Without Love I Am Nothing

Life makes no guarantees. It only offers us the opportunity to try. While we don’t all start out with the same advantages or disadvantages, most of us get to choose how we live. No matter what road we decide to venture down, pain and joy accompany us on our travels. Both offer us insights that can help us learn and grow as we progress on our journey.

bible study edited

And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

1 Corinthians 13:2 (ESV)

Recovery grants us the chance to experience love. Real love. Not the kind that comes at the end of a bottle, nor the exhilaration we feel at the peak of a high. But rather, genuine godly love that we can’t keep hidden inside, but that explodes from us, radiating in smile or felt in a warm touch.

happy couple

Maybe we share our love with our family, friends, and neighbors through a phone call, a door knock, a hospital visit, a handwritten note, or brief text reminding those dear to us  that we love them and that they matter. Created in God’s image, each of us have value. We all have a purpose. Our lives matter.

Life isn’t always wonderful. It has its ups and downs to be sure. Trials, tribulations, temptations, and trouble mark the trail like incessant potholes lurking along life’s highway. While it’s not always easy, life is full of wonder. Open your eyes and see. Open your ears and hear. Open your mind and think. Open your heart and feel.

Love is all around us.

May God grant you the opportunity to experience love in your life today.

Godspeed.

Love_The Devotional Guy

Remaining Vigilant on the Road of Recovery

Recovery is a total overhaul of our mind, body, and spirit. It is a constant, ongoing process. You can graduate from a program, but you never graduate from your recovery. Even after you overcome your habits and hang-ups and find healing from your hurts, the work of recovery continues. Like the process of sanctification, the journey of recovery transforms us daily, correcting our skewed inner navigation system. We are all flawed. We are all a little damaged. No one drives life’s highway without getting dinged up. At the end of the road, none of us even get off the highway alive.

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2 (ESV)

 addiction

Recovery is about living. Addiction is about dying. As addicts, regardless of habit or hang-up, we die to self a bit every single day. The longer we remain embroiled in the turmoil brought on by our darkest demons, the more of our self we lose. We find ourselves wandering aimlessly off-course, struggling to find our way home.

“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

Psalm 46:10 (ESV)

But, the good new is that recovery works if you work it. We avoid getting too far ahead of ourselves and certainly we must not get ahead of God. His desire is for us to walk with Him, just as Adam and Eve walked with Him in the Garden (Genesis 3:8). When we walk with God, it fosters closeness, intimacy and fellowship. Spiritual growth occurs. Our spiritual growth and transformation help us remain in a state of recovery. Recovery is not a stagnant but ever-developing, altering states just like water forms into ice and ice evaporates into a gas.

Vigilant

Our recovery requires our active participation, monitoring our thoughts and behaviors, continuing to learn and practice new skills, developing and growing our support system, and being alert and watchful to triggers and temptations to use or return to our addictions of choice. We must stay vigilant, guarding against relapse.

Step 1: Honesty

“Admit that you, of yourself, are powerless to overcome your addictions and that your life has become unmanageable.”

The work of recovery is hard but it is also rewarding. The work we do in the rooms and through our programs helps us rebuild broken relationships. Recovery brings new people into our life as well, providing us with friends who walk with us, mentoring us, and most of all, holding us accountable. We can experience happiness because we learn to quickly forgive wrongs and readily admit when we messed up and need to apologize and make amends. This keeps the list short and our burdens light, replacing pain with joy. Through recovery we can live the abundant life our Creator intended for us to experience this side of Heaven.

Open Door

 

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”

John 10:10 (ESV)

My friend, continue to press on, one day at a time, and even sometimes one moment at a time.

RBantau_072017 Devo Guy