Today’s Voices of Recovery entry is based on a quote from page 67 of the OA 12&12, Clearly, if we were going to remain abstinent and find serenity, we had to learn better ways of dealing with other people, ways that would bring us joy instead of pain.” The whole entry is definitely worth the read, but I especially related to the contributor’s words, “I am still disappointed…but I don’t let it ruin my serenity.” My peaceful balance is no balance at all if I give others the ability to topple it.

Proverbs 5 warns against adultery and wraps up with a verse that begins with the word, “He,” but refers to the phrase, “a wicked man,” in the previous verse. It occurs to me that the closing might also include other self-indulgences, since wickedness and evil seem to equate to self-service. “He (the wicked, or self-indulgent, man) will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.”

The past several chapters of Joshua have been of historical and geographical interest, without much spiritual punch. But I have read detailed reports of God keeping promises to His faithful ones. He said of the mountain inhabitants, “I myself will drive them out before the Israelites.” (13:6) Caleb, one of the twelve spies sent into Canaan, said in 14:12, “Now give me this hill country that the LORD promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but, the LORD helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.” Caleb learned what I am learning: that trusting God is more reliable than trusting self. It’s much less stressful, less disappointing, and more rewarding than trusting anything else. Reading these stories helps affirm this, like living forty years of watching God’s providence taught Caleb.

In the end of Chapter 14, there is a strange statement: “Then the land had rest from war.” I believe my house, my family, my office, and even the dirt beneath my feet would rest easier if I were not at such war with my surroundings. Peace comes from trusting God, and peace is bigger than one person. It settles down even the elements around us.

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