The Power of Prayer in Recovery
Bill W learned about the power of prayer in recovery from the Oxford Group. The Oxford Group learned about the power from church. And the church learned all about it from Abraham himself. So what makes you think it won’t work for you?
Okay, Abraham didn’t have an alcohol problem. Not that we know of anyway. Noah sure had a drinking problem though. A big problem. And it begat the Curse of Ham. That means people have been dealing with substance abuse issues since The Flood. They couldn’t lick it then, and they can’t lick it now.
But they can kick it to the curb though. Get it out of the way. Put it in its place. Stomp it into submission. They can face the fact of substance abuse — that it exists, that it’s formidable, that it affects everybody, everywhere — and they can give it an about face.
How? Through prayer. Prayer has helped people overcome the most tragic of setbacks, so it’s a cinch it’ll help people overcome substance abuse. In fact, it’s essential that people recognize the power of prayer in recovery. And then put that power to use.
It’s Not the Prayer; it’s the Way You Pray!
Prayer is indeed a powerful force. It can be soothing. It can be reassuring. And yes, it can be empowering. Incredibly empowering. But it’s not so much the prayer which provides the most power — it’s the way that you pray.
Just ask Jesus. Or at least ask his disciples and acolytes. Jesus prayed with a kind of authority and power they had never seen before — as though God was listening! So they didn’t say, “Teach us another prayer.” They said, “Lord, teach us to pray.” Jesus responded with The Lord’s Prayer.
Yes, that prayer is ubiquitous. In fact, it’s been closing Alcoholics Anonymous meetings around the world since the birth of the organization itself. But it’s what lies behind the words that makes the prayer so effective. The heart, as well as the soul. The belief in what’s said and the faith that’s what said will ring true.
Summoning the Power of Prayer in Recovery
Here are a few tips on how best to summon the power of prayer in recovery:
- Know Who You’re Praying ToPrayer is a conversation with God, and since the best conversations begin by addressing the other person by name, you’ll want to do so here. Who are you praying to? The Father? The Son? Perhaps the Holy Ghost? Maybe you’ve another deity or spirit in mind. Whomever you’re addressing, try to make it personal.
- Show Your ThanksA heartfelt Thank You is always a great conversation starter. Spirits love to see that we have grateful hearts. More importantly, as we take the time to praise our particular God for all the answered prayers, the impossible situations overcome, the healings and the grace, our faith to believe grows ever stronger and more confident. They say praise opens the gates of heaven, so it should always be part of your alone time with God.
- Ask for God’s WillIn the Garden of Gethsemane, only hours before he was crucified, Jesus prayed “not my will, but yours be done.” If Jesus was confused between right and wrong, chance are we are too. It’s not a Christian thing. It’s a Spirit thing. The Universe has a plan for all of us, and that plan is divine. Pray to be put on the path to divinity.
- Say What You NeedYou seldom hesitate asking for things in real life, so why hesitate to ask in prayer? If anything, prayer is the perfect place to ask for what you need. Take Jesus. He needed bread to feed his friends, so he asked for it. And what happened. He received it too. In fact, that whole ask and ye shall receive is one of The Bible’s boldest truths. Whether it’s something small or something large, hit your knees and ask the heavens. You’ll be surprised how often it will provide.
- Ask for ForgivenessPeople feel guilty. That’s a given. (Unless they’re sociopaths.) That’s especially true for people in recovery. Somehow, someway we’ve wronged, and we walk around kicking ourselves because of it. But kicking yourself doesn’t do anything but tie you into a knot and carrying the weight of guilt can bury you. Ask for forgiveness. And while you’re at it, ask for the power to forgive yourself.
- Pray with a FriendPraying with a friend can double the chances that your prayers will be answered. It can also help you bond with someone whose interests and beliefs align with yours. That will deepen the faith for you both. The benefits rise exponentially with the number of people aligned in prayer. And if you’re limited by social distancing, try putting together a prayer group via Zoom. With your eyes closed and your faith on high, it’ll almost be like praying with people in the same room.
The Power of Prayer in Recovery
Healing Properties has long recognized the power of prayer in recovery. In fact, we’ve been a proponent of prayer in recovery since our inception. Like Bill W, we took our cues from the Oxford Group. And like Bill W, we’ve seen prayer impact our lives in every way, each and every day that we pray. That’s why we try never to miss a day. And that’s why we advocate for prayer every chance we get.
But don’t just take our word for it. Written evidence of prayer dates back nearly 5000 years and it’s been used by every people in the world. Christians bow their heads and fold their hands. Native Americans dance. Sufi dervishes whirl. Hindus chant mantras. Jews sway back and forth and bow. While Quakers keep still and silent. There’s good reason why all the peoples of the world incorporate prayer in their lives. That’s because it works. Plain and simple.
And if prayer works for them it will also work for you. All you’ve got to do is have faith. Believe in yourself, believe in your God, and believe your world will turn out right. Yes, the power of prayer in recovery can be immeasurable. It can likewise reap immeasurable reward. What are you waiting for?