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Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/1089201
Rated: E · Essay · Spiritual · #1089201
Short devotional thoughts on Biblical perspectives for healing from life's wounds.
Moments to Recover
Vol I

Today Dan Ward
Cruises for Recovery

Recently I was privileged to take a cruise. As always, God used the experience to teach me more about what it means to recover in Him. And that’s brings us to our first cruise lesson. What kind of lessons are you learning in your recovery? The one constant of experiences – good or bad - is that they teach us. But what we learn depends on us. If, in your trials you look to affirm your negative opinions of others you’ll learn those lessons. If you look for proofs you’re a failure you’ll find them. If though, you will look for the unseen hand of God at work in your life, guess what you’ll find? As you cruise through troubled waters, what lessons are you finding?

Today Dan Ward
Cruises without Trash

As hundreds of people waited impatiently to board, questions arose as to the delay. Finally someone told us customs had held up the unloading from the previous trip and the ship wasn’t quite ready. Here’s cruise lesson two. In your recovery from life’s wounds, make sure you unload the trash and clean out your interior before you sail on. Too often we “stuff” our troubles hoping they’ll just fade away. But when we don’t deal with our issues, the stink of the “trash” we carry with us will mar the beauty of our trip. More, the extra weight from that trash will slow us down, and in a storm, could sink us. In your recovery, remember to take out the trash before you sail on.
Today Dan Ward
Cruises for Sabbath Rest

A cruise ship can be a floating tourist trap. With the glitz, glamor and incessant promotion and you can fill every moment from dawn to midnight. Choose this route and you come home needing a vacation. But a cruise can also be a floating retreat - with quiet chairs on sunny decks, good books in a plush library, and long walks at glorious sunsets. Life itself poses similar choices for those in recovery. If we pursue life’s busyness and glamor, we’ll never experience the Sabbath rest that God designed to be a crucial part of our journey. But if we’ll hit life’s lounge chair occasionally, we’ll find rest and refreshment for body and spirit. As you cruise through your recovery are you finding Sabbath rest?

Today Dan Ward
Cruises for Fellowship

Cruise ships are designed to fill the senses – from swimming areas filled with tanning bodies, special pampering spas, to casinos where lights, sound and aromas are designed to help you gamble more. But what we treasure from our cruise are the people we met – like sharing a sunset with another Christian couple, or dinner conversation with a recovering addict or the cabin attendant who missed her family in Indonesia. In recovery there is no end of attractive THINGS to do. But Biblical recovery is all about relationships. Jesus went to the cross to restore our relationship with the Father and His desire is that we have loving relationships with one another. As you cruise through your recovery, are you valuing relationships over things?
Today Dan Ward
Cruises for a Good Port

Cruise ships move from port to port. Direction and location of Port visits are essential to a great cruise. A cruise to Alaska in January would not be wise. Mechanical problems caused the ship’s first port to be different than the usual one. Almost every passenger was dissapointed with that stop. Fortunately the other stops were much better. As we cruise through our recovery, the “PORTS” we visit will be major factors in the success of our journey. WHERE we go is just as important as THAT we go. Have you taken time to consider the direction and destination of your journey? If not, ask God to show you where you’re headed – and then decide if that’s really where you want to go.

Today Dan Ward
Cruises for Repairs

Our Cruise ship spends fifty-one weeks at sea serving over 100,000 passengers. The salt air and the constant use take a heavy toll both equipment and facilities. An underappreciated aspect of cruising is the incessant stream of minor repair work day and night crews of workers are painting, varnishing, tuning, and adjusting.
Like the ship, I spend most of my life in action. Opportunities to “fry-dock” for major repairs are few. That’s why we need to learn how to engage in a daily repair routine. For Christians in recovery this means daily spiritual tuneups. Daily time in the Word and in prayer will adjust our attitudes and put a fresh coat of Godly varnish on world weary hearts. How’s your repair work progressing?
Today Dan Ward
Re-Stocks his Cruise

As we boarded our ship, the harbor was a beehive. Trucks and forklifts were in constant motion as the ship was filled with the fuel and supplies for over Three thousand passengers and crew. At each stop this scene repeated. In our recovery journey, we too need to regularly dock at ports to re-stock our lives with the essentials. Different ports supply different needs. A cruise might supply rest. A seminar might instruct us. A fishing or shopping trip offers fellowship. The one port that does all those things regularly is called CHURCH. There we find Sabbath rest, instruction for our daily walk and fellowship with others on the same journey. If you’re wounded ind in recovery, visit your church weekly and let God re-stock your spirit.

