Prayer For A Recovering Alcoholic
AA and The Alcoholic Anonymous Serenity Prayer
The simple AA Prayer of Serenity helps recovering alcoholics find courage, stay sober & support fellow alcoholics in their struggle against alcohol.
The Serenity Prayer has been part of regular AA meetings for many years, and is a great help for many alcoholics.
Some people might say, ‘Why pray?’ The answer is simple – it’s a good prayer – it’s a prayer that works: a belief in the power of prayer to God or Jesus for healing and recovery, has been one of ways that AA and NA have inspired thousands of desperate people to restore hope in their ability to withstand the cravings of their addiction. Alcoholics around the world need a prayer for help when they are fighting against temptation. The Serenity Prayer is the short prayer that they frequently turn to. For many recovering alcoholics, the Serenity Prayer is a daily prayer – because cravings and temptation have to be faced and overcome, every day of an alcoholic’s life. There are no ‘days off’ for an alcoholic.
God, give us grace to accept with serenityThe things that cannot be changed,Courage to change the thingswhich should be changed,and the Wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.
Living one day at a time,Enjoying one moment at a time,Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,Taking, as Jesus did,This sinful world as it is,Not as I would have it,Trusting that You will make all things right,If I surrender to Your will,So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,And supremely happy with You forever in the next.
Amen.The version above, is a translation of the original untitled prayer, written down by the theologian Reinhold Niebuhr in 1943, although there were oral versions of the Serenity Prayer in circulation, before that time.
There are several different variations of the Prayer of Serenity, but they are all the above text.
Alternative Versions of the Serenity Prayer
There is a popular shorter version of this powerful prayer of healing:
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.
Some version of the AA Prayer of Serenity has become a regular part of Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, as well as NA meetings and other Addict Support groups. It forms part of 12 Step Programs in most places around the world. It is sometimes known as The Meeting Prayer.
Most of the variations of this alcoholic prayer have a similar structure: firstly, it’s a prayer asking for strength – a prayer to God or Jesus, or any higher power outside ourselves, asking for the courage to change.
Praying for serenity follows this, but it’s a specific sort of serenity – serenity in the face of accepting things as they really are – life and reality as it really is, not as we would it to be – or how we kid ourselves that it is. Failure to accept ‘real’ reality about ourselves, and what we do, is really a demonstration of our ability to use denial to avoid making difficult decisions to change.
Denial vs Acceptance of Reality
Everybody uses denial to some degree – it’s normal. Denial protects our inner selves from facts that we feel we cannot accept…or cannot accept, yet. It’s a defence mechanism that can be useful in some circumstances. For example, it can be useful if we are not yet ‘ready’ to face some ‘awful truth’ – whatever it is that we feel is an ‘awful truth’.
Denial allows us time to adjust to the new reality. It could be an unexpected diagnosis of cancer, or it could be the fact that our drinking, or drug taking, has taken over our lives, and we have become powerless to control our cravings.
The value of denial in some circumstances is that it buys us time to adjust to new, and difficult information. But difficult facts are still facts. They are not going to go away, even if we deny them. We all have to face the truth in the end, no matter how difficult that might be.If we continue to ‘protect’ ourselves through using denial of reality, it becomes counter-productive, because it is not a useful coping mechanism any longer – it is only delaying the inevitable. If it continues too long, denial becomes only ‘wishful thinking’.
For someone with an addiction, it is always better to stop using that safety net of denial sooner, rather than later – before lasting damage is done
Denial of reality is one of the major barriers to recovery. This Alcoholic’s Prayer strikes at the places where addicts of all types to hide – where they feel ‘comfortable’ – where life seems to be easier. That is an illusion. That ‘more comfortable’ place is also the place that is destroying their lives, and the lives of their families.
It’s a tough prayer!
The Serenity Prayer is very effective for AA and NA members, exactly because it speaks the ‘truth’ about what needs to be done – and alcoholics and addicts all know this, deep down. William Shakespeare understood the importance of being truly honest with yourself:
“To thine own self be true”
That’s always a tough thing to do, but being true to yourself, and refusing to accept who and what you have become, is even harder for anyone with an addiction. Being totally honest with yourself, takes a huge amount of courage, and this Serenity Prayer has helped many alcoholics to admit to things as they really are – even when those things are not easy to admit, accept or live with.
