Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 20th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 20th

Daily Reflections

“THY WILL, NOT MINE”

. . . when making specific requests, it will be well
to add to each one of them this qualification. .” . . .
if it be Thy will.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 102-03

I ask simply that throughout the day God place in me the
best understanding of His will that I can have for that
day, and that I be given the grace by which I may carry
it out. As the day goes on, I can pause when facing
situations that must be met and decisions that must be
made, and renew the simple request: “Thy will, not mine,
be done.” I must always keep in mind that in every
situation I am responsible for the effort and God is
responsible for the outcome. I can “Let Go and Let God”
by humbly repeating: “Thy will, not mine, be done.”
Patience and persistence in seeking His will for me will
free me from the pain of selfish expectations.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

I no longer try to escape life through alcoholism. Drinking
built up an unreal world for me and I tried to live in it.
But in the morning light the real world was back again and
facing it was harder than ever, because I had less resources
with which to meet it. Each attempt at escape weakened my
personality by the very attempt. Everyone knows that alcohol,
by relaxing inhibitions, permits a flight from reality.
Alcohol deadens the brain cells that preside over our highest
faculties and we are off to the unreal world of drunkenness.
A.A. taught me not to run away, but to face reality. Have I
given up trying to escape life?

Meditation For The Day

In these times of quiet meditation, try more and more to set
your hopes on the grace of God. Know that whatever the future
may hold, it will hold more and more of good. Do not set all
your hopes and desires on material things. There is weariness
in an abundance of things. Set your hopes on spiritual things
so that you may grow spiritually. Learn to rely on God’s power
more and more and in that reliance you will have an insight
into the greater value of things of the spirit.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not be overwhelmed by material things.
I pray that I may realize the higher value of spiritual things.


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As Bill Sees It

Easy Does It–But Do It, p. 322

Procrastination is really sloth in five syllables.

<< << << >> >> >>

“My observation is that some people can get by with a certain amount of
postponement, but few can live with outright rebellion.”

<< << << >> >> >>

“We have succeeded in confronting many a problem drinker with that
awful alternative, ‘This we A.A.’s do, or we die.’ Once this much is
firmly in his mind, more drinking only turns the coil tighter.

“As many an alcoholic has said, ‘I came to the place where it was either
into A.A. or out the window. So here I am!”

1. 12 & 12, p. 67
2. Letter, 1952

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Walk In Dry Places

Estrangements
Amends
A number of alcoholics become estranged from members of their family.  Sometimes these estrangements continue into sobriety and fester as a source of resentment.
Where estrangements have occurred, we are always responsible for any wrongs on our part.  We need to check carefully to make sure that pride and bitterness on our part aren’t prolonging the estrangement.
But some of these estrangements have been chosen by others.  We need to accept them if we’ve done everything possible to correct the problem.
Honesty will be our guide as we look carefully at any estrangements in our lives.  All that’s ever necessary is that we use our best principles in dealing with any estrangements.
If I find today that an estrangement is bothering me or others in the program, I’ll examine it carefully with the thought that either making amends or acceptance might be required.

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Keep It Simple

A man is too apt to forget that in this world he cannot have everything. A choice is all that is left him.—H. Mathews.
Sobriety is about choice. Each day we choose to stay sober, we teach ourselves how
to make better choices.
Life is about choice. To be spiritual people, we must make spiritual choices. Honesty is a spiritual choice. And working the Steps is a spiritual choice.
Our life is the sum total of our choices. We owe it to ourselves to choose wisely. We can do that now, thanks to the program.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me choose a spiritual way of life. Help me to see choice as my way to a better relationship with you.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll be aware of the many choices I make. At the end of the day, I’ll think about all the choices I’ve made. Am I proud of my choices?

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Each Day a New Beginning

Experience is a good teacher, but she sends in terrific bills.  –Minna Antrim
It is not by chance but by design that the sorrows we experience throughout our lives are countered by equal servings of joy. One offsets the other. And we are strengthened by their combination.
Our longing for only life’s joys is human–also folly. Joy would become insipid if it were our steady diet. Joyful times serve us well as respites from the trying situations that push our growth and development as women.
Laughter softens the cutting edges of the lessons we seek or are cornered by. It offers perspective when the outlook is bleak. And for those of us who are recovering, wallowing in the bleaker times used to be acceptable behavior. But no more. The reality is that each day will present both occasions for anguish and ones inviting easy laughter. Both are valuable. Neither should dominate.
Joy and sorrow are analogous to the ebb and flow of the ocean tide. They are natural rhythms. And we are mellowed by their presence when we accept them as necessary to our very existence.
Any pain today guarantees an equal amount of pleasure, if I willingly accept them both.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

Of course, this chapter refers to alcoholics, sick people, deranged men. What our friend, the vice president, had in mind was the habitual or whoopee drinker. As to them, his policy is undoubtedly sound, but he did not distinguish between such people and the alcoholic.

p. 149

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

When I passed out and fell into bed early, I woke up at four or five and had Irish coffee to start the day. I discovered beer was better than orange juice to ease my hangover. Afraid my colleagues or students would smell my breath at work, I was careful to keep my distance. When I got up late and rushed off to the lab, fortified only with coffee, my hands shook so badly it was impossible to weigh out the milligrams of compounds needed for an experiment. When I went out to lunch with another alcoholic, we might never make it back to work that day.

pp. 341-342

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

Having carefully surveyed this whole area of human relations, and having decided exactly what personality traits in us injured and disturbed others, we can now commence to ransack memory for the people to whom we have given offense. To put a finger on the nearby and most deeply damaged ones shouldn’t be hard to do. Then, as year by year we walk back through our lives as far as memory will reach, we shall be bound to construct a long list of people who have, to some extent or other, been affected. We should, of course, ponder and weigh each instance carefully. We shall want to hold ourselves to the course of admitting the things we have done, meanwhile forgiving the wrongs done us, real or fancied. We should avoid extreme judgments, both of ourselves and of others involved. We must not exaggerate our defects or theirs. A quiet, objective view will be our steadfast aim.

pp. 81- 82

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“Life’s under no obligation to give us what we expect.”
–Margaret Mitchell

“Faith is the only known cure for fear.”
–Lena K. Sadler

The more anger towards the past you carry in your heart, the less capable you are of loving
in the present.
–Barbara De Angelis

Love is the master key which opens the gates of happiness.
–Oliver Wendell Holmes

Sometimes we are so busy adding up our troubles that we forget to count our blessings.
–unknown

The right word spoken at the right time sometimes achieves miracles.
–unknown

Love is the only thing you get more of by giving it away.
–Tom Wilson

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

YESTERDAYS

“When I want to understand
what is happening today or try
to decide what will happen
tomorrow, I look back.”
— Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

The writing is on the wall! My writing is on my wall and it is to be found in my life.
My history of my life teaches me about my alcoholism. Alcoholism is a personal
disease; it affects others through self.

Sometimes I am tempted to forget the past. Why live in yesterday? Because the
events of my yesterdays affect my today. The future is forged from the recognition of
my past. My disease grew strong in my denial. My recovery began with the acceptance
of reality my reality.

Today does not exist in a vacuum and my tomorrows are determined by the decisions I
make today. I also know and believe that my recovering life demands a true
recognition of my yesterdays.

Thank You for the historical progressiveness of my recovery.

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He who guards his mouth preserves his life, but he who opens wide his lips shall have
destruction.
Proverbs 13:3

“This is the day the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it.”
Psalm 118:24

Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do:
Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal
to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13-14

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due
time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:6-7


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Daily Inspiration

Time is yours to use or lose. Lord, teach me to avoid all upsetting thoughts and create a heart that glories in my time as a peaceful gift from You.

Begin each day with the certainty that today is the best day of your life and watch what happens. Lord, I celebrate my life and give thanks for everything because for everything there is a reason.

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NA Just For Today

Finding Fulfillment

“We weren’t oriented toward fulfillment; we focused on the emptiness and worthlessness of it all.”
Basic Text p. 86

There were probably hundreds of times in our active addiction when we wished we could become someone else. We may have wished we could trade places with someone who owned a nice car or had a larger home, a better job, a more attractive mate – anything but what we had. So severe was our despair that we could hardly imagine anyone being in worse shape than ourselves.

In recovery, we may find we are experiencing a different sort of envy. We may continue to compare our insides with others’ outsides and feel as though we still don’t have enough of anything. We may think everyone, from the newest member to the oldest old-timer, sounds better at meetings than we do. We may think that everyone else must be working a better program because they have a better car, a larger home, more money, and so on.

The recovery process experienced through our Twelve Steps will take us from an attitude of envy and low self-esteem to a place of spiritual fulfillment and deep appreciation for what we do have. We find that we would never willingly trade places with another, for what we have discovered within ourselves is priceless.

Just for today: There is much to be grateful for in my life. I will cherish the spiritual fulfillment I have found in recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Without solitude, there can be no real people. –John Euder
We all need some time alone. It’s a good idea to set aside a few minutes every day to be alone with ourselves. This is a very special time that is all our own. It’s a time to relax and refresh ourselves.
This goes for every member of the family, and it’s important that we allow others some time for themselves. It shows them we respect, love, and care about them. Without that solitude, they cannot be truly themselves–and neither can we.
Nature teaches us that each thing, even the earth itself, needs a retreat. Bears hibernate; cats crawl off out of sight, even the plants disappear for the winter. It is this time that refreshes life for the Spring to come. If we want to have healthy, fulfilling relationships with each other, we all need time to ourselves every day. Without being “real people”–truly ourselves–how can we be full members of our family?
How can I better spend my time alone today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The most important function of art and science is to awaken the cosmic religious feeling and keep it alive. –Albert Einstein
There is no need to be concerned about a conflict between science and the spiritual life. People have turned to the spiritual in many ways since the beginning of humanity. Some are tribal and primitive, some very emotional, some focused on ideas and philosophy, some centered on tradition. Perhaps in the very center of our humanness is a spiritual compass. When we disown that orientation, do we lose some of our humanness? This program did not invent the spiritual outlook. It only tells us recovery will come through awakening of the spiritual within us.
We are on an exploration. We give ourselves over to it and only discover where our awakening will lead as it unfolds. The Steps tell us to engage with the God of our understanding, to develop a relationship of trust, total openness and humility, and to improve the contact. As the center of our humanness is restored, we come alive and our daily tasks take on new meaning.
May I be awakened again to that cosmic feeling we all inherit.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Continuous effort–not strength or intelligence–is the key to unlocking our potential. –Liane Cordes
Perseverance may well be our greatest asset. As we forge ahead on a project, it loses its power over us. Our confidence and abilities grow in concert with our progress on the project, preparing us to tackle the next one too.
We have something special, uniquely our own to offer in this life. And we also have the potential to offer it successfully. However, we don’t always realize our potential. Many of us stifled our development with fears of failure, low self-worth, assumed inadequacies. The past need plague us no longer.
Help is readily available for us to discover our capacities for success. Abilities stand ready to be tapped, goals and projects await our recognition. Any commitment we make to a task that draws our interest will be reinforced by God’s commitment to our efforts. We have a partner. Our efforts are always doubled when we make them–truly make them.
I will not back away from a project today. I will persevere and find completion. I’ll feel completed.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Wants and Needs`
So many of us have been brainwashed to think that we can’t have what we want in life. That is the belief of the martyr. It is born of deprivation and fear.
Identifying what we want and need, then writing it down, sets in motion a powerful chain of events. It indicates that we are taking responsibility for ourselves, giving God and the Universe permission to supply our wants and needs.
The belief that we deserve to have a change in character, a relationship, a new dimension to an existing relationship, a possession, a certain level of health, living, loving, or success, is a powerful force in bringing that desire to pass.
Often, when we realize that we want something, that feeling is God preparing us to receive it!
Listen. Trust. Empower the good in your life by paying attention to what you want and need. Write it down. Affirm it mentally. Pray about it. Then, let it go. Give it to God, and see what happens.
The results may be better than you think.
Today, I will pay attention to what I want and need. I will take time to write it down, and then I will let it go. I will begin to believe I deserve the best.

Today I know that I have done the best I can with my life. Today I know that I am at choice, and what I choose right now creates new memories. Today I choose to continue to do the very best. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Let Yourself Play

How long has it been since you played? How long has it been since you played at your life, had fun with it?

Our imaginations are so delightful when we’re young. Watch a child sit in the middle of the floor and build castles with blocks. Watch a child play– any object can be anything, and anything can be fun. Life can pound that out of us if we let it.

Breathe life back into your imagination. Come back to life. Let yourself see dragons in clouds and leprechauns in trees and velvet in a rose. Imagine what it would be like to grab a handful of cloud. Then touch the tree. And put the rose in your cheek.

Let your imagination come alive. Play the game of “What if?” What if anything could be anything. What if life could be fun?

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More Language Of Letting Go

Be prepared

Did you ever have a teacher in school who warned you at the beginning of the year that he would give tests without previous notice, so be prepared? We might not have liked it, but we appreciated being warned. We knew in that class that we needed to do our homework in a timely manner if we wanted a good grade. We kept our awareness up. We knew we couldn’t slide by.

When that test came, we were either prepared for it or at the very least, aware. We had been warned. We knew the test was coming.

When I decided to stop using alcohol and drugs and live a life of abstinence and recovery, I was tested many times. People put drugs and alcohol in my hand. Once, in the early months, soon after my decision, I failed the test and felt awful. Then I learned that important lesson, life would challenge my decision from time to time. I had to be prepared not only to make the choice to be sober, but to stand behind that decision each day.

When I decided to become a writer, things moved along well for the first few years, then I began hitting some walls. I hit a dry spell. No words came out. The results weren’t as I had planned. It was time to decide if I wanted to stand behind my decision or fold.

We will be given tests without notice, on almost every decision we make and boundary we set. Each time we say I can, we will be tested. And drawing from personal experience, the test is never one we would have chosen. It’s often ugly, inconvenient, and hits us at our weakest spot.

Don’t feel victimized or tortured when out test comes. Be prepared. Let it teach you more about yourself, what you want, and how badly you want it. Use it as resistance, the kind we can push against to become clearer about who we are and what we want. Sometimes we don’t really want what we thought we did. Other times we do. We aren’t in school anymore, at least not grade school. The test isn’t for the teacher’s benefit. It’s for our benefit– to teach us how much we’ve learned.

Don’t worry. I’ve been told we’ll never be given a test we can’t pass.

So get ready. You’ve been warned.

Be aware.

The test could come at any time.

God, help me let go of my resistance to the little tests life throws my way. Instead, help me use these tests as a chance to get to know myself and you better. Help me do my best.

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Progressing with Patience
Doing the Best You Can by Madisyn Taylor

Try not to expect perfection when starting out on a spiritual path or attaining inner peace.

It isn’t always easy to meet the expectations we hold ourselves to. We may find ourselves in a situation such as just finishing a relaxing yoga class or meditation retreat, a serene session of deep breathing, or listening to some calming, soul-stirring music, yet we have difficulty retaining our sense of peace. A long line at the store, slow-moving traffic, or another stressful situation can unnerve you and leave you wondering why the tranquility and spiritual equilibrium you cultivate is so quick to dissipate in the face of certain stressors. You may feel guilty and angry at yourself or even feel like a hypocrite for not being able to maintain control after practicing being centered. However, being patient with yourself will help you more in your soul’s journey than frustration at your perceived lack of progress. Doing the best you can in your quest for spiritual growth is vastly more important than striving for perfection.

Just because you are devoted to following a spiritual path, attaining inner peace, or living a specific ideology doesn’t mean you should expect to achieve perfection. When you approach your personal evolution mindfully, you can experience intense emotions such as anger without feeling that you have somehow failed. Simply by being aware of what you are experiencing and recognizing that your feelings are temporary, you have begun taking the necessary steps to regaining your internal balance. Accepting that difficult situations will arise from time to time and treating your reaction to them as if they are passing events rather than a part of who you are can help you move past them. Practicing this form of acceptance and paying attention to your reactions in order to learn from them will make it easier for you to return to your center more quickly in the future.

Since your experiences won’t be similar to others’ and your behavior will be shaped by those experiences, you may never stop reacting strongly to the challenging situations you encounter. Even if you are able to do nothing more than acknowledge what you are feeling and that there is little you can do to affect your current circumstances, in time you’ll alter your reaction to such circumstances. You can learn gradually to let negative thoughts come into your mind, recognize them, and then let them go. You may never reach a place of perfect peace, but you’ll find serenity in having done your best.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I’ve come to measure success in a whole new way. My success today isn’t limited by social or economic benchmarks. Success is mine today, no matter what the undertaking, when I tap the power of god within me and allow myself to be an open channel for the expression of His good. The spirit of success works through me as creative ideas and useful service — as efficient use of my time and energy, and as cooperative effort with others. Will I try to keep my mind centered in the realization that within me is the God -implanted power to succeed?

Today I Pray

May I develop a new concept of success, based on measurements of the good qualities which come from God’s treasure-filled bank of good. To draw from that bank, all I have to do is look within myself. May I know that God’s riches are the only kind that are fully insurable, because they are infinite. May I look in God’s bank for my security.

Today I Will Remember

Spiritual “success” is my security.

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One More Day

There is no hope unmingled with fear, and no fear unmingled with hope.
– Baruch Spinoza

Most of us are frightened each time we go through a major life change, for we fear what we do not know. We thought we had our lived planned. Because a crisis occurs unexpectedly, there is no way to prepare for a burglary, a broken leg, or a loss of a loved one. these events can throw us and our lives into a tailspin.

If the event is short-lived, like a bad case of the flu or a minor injury, we forget it quickly. If, however, the effects are long-lasting, we work to incorporate them into our daily living. Adapting in this way forces us to look for the positive parts of the day. We get into the habit of remembering good times and hope — even expect — better times to come.

I can see that positive action and thought is needed. I will find good people and events in this day.

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Food For Thought

Eating For Mother

As babies and children, we made Mother happy by eating what she gave us. Since our emotions were closely tied to hers, when she was happy, we were also happy. We may have developed the mistaken notion that the more we ate, the happier Mother would be and, therefore, the happier we would be.

This illusion may be persisting into our adult life. On some level, we may not yet realize that no amount of food we can eat will make Mother permanently happy, anymore than it will make us happy. We may have eaten many times in the past in order to please Mother, rather than because we really wanted food. Subconsciously, we may still think we could please her by consuming more food than we need.

Working the OA program often brings to light other things we are doing in order to please someone else. Since each individual is responsible for his or her own happiness, there is nothing we can do to ensure the happiness of another individual. Realizing this on a gut level is a powerful tool for maintaining abstinence.

May I realize the/utility of eating to please someone else.

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One Day At A Time

~ PATIENCE ~
Patience is the key to paradise.
Turkish proverb

I used to be the queen of the “quick fix.” Anything I wanted done had to be done today, if not yesterday. I’d even do a job myself because I couldn’t wait for someone else to do it in their time. I ended up chasing my tail most days, and trying to run the show myself, simply because I couldn’t wait. Even all the many diets that I went on had to get results fast or they weren’t worth their salt. Small wonder, being the compulsive person that I was, that when I wanted to eat, there was no such thing in my vocabulary as delayed gratification. When I wanted it, I had to have it right then.

Imagine my horror at coming into the program and seeing that people who had been in the fellowship for years were still there. Surely they should have gotten it right by now and graduated from this program. But I soon learned that this is not something we graduate from. Recovery and abstinence happen in God’s time, not mine. I’ve had to learn that this a journey. Progress can sometimes be painfully slow, but the rewards for those who wait for the miracle is a gift I wouldn’t want to be without. Not only am I offered freedom from compulsive eating, but also sanity and serenity to live my life the way I was intended to do.

One Day at a Time . . .
Even when progress seems slow, I will keep coming back and working the program to the best of my ability, knowing that recovery will come to me if I wait.
~ Sharon S. ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We were having trouble with personal relationships, we couldn’t control our emotional natures, we were a prey to misery and depression, we couldn’t make a living, we had a feeling of uselessness, we were full of fear, we were unhappy, we couldn’t seem to be of real help to other people – was not a basic solution of these bedevilments more important than whether we should see newsreels of lunar flight? Of course it was. – Pg. 52 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

When intense cravings for our drug of choice overwhelm us, we immediately talk to another person in recovery, no matter the time. Our program teaches us to rely on each other and they will welcome the contact!

Give me the strength to contact another clean and sober person BEFORE I think of satisfying that craving.

The Creative Power of My Thoughts

Today, I recognize that I tend to produce in my life what I feel is true for myself. Thoughts have a creative power of their own. If I look closely, I can see my thoughts come to life. I create the possibility of what I would like by first experiencing it in my mind. I will visualize what I would like to have in my life in my mind’s eye. I will accept what I see in my inner eye as being there for me, and I will fully participate in my vision as if it were mine. I will be specific about what I see, smell, feel, and I will accept my inner vision as fully as possible. I will enjoy my vision, then let it go and move on in my day, releasing it with no thought of controlling it further. I will let it happen, if it is right for me, in God’s time.

All good things are possible for me.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

We may have empathy for your situation but we will not pity you. We know that pitying you leads to you pitying yourself which leads to mind-affecting chemicals. Rather than pity you, if you need an attitude adjustment, it’s very likely a fellow group member will let you know.

Attitudes are contagious. Is mine worth catching?

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Don’t ‘people please’, ‘Higher Power Please.’

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that I have done the best I can with my life. Today I know that I am at choice, and what I choose right now creates new memories. Today I choose to continue to do the very best.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

They take good scotch, put juice, soda, bitters and God knows what in it, shake it up, stick an umbrella in it – That’s alcohol abuse. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 20

A Possibility
The idea that religion and spirituality were not one and the same was a new notion.
My sponsor asked that I merely remain open-minded to the possibility that there was a Power greater than myself,
one of my own understanding. . .
Reluctantly, I opened my mind to the fact that maybe, just maybe, there was something to this spiritual lifestyle.
Slowly but surely, I realized there was indeed a Power greater than myself.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 287

Thought to Ponder . . .
The Power within me is far greater than any fear before me.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H O P E = Heart Open; Please Enter

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Honesty
“I know the biggest word for me in AA is ‘honesty.’
I don’t believe this program would work for me
if I didn’t get honest with myself about everything.
Honesty is the easiest word for me to understand
because it is the exact opposite of what I’ve been doing
all my life.
Therefore, it will be the hardest to work on.
But I will never be totally honest — that would make me perfect,
and none of us can claim to be perfect.
Only God is.
If I work on it every day, it will be easier
to be honest with myself.
Then getting and staying honest with other people
will come automatically.
I know I will be grateful for a chance to make amends
to everybody I have hurt in the past.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 482

Thought to Consider . . .
Honesty is the absence of the intent to deceive.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
H O P E = Honest, Open, Positive, Environment

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Structure of Service
From: Concept V:
Throughout our world service structure, a traditional Right of Appeal ought to prevail, thus assuring us that minority opinion will be heard and that petitions for the redress of personal grievances will be carefully considered.”
We believe that the spirit of democracy in our Fellowship and in our world service structure will always survive, despite the counter forces which will no doubt continue to beat upon us. Fortunately we are not obliged to maintain a government that enforces conformity by inflicting punishments. We need to maintain only a structure of service that holds aloft our Traditions, that forms and executes our policies thereunder, and so steadily carries our message to those who suffer.
Hence we believe that we shall never be subjected to the tyranny of either the majority or the minority, provided we carefully define the relations between them and forthwith tread the path of world service in the spirit of our Twelve Steps, our Twelve Traditions, and our Conference Charter – in which I trust that we shall one day inscribe these traditional Rights of Appeal and Petition.
1962, AAWS, Twelve Concepts of World Service, pages 24-25

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“I’d like to develop Step Eleven further — for the benefit of the complete doubter, the unlucky one who can’t believe it has any real merit at all …. As he goes along with his process of prayer, he begins to add up the results. If he persists, he will almost surely find more serenity, more tolerance, less fear, and less anger. He will acquire a quiet courage, the kind that doesn’t strain him. He can look at so-called failure and success for what they really are. Problems and calamity will begin to mean instruction, instead of destruction. He will feel freer and saner … His sense of purpose and of direction will increase. His tensions and anxieties will commence to fade. His physical health is likely to improve. Wonderful and unaccountable things will start to happen. Twisted relations in his family and on the outside will unaccountably improve.
“Even if few of these things happen, he will still find himself in possession of great gifts. When he has to deal with hard circumstances he can face them and accept them. He can now accept himself and the world around him.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1958
“Take Step Eleven”
The Language of the Heart

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“Once more: The alcoholic at certain times has no effective mental
defense against the first drink. Except in a few rare cases, neither
he nor any other human being can provide such a defense. His defense
must come from a Higher Power.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 43~

“Each day, somewhere in the world, recovery begins when one alcoholic talks with another alcoholic, sharing experience, strength, and hope.”
Alcoholics Anonymous Foreword to the Third Edition

We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.60

He asks only that we try as best we know how to make progress in the building of character.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.65

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Some of us still ask, ‘Just what is this Third Legacy business anyhow? And just how much territory does ‘service’ take in?’
Let’s begin with my own sponsor, Ebby. When Ebby heard how serious my drinking was, he resolved to visit me. He was in New York; I was in Brooklyn. His resolve was not enough; he had to take action and he had to spend money.
He called me on the phone and then got into the subway; total cost, ten cents. At the level of the telephone booth and subway turnstile, spirituality and money began to mix. One without the other would have amounted to nothing at all.
Right then and there, Ebby established the principle that A.A. in action calls for the sacrifice of much time and a little money.

Prayer for the Day: Guide Me – Thank You, Higher Power, for this beautiful day, for strength, for health. Help me to live this day for You. Place in my path some way to serve You. Help me to know that no other walks in My shoes, that there is something that only I can do today. Guide my thoughts and deeds that I may feel Your presence today and in all the tomorrow.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 19th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 19th

Daily Reflections

“I WAS SLIPPING FAST”

We A.A.’s are active folk, enjoying the satisfactions
of dealing with the realities of life, . . . . So it
isn’t surprising that we often tend to slight serious
meditation and prayer as something not really necessary.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 96

I had been slipping away from the program for some time,
but it took a death threat from a terminal disease to
bring me back, and particularly to the practice of the
Eleventh Step of our blessed Fellowship. Although I had
fifteen years of sobriety and was still very active in
the program, I knew that the quality of my sobriety had
slipped badly. Eighteen months later, a checkup revealed
a malignant tumor and a prognosis of certain death
within six months. Despair settled in when I enrolled in
a rehab program, after which I suffered two small strokes
which revealed two large brain tumors. As I kept hitting
new bottoms I had to ask myself why this was happening to
me. God allowed me to recognize my dishonesty and to
become teachable again. Miracles began to happen. But
primarily I relearned the whole meaning of the Eleventh
Step. My physical condition has improved dramatically, but
my illness is minor compared to what I almost lost
completely.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In A.A. we do not speak much of sex. And yet putting sex
in its proper place in our lives is one of the rewards that
has come to us as a result of our new way of living. The big
book says that many of us needed an overhauling there. It
also says that we subjected each sex relation to this test
— was it selfish or not? “We remembered always that our sex
powers were God-given and therefore good, neither to be used
lightly or selfishly, nor to be despised or loathed.” We can
ask God to mold our ideals and to help us to live up to them.
We can act accordingly. Have I got my sex life under proper
control?

Meditation For The Day

“I will lift up my eyes unto the heights whence cometh my
help.” Try to raise your thoughts from the depths of the
sordid and mean and impure things of the earth to the heights
of goodness and decency and beauty. Train your insight by
trying to take the higher view. Train it more and more until
distant heights become more familiar. The heights of the Lord,
whence cometh your help, will become nearer and dearer and
the false values of the earth will seem farther away.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not keep my eyes forever downcast.
I pray that I may set my sights on higher things.


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As Bill Sees It

Results of Prayer, p. 321

As the doubter tries the process of prayer, he should begin to add up
the results. If he persists, he will most surely find more serenity, more
tolerance, less fear, and less anger. He will acquire a quiet courage,
the kind that isn’t tension-ridden. He can look at “failure” and
“success” for what these really are. Problems and calamity will begin
to mean his instruction, instead of his destruction. He will feel freer
and saner.

The idea that he may have been hypnotizing himself by autosuggestion
will become laughable. His sense of purpose and of direction will
increase. His anxieties will commence to fade. His physical health will
be likely to improve. Wonderful and unaccountable things will start to
happen. Twisted relations in his family and on the outside will improve
surprisingly.

Grapevine, June 1958

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Walk In Dry Places

Is there bondage in attending meetings?
Sharing
A few critics have noted scornfully that AA members can be as enslaved by the need for meetings as we were by the bottle.  are we compulsively addicted to meetings.
When we hear such remarks, we must remember that our survival insobriety is always the main issue.  We might be going to more meetings that seems necessary , but we are the judges of our own needs.
In addition, meeting attendance is a constructive activity, while drinking was destructive... at least for us. If we’re gong to overdo something, at least it’s an activity that helps us.
We should never consider meeting attendance a form of bondage.  There are many activities in life that are required for our peace and freedom.  Meeting attendance is one of these things.  We can be grateful for the opportunities meetings provide for sharing our personal experiences.  No criticism should be allowed to intrude on this.
I’ll not let outside criticism interfere with any AA activity that is benefiting me and maintaining my sobriety.

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Keep It Simple

What we don’t live, we cannot teach others.—Day By Day
Remember – we don’t carry the message to others until we get to Step
Twelve. We must first learn to live in a sober way. Sobriety takes time.
We have to stop using alcohol and other drugs, but this is only the start.
Just as it takes time to build a home, it takes time to build a new way of
life. We talk with friends and sponsors about the Steps. We try using them in out lives. Then we talk about how the Steps work for us. We talk about where we get stuck with the Steps.
All this takes time. We aren’t in a hurry. We have a lifetime ahead of us.
Remember-the better we live our program, the better we help others.
Prayer for the day:  Higher Power, You’ll let me know when I’m to carry the message. Until then, be with me as I build a new way of life, a spiritual way of life.
Action for the day:  I’ll take time to think over where I’m with my program. I’ll talk about it with a friend.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Do not compare yourself with others, for you are a unique and wonderful creation. Make your own beautiful footprints in the snow.  –Barbara Kimball
Comparisons we make of ourselves to other women do destruction far greater than our conscious minds are aware of. Positioning ourselves or her on the “beloved pedestal” prevents the equality of sisterhood that offers each woman the freedom to be solely herself.
Comparisons in which we are the losers darken the moment, cut us off from the actual rhythms of that moment. The consequences can be grave. Within any moment might be the opportunity we’ve awaited, the opportunity to achieve a particular dream. We must not miss our opportunities.
Each life is symbolized by a particular set of footprints in the snow. How wonderful and how freeing to know that we each offer something uniquely our own. We need never compete to be noticed. Each of us is guaranteed recognition for what we contribute, because it is offered by us alone.
Envy eats at us; it interferes with all of our interactions. It possesses all of our thoughts, caging us, denying us the freedom to achieve that can be ours.
I will look with love on my sisters. I will free them and myself to be all we are capable of becoming.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

Perhaps this is a typical attitude. We, who have collectively seen a great deal of business life, at least from the alcoholic angle, had to smile at this gentleman’s sincere opinion. He might be shocked if he knew how much alcoholism is costing his organization a year. That company may harbor many actual or potential alcoholics. We believe that managers of large enterprises often have little idea how prevalent this problem is. Even if you feel your organization has no alcoholic problem, it may pay to take another look down the line. You may make some interesting discoveries.

p. 149

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I needed a drink to go anyplace–to the theater, a party, a date, and later, to work. I would leave my apartment, lock the door, and start down the stairs, and then turn around and go back in for another drink to get me where I planned to go. I needed a drink to do anything–to write, to cook, to clean the house, to paint the walls, to take a bath.

p. 341

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

Such gross misbehavior is not by any means a full catalogue of the harms we do. Let us think of some of the subtler ones which can sometimes be quite as damaging. Suppose that in our family lives we happen to be miserly, irresponsible, callous, or cold. Suppose that we are irritable, critical, impatient, and humorless. Suppose we lavish attention upon one member of the family and neglect the others. What happens when we try to dominate the whole family, either by a rule of iron or by a constant outpouring of minute directions for just how their lives should be lived from hour to hour? What happens when we wallow in depression, self-pity oozing from every pore, and inflict that upon those about us? Such a roster of harms done others–the kind that make daily living with us as practicing alcoholics difficult and often unbearable could be extended almost indefinitely. When we take such personality traits as these into shop, office, and the society of our fellows, they can do damage almost as extensive as that we have caused at home.

p. 81

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Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.
–Helen Keller

I believe in God — this is a fine, praiseworthy thing to say, but to acknowledge God
wherever and however he manifest Himself, that in truth is heavenly bliss on earth.
–Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Maximize your productive time by focusing on positive outcomes.
–unknown

Perseverance can tip the scales from failure to success.
–unknown

If you always do what you’ve always done, you will always be where you’ve always been.
–unknown

H O W = Honest, Open, Willing

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

FORGIVING

“He that cannot forgive others
breaks the bridge over which he
must pass himself. For every
man has need to be forgiven.”
— Thomas Fuller

My failings as an alcoholic help me to live with others today. The fact that I made and
make mistakes helps me to have creative relationships today. Because I know what
it is to fail, I can understand the failings of others. My weaknesses are a bridge
to understanding my fellow man.

