While I was raised with a concept of God, I used to wonder how God could exist in the chaos and fat that surrounded my life. I must have been cursed!

I am thankful God knew better than I did. Over and over, it was as if he were saying, “It’s okay, honey. I’m here for you when you are ready.” While I was busy not believing in him and running the show, he sent me bright green flashing arrows guiding me to different people, places, and things. He guided me right into these rooms. By working the Steps, I became convinced that, as the Big Book says, “God is concerned with us humans when we want Him enough” (Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th ed., p. 12). I wanted him!

God shows up for me quite often, especially when I show up for myself. When I had been in program almost six months and was in the middle of my Fourth Step, I decided to go to an OA women’s retreat. The women I met blew me away with their knowledge, support, and love. Again my eyes were opened.

On my way home, I stopped to grab my abstinent lunch and decided to pull into a park that overlooked the ocean. I sat on one of the benches along the edge of the cliff. On the bench was a memorial plaque with a man’s name and his birth and death dates, with the inscription “Happy, Joyous & Free.” I sat frozen and crying. Not only were the words from the Big Book staring me in the face, but he and I were almost the same age, 26. It became clear that God was telling me I was where I was supposed to be and I was going to be okay. I wish I had known that man and his story, but I took comfort in him. The bench reminded me I am here for a reason. I am in this program to thrive, not just survive.

I went back to the same spot after my second women’s retreat. This time the bench had been carved and the plaque didn’t stand out as it once had, but when I looked around, the people, places, and things were vibrant, matching the life I now have in program.

Today I am 96 pounds (44 kg) down from my top weight, imperfectly reaching out to others instead of isolating with my food. I have an intimate relationship with my Higher Power, and I have even come to appreciate the religion of my childhood. All of that, to me, shows my Higher Power working in my life. My old idea about God not being there for me could not have been further from the truth.

I thank God every day for keeping me here and letting me know I am always right where I am supposed to be.

— Krista S., Los Angeles, California USA

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