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Celebrate Recovery

Who Needs Recovery?

I get asked from time to time, “Do I need recovery?”

I love the question because the answer is easy. It’s the same answer every single time: “Yes, you do.”

Everyone needs recovery from something. Why? Everyone is broken, for “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23 NIV).

All leaves little room for questions. Everyone is included. Sin affects all people.

Sin leaves us broken and estranged from God. Every single problem in our lives—from relationships to finances to our health—comes from the brokenness in this world.

There are only two kinds of people: Those who understand they’re broken and need recovery, and those who are in denial.

So, what’s this universal brokenness about? Humans want to be in control. We want to be God. We want to decide what’s right and wrong on our own. And the more insecure we are—the more out of control we feel—the more we try to control.

It’s a problem that began with Adam and Eve. God put them in paradise and told the first couple, “You can do anything you want in this entire paradise except this: don’t eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” Then, of course, they made a beeline for that tree. They wanted to control paradise, to set their own agenda.

So do we. Every single one of us wants to be in control and at the center of the universe. We all have areas in our lives we want to control—and push God out of control.

So, yes, we all need recovery.

But those who are involved in Celebrate Recovery® know that there is also good news. There’s a path to recovery, on which we can all find recovery the same way, whether our brokenness is emotional, spiritual, financial, sexual, or in any other area of our lives.

We find this path to recovery in the Bible. It’s the original recovery manual. The 12 steps involved in Celebrate Recovery are all found in the Bible.

You’ll find another word for recovery in the Bible—sanctification. The recovery process is simply growing in the likeness of Christ.

At Saddleback, we take seriously Jesus’ statement in Mark 2:17: “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick” (NIV).

Great churches are built on broken people who find Christ and grow through the recovery process. One of the secrets of Saddleback’s amazing growth over the past 40 years has been Celebrate Recovery. Tens of thousands of people have gone through the program on the Saddleback Campus. We’ve also taught the recovery principles of Celebrate Recovery in weekend sermon series multiple times over the past 30 years.

Saddleback Church is a second-chance grace place. I think every church should be a place where people are given the opportunity to start over. No matter how they’ve messed up, a fresh start is possible for everyone.

That’s what I love about Celebrate Recovery. Everyone has a hurt, hang-up, or habit they need to recover from. Celebrate Recovery is a place to begin again. It’s a place to start over.

Once people realize they need a second chance in life, God often brings them to Celebrate Recovery. The moment they begin following Christ, they start healing. Then God takes the pain of their past and turns it into a ministry.

Celebrate Recovery is a leadership factory for a local church. God never wastes a hurt.

Next time someone asks you if they need recovery, say yes. Then tell them about a place for second chances. Tell them about Celebrate Recovery.

Who knows how many people could be impacted by that invitation?

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