Who I Am
As in water face reflects face, so the heart of man reflects the man. Proverbs 27:19
When I was in medical training, I met physicians who, though they provided excellent care for patients, were monsters in their personal life. It seemed they thought that because they saved lives, that they could behave horribly outside the exam room, and still see themselves as wonderful human beings.
I found this hypocritical and vowed never to behave in such a manner. A few years later however, I found myself engaging in a similar hypocrisy. I’m an ER physician. I save lives. I deserve a pill. I can indulge a little here and there.
I viewed myself from the perspective I desired and ignored the fact that I was living in pursuit of destruction. When my addiction could no longer be hidden, I felt I was being treated unfairly. But look at all the good I’ve done!
The addict often does this. But I’m a good person! Addicts, like everyone else, have some good qualities, but the destructive, toxic behavior that flows out of the addict, overshadows everything else. The addict then, often tries to export blame. If only I had not encountered this trial, I would not have used. You must understand!
Today’s passage insists however, that what flows out of me, is who I am. This is often revealed in my trials. I may present a shiny facade, but when someone cuts me off in traffic, do I fume and swear? When I have a rough day, do I turn to God, or do I look for relief in food, a pill or a bottle? Do I ask God to use my tough times to shape me, or do I curse him?
Who we truly are, flows out of what is in us and only we are responsible for what we put in ourselves. If we want to be men and women of faith and recovery, then we must work at those things. We do not live as disciples or find recovery by accident. We become who we were meant to be only by daily abandoning our old self and pursuing God.