Listening to a pod cast this week, and a phrase stuck out to me. Integrity is not perfection, it is authenticity. The speaker went on to say that many times we use the excuse that nobody’s perfect as a cop-out. It becomes a way to shrug-off a conviction to progress toward God’s plan of clean living for us.

The ongoing struggle in recovery is pressing forward, even when we aren’t feeling it. I have listened to speakers who shared stories of incredible loss and redemption, and that it wasn’t nearly as important as how we started the race as to how we finish it.

Recently, a brother in recovery passed away after being recently diagnosed with a terminal illness. He had lived a full life, despite passing at a relatively young age, because as we are often reminded, it’s not the years, it’s the mileage. His testimony was similar to others in recovery, and in the last several years he found himself attending meetings, being a devoted friend and staying clean to honor God who brought him safe thus far. His sudden passing from a heart attack spared him months of medical procedures and suffering, and he finished his race in honor and grace.

None of us are getting out of here alive. That’s the straight-scoop folks. We have a number of pages to write on, that God allows us each day, and one day the page will be turned, and it will be the last. Who we are right now, may be the person that those we are in relationship with remember, and this is all that we really leave behind. Do we leave true, lasting fondness and smiles? Or relief that the anxiety our presence causes, has now been lifted?

Recovery gives us each the opportunity to give to those around us the very best part of who we are. To example healthy living, and to find the deepest joy and happiness for ourselves this side of eternity. If you are considering a recovery journey, start today with step one:

Step 1: We admitted we were powerless over [addictions, compulsions and other unhealthy habits that separate me from God] – that our lives had become unmanageable.

This begins the journey to health and wholeness. It’s where we all start, and where I return when needed. I am not worried about perfection, but I want to be authentic, and I hold myself accountable for progress toward a deeper level of peace and serenity.

Grace and peace to you, and much love. Always.