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How to prepare for a miracle in drug addiction & alcoholism recovery

How can recovery happen? Yet again, Rabbi Taub helps us understand the “self” in relationship to a Higher Power and helps us prepare for miracles in recovery. Contemplate what it takes to pray for a miracle in addiction recovery here.

2
minute read

Recovery in a nutshell

So, here’s basically recovery in a nutshell: addict gets tired of trying to make everything work; addict gives up and lets Higher Power take over; addict experiences unusual freedom, happiness, and usefulness as long as and to the extent that addict does not renege on previous decision.

I am sure that people who suffer from other conditions that are also incurable, progressive, and fatal would be thrilled if their diseases could be treated just as easily. It almost seems too good to be true, and it would be . . . if everybody who needed the solution knew about it and everyone who knew about it actually used it. But the irony of addiction is, as many people in recovery are apt to point out, that it is the disease that tells you don’t have a disease.

Another way of putting it is that when you are full of yourself, its very hard to see that you are the problem.

Or, conversely, when you need God the most, God is the last thing you want.

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There’s not much more to recovery than that the addict just follows some basic rules of living and is relieved from the obsession to use. It sounds like a neat trick. But as the old slogan goes, There is no magic in recovery; just miracles.

How to prepare for a miracle in recovery

This is a crucial point, one that we need to clarify right here and now if we are to understand how this program works.

People don’t make miracles.

God does.

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The addict’s role in recovery is thus really no more than to just get out of the way so that God can make recovery happen.

If that sounds like some kind of voodoo or imaginary magic bullet, just remember how much incredibly hard work it actually takes to get out of the way.

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If it were really so easy to let God do His business, then addicts wouldn’t need to resort to numbing themselves into oblivion in a desperate attempt to replicate this effect. Would they? If we could all just snap our fingers and become selfless, we wouldn’t need to follow a program that trains us how to live in harmony with God; we’d already just being doing it. So do not be mistaken: recovery is hard work, just not in the sense that we often think of it.

About the author
Rabbi Shais Taub is one of today's most respected young scholars of Jewish spirituality and practice. National Public Radio called him "an expert in Jewish mysticism and the Twelve Steps." He is the author of God of Our Understanding: Jewish Spirituality and Recovery from Addiction.

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  1. I AM A 55YRSOLD WOMAN AND I AM SOOOOOOOO TIRED BEING IN MY OWN WAY, AND PRAY ALL THRU THE DAY TO ASK TO HELP GET THIS POISSON, SOME ONE PLEASE HELP ME TO HELP MYSELF. .PLEASE AND DO BE LEAVE IF U TAKE ONE STEP GOD WILL BLESS YOU WITH TWO. .AMEN. .

    1. Hi Diane. If you have questions about addiction treatment and your options, immediate assistance is available. Call our free hotline to speak with a trusted treatment consultant.

  2. Hi Rabbi Taub,
    I’ve found out it’s called “Call of the Shofar”. It’s a sort of therapy shabbaton. It will be held soon in Milwaukee, and next in New Jersey. It is good for addicts or anyone. Thanks for this blog.

  3. No, I do not know SHOFAR in Milwaukee which is funny because I lived there for 6 years and was extremely involved in the recovery community there. Maybe it is something new. That would be exciting. If you find out more, please tell me.

  4. Do you know anything about SHOFAR in Milwaukee? It was recommended for my husband by someone. My husband is in AA. Is this place good for alcoholics?

  5. Hi Marissa, You might want to check out this post about how Al-Anon works written by licensed clinical social worker, Nachshon Zohari. He outlines what you, as a spouse, can do and expect from 12 step meetings and deal with a loved one’s addiction.

  6. Can you share some advice on how someone in need can get fast contact with their local synagogue via the telephone?

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