WE’RE ONLY AS SICK AS OUR SECRETS
Many have heard that little gem of wisdom…but how true is it?
Betcha’ didn’t think the Hurls went for jams like this…didja’? I really do. Especially @ 6:47AM on a Michigan Fall Sunday Morning.
“Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops.”
Boy…ain’t that the truth. Trying to keep a lid on a lie is like dropping a Mentos Mint in a 2 Liter of Coke and securing the cap. Not gonna’ happen. Eventually, everything blows. The amount of collateral damage is proportionate to the depth of darkness. Those who like to point out that sin is sin are usually not the same folks who point out the varying degrees of consequence. Sin is not a very popular topic in our culture today. In this graceless age of moral relativity, sin is regarded in most quarters as some kind of archaic form of hate crime. “You are judging me!” has become the new battle cry.
Anyone reading my stuff knows I’m recovering guy with the disease of addiction. There’s another aspect to that particular malady. Holing up in this secret place for months on end, chasing a magic fix of Nirvana was sin. This was the rathole I’d sequester myself in for three months before going on a crime rampage and getting locked up…the first time. My sons are old enough to see this now. What started off as an innocent toke, a couple of lines and the occasional brewski culminated in bondage. The 3rd door from the left led to an upper flat. (see cracked open window) It was the Caligula of Dope Dens on Woodrow Wilson Street in the “D”.
As was shooting dope in these lovely abodes.
Eric (dope man) use to sling from the house on the left. Eric was aka “The Undertaker“. How he earned that street moniker is an interesting story. A guy once died from an OD in a dope pad he was dealing from. Everyone in the place freaked out. Not Eric. He calmly ordered a couple of fiends to help him wrap the body up in a rug. Then they dragged the stiff out to the alley behind the dope house and went back to doing their thing. Nice guy…pure Detroit. My kind of dealer while pushing the envelope. One day, the Undertaker was not home. The neighbor to the right watching me pound on Eric’s door, invited me over for some high-grade smack…for a price of course. A subsequent overdose in the basement was part of the price of that sin. Death was averted by someone calling EMS. At Detroit Receiving, they mainlined me with Trexan. That will never make my list of life’s highlights.
Sin is wrecking a good marriage, displacing my sons from their home and trading in this nice pad for the former.
But I digress….again
Getting back to secrets is not to infer all secrets are bad. However, there’s a difference between cautious prudence and lying. There’s a difference between setting up camp on sick and finding a place of solace that engenders life. The days of applying for a job at Langley to prevent emerging threats to US national security are long past. There’s nothing to hide anymore and it’s a great freedom. Today it’s all about the rebuild. What this has to offer is far more appealing than the previous ghetto that I once called home.
We were not created for self-immolation. We were created for God’s glory. Life is His gift to us. What we do with that is our gift to Him.
After getting clean & sober for the first time, I laid that little saying on my Mom & Dad..like it was some kind of Big Revelation to them. They smiled and my Mom said; “Timmy…I had that saying hung inside the kitchen cabinet for years on Mark Blvd…but I’m glad it finally means something to you“. The seed my folks planted took a few…er’…DECADES to take root and grow. Better late than never. Amen?
For those of you who’ve not had the pleasure, meet Bill Keaton. He’s been my sponsor for over 30 years. Bill is 84 years old with 63 years of unbroken sobriety. One day, we were in some restaurant eating lunch. As we finished and got up to leave, Billy suddenly turned around. He grabbed both sides of his suitcoat–held his jacket wide open and said;
“Bahrutha’…if you go through life wide open…no one can ever hurt you”
Looking back, that was Bill’s inimitable way of letting me know he wasn’t buying any of the BS I just tried to lay on him at lunch.
Bill is now at the Georgian Inn in Bloomfield for physical rehab after taking a couple of falls. Go visit my brother. He’d get a kick out of it. So would you. He’s quite a guy and I can’t imagine living life without him.
It’s part of our inherent nature to find a place to fit. Where is your place? The book of Matthew may provide a clue.
“But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”.
Hmm…what does that really mean? An inventory of where time and attention is spent can be revealing. Just having experienced a 2nd 40 year, high school reunion gave rise to these thoughts. A good time was had by all as our class came together some 40 years down the road. To those of us who’ve survived…it was a magic time of grace.
Many of them shared they have been following my blog and gave encouraging feedback. Almost to a person they said;
“Dude…keep it shorter!“
Fine. They hate me.
This morning, celebrate life.
IT’S NOT ABOUT RELIGION. IT’S ABOUT RELATIONSHIP
EMBRACE THE GRACE THAT WILL NEVER COME FROM ANY PERSON, PLACE OR THING.