Recovery High {Redemption Stories}

Sean looked tired yesterday morning as he sat in his spot in the chapel. We are such creatures of habit. We sit in the same place while we are trying to build new habits into our lives. It was early. The chapel was almost empty. I walked over to give him a hug and ask if he was tired and he mouthed “bad day”.

There are some things that happen over and over and the repetition numbs you. Even good things. But not this. Not when one who has celebrated such success has a relapse. A few weeks ago he was recognized as the runner-up for Man of the Year. He shared, with such freedom, his story to encourage others. The one-year medallion was waiting to be picked up. There was so much hope. So much promise and future. And a slip. A slip we have prayed will not be a long fall.

And a slip. A slip we have prayed will not be a long fall.

I never want to feel numb to the sorrow I feel. How can we show grace if we become numb? How can we love if we don’t feel?


My mind swirls with questions. Do we celebrate too much? Is the crown of success too heavy to wear? We have these monthly awards to celebrate sobriety. We recognize a select few as having shown outstanding progress in all areas, not just sobriety. Recovery is more than not drinking or using.

Is it too much? I asked that aloud yesterday. A few nodded their heads with raised eyebrows as if to say…maybe, yes, maybe it’s too much. But Eric, oh Eric I love your honesty. Eric said, “For what? A year?” He’s been doing these things for a full recovery a year. It’s not too much Eric says.

And I don’t know. I do know, I must always remember we aren’t responsible for another’s recovery. For the success or failure. We merely stand with arms open saying here’s my gift. Take it.

Isn’t that what God is doing with us? All of us. Here it is…Here I am….take it. My gift, my grace, my mercy, my love…to you.

Overwhelm me with that love so I can share it.

And surround Sean with your unending grace.

More about Debby Hudson

Where do you find grace? Inside the church walls? Around the dinner table with your family? For years, grace was not much more than the prayer we said before meals or a biblical concept. Then I met a group of men who had, as we say, reached bottom. They welcomed me to Graceland. They showing me grace can be found in the darkest of places. I'm still searching and learning. I hope you'll want to come along.

4 thoughts on “Recovery High {Redemption Stories}

  1. Stumbling into GRACE

    Morning Debby … I checked the box LIKE but in reality I take a big sigh with tear filled eyes .. for Sean and for all suffering from these addictions in life .. we all know it’s self medication to hide true pain .. such struggles when we don’t even know if we would be sitting in the same chairs if we lived those same live experiences .. in my limited experience I’ve found addicts don’t have much experience with Life Celebrations .. So CELEBRATE .. take the good with the bad … take the slip and falls and CELEBRATE when they return because each time they learn a little more and remember what they’ve been taught about forgiveness and grace by loving people like you, your husband and staff .. Prayers for your men and your work!!! Prayers for strength to keep on keeping on


    1. Debby Hudson

      Now my eyes are getting teary Sue. Yes, we believe each time they learn more and we will definitely keep on celebrating! Thank you for your prayers. Prayers are what sustain us every day.


  2. Annie Rim

    Thinking about your post yesterday, too. I love that you CELEBRATE recovery. And yet… Accountability and hard work are still needed every day. Sometimes I forget that the celebration is encouragement for the journey. That we are still on a journey…


    1. Debby Hudson

      Yes, it is a journey for all of us, Annie. I hope our folks can see that. Even when our journies look different, they are no less filled with unseen curves and detours. I’m so poor at celebrating things in my own life but maybe this will teach me more about that too.


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