Today Dan Ward
Sets Sail

On my wall a poster says “a ship is safe in the harbor – but that’s not what ship’s are for”. My recent cruise would have been boring if the ship never left the dock. Yet in recovery, our hurts may make tempt us to seek a safe spiritual and emotional port and never leave. This is dangerous for two reasons. First it robs us of the Life God intends for us. We can’t be conquerors or overcomers if we never raise anchor. Second, it’s false security. Life’s storms are just as devasting to harbors as they are at sea. If you want to live life rather than just endure, you may need to stop hiding at the dock and risk the open sea.
Today Dan Ward
Argues with God

Recently our ministry has been dealt a serious and unjust blow. In the process, God and I have had several serious “arguments” Some Christians are shocked that I argue with God, but most heroes of the faith did so. The questions is does arguing help? Here David’s psalms – many just musical arguments are models. David never pulled punches when he was angry. In one He tells God “wake up and see for yourself.” Yet at the end of each diatribe David returns to his trust in God’s righteousness. The truth in recovery is God can handle our anger, but we can’t handle trying to hide it from Him. Like David, we need to be honest with God and then we need to trust Him.

Today Dan Ward
Deals With It

In the midst of writing several of these “moments” I received an email from someone who made a commitment to me months ago and was now breaking it. No offer was made for amends – just “sorry”. Based on this promise, we had already sent out public announcements. Now I have a choice. I can whine about this problem, or I can deal with it. When King David thought there was a chance that his baby would live, he stayed on God’s case. When the Baby died, David went on with life. That’s what the addict’s prayer means when it says, “accept the things I can not change. In your recovery are you struggling with what can’t be changed? If not ask God to help you deal with it.
Today Dan Ward
Chooses to Dance

One recovery leader recommends that programs be built around dealing with grief. Indeed grief over loss – loss of relationships, opportunities, innocence, our dream etc. is something with which we all deal regularly. I was reminded of this lately as I grieved over the of a valuable staff member. The question we need to address in recovery is, “what do we do with our grief”? That’s why I love Psalm 30 when God promises to turn our mourning into dancing. God clearly identifies with us in our grief. Scripture even declares that He grieves. Because He understands and cares, we have a place to park our grief. But we must choose to take our grief to Him, if we want to be fitted for dancing shoes.

Today Dan Ward
Abandons the Battle

Recently I responded to a perceived unfairness with a blistering email of defiance. To make the story short, just know that I made the problem worse and lost the argument big-time. In recovery our first instinct is often to attack. Only after we have been beaten up do we stop and God for wisdom or help. Yet in scripture, we see many examples, such as marching around Jericho, where God fought and won without Israel firing a shot. In one such story, King Jehoshaphat was ready to fight and die until the prophet told him that “The battle is the Lord’s”. Israel won that battle with praise not weapons – and we’ll win more of our battles when we learn “the battle is the Lord’s”.
Today Dan Ward
Seeks Him

When Jehoshaphat’s was faced with an overwhelming enemy, his frist instinct was to call for prayer and fasting. In response scriptures says that people came from all over “to seek HIM”.
When, in recovery, we’re faced with huge problems, we may seek solutions, or wisdom, or victory. Addicts often seek escape. Sadly only when all else fails do some of us seek HIM. Jehoshaphat, facing a sea of inavders understood what it meant to be “powerless”. He told God “we have no power to face this this vast army --- (and) we don’t know what to do”. But he ended with these words “Our eyes are on You.” In your struggles there will be many battles that can only be won when you seek HIM.

