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Thankful for Waking Up

Thankful for Waking Up

At the end of the days I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honored him who lives forever . . . Daniel 4:34

Every day, I wake up, make my coffee, sit in my chair, and thank God for another day of life. I thank him for his grace and forgiveness and for loving me enough to pull me out of the darkness of my addiction. I’m far from perfect, but I’m profoundly thankful for my recovery.

While enslaved to my destructive appetite, my thinking became tortured and twisted by the pursuit of my appetite above all. Friends who would help became enemies. Honesty and integrity were thrown away. I turned my back on my faith as I couldn’t even look at God.

I gave up everything – family, career and faith – refusing to wake up. I don’t need help. I don’t have a problem. I can stop anytime I want. I’ll quit tomorrow. I’m not hurting anyone. I deserve this.

When I finally did find recovery, it was like waking up from a nightmare. It was like a resurrection from the dead. As the influence of the chemicals gradually faded and as I was able to turn from my obsessive pursuit of the drug to pursue God, he profoundly transformed my mind. I began to hear God’s voice instead of the voice of insanity.

This sounds similar to the experience of King Nebuchadnezzar in today’s passage. In it, the king was struck with madness by God for his arrogance and disobedience. For seven periods of time,the king was made to live as a beast of the field, but at the end of his sentence, God restored his mind. Upon his awakening, Nebuchadnezzar lifted his eyes, humbled himself before God, repented and returned to blessed life.

This is the awakening. This is resurrection. This is born again, and it is available to us all. God calls us to a new and beautiful life of following him instead of the madness or following ourselves. When we do what it takes to abandon our self-inflicted nightmare, we awaken to find a blessed new life in God.

For that, I’m thankful.

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