By contrast when I was drinking, I thought I was perfect, always right and this led to
judgments, arguments and a self-imposed alienation.

Alcohol fed my arrogance and pride; sobriety helps develop humility and
understanding.

God, I understand that even my failings can be made to work for me in sobriety.

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“The measure you give will be the measure you get back.”
Luke 6:38

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you
will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
Matthew 7:1-2

In my anguish I cried to the LORD, and he answered by setting me free.
Psalm 118:5

Let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose
heart.”
Galatians 6:9

“But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with
wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not grow faint.”
Isaiah 40:31


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Daily Inspiration

Listen to hear and learn. Lord, help me to practice listening without judgment and interruption so that I fully benefit and truly comprehend the nature of what is being shared with me.

Learn to be peaceful in all situations and trust that through all stages of our lives, God has a plan. Lord, may I have the wisdom to be able to turn my stumbling blocks into building blocks.

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NA Just For Today

The Language Of Empathy

“… the addict would find from the start as much identification as each needed to convince himself that he could stay clean, by the example of others who had recovered for many years.”
Basic Text p. 85

Many of us attended our first meeting and, not being entirely sure that NA was for us, found much to criticize. Either we felt as though no one had suffered like we had or that we hadn’t suffered enough. But as we listened we started to hear something new, a wordless language with its roots in recognition, belief, and faith: the language of empathy. Desiring to belong, we kept listening.

We find all the identification we need as we learn to understand and speak the language of empathy. To understand this special language, we listen with our hearts. The language of empathy uses few words; it feels more than it speaks. It doesn’t preach or lecture – it listens. It can reach out and touch the spirit of another addict without a single spoken word.

Fluency in the language of empathy comes to us through practice. The more we use it with other addicts and our Higher Power, the more we understand this language. It keeps us coming back.

Just for today: I will listen with my heart. With each passing day, I will become more fluent in the language of empathy.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
We all fear what we don’t know–it’s natural. –Leo Buscaglia
If we put a blindfold over our eyes and begin to walk around an open field, we would feel unsure with each step. We might be afraid of falling, afraid of walking over some unseen edge and hurting ourselves.
When any of us face something and we don’t know what the outcome will be, we often feel blindfolded. We fear we may get hurt. We fear we can’t do it. We have a hard time trusting ourselves. A blind person often finds help or guidance from others, or will gain confidence by walking on–slowly at first, finding trust and sureness with each step.
These same things help us when we are afraid. It is also helpful to remember there is no right or wrong way to explore what faces us–only our own way.
What new trust can I place in myself today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Archie Bunker: What’s wrong with revenge? That’s a perfect way to get even. –Norman Lear
When we are locked within negative, hostile thinking patterns, we go around in mental circles. What seems perfectly rational to us at the time looks misguided and blind when we look back. Carrying a grudge or a desire to get even with someone is a cancer inside us. It belittles us and holds back our spirit.
We break through our mental circles by revealing our anger to others. We talk with other recovering men and let them know the details of our resentments. We listen to their experiences and apply them in our program. As long as we keep our thoughts and feelings to ourselves, we only recycle the same thinking system. When we take the risk and talk to friends, we build bridges that bring in new ideas.
I will not harbor my resentments within myself. I will talk with a trusted friend so I can learn to let them go.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Experience is a good teacher, but she sends in terrific bills. –Minna Antrim
It is not by chance but by design that the sorrows we experience throughout our lives are countered by equal servings of joy. One offsets the other. And we are strengthened by their combination.
Our longing for only life’s joys is human–also folly. Joy would become insipid if it were our steady diet. Joyful times serve us well as respites from the trying situations that push our growth and development as women.
Laughter softens the cutting edges of the lessons we seek or are cornered by. It offers perspective when the outlook is bleak. And for those of us who are recovering, wallowing in the bleaker times used to be acceptable behavior. But no more. The reality is that each day will present both occasions for anguish and ones inviting easy laughter. Both are valuable. Neither should dominate.
Joy and sorrow are analogous to the ebb and flow of the ocean tide. They are natural rhythms. And we are mellowed by their presence when we accept them as necessary to our very existence.
Any pain today guarantees an equal amount of pleasure, if I willingly accept them both.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Accepting Our Feelings
Why do we struggle so with our feelings? Why do we work so hard to deny our emotions, especially concerning other people? They are only feelings!
In the course of a day, we may deny we feel frustrated in reaction to someone who is selling us a service.
We may deny that we feel frustrated, angry, or hurt in reaction to a friend.
We may deny feelings of fear, or anger, toward our children.
We may deny a whole range of feelings toward our spouse or the person with whom we’re in a love relationship.
We may deny feelings provoked by people we work for, or by people who work for us.
Sometimes the feelings are a direct reaction to others. Sometimes people trigger something deeper – an old sadness or frustration.
Regardless of the source of our feelings, they are still our feelings. We own them. And acceptance is often all that is necessary to make them go away.
We don’t have to let our feelings control our behavior. We don’t have to act on each feeling that passes through us. We do not need to indulge in inappropriate behavior.
It does help to talk about our feelings with someone we trust. Sometimes we need to bring our feelings to the person who is triggering them. That can breed intimacy and closeness. But the most important person we need to tell is ourselves. If we allow our feelings to pass through us, accept them, and release them, we shall know what to do next.
Today, I will remember that feelings are an important part of my life. I will be open to my feelings in family life, in friendships, in love, and at work. I will feel my feelings without judging myself.

I am so full of love and joy today. I see it everywhere I look, and feel it with every breath that I take. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Awaken to the Storyteller Within

Each of us has a story to tell, a story to share with the world.

Artists and writers are in the storytelling business. Others have different ways of telling and sharing their stories. The tackle shop owner sells bait, hooks, and sinkers and tells people where to fish and about the big one that got away. The master carpenter tells his story by carving and hanging a wooden door so well crafted that it swings shut gently on its own. The quilter tells her story by commemorating important moments from her life in quilts that are colorful works of art.

Each of us has a story to tell and our own way of sharing it with the world. It comes out through our words, through our work, and through the simple actions of our daily life. Listen to the stories of the people around you. Listen to your soul. Learn to value without judging and listen with an open heart to the beauty of each story and the importance of the storyteller. Learn to value and appreciate the story you are living now.

Awaken to the storyteller within and share your story with the world. Tell it with joy and flair. Commit to telling it with love and passion. Tell it through living your life fully, doing your work well, and creating the best life you can. Be who you are and love being that.

Live your life from your heart. Share from your heart. And your story will touch and heal people’s souls.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Respect the powers that be

I watched the man out the window as he dragged his kayak out to sea. Just as he’d get ready to launch, a huge frothy wave would come barreling over the top of him. The kayak would fly off in one direction. Then I’d see a paddle emerge form the sea. He’d walk back to his boat, try again, only to have himself and the boat tossed around by the wave. Finally, the last wave took the boat and threw it all the way to shore. When the man, in his thirties, stood up, he looked up at the heavens and stretched out his arms.

It was the surrender position, that what can I do but resign myself to the powers that be stance that some of us know so well.

Yes, we’re learning to believe in ourselves. We’re learning to say I can. But an important part of self-confidence and self-esteem is learning humilty
and respect for the powers that be. Set your goals. Pursue your dreams. Say what you want and learn to say when. Hold your head up high, but learn to sublimate yourself,too.

Sometimes you’ve just got to throw your hands up in the air and surrender to the powers that be.

God, help me let go of arrogance and receive the blessings that humility brings.

*****

The Dance of Intimacy
Coming Back to Center in a Relationship by Madisyn Taylor

In a long-term relationship it is often necessary to get back to basics and come back to center with each other.

Anyone in a long-term relationship knows that the dance of intimacy involves coming together and moving apart. Early in a relationship, intense periods of closeness are important in order to establish the ground of a new union. Just as a sapling needs a lot more attention than a full-grown tree, budding relationships demand time and attention if they are to fully take root. Once they become more established, the individuals in the union begin to turn their attention outward again, to the other parts of their lives that matter, such as work, family, and friendships. This is natural and healthy. Yet, if a long-term relationship is to last, turning towards one another recurrently, with the same curiosity, attention, and nurturance of earlier times, is essential.

In a busy and demanding world full of obligations and opportunities, we sometimes lose track of our primary relationships, thinking they will tend to themselves. We may have the best intentions when we think about how nice it would be to surprise our partner with a gift or establish a weekly date night. Yet somehow, life gets in the way. We may think that our love is strong enough to survive without attention. Yet even mature trees need water and care if they are to thrive.

One of the best ways to nourish a relationship is through communication. If you feel that a distance has grown between you and your partner, you may be able to bridge the gap by sharing how you feel. Do your best to avoid blame and regret. Focus instead on the positive, which is the fact that you want to grow closer together. Sometimes, just acknowledging that there is distance between you has the effect of bringing the relationship into balance. In other cases, more intense effort and attention may be required. You may want to set aside time to talk and come up with solutions together. Remember to have compassion for each other. You’re in the same boat together and trying to maintain the right balance of space and togetherness to keep your relationship healthy and thriving. Express faith and confidence in each other, and enjoy the slow dance of intimacy that can resume between the two of you. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I no longer argue with people who believe that satisfaction of our natural desires is the primary purpose of life. It’s not our business in The Program to knock material achievement. When we stop and think about it, in fact, no group of people ever made a worse mess of trying to live by that “la dolce vita” formula than we did. We always insisted on more than our share — in all areas. And even when we seemed to be succeeding, we fueled our addictions so that we could dream of still greater successes. Am I learning that material satisfactions are simply by-products and not the chief aim of life? Am I gaining the perspective to see that character-building and spiritual values must come first?

Today I Pray

May I recognize that I never did handle excesses very well, based on my past experience. I have been apt to “want more” of whatever it is I have — love, money, property, things, chemicals, foods, winnings. May The Program teach me that I must concentrate on my spiritual, rather than my material bounty.

Today I Will Remember

It’s okay to be spiritually greedy.

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One More Day

There is no formula for easy living. Anyone who says he has one is either joking or lying.
–Harold Russel

We all have, in our mind’s eye, a picture of what life would be like if we were healthy and wealthy and could do whatever we wanted with our days. If given the choice between health and sickness, wealth and poverty,, most people would choose the former of both. Yet, there are no assurances of easy living no matter how healthy or wealthy we are.

When our wish to “have it easy” becomes a preoccupation — our whole system can become stressed. We need to recognize that this wish for “having it easy” creates stress that we could avoid. Ironically, to escape this stress, we need to return to the reality of our own beautiful lives.

I have no guarantee for easy living, but I am guaranteed the chance to change and grow as often as I want to.

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Food For Thought

Appetite Is Not Hunger

Confusing a “hearty” appetite with genuine, physical hunger is a mistake made consistently by compulsive overeaters. Our idea of how much food our body needs is usually a great exaggeration of the actual requirement. Because of an overdeveloped appetite, we are unfamiliar with the feeling of true hunger.

Since we cannot rely on subjective feelings to tell us how much we need to eat, we require an objective, definite plan. When we reach our normal weight, we continue to eat according to a measured food plan, rather than according to appetite. We will never be able to satisfy the demands of our appetite without destroying ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

When we think we require more food than is called for by our plan, we need to examine our thinking. Usually we find that we are being deluded by the demands of our overdeveloped appetite. We would like to eat more, but in fact, our body does not need more.

I pray for the wisdom to distinguish between appetite and hunger.

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One Day At A Time

THE PROMISES
“We will intuitively know how to handle situations
which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that
God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.”
The Big Book

When I first came into program and heard these words I couldn’t grasp their meaning. Life baffled me. I had no idea who I was or what I was doing. I was completely in the grip of this disease. I felt like I was the disease. Why would God do anything for me?

Initially I thought these people were crazy and even worse off than I was. My opinion soon changed when I noticed wonderful differences between them and myself. They seemed calmer, verbalized their feelings more clearly, appeared to have their act together, and seemed to enjoy life. I was hooked! I wanted what they had. I finally wanted to want to live. I was drawn to those who demonstrated traits I wanted to have. I talked to them and listened when they shared. I asked them how to work the program and how to find my Higher Power. I started working the Steps. I began my search for a God I could relate to. I found online recovery loops and people who shared how they worked their program.

Then I had a crisis develop which almost overwhelmed me. Yet as I read the Big Book, I realized that the promises God had given to the other program people were given to me too. I had been so busy working this program that I needed to pause and examine all I had received. Yes, it does work when you work it. I proved it to myself by allowing God to prove it to me.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will remember that the promises really are for everyone and that they come into my life as I work my program to the best of my ability.
~ Judith A.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The almost certain consequences that follow taking even a glass of beer do not crowd into the mind to deter us. If these thoughts occur, they are hazy and readily supplanted with the old threadbare idea that this time we shall handle ourselves like other people. There is a complete failure of the kind of defense that keeps one from putting his hand on a hot stove. – Pg. 24 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The most important thing to know about Step Three, turning our will over to a Higher Power, is that all we can do is DECIDE to do it. There is no ‘will’ we can wrap and send. Once we make the decision to do this, our Higher Power will work for us through the rest of the Steps.

I decide to align my will with that of the Source of my Spirit.

Reinvestment

I have been through a journey of forgiveness. I’ve faced my anger and hurt and brought order and clarity to my inner world. I’ve accepted the things I cannot change and changed the things that I could. Because I’ve shown the courage to face my inner demons and look them in the eye, I feel stronger and more competent. Forgiveness of my self and others has offered me a way out of pain and confusion, and now I find I have a renewed interest in life. I see things differently. I feel liberated from something that was tying up me energy. And I recognize and accept my own humanity, and the humanity of others. I am ready and willing to reinvest in the ideal of love. I want to find worthy projects and passions, and put my energy toward them. I have something to give to the world and the world has something to give to me. I am right where I am supposed to be and I’ve met the challenges of my life. I am ready to live.

I invest my energy with care and gusto
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

It is better to have some-one sober and hating you because you told them the truth, rather than have someone drunk and liking you because you told them a lie.

I don’t heap on the bull**** when the truth is like Miracle Grow

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Along the road well traveled, there are many pity potholes.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am so full of love and joy today. I see it everywhere I look, and feel it with every breath that I take.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

If you went to a critical AIDS ward and said ‘I’ve got a deal for you; would you come with me to some meetings, meet and chat with some people, take some actions that seem strange to you – would you do that if I could arrest your AIDS? They’d sign over their homes to you. But, go to the alcoholism ward where they’re dying from this disease, and they won’t go to an AA meeting two doors down the hall. – Clancy I.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 19

Listening
For weeks I sat in the back of the rooms, silent when others shared their experience, strength and hope.
I listened to their stories and found so many areas where we overlapped — not all of the deeds,
but the feelings of remorse and hopelessness. I learned that alcoholism isn’t a sin, it’s a disease.
That lifted the guilt I felt.
– Alcoholics Anonymous,p. 344

Thought to Ponder . . .
I listen for direction now.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H E A R T = Healing, Enjoying, And Recovering Together.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Commitment
“No matter how much one wishes to try,
how can he turn his own will and his own life
over to the care of whatever God he thinks there is?
A beginning, even the smallest, is all that is needed.
Once we have placed the key of willingness in the lock,
and have the door ever so slightly open,
we find that we can always open it some more.”
c. 1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 122

Thought to Consider . . .
If you always do what you’ve always done,
you will always be where you’ve always been.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
H O W = Honest, Open, Willing

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Ingredient
From: “Me An Alcoholic?”
Here I found an ingredient that had been lacking in any other effort I had made to save myself. Here was – power! Here was power to live to the end of any given day, power to have the courage to face the next day, power to have friends, power to help people, power to be sane, power to stay sober. That was seven years ago – and many AA meetings ago – and I haven’t had a drink during those seven years. Moreover, I am deeply convinced that so long as I continue to strive, in my bumbling way, toward the principles I first encountered in the earlier chapters of this book, this remarkable power will continue to flow through me. What is this power? With my AA friends, all I can say is that it’s a Power greater than myself. If pressed, all I can do is follow the psalmist who said it long before me: “Be still, and know that I am God.”
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, pages 386-387

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“The best university for me — the best school, the best teaching — was in analyzing mistakes that I’d made and problems I created because of these mistakes. Not my successes.”
Warsaw, Poland, October 1996
“A Smiling Man, A Happy Man,”
AA Around the World

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“God will constantly disclose more to you and to us. Ask Him in your
morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still
sick. The answers will come, if your own house is in order. But
obviously you cannot transmit something you haven’t got. See to it
that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come
to pass for you and countless others. This is the Great Fact for us.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 164~

We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery. The delusion that we are like other people, or presently may be, has to be smashed.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous page 30

Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas and the result was nil until we let go absolutely.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.58

And so it is: the beginning of the end of his old life, and the beginning of his emergence into a new one.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.26

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

More than most people, I think, alcoholics want to know who they are, what this life is about,, whether they have a divine origin and an appointed destiny, and whether there is a system of cosmic justice and love.
It is the experience of many of us in the early stages of drinking to feel that we have had glimpses of the Absolute and a heightened feeling of identification with the cosmos. While these glimpses and feelings doubtless have a validity, they are deformed and finally swept away in the chemical, spiritual, and emotional damage wrought by the alcohol itself.
In A.A., and in many religious approaches, alcoholics find a great deal more of what they merely glimpsed and felt while trying to grope their way toward God in alcohol.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 18th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 18th

Daily Reflections

A SAFETY NET

Occasionally. . . We are seized with a rebellion so sickening that we
simply won’t pray. When these things happen we should not think too
ill of ourselves. We should simply resume prayer as soon as we can,
doing what we know to be good for us.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 105

Sometimes I scream, stomp my feet, and turn my back on my Higher
Power. Then my disease tells me that I am a failure, and that if I stay
angry I’ll surely get drunk. In those moments of self-will it’s as if I’ve
slipped over a cliff and am hanging by one hand. The above passage
is my safety net, in that it urges me to try some new behavior, such as
being kind and patient with myself. It assures me that my Higher
Power will wait until I am willing once again to risk letting go, to land
in the net, and to pray.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

I have got over my procrastination. I was always putting
things off till tomorrow and as a result that never got
done. “There is always another day” was my motto instead
of “Do it now.” Under the influence of alcohol, I had
grandiose plans. When I was sober I was too busy getting
over my drunk to start anything. “Some day I’ll do that”
— but I never did it. In A.A. I have learned it’s better
to make a mistake once in a while than to never do
anything at all. We learn by trial and error. But we must
act now and not put it off until tomorrow. Have I learned
to do it now?

Meditation For The Day

“Do not hide your light under a bushel. Arise and shine,
for the light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen
in thee.” The glory of the Lord shines in the beauty of a
man’s character. It is risen in you, even though you can
realize it only in part. “Now you see as in a glass darkly,
but later you will see face to face.” The glory of the Lord
is too dazzling for mortals to see fully on earth. But some
of this glory is risen in you when you try to reflect that
light in your life.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may try to be a reflection of the Divine Light.
I pray that some of its rays may shine in my life.


***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

Running The Whole Show, p. 320

Most people try to live by self-propulsion. Each person is like an actor
who wants to run the whole show and is forever trying to arrange the
lights, the scenery, and the rest of the players in his own way. If his
arrangements would only stay put, if only people would do as he
wished, the show would be great.

What usually happens? The show doesn’t come off very well.
Admitting he may be somewhat at fault, he is sure that other people
are more to blame. He becomes angry, indignant, self-pitying.

Is he not really a self-seeker even when trying to be useful? Is he not
a victim of the delusion that he can wrest satisfaction and happiness
out of this world if he only manages well?

Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 60-61

***********************************************************

Walk In Dry Places

The old friends who dropped us.
Personal relations.
As our drinking progressed, most of us lost old friends. Sometimes it was our behavior that drove them away; at other times, it was because they didn’t want to associate with “losers.”
In sobriety, some of our old friendships have been restored. These are real friendships based on trust and true affection.
But sobriety can also give us a deeper and finer understanding of friendships. We may acquire a new set of values on this subject. We may find that some of those whom we considered friends were only fair-weather drinking acquaintances.
Drinking acquaintances will probably ease away from us if we really means business in staying sober. This need not bother us if we’re thinking rightly.
The great news in all of this is that in the fellowship, we’ll be making some of the best friends we can ever have. We’ll also learn how to be great friends with ourselves.
In my thinking about friendship today, I’ll seek people I trust and like, not people I can use.

***********************************************************

Keep It Simple

Life is short: live it up. Nikita
We won’t stay sober long unless it’s more fun than using chemicals.
The truth is, using chemicals wasn’t fun anymore. It was work. We just
told ourselves it was still fun.
So live it up! Try new things. Meet new friends. Try new foods. Taking
risks and having adventures are a basic human need. So go for it.
Sobriety is fun. Living a spiritual life is fun. Get out there and live!
Prayer for the day:  Higher Power ,teach me to play. Teach me to have fun. Teach me to live!
Action for the day:  Today is for fun. I’ll try something new. I’ll see how many people
I can get to smile. And I’ll celebrate the fact that I’m sober.

***********************************************************

Each Day a New Beginning

Do not compare yourself with others, for you are a unique and wonderful creation. Make your own beautiful footprints in the snow.  –Barbara Kimball
Comparisons we make of ourselves to other women do destruction far greater than our conscious minds are aware of. Positioning ourselves or her on the “beloved pedestal” prevents the equality of sisterhood that offers each woman the freedom to be solely herself.
Comparisons in which we are the losers darken the moment, cut us off from the actual rhythms of that moment. The consequences can be grave. Within any moment might be the opportunity we’ve awaited, the opportunity to achieve a particular dream. We must not miss our opportunities.
Each life is symbolized by a particular set of footprints in the snow. How wonderful and how freeing to know that we each offer something uniquely our own. We need never compete to be noticed. Each of us is guaranteed recognition for what we contribute, because it is offered by us alone.
Envy eats at us; it interferes with all of our interactions. It possesses all of our thoughts, caging us, denying us the freedom to achieve that can be ours.
I will look with love on my sisters. I will free them and myself to be all we are capable of becoming.

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

The other day an approach was made to the vice president of a large industrial concern. He remarked: “I’m glad you fellows got over your drinking. But the policy of this company is not to interfere with the habits of our employees. If a man drinks so much that his job suffers, we fire him. I don’t see how you can be of any help to us for, as you see, we don’t have any alcoholic problem.” This same company spends millions for research every year. Their cost of production is figured to a fine decimal point. They have recreational facilities. There is company insurance. There is a real interest, both humanitarian and business, in the well-being of employees. But alcoholism—well, they just don’t believe they have it.

pp. 148-149

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

The blackouts increased, and my terror increased with them. Telephone bills would inform me that I’d made late-night calls to distant places. I could tell from the numbers whom I called, but what had I said? Some mornings I woke up with a stranger who had brought me home from a party the night before. These things weighed heavily on me, but I couldn’t stop the drinking that had caused them. That too gnawed away at any remnants of self-respect I might have had. I was incapable of controlling my drinking and my life.

p. 341

***********************************************************

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

We might next ask ourselves what we mean when we say that we have “harmed” other people. What kinds of “harm” do people do one another, anyway? To define the word “harm” in a practical way, we might call it the result of instincts in collision, which cause physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual damage to people. If our tempers are consistently bad, we arouse anger in others. If we lie or cheat, we deprive others not only of their worldly goods, but of their emotional security and peace of mind. We really issue them an invitation to become contemptuous and vengeful. If our sex conduct is selfish, we may excite jealousy, misery, and a strong desire to retaliate in kind.

p. 80

***********************************************************

“What makes humility so desirable is the marvelous thing it does to us; it creates in
us a capacity for the closest possible intimacy with God.”
–Monica Baldwin

What you are is God’s gift to you,
What you do with yourself is your gift to God.
–White Buffalo Calf Woman

Remember that your children are not your own, but are lent to you by the Creator.
–Native American Proverb

A baby is God’s opinion that the world should go on.
–Carl Sandburg

Honesty is the best way to gain the trust of others. By being honest,
feelings may or may not be hurt. Whichever the case you will end up
respecting yourself more for it.
–unknown

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

STRENGTH

“All cruelty springs from weakness.”
— Seneca

My spiritual recovery means that I confront my disease and remember sick attitudes
and behavior patterns. I would rather not talk about my disease because it is
embarrassing and shameful particularly my cruelty to people and animals. My
alcoholism made me lash out at the weak; yes, my weakness inflicted pain and
cruelty on others.

I remember this only to rejoice in today’s strength that allows vulnerability. My past
weaknesses made me act strong. Today my strength allows me to be weak.

God, the recognition of my past cruelties enables me to forgive and
understand others.

***********************************************************

Set a guard over my mouth ,O Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.
Psalm 141:3

“You heavens above, rain down righteousness; let the clouds shower it down. Let the
earth open wide, let salvation spring up, let righteousness grow with it; I, the LORD, have
created it.
Isaiah 45:8

No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful,
who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will
provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.
1 Corinthians 10:13

Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death.
Proverbs 19:18


***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

Your life is yours to live as you choose with the results that you want. Lord, help me to be full of life, full of energy and greet my opportunities with a peaceful smile and a gentle gratitude.

Faith grows by speaking daily with God. Lord, You teach me Your promises when times are good so that I will be able to trust in You when times are hard.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Self-discovery

“The Tenth Step can help us correct our living problems and prevent their recurrence.”
Basic Text p. 41

Our identities, how we think and feel, have been shaped by our experiences. Some of our experiences have made us better people; others have caused us shame or embarrassment; all of them have influenced who we are today. We can take advantage of the knowledge gained in examining our mistakes, using this wisdom to guide the decisions we’ll make today.

Acceptance of ourselves means accepting all aspects of ourselves – our assets, our defects, our successes, and our failures. Shame and guilt left unaddressed can paralyze us, preventing us from moving forward in our lives. Some of the most meaningful amends we can make for the mistakes of our past are made simply by acting differently today. We strive for improvement and measure our success by comparing who we used to be with who we are now.

Being human, we will continue making mistakes; however, we need not make the same ones over and over again. By looking over our past and realizing that we have changed and grown, we’ll find hope for the future. The best is yet to come.

Just for today: I will do the best I can with what I have today. Each day I’ll learn something new that will help me tomorrow.

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
One comes in the end to realize that there is no permanent pure relationship and there should not be. –Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Whether we are teenagers in love for the first time, or parents who have been married for twenty years, relationships can turn into obsessions if we’re not careful.
We can lose our sense of self and only feel complete when we’re with the other person. We can become totally attached and dependent on the primary person in our lives for all our needs.
We need to remember that we can be a good partner in a relationship only if we feel complete within ourselves. Keeping ourselves open to change in our surroundings, our loved ones, and especially ourselves helps us stay whole.
We learn, first, to be ourselves, to make independent choices. We dare to do things on our own. Things as simple as going for a walk by ourselves and smelling the scents of nature. Being ourselves means bringing our own world to meet the world of our loved ones, rather than depending on them to make our world.
Am I making my own happiness so I may share it with others?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I always entertain great hopes. –Robert Frost
In our honest journey, we must admit life is often difficult and painful.
But these facts do not describe all of life, and they do not determine how we respond. The sun rises warm and bright after a cold and dark night. The open, generous smile of a small child reaches into the soft part of us all. To be strong and hardy men on this spiritual path, we must be truthful about the pain and unfairness in life while holding firmly to a belief in all the generous possibilities.
Surrendering to despair, we trade the uncertainty of options for the certainty of gloom. Then we might say, “At least I’m never disappointed this way.” Life isn’t filled only with difficulty and pain. It is also filled with people whose dignity and spirit rise above their circumstances. There are situations when great sacrifice or love and wisdom turn a problem into an opportunity and strength. If we look at what has happened in our own lives and in those of others, we have ample reason to hope.
My own experience in recovery gives me great hope in what can be.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Do not compare yourself with others, for you are a unique and wonderful creation. Make your own beautiful footprints in the snow. –Barbara Kimball
Comparisons we make of ourselves to other women do destruction far greater than our conscious minds are aware of. Positioning ourselves or her on the “beloved pedestal” prevents the equality of sisterhood that offers each woman the freedom to be solely herself.
Comparisons in which we are the losers darken the moment, cut us off from the actual rhythms of that moment. The consequences can be grave. Within any moment might be the opportunity we’ve awaited, the opportunity to achieve a particular dream. We must not miss our opportunities.
Each life is symbolized by a particular set of footprints in the snow. How wonderful and how freeing to know that we each offer something uniquely our own. We need never compete to be noticed. Each of us is guaranteed recognition for what we contribute, because it is offered by us alone.
Envy eats at us; it interferes with all of our interactions. It possesses all of our thoughts, caging us, denying us the freedom to achieve that can be ours.
I will look with love on my sisters. I will free them and myself to be all we are capable of becoming.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Allowing Ourselves to be Nurtured
Let yourself be nurtured and loved. Let people be there for you. Allow yourself to be held when it would feel good. Let someone listen to you, support and encourage you when you need that. Receive comfort from someone’s physical presence when you need that. Allow yourself to be supported emotionally and cared about.
For too long, we’ve stood in the background, attending to the needs of others and claiming we have no needs of our own. We’ve shut off, for to long, the part of us that longs to be nurtured.
It is time, now, to claim those needs, to identify them, and to understand that we deserve to have them met.
What are our needs? What would feel good? What kinds of ways would we like others to nurture and support us? The clearer we can be about our needs, the greater the possibility they will be met.
Hugs. A listening ear. Support. Encouragement. The physical and emotional presence of people who care about us. Doesn’t that sound good? Tempting?
Someone once said to me, “The eighties have been a ‘me’ decade. Now, maybe the nineties can be a ‘you’ decade.”
My reply was immediate. “Let’s make the nineties a ‘me’ and ‘you’ decade.”
No matter how long we’ve been recovering, we never outgrow our need for nurturing and love.
Today, I will open to recognizing my needs for nurturing. I will be open to the needs of those around me too. I can begin taking a nurturing, loving attitude toward myself and by taking responsibility for my needs in relationships.

