Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 31st

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 31st

Daily Reflections

NO ONE DENIED ME LOVE

On the A.A. calendar it was Year Two . . . . A newcomer appeared at
one of these groups . . . . He soon proved that his was a desperate
case, and that above all he wanted to get well. . . . [He said], “Since I
am the victim of another addiction even worse stigmatized than
alcoholism, you may not want me among you.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 141-42

I came to you — a wife, mother, woman who had walked out on her
husband, children, family. I was a drunk, a pill-head, a nothing. Yet no
one denied me love, caring, a sense of belonging. Today, by God’s grace
and the love of a good sponsor and a home group, I can say that —
through you in Alcoholics Anonymous — I am a wife, a mother, a
grandmother and a woman. Sober. Free of pills. Responsible.
Without a Higher Power I found in the Fellowship, my life would be
meaningless. I am full of gratitude to be a member of good standing in
Alcoholics Anonymous.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Since I’ve been in A.A., have I made a start toward being more
unselfish? Do I no longer want my own way in everything? When things
go wrong and I can’t have what I want, do I no longer sulk? Am I
trying not to waste money on myself? And does it make me happy to see
my family and my home have enough attention from me? Am I trying not
to be all “get” and no “give”?

Meditation For The Day

Each day is a day of progress, steady progress forward, if you make it
so. You may not see it, but God does. God does not judge by outward
appearance. He judges by the heart. Let Him see in your heart a simple
desire always to do His will. Though you may feel that your work has
been spoiled or tarnished, God sees it as an offering for Him. When
climbing a steep hill, people are often more conscious of the weakness of
their stumbling feet than of the view, the grandeur, or even of the
upward progress.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may persevere in all good things. I pray that I may advance
each day in spite of my stumbling feet.


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As Bill Sees It

To Watch Loneliness Vanish, p. 90

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. Either we were
shy, and dared not draw near others, or we were noisy good fellows
constantly craving attention and companionship, but rarely getting it.
There was always that mysterious barrier we could neither surmount
nor understand.

That’s one reason we loved alcohol too well. But even Bacchus
betrayed us, we were finally struck down and left in terrified
isolation.

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

Life takes on new meaning in A.A. To watch people recover, to see
them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow
up about you, to have a host of friends–this is an experience not to be
missed.

1. 12 & 12, p. 57
2. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 89

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Walk in Dry Places

A Journey, Not a Destination.
How it Works
“Now that you’re sober, why do you stay in AA?”  AA members frequently hear this from others not familiar with the fellowship, but it’s understandable.  They see AA as a place where one goes to be ” cured,” whereas we learn to see it as an ongoing recovery process that is never really completed.
Sobriety is not an object that one can acquire and then put on a shelf somewhere or on the wall like a diploma.  It is more of a JOURNEY IN LIVING, with each day’s march being a goal in itself.
You could also say that sobriety is like the “MANNA FROM HEAVEN” described in the Old Testament. Fresh manna arrived each day, but could not be saved for the future. It is the same with us.  Today’s experience in sobriety is what sustains us, and we’re in trouble if we’re trying to depend on what was accomplished in the past.
Though we do use the term “permanent sobriety”, we never truly possess it.  Our quest for sobriety is a lifetime journey.
I’ll be on guard against any feeling of “having it made.”  Sure, past success should be helpful in maintaining today’s sobriety. But the quality of today’s sobriety will depend only on today’s thinking and behavior.


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Keep It Simple

You grow up the day you have your first real laugh at yourself.—Ethel Barrymore
There was a time when we wouldn’t let anyone laugh at us—even ourselves. We had to much shame. We had to much pain. We took the world too seriously. If we laughed it was at others—not at ourselves. Over time , real honest laughter returns to us. Laughter is a way of accepting ourselves as human. To be human means we can make mistakes. It means we can lighten up. It also means growing up. And growing up means being happy with all of who we are—even parts of us that may seem odd or funny. If we can’t laugh at ourselves, we shut ourselves off from the world. We shut ourselves off from the parts of us we need to accept. Am I willing to accept the fact that I’m human.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, You made laughter. Help me us it to make my life easier. Help me accept all of me a funny mistake I’ve made.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll share with someone close to me a funny mistake I’ve made.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Anger repressed can poison a relationship as surely as the cruelest words.  –Joyce Brothers
Anger is familiar to us all. We feel it toward others and from others. The expression and acceptance of anger is where we often falter. Most of us were told when we were small girls that we shouldn’t be angry, but we were. And we are, even yet. However, we often still feel like a little girl when it comes to angry feelings.
We need to accept our anger and learn to express it, honestly, openly and assertively, not aggressively. We can’t afford to hang onto anger. It grows and then festers and then boils. Soon it is interfering in all our relationships, and it provides a ready excuse for an old, self-destructive pattern we don’t want to entertain for even a moment.
Nothing we set out to do today will have the right outcome, if we carry anger within us. How we interpret life, how we treat our friends, what we do with our opportunities and our challenges–all these are determined by our attitudes. Repressed anger always blocks the way to a positive attitude.
Every experience can uplift me if anger doesn’t weigh me down.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

Had this power originated in him? Obviously it had not. There had been no more power in him than there was in me at that minute; and this was none at all.
That floored me. It began to look as though religious people were right after all. Here was something at work in a human heart which had done the impossible. My ideas about miracles were drastically revised right then. Never mind the musty past; here sat a miracle directly across the kitchen table. He shouted great tidings.

p. 11

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

ME AN ALCOHOLIC? – Alcohol’s wringer squeezed this author–but he escaped quite whole.
The other side of the coin is sinister, baffling.  I was inwardly unhappy most of the time.  There would be times when the life of respectability and achievement seemed insufferably dull–I had to break out.  This I would do by going completely “bohemian” for a night, getting drunk, and rolling home with the dawn.  Next day, remorse would be on me like a tiger.  I’d claw my way back to respectability and stay there–until the inevitable next time.

p. 382

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

In a neighboring state, Ed had holed up in a cheap hotel. After all his pleas for help had been rebuffed, these words rang in his fevered mind. “They have deserted me. I have been deserted by my own kind. This is the end . . . Nothing is left.” As he tossed on his bed, his hand brushed the bureau near by, touching a book. Opening the book, he read. It was a Gideon Bible. Ed never confided any more of what he saw and felt in that hotel room. It was the year 1938. He hasn’t had a drink since.

pp. 144-145

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“Don’t hurry, don’t worry. You’re only here for a short visit. So be sure
to stop and smell the flowers.”
–Walter Hagen

Always put yourself in others’ shoes. If you feel that it hurts you, it
probably hurts the other person, too.

Getting sober is like learning to ride a horse, if you fall off, get back on,
you can’t learn to ride on the ground….
–Patricia D.

“It is no disgrace to start all over. It is usually an opportunity.”
–George Matthew Adams, author

Here is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished: if
you’re alive, it isn’t.
–Richard Bach


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

WORLD

“All wars are civil wars,
because all men are brothers . . .
Each one owes infinitely more to
the human race than to the
particular country in which he
was born.”
— Francois Fenelon

My disease of addiction kept me separate, isolated and alone. I was so
busy seeing how I was different from other people that I missed the
similarities. I missed the “oneness” of this creation by always placing
myself above it, below it, outside it: and I was the loser.

Even my religion kept me separate. I was a Christian and not a Jew,
Muslim or Hindu — but I failed to see the similarities of these major
philosophies; I failed to see what all religious people have in common; I
failed to see the inclusiveness of Love, Truth and Forgiveness.

God is to be found in the “difference” and “sameness” of His people.

O Lord, I am discovering that even the differences, when understood,
become the same.

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“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to
God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who
diligently seek Him”
Hebrews 11:6

“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from Him.”
Psalm 62:5

“Thus says the Lord: ‘Keep justice, and do righteousness, for soon my
salvation will come, and my deliverance be revealed. Blessed is the
man who does this.”
Isaiah 56:1-2a


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Daily Inspiration

We have never before had today and we will never have it again. Lord, as I have the opportunity, let me use this day to do good.

Worse than being a quitter is the one who is afraid to begin. Lord, grant me the courage to believe in myself and the ability to focus on what I can do, not what I can’t do.

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NA Just For Today

“Insides Outsides”

“Our real value is in being ourselves.”
Basic Text p. 101

As we work the steps, we’re bound to discover some basic truths about ourselves. The process of uncovering our secrets, exposing them, and searching our characters reveals our true nature. As we become acquainted with ourselves, we’ll need to make a decision to be just who we are.

We may want to take a look at what we present to our fellow addicts and the world and see if it matches up with what we’ve discovered inside. Do we pretend that nothing bothers us when, in truth, we’re very sensitive? Do we cover our insecurities with obnoxious jokes, or do we share our fears with someone? Do we dress like a teenager when we’re approaching forty and are basically conservative?

We may want to take another look at those things which we thought “weren’t us:” Maybe we’ve avoided NA activities because we “don’t like crowds!” Or maybe we have a secret dream of changing careers but have put off taking action because our dream “wasn’t really right” for us. As we attain a new understanding of ourselves, we’ll want to adjust our behavior accordingly. We want to be genuine examples of who we are.

Just for today: I will check my outsides to make sure they match my insides. I will try to act on the growth I have experienced in recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Withdrawal is a preparation for emergence. –Nor Hall
A man lost his family in a car accident and wanted to be alone for a while, but he worried whether he was doing the right thing. Then one day a friend told him that when pine cones fall off the lodge pole pine trees, they are sealed shut so the seeds inside can’t get out. The pine cones lie on the forest floor–sometimes for decades–until a forest fire sweeps through. Heat from the fire melts the seal and the seeds fall out and finally grow, and that’s why the lodge pole pine is called a “fire-origin species.”
The man felt good about himself when he heard the story. “Fire-origin species” is a good name for people who’ve been burned by life and find new growth as a result.
How have I grown because of pain and difficulty?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Shared joy is double joy, and shared sorrow is half sorrow. –Swedish proverb
As recovering men, we know relief and peace when we express our pain and share the burden of a sorrow with each other. Life is too difficult, a day is too long, to carry grief alone and keep our joys to ourselves. We have spent long periods of time in loneliness. Like anyone who has been alone and finally gets a chance to speak, we have much to say to one another.
In this program we tell our stories, and the telling heals us. We tell about our pain and unmanageable past lives. We tell each other about our spiritual experiences. We share our honest doubts and worries about ourselves and events in our daily lives. Full communication at a truly spiritual meeting includes our questions and the incomplete thoughts in our stories as well as the thoughts that are fully concluded. As we talk, we unburden ourselves and learn from each other about closeness and manhood.
Today, I will let the people around me know about my joys and my sorrows. It will enrich my whole experience.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Anger repressed can poison a relationship as surely as the cruelest words. –Joyce Brothers
Anger is familiar to us all. We feel it toward others and from others. The expression and acceptance of anger is where we often falter. Most of us were told when we were small girls that we shouldn’t be angry, but we were. And we are, even yet. However, we often still feel like a little girl when it comes to angry feelings.
We need to accept our anger and learn to express it, honestly, openly and assertively, not aggressively. We can’t afford to hang onto anger. It grows and then festers and then boils. Soon it is interfering in all our relationships, and it provides a ready excuse for an old, self-destructive pattern we don’t want to entertain for even a moment.
Nothing we set out to do today will have the right outcome, if we carry anger within us. How we interpret life, how we treat our friends, what we do with our opportunities and our challenges–all these are determined by our attitudes. Repressed anger always blocks the way to a positive attitude.
Every experience can uplift me if anger doesn’t weigh me down.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Finances
Taking financial responsibility for ourselves is part of recovery. Some of us may find ourselves in hard financial times for a variety of reasons.
Our recovery concepts, including the Steps, work on money issues and restoring manageability to that area of our life. Make appropriate amends – even if that means tackling a $5,000 debt by sending in $5 a month.
Start where you are, with what you’ve got. As with other issues, acceptance and gratitude turn what we have into more.
Money issues are not a good place to act as if. Don’t write checks until the money is in the bank. Don’t spend money until you’ve got it in your hand.
If there is too little money to survive, use the appropriate resources available without shame.
Set goals.
Believe you deserve the best, financially.
Believe God cares about your finances.
Let go of your fear, and trust.
Today, I will focus on taking responsibility for my present financial circumstances, no matter how overwhelming that area of my life may feel and be.

