What is distracting you?

Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

~ Romans 1:23

Take a pause and journal or make a list or consult with your sponsor or spiritual director. Ask for feedback. Give yourself time to really think about this:

In what ways are you chasing after free cheesecake?

What distracts you from living with more intention?

How can you find the peace that comes when our resolutions align with our core values and intentions for life?

I remember a conversation I had many years ago with a young woman who was having a devil of a time stringing sobriety days together. She was extremely frustrated with her family’s reaction to her relapses. She felt they had turned cold toward her. They no longer were willing to “share in her suffering” after a relapse. They were done talking about it and they were unwilling to act as if she was sustaining long term recovery. They stopped counting on her; they stopped expressing sorrow when she didn’t show up for a family event. She was livid. She felt this showed a lack of Christian love. She felt they were not working a solid recovery program. She talked about all her experience in treatment, and waxed eloquent about what everyone around her was doing to ruin her recovery experience.

She had no clue how foolish her words sounded. Although she had access to a strong recovery support network, she exchanged that opportunity (privilege really) for the chance to blame others.

Are there any exchanges that you are making? At what cost?

Resolutions can be bigger than our insecurities

My musings continued (so this won’t make sense if you didn’t read yesterday’s blog):

Apologizing in advance for presuming to add content to anything Brene` Brown has to say, I would add this to her quote (with all due respect): [the courage to be vulnerable]...is also about showing up when absolutely nothing is offered you. No free cheesecake. No warm fuzzies. No personal benefit at all.

Aren’t most of our resolutions a structured way to address our own insecurities, weaknesses, and anxieties? Lose weight. Find a loving relationship. Change careers. Hike the Himalayas. Get botox. Deadlift 300 pounds.

Are those really things we need to be RESOLUTE about?

So what is worth being RESOLUTE for? It depends on our core values I suppose. But what I hope we will all consider is that thousands of people RESOLUTELY went out for a piece of free cheesecake who may or may not be RESOLUTE about loving like God loves.

I closed my impromptu note with a prayer. Because if anything is true, it is this: we are desperately in need of prayer, transformation, and a commitment to something bigger than a free piece of cheesecake.

This is my prayer for you...May we show ourselves more compassion and more respect than has been our habit, daring to believe that we are destined to show up for others, sacrifice for something more profound than a carb-laden sweet treat. May we begin to practice standing up under the pressure of inconvenience over indulgence - because we know we are better than pettiness and selfish indulgence. May be do something nice for someone else even as it costs us something we are not quite sure we can afford to give. May we show more compassion to ourselves by being more compassionate than we knew we could muster. May we live with more courage and conviction than we knew we possessed. May we choose daily to live with more conscious intention than the Cheesecake Factory story gives us much reason to hope for on the part of humanity...and let’s be honest, in ourselves. May we dare to believe that together, we can do hard things. Inconvenient things. Things that are not our preference. Amen

Make 2019 the year we that act on our good intentions. Do hard things. We are image bearers. We can do better.