Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Year, New Me

I begin today with the statement that I am a new being. I am just now discovering what it means to follow Jesus. I have claimed myself to be a Christian since I could talk. I believed but I was not walking it out. I didn’t know what that meant.
Walking it out makes sense now. It means I can’t use my ADHD as a crutch and there are no excuses for certain behavior that is unacceptable in God’s eyes. It means that I follow His Word as the Law and not as a notebook of suggestions. It means I have to live my life as an example.
I was talking to Katie this morning over coffee. I was fitting for a cigarette. I gave her my pack to hold and only allot me a certain amount of cigarettes a day. I haven’t smoked yet today, but tomorrow is the New Year and I plan on being done with this yucky habit by then. I only just seriously started trying to quit on Monday. I have been saying I am trying to quite for what seems like the whole time I have been a smoker. But only until this week did I really decide I was done. It has to be a personal decision.
I am telling you this story because I believe it can be related to how we accept Christ. We like the idea of Jesus, we like what he has to offer (We like the idea of quitting a bad habit and the benefits of quitting), but it is only when we truly decide to FOLLOW that an idea becomes an action. I have struggled with this nicotine addiction since I was 18. I actually planned on buying my first pack of cigarettes when I turned 18. My parents both smoked, so I figured, heck, why not smoke. It runs in the family.
There are also a lot of other things that run in the family; alcoholism, diabetes, codependency, sarcasm… we put the FUN in dysfunctional. I love my family, but yes, we have some issues. Don’t we all? That is why I need Jesus. I need Jesus because I can’t do anything on my own. It is hard to give every aspect of my life to Him, including my addiction, but I know it will be worth it in the end. I feel stronger already just knowing I have gone all day so far without a cigarette and there are no dead bodies yet. Usually I run to cigarettes when I am stressed or bored or basically anytime I’m not busy. I am hyperactive so sitting at my desk drives me CRAY CRAY, but it is what I get paid to do. I often find myself pacing and getting sidetracked, but thankfully the Holy Spirit always reels me back in.
Lord, just let me have my time with Jesus and coffee and I think I will be alright.
Last night I sat on the futon and cried because I wanted a cigarette so bad. Katie was my pillar, suggesting things to take my mind off my craving. It was so hard!!! She made me laugh though and I tried to search the Word for comfort, which there is plenty of in there. Katie had this little list of Emergency verses that you could go to if you were feeling certain ways. I found it very helpful.
I am trying to replace my bad habit with new and improved “healthy” habits. I already run which helps, especially when I am angry. I can guarantee I will run at least three miles if I am really upset and it never seems to help as much as a 5 minute cigarette break. I use floss picks on the way to work to try and curb my desire to smoke while driving. I was notorious for chain smoking while driving.
I also made rules for myself. I made the rule that I couldn’t buy any more cigarettes. I rolled my own for a while which made smoking more of a burden and a time consuming event than the convenience of buying a pack. That helped for a while, but I was still smoking about half of a pack a day. It is amazing how much money I have already saved. Now quitting completely will be the icing on the money cake. I can’t wait to be smoke free, but I HAVE to stop eating chocolate in place of smoking a cigarette. I am also addicted to food.
I lost a significant amount of weight over the summer because of nutrition changes, which led to weight loss, which led to closeness with God, which led to a spiritual awakening.
Now I am scared to gain back all the weight that made me feel sluggish. So now I have a healthy fear of obesity, smoking, and God. Sounds like a good thing; and it is. It is great for me, but very frustrating!
I hate that nicotine has so much power over me. Sin will make you say and do things you don’t mean. It will make you act in ways that you would not normally. It makes you manipulative and desperate. Addiction is weird like that, and it is a horrible realization when you figure out it is a chain tying you down.
I am also mending a broken heart. God taught me I can’t rely on humans for worth and comfort. They will always let me down. No one can love me the way God loves me, and one day He will find me a man who loves Him more than me. I have a feeling he has great things in store for me, I just have to listen and stop fudging off. Yeah… you like how I use fudging don’t you? It is not as satisfying as the other F word, but it is better that I don’t use that word.
Anyway, blessed be. Happy New Year!

2016 is going to be a wonderful year, it will bring great things! I just know it!