The Story of the miracle of this Website!
For so many months, I struggled to find a web master to help give birth to this site. Over a year ago, some one started working on this for a chunk of money. It was really in bad shape and the “under construction” signs were beginning to be more like wishful thinking! I spent a lot of time praying and worrying about this. Praying and worrying has been my way of getting things done for a long time. Here’s what it looks like. I go to God’s throne room and throw the doors open and then drag a big cinder block into the large hall and right up to God. I tell Him what He already knows and then I beg Him to do something, Please! Then, I pick up the cinder block and leave with it and rack my brain to figure out how I can find a web master that I can afford so I can fix this problem!
One day, a man emailed me and told me he was a friend from my past and long story short, he mentioned, he knew how to fix a website. I began to think, this might be answered prayer and that help was on the way. We started to work on the website and in truth, we don’t know the first thing about setting up a web site. I don’t and he, while he is an extremely computer savvy person and certainly sincerely wanted to be helpful, it was a case of the blind leading the blind every time we got together on the phone. Nothing was getting accomplished and hours were spent trying. It was a Sunday evening at about 5pm. I remember because I had reached the end of self. Here’s what that looks like.
Throughout history, there have been many very bright men and women who call them-selves atheists or agnostics. Sigmund Freud, Friedrich Nietzsche, Ludwig Feuerbach, Bertrand Russell; these are just a few of the noted authors, poets, and intellects. The definition of an atheist, in short is: “A” (with-out) + “Theos” (God)= He doesn’t exist! Then there are agnostics: “A” without +Gnostic (to know)= to doubt the existence of God or as some would say, ‘They just don’t know’. Some believe that science and reason have supplanted religion and superstition. Darwin, is one example. He went from being a strong believer, raised Anglican and steeped in Unitarianism to an evolutionist. He was at various times and ways, exposed to strong bible believing Christians, including his mother and his boss for five years, the captain of a ship upon which Darwin, a ‘naturalist’, studied science. I have no intention of discussing creation vs evolution or Darwin at length, but I do wonder, in light of Darwin’s background, are the most committed atheists men who were, at one time, raised among committed Christians and in some way, damaged? If so, are they all blocked?
Abstinence for me includes measuring and monitoring closely what goes into my body. Anonymity is an important part of measuring and monitoring every word that goes out of my mouth. Both require God’s power for restraint!
“If we put bits into the mouths of horses that they may obey us, we guide their whole bodies. Look at the ships too; though they are so great and are driven by harsh winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So too, the tongue is a tiny member and boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by a small fire!” (James 3:3-5)
More and more, I realize that what’s happening in my life is that I’m growing and changing and it has a direct correlation to my tongue. Now that I weigh and measure everything I eat (and I am so happy I do because no longer do I have to ask, “Did I eat too much? Did I eat enough?”). I have complete peace about my food and my diet. I have surrendered all decision-making to my Registered dietician and I plan my food accordingly and then follow my plan. It has become clear that God has turned his attention to what comes out of my mouth now. When I grew up, we used to chant, “Sticks and stones can break my bones but names will never harm me!” As a grown up, I’ve learned the truth; my words can do a lot of damage. King Solomon’s Book of Proverbs says, ‘Death and life are in the power of the tongue.’ (18:21) And sadly, just as ‘once the toothpaste is out of the tube, you can’t put it back’, it’s the same with my words. And it’s not just that I may say something harmful or hurtful, but my words are ever connected to the motivation of my heart. “Let the words of my mouth, O Lord, and the meditation of my heart (this speaks to motive), be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14) And so it is my words that tell the world what is going on in my heart. ‘Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks!’ (Mathew 12:34)
The mighty tongue can do all sorts of damage. I’m in a twelve step program and I’m learning to police this tiny member of my body! It seems to all stem from gossip and pride; the motive is not always clear but it’s not the most important thing. Being quiet and monitoring what comes out is! It used to be called, “stirring dissension” but these days they call it “stirring the pot!” (It’s likened to ‘witchy’ behavior.) Proverbs tells us, “Six things the Lord hates, seven which are an abomination to Him. . . “; (It’s worth reading the whole thing.) the seventh abomination is “a man who sows discord among brothers”. (Proverbs 6:16-19)
Miracles are so much fun! A few weeks ago, I had a car accident. Like most people, when I first moved to the right and hit another car, my first thought was, “Ugh!”. But I’m living ‘a new way, a new manner , a new plan of living’, as the Big Book puts it. And so, my second thought was, “Thank you, Lord.” If ‘nothing happens in God’s world by mistake’ (Pg. 417 BB), then God knew it would happen and God knew all the ramifications. So The first thing I did when I hit that woman’s car was to say, “Thank you, Lord, for this car accident and what I’m about to learn from it.”
I pulled my car over to the side of the road. The woman in the black maxima got out of her car and started screaming at me. I listened and said nothing. It seemed fair that she should be upset. I hit her! When she said, “DIDN”T YOU SEE ME? Didn’t you see my car?” I felt sorry for her. Her car, her day, her schedule was being run a muck. I calmly said, “I’m so sorry. I didn’t see you. I wouldn’t have moved into your lane if I had seen you. Let me call the police and get this over with. I know it was my fault.”
I was sick for a few days and really wasn’t myself that day. It was the very end of my day and I was tired and lazy about looking over my right shoulder to check my blind spot. Her car was low and not in my mirrors. I went back to my car and climbed into the driver’s seat so I could use my phone and the blue tooth. She came over to my car door and as she listened with my window open, she said, ‘We don’t call the police in Pennsylvania’. I hung up. Then she said, ‘Just go. I’ll take care of my car. You take care of yours. You have more damage anyway. My husband will fix my car.
I was very grateful. How nice of her. I received that as the first blessing from this accident. No insurance company involvement! Yay, my record is clean and I’m thrilled to keep it that way. She was so very kind to let me off the hook. So I drove home and as I crossed the bridge to New Jersey, I ruminated over her statement. “My husband will take care of my car.” It was like a marble in my mind just rolling around. How annoying; I don’t have a husband to rescue me.
“Hey, Uncle Bob, I know you used to be an alcoholic, but how ’bout you man the bar?” Holiday expectations are sometimes nonsensical. Upon my arrival to Thanks Giving, my four-year old grand-daughter, with joy and excitement, asked me to make a ginger-bread house with her. I listened with no response thinking, “I don’t think so.”
Ginger bread house
Three days later, with the back drop of Pandora Internet Radio, playing ‘Italian Traditional’ music, as I prepared the icing, I was lost in thought. First, I lied to myself. “This isn’t confectioners sugar, it’s Elmer’s glue!” I wasn’t tempted at all, but it didn’t seem wise to play with sugar. I also remembered a conversation I had with my litigator daughter; Who can win with her? Growing up, I called her the cruise director, always Charles in charge. So when she explained”I’ll vacuum while you help the kids make the ginger bread house!” I, of course, said, “How is that my job? I’m the one with the eating disorder! How about I vacuum, you make the ginger bread house?” She laughed with a guilty look.