Archives For Celebrate Recovery

Testimony: The Transformative Power of Jesus Christ

I’m a grateful believer in Jesus who has issues with anger, codependency, shame, blame, and fear. My name is Kenny. This is a testimony of the transformative power of Jesus Christ in the lives of my wife Karla and I.

I remember the day we met, but the icing on the cake was when, during a conversation, we discovered we were born in the VERY SAME HOSPITAL. We met in Los Angeles, but we were both born in Philadelphia at the University Hospital. Now that’s what I call a divine connection!

Our childhood traumas would lay the soil in which the enemy would plant seeds for our ultimate demise.

I was raised by a single parent. Blame was cultivated in my life after an incident with my little sister. She fell down the stairs while we were playing and broke her hip. For years I went through life thinking I must have pushed her accidentally. The truth of the event came out when I wrote it on my 4th Step Inventory. While working Step 9, the amends process, I was talking to my mother and mentioned the incident….

Continue Reading

Jesus Is Making All Things New

By Lori Smith, Cultural Communities

But there is a place where someone has testified:

‘What is mankind that you are mindful of them,
    a son of man that you care for him?

You made them a little lower than the angels;
    you crowned them with glory and honor
    and put everything under their feet.’

In putting everything under them, God left nothing that is not subject to them. Yet at present we do not see everything subject to them. But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

Hebrews 2:6-9 (NIV)

I opened up my news app and there it was. Shutdown. Lockdown. Forced quarantine. Overnight,…

Continue Reading

Testimony: Silence the Lies You Believe With God’s Truth

Since before I can remember, before I even knew what the word “lust” meant, I was immersed in it. Around the age of six, I was acting out in lust with self-gratification. It controlled me, and no one knew about it. Hi, I am a grateful believer in Jesus Christ, I struggle with lust, control issues, codependency, and fear of failure, and my name is Julia.

At a young age, I remember being taught, mostly through the T.V. and movies, that love, being loved, and being in a relationship was the most important thing in life. Even growing up in a Christian world, I felt that lie was perpetuated as I came to believe that marriage would complete me and that it’s where my identity belongs.

I was six years old when I stumbled into self-gratification. I didn’t really understand what I was doing or the implications of it. All I remember is somehow feeling like what I was doing was bad. As I got older, the “bad” feeling grew into shame.

You see, I went to a private Christian high school, where we would frequently…

Continue Reading

He Knows Our Needs

By Andy Petry, National Director of The Landing

“Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”
Matthew 6:8 (NIV)

Adversity and discouragement seem to go hand in hand. Whether they come in the form of hard medical diagnosis, some sort of family crisis, financial troubles, addiction and dysfunctional behaviors, or a world-wide pandemic, tough times can zap our strength, courage, and resolve, and can leave us feeling exhausted and defeated. Thinking back on this past year, I’ve had to admit that I’ve been pushed and stretched in a lot of different ways that I didn’t expect, nor want. And while I wouldn’t have chosen it myself (I don’t think any of us would’ve either), one undeniable fruit of this tough time has been that it’s forced me to press in the Lord and my own recovery journey. It’s taught me again just how much God is aware of our situation, how he works in the midst of it all, and how he gives us what we need to grow more into the image of Jesus.

I learned the Lord’s Prayer as I grew up in the church and…

Continue Reading

By Nita

I’m a grateful believer in Jesus Christ who struggles with grief. My name is Nita.

In August 2017, our thirty-year-old son died of a drug overdose. A year later, my father died after suffering with dementia for years. A year later, my mother battled through cancer treatments and severe pain for 11 months before dying in November 2020.

As I have watched the Covid-19 virus cause worldwide disruptions, upheavals, and losses of every kind, my heart has grieved anew. I see families experiencing economic hardships, severe illnesses, and painful deaths.

The unexpected, shocking, and random nature of Covid-19 has caused much confusion, anguish, and deep pain. My heart aches for the widespread grief affecting so many people because I have felt the crushing blows of grief myself.

Though the death of my parents caused us much sorrow and longing, they had lived long lives and they were eager to go to their heavenly home. We were able to bury them in their old age, in the more usual order of things. Burying our child was a different matter.

By far, our hardest grief journey was with our son. After a bad motorcycle wreck in college, he…

Continue Reading

By Mary Owen, National Training Coach

When 2020 arrived, we got in an unhealthy rhythm of staying in hypervigilant mode, and it’s a struggle to get out of this cycle, as the hard stuff seems to not be letting up.

The enemy wants us to think that God doesn’t have time for our prayers because after all, a lot is going on in the world that he’s tending to! The enemy reminds us:

You have failed God and disappointed him too many times.

You have doubted.

You have lived in fear.

You are weak.

The enemy wants us to believe that our prayers are powerless and ineffective. He doesn’t want us to communicate with God. He wants us to think we don’t have what it takes to be God’s leaders. So, he hopes we will let go of hope and let go of God.

