Tuesday – Thoughts on Humility and Step 7
It is written in the book, that Step 7 is all about Humility. It seems, to me, that I have been on this step for a very long time. A lifetime, for that matter. Steps 6 and 7, character defects and shortcomings, are those undesirable traits we want to get rid of.
We read this step the other night in the other fellowship and I got to thinking after the past few entries here that God, in His infinite wisdom, has been working on this for me for a lifetime.
I’ve said before that I have an intimate relationship with God that goes back to my early childhood. And as child and young person, I had opportunity to find Him and seek Him and learn about Him.
Life took its turns and I ended up where I ended up.
Prior to when I left home, I had been on a vacation with a friend, and I met a couple who lived in a swanky apartment in Orlando, close to the Tragic Queendom. I knew then, that that was exactly what I wanted, it cost big bucks, that, in the end, I could not make, for drinking, but I went nonetheless.
It was a crap shoot. I could only get so far, drinking and all, and sooner than later, I lost that swanky apartment and my car, due to drinking. That first move was a futile attempt at wanting something I could not afford, yet went after it anyways.
My wants over rid my base needs.
God does not like it when I “want.” He tends to say NO quite often to them.
I thought I knew better, and I did not. I had “ideas and thoughts” that really did not make it off the paper and into life.
The idea that I HAD to DRINK to get in, was the main focus of my drinking. And I held on to that idea for the major portion of my life. OLD IDEAS.
The theme of acquiring “things, homes, material goods” so forth and so on, was like a merry go round. I would collect things, I would move, I would loose things, and have to start over again. With nothing.
The humbling before God began early on, but I never saw it that way.
God, I think, had been watching out for me in a specific way. Family is the thorn in my side, and I hear other gay men talk about family with reverence, and I heard the other day how important family is and that we should visit them and be with them, and for me that is entirely not the case.
My parents could not wait to get rid of me, in fact, they never wanted me to begin with, as I was the root of all of their problems.
Blame the little children, why don’t you.
I know this today, but did not know this THEN, that God removed toxic and detrimental people from my life on purpose. There is a book called Michael and the Angels, a Kryon parable that talks about the contract we write before birth. That certain people reincarnate together for a specific period of time, which may NOT be a lifetime.
With that thought in mind, my parents were not under contract, past the date they asked me to go. I went on my own volition. But I knew that was coming.
When I got sick, back in the day, everybody walked out. Family included. I think God knew what was good for me, but at the time I did not. God, read: Todd, came to me and those men of that time were the people who mattered. The ones who would be part of my salvation.
Once again, and probably the most important time, I was humbled before God.
Every day, and every night, I began work on my knees, praying with Todd. I had to believe in a Power greater than myself, and Todd was that power. I learned a great deal about humility during those two years with him.
GOD became Incarnate. I know this as FACT. I was there.
The practice of NOT thinking about myself for the most part, was beneficial.
When Todd left and I was left to my own devices, I could not carry forwards what I had learned because there was no one around to help me do that. The all important “other person dynamic” was missing. And I did not find it again.
Alas, I was sober, to an extent.
Words were said, and I began to think wild thoughts, and have desires, well outside my comfort zone. My desires, well outstripped my needs. I could not cover the bills of that move and pawned them off on a friend, that I owe an amend to greatly.
I turned away from God, from my recovery and from my survival, for base desires. Sickly thinking that a stranger was going to fill the hole in my soul.
How wrong I was, to my detriment.
Once again, at the end of that escapade, I was humbled before God.
This was the biggest loss for me. My house, my furniture, everything that I owned. Save a backpack, a duffle bag, my bible and a few odds and ends.
I returned home with my tail between my legs to friends who opened their home to me until I found one of my own. God was there, because the sequence of events that took place were divine. I know this for sure.
And as it happened, and history will tell us, that the rest of this story IS history.
I ended up here.
And for a time, I was good, until my minor hiccup. When I drew out my arms length list of needs (read:wants) and desires for God, that I stupidly shared at a meeting.
To the laughter of my fellows and encouragements like “Keep coming back, and Stay in your day,” that list was whittled down to nothing, by God.
Over the last fourteen years and some months time, God has worked on me, and I see this now, that we read texts over and over, where the hand of God plays into this story.
I thought, a long time ago, that I played a role, or would play a role in a community that I was told, that drinking was my ticket in. Well, I never did find the right community to participate in, but I did find one who’s only job was to facilitate my drinking and using.
Not very healthy at all was it ?
I thought, a long time ago, that trolling for love on the internet was the right thing to do, when I should have been concentrating on getting sober, whatever that might have looked like had I stuck with it instead of fucking off on it.
Not very healthy at all was it ?
I thought, a while back, that God owed me, because I had returned to recovery, how WRONG I was about that.
I found the humble community that I was supposed to be part of, and the man that I spend my life with. Totally by God’s grace. Now I am FREE …
For a long time in sobriety, I bided my time and did what I thought I should be doing, until someone much smarter than me, said, NO, you should do it THIS WAY.
And where did that start ? On my knees, morning, noon and night. Praying …
What, you want me to pray, YES, “I want you to pray.”
Ok, I followed direction.
All along, God had been pruning my proverbial tree of life. Teaching me WHAT was important, WHO was important, and HOW to live.
It wasn’t about ME, or the MONEY, or the THINGS.
It was about my husband, my fellows and my friends.
I learned the value of friendships and relationships. I learned the value of money and what was necessary to survive.
But on the inside, I did not notice God working on the finer details of my life.
And I wrote about this a while back, about God trying to get our attention.
- The first time God wants us to hear him he whispers,
- If we miss it, He whispers again.
- If we miss the second contact, he hits us over the head with a two by four.
- If we miss that third contact, then he drops the proverbial wall on top of us.
I missed all those queues, and the proverbial wall came down, the night I returned from the last men’s intensive I attended last year.
It seems to me that the lesson of humility has been an ongoing process for me for the whole of my life. Because what I thought I needed was wrong, what I ended up doing was wrong. The people I surrounded myself with was wrong.
Save Todd and the group there.
I did not follow the path into life, that everyone else is supposed to follow.
The life, the wife, the house, the cars, the children, the dogs and the picket fence.
I ended up with two suitcases, a few boxes and a basement apartment in Verdun.
With one pot, no furniture and a clock radio and CBC radio every night.
At least I had meetings and friends, and sobriety.
I am not averse to asking for help, and I sure as shit prosper better, when some one else is in control. Don’t get me wrong, I am in control of me, but not all of me.
I do better, live better, and am a bit more humble when I turn my will and my life over to the God of my understanding.
I do that on a daily basis. And I have hubby who takes care of me and sees to my needs.
I know what to do today. And I do it gladly.
And it begins with prayer, morning, noon and night.