Starting today we will be starting the 9th step lecture.
Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you; leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.
This is the scripture from Matthew chapter 5 verse 23-24
There is something in common in the 9th step and the 5th step. What could that be? We just read step 9, and
The subject matter of the 5th step is laid out in this way.
Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
What are the similarities within these two steps?
The similarities are that we, with rigorous honesty directly share with another person.
But the fifth step is where someone I know very well and trust, a sponsor and I discuss and process together.
On the other hand, the ones we need to directly make our amends to are mostly those people that were made to dislike us.
It is an area where our inner self can become a target for attack.
For that reason, we can fall into fear when confronted with the 9th step.
We can even think and ask ourselves the question “is it really necessary to go to these lengths in order to make amends”?
Therefore, for those people that hold recovery as a most serious matter, the 9th step although very difficult, will ultimately be beneficial.
We can see by reading the passage of God’s word which highlights the utmost importance of brotherly fellowship.
We know that one of the purposes of our new lives is to break the walls of isolation, and to participate in harmony with our fellow man.
In order to achieve this, we must see that in starting the 4th step, we work on the solid steps necessary, resulting in the 9th step, we open our eyes to the harm we had caused and are willing to hold ourselves accountable for those harms.
Every time I get the opportunity, I try to confirm the message of the 12 step and one by one try to apply it in my life.
I will try and describe by using a little different wording style.
Step 1: We admitted that we were powerless over our addiction, and that our lives had become unmanageable.
We accepted that we could not resolve alone our issues with addiction, and our issues with our sins.
Step 2: Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
It means that we come to believe that with God’s help, we will find solutions to our problems.
Step 3: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him.
The point of this step is that we come to realize just our problems from addiction is not the only thing we must turn over to the care of God, but that we must turn over all aspects of our lives to His care.
The way I see it, I think addiction is comparable to a terminal cancer.
I see these cases all the time in the operating room.
Cancer latches on to normal cell tissue and becomes one with it, where it no longer becomes possible for just the cancer cells to be separated or removed from the normal tissue.
If our addiction progresses long enough, it infiltrates deep into every nook and cranny of our lives, so in order to be treated of our disease, we must turn all of our lives as we know it over to the care of God.
However, through my observations, there are those that still fall into relapse even though they complete the 5th step. Why do you think that happens?
It is my conclusion that we have difficulties in turning over all of our lives and will over to the care of God as it states in the 3rd step.
The 3rd step as so with any other step is not done and forgotten about after we scribble a few words down on paper. Day by day, instance by instance, it must continuously progress within our lives.
4th step: Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
In order for the 3rd step to really continue, the 4th step is the course we must take in order to closely observe or inner selves.
When I started the 4th step, I realized that I had to thoroughly and meticulously go about the work of turning over the business that was ruined by the CEO known as JC Hong to the new CEO to be in charge who was known as God.
What do we do when we turn over a business to the care of someone else?
Not only do we turn over the financial history and records, but we also include all of the entire business inventory as well. That inventory is the 4th step.
5th step: Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
This is where we confess to God, ourselves, and another person the results from our 4th step observations.
Also, the 6th and 7th step is where we go forward to treat our defects.
The forgiveness, reconciliation, and compensation we receive through the 8th and 9th steps, we are able to take the correct course in our relationship with God, our relationship with others, and lastly our relationship with ourselves.
Therefore, steps 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 directly coincides with the 3rd steps point of us fully turning our life and will over to the care of God, and it’s the work necessary to remove all the elements that would interfere with us doing so.
We carry with us the issues and problems that force us to continuously commit sin along with our addictions.
Anger, perfectionism, pridefulness, selfishness, laziness, habitual lying, and self-centeredness caused problems in our relationships with people around us, and our relationship with God.
We failed to recognize or knew it, but refused to see clearly the shattering effects on our social life, emotions, spiritual life, and physical well being.
To describe it in one word, our life was disaster.
But, after the time that had been swept away by disaster has passed, the time for work towards recovery begins.
After typhoon, tsunami, earthquake, or wicked war, when we spend time in recovery, we can see that regardless, things are better than they used to be. This is what is of recovery.
Through the steps of recovery, we practice becoming honest with God, ourselves, and with others.