With softness and gentleness I am turning around all negative thinking so that my mind is positive. It feels so good to be in charge of the world that I am creating for myself. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Take the Pressure Off

Sometimes we need a little pressure to get moving, but sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves. I must do this, we think, and I must do it better and faster. We begin to believe that only by worry and fear and pressuring ourselves can we got the job done– whether the job is spiritual growth, making a particular decision, or accomplishing a task.

That kind of pressure doesn’t get the job done any better or faster. It simply makes you tense and fearful, and stops the creative juices. Too much pressure can take you out of the present moment. It can inhibit the life force, the flow of life within you. That kind of pressure can make so much noise in your mind that you can’t hear your heart.

We have responsibilites. We have time frames and commitments to others. And there are times when we need to get the job done. But the most pressing job can be done best when we’re relaxed. The most urgent decision can be made most clearly when we’re at peace. It doesn’t help to force ourselves to go faster, be somewhere else, or be someone we’re not. There are few things we need to do that can be enhanced by becoming tense, fearful, and worried. The more pressing the situation, the more pressing the need to be present for ourselves, and be present for each moment.

Let off some steam. Release your emotions. Clear the pathway to the heart. The answer will come. The job will get done.

Give yourself some relief. Take the pressure off.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Change what you can

There are times when it’s best to say whatever and times when it’s best to say enough. Be aware of the difference in these times, and be ready to say both.

Are you being abused or merely annoyed? Is your anger based on a legitimate hurt, or has someone just not lived up to your expectations? Be aware that there’s a difference. Then learn to apply the strategies, as needed, for that particular situation.

Are there any rules for knowing? No, there aren’t. You need to decide and choose what’s best for you at any given time. Trust yourself and your Higher Power. You’re wiser than you think.

Seek balance in your life. Learn when it’s time to let go, and learn when it’s time to act.

God, help me let go of situations that are out of my control and help me take action, when it’s time.

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In God’s Care

I came to this program to save my ass and found out it was attached to my soul.
~~Anonymous

God gets our attention in a lot of different ways. To a great many of us, it was through accdident or illness, coming close to death. All of us come to this program frightened for our life or our sanity or both. God has our attention.

And now we are learning about the spiritual aspect of our life, the one we had so long neglected. Now we are partaking of God’s love–Soul food–and discovering that the spiritual life is fuller and more rewarding than anything we thought possible. Nothing we do to please our body can compare to the joy of unconditional love. When we lend a loving hand to anyone, we realize once again that the pain we suffered was worth it to bring us to this awareness.

Today I will look for ways to help others–and bless my soul!

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Protecting Your Flow
How Fear Blocks Creativity

To understand how fear blocks creativity, take a moment to imagine yourself telling a story. First, imagine telling the story to someone you love and who loves you. You probably feel warmth and energy as you fill in the details of your tale to your friend’s delight. Now, imagine telling the same story to someone who, for whatever reason, makes you uncomfortable. The wonderful twists and turns, the fine points and colorful images that unfolded in your mind for your friend probably won’t present themselves. Instead of warmth, energy, and creativity, you will probably feel opposite sensations and a desire to close down. When we feel unsafe, whether we fear being judged, disliked, or misunderstood, our creative flow stops. Alternately, when we feel safe, our creativity unfolds like a beautiful flower, without conscious effort.

Knowing this, we can maximize our creative potential by creating the conditions that inspire our creativity. In order to really be in the flow, we need to feel safe and unrestricted. However, achieving this is not as simple as avoiding people who make us feel uncomfortable. Sometimes we can be alone in a room and still feel totally blocked. When this happens, we know we have come up against elements in our own psyches that are making us feel fearful. Perhaps we are afraid that in expressing ourselves we will discover something we don’t want to know, or unleash emotions or ideas that we don’t want to be responsible for. Or maybe we’re afraid we’ll fail to produce something worthy.

When you’re up against fear, internal or external, ritual can be a powerful—and creative—antidote. Before you sit down to be creative, try casting a circle of protection around yourself. Visualize yourself inside a ring of light, protective fire, or angels. Imagine that this protective energy emanates unconditional love for you and wants to hear, see, and feel everything you have to express. Take a moment to bathe in the warmth of this feeling and then fearlessly surrender yourself to the power that flows through you. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

My illness is unlike most other illnesses in that denial that I am sick is a primary symptom that I am sick. Like such other incurable illnesses as diabetes and arhritis, howeever, my illness is characteriezed by relapses. In The Program, we call such relapses “slips.” The one thing I know for certain is that I alone can cause myself to slip. Will I remember at all times that the thought precedes the action? Will I try to avoid “stiinking thinking?”

Today I Pray

May God give me the power to resist temptations. May the responsibility for giving in, for having a “slip,” be on my shoulders and mine only. May I see beforehand if I am setting myself up for a slip by blame-shifing, shirking my responsibility to myself, becoming the world’s poor puppet once again. My return to those old attitudes ccan be as much of a slip as the act of losing my sobriety.

Today I Will Remember

Nobody’s slip-proof.

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One More Day

Why, why, why?
– James Joyce

“it doesn’t seem fair,” we privately lament. “How could I have this rotten medical condition just when I’ve hit my stride — the prime time of my life?”

That’s a question we all wonder about. Many of us may get down on our knees and pray to our Higher Power for understanding. We might as, “Why Me?” We might implore, “Why now, when I’m nearly on my feet again?”

We might ask these questions, yet often there are no answers. Our ways are not His ways. Sometimes life just isn’t fair; there are no easy answers.

I have adjusted to other changes in my life, and I can adjust to this one too. It may take some time, and I may go through the gamut of emotions first, but I am willing.

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Food For Thought

Sanity

Once, a long time ago, I was able to eat a small amount of extra food between meals and then stop. I enjoyed it very much. Over the years, that small amount became more and more. Somewhere along the line, I crossed the boundary of rational eating and moved into an area of insane bingeing.

Now, when the old urge comes for a small amount of extra food, I need to remember that I am incapable of stopping after a reasonable amount. For me, the first compulsive bite is now the point of no return. Once I take it, I cross immediately into insanity.

How do I remember? I need protection against the arrogant, willful delusion that “This time I will be able to handle it; this time I will get away with cheating just a little bit.” How can I protect myself?

Step One says that we are powerless over food. From sad experience, I know this to be a fact. Step Two says that we “came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.” My protection comes from this Higher Power.

Keep me sane, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

LOYALTY

“Health is the greatest gift,
contentment the greatest wealth,
faithfulness the best relationship.”
Buddah

I have a history of chaotic relationships filled with destructive drama and a lack of loyalty. For many years, however, I believed that I was in fact a very loyal friend – and that it was my friends who were disloyal to me.

I was an avid — even rabid — people-pleaser. I drove myself crazy trying to figure out what people wanted and how I could best provide that for them. Because I thought I knew what was best for everybody, I failed to truly listen to the people in my life. Instead, I tried to impose my will upon them … then I wondered why they didn’t appreciate all of my efforts on “their” behalf. When they inevitably became frustrated with me, I was wounded by what I perceived to be their lack of loyalty to me.

Only recently in my recovery program have I come to learn that my efforts at people-pleasing were actually symptoms of my own disloyalty. I was failing to relate with people as they are – rather, I was relating to them as I thought they “should be.” That is perhaps the most egregious form of disloyalty… insisting that others be loyal to my concept of them and myself.

Now I am taking steps to honestly listen to people and to relate with them as they are – and as I truly am. I am no longer hiding behind food. In order to be loyal in my relationships, I must be loyal to the ‘Truth of Reality.’ Only then can we share the joy of faithful relationships.

One day at a time … I will practice listening to the people in my life and I will honor them as they are. Each day I can choose to be loyal, rather than critical or people-pleasing.
Lisa

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Though we work out our solution on the spiritual as well as an altruistic plane, we favor hospitalization for the alcoholic who is very jittery or befogged. More often than not, it is imperative that a man’s brain be cleared before he is approached, as he has then a better chance of understanding and accepting what we have to offer. – Pg. xxvii – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

You want to be able to respond, not just react to the chaos of early recovery. Reaction is simply from the genes, primal and mostly instinctual. To respond requires thought. Think about your situation and how you want to respond to what happens to you.

I do not simply react to situations in an instinctual mode. I respond in a thoughtful, thought-out manner.

Bearing Witness

When I have an undesirable thought today, like jealousy, anger or self doubt I will just observe it in my mind. I will allow the thought to really be there. I won’t try to deny it or eradicate it. I will simply give it space and witness it. As I do this, the thought transforms. As I see it for what it is and accept it as a part of me, I give it the breathing room it needs to play itself through, to change into something else. I cannot hide from me, nor do I wish to. I can be my own best friend by allowing myself the space to think what I am really thinking and feel what I am really feeling knowing that it doesn’t have to lead to blind action. There is another more powerful and fruitful action that I can take. It is in simply witnessing, allowing and trusting that this process will lead to awareness, transformation and a more permanent change than is possible through denial. Today I will give myself the gift of self reflection.

I observe the workings of my inner mind

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

The person you were will use again. That is why you must ‘smash all your old ideas’ so that the new you is a member of the program, not the person you were. The person you were was a practicing alcoholic. The person you are is not.

Some people say that the 12 Steps brain wash us. Thank God, because that’s how I got clean!

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

There is no right way to do the wrong thing.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

With softness and gentleness I am turning around all negative thinking so that my mind is positive. It feels so good to be in charge of the world that I am creating for myself.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Faith is capitalizing on the belief of others.- Fr. Ed Dowling.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 31

Independence
Over and over, we have found we cannot stay sober long just for the sake of wife,
husband, children, lover, parents, other relative, or friend,
nor for the sake of a job, nor to please a boss (or doctor, or judge, or creditor)
— not for anyone other than ourselves. . .
Independent, unaffiliated with anything else, our sobriety can grow strong enough
to cope with anything — and everybody.
– Living Sober, p. 64

Thought to Ponder . . .
Others can stop you temporarily, but only you can do it permanently.