Today I can handle whatever comes up, knowing that I am surrounded by all the positive energies of the universe. –Ruth Fishel

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

Live with Unsolved Problems

Sometimes we need to live for a while with a particular behavior, problem, or situation before we’re ready to change it.

Sometimes we have to live with it so long– conscious that it’s a problem but unable yet to solve or change it– that we can hardly bear it. We’re fully aware that we want and need something different, but the situation still hasn’t changed. The answer has not yet arrived. We worry that the situation will continue eternally and the problem will never be solved. During those times of living with a problem and the desire to solve it, we may long for the old days, those days when our denial system was intact and we didn’t know what we were doing.

If you can’t solve it yet, if you can’t change it yet, it’s okay to live with it, just as it is. Something is happening. The situation is changing. You’re on your way to change.

Trust that the waiting part of change is necessary. Trust that your desire for change is the beginning of change. Trust that each moment you are moving closer to the change you desire.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go

Improvise

Do not fear mistakes; there are none.
–Miles Davis

Life is a jazz tune. Sometimes it’s raucous, sometimes blue, but always full of unexpected twists and turns, and here and there a delightful new sound emerges. Viewed from a staunch classical viewpoint we might be tempted to call the new note or harmonization a mistake, but in the free flowing world of jazz, it becomes just another piece of the melodic whole.

So we took the wrong job, chose a career based on what others expected of you rather that what you expected of yourself. Was it a mistake? Only if you spent all your time there dwelling on the fact that you would rather be someplace else and missed the chance to learn something about yourself.

Admit your mistakes. Say sorry when you’re wrong.

But don’t feel trapped by the mistakes of your past and don’t trap yourself now by the possibility of future mistakes. Sure, we’ll continue to screw up. But, we just might invent a new note or two along the way.

*****

Staying Afloat Amidst the Spin
Taking Things Personally

Every time you interact with others, you have the choice to listen to, acknowledge, and let go of their words, or you can take what they are saying personally. Taking things personally is often the result of perceiving a person’s actions or words as an affront or slight. In order to take something personally, you must read negative intent in an individual’s words or actions. But what people do and say has no bearing upon you and is usually based on their own experiences, emotions, and perceptions. If you attempt to take what they do or say personally, you may end up feeling hurt without reason.

If you are tempted to take a comment or action personally, creating some distance between yourself and the other person can help you. Try to determine what is at the root of your feelings. Ask yourself if the other person’s words or actions are just reinforcing some insecurity within you or if you can really be sure that an offense was intended. You may even want to ask them what they meant. Finally, put yourself in the other person’s shoes. Instead of taking their words as the truth, or as a personal affront, remember that whatever was said or done is based on their opinion and is more reflective of what is going on inside of them, rather than having anything to do with you. You may have been an easy target for someone having a bad day, and their comments may have been offered with no ill intentions.

When you recognize that what anyone says or does doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with you, you will no longer feel hurt or attacked. While it’s easy to take things personally, you should never let anyone’s perceptions or actions affect how you see yourself or your worth. Your life is personal to you, and it is up to you to influence your own value and sense of well-being. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

“Nothing is enough to the man for whom enough is too little,” wrote the Greek philosopher Epicurus. Now that we’re free from addiction, rebuilding our self-respect and winning back the esteem of family and friends, we have to avoid becoming smug about our new-found success. For most of us, success has always been a heady brew; even in our new life, it’s still possible to fall into the dangerous trap of “big-shot-itis.” As insurance, we ought to remember that we’re free today only by the grace of God. Will I remember that any success i may be having is far more His success than mine?

Today I Pray

May I keep constant string-on-the-finger reminder that I have found freedom through the grace of God — just so I don’t let my pride try to convince me I did it all myself. May I learn to cope with success by ascribing it to a Higher Power, not to my own questionable superiority.

Today I Will Remember

Learn to deal with success.

*************************************

One More Day

Life is not a static thing.
– Everet M. Dirkson

Sometimes change occurs so slowly within us that we don’t notice it. We accept it and may even welcome it when it happens gradually, but we’re less likely to accept those changes that arrive suddenly. Abrupt change doesn’t fit what we expect and can cause chaos in our lives.

When we finally realize we can’t prevent changes from happening, but can only alter our reactions to these changes, they become easier to accept. We can’t stop our declining health either, but we can certainly understand the influence a positive attitude can have on our lives.

I will accept the things I cannot change.

************************************

Food For Thought

No Exit

We have tried many ways of avoiding problems and pain.  In addition to food, we may have used alcohol, drugs, sleep, sex, compulsive activity, or excessive daydreaming to try to escape whatever it was that we did not want to encounter.  Undoubtedly, we found that nothing worked permanently; the problem or pain remained.

It is the attempt to avoid discomfort that turned fear into panic.  Whatever troubles or threatens us becomes more unmanageable when we pretend that it does not exist.  Now that we have the OA program and contact with a Power greater than ourselves, we can confront our problems without searching frantically for an exit from reality.

Our pain is what teaches us the things we need to know.  By being willing to be broken, we are able to become whole.  Through our distress, we are watched over by the One who heals us.  We need no exit.

Thank You for the faith that overcomes panic.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

~ HONESTY ~
You never find yourself until you face the truth.
Pearl Bailey

I was brought up to be scrupulously honest, or so I thought. I still remember how my father would go back into a shop if he’d been given too much change, a practice that I adopted too. I found it hard to tell a lie, even a white lie, and I would never contemplate cheating on a test. But when it came to food, I only realized later, I was totally dishonest. I was even dishonest when it came to telling people how I felt, or for that matter who I really was. The person who did these things was a totally different person to the upright person I liked people to see.

I know now that all the things I’d hidden around food were obviously what I felt ashamed about. I wanted people to see only the “good” side of me and not the person who did all these devious things in secret. I kept thinking that I was a bad person and the shame stopped me from being totally honest about what I had been doing.

It has taken time, and the love and acceptance I have found in the fellowship, to be able to get totally honest with myself. It has taken time to look at all the things about me that I felt ashamed of. In the housecleaning necessary in the Steps, I have been able to face my shame. I learned that I am human, and that I have a disease. Some of the soul searching has been very painful, but at the same time it has been totally enlightening. I am amazed how I am beginning to know a new me, with faults and all, but a loveable me nevertheless. As I peel off more layers of the onion that represents the sum total of what makes me unique and truly one of God’s creatures, I am actually beginning to like the new me. I know now that I am not a bad person trying to get good, merely a sick person trying to get well.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will keep being honest about who I am, what I eat and how I am behaving in my relationships, so I can learn more about me. Even when I don’t like what I see, I know I am still a lovable person and a child of God, created in His image.
~ Sharon S. ~

*****************************************

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

As we discovered the principles by which the individual alcoholic could live, so we had to evolve principles by which A.A. groups and A.A. as a whole could survive and function effectively. It was thought that no alcoholic man or woman could be excluded from our Society; that our leaders might serve but never govern; that each group was to be autonomous and there was to be no professional class of therapy. – Pg. xix – 4th Edition – Forward To The Second Edition

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Addiction is the great solvent that equalizes all people. We are equal in our addiction and equal in our program of recovery. Although with each passing day of sobriety we get clearer, we are only one fix, pill, drink, smoke, or snort away from a binge–at 18 days or 18 years!

May I realize I am no better or worse than another, or them from me. We are equal in our recovery.

Letting Go

Letting go of the past and moving on is a tall order; it requires a kind of releasing that I still find difficult to do. My past will always be in the shadows of my memory to haunt me if I do not recognize it as a part of me. If I pretend it’s not important, grit my teeth and force myself to numb myself, I have missed the point of this process. On the other had, if I am unwilling to let go no matter how many times I have worked through certain issues, I am also not allowing myself to be fully healthy and return to life. The part of my healing that is a flowing through the stored pain from the past is a decisive, forward-moving action.

I understand that, as part of my process of healing, my responsibility to let go and move on.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Honesty without kindness is cruel and kindness without honesty is co-dependence.

If I can’t say it kindly, I needn’t say it at all.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

It came to pass; it didn’t come to stay.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I can handle whatever comes up, knowing that I am surrounded by all the positive energies of the universe.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

People think that they’re going to get sober by osmosis and going to 90 meetings in 90 days. But there’s only one way to obtain and maintain sobriety and that’s through the program folded within these 164 pages. – Ted H.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 18

Daily Discipline
Meditation and prayer also teach me the art of focusing and listening.
I find that the turmoil of the day gets tuned out as I pray for His will and guidance. . .
The daily discipline of prayer and meditation will keep me in fit spiritual condition,
able to face whatever the day brings — without the thought of a drink.
– Daily Reflections, p. 317

Thought to Ponder . . .
I listen for direction now.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A R T = Always Remain Teachable

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Prayer
“As the alcoholic goes along with his process of prayer,
he begins to add up the results.
If he persists, he will almost surely find more serenity,
more tolerance, less fear, and less anger.
He will acquire a quiet courage, the kind that doesn’t strain him.
He can look at so-called failure and success
for what they really are.
Problems and calamity will begin to mean instruction,
rather than destruction.
He will feel freer and saner. . .
Wonderful and unaccountable things will start to happen.
Twisted relations with family and on the outside
will unaccountably improve.”
Bill W., June 1958
c. 1988AAGrapevine, The Language of the Heart, p. 241

Thought to Consider . . .
Trying to pray is praying.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
H O P E = Hang On; Pray Every day

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Disturbing Reflection
Step Five: Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs
More realism and therefore more honesty about ourselves are the great gains we make under the influence of Step Five. As we took inventory, we began to suspect how much trouble self-delusion had been causing us. This had brought a disturbing reflection. If all our lives we had more or less fooled ourselves, how could we now be so sure that we weren’t still self-deceived? How could we be certain that we had made a true catalog of our defects and had really admitted them, even to ourselves? Because we were still bothered by fear, self-pity, and hurt feelings, it was probable we couldn’t appraise ourselves fairly at all. Too much guilt and remorse might cause us to dramatize and exaggerate our shortcomings. Or anger and hurt pride might be the smoke screen under which we were hiding some of our defects while we blamed others for them. Possibly, too, we were still handicapped by many liabilities, great and small, we never knew we had.
1981, AAWS, Inc., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pages 58-59

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“How wonderful to be sober, to be able to think clearly (at times, at least), and to become aware of some portion of the greater wisdom concealed so deeply within myself.”
Columbus, OH, April 1981
“A New Way of Looking at Life,”
Voices of Long-Term Sobriety

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“Now we go out to our fellows and repair the damage done in the
past. We attempt to sweep away the debris which has accumulated out
of our effort to live on self-will and run the show ourselves. If we
haven’t the will to do this, we ask until it comes. Remember it was
agreed at the beginning we would go to any lengths for victory over
alcohol.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg.76~

Resentment is the “number one” offender . It destroys more alcoholics then anything else.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.64

The joy of living we really have, even under pressure and difficulty.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.15

The joy of living is the theme of A.A.’s Twelfth Step, and action is its key word.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.106

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

‘My observation is that some people can get by with a certain amount of postponement, but few can live with outright rebellion.’
‘We have succeeded in confronting many a problem drinker with that awful alternative, ‘This we A.A.’s do, or we die.’ Once this much is firmly in his mind, more drinking only turns the coil tighter.
As many an alcoholic has said, ‘I came to the place where it was either into A.A. or out the window. So here I am!

Prayer for the Day: Kindness and Service – O Lord, help me always to remember thankfully the work of those who helped me when I needed help. Reward them for their kindness and service, and grant that I may have the will, the time, and the opportunity to do the same for others.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 17th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 16th

Daily Reflections

OVERCOMING LONELINESS

Almost without exception, alcoholics are tortured by
loneliness. Even before our drinking got bad and people
began to cut us off, nearly all of us suffered the
feeling that we didn’t quite belong.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 90

The agonies and the void that I often felt inside occur
less and less frequently in my life today. I have
learned to cope with solitude. It is only when I am
alone and calm that I am able to communicate with God,
for He cannot reach me when I am in turmoil. It is good
to maintain contact with God at all times, but it is
absolutely essential that, when everything seems to go
wrong, I maintain that contact through prayer and
meditation.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Everyone has two personalities, a good and a bad. We
are all dual personalities to some extent. When we were
drinking, the bad personality was in control. We did
things when we were drunk that we would never do when
we were sober. When we sober up, we are different people.
Then we wonder how we could have done the things we did.
But we drink again, and again our bad side comes out.
So we are back and forth, always in conflict with our
other selves, always in a stew. This division of our
selves is not good; we must somehow become unified. We
do this by giving ourselves wholeheartedly to A.A. and
to sobriety. Have I become unified?

Meditation For The Day

“Well done, thou good and faithful servant. Enter into
the joy of Thy Lord.” These words are for many ordinary
people whom the world may pass by, unrecognizing. Not
to the world-famed, the proud, the wealthy, are these
words spoken, but to the quiet followers who serve God
unobtrusively yet faithfully, who bear their crosses
bravely and put a smiling face to the world. “Enter into
the joy of Thy Lord.” Pass into that fuller spiritual
life, which is a life of joy and peace.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not desire the world’s applause.
I pray that I may not seek rewards for doing what I
believe is right.


***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

Two Authorities, p. 319

Many people wonder how A.A. can function under a seeming anarchy.
Other societies have to have law and force and sanction and
punishment, administered by authorized people. Happily for us, we
found that we need no human authority whatever. We have two
authorities which are far more effective. One is benign, the other
malign.

There is God, our Father, who very simply says, “I am waiting for you
to do my will.” The other authority is named John Barleycorn, and he
says, “You had better do God’s will or I will kill you.”

<< << << >> >> >>

The A.A. Traditions are neither rules, regulations, nor laws. We obey
them willingly because we ought to and because we want to. Perhaps
the secret of their power lies in the fact that these life-giving
communications spring out of living experience and are rooted in love.

1. A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 105
2. A.A. Today, p. 11

***********************************************************

Walk In Dry Places

Are we doing well enough?
Success
Sometimes we can get off the track by mixing AA with the world’s ideas of success.
In AA, success means staying sober while using the AA principles in our daily affairs.  We can be successful people in all walks of life.
We should never think that a person is unsuccessful merely because he or she holds a low-paying job or has not regained any business or professional stature that has been lost.  One of our members, for example, had once been the senior member of a lucrative law partnership before drinking himself into the gutter. In his sober years, he found great satisfaction in a relatively low- paying judgeship.  In worldly terms, he could be seen as less successful.  In AA terms, however, this period was the truly successful part of his life.
Our Higher Power will show us where our place in life should be.  That should be success enough for any of us.
I’ll do my best today in whatever job I have, grateful for the sobriety that helps me stay self-supporting and happy.

***********************************************************

Keep It Simple

Mishaps are like knives that either serve us or cut us, as we grasp them by the blade or the handle.
—Herman Melville
We have hung on in hard times. We made it through our addiction. Some of us have lived through abuse. We’ve felt like our hearts were broken. But we’ve proven we are survivors. Now we’re learning that we can heal.
Being recovery doesn’t mean things will be easy. But we have a Higher Power to help us. We have friends who listen to us, care for us, and help us through the pain. Because of our recovery program, we’re able to keep hope and love in our lives—One Day at a Time.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me through the hard times. Help me trust in Your love and care.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll plan ahead with my sponsor. What will I do now so that I’ll have strong support when hard times come?

***********************************************************

Each Day a New Beginning

I think happiness is like the effect on an audience (when acting), if you think of it all the time you will not get it, you must get lost in the part, lost in your purposes and let the effect be the criterion of your success.  –Joanna Field
Happiness is a gift that accompanies every instance of our lives if we approach each situation with gratitude, knowing that what’s offered to us is special to our particular needs. The experiences we meet day to day are honing our Spirit, tempering our hard edges. For these we should offer gratitude.
Our well-being is the gift. Deciding what will make us happy, in fact, what we must have to be happy, prevents us from grasping the unexpected pleasure of the “chance” events of the moment. When we intently look for what we think we need, we may well be blind to more beneficial opportunities God has chosen for us.
Our self-centeredness hinders every breath we take. It prejudices every encounter. It stifles our creative potential. And most of all, it blocks any chance for a spontaneous reaction to the moment. Spontaneity is the breeding ground for creative living. And happiness is the byproduct.
Happiness is my decision, every moment.

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

We think this method of approach will accomplish several things. It will permit the rehabilitation of good men. At the same time you will feel no reluctance to rid yourself of those who cannot or will not stop. Alcoholism may be causing your organization considerable damage in its waste of time, men and reputation. We hope our suggestions will help you plug up this sometimes serious leak. We think we are sensible when we urge that you stop this waste and give your worthwhile man a chance.

p. 148

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

One time we sailed from Guadelupe to a little island for a picnic, swam to shore from the ship. After lunch, and quantities of wine, I was with a French ski instructor talking to a troop of small boys on their way home from school, trying to explain to those tropical islanders what snow is like. I remember them giggling. The next thing I knew, I was back at the camp, walking to the dining room–apparently after swimming back to the ship, sailing to the port, then taking a rickety bus across the island. I had no memory of what I had done during those hours between.

p. 341

***********************************************************

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

While the purpose of making restitution to others is paramount, it is equally necessary that we extricate from an examination of our personal relations every bit of information about ourselves and our fundamental difficulties that we can. Since defective relations with other human beings have nearly always been the immediate cause of our woes, including our alcoholism, no field of investigation could yield more satisfying and valuable rewards than this one. Calm, thoughtful reflection upon personal relations can deepen our insight. We can go far beyond those things which were superficially wrong with us, to see those flaws which were basic, flaws which sometimes were responsible for the whole pattern of our lives. Thoroughness, we have found, will pay–and pay handsomely.

p. 80

***********************************************************

I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked
with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a
grand thing.
–Agatha Christie

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our
thanksgiving.
–W.T. Purkiser

The source of love is deep in us, and we can help others realize a lot of happiness. One
word, one action, one thought can reduce another person’s suffering and bring that person
joy.
–Thich Nhat Hanh

Never let the word “impossible” stop you from pursuing what your heart and spirit urge
you to do. Impossible things come true every day.
–Robert K. Cooper

Nothing is impossible to the willing heart.
–Thomas Heywood

H O P E = Happy Our Program Exists.

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

EXPERIENCE

“Experience is not what happens
to a man. It is what a man does
with what happens to him.”
— Aldous Huxley

Today I experience the joy of sobriety. Today I experience God in my world. Today I
experience the peace and serenity that for years eluded me.

Experience is the key. It locates all that is in my life. Experience allows me to
appreciate what living is all about.

Love is to be felt. Forgiveness is to be experienced. Humility is to be lived in action.
Hope is to be recognized in the brightness of the eye.

Life is to be experienced. That is spirituality.

May the God that I experience be reflected in daily life.

***********************************************************

“God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”
Revelation 7:17

“I waited patiently for the Lord; He turned to me and heard my cry.”
Psalm 40:1

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth
in Thee.
Isaiah 26:3

But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving,
considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.
James 3:17


***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

You will not create a new life by simply forgetting the old one. Lord, help me create new values and new goals so that I will become a peaceful spirit which will bring newness and freshness to my life and allow me to greet the day with enthusiasm.

Never underestimate the power of your presence nor your ability to comfort and encourage. Lord, thank You for my opportunities to do Your work.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Walking Through The Pain

“We never have to use again, no matter how we feel. All feelings will eventually pass.”
Basic Text p. 79

It hurts like never before. You get out of bed after a sleepless night, talk to God, and still don’t feel any better. “It will pass;” a little voice tells you. “When?” you wonder, as you pace and mutter and get on with your day.

You sob in your car and turn the radio all the way up so you can’t hear your own thoughts. But you go straight to work, and don’t even think about using drugs.

Your insides feel as though they’ve been torched. Just when the pain becomes unbearable, you go numb and silent. You go to a meeting and wish you were as happy as other members seem to be. But you don’t relapse.

You cry some more and call your sponsor. You drive to a friend’s house and don’t even notice the beautiful scenery because your inner landscape is so bleak. You may not feel any better after visiting your friend-but at least you didn’t visit the connection instead.

You listen to a Fifth Step. You share at a meeting. You look at the calendar and realize you’ve gotten through another day clean.

Then one day you wake up, look outside, and realize it’s a beautiful day. The sun is shining. The sky is blue. You take a deep breath, smile again, and know that it really does pass.

Just for today: No matter how I feel today, I’ll go on with my recovery.

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Down in a green and shady bed
A modest violet grew;
Its stalk was bent, it hung its head,
As if to hide from view.
–Jane Taylor
Shyness can be painful. Those of us who are shy do not choose to be this way. There are no quick and easy solutions to shyness, but it isn’t the worst thing that could happen to us. And there are some things we can do about it. We can be willing to talk about it with someone we trust. We can exercise to build strength and self-confidence, and we can avoid dwelling on the problem. Most of all, we should not let shyness keep us from doing things. We may be a little uncomfortable, but that doesn’t have to stop us from doing the task at hand to the best of our ability.
We can be assured that the ability to succeed is within us, and keep in mind that, if we offer love to those around us, their answering love will help us overcome our shyness.
What am I no longer too shy to try today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
You cannot devalue the body and value the soul – or value anything else. The isolation of the body sets it into direct conflict with everything else in creation. –Wendell Berry
Our bodies are part of creation as much as trees, lakes, mountains, flowers, and animals. Part of our growth into full manhood is treating ourselves respectfully. It is a spiritual practice to be fully accepting, active, and alive physically.
We can no longer be content to be only spectator sportsmen in front of the television set. We need to get our own muscles moving. What we take in as food expresses the level of respect we feel for ourselves. Our sexual expressions reflect the value we feel for our own bodies and our partners’. Our spiritual feelings become part of all the basic details of our lives.
Today, I stand in God’s creation as a physical body. My spiritual experience includes all the ways I care for and accept my body.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
I think happiness is like the effect on an audience (when acting), if you think of it all the time you will not get it, you must get lost in the part, lost in your purposes and let the effect be the criterion of your success. –Joanna Field
Happiness is a gift that accompanies every instance of our lives if we approach each situation with gratitude, knowing that what’s offered to us is special to our particular needs. The experiences we meet day to day are honing our Spirit, tempering our hard edges. For these we should offer gratitude.
Our well-being is the gift. Deciding what will make us happy, in fact, what we must have to be happy, prevents us from grasping the unexpected pleasure of the “chance” events of the moment. When we intently look for what we think we need, we may well be blind to more beneficial opportunities God has chosen for us.
Our self-centeredness hinders every breath we take. It prejudices every encounter. It stifles our creative potential. And most of all, it blocks any chance for a spontaneous reaction to the moment. Spontaneity is the breeding ground for creative living. And happiness is the byproduct.
Happiness is my decision, every moment.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Grief and Action
Trust in God and do something. –Mary Lyon
It’s important to let ourselves grieve as a passage between yesterday and tomorrow. But we do not have to be controlled unduly by our grief, or our pain.
There are times when we have grieved, surrendered to the heaviness, tiredness, and weariness of a circumstance long enough. It becomes time to break out. It comes time to take action.
We will know when it’s time to break the routine of grieving. There will be signs within and around us. We will become tired of the heaviness. An idea will occur; an opportunity will present itself. We may think: No. Too much effort… Do it anyway. Try something. Reach out. Stretch. Do something unusual, something different, and something special.
A new activity may help trigger the transformation process. Stay up two hours later than usual! Make an appointment to do something for yourself that is different from what you usually do. Visit someone you haven’t seen in years. Do something to encourage and help the new energy coming your way.
We may not feel like breaking out of grief. It may feel safer, easier, to remain in our cocoon. Begin pushing out anyway.
Test the walls of your cocoon. Push. Push a little harder. It may be time to emerge.
Today, I will trust God and the process, but I will also take action to help myself feel better.

Today I am doing the best that I can with the guidance that I get. I leave the results to my Higher Power and trust that they are for the greatest good. –Ruth Fishel

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

Discover the Power of Loving Yourself

Sometimes it’s hard to trust life with all its sudden twists, turns, and storms. When something unexpected or painful happens, when we become blocked or frustrated, when life takes a different course than we hoped it would, it’s easy to stop trusting the flow of our lives. I didn’t ask for this. It’s not fair. I don’t want this, we think. This road isn’t leading anywhere, at least nowhere I want to go. Often, when we feel life has turned on us, we respond by turning on ourselves. But turning on ourselves doesn’t help. In fact, it can compound the situation. It can prevent us from hearing and acting on the very guidance that will lead us through, get us through, and take us to the next place. It can prevent us from hearing our heart.

Keep loving yourself, and taking care of yourself, no matter what– through the storms,the twists, the turns, and the blocks. Take a moment, breathe deep, restore yourself to that sacred place of self-love and self-responsibility. Feel all your feelings. Then let them go. Love yourself until you can hear your heart and what it tells you to do. Love yourself until you find the courage to act on that guidance.

Loving yourself is a powerful tool, a powerful force for change. It can reconnect you to creativity, to universal love, to the best possible flow of events within your life. It can and will reconnect you to life’s magic.

There is a trustworthy road through whatever life brings. Loving yourself will help you find it.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go

Undo your mistakes

“Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.” This is the Tenth Step of the Alcoholics Anonymous Twelve Step program. It’s also a step that many wise people not working a program practice,too.

Sometimes the mistakes we make are teeny, tiny ones. We say something that hurts another person. Or we behave in a way we know is inappropriate, and we feel badly about it. Sometimes the mistakes are bigger. We may have taken a job or gotten ourselves into a relationship thinking it was a good idea only to discover later that it wasn’t.

For whatever the reasons motivating us at the time, we made a mistake. We took a wrong turn on the path, and the direction we’re going isn’t where we meant to go and isn’t where we want to be. Or we’ve arrived at a dead end.

Step Ten is part of the program, one-twelfth of the program, because someone knew we were going to need it, maybe one-twelfth of the time. The words I’m sorry are in our language because we’ve developed a need for that phrase,too.

Not making amends can damage our relationships. When pride or shame prevent us from making amends, we close our hearts to God, ourselves, and the people we love.

Admit your mistake. Take any actions necessary to correct the situation for yourself and the people involved.

Just open your heart and say these five words: I’m sorry. I was wrong.

Then let it go and get one with your life. Have the courage to do what you need to do to get on track with your life.

God, help me admit to myself, you, and others when I’m wrong and have made a mistake– whether it’s a small one or a major wrong turn in my life. Then, help me to undo my actions and get back on track again.

*****

Decorating Life
The World as Home

There are few things more thrilling than having a new house or an empty room to decorate. Our imaginations soar as we consider the many possibilities. In the same way, our lives offer us the opportunity to express ourselves within various contexts, to ask ourselves questions about what we want to see as we move through our days and how we want things to flow. Some people do this instinctively, moving through the various environments they inhabit and shifting the energy with their presence. These people have a knack for decorating life. This can be as simple as the way they dress, the way they speak, or the fact that they always bring a bouquet of wildflowers when they come for a visit.

As we move through the world, we make a statement, whether we intend to or not. We shift the energy one way when we enter a room dressed elegantly and simply, and another when we show up in bright, cheerful colors and a floppy hat. One is not better than the other. It is simply a question of the mood we wish to create. What we wear is just one choice we can focus on. The way we speak to people, or touch them, shifts the energy more profoundly than almost anything else. The words we speak and the tone in which we say them are the music we choose to play in the world that is our home. Some of us fill the space with passionate arias, others with healing hymns. Again, one is not better than the other. We are all called to contribute.

Just as we consciously create an environment within our homes, we can consciously choose to decorate life itself with our particular energy. Ideally, in doing so, we express our deeper selves, so that the adornments we add to the world make it more meaningful, more beautiful, and as welcoming as a beloved home. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Many of us in The Program stubbornly cling to false ideas and positions simply because we fear we’d be left defenseless if we admitted having been wrong. The thought of “backing down” still seems distasteful to some of us. But we come to learn that our self-esteem soars when we’re able to push pride into the background and truly face the facts. Chances are that people with true humility have more genuine self-esteem than those of us who are repeatedly victimized by pride. Does pride deviously keep me from thorough and continuing attention to the Tenth Step?

Today I Pray

May pride stay out of my way, now that I’ve found a road to follow. May I avoid that familiar, destructive cycle of pride — the ego that balloons up out of all proportion and then deflates with a fizzle. May I learn the value of “backing down.”

Today I Will Remember

Pride is the arch-enemy of self-esteem.

*************************************

One More Day

The People plan and God laughs.
–Yiddish Proverb

Through the ages our ancestors have recognized that sometimes what happens is due to a purely random selection. Natural disasters occur, accidents happen, and people are in the wrong places at the wrong times.

But what about being in the right place at the right time? It’s not very often that we hear those stories. We hear about trade dies and real triumphs. What we don’t hear are stories about people like us, who struggle along, doing the best they can, hoping for a break. We have learned there are times to let go of unrealistic plans and to let our Higher Power have a hand in our lives. By letting go we create our own well-being.

I make my plans and hope for success, knowing there is a Power greater than me who has the final word.

************************************

Food For Thought

Escape into Sleep

After we stop eating compulsively, we may be tempted to use sleep as a form of escape. Though not as detrimental as excess food, too much sleep can also make us lethargic and dull. The danger lies in allowing ourselves to escape the realities of living, rather than coping with them.

We all need adequate rest in order to feel good and function efficiently. Sleep becomes an escape, however, if we take long daytime naps instead of finding worthwhile and enjoyable activities. Just as we may have overeaten because of boredom, we may oversleep because we have nothing better to do.

Our Higher Power has a plan for the time and talents He gives us. It is our job to discover how and where we can best serve God and each other. With the new life we are given in OA goes the responsibility to use it productively. Since this is the only life we have, we do not choose to sleep it away. By facing our problems with the help of this program, we learn how to deal with them.

Deliver me from indolence.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

~ Aging ~
Those who love deeply never grow old;
they may die of old age, but they die young.
Benjamin Franklin

I used to be afraid of getting older. I was also afraid to become friends with older people, because I would come to love them and then they would die. I could not handle unpleasant feelings (other than if I overate to stop feeling them) because the feeling of unpleasantness would totally devastate me.

In working the Twelve Step program, my Higher Power has brought me great recovery in this area … I am now able to handle the grief and sorrow that come up when I allow myself to get to know and love older people and then they die. I am now free in this area! I get to enjoy the wisdom and beauty that they have to share, from all their life experiences, and from the beautiful people they are!

Another beautiful gift from my Higher Power came when I started relating to older people again. When the first one died, it really threw me, and I was very sad. But I got up the next day and had a great spiritual awakening: this person was missing and that was sad, but I looked around and saw all the other wonderful people still there in my life, with whom I got to share another day! Life suddenly became much more precious to me … to have one more day to be with and share with someone who touches my soul!

One Day at a Time . . .
I enjoy myself as I become older. I allow myself to enjoy friendships with those who are older than me. I thank my Higher Power for every day and every moment of precious life!
~ Lynne ~

*****************************************

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The terms ‘spiritual experience’ and ‘spiritual awakening’ are used many times in this book which, upon careful reading, shows that the personality change sufficient to bring about recovery from alcoholism has manifested itself among us in many different forms. – Pg. 567 – 4th. Edition – Appendices II – Spiritual Experience

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Are we remembering the so-called ‘good times’ right now? How nice a ‘high’ would be? We use this hour to REALLY think about what got us to this fight for sobriety. It wasn’t because we were having a lot of fun!

