From the Director
As winter fades into the past and spring comes forth with new life and beauty, we rejoice in God’s Providence and Grace. Our Creator is holy, glorious, and everlasting. He is also faithful. As seedlings bring the harvest, so are His promises – that He will never leave us or forsake us; He is with us to the end of the age; He loves us, cares for us, protects us, and guides us. As we grow in trust, our sense of His presence calls us to seek His guidance, which increases our dependence upon Him, and the assurance of His Faithfulness becomes our faith, which in turn bears the fruit of His Spirit. Our trials, our victories, even our very lives are but seasons in the cycle of His everlasting Glory, Amen! It is in this faith, which is from God, that we are overcomers in Christ, and can travel the seasons of birth, life, death to self, rebirth, new life, death to the world, and resurrection in Christ. As we recover, we face our failures, mistakes, and shortcomings. We reconcile with those we have harmed, and walk humbly before our God. We share the fruit born of the Spirit with others suffering as we once suffered, and we share our faith in the gospel of Jesus Christ, so that many more will come to trust God, and He will be glorified from generation to generation, season by season. As we walk in this faith, we see many fellow travelers come alongside. Some accompany us for a distance some for a brief trip. They are both teachers and students alike, just as we are. We learn from those who came before us, too, and are lessons for those who follow, but the absolute power of God is realized over time. We serve Almighty God, whose Spirit equips and empowers us to do His Works, through the faith and love we have received in Jesus Christ. It is a faith that has been tried and proved and has withstood the test. - Jeff M
300 Attend OO Convention in Dallas
By Jim Barnes, Tulsa, OK
On January 17th, 2014 my wife, Elayne, and I took the 4-hour trek from Tulsa, OK to Dallas, TX to participate in the National Overcomers Outreach Conference, held at Cedar Hill Church of Christ in Dallas, Texas. We were greeted by incredible smiles and hugs and a delightful Friday night dinner followed by a speaker from San Antonio who shared an awesome story of God’s redeeming power and grace. The next morning started with a Texas- size breakfast, followed by nonstop speakers and workshops. Each speaker shared his/her own experience, strength and hope and all workshops presenters were very professional. We left with a renewal in our hearts that Overcomers Outreach is alive and well throughout the US, since we had over 300 people in attendance from everywhere, including New York, Los Angeles, and all points in between! Our heartfelt thanks to Karl B. and all of the conference committee for all the hard work that was done to have a successful conference. I can’t wait to be renewed again next year!
Jim Barnes, 26 Years an OO Group Leader; Past OO Board Chairman
San Fernando Groups honor Colleen S
Several groups in the San Fernando area held a pot-luck luncheon to thank our Board member Colleen S. for her continued service to the many groups that she attends regularly Colleen has been active in the fellowship of OO since its inception, and continues to help many others.
Cayman Islands writes:
On behalf of the OO group which meets at Cayman Island Baptist Church, I am thrilled to enclose a donation towards the operating costs of Overcomers Outreach Central Office. We praise God for what He has done and continues to do in the lives of our members since inception January 2011. - In Christ , Virginia C
Dear Brother, Peace and love in Jesus Name. Another group has been formed in Montgomery. And Pastor Richard Cliff is Coordinator. I am sending you the picture of him and me. God bless you,
Country Director Overcomers Outreach Pakistan
Billiejean L writes:
I would like to get some Info, on Overcomers to show my Pastor, I have 9 years clean and I would like to help others.
“Cat lovers” writes:
Hello. My wife and I have been in recovery for some 20-25 years between the two of us and had been going to OO for ten years. Now we would like to possibly start a group in our home church. How do we go about doing it?
Ben N writes:
How can I be set free from a 20 year addiction to pain killers? I can’t do it myself - can you and will you help me?
Brenda G writes:
My 37 year old son, Reuben, is a heroin/meth addict. He says he accepted Christ in the last rehab but when he got out he went back to same old habits. This has been going on for 7 years! He has lost his wife and 2 kids and his inheritance. He owes everybody a great deal of money and his reputation is ruined. Sounds pretty hopeless but I know God can do anything! I looked at your map of locations for meetings and it looks like Everett, WA is the closest to us. If I can get him to go to a meeting, will someone talk to him? He wants to quit now but is unable on his own. His health is in danger. Thank you for your time, Brenda G
I had my first meeting last Friday of OO at my church. It was run by God because I could not have done it. The Spirit of God was so much in that room of 11 people. Awesome for the first one. This Friday my topic will be on HOPE TO COPE. Please pray. - Hutchinson K.S at First Southern Baptist
From our Blog Site: Our blog site is intended to offer sample material from our literature, while also serving as an “online meeting”. Here are some recent posts to the topic pages mentioned:
Susan R. comments:
Jesus says to be done with it and move on, not to continue in your past. "But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague." Mark 5:33-34
Ron R comments:
Hello, I am a follower of Jesus, who is my Higher Power (really, the Highest Power) and also a follower of the 12 Steps. I exist in both of these arenas, and God exists in them also. He heals those who suffer, and wants freedom for us. We get to understand working the 12 Steps there is a choice - follow and do God's will, or not. It is really this simple. Dr. Bob & Bill W. brought us a divinely inspired program of recovery, one in which anyone who follows its principles can find a daily reprieve from the madness of addiction. They both leave the actual healing to God, and the steps, though at times nebulous in not naming Jesus as our Higher Power, they at the VERY LEAST lead those who do not know God to Him! Truly a beautiful thing!
