The following comment from Resentment Rats is too wonderful to leave in the archives of comments:
So much lays beneath what we can easily see in ourselves. And how many people in life take time to self examine, shed light on, and challenge their own defects of character? Typically only those who find themselves in painful crisis.
Yet, millions of people who do not feel the full pain of their character defects obliviously allow them to remain functioning and undiscovered. Does that make their defects benign or just unrecognized? In my experience, the latter.
The pain many of us went through in alcoholism, addiction, and all of the related chaos, find ourselves in the bizarre and paradoxical states of opportunity and blessings. Opportunity to discover our self-limiting and self-destructive defects, and the blessing to begin free ourselves from them.
I often think of us as “Lucky unlucky people”. It is unfortunate that we ended up alcoholics and addicts, but tremendously fortunate that it lead us to a point of ‘recover or die’. This is a point that others who are buffered from the pain of their character defects seldom reach. Would this then not make them “Unlucky lucky people”.
Perhaps this is one of the things that James 1:2 refers to when it tells us to “count it all joy when you fall into various trials…”
I am grateful today that I am a recovering alcoholic. Had I not been, I may never have had cause to shine the light on the rats in my life.