celebrate recovery step 8

Celebrate Recovery Step 8 | How to Make a List of Amends in Recovery

Celebrate Recovery Step 8 teaches us how to make amends in recovery. You have identified the areas that were causing you problems in your life and confessed these bad habits or addictions. Now, it is time to get down and do a bit of hard life work.

There are two mainstream recovery programs (AA and CR), but this article focuses on the program called Celebrate Recovery.

If this is your first time hearing of the 12 steps of recovery, be sure to go back to Celebrate Recovery Step One! If you’ve been with us during this journey but missed the last article, please read Celebrate Recovery Step 7

In Celebrate Recovery Step 7, we make a list of everyone who has harmed us and begin the steps needed to make amends for each of these circumstances. It might sound like a lot when summed up that way, but we will take it one step at a time.  

Celebrate Recovery Step 7 will give you valuable resources, helpful tips, and more! Just make sure that you have an open mind and heart. 

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What is Celebrate Recovery Step 8?

Celebrate Recovery Step 8

Both recovery programs (Alcoholics Anonymous or AA and Celebrate Recovery or CR) use the 12 steps of recovery. The main difference is Celebrate Recovery is Christ-centered. Learn more about what Celebrate Recovery is.

Step 8 can be confusing, as Celebrate Recovery uses 8 principles of recovery. These 8 principles are based on the Beatitudes from Matthew 5. They are not the same as the 8 steps we have covered so far in this series. Use this FREE list of CR Numbers to keep it straight!

Celebrate Recovery Step 8 states: We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all. Celebrate Recovery Step 8 corresponds with Celebrate Recovery Principle 6 of the 8 Celebrate Recovery Principles.

Celebrate Recovery Principle 6 states: Evaluate all of my relationships. Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for harm I have done to others, except when to do so would cause harm to them or others. The corresponding Bible verses are Matthew 5:7, 9

What Does Celebrate Recovery Step 8 Mean?

In Celebrate Recovery step 8, it is time for us to own the harm we have caused to others. We face the dreaded list of people we have trampled on to make our life the mess it might be today. If you’ve finally got it together, maybe think about who you’ve hurt along the way.

To fully take Celebrate Recovery Step 8, we must be aware of where we have wronged others, in what ways we have possibly caused harm to their lives, and how we will make amends to individuals who are likely, not ready, if they ever will be, to accept our amends.

Much of this means that we have to trust God to do His part in the lives of others. Maybe your words will encourage them in a way that makes a real difference in their lives, but they might not ever be ready to walk a road of friendship or another type of relationship with you again.

In Celebrate Recovery Lesson 16, you were given a FREE study guide, a supplemental resource to help you get through the lesson with additional questions. This lesson also went over some useful guidelines and advice to help you as you make amends for the first time.

In Celebrate Recovery Lesson 17, we learn about forgiveness. This might be part of forgiving the harm that was done to you or the harm you have caused others because of your addiction, hurtful habit, or hang-up. This lesson also had an additional study guide.

How to Complete Celebrate Recovery Step 8 

As you seek to learn how to complete Celebrate Recovery Step 8, your efforts should be focused on two main areas – how to become willing to make amends and how to make a list of amends. Staring at both items might seem overwhelming at first.

However, if you have gone through the 25 lessons in our Celebrate Recovery section, you should know how to do this very easily, and this should be pretty straightforward, especially if you have already completed your inventory worksheet from Celebrate Recovery Lesson 16.

How to Become Willing to Make Amends

If you are trying to “psych” yourself up to create your list of amends, you might be having a tough time. It can be hard to stay positive if you are dreading a particular task. 

Always keep the finish line in mind. One day, you will be able to look back and be proud of your achievements – even if these are achievements in your book and no one else’s!

Celebrate Recovery Step 8

1 – Find encouragement from an accountability partner.

We have talked in quite a few places about the importance of having an accountability partner. If you are still looking for the right person to fill these shoes, there is no better time than right now!

The following articles might help:

How to Make Friends (The Tough Truth)

How to Be a Good Friend to Others

Why You Need a Sponsor

2 – Pray before and after you make your list of amends.

Prayer is a tool that no one can place a value on except to say that it is beyond anything of value. It is our time to have a conversation with our Creator. Nothing beats that. If you do not know how to pray or struggle in other ways, remember that there is no right or wrong here.

These resources might also help you:

How to Pray for Beginners (An Easy Guide)

How to Pray for People Who Hate You

FREE Prayer Planner, Prayer Journals, and More

3 – Read encouraging Scripture before you make amends.

God’s Word is the Sword of the Spirit. It is our only offensive weapon in the Armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-11). The Bible is infallible and completely true. You can trust the answers that you find in the Word of God. If you are new to the Bible, there are many helpful resources.

Here are a few things that might help you along the way:

How to Use the SOAP Bible Study Method (Free Worksheet)

Bible Journaling – How to Use Highlighters in Your Bible

How to Start a Bible Reading Plan This Year (Free Plan Included)

4 – Remember the reasons you are doing this.

Perhaps your children have encouraged you to get help. Maybe you are hoping to build a relationship with God. It’s always smart to look over your reasons for doing something before you take the next big steps. Review them often and pray about your choices.

Of course, the thing that matters most to me and, hopefully, to you also is our eternal future. Where will we spend eternity? If you are interested in building a closer bond with the Lord, here are a few spiritual disciplines to get you started.

#1 – Fellowship 

Find a church and go! It doesn’t have to be a perfect church (hint: there is no such thing) or even make you very comfortable. Church isn’t about us. It’s about praising our Creator! Is there a better way to do this than attending a church?

