Today:

I am abstinent by the grace of God, one more day at a time.  For details, check out my food journal.

 

 

From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

“In OA, I realize that I am not the only one who is imperfect. OA members, friends outside OA, and God—especially God—accept me as I am. In God, I have a loving and forgiving teacher who also guides me to the better way.”

 

A human perfectionist is an absolute oxymoron, one condemned to living in futility and frustration.  Our humanness means we are built in a carnal state, out of flesh that is pre-programmed to serve itself.  With this as man’s basic operating system, living according to a “perfect” standard is not only contrary, but unattainable on our own.  When I was delivered from the false expectation of perfectionism, I was freed to live among the other humans in the grace of God; not to remain sinful, but to accept myself as sinful, accept and apply forgiveness, and trust God to rebuild me.  My Higher Power is a gentlemanly Savior – He doesn’t seem willing to fight me for control of my life.  It is only when I acknowledge my absolute need that He sweeps in and heals absolutely.  Forgiveness from God was something the old me knew about and relied upon, but my own grudges against self held me hostage, because I promoted my own opinion past that of my God.  When I demoted myself and allowed God to sit on His throne, His value of me began to take control of my attitude, my actions, and finally my shape.  He taught me that, though mistakes speckle my history, they do not define my value.  I am not the failure my historical scorecard might lead me to believe.  I have a Father who wipes clean old slates, restores broken objects and makes them beautiful implements of His purpose.

 

 

From Proverbs Chapter 27:

4 Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy?

 

I have to admit, jealousy is one of the self-serving instincts that has been stinking up my insides lately.  My jealousy is a pitiful fear that something else is getting the attention I crave.  Anger and fury always seemed out of place, but jealousy is easier to justify, like it is somehow a masculine duty to claim what is mine.  Honestly though, marking my territory just embitters the soil of my environment so that those whose attention I want are less likely to grow near to me.  It also limits me from being able to enjoy whatever attention I do get.  Who can stand before jealousy?  Few, if any!  Why would they want to?  It is the bared teeth and threatening growl of a cornered dog in human form.  It is the very posture of a command to “back off!”  At the base of my jealousy is fear, and I have to let go of it to be free of it.  The antidote to fear is faith, and the activator of faith is a decision to believe.

 

I choose to believe that God’s grace and acceptance are sufficient for me.  I choose to believe that people’s participation in alternate occupations and activities are not a commentary on their level of interest in me.  I acknowledge that no one’s life revolves around me, not even mine, and I will permit others to live their lives as they see fit, demanding nothing, expecting little, and exercising patience and forgiveness according to that afforded me by Christ.  I know I will not do this perfectly, but I will do it as best I can, and I will trust God to help me.

 

 

From my reading through the Bible, currently in Job Chapters 29 – 33:

Job’s vanity in Chapter 29 begins with his backward, regretful thinking, “4 Oh, for the days when I was in my prime.”  It seems that anytime I look back, the view is either of a good time that has been lost to history or a bad time that threatens to haunt my present with resentment.  Backward thinking drags one into remorse and darkness, and robs the present of its glorious light.  In Chapter 30, Job’s thoughts bear the natural fruit of despair: doubt, insecurity, fear.  “5 Terrors overwhelm me; my dignity is driven away as by the wind, my safety vanishes like a cloud.”  For three chapters, he proclaims his innocence, and cried for an opportunity to prove himself righteous before God.

 

In Chapter 32, the young man, Elihu, speaks.  Not one of the original three friends, he had kept silent waiting for the old men to have their say, expecting more wisdom than he witnessed.  He first acknowledged the Giver of wisdom, “8 But it is the Spirit in a man, the breath of the Almighty, that gives him understanding.”  He continued this credit in Chapter 33, “4 The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.”  Elihu chastised Job for his vanity and warned that God is far too much greater than man for any to stand up to Him, and points out that God chastises man to teach him and better him, to rescue him from himself.  “29 God does all these things to a man— twice, even three times— 30 to turn back his soul from the pit, that the light of life may shine on him.”

 

When I am feeling overwhelmed in my trials, I need to remember that even my struggles serve only to make me better, to move me along on my journey of progress on the heading of perfection.  As James 1:2-4 says, “2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”  Proverbs 3:12 lets me know that it is not because of God’s vengeance or meanness that I suffer, but because of His love for me.  “…the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.

 

Thank You, Papa, for loving me back into alignment with Your will.  Keep me there, and help me to grow along this path, until I am collected to be with You forever.  Amen!

 

 

From Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 76:

The chief activator of our defects has been self-centered fear – primarily fear that we would lose something we already possessed or would fail to get something we demanded.  Living upon a basis of unsatisfied demands, we were in a state of continual disturbance and frustration.  Therefore, no peace was to be had unless we could find a means of reducing these demands.”

 

 

OD@aT:

May the breath of the Almighty give you life, and understanding to enjoy it!

Advertisements