Friday, May 30, 2014
SPIRITUAL JOURNEY: A Starting Point
When I started my road to recovery from alcoholism, I had to reset my spiritual journey as well. For when I turned down that road there was an admittance of being lost and broken--there was no functional knowledge in how to be one with myself and even less on how to be one with God. The knowledge from childhood did not move forward into how to be spiritual. I knew how to be as a Pharisee and view right and wrong in terms of what to do and not do; yet that could not and did not save me from becoming a drunk.
When the discussion and topic turned to God and those things spiritual for my recovery I thought this was going to be the easy part. I was wrong. Dead wrong. It was pointed out to me that I knew many historical accounts from the Bible even how God reacted to them, but had no real understanding of how God operated in personal lives. If I was going to learn of that I was going to have to come to some understanding of God. If I could not come to an understanding Him, the core idea of God removing the alcoholism could not be met within AA.
I know in searching for sobriety that I could not accept or understand a vengeful and angry god. I was in need of peace and comfort and solace for my mind and soul; that is what the alcohol had been used. There needed to be a comfortable starting place for my growth in understanding God. A place for my recovery to start.
That place was Psalm 23.
To have some one look after me was a very good thought to start. A shepherd looks after his sheep and they are not in want of food nor water. Their needs are met. How wonderful to think of God being able to do that! This is what I needed because taking care of myself was the very thing I could not do.
Being led to safe places. Not meandering wherever my two feet my take me, but purposefully following to places where dangers where not. Those green pastures and still waters were places completely lost to me. Yet, to know there was God to lead me there was great because I did not even know they even existed.
Restoring my soul. I did not know how to comprehend this, but thought if He could lead me and provide for me He could do this. But to be led in the paths of righteousness, to know what the truly right thing to do made sense, because I knew I did not know where that path was.
This reminded me that even be led and provided for there were still going to be rough roads to these safe places, but because He is the shepherd I would not be alone. The evil has no need to be feared because the tools of the shepherd (rod, staff) were there to protect me. This was the beginning of having a few safe feelings and thoughts that I never had when contemplating my trials.
vs. 5 & 6
As I stay with Him, the joys and blessings will come abundantly even if if I have to deal with things in verse 4. He is there for me and will continue to be there for me as long as I am staying with Him. How wonderful is that thought?
Intellectually, I knew there was more to God than this, but this I could understand and accept. It was looking at God as my protector and blessing giver, I was able to get through though first few months of sobriety. It was nothing more than a basic and simple understanding to get me started, and my understanding has matured over timed.
Each person must start their journey in recovery and understanding of God wherever they are able. If you don't know where to start, maybe this can help.