Along with serenity and acceptance, alcoholics and addicts then need to find the courage to stay strong and resist the temptation to fall back into addiction. The Serenity Prayer has saved many people from relapsing when some extra crisis hits, and they want to return to the ‘comfort’ of their addiction.
The strength and courage that is given and received from fellow members at A A is one of the most important factors that help members of Alcoholics Anonymous to stay strong during a crisis. If you have an addiction, every day can be a day of crisis.
The practice of including the Serenity Prayer as a regular part of AA meetings, reinforces the courage and determination of addicts to stay strong, whenever they need it.
It’s a prayer that can ‘be there’ for recovering addicts – or anyone – whenever they need it.
Here is another Alcoholic’s Prayer written by Irene Palmer Costigan, in 1976. It expresses similar thoughts to the original AA Serenity Prayer:
Oh Lord, Watch over this Alcoholic.Be Thou my Higher Power as I strive toward recovery.
Permit me to lean on You for strength and guidance.
Grant that I may become totally honest about my problem.Touch my soul and spark my spirit into awareness, Lord,
That I may see the value of a sober life.
Show me the glory of the Dawn and a new day
And the reward of a Sunset and a day well lived.
And persuade me to work toward emotional health and maturity.
In Thy mercy, Lord, see fit to remove my cravings
For that which will destroy me – alcohol.
Keep me ever mindful that alone,I am unable to maintain a happy sobriety.Bring me ever closer to You,
And those who will help me along the way.
Most of all, prompt me to extend my handTo the Alcoholic who still suffers,So that through him or her,I may find You, and continue sobriety.
Prayers for Drug Addiction Recovery and Recovering Alcoholics
I’m glad you found your way to this page. This means that you or someone you know needs help. The fact that you are here shows that you or someone you know needs to change. It’s time to take that first step toward recovery, whatever the addiction may be. Hopefully through prayer and help from organizations, family, and friends this vice will be overcome.
Prayers for Drug Addiction Recovery
God, I’m going through recovery, and it is a bumpy road, but I know I can get through it. I’m glad I can turn to you for strength and peace of mind.
I need you to reinforce me so I can continue to fend off this evil. I do not want to disappoint you or my family so I need to remain strong. Many others have gotten through this and I know I can as well.
Jesus, continue to walk with me on this difficult journey.
Prayer for Overcoming Addiction
I know that when things that aren’t important start affecting my life, I need to change. I turn to you today, God, because I need your guidance. I have fallen to this addiction and it needs to end.
I now realize that I have a problem and through you, my friends, and family I will resolve it. It began with innocent intentions. I just wanted an escape from how I was feeling, and now I’m paying the price. I need to finally stand up against my addiction.
Help fortify my will and help me stand steadfast against the temptations I will be facing.
Prayer for a Recovering Alcoholic
Lord Jesus, I would to thank you for giving me the strength and courage I need to recover from my addiction. I am extremely pleased by the progress I am making each day. I know that I’m on the right path. Thank you so much for enlightening my mind by showing me what I was doing to myself and loved ones.
I have been blinded all along not knowing that I’ve become heavily dependent on alcohol. I would to ask forgiveness for my weaknesses. I know I have failed you, but I am working very hard to not to return to that life. Thank you for showing how much you care for me amidst this difficult time in my life.
I can feel your presence telling me that I can make it through this uphill battle. It’s not an easy task to forget about something that has been part of my daily routine for years. Lord, thank you for giving me this opportunity to realize what I have become. There are some who aren’t given this chance.
I know I cannot do this alone. I need you by my side through it all. I regret what I have done, because it has led to ruining relationships with family and friends. Lord, I pray that you will show me your compassion. I want to be completely free from this addiction.
I will not allow it to further influence my life in a negative way. All things are possible with you because you are my Redeemer.
Prayer for Alcoholics
Heavenly Father, I feel deeply saddened knowing what people go through who are alcoholics. It is a very challenging situation to be in, because it involves so many negative emotions. There are countless instances where good relationships can become destroyed by alcoholism.