Help me to think a drink and drug all the way through, not just the high but the hell it leads to.

A Return to Living

Today, I keep my house clean and let go of the rest – some of the ways that I wish to live as a recovered person will not be readily understood by others. I will keep my own scorecard clean and not worry about the results. I will act in a way that makes it easier for me to live with myself – that keeps my own conscience clear. Other people’s negative projections of me no longer run me. I am the one who makes the decisions about who I want to be. I need not defend and explain myself again and again. I need not ask permission to be who I am. I allow myself to be happy in my own skin today. I think well of myself, no matter what others think of me.

I create my own self.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

The people you most need to give love to will seem like the ones who deserve it the least.

It begins with me.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Going to any lengths are our strengths.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am doing the best that I can with the guidance that I get. I leave the results to my Higher Power and trust that they are for the greatest good.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It’s not just the ‘yets’ I worry about if I pick up a drink – it’s also the ‘agains’. – Anon.

*****************************************

AA Thought for the Day

November 17

Depression
My depression deepened unbearably and finally it seemed to me as though I were at the very bottom of the pit.
I still gagged badly on the notion of a Power greater than myself, but finally, just for the moment,
the last vestige of my proud obstinacy was crushed.
All at once I found myself crying out, “If there is a God, let Him show Himself! I am ready to do anything, anything!”
Suddenly the room lit up with a great white light. I was caught into an ecstasy which there are no words to describe.
It seemed to me, in the mind’s eye, that I was on a mountain and a wind not of air but of spirit was blowing.
And then it burst upon me that I was a free man.
(Bill W., AA co-founder)
– Alcoholics Anonymous Comes Of Age, p. 63

Thought to Ponder . . .
God enters us through our wounds.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H O P E = Heart Open; Please Enter.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Affirmation!
“Taking advantage of technological advances, for example,
AA members with computers
can participate in meetings online,
sharing with fellow alcoholics across the country
or around the world.
Fundamentally, though, the difference between
an electronic meeting and the home group around the corner
is only one of format.
In any meeting, anywhere, AA’s share experience,
strength, and hope with each other,
in order to stay sober and help other alcoholics.
Modem-to-modem or face-to-face,
AA’s speak the language of the heart
in all its power and simplicity.”
c. 2001AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, Foreword to Fourth Edition, p. xxiv

Thought to Consider . . .
AA is where “we” make miracles.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
H O P E = Happy Our Program Exists.

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Baffling Feature
From: “More About Alcoholism”
For those who are unable to drink moderately the question is how to stop altogether. We are assuming, of course, that the reader desires to stop. Whether such a person can quit upon a nonspiritual basis depends upon the extent to which he has already lost the power to choose whether he will drink or not. Many of us felt that we had plenty of character. There was a tremendous urge to cease forever. Yet we found it impossible. This is the baffling feature of alcoholism as we know it – this utter inability to leave it alone, no matter how great the necessity or the wish.
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, page 34

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“Few of us will ever be famous, but we can all be great because we serve each other.”
McAllen, TX, October 1997
“Internal Restoration,”
Thank You for Sharing

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“Putting out of our minds the wrongs others had done, we resolutely
looked for our own mistakes. Where had we been selfish, dishonest,
self-seeking and frightened? Though a situation had not been entirely
our fault, we tried to disregard the other person involved entirely.
Where were we to blame? The inventory was ours, not the other man’s.
When we saw our faults we listed them. We placed them before us in
black and white. We admitted our wrongs honestly and were willing to
set these matters straight.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 67~

“Each day, somewhere in the world, recovery begins when one alcoholic talks with another alcoholic, sharing experience, strength, and hope.”
Alcoholics Anonymous Foreword to the Third Edition

It reminds us that we are to place principles before personalities; that we are actually to practice a genuine humility.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.566

Where humility had formerly stood for a forced feeding on humble pie, it now begins to mean the nourishing ingredient which can give us serenity.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.74

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

As the doubter tries the process of prayer, he should begin to add up the results. If he persists, he will almost surely find more serenity, more tolerance, less fear, and less anger. He will acquire a quiet courage, the kind that isn’t tension-ridden. He can look at ‘failure’ and ‘success’ for what these really are. Problems and calamity will begin to mean his instruction, instead of his destruction. He will feel freer and saner.
The idea that he may have been hypnotizing himself by auto-suggestion will become laughable. His sense of purpose and of direction will increase. His anxieties will commence to fade. His physical health will be likely to improve. Wonderful and unaccountable things will start to happen. Twisted relations in his family and on the outside will improve surprisingly.

Prayer for the Day: Recovery Prayer – Today and every day, I pray to be ever mindful that recovery is the most important thing in my life, without exception. I may believe my job, or my home life, or one of many other things, comes first. But if I don’t stay with the Program, chances are I won’t have a job, a family, sanity, or even life. If I am convinced that everything in life depends on my recovery, I have a much better chance of improving my life. If I put other things first, I am only hurting my chances.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 16th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 16th

Daily Reflections

 

A DAILY REPRIEVE

What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual
condition.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 85

Maintaining my spiritual condition is like working out every day, planning for the
marathon, swimming laps, jogging. It’s staying in good shape spiritually, and that requires
prayer and meditation. The single most important way for me to improve my conscious
contact with a Higher Power is to pray and meditate. I am as powerless over alcohol as I
am to turn back the waves of the sea; no human force had the power to overcome my
alcoholism. Now I am able to breathe the air of joy, happiness and wisdom. I have the
power to love and react to events around me with the eyes of a faith in things that are not
readily apparent. My daily reprieve means that, no matter how difficult or painful
things appear today, I can draw on the power of the program to stay liberated from my
cunning, baffling and powerful illness.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

I have got rid of most of my inner conflicts. I was always at war with myself. I was doing
things that I did not want to do. I was waking up in strange places and wondering how I
got there. I was full of recklessness when I was drunk and full of remorse when I was
sober. My life didn’t make sense. It was full of broken resolves and frustrated hopes and
plans. I was getting nowhere fast. No wonder my nerves were all shot. I was bumping up
against a blank wall and I was dizzy from it. A.A. taught me how to get organized and to
stop fighting against myself. Have I got rid of inner conflicts?

Meditation For The Day

“When two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them.”
The spirit of God comes upon His followers when they are all together at one time, in one
place, and with one accord. When two or three consecrated souls are together at a
meeting place, the spirit of God is there to help and guide them. Where any sincere group
of people are together, reverently seeking the help of God, His power and His spirit are
there to inspire them.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be in accord with the members of my group.
I pray that I may feel the strength of a consecrated group.


***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

Forgiveness, p. 318

Through the vital Fifth Step, we began to get the feeling that we could
be forgiven, no matter what we had thought or done.

Often it was while working on this Step with our sponsors or spiritual
advisers that we first felt truly able to forgive others, no matter how
deeply we felt they had wronged us.

Our moral inventory had persuaded us that all-round forgiveness was
desirable, but it was only when we resolutely tackled Step Five that
we inwardly knew we’d be able to receive forgiveness and give it, too.

12 & 12, pp. 57-58

***********************************************************

Walk In Dry Places

Continuing to follow
A child learning to ride a bicycle discovers that it only take gentle pedaling to keep the bike in motion. The more difficult task was getting on the bike and maintaining a straight course in the right direction.
Staying sober in AA seems to be  the same kind of thing. It may take a lot of effort and self-honesty to establish sobriety, but a routine of simple steps can keep it going on a daily basis.  For most people, daily meditations and regular attendance at meetings are enough to maintain a straight course in the right direction.
The danger comes when  people become too lazy or careless to take even these simple steps.  Then, like a bike losing forward momentum, they can wobble and fall.
Even at the point of wobbling, one can get a bike up to speed again and gain stability. This is something to remember if we find our own sobriety becoming wobbly.
Nothing can be so important today that it keeps me from doing the simple things needed for continuous sobriety.  I’ll remember the bike.

***********************************************************

Keep It Simple

Pray for powers equal to your task.—Phillips Brooks
Our task is to stay sober and to help others who still suffer from addiction. We will need patience and understanding. We will need much love. Most of all, we’ll need to work a strong program.
Pray that you come to know the Steps well. Pray that you’ll want to help others—always. Pray for these things, and you’ll have a strong program. In the program, we learn that prayer works. We see prayer change our lives and the lives of those around us. We came to know the power of prayer.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I pray for knowledge of Your will for me and the power to carry it out.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll admit my needs by praying for help from my Higher Power.

***********************************************************

Each Day a New Beginning

Rigidity is prevented most of the time as love and compassion mesh us into tolerant human beings.  –Kaethe S. Crawford
Looking outward with love, offering it freely to our friends and family, makes fluid, flowing, and fertile our existence. Each expression of love engenders more love, keeping tender our ties to one another, encouraging more ties.
The more flexible our lives, the more easily we’ll be attracted to an unexpected opportunity. And flexibility is fostered by a loving posture. As we approach the world, so it greets us. We are not mere recipients of life’s trials and tribulations. We find what our eyes are wanting to see. When our focus is rigid and narrow, so are our opportunities.
The Steps are leading us to be freer with our love, more tolerant in our expectations. The level of our compassion, fully felt and fully expressed, is the measure of our emotional health. Rigid attitudes, rigid behavior, rigid expectations of others recede as the level of our emotional health rises. Our approach to life changes and so do the results we meet.
I will love others. It’s my only assignment in life, and it guarantees the security I crave.

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

It boils right down to this: No man should be fired just because he is alcoholic. If he wants to stop, he should be afforded a real chance. If he cannot or does not want to stop, he should be discharged. The exceptions are few.

p. 148

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

Blackouts began, vacant places in my life when hours would disappear, lost to memory. The first time was after I’d given a dinner party. The next morning I woke up without remembering that I’d told my guests goodnight and gone to bed myself. I searched the apartment for clues. The table was cluttered with dessert glasses and coffee cups. Bottles were empty, and the glasses too. (It was my custom to polish off any drinks that were left.) My last memory was sometime during diner. Did we ever finish? But there were the plates. I was terrified that I’d done something horrendous, until my friends called to tell me they enjoyed the evening.

p. 340

***********************************************************

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

Though in some cases we cannot make restitution at all, and in some cases action ought to be deferred, we should nevertheless make an accurate and really exhaustive survey of our past life as it has affected other people. In many instances we shall find that though the harm done others has not been great, the emotional harm we have done ourselves has. Very deep, sometimes quite forgotten, damaging emotional conflicts persist below the level of consciousness. At the time of these occurrences, they may actually have given our emotions violent twists which have since discolored our personalities and altered our lives for the worse.

pp. 79-80

***********************************************************

Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love
what you are doing, you will be successful.
–Dr. Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965)

If I have the opportunity to help one person today, I’ll have done something
worthwhile if I’ve helped at least one person today.
–RJabo3

Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?
–unknown

Joy isn’t the absence of pain — it’s the presence of God.
–unknown

A B C = Acceptance, Belief, Change.

“If you were walking back from a well, carrying a bucket of water & someone jostled you,
there could be spilled from the bucket only that which it contained. As you walk along the
way of life, people are constantly bumping into you. If your heart is full of ill nature, bad
temper, and ugly disposition, only those things will be spilled from it. On the other hand, if
it is full of love, you will spill a smile or pleasant remark. You can spill from your bucket
only that which it contains.”
–Author Unknown

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

FRIENDSHIP

“True friendship comes when
silence between two people is
comfortable.
— Dave Tyson Gentry

Part of the spiritual life that awakens serenity is silence or stillness. “Be still and
know that I am God.” I believe that true friendship is divine. It is a special love that
binds two hearts as one. It is a comfortableness that is the opposite of dis-ease.
Friendship is necessary to recovery and it involves the sharing of feelings. Often
the feelings are silent; unspoken emotions; cherished moments that exist in
“word-less-ness”.

As a recovering alcoholic, I have a thousand friends who attest to the silent witness of
love by simply being there.

Thank You for the joy of friendship that grows in silence.

***********************************************************

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end.”
Lamentations 3:22

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the
righteousness of God.
2 Corinthians 5:21

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness,
peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Romans 14:17

***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

Life is a challenge so accept it for what it truly is. Lord, help me face what today brings with energy, determination and a joy that allows me to take control.

Pray about every task that you take on today and don’t take on those tasks which you have no time to pray about. Lord, tonight I will rest well because today You and I will accomplish many things. Thank You for Your constant blessings in my life.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Alone No More

“We gradually and carefully pull ourselves out of the isolation and loneliness of addiction and into the mainstream of life.”
Basic Text p. 35

Many of us spent much of our using time alone, avoiding other people – especially people who were not using – at all costs. After years of isolation, trying to find a place for ourselves in a bustling, sometimes boisterous fellowship is not always easy. We may still feel isolated, focusing on our differences rather than our similarities. The overwhelming feelings that often arise in early recovery-feelings of fear, anger, and mistrust-can also keep us isolated. We may feel like aliens but we must remember, the alienation is ours, not NA’s.

In Narcotics Anonymous, we are offered a very special opportunity for friendship. We are brought together with people who understand us like no one else can. We are encouraged to share with these people our feelings, our problems, our triumphs, and our failures. Slowly, the recognition and identification we find in NA bridge the lonely gap of alienation in our hearts. As we’ve heard it said – the program works, if we let it.

Just for today: The friendship of other members of the fellowship is a life-sustaining gift. I will reach out for the friendship that’s offered in NA, and accept it.

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
One is forever throwing away substance for shadows. –Jennie Jerome Churchill
Sometimes we trade possessions with our friends. Maybe we want to add to our collection, or perhaps we just do it to get someone to like us. But if we try to buy friendship, we’ll be sad later when we realize we’ve lost a prized possession and not gained a friend.
Our friendships come when we least expect them, often with people who have something in common with us. They will not be friendships we have to buy, but relationships to treasure and have for years. These friendships will teach us to respect ourselves and our friends.
Am I making good friends, or bad trades?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
A wise man never loses anything if he have himself. –Montaigne
As recovering men, perhaps we have learned more fully what it means to have ourselves because we know the extremes of losing ourselves. In the past we weren’t honest with others, or ourselves we didn’t have our self-respect, and our compulsive actions violated our values. In that condition, we were incapable of believing in ourselves or of standing up for ourselves. Some of us felt like phonies or nobodies.
In this program we pray for wisdom, and it comes to us as we take possession of ourselves. We develop a better match between our inner feelings and our outer actions. We become willing to make choices, and we are able to take a stand based on our personal feelings and hunches. The things we possess like our gadgets, our cars, or our audio equipment are just temporary. Our integrity, our selves, can never be taken from us.
Today, I am grateful for the growing feeling within that who I am and what I believe is acceptable to me.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Rigidity is prevented most of the time as love and compassion mesh us into tolerant human beings. –Kaethe S. Crawford
Looking outward with love, offering it freely to our friends and family, makes fluid, flowing, and fertile our existence. Each expression of love engenders more love, keeping tender our ties to one another, encouraging more ties.
The more flexible our lives, the more easily we’ll be attracted to an unexpected opportunity. And flexibility is fostered by a loving posture. As we approach the world, so it greets us. We are not mere recipients of life’s trials and tribulations. We find what our eyes are wanting to see. When our focus is rigid and narrow, so are our opportunities.
The Steps are leading us to be freer with our love, more tolerant in our expectations. The level of our compassion, fully felt and fully expressed, is the measure of our emotional health. Rigid attitudes, rigid behavior, rigid expectations of others recede as the level of our emotional health rises. Our approach to life changes and so do the results we meet.
I will love others. It’s my only assignment in life, and it guarantees the security I crave.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
The Victim Trap
The belief that life has to be hard and difficult in the belief that makes a martyr.
We can change our negative beliefs about life, and whether we have the power to stop our pain and take care of ourselves.
We aren’t helpless. We can solve our problems. We do have power – not to change or control others, but to solve the problems that are ours to solve.
Using each problem that comes our way to “prove” that life is hard and we are helpless – this is codependency. It’s the victim trap.
Life does not have to be difficult. In fact, it can be smooth. Life is good. We don’t have to “awfulize” it, or ourselves. We don’t have to live on the underside.
We do have power, more power than we know, even in the difficult times. And the difficult times don’t prove life is bad; they are part of the ups and downs of life; often, they work out for the best.
We can change our attitude; we can change ourselves; sometimes, we can change our circumstances.
Life is challenging. Sometimes, there’s more pain than we asked for; sometimes, there’s more joy than we imagined.
It’s all part of the package, and the package is good.
We are not victims of life. We can learn to remove ourselves as victims of life. By letting go of our belief that life has to be hard and difficult, we make our life much easier.
Today, God, help me let go of my belief that life is so hard, so awful, or so difficult. Help me replace that belief with a healthier, more realistic view.

Today I know that it does not matter if I cannot see the end of the road. I have absolute faith and trust that I am walking in the right direction and that I am being guided along the way. –Ruth Fishel

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

It’s Safe to Open Your Heart

You don’t have to be so afraid to love. You don’t have to fear losing your soul. You learned that lesson. It’s in the past. That doesn’t mean that people won’t try to control or manipulate you. Doesn’t mean that at times, you won’t try to control or manipulate them. Doesn’t mean that people with problems, agendas, addictions, and issues won’t sometimes come into your life. They may.

But the lessons of the past are yours, yours to keep. It may take you a moment to remember, but you will. Be gentle with yourself. Open up slowly, carefully, as you’re able.

It’s not that life and people are different, although how we see life and view people probably has changed. We’re different. We’ve learned about our powers. We’ve learned to take care of ourselves. We’ve learned how capable we really are.

Don’t be so afraid to love. Now it’s time to learn about the powers of the heart.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go

Be persistent

Earlier in this book, I talked about little drops of rain, over the years, could wear pockets and indentations into stones. I used this as an analogy to demonstrate how negative influences could wear away our resolve.

It goes both ways.

When I was first in recovery, one of the treatment center staff gave me one good quality about myself when I couldn’t see or find anything about myself to like.

“You’re persistent,” he said.

“Yes,” I thought. “You’re right. I am.”

I also thought if I took one-half the energy I used doing destructive things and channeled it into doing positive activities, there wouldn’t be anything in the world I couldn’t do.

Most of us are persistent. We persistently dwell. We have persistently tried to change what we cannot, usually a circumstance or someone else’s behavior. Take that energy, that persistence, that deoermination, that almost obsessive resolve, and persevere with the things you can do.

Don’t push.

Let go of concern about the seemingly impossible tasks in your life. Softly, steadily, like the rain, let your kind spirit naturally remove the obstacles in your path.

Life is better when we flow.

But sometimes it takes persistent flow to change the things we can.

Enough water, persistently applied, can be more powerful than rock.

God, grant me the courage to persevere and the strength to persist.

*****

You are reading from the book Food for Thought.

Alive to Truth

Being alive to truth requires being in touch with ourselves and with our Higher Power. It requires that we value spiritual truth more than material things. We come to realize that the insights and emotional growth we gain through this program are more valuable than the things we used to think we had to have.

Being alive to truth involves living each present moment. If we are obsessed with the past or preoccupied with the future, we will miss the truth of now. Today we can be who we are and give of our best in whatever situation we find ourselves.

Our Higher Power promises that if we ask for truth, we shall receive it. It will be found when we seek it more than status, money, or physical comfort. When we are alive to truth, we are open to the source of Power, which will never let us down.

Today, I will be alive to truth.

*****

Leaving a Positive Footprint
Blessing Space by Madisyn Taylor

We can bless each space we enter leaving a sweet energetic footprint behind.

Physical space acts like a sponge, absorbing the radiant of all who pass through it. And, more likely than not, the spaces we move through each day have seen many people come and go. We have no way of knowing whether the energy footprints left behind by those who preceded us will invigorate us or drain us. Yet we can control the energy footprint we leave behind for others. In blessing each space we enter, we orchestrate a subtle energy shift that affects not only our own experiences in that space but also the experiences of the individuals who will enter the space after us. While we may never see the effects our blessing has had, we can take comfort in the fact that we have provided grace for those that follow after us.

When you bless a room or an entire building, you leave a powerful message of love and light for all those who will come after you. Your blessings thus have myriad effects on the environments through which you pass. Old, stagnant energy is cleared, creating a vacuum into which fresh and invigorating energy can freely flow. The space is thus rendered harmonious and nourishing, and it becomes a hub from which positive feelings are transmitted. Intent is the key component of the blessings you leave in your physical wake. If your intent involves using your own consciousness as a tool for selflessly spreading grace, your blessings will never go awry. Whether you feel more comfortable performing a solo blessing or prefer to call upon your spirit guides for assistance, visualize each space you enter becoming free of toxins, chaos, and negativity as you speak your blessing. Then imagine the resultant emptiness being replaced by pure, healing white light and loving energy. Even a quic! k mindful thought of love can bless a space.

This type of blessing is cumulative and will grow each time you bestow it. Try blessing every home, business, and office you visit for an entire week and observing the effects of your goodwill. Your affirmative energy footprint will help brighten your day as you contemplate your blessing’s future impact on your siblings in humanity and your environment. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We sometimes hear humility defined as the state of being “teachable.” In that sense, most of us in The Program who are able to stay free of active addiction have acquired at least a smattering of humility, or we never would have learned to stay away from the first drink, the first tranquilizer, the first “side bet,” and similar destructive acts for those of us who are powerless over our respective addictions. Do I see increasing humility as a pathway to continuing improvements?

Today I Pray

Now that I have made a start at developing humility, may I keep it up. May I open my self to the will of God and the suggestions of my friends in the group. May I remain teachable, confrontable, receptive and conscious that I must stay that way in order to be healthy.

Today I Will Remember

To remain confrontable.

*************************************

One More Day

The future is an opaque mirror. Anyone who tries to look into it sees nothing but the dim outlines of an old and worried face.
– Jim Bishop

Perhaps we spend too much time looking into mirrors and being critical of what we see. There is no stage in life when we are wholly contented with what we see, but as we mature we gradually recognize that our lives are multidimensional. Now we know that there will be periods of time when we are more pensive, more introspective — and times when life will just roll along, with no concern from us.

Acceptance of our appearance gives us the time and energy to work on our inner selves. We look to the future by trying to prepare, and we live in the present by understanding that what we look like is not of important as what we do.

Today, I will decide which changes can give me and others the most joy.

************************************

Food For Thought

Alive To Truth

Being alive to truth requires being in touch with ourselves and with our Higher Power.  It requires that we value spiritual truth more than material things.  We come to realize that the insights and emotional growth we gain through this program are more valuable than the things we used to think we had to have.
Being alive to truth involves living each present moment.  If we are obsessed with the past or preoccupied with the future, we will miss the truth of now.  Today we can be who we are and give of our best in whatever situation we find ourselves.

Our Higher Power promises that if we ask for truth, we shall we receive it.  It will be found when we seek it more than status, or money, or physical comfort.  When we are alive to truth, we let open the resource of Power which will never let us down.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

HONESTY
“Whatever games are played with us,
we must play no games with ourselves,
but deal in our privacy with the last honesty and truth.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

When I began to study step one in OA I learned that the principle behind the step was honesty. That was difficult for me because I had spent so much time lying to myself and others about my eating. I was so ashamed of my eating habits and behaviors that when asked about them, it never occurred to me to tell the truth. I couldn’t conceive of being accepted, or even cared for, if anyone knew the truth.

Then I came into the program and began to hear people share. The denial and shell of lies began to melt. For the first time I found myself in a fellowship where I felt like I could tell the truth because I was surrounded by people whose stories were similar to mine. Most importantly, the people in the fellowship loved me and cared for me when I told my truth, no matter how ugly it seemed to me. I call this the magic of the fellowship. It makes me want to be that kind of loving, caring person for the newcomer taking his or her first step.

One day at a time…
I will honestly confront the reality of my compulsive eating, knowing that I am in a fellowship where I am unconditionally loved and cared for.
~ Carolyn H.

*****************************************

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

It is plain that a life which includes deep resentment leads only to futility and unhappiness. To the precise extent that we permit these, do we squander the hours that might have been worth while. But with the alcoholic, whose hope is the maintenance and growth of a spiritual experience, this business of resentment is infinitely grave. We found that is it fatal. For when harboring such feelings we shut ourselves off from the sunlight of the Spirit. The insanity of alcohol returns and we drink again. And with us, to drink is to die. – Pg. 66 – How It Works

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

To insist stubbornly on holding to old relationships, when they are basically drug oriented relationships is sabotaging our recovery process. Is it not our disease finding a ‘good’ excuse to keep us close to drugs?

May I be able to hear the suggestions of those who work with me. May I listen in this next hour and follow the suggestions.

Learning from Life

There are no ‘buts’ today. I am what I am, others are what they are, life is what it is. I will not parenthesize my growth with a ‘but’ or hold back my forward-moving spirit with second-guesses. For today, I am living with things as they are. I am exactly where I am meant to be, learning what I need to learn. All I need do is move through situations with willingness to learn and openness to feel. When feelings are brought up, I can accept them as what is happening within me – no need to resist and analyze them. Transformation will happen in the moving through and the acceptance of them. I trust that my life is unfolding in such a way that what I need to learn will be before me. I am willing to learn.

I see the ‘table prepared.’
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

A temper will get us into trouble and pride will keep us there.

I can’t save my face and my butt at the same time.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

With the first three steps, you get the courage to work the rest. When you work the rest, you get rid of the garbage so you can work the first three.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that it does not matter if I cannot see the end of the road. I have absolute faith and trust that I am walking in the right direction and that I am being guided along the way.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Success consists of getting up one more time than you fall. – Anon

*****************************************

AA Thought for the Day

November 16

A New Happiness
We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.
We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.
No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 83-84

Thought to Ponder . . .
Happiness is part of the journey, not some distant destination.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
T H I N K = The Happiness I Never Knew.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Meditation
“We liked AA all right,
and were quick to say that it had done miracles.
But we recoiled from meditation and prayer
as obstinately as the scientist who refused to perform
a certain experiment lest it prove his pet theory wrong.
Of course, we finally did experiment,
and when unexpected results followed, we felt different;
in fact we knew different;
and so were sold on meditation and prayer.
And that, we have found, can happen to anybody who tries.
It has been said that ‘almost the only scoffers at prayer
are those who never tried it enough.’ ”
c. 1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 97

Thought to Consider . . .
Meditation means trusting the silence around me for a while,
as if it were an answer I had long sought.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F A I T H = Finding Answers In The Heart

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Caring
>From “Brothers in Our Defects”:
“The identification that one alcoholic has with another is mysterious, spiritual almost incomprehensible. But it is there. I ‘feel’ it. Today I feel that I can help people and that they can help me.
“It is a new and exciting feeling for me to care for someone; to care what they are feeling, hoping for, praying for; to know their sadness, joy, horror, sorrow, grief; to want to share those feelings so that someone can have relief.”
1990 AAWS, Inc.; Daily Reflections, pg. 118

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“Times change, alcoholism doesn’t.”
Marysville, Wash., September 2001
“The Same Chance I Had,”
Voices of Long-Term Sobriety

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“We needed to ask ourselves but one short question. ‘Do I now
believe, or am I even willing to believe, that there is a Power
greater than myself?’ As soon as a man can say that he does believe,
or is willing to believe, we emphatically assure him that he is on
his way. It has been repeatedly proven among us that upon this
simple cornerstone a wonderfully effective spiritual structure can be
built.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 47

“Step Eleven suggests prayer and meditation. We shouldn’t be shy on this matter of prayer. Better men than we are using it constantly”
Alcoholics Anonymous p.85

We must take the lead.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.83

They do not drive by mandate; they lead by example.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.135

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Most people try to live by self-propulsion. Each person is like an actor who wants to run the whole show and is forever trying to arrange the lights, the scenery, and the rest of the players in his own way. If his arrangements would only stay put, if only people would do as he wished, the show would be great.
What usually happens? The show doesn’t come off very well. Admitting he may be somewhat at fault, he is sure that other people are more to blame. He becomes angry, indignant, self-pitying.
Is he not really a self-seeker even when trying to be useful? Is he not a victim of the delusion that he can wrest satisfaction and happiness out of this world if he only manages well?

Prayer for the Day: Prayer to Know – Grant it to me, Higher Power:
To know that which is worth knowing,
To love that which is worth loving,
To praise that which pleases You most,
To work for that which helps others,
Grant it to me:
To distinguish with true judgment things that differ, and above all to search out, and to do what is most pleasing to You.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 15th

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 15th

Daily Reflections

VITAL SUSTENANCE

Those of us who have come to make regular use of prayer would no more do without
it than we would refuse air, food, sunshine. And for the same reason. When we refuse
air, light or food, the body suffers. And when we turn away from meditation and prayer,
we likewise deprive our minds, our emotions, and our intuitions of vitally needed
support.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 97

Step Eleven doesn’t have to overwhelm me. Conscious contact with God can be as
simple, and as profound, as conscious contact with another human being. I can smile.
I can listen. I can forgive. Every encounter with another is an opportunity for prayer,
for acknowledging God’s presence within me. Today I can bring myself a little closer to
my Higher Power. The more I choose to seek the beauty of God’s work in other people,
the more certain of His presence I will become.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

I am less sensitive and my feelings are less easily hurt. I no longer take myself so
seriously. It didn’t use to take much to insult me, to feel that I had been slighted or
left on the outside. What happens to me now is not so important. One cause of our
drinking was because we couldn’t take it, so we escaped the unpleasant situation. We
have learned to take it on the chin if necessary and smile. When I am all wrapped
up in A.A., I do not notice the personal slights so much. They do not seem to matter so
much. I have learned to laugh at self-pity, because it’s so childish. Am I less sensitive?

Meditation For The Day

God’s miracle-working power is as manifest today as it was in the past. It still works
miracles of change in lives and miracles of healing in twisted minds. When a person
trusts wholly in God and leaves to Him the choosing of the day and hour, there is
God’s miracle-working power becoming manifest in that person’s life. So we can
trust in God and have boundless faith in His power to make us whole again,
whenever He chooses.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be sure that there is nothing that God cannot accomplish in
changing my life. I pray that I may have faith in His miracle-working power.


***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

Vision Beyond Today, p. 317

Vision is, I think the ability to make good estimates, both for the
immediate and for the more distant future. Some might feel this sort
of striving to be heresy against “One day at a time.” But that
valuable principle really refers to our mental and emotional lives and
means chiefly that we are not foolishly to repine over the past nor
wishfully to daydream about the future.

As individuals and as a fellowship, we shall surely suffer if we cast the
whole job of planning for tomorrow onto a fatuous idea of providence.
God’s real providence has endowed us human beings with a
considerable capability for foresight, and He evidently expects us to
use it. Of course, we shall often miscalculate the future in whole or in
part, but that is better than to refuse to think at all.

Twelve Concepts, p. 40

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Walk In Dry Places

The loss of choice
Freedom
Many alcoholics are vigorous defenders of free choice.  We have to concede, however, that our choices are not always limited by the tyranny of others. Our own actions can take away from freedom of choice.
Recovering people in AA have learned that taking even one drink will result in the loss of choice, and it is not just a temporary loss of sobriety that one faces. It’s always possible that the person who drinks again may never recovery sobriety.
In the same way, other actions represent loss of choice in our lives.  other actions represent loss of choice in our lives. A person who cheats, for example, may learn that he or she has no choice over the unpleasant outcomes that follow.
We can protect our freedom of choice by deciding only to take actions that will strengthen such freedom in the future.  At no time should we make any choices that rob us of our precious right to choose.
Every action I take today must help me keep favorable options open in the future.  My right to choose was restored by AA, and I must help protect it.

