Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21: Relapse Avoidance + Free Study Guide

We have officially reached Celebrate Recovery lesson 21 – Relapse! In this series, we have covered everything you need to know to work through your hurts and habits. We’ve also discovered many ways to maintain your sobriety or spiritual wellness.

Now, we are ready to look at the dreaded point that relapse might happen. There are many things that you can do to avoid relapse in your recovery, and we will look at each of these things so that you are set up for the best amount of success available!

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

Celebrate Recovery lesson 21 continues to look at Principle 7, which states we need to set apart time for Bible reading, self-examination, and prayer each day. We’ll move forward in the 12 steps of recovery as we look at Step 11 – improving our relationship with God.

Step 11 is one of the steps from the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Celebrate Recovery programs. This step is paramount for you if you are struggling to carry out God’s Will for your life.

If Celebrate Recovery lessons are new to you, please visit the first lesson in this series – Celebrate Recovery Lesson 1: Denial. For the previous lesson in this series, please read Celebrate Recovery Lesson 20 – Daily Inventory.

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What is Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21: Relapse?

Celebrate Recovery principle 7 states the following: Reserve a daily time with God for self-examination, Bible reading, and prayer in order to know God and His Will for my life and to gain the power to follow His Will. Let’s do this!

In Step 11, We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, praying only for knowledge of His Will for us and the power to carry that out. We can get through this – no matter what circumstance you find yourself in!

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly. – Colossians 3:16

LessonPrincipleStepBible Verse
21711Colossians 3:16

In Celebrate Recovery lesson 21, we look at going through a relapse in your recovery. If you are currently being negatively impacted in this way, do not lose hope. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Remember, we all have ups and downs in life, and with time, this will pass!

Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. – Mark 14:38

What Does “Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21” Mean?

Celebrate Recovery, or CR as it is often called, is a Christ-centered, 12-step recovery program created by Pastors John Baker and Rick Warren. It was created for people struggling with hurts, habits, or hang-ups

The curriculum provided in Celebrate Recovery is Biblically-based. For example, the Celebrate Recovery 8 principles are based on the Beatitudes found in the New Testament.

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 is the third lesson in the Growing in Christ While Helping Others Participant’s Guide 4. You can purchase this online or at Celebrate Recovery. While you would normally go through this in a CR step study, we are covering it in this article. 

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 Highlights

Here are the notes and key highlights from Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21. Relapse is often an inevitable part of recovery, so just work through it one step or one day at a time. 

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 Notes

According to the Celebrate Recovery study guide, the best ways to prevent relapse are to reserve a daily alone time with God, evaluate your health, listen to Jesus, pray, slow down, and enjoy the growth that you are experiencing along the way! Let’s look at these elements.

Be still, and know that I am God. – Psalm 46:10

Reserve a Daily Alone Time with God

As you took a close look at Principle 7 when you learned the 8 principles of Celebrate Recovery, you know you should make this time for God. It will include time for Bible reading and study, self-examination, and prayer. Have you done this yet?

If you do not know where to start in terms of Bible reading, why not try a Bible reading plan? You do not have to allow the Bible to intimidate you or the fact that it is no longer the first of the year! You can start reading and studying the Bible any time of the year!

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

If you want to know more about developing a quiet time with God, be sure to check out the Psalms Bible Study! It walks you through exactly how to do this. If you’d like to get started with a Bible study, these few articles can certainly get you started on the right path.

Evaluate Your Overall Health

When you take a look at your health, you should examine the physical, relational, spiritual, and emotional parts. Take a close inventory of any hurt, exhaustion, anger, resentment, or tension you are experiencing. Pay close attention to problem areas and speak to your sponsor!

As a special precaution when doing this check, read Romans 12:3-17. In those verses, you will see that you need to be honest in your estimation of your well-being. Lean toward the good in your life, and steer clear of what is wrong. Be patient and loving during this time of turmoil.

Slow Down and Listen to God

It is often easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life. We are all too busy to get anything done the way we should. It’s so different – the way we put quantity above quality. When it comes to your faith, God deserves quality time. He did create you! Listen for God!

Take a break from the things that flood your mind, body, and soul. Slow down so you are able to listen to the instructions that you receive from God. What if He needs to tell you something important about your calling or your purpose? It would be wise to hear that information, right?

