What role do rewards play in recovery?
Dr. John F. Kelly addresses this in his article, Recovery from Addiction. He writes, “It is now well known that the repetition of rewarding behaviors produces changes in brain function and structure that facilitate habits and, for some, sustained compulsivity and addiction.”
Dr. Kelly is saying that one reason we continue to act out is for the immediate reward of pleasure. But in order to find lasting sobriety, we must embrace the bigger reward.
We must give up what we want now for what we want most. And that is a reward of its own.
Paul confirms this principle, that God rewards those who make good decisions: “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward” (Colossians 3:23-24).
Recovery Step: Enjoy the rewards of recovery – peace, freedom, and hope.