But how can people call for help if they don’t know who to trust? And how can they know who to trust if they haven’t heard of the One who can be trusted? And how can they hear if nobody tells them? And how is anyone going to tell them, unless someone is sent to do it? That’s why Scripture exclaims, A sight to take your breath away! Grand processions of people telling all the good things of God! But not everybody is ready for this, ready to see and hear and act. Isaiah asked what we all ask at one time or another: “Does anyone care, God? Is anyone listening and believing a word of it?” The point is: Before you trust, you have to listen. But unless Christ’s Word is preached, there’s nothing to listen to.
2023 | Discussion Starter 158
I’ll Not Turn Back
Corinthians 5:17 Anyone who believes in Christ is a new
creation. The old is gone! The new has come.
Another of my favourite scriptures. This verse in my recovery saved my life.
I never believed when it came to step six change in my
character was possible. Anyone who knows me will tell you I am a creature of habit.
Always have been, always will be. Idon’t adapt well to change. And I always prefer to be in control.
This one verse from the Bible gave me a whole new hope in my life. Hope that if I trusted God and did what he told me to do I never needed to be the person I was in the past again.
I want to tell you in my recovery journey I experienced so
much change. In me, in my circumstances and in my life that without God would have driven me back to relapse.
Today I am a different person because I believed what the
Bible said about change
Finding strength in the challenges of life.
Thought for Today
Welcome tt Living Life Recovery today.
Today, I want to draw inspiration from the profound words of Psalm 61:3-4 in The Message Bible. These verses remind us that even in the midst of life’s trials, we can find peace, strength, and stability through our connection with One True Higher Power.
The verse says, “You’ve always given me breathing room, a place to get away from it all, A lifetime pass to your safe-house, an open invitation as your guest. You’ve always taken me seriously, God, made me welcome among those who know and love you.”
The journey of recovery can often feel overwhelming, with numerous challenges and temptations. However, these verses remind us that we have a place of rest, a breathing room—where we can find peace, regroup, and gather strength. A safe space that is not just physical but also spiritual, allowing us to retreat from the chaos and reconnect with our God. How do you create your own breathing room? How does it contribute to your recovery process?
In times of struggle, we all long for a place of safety and refuge. This verse assures us that our higher power offers us a lifetime pass to a safe-house—a space where we can find shelter, security, and support.
A place that is a state of being, where we can seek God’s strength when life’s challenges become overwhelming. How does your faith or spirituality provide a sense of safety and security amidst life’s trials?
Imagine being an honored guest among those who know and love your God!
These verses emphasize that God takes us seriously, acknowledging our struggles, He extends an open invitation to be welcomed into a community that shares our beliefs and values. It reminds us that we are not alone in our recovery journey, but rather surrounded by a supportive network that understands our experiences. How has being part of a recovery community or support group impacted your journey?
In our journey of recovery, we seek a deeper understanding of ourselves and our higher power. As we engage in self-reflection and explore our spiritual connection, we discover a profound sense of being known. God recognizes our unique experiences, strengths, and challenges, providing a sense of validation and acceptance that fuels our recovery. How has your understanding of your higher power evolved throughout your recovery process? How does it impact your relationship with yourself and others?
As we delve into the words of Psalm 61:3-4, we find an invitation to embrace our recovery journey with renewed hope and courage. These verses remind us of the breathing room, safe-house, and supportive community available to us through our connection with God. Let us continue to explore, reflect, and share our experiences, as we navigate the challenges of living life in recovery.
Remember, you are never alone on this path. Embrace the gift of breathing room, seek refuge in the safe-house of your higher power, and cherish the relationships of those who know and love you. Together, we can find strength, inspiration, and transformation in the process of living life recovery.
What are your thoughts on these verses? How have they impacted your recovery journey? Share your insights and experiences in the comments below.
2023 | Morning Harmony | Day 155
Say this: “God, you’re my refuge. I trust in you and I’m safe!” That’s right—he rescues you from hidden traps and shields you from deadly hazards. His huge outstretched arms protect you. Under them, you’re perfectly safe; his arms fend off all harm. Psalms 91:2-4 MSG.
