I am a gratefully recovering compulsive overeater, abstinent by the grace of God one more* day at a time. †
I’ve been working on my World Religions class, and I must say that it is difficult to look objectively at a subject that seems to blame Christians and Christianity for everything wrong with religious perspectives and practices. The tone of the textbook feels at enmity with Christ, even from the introduction. I keep praying for God to help me filter out the spiteful and learn what I can about those who hold other religious viewpoints so that, one day, I will be able to make a difference even to the most devout unbeliever.
From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:
“Our Higher Power is the only source of help that is always available to us, always strong enough to lift us up and set our feet on the path of life.” — The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, p. 98
“Go to the throne instead of the phone!” I heard it said in a meeting once. No matter how great a sponsor is, he’s bound to have to let a phone call or two, or twenty, go to voicemail. God does not. Furthermore, God is the only one powerful enough to do anything about whatever it is we might call about. If I’m frustrated, my fellows can’t make me un-frustrated, they can only point out that I am being selfish again and direct me back to my Higher Power for help. My sponsor can’t make the big meanies hurting my feelings stop it, but praying for them certainly does seem to do something amazing.
While I was meditating on this reading I had another thought. We call the result of living the principles of the twelve steps to the best of our ability “recovery,” but what is it that was recovered? The most precious thing I had lost and have now have recovered is a real relationship with God. Looking back, everything appears to have been pointing me to that all along, but it took this process of recovery to figure it out and to reestablish what I had broken. Perhaps that is a little bit of yesterday’s meditation echoing into today’s, but I thought it was worth sharing.
God, thank You for finding me a pearl of great price, and for selling Your prized possession, Your Son, to buy me back. Though I know I could never repay You or earn my way, may I live a life that honors Your gift.
From my reading through the Bible, currently in Revelation 2, NIV:
17 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give that person a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to the one who receives it.
The Spirit of Jesus addresses four churches in this chapter, and we have a few more to come. Each time, he extends the same invitation to “whoever has ears.” The promise to the victorious varies a little bit with each prophecy, but the understanding is that the victors receive them all. This “hidden manna” refers to the “Bread of Life” that Jesus said was Himself (John 6). This is the Bread that I am talking about when I pray the Lord’s Prayer and ask for my daily bread.
This verse has a promise we don’t see again with the others: the white stone with our new name on it. God will establish a relationship with each of His redeemed so personal that the name He will have for us will be for each of us alone to know, an intimate secret name. As exciting as that is, knowing that motivates me to enjoy that intimacy now, even as I can talk, worship and share with Him in secret right now where I am. This lover of my soul is looking forward to being present with me, and I with Him!
From The “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous,
“A Vision for You”:
We realize we know only a little. God will constantly disclose more to you and to us. Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick. The answers will come, if your own house is in order. But obviously you cannot transmit something you haven’t got. See to it that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come to pass for you and countless others. This is the Great Fact for 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.