#2 – Bible Intake

Start a Bible reading plan. We have a free topical monthly Bible reading plan, as you can read about in that article. This should help you get familiar with the Bible and grow in your walk with Christ.

Begin studying the Bible. If you do not yet know how to study the Bible, check out the Bible category on our home page. It is full of useful articles and tutorials that can fuel your Bible study time. A great place to start is with the SOAP Bible Study Method.

Spend time memorizing Scripture. When I began memorizing Scripture, my life really did change. Meditating or memorizing Bible verses can take time, but it is truly the only way to imprint the Word of God on your heart and carry it with you at all times.

#3 – Prayer

Speak to the Lord in prayer. You do not have to kneel or be formal in any way. Prayer is your time to connect with the Lord. It’s a time when you can speak to Him about anything and listen for His reply. At Sharing Life and Love, we have a complete section on Prayer.

If you love writing (as I do), think about starting a Prayer Binder. Another option is a prayer journal. We have several free options in our shop to get you started, including a prayer journal planner to organize all of your prayer information.

#4 – Gratitude

Use a gratitude journal. We also have several of these on our website. Keeping a gratitude journal is a great way to connect with God and show gratitude for things you might overlook on a daily basis.

#5 – Having a Real Relationship with God

Build a Quiet Time with God. Having alone time with our Lord is crucial. You must make the time to do this or incorporate time during your current schedule. For example, memorize Scripture while you are washing dishes. Where there’s a will, there is a way. Find a way!

#6 – Grow in Your Relationship with God

If you are ready to move into a deeper relationship with God, learn how to discover your calling. While this Bible study can certainly help you pursue God’s dreams for your life, you might want to also check out our articles on spiritual purpose and spiritual calling.

5 – Have a gracious attitude.

Having the right attitude can change things immensely. An employee who walks into work upset over a romantic fight will likely rub their coworkers and customers the wrong way. Fights or worse could take place. Negativity tends to fuel itself. 

On the other hand, an attitude of gratitude in recovery will help you go far and enjoy the process. I was watching a productivity YouTube video today, and he explained that each day, he picked a task that he didn’t like and made it an “adventure.”

An adventure can mean different things to different people, but as I understood it, he found unique ways to make something he didn’t want to do into something that was fun – something he looked forward to doing. Attitude can really change things around!

Recommended Reading: Celebrate Recovery Lesson 22 – Gratitude

Celebrate Recovery Step 8

How to Make a List of Amends in Recovery

There are many approaches to making a list of amends in recovery or making a list of those you have harmed. From the experience of someone who has done this more than once, I would recommend starting with a family tree.

Begin with your biological mother and father. Then, list any step-relatives, including all siblings. Even if you did or do not know one of the individuals well or at all, it’s important to list them. In one way or another, they did have an impact on your life (or they could have).

If you did not have as fulfilling of a relationship with one person as you would have liked, list them. That lack of a connection did not meet your expectations for that person, and that disconnect did affect you – whether in a good way or not.

Once you’ve covered your relatives, whether direct or indirect, it’s time to look at friends and acquaintances. It can be helpful to look at your life in 5-year blocks. From ages 0-5, which individuals outside of your family impacted your life? Make a list from birth until now.

Keep in mind that you are not required to send a formal letter to each person you add to your list of amends in recovery. Rather, this is mostly an exercise for yourself. Of course, if you have children or have obviously hurt someone directly, you will have to face the music to best heal.

We’ll cover this topic more in-depth during step 9. Step 9 of recovery explains how to make direct amends when possible. Step 8 of recovery is solely making the list.

Step 8 in Recovery Prayer

While there is not a formal Celebrate Recovery Step 8 prayer, there is a prayer for Principle 6 of the 8 Principles of Celebrate Recovery. That prayer goes hand-in-hand with this step.

Dear God, 

Today, I ask for a newfound willingness to pursue Your will for my life. This will involve me digging deep and determining which relationships in my past and present I need to evaluate. 

Please reveal to me the individuals I have hurt and bring about an eagerness to make things right with them, provided it does not cause further harm.

Additionally, I humbly ask for the strength needed to forgive those I believe have wronged me. Help me follow Your will in all things and to do so with the right timing. Thank You for blessing my life and standing by me through thick and thin.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Celebrate Recovery Step 8

Additional Tips for Celebrate Recovery Step 8

As you complete Celebrate Recovery Step 8, the following tips might help. 

Purchase Celebrate Recovery Study Guide Book 3 for additional information on Celebrate Recovery step 8!

More Celebrate Recovery Step 8 Resources

These bonus Celebrate Recovery Step 8 resources will aid you in completing this step!

A Celebrate Recovery Step 8 Video

Step 8 of the 12 Steps of Recovery (Life Recovery Program)

Celebrate Recovery Step 8 Bonus Resources

Concluding Thoughts About Celebrate Recovery Step 8 

Do you feel like you understand how to complete Celebrate Recovery Step 8? In this lesson, we discussed all of the details regarding how to complete step 8 in recovery, including how to determine a willingness to make amends and how to make a list of amends.

If you are thrilled to be a part of Celebrate Recovery, share this article with a friend! Also, be sure to check out our Celebrate Recovery lessons, as these often have free study guides or worksheets that will help as you complete Celebrate Recovery Step 8!

As we continue to walk through the 12 steps of recovery in this series, be sure to always trust God’s will for your life! He knows best!

We are excited for you as you travel this road to recovery!!

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