The selected road to recovery has been written about in the Big Book under the Chapter How It Works, by the alumni of Alcoholics Anonymous.
“Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path. Those who do not recover are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program, usually men and women who are constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves. There are such unfortunates. They are not at fault; they seem to have been born this way. They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty. Their chances are less than average. There are those, too, who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest”.
Ladies and gentlemen, honesty is an absolute requirement in recovery.
We have come to be aware of ourselves through honesty.
And through honesty, we became aware of our character defects. And we humbly prayed for God to remove our defects of character.
And also, now in the 8th step, we must honestly and with sincerity take the contents of our amends list and seek help from God in order to achieve success in the 9th step.
1. To conduct the 9th step in the appropriate time
2. Gain the courage to not put off, or make excuses to shy away from those amends.
3. To be able to trust Gods word, and to pray and ask for God to reveal to us what Gods will is and what God would consider to be a priority.
Now the plans for recovery are complete.
From this point forward, with solid actions, it is possible for us to gain forgiveness and reconciliation.
Recovery is not achieved by theory, it is achieved through action.
No matter how much we have learned, if we do not have action, there is absolutely no use for any of it.
Now, who should we start with? It’s time to make a decision about it.
We have the written list which we created in the 8th step.
A good procedure to follow would be to separate the list into three groups, and start with the easiest of the groups.
1. The group which the least burden would be felt by meeting with, apologizing, and making amends.
2. The group which would entail some amount of difficulties.
3. The group which would be considered nearly impossible to do at this point in time.
In order to make the 9th step less difficult, by comparison, starting with the easiest of the groups and gradually moving on towards the more strenuous would prove most effective.
Just because we prioritize our amends in that order does not mean that it is the end, nor does it mean that our plans to make the amends will change.
Now I would like to go over once more on the topic of forgiveness.
We can consider forgiveness the principle of the 8th and 9th step, and that forgiveness is the theme of Christianity.
Forgiveness is a needed, indispensible recipe when it comes to recovery and relationships.
Just as it is unfathomable to consider not having kimchee in kimchee jjigae, so to, is it unfathomable to consider that forgiveness not play an integral role in recovery and relationships. Also, on other important aspect is that if forgiveness is omitted, it is true that many people on the list of our amends would be removed. Why is that?
If we were to have resentment towards someone that we need to make amends to, would we actually think about going to make amends to that person?
Although it is in our plans to make amends to those we have harmed, if we have also been the recipient of damage from that person, we cannot truly make amends if we do not make the effort to forgive them first.
Therefore, instead of considering the resentments that we hold towards others, it is rather more beneficial that we consider and know what God would want for us to do.
If God is there wanting us to be honest, and to do the right things, it would make him glad every time that we did so.
This is God’s word from Proverbs 21 verse 3
To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.
God wants us to have more interest in and strive to do the other things that make him happy rather than just sacrifice and material gifts to him.
A fellowship with our brothers and sisters is one of those other things.
That is something we already know. The second is that we do things in a righteous and fair manner.
From Psalms 51 verse 17
God saves the sacrifice of a broken spirit is what the Word says.
What is the image of one who has a broken spirit?
The image is of one who beats their chest because they cannot themselves find solutions for their sins, and the one who humbly confesses those sins to God.
How would this result reflect inside of our lives? First and foremost, these appear in the form of forgiveness and reconciliation. What would just beating our chest do? If we realize the fact that others are human beings just as I am, forgiveness and reconciliation become a solution.
Secondly, giving our best effort to be honest and do the right thing. What is doing the right thing?
First, just like a radio, we need to be on the right frequency with God’s will. Through the written Word, through prayer, we try to become more aware of His wishes, and through that awareness, we have fellowship with others, try to help and love one another, because we realize that is what makes God glad to see of his followers. If we are on the right frequency, we can hear Gods words.
As a result, we need to start by loving those closest to us, which is our family.
Also, we need to take care of our neighbors, pursue salvation, spread the gospel, and perform missionary work. It is not that easy, but worship is the lifestyle we can choose to endure the hardships for Gods Kingdom.
God wants for us to not just worship during the times that we are in church, but to worship him through our lives also.