***********************************************************

Keep It Simple

The best way to know God is to love many things.—Vincent Van Gogh
Now that we’re in recovery, we’re learning to love people. We’re learning to love nature.
We’re learning to love new ideas about life. The result? We love the way we feel now that we’re taking care of ourselves.
Is our Higher Power really so close? Can we really find our Higher Power just by loving many things? Yes! When we love, we wake up that part of us that is part of all creation—our spirit. We really come to life when we love!
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, remind me that You are near when I love someone or something. The energy of love come from You.
Action for the Day:  I will list three things I love that help me know my Higher Power is near me.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Zeal is the faculty igniting the other mind powers into the full flame of activity.  –Sylvia Stitt Edwards
When enthusiasm is absent in our lives, no activity appears inviting. In fact, most situations foster fear. With fear, we’re ever so familiar. The program we’re committed to relieves us of all fear, when we work it. And it offers us the enthusiasm that will guarantee positive outcomes for our efforts, when we look to our higher power for the right attitude.
An open, trusting, sincere relationship with our higher power equals enthusiasm about life. But that relationship takes work on our part. When we’ve done our homework we discover that no lesson will baffle us. Prayer and meditation make all things understandable and guarantee that we will “pass the course” on life.
I will begin this day, and every day, looking to God for the gift of zeal to live fully every moment, to give fully what I have to give, and to glory fully in all that I receive. My attitude of gratitude will increase my happiness manyfold. I will look to this day with zeal.

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

Your junior executive may not agree with the contents of our book. He need not, and often should not show it to his alcoholic prospect. But at least he will understand the problem and will no longer be misled by ordinary promises. He will be able to take a position with such a man which is eminently fair and square. He will have no further reason for covering up an alcoholic employee.

p. 148

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

Europe hadn’t proved to be the change that would repair my life, and I started west again. It was in Cambridge that I pronounced my first resolutions about cutting down–New Year’s resolutions I recycled for a dozen years while my drinking and my life kept getting worse. Alcohol had enslaved me. I was in bondage to it, although I kept assuring myself that drinking was a pleasure and a choice.

p. 340

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

This attitude, of course, is the end result of purposeful forgetting. It is an attitude which can only be changed by a deep and honest search of our motives and actions.

p. 79

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“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at
someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”
–Buddha

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new
eyes.
–Marcel Proust

Today I am learning to think and act in a positive way that is healthy for my mind, body
and spirit.
–Ruth Fishel

“The wisest person is not the one who has the fewest failures but the one who turns
failures to best account.”
–Richard R. Grant

“I don’t stay clean on yesterday’s recovery.”
–unknown

“We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work
is the same.”
–Carlos Castenada

“It may be that one reason a dog is a good friend is his tail wags and not his tongue.”
–unknown

Remember that God values you for who you are, not what you do.
–unknown

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

COMFORT

“No man knows of what stuff he
is made until prosperity and
ease try him.”
— A. P. Gouthey

I must be careful that I do not get too comfortable and self-confident. I must be careful
that I do not plateau at this stage of my journey into sobriety and relax in past
achievements. Sometimes I hear the disease of addiction saying to me, “You’ve done all
you need now relax; take it easy.”

Sometimes the sick voice says, “Listen to the stupidity of these newly recovering
people: avoid them!” “You don’t need meeting now just sit and talk with your
friends.” Historically I know that when things are going well for me, that is when I
need to be careful. A complacent and indulgent sobriety is dangerous. It leads to the
disarming slip of arrogance and false pride.

I need to remember the pain of my yesterdays; I need to hear the newly recovering; I
need to hear the pain if I am to continue to gain. My disease will forever speak, but
will I listen?

Teach me to embrace a humility that enables me to enjoy a realistic sobriety.

***********************************************************

“You hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel.”
Psalm 73:23-24

“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my
thoughts than your thoughts.”
Isaiah 55:9

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone
who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man, who looks at his face in
a mirror and after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks
like.
James 1:22-24


***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

If you give up and let things just happen to you, you will open the door to a helpless, passive existence and bring on needless sorrow. Lord, open my eyes to see that You and I can determine the outcome of my day and the direction of my life and that the result of refusing to let my environment control me is a tremendous inner strength , a joyful spirit and a constant reason to smile.

Often times that which we find difficult is that which teaches. Lord, may I always be able to see the good that comes from even my trials.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Letting Go

“Take my will and my life. Guide me in my recovery. Show me how to live.”
Basic Text p. 25

How do we begin the process of letting our Higher Power guide our lives? When we seek advice about situations that trouble us, we often find that our Higher Power works through others. When we accept that we don’t have all the answers, we open ourselves to new and different options. A willingness to let go of our preconceived ideas and opinions opens the channel for spiritual guidance to light our way.

At times, we must be driven to the point of distraction before we are ready to turn difficult situations over to our Higher Power. Anxiously plotting, struggling, planning, worrying – none of these suffice. We can be sure that if we turn our problems over to our Higher Power, through listening to others share their experience or in the quiet of meditation, the answers will come.

There is no point in living a frantic existence. Charging through life like the house is on fire exhausts us and gets us nowhere. In the long run, no amount of manipulation on our part will change a situation. When we let go and allow ourselves access to a Higher Power, we will discover the best way to proceed. Rest assured, answers derived from a sound spiritual basis will be far superior to any answers we could concoct on our own.

Just for today: I will let go and let my Higher Power guide my life.

pg. 333

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Growing is like running a twenty-six mile marathon. If we give up on the twenty-fourth mile, we will never know what it feels like to finish the race. –Anonymous
There will be times in our growth when we will want to give up. Our pain seems to have no end to it. In a sense, we are like the runner of a marathon on her twenty-fourth mile. She may think she cannot finish the race; she may lose her ability to see things as they are.
If she can remember previous successes, she will no doubt make the decision to go on, to at least give the race her best shot. It does not matter how may people come in before or after her. It matters only that she has not given up. When she crosses the finish line, the pain turns quickly into joy.
When we refuse to give up, we give ourselves an accomplishment we can rejoice in, the reward of knowing we have done our best.
What can I finish that I gave up on earlier?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
To wait for moments or places where no pain exists, no separation is felt and where all human restlessness has turned into inner peace is waiting for a dream world. –Henri J. M. Nouwen
Anytime we do a spot check on our anxiety or personal restlessness we will probably find some. As long as we are aware and alive we can expect to have some discomfort, some fear of loss, some doubt. Our program does not totally rid us of these pains. Perhaps our old ways sought absolute peace or escape through abuse of chemicals or food or gambling or sex, but the serenity we seek in our recovery comes through honesty with ourselves and acceptance of the incompleteness of our lives.
When we make room for the pain in our lives, we allow the river of our emotions to flow. It will carry us along to other feelings like happiness and peace. Conflicting feelings can exist side by side in our lives, and when we try to control true feelings of restlessness or pain, we dam the flow of emotions and block the pleasant ones as well as the difficult ones.
I am moving to a real world where I know and accept my feelings.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Zeal is the faculty igniting the other mind powers into the full flame of activity. –Sylvia Stitt Edwards
When enthusiasm is absent in our lives, no activity appears inviting. In fact, most situations foster fear. With fear, we’re ever so familiar. The program we’re committed to relieves us of all fear, when we work it. And it offers us the enthusiasm that will guarantee positive outcomes for our efforts, when we look to our higher power for the right attitude.
An open, trusting, sincere relationship with our higher power equals enthusiasm about life. But that relationship takes work on our part. When we’ve done our homework we discover that no lesson will baffle us. Prayer and meditation make all things understandable and guarantee that we will “pass the course” on life.
I will begin this day, and every day, looking to God for the gift of zeal to live fully every moment, to give fully what I have to give, and to glory fully in all that I receive. My attitude of gratitude will increase my happiness manyfold. I will look to this day with zeal.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Benefits of Recovery
There are two benefits from recovery: we have short-term gains and long-term gains.
The short-term gains are the things we can do today that help us feel better immediately.
We can wake up in the morning, read for a few minutes in our meditation book, and feel lifted. We can work a Step and often notice an immediate difference in the way we feel and function. We can go to a meeting and feel refreshed, talk to a friend and feel comforted, or practice a new recovery behavior, such as dealing with our feelings or doing something good for ourselves, and feel relieved.
There are other benefits from recovery, though, that we don’t see immediately on a daily or even a monthly basis. These are the long-term gains, the larger progress we make in our life.
Over the years, we can see tremendous rewards. We can watch ourselves grow strong in faith, until we have a daily personal relationship with a Higher Power that is as real to us as a relationship with a best friend.
We can watch ourselves grow beautiful as we shed shame, guilt, resentments, self-hatred, and other negative buildups from our past.
We can watch the quality of our relationships improve with family, friends, and spouses. We find ourselves growing steadily and gradually in our capacity to be intimate and close, to give and receive.
We can watch ourselves grow in our careers, in our ability to be creative, powerful, productive people, using our gifts and talents in a way that feels good and benefits others.
We discover the joy and beauty in ourselves, others, and life.
The long-term progress is steady, but sometimes slow, happening in increments and often with much forward and backward movement. Enough days at a time of practicing recovery behaviors and piling up short term gains leads to long-term rewards.
Today, I will be grateful for the immediate and long-term rewards of recovery. If I am new to recovery, I will have faith that I can achieve the long-term benefits. If I’ve been recovering for a while, I will pause to reflect, and be grateful for my overall progress.

Today I am learning to think and act in a positive way that is healthy for my mind, body and spirit. –Ruth Fishel

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

The Light Will Illuminate Your Path

It was almost eleven o’clock at night. I was driving down a highway in Colorado on the west side of the mountains. I was exhausted, driving and driving, hoping I was going somewhere, hoping the road led to someplace where I could rest and replenish myself. Whenever I would become fearful, wondering if I had taken complete leave of my senses, i’d look up in the sky. A crescent moon was snuggled between two mountians. It seemed to urge me on, beckoning me to drive toward it.

Finally, I reached the place marked by the moon. It was a lodge not listed in any directory, in a town not even on any map. It had a mineral bath on the grounds and, yes, an available room.

Sometimes when I’m driving late at night on a strange road and I’m not sure which turn to take, I look for a light. The moon might be setting above a particular place, lighting it with its glow. The lights of a city might brighten one direction more than another. A certain road appears lighter, feels better, feels right.

Often that’s what happens in our lives. When we get to a fork in the road and we’re not certain which direction to go, there’s usually one path that appears lighter than another. Sometimes the light is dim. Sometimes it can only be seen with the eyes of our soul, the eyes of our heart. But it’s also a light that can be clouded and blocked by fear, tenseness, and lack of faith.

Relax. Tune into your body. Trust your heart. Look around. When you don’t know which way to go next, wait. Soon a path will open up. It will appear lighter. It will feel right.

When in doubt, go toward the light. When you get to a fork in the road, choose the way that feels lightest. The light will take you to the next place. The light will lead you home.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go

Teach others they can,too

One good way to help ourselves believe we can is by helping others learn they can,too.

Some of us call this “being of service.”

In Twelve Step programs, they call this “carrying the message.” No matter how much recovery time we have, we can share our experience, strength, and hope with others. We can tell them how we were set free, how it felt in the beginning, and how it feels now, so they’ll believe they can do it,too.

I’ve found even in skydiving that it helps me to share my experience, strength, and hope with skydivers newer to the sport than I am. When I am telling them that it’s okay, that they can do it, I’m really telling myself I can do it,too.

Often in my everyday life, the things I’m telling others they need to do, or can learn, are the very things I need to be telling myself. Repetition forms belief. If we tell others, we’re telling ourselves. The belief in them grows stronger. The belief in us is strengthened,too.

Some people say, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” That may be true. But sometimes when the student appears, it’s because the teacher is ready to learn the lesson,too.

Sometimes helping others is how we help ourselves. And giving it away is often how we get to have some ourselves.

God, help me be of service. Help me remember the value of serving others– that it strengthens and uplifts them and blesses and helps me,too.

*****

Summon Your Aliveness
Being Fully Present by Madisyn Taylor

When we live fully in the moment there is an aliveness that comes easily.

When we are fully present, we offer our whole selves to whatever it is that we are doing. Our attention, our integrity, and our energy are all focused in the moment and on the task at hand. This is a powerful experience, and when we are in this state, we feel completely alive and invigorated. This kind of aliveness comes easily when we are absorbed in work or play that we love, but it is available to us in every moment, and we can learn to summon it regardless of what we are doing. Even tasks or jobs we don’t enjoy can become infused with the light of being present. The more present we are, the more meaningful our entire lives become.

Next time you find yourself fully engaged in the moment, whether you are making art, trying to solve an interesting puzzle, or talking to your best friend, you may want to take a moment to notice how you feel. You may observe that you are not thinking about what you need to do next, your body feels like it’s pleasantly humming, or your brain feels tingly. As you enjoy the feeling of being located entirely in the present moment, you can inform yourself that you may try to recall this feeling later. You might try this while driving home or getting ready for bed, allowing yourself to be just as engaged in that experience as you were in the earlier one.

The more we draw ourselves into the present moment, the more we honor the gift of our lives, and the more we honor the people around us. When we are fully present, we give and receive aliveness in equal measure. For today, try to be fully present in your daily activities and watch a new reality open for you. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

As a newcomer, I was told that my admission of my powerlessness over alcohol was my first step toward freedom from its deadly grip. I soon came to realize the truth of that fact. In that regard, surrender was a dire necessity. But for me that was only a small beginning toward acquiring humility. I’ve learned in The Program that to be willing to work for humility — as something to be desired for itself — takes most of us a long, long time. Do I realize that a whole lifetime geared to self-centeredness can’t be shifted into reverse in a split second?

Today I Pray

May I search for my own humility as a quality that I must cultivate to survive, not just an admission that I am powerless over my compulsive behavior. Step One is just that — step one — in the direction of acquiring an attitude of humility. May I be realistic enough to know that this may take half a lifetime.

Today I Will Remember

Pride blew it; let humility have a chance.

*************************************

One More Day

There is always room for improvement, you know — it’s the biggest room in the house.
– Louise Heath Leber

Acceptance of criticism is very hard, even when it’s given constructively. As small children we have bristled at suggestions about our drawings or toy houses we made. We liked things to be the way we wanted them to be.

Not everyone is so talented or sensitive that they can offer criticism without it hurting. We do ourselves justice when we learn to listen to most criticism. Of course, we remain the right to disagree.

We understand that criticism is often tempered with love and understanding. A Receptiveness to criticism helps us become less rigid and more willing to change.

I can accept criticism and try to change when it will benefit me.

************************************

Food For Thought

Loving Truth

Since it is truth that sets us free – free from our addiction and free from crippling fear – we come to love this truth, even when it hurts. It was mainly our fear that kept us from recognizing the truth about ourselves. We needed help and support from a Higher Power before we could face reality. Now that the OA program sustains us, we can devote our time and energy to striving for truth in all that we think, say, and do.

Our devotion to truth may bring us into conflict with those around us. What we need to remember is that we are not responsible for convincing anyone else of what we believe to be true. We are honest about where we are, but we do not expect or demand agreement from anyone else. Since each of us has a different perspective, we can only know the truth, as we each understand it. Loving truth means that we acknowledge it to be too big for any one of us to grasp completely.

Increase my devotion to Your truth.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

STEP TWO
“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again
and expecting a different result.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

While in the grip of my disease I tried many things to deal with my compulsive overeating. I tried many, many diets, fasting, exercise programs, treatment, therapy, church and even resorted to weight loss surgery. I did the same thing over and over again – I tried outward solutions to fix an inward problem. And the sad thing was I somehow thought that I would get different results: a permanent change of my compulsive overeating. But it did not work that way. It was acting with insanity. I was frustrated and very, very sad. All along, I knew there was something wrong with me, that I was not “normal”, but I didn’t know what to do about it.

Then the blessing of the program came to me. I learned about Step Two: “Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.” I came to believe that was true. I finally was doing something different. Never before had I approached my compulsive overeating on three levels all at the same time. I had never seen my disease as a physical, emotional and spiritual disease that needed addressing at the same time, one day at a time. I began to slowly learn how to do this through the steps and the tools, with the help of sponsors and friends in the program. I found myself doing something different and getting different results. I found my sanity returning, piece by piece.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will do something different, knowing I will get different results.
~ Carolyn

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We doctors have realized for a long time that some form of moral psychology was of urgent importance to alcoholics, but it’s application presented difficulties beyond our conception. What with our ultra-modern standards, our scientific approach to everything, we are perhaps not well equipped to apply the powers of good that lie outside our synthetic knowledge. – Pg. xxvii – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Whatever time it is that we are reading this, we may feel anxious about what the rest of the day will bring. But our program is a ‘now’ program. Later will bring what later will bring, right now we’re clean and sober!

I will meditate briefly on the phrase ‘Be Here Now’ to better understand my new way of life.

Being in the Moment

Today, I see that the only real point of power is in the present, which is to say that life cannot be lived backward or forward, but only in the context of today. If I truly let myself have this moment and all that it contains, I will be in quiet possession of great eternal wealth. All that is, is in this moment where all the waters meet and all the wisdom of the ages lies; it is the now that calls me to it with open arms. I work out my past, not because it is right or good or proper, but because it allows me to be in fuller possession of my present. By releasing and returning to me those parts of me that remain prisoner in my own psychic and emotional jail, I can have access to the now. I allow myself this moment.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

We not only attempt geographical ‘cures’ while drinking, but often while clean and sober too. When you make a move ‘for the better,’ unless you can honestly say you are running to something positive, then you are running from something that you haven’t faced.

No matter how fast or how far I go, I can’t outrun myself.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Not drinking is a symptom of your recovery.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am learning to think and act in a positive way that is healthy for my mind, body and spirit.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Laughter is the music of Alcoholics Anonymous. – Angie D.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 15

Gratitude
Today I am grateful for a new life, one in which my prayers are those of thanksgiving.
My prayer time is more for listening than for talking.
I know today that if I cannot change the wind, I can adjust my sail.
– Daily Reflections, p. 314

Thought to Ponder . . .
There is a calmness to a life lived in gratitude, a quiet joy.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H J F = Happy, Joyous, Free.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Pain
“Though I still find it difficult to accept
today’s pain and anxiety with any great degree of serenity
— as those more advanced in the spiritual life
seem able to do —
I can give thanks for present pain nevertheless.
I find the willingness to do this
by contemplating the lessons learned from past suffering
— lessons which have led to the blessings I now enjoy.
I can remember how the agonies of alcoholism,
the pain of rebellion and thwarted pride,
have often led me to God’s grace, and so to a new freedom.”
Bill W., Grapevine, March 1962
c. 1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 266

Thought to Consider . . .
Joy isn’t the absence of pain — it’s the presence of God.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A B C = Acceptance, Belief, Change

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Wrong
>From “When A.A. Came of Age”:
“After a long interval we heard from the promoter. He wrote, ‘You told us that outside enterprises can be fine and very helpful. But you also said that they could not be mixed with A.A. I figured that they could be, and should be. Well, you folks at Headquarters were right and I was wrong.’
“With his letter, the promoter sent us a card, which he had already mailed to every group in the United States. It was folded like a golf score card, and on the outside was printed, ‘Group so-and-so, place so-and-so. Rule No. 62.’ When the card was unfolded a single pungent sentence met the eye: ‘Don’t take yourself too damned seriously.'”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 104

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“More than a million of us who suffer from the disease of alcoholism have found not just the ability to live with or survive this insidious disease, but a joyful way of life as new as this morning and as old as mankind. We can gain sobriety, aspire to serenity, at no greater price than caring for our fellow sufferers and sharing with them what has been freely given to us. We can experience the true joy of love that we once tried to destroy by not giving it away, and we can learn the truth that the more we give away, the more we will have.”
Brick Town, N.J., January 1977
“Because One Man Was Lonely,”
AA Grapevine

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“We never apologize to anyone for depending upon our Creator. We can
laugh at those who think spirituality the way of weakness.
Paradoxically, it is the way of strength. The verdict of the ages is
that faith means courage. All men of faith have courage. They trust
their God. We never apologize for God. Instead we let Him
demonstrate, through us, what He can do. We ask Him to remove our
fear and direct our attention to what He would have us be. At once,
we commence to outgrow fear.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 68~

When working with a man and his family, you should take care not to
participate in their quarrels. You may spoil your chance of being
helpful if you do. But urge upon a man’s family that he has been a
very sick person and should be treated accordingly. You should warn
against arousing resentment or jealousy. You should point out that
his defects of character are not going to disappear over night. Show
them that he has entered upon a period of growth. Ask them to
remember, when they are impatient, the blessed fact of his sobriety.
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 100~

We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.84

Can we accept poverty, sickness, loneliness, and bereavement with courage and serenity?
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.112

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Many people wonder how A.A. can function under a seeming anarchy. Other societies have to have law and force and sanction and punishment, administered by authorized people. Happily for us, we found that we need no human authority whatever. We have two authorities which are far more effective. One is benign, the other malign.
There is God, our Father, who very simply says, ‘I am waiting for you to do my will.’ The other authority is named John Barleycorn, and he says, ‘You had better do God’s will or I will kill you.’
The A.A. Traditions are neither rules, regulations, nor laws. We obey them willingly because we ought to and because we want to. Perhaps the secret of their power lies in the fact that these life-giving communications spring out of living experience and are rooted in love.

Prayer for the Day: Against Temptations – May the strength of my Higher Power guide me. May the power of my Higher Power preserve me. May the wisdom of my Higher Power instruct me. May the hand of God protect me. May the way of God direct me. May the shield of God defend me. And may the presence of, and belief in, my Higher Power guard me against the temptations of the world.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-November 14th.

Bsober Listen

Daily Reflections

 

INTUITION AND INSPIRATION

. . . . we ask God for inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision. We relax and take it
easy. We don’t struggle.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 86

I invest my time in what I truly love. Step Eleven is a discipline that allows me and my
Higher Power to be together, reminding me that, with God’s help, intuition and inspiration
are possible. Practice of the Step brings on self-love. In a consistent attempt to improve
my conscious contact with a Higher Power, I am subtly reminded of my unhealthy past,
with its patterns of grandiose thinking and false feeling of omnipotence. When I ask for
the power to carry out God’s will for me, I am made aware of my powerlessness. Humility
and a healthy self-love are compatible, a direct result of working Step Eleven.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

A better way than judging people is to look for all the good you can find in them. If you
look hard enough and long enough, you ought to be able to find some good somewhere in
every person. In A.A. I learned that my job was to try to bring out the good, not criticize
the bad. Every alcoholic is used to being judged and criticized. That has never helped
anyone get sober. In A.A. we tell people they can change. We try to bring out the best in
them. We encourage their good points and ignore their bad points as much as possible.
People are not converted by criticism. Do I look for the good in people?

Meditation For The Day

There must be a design for the world in the mind of God. We can believe that His design
for the world is a universal brotherhood of men and women under the fatherhood of God.
The plan for your life must also be in the mind of God. In times of quiet meditation you
can seek for God’s guidance, for the revealing of God’s plan for your day. Then you can
live this day according to that guidance. Many people are not making of their lives what
God meant them to be, and so they are unhappy. They have missed the design for their
lives.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may try to follow God’s design for today. I pray that I may have the sense of
Divine Intent in what I do today.


***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

Our Protective Mantle, p. 316

Almost every newspaper reporter who covers A.A. complains, at first,
of the difficulty of writing his story without names. But he quickly
forgets this difficulty when he realizes that here is a group of people
who care nothing for acclaim.

Probably this is the first time in his life he has ever reported on an
organization that wants no personalized publicity. Cynic though he
may be, this obvious sincerity quickly transforms him into a friend of
A.A.

<< << << >> >> >>

Moved by the spirit of anonymity, we try to give up our natural desires
for personal distinction as A.A. members, both among fellow alcoholics
and before the general public. As we lay aside these very human
aspirations, we believe that each of us takes part in the weaving of a
protective mantle which covers our whole Society and under which we
may grow and work in unity.

1. Grapevine, March 1946
2. 12 & 12, p. 187

***********************************************************

Walk In Dry Places

No Respecter of People
Carrying the message
As human beings, we have to realize that some people are more attractive to us than others.  Even in AA, we will likely be more interested in a person who has qualities we admire than one who annoys and repels us.
This is a snobbish attitude that we ridicule when we see it practiced by others, but we may be practicing it in our own way by seeking out only those members we find interesting and attractive. Without realizing it, we can be making AA a popularity contest, which it’s not supposed to be.
We can compensate for such tendencies by making a special effort to express friendship to everyone at the meeting. This can even become a spiritual exercise. It doesn’t hurt to admit that one has snobbish tendencies that can violate the spirit of AA.
Just as alcohol is no respecter of people, so it is that the program should be open to all. Today, I’ll try to make AA a welcoming haven for everyone.

***********************************************************

Keep It Simple

Make it a point to do something every day that you don’t want to do—Mark Twain
Self-discipline is a key part of living sober life. We need it t get to our meetings regularly. We need it to understand the Steps. We need it to work the Steps.
And we get much in return. With self-discipline, we learn to trust ourselves. We learn to do what is most loving and caring for ourselves. What a great relief! One of the worst parts of our illness was that we couldn’t count on ourselves. We didn’t know what we’d do next. Self-discipline heals this part of our illness.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, You have given me much. It’s only right that I give You part of my day. I will pray and meditate on Your wonders.
Action for the Day:  I will list areas of my program where I lack self-discipline. I will share the list with my group and sponsor, and I’ll let them know in a month how I’m doing.

***********************************************************

Each Day a New Beginning

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. –Kathleen Casey Theisen
How awesome is our power, personally, to choose our attitudes and our responses to any situation, to every situation. We will feel only how we choose to feel, no matter the circumstance. Happiness is as free an option as sorrow.
Perceiving our challenges as opportunities for positive growth rather than stumbling blocks in our path to success is a choice readily available. What is inevitable–a matter over which we have no choice–is that difficult times, painful experiences will visit us. We can, however, greet them like welcome guests, celebrating their blessings on us and the personal growth they inspire.
No circumstance demands suffering. Every circumstance has a silver lining. In one instance you may choose to feel self-pity; in the next, gladness.
We do not always feel confident about our choices, even when we accept the responsibility for making them. How lucky for us that the program offers a solution! Prayer and meditation, guidance from our higher power, can help us make the right choice every time.
I will relish my freedom to choose, to feel, to act. I and only I can take it away.

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

After reading this book, a junior executive can go to such a man and say approximately this, “Look here, Ed. Do you want to stop drinking or not? You put me on the spot every time you get drunk. It isn’t fair to me or the firm. I have been learning something about alcoholism. If you are an alcoholic, you are a mighty sick man. You act like one. The firm wants to help you get over it, and if you are interested, there is a way out. If you take it, your past will be forgotten and the fact that you went away for treatment will not be mentioned. But if you cannot or will not stop drinking, I think you ought to resign.”

pp. 147-148

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I began to drink daily and rationalized that in France, of course, you have to have wine with meals. And after the dinner, after the wine, then there were liqueurs. My journals and letters bear witness in the deterioration of my handwriting as the evening wore on, drinking as I wrote. It was there too that I first became dependent on alcohol. After work, on the way to the Alliance Francaise for classes, I’d stop at a bistro for a glass of cognac to give me courage to get me there–my need being greater than the embarrassment of being a woman drinking alone in the 1950s. One vacation, I went to visit friends in Scotland, traveling slowly through the English and Welsh countryside. The bottles of cognac and Benedictine I’d brought as gifts for them I drank in little hotel rooms miles before I got there. As long as it lasted, I could stay out of the pubs.

pp. 339-340

***********************************************************

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

Some of us, though, tripped over a very different snag. We clung to the claim that when drinking we never hurt anybody but ourselves. Our families didn’t suffer, because we always paid the bills and seldom drank at home. Our business associates didn’t suffer, because we were usually on the job. Our reputations hadn’t suffered, because we were certain few knew of our drinking. Those who did would sometimes assure us that, after all, a lively bender was only a good man’s fault. What real harm, therefore, had we done? No more, surely, than we could easily mend with a few casual apologies.

p. 79

***********************************************************

“The door of opportunity won’t open unless you do some pushing.”
–Anonymous

Just when I have learned the way to live, life changes.
–Hugh Prather

I AM MORE
I am more than happy, I am JOYFUL.
I am more than healthy, I am WHOLE.
I am more than alive, I am RADIANT.
I am more than successful, I am FREE.
I am more than caring, I am LOVING.
I am more than tranquil, I am PEACEFUL.
I am more than interested, I am INVOLVED.
I am more than adequate, I am TRIUMPHANT.
I am more than fortunate, I am PROSPEROUS.
I am more than human, I am a CHILD OF GOD.
–William Arthur

Things turn out best for the people who make the best out of the way things turn out.
–Art Linkletter

Life is available to anyone no matter what age. All you have to do is grab it.
–Art Carney

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

LEISURE

“It is seldom that an American
retires from business to enjoy
his fortune in comfort . . . He
works because he has always
worked, and knows no other
way.”
— Thomas Nichols

For years I rushed around being busy and I missed me. I spent years trying to please
people by doing things and I missed me. I was a workaholic, my value was seen only
in what I could achieve and I missed me.

Today I can relax in my sobriety; indeed sobriety has enabled me to relax. I can sit
and do nothing and it is okay. Life is about “being” and not “doing”. Spirituality is
about taking time out for me because I am worth it. “Be still and know that I am God,”
said the psalmist. In the silence of self I have discovered the meaning of life and I
have found God.

Thank You, Lord, for creating the feelings of peace that come from leisure.

***********************************************************

Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus
Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.
2 John, 1:3

“May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine upon us.”
Psalm 67:1

***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

When you choose to fight, be sure it is only for that which is right and fair. Lord, help me to see clearly when goodness is being violated and guide me in helping those who need my help.

Nothing is ever quite as bad as it seems. Call on God and then practice expectancy and optimism and things will turn out better than you expect. Lord, thank You for tomorrow.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Not Just Surviving

“When we were using, our lives became an exercise in survival. Now we are doing much more living than surviving.”

Basic Text p. 50

“I’d be better off dead!” A familiar refrain to a practicing addict, and with good reason. All we had to look forward to was more of the same miserable existence. Our hold on life was weak at best. Our emotional decay, our spiritual demise, and the crushing awareness that nothing would ever change were constants. We had little hope and no concept of the life we were missing out on.

The resurrection of our emotions, our spirits, and our physical health takes time. The more experience we gain in living, rather than merely existing, the more we understand how precious and delightful life can be. Traveling, playing with a small child, making love, expanding our intellectual horizons, and forming relationships are among the endless activities that say, “I’m alive.” We discover so much to cherish and feel grateful to have a second chance.

If we had died in active addiction, we would have been bitterly deprived of so many of life’s joys. Each day we thank a Power greater than ourselves for another day clean and another day of life.

