By: Joshua Danker-Dake | Category: Special Interest | Issue: January 2009
Doug Smith, a ministry leader at Faith Church in Glenpool, welcomes you to participate in Celebrate Recovery, a program that can help free you from the hurts, hang-ups and habits of life.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse or emotional abuse, or if you’re weighed down by the troubles of life, you should know that help is available. Celebrate Recovery is a program designed to help free people from “the hurts, hang-ups and habits of life.”
“Celebrate Recovery is a Christian 12-step recovery program,” says Doug Smith, a ministry leader at Faith Church in Glenpool. “It’s designed to help adults from all walks of life, from within the church and outside it, with their hurts, hang-ups and habits. Through spending time together and sharing experiences and hopes, we become willing to accept God’s grace in solving life’s problems.
“Celebrate Recovery isn’t just for addicts: it’s for anyone struggling with relationships or their circumstances. Christ’s power can overcome anger, grief, alcohol abuse, guilt, shame, financial loss, divorce, dysfunctional families, sexual abuse, drug abuse and eating disorders. The 12-step process is a great way to grow in your relationship with Christ and to repair and build your relationships with others, and ultimately to live without guilt, shame or resentment. So many of these addictions and struggles are rooted in injured relationships, and so many people are stuck looking backward. Celebrate Recovery tries to help these people look forward, to repair these relationships and look to the future.”
The Celebrate Recovery program was created in 1991 by John Baker of Saddleback Church in California, which is pastored by Rick Warren, author of “The Purpose Driven Life.”
“Baker was previously an alcoholic,” says Smith. “He got involved in some secular programs, and while they were helpful, they didn’t give him the spiritual foundation he needed.” The program was designed after Warren’s sermon series “The Road to Recovery,” based on the Beatitudes, which put Scripture behind the 12-step process. The program has spread to over 10,000 churches, and over 500,000 people have completed it. “Celebrate Recovery is now in the prison system as well,” says Smith. “It’s recognized by the Department of Corrections as a valid 12-step program.”
Faith Church in Glenpool began offering the Celebrate Recovery program in April of 2008. “We’ve had a pretty good response so far,” says Smith, who heads up the program there with his wife Betty. “About half our people are from within the church, and half from outside it. We’re still growing. But we aren’t concerned with numbers as much as we are with helping people. If we can help one person, it’s all been worth it. We concentrate on growing one life at a time.”
At Faith Church, the Celebrate Recovery group meets every Monday evening. They begin with dinner, then have a one-hour large group meeting with praise and worship, followed by one-hour, gender-specific small groups for personal sharing. The evening concludes with a fellowship time with free coffee and dessert. Childcare is provided.
“God never wastes a hurt,” says Smith. “Celebrate Recovery is for those who feel like they’re beyond their last chance.”
Many other churches in the Tulsa area also offer the Celebrate Recovery program, and on every night of the week. For more information on Celebrate Recovery, including groups near you, visit them on the web at www.celebraterecovery.com. For more information on Faith Church in Glenpool, including their Celebrate Recovery schedule, visit www.faithglenpool.com.