When Loss is Gain…
To gain that which is worth having, it may be necessary to lose everything else.
At one level or another, the process of gaining something new generally requires the loss of something else. This is difficult for addicts because we are so self centered and self seeking that it is difficult for us to give up anything of value, even if it is a terrible value like our acting out behavior or our character defects. There is always something that must be sacrificed in order for us to obtain what we are seeking…whether it is time, money, improper behaviors and attitudes, or simply our own preconceived notions. The questions one must ask, is whether what is being sacrificed is worth giving up to obtain the goal, and, are you willing to pay the price?
Thought for the day
It is a major truth in all 12 Step fellowships that there is a price to pay for emotional and spiritual maturity. If we look closely at the steps and understand and accept the principles contained therein we will see the major paradoxes which describe the entire process and results of being faithfully submissive to their instructions. As we work on the first set of steps (1-3) we must Surrender to Win with the emphasis on the surrender! As we move into the next phase steps (4-7) we encounter the difficulties and pain of an honest self appraisal and so we Suffer to get Well until finally we approach the defining moments where as we work the next set of steps (8-12) we are asked to Die to be Reborn. It is my opinion based on experience that it is at this time when our paradigm shift is almost fully experienced. I say almost because I believe actions not beliefs will determine whether indeed we have let God truly do a wonderful work in us. If we truly have been reborn we will not have to proclaim it. Our actions will convict us!
Then Jesus said to the disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must put aside your selfish ambition, shoulder your cross, and follow me. If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for me, you will find true life. And how do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul in the process? Is anything worth more than your soul?”
~Jesus / Matthew 16:24-26 (NLT)~
But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection…
~Philippians 3:7-10 (NASB)~
And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice–the kind he will accept. When you think of what he has done for you, is this too much to ask? Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect his will really is.
~Romans 12:1-2 (Amp) ~
Heavenly Father, when I am stubborn, lazy or unwilling to follow the directions laid out for me please allow me to get in touch with my inner most self. As I find the real reason (fear of not getting what I want or losing something I have) for my rebellion allow me to humbly reconsider my denial. Help me oh Lord, to be willing to lose everything, no matter what, to find you Lord.
I pray this in your holy name. Amen