One of the things that has stuck with me from the early days of my recovery is the idea of trying to listen to the things that I am saying to another recovering addict/alcoholic. When I keep in mind that the speck in my eye is more often than not made of the same type of wood as the, supposed, plank in the others eye I can see the sense in taking on board the advice that I am so wisely giving away. It doesn’t always have to be that I am trying to right their blatant wrongs, sometimes I am actually just trying to give advice that stems from my own experience. Apparently, there is some truth in the idea that speaking things aloud can help us to get a better grasp of their meaning and bring them to a place in our heads where we can begin to put them into action, who’d have thought it?
So, I was just involved in telling someone else how they could start to live their lives in a way that would both benefit them and those around them and as I was talking I was becoming aware that whilst I was putting some of those ideas into action myself, I could find room to be moving further forward. I was actually getting a flow of excitement from the idea that I can be my best teacher. Well, let’s face it, no one else out there is going to be quite as grateful for half as long as me so I might as well set up a comfortable chair and give myself the benefit of my years of experience, or something.
Fortunately for my fragile ego, most of what I was saying has been written in some form or other by myself on this platform. Although that is pretty much the truth of it in that I actually know what is the right way for me to go I just need to keep putting one foot in front of the other and picking myself up when I trip. And, of course, the biggest part of the problem and what I was just talking about is that I am programmed to think and behave in a certain way that is actually working against my better outcome.
The way forward is to change the way I think about things or renewing the mind, if you want to get all biblical about it. Spend the time needed to decide that the present outcome of certain actions is actually harmful or just plain unedifying. As the wisdom of partaking of the right actions starts to slip into the mind my best next move is to remind myself that I can do this whole thing and still hold on tightly to my special and unique status. While it is obviously true that I am indeed special and unique, that doesn’t mean that I can’t renew my mind as my weaker self wants to carry on believing. In fact, not only can I bring about change in my life I can also enjoy the scenery on the journey.
Which all leaves me stuck facing a future where I have a strong desire to actually face some of the deep-set painful experiences in my life in the only way that will actually bring about long-lasting change. I have tried to slip past the actual ‘experience the pain’ bit in a vast number of ways that have included getting wasted, ignoring it, shopping, losing myself in relationships and even talking it all through with a ‘skilled’ counsellor. It has, perhaps, taken me a long time to take this view but as I am following a sovereign God I can’t see that as a problem. I am here and it is now. So one teardrop at a time, and trust me that is how slow this process can be at times, I will allow my maker to bring up the sediments in my soul and work his way to bring about beautiful change in me.