I am a recovering compulsive overeater, abstinent by the grace of God one more* day at a time. †
Zip-lining yesterday was a blast, and was easy enough any able-bodied person (which I recently have become by the grace of God) could do it. It’s something to put on a bucket list if you have one. Because of all the fail-safes built into a professional system, it isn’t as scary or daring as bungee-jumping or skydiving, but it holds a similar thrill of flying and of fulfilling the childhood wish to “zoom.” (Yes, I have the experience to compare those activities.) Since our course was over a zoo, my son and I got to experience a view of (and proximity to) some exotic animals most people would never get to see. I am grateful for the experience, for the opportunity to have shared it with my son, and for my wife who bought the tickets as a Christmas present.
From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:
“Each morning brings a new surrender, a new admission of powerlessness, and a new commitment to abstinence through Steps One, Two, and Three. It is a quiet time, a new beginning, a new day.” — Lifeline Sampler, p. 69
As the morning is baptized in the glow of each dawning sun, so I am renewed with the fresh mercies of God for one more day, resurrected from my slumber to walk in newness of life each day at a time.
“22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.’” (Lamentations 3:22-24)
From Proverbs 12:
“4 A wife of noble character is her husband’s crown,
but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones.”
My wife is an elegant, sparkly crown! She was suffering through some pretty tough stuff yesterday, but was a gracious hostess, cheerleader and videographer, sticking with us as much as anyone could from the ground, and did a commendable job of being positive though what she felt like, I’m sure, was anything but positive. She is a noble princess of Heaven, and I would like to be as priceless a bride of Christ (member of His universal Church) as she is of mine.
From my reading through the Bible, currently in Matthew 20:
Jesus told the parable of the workers in the field, in which a landowner hired laborers at 6am, 9am, 12pm, and 5pm, but paid them all the same at the end of the day. Those who had worked all day were chastised for their annoyance at this generosity. This reminded me that I have no right to grumble when a death-row inmate finds grace before the execution of his sentence, or when the Light of Life descends on the hospital patient in his final hours. The grace of God is given as He determines, and it is not for me to do anything but diligently work the field in which He has employed me, one hour, one day at a time.
This parable was adequately timed for an object lesson that followed, although His audience proved they weren’t getting the message, when Mrs. Zebedee begged Jesus to promise places of honor for her sons. He was polite, but firm, and drove home His message that “the last will be first, and the first will be last” again:
“25 Jesus called them together and said, ‘You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 26 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 27 and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— 28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.’”
There is no room for ego in the supernatural life! Interestingly, the plea for honor was cued by Jesus’ description of what was about to happen to Him in Jerusalem (vs. 17-19). Instead of being moved to compassion for the Christ who would be betrayed, flogged and crucified, she chose to hear that her chance to make her request was getting short. It reminds me of the little boy in The Three Amigos, who approached one of the newly arrived heroes and asked, “Can I have your watch when you are dead?” Kids and greedy people just don’t seem to get it! Do we?
From Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 70:
“Indeed, the attainment of greater humility is the foundation principle of each of A.A.’s Twelve Steps. For without some degree of humility, no alcoholic can stay sober at all. Nearly all A.A.’s have found, too, that unless they develop much more of this precious quality than may be required just for sobriety, they still haven’t much chance of becoming truly happy. Without it, they cannot live to much useful purpose, or, in adversity, be able to summon the faith that can meet any emergency.”
*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.