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Rev. Dr. Paul Bradley
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Blog Entries by Rev. Dr. Paul Bradley

Amends and Forgiveness: Taking Step Eight

(2) Comments | Posted November 15, 2012 | 9:10 AM

Step Eight: Made a list of all people we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

In the Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book, the description of Step Seven concludes with the Seventh Step Prayer: "My Creator, I am now willing that you should have all of me,...

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Step Seven: Performing the Surgery

(0) Comments | Posted October 15, 2012 | 5:26 PM

"Humbly asked [God] to remove our shortcomings." -- Step Seven

By the time we get to the Seventh Step in the Twelve Step recovery process, our denial has been ripped away and we've done some very deep soul-searching. We've been brought to our knees by our disease and taken the...

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Removing the Anesthesia: A Reflection on Step 6

(7) Comments | Posted June 11, 2012 | 8:16 AM

Step 6: We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

Scripture references: Psalm 119:28-40, Romans 6:11,12, Philippians 2: 12-13, Philippians 3: 12-14

The Sixth Step's call to become "entirely ready to have God remove all our defects of character" sounds nearly impossible. Achieving such a...

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Step Five: Diving Into the Wreck, Admitting Our Wrongs

(10) Comments | Posted April 13, 2012 | 1:10 PM

Step Five: "Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs."

Psalm 139:23 offers this prayer: "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts." Having done a searching and fearless moral inventory in Step Four, it is...

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Step Four: Letting Go to Let in God's Light and Love

(22) Comments | Posted January 29, 2012 | 11:00 AM

Step Four: Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Scripture references: Philippians 2:6-11, Luke 12:2-3 Lamentations 3:40, Revelation 2:5.

When we begin recovering from addictive substances and behaviors and join our first 12-step recovery program, many of us are put...

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Preparing for Step Four: Acceptance, Awareness, Action

(6) Comments | Posted November 29, 2011 | 1:11 PM

Step Four: Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Scripture: Proverbs 16:2-3, Luke 12:2, James 4: 6-10, Revelation 2:5.

In the meeting rooms of Twelve Step recovery, we often hear about the "threefold" nature of the disease of addiction and...

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The Third Step: "An Unknown God" as Higher Power

(313) Comments | Posted October 14, 2011 | 10:00 AM

"Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God." --Step Three

In the Third Step, we make "a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God." In the book...

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We Came To Believe: Step Two on the Recovery Journey

(160) Comments | Posted August 29, 2011 | 9:50 AM

"Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity." --Step Two

"The dark night of the soul" -- so the Christian mystic St. John of the Cross described a crisis of the spirit. In my heart, when I was deep in the grip of addictions,...

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Christian Addiction Recovery: In Our Weakness Is Our Strength

(33) Comments | Posted August 9, 2011 | 10:09 AM

Step One: We admitted we were powerless over alcohol [drugs, compulsive sexual behavior, spending, food, gambling, codependence, unhealthy relationships], that our lives had become unmanageable.

Scripture references: 2 Corinthians 12:5-10, Romans 7:19, Proverbs 14:12

In his Second letter to the Corinthians (12:9), the Apostle Paul tells us that "power...

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Recovery, Gratitude and the Power of the Holy Spirit

(23) Comments | Posted July 20, 2011 | 10:51 AM

It begins and ends with gratitude. For me, gratitude arrived when I had been sober for less than two years. It was Thanksgiving Day. The weekend before, I spent a long afternoon with my sponsor, the late Bob Roche, doing my Fifth Step. In the Twelve Steps of recovery, after...

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