TRAV I S AKERS
Addiction recovery for many is spiritual, but not every recovering alcoholic identifies with a spiritual approach to sobriety. Still though, every person in recovery can discover and honour moments of reverence on their journey. Reverence is a term often associated in a religious context – reverence for God, reverence for religious scriptures, reverence for a holy place – but the inclusive and universally accepted application of reverence exists in a moment of deep respect, or a sense of awe in the presence of greatness . As a person in recovery, these moments occur and it is important that we acknowledge and document them in ways that we are able to identify milestones to celebrate and to return to for moments we must draw from for strength. I recently awoke one morning, well-rested, refreshed, energized, and more thankful for life that day than I had in days previous. It was an overwhelming and unexpected sense of euphoria that I did not understand in the moment. I only knew that it was a feeling I wanted to experience every morning I awoke. Then it dawned on me. It was my second anniversary of sobriety. An accomplishment I never imagined possible when I first began an alcohol-free lifestyle. Hangover-free, guilt-free, embarrassment- free, free. I was free, and had been for 730 days in a row. This was a reverent moment. This was a moment in which I was in the presence of greatness. The greatness of having defeated a devilish poison for yet another day, another week, another month, and another year. This was a moment of the deepest respect. Not for just myself, but for what I had accomplished during that time personally and professionally, the relationships that had been restored, the faith that had grown, and the life I had created through being sober. This was a time of reverence. As we journey through life in sobriety, these moments will happen, even when least expected. It is important that we acknowledge them for what they are. I personally approach these times as if they are holy, and I am standing on holy ground.
In the Old Testament book of Genesis, an account is told of a man named Jacob, who in a dream saw a ladder extend to Heaven (Jacob’s ladder). Angels were ascending and descending on the ladder. During the vision, Jacob also saw and heard the voice of God. After waking from his dream, according to the Biblical author, Jacob said “Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not. How full of awe is this place!” Using the rock on which he had rested his head, Jacob poured oil on it and named the place “Beth-el,” which means House of God. Jacob recognized the moment of reverence and erected a monument for it to be remembered and honored. You do not have to be a spiritual, religious, or faithful person to construct your own tributes to reverent times. A diary or journal has just as much significance and impact as a stone altar anointed in oil. Document the times when you recognize the reverent periods of your sobriety – a milestone, an anniversary, an accomplishment – any moment in which you can attribute to living your life out of the grasps of alcohol, a moment you could not have stepped into had you remained in the clutches of a wine bottle or cocktail. The morning I woke on my second anniversary of sobriety, was my Jacob’s ladder moment. I wrote down my feelings and captured the emotions in ink, so that I could reflect on my accomplishment and refer back to that reverent snap shot in time if I need a reminder of my strength. This is discovering reverence in your sobriety – these are the moments of deep respect and awe in the presence of greatness. Recognize the times that deserve reverence and build a monument in your own way to honor them.
Made with FlippingBook - Online magazine maker