Abstinent Today:

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

Yesterday’s engagement went well.  As many times as God proves Himself faithful to provide just the right words to say, one might think I would stop getting nervous before such an event.  Still, a little nervousness serves to remind me to go to Him, so I guess that’s better than arrogant self-confidence.

 

 

Christmas cookie makerFrom today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

“…do we let the needs of others govern us while we ignore our own?… have we tried to shift the blame to others?” — The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, p. 36

This pair of interrogatory statements, sharpened by the italics in which they appear in the text from the “OA 12&12” cuts especially deep this time of year when family gathers for the holidays, especially around food, tradition, personal investments lovingly offered, and expectations wrapped high and tight with anticipation of some emotional connection that may or may not have existed as the previous calendar pages turned.  It was hard for me in the first year explaining that, while I still enjoy the time, the talk and the tradition of Christmas, I would not be participating in the indulgences that piggyback on the jingle-bell girded coattails of the “Spirit of Christmas Present.”  In situations such as these, I try to remind myself that “Food is fuel; not fun!  Food is not love, nor is it festivity.”  I cannot prove my love for someone by accepting their offering of what amounts to poison for me.  I can love them gently, being careful to do no harm, while I explain that for me to eat an unplanned portion of anything would be harmful.  No one who offers a gift wishes to harm, and so, they may be left feeling as though their gift was rejected.  It is up to me to be gracious enough to give energetic thanks for the gesture, even though I decline the object of their giving.

God, help me to remember to demonstrate grace and gratitude while remaining abstinent.  Keep me from harming others while I refrain from harming myself this Christmas and always.

 

 

From Proverbs 20:

It is to a man’s honor to avoid strife,
but every fool is quick to quarrel.”

Here I find the person I am trying to become and the one I have been, demonstrated by my defective character.  The description rides in perfect sync with the VOR reflection today.  It would be to my honor to approach people in the gracious way I plan to achieve; but it would be unwise for me to enter a season such as this without the awareness that my nature is to snap, snarl and subjugate those around me with prideful superiority.  Perhaps never more critical is the commencement of the death execution of self-will, not just daily, but each moment God gives me the awareness to do so.

He must become greater; I must become less.(John 3:30)

 

 

From my reading through the Bible, currently in Zechariah 13 and 14:

In Chapter 13, I found two outstanding prophecies of Christ: one the Living Water that sanctifies and purifies His children; and another, fulfilled in Jesus’ betrayal and desertion by His apostles on the eve of His crucifixion, in Matthew 26:31 and Mark 14:27.

 

13:1 On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity.”

13:‘Awake, O sword, against my shepherd,
against the man who is close to me!”
declares the Lord Almighty.
‘Strike the shepherd,
and the sheep will be scattered…’”

Chapter 14 is a difficult passage, but it describes the Day of the Lord, when He will initiate His reign on earth.

14:5b Then the Lord my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.

On that day there will be no light, no cold or frost. It will be a unique day, without daytime or nighttime—a day known to the Lord. When evening comes, there will be light.”

The Lord will be king over the whole earth. On that day there will be one Lord, and his name the only name.”

I don’t know whether there will be a thousand year reign, a tribulation or a rapture, or which one comes first and who’s on second, but this I do know: Jesus wins!  I’ll side with Him.

 

 

 

 

From The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, pages 39-40:

“Have we been procrastinators? If so, we write it down, along with incidents in which we have procrastinated. Are we perfectionists? Do we delay starting things we are afraid we can’t do to perfection?”

 

 

 

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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