Only 8 months after our wedding we were both serving in the church when our marriage took a hit that I wasn’t sure we’d recover from.

At this point in our marriage I really didn’t know where to turn. I felt like there was no one I could talk to about what was really going on. We were both faithful servants in the church and, with my trust issues, I worried if anyone knew what was really going on we would both be judged.

I did the only thing I knew to do... pray and fast over my marriage and try to figure out how to deal without letting anyone into our issues. What I’ve learned is that is right where the enemy wants us to be- suffering silently feeling alone and isolated!

When Jonathan told me that he was going to start going to CR, in my head I was saying “great that is exactly what you need to do!”

In 1 Corinthians 13:5 it says love keeps no record of wrongs. I knew if I really loved my husband like I said I did then I needed to offer him the same forgiveness Jesus gives and still gives me over and over again. To my husband’s surprise when he asked me about going to CR I said “okay i'll go.” Little did I know is that night I would hear a testimony on how CR healed a couple’s marriage.

As I sat in the back row with tears in my eyes I knew this is where Jesus wanted me to be. Just keep coming back is what they say and I did just that! I decided to join a step study and began working the steps. I went through the motions for a while and started praying and asking God why isnt this helping like I thought it would. Yet again the Lord reminded me that you have to be real to get what you need. I finally opened up to my sponsor in more detail. Through sharing with her and others I grew to trust this was a safe place where I could be open & vulnerable.

Today our marriage is stronger than ever and we both lead our ministry’s Landing (Celebrate Recovery’s Teen ministry) where we are helping students come out of their isolation and find hope and healing from their hurts, hangups and habits!”

Thanks for sharing letting us share. Faith and Jonathan

Addiction, cigarettes, identity, alcohol, marijuana, rebellion

“I grew up in a pretty ideal home where we were in the church every time the doors opened. I am able to peg the exact moment that life changed for me. An unfortunate situation came about with the pastor of our church and we quit attending. I went from being a good student, focused on academics and Christ to a lost and vulnerable young adult on the search for his new identity. This search lead me to cigarettes, alcohol and marijuana and, ultimately, rebellion.

I clung to these vices as I faced my parent’s divorce, my cousin’s suicide, and failed relationships, one of which gave me my first child. Addiction had its hold on me and I couldn’t shake it loose. I eventually met my wife and we have three children together.

Though I was holding down a job that took care of my family, allowing my wife to stay at home and take care of our children, looking back I realize that I was a functioning alcoholic, functioning just enough to tell myself I didn’t have a problem. I wasn’t the husband, or father that God wanted me to be.

As my family began to fall apart, my Christian roots called me home, back to church. God was moving, helping keep my family together, and then our church started a CR. My wife and kids began attending, and as I noticed the positive changes in them, it prompted me to think this may work for me too. The control I thought I had on this addiction showed its ugly face when, after gaining 2 months of sobriety, I woke up in a jail cell, unaware of how or why I was there. In that moment I knew I had to surrender, that God had to be the one to deliver me from my addiction. I got home and became as involved as possible at CR, starting a step study and serving. Through the power of God along with CR I have been able to overcome my addictions, my relationships are restored and I am a new creation. Satan had me thinking he had stolen everything from me, but God has redeemed it all!”

Jesse