Category Archives: RIGOROUS HONESTY

Friday Mrng FaceBook Inspiration

My FB Friend Angie posted the following this morning:

It was the LOVE I felt that made me WANT to follow,
fall down and keep following,
not the threat of hell

After “liking” the post, I commented with this:

More than 5, less than 6, years ago, God said:

 “Jim, I want to begin teaching U how much I Love U

I HAD NO IDEA!! I thought I did, but… WOW, was I misinformed!
(I refrain from saying “dumb”)

One lesson eliminated the word “MUCH
God’s Love cannot be quantified
It’s not “how much”, it’s “HOW”!
God doesn’t do “MORE”
He just Loves!:

Unconditionally!
Gracefully!
Unfailingly!
Faithfully!
Unchanging!
Without Regret!
Unswerving!
Sacrificially!

That was the post’n comment, but Now I find I must continue:

God won’t Love me more tomorrow when(if) I get better

If I am better tomorrow, it will be because I’ve learned (He’s taught me) to Love HIM more
(If I’m not better tomorrow, He still Loves!)

The best part is that He will teach me how to Love Him
One of the ways He wants me to Love Him is to write about it
So I do. Here. On this blog
He’s pleased with me when I write
Hmmm, WOW! I like to journal. I like to write!
Who knew that GOD LIKES it when I do it

So, the way He wants me to Love Him is to do something I like to do?
That’s radical!

Yeah, it’s so radical it’s changed(ing) my life
His Love will do that

For more years than I care to remember, I looked at how other people were Loving God and attempted to copy them so He would Love me the way He Loved them. Then, God said:
Jim, I want to begin teaching YOU how I want YOU to Love Me.”

The way God wants ME to Love Him is not the way He wants others to Love Him
The way He wants YOU to Love Him will be unique to YOU
He WILL teach you
Ask Him

It REALLY IS just that simple!
BUT – it ain’t easy

I’ve stopped working FOR His love and am now working FROM His Love.
Well, to be rigorously honest, I must say:
More than I used to…”

T.B.T.#5 – BURYING THE GOO(L)D

A year ago last week, I blogged about finding Treasure in the Trash. I’ve learned that when I bury the painful parts of my life, I ALWAYS bury some of the good that surrounds it.

DIGGING 2

That part of me I use to protect myself from the Hurts, Habits and Hangups that come from living this thing called LIFE can’t always tell the difference.

For the past 6+ years, I’ve been intentional about sorting out the lumpy carpet of my journey. (I got tired of tripping) I have discovered and recovered some Gold I thought was gone forever.

https://itreallyisjustthatsimple.com/2014/01/21/mining-for-gold/

How’bout U?

Do U have some GOLD hidden in Ur past?
Have U done some digging and found some?
Share Ur times of toil with us!
Tell us about the treasure!

*****WARNING*WARNING*WARNING*****

Don’t dig alone

RU A PART OF MY TRIBE?
I’d be honored for U to join!!
Click the FOLLOW button in the upper right corner

NAILED me!

TidBit o’Wisdom from my Daughter #37

imagesMS6NCWIX

The other day my Daughter described my codependency as:

An addiction to being needed

She said I “keep finding people whom I use to fix that need in me

She NAILED me

O.U.C.H.

Thx, I needed that!

Do U have someone in Ur life that can tell U the things U need to hear?
Do U listen?

Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy
(‭Proverbs‬ ‭27‬:‭6‬ NLT)

LITTLE THINGS!

More often than not, it’s the LITTLE THINGS I do that make a difference in my life and marriage.

soap

For YEARS, I constantly had to pick up the soap when I was taking a shower. Most of the time, it was not because I dropped it, but because it slipped off the rack. No matter how carefully I placed the bar on the rack, it slid off. My wife got used to the sound of the bar hitting the basin, followed shortly thereafter by my grimace and groan as I bent over to pick it up.

The older I got, the more I groaned.

Then, one day I took a GOOD look at why this was happening. I saw the rack in a new way. I discovered one minor adjustment was all that was needed. The rack is designed with 5 bars… I pushed the front one up 1/8 of an inch. TaDa!!!   IT STAYED!!! Ever since that day, the only time I have to pick up the soap is when it slips out of my hand. My entire life is SO MUCH BETTER!!!! My frustration level is almost zero!! Well, in the shower, at least!!

If I take that lesson and apply it to the rest of my life, I find the same truth… It’s usually (more often than not) the minor adjustments that make the biggest lasting difference.

Sometimes, we need to see the situation through different eyes. (not recommended when showering) Sharing the hurts, habits and hang-ups of our past or present difficulties can lead to new insight from others. Discussing future plans with wise connections (U DO have some of those people U can call, right?) can help U make better decisions. Just taking time to get past the familiar frustrations can lead to a time of new perspective.

Sometimes, all that’s needed is a 1/8″ push in the right direction to bring an end to life-long frustrations! Go ahead – take a new look! I dare you!! What is your daily frustration? Yeah, that one, the one that just came to your mind!!

Baby Steps.
You didn’t get to where you are in one giant leap.
Take a Baby Step. Today!
Then, take the rest of the day off.
When Tomorrow becomes Today, do it again.
Repeat Daily!

The End? Or a New Beginning?

3363693679_6d8400fa0c_z

 Six years’n a few months ago I fell off the cliff.
I thought, I feared it was going to be the end.
In actuality, it became the beginning of the end
Of me!

