The month of March and this week are a reflection time for me. To remember where I used to be and how far I’ve come. The last few years I have delved into my past in detail while I’ve been writing my memoir titled “Hide and Seek – How I Found God in My Life”. A large portion of the book is dedicated to describing my life in the bondage of alcohol and drug addiction.
My hope in writing this book is so others who have similar issues with addictions can relate to my story and find hope in a new way of living. It has not been a “cake walk” or all “white picket fences”. There have been many struggles and hopeless days until I could understand there was a High Power bigger then me.
When I walked into the rooms of a 12-step program while going to outpatient treatment they referred to a High Power. I wanted nothing to do with a High Power. My childhood understanding of God or this High Power was of a condemning, mean, non-forgiving being. All too many times, I heard, “You’re going to go to Hell if you keep doing what you’re doing”. And my repeated response was, “I am in Hell”. Broken, battered, and unwilling to give anyone a chance to explain who their God or High Power was, I kept on believing in nothing. I simply stuck cotton balls in my ears and refused to hear any of it. I only needed help to learn how to stop the obsession of drinking and using. There was no need for any God or High Power in my life because I had it all under control. Or so I thought.
It took some time before I would take the cotton out of my ears. It was close to five years of misery in struggling to do it on my own. To try and stay in control of my life. As I worked the 12 steps it became apparent I had to decide about this God or High Power. Those around me told me to decide – God is everything or He’s nothing, God either is or He isn’t. What was my decision?
God IS! I dropped my wall of defense and surrendered again, hands raised to say, “I give up. If there is a God, help me”. On that day those words came out of my mouth; God came into my heart. My life as never been the same. God is Good!
The cliché “You’ve come a long way baby” is one I can say to describe the process of coming out of the darkness of addiction to the light of God’s love and forgiveness. Many wonderful things have happened to me in the 27 years since I have chosen not to drink or use. Many days I still am in awe to the life I am living. Yet, it is truly by God’s grace I’m allowed to experience every minute of this wonderful journey called LIFE!