Journey to Recovery: The First Step

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I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. — Romans 7:18

No one gets to start in the middle — we’re all beginners in one area of our lives or another. But for many of us, what we need is more like a new beginning, a fresh start, a walking journey from chaos to wholeness that is accomplished one step at a time. We call that journey recovery. Let’s look at that first step:

Step 1: We admitted we were powerless over our addictions and compulsive behaviors. That our lives had become unmanageable.

Our first step is a big one. We are finally ready to admit that we are powerless to control an addiction or a behavior.

The harder we try, the more unmanageable it becomes. Our lives have descended into chaos. When we take that first big step — giving up control — we are stepping away from denial and acknowledging our own need.

There is hope in that first step, for we can’t be helped until we admit that we need help. Until then we are trying to be God in our own lives, and really we just aren’t up to the task. We are powerless to control much of anything by our own power. Step 1 allows us to find freedom from ourselves.

Prayer

Father God, today I take that first important step toward healing and wholeness. I admit to you that I’m powerless over the strongholds that have taken over my life. I desperately need Your help. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Excerpted with permission from Celebrate Recovery Devotional by John Baker, copyright Zondervan.

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Your Turn

As we leave 2015 in a couple of days, we have the grace from our Heavenly Father to take the first step in leaving behind the burden of addiction or damaging behavior — just by saying “I can’t do it by myself. I need You to help me, God.” Today, right this minute, is a great time to get down on our knees and admit the strongholds that have been strangling us and ask Him for a fresh beginning leaning upon our Beloved for strength, endurance, and daily mercy. Come join the conversation on our blog! We would love to hear from you about the first step of recovery. ~ Devotionals Daily


John Baker

John Baker is a nationally known author, speaker, and founder of Celebrate Recovery, a ministry born out of the heart of Saddleback Church in 1991. He is currently serving there as pastor of Celebrate Recovery and is one of the church’s five elders. Over the last 23 years, nearly 27,000 individuals have gone through this Christ-centered recovery program at Saddleback Church. The program is now being used in thousands of churches nationwide. Over two and half million individuals have completed the program.

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