For this reason, we cannot consider living a Christian life or a recovery life properly if we omit forgiveness and amends.
Now it is clearly revealed what the purpose of a Christian life is.
This is summarized in 2nd Corinthians 5 verse 9
Therefore, we make it our aim whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to him.
This passage was first given to me by God nearly 6 years ago when I was serving as the rector for Tres Dias #1 in Taiwan.
Our pastor had informed me of wanting to start the first Tres Dias in Taiwan, and that he wanted me to just practice the responsibilities of preparation leader, but after completing a few months of work, as we were ready to set off, a week before departure I was given the new role of rector. This was a time in my life when I was faced with the difficulties of a neck disc.
But a preparation leader can afford to lie down and rest if his neck was in pain.
But a rector cannot for a minute rest or leave the site, so I was at a loss for what to do in that situation.
Then, through prayer, God had given me this scripture, and later this same scripture was decided to become the theme for Tres Dias #1 in Taiwan.
The entire program was completed successfully, and what started as a flickering ember has grown into an awesome spiritual revival in Taiwan.
Although there were some pains experienced during that time, I can’t begin to describe what an exciting happy experience that was.
How much more excited and happy do you think God was?
Whether we live or die, we strive to use our strength to please Christ.
As a result, we can grasp a life of honest freedom and happiness.
But if we are trying to pursue happiness and freedom without understanding and practicing this principle, it becomes easy to live a sinful lifestyle.
All of us who have chosen recovery want to follow the path that leads us closer to God.
So in the 3rd step, we make the decision to place down our will at His feet, and receive His guidance.
But, God is speaking to us now.
“Forgive, make amends, reconcile, and come back to me”
Our position in the 9th step should be to follow the requirements of God in order to obtain the bigger picture in his plans for us. That is the principle of second Corinthians 5 verse 18.
“Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation”
The relationship between man and God was broken solely due to the fault of man.
The relationship has gone wrong and we are not able to fix this relationship by our own abilities.
Let’s think of a hypothetical situation.
Let’s say that I am the owner of a small manufacturing company.
I have come to a meeting to engage in a business contract with one of America's biggest corporations.
What do you think would happen if I were to throw a tantrum, rip up the contract papers, and storm out of the meeting?
In the middle of my meeting with the CEO of the corporation?
There would be no way for me to somehow make up for this behavior.
Unless the CEO is willing to give me another chance, I would not be able to engage in a business relationship with this corporation.
That is exactly why God decided He Himself would come up with a plan to fix the relationship with God and man
After man ruined this relationship when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden.
We were the ones that sinned and caused our relationship with God to be torn.
But God is the one that wants to and actively tries to reconcile our relationship.
And to make this happen He MADE SUCH GREAT SACRIFICES!
Our God is a God of righteousness and love and His forgiveness and sacrifice shows us His will.
So what does it mean when it says?
“”Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through JesusChrist, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation”
What is does this tell us?
It is saying that we are undeserving of God's grace.
And yet we, who have no merit, have received God's grace.
Therefore, we must accept and follow God's will by loving our neighbors and spreading God's blessings to those around us by spreading the gospel.
My dear Gilgal family, what is recovery? recovery is not simple a life of abstinence from drugs and alcohol.
Recovery is aligning our lives with the will and plan God has for each and every one of us.
Recovery is the transformation of our broken lives into a life filled with God's grace and blessing.
Recovery is going from living our lives according to our own will to living our lives being led by God's will.
Recovery is recognizing how much our lives have changed.
In the past, we used to give pain to other people, and those people hated us for it.
But at some point we started to realize that we are becoming men in peace, spreading Gods love. This ladies and gentlemen, is recovery.
I conclude this lecture
As I hope to believe in our Gilgal community to relay this message to the addicts and addicts' families around us who are still suffering and dying.
This is our second lecture on step 9
“We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has soemthing against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.”
Matthew chapter 5 verses 23 and 24.
Through the lectures on step 8 and the first lecture on step 9
we learned about the forgiveness, amends, and compensations we must deal with in our process of recovery.
Then we constructed a list of people we have harmed and a list of our harmful actions.
