• David Hampton

People in the Thresholds of Recovery



The Challenges of People in the Thresholds of Recovery


In keeping with our focus on the thresholds of recovery and embracing the thin places between who we were and who we are becoming, I would like to challenge us to embrace the thresholds as positive transitions that are part of a process to bring out the very best in who we are.


It is in these liminal spaces that we learn who we truly are. I believe this is where the most authentic forms of awareness and awakening take place. These are the places where we may be known to say to our Higher Power, “Unless you show up here I am done!” It is a place of simple prayers, honest confessions, and humble praise.


Thresholds remind us that anything beautiful we experience in life is a gift, any comfort is truly through a spiritual connection, and that whatever we encounter in this interim is intentional preparation for the next stretch of the road. As the Buddha said, at the end of all our self-awareness the objective is to be ourselves, but to truly be all of ourselves.


Who Are the People in the Thresholds of Recovery?


People in the Thresholds of Recovery Are Beginning a JourneyThose of us on the path of restoration and recovery whom I call “The People of the Thresholds” are not always the most comfortable to be around as we embark on and embrace this restorative process. The practice of rigorous honesty for those of us in 12-step recovery reminds us of this as well. In our quest to live authentically, we have so many questions that we probe beyond the stock answers and nudge until we feel like we are a little closer to the whole truth. This is an uncomfortable but necessary part of true acceptance.


Ultimately, this is simply the place where we are finally able to begin resting in the mystery. After all, we came to the end of ourselves when we admitted our powerlessness over a substance or a behavior. Now we stand at the point of waiting, trusting, hoping, and praying that everything we let go of will be replaced with something trustworthy that we can take into the next chapter of our lives.


What Should People in the Thresholds of Recovery Do?


Rigorous honesty, keeping a short list of resentments, and seeking to make amends when necessary are virtues only learned in the threshold places. They are practices that make for authentic people and authentic awakenings. They don’t come cheaply, but they are well worth the time served so as to experience the freedom that comes from embracing them. Remember, sobriety is not the absence of a substance or a behavior, but the presence of a new way of understanding and living that is only arrived upon when we pass through those thin, awkward seasons in the thresholds.

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