Repentance is merely change. Recovery is a repentance process usually involving a 12-Step program. 12-Step programs are merely well-tested, graduating efforts used to facilitate a course correction.
Navigators tell us that if we are traveling North and we make a 2-degree change in that heading, keep moving in that same changed course long enough and far enough, we will eventually reach a 180-degree difference in the course—our course becomes southward.
Likewise, over the course of our lives, a 2-degree change in thought or behavior can change our level of physical, mental, or spiritual wellness. Although we may struggle to stay on the changed course, making corrections along the way, we will reap the blessings of making the effort. For instance, if our 2-degree change is centered on a reduction in the amount of sugar or unhealthy fats we consume over the course of our life, we may experience a healthier heart, brain, and pancreas. Wisdom tells us that this can be multiplied by degrees and health practices.
This is true when we make a 2-degree change in our mental thought paradigm. We create and own our thought paradigm. Our paradigm is the way in which we see our world and our place in the world, or our place in the world as it relates to Light. We can move from a person who is plagued with a blaming mindset to one that is completely comfortable with honesty and accountability by making small changes in how we think about what we are thinking about.
If we follow the 2-degree scenario into the 12-Steps, making only a 2-degree change as we approach each step, we could be making a 24-degree change in our paradigm in no time at all! The 12-Steps are vital to Recovery, and a paradigm shift is vital to the health of every cell in our brains and is reflected in the amount of progress we make in Recovery. Our thinking must become a disciplined, hard-working power if our Recovery or change or repentance is going to invite Light into our beings.
Genes are not destiny! Our new understanding of the universe’s mechanics shows us how the physical body can be affected by the immaterial [spiritual or thinking] mind. Thoughts, the mind’s energy, directly influence how the physical brain controls the body’s physiology. We are made in the image of God, and we need to put Spirit back into the equation when we want to improve our physical and our mental health.
Bruce H. Lipton, PhD., The Biology of Belief, 2015 ed.
So, our thinking paradigm, along with the level of discipline we have gained through thought control work, will have enormous consequences on our physical and mental wellness. One truth is evident in this discussion: Our belief system is far more powerful than we understand. Self-doubt is the enemy in this process of change. We see this self-doubt paradigm far too often while leading 12-Step groups. Yet, the moment any mentally or emotionally burdened or addicted soul accepts the truth that they are not victims of circumstance but hold the power of the Light of the Gods within, they become unstoppable.
Therein lies the mystery of successful Recovery from any sorrow: A paradigm that trusts the power of Christ’s Light at its core!