Now we have arrived at the stage of actually making the amends
and I hope that by now we have a certain assurance about the course of actions we must take.
Let's take a look at Numbers 5:5~7 to get a detailed look at what God tells us about making amends and compensations.
“The Lord said to Moses,
“Say to the Israelites: 'When a man or woman wrongs another in any way and so is unfaithful to the Lord, that person is guilty and must confess the sin he has committed. He must make full restitution for his wrong, add one fifth to it and give it all to the person he has wronged.'””
Let's take a look at verse 6 one more time
““Say to the Israelites: 'When a man or woman wrongs another in any way and so is unfaithful to the Lord”
In this verse the word “wrongs”
In elaboration, this word describes the act of committing treason against God's laws, and therefore we have sinned.
What does this really mean?
This verse is telling us that the sins we commit against each other are not simply wrongs we exchange amongst humans.
When we carry about immorality, we are directly standing against God and committing these sins against Him.
In verse 7, God provides us with a solution to our problem of immorality.
[He or she] must confess the sin he has committed”
We must publicly confess our sins with a contrite state of mind.
In other words, we are submitting and surrendering to the justice righteous judgment of God.
Making monetary and materialistic compensations without true admission and realization to our sins cannot be considered true repentence.
Therefore, if we are to truly realize our wrong doings, we must be willing to make amends and proper compensations with a mind of repentence.
That is why God commands us to not only make full repayment and compensations according to our sins, but five times more on top*
In the last lecture of step we talked about Sacchaeus.
He is an example of someone who has truly repented for his sins and made proper amends.*
The Korean word Bo Sang really means to return to its rightful owner
The English bible uses the word restitution.
There is something that this word reminds me of a passage in the AA Big Book.
There is a segment in the book that carries testimonies and experiences of recovering addicts.
Among those testimonies and experiences, there are 12 stories written by the AA pioneers.
Since AA meetings first started in Akron and Cleveland, there are several writings about the pioneers' experiences at these meetings.*
Back then meetings took place at people's homes. The meeting consisted of a few alcoholics and their wives.
As expected, there was not yet a Big Book or even the 12 steps.
All there was were a few christian pamphlets
The meeting lasted about an hour and after the meeting everyone would gather around the kitchen area enjoying some coffee and doughnuts.
They would stay up until early morning talking and sharing.
When there was a new comer, Dr. Bob would spend hours explaining the step work, which only had 6 steps at the time. He would pray for the new comer as well.*
Dr. Bob would emphasize the importance of having faith in the christian God. Many of the original members share about how they benefited from it.
The early step works were made up of 6 steps.
These steps are actually in today's Big Book.
They are revealed in a chapter called “He sold himself short”,
which is a chapter on personal experiences
-The very first thing an addict needs to do in order to begin recovery is popping the balloon of pride we have of ourselves.
-We cannot begin recovery until all of the air in our balloon has been emptied out.
-This is today's step 1 and 2.
2.dependence and guidance from the Holy Spirit
-We must completely depend on the Holy Spirit for guidance in our lives
-This is today's step 3 and 11
-This is today's step 4
-This is today's step 5 and 10
-This encompasses today's step 6 through 9
6.continued work with other alcoholics
-This is today's step 12
These six principles originated from the principles of the oxford group, which the founding members of AA were apart of.
1.all people are sinners
2.all sinners can be changed
3.confession is a prerequisite to change
4.the changees can access God directly
5.miracles are again possible
6.the changees must change others
My dear Gilgal community
People can experience real internal change. Miracles still continue to happen.
A blind man gaining sight or a handicapped man learning how to walk are not the only events that can be considered a miracle.
An addict gaining sobriety and a new life through recovery is also a great miracle.
But this miracle does not occur because we continue to depend on our own strength and will.
We lose hope and sight of this miracle, so it does not take place.
This miracle happens when we sincerely wish to be change, our spirit is able to communicate with God and when those who have experienced change be of service to help those around us change as well*
Now let's return to the subject of restitution
Through the 8th and 9th step we face problems caused by materialistic reasons and relationship issues.
By making amends and compensations we can continue with our recovery*
The problems we have within ourselves caused damages in our relationships with others and with God.