A marriage can end very badly because of this addiction. Children of parents who are alcoholics do not grow up to have the proper upbringing that they deserve. Their vision is blinded and their minds get clouded which can lead to both mental and physical abuse.
Father, I put my whole faith in you in finding a solution to this dilemma. I pray that you’ll help these troubled souls overcome this cruel addiction. I believe that through you it is not too late for them to change for the better. There is always hope within you .As a faithful believer, I trust that you’ll be able to help alcoholics win their battle against this addiction.
Prayer for a Heroin Addict
Merciful God, you have given me this life. I am very grateful for your generosity. Today, I come to you asking for forgiveness. I have a problem. Even though I am ashamed to admit it, I know that the first step to recovery is acceptance. I have been dependent on it for awhile now.
Heroin makes me feel good but at the expense of everyone who has ever cared for me. I have finally realized that what I’m doing is wrong. I also shouldn’t be abusing my body, because it is a special gift you have generously bestowed upon me. Please give me the fortitude and willpower I need to defeat this addiction.
It has greatly affected my relationships with the people I love the most. I know you will not let me face this alone. I do not want to disappoint your or my family ever again. Today, I am making a promise to you that I will never again fall to the shadows. I have decided to quit this vile addiction.
I will take it one day at a time and find the strength I need in you. I trust that you’ll continue to work your mighty wonders in my life.
Addiction is a terribly challenging thing to deal with. It is one weakness that quite a few of us have. Please keep in mind that when I say, “addiction” I’m not just talking about drugs.
Addiction can take many different forms. Someone who gets home from work and watches TV until they go to bed everyday could definitely be considered to be addicted to television.
It can take many forms.
Hopefully with these prayers you or your loved ones can make some progress. I encourage all who have a problem with addiction to pray and seek professional help.Remember that your friends and family are the most important parts of your life. Do not lose them over something that really doesn’t matter.
Here are a few resources that may help you or someone you know who is having a problem with addiction:
Alcoholics Anonymous – This is probably one of the largest organizations dedicated to those who suffer from alcoholism.
National Institute on Drug Abuse – A great site that offers plenty of resources regarding drug abuse and addiction.
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) | 12-Step Program for Alcoholism Recovery
No conversation about alcoholism or alcohol use disorder recovery is complete without mentioning Alcoholics Anonymous.
The group has become synonymous with the concepts of recovery and lasting sobriety and has been instrumental in changing the conversation surrounding addiction since its inception roughly 80 years ago.
As the science and psychology of addiction evolves, the role of Alcoholics Anonymous may change somewhat, but is ly to remain a cornerstone of many people’s aftercare efforts, if not their overall recovery journeys.
What is Alcoholics Anonymous?
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is a global, community-based program that was created to help those struggling with problematic drinking get sober with the support of their peers through daily meetings and discussions surrounding addiction.
1 AA gives men and women a place to come together and share their experiences, recover from alcoholism and maintain sobriety.1 Its concept revolves around that premise that alcoholism is an illness that can be managed, but not controlled.
AA was founded by Bill Wilson and his physician, Doctor Bob Smith in 1935 and eventually grew to include two more groups by 1939.2 That same year, Wilson published Alcoholics Anonymous, a text which explained its philosophy and methods.2 We know it today as the 12 Steps of recovery.
Over the years, the 12 Steps have been adapted by other self-help and addiction recovery groups, such as Gamblers Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, to those struggling with other forms of addiction.
Additionally, many groups have changed the explicitly Christian overtones of the original 12 Steps to reflect more secular or agnostic philosophies.3
There are no other requirements to AA other than having a desire to quit drinking, and it is not associated with any organization, sect, politics, denomination, or institution. Those attending AA make a commitment to join either voluntarily, as a continuation of therapy or via court-mandated rehab.
Stats on Alcohol Abuse
Per the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), in order to be diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder (AUD), individuals must meet any two of 11 criteria during the same 12-month period.
4 An estimated 16 million people in the U.S. have an AUD, yet only a small percentage of those individuals seek treatment.5 In 2015, only 4.