God, I trust You and I am safe
Good morning, readers! Today, let’s embark on a journey of tranquility and recovery as we delve into the comforting words of Psalm 91:2-4.
In this sacred passage, we find peace, strength, and a sense of security in our relationship with God. As we navigate the challenges of life, let us take a moment to reflect on the profound message in these verses.
There are moments in life when we feel overwhelmed, trapped, or threatened by the circumstances that surround us. During such times, it is essential to remind ourselves that God is our refuge, a safe haven where we can find peace and restoration. The psalmist proclaims, “God, you’re my refuge. I trust in you and I’m safe!” These words echo the deep trust the psalmist had in God’s unwavering protection.
Imagine a hidden trap, cleverly concealed from our view, waiting to ensnare us. These traps may manifest as temptations, trials, or even the burdens of everyday life. Yet, as we put our trust in God, we discover He rescues us from these hidden traps. His divine wisdom and guidance illuminate our path, enabling us to navigate through life’s challenges with clarity and discernment.
In these verses, the psalmist paints a vivid picture of God’s immense love and protection. We are told that God shields us from deadly hazards, much like a shield deflects arrows aimed at us. When we surrender ourselves to God, His love becomes a shield that guards us from harm, both seen and unseen. Our vulnerabilities are not weaknesses but opportunities for God’s strength to manifest within us.
Just as a loving parent enfolds their child in their arms, God’s outstretched arms serve as our eternal protection. Under His watchful eye, we can find respite from the storms of life. It is in His embrace that we discover perfect safety and peace. No matter what trials we face, we can find comfort in knowing that God is there, shielding us from harm.
THINK ABOUT IT!
As we embark on a new day, let us carry the profound message of Psalm 91:2-4 in our hearts. In God, we find our refuge, a sanctuary where we are safe, protected, and loved. As we place our trust in Him, He rescues us from hidden traps, shields us from dangers, and holds us securely within His embrace.
May these verses serve as a reminder that we need not face life’s challenges alone. Instead, let us find strength and peace in the arms of our heavenly Father. Embrace the morning harmony, knowing that you are secure in His unfailing love. Trust in God, for under His protection, you are perfectly safe, and His arms will fend off all harm. May your day be filled with the assurance of God’s refuge and the peace that surpasses all understanding.
God today remind us that we are facing life’s challenges with You. That the peace and strength we find in You is all we need to face and overcome whatever comes our way.
Trust in the Lord
In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight.
2023 | Discussion Starter #154
OUR REFUGE AND
“The eternal God is your refuge, and his everlasting arms are under you.” Deuteronomy 33:27 NLT
Amid life’s challenges and uncertainties, it is often comforting to find something steadfast and unchanging to hold on to. These words offer us a profound reminder that no matter what we face, God’s unchanging love and support are always available to us.
Life can be filled with moments of instability, where we grapple with fear, doubt, and insecurities. However, Deuteronomy 33:27 presents us with an encouraging image: the eternal God as our refuge. Just as a refuge provides shelter and protection, God invites us to find solace and peace in Him. In the chaos of life, we can seek refuge in God’s presence, knowing that He is our safe haven—a constant source of security and stability.
The second part of the verse reminds us that “underneath are the everlasting arms.” These words paint a beautiful picture of God’s unwavering support and care for His children. It is a vivid illustration of a parent holding their child, assuring them of their presence and love. When we are weary, weak, or burdened by the challenges of recovery, we can trust in God’s everlasting arms to hold us up and carry us through. His arms are strong, unchanging, and ready to embrace us with love and grace.
As we navigate the difficulties of our recovery journey, let us not forget the truth embedded in Deuteronomy 33:27. God is our refuge and our unchanging anchor. His love is a constant in our ever-changing world, and His arms are always open to embrace us. When we feel overwhelmed, let us turn to Him, seeking strength and comfort. As we rest in His presence, we will find renewed courage, hope, and resilience to face whatever lies ahead. Let us embrace the unchanging refuge of God and allow His everlasting arms to guide us on the path of recovery.
In times of uncertainty and struggle, it is reassuring to know that we have a refuge and a source of unwavering support in God. Deuteronomy 33:27 reminds us of the unchanging nature of our Heavenly Father and His willingness to embrace us with His everlasting arms. Let us take comfort in His presence, finding strength, peace, and hope in the of life’s challenges. As we lean on God’s unchanging love, we can navigate the path of recovery with confidence, knowing that He is always with us.
