When people hear the word “recovery” in church or any other public forums, many tend to turn and run from any further conversation by closing their mind to hearing the truth about what recovery truly is. Why do they do this, you may ask? Automatically people relate the word “recovery” as having a problem with alcohol, drugs, sex, gambling or any other type of addiction. A persons automatic response may generally be something like this; “I’m not one of those people. I do not struggle with any kind of addiction.” Recovery is not working on and overcoming an addiction, that is sobriety. There is a big difference between the two.
So what is the difference between sobriety and recovery? Sobriety is simply not drinking, not drugging, not overeating, not gambling, etc.. In other words, one works on their addiction. In today’s treatment world, that often times include putting one on some other sort of medication. For example, like an opiate blocker to help them overcome the addiction. Nothing to address the underlying issues of the addictions. We must understand that liquor, drugs, overeating, etc. is ONLY but a symptom of why one drinks, drugs, overeats, gambles, etc. One must get down to underlying causes and conditions of the addiction. This is where true recovery happens.
So you may be wondering now, what is recovery? Here is one definition of recovery; “A process of change through which individuals improve their spiritual and emotional health and wellbeing, live a God and self-directed life, and strive to reach their full potential.” Heal and Restore Counseling defines it as, “returning to the person God intended you to be before the ways of the world corrupted you.” Sounds almost like an impossible task. For many it can be. For those that are willing to do the hard work required to journey on the path of recovery, it is very much possible. All that is required is to have an open mind and a willingness to do the hard and sometimes painful work.
In the Bible, Paul gives us very specific instructions on what this transformation requires in the book of Romans. Specifically Romans 12:2 – “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…” The words conform, transform and renew are all verbs, action words. In other words, there is a tremendous amount of action that is required on our part. The transformations and renewing of our minds doesn’t happen with a simple snap of our fingers. It happens over time as we take action in the renew process or recovery process.
Most of us have developed years of thought patterns and behaviors that are deeply rooted in the fiber of our being. So, how do we transform and renew our minds? How do we transform one's thinking patterns and beliefs. Here are five steps you can take to apply this principle in your life:
Awareness and Reflection:
Remember, transforming your mind is a continuous process. It requires self-awareness, effort, and a commitment to personal growth. Be patient with yourself and celebrate your progress along the way.
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In the dance of marriage, communication takes center stage. While speaking is undoubtedly important, equally vital is the often underestimated skill of listening. It's the quiet counterpart to words, the bridge that connects hearts, and the cornerstone of a thriving relationship. In this blog, we'll explore why listening is paramount in a marriage and how it can transform a partnership.
In the symphony of marriage, listening is the harmonious note that brings it all together. It's the quiet yet powerful force that nurtures understanding, trust, and emotional intimacy. By making a conscious effort to truly hear and acknowledge your partner, you lay the foundation for a marriage that not only endures but flourishes. So, let your ears be the gateway to your partner's heart, and let the art of listening be the cornerstone of your extraordinary journey together.
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Marriage, a beautiful union of two individuals, is a journey filled with ups and downs, twists and turns. While love is often considered the foundation of a strong marriage, there is another equally vital ingredient that plays a crucial role in nurturing a lasting and fulfilling partnership: acceptance. In this blog, we will explore the significance of acceptance in a marriage and how it can strengthen the bond between spouses.
It is important to understand that acceptance does not
mean approval. Acceptance is not submission. Rather, it is
acknowledgment of the facts of any situation and then deciding
what you’re going to do about it. We do not have the power to
change anyone or anything!
Acceptance, in the context of marriage, refers to the ability to embrace your partner for who they are, flaws and all, without trying to change them. It's about recognizing that your spouse is a unique individual with their own set of strengths, weaknesses, quirks, and idiosyncrasies. When both partners practice acceptance, it creates a safe and nurturing environment where love can truly flourish.
1. Fosters Emotional Intimacy: Acceptance forms the cornerstone of emotional intimacy in a marriage. When you accept your partner, it allows them to be vulnerable and open up without fear of judgment. This, in turn, fosters trust and deepens the emotional connection between spouses.
2. Strengthens Communication: Accepting your partner's perspective and feelings enhances communication. When both partners feel heard and understood, they are more likely to engage in open and honest conversations, resolving conflicts more effectively.
