If One is Good . . .

If One is Good . . .

And Moses said to them, “Let no one leave any of it over till the morning.” But they did not listen to Moses. Some left part of it till the morning, and it bred worms and stank. Exodus 16:19-20

With some medications, like opioids, tolerance is expected. The body and brain of the one taking an opioid adapts to the presence of the drug. So, with repeated exposure, more of the drug is needed to achieve the same initial effect. Those of us who’ve abused opioids learned this quickly. When I first took two pills and experienced a euphoric effect, I desired to repeat the experience. I was disappointed then to learn that the euphoria just wasn’t the same with any subsequent two-pill dose. No problem. I’ll just take more. If two is good, then four is better. This kind of thinking is foreign to some of you, but to those of us who’ve abused drugs, it’s an obvious reality. It eventually became normal for me to consume handfuls of pills at a time. I had a voracious appetite, wanting more, more, more.

If one is good . . . I see the same behavior in the Israelites in today’s passage. In the story, as the Israelites traveled through the wilderness, God provided miraculous bread from heaven every morning. Daily, the Israelites were supposed to go out and collect just enough bread for that day. They were to eat their daily bread and save nothing for the following day, believing that God would provide for them every day. This was an obedience test, which many of them failed. Some, in their faithlessness, went out and gathered more than they needed. Some hoarded the bread, saving it for tomorrow, only to find that their leftovers turned rancid, producing maggots.

Through this experience, God was instructing his people in faith and obedience. He taught them to rely on him for their daily needs, learning a healthy relationship with their appetites. Depend on me for your needs. Don’t hoard. Don’t take more than necessary. I’ll provide for you today and tomorrow. While you rely on me, you will be satisfied. When you rely on yourselves, it will all turn rancid.

Recovery, for me, has meant learning this same lesson repeatedly. I may not be addicted to drugs today, but I still have an unhealthy relationship with my appetite, attempting to find satisfaction in my desire for any immediate gratification. If one donut is good . . . Recovery though, means daily finding my satisfaction, comfort, and peace in a healthy relationship with God, trusting that he is enough for today and that he’ll still be here tomorrow. Every day, God is enough.

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