Stigma and Christianity in Sobriety


palace in venice

Why is there stigma attached to becoming a new Christian?

Maybe there is or maybe there isn’t, maybe I am feeling like there is because I have become a new Christian, totally unplanned and a complete surprise to myself and those who know me. Maybe I have not totally accepted that I am walking a new path now and I am still trying to hold on to who I used to be. I think I am still trying to figure out just how much you have to change to become a Christian. I can’t think of anything that has happened to me that I am upset about. Infact, since being a Christian, I have made more friends, learned a huge amount about history, Jesus, prophets, other religions, had more meaningful conversations and have watched how my life and my families life is being changed for the better in every way. I think I just need to release the fear and go with it. Why not? Life is pretty good now, I wonder how much better it will be if I just let go of the fear and embark fully on this new journey in my life.

After all, it is actually very scary to change so drastically..or is..it? If I take it on a day by day basis, what do I do that is so drastically different, and who really cares? Those who are closest to me are going to benefit from me being a better person, and those who know the old me will probably first have some apprehensions but then they will either accept the new me or exit my life. That is what happens in life, people do sometimes drift out of our lives because we change. I of course do not want to lose any of my friends and family and I hope for acceptance. Really, (in true evangelical fashion!) I hope that people will tag along and join me. I can not see any disadvantages other than the fear people have of change and if you read the bible, you will also read that you are told to ‘Fear not’

When I think back to the beginning of my sobriety, I really didn’t want to go anywhere near anyone who would preach the Bible at me. No A.A, no church, I was having none of it. Absolutely not. I even searched out different ways of staying sober so that I didn’t have to listen to God talk and all the rest of it. I don’t know why I was so against it, to be honest, now that I look back I think it was pure ignorance. I really and truly knew nothing about Christianity. All that I knew was what I had learned as a child and my knowledge of God had remained at that elementary level. I couldn’t believe it when I first started reading the Bible, the proverbs especially, how much sense they spoke. ( there is also a lot that does not make sense to the uneducated eye) but I was shocked that there was a plan for life out there and I had never even known it. I had fought on my own trying to get by, never knowing or realizing that help is within reach. Also, all these stereotypical ‘Yay God’ people out there, unfashionable plain people who even look boring always chewed at me (not that I think there is anything wrong with them). I just did not want to be one of them and I think they put me off.

Just a little ramble from me about Christianity and sobriety!

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4 thoughts on “Stigma and Christianity in Sobriety

  1. Hi, Madison:

    What wonderful news to hear about your new faith!!! I’ve been a believer for about fifteen years now (I’m 35 now) and just want to let you know that Jesus has been faithful to me the whole time! A lot more faithful than me. And to answer your question about how much you have to change—you don’t have to worry about that. The Holy Spirit does the changing for you! So no laws or “shoulds”. It’s God’s “love that calls us to repentence.”

    Also, I understand the dowdy “boring” look of Christians. Some Christians, but not all of us! I think many of those people are caught up in “works” and not faith and can easily get self righteous.

    It was the Holy Spirit who told me I had to quit drinking years ago. I’ve had over a year before but as I write this I’ve now got about 24 hours after four years of drinking Nothing has seperated me from God and LIFE and LOVE more than alcohol. I’m tired; so, so tired of it.

    Looking forward to reading your old entries! Keep reading the good book! Proverbs is a wonderful book. One of my favorites. As are the psalms.

    Sincerely,

    JoAnna

  2. Thank you JoAnna. I wish you luck in your sobriety and I hope you enjoy the posts.
    I am so grateful for my faith, I often think to myself ‘no wonder you were so messed up before’ I don’t know how non Christians get by without faith, I never want to be that way again!
    Good Luck!

  3. i’m dealing with the fear now. i don’t understand why it’s there, but hoping god helps me along the way. thank you for your post. it’s encouraging to me that i’m not the only one out there feeling this way.

  4. Very inspirational stuff. I am one step to crossing over to the “light side.” Thank you for the “nudge.”
    check me out on Linkedin or facebook for more discussions and inspiration.
    Dr. Lou

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