Manage or Join

This week in my regular Tuesday night meeting the topic was Step 1, “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.”  My first thought is always that life was never truly manageable by me or anyone else.  The step says this in the past tense.  Thinking more deeply, however, I now understand that the remainder of the steps is where life gets tamed but most certainly not by any human power.  No, this is God’s domain.  Only through complete surrender to God’s will for us with an openess to his guidance and direction will we ever experience any degree of tranquility when navigating the storms of life.  Previously, I would try to manage, manipulate, direct, shape … you get the idea … almost every situation.  The common results were frustration, anger, or annoyance at the very least.  Its funny how everybody didn’t just fall in line with my every whim.  Now, eight and a half years later, I have experienced God’s leadership through life’s challenges.  Remaining surrendered is the true challenge.  Human nature tends to take full advantage of the freedom God has given us all making it extremely difficult to keep from trying to take control ourselves
About halfway through the hour a catch phrase came to mind.  “Don’t manage life.  Be a part of it.”  I describe my experience of finding and following God’s will pretty simply.  I try to do my best with whatever comes down life’s path.  I always want to do “the next right thing.”  I believe God has given me adequate insight and gifts so as long as I am actively seeking his will I believe my actions will be the best possible.  Trust me, this doesn’t work out absent flaw or error but what I’ve found is a remarkable relief from the negative emotions that used to fuel my drinking.  “God grants me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.”

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