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

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

Give Thanks
“Though I still find it difficult
to accept today’s pain and anxiety
with any degree of serenity-
as those more advanced in the spiritual life
seem able to do-
I can give thanks for present pain nevertheless.
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., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, March 1962
As Bill Sees It, p. 266

Thought to Consider . . .
Serenity isn’t freedom from the storm; it is peace within the storm.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
HOPE
Hearing Other Peoples’ Experience

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

Enlightenment
From “Bill’s Story”:
“These were revolutionary and drastic proposals, but the moment I fully accepted them, the effect was electric. There
was a sense of victory, followed by such a peace and serenity as I had never known.
“For a moment I was alarmed, and called my friend, the doctor, to ask if I were still sane. He listened in wonder as I talked.
“Finally he shook his head saying, “Something has happened to you I don’t understand. But you had better hang on to it.
Anything is better than the way you were.” The good doctor now sees many men who have such experiences. He
knows that they are real.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 14

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

“If I am in pain, it may be beneficial to me if I am aware of those in even more pain … The answer for my pain is in the Twelfth Step.”
New York, N.Y., October 2006
“Gruff Love”
AA Grapevine

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

“‘There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which
is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in
everlasting ignorance that principle is contempt prior to investigation.'”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Appendice II, Spiritual Experience, pg. 568~

“For the type of alcoholic who is able and willing get well, little
charity, in the ordinary sense of the word, is need or wanted. The men
who cry for money and shelter before conquering alcohol, are on the wrong track.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 97

We perceive that only through utter defeat are we able to take our first steps toward liberation and strength.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 21

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

To Watch Loneliness Vanish
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. ? Either we were shy, and dared not draw near
others, or we were noisy good fellows constantly craving attention and companionship, but rarely getting it. There was
always that mysterious barrier we could neither surmount nor understand.
That’s one reason we loved alcohol too well. But even Bacchus betrayed us; we were finally struck down and left in
terrified isolation.
Life takes on new meaning in A.A. To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see
a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends–this is an experience not to be missed.
1. TWELVE AND TWELVE, P. 57
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, P. 89

Prayer For The Day: Dear heavenly Father, I praise You for Your abundant love and mercy toward us. Thank you for being patient with me as I am learning not to say things that would hurt You or others. I do ask that You help me to guard my lips from saying unkind things. Lord, even as David prayed these words, I ask that they be my prayer also. “Let the words of my mouth and the mediation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.” Help us all, as Your children, to say edifying things about one another. Thank you for the abundant life that is ours as we hear, speak, and obey the Words of God. I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 29th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 29th

Daily Reflections

TRUSTED SERVANTS

They are servants. Theirs is the sometimes thankless
privilege of doing the group’s chores.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 134

In Zorba the Greek, Nikos Kazantzakis describes an
encounter between his principle character and an old
man busily at work planting a tree. “What is it that
you are doing?” Zorba asks. The old man replies: “You
can see very well what I am doing, my son, I’m planting
a tree.” “But why plant a tree,” Zorba asks, “if you
won’t be able to see it bear fruit?” And the old man
answers: “I, my son, live as though I were never going
to die.” The response brings a faint smile to Zorba’s
lips and, as he walks away, he exclaims with a note of
irony: “How strange — I live as though I were going
to die tomorrow!”
As a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, I have found that
the Third Legacy is a fertile soil in which to plant
the tree of my sobriety. The fruits I harvest are
wonderful: peace, security, understanding and twenty-four
hours of eternal fulfillment; and with the soundness of
mind to listen to the voice of my conscience when, in
silence, it gently speaks to me, saying: You must let go
in service. There are others who must plant the harvest.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Before I met A.A. I was very dishonest. I lied to my wife
constantly about where I had been and what I’d been doing.
I took time off from the office and pretended I’d been
sick or gave some other dishonest excuse. I was dishonest
with myself, as well as with other people. I would never
face myself as I really was or admit when I was wrong. I
pretended to myself that I was as good as the next fellow,
although I suspected I wasn’t. Am I now really honest?

Meditation For The Day

I must live in the world and yet live apart with God. I can
go forth from my secret times of communion with God to the
work of the world. To get the spiritual strength I need, my
inner life must be lived apart from the world. I must wear
the world as a loose garment. Nothing in the world should
seriously upset me, as long as my inner life is lived with
God. All successful living arises from this inner life.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may live my inner life with God. I pray that
nothing shall invade or destroy that secret place of peace.

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As Bill Sees It

Will Power And Choice, p. 88

“We A.A.’s know the futility of trying to break the drinking
obsession by will power alone. However, we do know that it takes
great willingness to adopt A.A.’s Twelve Steps as a way of life that
can restore us to sanity.

“No matter how grievous the alcohol obsession, we happily find that
other vital choices can still be made. For example, we can choose to
admit that we are personally powerless over alcohol; that
dependence upon a ‘Higher Power’ is a necessity, even if this be
simply dependence upon an A.A. group. Then we can choose to try
for a life of honesty and humility, of selfless service to our fellows
and to ‘God as we understand Him.’

“As we continue to make these choices and so move toward these
high aspirations, our sanity returns and the compulsion to drink
vanishes,”

Letter, 1966

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Walk in Dry Places

Stick with the winners
Making the Right Choices
In the world of drinking, people lead each other down paths of further destruction. In the world of AA, that same destructive process can still go on through wrong thinking.  It’s possible for AA members to encourage resentments, criticism, gossip, and other dead-end practices.
That’s why people are urged to “stick with the winners” in order to find and maintain sobriety.  Seek out people who are doing well in the program, people whose progress is noticeable and admirable. The can be of real help as sponsors, as friends, or simply as role models.
It’s important to remember that the winners can be from all walks of life. The first AA member in Detroit earned only a modest living, while the second Detroit member became a wealthy manufacturer after finding sobriety.  In AA terms, both men were winners. They stayed sober, they stayed active in the fellowship, and they helped others.
“Sticking with the winners” does not mean we should shun people who are having difficulty with the program.  It does mean we should avoid accepting ideas and ways of living that do not lead to sobriety.
I’ll spend time in the company of people who have a good record of following the program.


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Keep It Simple

Whatever is in the heart will come up to the tongue.—Persian proverb
During our illness, we wouldn’t let people get close to us. We spoke of what was in our heart. And much of what filled our heart was sadness, anger, and hopelessness. Those who want to be close to us heard what was in our heart. In short, we had become our illness. Recovery is about changing what’s in our heart. We open our hearts up to our Higher Power. The first three Steps are about honesty and needing others. They’re about turning our will and our lives over to a Higher Power.
If you’re wondering where you are with these Steps, listen to the words you speak.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, keep my heart open to the first three Steps.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll work at really listening to what I have to say.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Love is an expression and assertion of self-esteem, a response to one’s own values in the person of another.  –Ayn Rand
The struggle to love one another may be a daily one for us, and it is made more difficult because we are still stumbling in our attempts at self-love. Many of us have lived our whole adult lives feeling inadequate, dull, unattractive, fearing the worst regarding our relationships with others.
But this phase, this struggle, is passing. We see a woman we like in the mirror each morning. We did a task or a favor yesterday that we felt good about. And when we feel good about our accomplishments, we look with a loving eye on the persons around us. Self-love does encourage other love.
Self-love takes practice. It’s new behavior. We can begin to measure what we are doing, rather than what we haven’t yet managed to do, and praise ourselves. Nurturing our inner selves invites further expression of the values that are developing, values that will carry us to new situations and new opportunities for accomplishments, and finally to loving the woman who looks back at us every morning.
Self-love makes me vulnerable and compassionate towards others. It’s the balm for all wounds; it multiplies as it’s expressed. It can begin with my smile.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

The wars which had been fought, the burnings and chicanery that religious dispute had facilitated, made me sick. I honestly doubted whether, on balance, the religions of mankind had done any good. Judging from what I had seen in Europe and since, the power of God in human affairs was negligible, the Brotherhood of Man a grim jest. If there was a Devil, he seemed the Boss of the Universal, and he certainly had me.

p. 11

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
In working the Twelve Steps, my life and my old way of thinking have changed.  I have no control over some of the things that happen in my life, but with the help of God I can now choose how I will respond.  Today I choose to be happy, and when I’m not, I have the tools of this program to put me back on track.

p. 381

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

Quite a while later, Ed got a sales job which took him out of town. At the end of a few days, the news came in. He’d sent a telegram for money, and everybody knew what that meant! Then he got on the phone. In those days, we’d go anywhere on a Twelfth Step job, no matter how unpromising. But this time nobody stirred. “Leave him alone! Let him try it by himself for once; maybe he’ll learn a lesson!”

p. 144

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People always ask, “How did you succeed?” Simply put, I chose not to
fail.
–Xernona Clayton

“Real friendship is shown in times of trouble; prosperity is full of
friends.”
–Euripides

Honesty gets us sober, tolerance keeps us sober.
–Bill W.

“To be trusted is a greater compliment than to be loved.”
–George MacDonald

“The principles you live by create the world you live in; if you change the
principles you live by, you will change your world.”
–Blaine Lee

“Many a man curses the rain that falls upon his head, and knows not
that it brings abundance to drive away hunger.”
–St. Basil

“If the only prayer you say in your life is ‘thank you,’ that would
suffice.”
–Meister Eckhart

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

OPINIONS

“Opinions cannot survive if one
has no chance to fight for them.”
— Thomas Mann

An opinion is worth fighting for, and I have opinions on a great number
of subjects — as a result of sobriety.

Drugs have a tendency to make insane remarks appear brilliant; the
drunk is always the unsung poet or victimized genius when he is “in
alcohol”. I did not have opinions when I was drinking but rather a series
of chaotic and incoherent reactions.

But today I have considered opinions. I am able to think and make
decisions. I am able to make a contribution to life and the world in which
I live. I am involved.

More than this, today I have the spiritual confidence to fight for what I
believe and “speak out” my concerns in love. Today I am alive and I
love it — also I love me.

Let me always hear the opinions of others but not fail to express my
own.

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

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the
renewing of your mind.
Romans 12:2

‘Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be
saved; for thou art my praise.”
Jeremiah 17:14

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God
is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But
when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can
stand up under it.”
I Corinthians 10:13

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Daily Inspiration

Few things are worthy of worry and fewer are worthy of anger. Lord, bless me with patience for my circumstances and wisdom to overcome the obstacles.

We only have so much time and so much energy in a day. To use it grumbling leaves less time for enjoyment and accomplishment. Lord, may I focus on looking for Your blessings in every part of my life.

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

NA Just For Today

Our Own True Will

“God’s will for us consists of the very things we most value. God’s will… becomes our own true will for ourselves.”
Basic Text p. 46

It’s human nature to want something for nothing. We may be ecstatic when a store cashier gives us back change for a twenty though we only paid with a ten. We tend to think that, if no one knows, one small deception won’t make any difference. But someone does know—we do. And it does make a difference.

What worked for us when we used, frequently doesn’t work long in recovery. As we progress spiritually by working the Twelve Steps, we begin to develop new values and standards. We begin to feel uncomfortable when we take advantage of situations that, when we used, would have left us gloating about what we had gotten away with.

In the past, we may have victimized others. However, as we draw closer to our Higher Power, our values change. God’s will becomes more important than getting away with something.

When our values change, our lives change, too. Guided by an inner knowledge given us by our Higher Power, we want to live out our newfound values. We have internalized our Higher Power’s will for us—in fact, God’s will has become our own true will for ourselves.

