Lucky number seven? Luck has nothing to do with it.
I want to curse at the cursor. I have been staring at the screen for at least half an hour or so. This problem has happened repeatedly this past week. Day after day, my hands poised over the keyboard in mid-air, ready to attack. I got nothing; I have exhausted every distraction possible, and now it's down to the personal deadline I have set for myself.
I seriously don't know what to say about this topic. Haven't I already said all there is to say on it?
The topic is another sober anniversary. Seven years to be exact. Seven is supposed to be lucky but luck is not what kept me sober these last seven years.
So here are a few thoughts running through my mind (along with the urge to order something from Amazon, check my email, and look at recipes and decorating inspirations.)
On November 6, 2013, I escaped from a jail cell that I had the key to unlock the entire time.
On the key, the word CHOICE is engraved. We all own one and have the power to free ourselves from just about anything.
Every single thing we do requires a choice to be made, including sinful habits. Those sinful habits have a way of gaining strength quickly and soon have a secure foothold on us because of our thoughts and choices.
This key of choice has the power to free you, and God is the one who is handing you the key.
If I could accomplish one thing on this earth, it would be this; that when someone tells you that you can quit and that you will be so happy when you do, believe them. When they tell you that they never could've imagined the joy that was waiting for them, believe them. They are handing you a key.
For every person that told me these things, I would think:
That will never be my life, sober life sounds impossible, and they have no idea how addicted I am.
It is the truth; I just had to trust the process and God to see it through.
That for every friend I lost, I would gain new ones.
The discovery that sober life is much easier than drinking life was a surprise (even though I had been told this in this past.)
The promises that God makes in Scripture aren't just random words from the olden days; they were for me!
The day I quit trying to find an earthly solution for a spiritual problem was the day everything changed.
I used the key.
It didn't take seven years to see any of these changes; they started right away and continued building. As I write this, I think about that sad, lonely woman seven years ago. She was so sick physically, emotionally, and spiritually, and I start to cry. I feel so bad for her which is why I care about each and every woman that reaches out to me.
I see you and I want more for you. I want this joy for you.
It is incredible to me that God was patient enough to wait for me to get my **** together. When I did, we got busy. These last seven years are a blur of beauty and hardship, and I remember every detail of it all. Another bonus of sobriety, making memories.
These words from Isaiah 43 are beautifully real and bring me so much assurance in recovery life.
"Don't be afraid; I've redeemed you.
I've called your name. You're mine.
When you're in over your head, I'll be there with you.
When you're in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you're between a rock and a hard place,
it won't be a dead-end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
I'm not who I used to be, nor will I ever be her again, Lord Willing.
This weekend will quietly go by - (wait, our lives are never quiet), and I will be on my way into year eight of not only sobriety but another year of freedom from the chains that weighed me down for so long. Chains that kept me from being who God created me to be. Until I chose to free myself and embrace what God wanted me to fill myself with instead of drinking.
More of Him. Less of Me.