Our Goal is Transformation
Through the Twelve Steps God wants to take us to a place where addiction and
compulsion is swapped for recovery. Notice I didn’t say ‘addiction and compulsion is
repalced with sobriety’
Our goal is life transformation that can only be achieved with God’s help.
Step Eleven Says. “We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our concsious contact with God. Praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the Power to carry it out.”
We are saved through faith in Jesus, who He is! What He has done for us! and we are
encouraged daily in realtionship with the Holy Spirit to continue the recovery journey
God’s way, not our way.
Recovery is possible .
Recovery is about being taught by a servant of God to be a servant of God, and
embracing practical, Biblical principles.
Recovery happens when we admit we are poor in Spirit , that our character needs to
change, and hand over our wills and lives to God.
You will still have worries and frustrations, fear guilt and shame will not go away overnight. But God can change our mess into a message. And he does that through us placing our faith in Him and allowing the Holy Spirit to work in and through our lives.
How much faith do you need today to begin the process of recovery? The Bible says,
“faith as small as a mustard seed can move a mountain.”
We have medicated our lives with alcohol, drugs, gambling, sex, and many other things
that we have used as crutches to face our lives on a day to day basis. We isolated
ourselves from things we knew were good for us because they were uncomfortable.
Now it is time to STOP! and feel the healing power of God in our live
Morning Harmony | Day 154
“UNCARING OF CHRIST“
In Matthew 26:31 Jesus said, “Before the night’s over, you’re going to fall to pieces because of what happens to me. There is a Scripture that says, I’ll strike the shepherd; helter-skelter the sheep will be scattered.”
Betrayal: millions have despised the sin of Judas since the day he sold Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. Maybe this has little relevance to Mr. and Mrs. Average, that may sell Jesus for less, some for more. Judas deliberately chose and the moment it completed the despicable act miserableness overcame him. Self-condemnation, resolve to make amendments, ridding himself of the blood money. Confession and tears could not ease the torment Judas experienced. Once the bribe was accepted the curse of betrayal could not be reversed.
Judas turned his back on Jesus, making every known benefit invalid in his life. Through choice, he distanced himself from the Son of God. It can be the same for us if we renounce Jesus, and cannot acknowledge, accept and follow Him.
Judas isn’t a character to emulate. Each of us will face the question as we move through the recovery process “What should I do with Jesus who is called Christ?” Matthew 27:22 Each of us individually must decide the answer. Our tendency is to shrug our shoulders, declining to do anything. Others may choose not to think about the question. Some may see the question as cheap entertainment The more general inclination is to give Jesus the cold shoulder or to do our duty twice yearly as seasonal remembrance occurs. Dare we measure our uncaring of Jesus Christ? Should we desire to care about Him, more than ever before? Make an immediate start and provide a home for Him in our hearts.
Revelation 3:20 says, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If any of you hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with you. And you will eat with me. WILL YOU OPEN THE DOOR?
Forgive me, Lord! I have so often kept You on the fringe of my life. There has been little room for You. Today I choose to correct things: Fill my life with your presence and don’t let me be like Judas.
Welcome to the new podcast series
2023 | Welcome | Episode One
60 years old – 34 years Bible-based recovery
The day I received recovery from addiction and compulsion on the Bridge Program in May 1989.
Hi, my name is Archie, and I and a recovered alcoholic> Recovered through the saving grace of Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit moving in and through my life on a daily basis since 1989.
I want to begin tonight by thanking everyone who has sent me birthday wishes today. (Including Captain Paul Such). At some point in my 60 years of life and 34 years of Bible-based recovery, you have played a part in my spiritual growth and you are important to me.
The weekly podcasts will begin tomorrow night but before they do I want to share with you the incredible journey of my recovery from addiction via the Salvation Army Bridge Program.
I found myself with nowhere else to run in life. I had been battling addiction since the age of 15 and although I had managed to achieve some level of secular recovery, I felt I needed more. Little did I know that encountering Jesus personally by my bedside on the Bridge Program would transform my life forever.