4% of people age 12 and older received specialty treatment for an alcohol use disorder.6According to the 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 51.7% of people age 12 and older reported drinking in the past month, 24.5% of people age 12 and older binge drank in the past month (4 or more drinks for women and 5 or more drinks for men on one occasion), and 6.1% engaged in heavy alcohol use over the past month (binge drinking on 5 or more days over the past 30 days).7
Given the number of individuals struggling with or at risk for an AUD, it is understandable that AA has grown to what it is today—an organization with more than 115,000 groups worldwide.8
What Are The 12 Steps?
AA’s 12-Step approach follows a set of guidelines designed as “steps” toward recovery, and members can revisit these steps at any time. The 12 Steps are:9
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
- Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
Scientific Support and Success Rates
Alcoholics Anonymous’ Big Book cites a 50% success rate with 25% remaining sober after some relapses.10 However, since many of the group’s published success rates are provided by AA itself—and because some members choose to remain anonymous or don’t want to admit to relapsing—there isn’t enough impartial data to measure those rates.
The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) states that approximately 10% of the people who become part of a 12-Step program enjoy long-term success in their recovery.11 Yet, members also tend to drop out at a 40% rate during their first year, according to some studies, causing group attendance to change often.12
In 2014, AA reported that 27% of the 6,000 members who participated in an internal study were sober for less than a year; 24% retained their sobriety for up to five years, and 13% lasted for as long as a decade.8 Fourteen percent of the study’s participants stayed sober between 10 and 20 years, and 22 percent reported remaining sober for more than two decades.8
A long-term study conducted by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) found, at both one and three-year follow-up interviews, that people with alcoholism who both received formal treatment and attended an AA group had a better chance of staying sober than those who only received formal treatment.13 NIAAA concluded that stronger connections between community-based meetings and professional treatment resources will equate to a more efficient systemic approach to managing alcohol use disorders.13
Sources. Alcoholics Anonymous. (2017). This is A.A. An introduction to the A.A. Recovery Program. . Alcoholics Anonymous. (n.d.). Historical Data: The Birth of A.A. and Its Growth in the U.S./Canada. . U.S. National Library of Medicine. Kaskutas L. A. (2009). Alcoholics Anonymous Effectiveness: Faith Meets Science. Journal of addictive diseases, 28(2), 145–157. . Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: DSM-5. (5th ed.). (2013). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association. 490-491. . National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. (n.d.). Alcohol Use Disorder. . Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2017). Behavioral Health Barometer, United States, Volume 4. . Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2018). Key Substance Use and Mental Health Indicators in the United States: Results from the 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. . Alcoholics Anonymous. 2014 Membership Survey. . Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (2016). The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. . Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (2001). Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How Many Thousands of Men and Women Have Recovered From Alcoholism. . The American Society of Addiction Medicine. (2015). The Relevance of Twelve-Step Recovery in 21st Century Addiction Medicine. . Lilienfeld, S. and Arkowitz, H. (2011). Does Alcoholics Anonymous Work? Scientific American. . National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. (2011). The Role of Mutual-Help Groups in Extending the Framework of Treatment. Alcohol Research & Health, 33(4).
Recovering Alcoholic or Recovered Alcoholic
Home > How to Know When to Seek Treatment for Alcoholism > Recovering Alcoholic or Recovered Alcoholic
Labels in Recovery
These days there are many options for how people can escape an addiction. The different approaches have led to the development of different terminology.
Sometimes the differences in language will be minor, but they can also express fundamental differences for how each approach views addiction and recovery.
One of the most contentious disagreements in terminology is in relation to the use of recovering or recovered alcoholics to describe people who are no longer drinking.Some may say that the words are not that important – all that matters is that people are getting sober. Others might argue that the labels we use are crucial because they define how we view the world.
It is even suggested that the words we use create our reality.
It could be that by choosing between the terms recovering alcoholics and recovered alcoholics will have a difference on how people experience life in sobriety.
Benefits of Using the Recovered Alcoholic Label
If people choose to consider themselves to be recovered alcoholics it may be beneficial in a number of ways:
* It reinforces the idea that the addiction is over and the individual is now ready to get on with their life.
* When people enter sobriety there problems are no longer related to alcohol but with daily living.
