Prayer Challenge


I want to ask you to say this prayer out loud, if possible.

“I belong to God. I am a holy vessel because I have the Holy Spirit of the Living God. The Lord of Heaven and earth has said to me; “I declare you holy!”. I commit to start believing what He says. I AM HOLY! Remind me daily, Spirit of the Living God, to treat myself as holy, open my eyes to every scheme of The Enemy to treat me as if I'm not. You, God, are Holy. Your word is the truth. This day Father, I chose to believe you! I ask this in the mighty name of your son Jesus Christ, who died on a cross for me so that I could be a coheir to the kingdom of God. Amen”



Saturday, June 17, 2017

Reaching for Sobriety with My Dad

For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:
 it is the gift of God:
Ephesians 2:8

Growing up with my dad had its good moments, bad moments, and awful, gut wrenching moments.

One of the best moments that I remember is my dad playing "Airplane" with my siblings and I. "Airplane" is a version of "Follow the Leader." The difference is that you stretch your arms out like wings and make motor noises with your mouth as you run after the lead airplane. 

I fondly remember my dad during holiday gift giving, Thanksgiving dinners with a golden brown turkey on the table, visiting my great grandparents and grandparents, riding in the back of the old '49 Dodge pickup truck in the summer, hunting deer with dad, and fishing - lots of fishing!

Most of the great memories are from the years before I turned 10
After that, Dad's drinking took over and he changed into an angry man who took his anger out on my mom. Dad was physically and emotionally abusive. No one should see their mom bleeding and bruised in the aftermath of a verbal and physical assault.  

My teen years were chaotic.
I started speaking my teenage opinion to my dad; it didn't go over well. My brother was the focus of some unpleasant attention too. Both of us found out what it was like to be pinned against a wall by the neck and lifted off the floor. I was 16 when this happened and my brother was 15.

However, my dad changed in 1977. 
One afternoon he came home to find a deputy sheriff waiting for him. Dad was served with papers saying he couldn't stay at the house for 30 days. This situation changed my dad, but I wasn't there to see it. 

I left home at 17 and went into the United States Navy. 
You know what happened when I left home? I started drinking like my dad. I repeated the cycle of alcoholism even though I had sworn that my drinking wouldn't be like my Dad's drinking. My awareness of Dad's recovery was mainly from a few quick trips home because my parents asked me not to bring alcohol into the house, or drink while I was at the house. 

Now I am going to fast forward to 1984. 
In 1984, I was discharged from the Navy and went home to Missouri. I proceeded to meet a nice fellow at the bar I worked at and we ended up together. By 1992, we had 2 little girls and I was drowning myself with alcohol every day. At this point, my dad had been sober for eight years. He and mom went to 12 step recovery meetings. Dad went to a meeting for alcoholics and mom went to a meeting for the friends and family of alcoholics. 

Just like my dad, I had a life changing moment myself. 
My moment came when my partner aimed a .22 rifle at me during my attempt to stop him from shooting our family pet, a little black dog named Scooter. Did you know that a .22 rifle barrel looks as big as a cannon when you are looking into it? Additionally, time seemed to slow down as I looked over his shoulder and saw our two beautiful little girls standing side by side and screaming at him to not hurt Momma. As I looked back at him and the rifle barrel, I was conscious of one thought ricocheting in my head,"Oh my god, I am going to be shot."I wasn't. 

In fact, I managed to get myself, the dog, and the two children into the car and leave. You know where I went don't you? Yep, I drove to Mom and Dad's house. My dad answered the door and looked at us for one long moment - I was bedraggled and muddy as I huddled with my pale and silent daughters and their little black dog. 

The next day I followed my dad into sobriety and wiped the dust off of my Bible. 
During the following day, I read the Bible.  A HUGE weight lifted off of my shoulders and I felt like I was walking 2 feet above the floor. That evening, my mom's friend took me to my first recovery meeting. 

Those early weeks were tough, but Jesus kept showing me the path I needed to take. 
I was hired for the first job I applied for, day shift at a nursing home. Two weeks later, I found an apartment and the landlord agreed to let me pay the rent in two monthly payments. Every time a financial situation arose, I let Jesus handle it and everything just fell into place. God, through Jesus, took care of my every need as I continued to learn how to live sober.

My dad and mom were always available to answer my questions about sobriety. 
Both helped me many times. At meetings, it was tough to hear my dad talk about life before sobriety. I lived through those times, too. However, I needed to confront the situations as an adult and leave behind the little girl memories. My dad apologized to me and I apologized to him. We healed together one day at a time. 

This year I celebrated 25 years of sobriety and my dad celebrates 33 years in July. What we found, faith in God through Jesus, works!