Working with a new person entering into recovery from addictions to alcohol and drugs, there are a few questions I like to ask regarding their consequences from the addiction. Normally before I ask these questions they have already filled in my blanks by letting me know what I will be getting into if I sponsor or mentor them. Some people, have had few consequences remarkably, and the largest part of folks have had the “norm,” divorce, bankruptcy, ovi’s or dui’s.
There are some, however, who have been through a literal hell on earth with their consequences, and after years of sobriety are still paying. That is why I think it is important to know a little about their past…I may not be able to help them properly. Not yet, is the answer I get to most of the harder questions. Have you been jailed for drinking….not yet. Have you been through divorce?….not yet. Have you lost your home, car, or job?…not yet. Have you killed anyone driving drunk or doped?….not yet.
I have to say that from time to time, those questions are all answered with a yes. When it is, the sorrow in their eyes is deep and remorseful. There have been so many people in and out of AA, NA, Celebrate Recovery, and every offered program that offers help, that have seen repeatedly people who have quit the program, or quit praying daily for God’s help, and thought they could handle their addiction on their own, and now have these consequenses for real. Not yet is now reality. Some have never recovered and died.
“Where there is no counsel, the people fall; But in the multitude of counselors there is safety.” Prov.11:14 “The way of the fool is right in his own eyes, but he who heeds counsel is wise.” Prov.12:15 “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.”Prov.14:12 (NKJV)
To reject counsel because of pride or fear, and not ask for help and choose a sponsor/mentor in recovery is foolish, and consequences you thought you would never deal with may become reality. It seems right for us to think we’re unique and what happened to others won’t happen to us. Our way feels right, they cannot tell me what I don’t already know, we think. Do you know you are irresponsible and do not want anyone to know anything about you to make you feel less than perfect in others eyes? Your pride will drop you into an abyss of self-will.
There is hope for you and I. God’s foreknowledge designed these programs before you experienced their pain and lived by their poison. We ask His help to be free of the addiction and find ourselves among people as desperate as we are. Why not throw yourself into recovery entirely like you used and drank? Give it all you have, while continuing to ask God to keep you clean and sober? As they say in these meetings…It works if you work it.
You may not believe this, but I know people who have had consequences enough for five people, but still try to “religion” their way clean, or self-will themselves sober. Church is good and a must in my estimation. However, those people sitting next to you in the pew have no understanding of how to help you. They make take courses on addiction counseling, and know “street-speak,” but they do not know how you tick, and how the addicts mind works. Self discipline is great, but in time it fades…and you fail. Try sobriety meetings, humble yourself “O great one.” Or please just admit you’re not finished using, boozing, and losing. You have not had enough, not yet.
Thanks for reading, God bless and keep you all. Keith