I am in recovery…

by Chelle Wilson



                               

I am in recovery, and my children helped restore my joy. I love that they do that for me. That may be one of my blessings as a Mid-Life Mama (you raise them, and if you are blessed, they raise you back). Welcome to my spiritual recovery. I mean no disrespect; I have immense regard for people who have fought demons and overcome addictions, but that is not this story. I am in recovery from the dangerous notion that I was ever in control of my life. I am in recovery.

I am walking out of the wilderness that was my life for the last several years. It was hard. It seemed endless. I knew God was a presence in my life, but He didn’t feel near. (I am now in recovery; now I am learning better). It wasn’t until I shattered completely, was beyond broken, until I was ground into dust that I began to see The Light, until I accepted both my utter and irrevocable helplessness AND that God had always been near. (He is, after all, close to the brokenhearted).  What happened?

When everything began to fall away, a career, the health of a beloved, our sense of security, I succumbed, incrementally, to a peculiar type of hopelessness. I wasn’t mindful of the change, but those closest to me were keenly aware. I continued to encourage. I continued to nurture, to preach hope, to preach Grace, to cultivate faithful anticipation. I kept cheering, all while slowly dying inside.

My mother let me know that my melancholy affected her. I didn’t even realize how miserable I was, that it was infecting our home like a sickness. I was so enmeshed in my misery I couldn’t see. (But God, and His Amazing Grace…)

My children have supported my return for wholeness, and I realize that a)I couldn’t do it without their support, and b)it is the God their dad and I poured into them all their lives that they are pouring back into me just now. I am in recovery. But the question remains…what happened?

I pray daily NOT to forget the lessons of hitting rock bottom spiritually, to ensure that I value this peace to the greatest extent possible.  ~Chelle Wilson

I pray daily NOT to forget the lessons of hitting rock bottom spiritually, to ensure that I value this peace to the greatest extent possible. ~Chelle Wilson

Simply stated, what happened was that I hit rock bottom-a common theme in recovery. After years of trying to lean of what I thought was enough faith and surrender, nothing worked anymore; it was time to relent, or perhaps die. That moment of yielding was my moment of Grace. It was also the moment I was able to accept Grace with the humbly surrendered gratitude I lacked previously. I began recovery.

My children (and My Beloved) are part of that recovery. They embraced my return to joy and to genuine hope through ALL things in a powerfully sustaining way. The words of Paul in Philippians 4:11-12(NIV) minister to me entirely differently now.

I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

I no longer fight those words resentfully as once I did. And the last bit of this Grace? Grasping that recovery is lifelong, a fragile practice dependent upon Faith. Maintaining resiliency and sustaining recovery of any kind is a lifetime discipline.  I pray daily NOT to forget the lessons of hitting rock bottom spiritually, to ensure that I value this peace to the greatest extent possible. And I am thankful that my children were there to hold my head, my hands, and most of all my heart.

Email Author    |    Website About Chelle Wilson

I write at the intersection of life and faith, not as a theologian, but a regular person struggling to make sense of it all. I write the soundtrack for my faith…hymns, anthems, jazz vespers and hip-hop Gospel, encouragement to rely upon faith to live and love in the face of confusion. You can visit me at Treat Me to a Feast, Facebook, and Twitter

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mandy November 16, 2014 at 1:26 pm

Beautiful. Love you, Chelle!

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2 Chelle Wilson November 16, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Mandy,
thank you. You posted that image, and then it all began to come together.
Thank you, girl. I wouldn’t even be here without you.
Love you,
Chelle

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3 Christine Wright November 16, 2014 at 1:52 pm

Oh Chelle…that was a beautiful post. Thank you.

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4 Chelle Wilson November 16, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Christine,
Thanks, and thanks for all your prayers while I tarried there…

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5 Barbie November 16, 2014 at 11:33 pm

I cannot tell you how much I needed to read this today. I’ve had so many losses over the years and yet I just keep going on being me — encouraging, greeting with a smile, serving. Some days I feel as if I’m dying a slow death and “where is God” in the process. I know that He is near to the broken hearted, but I haven’t felt him, really felt him, though my numbness in so long. Thank you!

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6 Chelle Wilson November 17, 2014 at 9:02 pm

Barbie,
I know. So glad that my confession spoke to you. It was hard to live, harder to write, but such a blessing. I am praying for you, and know it will be alright, in His Time (which can seem awfully endless)…
Love,
Chelle

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7 Lisha Epperson November 17, 2014 at 9:49 am

In the middle of my own mess, I receive this post as encouragement. Things won’t always be as they are. After rock bottom is recovery. Thanks for breathing life and hope with your words today Chelle.

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8 Chelle Wilson November 17, 2014 at 9:05 pm

Lisha,
Be encouraged. There is so much beauty in the messes that are our lives. We need to be encouraged to be honest, and to lean on one another knowing that we are either living in the wilderness, leaving the wilderness, or approaching one on the horizon.
Trust Him,
Chelle

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9 Laurie Wallin November 18, 2014 at 1:14 pm

This is going into my “read often” folder. You bless this girl deep, friend.

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10 Chelle Wilson November 22, 2014 at 11:58 am

Laurie,
Thank you. There is a line from the movie the Color Purple where Shug Avery makes up a song, and Celie comments “What that song? I ast. Sound low down dirty to me. Like what the preacher tell you its sin to hear. Not to mention sing….She hum a little more. Something come to me, she say. Something I made up. Something you help scratch out my head.” I thank God that you midwifed that revelation out of me, like you helped scratch it out of my head. I will never forget our fellowship that sunny afternnon, on a day that neither of us knew you would minister to me. If you read this often, I am blessed, but blessed more because much of this wisdom was drawn out by you, to God be the Glory.
Keep fighting for your peace, girl, even when it’s hard. And never forget, our intercessors are everywhere.
Love you.

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