I am abstinent by the grace of God, one more day at a time.

 

 

From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

Ours is a spiritual program, not a religious one. We have no creeds or doctrines, only our own experiences of recovery.” — The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, p. 13

OA offers me a spiritual program that helps me put my personal religious program into action.  I am grateful for OA bringing the rubber to the road for me, and allowing me to have and share my own experience of recovery with others.  My personal experience has me and all my pieces and parts, including my religious beliefs and behaviors that support my spiritual reflection.  This means that “ours” is not a religious program, but “mine” is very welcome to be.  Thank You, God, for OA!

From Proverbs Chapter 26:

17 Like one who seizes a dog by the ears is a passer-by who meddles in a quarrel not his own.

Meddling is one of the several character defects this chapter addresses, and is quite simply put, the assertion of my will on someone else’s life.  The word picture here is of one who has foolishly chosen his hand-hold on a beast.  If that still photo were developed into motion, I believe we could see that person’s dilemma: he is face to face with the snarling teeth, likely only an elbow away, and he dare not let go or he will suffer the consequences of meeting with the sharp end of the animal.  I bet if we rewound this movie, that dog would have had no interest whatsoever in the meddler until he got his ears grabbed.  What kind of person would grab a dog by the ears anyway?  Oh, yeah.  Me!  Every time I wedge my will, wish and way into someone else’s conversation, attempt to compete with a story someone else is telling, or just push my ideas on someone who didn’t ask for them, I do the same thing.

Celebrating my completeness keeps me from seeking the approval of others, or of trying to fix someone else’s problems uninvited.  It keeps me on friendly terms with the fellow creatures with whom I share this world, human, canine, or otherwise.

 

From my reading through the Bible, currently in Ezra 7:

This chapter introduces the book’s namesake and most likely author.  Ezra was a descendent of Aaron, the patriarch of the royal priesthood, and he lived at the time of the Jewish release from Babylon.  “6…this Ezra came up from Babylon. He was a teacher well versed in the Law of Moses, which the LORD, the God of Israel, had given. The king had granted him everything he asked, for the hand of the LORD his God was on him.”  This speaks to me of the character of Ezra and the heart of the king.  Twice the text refers to the favor of God being on Ezra, then it explains why, 10 For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.”  This also tells me something about Ezra’s character I find inspiring.  Not only was his life so marked by God’s favor that it drew the attention of kings, he was willing to share what he learned for the benefit of others.  This is a man I could aspire to emulate – a true hero of God!

Artaxerxes king of Babylon issued Ezra an emancipation proclamation for the Israelites that doubled as a letter of marque guaranteeing his safety and provision for the mission to which the king appointed him: to survey the land of Judah and its surrounding territory and appoint judges and magistrates, teaching everyone to obey the Law of the Lord.  One of my favorite statements out of this letter reads, “23 Whatever the God of heaven has prescribed, let it be done with diligence for the temple of the God of heaven.”  This order of the Babylonian king could be adopted as a life motto.

Ezra’s response to the king’s charge inspired me as much as the description of him, “28b Because the hand of the LORD my God was on me, I took courage…

Great God of heaven, rule my life!  Keep me humble enough to stay out of the way of Your love for me, but courageous enough to help connect others with that love.

From The “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, page 88:

We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves.

3 John 2, “Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” – OD@aT

~TLJax

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