Category Archives: C.R.



The Lord who made you and helps you says: “Do not be afraid, my chosen one.” Isaiah 44:2. 

Isaiah 44:1–5; Esther 9–10; Acts 7:1–21

I had been out late the night before, just as I was every Saturday night. Just twenty years old, I was running from God as fast as I could. But suddenly, strangely, I felt compelled to attend the church my dad pastored. I put on my faded jeans, well-worn T-shirt, and unlaced high-tops and drove across town.

I do not recall the sermon Dad preached that day, but I can not forget how delighted he was to see me. With his arm over my shoulder, he introduced me to everyone he saw. “This is my son!” he proudly declared. His joy became a picture of God’s love that has stuck with me all these decades.

You Belong Here
You Belong Here

The imagery of God as loving Father occurs throughout the Bible. In Isaiah 44, the prophet interrupts a series of warnings to proclaim God’s message of family love. “Dear Israel, my chosen one,” he said. “I will pour out my Spirit on your descendants, and my blessing on your children” (vv. 2–3 nlt). Isaiah noted how the response of those descendants would demonstrate family pride. “Some will proudly claim, ‘I belong to the Lord,’” he wrote. “Some will write the Lord’s name on their hands” (v. 5 nlt).

Wayward Israel belonged to God, just as I belonged to my adoptive father. Nothing I could do would ever make him lose his love for me. He gave me a glimpse of our heavenly Father’s love for us. – Tim Gustafson. Daily Bread. 

Heavenly Father, we all come from families that are broken in one way or another. Thank You for loving us in that brokenness and for showing us what real love looks like.

God’s love for us offers us the sense of belonging and identity we all crave.

We Belong 

David Lowen 

Pat Benatar 

We belong to the light, we belong to the thunder 

We belong to the sound of the words we’ve both fallen under 

Whatever we deny or embrace for worse or for better 

We belong, we belong, we belong together…

Seven Reasons We Get Stuck

Seven Reasons We Get Stuck

Celebrate Recovery
Celebrate Recovery

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 25

1. We have not completely worked the previous principle.

– Perhaps we are trying to move through the principles too quickly. Slow down! Give God time to work! Remember, this program is a process.

– “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” Galatians 5:25.

2. We have not completely surrendered our life and our will to the Lord.

– Perhaps we are trusting Jesus with the “big” things, but we still think we can handle the “small” things.

– “For good judgment and common sense, trust in the Lord completely; don’t ever trust in yourself. In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success.”  Proverbs 3:5-6.

3. We have not accepted Jesus’ work on the cross for our forgiveness.

– We may have forgiven others, but we think our sin is too big to be forgiven.

– “But if we confess our sins to him, he can be depended on to forgive us … from every wrong.” 1 John 1:9.

– “So overflowing is his kindness towards us that he took away all our sins through the blood of his Son, by whom we are saved.” Ephesians 1:7.

– Have you forgiven yourself?

– Remember, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:1.

4. We really have not forgiven others who have harmed us.

– We must “let go of the pain of past harm and abuse. Until we are able to release it, forgive it, it will continue to hold us as its prisoner.

– “After you have suffered a little while, our God, who is full of kindness through Christ, will give you his eternal glory. He personally will pick you up, and set firmly in place and make you stronger than ever.” 1 Peter 5:10-11.

5. We are afraid of the risk in making the necessary change.

– We may be paralyzed by the fear of failure. We may fear intimacy because of the fear of rejection or of being hurt again. We may resist change (growth) because of the fear of the unknown.

– “Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed … I will strengthen you; I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.” Isaiah 41:10.

– “That is why we can say without any doubt or fear, “The Lord is my Helper and I am not afraid of anything that mere man can do to me.” Hebrews 13:6.

6. We are not willing to “own” our responsibility.

– We need to take responsibility for our past in a broken relationship, a damaged friendship, with a distant child or parent, and so forth.

– “Examine me, O God, and know my mind; test me, and discover … if there is any evil in me and guide me in the everlasting way.” Psalm 139:23.

7. We have not developed an effective support team.

– Do you have a sponsor or an accountability partner? Do you have the phone numbers of others in you small group? Have you volunteered for a commitment to your recovery ministry?

– “Be with wise men and become wise. Be with evil men and become evil.” Proverbs 13:20.

– “Dear brothers, you have been given freedom: not freedom to do wrong, but freedom to love and serve each another.” Galatians 5:13.

– “Share each other’s troubles and problems, and so obey our Lord’s command.” Galatians 6:2.