Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016


Being happy sometimes means letting go, of no longer grasping for the things we've dreamed of having.

Once I got sober my focus was to stop putting illicit or addictive substances in my body.

For a long time I thought if I had more stuff life would be perfect. A lot of drugs. More money and the things money could buy. More clothes and cars and investments. More things to build up my ego.

But a funny thing happened on the way to that destination - my version of heavan on earth. God intervened and showed me that the only thing important was to be clean and sober.

Oh, he didn't show up in a dream. He didn't appear in person. The way he manifested in my life was to keep putting obstacles in my way. Once I got back to using 25 plus years ago things started disappearing quickly. Not long after I put a needle in my arm again things started to disappear. My job. Apartment. Clothing. Anything that had any value just vanished. Before long I was homeless, strung out, hungry and had no one who cared to help me change.

But for some reason losing all that stuff made me surrender. I gave up on all my fantasy ideas and focused on getting clean and sober. And an interesting thing happened when I made that decision.

All that stuff that I wanted and thought I needed started showing up in my life. A lovely wife. A nice home. Automobiles. Vacations. All the material things.

But even better, spiritual insights came to me. Insights that guided me when obstacles did show up.

Try it sometime. When you're not getting what you want forget about it. Try to follow God's will for your life. You may be surprised at what happens.