Tens of thousands of alcoholics, addicts, A.A. members, concerned Christians, professional recovery workers, old-timers, and desperate family and other concerned friends and associates have contacted me over the past 20 years. They usually ask how they or their loved ones can get God's help. And do so within existing A.A., Christian, treatment, and counseling boundaries.
Twenty years ago, with A.A. drifting away from its Christian origins, history, founding, original program, and successes and some members, professionals, and religious focusing more and more on nonsense gods, "spirituality," and meetings, the cries for help were critical.
Did recovery people respond adequately? The answer, for the most part, is that they did not.
Publishing houses leaped to print Recovery or Twelve-Step Bibles - thousands of them.
Christian counselors sought licensing for Christian recovery counselors.
Attempts at Christian treatment and Christian track treatment programs were established.
Some clergy and Christians panned A.A.
Some AAs panned clergy and Christianity
A.A. "official" publications began announcing that you didn't have to believe in anything at all in order to recover from alcoholism.
All were probably well-meaning. All were offering half-measure solutions. And all were totally uninformed about the Christian recovery movement origins in the Salvation Army, YMCA, Rescue Missions, Evangelists, and Young People's Society of Christian Endeavor. They didn't know much if anything about the original A.A. Christian fellowship program of 1935 and its successes. And they grasped at slender, irrelevant straws--talking about the Oxford Group, the Washingtonians, the Emanuel Movement, Emmet Fox. Anything but how the original AAs got well believing in God and coming to Him through Jesus Christ.
After 20 years of travel, research, interviews, gathering of materials, holding conferences and meetings, and talking to old-timer Christian AAs, we found a hunger for A New Way Out--a way which would foster reliance on God, honor the support A.A. provides, emphasize helping others, and returning to historical, spiritual tools like the Bible, Prayer, Quiet Time, Christian Fellowship, and Daily Devotions. Simple. Easy. Effective. But almost lost.
We offered and still offer several answers: (1) International Christian Recovery Coalition www.ChristianRecoveryCoalition.com. (2) Christian Recovery Resource Centers http://bit.ly/erD3tW. (3) The Dick B. Christian Recovery Guide, 3rd ed., 2010 www.dickb.com/Christian-Recov-Guide.shtml. (4) "Introductory Foundations for Christian Recovery" www.dickb.com/IFCR-Class.shtml. (5) The new Dick B. Handbook for Recovery Resource Centers. http://mcaf.ee/f6ed4. (6) A complete reference set of 29 of Dick B.'s titles on A.A. History and Biblical roots. See www.dickb.com.
The most important step now is to recognize the elements of a comprehensive Christian recovery effort: (1) Interview, inquiry, assessment, referral. (2) Immediate medical diagnosis and precautions against seizures and acute withdrawal problems. (3) Possible licensed Christian counseling. (4) Possible Christian intervention with Christian follow-through. (5) Possible Christian treatment or Christian track treatment that is adequate! (6) Family and children care emphasis--like old-time A.A. (7) Coordination with Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. (8) Coordination with Christian recovery meetings. (9) Bible study. (10) Prayer. (11) Quiet Time help. (12) Literature help. (13) After Care. (14) Alumni activity. (15) Church or religious comradeship. (16) Christian Recovery Fellowships. (17) Study groups. (18) Help in entering a new life in the community, employment, financial stability, education, vocational training, fitness, fellowship, and regular study and fellowship meetings. (19) Heavy emphasis on helping others. (20) Reliance on God for guidance, forgiveness, love, healing, fellowship, and revelation.
Dick B., email@example.com 808 874 4876.