“When my soul is in the dumps, I rehearse everything I know of you, From Jordan depths to Hermon heights, including Mount Mizar. Chaos calls to chaos, to the tune of whitewater rapids. Your breaking surf, your thundering breakers crash and crush me. Then God promises to love me all day, sing songs all through…

Continue Reading

By Blake

I wanted to be professional baseball player or a fireman when I was growing up. How was it that in my early 40s I had successfully become an alcoholic? I was in a self-imposed hell that was physically, spiritually, and morally bankrupt.

I grew up in a Christian home and in what I thought was a typical household. My parents didn’t really drink– an occasional glass of wine typically only if people were over for dinner. We moved about every four years as I was growing up, and it wasn’t until I looked back at all the variables of my life, did I realize some of the impacts that had. It was in high school that my path began to wander. I was extremely insecure but popular. I shared my first kiss in high school with a girl from my church who took her life months after we had parted ways. Not because of me, but it was a loss and pain I didn’t know how to handle.

Eventually, drinking became part of what I did with some of my football and baseball teammates…and like an amazing switch, my shyness would disappear….

Continue Reading

By Ken Grider, National Encourager Coach

“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, as He already existed in the form of God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but emptied Himself by taking the form of a bond-servant and being born in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death: death on a cross.”

Philippians 2:5-8 (NASB)

The goal of any devotional– and life on earth for that matter –is to point to God. The goal is to bring us into a closer relationship with and a greater awareness of our Savior. I want to be someone who says, “Here am I. Send me!” (Isaiah 6:8 NIV) regardless of location, proximity, timing, or circumstance. Notice I said, “I want to be”…this is not always the case. In fact, my most frequent request of God is that he will let me see with his eyes and love with his heart. But, as I unpack these verses, my spiritual assignment, once again, becomes one that I…

Continue Reading

By Kristen

Hi, my name is Kristen. I am a grateful believer in Christ in recovery for bulimia, overachieving, and perfectionism.

Life was crazy, chaotic, and unsteady for me growing up. I was an awkward, nerdy, athletic kid, and I just wante to fit in somewhere. Because of several experiences, I came to believe the lies that I would never be good enough and that I was to blame for everything that went wrong. I thought that the best way to cope was to choose (or force myself) to always be happy on the outside, no matter what. So I started putting on masks. However, inside I started pretending and living in a fantasy life to cope.

This way of coping eventually paved the way for me to start struggling with an addiction that was pretty easy for me to hide…bulimia. My life was marked by insecurity, performance, people-pleasing, and the striving for perfection. I convinced myself that this was something that was only hurting me and that I could control it.

I finally came to a point where I realized my eating disorder was controlling me, so I started getting help. While attending Celebrate…

Continue Reading

By Donna Yearsin, National Director Celebration Place

“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.  And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.  As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.”

Romans 7:15-20 (NIV)

One of the most beautiful things about recovery involves introspection. Focus questions posed during Open Share Groups cause participants to stop and think about their own thoughts, feelings, and actions– an honest assessment of what is…

Continue Reading

By Tiffani

Each hurt we go through can build walls in our lives; some can turn into good boundaries, others build walls of protection surrounding us and we think ugliness cannot break though to get to us. Hi, I’m a grateful believer in Jesus– I have victory over co-dependency, isolation, fear of abandonment, and shame. I struggle with food addiction and the effects of past abuse, and my name is Tiffani.

I grew up in an alcoholic home where both my father and stepfather drank heavily. My mom used shame, fear and withdrawal to parent us. I remember the night my dad left. A police officer woke me and my two sisters and helped us get dressed, they took us to a friend’s house to spend the night. I had so many questions but even at that young age I knew better than to ask. In my mind it was better to be as quiet and invisible as possible. My walls began to form. I had quite a few life-changing events all happening at the age of 6: my parents separated, I moved from a middle-class suburb area to a more inner-city location, I…

Continue Reading

By Rodney Holmstrom, National Assimilation Coach

“Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3

There was a man walking along on a cold winter day. Suddenly hitting a patch of black ice, he fell and then BAM! He wasn’t expecting this, but found himself on the ground, cold, wet, humiliated and seemingly alone. He cut his elbow and was bleeding quite a bit. He wanted to go crawl into a hole and hide. His first thought was complete embarrassment for what had happened and wondered if anyone had seen him fall so abruptly. Before he realized it, a stranger was kneeling by him grabbing his arm, helping him back to his feet. He felt embarrassed by the situation. However, the stranger wasn’t focused on that at all. Instead he focused on showing love and compassion while making sure he was ok. He knew he was hurting and came alongside him, helping him mend his wounds.

This has me thinking about my brothers and sisters struggling with mental health issues. Some may struggle with depression, anger, anxiety or other issues that make…

Continue Reading