Archives for: September 2013


Permalink 08:23:06 am, Step(s): 02 "God can...", 254 words   English (US)

Who, Or What, Do I Worship?

There seems to be something about the way that we humans are made that causes us to need to worship (love, admire, pay homage to) someone or some thing. Unfortunately, we tend to try to fill that need with things we can see, or make ourselves. Of course this is nothing new. You probably remember what the children of Israel did when Moses left them for awhile to be with God: "And they forsook all the commandments of Jehovah their God, and made them molten images, even two calves, and made an Asherah, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served Baal." (2 Kings 17:16). I'm not so sure that we are much different today.

In this age of advanced technology, we may worship some of the things that it brings us over the Internet, such as shopping, gaming, porn, etc... Or, maybe we worship the things that tend to accumulate over time. Really, it could be anything.

For some, it maybe another human that we worship. It could be that special someone that we spend a great deal of time with. For others, it could be a charismatic pastor that we give our homage to.

Really, the list of people or things that we put in the place of God is endless. The problem is that none of this fills our need of worship anywhere near as well as does our Creator. "And the people believed: and when they heard that Jehovah had visited the children of Israel, and that he had seen their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped." (Exodus 4:31)

Likewise, as I remember the incredible love of God for me, how He paid the price of death for my sins, and how He has looked upon the affliction of my dependencies, how He provides for all of my needs, I am reminded that only God is worthy of all of my worship.

"Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity." (Step 2)


Permalink 08:00:01 am, Step(s): 01 "I can't...", 589 words   English (US)

Under Who's Control Am I?

As humans in need of help, we tend to put on a facade that says, "I can do it myself. I could fix my own problems, if I had any." It's great to have a positive attitude, but are things really that great? Can I really fix my own problems? Or, do I just make myself feel superior to others, thinking that my issues are not nearly as bad as theirs? Or, maybe I try to become an authority on everything, so I can tell others what they are doing wrong. Maybe this gives me some temporary relief from the reality of my own inadequacies. Or, maybe I spend large amounts of time doing good deeds for my community or my church, hoping that this will somehow ease my pain, or give me the victory over those sins that so easily beset me. Or maybe I continually pursue higher, more prestigious degrees, hoping that education will bring me peace and happiness in my soul.

Does any of this sound familiar? Are you in denial about your true condition, as I have been (and in some ways, may still be)? It has been a difficult thing for me to realize my own issues, and my own powerlessness over them. But one of the ironies of recovery (the process of sanctification, as some call it), is that the only way to resolve those sins that so easily beset us, is to admit it, and acknowledge our own powerlessness to resolve them on our own.

Here are a couple of quotes that I really don't like: "There are but two powers that control the minds of men -- the power of God and the power of Satan." (Temperance, p. 276) "Satan takes control of every mind that is not decidedly under the control of the Spirit of God." (Testimonies to Ministers, p. 79). WOW, I thought I could do my own thing -- control my own mind. But, it seems that it is more complicated than that. It wasn't until I began to understand my own powerlessness, that I was able to begin my recovery process.

God invites us to come out from behind our facade, to get real with ourselves and admit that everything is NOT OK, and that we are powerless over our lives. Yes, it's painful. But the pain has been there all along, just festering into more and more damaging thoughts and behavior.

Isn't it time to face that pain instead of just stuffing it, hoping it will go away? Isn't it time to acknowledge that we need the help of a higher power outside of ourselves? My own personal experience is that it is well worth the pain, to gain the peace and serenity that follows. It's unfortunate that I had to sink lower than a snake's belly before I began to understood my own powerlessness, but that's what it took for me. And, no matter how low you've sunk, there is still hope for you. You too can have a better life, and YOU ARE WORTH IT! Why else would Jesus make the ultimate sacrifice when He died to pay the price for your sins, and mine.

Jesus says, "Yield yourself up to Me; give me that will; take it from the control of Satan, and I will take possession of it; then I can work in you to will and to do of My good pleasure." (Messages to Young People 154) And I guarantee that His good pleasure is infinity better than our default -- satan's evil pleasure.

"We admitted we were powerless over our problems, that our lives had become unmanageable." (Step 1)


Permalink 09:55:21 pm, Step(s): 11 Prayer and Meditation, 255 words   English (US)


Webster defines "liberty" as "the quality or state of being free: the power to do as one pleases..., the power of choice".

In my carnal nature, I lacked liberty. My power of choice was diminished by the bad habits I had cultivated. Thankfully, God provided a way to restore my liberty, and yours. The apostle Paul taught that we all can "... be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God." (Romans 8:21)

Jesus, quoting Isaiah 61:1 and applying it to Himself, said, "... the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;" (Isaiah 61:1).

As we learn to trust God to lead us in the way that we would choose for ourselves if we could see the end from the beginning, more and more we seek only His will for our lives and trust Him implicitly to provide the power to do as He asks. As a result, captivity to our old faults is diminished and our liberty increases. Our power of choice is strengthened, for our good and for the good of those close to us.

"... Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the LORD." (2 Corinthians 3:17,18).

"But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak." (1 Corinthians 8:9)

"Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out." (Step 11)


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