recovery in Christ when life is broken

Top 10 Tips to Get the Most Out of Recovery

 

  1. Attendance: Hebrews 10:24-25
    • Consistent attendance is a vital part of your recovery. It is how you get to know your group members and they get to know you. Let your leaders know if you will not be there.
    • Don’t skip large group. Worship is important. You will also learn a lot from the testimonies/teaching.

 

  1. Book Work: Proverbs 14:23, Colossians 3:23
    • Once you get behind it can be difficult to catch up. Find a time that works best for you and commit to spend about 30 minutes a day on the lessons.
    • Let your leaders know if you get behind – even by 1 week so they can help you catch up.

 

  1. Dating & Attire: 1 Corinthians 10:31-32, Romans 14:13
    • While going through the steps, it is best to not start a new dating relationship, as it would place your focus on that person rather than your own recovery. Prepare to be healthy so you can date well.
    • Honor the Lord with what you wear at re:generation. Clothing that is revealing, too tight, low cut, or short may cause other participants to struggle. Try not to distract others from focusing on the Lord.

 

  1. Mentor: James 5:16
    • Utilize your mentor. Contact them regularly and let them know how you are doing and how they can pray for you. Ask them questions. Be open and honest so they can help and encourage you.
    • A good mentor is someone who is of the same gender, a mature Christian, lives locally, and will continue to be in your life after you complete the 12 steps (see the “How Do I Choose a Mentor?” document).
    • If you are already in a Christian small group, consider choosing a mentor from that group.

 

  1. Accountability Groups: 1 Thessalonians 5:11, Psalm 133:1
    • Build relationships with recovery partners in your group. You may all be very different and have different struggles, but you can pray for and encourage one another through each step.

 

  1. No Gossip: Ephesians 4:29
    • Guard Against Gossip – keep what is said in group within the group. If you feel there is a biblical reason to share information beyond the group, always bring it to group/ministry leadership to handle.
    • Your leaders are not licensed counselors, but are committed to counseling biblically. They may need to consult each other or ministry leadership for wisdom, so they cannot promise to keep secrets. Trust them to counsel biblically and to only share information with those necessary to help your recovery.

 

  1. Participation: 1 John 1:7
    • Be open and honest with your group members, leaders, and mentor. Openly participating and sharing during group time and other times is part of the growth and healing process.

 

  1. Pray: Ephesians 6:18, Romans 12:12
    • Pray for your leaders, fellow participants, the ministry etc. Ask for prayer from them, too.
    • Pray daily for the person whose prayer card you pick up. Contact them to encourage them.
    • Pray the daily prayers in the curriculum asking God to change your heart.

 

  1. Memorize Step Verses: Psalm 119:11, Colossians 3:16
    • Each step has a verse to memorize so that you have an arsenal against the enemy’s lies. Work to memorize them each step. Use flash cards, an app or another preferred method to help you.

 

  1. Remember it is God Who Changes Us: Ezekiel 36:26, Philippians 2:13
    • Leaders cannot change your heart. We cannot change our own hearts. Only God changes our hearts.
    • Our job is to be willing and to follow God each step of the way wherever He leads.
    • Take this process one step at a time, focusing on your current step. Trust God for healing.

 

 

- Laura R., Watermark Plano re:generation

Why Should I Share a Secret Sin?

 

From the time I was eighteen years old it took root. As the days passed it grew. I held secret a sin, believing that no one would understand. Early in my life, I didn’t know Christ and most of my friends didn’t know Him either. When I shared a struggle—which was rare—I was told to get over it, move on, you’re crazy, you got mental issues, or come on man!

Though I had accepted Jesus Christ as Lord of my life, I was still isolating. The longer I isolated, the tighter the enemy gripped.


“But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:3)

 

I would share bits and pieces of my struggle of insecurities with others, but not all of it. The real truth was buried away deep inside.

 

“Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13)

 

Isolated and insecure, I devalued myself by comparing myself to my own perceptions of others. This greatly affected my relationships. When I dated a woman, I wanted to know about her past boyfriends: how they looked, their careers, their ages, etc. I needed to stack up. I needed to be better. This rabbit hole led me to dark places of sexual insecurity. I would imagine my girlfriends with men of their pasts. Pornography acted as gasoline fueling this fire, searing false images, jealous thoughts, and crazy ideas into my head.

I believed I could fight this battle myself, that my insecurity would eventually disappear—but it didn’t. Two years into my relationship with Christ, I was still keeping secrets. I knew Jesus was calling me to live in the light (to expose sin), but I was afraid to reveal the real me (John 3:20). I wanted to maintain an image, so I concealed my sin and shame, like Adam in the garden trying to hide behind shrubs. But who can hide from God’s sight? I was wasting away.

 

“For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away, through my groaning all day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.” (Psalm 32:3)

 

When I began re:generation. I told myself, “I will be open, but not with this struggle. I’m taking this to the grave.” I told God, “You can’t have this one. I won’t confess this sin, this embarrassment.” But God continued to press me until my secret sin became a burden too great to bear. One evening, I finally confessed to my re:generation group. I confessed the exact nature of my sin (Step 5). I didn’t just give them a nugget. I gave them all of it. In that moment, the weight of the sin lifted.

 

“Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (James 5:16)

 

I was met with love, care, kindness, and understanding. I proceeded to confess to other Christians and my mentor. Finally, I was fully known and loved. I was free from the burden of sin and shame.

 

“If we say we have fellowship with Him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.” (1 John 1:6-7)

 

To this day, secret sin and insecurity no longer control me. Now, I experience freedom by living in the light with other Christians. God showed me that His grace is enough for all of my sin. The fact that Christ chose me and died for my sin, defines me more than any sin. When I fully trust in the work of the cross, I am secure to be known in my weakness, and the power of Christ rests upon me.

 

“…therefore, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

 

- James R.

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recovery in Christ when life is broken.