Listen to the Lord. Hear what He is telling you. – Isaiah 1:10 (TLB)

Plug into God’s Power with Prayer

Don’t just gloss over the subject of prayer. Jesus knew the value of talking to His Father and frequently took time apart from the world to converse with God. If you find it helpful, set a spiritual goal to pray more and improve this habit one step at a time.

Don’t expect to become a prayer warrior overnight. Do take the time to really set down distractions and watch God work in your life. We are encouraged to pray about every matter, not just the big-ticket items. Seek His Will in ALL you do and witness greatness!

Here are a few resources to get you started on your prayer journey.

Find a FREE Prayer Journal Planner or the FREE Daily Prayer Journal in our Shop!

If you are already an avid prayer enthusiast, here are a few things that you can consider for your prayer life – to enhance what is already there (or leave a comment on what helps you the most at the bottom of this article)!

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers. – Philippians 4:6 (TLB)

Slow Down During Recovery

As you walk (or soar) through recovery, remember to slow down. God’s timing is perfect, and you don’t want to ruin that by behaving impatiently. Remember that you were created for a reason, so be sure to take the time to enjoy and embrace what you’ve been called to.

Listen to Me. Keep silent, and I will teach you wisdom! – Job 33:33 (TLB)

Enjoy Your Growth

Celebrate the victories you see along the way, too! Whether you are on your first step or have been down this road many times, you should adopt a joyful attitude. An attitude of gratitude will set you on the right path. Appreciate the lessons that you learn along the way, as well.

Even when things seem grim, you can positively impact the lives of those around you. Show them what hope really looks like by triumphing when you could complain. Share your recovery or spiritual testimony with those around you, so they can see God’s glory in plain sight!

Some additional things that may help you as you are worried about a relapse in recovery are having a specific time and place for your daily time with God, going to as many Celebrate Recovery meetings as you can in your schedule (prioritize), and spending time with others.

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

Keep in mind that the term “others” does not include negative forces that encourage you to relapse (usually because it benefits them). Instead, lean on your church family or the Christian friends you have met along the way. 

Again, going to CR meetings should help you find the right crowd.

Finally, consider doing volunteer work, especially at Celebrate Recovery. Helping others is a fine way to spend one’s time. You can volunteer at a local animal shelter, help the homeless (with something unrelated to your recovery issue), or even send a care package to soldiers!

Be joyful always, pray at all times, be thankful in all circumstances. – 1 Thessalonians 5:16 (GNT)

Questions from Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

Here are the questions from Celebrate Recovery lesson 21

  • What tools will you use to prevent a relapse? What have you tried in the past?
  • Are you hurting right now? How?
  • In what ways are you exhausted?
  • How are you feeling anger and resentment?
  • What are you still harboring in terms of these items?
  • What is making you tense right now?
  • How do you behave when you feel the stressors above?
  • How do your listening skills rate on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 is the best)?
  • In what ways could you improve your listening skills with God?
  • How could you improve your listening skills with others?
  • What does a “quiet time” with God mean to you? Why is it crucial?
  • How could you improve your prayer life? Get into the details here.
  • When and where do you currently pray? (Consider a prayer closet).
  • Do you currently give God the opportunity to speak to you as you listen?
  • What does meditation mean to you?
  • How do you celebrate your recovery? List what you do, even with the small victories.

More Celebrate Recovery Resources

Make your journey successful with even more Celebrate Recovery resources!

FREE Recovery Lesson 21 Relapse Study Guide

For the Recovery Lesson 21 Relapse Study Guide, check out the following resource.

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 Study Guide

A Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21: Relapse Video

Lesson 21 of Celebrate Recovery: Relapse – YouTube

Additional Celebrate Recovery Resources

Additional helpful CR resources to use on your journey include the Celebrate Recovery NIV Study Bible and the Celebrate Recovery (CR) 365-Day Devotional Book!

A Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 – A Personal Story

As customary in Celebrate Recovery, I will introduce myself. I am Michele – a grateful believer in Jesus. I celebrate recovery through the grace of God from various addictions and still struggle with perfectionism and insecurities. 

Please note that I have never had a “traditional” recovery journey – if there is such a thing! I’ve battled with things that the everyday individual experiences and a few aspects that are outside of the norm. I tell you this because I’ve never really had a “big relapse,” as some might.

Because of this, I have not regressed back to the way I once was – with numerous problems relating to addiction that obviously caused the end of relationships that were important to me. (I’m sharing this with you because I don’t want to be perceived as an expert on relapses).