At the bottom of the cliff I met – in a brand new way, The Power that is Greater than me.
My Higher Power has a name – His name is JESUS!
He taught me that my journey began a long time before I reached the edge of cliff.
I’ve discovered He was walking with me the whole time.

He is, in fact, the One who led me to the edge, then caught me as I stumbled and fell.
It took a long time for me to forgive those I thought had pushed me.
Over the edge.

It’s been a rough climb back up, but Oh!, how grateful I am for the Process.
It’s become my favorite word – “Process

Every time I get “stuck climbing”, He shows me something else in my backpack.
I  can’t keep all the stuff  I’ve carried for years.
Little by little, it has to be left behind.

Process

…So, how come I can’t just do it all at once?
Is that the “easier’n softer” way my sponsor says never works?

“Dang, he’s right –
again…”

STUMBLY PATHs

A few months ago, my good friend, Angie posted on FaceBook:

                Someone told me you can know God’s path because it’ll be smooth &
                 filled with certainty. I’m not sure Jesus would agree
.” @John Alan Turner(pastor)

As she’s done before, she set my mind to spinning. She has a very unique way of doing that!

I responded with:

In a recovery meeting today, the topic was “Healing“. As I sat there listening and thinking, I realized that most of the healing in recovery for me has come in my relationships – with myself, with God, and with others. As I am learning to walk in that healing, my life has gotten a lot less hectic and stumbly.

Yes, that’s right, STUMBLY!  I like that word! That’s why I invented it.
It describes my life Pre-Process.

I no longer stumble and fall so hard over the lumps in the carpet I created by the secrets I hid.  My relationship with my past-self is being healed as I have found the safety and courage to stop hiding from it.

I no longer constantly stumble over the things I don’t understand, ’cause I know Somebody who understand everything and He promises to help me understand it when and if I need to.

I no longer stumble so severely over remarks that others say that hurt me, because I’ve come to know it may come from that place deep inside them that hurts like I did(and sometimes still do).

I no longer stumble over my faults. For most (all) of my life, I thought I needed to be better than I was so God would Love me more. As I’ve learned that God.Loves.Me.Just.As.I.Am. I’m amazed at how my faults are just not as important as they used to be. In fact, some of what I thought were my worst character defects have become some of my greatest strengths.

I no longer constantly stumble over people who don’t like me. Or who don’t approve of me. “Hey, this is me… Don’t like it? Let’s see if we can work it out. If we can’t, U go Ur way, I’ll go mine. I refuse to make my life stumbly because U don’t like me“. (I do realize you can’t, and shouldn’t do that with everyone)

I no longer stumble over my relationship with God. Recovery Step 3 says: “We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God…”   All my life I was told: “Be careful, God’s watching you“. I understood that to mean “He’s watching so He can catch you when you do something wrong – and punish you“. Now, I KNOW! He’s watching because He loves me. He wants to catch me, yes, but He wants to catch me when I fall. He wants to guide me. He wants to comfort me. I now KNOW He will discipline me when I need it, not to punish me, but to teach me.

I no longer stumble (so much) over all the things left on my To-Do-List. One of the greatest sources of satisfaction for me has always been My.List!  If, at the end of the day I had lots of red stripes on the page, it was a good day. Frustration arose if I got stuck on something. Today, I am getting better at setting aside My.List! in favor of PEOPLE! My life is richer because of it.

Future Stumbles are no longer a huge worry for me. I’ve seen time and time and time again how God has been there for me and mine. I have seen His RELENTLESS FAITHFULNESS. He has used some of my hardest and most painful days to make my life the way it is today. I can therefore trust Him to continue to do that tomorrow, next week, next year.

OF COURSE, I’d like to still pretend my life is perfect and I never stumble and fall in the pit anymore. But that isn’t my reality. (And neither is it yours) But since the day of my “Heart Attack“, God & I (mostly God) have changed my life in ways I never imagined was possible.

Mining for Gold

In Friday’s meeting I shared:

I came to Recovery because I needed to feel better. And I do. But what I learned was how to feel MY FEELINGS BETTER.

That part of ME that I use to hide my feelings – from the world, from God or from myself does not always have the capacity to know the difference between the good and bad. So as I sweep stuff under the rug, I end up burying Golden Treasures along with the dirt.

Those Nuggets that bring Joy to my life can be elusive. I’ve had to dig deep, but I now can feel (my feelings) better. I “feel better”!

I am now beginning to understand why God has been so relentless in teaching me to Trust Him. He wants the Best for me. He know where the Gold is buried. He wants to help me find it.

20140121-075905.jpg

Writing out the Storm

I find that the act of writing down my thoughts provides clarity to my thinking that is seldom found in the at-times cyclonic thinking of my mind. My mind-storm quiets as I let the thoughts flow out of my head, down my arm, through the pen in my hand into the pages of my journal. The temptation is to stay in the storm.

The privilege of returning to my journal, my written words, days, weeks, or even years later allows me to recognize growth that would otherwise seem lost.

The only regret I have about my writing is that I did not do more of it “yesterday”.

A couple of months ago, my daughter advised me to “Write for yourself, Dad. Express what is in YOUR heart, not what you think other people want or need to hear.”

“Who is that woman, and how did she get so wise?”