31-Day Spiritual Guide: Day 17 – Patience

You know that old bit of advice, “Don’t pray for patience, or you will be given the opportunity to practice patience?” Yeah, that [insert expletive]. It never ceases to amaze me that when I am being the most impatient is usually in sync with when I truly NEED to be practicing patience. I think patience is one of the cornerstones of being a responsible, productive human being. Patience is the practice of waiting on the greater reward instead of shorting yourself for the immediate reward. It is a rejection of instant gratification, which is a rampant character defect of the alcoholic/addict. It is sticking it out through the entirety of treatment to get to that maximum reward instead of leaving early because “I got this.” It is, if I am a 12-stepper, working ALL 12 STEPS to get to the peace, joy, and serenity I see in others who are clean and sober. Patience is not giving up when I think the deck is stacked against me and convince myself I am destined to fail. It is the application of commitment, determination, and perseverance to carry me to the ends I so desperately seek. Patience is trusting the advice/suggestions of those who have been sober for a while, and who have what I am looking for, and following those suggestions UNTIL I get to those same rewards of sobriety. Patience is also putting in maximum effort, even though there is no guarantee that I will get maximum benefits; although, the benefit of knowing that I gave maximum effort generally makes whatever result I get worth the work. I fail miserably and often when opportunities to practice patience arise, but I am confident that I am better today than I was 5 years ago when I was still using. Thank you for reading, I wish you all the best!

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