Hanging around meetings for recovering alcoholics and addicts, has brought affirmation to the truth of those ancient words found in the book of Proverbs. The practice of reading one chapter each day has a two-fold effect. One, if it is wisdom and understanding regarding life, and knowledge of how to conduct yourself on life’s way, this is the book for you. Two, the book’s practical teachings are simple and you see these proverbs unfold before your very eyes, through others…and yourself.
There are 31 chapters in the book, one for each day of the month, if you want to see it that way. In months with 30 days, or in February, I only read the number of proverbs for that month. Chapter 12 is a good teaching example. Three things stand out. The chapter begins with this: “Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid.” This verse is very relevant for people suffering from addictions. We must be willing to go to any length to stay sober. Any length means, take instruction from those who have worked the steps and want to help you. This is very important because nearly every one seeking help want help on their terms, which will not work.
The second thing that stands out in chapter 12 is scattered throughout the chapter. How you speak is how you heal, how you conduct yourself, and how you see yourself. “A man (woman) will be satisfied with the good fruit of his mouth. The tongue of the wise promotes health. The wicked are ensnared by the transgression of their lips. The truthful lip shall be established forever, but the lying tongue is but for a moment.”
Each of these verses warn and promise good by what comes out of our mouth. My mouth has caused me many problems in life, not knowing when to stifle it. I hear people new in recovery talk, and I can see, rather hear their pain, whether they have had enough or not. Choose your words wisely.
Finally the chapter has these words: “DILIGENCE is a man’s precious possession.” If you are a persistent person, that don’t quit, be very grateful for that. Diligence is a precious possession, not just in things you love to do, but in those things you would rather not do. In recovering from addictions, there are things you must do to stay clean and sober, and as you complete each step you wonder what the fuss was about. Diligent people are destined for success. The truth is, everyone is diligent and will stick with things they like to do. Diligence in what you don’t like shows spiritual fortitude.
Now look at your past, and where you had success. You had to work at it, little by little, to accomplish becoming an ace. So it is with working the recovery programs. Putting these three outstanding features together, being teachable, (taking instruction), watching your words, and speaking life positively, and working diligently on your sobriety, will get you through any bump in the road. Make the decision to practice these precepts, and you will stay on the recovery road.
Thanks for reading, God bless and keep you all. Keith