Addiction has been declared an epidemic in the United States. It affects individuals, families, education, politics, socioeconomics, healthcare, employment, crime, transportation, and housing. These are only a few lenses from the larger perspective. Faced with such a tremendous health concern, people often have many questions about addiction and recovery. One such question comes often in the form “How long does recovery last?” We at The Foundry offer both a Biblical as well as a systemic healthcare-oriented answer: Recovery lasts a lifetime! And, since recovery lasts a lifetime, we joyfully commit to a lifetime partnership of addiction aftercare with all those we serve in our programs.
What people need and, indeed, what we help people achieve is a shift to a long-term perspective in their approach to recovery. When offering the long-term perspective, what we really mean is an eternal perspective. Our eternity with God begins in the “here and now” as much as it does in the “for all time.” We want to serve our participants in giving a good start to a lifelong journey in freedom, but we also want to help posture them so their personal growth endures into eternity. After all, recovery is really all about what you, God, and others do to get you to, and keep you in, your best life. How does The Foundry do that? We follow a series of guiding principles which parallel measurable outcomes for success. This culminates in our addiction aftercare program.
The Vision: Eternal Life
We strive to provide an environment where people can develop lifelong relationships with God that will last into eternity. We model engagement with God through prayer, worship, and revelation from Scripture while also cultivating an attitude of hope and gratefulness. Our graduation ceremonies are not the end for us, but just the beginning! And we make it a point to check on participants in different points of time after they graduate.
The Target: Preparation for a Purpose
People will achieve nothing for which they have no aim. While we hope to develop participants as leaders to serve in careers, we ultimately want them to know they were created for a purpose that is much higher than themselves; all people are specially and specifically tailored to fit into God’s great design. Immediately, this may mean employment readiness training and engaging in higher education, but in the long run, it means perpetual next steps through the principles of stewardship and humility.
The Heart-check: Acceptance in Accountability
Beyond spiritual truths, decades of research have shown that people are only as healthy as their relationships and they are only as sick as their secrets. Accountability is required for authentic recovery, but, if approached with an eternal perspective, accountability will eventually become enjoyable. We seek to create opportunities for life-giving relationships that can bear the weight of accountability through the reinforcement of a positive identity in Christ. Once people know who they really are, they are more receptive to being coached on how to be. Participants are eligible for free counseling services years after they graduate, and we are happy to provide warm “hand-offs” should someone require extra support.
The Local Church: Security Amidst Support
We have a saying here at The Foundry: “Show us your friends and we’ll show you your future.” While all people should work to suspend judgement in their observations of others, toxic company will always pollute good character. We all must grow into maturity and the local church is the fertile soil of God’s Kingdom in which to put down roots. We have church ambassadors in many areas and, depending on the participants’ preferences and style of worship, we work hard to connect them with a local church family. This allows them to celebrate and commune in their faith long after they walk across our graduation stage. This is a vital part of addiction aftercare.
Giving Life: Significance through Service
It has been said that emotion is the universal language. People may spend years numbing their emotions through addiction because of various sources of pain and trauma; however, if you numb negative emotions, that means you numb the positive ones too. Coping skills and emotional regulation in times of heightened stress are keen goals for any healthy recovery program. How does one achieve long-term emotional stability? The answer may surprise you! It’s as simple as serving. People want to feel good about themselves but that can be hard when our perspective is only self-focused. At The Foundry, not only do we provide many opportunities for participants to give back to local communities through large projects, but we also support the continuing attitude of service for years to come.
Perhaps the question “How long does recovery last?” should be reframed as “How long is total freedom worth?” While answers in the form our addiction aftercare program and checkboxes reside in the former question, we see hope and perseverance dwelling within the latter!