As I gazed upon the tattoo on my right arm, designed by my sons Tom and Paul, I began to think of the significance of it. A shadowed cross with the word Forgiven underneath in a banner, it is something I will treasure for the rest of my life. It reminds me of where I came from, it reminds me of Where Would I Be without the sacrifice made for me, the forgiveness I received and the grace that covers my humanity every day.
It reminds me of the time as a 12 year old when another man tried to sexually abuse me but I fought off a man much stronger than myself. Even then when I didn't know any better, God was watching out for me.
It reminds me of the time in Viet Nam when I was out on patrols much longer than usual because I was the last radio operator left, and was relieved by a volunteer. On the way back to the Command Post I heard an explosion, my relief had stepped on a land mine. Could and probably should have been me, but somehow I was spared. Where Would I Be.......
It reminds me of my lowest moment in my drinking years when I passed out at the wheel from a massive drunk, swerved into the other lane, miraculously missing a family in a van, then plummeted down a hill and somehow escaped with only a concussion. Got a DUI, a fine and a stay in a 7th Day Adventist Hospital that did not believe in serving meat, but I ask myself again, Where Would I Be......
And then I think of hearing the news of my son Paul losing his life, and how the 5 hour ride back to ATL was possibly the low point of my life, and I remember how the Lord spoke to my heart every mile of the way, how he comforted my soul, and assured me of my son's presence with him. It was lonely, it was tearful and it was so very sad, but there He was, always comforting my spirit.
And I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that Where Would I Be would be nowhere I would want to be.
I remember, I will never forget where I came from! And who led me here.........
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.