New Years Step 1

We ascalesre two weeks into the New Year. For most of us the holiday weariness is just passing and we are starting to get our traction again for the winter days ahead. Maybe we are reevaluating our New Year’s resolutions or 2013 goals. I was going to read through the Bible this year but I’m already 30 chapters behind. I was going to lose a little weight and so far I’ve gained 4 pounds. For me, the first two or three weeks of the year are the time when it takes every ounce of discipline I have to even keep looking at the track, much less stay on track.

It occurred to me this morning that goal setting is a lot like living in recovery. We have to be clear about where we are headed. We need some accountability and support. And we must break it down into small chunks or it is just too overwhelming. To use my 12 Step language, I have to take it one day at a time.

If that is true (and it is) then it might be a good idea to rehearse the recovery mantras while I’m trying to make this year productive. The 12 Steps are not the roadmap for the path to recovery from addictions, character defects, or sins; they are also super tools for achieving our goals and accomplishing the mission that we believe God has set before us this year.

So….let’s top and revisit Step 1 today in this first period of the New Year. Step 1 says “We saw that we were powerless over our (you fill in the blank but for today I am going to say WEAKNESS) and our lives were out of control. We saw that we were powerless over our weakness an our lives were out of control. Listen, I am not a goal accomplisher. I don’t have it in me to do great things or even stay steady in the race. I am weak. I am lazy. I am selfish and self-centered. And when it gets right down to it, I would rather enjoy an extra slice of pie today than pay the price to be more healthy in six months. I am powerless and I have a long history to prove it.

Well, that should cheer you up. Okay. Good luck. God bless. Have a great day!…….Wait a minute. That’s not the end of the story. It is all true but it is not all of the truth. I (and I believe you) are pretty helpless when it comes to overcoming our weaknesses and making ourselves better. Oh, we can read the books, join the gyms, make out the plans, and they work for awhile; but in the end, nothing has really changed in us. Praise the Lord for Steps 2 and 3. We’ll look at those steps over the next few weeks. For now, the great news is that I am powerless but I don’t have to be in charge.

Remember what Paul says to us in Philippians 4:13, “I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength.” Is that good news or what? I am powerless. I can’t stick with this diet. I can’t accomplish my goals. I can’t make myself get up and run. AND I DON’T HAVE TO. I just put it in God’s hands. And with His help I can do it all. Man, I feel better already. Hope you do to.

One of my goals for 2013 is to be faithful about writing every Tuesday morning a brief word about recovery. In fact I’m thinking the blog will be “Learning Recovery – Living Redemption.” So stay tuned, lay off that donut, and let’s make it to the next step together.



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