Sunday, January 01, 2006

Audience of ONE

ALong with my roommate, I am reading A Million Little Pieces by James Frey. The book was reccommended to me by my parents' friend Peggy. SHe watches Oprah, and the book happened to make her Book Club List. She picked it up and when she came down to visit us over break truly convinced me to read it. I was drawn to the book mostly in hopes of understanding my friend's addition, heck, maybe a little curious in understanding my own additions. The further and further i've gotten in the book, by the way, i can't put it down...i've realized how important God is in all of our lives.
In the book, James refuses to follow the 12 steps of staying sober because it requires the addict to believe in a higher being, not even God, but something greater than himself. He is constantly battling God, forcing himself to think He doesn't exist...right there shows that you can't fight something that isn't there....Throughout his recovery, the devil is playing him like a fiddle. God's power is so strong that even a man who claims to be an athiest, is still battling an existance from a higher power..GOD.
Not only have i been more comfortable talking to my friend about her addictions, but i have realized my own. Just think if i put all my energy into God how amazing that would be!? I just really have been praying for people i know to really open their ears to the voice inside of them. It is human nature to turn away something that doesn't come natural, to fear what is unknown. But to experience true happiness, we must have faith, love and that something bigger than ourselves will get us through it, because we can't do it alone. love ourselves because we know God would do anything for us, and He has already. "Where God's love is there is no fear, because God's perfect love drives out fear" (1JOhn 4:18) and hope that if we continue to do what's right in His eyes, He will always lead us to do right, lead us straight into the kingdom of heaven (Luke 10:20).
This may seem so hard to do, but really it can just start with prayer. Back in the book, James may not have said, "dear father, please don't make me suffer the symptoms of withdrawl" but he did pray to get better, and God knows deep down we know he's the only one that can heal us.
I know that i could start off my year saying, "i'm not going to do this or this and i'm going to lose 50 lbs" but really how long will that last? I think of James, he could chose to stay sober for 20 years, but really, without the right plan, how long would his sobrity last? We're talking alcohol and drug addict with a strong criminal the age of 23 (started when he was 10) His change started when he realized his fear...he was drawn to the Tao Te Ching book (he had no idea is was almost the same thing as AA's BIG BOOK) He said the Tao Te Ching followers do not "need, depend, create, or define. They do not see beauty or ugliness or good or bad. There just is, and just be." Well, little did he know that Jesus is the same, he doesn't define us by our wrongs and rights, what we do, or what we have! He sees us, as if we had just come out of our mother's womb. So anyways, his plan was to just be. not be "an addict, and a fellow patient and a f*uck up of the first order" but just to be. And i suggest with this new year already here, we just be! Forget your mistakes in 05....its behind you, start fresh...i do want you to know though, that starting fresh is great, and making commitments are even better, but making a life change is the most rewarding! Knowing that you will never go back on it, and loving on life is the best! There is only one way to go, one way that will work, and once you commit, truly commit you will never go back. So when you make those New Year's Resolutions, remember that if you really want to change, you only need one Man on your side. I think Brooke Amstutz's team's warm up shirts say it all, "Audience of One" because He's all that matters...and GOD IS GOOD!

Rachael's New Years Resolutions
pay off credit cards (get finances in order)
put God first, people second, and me third
read a book a month
commit to staying healthy, but not obsessing
really put quality effort into my quiet times
treat my job as a vocation, a call from God, find how i can serve him while i work
become confident with how i pray, become a prayer warrior
guard my heart
let things be
this year i'm constantly wanting to improve my life, so i'm not making resolutions for the NOW, but for a lifetime.