Abstinent 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:

” If I am too busy to pray, I’m busier than God intended me to be. When fear enters in, I remind myself that God did not give me the spirit of fear. In my quiet time I hear, ‘Fear not!’ In the quietness of my mind, God gives me courage and peace.”

My mind gets frantic sometimes, and I think that serves as an indicator that I have wandered into self, and a reminder for me to step back into trust.  God will not abandon me, even though my nature seems programmed to wander from Him.

From Proverbs 28 (NKJV):

22 A man with an evil eye hastens after riches,
And does not consider that poverty will come upon him.”

The “evil eye” isn’t the googly one from the kids’ mystery shows or the deformed “eagle eye” from a Poe short story, but the self-indulgent one, the one that seeks to fulfill its every whim, the covetous one, the one that lusts.  Verse 16 mentions it too:

“…he who hates covetousness will prolong his days.”

Neither of these negative outcomes is consistent with the abundant life for which Christ came to earth.  (John 10:10)   My eyes still try to lead me.  I disconnect from them regularly, though I still carry them with me.  Perhaps this self-discipline is the “gouging out” described by Jesus.  (Matthew 5:29, Matthew 18:9, Mark 9:47)

From my reading through the Bible,” currently in Amos 3:

You only have I chosen
of all the families of the earth;
therefore I will punish you
for all your sins.”

I have often noticed that many around me seem to get away with all sorts of evil, but when I partake in even the most benign, in comes the authority to catch me and rarely those for whom it had been a habit.  This verse may give some insight into why that happens.  God’s elect receive His correction.  Punishment is for those for whom the Master has higher intentions.  Elsewhere, Scripture says that God disciplines those He loves as dearly loved children.  (Deuteronomy 8:5, Proverbs 3:11-12, Hebrews 12:1-11)   Not that it is for me to judge others, but this may also explain the callous appearance of those numbed by their sinful practices.  They appear to feel no guilt because they have none; their souls are uncorrected by the Heavenly Father.  Regardless of the state of others, I can know that when I am disciplined it is because I am special to God.  He is not willing that I should live a life that causes me pain, and He instructs me and guides my steps accordingly.  God makes His intentions and purposes known in verse 10, where He again mentions the covetousness of man:

10 ‘They do not know how to do right,’ declares the Lord,
‘who hoard plunder and loot in their fortresses.’”

There is an urgency to be found among the elect. God uses a frightfully graphic metaphor to make this point.

12 This is what the Lord says:

‘As a shepherd saves from the lion’s mouth
only two leg bones or a piece of an ear,
so will the Israelites be saved,
those who sit in Samaria
on the edge of their beds
and in Damascus on their couches.’”

If only a few of those being sought for rescue will be rescued, I want to be on the edge of the group closest to the grasp of the Savior!  There is no part of me that cries out for mediocrity, and perhaps that is the seed of hope planted in me.  To be extreme in passion for God and His purposes may well be the only thing that keeps me in His reach and out of the devourer’s belly.  The time for sitting on my bed and resting on my couch is done!  Action and more action is the call.

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

“We alcoholics are undisciplined. So we let God discipline us in the simple way we have just outlined. But this is not all. There is action and more action. ‘Faith without works is dead.’”

Footnotes:

*Abstinence began for me on May 11th, 2010.

For the sake of accountability, the details of my eating are posted in my online food log.

In order to shed light on the old truths from a different angle and exercise my willingness with a little change, I switched from using the New International Version (NIV or “NIV1984”) to the New King James Version (NKJV) just for this month’s reading of Proverbs.  

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