Monday, July 13, 2009

Sobriety vs. Recovery

In the Addiction Recovery Program, we are very fond of counting days of sobriety. There is good reason for this, working the program one day at a time is the only way many of us can even begin our recovery progress. One day of success is worth celebrating. In the AR group meetings, we clap and celebrate for any length of sobriety, whether it be 3 years or 2 hours.

For me personally, however, I can get caught in a trap. My goal with regards to my addiction is to recover. Stated more scripturally, to "experience the mighty change in my heart" and to "have no more disposition to do evil". Certainly these changes bring with them the wonderful side affect of sobriety. But sobriety is not my goal.

This may be a subtle difference, but it is important. I can be sober for months on end, without becoming converted completely to my Savior and becoming born again through Him. It can be easy for me to think because I am being sober I am being successful. Certainly sobriety is essential, but it's not enough. If I let my success in avoiding pornography make me complacent and keep me from doing the small, daily things which convert my soul, then truly sobriety is standing in the way of my recovery.

Humility is perhaps the key ingredient to recovery. When I am humble I am moldable, teachable, willing to listen to anything the Lord would have me do. Being the prideful man I am, as my sobriety builds I can start to think "I've got it. I can beat this...I....I....I" Nothing is more deadly for me than the "I" thoughts.

Recovery, for me, requires turning my life and will over to the Lord every single day. I have to be very aware that I take this step, no matter where my sobriety number lies. Because the day I forget to turn myself over to Him, is the day I start my slow descent. My goal, now and always, is to be converted to my Savior Jesus Christ.

Oh...and my sobriety is now at 150 days.

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