I am a gratefully recovering compulsive overeater, abstinent by the grace of God one more* day at a time. †
From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:
“We admitted we were powerless over food—that our lives had become unmanageable.” — Step One
Step One, practiced in all my affairs, brought me an even greater revelation than I could have ever expected walking into an eating recovery group: that I am not all-powerful. Surprising – I know, but true. I am powerless over a great many things, and I am glad of it. I never really realized I was trying to be all-powerful, but when I analyzed my frustrations, my resentments and my fears, I found I was even trying to be all-seeing, all-knowing, and even all-controlling. I discovered what happens when a grain of sand decides he is in charge of the whole beach and ocean: he gets frustrated with every wave and wind! Accepting that I am a grain and not the keeper of even one beach, let alone its vast expanses and global cousins, freed me to take my happy place among a googol of other grains of sand, each one doing its part to form a beautiful landscape and border a mighty ocean, just as the true Almighty God designed.
From Proverbs 27, NIV:
19 As water reflects the face,
so one’s life reflects the heart.[a]
The new NIV has a footnote on this verse I don’t remember reading before: “Or so others reflect your heart back to you”. I imagine most people wonder how they will be remembered. Many spend their lives spinning their wheels trying to cultivate a legacy. I don’t know how I am perceived. I have one friend who only knows me from before recovery, who was fond of pointing out that I was a “condescending bastard.” He still calls me that every time he sees me regardless of what amends I make to him. We really don’t spend much time together. Recently, I was asked by another friend to marry him to his fiancé. He was shocked to find that I am not an ordained minister. “I just always assumed you were!” he protested, even though he knows me from work and is well acquainted with my professional identity. Being known from such wildly opposing viewpoints may give insight into why integrity is such an important goal for me. I want my life to reflect the same heart and purpose all the time, no matter what my circumstance or audience. Everyone should know that I am first and foremost God’s son, purchased and saved by grace for His glory.
God, make my life reflect You. By Your Spirit empower me to be gracious, loving, forgiving, a servant of all. Keep me from snatching back control or wishing for my will.
From my reading through the Bible, currently in Hebrews 5, NIV:
8 Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered 9 and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him
Since Christ the Son suffered to learn obedience, who am I that I should have everything my way and be always at ease? When did I develop this warped sense that life was supposed to flow my way? The truth is it is easy to obey when the instruction is concurrent with the circumstances. It’s when the world as we know it goes lopsided that obedience becomes difficult, and it is then that our priorities are tested. What really is our god? Is it the Creator or our selves? We make that declaration with every decision, every action we make.
God, today, I choose to honor You as God. Help me to remain consistent with that choice all day long, serving those You put in my path to serve and harming none of Your children along the way.
From The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, “Step Twelve”:
We who began working the steps in order to recover from compulsive eating now find that through them we have embarked on a lifelong journey of spiritual growth. From the isolation of food obsession we have emerged into a new world. Walking hand in hand with our friends and our Higher Power, we are now exploring this world, using the great spiritual principles embodied in the twelve steps as the map to guide our way.
*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.