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I won’t normally combine two messages in a single analysis but I do for these two weeks for two reasons. First, I was out of state last week so obviously couldn’t attend. I have, however, studied Brian’s listening guide and the scriptures that provided the guiding light. Second, this was a single message split between two weeks so it makes some sense to treat them as one. With that, let’s begin …

Judge Not
The title of this message, “Playing God,” should cause all of us in recovery to remember back and cringe at least a bit. This is one of the characteristics very very common to us specifically. There were several recovery themes addressed as a result, to many in fact, to illuminate in this one page analysis. Rather than trying to address them all, I will focus on a chosen few.
James 4:12 – There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?

Clearly, James is telling us not to judge each other. God is the “only one Lawgiver and Judge.”

Step 10 – Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

The importance of the word “personal” is critical in this step. We’re not taking an inventory of others, only God can do that. Our work through this step is to keep track of ourselves and ourselves only. I can relate from personal experience that this step keeps me very aware of my actions. I can assure you, having to “promptly admit” wrongdoing is humbling, and perhaps that is the point. I am not God and shouldn’t act like I am even a little bit. This step also addresses “justified anger.” Those situations which happen in normal life with remarkable regularity, where we are wronged by others. Can we not judge these situations and render a verdict of substantial penalty? As James 4:12 clearly answers, No, we cannot. Tightly connected to this is a substantial threat to our sobriety, resentment. I’ve heard it said that resentment is like drinking poison and hoping to kill the rat. Resentment has led many from sobriety back toward their previous toxic path.

One Day At a Time
Another key point in Pastor Brian’s message arose from James 4:13-14. Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.”

“One day at a time” – I’m certain this saying is not just familiar to those of us in recovery. James addressed this idea elsewhere in his writings too, so it is obviously important. We need to reduce our lives to the very moment we are living and we must apply Step 3 by turning our life and will over to God’s care. We are merely the crew of this journey, God is the captain. Our task is to follow his will each moment and, when we go astray, promptly admit it and make it right. We cannot afford to wander off path for long or we may not make it back.

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