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Patience

Patience has been essential to my recovery.

I'm constantly reminded that time is a factor in any worthwhile endeavor. No less so in recovery. Perhaps more so in recovery.

I have learned that time is God's tool. For creating wisdom and understanding in me. For so ordering events as to bring about my highest and best good.

First, I must explain that delaying gratification always proved difficult for me. I needed to learn the best life offers has a price. In my life, the price of serenity and understanding has consistently proven to be patience. Urgency always got me into trouble; patience always kept me out of trouble.

Secondly, patience has proven necessary for the proper preparation of my whole person—spirit, soul, heart, and mind—all of me had to be brought to a point where the desire for serenity became greater than the pain. For me, I had to hit bottom—emotional, spiritual, social, financial, marital—all the way down—and it took 33 years. And then, achieving a measure of sustained serenity took another three-and-a-half years of incredible pain, sorrow, suffering, and conflict, coupled with the decision and the discipline to become better, rather than bitter. Recovery simply cannot happen without patience, just as a flower cannot bloom without water.

Third, patience was necessary to prove my commitment and perseverance to recovery. God didn't instantly bestow the blessings of recovery on my broken heart. The gift came through my long-term commitment to gain serenity and peace. It's almost as if God asked me, "How badly do you want to recover?" I finally came to a point where I desired peace and serenity and unity with God more than anything else. Even more than anything any addiction could offer me.

Fourth, the gift of patience taught me to concentrate my energy during the waiting times. I learned how to focus on the present, rather than obsessing about the future. Growth, for me, always came in the present; through an awareness of the present and knowing exactly what is going on inside of me in the present.

There is a measure of growth from examining the past, but I have found that self-examination of where I am today, in the here and now, is a quicker path to spiritual growth. However, a proper moral inventory (such as working Step Four) again requires time and lots of it.

Fifth, patience has been necessary for my recovery because my sense of timing has seldom coincided with God's. God has always been present for me, in the now, waiting patiently for me to catch up. God has always graciously extended patience to me. Through recovery, I am learning to be patient with God. I am learning to wait for the good stuff. I am learning to watch with joyful patience as day by day God reveals His miraculous plan for my life.


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APA Reference
Staff, H. (2008, December 18). Patience, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, March 29 from https://www.healthyplace.com/relationships/serendipity/patience

Last Updated: August 8, 2014

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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