Just for today: I am grateful to be alive. I will do something today to celebrate.

pg. 332

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
People are lonely because they build walls instead of bridges. –Joseph Fort Newton
Communication is much more than words. Words are merely fingers pointing the direction to understanding–they are not understanding itself. To really communicate with someone, we have to allow ourselves, just for a moment, to become that other person. When we do this, we begin to be able to see beyond the masks that hide what another person is really feeling.
When we take the time to really see others, we may discover they are frightened, timid people longing for understanding. When we get beyond reacting to their outward behavior and move toward viewing their inner selves, it is much easier to extend a hand of friendship, to say we care, and truly mean it.
Who can I see as they really are today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
No one can get rid of the spirit of judgment by an effort of the will. –Paul Tournier
In the past, we applied our wills and tried to bring about the changes we wanted. We may still unconsciously try to create self-improvement by an effort of will. But, as long as we do that, we continue the same circles of frustration and defeat we knew before recovery. The way to growth is in directions we cannot fully imagine for ourselves. We can become ready for change and then pray for help. The man who simply became ready to have God remove his judgmental attitudes was surprised to find God’s answer was to make him more trusting of others and less judgmental of himself.
The wonders of recovery are miracles because we tried before and couldn’t recover by ourselves. Miracles are surprises that come upon us because God’s will for us is more creative and far reaching in its renewal than anything we can think of.
Today, I pray that I may know the will of God and forgo my limited willfulness.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. –Kathleen Casey Theisen
How awesome is our power, personally, to choose our attitudes and our responses to any situation, to every situation. We will feel only how we choose to feel, no matter the circumstance. Happiness is as free an option as sorrow.
Perceiving our challenges as opportunities for positive growth rather than stumbling blocks in our path to success is a choice readily available. What is inevitable–a matter over which we have no choice–is that difficult times, painful experiences will visit us. We can, however, greet them like welcome guests, celebrating their blessings on us and the personal growth they inspire.
No circumstance demands suffering. Every circumstance has a silver lining. In one instance you may choose to feel self-pity; in the next, gladness.
We do not always feel confident about our choices, even when we accept the responsibility for making them. How lucky for us that the program offers a solution! Prayer and meditation, guidance from our higher power, can help us make the right choice every time.
I will relish my freedom to choose, to feel, to act. I and only I can take it away.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting Our Anger Out
It’s okay to be angry, but it isn’t healthy to be resentful. Regardless of what we learned as children, no matter what we saw role modeled, we can learn to deal with our anger in ways that are healthy for us and for those around us. We can have our angry feelings. We can connect with them, own them, and feel them, express them, release them, and be done with them.
We can learn to listen to what anger is telling us about what we want and need in order to take care of ourselves.
Sometimes we can even indulge in angry feelings that aren’t justified. Feelings are just feelings; there is no morality in the feeling, only in our behavior. We can feel angry without hurting or abusing others or ourselves. We can learn to deal with anger in ways that benefit our relationships instead of ways that harm them.
If we don’t feel our angry feelings today, we will need to face them tomorrow.
Today, I will let myself feel my anger. I will express my anger appropriately, without guilt. Then I will be done with it.

Today I know that whatever ability, talents and energy I have are perfect for this moment. Today I know that God gives me all that I need to do what he wants me to do in this day. –Ruth Fishel

*****

You are reading from the book Food for Thought.

Waking Up to Truth

Our illusions were tied to our compulsive overeating behavior. Abstaining from the behavior makes it possible for us to let go of our illusions. It is the Higher Power that leads us into the truth, which penetrates and dispels illusions.

Working the Steps, reading the OA literature, and talking with other members prepares us to receive new truth. Our Higher Power gives us insights, sometimes-in quick flashes of perception and sometimes slowly over a long period of time. The experience of discovery is one of the most rewarding facets of our program. It is an ongoing process, since we continue to grow and become aware of new truth.

Too much food kept us in a fog. Now we are recovering from the physical effects of our addiction to refined sugars and carbohydrates and the emotional dependency on eating to avoid feeling pain. In the process, we wake up to more and more truth about others, our Higher Power, and ourselves.

May I live by the truth that You reveal.

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

Find Your Center

“My life has changed so much,” the man at Breitenbush told me. “I go with the flow now, try to be in the moment, be spontaneous. I’m a foreman, and even at work life goes much more smoothly. A year ago, I didn’t know what it meant to be centered. Now I do and I work at staying that way.” He looked around the camp, a nature retreat in the heart of the Willamette National Forest in Oregon. “And I know how to get there too.”

For many years, I didn’t understand what it meant to be centered either. If I was that way for a while, it was more accidental than deliberate. It takes time, practice, and mostly desire and commitment to make staying centered a way of life. But the time it takes is worth it.

Learn what it feels like to be centered, to be balanced. Learn what it feels like to be off center. Learn to tell the difference. Then, learn to come back to center as quickly as possible.

Quiet. Relaxed. Feeling right about what you’re doing. On track. In harmony. At peace. In balance. No turbulent emotions racing through you. No disorganized thoughts clamoring through your head. Your body feels aligned, and you feel connected to it. What you do and say comes from your center. It feels right and honest. It feels like you, and you feel connected to your self, your deepest self, your soul. Your heart is open. And so is your mind.

That’s the place from which we’re seeking to live our lives. Find a way to get to that place, then go there often. Some helps include nature, listening to music, going for a walk, repeating a prayer, or forms of deep breathing or meditation.

It’s hard to find a place we’ve never been to. Learn what it feels like to be centered. Know your center is in you. Then go there often.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go

There’s freedom in letting go

Sometimes we gain freedom not only by letting go ourselves, but by helping someone else let go of us.

A child rounds a corner on her little purple bike, one training wheel clattering on the sidewalk, the other high in the air. Her father calls her over and tells her that today is special. Today, she has finally outgrown those training wheels and will learn to ride the bike like the big kids! Tears follow the happy news.

“But what if I fall? Or I can’t balance? I’m not ready!” she complains.

Finally, after many assurances that he will be right beside her, she lets daddy take the wheels off.

At first he holds tightly to the bike, and she sits there frozen, unable to pedal, rigidly gripping the handlebars.

“Relax,” he says. “It’s okay. I’m right here by your side.”

She relaxes. Then she starts to pedal. Dad releases his grip slightly. He lets go and runs alongside. She looks over and laughs. “Daddy, don’t let go! I’ll fall!” And then, the inevitable happens, she falls.

But she gets back up. He holds on again. And again. And again. Until near suppertime, daddy runs beside beside, lets go of the bike, slows to a walk, and watches his little girl ride off on two wheels.

Is there something or someone in your life that you need to let go of in order to grow? Is there someone you need to help let go of you? Sometimes it’s tempting to keep people dependent on us. It makes us feel needed and powerful. It makes us feel good. But it may be holding them and us back.

Go ahead. It’s time. Take off the training wheels. Help them ride off into the sunset. Set both of you free.

God, help me resist the temptation to keep people dependent on me. Give me the courage to help other people let go of me.

*****

Embracing New Information
Be Open by Madisyn Taylor

As we live we will go through the processes of opening to new information, integrating it, and stabilizing our worldview.

Living in an information age, it is easy to become overwhelmed by the constant influx of scientific studies, breaking news, and even spiritual revelations that fill our bookshelves, radio waves, and in-boxes. No sooner have we decided what to eat or how to think about the universe than a new study or book comes out confounding our well-researched opinion. After a while, we may be tempted to dismiss or ignore new information in the interest of stabilizing our point of view, and this is understandable. Rather than closing down, we might try instead to remain open by allowing our intuition to guide us.

For example, contradictory studies concerning foods that are good for you and foods that are bad for you are plentiful. At a certain point, though, we can feel for ourselves whether coffee or tomatoes are good for us or not. The answer is different for each individual, and this is something that a scientific study can’t quite account for. All we can do is take in the information and process it through our own systems of understanding. In the end, only we can decide what information, ideas, and concepts we will integrate. Remaining open allows us to continually change and shift by checking in with ourselves as we learn new information. It keeps us flexible and alert, and while it can feel a bit like being thrown off balance all the time, this openness is essential to the process of growth and expansion.

Perhaps the key is realizing that we are not going to finally get to some stable place of having it all figured out. Throughout our lives we will go through the processes of opening to new information, integrating it, and stabilizing our worldview. No sooner will we have reached some kind of stability than it will be time to open again to new information, which is inherently destabilizing. If we see ourselves as surfers riding the incoming waves of information and inspiration, always open and willing to attune ourselves to the next shift, we will see how blessed we are to have this opportunity to play on the waves and, most of all, to enjoy the ride. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

First search for a little humility, my sponsor urged me. If you don’t, he said, you’re greatly increasing the risk of going “out there” again. After a while, in spite of my lifelong rebelliousness, I took his advice; I began to try to practice humility, simply because I believed it was the right thing to do. Hopefully, the day will come when most of my rebelliousness will be but a memory, and then I’ll practice humility because I deeply want it as a way of life. Can I try, today, to leave my self behind — and to seek the humility of self-forgetfulness?

Today I Pray

Since I — like so many chemically or otherwise dependent people — am a rebel, may I know that I will need to practice humility. May I recognize that humility does not come easily to a rebellious nature, whether I am out-and-out defiant, dug-in negative or, more subtly, determined in a roundabout way to change everything else but myself. I pray that by practicing humility it will become instinctive for me.

Today I Will Remember

Get the humble habit.

*************************************

One More Day

Rest is not a matter of doing absolutely nothing. Rest is Repair. Daniel W. Josselyn

Every once in a while the burdens of our lives get us down. We just can’t be optimistic all the time. It’s so important to know that we can let go of those burdens for a day or two; in fact, we owe it to ourselves.

Too many of us feel guilty if we succumb to our feelings of sadness, disgust, anger, or exhaustion. Why? Having a medical problem doesn’t make us any more or less exempt from the problems which face everybody else. There will be days when there seems to be no reason to get out of bed. That’s okay. We can take a mental health day by relaxing. We can pamper ourselves every once in a while to rejuvenate the physical and emotional strength needed to face our world.

I can simplify my life by giving myself this day for relaxing.

************************************

Food For Thought

Waking Up to Truth

Our illusions were tied to our compulsive overeating behavior. Abstaining from the behavior makes it possible for us to let go of our illusions. It is the Higher Power that leads us into the truth, which penetrates and dispels illusions.

Working the Steps, reading the OA literature, and talking with other members prepares us to receive new truth. Our Higher Power gives us insights, sometimes-in quick flashes of perception and sometimes slowly over a long period of time. The experience of discovery is one of the most rewarding facets of our program. It is an ongoing process, since we continue to grow and become aware of new truth.

Too much food kept us in a fog. Now we are recovering from the physical effects of our addiction to refined sugars and carbohydrates and the emotional dependency on eating to avoid feeling pain. In the process, we wake up to more and more truth about others, our Higher Power, and ourselves.

May I live by the truth that You reveal.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

~ Contentment ~
Everything has its wonders, even darkness and silence, and I learn, whatever state I may be in, therein to be content.
Helen Keller

I spent most of my life dreaming and wishing for the stars, always hoping that something wonderful would happen to change my life. If only my mother were more loving; if only I had more friends; if only I had a better husband or smarter children; and, more especially, if only I were thin. I was never satisfied with what I had because someone else always seemed to be better off than me. It was like I was always being short-changed in life, and what expectations I had had as a child just didn’t materialize. I never realized that what I had was exactly what I needed at the time, even though it may not have seemed to be what I wanted.

I know now that, even though I may have less than a perfect life, I have many wonderful things. I have so much more than many others, and instead seeing my cup as half-empty, I can now see it as half-full. I can see the miracle of the changing seasons, the beauty of a sunset and the changing moods of the sea. I can hear the beautiful music that feeds my soul, a baby’s cry and the crash of thunder. I am surrounded by loving friends and family who care for me as I care for them. I can look at those less fortunate than me and know that I am truly blessed. More and more I am becoming aware that I have exactly what I need for today, and in that I am content.

One Day at a Time . . .
I am content knowing that I have many blessings in my life … may I always be willing to see that.
~ Sharon S. ~

*****************************************

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We, of Alcoholics Anonymous, are more than one hundred men and women who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. To show other alcoholics PRECISELY HOW WE HAVE RECOVERED is the main purpose of this book. For them, we hope these pages will prove so convincing that no further authentication will be necessary. we think this account of our experiences will help everyone to better understand the alcoholic. Many do not comprehend that the alcoholic is a very sick person. And besides, we are sure that our way of living has its advantages for all. – Pg. xiii – 4th. Edition – Forward To First Edition

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

We have been known to think that dishonesty with others was OK as long as it didn’t ‘hurt’ them. We really don’t know what will hurt another or not. Being dishonest with other people deprives them of the information they need to run their own lives.

Honesty is honesty. Let me understand that ‘little’ dishonesties are a disservice to others as well as myself.

Leaving Abuse Behind

Today, I see my life as my life. If I do not take care of it, make plans and dream dreams, who will? I am not second in my own heart – there has to be a place on this Earth where I come first, so that the little child inside me feels loved and held. I will come first with me. In the same way that I will protect my children from harm, I will protect myself. Chaos is a part of a dysfunctional family system. I hardly saw it as unusual – it was just what was, a painful way of life – the only one I knew. I do not need to recreate problem situations in my life today in order to feel stable or as if I have a home. I can live a calm and pleasant life.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

You may very well under-stand your demons, defects, compulsions, and fear. You have an arsenal of information about recovery to overcome them. Why then is it all so difficult? Deep inside you know what you always have known: knowledge alone is not enough.

I know that ‘no-ing’ is not enough and ‘knowing’ is not enough. I must do.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

It gets worse, so you have to get better.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that whatever ability, talents and energy I have are perfect for this moment. Today I know that God gives me all that I need to do what he wants me to do in this day.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Speaking from the podiums at meetings and possibly embarrassing myself was way more than I wanted to do. I believe today that my willingness to be embarrassed was the key to me getting a life. – Steve A.

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November 14

Indispensable
When we find ourselves up-tight and even frantic, we can ask ourselves occasionally,
“Am I really that indispensable?” or “Is this hurry really necessary?”
What a relief to find the honest answer is frequently no!
And such devices actually serve, in the long run, not only to help us get over our drinking problem and its old ways;
they also enable us to become far more productive, because we conserve and channel our energy better.
– Living Sober, p. 46

Thought to Ponder . . .
Rashness and haste make all things insecure. Take it easy!

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
O D A A T = One Day At A Time.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Sanity
“My actions drunk or sober, before AA,
were not those of a sane person.
My desire to be honest with myself made it necessary
for me to realize that my drinking was irrational.
It had to be, or I could not have justified
my erratic behavior as I did.
I’ve been benefited from a dictionary definition I found
that reads: ‘rationalization is giving
a socially acceptable reason for
socially unacceptable behavior,
and socially unacceptable behavior is a form of insanity.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 550-1

Thought to Consider . . .
Let the lunatic out of the attic.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
K I S S = Keep It Simple, Surrender

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Balance Today’s Books
From: “Yesterday’s Baggage”
For the wise have always known that no one can make much of his life until self-searching becomes a regular habit, until he is able to admit and accept what he finds, and until he patiently and persistently tries to correct what is wrong.
Twelve and Twelve, page 88

I have more than enough to handle today, without dragging along yesterday’s baggage too. I must balance today’s books, if I am to have a chance tomorrow. So I ask myself if I have erred and how I can avoid repeating that particular behavior. Did I hurt anyone, did I help anyone, and why? Some of today is bound to spill over into tomorrow, but most of it need not if I make an honest daily inventory.
1990, AAWS, Inc., Daily Reflections, page 287

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“I have always carried a meeting list and quarter for a phone call because I don’t know when I am going to want another drink.”
Cornwall, Ontario, January 2005
“From Rags to Riches,”
Voices of Long-Term Sobriety

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“We will seldom be interested in liquor. If tempted, we recoil from
it as from a hot flame. We react sanely and normally, and we will
find that this has happened automatically. We will see that our new
attitude toward liquor has been given us without any thought or
effort on our part. It just comes!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 84

We have learned that whatever the human frailties of various faiths
may be, those faiths have given purpose and direction to millions.
People of faith have a logical idea of what life is all about.
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 49

Were we kind and loving toward all?
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.86

Courtesy, kindness, justice, and love are the keynotes by which we may come into harmony with practically anybody.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.93

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Through the vital Fifth Step, we began to get the feeling that we could be forgiven, no matter what we had thought or done.
Often it was while working on this Step with our sponsors or spiritual advisers that we first felt truly able to forgive others, no matter how deeply we felt they had wronged us.
Our moral inventory had persuaded us that all-round forgiveness was desirable, but it was only when we resolutely tackled Step Five that we inwardly knew we’d be able to receive forgiveness and give it, too.

Prayer for the Day: Right Living – Higher Power, deliver me: From the cowardice that dare not face new truth; From the laziness that is contented with half-truth; >From the arrogance that thinks it knows all truth; These things, good Lord, I pray for, Give me the strength to work for.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-Nov 13th

Bsober Listen

Daily Reflections

LOOKING OUTWARD

We ask especially for freedom from self-will, and are careful to make no requests for
ourselves only. We may ask for ourselves, however, if others will be helped. We are
careful never to pray for our own selfish ends.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 87

As an active alcoholic, I allowed selfishness to run rampant in my life. I was so attached
to my drinking and other selfish habits that people and moral principles came second.
Now, when I pray for the good of others rather than my “own selfish ends,” I practice a
discipline in letting go of selfish attachments, caring for my fellows and preparing for the
day when I will be required to let go of all earthly attachments.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Who am I to judge other people? Have I proved by my great success in life that I know
all the answers? Exactly the opposite. Until I came into A.A., my life could be called a
failure. I made all the mistakes a man could make. I took all the wrong roads there
were to take. On the basis of my record, am I a fit person to be a judge of my fellow
men? Hardly. In A.A. I have learned not to judge people. I am so often wrong. Let the
results of what they do judge them. It’s not up to me. Am I less harsh in my judgment of
people?

Meditation For The Day

In our time of meditation, we again seem to hear: “Come unto me, all ye that are weary
and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Again and again we seem to hear God saying
this to us. “Come unto me” for the solution of every problem, for the overcoming of
every temptation, for the calming of every fear, for all our need, physical, mental or
spiritual, but mostly “come unto me” for the strength we need to live with peace of mind
and the power to be useful and effective.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may go to God today for those things which I need to help me live. I pray
that I may find real peace of mind.


***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

Greater Than Ourselves, p. 315

If a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were sufficient
to overcome alcoholism, many of us would have recovered long ago.
But we found that such code and philosophies did not save us, no
matter how much we tried. We could wish to be moral, we could wish
to be philosophically comforted, in fact, we could will these things with
all our might, but the power needed for change wasn’t there. Our
human resources, as marshaled by the will, were not sufficient; they
failed utterly.

Lack of power: That was our dilemma. We had to find a power by
which we could live–and it had to be a Power greater than ourselves.

Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 44-45


***********************************************************

Walk In Dry Places
 
The Boredom battle
Acceptance and Patience.
All of us have times when we don’t enjoy our sobriety as much as we feel we should.  Thought we’re still grateful, we sometimes feel bored and depressed.
What we have to remember at such times is our bleak history of using alcohol as a quick fix for boredom. However ruinous and false it proved to be, alcohol did temporarily bring the miraculous change we sought.
We thought of alcohol as a means of uplifting our mood.  We were very surprised to learn that it’s really a depressant.  Maybe it lifted us up by depressing our self-doubt and self-criticism.
Whatever the nature of our drinking, we need to stay sober while fighting our battles with boredom.  We can do that by accepting a bit of boredom without succumbing to it.  Meanwhile, we can look for ways of easing boredom that don’t get us into trouble or lead back to the bottle.
I’ll  not feel guilty or unworthy if boredom strikes me now and then.  Today I’ll help manage my long-term boredom tendencies by practicing acceptance and patience for twenty-four hours.

***********************************************************

Keep It Simple
 
Write down the advice of him who loves you, though you like it not at present.
—Anonymous
We addicts often learn things the hard way. In the past, we found it very hard to take advice from anyone. It’s still hard to take advice, but it’s getting easier every day. We know now that we can’t handle everything in life by ourselves. We’ve come to believe there is help of us. And we’re learning to ask for help and advice.
Sometimes we don’t like the advice we get. We don’t have to use it. But if it comes from people who love and understand us, we can try to listen. Write it down. Think about it. It may make sense another day.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, please work through people who love me. I need your advice. Help me listen to it.
Action for the Day:  I will make notes to myself, writing down things that seem important. I will read them once in a while.

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Each Day a New Beginning

My Declaration of Self-Esteem:
I am me. In all the world there is no one else exactly like me. There are persons who have some parts like me, but no one adds up exactly like me. Therefore, everything that comes out of me is authentically mine because I alone chose it.  –Virginia Satir
Feeling special, feeling worthy and unique in the contribution we make to our surroundings is perhaps not a very familiar feeling to many of us in this recovery program. We may have recognized our differences from others, but not in a positive way. We may well have figured that to be our problem. “If only I were more like her . . .” To celebrate our specialness, the unique contribution we make to every situation we experience, is one of the gifts of recovery.
It’s spiritually moving to realize the truth of our authenticity. To realize that no other choice will ever be just like our choice–to realize that no other contribution will be just like our contribution. Our gift to life is ourselves. Life’s gift to us is the opportunity to realize our value.
Today, I will be aware of my gifts, I will offer them and receive them thankfully.

***********************************************************

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

There is another thing you might wish to do. If your organization is a large one, your junior executives might be provided with this book. You might let them know you have no quarrel with alcoholics of your organization. These juniors are often in a difficult position. Men under them are frequently their friends. So, for one reason or another, they cover these men, hoping matters will take a turn for the better. They often jeopardize their own positions by trying to help serious drinkers who should have been fired long ago, or else given an opportunity to get well.

p. 147

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic
 
This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

So I continued spinning fantasies, and now alcohol fueled my dreams. I would make great discoveries, win the Nobel Prize in medicine and in literature as well. Always the dream was somewhere else, further off, and I took a series of geographical cures in search of myself. I was offered a job in Paris and jumped at the chance. I packed my trunk, left my apartment to my boyfriend, and sailed off, thinking that at last I would find my real home, my real self.

p. 339

***********************************************************

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

When listing the people we have harmed, most of us hit another solid obstacle. We got a pretty severe shock when we realized that we were preparing to make a face-to-face admission of our wretched conduct to those we had hurt. It had been embarrassing enough when in confidence we had admitted these things to God, to ourselves, and to another human being. But the prospect of actually visiting or even writing the people concerned now overwhelmed us, especially when we remembered in what poor favor we stood with most of them. There were cases, too, where we had damaged others who were still happily unaware of being hurt. Why, we cried, shouldn’t bygones be bygones? Why do we have to think of these people at all? These were some of the ways in which fear conspired with pride to hinder our making a list of all the people we had harmed.

pp. 78-79


***********************************************************

Friendship is like a bank account. You can’t continue to draw on it without making
deposits.
–Cited in The Best of BITS & PIECES

“Sometimes the most important thing in a whole day is the rest we take between two
deep breaths, or the turning inwards in prayer for five short minutes.”
–Etty Hillesum

You take people as far as they will go, not as far as you would like them to go.
–Jeanette Rankin

“There are no mistakes. The events we bring upon ourselves, no matter how unpleasant,
are necessary in order to learn what we need to learn; whatever steps we take, they’re
necessary to reach the places we’ve chosen to go.”
–Richard Bach

Don’t mess up an amends with an excuse.
–unknown

S T E P S = Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety.

“Spirituality is an individual matter. I can tell you what it means to me, but it might be
different for you.”
–Jake T.

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

MONEY

“Money doesn’t always bring
happiness. People with ten million
dollars are no happier than
people with nine million dollars.”
— Hobart Brown

Today I understand that there is nothing intrinsically wrong with money. Wealth is
not good or bad in itself it is what we do with it. As a famous comedian once said, “I’ve
been rich and I’ve been poor and rich is better!”

But in what sense is rich better? I suppose in the freedom that it affords us, not only to
travel and buy comfortable “things” but also in the way we can help and contribute to
the lives and well-being of others. But to hoard money, be “stingy” with yourself and
others, make a “god” of possessions or become compulsive about the “making of
money” produces the same pain as any other addiction.

Money is to be used. It is usually one of the benefits of sobriety, part of what it means to
say “it gets better”. Why? Because we are more responsible and creative as sober
people and this brings its rewards.

Help me to be a responsible steward of the possessions You entrusted to me.

***********************************************************

I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me.
Psalm 120:1

My sheep recognize my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life,
and they will never perish. No one will snatch them away from me, for my Father has
given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else. So no one can take them
from me. The Father and I are one.”
John 10:27-30


***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

Refuse to be one of the many who go through life never knowing the limits of their abilities. Lord, You have blessed me with all that I need, but also with the ability to achieve all that I want. Help me to continue to strive and become all that I can.

Forget the useless and unhealthy things of your past that clutter your mind so that you can live a life that is alive and vibrant. Lord, help me to discard all that clouds my day so that I am able to live the life that You intend me to live
.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Not Perfect

“We are not going to be perfect. If we were perfect, we would not be human.”

Basic Text p. 30
All of us had expectations about life in recovery. Some of us thought recovery would suddenly make us employable or able to do anything in the world we wanted to do. Or maybe we imagined perfect ease in our interactions with others. When we stop and think, we realize that we expected recovery would make us perfect. We didn’t expect to continue making many mistakes. But we do. That’s not the addict side of us showing through; that’s being human.

In Narcotics Anonymous we strive for recovery, not perfection. The only promise we are given is freedom from active addiction. Perfection is not an attainable state for human beings; it’s not a realistic goal. What we often seek in perfection is freedom from the discomfort of making mistakes. In return for that freedom from discomfort, we trade our curiosity, our flexibility, and the room to grow.

We can consider the trade: Do we want to live the rest of our lives in our well-defined little world, safe but perhaps stifled? Or do we wish to venture out into the unknown, take a risk, and reach for everything life has to offer?

Just for today: I want all that life has to offer me and all that recovery can provide. Today, I will take a risk, try something new, and grow.

pg. 331 

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The measure of a man’s real character is what he would do if he knew he could never be found out. –Thomas Macaulay
Remember the tale about the poor, tired shoemaker who cut out his last bit of leather and awoke to find a beautiful pair of shoes sewn for him? Night after night two little elves secretly worked from midnight to dawn sewing shoes to help the old craftsman. Helping the shoemaker without his knowing who they were made the elves very happy, and they danced and sang as they worked away. These elves knew their reward was in the doing of the good deed, not in the discovery of them doing it.
What secret gift of kindness can I give today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
All men should strive to learn before they die what they are running from, and to, and why. –James Thurber
We are getting to know ourselves each day. We have learned some very important things about ourselves since the day we started our recovery. Most of us began learning by admitting our addiction or codependency. We saw how loyal we had become to a substance or a behavior. What seemed normal to us was actually distorted and unhealthy living. We didn’t understand why we felt so confused and upset. Perhaps we didn’t know what we were running to, or from.
Until we were faced with our powerlessness we couldn’t know ourselves. We could not feel our void or pain until we had relinquished our old ways. We now can see our motives more clearly. When we have come face to face with ourselves, surrendered and stopped running, nothing else ever need be so frightening again.
I will let myself know where I am going today.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
My Declaration of Self-Esteem:
I am me. In all the world there is no one else exactly like me. There are persons who have some parts like me, but no one adds up exactly like me. Therefore, everything that comes out of me is authentically mine because I alone chose it. –Virginia Satir
Feeling special, feeling worthy and unique in the contribution we make to our surroundings is perhaps not a very familiar feeling to many of us in this recovery program. We may have recognized our differences from others, but not in a positive way. We may well have figured that to be our problem. “If only I were more like her . . .” To celebrate our specialness, the unique contribution we make to every situation we experience, is one of the gifts of recovery.
It’s spiritually moving to realize the truth of our authenticity. To realize that no other choice will ever be just like our choice–to realize that no other contribution will be just like our contribution. Our gift to life is ourselves. Life’s gift to us is the opportunity to realize our value.
Today, I will be aware of my gifts, I will offer them and receive them thankfully.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Taking Care of Ourselves
We do not have to wait for others to come to our aid. We are not victims. We are not helpless.
Letting go of faulty thinking means we realize there are no knights on white horses, no magical grandmothers in the sky watching, waiting to rescue us.
Teachers may come our way, but they will not rescue. They will teach. People who care will come, but they will not rescue. They will care. Help will come, but help is not rescuing.
We are our own rescuers.
Our relationships will improve dramatically when we stop rescuing others and stop expecting them to rescue us.
Today, I will let go of the fears and self doubt that block me from taking assertive action in my best interest. I can take care of myself and let others do the same for themselves.

Today I am looking within to discover what I am holding onto from the past. Today I am willing to let go of all old anger and resentments that keep me stuck in tension and in pain. –Ruth Fishel

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

You’re Almost Home

I only had a few hundred miles to go, but the stretch ahead seemed endless. I was tired and near the end of this adventure. I remembered the meditative words of a friend, words that had helped me several years ago, words that helped me again now.

“The life force is a force within you. You have the power to fire it, stoke it, expand its energy throughout your body. Don’t clench up, tighten up. That limits the life force within you. Stop cramping your muscles and telling yourself you can’t. If you say it long and loud enough, you’ll begin to believe it. Relax. Relax your arms, your legs, your neck, your body. You’ve come so far. Look back at all the miles you’ve traveled. What lies ahead is a small portion, such a small portion of fear.

“Breathe deeply. When you become afraid or tired, your breathing becomes shallow. That inhibits the fire. It keeps the life force from reaching your muscles, your vital organs, your brain. Breathe deeply. Stoke the fire within.

“Take a moment now to picture the core of light within you. See it in your solar plexus just inches below your navel. Picture it as a glowing coal, a candle, a flame. With each breath you take, picture the flame getting stronger, glowing more brightly, until you feel the vital life force begin to surge through you.

“Feel yourself being filled with healing, life-giving energy with each breath you take. Feel the flame burn more brightly within you. Inhale deeply. Exhale deeply. Feel your power spread through your body. Feel the power of the universe come in through your breath. Feel the power connect with and flame the burning coal of energy that is within you.

You’ve come so far. You’ve almost mastered that lesson, accomplished that task, unveiled that insight, the one you’ve been struggling with. Of course you’re tired. You’ve been working hard. Take a moment now to light the fire within you. Let it give you the energy you need.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go

Set the switches yourself

One day, when I was getting ready to do a coached skydive, my coach sat me down. He gave me an exercise to do.

“When I skydive,” he said. “I go into my switch room, and I set the switches where I want them to be. He explained how he set his alertness and awareness switch at about eight. If he put it any higher, all the way up to ten, he said he became too tense, hyper vigilant.

For many years, we’ve let a lot of people push our buttons. Why don’t we try setting these switches ourselves instead?

Create a switch panel for yourself. Let the switches indicate the issues you’d like to work on. You might create one switch for fear. Don’t turn it all the way off. You need some fear to help be your guide. Maybe set the fear switch at two, or a level you’re comfortable with. Then go to the switch that says humble confidence. Maybe set that one at eight. Then go to the having fun and playing switch. How about cranking that one up to ten?

Create switches for any attribute in your life that you’d like to turn up or turn down. Then, from time to time, go in there and make sure the switches are still set and your circuit breaker is turned on.

God, help me own my power.

*****

Voicing Faith in Another
The Gift of a Positive Image by Madisyn Taylor

It is important that we all find people that believe in us just as we believe in others.