Just for today: By improving my conscious contact with God, my values have changed. Today, I will practice God’s will, my own true will.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Drag your thoughts away from your troubles . . . by the ears, by the heels or any other way you can manage it. It’s the healthiest thing a body can do. –Mark Twain
It requires very little effort–and no imagination–to start feeling sorry for ourselves. Often, it is easy to feel sorry for ourselves in our families. Instead of being inspired by the sports talents of an older brother, the popularity of a lovely sister, or the fame of a parent or relative, we often take the easier attitude: “I’m denied all that he or she has.”
If we work hard at developing our own abilities so that we can excel, we will find ourselves proud of, and applauding, what others do. If a personal problem brings us self-pity, we must remind ourselves that all people have problems. We can cope as well as the best of people if we learn from them and think positively.
Who among those close to me can I be proud of today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Restless man’s mind is,
So strongly shaken
In the grip of the senses…
Truly I think
The wind is no wilder.
–Bhagavad Gita
What passions have swept away our reasoning powers? What lust have we pursued at the cost of our values and better judgment? As men in this program, we know the ferocious winds of addiction and codependency. Now we are in a program of recovery, learning to combine our sensual side with our mind and our morals.
Every day we feel the winds of our senses, and they are part of what gives us life. We can let them blow and not be carried away by them. In this way we take pleasure in being human beings and men. We have our minds, our thoughts, and our knowledge to turn to for guidance. And we have our inner voice – our Higher Power – on which we can rely through even the wildest hurricane.
I am learning to make room in life for my senses, my mind, and my Higher Power.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Love is an expression and assertion of self-esteem, a response to one’s own values in the person of another. –Ayn Rand
The struggle to love one another may be a daily one for us, and it is made more difficult because we are still stumbling in our attempts at self-love. Many of us have lived our whole adult lives feeling inadequate, dull, unattractive, fearing the worst regarding our relationships with others.
But this phase, this struggle, is passing. We see a woman we like in the mirror each morning. We did a task or a favor yesterday that we felt good about. And when we feel good about our accomplishments, we look with a loving eye on the persons around us. Self-love does encourage other love.
Self-love takes practice. It’s new behavior. We can begin to measure what we are doing, rather than what we haven’t yet managed to do, and praise ourselves. Nurturing our inner selves invites further expression of the values that are developing, values that will carry us to new situations and new opportunities for accomplishments, and finally to loving the woman who looks back at us every morning.
Self-love makes me vulnerable and compassionate towards others. It’s the balm for all wounds; it multiplies as it’s expressed. It can begin with my smile.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Getting Needs Met
Picture yourself walking through a meadow. There is a path opening before you. As you walk, you feel hungry. Look to your left. There’s a fruit tree in full bloom. Pick what you need.
Steps later, you notice you’re thirsty. On your right, there’s a fresh water spring.
When you are tired, a resting place emerges. When you are lonely, a friend appears to walk with you. When you get lost, a teacher with a map appears.
Before long, you notice the flow: need and supply; desire and fulfillment. Maybe, you wonder, someone gave me the need because someone planned to fulfill it. Maybe I had to feel the need, so I would notice and accept the gift. Maybe closing my eyes to the desire closes my arms to its fulfillment.
Demand and supply, desire and fulfillment – a continuous cycle, unless we break it. All the necessary supplies have already been planned and provided for this journey.
Today, everything I need shall be supplied to me.

God gives me all the strength and courage to accept whatever happens in my life today. It is so freeing to know that I am no longer a victim of people, places and things. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Move Gently into Forgiveness

“I never knew how much I blamed and hated myself. I never knew how much shame and self-contempt I picked up from situations I’d been through until I really forgave myself and felt how that feels,” one woman said to me.

Loving yourself, forgiving yourself, accepting yourself– all of these feel different from judging yourself. Many of us have lived with so much judgement of ourselves that we take these feelings for granted. We just think that’s how we’re doomed to feel. Until we do forgive ourselves, we don’t realize how much we need to, and how good, how great, how absolutely terrific that feels.

I was leery of forgiveness for many years. I thought forgiving implied judging. And because judging was wrong and I shouldn’t do it, I didn’t need to forgive. The problem was, whether right or wrong, I had judged myself. And now I needed forgiveness.

Self-judgements set us apart, separate us from the rest of the world in an undesirable way. Forgiving ourselves reconnects us to the world, to God, to ourselves.

We can forgive ourselves for what we’ve done wrong, what we’ve done badly, and what we think we could have done better. We can transcend our judgements of ourselves.

Move gently into forgiveness. Love, forgive, and accept yourself. See how connected you feel. See how free you really are and always have been. See how much better you feel!

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More Language Of Letting Go

Thy will be done

You can clear the land, plow the field, spread the fertilizer, and plant the corn. but you cannot make it rain. You cannot prevent an early frost. You cannot determine exactly what will happen in your life. The rain may or may not fall, but one thing is certain: you will get a harvest only if you planted something in the field.

It’s important to do everything in our power to ensure our success, but we also need to let the universe take its course. Getting mad won’t help. Dwelling on a situation only takes energy away from us, while yielding few positive results.

The Serenity Prayer comes to mind. It begins:”Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.”

Clear the land, plow the field, plant the crop, and then let go. Things will work out, sometimes the way we want them to, sometimes not. But they will work out.

Sometimes all you can do is shrug your shoulders, smile, and say whatever.

Thy will, not mine, be done.

God, help me take guided action, then surrender to your will. Help me remember that true power comes from aligning my will, intentions, and desires with you.

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In God’s Care

We are born helpless. As soon as we are fully conscious we discover loneliness. We need others physically, emotionally, intellectually; we need them if we are to know anything, even ourselves.

People today are taught at an early age to be self-sufficient. Independence is considered a strength, and dependence a weakness. As a result, we come to believe that we can make it on our own. And we can, but at what cost? Many of us fill our loneliness with chemical substances, Humans are social creatures; we need each other for physical and emotional support, and for a healthy exchange of ideas.

Even more, we need each other for spiritual development. God loves us equally and often speaks to us through one another. We truly learn about our spiritual nature in the loving acts we exchange

I am never lonely when showing someone that I care.

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Alive in Joy
Dispelling Drama

by Madisyn Taylor

Some people are so used to creating drama that a peaceful existence seems uncomfortable for them.

There are scores of people in the world who seem to be magnets for calamity. They live their lives jumping from one difficult to the next, surrounded by unstable individuals. Some believe themselves victims of fate and decry a universe they regard as malevolent. Others view their chaotic circumstances as just punishments for some failing within. Yet, in truth, neither group has been fated or consigned to suffer. They are likely unconsciously drawing drama into their lives, attracting catastrophe through their choices, attitudes, and patterns of thought. Drama, however disastrous, can be exciting and stimulating. But the thrill of pandemonium eventually begins to frustrate the soul and drain the energy of all who embrace it. To halt this process, we must understand the root of our drama addiction, be aware of our reactions, and be willing to accept that a serene, joyful life need not be a boring one.

Many people, so used to living in the dramatic world they create, feel uncomfortable when confronted with the prospect of a lifetime of peace and contentment. The drama in their lives serves multiple purposes. Upset causes excitement, prompting the body to manufacture adrenaline, which produces a pleasurable surge of energy. For those seeking affection in the form of sympathy, drama forms the basis of their identity as a victim. And when drama is familial, many people believe they can avoid abandonment by continuing to play a key role in the established family dynamic. The addiction to drama is fed by the intensity of the feelings evoked during bouts of conflict, periods of uncertainty, and upheaval.

Understanding where the subconscious need for drama stems from is the key to addressing it effectively. Journaling can help you transfer this need from your mind onto a benign piece of paper. After repeated writing sessions, your feelings regarding the mayhem, hurt feelings, and confusion often associated with drama become clear. When you confront your emotional response to drama and the purpose it serves in your life, you can reject it. Each time you consciously choose not to take part in dramatic situations or associate with dramatic people, you create space in your inner being that is filled with a calm and tranquil stillness and becomes an asset in your quest to lead a more centered life. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

What is the definition of humility? “Absolute humility,” said AA co-founder Bill W., “would consist of a state of complete freedom from myself, freedom from all the claims that my defects of character no lay so heavily upon me. Perfect humility would be a full willingness, in all times and places, to find and to do the will of God” Am I striving for humility?

Today I Pray

May God expand my interpretation of humility beyond abject subservience or awe at the greatness of others May humility also mean freedom from myself, a freedom which can come only through turning my being over to God’s will. May I sense the omnipotence of God, which is simultaneously humbling and exhilarating. May I be willing to carry out His will.

Today I Will Remember

Humility is freedom.

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One More Day

Happiness should not depend on physical wellness.
– K. o’Brien

Without even recognizing that we have done so, we sometimes structure our entire lives on the foundation of good health. We assume good health for our future. And we refuse to even acknowledge that nature’s somewhat random selection process can change the way we live. We may never even give a moment’s thought to changing our habits because of illness. We feel exempt, confident it will never happen to us.

And when it does and our lifestyle changes — sometimes gradually, sometimes abruptly — we feel we’ve lost the right to happiness. Then we begin to adjust. Family and friends stick with us, and an awareness comes forth that they, not physical activity, are the reasons for true happiness.

I accept and will adjust to chronic illness. Poor health has changed my life not ended it.

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Food For Thought

Slow Success

We say that there are no failures in OA, only slow successes. Some of us take longer than others to catch on to the program. It is important to keep trying, to continue to attend as many meetings as possible, and to refuse to become discouraged.

There are some of us who spent months and years experimenting before we were finally able to accept abstinence and stay with it. Sometimes we left the program for a time, until we realized how much we needed OA and came back to try again.

When we have accepted the program and maintained abstinence, yet found weight loss to be extremely slow, it is easy to become discouraged. It helps to remember that we are not only losing weight–however slowly–we are also learning a new way of life. Our spiritual and emotional growth in this program is even more rewarding than the eventual weight loss. By living each day as it comes and working the Twelve Steps, we achieve the serenity and confidence that make us satisfied with slow success.

May I be granted patience and persistence.

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One Day At A Time

ISOLATION

“Isolation is the sum total of wretchedness to a man.”
Thomas Carlyle

This past summer I was forced to play “catch-up” at work in order to compensate for time lost while recovering from a serious ankle injury. As a result of my increased responsibilities, I stopped touching base with my friends and family — Program family included — except via the occasional email or phone call.

Fortunately, my friends and my sponsor are not the “shrinking violet” types. They took me to task about my whereabouts and well being. Because COE is a disease of isolation, it’s extremely important to make sure we’re making contact with others. We do this by using the tools of the Program: sharing with our support group, meetings, and sponsor.

When we don’t allow ourselves to have regular, daily social outflow and personal accountability – even with a good excuse – we are more likely to relapse.

One day at a time…
I will make a determined effort to connect and share with others.
Rob R.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

If a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were 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 needed power wasn’t there. Our human resources, as marshalled by the will, were not sufficient; they failed utterly. – Pg. 45 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Anger is one letter short of Danger. ( Dolores )

I Will Be Me

I will be me, today. One thing I never seem to do well at, is trying to be someone else. I can imitate and learn from others, but I cannot be them. Only they know how to do that, it’s a natural outgrowth of all that they have experienced in life, of all they are. That’s the bad news. The good news is no one can be me as well as me. Being me builds on who I already am. It’s exercise for my personality and my spirit. If I allow myself to actualize my own unique gifts and visions they will have originality to them, a freshness.

I am a better me than anyone else can be

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

In the words of Wayne Dryer ‘You will be happy to know that the universal law that created miracles has not been repealed.’

