"....we think that if we can just get enough food, enough sex, or enough money, we'll be satisfied and everything will be alright". Basic Text P 77
We might add to that the phrase "when we get enough success," so let's start there this week. As long as things are going well, we feel like Superman or woman. Once dramatic changes happen to us, whether through addiction or just real life, we find out how full our spiritual tank really is. Lately, I have been on a personal good roll, until that is, the last month or so.
The cushion of my part time jobs went away through no fault of my own, and my personal life began to unravel in certain areas through a definite fault of my own. Either way, I found myself a little staggered sitting in a Publix parking lot just before an 11 AM recovery meeting. I felt emptied out, seeking God's divine wisdom for direction and purpose. I really did not want to do the meeting which is definitely not like me.
Then an old man passed in front of me walking at an extremely slow pace pushing a grocery cart with no one around to help him. Obviously in pain, I could feel his loneliness. Then another man passed by looking very down and out, and I could sense his disappointment of life. As I came to the meeting, a woman took me aside and asked if I would pray with her about people coming against her with jealousy and anger, and I could feel her hurt.
Once the meeting started, the answers to my lead question "When is enough enough?" prompted responses from a double overdose, to near death, to being shot at but the chamber jammed, to being passed out in a parking lot with an alcoholic black out only to wake up miraculously in an emergency room, to other similar stories that caused me to feel the compassion in that room over and over again.
Then I knew God had shown up to fill my spiritual emptiness in a very big way, showing me exactly where I belonged. And he had given me that topic not just for them, but surely for me. I wasn't using, but I was feeling that failure, and I was in need of comfort and reassurance. We have our good days and bad days, but in all days we turn to our creator and ask, what do you want me to do? When he answers, the living water he speaks of in John 4, fills completely our thirst, and reminds us we have been drinking the wrong water.
In that Basic Text, Just For Today, it goes on to say, "The world of addiction is a world of taking and being taken; the world of recovery is a world of giving and being given." The woman at the well that day wanted to take home enough of that well water so she would never have to come back to draw more.
Jesus wanted to give her the kind of water that would fill her emptiness in life, despite her failures so she would have enough that would be more than enough!
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.