Today Dan Ward
Rebuts Inputs

In a cute movie a robot discovers television and encyclopedias. Thrilled with all this info, he devours it and looks for more, crying all the while “more input!” Soon he is a walking knowledge warehouse. Yet with all this accumulated knowledge, the robot requires a human with a heart to rescue him from the scrap pile. In our quest to deal with the trials and tribulations of life, we often find ourselves pursuing new ideas, therapies, and in the hope of finding the information keys that will solve our emotional and spiritual problems. Our real hope lies in a God who loves us and has the power to rescue us from life’s scrap pile. Perhaps what we need is less input and more Godput.
Today Dan Ward
Inputs HIM

Yesterday I mentioned a story about a robot with an inexaustible appetite for information, which he called INPUT. The truth is that we – especially when we’re hurting - are very much like that. Our cuture is built in great measure on a glorification of the intellect. We tend to believe that knowledge - if we can just find the right knowledge – will solve all our problems. Paul understood our generation when he warned Timothy about people who were “always learning but never able to acknowldge the truth.” The one central issue in recovery that we must face if we are to succeed is that Jesus declared Himself to be THE Truth. Unless we learn of him, our knowledge has little power to ease our pain.

Today Dan Ward
Favors Output

My little movie robot that loved input acquired a great storehouse of knowldege, but he lacked emotions. In fact it was people who showed him love and mercy that rescued him. In recovery, it’s easy to fall into the role of constant taker. Not only do we want a constant input of knowledge, but also we want all we get of love, mercy, patience – the list goes on and on. The problem is the more we take, the more self-centered we become – and the less likely we are to overcome our hurts. Jesus declared that we receive according to the measure we give. If we really want torecovery from life’s wounds maybe we need to increase our output of love, mercy, patience, etc. How’s your output?
Today Dan Ward
Does Recovery Math

In school, I learned counting before addition, addition before subtraction, multiplication before division, etc. Effective learning requires that we learn in a progression of difficulty. Yet in recovery, we somehow think that we should be able to go from the onset of suffering directly to total victory and freedom in one quick step. Misunderstanding of this has led to much poor counsel that implies Christians can just act, think or pray the right way and their troubles will disappear. Even the occasional miraculous sobriety I witness still requires the person to grow through and out of their acquired dysfunction. Only a committed daily walk that starts in spiritual diapers and applies inself in God’s schoolhouse adds up to a life of consistent power and victory.

Today Dan Ward
Stands on His Knees

The constant battle in recovery is between our desires to DO the right things and God’s call to BECOME the right kind of person.
This tension between performance expectations and the apparent passive stance God calls us to in surrender seems too wide a gap to jump. What we fail to understand is that God does call us to action. He asks us first to come to him. When we’re with Him, he asks us to sit, to bow, to kneel and more. And when the battles come, he asks us to STAND. Joyce Meier says the beleiver’ s position in battle is to stand on our knees. The truth is, that takes more courage than it does to fight. Are you brave enough?
Today Dan Ward
Seeks Face-time with God

When we’re hurting in recovery we want help and we want it now!
Our tendency if we’re believers is to approach God that way – expecting him to help us and to do it quickly. We all resonate with many of David’s Psalms when he demands God act on his appeals immediately. Yet, in recovery, we must be careful to approach God as our LORD; not as our assistant. When we’re hurting, we must not fall prey to the illusion that the world and God revolve around our pain. Seeking God’s hand is seeking his assistance. In contrast, seeking God’s face is seeking His presence in our lives. The cool deal is that with His presences comes His help.

Today Dan Ward
Rubs Off Recovery

Couples married over thirty years often think, act and look alike. Living in the south for a few years, I developed slight drawl. Children learn what they live. That our environment changes us is a truism of human nature. In recovery change is a fundamental necessity. Who and what we surround ourselves with will in great measure determine our success or failure. At the risk of preaching, I must suggest to anyone who’se hurting that there’s no more important activity in which you can engage than sitting at the feet of Jesus. If you’ll commit faithful regularl time to this, I promise you will begin to think, act, speak, and look like him. In short, Jesus will “rub-off” on you. That’s real recovery!
© Copyright 2006 Christian Curmudgeon (chrcurmudgeon at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/1089201