Sharing Your Story

Jared Murray is a friend and colleague of mine that works at The Reprieve for Men in Alabama. He was asked recently to give his testimony at his home church in Alabama about addiction, recovery and his life story. The preacher used a Bible translation that made some of the words in Romans chapters 6-8 fresh and new for me. I felt that Jared was able to connect and clarify both the traditional view of addiction from the standpoint of the Christian Scriptures and from the standpoint of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).

It is very important and special to me to understand that the founders of AA had a Christian background but they worded the 12 steps language in such a way that it could be available to others with a different background and world view. They wanted to make it available to people from all over the world. The “fellowship” as it is called, is the biggest support group in the world for anyone struggling with the disease of addiction. We need both a relationship with our Higher Power and a group of friends who don’t judge us, but instead love us to overcome addiction.

It is my hope that this sermon and Jared’s story help to clarify why traditional Christian beliefs dovetail with and are compatible with the AA approach to recovery. Now there are many other groups from other traditions as well. Our job is to love and let the God (of our understanding) reach beyond words and doctrines to help us support one another!  As the sign at Cumberland Heights says, Let Go and Let God.