12 Step recovery literature refers to “God, as we understood him” and our “own conception of God”. But we also often hear in the rooms of recovery “a God of our own understanding”. References to God are just that - God. Whether it is “our own conception of” or “as we understand Him”, the reference is always to God, not a god. There are references to “a Higher Power” or “a power greater than ourselves”, so it is likely that confusion of the terms God and Higher Power may occur. Just think of what I might do with “a God of my own understanding”? If I can “make up” or create “a” god, how can my Creator be my creation? My mind, when left to its own devices, gets things all out of proportion. If I can create a god then I am more than God, which happily I am not. And it cannot be “a power greater than myself” if I create it, for then I have the power necessary to solve my problem, so there is no problem to begin with! Although God may be beyond my understanding, the evidence of His power and existence is not. This is God that we can and do believe in, or there is no real power to help us. In an effort to attract the newcomer and appease his or her denial many have offered the “any God will do” or “you can borrow mine” concept. The importance of God in recovery, especially the personal relationship, is necessary to “improve our conscious contact with God”. I cannot accept the scenario of someone getting just well enough to go back out and kill themselves because of “political correctness”. There is good reason that God is referred to only as God in the literature – that is what works! - Jeff (Sucha)
Kathy J has passed-to the Kingdom - after extended illness. She and her husband Paul had started the first OO in Simi Valley about 27-28 years ago. She had 28 years clean and was a sponsor to many in need. OO has been blessed with her participation. .
Happy Birthday/Anniversary -
The following people have recently celebrated milestones in recovery: Peggy M, San Fernando, CA – 5yrs, Bob B, Lockport, IL – 12yrs, Frank R, Prescott, AZ – 23yrs, Rita A, Burley, ID - 24yrs, Ed J, San Juan Capistrano, CA – 26yrs, and John H, Cathedral City, CA – 33 yrs. They made donations ($1 for each year of their recovery) to the Central Office to express their gratitude and help us “carry the message”.
The following groups celebrated anniversaries recently: DeSoto, KS – 1yr, ”Water of Life” group, Rainier, WA – 2yrs, Pikes Peak Christian Church group, Colorado Springs, CO – 2yrs, Overland Park, KS – 3yrs, Baton Rouge, LA – 3yrs, Cayman Island group – 3yrs, Pikes Peak Baptist church group, Colorado Springs, CO – 5yrs, Lockport, IL – 13yrs, “Spiritual Change” group, Elizabeth, NJ – 17yrs, “Missing Peace” group, Ventura, CA – 19yrs, Lincoln,
NE – 22yrs, S. Lake Tahoe Tuesday group – 24yrs, and Center Cross group (formerly Skelly Drive group), Tulsa, OK – 26yrs. These groups make regular 7th tradition donations to the Central Office and continue, through their love and support, to help many people. If you or your group would like to be added to our list, please visit our Birthday Page or call the Central Office for details.
Why and Where I “Identify” - Many seem to have problems with the practice of identifying as an alcoholic, addict, or even sinner. We often hear that it is wrong to remain in the past, or that we are claiming to not be healed, or many other beliefs that it is wrong to introduce ourselves as identified with our “old” presenting problem. Let’s look at where it all started. The 12 step program of recovery starts with an admission of being “powerless over” alcohol, drugs, etc. We admit we have a problem, and move on from there to find and use a solution to that problem. So far, so good. The last step says that after we found that solution (God), we try to help others as we have been helped, and practice what we have learned in all aspects of our lives. Helping others is part of our method of recovery. The basis of the success of the 12 step program is one addict, alcoholic, gambler, etc., helping another. So those in recovery need to help people seeking recovery. The seekers are plentiful at meetings, since that is what the purpose of the meeting is – a place to get and give help. By identifying, we let the new ones know that we have felt as they are feeling, have found a solution, and would like to share that solution with them. Most of these fellowships have a two part name, the second part almost always being “anonymous”. There are good reasons for this, but let’s just say that it means what is said there should stay there. We don’t identify except at meetings or when we are offering help, so actually we are “qualifying” more than identifying. While many groups require one to identify in order to participate in that group, Overcomers groups usually keep it an optional practice. We welcome anyone with a desire to stop.
