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

From Voices of Recovery:

“As the mistakes fade away, the true beauty of the music emerges.”

I was a musician once. It required diligent work, so it didn’t last long. But I was pretty good for a little while. I could relate to the contributor’s story of making something lovely though, when first attempted, nothing like “lovely” would describe what came out of my horn. The same was true with my attitude, my relationships, and my eating, only I have rarely been able to put forth the consistent effort it takes to be masterful at any of those. So diets, exercise routines, relationships, and anything else I touch has historically turned to crap. ‘Cause when the going gets tough, the compulsive eater gets going through a drive through or two or three, but he doesn’t typically do the tough stuff like work out problems, or learn to be careful when the cared-for stop caring.

From Proverbs 19 (NRSV):

8 To get wisdom is to love oneself;
To keep understanding is to prosper.

Remember all those sappy songs and movie themes that talked about loving yourself before you can love someone else? Me too! And they always made me sick! On the bright side of the recovery arch, though, I’m learning they were right in a sense. When the Bible talks about love it is always a service, an action; not a feeling like some feverish rush. that’s erotic passion. But it also doesn’t mean to really really like someone, or we wouldn’t be expected to do it to our enemies (Matthew 5:44, Luke 6:35). This idea of loving myself (the action kind), giving due care to support my structures and legitimate needs, is new because I always disqualified myself for self-love, due to the fact that I didn’t like me. “Like” has nothing to do with it! If I don’t take care of me, I can’t take care of anyone else. Getting wisdom is one way I can care for myself to meet a legitimate need, and also thereby equip myself to serve those around me. Dancing around in folly and frivolity, I help no one, especially when that folly wraps itself around my legs in the form of vericose veins, peripheral arterial disease, diabetes, congestive heart failure, and morbid obesity! As I continue to learn to love (take care of) myself rather than to chase after every self-indulgent desire, I trust that I am being made into a more useful tool of service to those around me.

From John 16 (NRSV):

12 I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot hear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth…”

In this promise of the Holy Spirit, Jesus mentions that even the disciples, the great apostles, were not ready to hear some of what He had to say to them. He would leave it to the Advocate to teach them after He retuned to the Father. Later on (v. 33) He promised them problems, trouble, in this translation “persecution,” but assured them that, because He had overcome (“conquered”) the world, there was no need for alarm. This gets me thinking that any faith, theirs, mine, yours, will grow and evolve, and it will do so even around whatever trials and troubles we go through while we are here on earth. Maybe even because of those troubles, our understanding will be stretched and our faith will be pulled into shape. We can’t bear all the truth at once any more than the first disciples could, but the Advocate, the Holy Spirit of God, is here to teach and guide us the rest of the way, if we follow, seek, and obey.

From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 81:

“After a few years with an alcoholic, a wife gets worn out, resentful and uncommunicative. How could she be anything else? The husband begins to feel lonely, sorry for himself.”