faithful and true riderAbstinent Today:

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

Have you ever had one of those really close moments with God, when everything is just amazing and His revelation of right-now relationship with you was just overwhelming, then when you went to describe it, the details of the experience just vanished, like there was no way on earth to convey to another person what happened?  This happens to me a lot, and again yesterday.  At the time, I even thought I would have to come up with some way to put this in words so I can share it in my journal.  I guess it is a little like bedroom intimacy, in that the details don’t get shared with those outside the experience, but are reserved for the participants.  Still, I hope for everyone the joy of this same sweet communion with God.

I have been thinking a lot about the Third Step Prayer, which I say daily along with the Seventh Step Prayer.  In the former, there is the line which I paraphrase, “Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Your power, Your love, and Your way of life.”  (“Thy” never sounds at home in my head.)  I hate to scare anyone off from praying this life-altering prayer, but there is a commitment built into it: of bearing witness to God’s power, love and way of life, and of helping others.  When we pray that God will change us so that we can serve, we better be ready to serve when the transformation begins.  I’m enjoying being a part of loving others to healthy, loving relationships of their own, first with God then with others.  I just want so much for everyone else to experience what I have found!

 

From today’s entry in Voices of Recovery:

“…our fears usually stem from our inability to trust that our basic needs will be met.” — The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous, pp. 49, 50

What is bigger: God or my fear?  Thank God He is big enough to take on any and all comers!  My trouble has been less about fear that He will meet my “needs” as it has been that His will won’t match my own, and my preference always tipped in favor of my own.  If my will, wish and way were “needs” (as they apparently were when I was consumed by my disease) then this applies wholly.  When I (and anyone else who wishes to apply this) promote my fear or my will past God, I am practicing idolatry – the worship of something other than God, a counterfeit god, an idol, a false hero which really can’t do anything for me.  The real God won’t tolerate that, and He can’t give me the abundant life He wants for me while I stand in such opposition to Him.  He sends rain on the just and the unjust, but the joy of light and life elude those who stand opposed.  This is why His message has been unchanging through the ages.  From the prophets, the Law, and the blood of the Lamb, He cries out, “Turn back to me!”  “Trust in me again!  Put down those worthless cares and worries, lay aside your shame and your resentments, and let Me love you like I intended when I knit you together in your mother’s womb.”

Lord, I thank you for loving me enough to never give up on me, and for pursuing me so hotly that I felt the burning of my emptiness without you.  Forgive me for trying to quench that burning emptiness with substitutions, for exploring other options, for prostituting myself with idols, for being my own god if that were possible.  Wash me, Papa, for I am filthy!  Make me clean enough to stand in Your presence.  Clothe me in garments of white to cover my nakedness, and bring me into Your glory forever.  Help me stand separated for You but among those You have chosen, and strengthen me to make Your love known to all.  In Jesus’ name, Amen!

 

From my reading through the Bible, currently in Revelation 19, NIV:

Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting:

“Hallelujah!
For our Lord God Almighty reigns.
Let us rejoice and be glad
and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb has come,
and his bride has made herself ready.
Fine linen, bright and clean,
was given her to wear.”

Oh, what an awesome way to conclude a devotion as with this confirmation of God’s grace, power, and love.  The Bridegroom comes!  And in this chapter we read of His coming in glory as the Faithful and True, the Just Judge and Warrior, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the One whose name is the Word of God, and who bears a name that no one knows but He Himself.

I love to read of it, and I love to look forward to it!  It is the emancipation of the Church and consummation of unity forever with God, Whose love is mighty enough to save even me.

 

From the “Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous, page 164:

He will show you how to create the fellowship you crave.

 

Footnotes:

*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.

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