These problems can be dealt with and recovered through steps 6 and 7
Therefore, we can see that there are more things than just materialistic* things involved in the process of restitution.
Restitution also encompasses the recovery of our relationship with God and with other people.
The Big Book is a testament of our predecessors of recovery who have thoroughly applied the steps in their lives and experienced great and drastic changes in their lives. It is a book of promises and guarantees of what can happen in our lives*
Let's take a look at a passage in the Big Book
If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through.
We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness.
We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.
We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.
No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others.
That feeling of uselessness and self pity will disappear.
We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows.
Self-seeking will slip away.
Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.
Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us.
We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us.
We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.
Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us—sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them.
3rd ed. Big Book pg. 83 & 84
We have with us God's promise, the Bible, and also evidence of real change in our predecessors' lives.
What more can we ask for? What are we waiting for?
I hope to see all of us use these tools to invest our lives in recovery.
In the last lecture, we completed the preparations to go through with step 9.
Now we will move on to a step by step detailed instruction on how to apply step 9 into our lives.
A.What should we do when it is possible to directly make amends?
Family, relatives, friends, co-workers.. There are people around us, to whom we are indebted to, that are rather easily accessible. After we have determined the list of people whom we can easily come in contact with we follow up with the following steps
1.We review our list with our sponsor and start with people we feel like we can more easily deal with.*
2.Then we take the time to first forgive the counter party. We reviewed the reasons as to why we do this during the last lecture.
3.Then we pray asking for humility and lift up our fears to God.
If we try to meet without a humble attitude, there is a good change we will fail at making amends*
Therefore, we should proceed with the heart of acceptance. We must be prepared to properly handle the other party's reactions and accept the result of meeting with them, whatever they may be.*
That is why we need to prepare beforehand by asking God for the will to do so.
Now we meet with the people on our list.
4.We have a face to face conversation, in which we make a sincere apology and ask for forgiveness.
We also display a willingness to go through with a detailed plan of repaying the damages we caused.
(one time repayment, monthly, in due time, etc.)
At this time, we must keep in mind to express things in a terse manner.
We do not give a dragged out explanation or make excuses, and we do not point any blame towards them.
5.Then we inquire about any other miscellaneous we might have caused.
These would include damages that cannot readily be calculated and repaid through money or any other materialistic means.
Any mental stress or damage to reputation can be considered here.
We also ask them what about ourselves or our actions caused them trouble.
At this time there will inevitably be a discussion about our character defects
We should remain calm. We must rid ourselves of self centered thoughts or self justifying ideas and maintain an open mindedness to successfully complete this meeting.
After all talk is over thank the counter party for the meeting and their words.
6.After returning home, we say a prayer of thankfulness. We are expressing our gratitude to God who continues to be in our lives and help us grow.
7.Then we go to our sponsor for support. There is a good chance we might have gotten hurt from the meeting.
B.What do we do in the circumstance in which only an indirect compensation is possible?*
There are people that live far away, people we cannot locate, or people who have passed.
1.We first examine if it is truly impossible to make direct restitution with these people.
2.Express the hurt we feel to a sponsor, friend, or God.
This is something I have experienced several times before.
3.If there is a way for us to contact the them by either phone or mail, we try to determine how we can go about making restitutions.
4.In the case that they have passed away
a.We pray about the harm we caused them and ask God for forgiveness and lift it up to God.
b.We can also write a letter. We cannot mail it to them, however, we can ask for forgiveness in the process of writing. We can also visit their grave with the letter we have written.
c.We can make compensation to their loved ones, such as their spouse or children.
5.There are people that we cannot find. We will make restitution to these people by doing the following
a.try our best to become a better personal
b.be of service to the organization and ministry we are apart of
c.help the poor and neglected people around us
Let's take a look at Ephesians chapter 4 verse 28
“Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”
When it says stealing, it is not only talking about professional thieves.
The bible is referring to all and any gains we have made unfairly or unrighteously.
Therefore we are to share our hard earned money with those who are in need
Thirdly, while making restitution we can run into another problem.
C.There is a chance that others can be harmed through the process of making restitution
Through the process of restitution there are things that we can gain.