I Expect a Miracle today.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

There is an easy answer to your problem that is neat, plausible, and wrong.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

God gives me all the strength and courage to accept whatever happens in my life today. It is so freeing to know that I am no longer a victim of people, places and things.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Relationships: I’ve learned how to get into them and now how to get out of them.
Now all I’ve got to do is learn how to do the bit in the middle. – Lochie.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 29

Surrender
At one time the admission that I was and am an alcoholic
meant shame, defeat, and failure to me.
But in the light of the new understanding that I have found in AA,
I have been able to interpret that defeat and that failure as seeds of victory.
Because it was only through feeling defeat and failure,
the inability to cope with my life and with alcohol,
that I was able to surrender and accept the fact that I had this disease
and that I had to learn to live again without alcohol.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 295

Thought to Ponder . . .
We surrender to win.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
K I S S = Keep It Simple; Surrender.

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

Housecleaning
“Somehow, being alone with God
doesn’t seem as embarrassing
as facing up to another person.
Until we actually sit down and talk aloud
about what we have so long hidden,
our willingness to clean house
is still largely theoretical.
When we are honest with another person,
it confirms that we have been honest
with ourselves and with God.”
Bill W., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 60

Thought to Consider . . .
If we skip this vital step, we may not overcome drinking.
Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 72

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
STEPS
Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety

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

Selfless
From “When A.A. Came of Age”:
“As this tidal offering of top public approval swept in, we realized that it could do us incalculable good or great harm.
Everything would depend upon how it was channeled. We simply could not afford to take the chance of letting self-
appointed members present themselves as messiahs representing A.A. before the whole public. The promoter instinct
in us might be our undoing. If even one such person publicly got drunk or was lured into using A.A.’s name for his own
purposes, the damage might be irreparable. At this altitude (press, radio, films, and television [and the internet] ),
anonymity 100 per cent anonymity was the only possible answer. Here principles would have to come before
personalities, without exception.
“These experiences taught us that anonymity is real humility at work. It is an all-pervading spiritual quality which today
keynotes A.A. life everywhere.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 134

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

“Until I was at my complete bottom, alcohol wasn’t even my problem. But thankfully, when I did hit bottom, AA was not
hard to find.”
November 2013
“Why Not Tell the World?”
AA Grapevine

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

“The great fact is just this, and nothing less: That we have had deep
and effective spiritual experiences which have revolutionized our
whole attitude toward life, toward our fellows and toward God’s
universe. The central fact of our lives today is the absolute
certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a
way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish
those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 25~

“The age of miracles is still with us. Our own recovery proves that!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 153~

But in A.A. we slowly learned that something had to be done about our vengeful resentments, self-pity, and unwarranted pride.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 47

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

‘Will Power and Choice’
‘We A.A.’s know the futility of trying to break the drinking obsession by will power alone. However, we do know that it
takes great willingness to adopt A.A.’s Twelve Steps as a way of life that can restore us to sanity.
‘No matter how grievous the alcohol obsession, we happily find that other vital choices can still be made. For example,
we can choose to admit that we are personally powerless over alcohol; that dependence upon a ‘higher Power’ is a
necessity, even if this be simply dependence upon an A.A. group. Then we can choose to try for a life of honesty and
humility, of selfless services to out fellows and to ‘God as we understand Him.’
‘As we continue to make these choices and so move toward these high aspirations, our sanity returns and the
compulsion to drink vanishes.’ LETTER, 1966

Prayer For The Day: Lord God, help me to remember that I may not only be forgiven for my transgression, but with thy help I may be led away from the wrong. May I be content to follow where thou dost lead. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 25th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 25th

Daily Reflections

A FULL AND THANKFUL HEART

I try hard to hold fast to the truth that a full and
thankful heart cannot entertain certain conceits. When
brimming with gratitude, one’s heartbeat must surely
result in outgoing love, the finest emotion that we
can ever know.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 37

I believe that we in Alcoholics Anonymous are fortunate
in that we are constantly reminded of the need to be
grateful and of how important gratitude is in our
sobriety. I am truly grateful for the sobriety God has
given me through the A.A. program and am glad I can give
back what was given to me freely. I am grateful not only
for sobriety, but for the quality of life my sobriety
has brought. God has been gracious enough to give me
sober days and a life blessed with peace and contentment,
as well as the ability to give and receive love, and the
opportunity to serve others — in our Fellowship, my
family and community. For all of this, I have “a full
and thankful heart.”


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Strength comes from coming to believe in a Higher Power
that can help you. You can’t define this Higher Power, but
you can see how it helps other alcoholics. You hear them
talk about it and you begin to get the idea yourself. You
try praying in a quiet time each morning and you begin to
feel stronger, as though your prayers were heard. So you
gradually come to believe there must be a Power in the
world outside of yourself, which is stronger than you and
which you can turn to for help. Am I receiving strength from
my faith in a Higher Power?

Meditation For The Day

Spiritual development is achieved by daily persistence in
living the way you believe God wants you to live. Like the
wearing away of a stone by steady drops of water, so will
your daily persistence wear away all the difficulties and
gain spiritual success for you. Never falter in this daily,
steady persistence. Go forward boldly and unafraid.
God will help and strengthen you, as long as you are trying
to do His will.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may persist day by day in gaining spiritual
experience. I pray that I may make this a lifetime work.


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As Bill Sees It

Benefits of Responsibility, p. 84

“Happily, A.A.’s per capita expenses are very low. For us to fail to
meet them would be to evade a responsibility beneficial for us.

“Most alcoholics have said they had no troubles that money would not
cure. We are a group that, when drinking, always held out a hand for
funds. So when we commence to pay our own service bills, this is a
healthy change.”

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

“Because of drinking, my friend Henry had lost a high-salaried job.
There remained a fine house–with a budget three times his reduced
earnings.

“He could have rented the house for enough to carry it. But no!
Henry said he knew that God wanted him to live there, and He would
see that the costs were paid. So Henry went on running up bills and
glowing with faith. Not surprisingly, his creditors finally took over the
place.

“Henry can laugh about it now, having learned that God more often
helps those who are willing to help themselves.”

1. Letter, 1960
2. Letter, 1966

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Walk in Dry Places

Expect Miracles____Belief
Some have claimed that there have been no miracles since the fourteenth century.  This is a smug way of saying that miracles do not happen.
Emmet Fox conceded that miracles don’t happen in the sense of violating the perfect, universal system of law and order.  But there is such a thing as appealing to a higher law, and this too is part of the constitution of the universe.  Prayer is a means of doing this, and enough prayer will get you out of any difficulty, Fox insisted.
People who have found sobriety in AA are actually modern miracles.  They expect more miracles to continue happening”  otherwise, there would be no point in continuing to work with newcomers. And while we’re expecting miracles, let’s remember that countless other human problems will yield to a spiritual approach.  Life itself is miraculous when we study it:  why shouldn’t there be more miracles ahead?
I’ll keep an open mind on the subject of miracles.  Since we still can glipmse only a fragment of the universe, it should follow that there’s also much more to learn about the spiritual processes that rescued us from alcoholism.


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Keep It Simple

The artist who aims at perfection in everything achieves it in nothing.—Eugene Delacroix
Trying to be prefect puts distance between us and our Higher Power. Trying to be perfect shows we’re ashamed of being human. In recovery, we accept that we’re human. We try to be the best human we can be. We used to get high to feel powerful and god-like. But God is not just power. God is also gentleness. Gentleness and love are the power we look for on recovery. We work to be human. We work to know the loving, gentle side of ourselves and our Higher Power. Remember, if we try to be god, we’ll fail. If we try to be human, we’ll win.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me give up trying to be perfect. Help me always keep in mind that I’m human—which means, I’m not perfect.
Action for the Day:  Part of being human is making mistakes. Today, I’ll see my mistakes as chances to learn.

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Each Day a New Beginning

When I slow down long enough to smell the roses, I usually see the beauty and all else that is ours to share.  –Morgan Jennings
We overlook so many joys, so many hidden treasures, when we hurry from place to place, person to person, experience to experience, with little attention anywhere. All that matters passes before us now, at this moment. And assuredly, we will not pass this way again.
It has been said the greatest gift we can give one another is rapt attention; additionally, living life fully attentive to the breezes, the colors, the sorrows and the thrills as well, is the most prayerful response any of us can make in this life. Nothing more is asked of us. Nothing less is expected.
We have just this one life to live, and each day is a blessing. Even the trials we shall understand as blessings in the months, the years ahead, as we can see now how the painful moments of the past played their part. Our attitude toward the lessons life has offered makes all the difference in the world.
I will look closely at everything in my path today. The women and children, the trees and squirrels, the silent neighbors. I will never see them again as I see them today. I will be at attention.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

He talked for hours. Childhood memories rose before me. I could almost hear the sound of the preacher’s voice as I sat, on still Sundays, way over there on the hillside; there was that proffered temperance pledge I never signed; my grandfather’s good natured contempt of some church folk and their doings; his insistence that the spheres really had their music; but his denial of the preacher’s right to tell him how he must listen; his fearlessness as he spoke of these things just before he died; these recollections welled up from the past. They made me swallow hard.
That war-time day in old Winchester Cathedral came back again.

p. 10

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
In working the steps, my life changed.  I think differently today; I feel differently today.  I am new.  We have a sign at the A.A. meetings I go to that says, “Expect a Miracle.”  My sobriety is full of miracles.  When my son filled out an application for college, I filled out one too, and was accepted.  Soon I will be a senior, and I have a 3.71 grade point average.  Thanks to A.A.  I have come a long way from being near the bottom of my high school class.  It takes me a lot longer to read the material, so I have CCTV (I put my book under this camera and it comes out in large print on a monitor).  I have a talking calculator that helped me get through statistics and a telescope that can help me see the board.  I accept help from the disabled students services and gladly make use of the volunteer notetakers.

pp. 380-381

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire
to stop drinking.”

Not long after the man with the double stigma knocked for admission,
A.A.’s other group received into its membership a salesman we shall call
Ed. A power driver, this one, and brash as any salesman could possibly
be. He had at least and idea a minute on how to improves A.A. These
ideas he sold to fellow members with the same burning enthusiasm with
which he distributed automobile polish. But he had one idea that wasn’t
so salable. Ed was an atheist. His pet obsession was that A.A. could get
along better without its “God nonsense.” He browbeat everybody, and
everybody expected that he’d soon get drunk – for at the time, you see,
A.A. was on the pious side. There must be a heavy penalty, it was
thought, for blasphemy. Distressingly enough, Ed proceeded to stay sober.

p. 143

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Nine requisites for contented living:
Health enough to make work a pleasure.
Wealth enough to support your needs.
Strength to battle with difficulties and overcome them.
Grace enough to confess your sins and forsake them.
Patience enough to toil until some good is accomplished.
Charity enough to see some good in your neighbor.
Love enough to move you to be useful and helpful to others.
Faith enough to make real the things of God.
Hope enough to remove all the anxious fears concerning the future.
–Johann von Goethe

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
–Chinese proverb

“All fortune belongs to him who has a contented mind.”
–The Panchatantra

“If we lead good lives, the times are also good. As we are, such are the times.”
–St. Augustine

Wise sayings often fall on barren ground; but a kind word is never thrown away.”
–Sir Arthur Helps


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PERSEVERANCE

“I know of no more encouraging
fact than the unquestionable
ability of man to elevate his life by
a conscious endeavor.”
— Henry David Thoreau

Life is exciting to me when I am creating, when I am pursuing a dream,
when I am making miracles in my life.

I suppose “perseverance” stems from a belief that things get better
when we roll-up our sleeves and do something. Sobriety is about
comprehending that in our lives we reflect the message.

God has created man with the ability to make the dream come true;
this is not to say it is easy . . . but it is harder not to dream!

