A Way Out of Hell on Earth

January 14, 2019, By: Dana Cramer

“If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.” Mark 9:43

Is Hell real? You won’t find very many people in CR who will tell you “no.” For many of us we have lived in the hell of our addictions, obsessive compulsive behaviors, and abuse; beaten battered and discarded. Sometimes we have fallen into someone else’s hell, getting trapped in co-dependency, and their hell becomes our hell.

Addicted people have a self-problem. It doesn’t matter what you’re addicted to, it still comes back to self—the extreme selfishness and self-centeredness of an addict, self-run-riot kind of self. I was that person; it wasn’t that I couldn’t love others, I just “loved” me more than anyone else—more than God. That’s the humbling admission of an alcoholic/addict, but when we face up to that in CR we realize that our best thinking was actually destroying our lives and the lives of others. For the co-dependent, it’s living for someone else; for the abused, its living out the hell others have done to them. But it still comes down in some way to self doesn’t it? The self of an egomaniac or the self of extreme inferiority.

Our self-induced living hell is exactly the place where Satan wants us, telling us that we are okay and everybody else is wrong. CR defines denial as a false system of beliefs that are not based on reality, a self-protecting behavior that keeps us from honestly facing the truth. Denial can last for years and a lifetime. The truth is most of us are in denial about something, we just don’t know what it is yet. Breaking through denial is the first step in admitting that we can’t fix ourselves; a power greater than us is needed.

If we admit that countless attempts of using self-will has failed and instead has brought us to a place of powerlessness, then we have to ask ourselves, is there a power greater than you that can help you out of your personal hell? The answer is yes, God has all the power you need!

Author and Pastor Timothy Keller defines hell as “A freely chosen identity projected on something other than God.” It reminds me that in some way, I have a part in most of what has caused my hell. But for those suffering from abuse CR reminds us that you are not guilty for being abused, it is not your fault, and in recovery you will find you do have a choice; you can move out of that hell.

The best compliment I have ever received about CR came from one of my daughters. After 18 years in secular recovery, Nan and I started in CR at Crossroads. After a few years into my CR program my daughter came up with a startling statement. She said, “Dad, secular recovery got you sober, but Celebrate Recovery changed your heart.” Only God’s love can do that.

Recover what was lost, Celebrate what is found!

Dana Cramer // Celebrate Recovery at Crossroads


Celebrate Recovery at Crossroads Church Calendar
January 14-20, 2018

Friday, January 18: Message Night

  • 6pm: Our Hospitality Team is preparing a wonderful dinner for you. Please join us for food and fellowship.
  • 7pmPlease join us for an hour of worship and a recovery message.
  • 8pm: Open Share Groups.
  • 9pm: Solid Rock Café