Today:

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

From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

“As we become aware of what our eating guidelines should be, we ask God for the willingness and the ability to live within them each day. We ask and we receive, first the willingness, and then the ability. We can count on this without fail.” — The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, p. 23

Willingness is really the key to this program for me.  What am I willing to give up today?  I ask sponsorees and newcomers that same question to help them get started on defining their abstinence.  I remember that, in my first days, I could not have imagined being willing to commit to a plan of eating or action plan like I have today, and, God willing, it may change for as many tomorrows as He will give me.  Learning, however, to ask and trust God for that willingness was a new concept for me.  At that time, I was under the mistaken impression that what I wanted was the most supreme force in the universe, and so my will had to move before I could.  Furthermore, my will seemed crippled because of my fear of failure, so this prayer for willingness and ability was just the one-two punch I needed to knock my doubt out for the count.

Step Eleven challenged me even the first time I heard it.  The prospect of changing my prayer focus from me to “the knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out,” was mind-blowing.  Since I started the practice, however, I have found that awareness of God’s will combined with the willingness and ability to meet it are all that is really necessary to achieve His purposes in my life.  Nothing is as fulfilling as that!

 

From Proverbs 2:

and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure…”

I just got interrupted with a conversation about a person I dearly love who has been less than motivated to find a job.  What was decided was that the only thing we, as parties to this loved one’s welfare, can do is love, support, and encourage him to take some action in a positive direction toward what he wants.  As long as any of us sit still and wish for something it will elude us.  This verse of Proverbs addresses our pursuit for wisdom and understanding.  Scripture encourages that we pray for it, but also pursue it with action, looking for it “as for silver” taking an active, diligent, even adventurous part in seeking it out.  The same is true with anything for which we long, whether it is a job or a college degree or recovery from addiction or compulsive behavior.  We have to make changes in order for God to make changes in us.  The Twelve Steps will take no one further toward recovery who is unwilling to take them.  No one finds the treasure by sitting in the captain’s cabin, staring at the compass!

From my reading through the Bible, currently in Isaiah 66:

This, the final chapter of Isaiah, is subtitled in the NIV, “Judgment and Hope,” a combination of themes I find are not mutually exclusive, as they might appear.  The same God who rescues has power to do so because He owns Judgment.  It is texts like these that remind me that earth-life is not the main life, but a testing ground, an opportunity to choose for ourselves relationship with, or rebellion against, the Creator.  Eternity is the setting in which we will ultimately live out our real existence according to that choice.  It helps me to consider this a pupa stage, like an insect that hasn’t cocooned yet.  I can either rest in my leisure, feasting on leaves until my wormy form dies in the scorching heat, or I can accept that I am only in this condition temporarily, and in order to be translated into the winged beauty I will become, I first have some work to do.  I have to make provision for my success.  I have to ask God’s will, to seek His direction, and to do what He shows me to do.  My transformation will come in His timing, after I demonstrate by my actions a submission to His will.  My deliverance will be both a rescue and a reward.  In this there is no contradiction.

2b This is the one I esteem:
he who is humble and contrite in spirit,
and trembles at my word.”

14 When you see this (God’s comfort and peace), your heart will rejoice
and you will flourish like grass;
the hand of the Lord will be made known to his servants,
but his fury will be shown to his foes.

From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, page 143:

“To get over drinking will require a transformation of thought and attitude.”

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