29 Years Sober
That’s not what has been problematic. Learning to live on life’s terms is what has caused me most of my problems. You see, even though I was no longer an active alcoholic, I still thought like one. This was true even though I was a Christian and had been one for many years.
Before I went to AA to pick up a white chip, signifying surrender, I spend a year going to Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACOA) meetings, blaming my issues on my parents. I pointed to their alcoholism without being willing to address what was happening in my own life. My self-deception was this engrained in who I was. That was what needed to change.
Once I became willing to take a good, hard look at my own life and behavior, having bottomed out in the process, was when things began to change for me. I had to admit to myself, to God and to others who I really was. At first, having been pretentious for decades, this was really scary, but I had to do it. I had to be real. I had to be who I was.
When I began to live this way is when real, life-altering changes began to occur. Writing my memoir, HI, MY NAME IS JACK, was by far the most healing thing I ever did, but I still had to do more. Since I was a consultant for numerous large Christian ministries, I had to be transparent with them. So, I allowed them to read the book, which was not good for business, but it was Manna for my soul. It cost me financially, since many stopped using my services, but I was finally free to be exactly who I really was. In the words of Polonius, “To thine own self be true,” became a reality in my life.
While doing all of this, I had no idea what God’s plan for my future would entail. All I knew was I needed to do the next right thing repeatedly, which I did until it eventually became who I was. Looking back, I wouldn’t change much—some, but not much. I am at peace with the Lord and with myself.
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