OK, here’s a secret, a secret that people in the recovery business don’t necessarily want you to know. Getting over addiction doesn’t guarantee happiness. It probably means a lot less pain when you can leave abuse behind, but a lack of pain does not necessarily equate to happiness, and deep down, bottom line and big picture, that’s the only thing that’s really important.
Now, that doesn’t mean that you are not going to be happy after you quit drinking or drugging, it’s just not a guarantee.
Now if you don’t believe in God, Christian recovery doesn’t offer you much, obviously. If you do believe in God though, the Christian method of recovery may have some advantages over secular forms of treatment. I’m not sure that long term success rates are all that different between Christian recovery and secular recovery, but if you change things around a bit, and define success as happiness, I think Christians in recovery win hands down. Some people can stay sober through sheer determination – through grit – and some of these people can even stay sober like this for ever. But man oh man…this takes work! It wears you down, and maintaining such constant vigilance drains the life out of you and it’s pretty hard to be truly happy when you’re just so tired.
Now by contrast, in Christian recovery, one of the fundamental principles to grasp is that you don’t have the strength alone to get better, only God does. Let go and let God! Once you can trust in God, feel His grace and believe that He will show you the path, you no longer have to worry every minute of the day about staying sober…God’s on the job! And this letting go, this makes it a whole lot easier to start really enjoying your life of sobriety.
That’s not all too. Christian recovery is an exercise in humility, real humility before Christ. Although going through addiction is a pretty tough way to find humility, let me tell you that once you do, and once you feel your relationship with Christ flourish through your newfound humility…whatever you went through before was worth it! We also relearn the power and beauty of prayer through recovery, and that feels pretty good too. No recovery is easy, but once you can put your trust in Christ, you’ll feel better, you’ll feel His Grace and His strength, and it won’t feel so hard anymore. You may be able to recover through a secular rehab, but if you want Christian happiness, walk the Christian 12 steps, and rediscover how sweet life can be.