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Posted May 31, 2013
Once upon a time, I assumed my Christian faith would make me immune to the kind of gross moral lapse I considered alcoholism to be. The way I saw it, if you were a sincere believer, you would rarely, if ever, drink. And if you did drink, you would be careful not to drink too much. And if you never drank too much, you couldn’t become an alcoholic”. Heather Kopp
So begins Chapter Two of Heather’s book “Sober Mercies”, a book I couldn’t put down and read in a little over a weekend.
I was fascinated by Heather’s story mainly because I personally have the privilege of knowing many members of my local recovery community. I admire those individuals who recognize their drinking has gone awry and make the choice to live sober. Matter of fact, my recovery friends have taught me a great deal about spirituality, faith and living life one day at a time.
But a Christian drunk exposing all of her deepest fears, shortcomings and basically, dirty laundry? Yes. Heather gets right to the point and shares the secret life she led- hiding bottles, discarding used bottles and the constant maintenance of a consistent level of alcohol in her system. And the insanity that brought her to bended knees, finally causing her to admit she had no control over her insatiable desire for alcohol. And finding out alcoholism is a disease, not a question of self will.
Because, as Heather explains, it is a disease. She hears this in treatment, thinks it’s an excuse, and the counselor blows her out of the water by explaining that “no one would propose lung cancer, directly caused by cigarettes, or diabetes brought on by obesity, are not legitimate disease, even when they arise from or are triggered by an avoidable indulgence.”
Heather analyzes her own Christian faith, realizing that she brought “a finely tuned and biblically supported belief system about God” to recovery. But then she realizes just how much her recovery meetings begin to feel like a close encounter with grace.
The difference? The people in the meetings come in desperation, asking God for help. And they are saved by their surrender and willingness to turn complete control over to the God of their understanding.
Why read this book? Maybe you are a member of a recovery community yourself, or maybe you know someone who drinks a little too much. Regardless, you will find an education within the pages of “Sober Mercies.” An education not only on alcoholism, the twelve steps, faith and God, but also the enlightenment that comes with going deeper. Heather inspires us not to settle for the comfortable (or uncomfortable) spot in life, but to look beyond and inside ourselves for answers and the real meaning of why we do the things we do.
I hope you will take the time to read this beautiful book.
And, of course, here is my disclosure. The book was given to me free of charge and I am not compensated for my review. This is my own opinion of “Sober Mercies” by Heather Kopp.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 6, 2013
All I can say is that this one book is what made me open up enou
All I can say is that this one book is what made me open up enough to start AA and work to get sober. It is THAT powerful of a read in my eyes.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 20, 2013
Reviewed by Mary DeKok Blowers for Readers' Favorite Sober Merc
Reviewed by Mary DeKok Blowers for Readers' FavoriteWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Sober Mercies, by Heather Kopp, is a frightening look behind the scenes of the social alcoholic. Heather thought for the longest time that she couldn’t be an alcoholic, because she was a Christian, and she couldn’t believe she was like those people who went to meetings. But she carried mini wine bottles in her purse, had a secret stash at home, and blacked out, forgetting whole evenings until her husband told her how unreasonable she’d become. There was almost no situation she could survive without alcohol, and every night she began drinking at 4 or 5 p.m.
She was amazed that her husband stood by her as he was frequently embarrassed by and the object of her drunken tirades, not to mention the expense of her addiction. Heather tells how this all affected her relationships with her first family, her children, and her step-children, how it affected holiday traditions, and even kept her from taking trips because she was afraid she’d have trouble getting enough alcohol. Her lies and deception will shock you as you hear the great lengths she went to to hide her drinking from friends, family, even her husband, until she could hide it no longer.
Not your typical drunk-turned-sober story, anyone who has ever wondered if they might have a drinking problem should get this audio book, Sober Mercies, by Heather Kopp. I was so embarrassed for her as she outlined her strategies to get and hide alcohol and the intricate lies she told. It was humbling, and yet enlightening, and kept me listening to find out if she, her marriage, and her children, would survive. Would people respect her? Could she ever respect herself? One of the “mercies” of the title is that God still loves us despite our issues, baggage, and sins.