The recovered label reinforces the idea that the current problems are due to life and not alcohol.* Those people who have been addicted to alcohol for years will already have wasted too much time focused on their drug.
They have no wish to be defined now by their previous addiction.* The individual is no longer being controlled by alcohol so it is reasonable for them to claim to be recovered.
* The label of recovering alcoholic is mostly associated with the disease theory of alcoholism. There are many people who do not subscribe to this theory so prefer the word recovered.
* This label is more empowering for the individual. They have put the past behind them and can now concentrate on finding success in life.
Dangers of Using the Recovered Alcoholic Label
There may be dangers associated with using the recovered label such as:
* The individual may wrongly assume this to mean that at some time in the future they will be able to drink safely again. The fact that the individual is recovered does not mean that they will never fall into the same difficulties again – in fact they almost certainly will if they relapse.
* Some people may use the idea of being recovered as an excuse to not put enough effort into their new life. They begin to take sober living for granted and believe that just stopping drinking is enough.
* If the individual believes themselves to be recovered they might not see the need for aftercare.
If people do not get enough support in recovery it greatly increases their risk of relapse.
* Over time people in recovery can forget how bad things were in the midst of their addiction. There is a wise saying that explains how, those who forget their mistakes are doomed to repeat them.
* If the individual believes they are recovered they can become overconfident. As much as 90% of people who enter recovery will later relapse so overconfidence is not a healthy attitude to have.
Benefits of Using the Recovering Alcoholic Label
There are advantages to using the recovering alcoholic label such as:
* It is a constant reminder to the individual that they can never drink a normal person. They have not been cured of their alcoholism.* It implies that there is much more work to be done. In order to keep recovering the individual will have to keep put effort into their sobriety.
* Some people begin to enjoy identifying themselves in this way. If they are part of a recovery fellowship this label will be the thing that holds the group together.
* Members of Alcoholics Anonymous believe in the disease theory of addiction.
They view their recovery as a daily reprieve granted by continued participation in the program.
* When people identify with this label it may increase their motivation to help those who are still struggling with addiction.
Dangers of Using the Recovering Alcoholic Label
The disadvantages of the recovering alcoholic label include:
* The individual may be encouraged to blame all their problems on their alcoholism. They may fail to realize that every human has similar problems to deal with.
* It can mean that people begin to divide the world into us and them.
They may start to believe that those outside the fellowship can’t understand them because they are not recovering alcoholics.* Some would claim that by continuing to view themselves as alcoholic the individual is disempowering themselves.
* The fact that the individual still considers themselves to be an alcoholic might be used as justification to relapse. The individual can claim that it is normal for them to relapse because they are an alcoholic.
Disease Theory of Alcoholism
The disease theory views alcoholism as a chronic lifelong condition that cannot be cured. The best the sufferer can hope for is that their disease will go into remission, and that this will last the rest of their life.
This image of alcoholism is supported by Alcoholics Anonymous. They agree that they are dealing with a incurable disease of the mind, but they add that remission can be achieved using a spiritual program called the 12 Steps.
So according to this theory there can never be a recovered alcoholic but only a recovering alcoholic. The individual is always only ever one drink away from their disease. There is even the belief that the disease progresses even when the individual is not drinking.
This means that should the individual relapse things will be much worse than they were before.
Criticism of the Disease Theory of Alcoholism
The disease theory of alcoholism is not accepted by everyone. Some would even suggest that it is an unproven theory with little evidence to support it.
Those who follow other recovery programs such as Rational Recovery claim that belief in this theory has led to a great deal of harm – it has transformed a common vice into a national tragedy. According to this view the theory of alcoholism being a disease has disempowered people and turned them into passive victims.
The idea that alcoholism requires a spiritual remedy has alienated many nonbelievers and left them with the belief that there may be no cure for their addiction.
Conclusion on Using Labels in Recovery
There appears to be advantages and disadvantages to both the terms recovered alcoholic and recovering alcoholic. The individual may be able to avoid the dangers of both by:
* No matter what label they use the individual needs to accept that they can never drink safely again. So long as they have any ambivalence about this they will struggle to progress in their new life, and they will be at risk of relapse.
