Spirituality and Recovery
The 12 Step program of AA is founded on the need to find a spiritual basis for life in order to get into recovery. As the Big Book of AA indicates, if a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were sufficient to overcome alcoholism and drug addiction many would have recovered long ago. However, no such codes or philosophies worked. Individuals on their own do not have the power needed to “will” themselves sober. “The spiritual life is not a theory. We have to live it.” (Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 83)
The 12 Steps of AA provide the framework for the individual to begin to develop a level of spirituality that leads to recovery. Each step requires soul searching and action on the part of the alcoholic/addict in order to progress to the next step.
“…Lack of power, that was our dilemma. We had to find a power by which we could live, and it had to be a Power greater than ourselves. Obviously. But where and how were we to find this Power? Well, that’s exactly what this book is about. Its main object is to enable you to find a Power greater than yourself which will solve your problem. That means we have written a book which we believe to be spiritual as well as moral. And it means, of course that we are going to talk about God… Being all powerful, He provided what we needed, if we kept close to Him and performed His work well. Established on such a footing we became less and less interested in ourselves, our little plans and designs. More and more we became interested in seeing what we could contribute to life. As we felt new power flow in, as we enjoyed peace of mind, as we discovered we could face life successfully, as we became conscious of His presence, we began to lose our fear of today, tomorrow or the hereafter. We were reborn…”
In addition to the years of success that AA has demonstrated, there have been studies that have shown positive outcomes when spirituality is a significant part of a recovery program. A study published in the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment entitled “Spirituality and recovery in 12-step programs: An empirical model” by Dr. Marc Galenter shows that participating in a recovery program combined with a level of spirituality can lead to successful outcomes more often.
At Renaissance Ranch, we fully embrace the 12 Step program of AA and combine it with Gospel principles that apply to addiction recovery. We go beyond saying “Higher Power” and acknowledge Jesus Christ as our Higher Power. It is through the Atonement of Jesus Christ that forgiveness can be found and lives can be made whole again.
The combination of the 12 Steps of AA and the Gospel of Jesus Christ have proven to be a catalyst for long-term sobriety and happiness for many of our clients.