Teach us to wonder at the stars with a spade in our hands.

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Oh, give thanks to the LORD!
Call upon His name;
Make known His deeds among the peoples!
Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him;
Talk of all His wondrous works!
Glory in His holy name;
Let the hearts of those rejoice who seek the LORD!
Seek the LORD and His strength;
Seek His face evermore.
Psalm 105:1-4

My peace I give you … Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not
be afraid.
John 14:27


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Daily Inspiration

Things are not always what they seem, so take time to think before you react. Lord, grant me patience and resolve when I have the urge to assume the worst or jump to false conclusions.

Knowing about God and knowing God are very different things. Lord, may I recognize Your workings in my life so that I may really know You.

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NA Just For Today

I Can’t, But We Can

“From the isolation of our addiction, we find a fellowship of people with a common bond… Our faith, strength, and hope come from people sharing their recovery…”
Basic Text, pg.94-95

Admit no weakness, conceal all shortcomings, deny every failure, go it alone-that was the creed many of us followed. We denied that we were powerless over our addiction, that our lives had become unmanageable, despite all evidence to the contrary. Many of us took our First Step only when we had evidence that addicts could recover in Narcotics Anonymous.

In NA, we find others who’ve been in the same predicament, with the same needs, who’ve found tools that work for them. These addicts are willing to share those tools with us and gibe us the emotional support we need as we learn to use them. Recovering addicts know how important the help of others can be because they’ve been given that help themselves. When we become a part of Narcotics Anonymous, we join a society of addicts like ourselves, a group of people who know that we help one another recover.

Just for today: I will join in the bond of recovery. I will find the experience, strength, and hope I need in the Fellowship of Narcotics Anonymous.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
My most irrational fear is that I’ve forgotten how to cook. –Pam Sherman
Once there was a teacher who was having nightmares about doing a good job. In one dream, he couldn’t find his classroom and he had to run from building to building. In another dream, he started teaching the lesson in the middle of the woods and didn’t notice he was in the wrong place!
Then one Sunday morning, he read an article about a wonderful baker. She baked every day, started bakeries, and fixed food for her friends, yet when the reporter asked her about her fears, she said, “My most irrational fear is that I’ve forgotten how to cook.”
Suddenly the man felt better. He realized someone else had the same kinds of fears. In a miraculous way, our fears become less powerful when we discover that we share them with other people.
What fear can I share with someone right now?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I don’t want everyone to like me; I should think less of myself if some people did. –Henry James
Many of us have learned to control the responses of others by always being pleasing and charming. Maybe we feel it’s better to have others like us than to take a stand. Maybe we only feel okay about ourselves if others approve. Some of us have certainly learned we have a sense of power and control over people when they like us. Many of us have carried our people pleasing behavior so far that we have really sold our souls for the applause of others.
Are there problems or tensions in our lives from trying to please someone? Is fear of criticism preventing us from taking an action that would be good for us? Have we neglected our inner voice by listening so hard to others? As we get stronger, healthier, more fully into our manhood, not everyone will like us. Some people will be angry; others, not interested. Once we have faced our own life crises, we are not so dependent on having everyone’s approval.
I pray for God’s blessing upon the man I’m becoming. I will let go of this need to please everyone.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
When I slow down long enough to smell the roses, I usually see the beauty and all else that is ours to share. –Morgan Jennings
We overlook so many joys, so many hidden treasures, when we hurry from place to place, person to person, experience to experience, with little attention anywhere. All that matters passes before us now, at this moment. And assuredly, we will not pass this way again.
It has been said the greatest gift we can give one another is rapt attention; additionally, living life fully attentive to the breezes, the colors, the sorrows and the thrills as well, is the most prayerful response any of us can make in this life. Nothing more is asked of us. Nothing less is expected.
We have just this one life to live, and each day is a blessing. Even the trials we shall understand as blessings in the months, the years ahead, as we can see now how the painful moments of the past played their part. Our attitude toward the lessons life has offered makes all the difference in the world.
I will look closely at everything in my path today. The women and children, the trees and squirrels, the silent neighbors. I will never see them again as I see them today. I will be at attention.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Worry
What if we knew for certain that everything were worried about today will work out fine?
What if . . . we had a guarantee that the problem bothering us would be worked out in the most perfect way, and at the best possible time? Furthermore, what if we knew that three years from now wed be grateful for that problem, and it solution?
What if . . . we knew that even our worst fear would work out for the best?
What if . . . we had a guarantee that everything that’s happening, and has happened, in our life was meant to be, planned just for us, and in our best interest?
What if . . . we had a guarantee that the people we love are experiencing exactly what they need in order to become who they’re intended to become? Further, what if we had a guarantee that others can be responsible for themselves, and we don’t have to control or take responsibility for them?
What if . . . we knew the future was going to be good, and we would have an abundance of resources and guidance to handle whatever comes our way?
What if . . . we knew everything was okay, and we didn’t have to worry about a thing? What would we do then?
We’d be free to let go and enjoy life.
Today, I will know that I don’t have to worry about anything. If I do worry, I will do it with the understanding that I am choosing to worry, and it is not necessary.

My Higher Power is with me in the sun as well as the rain, in pain as well as joy. As long as I know I am protected by the power of faith and love, I will remain centered and balanced throughout all of this day. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Break Through Your Blocks

I was walking at a good clip down sandy Colony Beach when it happened. Without warning, I began running. I ran the longest distance I had ever before run. Instead of collapsing in a panting heap, I kept running. Another stretch. Then another. By the time I tired, I had run a mile. The furthest I had ever before run in my life was about a quarter block.

I didn’t intend to make this breakthrough. I was so blocked in this area I didn’t think I could. Running wasn’t even a goal. I had simply incorporated regular walks into my lifestyle as a way of exercising my body. This event surprised me because I’m not a physical fitness buff. I hadn’t been allowed to participate in any physical education or sports activities as a child or teenager because of chronic health ailments. I spent many years neglecting my body. Lately, I had put some effort into connecting with my body and working out in an amateurish fashion. But running? Not me. Or so I used to think.

The next time I went walking, I felt timid, almost afraid to even try running. I wondered if what I had experienced was a fluke. It wasn’t. I ran again and again. Now, running is a regular part of my physical activity, one I truly enjoy.

Sometimes, we’re so blocked in a particular area we don’t even consider a breakthrough a possibility. We’re so blocked we don’t even see our blocks. Stay open. Don’t limit yourself. Something that yesterday seemed entirely unfeasable and forever beyond your grasp may tomorrow, next month, next year– or today– become something you can do naturally, something that’s available to you. It can come as a total surprise, in an area you hadn’t considered. Your breakthrough may happen in an area you’ve been struggling with and working on.

Life is more than setbacks, and it’s not static. Appreciate and respect where you are now. But let yourself move to the next level when it’s time. Celebrate your breakthroughs when they come. Listen to that quiet voice, that fleeting thought that says, Why don’t you…? even if it’s something you’ve never done before.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let go of resentments

Resentments are sneaky, tricky little things. They can convince us they’re justified. They can dry up our hearts. They can sabotage our happiness. They can sabotage love.

Most of us have been at the receiving end of an injustice at some time in our lives. Most of us know someone who’s complained of an injustice we’ve done to him or her. Life can be a breeding ground for resentments, if we let it.

“Yes, but this time I really was wronged,” we complain.

Maybe you were. But harboring a resentment isn’t the solution. If it was, our resentment list would resemble the Los Angeles telephone directory. Deal with your feelings. Learn whatever lesson is at hand. Then let the feelings go.

Resentments are a coping behavior, a tool of someone settling for survival in life. They’re a form of revenge. The problem is, no matter who we’re resenting, the anger is ultimately directed against ourselves.

Take a moment. Search your heart. Have you tricked yourself into harboring a resentment? If you have, take another moment and let that resentment go.

God, grant me the serenity that acceptance brings.

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The Road to New Beginnings
Completion

by Madisyn Taylor

Just as new beginnings are important, so is honoring the experience of closure.

Life is a collage of beginnings and endings that run together like still-wet paint. Yet before we can begin any new phase in life, we must sometimes first achieve closure to the current stage we are in. That’s because many of life’s experiences call for closure. Often, we cannot see the significance of an event or importance of a lesson until we have reached closure. Or, we may have completed a certain phase in life or path of learning and want to honor that ending. It is this sense of completion that frees us to open the door to new beginnings. Closure serves to tie up or sever loose ends, quiets the mind even when questions have been left unanswered, signifies the end of an experience, and acknowledges that a change has taken place.

The period of completion, rather than being just an act of finality, is also one of transition. When we seek closure, what we really want is an understanding of what has happened and an opportunity to derive what lessons we can from an experience. Without closure, there is no resolution and we are left to grieve, relive old memories to the point of frustration, or remain forever connected to people from our past. A sense of completion regarding a situation may also result when we accept that we have done our best. If you can’t officially achieve closure with someone, you can create completion by participating in a closure ritual. Write a farewell letter to that person and then burn your note during a ceremony. This ritual allows you to consciously honor and appreciate what has taken place between you and release the experience so you can move forward.

Closure can help you let go of feelings of anger or uncertainty regarding your past even as you honor your experience – whether good or bad – as a necessary step on your life’s path. Closure allows you to emotionally lay to rest issues and feelings that may be weighing down your spirit. When you create closure, you affirm that you have done what was needed, are wiser because of your experience, and are ready for whatever life wants to bring you next. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

If a chemically-dependent person wants to live successfully in society, he or she must replace the power of chemicals over his/her life with the power of something else — preferably positive, at least neutral, but not negative. That is why we say to the agnostic newcomer: If you can’t believe in God, find a positive power that is as great as the power of your addiction, and give it the power and dependence you gave to your addiction. In The Program, the agnostic is left free to find his or her Higher Power, and can use the principles of The Program and the therapy of the meetings to aid in rebuilding his/her life. Do I go out of my way to work with newcomers?

Today I Pray

May the Power of The Program work its miracles equally for those who believe in a personal God or in a Universal Spirit or in the strength of the group itself, or for those who define their Higher Power in their own terms, religious or not. If newcomers are disturbed by the religiosity of The Program, may I welcome them on their own spiritual terms May I recognize that we are all spiritual beings.

Today I Will Remember

To each his own spirituality.

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One More Day

Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world.
– Arthur Schopenhauer

It’s not easy to get used to the idea of a “forever” kind of illness. When we first learned about it, we may have allowed it to overtake our lies. Perhaps we lost the pleasure of taking a walk, playing a card game with friends, or spending time helping others. We were obsessed with the memory of how life used to be.

We can learn to put illness into its correct position. We have the chronic condition; it doesn’t own us. We will know we have reached true acceptance when the medical issue doesn’t dominate our days.

Of course a chronic illness affects us, but now we an see it properly as only one facet of our lives. We can choose to once again have full and meaningful days.

I — not my illness — can choose how well and how fully I will live my life.

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Food For Thought

Living Day by Day

“Life by the mile is a trial; by the inch it’s a cinch.” In the past, we got into trouble when we thought we had to have our lives mapped out forever. That just did not work.

We need only deal with the problems and joys of today. If we try to see too far ahead, we lose touch with the reality of the here and now. The Lord lets us know what we need to know when we need to know it.

What seems impossible when looked at in total –writing a book, putting the children through college, abstaining for the rest of our lives — becomes manageable when worked at step-by-step, day-by-day.

