor and taking in as many meetings as possible. This is very different than a self-help program. This kind of radical commitment, turning our will and lives over to the care of God—through the group—involves an ego deflation not in keeping with the idea of self-help.

- Peace

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