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Beside Restful Waters

"But the human ego prefers knowing and being certain over being honest."

Richard Rohr

I have heard statements like this dozens of times. Yet, the impact doesn't change. There is a force that hits my soul like a sharp blow to my midsection.

I pray daily for the surrender of my ego. I am sure that I am making progress. Then I hear a statement reminding me that, while I am certainly making progress, my ego continues to dominate my thoughts. I remain masterful at playing mind games with honesty. I push the envelope to the edges of honesty. With my decades of practice at these games, you would think I would learn that there is no substitute for truth.

Well! I am learning because I have powerful teachers and practices.

My sobriety requires that I continue to engage the practice of surrender through prayer and meditation. I have to face the truth that my ego is not going to run and hide simply because I pray or meditate. However, I am noticing that my awareness of ego power is getting more finely-tuned. I quickly become more mindful of ego through these practices.

As I ponder these practices, right now as I am sharing with you, I am keenly aware of the simplicity of these practices. I like to read lots of heady, complicated dissertations about spirituality and religion. This fills me with lots of knowledge. As you know, I can easily launch my own lofty monologues. Yet the fact remains that the practice of surrender is simple—be still and listen.

For my sake, I will repeat this: "Be still and listen."

Listen with my whole being. I am starting to integrate this into my daily routine of self-care:

Wash my ears so I can fully hear you.

Wash my eyes so I can fully see you.

Wash my nose so I can fully smell you.

Wash my hands so I can fully touch you.

Wash my mouth so I can fully taste you.

Wash my feet so I can walk with you.

There are many other practices available. However, the simpler I can keep my practice, the more beautiful the results.

My mother offered a constant reminder of simplicity: "God said it, that's enough for me."

Thanks, mom.

This is another reminder that when I am in my listening mode, I hear God's word from your mouth, in your smile, in your touch, in your eyes and in your presence. This is the mindfulness that is so necessary for me to grown in sobriety. Our connection to each other and to the universe surrounding us is critical for our truth to be the source of our ease and stability.

Richard Rohr reminds us of the prevailing attitude "Don't bother me with the truth, I want to be in control." Well, my desire to be in control is the attitude that my addiction loves to hear. So, I will continue to look to our willingness to connect with each other as our source of ease and stability, and mindfulness of the presence of our Higher Power.

This is my path to the restful waters. This is where we thrive.


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