Making amends is often one of the more difficult challenges a patient faces in recovery. Addiction can create moral wreckage. People who are in active addiction often struggle with lying, cheating and/or stealing to maintain their substance abuse. Upon realizing there is a problem, a patient begins the process of recovery by first healing themselves and then making amends to the relationships they have broken during active addiction.
What Does It Mean to Make Amends?
When a patient begins their walk in recovery, past behaviors and consequences begin to arise that the patient has to take into account. Making amends in recovery symbolizes that a patient is ready to work through the hurt and the pain they have caused–to themselves and others–while at the same time shifting the focus from selfishness to selflessness. God calls us to do this with great humility, acknowledging our errors and striving for ways to demonstrate sincerity. The goal in recovery is to restore what was broken or damaged in life. This allows a patient to show a genuine form of repentance.
What Does the Bible Say?
God calls us to reconcile with another before coming to Him. The message in the Bible reads in Matthew 5:23-24, “This is how I want you to conduct yourself in these matters. If you enter your place of worship and, about to make an offering, you suddenly remember a grudge a friend has against you, abandon your offering, leave immediately, go to this friend and make things right. Then and only then, come back and work things out with God.”
What Are the Benefits of Making Amends in Recovery?
If a patient continually harms others and has not made any effort toward amends, selfishness begins to take root, in the form of broken promises, tarnished reputations and environments to avoid. Large areas of life become closed off. When a patient is willing to make amends in recovery, these areas open up again. God’s goal is for people to learn how to address issues head on. To learn how to reconcile and be reconciled with, just as Jesus has forgiven us for all our sins. Making amends in recovery allows a patient to free themselves from bondage and to reconnect with those most close to them.
Lakeview Health can help people struggling with addiction. You can find help here, including in our Christian recovery track. Call our admission counselors at 866.704.7692 for immediate help.