Today:

I am a recovering compulsive overeater, 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:

“What would I like such a power to be and to do in my life? …Then we began to act as if such a power existed and we found good things happening to us as a result.” — The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, p. 14

 

The idea that each of us is free to “choose” his or her own concept of God made me shudder when I first heard of it.  Then I came to realize that what most of us in the rooms of recovery were suffering from, aside from a lot of shame and disappointment in ourselves, was some form of disappointment in our concept of God.  None of us has a monopoly on an understanding of God.  He is far too big for any of His creatures to fully understand.  So if there is a disappointment, it is more likely that the disappointed is wrong in his understanding than that God is actually disappointing.  In other words, if one of us is wrong, it is more likely me than Him.  So for me to scale back my understanding of God to one that does not disappoint me is to shave off my misconception more than it is to limit God.  This is not really as unreasonable as it seems on the surface, for even the most learned religious people can argue about their differing conceptions of God like two blind men on opposite ends of an elephant.

 

Say, for instance, I go through my early adulthood convinced that God is in charge of all the red traffic lights, and I shake my fist at Him because it seems to me I get all the red lights.  Then I come upon this idea of reshaping Him to meet my current needs, and I decide to act as if God does not handle red lights.  Then I can stop being mad at Him and trust Him with the bigger things.  I ask Him to show me more of Himself, and to establish me in a secure relationship with Him.  He does.  In the process, I learn that traffic lights, green or red, are not about me but about the much grander concern of public safety and traffic control.  Eventually, I learn that He can indeed change even the algorithms of the traffic engineers to suit His purposes and will, but that the moments I spend at red lights are moments I can spend praying, greeting passing strangers, smiling at people, singing, or doing all sorts of things to make the day better.  God has changed me because I was willing to change my prejudice about Him.  That is what this idea has freed many to do: change their prejudice against God.  We can no more recreate Him than the test tube could decide to invent a scientist.

 

What are your red lights?  Death?  War?  Disease?  To be honest, I had a few.  I had to pretend for a while that God did not do the things I held grudges about.  Gradually, I began to accept that, even if He did, I could accept His decisions, made from His omniscient perspective, as part of His higher will.  “Acting as if we believe” has another term.  It goes by the familiar alias “faith.”

 

 

From Proverbs 26:

27 If a man digs a pit, he will fall into it;
if a man rolls a stone, it will roll back on him.”

 

This seems like a strange phenomenon, but it is actually a Scriptural law.  The harm I plan for others befalls me.  When I hate others it is I who is consumed by hate.  Evidence of this is bound to reveal itself as we address our resentments and harms and discover those we have resented bitterly for years scarcely remember the offense while we remain emotionally crippled by the same event.  So who’s been rolling the boulder all this time?  Nuts!  It’s me!

 

When I was a kid, I actually dug a literal pit to set a trap for my little brother.  I covered it with flimsy sticks and disguised it very well with pine needles and leaves.  I disguised it too well in fact!  When I returned to find it, I fell into the three-foot hole and twisted my ankle.  To make matters worse, the hole had mysteriously filled with water, so I was forced to explain my muddy clothes, and my limp, to my mother.

 

The good news about this strange curse is that the flip-side blessing is also true.  When I act out of love in faith, the Bible says it is credited to me as righteousness.  Christ said, “And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that. …But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.”  (Luke 6:33, 35)  Trusting God to bring about right will always go farther than trying to accomplish it on our own.  “Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.” (Genesis 15:6)

 

 

 

From my reading through the Bible, currently in Psalm 48 and 49:

 

Psalm 48 leaves me kind of in limbo between the literal, what once was, and the prophecy which will apparently be in the end times.  There is even a reference in the last verse to “the end” as if to confirm this.  One thing is certain, the God of Old Jerusalem and the God of the New Jerusalem are one and the same!  The Creator never changes, but He is always willing and able to remanufacture His creation.

 

14 For this God is our God for ever and ever;
he will be our guide even to the end.”

 

Psalm 49 is a song of revelation, declared so by verses 3 and 4, “…the utterance from my heart will give understanding. …With the harp I will expound my riddle.”  The song is of the mystery of death, the great equalizer of men, and the ransom from it being far too great for any normal man to pay.  It cries out for a better-than-man, a redeemer able to stand up to death. 

 

7 No man can redeem the life of another
or give to God a ransom for him—
8 the ransom for a life is costly,
no payment is ever enough…”

 

The prophetic Psalms gave utterance to what many of us are only now are coming to understand, that God alone could pay the ransom for death and restore life to the race that chose self-indulgence over obedience to Him, even as far back as Eden.  It would take a God-man combination to overcome the curse of Adam!

 

 

From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, page 70:

“It depends on us and on our motives. If we are sorry for what we have done, and have the honest desire to let God take us to better things, we believe we will be forgiven and will have learned our lesson. If we are not sorry, and our conduct continues to harm others, we are quite sure to drink. We are not theorizing. These are facts out of our experience.”

 

 

OD@aT:

“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.”  3 John 2

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