“We usually find a solitary self appraisal is insufficient” Into Action, p. 72, Big Book
“Is it possible?” “Would you consider?” These are terms that are very familiar to alumni of BRC Recovery. They are used to softly address the ego and resistance to change often found in the addicted and alcoholic population, and to hopefully facilitate the growth and change necessary to sustain recovery.
Our founder, Mark Houston, created an incredible spiritual exercise known as Steel on Steel. The concept of “steel on steel” came from the Bible,
“As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17
It has been utilized by hundreds and thousands of men and women seeking to develop their recovery by asking their peers to help them see themselves. The small group process of no more than four people is about love and action. Through monthly meetings, they form close bonds built on honesty, openness and trust. Without criticism or harsh judgment, each participant provides feedback in the spirit of love and tolerance. It is through this process they are able to provide a “spiritual mirror” for each other and to improve their conscious contact with the God of their understanding.
Steel on Steel is an amazing experience for those truly committed to 12 Step recovery. Mark had an uncanny ability to help people peel back the layers of the onion, sometimes painfully, helping them to reveal their deepest truths. Having participated in this process many times, I have personally experienced, as well as witnessed, some remarkable results.
Utilizing exercises such as Steel on Steel are representative of the therapeutic community approach that has proven so successful in addressing alcoholism and addiction. One alcoholic to another brings about a connection and an identification second to none. Experiences are shared, hope is transmitted and lessons are absorbed.
At BRC Recovery, community reliance is fostered. This community is the type of support network found in 12 Step fellowships all over this country, and the world at large. I have often heard it described as a “we” program. In my own experience, the relationships I have in my recovery have helped me through some of the most difficult times, and conversely through some of the greatest triumphs.
In the words of Hillary Clinton…”It takes a village”.