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2014

Relapse Ain’t Got Nothin’ on My Recovery Group

 
Hi, friends!
 
RelapsenothinrevLet’s talk recovery. More specifically, relapse.
 
We see it over and over again on the news, mainly with celebrities whose relapse into addictions and unhealthy behaviors results in death. Singer Whitney Houston comes to mind. Just this week, actor Philip Seymour Hoffman died after being clean more than two decades. He relapsed last year.
 
This isn’t just about celebrities. We see relapse more and more in the lives of those around us—family, friends, acquaintances, even people at church. We might be the ones in relapse.
 

I’ve relapsed.

 
This past year has been incredibly difficult for me: Emotional stress, financial issues, and tense relationships. Like others in recovery, I’ve had a hard time not falling back into old habits when I face triggers. I’ve had some missteps–even skidding back to square one in several areas. I’ll be honest: I wasn’t practicing what I wrote two years ago about preventing and reversing relapse:
 

  • Reflect
  • Expose your triggers and plan your escape strategies
  • Look up and re-learn scripture passages
  • Activate your accountability partners
  • Pray, pray, pray
  • Share your story
  • Evaluate regularly

 
(You can find more detailed explanations about each of these tips in part one and part two from 2012.)
 
One thing has been important for me to step back onto–and stay on–my recovery path:
 
 

I started attending weekly recovery group meetings again.

 
 
Recovery groups aren’t just for people who struggle with drugs or alcohol. Recovery groups are for people who struggle with anger, codependency, food addictions, workaholism, pornography addictions, fear and worry, trust, and so much more. People like me and possibly you.
 
I made a lot of progress when I was attending group, so I didn’t see the need to keep going once I was “better.” Now I remember why it’s important to attend my recovery group regularly. I have people who hold me accountable. They don’t judge me, criticize me, or look at me any differently when I make a bad choice. They listen, understand, and love me no matter what. My recovery group keeps me from relapsing. They are my family.
 
 
Attending weekly also helps me to live consistently, my word for this year.
 
 
I don’t know why I ever stopped attending. 😉
 
 
LastRecoveryGrouprev
 
 
Today, I encourage you: If you’re struggling to stay on your recovery path–or if you’re already on an unhealthy and destructive path, find a recovery group in your area. Celebrate Recovery is a great place to get connected. You’ll meet with others who will walk with you, encourage you, and love you.
 
 

Two people are better than one. They can help each other in everything they do. Suppose someone falls down. Then his friend can help him up. But suppose the man who falls down doesn’t have anyone to help him up. Then feel sorry for him! Or suppose two people lie down together. Then they’ll keep warm. But how can one person keep warm alone? One person could be overpowered. But two people can stand up for themselves. And a rope made out of three cords isn’t easily broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)
 

 
 
Don’t go it alone. Relapse ain’t got nothin’ on recovery groups!*
 
 
Come alongside… Are you staying on track in your recovery? Have you taken steps back? What can you do to get back on the right path? Share with us in the comments below. Remember, you can comment anonymously.
 
 
 
*Note: I don’t mean to minimize addiction by saying it’s easy to recover by solely attending recovery groups. Other resources and treatments might be necessary to address recovery. Recovery groups are just one component to address recovery, relapse, and addictive behaviors.


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Are you feelin’ it? You don’t have to.

 
Hi, friends!
 
It’s hard to encourage others when you yourself are discouraged. That’s where I’ve been lately.
 
Okaydiscouragedrev
 
Hey, this blog is about transparency, right? 😉
 
 
One thing I’m learning—sometimes, not very well—is that discouragement comes when I expect something and then don’t get it, when I long for something and it doesn’t come about. For most of us, wanting these things isn’t necessarily bad:
 
 

  • A job
  • A husband
  • A child
  • An improvement in health
  • A publishing contract (for my fellow writers out there!)

 
 
What to do?
 
 
It’s easy to tell someone to just put their eyes on Jesus. But when your bills stack higher than Mt. Everest, your biological clock is ticking, your health slides downward, or the publishing contract loses its way in the mail, it’s hard to get your eyes on anything other than what your heart desires.
 
 
That’s why I start with my heart.
 
 
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I’m a firm believer in acknowledging and processing my feelings. That’s how we heal and grow. It’s also how we experience the range of emotions God gave us. But if I stop there—with my heart, I will stay discouraged, maybe even dip into depression.
 
 
So I move from my heart to my mind, to what I know is true—even though I might not feel it.
 
 

  • I don’t feel loved, but I know God loves me (John 3:16).
  • I don’t feel like He’s listening, but I know He leans in close (Psalm 4:3).
  • I don’t feel like I have all I need, but I know He provides for me (Philippians 4:19).
  • I don’t feel like I have good things. But I know He gives me only the best (James 1:17).
  • I don’t feel like I’m going in the right direction. But I know He leads me (Psalm 143:10).
  • I don’t feel like I have anyone who stands up for me. But I know He protects me (Psalm 121:7).

 
 
It’s not “fake it ’til you make it.” It’s an “I don’t feel it. But I don’t have to because I know it!” Why?
 
 

Because I know my God. And I believe His word.

 
 
knowGodwordrev
 
 
See the difference? I’m not stuffing my feelings; I’m acknowledging them and reminding myself I don’t have to rely on them solely. I can rely on what—er, who—I know.
 
 
This is especially important for people who struggle with mental illness, especially depression, like me. Many times, I haven’t felt … anything. This is a daily thing for me. But it’s at those times, when I choose to rely on what I know about my God.
 
 
Start with your heart. And then move to your mind.
 
 
Don’t just feel it. Know it!
 
 
Come alongside… What are you not feeling lately? How can you know it? Share with us in the comments below.
 
