Posted in Addiction, Forgiveness, healing, Jesus, Purpose, Uncategorized

What Can You Say to the Newly Recovered Former Substance Abuser?

Words hold power – to do either good or evil.  When you deliver bad words, life takes a turn for the worse.  When you speak good words, beautiful life changing events happen.  The recovered former substance abuser is extra sensitive during their first year, when the brain is re-setting itself to normal. When you love that person, you need to provide encouragement, forgiveness and a source of hope for them.  No, you’re not responsible for winning or losing in their recovery; however, you ARE responsible for respecting their humanity and showing them that you forgive them.  They need to feel your unconditional love, without placating them or giving them false hopes.  It’s a balance of things that need to work together to help them in a therapeutic and humane way.  We teach that at Victory Retreat Montana online.

The people the recovered former substance abuser comes home to are an integral part in that person’s completed recovery. Through your words to them, along with their observation of your lifestyle that back those words, they learn trust, love, compassion, balance, life skills and hope.  You need to know what ingredients to add that will make the recovery meal super delicious.  In a way it’s like a child learning what they live.  The vulnerable newly recovered former substance abuser is also like a child who need to re-learn life, just as a child does.


For you newly recovered love one, NEVER…

  • Never call them an ‘addict’; that was then and not now; they are humans like anyone else
  • Never become hostile; hostility breeds rage and resentment
  • Never speak to them in the negative, such as saying things like, ‘don’t’, ‘you’re not’, ‘never’, ‘I prohibit you from’, ‘you can’t’, etc.  All of those negative words cause behaviors that are opposite to what you are demanding.  When you tell someone, ‘don’t, they ‘do’.
  • Never speak words that will dredge up their past. The past is over and done.  No one should ever be defined by their past.
  • Never correct in a negative manner.
  • Never use words of condemnation.
  • Never react in anger.
  • Never cause them to feel invisible; that’s abusive.

For your newly recovered loved one, ALWAYS…

  • Always speak truth in words and in deeds… and follow through with your promises.
  • Always pray for and with your loved one at least once daily and each time a crisis comes up.
  • Always be a source of encouragement. There is always something to respond with encouragement about.
  • Always be there to listen – without judgement.
  • Show unconditional love always.
  • Find something to compliment about your loved one.
  • Deliver words that bring change.
  • Offer words, on a daily basis (or more), that tells them how much they matter.
  • Ask them if they would like to talk about their plans and encourage them.
  • Tell them, in word and in deed, that you are proud of them.

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue.”
Proverbs 18:21


Posted in Addiction, Forgiveness, healing, Purpose, recovery, rehab, Uncategorized

Is Your Loved One Coming Home to His or Her Past, or Will it be their Present and Future?

One of the reasons why we work with families, is because addiction is a family problem that has a family solution.  Without knowing it, family members can destroy someone’s recovery process by refusing to see them as a new person.  Typically, spouses, children, parents and others close to the recovering person, will constantly make mention of what that person once was and the bad things they did – not acknowledging their courage and strength during their brave fight to be delivered from the ugly, dark and demonic claws of addiction.

When people graduate from Victory Retreat Montana’s virtual recovery program, the family is well coached on how to welcome their loved one back into their lives and their homes.  The graduate is also prepared to overcome any obstacles that may present themselves upon their return home.  Most rehabs don’t do this.  They send the graduate of their program back into their former life, with all the problems they left there.  No one knows how to communicate, much less provide the necessary encouragement and recovery tools to fuel their loved one in a positive direction.

Are you a new graduate?  Need faith based Recovery?  Looking for answers? Are you the family of a loved one who suffered in an addiction and don’t know what to do or where to turn?  Please contact us below, or go to Victory Retreat Montana and learn more of what we do and how we can help.


Posted in Addiction, Forgiveness, healing, Salvation, Uncategorized

Does Forgiving Always Lead to Forgetting?


Guilt and shame cause addiction.  They also walk together in causing depression and despair.  Forgiving and forgetting – with the full understanding of what both words truly mean –  have everything to do with this.  Let’s look at what our Master, Jesus, has to say about this when Peter asked this question, in Matthew 18:21-22 …….

Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?  Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

What do we read from His Words and what do we read between the lines?  Clearly, Jesus says that we need to keep forgiving; however, as many times as He tells us to forgive, those times come to an end.  Simple math tells us that the number of times we need to forgive someone comes to 490. So, is that a literal amount of times that we keep a note of in our little forgiveness notebook, or, does it mean to keep forgiving without counting the number of times we forgive?  After all, constantly writing this down can be annoying and with probably errors.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this; however, my personal opinion is that we just keep forgiving.  Jesus also says in Matthew 6:15 …….

But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

In this passage, there is no number set on how many times we must forgive.  We always need to do exhaustive research by connecting other Scriptures in order to get the true meaning of any verses or passages.  My personal conclusion is that we must always  forgive in order to be forgiven. So, does forgetting always follow forgiving?

My next question is, what about forgetting the things that were done against us?  Now, that’s a horse of another color!  Jesus also says , in Matthew 7:6 …….

Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

Scripture is deeply multi-layered and usually has many applications.  One of the meanings of the above Scripture warns us that  there is a certain point in time that we must protect ourselves from ongoing hurt and abuse.  When it’s been too much, we shut down.  When we shut down, we are rendered useless to God, ourselves and others.  We don’t want to go to that dark place.  That’s the darkness when we become vulnerable to doing and thinking dark things.

No longer casting our pearls before swine is a point in time when we come to the harsh realization that we’ve been beaten each and every time we trust this person. So, we need to stop thinking that this time it will be different.  We can predict future behavior by past behavior unless there is a dramatic event that radically changes someone.  We must continue to hold on to forgiveness, as forgiveness is something that exists between our Heavenly Father and us.  It sets us free.  Forgetting, however, may be a different thing.  The ability to remember can actually be a protective shield for us. There comes a point in time, however, when we feel as though we are so badly bruised that we just cannot take another blow. That is the point, in my humble opinion, when we no longer cast our pearls before that swine (person).  It stops so that we can recover and re-fuel.  It becomes a time of healing… retrospection… introspection… and talking with the Lord. We must, however, make certain that this person has truly harmed us and it’s not our biased perception.  We cannot disconnect from someone just because we don’t like a few things they do, or the color of their hair, or because we are thin skinned and take something they say or do as offensive.  We need to make certain the the harm they keep doing to to us is truly ungodly and may even border on criminal.  We must also figure into this equation whether this person is a spouse… a child… a parent… or someone similar.  For those people in our lives, we need to seek Godly counsel in order to move forward together or separately.  A husband or wife who are both in Christ is yet another scenario.  God HATES divorce, so we must work especially hard to ‘fix’ a relationship, and each person independently, involved in that marriage so that our relationship here mirrors our marriage to Jesus in eternity.

Bringing it home

As Christians, we are held to a higher level of accountability – to God, to friends, to family, to co-workers, and even to strangers.  We must seek God in all areas of forgiveness and being able to forget.  There is no one answer that covers all situations.  Here, I have presented some ideas and scenarios; however, you need to dig deeply for each and every situation before you consider anyone to be ‘swine’.  Yes, life as a believer can, at times, be even more complicated that life as a non-believer.  We are accountable to God and must take that seriously.

Never live your life so that you have regrets.

Faith based recovery that is compassionate, empathetic, transformational, non-12 step, without disease theories, individualized, and delivered to you online and by phone – with 24/7 support for life! Please CLICK HERE.