* Even if the individual no longer consider themselves to be an alcoholic they will still need to put a great deal of effort into their new life. There will have been reasons for why the individual fell into addiction in the first place, and to find success now they will need to tackle these issues.
* People can become too obsessed with labels and this can be an excuse to avoid dealing with what is really important. The most important thing is not how people describe their recovery but with how they change their ways.* There appears to be no one label that suits everyone. Each individual has to decide on which label works better for them.
* There is probably no point in arguing about these labels. What works for one person might not work for somebody else – there might not be a right or wrong answer.
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The power of prayer in addiction recovery
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” – Matthew 11:28-30
Struggling with a substance abuse addiction takes its toll not only physically and emotionally, but spiritually as well.
That’s why Christian drug and alcohol treatment centers strongly believe in treating the person as a whole; mind, body and spirit.
How does prayer work in recovery? The power of prayer in recovery builds hope and provides the motivation and strength to fight the good fight against addiction.
Finding or restoring a relationship with God during rehab provides a powerful Helper while on the journey to life-long recovery. Strengthening a relationship with God through group and personal Bible studies, and fellowship with others through prayer groups, provides an unexplainable sense of peace and boundless hope. In its essence, faith in recovery needs to be accompanied by actions.
“Jesus stopped and called them. ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ he asked. ‘Lord,’ they answered, ‘we want our sight.’ Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.” -Matthew 20:32-34
The healing power of prayer is a proven fact that scientific and medical research equally support. There are documented studies that prayer has healed many serious diseases much to the puzzlement of medical practitioners. The power of prayer is a mighty God-given gift that can heal addiction too.
No one is without weakness; no one. How we react to that weakness, however, makes all the difference in the world. Turning to drugs or alcohol is the easy way out and not the reaction God desires.
God offers unlimited strength to those who turn to Him in prayer; releasing control and allowing Him to take charge of that weakness – that addiction – will extinguish its power and hold on an addict’s life.
There are many more benefits gained through genuine faith and prayer:
- You will never be alone in the battle
- Relief from fear and anxiety
- Balance of mind, body and spirit
- Experiencing pure joy which increases the effectiveness of treatment during rehab
- Inspiration to do the work necessary to achieve a new life free of addiction
- Greater mental focus
- Diminished stress levels
- Strength against addiction triggers
- Reduced rate of relapse
- An increase of dopamine levels in the brain generating the serenity once manufactured by drug use
- Absence of depression
- A 24/7 Helper to guide you to making the right choices while accepting what cannot be changed
How to Pray
“I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.” – Psalm 121:1-2
Don’t let your loved one suffer. 1-888-882-1456
Think of prayer as a conversation between you and God. Talk to Him as if you were talking with a friend. Prayer does not have to be a script; filled with ‘thee’ and ‘thou.’ God wants to hear from you – personally.
A good guideline is to:
- Start with some praise, tell Him how you care for Him and trust in Him alone
- Thank Him for the blessings in your life; big and small
- Ask Him for healing from your addiction and share the desires of your heart with Him
- Ask for forgiveness
- Ask for strength and protection against the evil powers of addiction
The 12-Step Recovery and Prayer
“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference” – Reinhold Niebuhr
A.A. and N.A. believe deeply in utilizing the power of prayer for recovery and healing. A countless number of addicts have achieved successful long-term recovery with the strength gained through praying to God.
Each of the twelve steps is complemented by a prayer which can be incorporated into personal prayer time. Reciting the Prayer of Serenity during A.A. meetings is customary and a good prayer to find strength on a daily basis during life-long recovery (what the Serenity Prayer means).
Believe in the Power of Prayer for Recovery
“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.” –John 10:10
Drugs and alcohol are not your friends. They are the enemy – the thief – that is intent on destroying lives and families. God promises unconditional love, protection from your enemies, a Helper to guide you and strength to carry you through. All you have to do is believe.
6 Amazing Gifts for Recovering Alcoholics
Realizing someone close to you is an alcoholic is one of the hardest things in life to face. But, imagine how much harder addiction is for the person who is struggling with it.
He or she needs your support as they work to recover, and even after they've reached sobriety, too.
