Tuesday, March 09, 2010
Giving God the Pen
The story that Jeremy and I told last week was scary, at least for me, to tell. I confess that I want to portray myself as a much more competent father than I actually am. But the thing about this “long and winding road” of recovery that both Jeremy and I are on now is that there needs to be a continual recognition that we are powerless in ourselves, in our own strength, to overcome addiction. This is a story that highlights our weakness rather than our strength. But hopefully, it is a story that proclaims Christ’s forgiveness, restoration and sufficiency above all.
If you are thinking, “Did I miss something - does Jamie have a drug and alcohol problem, too?” No. I don’t have a chemical dependency problem but alcohol and drug addiction is a “family disease” and I can, with the 20/20 vision of hindsight, now recognize my “co-dependence.” In the past I took more responsibility for Jeremy’s life than he did for himself. I identified with him so much that I allowed our relationship to impact the vitally important husband-wife unity. I can see this clearly now and am on my own recovery road.
As I became aware of this and saw what Jeremy had to go through to find his own way, I was driven many times just to pray. I didn’t have the words for the helplessness, hopelessness and confusion I was feeling. I wanted to fix something that couldn’t readily be fixed. Answers from the “experts” were unsatisfying. Heaven seemed to be silent.
However, I did receive during that time some clear “impressions” (about as close to a vision a Baptist can get!). In one of these impressions I received I saw myself writing in a journal. It was time to write the next page and I was stuck. I was writing a story, Jeremy’s story, and the journal written so far seemed to symbolize for me doing my best as a father to Jeremy. I realized that I needed to now hand the pen over. I had taken the story as far as I could. I needed to give it over to God to finish, edit and redeem.
The One who took the pen was a far wiser, far more loving and capable Writer. This handing over happened repeatedly throughout this journey as I kept trying to wrestle that pen back out of the Lord’s hands.
Now Jeremy is poised to begin a 2,175-mile hike on the Appalachian Trail for the next five months. He will do this for the Pay It Forward drug and alcohol recovery program in San Antonio, Texas. This venture, I believe, has come from the finger of God. It is a chapter I sure didn’t see coming but I can now see it unfolding, like a surprise in a well-written book. It will be a true delight for me and for many others to “read.”
Pay It Forward has experienced some challenges in getting Jeremy’s blog up on its site. When it is finally up we will be able to go to the link and make a pledge or a donation to the cause if we so desire. I hope to send that information out to you next week. I plan on, for the next five months, putting the link up with our blog to remind you to go to Pay It Forward and follow his progress.
Until then we can…
(Watch Jeremy's YouTube Video)
or shoot him a quick email to give him your best wishes before he hits the trail on Monday, March 15th.
“The Lord will watch over your life, He will watch over your coming and going both now and forever more.” (Psalm 121:7-8)
Trusting In The Author And Redeemer Of Our Stories,
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