3. Reduces Resentment: Trying to change your spouse or constantly pointing out their flaws can lead to resentment and frustration. Acceptance, on the other hand, reduces the need for such criticisms and creates a more harmonious atmosphere.
4. Encourages Personal Growth: Paradoxically, acceptance can also foster personal growth within a marriage. When spouses feel accepted and loved for who they are, they are more likely to strive to be their best selves, not out of fear but out of genuine desire to be a better partner.
5. Promotes Self-Acceptance: Acceptance in a marriage often mirrors self-acceptance. When you learn to accept your partner's imperfections, you also tend to become more accepting of your own flaws, creating a positive feedback loop of self-improvement.
6. Strengthens Resilience: Life is full of challenges, and marriage is no exception. When couples face adversity together with a foundation of acceptance, they are better equipped to weather the storms, emerge stronger, and grow together.
7. Encourages Compromise: Acceptance doesn't mean giving up your own needs and desires. It means finding a balance between your individuality and your role as part of a team. This often leads to healthier compromises, which are essential in any marriage.
8. Long-Term Satisfaction: Studies have shown that couples who practice acceptance report higher levels of marital satisfaction. The freedom to be oneself and the knowledge that your partner loves you for it creates a sense of contentment that lasts.
However, practicing acceptance is not always easy. It requires self-awareness, empathy, and patience. Here are some tips to cultivate acceptance in your marriage:
1. Practice Active Listening: Make an effort to truly listen to your partner's thoughts and feelings without immediately offering solutions or judgments.
2. Empathize: Try to understand your partner's perspective even if you don't agree with it. Empathy builds bridges of understanding.
3. Communicate Your Needs: Express your own needs and boundaries calmly and assertively. Encourage your partner to do the same.
4. Celebrate Differences: Instead of trying to change your partner, celebrate the qualities that make them unique and cherish the diversity they bring to the relationship.
5. Seek Professional Help: If acceptance seems challenging due to unresolved issues or deep-seated conflicts, consider seeking the assistance of a therapist or counselor.
In conclusion, acceptance is the glue that holds a marriage together. It fosters love, trust, and emotional intimacy while reducing conflict and resentment. By practicing acceptance, both partners can create a relationship that not only survives but thrives through life's inevitable challenges, ultimately leading to a deeper, more fulfilling bond that stands the test of time. So, embrace the beauty of acceptance in your marriage and watch it flourish.
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Spirituality is a source of solace, purpose, and strength for many individuals. However, when wielded improperly, it can become a tool of manipulation and control. Spiritual abuse is a deeply concerning phenomenon that often occurs within religious communities, where leaders or members exploit their spiritual authority to exert power over others. In this blog post, we will delve into the insidious nature of spiritual abuse, its detrimental effects, and how individuals can find healing and reclaim their spiritual journey.
Defining Spiritual Abuse
Spiritual abuse is a form of psychological and emotional manipulation where individuals misuse their spiritual authority to control, intimidate, or exploit others. This abuse can manifest in various ways, including manipulating scripture to justify harmful behavior, enforcing rigid beliefs, and isolating individuals from their support networks. It often leaves victims feeling trapped, powerless, and disconnected from their own spirituality.
The Manipulative Tactics
Spiritual abuse can have profound and long-lasting effects on individuals' mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. Some common consequences include:
Spiritual abuse is a painful reality for many, but it is not the essence of true spirituality. By recognizing the signs, seeking help, and reclaiming your faith, you can break free from the chains of manipulation and embark on a journey towards genuine spiritual growth and healing. Remember, you are worthy of love, respect, and a faith that nurtures your soul.
Cathy and I have been happily married since 1983. However it has not been without our share of issues, yet we have persevered through all of them. We have three amazing kids that have grown into well respected and loved adults in their communities. We are the proud "Papo" & "Mami" of three beautiful granddaughters and 2 handsome grandsons. We enjoy spending quality time with our family. Randy enjoys cycling, working out, hunting, fishing, and playing the guitar. Cathy loves working in the garden, cooking, and camping. Together we love traveling. Although we have been blessed to visit several foreign countries, our favorite place to travel to is the beautiful island of Maui where we spend most of our time together laying on the beach enjoying the serenity of the Maui energy.