There are times in our lives when we may find ourselves facing challenges that can seem overwhelming. The situation or task we are struggling with seems hopeless, and it is easy to stop believing in ourselves, our goals, and our dreams. It is during these moments that it can be reassuring and reaffirming to turn to the people in our lives who do believe in us, especially when we are finding it hard to believe in ourselves. An encouraging word, a reassuring look, or hearing the words “I believe in you” from someone who matters can help us turn our situations around in an instant.

Everybody has someone who believes in them, whether this person is a teacher, parent, friend, loved one, or an employer. Often their belief can wrap us in warmth, bolster us, and offer us a supportive hand to grab onto until we can regain our own support. Having that special person who believes in our abilities and our worth is a wonderful gift. But when we are feeling unworthy, it may be difficult to take in something so precious. We may even feel like we need to do it all on our own and that we shouldn’t be asking for help. However, in letting their belief and support impact you, you are acknowledging the part of yourself that knows you are worthy of trust and esteem. By allowing them to believe in you, your own belief in yourself and your abilities will start to emerge again. Borrow their vision, and you can make it your own.

If your special someone is not there to spur you on, you also can lift yourself up with the gift of a positive image. When you feel uncertain, you can create a vision of the future you desire that will serve as a beacon of light. To do so, simply imagine a future that is exactly as you’d like it to be. Imagine in detail how you feel, what you are doing, and how others are responding to you. Make your vision as real as possible, and allow your doubts to recede so you can focus solely on the goal you seek. The more intently you focus on the image of what you want, your belief in yourself will step to the forefront, making it easier for the universe to open up a path and guide you. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We hear it said that all progress in The Program can be boiled down and measured by just two words: humility and responsibility. It’s also said that our entire spiritual development can be precisely measured by our degree of adherence to those standards. As AA co-founder Bill W. once put it, “Ever deepening humility, accompanied by and ever greater willingness to accept and to act upon clear-cut obligations — these are truly our touchstones for all growth in the life of the spirit.” Am I responsible?

Today I Pray

I pray that of all the good words and catch phrases and wisps of inspiration that come to me, I will remember these two above all: humility and responsibility. these may be the hardest to come by — humility because it means shooing away my pride, responsibility because I am in the habit of using my addiction as a thin excuse for getting out of obligations. I pray that I may break these old patterns.

Today I Will Remember

First humility, then responsibility.

*************************************

One More Day

Meditation is not a means to an end. It is both the means and the end.
–Krishnamurti
There is a current trend to reading meditation books, which we’re familiar with. We tend to use meditations as enlarging our thoughts for the day. Some of us begin our days with a meditation; others of us use them as a final thought before bed.

Meditation encourages deep and comforting thoughts. How we meditate has little importance, for customs are different across the cultures. What does matter is that we are turning to rich spiritual resources, so that each day we can give some serious time to our most pertinent thoughts and to improve ourselves.

When I meditate I have a special thought to carry with me throughout the day. I know that I am doing something important for myself.

************************************

Food For Thought

Pinpointing Anxiety

Many of us suffer from a vague, nameless anxiety for which we are unable to find a source. We do not know exactly what we fear, but we know that we are afraid. In the past, we tried to dispel this ominous anxiety by eating.

As long as we overate compulsively, we made it more difficult to get at the reasons for our anxiety. Trying to cover it up with food did not get rid of it, and until we stopped eating compulsively we were unable to identify the source of our anxiety.

By abstaining, we face anxiety rather than trying to cover it up. If we are willing to put up with a certain amount of emotional discomfort, we will be able to understand and work through many of the irrational notions that have made us anxious. Our Higher Power allows buried fears to surface as we acquire the strength and faith to confront them. When we are abstinent, we are able to define our anxiety more clearly and handle it with greater maturity.

By Your light, may we see our irrational anxiety for what it is.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

~ GRATITUDE ~
It is good to say thank you to the Lord, to sing
praises to the God who is above all gods … He is my
shelter. There is nothing but goodness in Him!
The Bible, Book of Psalms

Since I first walked into these rooms, I was welcomed with open arms. Everyone said, “Welcome home.” In my gut I felt welcomed into the fellowship, but only now, after years of accepting it, do I finally get it.

Who is this God everyone is saying cares about us? I felt God was too busy creating and managing the universe to concentrate on any one individual, let alone each and every one of us. Now, I don’t know how anyone else acted while in the clutches of their disease, but I do know how I reacted. I was not a very nice person to be around. If you said the sky was blue, I would say it was black. Nothing was right in my world and I refused to trust anyone or anything; I was rebellious. That is how I treated God! I dared God to fix me, to take away my desire for food, to come into my life so I would know it.

Well, people told me God meets you where you are. I learned the hard way that God does reveal Himself to you in whatever way works for you. For me that has been by learning to listen to people share in meetings and verbally state what God has been trying to get through my thick skull. When I read program literature, I hear little voices of recovering people speak of how God is doing for them what they couldn’t do for themselves. I watch people in recovery living a new kind of life, in which they are participants. I learn from them how to live rather then bouncing off the walls because I only reacted to life. I am beginning to see all the little things that I have been given from God through my interactions with fellow compulsive overeaters. My soul feels welcomed in this fellowship. I feel I have a new family in which to heal my wounds from my family of origin. I am filled with immense gratitude to a God that cares enough about each and everyone of us.

One day at a time… . . .
I will stop and take inventory of all the blessings I receive, each and every day, from a loving, supportive fellowship and a God of my understanding who loves me enough to put up with all my baggage.

A fellow traveler
Judith 

*****************************************

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The mind and the body are marvelous mechanisms, for mine endured this agony two more years. Sometimes I stole from my wife’s slender purse when the morning terror and madness were on me. Again I swayed dizzily before an open window, or the medicine cabinet where there was poison, cursing myself for a weakling. There were flights from city to country and back, as my wife and I sought escape. Then came the night when the physical and mental torture was so hellish I feared I would burst through my window, sash and all. Somehow I managed to drag my mattress to a lower floor, lest I suddenly leap. A doctor came with a heavy sedative. Next day found me drinking both gin and sedative. This combination soon landed me on the rocks. – Pgs. 6-7 – Bill’s Story

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Putting pen to paper can be a pain, reading new material can be frustrating, making numerous phone calls can be an annoyance, getting to a lot of meetings can seem boring, BUT this is the way we start. We must remember what circumstances brought us here in the first place. Was that such a pleasure?

My I place one foot in front of the other to reach my destination of sobriety.

Healing Society

Today, I will light one candle and that candle is myself. I will keep my own flame burning. I turn my sight to light and love and goodness. For today, there is no need to be discouraged. So what if I see and identify all the ills of society and diagnose it as sick – what good will that do me or anyone else? I heal society by healing myself. Just as life is lived one day at a time, the world will heal one person at a time. Each time I think a positive, loving thought, it goes into the ether and vibrates. This is nothing particularly mystical; I have but to sit near someone and look at thier face to feel how their thoughts affect me. I take ownership of my owner inner workings and their effect on myself and others. I do my part to heal the world.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Don’t try to clear away the wreckage of your future.

I stay in today and forget about jump starting tomorrow.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You must learn to pick up a program, not just set down a drink!

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am looking within to discover what I am holding onto from the past. Today I am willing to let go of all old anger and resentments that keep me stuck in tension and in pain.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

There’s a line in ‘Alice In Wonderland’: ‘You have to run as fast as you can to stay where you are.’ And it seems like that’s the way I spent most of my life and the first few years of my sobriety.- Gayle W.

*****************************************

AA Thought for the Day

November 13

Bill W. Shares:
It is traditional in AA that we do not make speeches; we just talk about our own experiences. . .
I was brought up in a little Yankee town of about fifty houses, East Dorset, Vermont.
I was born under the shadow of a mountain there called Mount Aeolus.
An early recollection is one of looking up and seeing that vast and mysterious mountain wondering what it was
and whether I would ever climb that high.
But I was presently distracted by my aunt, who, as a fourth-birthday present, made me a plate of fudge.
For the next thirty-five years I pursued the fudge of life and quite forgot about the mountain.
(AA co-founder Bill W., July 1950)
– Alcoholics Anonymous Comes Of Age, pp. 52-53

Thought to Ponder . . .
Your perception will change your experience. Your experience is your life.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
E S H = Experience, Strength and Hope

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Spiritual Life
“The spiritual life is not a theory.
We have to live it.
Unless one’s family expresses a desire to live upon
spiritual principles
we think we ought not to urge them.
We should not talk incessantly to them about spiritual matters.
They will change in time.
Our behavior will convince them more than our words.
We must remember that ten or twenty years
of drunkenness would make a skeptic out of anyone.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 83

Thought to Consider . . .
Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
P A C E =Positive Attitudes Change Everything

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Unconditional
From: “Getting our of the “if trap” 
But then, after a sober while, for some of us there comes a time when – plop! – a new discovery slaps us in the face. That same old eiffy thinking habit of our tippling days has, without our seeing it, attached itself to not drinking. Unconsciously, we have placed conditions on our sobriety. We have begun to think sobriety is just fine – if everything goes well, or if nothing goes askew. 
In effect, we are ignoring the biochemical, unchangeable nature of our ailment. Alcoholism respects no ifs. It does not go away, not for a week, for a day, or even for an hour, leaving us nonalcoholic and able to drink again on some special occasion or for some extraordinary reason – not even if it is a once-in-a-lifetime celebration, or if a big sorrow hits us, or if it rains in Spain or the stars fall on Alabama. Alcoholism is for us unconditional, with no dispensations available at any price. 
1998, AAWS, Inc., Living Sober, page 63

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“When I first started in AA, I began each day asking God to help keep me sober that day, and ended each night by thanking him for another day of sobriety. I still end each day that way, as I have done almost every night during the past forty-one years. It is a routine for me, but every once in a while I pause to reflect on what it truly means. I do it every night so that God won’t change his mind, as I truly believe he helped lead me from the pits of alcoholism to the AA way of life.” 
Alexandria, Va., April 2002
“A Real War Story,”
Voices of Long-Term Sobriety

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“Practical experience shows that nothing will so much insure immunity
from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 89~

So our rule is not to avoid a place where there is drinking, if we
have a legitimate reason for being there. That includes bars,
nightclubs, dances, receptions, weddings, even plain ordinary whoopee
parties. To a person who has had experience with an alcoholic, this
may seem like tempting Providence, but it isn’t.
You will note that we made an important qualification. Therefore,
ask yourself on each occasion, Have I any good social, business, or
personal reason for going to this place? Or am I expecting to steal a
little vicarious pleasure from the atmosphere of such places?’ If you
answer these questions satisfactorily, you need have no
apprehension. Go or stay away, whichever seems best. But be sure
you are on solid spiritual ground before you start and that your
motive in going is thoroughly good. Do not think of what you will
get out of the occasion. Think of what you can bring to it. But if
you are shaky, you had better work with another alcoholic instead
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 101

This we did because we honestly wanted to, and were willing to make the effort.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.26

Without a willing and persistent effort to do this, there can be little sobriety or contentment for us.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.43

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Vision is, I think, the ability to make good estimates, both for the immediate and for the more distant future. Some might feel this sort of striving to be heresy against ‘One day at a time.’ But that valuable principle really refers to our mental and emotional lives and means chiefly that we are not foolishly to repine over the past nor wishfully to daydream about the future.
As individuals and as a fellowship, we shall surely suffer if we cast the whole job of planning for tomorrow onto a fatuous idea of providence. God’s real providence has endowed us human beings with a considerable capability for foresight, and He evidently expects us to use it. Of course, we shall often miscalculate the future in whole or in part, but that is better than to refuse to think at all. 

Prayer for the Day: My Worth – I pray to remember that my worth is not determined by my show of outward strength, or the volume of my voice, or the thunder of my accomplishments. It is to be seen, rather, in terms of the nature and depths of my commitments, the genuineness of my friendships, the sincerity of my purpose, the quiet courage of my convictions, my capacity to accept life on life’s terms, and my willingness to continue “growing up.” This I pray.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 12th

Bsober Listen


Daily Reflections

MORNING THOUGHTS
Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still
sick.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 164

For many years I pondered over God’s will for me, believing that perhaps a great
destiny had been ordained for my life. After all, having been born into a specific faith,
hadn’t I been told early that I was “chosen”? It finally occurred to me, as I
considered the above passage, that God’s will for me was simply that I practice Step
Twelve on a daily basis. Furthermore, I realized I should do this to the best of my
ability. I soon learned that the practice aids me in keeping my life in the context of the
day at hand.

***********************************************************

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

I am less critical of other people, inside and outside of A.A. I used to run people
down all the time. I realize now that it was because I wanted unconsciously to build
myself up. I was envious of people who lived normal lives. I couldn’t understand why
I couldn’t be like them. And so I ran them down. I called them sissies or hypocrites.
I was always looking for faults in the other person. I loved to tear down what I
called “a stuff shirt” or “a snob.” I have found that I can never make a person any
better by criticism. A.A. has taught me this. Am I less critical of people?

Meditation For The Day

You must admit your helplessness before your prayer for help will be heard by God.
Your own need must be recognized before you can ask God for the strength to meet
that need. But once that need is recognized, your prayer is heard above all the music
of heaven. It is not theological arguments that solve the problems of the questing
soul, but the sincere cry of that soul to God for strength and the certainty of that
soul that the cry will be heard and answered.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may send my voiceless cry for help out into the void. I pray that I may feel
certain that it will be heard somewhere, somehow.
***********************************************************

As Bill Sees It

High and Low, p. 314

When our membership was small, we dealt with “low-bottom cases”
only. Many less desperate alcoholics tried A.A., but did not succeed
because they could not make the admission of their hopelessness.

In the following years, this changed. Alcoholics who still had their
health, their families, their jobs, and even two cars in the garage,
began to recognize their alcoholism. As this trend grew, they were
joined by young people who were scarcely more than potential
alcoholics. How could people such as these take the First Step?

By going back in our own drinking histories, we showed them that
years before we realized it we were out of control, that our drinking
even then was no mere habit, that it was indeed the beginning of a
fatal progression.

12 & 12, p. 23

***********************************************************

Walk In Dry Places
 
The importance of maintenance.
Fortitude
In praising their success with AA, people sometimes overlook the importance of maintenance.  AA not only helps us achieve sobriety, but it can also help us maintain our sobriety for a lifetime.
Members often touch on this matter when they admit that they were able to sober up hundreds of times, but didn’t know how to stay sober. It is staying sober that makes all the difference between life and death for us.
Our tools for staying sober___ for maintaining our sobriety___  are the simple ones that put us back on our feet in the first place. We continue to admit that we’re alcoholics and need the help of  fellow members and our Higher Power. We also continue to attend meetings and to carry the message.  We remind ourselves that we’re never out of the woods permanently, no matter how much our lives improve.
I’ll take the routine steps today that are needed for the maintenance of my sobriety.  Doing this will help protect me from the terrible consequences of returning to drinking.
***********************************************************

Keep It Simple
 
It may be those who do most, dream most.—Stephen Leacock
Daydreaming gives us hope. It makes our world bigger. Daydreaming can be part of doing Step Eleven. As we meditate, we daydream. Through our daydreaming, we get to know ourselves, our spirit, and our Higher Power. What special work can we do? Our dreams can tell us.
There is time to work and time to dream. Daydreaming helps us find the work our Higher Power wants us to do.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, please speak to me through my daydreams.
Action for the Day:  I’ll set aside time to daydream. I will look into a candle flame, at picture, or out a window, and let my mind wander.

***********************************************************

Each Day a New Beginning

Fantasies are more than substitutes for unpleasant reality; they are
also dress rehearsals, plans. All acts performed in the world begin in
the imagination. –Barbara Grizzuti Harrison
Our minds mold who we become. Our thoughts not only contribute to our
achievements, they determine the posture of our lives. How very powerful
they are. Fortunately, we have the power to think the thoughts we
choose, which means our lives will unfold much as we expect.
The seeds we plant in our minds indicate the directions we’ll explore in
our development. And we won’t explore areas we’ve never given attention
to in our reflective moments. We must dare to dream extravagant,
improbable dreams if we intend to find a new direction, and the steps
necessary to it.
We will not achieve, we will not master that which goes unplanned in our
dream world. We imagine first, and then we conceive the execution of a
plan. Our minds prepare us for success. They can also prepare us for
failure if we let our thoughts become negative.
I can succeed with my fondest hopes. But I must believe in my potential
for success. I will ponder the positive today.

***********************************************************Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition
Chapter 10 – To Employers

In case he does stumble, even once, you will have to decide whether to let him go. If you are sure he doesn’t mean business, there is not doubt you should discharge him. If, on the contrary, you are sure he is doing his utmost, you may wish to give him another chance. But you should feel under no obligation to keep him on, for your obligation has been well discharged already.

p. 147
***********************************************************Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories
Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

Behind the facade, my real life seemed just out of reach. I wanted to consider myself grown up, but inside I felt small and helpless, hardly there at all. I would look at my friends–delightful, interesting, good people–and try to define myself through them. If they saw something in me that made them want to be with me, I must have something to offer. But their love for me was not a substitute for loving myself; it didn’t fill the emptiness.

p. 339
***********************************************************
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

Right here we need to fetch ourselves up sharply. It doesn’t make much sense when a real tosspot calls a kettle black. Let’s remember that alcoholics are not the only ones bedeviled by sick emotions. Moreover, it is usually a fact that our behavior when drinking has aggravated the defects of others. We’ve repeatedly strained the patience of our best friends to a snapping point, and have brought out the very worst in those who didn’t think much of us to begin with. In many instances we are really dealing with fellow sufferers, people whose woes we have increased. If we are now about to ask forgiveness for ourselves, why shouldn’t we start out by forgiving them, one and all?

p. 78
***********************************************************
Apprehend God in all things, For God is in all things. Every single creature is full of God
and is a book about God. Every creature is a word of God! If I spent enough time with the
tiniest creature–even a caterpillar — I would never have to prepare a sermon, so full of
God is every creature.
–Meister Eckhart

“There is only one meaning of life: the act of living itself.”
–Erich Fromm

“A day of worry is more exhausting than a day of work.”
–John Lubbock

“When shall we live if not now?”
–M. F. K. Fisher

“With each sunrise, we start anew.”
–Anonymous

“You never know what you can do till you try.”
–William Cobbett

***********************************************

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

RELIGION

“It is the test of a good religion
if you can joke about it.”
— G. K. Chesterton

Today I am able to joke with God and about God. I am able to laugh at me swinging
incense at a candlestick and then swinging the incense at the Bishop! I smile at the
determined seriousness of choirboys who receive communion while at the same time
sticking chewing gum under the arm rail. I chuckle at the embarrassment of the
baptism family when the baby pulls the plug out of the font and the holy water
drains away.

Today I am able to laugh at God and His Church it joyously reflects man’s
imperfection but at the same time reminds him of his glory.

God, I contemplate You laughing at our pompous piety.

***********************************************************

“Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”
Matthew 6:8

Then I realized that it is good and proper for a man to eat and drink, and to find
satisfaction in his toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given
him — for this is his lot. Moreover, when God gives any man wealth and possessions, and
enables him to enjoy them, to accept his lot and be happy in his work — this is a gift of
God. He seldom reflects on the days of his life, because God keeps him occupied with
gladness of heart.
Ecclesiastes 5:18-20
***********************************************************

Daily Inspiration

Write down who you think you are and then write down who you want to be. Lord, help me realize that with little effort I can be who I want to be and give me the determination and will power to blossom.

Prayer is the best preparation for the day. Lord, although I don’t know all that I will need for today, give me clarity and wisdom and remove from my path that which I am yet not strong enough to bear
.

***********************************************************

NA Just For Today

Our Own Story

“When we honestly tell our own story, someone else may identify with us.”
Basic Text p. 95

Many of us have heard truly captivating speakers at Narcotics Anonymous conventions. We remember the audience alternating between tears of identification and joyous hilarity. “Someday,” we may think, “I’m going to be a main speaker at a convention, too.”

Well, for many of us, that day has yet to arrive. Once in awhile we may be asked to speak at a meeting near where we live. We might speak at a small convention workshop. But after all this time, we’re still not “hot&hot; convention speakers – and that’s okay. We’ve learned that we, too, have a special message to share, even if it’s only at a local meeting with fifteen or twenty addicts in attendance.

Each of us has only our own story to tell; that’s it. We can’t tell anyone else’s story. Every time we get up to speak, many of us find all the clever lines and funny stories seem to disappear from our minds. But we do have something to offer. We carry the message of hope – we can and do recover from our addiction. And that’s enough.

Just for today: I will remember that my honest story is what I share the best. Today, that’s enough.

pg. 330

***********************************************************

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
No life is so hard that you can’t make it easier by the way you take it.
–Ellen Glasgow
Jimmy and Karen were out catching insects for their science class. Jimmy
had caught a gray moth and Karen a monarch butterfly.
“My moth sure isn’t very pretty,” Jimmy said as he looked at the two
insects. “Now I’ll have to catch something else.”
“Oh, but it is,” said Karen. “See what a fat body your moth has compared
to my butterfly, and it’s got fuzzies on its wings.”
“You’re right,” said Jimmy, beginning to smile at his moth. “I was
almost going to let him go.”
How many times in the past have we taken just a quick look at something
before rejecting it? Often, simply because a thing isn’t quite what we
expected, we don’t give ourselves a chance to discover what it is that
makes that thing beautiful. There is a secret beauty in everything, even
ourselves. When we take the time to seek it out in other people and
things, especially those that have disappointed us, that beauty is
reflected in us, too.
Can I find the beauty in something common today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
An ideal is a man’s portrait of his better self. –Louis Binstock
When in training for athletics, we use a daily routine to reach a peak
condition. We stretch; lift weights, run, and do special conditioning to
develop our bodies and skills for that big day of competition. It’s hard
work. Sometimes we hate it, but at other times we do it just because it
feels so good. Then when the day of competition comes, we can depend on
that practice. At a crucial moment there’s not time to think about how
we will respond. We just do it the way we learned and use our physical
ability to carry us through.
In this program we go to our meetings, we work the Steps on a personal
level, we develop a relationship with our Higher Power, and we keep in
touch with our sponsor. Some days we may wonder if it’s worthwhile, but
most of the time the process is full and rewarding in itself. We make
progress toward the ideal although we never achieve perfection. When the
challenges or threats to our sobriety come, we have our conditioning
within the program to carry us through.
In this day ahead I will remember that I am building myself to peak
condition. I will be faithful to my “training program.”

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Fantasies are more than substitutes for unpleasant reality; they are
also dress rehearsals, plans. All acts performed in the world begin in
the imagination. –Barbara Grizzuti Harrison
Our minds mold who we become. Our thoughts not only contribute to our
achievements, they determine the posture of our lives. How very powerful
they are. Fortunately, we have the power to think the thoughts we
choose, which means our lives will unfold much as we expect.
The seeds we plant in our minds indicate the directions we’ll explore in
our development. And we won’t explore areas we’ve never given attention
to in our reflective moments. We must dare to dream extravagant,
improbable dreams if we intend to find a new direction, and the steps
necessary to it.
We will not achieve, we will not master that which goes unplanned in our
dream world. We imagine first, and then we conceive the execution of a
plan. Our minds prepare us for success. They can also prepare us for
failure if we let our thoughts become negative.
I can succeed with my fondest hopes. But I must believe in my potential
for success. I will ponder the positive today.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Timing
Wait until the time is right. It is self-defeating to postpone or
procrastinate; it is also self-defeating to act too soon, before the
time is right.
Sometimes, we panic and take action out of fear. Sometimes, we take
untimely action for revenge or because we want to punish someone. We act
or speak too soon as a way to control or force someone to action.
Sometimes, we take action too soon to relieve feelings of discomfort or
anxiety about how a situation will turn out.
An action taken too soon can be as ineffective as one taken too late. It
can backfire and cause more problems than it solves. Usually, when we
wait until the time is right – sometimes only a matter of minutes or
hours – the discomfort dissolves, and we’re empowered to accomplish what
we need to do.
In recovery, we are learning to be effective.
Our answers will come. Our guidance will come. Pray. Trust. Wait. Let
go. We are being led. We are being guided.
Today, I will let go of my need to control by waiting until the time is
right. When the time is right, I will take action.

When I find my now full of yesterday’s feelings, I can ask for God to
remove them. I can pray to turn them over to a power greater than myself
so that they will lose their power for me. I know longer need to hold on
to memories which create feelings that make me upset or unhappy. –Ruth
Fishel

*************************************

Journey to the Heart

Wash Old Pain Away

“I don’t know what’s going on,” a woman told me, “but lately memories of the past have been coursing through me like a river. I see scenes from my life, then the feelings appear– old pains, old hurts, old wounds. Nothing is triggering this that I can tell. It’s just happening spontaneously.”

We walk around with old wounds, old hurts– remnants of other times, ancient times, in our lives. We may be aware of these old feelings, fully conscious they’re there and why. Or we may only have partial awareness, a lingering sense that there’s some hurt within, without a clue as to its source. We may get a glimpse of it when we open our eyes in the morning and notice something deep inside aches, but we don’t know why. Or we may not be conscious of the pain or it’s connection to a particular event. The pain is hidden away, deep within our soul.

It has become time to cleanse the past.

Let the feelings come to the surface and pass through your consciousness. Let memories emerge as they will. You aren’t going back to your past. What’s happening is normal. Your heart is finding a way to heal.

Clear away the past. Let the river of life wash old pains away. Feel the feelings until the river runs clear.

*************************************

More Language Of Letting Go
November 12, 2012
Use your connections

As I glanced through the pages of a writer’s magazine one morning, I realized how important this magazine had been in my life. When I began writing back in the late seventies, I had no writer friends. I was on my own with a dream and a sketchy one at that. But by reading this monthly magazine aimed at aspiring writers, I knew I wasn’t alone. Other people had done what I wanted to do, they had started where I was at. This magazine was an important part of my believing I can.

From time to time, we all need connections to help us believe. If we’re beginning recovery from an issue like codependency or chemical dependency, our group meetings help us believe I can. If we’re learning a new skilll, like skydiving or flying a plane, sometimes talking to someone that can remember what it felt like to be unsure, awkward, and unskilled goes much further than talking to someone that can only remember being in mastery of the craft.

One day at the drop zone, I grabbed a man who had jumped out of an airplane over ten thousand times. “I’m so scared each time I jump,” I said. “Is it normal to be that afraid?” This skydiving professional– who was so assured and respected– looked at me and smiled. “I was so frightened my first one hundred jumps that I couldn’t even breathe!”

When you’re trying to believe you can, whether it’s believing you can stay sober for the next twenty-four hours, learning to take care of yourself, being a single parent, being in a good relationship, learning to write, learning to type, or learning to jump out of a plane, make good solid connections to people, places, and things that help you believe I can.

And if you run into someone who’s walking a path that you’ve already walked, remember and share how it felt in the beginning so they can come to believe,too.

God, thank you for sending me the connections I need. Let me be of service whenever possible by being honest and speaking from my heart so I can be a good connection, as well.

Activity: Make a list of your connections. What are the areas in your life where you want to believe you can do it? Examples might be sobriety, taking care of yourself, being a single parent, learning to write, learning to be in a relationship, going through a divorce, surviving the loss of a loved one, getting your finances in order, or learning to speak a new language. Once you have your list of I can’s, list in detail your present or potential connections for coming to believe. For instance, in recovery from chemical dependency, your connections might include your Twelve Step groups, the Big Book, a daily meditation book, a counselor, some recovering friends, and a medallion you received– whether it’s for one hour or one day. If you’re learning a new skill, such as writing, your connections might include a teacher, a friend, a book that’s particularly helpful and encouraging, a magazine, and a piece of writing you’ve already done that either has been published or received good responses from friends. This list is solely to help you believe you can. Once you have your connection lists written, use them whenever you need a big dose of I can.

*****

An Invitation to Comfort
Creating a Serene Home

Your home is your oasis. Through your efforts, your house or apartment can become both a private sanctuary and a welcoming, serene, and healthy place to live in and visit. An organized and comfortable home can have a calming effect on you, your family, and guests, as well as be your personal escape from the rest of the world. Creating this nurturing space isn’t difficult. Even a household that includes young children or multiple animals can be a serene and peaceful place. In just a few minutes, you can make a number of changes that can turn your home into a safe and comfortable haven that you can be proud to share with your loved ones and friends.

One way to fill your house or apartment with calming energy is to imbue it with a peaceful ambiance that nurtures all five senses. Soft lighting and soothing colors like blue, purple, and green can make a space feel warm and inviting, while pleasant and calming aromas such as lavender and vanilla can positively affect moods. Peaceful sounds, such as running water in a fountain or gentle chimes can uplift and clear the space, while clearing clutter and making the most of open space can ease internal turmoil and dispel negative feelings. The physical objects in your home as well as your home itself can retain the energy of previous owners or creators. You can give your household’s energy a lift by visualizing white light surrounding our home, symbolically sweeping out residual energy, or smudging your home with cleansing sage.

The changes you make to your home can be as unique as you are and may involve utilization of space, lighting, new furniture, decorating, feng shui, or ritual. But what you do is not as important as being clear in your intention to set up your household as a soothing and refreshing place to be. Make your home a place of comfort, and you will feel nurtured and cared for whenever you are there. Published with permission from Daily OM

*************************************

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

There are few “absolutes” in The Program’s Twelve Steps. We’re free to start at any point we can, or will. God, as we understand Him, may be defined as simply a “Power greater”; for many of us in The Program, the group itself was the first “Power greater.” And this acknowledgment is relatively easy to make if a newcomer knows that most of the members are sober and otherwise chemically-free and he isn’t. This admission is the beginning of humility. Perhaps for the first time, the newcomer is at least willing to disclaim that he himself — or sh3e herself — is God. Is my behavior more convincing to newcomers than my words?

Today I Pray

May I define and discover my own Higher Power. As that definition becomes clearer and closer to me, may I remember not to insist that my interpretation is right. For each much find his or her own Higher Power. If a newcomer is feeling godless and alone, the power of the group may be enough for now. May I never discredit the power of the group.

Today I Will Remember

Group power can be a Higher Power.

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One More Day

Life is the enjoyment of Emotion, derived from the past and aimed at the future.
– Alfred, Lord Whitehead

Life sails by much more quickly than we expect it to. When our children were young, it seemed as if endless years stretched ahead for us to nurture and teach them; suddenly they are in college, or married with children of there own.

Each day must be lived to its fullest, for we shall never be able to recapture it again. The memories we create today can enrich the present, and even the future years. Making good memories serves us well.

It is our wish to fully enjoy life and if we can’t, to attempt to correct those problems which keep us from fully enjoying what we do have. Than we can once again look to a full and wonderful future.

I will work to deal with those facts of my life which cause me pain.

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Food For Thought

Don’t Anticipate

We wear ourselves out unnecessarily when we spend our energy anticipating the future rather than living in the present. To anticipate bad things is obviously detrimental to our serenity. It is also needless, since most of the things we worry about never happen. Even if some of them do occur, it is easier by far to deal with real disasters than with imagined ones.

Anticipating future satisfactions can also be detrimental to our serenity. If we are living for an event or condition, which is yet to come, we are not completely alive to what is here now. We may build up some future pleasure in our minds to such an unrealistic pitch that the actual event is bound to be disappointing.

Accepting the here and now is what ensures our sanity and our serenity. Reality is never more than we can manage, with the help of our Higher Power. It is our anticipation of the future, which is unreal and dangerous.

May I live today and leave the future to You.

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One Day At A Time

~ Hitting Bottom ~
My life closed twice before its close.
Emily Dickinson

Doesn’t every addict, sooner or later, face some kind of incomprehensible end to something they hold dear, all because of their addiction?

