We became entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness…
Matthew 5:6 NLT
“Discontent is holy when it compels us to dream of redemption."
- Dan Allender, PhD
Dissatisfaction and Desire
Being part of a recovery fellowship on an ongoing basis will provide us with many opportunities to hear others tell about how they have suffered because of their addictions and what it has been like for them to find recovery. One of the most incredible and amazing things that we will ever experience in a meeting is when someone shares how he or she has become grateful for having had addictions. In recovery, it is possible for the pain of our addictions to become a great motivator in our lives. Pain keeps us moving forward, compelling us to keep reaching out to find answers for the pain and troubles of life. As we recover, we find a very simple but profound solution. The solution is for us is to want God, and what He has to give us, more than we want what we, or our addictions, can provide us. This new kind of God-given desire helps us to see that pain is not our enemy and we don’t need to run from it anymore. As we become wiling to face the day-to-day pains of life our pain and difficulties are transformed into powerful assets of learning and growth. Embracing pain as a learning opportunity brings us face to face with God’s work of redemption, a work that is only available to those who have the deep, pliable humility that soaks out of a desperate and dying pain.
We all seem to want more out of life than what we can provide for ourselves. Not only do we fail to supply ourselves with the things that we think will make us happy; our addictions prove that we fail to provide ourselves with a satisfying level of interpersonal and spiritual connectedness, too. We all fall short. We all fail to meet our own needs. By recognizing how we have failed to meet our own needs, no matter how hard we tried, we can see that the things that we’ve been addicted to are not our biggest problem. Our real problem is who we are. We are all in need of a complete, interpersonal overhaul, starting with the very core of our minds, our hearts and our innermost character.
Our addictions grow from a deep personal longing inside of us that silently cries out to be touched. When our deep longing goes untouched, we cry out all the more in ever deeper ways, craving with an ever-increasing intensity for more of the things that brought us relief in the past. This is how our addictions take hold of us. Deep-rooted painful feelings of uselessness, worthlessness and loneliness can be the triggers that send us back to our addictions time after time. With our longing unsatisfied, and after numerous and repeated attempts to do the right thing, invariably we fail, once again, falling ever deeper into our addictions. Desperate, over time, we become wholly and completely dissatisfied with who we are and with the way that we have lived our lives. Our good intentions and our failures have simmered together until, finally, with God’s help, we become entirely ready to be recreated into a fundamentally different kind of person. We are sick and tired of being sick and tired. We are convinced that we will never satisfy our own innermost needs. Staying the same is no longer acceptable to us. We want to be different. Deep in our hearts we know that if we do not humbly make the choice to change, we will eventually die still wallowing in our addictions.
This profound misery and discontent is the birth point of a new healthier desire - a desire based not on our previous loves or lusts, but more on a healthy and compelling desire, to experience new life inside of us. The pain of our addictions helps us to understand that we really don’t need things to change but it is the “I”, the “ME”, the “WE” that need to change. We are no longer satisfied with just being healed from our addictions. We want to have our complete and total self reformatted and changed by the perfect design of God.
Insights and Inspirations for Christian Twelve Step Recovery
By David Zailer and The Men and Women of Operation Integrity
Chapter Six Segment One
Copyright David Zailer, 2008
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