I feel like I’ve relapsed totally. Last night, during an emotional tirade, I fussed at my wife and then went to bed, disregarding the fact that I had not yet eaten my last planned meal of the day. When I remembered it, I said to myself, “Forget it, I’m not eating!” which is dangerously close to my abstinence phrase, “Forget it, I’m eating!” and I can see how the two are related in the lives and recoveries of some of my friends who restrict food intake. To make matters worse, once I did go to sleep, I dreamt of every imaginable self-indulgence, starting with cake and ending with an extra-marital affair. I woke up afflicted with guilt and shame, and it took a while to remind myself I had not actually done any of the things for which I was feeling guilty, except for the harmful fit that started it all. By the time the artificial guilt eroded, I had completed the personal inventory that makes everything my fault, so generally my guilt was never really assuaged but redirected at the defects that ignite outbursts of rage in an otherwise peaceful home.

Since my abstinence does not say anything about restricting, I will not consider this a “day one” but I need to acknowledge that I am a hair’s breadth from relapse if I do not do something about my spiritual condition.

Dear Father, today, keep me aware of what I have done, but wash me clean of it. Help me remember the atrocities of which I am capable so I can be vigilant against them. Protect me from the spiritual forces that war against me, and help me to stand up against my own internal battles that tend to weaken me to any outside force. In my weakness make me strong. Secure my insecurities so I can be gentle and selfless in my relationships. Do not let me suffer needlessly, but bring purpose to any pain by making me teachable, and to Your discipline I submit, Lord. Thank You for loving me enough to be patient in re-creating me.

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