“Just wait”

imageThose once were damning words when I was a kid; as in, “you just wait until your father gets home.”  I knew what that meant, but I was incapable of dragging time out longer than his eventual arrival.  I was a rambunctious type, usually breaking a rule or bending a boundary. I work on my day to day recovery now and still have to wait for the results even when they are painful.  In today’s weekly blog, Paul Tripp discusses this very subject when he writes, “waiting immediately announces that we’re not in control. When God calls us to wait, He’s lovingly refreshing us of the fact that Someone wiser and stronger is in charge of the narrative of our lives. God is God and we are not. Sometimes we need to be put in our place  and waiting is one of God’s refreshing tools. Whenever I’m forced to wait, I find that I’m easier to agitate, prone to rude words and behaviors, and focused more on my pleasure than other’s needs. He uses waiting to reveal the selfishness of my heart and makes me seek restoring and redeeming grace.” Thanks Paul, I quoted you because I could no longer sit and wait for the right words to describe where I am right now. Having been displaced recently by Hurricane Matthew, I’d been waiting on a piece of mail routed to my former home to avoid the gridlock of anticipated power outages and slow mail service after the hurricane hit. I ranted in my head and slowly began to paint a picture with a broad brush in my mind. Fear set in, and I told myself that others are “effing with me,” and I forget to pause when agitated and doubtful. I get in a hurry in the mornings and forget to invite God into my little plans. I can belabor my rant, but I assure you that my check will not arrive any faster. Those blank stares and unanswered questions I get when I arrive at the local post office branch to enquire of its status turns me into a disturbingly anti government and ‘the sky is falling’ Chicken Little type. Can’t these people empathize with me and get me my mail?  It frustrates me, and then I have to remember that I must wait. Something is being worked out in me that I do not see. I have to pause, and then listen to what the lesson is for me. The excuses no longer suffice. When my mind changes from the idea that I have to stand in line into I get to stand in line, then I know I’m changing. I then can wait more patiently on life to unfold and accept it as it comes. I get my freedoms back when I surrender. The miracle is that I no longer get drunk over it, and I work thru the process more serenely of thinking life and it’s people are out to get me…..good day!…b

Indignant obstinancy

 

imageI could call it defiant pigheadedness, but if I slapped lipstick on it, I’m still the one holding the pig. It’s rooted in my ego and worse is the unwillingness to see my part in situations that go awry.  I usually create the confusion when I open my squealer. Then, because of pride I have a harder time saying, “I was wrong, and I am sorry.” It’s a testimony of what happens when I allow my self will to run the show. I’ve watched pride kill a fella because of the relentless battle of good over evil. It’s natural to assume that admission of my faults and shortcomings are reasons to believe I am weak. But when I have faith, believe, and confess these shortcomings then they lose their power over me. Yet, I will obstinately deny that I am the source of the problem. If I have a problem with others, then I have to look inside myself to see where I am at fault. It is laborious to do so, but I must in order to remain free. Inside me resides a God conscience, a voice of reason to guide me when I do harm. It’s been there all along, but I chose to ignore it for so long that the sting of doing wrong didn’t hurt as bad. Then, I found I couldn’t continue to mistreat others sober like I had when I drank. Alcoholism is a selfish disease. I drink thinking about nothing but my hurts, my pain, and myself. Today, I had rather drink than live like that. So in order not to imbibe, I have to ask God to free me in order to help others. That way, if I’m being defiant and fail to see my part, others will know me well enough to point it out. It’s called working my program as if my life depends on it, because it does..good day!..b

Law of Attraction

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“That which is like unto itself, is drawn”~unknown

Cleveland Browns receiver Andrew Hawkins spoke for the team about his teammate Josh Gordon’s decision to enter rehab, and Hawkins said he was happy Gordon made that choice.”I lost a sister this summer to a heroin overdose,” Hawkins said Friday. “She had been clean for two to three years, doing an incredible job. Talked to her regularly, but the one relapse cost her her life. It was something I didn’t see coming, and it kind of opens your eyes up to what addiction is like.” Inside of Andrew is a piece of all of us whether you are an addict or not. I happen to understand it because I live with a disease that is constantly trying to kill me. It takes work to recognize, and that is what attracts me to AA. Here are people in a fellowship that has no hierarchy, no rules to follow, no org charts to climb, and no governing body. I am simply a member because I have a ‘desire to stop drinking.’ CA uses the same 12 steps but is all inclusive of any mind altering chemical. Both programs work for me and this is where I share my experience, strength, and hope to stay sober. What attracts me is what keeps me coming back. We understand the pain, heartache, and misery of each other’s episodes. We get each other on a deeply personal level. Thru working the steps, I open up and share my vulnerabilities, insecurities, and fears. Nowhere on earth have I found I can do that outside the rooms where people won’t look at me like I’m  crazy. It’s what keeps me free, and that is attractive.  We are attracted to each other to get better, heal, and help others. We sympathize and empathize with the families who deal with wrecked carnage. It’s attractive to see a teammate support a friend all because he’s felt the sting of losing a loved one to this disease. Closing my mind and my heart can cause me to lose out in life. I can miss the true beauty and wisdom in people who at first glance look ordinary. I can miss opportunities and ideas that could change my life. I can overlook danger signs, and sometimes, I can embarrass myself. I have to learn by doing. It’s ok, it’s the law of attraction that works for me, inside of me, and for those around me that binds us all together…good day!…b