Jesus Has My Back

by Bill Brenner on April 23, 2011

This is a very special Easter for me. Five years ago tonight, I was Baptized and got a new chance at life.

Since then, I’ve tried to live a Holy life. I’ve come up short much of the time, but I just keep trying.

It’s a massive, sometimes overwhelming challenge to get it right these days. Everywhere you look there’s something to temp you. For an addictive personality like mine, being weak in that environment is as natural as breathing.

I used to beat myself silly over that. Not so much now.

Five years ago, I was a couple years into therapy for the OCD diagnosis that was still a few months away at that point. I wan’t taking Prozac yet, and I was having daily anxiety attacks.

I was hoping that the conversion would somehow cure me of all those things. The truth is that things got much worse for me after the 2006 Easter Vigil.

It was like that intense fever you get right before the virus starts to ease up on you. I was at the lowest of lows. But the turnaround was coming.

I just had to learn a simple lesson: The more you put into your Faith, the more you get back. I’ve also had to learn a lesson that’s especially painful for someone with OCD: You have to let go of the urge to control everything. My fellow OCD sufferers know what a bitch that can be.

One day I simply surrendered. I didn’t give up. I just realized that you can’t control the big things. Only God can.

Once you realize that, you stop sweating over the little things.

Learning the 12 Steps to help manage my addictions has taught me a lot in that regard.

Last night, a friend sent me a message that ended with, “Jesus has your back.”

He sure does.

Some of you might think this Faith thing is a bunch of hogwash.

I’m not going to argue it with you.

I believe what I believe, and that’s good enough.

I’m very inspired this morning by my old friend Deb Jones. She lost her daughter this past week. I can’t imagine what that must be like. I don’t ever want to know the feeling.

But there she is, sharing her Faith on Facebook, telling everyone that while things will never be the same for her family on Earth, her daughter is fine. Because she’s truly in a better place.

It’s easy to wonder why God lets the bad stuff happen. But I think my seven-year-old son said it best the other day:

“Dad, I don’t see how people could get mad at God,” he says.

“Why not?” I ask.

“Because while we’re all busy getting upset down here, we have no idea what God is doing up there.”

That’s probably the best way I’ve ever heard someone explain that God has a plan and we have no idea why things happen the way they do.

But Duncan is pretty certain about one thing God’s not doing up there:

“I know this much,” he says. “God’s not picking his nose, because he doesn’t like that.”

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Ken April 23, 2011 at 2:22 am

Happy anniversay!

bill roth April 24, 2011 at 9:30 am

Bill, happy easter. I love your work. Keep busting stigmas. You should consider putting together a book.

Peace,

Bill Roth

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