So many of the things we worry about never happen. How much better it is to concentrate our energies on the real demands and challenges of today, insignificant as they may seem. When we turn our lives over to our Higher Power, we trust Him to manage the master plan and to direct us in the small details of living each day.

Show me, Lord, how to best live each day. I leave the years to You.

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One Day At A Time

Present Moment

“Do not dwell in the past, do not
dream of the future, concentrate on
the present moment.”
Buddha

Staying focused, serene and receptive requires that we keep our attention placed in the present moment. If we allow our minds to be overly focused in the future (ie on outcomes such as “what if’s” or “if only’s”) or in the past (ie past resentments, past embarrassments, or “would’ve beens, “could’ve beens”) we allow ourselves to be subject to the psychological and emotional roller coaster ride that can go with these states. These meanderings into the past or present, colour our judgement and play a major role in contributing to our eating disorder. Therefore, it is imperative that we practise staying in the moment in order to maintain a healthy recovery.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will choose to live in the serenity of the present moment.
~ Rob R.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We realize that we have been giving you much direction and advice. We may have seemed to lecture. If that is so we are sorry, for we ourselves don’t always care for people who lecture us. But what we have related is based upon experience, some of it painful. We had to learn these things the hard way. That is why we are anxious that you understand, and that you avoid these unnecessary difficulties. – Pg. 121 – To Wives

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The restless changing tides of the sea seem to parallel our recovery. The tide comes in, the tide goes out. A fact of life. Whatever is high tide in your emotion now, will eventually ebb to low tide. Remember: This too shall pass.

Help me recognize that my emotions are like the tides of the sea. Nothing is forever. This too shall pass.

Loving Myself through Action

I want to do something special for myself today. Giving to others and withholding from myself doesn’t work. I tend to treat other people the way that I treat myself. If I am stingy with me, I will, somewhere along the line, act that out with other people. If I am hard on myself, I will tend to be hard on others. I am the only person who is with me all hours of the day and I know what feels good and warm to me. I know what makes me feel sustained from within. Today, I will encourage, support and congratulate myself. Each time I do something that pleases me I’ll say ‘thank you’ to myself. Each time I do something well, I’ll tell myself ‘good job.’ I will be my own best cheerleader.

I will encourage and support myself.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

When one door closes, another door opens. It’s waiting in the hallway that’s hell.
I am not a slow learner. I am just, sometimes, a slow accepter.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

No matter how fast or how far you go, you can’t outrun God.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

My Higher Power is with me in the sun as well as the rain, in pain as well as joy. As long as I know I am protected by the power of faith and love, I will remain centered and balanced throughout all of this day.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

This old codger saying he’d spilt more than I’d drunk. I thought; ‘If you hadn’t spilt so much you might have got here earlier.’ – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 25

Resentments
It is plain that a life which includes deep resentment leads only to futility and unhappiness.
To the precise extent 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 it is fatal.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 66

Thought to Ponder . . .
Resentment is like acid, eating away at the vessel it is stored in.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
S W A T = Surrender, Willingness, Acceptance, Trust.

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

“There are those in AA whom we call ‘destructive’ critics.
They power-drive, they are ‘politickers,’
they make accusations to gain their ends–
all for the good of AA, of course!
We ought to listen carefully to what they say.
Sometimes they are telling the whole truth;
at other times, a little truth.
If they are talking nonsense, we can ignore it,
or else try to persuade them.
There are few better means of self-survey
and of developing patience than the workouts
these usually well-meaning but erratic members
so often afford us.”
Bill W., Twelve Concepts for World Service, p. 40
As Bill Sees It, p. 215

Thought to Consider . . .
Every problem arrives bearing a gift in its hands.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
GIFTS
Getting It From The Steps

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

Decision
Step Three: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
“Therefore, we who are alcoholics can consider ourselves fortunate indeed. Each of us has had his own near-fatal
encounter with the juggernaut of self-will, and has suffered enough under its weight to be willing to look for something
better. So it is by circumstance rather than by any virtue that we have been driven to A.A., have admitted defeat, have
acquired the rudiments of faith, and now want to make a decision to turn our will and our lives over to a Higher Power.”
1952, AAWS, Inc.; Printed 2005; Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pgs. 37-38

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

“I’m better able to love people when the storm of my judgmental mind settles, when I understand and empathize rather
than criticize and condemn.”
September 2008
“The Fine Art of Listening”
AA Grapevine

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

“Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a
fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. There you will find release from
care, boredom and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will
mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your
existence lie ahead.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 152

“…the main problem of the alcoholic centers in his mind, rather than in his body.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, Page 23~

“On the other hand — and strange as this may seem to those who do not
understand — once a psychic change has occurred, the very same person
who seemed doomed, who had so many problems he despaired of ever
solving them, suddenly finds himself easily able to control his desire
for alcohol, the only effort necessary being that required to follow a
few simple rules.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctors Opinion, pg. xxix~

Many people, nonalcoholics, report that as a result of the practice of A.A.’s Twelve Steps, they have been able to meet other difficulties of life.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 15

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Benefits of Responsibility
‘Happily, A.A.’s per capita expenses are very low. For us to fail to meet them would be to evade a responsibility beneficial for us.
‘Most alcoholics have said they had no troubles that money would not cure. We are a group that, when drinking, always held out a hand for funds. So when we commence to pay our own service bills, this is a healthy change.’
‘Because of drinking, my friend Henry had lost a high-salaried job. There remained a fine house–with a budget three times his reduced earnings.
‘He could have rented the house for enough to carry it. But no! Henry said he knew that God wanted him to live there, and He would see that the costs were paid. So Henry went on running up bills and glowing with faith. Not surprisingly, his creditors finally took over the place.
‘Henry can laugh about it now, having learned that God more often helps those who are willing to help themselves.’
1. LETTER,1960
2. LETTER, 1966

Prayer For The Day: Almighty God, grant that I may never succumb to the controlling influences of the body, and lose the power of my mind. May I guard the dictates of my heart and keep my mind in command to obey thy will. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 24th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 24th

Daily Reflections

ACTIVE, NOT PASSIVE, p. 92

Man is supposed to think, and act. He wasn’t made to God’s image to
be an automation.
As Bill Sees It, p. 55

Before I joined A.A., I often did not think, and reacted to people and
situations. When not reacting I acted in a mechanical fashion. After
joining A.A., I started seeking daily guidance from a Power greater
than myself, and learning to listen for that guidance. Then I began to
make decisions and act on them, rather than react to them. The
results have been constructive; I no longer allow others to make
decisions for me and then criticize me for it.
Today–and every day–with a heart full of gratitude, and a desire for
God’s will to be done through me, my life is worth sharing, especially
with my fellow alcoholics! Above all, if I do not make a religion out of
anything, even A.A., then I can be an open channel for God’s
expression.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Strength comes from honestly telling your own experiences with
drinking. In religion, they call it confession. We call it witnessing or
sharing. You give a personal witness, you share your past experiences,
the troubles you got into, the hospitals, the jails, the break-up of your
home, the money wasted, the debts, and all the foolish things you did
when you were drinking. This personal witness lets out the things you
had kept hidden, brings them out into the open, and you find release
and strength. Am I receiving strength from my personal witnessing?

Meditation For The Day

We cannot fully understand the universe. The simple fact is that we
cannot even define space or time, which we have manufactured by our
own minds and on that depends all our so-called knowledge of the
universe. The simple fact is that we can never know all things, nor are
we made to know them. Much of our lives must be taken on faith.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that my faith may be based on my own experience of the power
of God in my life. I pray that I may know this one thing above all else
in the universe.

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As Bill Sees It

We Cannot Live Alone, p. 83

All of A.A.’s Twelve Steps ask us to go contrary to our natural
desires; they all deflate our egos.  When it comes to ego deflation, few
Steps are harder to take than the Fifth.  Scarcely any Step is more
necessary to long-time sobriety and peace of mind.

A.A. experience has taught us we cannot live alone with our pressing
problems and the character defects which cause or aggravate them.  If
Step Four has revealed in stark relief those experiences we’d rather
not remember, then the need to quit living by ourselves with those
tormenting ghosts of yesterday gets more urgent than ever.  We have
to talk to somebody about them.

<< << <<      >> >> >>

We cannot wholly rely on friends to solve all our difficulties.  A good
adviser will never do all our thinking for us.  He knows that each final
choice must be ours.  He will therefore help to eliminate fear,
expediency, and self-deception, so enabling us to make choices which
are loving, wise, and honest.

1.  12 & 12, p. 55

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Walk in Dry Places

This Too Shall Pass____  Fortitude
Growing older in sobriety, w soon become aware of the fact that both good and bad experiences eventually pass on.  No matter how beautiful or ugly a situation becomes, it must change in time. In discussions, we catch this idea by reminding ourselves that “This too shall pass.”
We are very fortunate that this is true.  Were it otherwise, intolerable conditions would last forever.  Our business is to make sure that our own thoughts and actions lead to betterment, for ourselves and others.  While we should be willing to accept unpleasantness if the re is no way of avoiding it, we should always hope…. And work….. for improvement.
When unpleasant experiences do pass on. We must also be careful not to resurrect them by brooding about how badly we were treated or trying to get even with others.  This only prolongs the trouble. The good news in AA is that we can survive any experience and put it behind us.
Whatever I’m facing today, I’ll know that it is temporary and has no power to keep me from the deeper happiness and gratitude I have in the 12 step program.

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Keep It Simple

Love your enemy it will drive him nuts.Eleanor Doan
Love you enemy. It’s a lot easier on you! Hating someone takes so much time and energy.
Loving your enemy means, instead of trying to get even, you let your Higher Power handle that person. Of course, loving your enemy is also hard. It means giving up control. It means giving up self-will. We addicts naturally want to control things and people.
This is where we turn to our program for help. We learn to love our enemies, not for some grand reason. We simply do it because hate can cause us to use alcohol or other drugs again.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, watch over my family, friends, and my enemies. Take from me my desire to control. Take from me all reasons to get high.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list all my enemies. I’ll say each of their names, and then I’ll read the Third Step out loud.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Love has a hundred gentle ends.  –Leonora Speyer
Letting go is a process that is seldom easy. For many, its meaning is elusive. How do we “let go”? Letting go means removing our attention from a particular experience or person and putting our focus on the here and now. We hang on to the past, to past hurts, but also to past joys. We have to let the past pass. The struggle to hang on to it, any part of it, clouds the present. You can’t see the possibilities today is offering if your mind is still drawn to what was.
Letting go can be a gentle process. Our trust in our higher power and our faith that good will prevail, in spite of appearances, eases the process. And we must let each experience end, as its moment passes, whether it is good or bad, love or sorrow. It helps to remember that all experiences contribute to our growth and wholeness. No experience will be ignored by the inner self who is charting our course. All are parts of the journey. And every moment has a gentle end, but no moment is forgotten.
My journey today is akin to yesterday’s journey and tomorrow’s too. I will savor each moment and be ready for the next.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

He had come to pass his experience along to me—if I cared to have it.  I was shocked, but interested.  Certainly I was interested.  I had to be, for I was hopeless.

pp. 9-10

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
This is an example of how God works in my life.  No longer did I have to drink, but it was much more than that.  Everything I needed was provided.  I had a God of my understanding that helped me in every aspect of my life.

p. 380

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

Overjoyed, the newcomer plunged into Twelfth Step work. Tirelessly he laid A.A.’s message before scores of people. Since this was a very early group, those scores have since multiplied themselves into thousands. Never did he trouble anyone with his other difficulty. A.A. had taken its first step in the formation of Tradition Three.

p. 142

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I keep my sobriety by giving it away.

