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A Charlie Brown Christmas & Learning to Fear Not

This is the third part of a series examining the 12 Steps of Recovery through the lens of nerd culture, all of which will be collected as part of our Mental Health resource.

Step 2 of Recovery | We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

In the journey of overcoming our addictive behaviors, Step 2 of the recovery process emphasizes the belief that a Power greater than ourselves can restore us to sanity. This profound step is beautifully echoed in the classic holiday special, A Charlie Brown Christmas, particularly in the iconic scene where Linus shares his insightful speech.

Throughout the show, Linus’s security blanket is a constant companion, symbolizing our own personal crutches and methods of coping with life’s uncertainties. It represents our attempts to control our environment and soothe ourselves, often manifesting as addictive behaviors. In the context of recovery, this blanket can be seen as a metaphor for self-reliance and the belief that we alone can manage our lives, despite evidence to the contrary.

© Apple TV+

The climax of Linus’s speech, where he is quoting the angel who appeared to the shepherds, embodies the essence of Step 2. Up until this moment, he is still holding on to his security blanket, but the moment he says the words “Fear not”, he drops his blanket. It’s not overtly focused on – in fact it’s barely even in frame the moment it happens – but when you catch it, it’s hard to focus on anything else. This action is not just about letting go of a physical object, but about releasing the illusion of control and acknowledging the need for something greater than oneself. In this moment, Linus demonstrates a fundamental shift from self-reliance to trust in God.

The message in Linus’s gesture resonates deeply with the principles of Step 2 in recovery. It’s an acknowledgment that while our addictive behaviors have rendered us powerless and our lives unmanageable, there is hope in surrendering to a Power greater than ourselves. While this step isn’t necessarily about religious belief, but rather about opening oneself to the possibility of healing and change that comes from beyond our limited self, as Christians, we have the ability to name that Higher Power, one who was born in the City of David.

“…which is Christ, the Lord.”

© Apple TV+

A Charlie Brown Christmas offers a poignant and gentle reminder of the power of faith and surrender in the recovery process. Linus’s act of dropping his blanket while reciting “Fear not” invites us to reflect on our own need for a higher power in our journey towards healing. As we watch this timeless story, we are reminded that in letting go of our illusions of control and embracing a Power greater than ourselves, we find the true strength needed for recovery and renewal.

This holiday season and beyond, let us find inspiration in Linus’s simple yet profound act of trust and surrender, reminding ourselves that in our own journeys of recovery, believing in a Power greater than ourselves is a step towards a life of balance, sanity, and peace.

And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”
Luke 2:10 ESV

Writer in the geek world, raising two beautiful baby geeks.

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