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Sober 24 Hours

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“One day at a time, one step at a time.”

I like this particular mantra because it’s very manageable. I might not be able to know what will happen 365 days from now, but I can focus on what’s in front of me today. I might not be able to run an entire marathon right now, but I can take a single step. I don’t have to be concerned or alarmed about the “end result”, instead I can choose to be present.

This concept of being sober for 24 hours is something that you’ll find in recovery meetings all over the world. This is the idea that if you can make it through 24 hours sober, then you can do that again and again until, before you know it, you’ve had a week, a month, 6 months, and, eventually a year of sobriety. Obviously, this explanation makes it sound so very easy when, in reality, it can be one of the hardest things a person can do.

A sober 24 hours makes sense for a substance addiction such as drinking or drugs, but what about those addictions that are rooted in the heart or mind?

When your struggle is with something like shame or control or pride, there’s not an obvious behavior to eliminate.

If I say “for the next 24 hours I’ll be sober from shame,” there’s a good chance that I’ll fail at some point throughout the day. But that doesn’t stop me from setting the intention. It helps me be aware of my self-talk so that I can change my shameful thoughts earlier in the process instead of sinking into a shame hole of my own making.

Is there a physical substance or an action that you need to abstain from for 24 hours?

Maybe it’s drinking or drugs, maybe it’s sugar or caffeine, maybe it’s porn or sleeping with someone other than your spouse. But, if something has come to your mind that is unhealthy and needs to change, I encourage you to take the courageous step and choose sobriety for a whole 24 hours. Invite a trusted, godly friend into the mix and let them know what you’re doing and see what happens. Don’t worry about next month, next year, or anything in the future, just be sober for these next 24 hours.

Is there a heart posture or a thought process that you need to cut out for 24 hours?

Maybe it’s jealousy or fear of man or materialism or a critical spirit. These are incredibly hard to abstain from for 24 hours, but it’s well worth the try. I would encourage you to set the intention, find a scripture to lean on when that thing begins to rise up in you, and find a person in your life to pray for you and encourage you as you work toward a sober 24 hours.

One of the most important parts of the whole sober 24 hours concept is that another 24 hours is right around the corner. If you blow it 1, 2, 23 hours in, that’s okay. There’s always the next 24, just get right back up on the sobriety train and welcome people in who will cheer you on when you get back up.

Have you ever tried being sober for 24 hours?

Is there something you need to abstain from for 24 hours?

To go Deeper: Read You Have a Problem, Present Over Perfect


Disclosure: some links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. 

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