Welcome New Groups: - Welcome to the new groups in Bell Gardens, CA, Reedley, CA, Cortez, CO, Hutchinson, KS, Leesville, LA, Shawnee, OK, Ellenville, NY, Rochester, NY, Puyallup, WA, and, just listed, DeSoto, KS
Literature Update -
We now have wall posters - "12 Steps with Scriptures" and "OO 12 Traditions". They are 20 inches wide and 30 inches long, with dark green lettering on white vinyl, with hanging grommets. Other sizes are available. Contact the office by phone or email for further details.
The One Year Recovery Prayer Devotional is for those who seek freedom and recovery from destructive habits and addictions. Each day, the book encourages you to bring your struggles to God in prayer, asking for strength and power. - $10 plus shipping.
Our Steps and Traditions Guidebook has been revised and enhanced with study scriptures, prayers, and additional material, in a spiral bound booklet. We are offering the new guidebook for $6, with extra volume discount pricing starting at 10 copies or more. We also have the Newly Revised Group Traditions Guide (traditions only) for $3 each.
Our OO “big book”, A Bridge to Recovery, is an excellent resource for a “book study” meeting. It also has guidelines, formats, 36 stories of recovery and the history of Overcomers Outreach. We offer a Group Discount on orders of ten or more books shipped directly from the publisher for $17.50 per book (shipping included). Visit our Books page in our online shop, where we also offer discounts by the case for the Life Recovery Bible in soft cover and personal size editions.
Literature sales help fund the Central Office. We are happy to help your group find the literature they want at a good price, and offer discount prices on some books and Bibles by the case.
Office News - Please visit, “like” and “follow” our Face Book page. Visit the page for posts and devotionals, and be sure to share any group news or events you care to. We are also on Google+. Our weekly Phone Meeting is still in need of a leader, but is “off and on” for now. We may combine the phone meeting with a regular face to face meeting soon. Our blog site – The Bridge – is a great place to share online and a good resource for some of our literature. We continue to work on updates to our online directory. We are asking group members to please look at the information listed and email changes if needed. There is a link at the bottom of the directory page for this. Corrections can also be phoned in. We need your help. Our Group Network link provides helpful information for starting, growing, and improving group attendance or outreach to the community. A discussion of our Group Traditions and helpful forms will be found on this site, too. Our website is averaging over 500 visitors a week. About 85% are new visitors, and the average time spent viewing is almost 5 minutes. We average 1500 page views a week.
Artie Loy Memorial OO Campout Scholarship Fund
Artie Loy loved the Lord and he also loved the fellowship with Overcomers Outreach. He especially loved the yearly Campouts as they brought together some wonderful people overcoming just like him, surrounded by the beautiful city of Morro Bay, California. Each year he anticipated its arrival and always came home beaming about all the fun times and fabulous people he met. It is our desire to honor him in his passing by creating an Overcomers Outreach Campout Scholarship fund to sponsor someone who would not otherwise be able to afford to go - it's a small amount but can go a long way and the rewards are priceless. The scholarship includes campout fee and all meals during the event. If you are interested in either donating to this worthwhile scholarship or applying for the endowment, please contact the Central Office, or Donate via the website. The scholarship Fund is limited each year so it is on a first come ~ first granted basis, and will be available next summer.
A Prayer of Deliverance
Days pass, then weeks, months, and years. Seasons change, and circumstances, even lives – it seems everything changes. Everything except God, because Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Heb.13:8) This means that His love for us is everlasting, so we may be sure of this simple Truth: We are forgiven through Christ. When we accept this truth, we believe, and our faith heals us! We were saved, are saved, and will be saved forever by our Lord Jesus, our deliverer.
Almighty God, Maker of All, we come to you in the name of Jesus, our savior. Through Him you have brought us before you, blessed in your healing, and you hear our prayers. May we always look to your Glory in all things. Strengthen our faith as we do your bidding, that we may honor You. Bid us do your wondrous works as we love one another in Jesus name. All Glory, Honor, and Praise is yours everlasting. Amen
If you would like to donate to Overcomers Outreach, Inc. to help defray the cost of this newsletter as well as other operating expenses, please visit our website overcomersoutreach.org or send to Overcomers Outreach, 12828 Acheson Dr., Whittier, CA 90601. All donations are tax deductible. To be added to our mailing list, or removed from it, please so indicate, along with your donation, or call us at (800)310-3001. You can also email us at email@example.com and we will be happy to accommodate your request. We also welcome any news articles or testimonies you would care to submit for future newsletters. God Bless
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