I certainly did. In my late thirties, in the plum Ivy League job that was the envy of all those I’d gone to graduate school with, I was fired. The fact was, though I’d tried to put a good face on it, I was up to my eyebrows in my disease of compulsive overeating and was consequently seriously depressed. Or was I seriously depressed and consequently…?

No matter. I had been in a hole the width and depth of which I could not overcome. Day after day I would sit in my office with the door closed, work piled on my desk, unable to make headway. I had done this for over a year. Then the ax fell, and there I was, a depressed, overweight workaholic without work.

Fortunately for me, by this time I had already found program, and although I was a newcomer of only six months, I knew enough that I was lucky to have lost my job. Although I would never have quit it, it would have eventually led to the loss of my health and sanity, what was left of them. I was in that important and prestigious job for all the wrong reasons, but mainly as a balm to my tiny and broken self-esteem.

The fact was, the healing for my self-loathing wasn’t in a fancy title or professional honors. It was in the spiritual life and the recovery of mind, body, heart, and spirit that I found in program.

I learned for myself that hitting bottom is not the end. I let my Higher Power into my life, and it was the beginning of a more honest and worthy way of living.

One day at a time… . . .
I turn my life over to my Higher Power to make of it what She will. It makes every day a good day.
~ Roberta ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We will seldom be interested in liquor. If tempted, we recoil from it as from a hot flame. We react sanely and normally, and we will find that this has happened automatically. We will see that our new attitude toward liquor has been given us without any thought or effort on our part. It just comes! That is the miracle of it. we are not fighting it, neither are avoiding temptation. We feel as though we had been placed in a position of neutrality – safe and protected. We have not even sworn off. Instead, the problem has been removed. It does not exist for us. We are neither cocky nor are we afraid. That is our experience. That is how we react so long as we keep in fit spiritual condition. – Pgs. 84-85 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

This is your second chance in life and although the suggestions are easy, the footwork is not. You must surrender on a daily basis, go to 90 meetings in 90 days and do what the clean and sober people tell you. It may take all the strength you have, but it won’t take more then you have.

Let me use every ounce of energy I have to stay clean and sober and not waste it on ways to convince myself to use or drink.

Being with Life

Today, I allow myself just to be with life. Somehow, it doesn’t have to prove anything to me or give me any more than I already have to be okay. The lessons I have learned through working through all that blocks my forgiveness have taught me that I can face my most difficult feelings and still come home to a place of love and acceptance. Life is always renewing itself; nothing lasts, good or bad, and that is just the way it is. It is enough today to enjoy my coffee, to take a walk, to appreciate the people in my life. I can rest in a quiet sort of understanding that this is what it’s all about; all the searching turned up such an ordinary but beautiful thing.

I am enraptured with the ordinary.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Each person you meet is in a specific stage of their life, a stage you may have passed through or not yet reached. Judging them by your standards and experience is therefore not only unfair, but could lead to unnecessary anger and frustration. (P 135, Alkiespeak)

I practice tolerance by putting up with those I’d like to put down.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Nothing makes a person more productive than the last minute.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

When I find my NOW full of yesterdays feelings, I can ask for God to remove them. I can pray to turn them over to a power greater than myself so that they will lose their power for me. I no longer need to hold on to memories which create feelings which make me upset or unhappy.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Life is fragile – Handle with prayer. – Unknown origin.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 12

Willingness
I pray for the willingness to let go of my arrogant self-criticism,
and to praise God by humbly accepting and caring for myself.
– Daily Reflections, p. 324

Thought to Ponder . . .
Trying to pray is praying.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
W I L L I N G = When I Live Life, I Need God.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Practice
“God willing, we members of AA may never again
have to deal with drinking,
but we do have to deal with sobriety every day.
How do we do it?
By learning — through practicing the Twelve Steps
and through sharing at meetings —
how to cope with the problems
that we looked to booze to solve, back in our drinking days.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 560

Thought to Consider . . .
There’s no elevator, you have to take the Steps.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
S T E P S = Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Red Flags
From: “The Perpetual Quest”
Many years later, although alcohol is not part of my life and I no longer have the compulsion to drink, it can still occur to me what a good drink tastes like and what it can do for me, from my stand-at-attention alcoholic taste buds right down to my stretched out tingling toes. As my sponsor used to point out, such thoughts are like red flags, telling me that something is not right, that I am stretched beyond my sober limit. It’s time to get back to basic AA and see what needs changing. That special relationship with alcohol will always be there, waiting to seduce me again. I can stay protected by continuing to be an active member of AA.
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, pages 396-397

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“Our Serenity Prayer … brings a new light to us that can dissipate our old-time and nearly fatal habit of fooling ourselves.” AA Co-Founder, Bill W., March 1962
“What Is Acceptance?”
The Language of the Heart

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“When you discover a prospect for Alcoholics Anonymous, find out all
you can about him. If he does not want to stop drinking, don’t
waste time trying to persuade him. You may spoil a later opportunity.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 90

Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.84

Or, if my disturbance was seemingly caused by the behavior of others, why do I lack the ability to accept conditions I cannot change?
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.52

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Almost every newspaper reporter who covers A.A. complains, at first, of the difficulty of writing his story without names. But he quickly forgets this difficulty when he realizes that here is a group of people who care nothing for acclaim.
Probably this is the first time in his life he has ever reported on an organization that wants no personalized publicity. Cynic though he may be, this obvious sincerity quickly transforms him into a friend of A.A.
Moved by the spirit of anonymity, we try to give up our natural desires for personal distinction as A.A. members, both among fellow alcoholics and before the general public. As we lay aside these very human aspirations, we believe that each of us takes part in the weaving of a protective mantle which covers our whole Society and under which we may grow and work in unity.

Prayer for the Day: I Promise Myself: Today I pray:
To promise myself to be so strong that nothing can disturb my peace of mind; 
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person I meet;
To make all my friends feel that there is something worthwhile in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make my optimism come true….
To think only of the best, to work only for the best & to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.
To forget the mistakes of the past, and press on to do the greater achievement of the future.
To wear a cheerful expression at all times, and give a smile to every living creature I meet.
To give so much time to improving myself that I have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-November 11th.

Bsober Listen


Daily Reflections

SELF-ACCEPTANCE

We know that God lovingly watches over us. We know that when we turn to Him, all will
be well with us, here and hereafter.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 105

I pray for the willingness to remember that I am a child of God, a divine soul in human
form, and that my most basic and urgent life-task is to accept, know, love and nurture
myself. As I accept myself, I am accepting God’s will. As I know and love myself, I am
knowing and loving God. As I nurture myself I am acting on God’s guidance. I pray for
the willingness to let go of my arrogant self-criticism, and to praise God by humbly
accepting and caring for myself.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When I think of all who have gone before me, I realize that I am only one, not very
important, person. What happens to me is not so very important after all. And A.A. has
taught me to be more outgoing, to seek friendship by going at least half way; to have a
sincere desire to help. I have more self-respect now that I have less sensitiveness. I
have found that the only way to live comfortably with myself is to take a real interest in
others. Do I realize that I am not so important after all?

Meditation For The Day

As you look back over your life, it is not too difficult to believe that what you went
through was for a purpose, to prepare you for some valuable work in life. Everything in
your way may well have been planned by God to make you of some use in the world. Each
person’s life is like the pattern of a mosaic. Each thing that happened to you is like one
tiny stone in the mosaic, and each tiny stone fits into the perfected pattern of the mosaic
of your life, which has been designed by God.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not need to see the whole design of my life. I pray that I may trust the
Designer.
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As Bill Sees It

In The Sunlight At Last, p. 313

When the thought was expressed that there might be a God personal
to me, I didn’t like the idea. So my friend Ebby made what then
seemed a novel suggestion. He said, “Why don’t you choose your own
conception of God?”

That statement hit me hard. It melted the icy intellectual mountain in
whose shadow I had lived and shivered many years. I stood in the
sunlight at last.

<< << << >> >> >>

It may be possible to find explanations of spiritual experiences such as
ours, but I have often tried to explain my own and have succeeded only
in giving the story of it. I know the feeling it gave me and the results
it has brought, but I realize I may never fully understand its deeper
why and now.

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 12
2. A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 45
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Walk In Dry Places
 
The rewards of truth
Seeking the truth
“The punishment of the liar is that he cannot believe anyone else,”  wrote one shrewd philosopher. This is another way of saying that we reap what we sow, or that we tend to judge others by our own actions.
But when we decide to be completely truthful, we are not immediately given the ability to discern whether others are lying or not.  It’s more important for us to realize that others’ lies don’t have the power to hurt us permanently if we persevere in the program.
Some people would argue with this, pointing to lies that have hurt innocent people in the past. But having no way of knowing all the facts of these cases, we cannot be the judge.
In our own experience, we’ll find that God alone is the source of all truth and will give us the protection and care we need if we seek truthfulness in everything we do.  Any fear of being victimized by lying, we’ll learn, will melt away as we follow this conviction.
I’ll be as discreet as possible today, but I’ll also be truthful.  I’ll find that this alone will lessen any fear of being victimized by a liar.
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Keep It Simple
 
Have the courage to live; anyone can die.—Robert Cody
Living means facing all of life. Life is joy and sorrow. We used to be people who wanted the joy without the sorrow. But we can learn from hard times, maybe more than we do in easy times. Often, getting through hard times helps us grow. When things get tough, maybe we want to turn and run. Then, a gentle voice from within us say, “I am with you. You have friends who will help.” If we listen, we’ll hear our Higher Power. This is what is meant by “conscious contact” in Step eleven. As this conscious contact grows, our courage grows. And we find the strength to face hard times.
Prayer for the Day:  I pray for the strength and courage to live. I pray that I’ll never have to face hard time alone again.
Action for the Day:  I’ll list two examples of conscious contact” in my life.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Life has got to be lived–that’s all there is to it. At 70 I would say the advantage is that you take life more calmly. You know that, “This, too, shall pass!”  –Eleanor Roosevelt
Wisdom comes with age, but also with maturity. It is knowing that all is well in the midst of a storm. And as our faith grows, as we trust more that there is a power greater than ourselves which will see us through, we can relax, secure that a better time awaits us.
We will come to understand the part a difficult circumstance has played in our lives. Hindsight makes so much clear. The broken marriage, the lost job, the loneliness have all contributed to who we are becoming. The joy of the wisdom we are acquiring is that hindsight comes more quickly. We can, on occasion, begin to accept a difficult situation’s contribution to our wholeness while caught in the turmoil.
How far we have come! So seldom do we stay caught, really trapped, in the fear of misunderstanding. Life must teach us all we need to know. We can make the way easier by stretching our trust–by knowing fully that the pain of the present will open the way to the serenity of the future.
I know that this too shall pass.

***********************************************************Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition
Chapter 10 – To Employers

Your man may be trusted. Long experience with alcoholic excuses naturally arouses suspicion. When his wife next calls saying he is sick, you may jump to the conclusion he is drunk. If he is, and is still trying to recover, he will tell you about it even if it means the loss of his job. For he knows he must be honest if he would live at all. He will appreciated knowing you are not bothering your head about him, that you are not suspicious nor are you trying to run his life so he will be shielded from temptation to drink. If he is conscientiously following the program of recovery he can go anywhere your business may call him.

pp. 146-147
***********************************************************Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories
Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

For ten years, through college and graduate school interspersed with jobs, I drank periodically, so it was easy enough to think that I was a social drinker. Looking back, I see that alcohol helped me construct an image of myself as a sophisticated metropolitan woman, diminishing my feelings of being a backward country girl. I studied vintage wines and selected them with care to accompany the gourmet dishes I learned to make. I read about the correct drinks for various occasions. I learned to put just the tiniest whiff of dry vermouth into my martinis. Meanwhile, my tolerance for alcohol grew, so that while at first I got sick or passed out, as time went on I could hold larger quantities without any visible effects. Until the next morning’s hangover.

pp. 338-339
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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Eight – “Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.”

These obstacles, however, are very real. The first, and one of the most difficult, has to do with forgiveness. The moment we ponder a twisted or broken relationship with another person, our emotions go on the defensive. To escape looking at the wrongs we have done another, we resentfully focus on the wrong he has done us. This is especially true if he has, in fact, behaved badly at all. Triumphantly we seize upon his misbehavior as the perfect excuse for minimizing or forgetting our own.

p. 78
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I can’t have a better tomorrow if I am thinking about yesterday all the time.
–unknown

“You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest, that it leaves your arms too full to
embrace the present.”
–Jan Glidewell

Jesus is a friend who walks in when the world has walked out.
–unknown

When God leads, He provides.
–unknown

The times that are the most difficult for me are when God’s answer is
“wait” (rather than “yes” or “no”). I can even take His “You’ve got
to be kidding!” or “You want WHAT??????” easier than “wait.”
–unknown

You can choose to worry about something or you can realize that there are actually very
few circumstances in life you can control, and just let things be. This is not an “I don’t
care” attitude, this is simply accepting what is.
–unknown

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PEACE

“Peace without justice is tyranny.”
— William Allen White

Peace at any price! Not for me today. For years I sought a peace that was based upon
the “no-talk” principle remaining quiet, rather than causing upset or risking
embarrassment. Such a peace was unjust. It only fed the disease and helped to keep
me sick.

Today I seek a peace that involves discussing or confronting painful situations, often
making me and others uncomfortable. Serenity is a peace that is arrived at after
periods of pain but a necessary pain.

In my life today I have the courage to speak out and make choices that are good for me;
God is alive in my choice.

May I forever search for the “peace” that is real. May I find “peace” in the justice of
my lifestyle.

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O Lord I say to you “You are my God” Hear O Lord my cry for mercy.
Psalm 140:6

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what
it says.”
James 1:22

Jesus said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you
rest.”
Matthew 11:28

“The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life.”
Proverbs 15:4
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Daily Inspiration

Choose the direction of your day and then make a point of enjoying your choices. Lord, help me to do what I can when I can, but also, help me to know when doing nothing is the better choice.

Take care of yourself so that you may give care to others. Lord, may I never totally ignore myself and my feelings for the sake of others and fit in time daily to refresh my spirit
.

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NA Just For Today

From Surrender To Acceptance

“We surrender quietly and let the God of our understanding take care of us.”
Basic Text p. 26

Surrender and acceptance are like infatuation and love. Infatuation begins when we encounter someone special. Infatuation requires nothing but the acknowledgement of the object of our infatuation. For infatuation to become love, however, requires a great deal of effort. That initial connection must be slowly, patiently nurtured into a lasting, durable bond.

It’s the same with surrender and acceptance. We surrender when we acknowledge our powerlessness. Slowly, we come to believe that a Power greater than ourselves can give us the care we need. Surrender turns to acceptance when we let this Power into our lives. We examine ourselves and let our God see us as we are. Having allowed the God of our understanding access to the depths of ourselves, we accept more of God’s care. We ask this Power to relieve us of our shortcomings and help us amend the wrongs we’ve done. Then, we embark on a new way of life, improving our conscious contact and accepting our Higher Power’s continuing care, guidance, and strength.

Surrender, like infatuation, can be the beginning of a lifelong relationship. To turn surrender into acceptance, however, we must let the God of our understanding take care of us each day.

Just for today: My recovery is more than infatuation. I have surrendered. Today, I will nurture my conscious contact with my Higher Power and accept that Power’s continuing care for me.

pg. 329 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
We shall not cease from exploration,
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive from where we started
And know the place for the first time.
–T. S. Eliot
We spend much of our lives looking forward to milestones we hope will mark our passage into wisdom–that time and place when once and for all we will know all there is to know.
When I am thirteen, I’ll be grown up, we say. When I am sixteen, eighteen, 21, drive a car, graduate, marry, write a book, own a house, find a job, or retire; then I’ll be grown up.
When we seek complete transformation, mere insight is disappointing. We find we don’t know all there is to know–not at thirteen or 35 or 80. We are still growing up.
The baby, the child, the younger person each of us was yesterday is still with us; we continue to love, hate, hurt, grieve, startle, delight, feel.
There is no magic moment of lasting enlightenment, simply a series of fleeting moments lived one at a time each day. They bring us home to who we’ve always been.
What small thing have I learned today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you’re a man, you take it. –Malcolm X
It does little good to complain about our wives or parents or lovers. We only accentuate our role as victims when we say, “I would be happier if she were different.” “If he would just get off my back, I would act better.” We each have a side, which is loyal to the victim within. Some of us take comfort in acting helpless and being taken care of; some of us relish the power of being catered to; some of us wallow in self-pity. These patterns of thought retard our recovery and put a drag on our relationships. When we decide that we aren’t willing to live this way any longer, we are ready to assert our independence.
Real emancipation can’t come at someone else’s initiative or as a gift. It can only begin from within, by saying, “I will take my independence.” Then we begin to be responsible men because we own it on the inside.
Today, I will not wait for others to set me free. I will do what is within my own power to be a free man.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Life has got to be lived–that’s all there is to it. At 70 I would say the advantage is that you take life more calmly. You know that, “This, too, shall pass!” –Eleanor Roosevelt
Wisdom comes with age, but also with maturity. It is knowing that all is well in the midst of a storm. And as our faith grows, as we trust more that there is a power greater than ourselves which will see us through, we can relax, secure that a better time awaits us.
We will come to understand the part a difficult circumstance has played in our lives. Hindsight makes so much clear. The broken marriage, the lost job, the loneliness have all contributed to who we are becoming. The joy of the wisdom we are acquiring is that hindsight comes more quickly. We can, on occasion, begin to accept a difficult situation’s contribution to our wholeness while caught in the turmoil.
How far we have come! So seldom do we stay caught, really trapped, in the fear of misunderstanding. Life must teach us all we need to know. We can make the way easier by stretching our trust–by knowing fully that the pain of the present will open the way to the serenity of the future.
I know that this too shall pass.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Discipline
Children need discipline to feel secure; so do adults.
Discipline means understanding there are logical consequences to our behavior. Discipline means taking responsibility for our behavior and the consequences.
Discipline means learning to wait for what we want.
Discipline means being willing to work for and toward what we want.
Discipline means learning and practicing new behaviors.
Discipline means being where we need to be, when we need to be there, despite our feelings.
Discipline is the day to day performing of tasks, whether these are recovery behaviors or washing the dishes.
Discipline involves trusting that our goals will be reached though we cannot see them.
Discipline can be grueling. We may feel afraid, confused, and uncertain. Later, we will see the purpose. But this clarity of sight usually does not come during the time of discipline. We may not even believe we’re moving forward.
But we are.
The task at hand during times of discipline is simple: listen, trust, and obey.
Higher Power, help me learn to surrender to discipline. Help me be grateful that You care enough about me to allow these times of discipline and learning in my life. Help me know that as a result of discipline and learning, something important will have been worked out in me.

Today I am taking the time that I need to look at my growth and progress. I celebrate being alive. I celebrate the good in me. Today I celebrate me. –Ruth Fishel

*****

journey to the heart
You’re Not a Victim Anymore

Sometimes people have problems that make it extremely draining to be around them, problems like alcoholism, other addictions, other issues. No matter where we go, who we are, how long we’ve been working on ourselves, a lot of people have these problems. That hasn’t changed.

What has changed is us.

We’ve learned our lessons. We can’t control the addictions, the problems of others. They may be the very problems they came here to solve. We’ve also learned, and learned well, that we don’t have to stand and absorb the energy from these problems, energy that isn’t ours, that no longer holds lessons or payoffs. We no longer need the payoffs of the past– that we’re victims and can’t take care of ourselves.

We’re free to walk away with compassion and love.

But most of all, we’re free. 

*****

more language of letting go
Create a path with heart

“I’ve reached my career and family goals,” a successful woman in her late thirties said. Now it’s time to start taking care of myself. I’m going to begin by resolving to spend one hour each week doing something I want to do.”

One hour? What a small percentage of time to devote to doing what we want. Yet, how easy it is to fall into the trap of denying what we want to do. We may call it God’s will for our lives. We may legitimately be in a situation where our responsibilities, including our commitments to other people, consume much of our time. And sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to do to accomplish the things we want.

The trap is when our entire life begins to shift over to the “should be doing” category. This is what I should be doing in my career, this is what I should be doing for my family; this is where I should live; and this is probably how I should spend my spare time. This is what I should be doing in my religion, or spirituality; this is what I should be doing with my money, time, and energy.

Who said?

Take a moment. Examine whose should’s are running your life. Are the things you tell yourself you need to be doing true expressions of your legitimate goals, responsibilties, and commitments? Or have you wandered so far away from yourself that your life is no longer a genuine expression of who you are, and what you want, in your heart?

How many hours a week do you spend doing what you want to be doing or doing what you need to be doing to have what you want– whether that’s sobriety, a family, or the career that’s right for you? How many hours each week are spent doing what you think you should be doing, whether you need to or not?

Getting the things we want in life entails responsibility. We need to tend to our liberations– the career we want, the family life we want, and our avocations, as well. Tend to the things we’ve set free. But don’t forget to tend to the liberation of yourself,too. Maybe the things you’re grumbling about doing are part of doing what you want. If that’s the case, stop grumbling and thank God. Maybe you’ve forgotten the things you’re doing are what you really want to do. But maybe when you assess your daily life, you’ll realize that some of the things you’re doing aren’t necessary, aren’t what you want, and won’t lead to where you want to go. You’re telling yourself you have to, but you don’t.

Start today by spending one hour doing something you want to do. In time, you may want to increase that to two hours a day. Eventually, you may get to that place where your should’s intersect with your wants. That’s when you’ve created and are walking a path with heart.

God, help me find a path with heart; help me walk the one I’m on with heart.

*****

Echoes of Happiness
Belly Laughs

As children, we laugh hundreds of times each day, delighted by the newness of living. When we reach adulthood, however, we tend to not allow ourselves to let go in a good belly laugh. Inviting laughter back into our lives is simply a matter of making the conscious decision to laugh. Though most of us are incited to laugh only when exposed to humor or the unexpected, each of us is capable of laughing at will. A laugh that comes from the belly carries with it the same positive effects whether prompted by a funny joke or consciously willed into existence. When our laughter comes from the core of our being, it permeates every cell in our physical selves, beginning in the center and radiating outward, until we are not merely belly laughing but rather body laughing.

Laughter has been a part of the human mode of expression since before evolution granted us the art of speech. Through it, we connected with allies while demonstrating our connection with people we didn’t know. In the present, laughter allows us to enjoy positive shared experiences with strangers and loved ones alike. Yet solitary laughter carries with it its own slew of benefits. An energetic and enthusiastic bout of whole-body laughter exercises the muscles, the lungs, and the mind in equal measure, leaving us feeling relaxed and content. When we laugh heartily at life’s ridiculousness instead of responding irritably, our focus shifts. Anger, stress, guilt, and sadness no longer wield any influence over us, and we are empowered to make light of what we originally feared. Laughter also opens our hearts, letting love and light in, changing our perspective, and enabling us to fix our attention on what is positive in our lives.

It is easy to laugh when we feel good, but it is when the world appears dim that we most need laughter in our lives. Our laughter then resonates through our hearts, filling the empty spaces with pure, unadulterated joy. We regain our footing in the moment and remember that no sorrow is powerful enough to rob us of our inborn happiness. When we understand that uninhibited laughter is the food of the soul, nourishing us from within, we know instinctively that life is worthwhile. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day at a Time

Reflection for the Day
What, exactly, is humility? Does it mean that we are to be submissive, accepting everything that comes our way, no matter how humiliating? Does it mean surrender to ugliness and a destructive way of life? To the contrary. The basic ingredient of all humility is simply a desire to seek and do God’s will.

Am I coming to understand that an attitude of true humility confers dignity and grace on me, strengthening me to take intelligent spiritual action in solving my problems?

Today I Pray
May I discover that humility is not bowing and scraping, kowtowing or letting people walk all over me – all of which has built-in expectations of some sort of personal reward, like approval or sympathy. Real humility is awareness of the vast love and unending might of God. It is the perspective that tells me how I, as a human being, relate to that Divine Power.

Today I Will Remember
Humility is awareness of God.

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One More Day

Pray that your loneliness may spur you into finding something to live for, great enough to die for.
– Dag Hammarskjold

The first time we go through a festive season without our spouse or a dear friend or beloved child, we may wonder if we can get through it. Pity overwhelms us as we think,. Surely no one has felt as bad as I do right now. Pain increases our loneliness, and we feel crushed by the holiday preparations the rest of the world seems to be making.

We can struggle out of this self-imposed misery by using the strategies that have helped us cope with our chronic illnesses. Patience tells us that this too shall pass. Selflessness shows us others who need compassion more than we do. Spiritually reminds us that our pain and sadness can be entrusted to the loving care of our Higher Power.

I know the holidays can be difficult, and if I take them one day at a time. I will do just fine.

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Food For Thought

Asking Directions

When we do not know which way to turn, let us not be too proud to ask for directions. We have found our way to a program, which can guide us out of the confusion of compulsive overeating into an ordered, satisfying way of life. In OA, there are people who can give us the directions we need, if we will ask for help.

There is much that we can do on our own thoroughly studying the literature, planning our three meals a day, establishing firm contact with our Higher Power. When we hit a snag, however, or are unsure of how to handle a difficult situation, we need to promptly seek the assistance our group provides. In order to receive help, we usually need to ask for it.

The illusion that we knew how to manage our lives and did not have to follow anyone else’s directions was one of the causes of our difficulties with food and with life in general. Admitting that by ourselves we are powerless enables us to ask for the directions we need.

I ask for Your directions. Lord.

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One Day At A Time

Humor
Don’t take yourself too damned seriously.
Rule #62, AA’s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

In the years of my existence, before I got into recovery, I would run from one self-important crisis to another. Everything was so important, so heavy! What laughter there was ended up directed derisively at others. I treated my life with self-importance and pomposity.

It took sitting in the rooms, day after day and night after night, listening to how recovering people were able to laugh at themselves. Oh, they were deadly serious when it came to working the Steps and the traditions. After all, if not for them, they’d be dead or crazy. But as they would share things where they had shown the heavy-does-it attitude, they would see the folly of their ways and start a good belly laugh that would cascade through the room and have us all wiping our eyes.

As I work my program, I realize that there are some things that need more prayer and meditation than others. Then there are those things in my life that, under the light of my recovery, are just plain flat-out silly. My Higher Power gives me the ability to cry and grieve where appropriate. My Higher Power also has taught me that laughter, indeed, is often the best medicine.

One day at a time ….
I learn that healthy laughter is just as important to my recovery as are the healthy tears.
~ Mark Y.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Follow the dictates of a Higher Power and you will presently live in a new and wonderful world, no matter what your present circumstances! – Pg. 100 – Working With Others

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Another day of sobriety begins. In our new recovery, we continue to welcome with open arms, those now newer than us. Today we DO one kind thing for someone: get them a cup of coffee, escort a newcomer to a chair, empty an ashtray after a meeting.

God, as I understand You, show me each day some kind thing I can DO for someone else.

Inner Hearing, Inner Sight

Today, I will trust my own heart. The clear message that whispers within me has more to tell me than a thousand voices. I have a guide within me who knows what is best for me. There is a part of me that sees the whole picture and knows how it all fits together. My inner voice may come in the form of a strong sense, a pull from within, a gut feeling or a quiet knowing. However my inner voice comes to me, I will learn to pay attention. In my heart I know what is going on. Though I am conditioned by the world to look constantly outside myself for meaning, today I recognize that it is deeply important for me to hear what I am saying from within.

I will trust my inner voice.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

When you’re being nice, it’s OK to over do it. During the HALT moments, when you’re too hungry, angry, lonely, and tired, it’s not.

When I go too far, it is seldom in the right direction.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Worry gives a small thing a big shadow.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am taking the time I need to look at my growth and progress. I celebrate being alive. I celebrate the good in me. Today I celebrate me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

You don’t have to want what we have – You just have to not want what you have. – Eddie C.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 11

Seduction

Although alcohol is not a part of my life and I no longer have the compulsion to drink,
it can still occur to me what a good drink tastes like and what it can do for me,
from my stand-at-attention alcoholic taste buds right down to my stretched out tingling toes.
As my sponsor used to point out, such thoughts are like red flags, telling me that something is not right,
that I am stretched beyond my sober limit. It’s time to get back to basic AA and see what needs changing.
That special relationship with alcohol will always be there, waiting to seduce me again.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 396-397

Thought to Ponder . . .
Alcohol — cunning, baffling, powerful!

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A = Always Aware.

~*~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~*~

Amends
“Though the variations were many,
my main theme was always ‘How godawful I am!’
Just as I often exaggerated my modest attainments by pride,
so I exaggerated my defects through guilt.
I would race about, confessing all (and a great deal more)
to whoever would listen.
Believe it or not, I took this widespread exposure
of my sins to be great humility on my part,
and considered it a great spiritual asset and consolation!
But later on I realized at depth that
the great harms I had done others were not truly regretted.
These episodes were merely the basis for
storytelling and exhibitionism.”
Bill W., AAGrapevine, June 1961
c. 1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 311

Thought to Consider . . .
Don’t mess up an amends with an excuse.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
W H O M E ? =
Willingness, Honesty, Open-mindedness, Must Exist

*~*~*~*~*^Just For Today!^*~*~*~*~*

Aim Toward Perfection
Step Six: Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character 
Let’s dispose of what appears to be a hazardous open end we have left. It is suggested that we ought to become entirely willing to aim toward perfection. We note that some delay, however, might be pardoned. That word, in the mind of a rationalizing alcoholic, could certainly be given a long term meaning. He could say, “How very easy! Sure, I’ll head toward perfection, but I’m certainly not going to hurry any. Maybe I can postpone dealing with some of my problems indefinitely.” Of course, this won’t do. Such a bluffing of oneself will have to go the way of many another pleasant rationalization. At the very least, we shall have to come to grips with some of our worst character defects and take action toward their removal as quickly as we can. 
1981, AAWS, Inc., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 69

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quote ^*~*~*~*~*

“We can’t grow without giving ourselves space for silence and the voice within.” 
Greenwich Village, N.Y., December 1997
“Oh God, You Again?”
I Am Responsible: The Hand of AA

~*~*~*~*^ Big Book & Twelve N’ Twelve Quotes of the Day ^*~*~*~*~*

“If we are sorry for what we have done, and have the honest desire to
let God take us to better things, we believe we will be forgiven and
will have learned our lesson. If we are not sorry, and our conduct
continues to harm others, we are quite sure to drink. We are not
theorizing. These are facts out of our experience.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 70~

We do not like to pronounce any individual as alcoholic, but you can
quickly diagnose yourself, Step over to the nearest barroom and try
some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it
more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are
honest with yourself about it. It may be worth a bad case of jitters
if you get a full knowledge of your condition.
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 31~

We alcoholics see that we must work together and hang together, else most of us will finally die alone.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.561

Surrounded by so many A.A. friends, these so-called loners tell us they no longer feel alone.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.120

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

If a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were sufficient to overcome alcoholism, many of us would have recovered long ago. But we found that such codes and philosophies did not save us, no matter how much we tried. We could wish to be moral, we could wish to be philosophically comforted, in fact, we could will these things with all our might, but the power needed for change wasn’t there. Our human resources, as marshaled by the will, were not sufficient; they failed utterly.
Lack of power: That was our dilemma. We had to find a power by which we could live – and it had to be a Power greater than ourselves. 

Prayer for the Day: Your Gift – Thank You, Higher Power, for Your gift of recovery; that through this Program I have come to know myself better than ever before, and that I have come to know others better as well. I pray that I may be eternally grateful for this, Your blessing.