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

Don’t get me wrong. I’m far from perfect and still struggle with many things – some of them creep up on me! The enemy is clever like that. Before, I had a negative attitude, which likely caused much of the catastrophes that accompanied my walk. 

What Has Changed on My Journey?

Today, when bad things happen, I can see that God has a bigger plan, and I trust Him to guide my life. I still have the loss of meaningful relationships, as one example. However, I can now look back and see exactly when this problem began and how it escalated to this point.

In other words, I have problems like anyone else, but they are easier to manage because I know that God is on my side. I wouldn’t say that I have fewer problems or less tragic ones, but I handle things differently. After all, we were never promised the easy road by Jesus.

To understand my journey better, you are welcome to read my spiritual testimony!

“I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

How to Build Your Walk with God

In building your relationship with God, expect change (as best you can) to happen in your life. As you learn how to pray and study the Bible, make your time with God an intimate time – something you look forward to each day!

Maybe you do not know where to start. Try a reading plan that guides you through the Bible slowly. When my husband and I began studying and reading the Bible together, we used a 4-part chronological study guide set of Bible studies – affordable and fun! (Grab all 4 books).

I enjoy using study guides and answering questions since I’m a writer. If you like to listen to the Bible, try an audio version or just download the YouVersion application on your smartphone and choose a version of the Bible (the NIV and NLT have one) that has an audio version.

Our website is packed with spiritual resources for you to enjoy – whether you are in recovery or not. Just use the menu options to find various elements of your walk with God to explore further. Often, just reading the eagerness of another person makes me excited to try something new!

Struggle with Addiction?

If you are in recovery because of an addiction or have an addictive personality, as I do, you might want to try something extreme! You can enlist various radical spiritual habits to enhance your spiritual life. These will surely jumpstart your relationship with God!

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21

Are you building a relationship with God from scratch or returning to a habit of a quiet time with God that you once had? Consider the Psalms Bible Study offered by the creator (me) of this website. It teaches you exactly how to create a meaningful quiet time with God!

Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on It day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in It. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. – Joshua 1:8 (NLT)

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 FAQs

The following questions and answers about Celebrate Recovery lesson 21 should help you if you have further questions. Of course, reach out if you need additional assistance.

What is the lesson on hope in Celebrate Recovery?

Celebrate Recovery Lesson 3 is Hope in Your Faith – what a beautiful lesson! Hop over to that article to learn new ways to build your faith, including volunteer work, praying, encouraging others, and so much more! It is worth a review – at a minimum!!

How long does it take to get through Celebrate Recovery?

Celebrate Recovery is one of the few Biblical 12-step recovery programs around. CR incorporates the Beatitudes that are found in the Bible and uses this as its curriculum. All of it is part of the 8 principles of Celebrate Recovery. A CR step study usually takes around 6-9 months to finish.

What is the first lesson in Celebrate Recovery?

The first lesson in the Celebrate Recovery books is about Denial. Reading this lesson on Sharing Life and Love gives you a bonus – a free accompanying study guide with additional questions! If you are stuck in denial, be sure to read Celebrate Recovery Lesson One!

What is a Celebrate Recovery step study?

A Celebrate Recovery step study is different from a Celebrate Recovery meeting or share group. When you really dig deep and work through the 12 steps of recovery, you typically do so at a Celebrate Recovery step study. You can get started with Celebrate Recovery’s Lesson One or Step One.

What is the Serenity Prayer?

The Serenity Prayer is the prayer said at Celebrate Recovery (CR) and Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). You are welcome to grab a copy on our website or write it down. The prayer is God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference


Wow! We are almost done with the lessons found in a step study! This has been a long, refreshing journey!! This article on Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21: Relapse has covered the following:

  • What is Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21: Relapse?
  • An Overview of Celebrate Recovery 
  • Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21 – Relapse Resources 
  • My Story in Relation to Celebrate Recovery Lesson 21
  • And Much More!

Has your life changed because of Celebrate Recovery? Were this lesson and study guide helpful? We would certainly appreciate it if you would share on social media or with your family and friends. Let’s support one another on this journey!

Grab a copy of the FREE Serenity Prayer in the shop!! When I was in recovery, this prayer helped me a great deal.

In the next Celebrate Recovery lesson, we will venture to the topic of Celebrate Recovery Lesson 22: Gratitude! I look forward to seeing you there!!

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