Voices of Recovery today quoted the 12&12 of OA, page 83, “One aspect of this program that keeps us here is the promise of a permanent recovery from this baffling malady.” The contributor elaborated about her history of coming back until the promise came true for her, and I was humbled by the comparatively short wait I had to endure for God’s OA miracle to come to me. I have had my wandering-in-the-wilderness moments, when I cried out, “How long, O Lord, how long?” But I am grateful that God has been preparing me and my circumstances for OA my whole life. I am grateful to be living today in the promise, content in the fleeting moment between His forgiveness and His provision.

Proverbs 20:27 reads, “The lamp of the LORD searches the spirit of a man; it searches out his inmost being.” This spoke to me about honesty and sincerity. My shame has prompted me to wear many masks to disguise my true self from others, but God will not be fooled. He knows all the hidden secrets of my heart. Furthermore, He can be trusted with the task of removing my shortcomings, if I remain willing to let Him.

I didn’t have time to read all of Judges 7, one of my favorite chapters, but the first 8 verses describe a sort of “searching out” of God’s warriors. God wanted to do something big, but He wanted Israel to know that it was by His power and not theirs. So He sent away anyone who was scared to face the opposing enemy. After that twenty-two thousand turned tail, He sifted out the remaining ten thousand down to 300 and decided that was plenty. This selection came by sending home anyone who stuck their face in the watering hole instead of scooping the water to their mouths. (NOTE: There may be something there for us COEs: fear and pre-occupation with self-gratification were the disqualifiers for miraculous warrior status.)

I get to read the rest tomorrow, but I love what happens! In the meantime, I am struck by how God often waits until we, like Gideon’s army, are powerless enough to recognize that His power and that alone is enough to save us. I have struggled, fought furiously, given all I had, and at the most hopeless times finally let go, only to find I tumbled gently into His loving hand that was beneath me the whole time, eagerly waiting for me to stop doing it on my own. Thank you, God, for holding me in your hand!