Prior to entering the Bridge Program, I had tried a secular rehab. Alcoholics Anonymous, and Adult Children of Alcoholics While they provided some relief, they never addressed the root causes of my problems or provided a lasting solution. I was trapped on the revolving door of relapses and despair, desperately searching for something more meaningful.
During one of these relapses God spoke to me for the first time. He said to me, “Archie, if you really want ti to achieve recovery and serenity you must leave Western Australia.” During my years of using and abusing alcohol and drugs, I had done a number of geographical moves to get ‘A new start.’ Unsuccessfully, because I always went with me. During my high school years and early adult years, I grew up with my family in Rockingham in Western Australia. I learned to drink there, and all my life supports were there. But I knew then I had to leave Western Australia so I hopped on a bus to Adelaide in South Australia. With no plan, very little money, and no support network I left all that I knew because God told me to.
When I arrived in Adelaide, with nowhere to stay I rand Alcoholics Anonymous to get advice on bed possibilities in Adelaide. They suggested the Salvation Army William Booth Men’s Hostel in Whitmore Square. When I went there they had no vacancies so for the first few nights in Adelaide I slept on the streets. Eventually securing a bed in the men’s hostel. As I said I really did want to change my life but I was an alcoholic on the ‘Relapse Revolving Door’ so I continued on the cycle of stopping and starting spending more and more nights in the detox unit and fewer and fewer nights in the hostel.
On one of my visits to detox, I spoke to someone on the staff about the Bridge Program and was told: “Sorry your attitude is all wrong for the Bridge Program.” To say I was confused at this response is an understatement I was angry.
That day a new Salvation Army Officer was appointed as the manager at the William Both Centre from Western Australia. An officer I had a history with from Western Australia. He was doing a walk through the detox unit that day, saw me in my anger, and stopped to talk to me because he recognized me. He asked me why I was so angry and explained to him why I had left Western Australia and the fact I had been refused admission to the Bridge Program because of my attitude. That afternoon I was on the bus going to the Bridge Program at Eden Park in Mount Barker.
One of the most profound moments of my recovery journey came when I encountered Jesus personally. During a quiet prayer session, I poured out my heart and confessed my brokenness and need for His healing touch. It was in that vulnerable moment that I felt a profound peace and a sense of forgiveness wash over me. I knew deep in my soul that Jesus had heard my cry and was extending His hand to lift me out of the pit of addiction.
On arrival, I was told to go straight to the Twelve Step group upstairs. The step they were discussing was step eleven: WE SOUGHT THROUGH PRAYER AND MEDITATION TO IMPROVE OUR CONSCIOUS CONTACT WITH GOD. PRAYING FOR KNOWLEDGE OF HIS WILL FOR US AND THE POWER TO CARRY IT OUT. This was a lightbulb moment in my recovery. I realized on the first day of the Bridge Program I had not included God in any aspect of recovery, I always believed God was for weak people and I never considered myself weak.
From that day Bridge Program not only provided me with the tools and strategies to overcome my addiction and compulsion to do the wrong thing but also two weeks after I entered the program Jesus spoke directly to me: He said to me “Archie, you do not need to live like this anymore, FOLLOW ME and I will lead you.” For the next couple of weeks, I wrestled with what He had said to me. A spiritual campaign was being conducted at Eden Park by a visiting Bridge Program leader from Western Australia. As part of the campaign, He was leading the mid-week chapel service. During the service he gave an invitation to anyone who wanted to invite Jesus into their lives to come forward for prayer. I had no intention of going forward but I ended up there. Standing before the cross at the front of the meeting I was aware of the fact in my life I was spiritually, mentally, and physically bankrupt. All I could think of was “How am I going to fix this?” I knelt to pray, committing to Jesus that where He led me I would follow. When I knelt I knew my condition, when I rose I felt the power of the Holy Spirit enter my body and move from the top of my head to my feet. I knew then I had received ‘recovery from my addictions and compulsions.’ through the saving grace of Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit moving in and through my life.
