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What is Recovery?

What is Recovery?

The LORD said to Moses, “Cut for yourself two tablets of stone like the first, and I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke.” Exodus 34:1

In my drug addiction, I made myself and those closest to me terribly sick. As I surrendered more of myself to the drug, I became more and more ill – physically, emotionally, and spiritually, and I damaged my relationships with my loved ones as I betrayed their trust, also harming them. They became sick in my sickness. Worst of all, I turned from my faith, damaging my relationship with God and distancing myself from him. In following my toxic appetite, I couldn’t look at God, so I ran from him, abandoning the person he created me to be.

Recovery then, has meant undoing all of that in a process of transformation that has allowed me to find emotional, physical, and spiritual health, while rebuilding relationships with my loved ones and with God. Recovery has meant becoming who God made created to be. God made me. I broke me. Only in following his will instead of my own, could I begin to recover what he originally intended.

God is a God of recovery. This is the lesson of today’s passage. In it, God walked Moses through the process of remaking the stone tablets that recorded his commandments. God originally made the stone tablets (Exodus 31:18) and then, because of Israel’s disobedience in worshipping the golden calf, Moses shattered the tablets in anger (Exodus 32:19). Now, God desired to remake them. The people had repented of their self-destructive behavior and God intended to restore his relationship with them. So, God asked Moses to carve new tablets, which God would then rewrite, recovering that which was lost in rebellion.

This is the nature of God, to lead us into recovery. We may not have all used drugs or worshipped a golden calf, but we’ve all gone our own way, turning from God and injuring our relationship with him. In doing so, we’ve hurt ourselves and our loved ones – emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Recovery then, is for all of us. If we desire to become who God made us to be, we must abandon our self-destructive words, thoughts, and behaviors, and follow God’s path. This will mean a process of gradual progress – not instant perfection – in which we become more like who we were made to be. This will be difficult – abandoning our way is always painful – but in finding the new life, we’ll realize that recovery is far less difficult than wallowing in the old life.

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