Christianity, Recovery, Spirituality, Uncategorized

From Here to Kingdom Come…

Thoughts From the Porch: Spring is finally here! The Dogwood across the street is covered in reddish-pink blossoms and the first shoots of green beans and yellow squash pushed through the garden soil. Winter reminded me that its passing isn’t too far gone though. It’s still a bit chilly this morning, at least until the sun’s fully up.

I love my mornings. I’m thrilled to be in my little place of refuge here in Fort Worth. I was born here and will probably be here when the Lord calls me home. I love being from Texas. My father used to say there were only two types of people in the world, “people from Texas and everyone who wishes they were”. I know he was joking. At least I think so…

Yet, as much as I love my residence here, I’ve come to find my true home. It’s been a long journey to this place in my life. I took a lot of detours and side roads before finding a path that works. Much of that has to do with recovery from the disease of addiction. Had I not suffered from a malady of mind, body, and soul I might have continued to walk aimlessly. It introduced me to a real relationship with God and put my feet on a more spiritual path.

I haven’t yet achieved sainthood or enlightenment and for that, I’m grateful. I hope I never become so “spiritually fit that I’m of no earthly good”. Yet, the spiritual path offers me a place to be centered. I stray occasionally (well, more than occasionally…) but I don’t feel as lost as often. It’s easier to find the path again when I do veer off.

My mornings here on the porch help me find the center; help me find the way home. I’m can become easily distracted and preoccupied with everything going on in my life. Yet the simple act of quiet and solitude brings me back to what’s really important: living from my center. I may have a long “To Do” list and a myriad of distractions but I can stay on the path if I’m willing. Willingness, for me, comes down to remembering where my true home and my citizenship is. I may love Fort Worth, but the “Kingdom of Heaven” is where my true residence is; and if that’s the case I need to be about following the will of the King.

I grew up in an ultra-conservative, fundamentalist Christian home. From an early age I remember hearing about the “Good News”, but to be honest, it never sounded good to me. The long list of “dos” and “don’ts”, never being able to measure up to impossible standards of piety, only fueled depression, resentment, and isolation. It wasn’t until much later that I discovered my understanding was given by “well-meaning, but misinformed people”.

The real “Good News” is God’s kingdom is here and grace allows me to be a part of it. The cool thing about it is the transformation taking place in my life. As a citizen of that kingdom I trust the King to look out for His citizen’s (therefore my) best interests, and as a good citizen I ask for “His will, not mine”.

Amazing things begin to take place. Life is easier; not because the world changed, but because I have. My perception is different. My stress level drops and my ability to love and be of service to others rises. I’m no longer depressed, resentful, and isolated. I’m part of a community. I have friends. I have a burning desire to share the “Good News”: not to offer future rewards, but present realities; to have life “abundantly”. Now that’s really good news…

So, I sit here this morning reveling in the birth of Spring, grateful for being home…

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