Today, I stand before you as a living testament to the power of Bible-based recovery through the Salvation Army Bridge Program. It has been over three decades since I first entered the program, and I continue to walk in freedom from addiction. Through the grace of God and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, I have rebuilt my life, mending broken relationships, and discovered a deep sense of fulfillment and purpose in my life that only comes from a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
There is a lot more to my story obviously. If you want to know more then join me here tomorrow night for the first episode of the series 60 years old – 34 years in Bible-based recovery. Some of it is still not clear to me, but I know God has got me, and He has not brought me this far to drop me. Recently I have written a timeline of the 60 years of my life which will for the curriculum for what I share in this podcast series.
If you find yourself trapped in the cycle of addiction, I urge you to pen your heart to the transformative power of God’s love and allow His grace to lead you on the path to recovery. With faith, perseverance, and the support of a community dedicated to your well-being, you too can experience the life-changing miracle of Bible-based recovery.
Remember, you are not alone, and there is hope for a brighter future. Jesus is ready to extend His hand and walk alongside you on this journey of healing and restoration. Trust in Him, and together, we can overcome any obstacle that stands in our way.
2023 | Discussion Starter #150
Surrendering Your Everyday Life to God
Today I read this inspiring passage from Romans 12:1-2 in The Message Bible that I’d love to discuss with you. It’s all about living a life of recovery by surrendering our everyday routines, thoughts, and actions to God.
Here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
Think About It!
- What does it mean to “take your everyday, ordinary life” and present it as an offering to God? How can we practically apply this concept in our lives?
- The passage mentions “embracing what God does for you” as the best thing you can do for Him. How do you interpret this statement, and what are some ways we can actively embrace what God does for us?
- The verse advises us not to conform to our culture without thinking. How do you see our culture influencing our thoughts, decisions, and behaviors? In what areas of your life have you noticed the need to resist cultural conformity?
- “Fixing our attention on God” is suggested as a transformative action. How can we intentionally redirect our focus toward God amidst the distractions and demands of daily life? What practices or disciplines have helped you in fixing your attention on God?
- The passage highlights the contrast between the surrounding culture and God’s transformative power. In what ways have you experienced God bringing out the best in you and developing maturity in your life, especially in the context of recovery?
- Recognizing and responding to what God wants from us is emphasized. How do you personally discern God’s will for your life? Are there any practical steps you take to ensure you’re readily responding to His guidance?
- How can we support one another in living out the principles outlined in these verses? Are there any specific challenges you face in surrendering your everyday life to God, and how can we encourage and help each other overcome them?
As we reflect on Romans 12:1-2 from The Message Bible, we realize the call to live a life of recovery extends beyond specific addictions and problems. It’s about surrendering our entire lives to God, allowing Him to transform us from the inside out. Let’s continue to encourage one another on this journey, supporting each other in embracing God’s will and growing in well-formed maturity.
2023 | Morning Harmony #150
Anchored In Gods Presence
Thought for today:
In the journey of life, we often face trials, struggles, and moments of despair. We may feel overwhelmed, searching for stability and a refuge to find solace. Psalm 61 reminds us that our ultimate source of strength and comfort lies in God’s presence. He is our rock, our fortress, and our anchor in times of trouble. As we embark on this new day, let us turn our hearts towards Him, knowing that His unwavering love and faithfulness will sustain us.
Meditation for today:
Take a moment to picture yourself standing on the edge of a vast sea, facing the challenges and uncertainties that lie ahead. As you gaze out into the horizon, imagine God extending His mighty hand towards you, inviting you to take hold. Just like the psalmist in Psalm 61, you can find refuge in His presence. He is your strong tower, a shelter that never fails. In the midst of life’s storms, anchor your faith in Him, knowing that His love and protection will guide you through every trial.
Heavenly Father, we come before You today, seeking refuge and strength. We acknowledge that without You, we are lost and vulnerable. Thank You for being our rock and fortress, a constant presence in our lives. As we face the challenges of this day, we ask for Your guidance and wisdom. Anchor us in Your love, that we may find peace and assurance in the midst of life’s uncertainties. Empower us to live lives of recovery, relying on Your strength and grace to overcome any obstacle. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.
May your day be filled with the assurance of God’s presence, and may you find strength and comfort in Him as you journey through life’s ups and downs. Trust in His unwavering love, for He is always with you, guiding you and leading you towards a life of recovery and restoration.