Interestingly, some people treat adultery recovery and prevention in the same manner. Those who skip steps, wish to rush the process or make changes for the wrong reasons will be exposed eventually. As Jeff Olson says, "Time will either promote you or expose you." You will know in time whether or not my repentance and recovery is legit or not. As Jesus said, "You will know a tree by its fruit."
I want to grow bountiful fruit of humility, strength, confidence, purity, courage and wisdom. I want to wake up every day and put on my "armor," knowing that the devil is prowling around searching for someone to devour. I know what I am capable of doing - good and bad. I never want to leave myself vulnerable to Satan's lies. Therefore, my DAILY personal walk with Christ AND other men of God is crucial.
This doesn't mean I won't ever have troubles. Remember, it's a pruning and maturing process. However, if I ever treat recovery like my kids do vacuuming, then I will only focus on the "external" factors that are easy to see. Things such as behaviors, my public image, how I treat others, etc. What you won't see is my thoughts, attitude, etc. At least not immediately. Eventually, "out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks." Therefore, when stressed and given enough time, the inside will soon be revealed.
My friend told me recently that I have changed over the past two years. He and I met when we first moved here to North MS. I was an emotional wreck. I had a lot of difficulty knowing how to transition to a new community and rebuild. As I said in another post, I felt like I was lying if I didn't quickly tell a bit of our story. I was still living in paranoia and emotional instability. He then told me that I "seem more comfortable in my skin."Wow. What a huge compliment. That's a testimony to the work God has done over the past two and a half years. I have struggled through some serious emotional waves. I am not fully past all of it, but I feel way better than I did the first two years of recovery.
I met with a guy recently who was stuck in a rut of disappointment and struggle. I encouraged him to work on small, daily disciplines and establish a clear purpose for his "why" and purpose (i.e. the benefits), versus drifting through life. I told him in six months, he will wake up and say one of two things: "I am glad I have spent the last six months working on me and implementing the small yet powerful "daily disciplines." OR "I wish I would have done the work of implementing the small steps of daily disciplines." One outcome will reap a harvest of benefits and personal growth; the other will reap more regret and disappointment.
I want to wake up each day and keep this in mind because it's a huge deal. I fell hard and the scars remain, but I am thankfully able to write new chapters, WITH my family. I read a quote this morning by Andrew Cherng, the CEO of Panda Express, a $1.8 billion company. He said, "Success is not an accident. When you put yourself in the right place at the right time, then you’re likely to be more successful because of how you prepare yourself on a daily basis."
This is a common philosophy of successful people. What you do "daily" makes the long term difference. Adultery recovery and prevention is no different.
13-14 Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you’ve got, be resolute, and love without stopping.