At The Intersection Of Addiction And Grace


On Monday I flew to Virginia to speak to a gathering of Salvation Army officers who operate their addiction rehabilitation centers in the Southeast. I was pretty nervous about it. I was also deeply grateful for the opportunity.

My grown son Noah joined me on the trip, and I can't tell you how much it meant to have him with me. As we sat at a gate waiting for a delayed flight and Noah was tracking his fantasy football teams on his phone while eating a huge bag of airport popcorn, I was overcome by joy.
Just to have him next to me. Alive. Sober. Just to have him squeeze my shoulder now and then and say, "You're going to do great, Mom."

How can this be the same young man who used to smoke pot for breakfast? Who I used to fear would turn out like my father -- addicted, depressed, and suicidal?
How can I be the same mother who used to drown my worry about Noah's drugging and drinking by getting drunk myself? Who used to live in dread of being exposed as an alcoholic and would rather die than declare it from a podium?

The only explanation is that Noah and I are walking, talking miracles -- living proof of God's goodness and grace.

This was never so clear to me as it was on Monday as I spoke about the role of faith in my journey of recovery. Noah graciously allowed me to share some parts of his story, too -- including how he'd probably be dead if the apartment where he was living when he hit bottom had had a garage.

After I spoke, we had a buffet lunch with the Salvation Army folks, and I noticed how easily Noah chatted with people. Several times I overheard someone ask him hopefully, "So do you speak, too?"
He laughed and said no. But you know what? He does speak. His life speaks. And nothing speaks louder than the story he can't help telling just by being who he is today.

To read the full story, click here.

The Salvation Army of Northern Virginia Stores Featured on WUSA
"What If Every Day Was Black Friday?




The Salvation Army of Northern Virginia Stores Featured on WUSA
"At The Salvation Army, Save Money Means Saving Lives"