Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob, the founders of the first Twelve Step Program had the right idea about incorporating a God of each individual’s understanding into their program. In addition to being a physiological and psychological disease, addiction often carries a spiritual component. Faith-based recovery is beneficial because it treats the psychological and spiritual component. Research even shows that those who believe in a religion are healthier psychologically.
Three Benefits of Faith-Based Recovery
- Motivates Recovery
Many addictions are triggered by people trying to fill a void. Faith-based recovery puts the God of your understanding front and center in your recovery; therefore, many of the tools that you learn will revolve around God. Faith-based treatment will teach you that God has saved you from the grasps of addiction, which will motivate you to fight even harder to maintain recovery, and that God can help you fill the void you were trying to fill when you became addicted.
- Decreases Risk of Relapse
Statistics show that members who practice a religion that prohibits or at least discourages substance use are less like to abuse substances. On the contrary, adults who do not practice a religious faith are more likely to abuse various substances. Even though substance use disorder does not discriminate, the numbers show that faith plays a huge role in reducing substance abuse. Practicing religion in recovery will help decrease your risk of relapse.
- Promotes Holistic Life Changes
Abstaining from addictive substances is a significant part of recovery, but it is not the only part of recovery. Recovery requires a change in lifestyle, cognition, and behavior. Religion changes your perspective on life. Many religions teach that the unfair in this life will be amended in the next life. Religions set a list of guidelines for behavior, which will help you reduce selfishness and other defects of character. Believing in a God who has a plan for you and forgives you will help you make peace with your past.
Faith and Recovery in a Nutshell
Practicing a spiritual or religious faith makes working a Twelve Step Program even easier. Faith is beneficial to recovery because it addresses multiple facets of substance use disorder. Though science and religion are often at odds, recovery is one goal where they can work together. Medical treatments, evidence-based therapies, and faith can work together to combat the disease. Faith can serve as your motivation for recovery, reduce your risk of relapsing, and help you holistically change your life.
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