Well, as this year is ending, I can attest: the more things change, the more they stay the same. One thing that hasn’t changed, though, and will never change, no matter how crazy fast life changes around me. It is the love of God in Christ.
But in the whirl of change that troubles bring, my vision dims, my hearing dulls; I can’t see clearly. Sometimes, I feel like I am losing my footing in the speed of change – whether it’s stuff happening to me, those I love, or the nation, or world. (Psalm 38:17)
So, I reread what I have heartily recommended to program friends who struggle: Chapter 16 in the Big Book, zeroing in on pages 417-420. I see the underlined passage:
Nothing, absolutely nothing, happens in God’s world by mistake.Until I accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober; unless I accept life completely on life’s terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as what needs to be changed in me and my attitudes.
So, I have to ask myself am I living in aggravation, fear, resentment, or bitterness with what some changes bring? Or, am I living in the blessed solution to uncertain times, that my Higher Power offers? *
But I can. (See Step Two)
No matter what I fear is getting the better of me, God’s got my back – He’s got all sides.
When I complain about God’s handiwork, I am saying I know better than God, (AA Big Book, page 417)
Expectations are not wrong! However, it’s good to remember: don’t let them morph into demands! (AA Big Book, page 420) When I let my expectations for people, places, and things become a demand for my serenity, I clench my fists in a demand for what God never promised—having things my way. (Isaiah 29:16)
The holidays are both a dangerous anddelightful season of expectations, and change. The changes are often not what I want. But change comes from my God who changes not.
“If anything in 2018, we need not only hope but a reminder to pause from our hand-wringing long enough to receive it.” ~ Christianity Today, December 2018 issue
Love in Christ,
Sober and Grateful
* How God answered prayer in a tough situation 2 Chronicles 20