Anyone whose brain or thought processes (“mind”) has been damaged by drug or alcohol abuse, can rehab both – by getting clean and applying themselves to daily, regular, recovery-oriented, positive mental exercises.
When guys joins our 12-month residential Spiritual Recovery Program, they start getting clean. We also have them begin focusing their brains by doing some simple but meaningful memory work. That’s been my job over the past 15 years – and it’s actually the best part of my day!
Donny, 52, is a quiet, thoughtful, nice guy. He’s also struggled with addiction for years and, in the process, had some injuries which have affected his brain – especially his memory.
When he can to Helping Up Mission 5 weeks ago, it was clear he wanted to change. At his age, he’d been through it all – a couple of times – and was serious and focused on his recovery.
But Donny made it clear to me in class during his first week here that he just wouldn’t be able to do this memorizing stuff. So, I gave him my “you don’t have to be good at it, you just have to work at it” speech.
Afterwards, Donny told me he would try but that he knew he wouldn’t be able to memorize anything. I assured him he just had to try and I would help him from there.
The next morning Donny haltingly recited our shortest verse. The next day the next shortest…and another the day after.
This week Danny recited our most difficult memory verse and today he gave me all 27 books of the New Testament. At the rate he’s going, by next week Danny may be reciting the whole dictionary!
But, best of all, his countenance and self-esteem are shining!
One Mind at a Time,
Pastor Gary Byers