What is Celebrate Recovery?
A safe place to work through your hurts, habits, and hang-ups

Celebrate Recovery is a twelve step program centered around Christ and His redemptive work in our lives. Celebrate Recovery meets in 35,000 churches around the world including Desert Hills Baptist Church. We want to help you with the hurts, habits, and hang-ups that create a roadblock from experiencing full freedom in Christ. We are here to help with addiction battles, loss and grief, depression, co-dependency, family issues, mental health, and everything in between. 

You can find more information about Celebrate Recovery here

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Celebrate Recovery meets at Desert Hills Baptist Church every Thursday at 6:30 PM and is led by Matt Ullman.  Dinner is provided. 

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The 12 steps of recovery

Step 1

We admitted we were powerless over our addictions and compulsive behaviors, that our lives had become unmanageable.

“For I know that in me (that is in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.” - Romans 7:18

Step 2

We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

“For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” - Philippians 2:13

Step 3

We made a decision to turn our lives and our wills over to the care of God.

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” - Romans 12:1

Step 4

We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

“Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the Lord.” - Lamentations 3:40

Step 5

We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

“Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for an other, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” - James 5:16

Step 6

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

“Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.” - James 4:10

Step 7

We humbly asked Him to remove all our shortcomings.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” - 1 John 1:9

Step 8

We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

“And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.” - Luke 6:31

Step 9

We made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

“Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.” - Matthew 5:23-24

Step 10

We continue to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

“Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.” - 1 Corinthians 10:12

Step 11

We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, praying only for knowledge of His will for us, and power to carry that out.

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” - Colossians 3:16

Step 12

Having had a spiritual experience as the result of these steps, we try to carry this message to others and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

“Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” - Galatians 6:1

The 12 missteps of life recovery

These false thoughts and assumptions have derailed many in their recovery, and some reflect the mistaken thinking of people sincerely trying to do things God’s way. Awareness is the first step in avoiding these common pitfalls.


1. “I can quit tomorrow!”

Tomorrow has no power or strength to initiate change in your life. Today – right now – is where the power is! Waiting even one more day is a decision to stay on a path that has proven to be destructive.

“Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” – James 4:14


2. “I can handle it by just trying harder or having more willpower.”

Under your own strength you have lived a life that has led to disappointment for your and for those who care about you. Under your own strength you have found only momentary victory or short-term progress. Under God’s strength you will experience transforming power that will last forever.

“But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings as eagles; They shall run, and not be weary; And they shall walk, and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:31


3. "Turning my life over to Christ is the only step I need."

Turning your life over to Christ and repenting of your sins is a huge first step. Surrendering to him is the most important step. But it is still just the beginning. It does not instantly build your character or make you mature in your faith. Working through the steps based on God's Word will lead you to a better place of maturity, wisdom, and transformed character.

"But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God." – Hebrews 5:14-6:1


4. "Twelve Step groups that don't talk about Jesus aren't worth my time."

A recovery group that focuses on Christ is helpful for anyone's recovery, but a group like that may not exist anywhere near you. And if we segregate ourselves from others who don't know Christ, they will not hear the message of hope and restoration that we have. You can be a light to another who is walking in darkness.

"I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness." – John 12:46


5. "While recovery might be good for some, it just isn't right for me."

If you have made a decision to surrender your life and your problem to God, you have made a very bold move. But your enemy will be the tendency to drift – to move away from surrender and to compromise, jeopardizing the progress you've made. Recovery prevents you from drifting, providing a path to growth and maturity and the support you need to succeed.

"If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard." – Colossians 1:23


6. "If I follow the Bible, I don't really need to work the Twelve Steps."

Working the Twelve Steps is following the Bible. It is a path through the Bible designed specifically for those who used to have a problem but whose problem now has them. it is a path of hope, healing, and restoration based on God's truth that will totally change the way you think.

"And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, That Ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God." – Romans 12:2


7. "Since I'm accountable to God, I don't need a sponsor."

You certainly are accountable to God, but God has also instructed us to be in healthy and supportive relationships with others. You will grow much stronger and more quickly if you have someone to guide you, encourage you, and hold you accountable.

"Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend." – Proverbs 27:17


8. "Since God has forgiven me, I don't need to go back to rehash what I've done."

Yes, God has forgiven you if you have confessed and changed your ways. But he clearly instructs

us to not stop with him. When we open up to someone else, it connects us, keeps us humble and grounded in reality, and leads to healing.

"Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." – James 5:16


9. "Since Jesus would want me to help my old friends, I don't need to change where I go or whom I hang out with."

The Bible is clear that we need to run from people and places that would tempt us to fall back into our old ways. Some call it changing playmates and playgrounds. But not only do we need time away from temptations so we can grow, we also need to seek out those who are on the same path. There will be plenty of time to reach out to those who need your help once you have established your own long-term recovery.

"Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart." – 2 Timothy 2:22


10. "Though I can forgive most things, some things are just beyond forgiveness."

There are some things that are so damaging that they may seem to be beyond forgiveness. But

forgiveness does not excuse what someone has done or minimize its impact. Forgiveness frees you from having to live in the pain any longer. Some say the most dangerous thing we can possess is justifiable resentment. It does nothing to the other person, but it robs you of the life of freedom God wants for you.

"Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: and be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." – Ephesians 4:31-32


11. "Since I'm involved in recovery, I don't need additional counseling or medication."

When we fully surrender to God, we become willing to do whatever it takes to recover. You may not think you need additional help, but someone you love may need you to need it. Working through your pride and reaching out for additional help, like starting recovery, is never a sign of weakness, but a sign of the strength found in humility.

"When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom." – Proverbs 11:2


12. "After making good progress in my recovery, I can start using again in moderation."

If you are on a solid recovery path, the last thing you want to do is try to control what has come to control you. The desire to fall back into it and try it again indicates that you need additional step work, meetings, and other support. Don't go back and relive the hurt and pain you experienced earlier in life.

"As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly." – Proverbs 26:11