No More Promises!

Promises really aren’t as noble as they seem. How many times have you promised yourself that you’d stop? How many times have you promised those around you that things would be different from here on out? How many times have you promised God that this would be the LAST time? You weren’t lying. You had every intention of following through . . . but, in the end, you just couldn’t pull it off.

Promises are rampant in addiction. It’s unlikely that there is anyone who has struggled with any sort of compulsive behavior, that hasn’t made a promise . . . or two . . . or one hundred . . .  that they couldn’t keep.

By their very nature, promises set a person up for failure. Either you 100% keep your promise. Or you 100% fail. In the early stages of recovery there is still a lot to learn and experience before you’ll be able to achieve lasting changes. A promise provides no allowance for the process of learning, growing, striving or even doing increasingly better. Once a promise is broken the deal is over. You failed. The repeated failures that are inevitable at this point only create more shame and self-loathing—the two things that have the potential to derail any recovery attempt.

Those who choose, instead, to make a COMMITMENT to recovery ultimately experience more success. If you purpose in your heart to move toward freedom and not stop trying until you get there, there is room for ups and downs, bad days, old thinking and even slips. You aren’t a failure just because you were still learning, still striving, and not quite “finished”. When it doesn’t go well, you just pick yourself up, renew your resolve to push toward freedom and run to God and others for the wisdom and courage you need to continue your journey. You’ll find there is less energy wasted on beating yourself up and feeling hopeless, less inclination to give up, and a new and fresh determination to move ever closer to your goal.

And you know the best part? God DOES lead those who don’t give up, to the freedom they seek.

“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-15


  • Sherry

    Reply Reply April 30, 2013

    I love this one. I really think you could make a daily reader of Meditations for the recovering sexual addict from your blog. I enjoy and get so much from reading each and every post.

    • bruceandjanet

      Reply Reply April 30, 2013

      Thanks! Glad that you’re finding the blog helpful. Who knows . . . maybe I WILL compile a Sexual Addiction Recovery Meditations book someday. It’s a great idea.

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