rebuilding TempleAbstinent Today:

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

Well, it’s a good thing I braced myself to deal with my returning son in tolerant peace, because he showed up presenting irresponsibility wrapped in bad news.  We bought his plane ticket home.  All he had to do was show up.  Yet, he missed his flight and had to take a later one, called from the check-in desk because he had no money for his luggage fees, told me on the ride home from the airport he may not be accepted back to school because of his absenteeism, and when he got home immediately skipped out on family to go visit a friend.  What can you do besides package that up with all the other resentments and offer it up to God, who actually can fix him?

 

 

From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

“Learning to live in the moment has been a blessing. I no longer fret about what hasn’t been done, or what has already happened. I’ve learned to ‘just be.’ I can acknowledge that for today, I am abstinent and grateful. I’m no longer in the driver’s seat.”

I promise, I wrote the preceding paragraph before reading this, but it was nicely orchestrated!

 

 

From Proverbs 14:

26 He who fears the Lord has a secure fortress,
and for his children it will be a refuge.”

29 A patient man has great understanding,
but a quick-tempered man displays folly.”

Here is today’s pair that strung together for me.  First, it lends hope that my children will ultimately find refuge in the Lord.  Second, it commends temper-retention and sane patience, reminding me that a quick-temper is on my list of character defects.  Third, it contains the word fear, once again reminding me that not all fear is bad.  Some are quite helpful, and particularly the fear (or reverence if you prefer) of the Lord!  I know this word has a bad reputation, especially in recovery circles, but what people really don’t like about it is that fear represents the possibility that things might not be as we understand or go as we would like.  This takes us right back to Step One, where we admit the universe is not in our control…and our nature resists that!  Fear of the Lord acknowledges that there is no possible way that I could possibly fathom all that God is and predict all that He will do.  I honor Him in wonder and awe at all that He is, has, does, and gives… and all that He doesn’t.

 

 

 

From my reading through the Bible,” currently in Haggai 1 and 2:

God spoke through Haggai to the people in exile in Babylon after the destruction of Jerusalem.  He offered them hope, and the promise of His Spirit, as they worked to rebuild what was destroyed, to recover that which was lost.

2:4b Be strong, all you people of the land,’ declares the Lord, ‘and work. For I am with you,’ declares the Lord Almighty. ‘This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And my Spirit remains among you. Do not fear.’

“This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. I will shake all nations, and the desired of all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the Lord Almighty.”

It seems ironic that God would say “Do not fear” just before describing a rattling of the world, but that is what He did.  The Almighty will demonstrate His might, but His children have nothing to fear, and Papa to revere.

23 “‘On that day,’ declares the Lord Almighty, ‘I will take you, my servant Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will make you like my signet ring, for I have chosen you,’ declares the Lord Almighty.”

What a commendation!  What a blessing to be chosen to represent the Lord’s endorsement!  Wouldn’t it be nice to be like Zerubbabel (only with a more modern name)?  Wait!  We are!  “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.(1 Peter 2:9)

I believe I will use Haggai 2:9 (NIV) as a prayerful affirmation of God’s promise of recovery.  Feel free to apply it to yourself.  Christians are, after all, temples of the Holy Spirit!

“‘The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,’ says the Lord Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,’ declares the Lord Almighty.”

 

 

From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, “Our Southern Friend”:

“There are periods of darkness, but the stars are shining, no matter how black the night. There are disturbances, but I have learned that if I seek patience and open-mindedness, understanding will come. And with it, direction by the Spirit of God. The dawn comes and with it more understanding, the peace that passes understanding, and the joy of living that is not disturbed by the wildness of circumstances or people around me. Fears, resentments, pride, worldly desires, worry, and self-pity no longer possess me. Ever-increasing are the number of true friends, ever-growing is the capacity for love, ever-widening is the horizon of understanding. And above all else comes a greater thankfulness to, and a greater love for Our Father in heaven.”

 

 

 

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.

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