One way you can show your loved one you still care is to give them a gift to celebrate their recovery. You may choose to do this as you're picking them up from rehab or as they reach important milestones in their sobriety – being 1 year or 10 years clean.
You can also buy gifts for recovering alcoholics just because. If you're not sure what to buy, though, check out the list of suggestions below.
1. Exercise Equipment
A big part of recovery is learning how to take better care of the mind and body – and what better way to do that than through exercise?
Regular exercise is encouraged in many treatment programs, but it's up to the recovered addict to keep this healthy habit going. A new workout outfit or a nice yoga mat could be the push in the right direction they need.
Keep in mind you don't have to go all-out on this gift, considering some workout equipment can be expensive. Just think about what your loved one's new exercise of choice is and give them a gift they can use for it. Even something as simple as a new water bottle is sure to brighten their day.
2. A Journal
Another habit most recovered addicts pick up in rehabilitation is journaling. Lots of times, an alcoholic is struggling with more than just addiction. They may be using drugs to help them cope with some sort of trauma or mental illness.
Journaling helps your loved one heal. It gives them an outlet to let things go and make sense of all the thoughts in their head instead of trying to block certain thoughts.
Plus, journaling encourages creativity and mindfulness. It doesn't always have to be about recovering or moving forward. The more your loved one writes in their journal, the more peace of mind and confidence they'll start to show every day.
3. Books, Book Covers, and Bookmarks
As good as it is for a person to write and express their own thoughts, sometimes, it's nice to get encouragement from the words of others. Research a few books on hope and healing for addicts and gift them to someone in your life who needs them.
They don't all have to be directly tied to addiction, either. A lot of addicts find a deep spiritual connection through their recovery process, so you can choose books religion or consciousness.
Social behavior books about overcoming obstacles and starting over are great reads for addicts too, on the more practical side of things.Whatever kind of book you buy, though, consider getting a book cover and a bookmark for it too. There are actually AA book covers out there that remind recovered addicts of their journey to sobriety.
These are wonderful and subtle encouragements for people to keep going in the right direction.
4. Motivational Jewelry
It's amazing what the power of words can do, whether a person is writing them down or reading the words of another. If you don't think your loved one is much of a reader, though, give them a piece of jewelry with one powerful statement on it.
Men and women a love a nice piece of jewelry. It's a great gift for a special occasion, a birthday or a holiday. But when you buy AA themed jewelry, the gift also works for someone's recovery anniversary or as congratulations when they leave rehab.
These special creations are engraved with motivational quotes or symbols to remind recovered addicts of the struggles they've overcome. There are all kinds of necklaces, rings, and bracelets to suit different fashion styles. One of them is sure to be just what the recovered addict in your life needs.
5. Subtle, Everyday Reminders
If you the thought of giving someone a powerful saying or image they can look at every day, brainstorm such gifts for recovering addicts beyond jewelry. There are so many things you can get engraved and make a meaningful gift .
- money clips
- jewelry boxes
You can even get the gift box for an AA gift engraved, and speaking of AA, don't forget about the organization's special coins for recovered addicts. AA coins are tokens that recovered alcoholics can collect when they reach milestones on their journey.
They're available starting at 1 month of recovery and go up to 10 years!
Still not sure what to get the recovered addict in your life? Buy them flowers.
It doesn't matter who they are to you or how old they are, flowers are sure to make them feel special. These are a lovely touch to add to a gift but they can also brighten someone's day entirely on their own.
Make sure you get some flowers on your way to pick up your loved one from their rehabilitation treatment. Or, have them ready when you meet up with them after one of their AA meetings. Maybe even get flowers sent to this person randomly as a sign of encouragement and love.
There's never a wrong time to buy flowers. These always do more for the other person than you think.
Find the Best Gifts for Recovering Alcoholics in Your Life
No matter who the recovered addict in your life is, or how many of them you know, it's good to reach out from time to time. Gifts for recovering alcoholics are a great way to start rebuilding your relationship if it became rocky during the alcoholic's drinking days.
It's also a nice way to say that you're proud of this person for taking care of themselves and getting clean.
To explore all the lovely AA gifts out there, click here.