“There comes a point in Addiction when you realize that you are committing suicide, just in a
slow, drawn out process.”
John Steakley speaks from his own experience, having walked the tough road of recovery from a substance use disorder. What began as a solution to everyday work stress and anxiety, resulted in a dependency on alcohol, and ultimately an addiction. John found himself in a cycle: looking for alcohol and prescription drugs to solve inward turmoil. As a husband, father, and friend, he sought to conceal his habits, disconnecting the many doctor visits regarding loss of energy and stomach ailment to his overuse of alcohol. It was in attempts to cope with the cycle of anxiety that substances took the place of true healing. This numbing and hiding could not go on forever and ultimately brought John to a place where he could hide no longer. He began to invite his wife and friends into his struggle. He speaks on this saying, “When everyone was on the same page, I couldn’t hide everything.”
After entering recovery for the first time, John found himself struggling with relapse and lack of personal solution to his substance abuse. John states, “I realized this was not something I could handle on my own will power and something I could not do for other people, but rather something I have to do for myself so as to become the husband, father and friend that I am supposed to be.” When the order was right, healing came. This shift in perspective was the necessary pivot toward sobriety and full recovery. The first step of the recovery process is “Admit You are Powerless.” This realization is something that we all must come to terms with, regardless of the presence of substance use or not. It is through John’s humility that true healing surfaced. Redemption always seems to find its way into the cracks of our brokenness.
John’s redemption story came in the form of the ministry, Unbound Grace. John explains the heart of this ministry saying, “You have recovery, you have the sober living, but there seemed to be a distant gap between these two places to going back to the context of your real life.” Following a period of praying, seeking wisdom, and trying to find a place that met this need, John and some trusted friends began Unbound Grace. “The purpose of this ministry is to help people find recovery in the context of their real life.” John and his team accomplish this through one-on-one discipleship counseling, meetings, and consulting with families. This team atmosphere creates a unique space for people to come and learn how to bridge the gap between recovery and the normal rhythms of life. John’s willingness and courage to share his story and weakness has brought healing and redemption not only for himself, but others.