How does God speak to you? My whole life I sat and prayed waiting for that burning bush, waiting for God to answer all of my prayers and I could never understand why sometimes he did and sometimes he didn’t. For the most part I could sit back and tell you that I only came to God when things were out of control in my life, whether it be created by my alcoholism or thru my lying and manipulation. Many times I found my relationship with him would flourish when I was in one of my many stays in county lockup and what seemed transparent to me was that the times that I sat down to pray were times in which I felt alone and abandoned, it was evident that I was searching. Very curios this was to me, I never understood why my reliance upon God was contingent on my current state. I did however start to resent God for this very reason and I didn’t understand it until I started to take a good look at myself. It’s easy to resent someone or something when the only time you call upon them is when you need them. If they don’t come through the way you want them to you begin to lose faith in them. It’s an easy process to see for anyone who takes the time to look at it. Why would I believe in something that can’t bail me out when I need it to? Who wants to worship a flaky deity?
Time to Wake Up
I needed something else, a wake-up call if you will and I could only be woken up by abandoning God. I didn’t know it at the time but I needed my world to unravel, it was the scariest time in my life when I decided that there was no God and I was all alone. Panic attacks were a daily occurrence and I needed to self-medicate any way that I could to cope. I was raised in a Christian household and was taught that God was a man in the sky who watched everything we did. To leave that notion behind was turbulent to say the least, it was devastating in fact. All I wanted was freedom from my old thoughts, not the anxiety that came with it. Unbeknownst to me was how important and vital this period was in my life.
The next year or so was a blur, I ravaged mine and everyone’s life around me until I was completely alone and in jail again. I wasn’t praying this time, I thought it to be a joke that I only found God behind bars… I was done being a cliché. Emotionally, spiritually and mentally bankrupt I sat in jail. I didn’t care anymore, I was at my bottom and so lost that I was past desperation. This was again a pivotal time, I was now the blank slate that God wanted me to be.
Bound for treatment and too tired to resist I started to believe in something, a God of coincidence for lack of better terminology. I was meeting people along the way now who were saying and doing things that spoke to me somehow. Even though I didn’t grasp it then, it’s clear to me now. In fact at the time I didn’t even know I was starting to believe in something, I just knew I was starting to feel again and notice the small things one breath at a time. This was the infancy in my journey through recovery, self-discovery and reliance upon God. My adolescence would only take place as I kept surrendering and listening to those around me. God would eventually reveal himself when I was ready to accept him, when I was ready to see that he was there for me the whole time, I just didn’t like the answers. I’ve come to learn today that I don’t have to like the answers but if I accept them I will be okay. I’ve learned that I need to keep in contact with God through the good and bad, thick and thin and pray no matter what the circumstance. He doesn’t leave me ever and he’s always willing, it’s my abandonment and willingness that I need to always question. God has given me a life today that I wouldn’t dare ask for in the past, I was too ashamed. I never thought I could be the man I am today and I hit my knees daily to thank God for this gift of life today.