I am a gratefully recovering compulsive overeater, abstinent by the grace of God one more* day at a time. †
This morning it was my Saturday meeting then our intergroup meeting. I’m getting a late start on my devotions again. I cannot make this a habit.
From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:
Every person I encounter has something of value to contribute. Letting go of comparing and judging sets my spirit free.
Cantankerous, judgmental, condescending, moody, critical, and angry would be words that described me not very long ago. With a personality like that, I would never have learned that others have something worthwhile to contribute. Now that I am living the Twelve Steps, I see myself differently, not as a tyrannical despot of the globe, but a co-occupant with others who are doing the best they can too. As I learn to approach even the difficult ones as though they are, perhaps, spiritually sick, I learn to accept that I am right in that same infirmary with them. As we all work to get better, I can work alongside them without acting as though it was a competition. This keeps me from feeling ashamed about my lack of progress and keeps me from despising others for theirs.
From Proverbs 13:
3 Those who guard their lips preserve their lives,
but those who speak rashly will come to ruin.
Ruin waits for those whose mouths rush. I had a history teacher in the Eighth Grade who accused me of having “diarrhea of the mouth,” that is, she accused me of talking too much and without thinking. She had me pegged way back then! What’s worse, was a supervisor who once wrote me a formal discipline for giving him “an insubordinate look.” Apparently, even my facial expressions betray my condescending attitude! Going to recovery meetings and regularly practicing the skill of listening without judgment, and respecting the viewpoints of others without criticism, “cross-talk” we call it, has made it easier to practice that principle in all my affairs. The guard over my lips is no Buckingham Palace Queen’s Guard, but I’m working on it. One of the things that has helped me most has been the insight of a friend in program who told me, “What other people think of you is none of your business.” God later showed me the opposite is also true: what I think of others is really none of theirs.
From my reading through the Bible, currently in Acts 21:
13 Then Paul answered, “Why are you weeping and breaking my heart? I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.”
14 When he would not be dissuaded, we gave up and said, “The Lord’s will be done.”
Two things in these verses stand out for me: Paul’s determination and willingness to sacrifice self for the cause of Christ, and the disciples’ response to not getting their way. They gave up and said, “The Lord’s will be done.” Now, wouldn’t that be a great way to live? Apparently, Paul had learned to put the sentiment of that prayer before the argument. I would like to live in such a way, circumventing arguments for the sake of God’s will, laying self and selfishness down first.
Dear Father, today, accept this failed, frail man as I am, and help me to be of use to You.
From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, page 87:
As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action. We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day “Thy will be done.”
*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.