Abstinent Today:

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

I screwed up!  Even after the “It’s Not About the Nail” video yesterday, I still ended up criticizing when given the opportunity to speak last night.  When will I learn?  I thought about Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, who was struck mute (Luke 1:20, 64), and I wondered why God doesn’t zap me with that temporary form of mutism when I am about to blow it.  Sewing my lips shut wouldn’t work, because with my food addiction, I would find some way to justify drinking milkshakes through my nose or something.  (Brrrrr!)



From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

“I have to be careful about my attitude toward anger.” — For Today, p. 90

Do you think?!  Preoccupied with my perceived mistreatment for a week now, I have had little energy to do, say, or serve much of anything else.  The discontent from my own self-pity has crippled me from sharing openly in meetings or reaching out to others.  “After all,” I would think, “what encouragement do I have to share when I am so discouraged myself?”  I have to wonder, too, how my siege plays into the plan of the one attacking me.  Surely I am not Satan’s prize; as a redeemed child of God, I am not for re-sale, and he cannot claim me back.  Those around me I would otherwise have helped, however, could be in play.  I have a friend who is considering suicide as an option.  I believe I was put near her to help guide her through the overwhelming times she is enduring right now, but I have neglected her because of my own self-interest.  My own son is going through one of the toughest times in his life so far, and could probably use more interaction from his dad than he has gotten.  A co-worker of mine is going through a difficult divorce, the kind that smacks of my own many years ago.  The pain I once endured has made me passionate about helping others survive theirs, but that burning has been doused by the selfish interests of anger and fear just in time for him to endure his final hearing and its ruling.

I was created to do the good works which God prepared in advance for me to do (Ephesians 2:10) but  I have failed to do them, consumed with my own self-interest.  Shame on me for allowing God’s orchestration to go in vain just to whimper about my petty little boo-boos!

My Creator, I am now willing that You should have all of me, good and bad.  I pray that you now remove from me every single defect of character that stands in the way of my usefulness to You and my fellows.  Grant me strength as I go out from here to do Your bidding.  (From AA’s Step Seven Prayer)  Forgive me for withholding this long.  Thank You for redemption!  In Jesus’ name, Amen!




From Proverbs 11, NIV:

12 Whoever derides their neighbor has no sense,

but the one who has understanding holds their tongue.

I’m seeing a pattern here: “Shut your trap, TL!”



From my reading through the Bible, currently in Galatians 5, NIV:

24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

The passions and desires of the flesh might otherwise be described as the compulsions of the body or obsessions of the mind.  It is the animal nature to fear and to wound what threatens us.  It is unnatural, or supernatural as is the case with those living by the Holy Spirit of God, to love our enemies and seek the good of those who threaten us.

The thought I had after reading Charles Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening devotion today was, I have no love but the love of God who first loved me.  As Spurgeon put it, “No! never should we have had a grain of love towards God unless it had been sown in us by the sweet seed of his love to us.

Clearly, I have been out of step with the Spirit.  I need to pause and reconnect this morning before my animal nature does any more harm or distracts me from the good I was created to do.



From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, page 66:

Our real purpose is to fit ourselves to be of maximum service to God and the people about us.



*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.