 
 
 
 


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God is all you need

 
Hi, friends!
 
godallyouneedrev
What do you need today?

  • Physical healing?
  • Restored relationships?
  • Financial miracle?
  • Direction?
  • Emotional stability?

 
Today, I want to encourage you: God can do all those things. More importantly, God is all those things:
 

  • Healer
  • Restorer
  • Miracle-worker
  • Provider
  • Guide
  • Prince of Peace

 
Whatever you need today, God is “I AM” (Exodus 3:14). He is yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Forever. He is what you need him to be. When life pierces you, keeps you up at night, breaks your heart, and messes with your mind, God is “I AM.”
 
He is God almighty. Nothing is too difficult for him. He needs no one’s help to bring things about. He alone is all you need!
 
Listen to this beautiful song by Phillips, Craig, and Dean and be encouraged. God is “I AM.”
 
 

 
 
Come alongside… What do you need today? Will you trust that God is “I AM” in your situation? Will you let him be “I AM?” Share with us in the comments. Remember, you can post anonymously.
 
 
 
 
 


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Roll it away!

 
Hi, friends!
 
How are your bowling skills? Are you in the 300 club? In the “gutter?” Or somewhere in between?
 
I’m in the gutter club. Well, maybe a little bit higher than that. 😉 Seriously, though, I’m not that great at it. I don’t practice; I don’t make it a priority. Even my grade-school children are better at it than I am.
 
rollitawayblogpost1rev
 
How are your bowling skills in life? Do you hang on to the ball?
 

  • Worries
  • Career
  • Family
  • Illness
  • Plans

 
Do you run after them down the lane? Or do you roll them away and let them go?
 
Listen to this verse from the Bible:
 

 
Commit to the LORD everything you do. Then your plans will succeed. (Proverbs 16:3 NIrV)
 

 
What does that verse have to do with bowling? Everything.
 
When we commit our lives to God—our hurts; our circumstances; the things that stress us out; our plans, we roll them away to Him, literally. That’s what the Bible says in its original wording.
 
Here are other translations of the same verse:
 

 
“Roll unto Jehovah thy works, And established are thy purposes” (YLT).
 
“Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed” (AMP).
 

 
Can you visualize it? Can you feel the heaviness of the ball? Can you feel your body lifting as you let it go? Can you see God waiting for it at the end of the lane, cheering you on?
 
 

You can do it! Roll it to me! I’ll take care of it!

 
 
Today, I want to encourage you: Roll it away to Him—all your cares, plans, pursuits. You might wobble a bit as you let the ball go. It might go straight, or it might veer to the left or to the right. It doesn’t matter, as long as you roll it to Him. As you watch it roll away down the lane, your mind and heart will become fixed on Him, immovable, established, calm, at peace.
 
He will take it from there. Just roll it away!
 
 
 
Come alongside… What do you need to roll away today? What is keeping you from rolling it away? What steps can you take? Who can help you along the way? Share with us in the comments below. Remember, you can comment anonymously.
 
 
 
 
 


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Word of the Year: 2014

 
Happy new year, friends!
 
For the past several years, I’ve meditated on a word for that specific year.
 

  • Freedom
  • Grace
  • Trust
  • Growth

 
Last year, my word was fearless. I mentioned specific fears I wanted to release:
 

  • Not measuring up as a newbie parent.
  • Declining physical and mental illness.
  • Dying and leaving my husband and family behind.
  • Being good enough to write my own book.

 
Big things! But…thanks be to God: He has helped me not to be consumed with these things.
 

  • I’ve lowered my high expectations of being the perfect parent and allowed myself to make mistakes and not feel like a failure.
  • God has helped me to manage my physical and mental illnesses. I can honestly say I’m doing well.
  • Of course, no one likes to think about dying and leaving their family behind, but I don’t let that overwhelm me like it did before last year. I’m still a little fearful, though.
  • And as you already know, I did write my book. 🙂
  •  

 
 

Isn’t God good?

 
 
If you’re struggling with fear, please remember this great verse from 2 Timothy 1:7:

 
God didn’t give us a spirit that makes us weak and fearful. He gave us a spirit that gives us power and love.
 

 
 

Fear not!

 
 
This year, I’ve been a little back and forth on my word for the year. But after much thought, my word for 2014 is:
 
 

CONSISTENCY

 
 
That’s a heavy one for me because sometimes–well, a lot of times, I’m all over the place and I overlook stuff–important stuff. So… here are the areas I want to focus on:
 

  • Prayer and Bible reading
  • Hubby and me time
  • Me time
  • Family time
  • Writing and blogging
  • Encouraging
  • Praising

 
That might seem like a lot–and it is, but I think I need to follow through with my good intentions. Hey, there’s no sense in scheduling stuff on my electronic calendar if I’m going to ignore the alerts, right? 😀
 
beconsistentrev
 
This is my verse for the year, from 1 Corinthians 9:25-27.
 
 

All good athletes train hard. They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades. You’re after one that’s gold eternally. I don’t know about you, but I’m running hard for the finish line. I’m giving it everything I’ve got. No sloppy living for me! I’m staying alert and in top condition. I’m not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself.
 

 
 
So, by God’s strength alone, I will not be led astray by distractions.
 
 

I will be consistent!

 
 
Come alongside….Would you say you are consistent? If not, what areas do you need to work on? What is your word for 2014?
 
 
 


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Daphne Tarango is a participant in affiliate programs with Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, DaySpring, Church Source, Hazelden, Christian Strong (via Conversant and ShareASale). These advertising services are designed to provide a means for sites like DaphneWrites.com to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to said merchants. Some images and articles may contain links to products on merchant sites. Should you choose to make purchases through those links, please understand that I will receive a small commission. Please do not feel like you need to use these links to make any purchases. The links are only for your convenience. Thank you.

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