I want to greet you on behalf of Overcomers Outreach Canada.
For those of you that serve I want to extend my heartfelt thanks. Our preamble sets forth the following imperative:
“Our leaders are chosen not to govern but to serve.” Serving in this capacity offers numerous benefits both to ourselves and to those who are just beginning their own journeys to recovery. It can offer us the opportunity to share our experiences and strengthen our own connection to our Higher Power Jesus Christ.
1 John 15: 1-4 (Msg) “I am the Real Vine and my Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of me that doesn’t bear grapes. And every branch that is grape-bearing he prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken.”
Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you. In the same way that a branch can’t bear grapes by itself but only by being joined to the vine, you can’t bear fruit unless you are joined with me.
For those that are looking for a way out of their own addictions and compulsions Overcomers offers a safe, accepting, community of people who will come along side of you in a non-judgemental way to help you in recovery. In any specific group you may or may not find people with the exact same struggle(s) as you are encountering. You will find people who know that the program can offer hope with the help of Jesus to offer recovery. The Bible teaches us that we were made free by grace- which means we did not earn our salvation/ redemption, it was a gift given freely. A tremendous example of the concept of Jesus offering grace to a sinner can be found in the following passage:
John 8: 1-11 (Msg) Jesus went across to Mount Olives, but he was soon back in the Temple again. Swarms of people came to him. He sat down and taught them. The religion scholars and Pharisees led in a woman who had been caught in an act of adultery. They stood her in plain sight of everyone and said, “Teacher, this woman was caught red-handed in the act of adultery. Moses, in the Law, gives orders to stone such persons. What do you say?” They were trying to trap him into saying something incriminating so they could bring charges against him.
Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger in the dirt. They kept at him, badgering him. He straightened up and said, “The sinless one among you, go first: Throw the stone.” Bending down again, he wrote some more in the dirt.
Hearing that, they walked away, one after another, beginning with the oldest. The woman was left alone. Jesus stood up and spoke to her. “Woman, where are they? Does no one condemn you?”
“No one, Master.”
“Neither do I,” said Jesus. “Go on your way. From now on, don’t sin.”
I just want to take this opportunity to reinforce that although we may be from vastly different backgrounds or be in different places spiritually there is one unifying theme: you were created by a God that wants to have a personal relationship with you. There is a story that is in the Bible that Jesus tells about the “Lost Sheep”. He is the Shepherd and we are the sheep. He used this story to reach the people in terms they could relate too. The Shepherd was utterly devoted to the care of his sheep.
Luke 15: 4-7 (Msg) “Suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. Wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it? When found, you can be sure you would put it across your shoulders, rejoicing, and when you got home call in your friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Celebrate with me! I’ve found my lost sheep!’ Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.
So how does Overcomers Outreach relate to the church and with other 12 Step Recovery groups?
From the FREED Book
Bridging the Gap
Between 12 Step Recovery Groups and Churches of All Denominations
Overcomers Outreach gives people in Traditional 12 Step support groups a way back to the church of their choice.
Overcomers Outreach provides a vehicle for people in the church to find additional help in traditional 12 Step groups.
I pray that as you attend one of the conferences you will be renewed as is written in the Bible: Romans 12:2 (NIV) Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Phil V- President Overcomers Outreach Canada