Emigre

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“You are my sweetest downfall”, she sings, “but I loved you first.” Once you recognize her voice you will understand better the story behind the song. The lyrics are written about the love affair Samson had with Delilah, who ultimately cut off his hair which had been the source of his strength. I gain wisdom from reading and hearing stories of faith, hope, struggles, and endurance that others have experienced in order to improve the quality of their lives. Regina Spektor, a Russian emigre, left with 5 members of her extended family at the age of 9 (pictured above)  with nothing but a soft voice and fingers that rub the keys of pianos as smooth as polished glass. Her family’s Jewish faith was the main reason for leaving their homeland, and to pack up and leave with nothing but shirts on their backs takes courage, especially when it’s the only life you’ve ever known. Our stories in recovery are very similar, and I hear the same message of hope in meetings as well. A lady in her 70’s shares that she just got the news that she has lung cancer, but she doesn’t want to drink. Miracle, my friends, these are miraculous wonders from God. The basic premise behind step 3 is that there is a God, and He works thru the spirit that resides in us all. He must, lest I perish. I meet strangers in meetings everyday and somehow I fit with them; an Asian woman from Australia, a traveling couple from the West Coast, a private pilot who once lived in Sweden,  and a Frenchman who has ported his sailboat in a fishing village due north. Experiences, not opinions, have taught me about my life. Then I happen upon a memorial for vagabonds by the sea, and humility teaches me that I’m closer than ever to home. Brendan Manning expresses it well in his book entitled, The Ragamuffin  Gospel, a priest from New Orleans who wrote that God is not asking for perfection, just honesty. We are all wanderers, sojourners, pilgrims,  and immigrants in this wonderment called life, and each of us can draw strength from the stories we share of how we stay sober just one more day…blessings!…b

 

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