We have gained freedom from our past and reconciliation in our relationship with others and God. We have gained the ability to get over our regrets and embarrassment and a new healthy self image*.
Not only that but we also have reduced the chances of making the same mistakes.
Even though there are so many things we can gain, we cannot do so while harming another individual.
For an example. If you had an affair with a married woman, should you tell her husband?
What about your wife who does not know anything about it? Would you tell her?
These are very serious matters we must think about.
But one thing for sure is that
Recovering addicts who are now sober and beginning a new life must be able to cut off all inappropriate relationships.
If there are certain things you cannot reveal to your loved ones, then you should express more love and care to compensate.
I say this once gain. We cannot continue to live double lives.
There is another situation that can be problematic
For an example, we could be in a situation where confessing and making restitution can result in another person losing their job or even going to jail.
It is true that if others' lives are at stake we must not continue with the confession and restitution. However, we must always be sure to examine ourselves. We might be giving up on the confession and restitution in order to protect ourselves.
In this case we must pray and talk with our sponsor.
We must remember that our goal is to lead a better life by growing and changing according to God's guidance.
One of the ways God guides us is by speaking to us through our conscience
Fourthly, there are times
D.When we have to delay
1.The counter party could still be in the midst of much pain and struggle with the damage that we gave them.
If this is so, then it would be pointless to meet with them. We must also be very honest with
ourselves in this situation.
2.If we find that we have not forgiven the other or we cannot find it in our heart to forgive them, we should delay meeting with them. What would be the solution in this case? We should pray
and read the bible. As we have Quiet Time with God, we can reassess our heart and try to
conjure a heart of forgiveness.
We have realized that the process of making amends and restitution requires much deep thought, prayer, and consultation. To have a successful meeting with each individual on our list, we must spend making preparations.
God is with us helping us, consoling us, and guiding us through each step of this process.
Therefore, we must keep in mind that we are doing the right thing.
By having faith we know that we do not have to be sneaky or try to take an easier way out.
We must stand firm as God’s children and at the same time maintain a humble and calm composure.
I would like to summarise and wrap up our lecture.
In Romans 13:8, it is stated
“Don’t be in debt to anyone, except for the obligation to love each other. Whoever loves another person has fulfilled the Law.
First, God tells us Christians to live without being indebted to others. We should always work towards getting rid of any debts we have not repaid.
We must repay any materialistic or monetary debts.
And if we have hurt or insulted someone we must sincerely apologize.
At the same time, if there are any people who have hurt or insulted us, we must forgive them.
Have you ever considered our unforgiveness of another to be a debt?**
Secondly, God tells us that love is a debt we cannot work off no matter how much we repay.
Love is an eternal debt we carry.
And this love is not something that is limited to other believers or fellow church members.
Love can expand to reach anyone.
We, as addicts, used to live our lives burdening and hurting those around us.
I hope that we can change into people that can care, respect, and love all of the people around us no matter who they are. I hope that we can become people who have positive influence to those around us.
Starting from our families, to co-workers, Gilgal community members, House of Thanksgiving members, church small group members, and even to the random people that we meet outside of our church and recovery communities, I hope that we can live as a testament of God’s love and God’s people.**
This is not to live boastfully about our accomplishments.
If we are to say that we are God’s people, we must be able to live serving others and God’s kingdom and glory. We must be able to sacrifice our lives for God’s purpose.
We must know that this is included in the menu of recovery**
We have all received some love and help from organizations of recovery and community of Christ. After a short period of time we convince ourselves that we have gotten everything we can from recovery and leave to live our own selfish and self centered lives.
This is very pathetic
That would be like going to a very expensive and fancy restaurant and leaving after drinking the ice water the waiter brings you. We would be leaving without even realizing that a FREE wonderful full course meal will follow the glass of water we drank.
Instead, if we maintain a grateful heart and learn to give to others as we have received, we will realize how much blessing awaits us and have unbelievably great and glorious experiences.
“So it does not matter if we are ling here or go to live there. Wherever we are we want to please the Lord.”
My dear Gilgal community
Recovery is a beautiful and miraculous gift from God.
I wish that every single one of us can receive this gift fully and take it for everything that it is worth.
With this hope I conclude the final lecture of step 9. Thank you very much.