What happens when your pain is greater than your fears? On this episode, Duane speaks with Recovery Pastor Craig Brown and author of the book, Stop Hiding, Start Healing.
Craig shares his recovery journey coming out of an abusive, dysfunctional family and how he peeled off the layers of his pain, shame, and guilt, and finally found freedom again once he decided to surrender and give his life over to Christ-centered recovery. One of the striking things Craig also mentioned during this interview is that people think recovery is about addiction and about the drug addict, but recovery is about restoring souls.
Growing up, Craig was feeling the pressure of having a dad who was a pastor, being in an environment where they were forced to fake it so his dad would look good in public. But the man he saw standing in the pulpit was entirely different than the one he saw at home. He had a lot of demons within him as well as a lot of struggles that he took out on Craig and his siblings.
So at a very young age, Craig had to learn some coping mechanisms to deal with what he was going through. He didn’t have good nurturing nor did he have any emotional, mental, or spiritual development. Once he got to high school, he started drinking. He felt a huge void and he wanted to get away from God and his family. From there, he began his descent to what he calls the pit of hell. He was partying everywhere and had no self-control. He felt totally isolated and didn’t have anybody he could talk to and trust. He just didn’t feel safe.
His streak of unfortunate events continued on as he dropped out of college and took a job at a bar restaurant owned by the biggest cocaine dealer on the East Coast at the time. There, he got sucked up into the drug world. He was depressed and dark with no mission or vision until the pain in his life got greater than his fear of changing. It was then that he finally decided to surrender and God took over his life. From that surrender came freedom.
In this episode, you will hear:
- Craig’s addiction and recovery journey
- The conscious decision to get well
- Shattering the bondage of shame and guilt
- Why the Bible is a blueprint for recovery
- Replacing negative self-talk with positive input
- The role of community in recovery
[06:28] – “Oftentimes, we take on the identity of our struggle, our pain. our shame. our guilt, failure.”
[07:09] – “When the pain is greater than my fear of changing, my fear of shame, my fear of embarrassment, when you’re at that point, more often than not, you’re going to do whatever it takes to get well.”
[13:00] – “People have so many resources available to get well. But the shame of their past is debilitating.”
[13:49] – “That shame and that guilt that is just keeping you in bondage. Let it be cracked and shattered, so you can be set free and begin healing.”
[14:31] – “Of all places that people should be accepted. It’s the church. And oftentimes that’s not the case, unfortunately.”
[15:56] – “If you’ve had adverse childhood events and painful events, you’re going to find a way to cope, and you’re more likely to turn to a substance, or pornography, or sex or food or whatever it is to make yourself feel medicated.”
[18:31] – “Churches that teach practical application of Scripture, do extremely well in helping people fully understand how it applies to their situation.”
[23:26] – “Whatever your community is, it has to be healthy, it has to be relational.”
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