It came out of left field. Marcus is a guy from my weekly prayer group and we became friendly from so many Wednesday mornings together.
We were waiting for services to begin, talking about nothing in particular. He said, "I was a very bad kid." He went on to explain: "I used drugs and alcohol. I've been sober 22 years." I was surprised to hear about his rocky past, but what really caught me off-guard was what he said next. "Sobriety was not the end of my problems. Drinking didn't cause my problems and stopping didn't end them. But I am handling it."
How simple, yet profound. I never thought of what it must be like for someone who has layers and layers of really tough issues to deal with. What's your problem? Is it inconvenient, challenging, or does it seem insurmountable?
Perspective is a great teacher. When you look at the problems you deal with, think about Marcus and so many like him. Friends, family and neighbors who struggle with dependency at the same time as they struggle to pay their bills or keep their kids in line.
Just as perspective is a great teacher, prayer is a great way to gain the perspective to handle your problems. Problems don't always go away, but prayer helps you deal with them, every single day.
Today I am stressed.
Stressed to the point
of losing my way in life.
It feels easier to sort out ways
to be in my addiction
than to be stuck
within my head today.
Stuck in my head
over what is happening
in my world.
Please take these
blinding emotions from me today
so that I can clearly see
the next steps forward.
Help me realize that
although the next best thing
may not be my ideal-
it may be Yours.
"ARE YOU ABLE TO PUT YOUR PROBLEMS IN PERSPECTIVE?"