Reflections from the Summit
Hello Chapel Hill!
I’ve just come back from the Celebrate Recovery Summit of Faith: Going for Great at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA! Imagine 3,000 brothers and sisters in Christ, 21 people from Gig Harbor, celebrating the positive changes God has made in their lives. We worship, have wonderful training and teaching time, and most importantly, we have a lot of fun!
I attended Summit for the first time in 2015 as part of my staff role at Chapel Hill. I found myself moved by that experience and realized that despite being raised in the church and knowing and serving God for most of my life, I needed healing. Four years later, I know without a doubt, God has bound up so many wounds from my past because of how He used Celebrate Recovery to heal me. I no longer live in shame and fear, and I have a “forever family” who loves me dearly. Every week, I now stand in front of a crowd and openly state that I’m a grateful believer in Jesus Christ, who struggles with anxiety, depression, and compulsive behaviors. I’m not hiding anymore.
Because of Chapel Hill’s continued support of this ministry, there are so many stories like mine. Stories of the emotionally wounded or chronically ill and stories of people trying to be perfect or struggling with control, anger, or addiction. There are stories of prodigal sons and daughters and stories of loneliness and pain. Through a process, however, these lives are transformed, and Jesus becomes the Lord over those issues. They experience hope, healing, and a new sense of purpose in God’s Kingdom. This is why we CELEBRATE!
The basic purpose of Celebrate Recovery is to “Love People to Christ.” As our pastors and leaders have prayed over this program, we recognize that for more people to experience Celebrate Recovery, we will move to Wednesdays beginning September 12, coming alongside Alpha and Extreme. Our high school program, The Landing, and our program for elementary age children, Celebration Place, will also take place on Wednesday nights. There’s something for everyone, no matter what age or stage of life you’re in. How exciting!
I don’t want you to miss out on what will be a big party at the church on Wednesday nights! Whether you join us at Celebrate Recovery or are headed to Alpha, how wonderful to have all of us together, serving, learning, and being changed more and more to the likeness of Jesus. And family, if you happen to bump into a Celebrate Recovery brother or sister, welcome them warmly to Wednesday night. Say hello, love them as Jesus would, and show them around.
It’s going to be awesome. I’ll see you there!
Shannon Hardin Rickert