Recovery. A tough theme for some of us and difficult to talk about in many settings. I have reflected on this theme a lot in the past couple of weeks as I prepared curriculum and the monthly take home cards. There are many kinds of recovery – prolonged recovery from illness, quick recovery from a cold, recovery from abuse, addiction, grief and loss, trauma, the list goes on. Although each type of recovery requires something different of our bodies and minds, at its core I believe it involves doing what is necessary to restore ourselves to wholeness.
In my own journey of recovering from abuse, I have found that the road is often two steps forward, one step back. Or even one step forward, three steps back. I suspect it is so with most recovery. We compensate for whatever has been missing or is hurting by finding substitutes or we develop a scar or a mental block that gets in the way of uncovering our truth. We may feel shame or guilt or ‘less than’ because our body is failing us. We can’t cope with what has happened to us or someone we love. We wrestle with whether we can love someone who abuses us, and whether we are worthy of love if we are being abused.
As we journey through recovery, we search and reflect. We cut ties with family and friends, share our stories, create healthy habits and new healthy relationships along the road. And then, perhaps, we hit a pothole. Something happens that puts us smack dab in the middle of our pain all over again. So we start down the path of recovery again, with fresh eyes and a new appreciation for the journey. And this is what we have to tell ourselves – I am worthy and I am lovable. It is the most important thing you can say to yourself – you are a blessing to this universe and you are loved.
All the anger, fear, grief – those are emotions everyone feels. Everyone is recovering from something. The church community is a place where you can bring the pain and struggle of the journey of recovery so that we can walk beside you. It also is a place to celebrate your return to wholeness and to know you are worthy and loved. For this I am grateful.
In community –