Thursday, 26 April 2012

Step Two - Back to Life

GospelJohn 6:44-51 

Jesus said to the crowd:
‘No one can come to me
unless he is drawn by the Father who sent me,
and I will raise him up at the last day.
It is written in the prophets:
They will all be taught by God,
and to hear the teaching of the Father,
and learn from it,
is to come to me.
Not that anybody has seen the Father,
except the one who comes from God:
he has seen the Father.
I tell you most solemnly,
everybody who believes has eternal life.
‘I am the bread of life.
Your fathers ate the manna in the desert
and they are dead;
but this is the bread that comes down from heaven,
so that a man may eat it and not die.
I am the living bread which has come down from heaven.
Anyone who eats this bread will live for ever;
and the bread that I shall give is my flesh,
for the life of the world.’

Step 2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

To be in any kind of distress is a terrible thing and, often, a more terrible thing to admit. 

Our desperate need for God can be disguised in many ways making it hard enough to acknowledge. When we do,  it opens our eyes to the equally desperate measures we have been taking in our desire to feel happy and loved. 

Too often, our first reaction is the world's reaction - to have what we deserve; to be rewarded; to be consoled.

There is a God-shaped hole in each of us but we often begin by filling it up with 'stuff'.

It is the desire of the Rich Young Man, who spends his life buying what is good to make him look good; to make him feel good.

Then- being 'good' gives us permission to reward ourselves for being good. 

And when things go wrong, we deserve to be consoled, to be compensated and to be allowed to go off the rails 'a little bit'. And still we believe that we are being 'good'. And even that we can push the good life into eternity  - because, after all, who is going to stop us.

Life becomes a shopping channel of 'all about me'; a need for stuff. Stuff goes stale, collects dust and clogs up the pathways to the light. The luxuries take more than they give; they make their judgements on you; there is no peace of mind. Even once you have realised the truth; turning it around is not going to be easy.

When we accept our powerlessness we  remember where the real consolation comes from; where hope abounds; where Love lives. It gets easier to let go; to recognise what we need instead of what we want. 

What we need to bring us back to ourselves is God's life within us - Jesus gives himself to us not as a luxury; not as a reward; not even as a consolation but as a basic need - the Bread of Life. Let the Godspace be filled with him. 

Second Step Prayer

Heavenly Father, I am full of fear. I am unhappy. I can’t seem to be of real help to others. I know in my heart that only you can restore me to sanity if I am just willing to stop doubting your power. I humbly ask that you help me to understand that it is more powerful to believe than not to believe and that you are either everything or nothing. 


1 comment:

log said...

"We need to ask ourselves but one short question. "Do I now believe, or am I even willing to believe, that there is a Power greater than myself?" As soon as a man can say that he does believe, or is willing to believe, we emphatically assure him that he is on his way. It has been proven among us that upon this simple cornerstone a wonderfully effective spiritual structure can be built" p47 aa book (Excuse gender)
O God grant me the willingness to be willing to believe that by your grace I may be restored to sanity in all areas of my life. Thy will not mine be done.