I have pondered my life and the 18+ years of drinking quite often since getting clean and sober. The initial reason I began to drink and use drugs was a statement I had made, more than once, that I would never live like that. That sealed it. I made that statement out condemnation toward those who lived to party, and ignore their families, "How do they live like that," I would say. Instead of asking God to open their eyes to truth, I looked down on them.
"When pride comes, then comes shame; but with the humble is wisdom."
When I fell, the fall was hard and all I could see was what I had missed all of the years while raising children and self-serving in church. I was awed by the lights and glitter of the party life, deceived by the stories of fun I had seen on sitcoms and in magazines, and fell prey to the fantasy life styles portrayed in movies. I was totally deceived by the flash and living for me.
"Some mens sins are clearly evident, preceding them to judgement,
but those of some men follow later." 1Tim.5:24 (NKJV)
I'm not unique. Neither are you. My story, and your story are probably similar but played out at different times, and in different ways. All of us have one common denominator, God's grace. You may not have been fooled by the flash, thinking the "high life" was found in the party scene. Maybe the thing that separated you from God was thinking you were better in appearance, or puffed up with pride from learning, or the sin of lying, being fearful, or lusting for sexual satisfaction away from your spouse. All of us may fall unless we stay small, and remain grateful. Our sin is evident to everyone but us, judgment follows, and it's painful.
All of these sins are based in pride, and self-exaltation. That's how the deceiver fell from heaven, self-absorbed with his own beauty:
"How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How
you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations! For
you have said in your heart: I WILL ascend into heaven, I WILL exalt
my throne above the stars of God; I WILL also sit on the mount of
the congregation, on the farthest sides of the north; I WILL ascend
above the heights of the clouds, I WILL BE LIKE THE MOST HIGH."
Our common denominator, the grace of God, in mercy delivered us from ourselves, and our prideful uniqueness. Let's pray God helps us stay free of our prideful besetting sin, and live a life of humility and service. Pray daily, serve humbly, and live with constant gratitude.
Thanks for reading. God of all grace bless and keep you all. Keith.