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Life in Recovery

Words of Life / Salvation Army
The Truth Network Radio
November 10, 2019 1:00 am

Life in Recovery

Words of Life / Salvation Army

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November 10, 2019 1:00 am

As we continue our discussion on addiction, today, Aleata discusses recovery. Specifically, she offers advice on what the family of a recovering person can do to help. We are also joined, once again, by Rob and Heather Dolby as they discuss the church’s role in welcoming someone back into the community after treatment.

Series: HEADSPACE/ a series on mental health

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Hi, this is Bernie Dake.

And I'm Lori Miller. Thanks for joining us and welcome back to The Salvation Army's Wonderful Words of Life. Well, welcome back everybody. We're glad that you're here and I'm excited to share this series on mental health.

And we're going to continue our discussion on addiction that's so powerful. And tomorrow is Veterans Day. Yeah, a big shout out to all of our veterans, particularly here in the United States and around the world.

If you've served your country's military for the greater good, we thank you for your service. According to the Research and Development Center for Military Health Policy, 20% of vets returning from Iraq or Afghanistan suffer from major depression and PTSD and one in four show signs of substance abuse. I mean, that's just shocking when you think about it, isn't it? Yeah, I can't even imagine that. 25% on any kind of substance abuse, that's a lot.

That's a lot. And when you think about not just the impact on the veteran itself, but on the family of the veteran, because, you know, I always think of veterans and those who serve and I think about the families they leave behind and the mothers and the fathers and the wives and the children. And the impact that PTSD and addiction has on families is incredible.

I cannot even imagine. But that means if you know someone serving in the military or know four people, then at least one of them is perhaps suffering from some sort of PTSD or mental health drama. Absolutely. So show your love to our vets today and to their families. And as we continue our discussion on addiction, Eliade discusses life in recovery. And once again, we're joined by Rob and Heather Dolby as they share their testimony and as they share their insight on how we can help those who are struggling with addiction.

I'm Captain Rob Dolby with the Salvation Army and I'm here with Heather, my wife, Captain Heather. That's right. And together in ministry, we've been serving and loving and working with people experiencing addiction for a combined 36 years. Right. Right.

Don't we look young and fresh? Yeah. You know, we've been talking about hope, but also substances. People use substances. That's the reality of addiction, whether that's alcohol, whether that's drugs, toxic relationships, all kinds of things. And those are substances. But we're also talking about the substantive nature of hope.

That's not even the right word, is it? Hope is a substance. But there's almost this feeling, you know, when you're journeying with someone who maybe has a family member experiencing addiction, that does it almost feel irresponsible to say, then we'll just pray God is going to be faithful, you know, God is going to come through.

Meanwhile, they're watching this person suffer sometimes on the street in horrible circumstances. But at the end of the day, when you hear these stories that aren't just made up, that are lives being transformed, often it's this time where hope comes in. And when hope, when love comes in, shame, you know, all these other things are cast away. Like you said, hope is powerful.

Hope is powerful. Anyone who has experienced addiction of some kind, it's interestingly enough, this idea of God coming in, people have like an experience that all of a sudden, like going from your addiction being something you enjoy, like using or getting high, it's like at first it's a thrill, but over time, if we're going to be honest, we become slaves to that. And it's a life that leads us increasingly into darkness or disillusionment or depression. And people feel like their lives are slipping away and they become more desperate. And this idea of there's no high, like the most high, is that He, the God that created us, like can set us free from that slavery. And all of a sudden we find ourselves found by Him and life feels fresh and new. And so people can say, you know what, of any high I felt while I was in my addiction, that high quickly became a low because I was a slave to it. So to be able to break free from that into something completely fresh and new, that is hope. It's supernatural.

It is so supernatural. So even in recovery, people talk about the pink cloud, right, which they refer to the pink cloud as, well, you know, your first three weeks here, you're going to feel really good, but just wait until it all wears off and reality kind of kicks in, right, which is then it's going to be hard and then it's going to require a lot of work, which, listen, recovery, even discipleship, is not easy. Like it requires discipline. It requires accountability, things that our flesh naturally doesn't want to just do.

That's right. But, you know, often as practitioners in mission, we get to say to people, there's one thing we can promise you. It's that not only are you loved, but you have an inherent worth because you're a child of God and you have hope that goes beyond the grave. Psalm 68 says that God takes the lonely and He sets them in the middle of a family. And I love that because that's totally my story. And I know that's your story, too. And because that was our experience that we went from being on the outside to of like life and family and acceptance and spiritual connection, somebody chose to open the door to us and I think you really have a hard time understanding the fullness of what it is to be a child of God unless you understand the family of God.

Right. Even some of the church movements we're seeing today where it's this idea of the open table, right, to be invitational. Maybe even some people call it messy church, you know, just get together with people even if they don't have it all together and find a way to make connections and share our testimony, share our Jesus story, share the Word of God with people in those tangible ways. I mean, a meal around a table is a beautiful gift. Being, making the choice to say we're going to be a safe place for people to just show up and be who they really are so that they don't have to be like me and pretend for eight years out of fear. You know, even just choosing to remember someone's name so that next time you see them, you can be like, hey Rob, how are you?

