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The Importance of Spirituality in Recovery

I grew up in a Southern Baptist family, with a grandfather who was a preacher.  And even though we might not have gone to church every Sunday, religion was still a central part in our lives.  But as I got older, I became more and more skeptical of the whole religion thing.  My life seemed to be filled with constant disappointment, and I began associating God as the reason all these hardships were taking place. 

But things really took a turn for the worse one night in 2009.  After leaving a local bar, I crashed into a car going nearly 60 miles per hour, seriously injuring two of its passengers.  Suddenly, life wasn’t just about me anymore, and the fact that I’d caused harm to others made me realize how selfishly and self-destructively I’d become accustomed to living. 

In the months leading up to my sentencing, the way I viewed life changed.  This was due to the presence I felt around me – one that appeared the night I was first arrested.  Not only did it give me strength and support when I needed it most, but it proved to me there was a power greater than myself at play.  No matter what the future had in store for me, I realized, I was going to be okay.   

Spirituality is especially important in recovery because it requires one to act completely opposite of when they were using.  This is because, during addiction, a person focuses solely on their drug of choice, completely disregarding others or developing relationships outside themselves.  They withdraw from society, don’t seek to better themselves and refuse to acknowledge how their actions negatively affect the outside world.  Because everything revolves around the next hit, life becomes stagnant and ceases to have any meaning or purpose. 

Spirituality, on the other hand, brings about growth and change.  It’s a personal search for the meaning of life, and gives us a recognition that there’s a power greater than ourselves.  Being spiritual also allows us to see the bigger picture in all of life’s ups and downs, providing us with peace of mind that everything is unfolding the way it’s supposed to. 

From my own personal standpoint, spirituality has given me a much-needed change in perspective and helped me deal with challenges and stresses in a different, more positive way.  It has provided me with an enhanced understanding of my meaning and purpose for being here and has inspired me to do more for others rather than selfishly focus on myself.  Through spirituality, you, too, can experience a transformation of character and heart, which ultimately goes hand-in-hand with recovery and long-term sobriety.