Choice 2: Earnestly believe that God exists, that I matter to Him, and that He has the power to help me recover. It is in this step that we find our HOPE. The changes you desire are only steps away. But, as many of you have shared over the past week, the steps are not always easy ones.
I struggle with control. There I said it! I don’t like many roller coasters because of the feeling of being so out-of-control. Same goes for motorcycles! I want my kids to behave a certain way, my husband to respond to me in a certain way, my workday to follow a set pattern, etc. One huge reason I’ve never taken the path of drug or alcohol use is the buzz or high that others crave makes me anxious because I’m not in control of things. Sometimes being in control is a good thing; but when you try to make sure that every part of your world lines up “just so” … it only brings disruption, anxiety, and depression.
We have hope and promise in the Scriptures that we are not on this journey alone. “I am sure that God, who began the good work within you, will keep right on helping you grow in His grace until His task within you is finally finished on that day when Jesus Christ returns.” (Philippians 1:6)
Dear Lord, my life is a precious treasure from You. I experience things as a result of my choices, both good and bad. Help me not ignore the pain that comes from my choices, as it is there to turn me back to You. I admit that I’ve refused Your help. I pray for Your power to be real and evident. I know that it is only through You that I will have the strength and power to break the habits that are holding me back from experiencing fully the life You have given to me. I want to experience true love and solid relationships, learning how to trust and respect others and myself. I want to experience self-control to walk away from temptation, and my tendency to turn back to comfortable patterns that continue to hold me back. Help me to continue making healing choices. Amen.
God promises to always be with you. He will never leave you. He will never forsake you. He will never turn His back on you. Do you believe this to be true? Deep down in your heart of hearts, do you really believe this to be true?
If you’ve been hurt and disappointed by other people, it’s hard to believe that someone as great, loving and powerful as God would stand by you…no matter what! No sin is too great to turn Him from His children. We may feel too ugly, too damaged, too tarnished, too sinful for God, and we make the choice to turn away. But that’s OUR choice, not God’s.
“When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you” Isaiah 43:2.
Using prompts from our book, take time to write in your journal the questions and answers that speak to you most. I would encourage you to answer all of the questions in the book – don’t skip the hard ones, dear friends.
Sharing can be the most frightening step. How will the other person react to our story? Will they judge or condemn my thoughts and/or actions? Can I trust them to protect my information? Whatever your apprehensions, remember in Proverbs we’re told, “As iron sharpens iron, so people can improve each other.” (Prov 27:17)
Baker gives a very clear and comforting instruction, “This journey is not one to be traveled alone. You need someone of the same sex, a trusted friend with whom you can share what God is doing in your life.” (p. 54). Do you have someone in your life you can talk to about this journey?
After you have taken the time to reflect and write your answers to these questions, we welcome your comments below, or visit our Facebook Group for additional discussion. Please remember that all comments shared on this page are open to the public. You do have the option of signing anonymously to post your comment.
“Remember that in the past you were without Christ. You were not citizens of Israel, and you had no part in the agreements with the promise that God made to His people. You had no hope, and you did not know God. But now in Christ Jesus, you who were far away from God are brought near through the blood of Christ’s death.” Ephesians 2:12–13
“But this precious treasure –this light and power that now shine within us –is held in a perishable container, that is, in our weak bodies. Everyone can see that the glorious power within must be from God and is not our won. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but not crushed and broken. We are perplexed because we don’t know why things happen as they do, but we don’t’ give up and quit.” 2 Corinthians 4:7-8
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but be a new and different person with a fresh newness in all you do and think. Then you will learn from your own experience how His ways will really satisfy you.” Romans 12:2
“And this is the secret: that Christ in your hearts is your only hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27
Lord, I have tried to fix & control my life’s hurts by myself. Often, I make situations worse by refusing to let go and let You handle a situation. I admit I am powerless, and change will only come when I turn it all over to You. You loved me enough to send Your Son to die on the cross for my sins. Thank You for standing by me, believing in me, and wanting more for my life. Help me to continue making healthy, healing choices in my life, and to loosen my grip on things that need to be in Your hands. Amen.
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