Christians, in all good conscience, need not drink alcohol to be socially relevant. If there is a part for Christians to play in relation to alcohol, it is in showing addicts and their families that there is a new normal beyond alcohol use and abuse, a better set of problems to be found in following Christ, and real hope in surrender to the grace of God.
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Love, therefore, is not so much the opposite of fear, hate and indifference as it is the cure for it. People who are properly loved will not be afraid, hateful or naive, and it’s our mission as Christian to love one another, because love comes from God. When we have learned how to be loved properly by God ourselves, through Christ, we will release love’s alternatives, and seek to practice it at every opportunity. Our mission surely then as professors and disciples of Christ is to do what He did. Love people. And do it properly.
We came to the group thinking what united us was a mutual enemy, but we have come to appreciate that in fact we are more united in our likenesses. Cancer may be what we all have in common, but slowly, it’s been pushed aside. As we tell our stories and listen to and honour each other, as we learn respect the stories of others and esteem our own, we have grown and enlarged to the point we barely leave any room for cancer to be with us anymore. It skulks off into a corner and prattles to itself while we all celebrate our wondrousness and aliveness. Cancer support group my blinking earhole. We’re a virtual street parade, complete with heroes, and just about as much cleaning up to do afterwards.
Truth be known, I’m a bit jealous of those helpers. As I sit here on the sofa a thousand miles away, wondering if I should have another cup of coffee or move to the deck to read the paper, I wish I was there. I wish I had the opportunity to be swept up in something bigger then myself, to show my mettle, to feel caught up in the urgency of needing to help others in their darkest day. I know it’s that feeling that someone else needs you that makes you feel truly alive, truly human