I am pleased to announce the release of my new book, The Bible and Addiction Recovery in Kindle format! Hopefully, by year’s end if we find there is enough interest, we may also offer it in a paperback format as well.
Well, after many of you have brought up the need for such a source, I have finally finished writing this book for use by those who work with recovery models that include the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and also the Disease Model of the medical community who would like to look at these non-Christian tools from a Bible-believing standpoint! Allow the introduction to my new book to explain what this work is all about:
Many familiar with the epidemic of substance addiction would agree that doctors lacking in education in the field of addiction are at a disadvantage when trying to interpret symptoms in their patients that might actually be associated with addiction. Thus, these otherwise well-trained doctors often attribute the meaning of these symptoms not to addiction, but to other types of disease and illness, leading to both mistaken assessment and diagnosis. I remember one case where a patient was misdiagnosed as being bi-polar when, in fact, they were in the process of withdrawals from methamphetamine use. Ironically, the same has been true of Bible scholars over the course of many generations. Although these scholars rightly have interpreted a vast amount of the wealth for living within the Bible’s pages, their lack of knowledge about addiction has often led them to overlook information contained in the Bible that relates to addiction and recovery and could make a vast difference in the lives of those in bondage to substances and behaviors.
Often, Bible passages that were written long ago and intended to address all manner of addictive behavior are seen merely as only referring to sexual immorality or in some cases simply the practice of witchcraft. When these students of Bible scholarship look at these priceless nuggets of recovery advice, they don’t realize the Bible is giving advice on dealing with a disease they are totally unfamiliar with!
Those who practice the Christian faith as a way of life believe that the Bible has within its pages the answers to every situation and need in life. If we believe that the Bible lives up to its acrostic (Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth), then we also believe it must address the issues of addiction and recovery extensively, as it does every other issue that prevents mankind from reaching his full potential, his full God-intended glory. So, if we look at Bible passages in light of mankind’s ageless struggle with dysfunctional addictive behavior, we quickly begin to see the Bible as a vast storehouse of advice for dealing with the root of the problem.
Working in a diverse community of clients in various stages of the disease of addiction, many addiction specialists find themselves impeded from fully serving their clients due to lack of cultural competency in certain areas. Cultural competency is when a counselor understands enough about the culture the client is from to be able to properly encourage them to build for themselves an action plan for their recovery. An example would be a counselor from a Caucasian cultural background studying Asian culture in order to more effectively guide a Korean client through setting up their recovery plan in a culture he or she is not familiar with. Another example is understanding the religious culture of the client in order to help him or her plan their recovery by utilizing the tools their particular religious culture has that can increase their chances of staying sober.
For the professing Christian counselor, this can manifest often in non-Christian recovery program and counseling settings where their expertise in addiction and recovery education is nonetheless sorely needed, but their spiritual convictions leave them challenged in trying to help clients with an unbelieving mindset. On the other hand, those professionals not practicing the Christian faith often find themselves at an impasse when trying to help their clients who profess belief in Christianity and insist that the Bible has the ultimate answers to their addiction recovery. What I propose to do in this present writing is to present useful tools to both the practicing Christian counselor attempting to educate a spiritually like-minded client and also to the specialist who may not consider Christianity as a necessary component of their own lifestyle or recovery, but who recognizes its potential to help their believing client to achieve his or her recovery. I would also like to present a variety of tools for those believing Christians who want to better understand the process of recovery based on the Bible.
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