At the end of a 9 day honeymoon, driving from Ironton, Ohio to the airport at Columbus, where we would fly home to Atlanta, my eyes were fixed on the speedometer. On the way in as well as the drive out there were police everywhere waiting to ticket speeders. Because of the remote location of Ironton there were many small towns, many changing speed limits that required Focus Focus Focus!
As a matter of fact on the way in, the GPS had said turn left which I did right on to a one way road with three lanes of oncoming traffic headed toward us. So needless to say my unfamiliarity of the area and my short attention span were battling inside my head.
Then it happened, a phone call from a friend, five minutes on the phone with him, then turning to my wife to explain the nature of the call, I glanced in the rear view mirror to see flashing red and blue lights. I had taken my eyes off my primary focus just briefly and got ticketed 14 miles over the speed limit even though I was stopped in a zone in which I was 9 miles over. It was that fast, that close to being okay!
That mirrors life and particularly recovery and relapse. One minute or maybe even one year or more, we are doing okay then we just let down for a moment and everything changes. My mistake only cost $135 but others in my life and even yours may have cost us much more. It seems like just human nature to just let down for a moment, but we see examples everywhere of what a moment can do, how things can change.
It happened to David, it happened to the Braves last night who should have left the 3rd inning ahead 2-0, but lost their focus, made a bunch of mental blunders and instead were down 9-2. I could go on, but the point is we are all human, and when we are in danger (lots of police looking for speeders), when we let down (David, when he should have been off to war), and when we are watching a baseball go 100 MPH (not chewing bubble gum talking to other infielders) we need to lock in and let nothing cause us to lose focus.
Let your eyes look straight ahead, fix your gaze directly before you. Proverbs 5:25
Wise words, I need to pay more attention not lose my attention.
Glenn is an ex-Marine Viet Nam vet who is also a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober for 30 years. He has been involved in start up and ongoing recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church and Campus for the last two decades. He has a passion for outreach and to spread the message that the answer to lasting and fulfilling recovery from addiction is in a relationship with Jesus Christ. He and the ATB team are available to assist in your questions or needs on an individual basis and will do so maintaining complete confidentiality. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.