Love - the strength to stay sober

In my addict self (the Old Man), I can be so caught up in myself that even prayer is about me.  Back then I was praying to God but I wasn’t meaning the words much – I was just saying them so I could scratch prayer off my list.  “See, I did it – I prayed”, I would say.  And even though I knew prayer worked in general, I just though it didn’t work for me in particular.  Didn’t God hear me?  Didn’t God love me? 
 
In recovery my sober self (the New Man), has discovered prayer as a real conversation with God – a dialogue, not a monologue.  Or even a time of just listening to God, without giving Him a "to do" list of demands.  I’m learning that it’s about having a relationship with God – just as I need relationships with others in recovery.  God doesn’t just give me a magic dose of strength to keep me sober because I said the right words to Him. He wants me to know how much He loves me – and that love is making all the difference in my life.  For me, being immersed in real love makes lust absolutely nothing in comparison.  And that love gives me the strength to stay sober.  This last part, I’m at a loss for words to express, and I’m starting to feel like I’m verging on waxing eloquent, so I’m going to stop.  But, I am so thankful to God right now that I can see this difference, because for a long time (and even now in my sicker moments), I couldn’t.