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Outrunning the Bear

Tuesday Re-mix – Anonymity Anonymous: Recovery from our Addiction to Self-reliance

Step 1: We admit we are powerless over our addiction and that our lives have become unmanageable.

There’s an old joke about two guys out on a camping trip.  They are at their campsite and they spot a bear off in the distance.  They are watching it when it spots them and starts coming toward their campsite and then starts running toward their campsite!  One guy grabs his gun and starts loading it and grabbing extra ammunition.  The other guy grabs his tennis shoes and starts furiously lacing them up.  The first guy says, “Are you crazy!?  You’ll never outrun the bear!”  And the second guys says, “I don’t have to outrun the bear.  I just have to outrun you!”

In my addiction to self-reliance, i.e., my fear of being too transparent with my friends, i.e., my secret disdain for the type of “community” and interdependence described in the Bible, there is a perspective that “enables” my addiction.  It actually makes the addiction worse.  It is the perspective that I don’t really have to be as perfect as God desires me to be…I just have to be better than the guys around me.  It is an attitude that all but gives up on living the life God intends for me and stays content with living a life that looks pretty good when compared to lots of other people.  It is the attitude that says, “I don’t have to outrun the bear…I just have to outrun the guy next to me.”

You see, no matter how badly I mess up, I can always find someone else who messed up “worse” in my opinion.  And as long as I can feel like I’m doing better than most folks around me, I …