I love talking last week. In everyday society, remembering somebody's name, I mean, it's polite. But when somebody remembers your name because they think you're worth knowing, when maybe even your own family won't talk to you, that is huge. And that, again, is not rocket science and you don't have to be fancy and learned to remember someone's name. You just have to be intentional.

Yeah. Then we get into this place where, you know, community sometimes in these beautiful examples comes around, support someone, invest in someone. Sometimes people don't always get it right the first time.

Ain't that the truth? You know, so sometimes what happens then when this community's come around a person, invested, you know, you become invested in that person, with that person, in that community. And then all of a sudden, hey, what happens one day they stop showing up or, you know, something happens and there's a relapse? You know, you and I have been through a lot with helping people. We've learned a lot of lessons and we've learned a lot from how people have helped us in our story. But I believe I never go wrong when I'm trying to please the Lord. So I believe if the Lord moves in my heart and leads me or leads my community or my family to help someone in a certain way, then I feel comfortable doing that. Even if that's not the time the person has their aha moment and everything changes for them. Because I remember touch points along the way in my journey, and I know you have some in yours, where somebody did something that was extravagantly loving or extravagantly generous that that touched us deeply. But it wasn't our changing moment. It wasn't like that spiritual breakthrough, but it contributed to that day that would come.

So God uses everything, even if it doesn't happen the way I wanted when I wanted. I like what you said, you know, you got to bring more people into the circle, trusted people. And that's a good place if you have a pastor that you trust, you know, a small group leader that you can really trust, even just to find one person to just say, you know, I just need you to pray for me.

I just need you pray for my son. There's a lot going on. And just start there because it's not something that one person can handle.

It's not something that you can fix for somebody. That's right. I'm joined again this week by Aliata Dawkins, who's coming to us from the Salvation Army in Washington, DC. Aliata, welcome back. Thank you for having me. We're glad that you're here. This week, we're going to talk about life and recovery.

Give me some highlights. What are some things that we should know or hear about recovery that are important? That we as human beings are creatures of habit and anything that takes or requires change in our life will take a process. You know, in the field, we call it the stages of change. You know, you have to first think about it, that you want to change, right? You know, you can associate it with anything, losing weight, getting off drugs or anything like that.

You got to, I want to do it. And then you have this process that I don't think I can do it. So we call that a pre-contemplation stage. And then you contemplate it is where you put more thought, I think I can do it. And so you move across this continuum until you get to a place where you actually take action. And so coming out of an alcoholism or drug abuse and moving towards recovery and life after recovery, every day is an active choice. And they teach you that if the day is too large, then we need to think about it in the terms of I'll take it for this hour. If the hour is too large, then let me take it minute by minute because it is sometimes a total requirement to change everything around you. You know, if you've ever seen NA or AA meeting, one of the biggest things they tell you is that you now have to change the people you've hung around.

So changing environments and things like that. So life and recovery can be difficult. And so you need a really, really strong support system. And it doesn't have to be any particular person. It can be a sponsor that you've met. But just knowing that if you take it one day at a time and that we sometimes determine that success and life is a straight line, but it's actually a very jagged one.

It goes all over the place. And so there'll be those who will come out of recovery, who will come into recovery, and it'll be okay. And they have 20 years clean. And then there'll be other instances where they have a day clean and then they relapse. But it's a process. As long as we know that it's a process that happens, that's the key, that you take it one day, one hour, even if one minute at a time as you try to move forward and change your life.

As you said earlier, consistency is the key. And so setting up systems to avoid particular places helps an individual in recovery. The individual who's in recovery has to find that point of gratitude. And it could be looking at their past life experiences and episodes and saying, gosh, I'm still here.

I'm still alive. So finding that ability to have gratitude by still having life and breath in your body, it might not be where you are or where you would want to be, but slow is the way that you need to go to make little changes end up being bigger changes. And that's just not so for recovery.

It's for mental health. It's for accepting any new change in our life. But the key thing is that in recovery, you just have to take it one day at a time. Yeah. You just take some perspective. Take some perspective. Take a breath. Take a breath. And keep on going.

Keep on going. Aliata, I am so glad that you're here. Thank you. Tell our listeners what your name means. It means calm spirit.

A calm spirit. I hope that you're calmed by Aliata's spirit, and I pray that you're enjoying this series on mental health. We hope that you'll come back and join us on the next show, and God bless you. The Salvation Army's mission, Doing the Most Good, means helping people with material and spiritual needs. You become a part of this mission every time you give to the Salvation Army. Visit to offer your support.

And we would love to hear from you. Email us at Call 1-800-229-9965 or write us at P.O.

Box 29972, Atlanta, Georgia, 30359. When you contact us, we'll send you our gift for this series. It's totally free for listeners like you, one per household while supplies last. You can also subscribe to our show on iTunes or your favorite podcast store and be sure to give us a rating. Just search for Wonderful Words of Life. Follow us on social media for the latest episodes, extended interviews, and more. And if you don't have a church home, we invite you to visit your local Salvation Army worship center. They'll be glad to see you. This is Bernie Dake inviting you to join us next time for The Salvation Army's Wonderful Words of Life. 🎵
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-03 08:35:27 / 2024-02-03 08:41:14 / 6

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