Humility does not mean you think less of yourself.
It means you think of yourself less.
–Ken Blanchard

“Recovery is a path, not a sudden landing.”
–Sandra B

“The two major sources of value today are time and knowledge. Find
new ways every day to use them better.”
–Brian Tracy

Action is the antidote to despair.
–Joan Baez

Even though our love may waiver, God’s love for us never fails.
–Howard Coop

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

LANGUAGE

“Language is the light of the mind.”
John Stuart Mill

When I was drinking, I never really thought about how I behaved, how
I dressed or the language I used. Today I believe I should be
responsible for the whole of me.

Language is important because it is my bridge to others; it is also the
vehicle for understanding the ideas of others. Spirituality involves the
concept of language because it is the means of growth, communication
and relationship. My words help me to be known. My ability to
understand the ideas and aspirations of others helps me to feel that I
belong.

God is perceived in this world and the gift of language is one of the
ways God is revealed. My words are spiritual.

May the light of God’s eternal truth be manifested in the way I talk
and relate to others.

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

Have you not known?
Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the LORD,
The Creator of the ends of the earth,
Neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall,
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 faint.
Isaiah 40:28-31

“Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mold, but let
God remold your minds from within, so that you may prove in practice
that the plan of God for you is good, meets all His demands, and moves
toward the goal of true maturity.”
Romans 12:2

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Daily Inspiration

A house becomes a home when it is filled with love and friendship. Lord, bless my life with laughter and many shared moments that I may in turn be a source of sunshine to others.

Live as a responsible adult, but approach God as a child, full of faith and trust. You cannot help but perfect one by the other. Lord, You are my Father. Who else will so lovingly listen to me and care for my desires.

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NA Just For Today

Letting Go Of The Past

“It is not where we were that counts, but where we are going.”
Basic Text, pg.22

When we first find recovery, some of us feel shame or despair at calling ourselves “addicts.” In the early days, we may be filled with both fear and hope as we struggle to find new meaning in our lives. The past may seem inescapable and overpowering. It may be hard to think of ourselves in any way other than the way we always have.

While memories of the past can serve as reminders of what’s waiting for us if we use again, they can also keep us stuck in a nightmare of shame and fear. Though it may be difficult to let go of those memories, each day in recovery can bring us that much farther away from our active addiction. Each day, we can find more to look forward to and less to punish ourselves for.

In recovery, all doors are open to us. We have many choices. Our new life is rich and full of promise. While we cannot forget the past, we don’t have to live in it. We can move on.

Just for today: I will pack my bags and move out of my past into a present filled with hope.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The things we hate about ourselves aren’t more real than things we like about ourselves. –Ellen Goodman
It is so easy, and tempting, to get down on ourselves, to focus on an imperfect face, a dismal batting average, our fear of math, or our big feet. The trouble is, the more we feel sorry for ourselves, and the more we have to feel sorry about. And though it probably doesn’t hurt to indulge in a little self-pity once in a while, how unfortunate–and limiting–it can be to let those attitudes define us.
The things we hate about ourselves are no more real than the things we like about ourselves. The trick is to dwell on the things we like instead of those we don’t. Even on days when we are sure we are the least lovable creatures in the world, we can “act as if” we like ourselves. What a surprise at the end of the day, to find out that we actually do!
What can I like about myself today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I don’t like a man to be too efficient. He’s likely to be not human enough. –Felix Frankfurter
On our path we seek balance. Pursuing any single value and ignoring another, whether it is efficiency, hard work, or leisure, will make one sided men of us. Psychology tells us our right brain is the creative, intuitive side and our left brain is the concrete, fact gathering side. Spending our energies developing only one part of ourselves will leave us incomplete. We males have been taught we should be decisive, practical, and have our feet on the ground.
As men we are also creative and sensitive. We think in stories, pictures, and metaphors and we love music. At our best, we are willing to place people and relationships ahead of things and goals. When we are wisest and most human, we draw on the many sides of ourselves.
Today, I will use both the creative, intuitive part of me and the practical, decisive part that can get a job done.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Love has a hundred gentle ends. –Leonora Speyer
Letting go is a process that is seldom easy. For many, its meaning is elusive. How do we “let go”? Letting go means removing our attention from a particular experience or person and putting our focus on the here and now. We hang on to the past, to past hurts, but also to past joys. We have to let the past pass. The struggle to hang on to it, any part of it, clouds the present. You can’t see the possibilities today is offering if your mind is still drawn to what was.
Letting go can be a gentle process. Our trust in our higher power and our faith that good will prevail, in spite of appearances, eases the process. And we must let each experience end, as its moment passes, whether it is good or bad, love or sorrow. It helps to remember that all experiences contribute to our growth and wholeness. No experience will be ignored by the inner self who is charting our course. All are parts of the journey. And every moment has a gentle end, but no moment is forgotten.
My journey today is akin to yesterday’s journey and tomorrow’s too. I will savor each moment and be ready for the next.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Appreciating Ourselves
We are the greatest things that will ever happen to us. Believe it. It makes life much easier. –Codependent No More
It is time to stop this nonsense of running around picking on ourselves.
We may have walked through much of our life apologizing for ourselves either directly or indirectly – feeling less valuable than others, believing that they know better than we do, and believing that somehow others are meant to be here and we are not.
We have a right to be here.
We have a right to be ourselves.
We are here. There is a purpose, a reason, and an intention for our life. We do not have to apologize for being here or being who we are.
We are good enough, and deserving.
Others do not have our magic. We have our magic. It is in us.
It doesn’t matter what we’ve done in our past. We all have a past, woven with mistakes, successes, and learning experiences. We have a right to our past. It is ours. It has worked to shape and form us. As we progress on this journey, we shall see how each of our experiences will be turned around and used for good.
We have already spent too much time being ashamed, being apologetic, and doubting the beauty of ourselves. Be done with it. Let it go. It is an unnecessary burden. Others have rights, but so do we. We are neither less than nor more than. We are equal. We are who we are. That is whom we were created and intended to be.
That, my friend, is a wonderful gift.
God, help me own my power to love and appreciate myself. Help me give myself validity instead of looking to others to do that.

I forgive myself and all others today. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Tap into Life’s Energy

Life is not something separate or apart from you, as you once believed. There is a power, a life force, that moves, guides, directs, and inspires you. You are one with life, with life’s energy.

Do things that energize you, charge your soul. Soak up the sun. Soak up color. Soak up beautiful sounds. Immerse yourself in nature, in a world the refreshes, restores, and renews. Don’t worry about the task or the day that looms ahead, the work, and love and play, the problems and choices that are on the way. If you energize yourself, restore yourself, the power to take action will come naturally like water from a spring.

Look around. What do you see that feels right to do? Which direction do you see as the right way to go? Trust the smallest glimmer. Give in to the urge, to the guidance that’s there. Do it once. Do it again. Soon you will find yourself in harmony.

You will have all the guidance, energy, ideas, creativity, power, and ability you need to do all you’re meant to do. And you will be given the power to enjoy it.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Cultivate inner peace

According to my experience, the principle characteristic of genuine happiness is peace, inner peace.
–His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Cultivate a sense of peace, an abiding inner peace that doesn’t depend on outward circumstance.

So much chaos, so much drama, so many emotions surge through us. It is so easy, so tempting to believe that once we get through this circumstance, once we achieve this goal, once we solve this problem, then we will be peaceful.

That’s an illusion.

“I’m happy when I get what I want,” said Kent. “For a few minutes.”

Getting what we want may cause us to feel happy for a moment, but it will bring a limited, transient happiness. The next problem or emotion will present itself. Or we will begin resenting that person or job, because he, she, or it did not bring the happiness we believed it would. Like a carrot on a stick, happiness will always be the next problem, acquisition, or emotion away.

Be peaceful now.

Be happy now.

Take the limits off your joy.

God, help me remember to be peaceful first, no matter what situation I face.

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A Great Teacher
Living Like Water

The journey of water as it flows upon the earth can be a mirror of our own paths through life. Water begins its residence on earth as it falls from the sky or melts from ice and streams down a mountain into a tributary or stream. In the same way, we come into the world and begin our lives on earth. Like a river that flows within the confines of its banks, we are born with certain defining characteristics that govern our identity. We are born in a specific time and place, within a specific family, and with certain gifts and challenges. Within these parameters, we move through life, encountering many twists, turns, and obstacles along the way just as a river flows.

Water is a great teacher that shows us how to move through the world with grace, ease, determination, and humility. When a river breaks at a waterfall, it gains energy and moves on, as we encounter our own waterfalls, we may fall hard but we always keep moving on. Water can inspire us to not become rigid with fear or cling to what’s familiar. Water is brave and does not waste time clinging to its past, but flows onward without looking back. At the same time, when there is a hole to be filled, water does not run away from it in fear of the dark; instead, water humbly and bravely fills the empty space. In the same way, we can face the dark moments of our life rather than run away from them.

Eventually, a river will empty into the sea. Water does not hold back from joining with a larger body, nor does it fear a loss of identity or control. It gracefully and humbly tumbles into the vastness by contributing its energy and merging without resistance. Each time we move beyond our individual egos to become part of something bigger, we can try our best to follow the lead of the river. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

All of us are faced with the troubles and problems of daily living, whether we’ve been in The Program two days or 20 years. We’d sometimes like to beieve we could ake care of all our problems right now, but it rarely works that way If we remember the slogan “Easy Does It” when we are ready to panic, we mayb come to know that the very best way to handle all things is “Easy.” We put one foot in front of the other, doing the best we are capapble of doing. We say “Easy Does It.” and we do it. Are The Pogram’s slognas gtwoing with me as I grow with The Program?

Today I Pray

May even the words “Easy Des It’ serve to slow me down in my hadlong rush to accomplis too much too fast. May just that world “Easy” be enough to make me ease up on he ships that drive my ambitions, ease up on the accelerator which plunges me into new situations without enough forethought, ese off on the number of hours spent in material pursuits. May I hark to the adage that Rome wasn’t built in a single day. Niether can I builde solutions to my problems all at once.

Today I Will Remember

Easy Does It.

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One More Day

Our safety is not in blindness, but in facing our danger.
– Johann Cristoph Schiller

Sometimes our difficulties are compounded when we take more drugs than needed to treat our illnesses. This can be due to our getting prescriptions from than one doctor or from using over-the-counter drugs in addition to our prescribed medications.

Certainly, we need to use the drugs that will keep us as healthy and functional as possible, but over medication can be an accidental side-effect of chronic medical problems. Also, psychological or physical dependence can also occur.

Besides necessary medications, the joy of living and the love of ourselves and others can help us deal with our illnesses. By learning to live with our limitations we can gain back some of the personal power that chronic illness has taken from us.

I am strengthened by facing my problems.

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

Food For Thought

Action

Ours is a program of Action. It does no good to develop new awareness if we do not take appropriate new actions. When we become aware of the damage done by compulsive overeating and realize that OA has the answer to our problem, we take action by going to meetings, making phone calls, and working the steps. We follow a food plan and abstain from eating compulsively.

Taking inventory, admitting our mistakes, and making amends involves action. Our Higher Power gives us courage to change the things we can. He gives us the confidence to get involved in new activities, to be more assertive, to make new friends, to go back to school, to change jobs.

By abstaining from the type of eating that paralyzed us, we have strength and energy to do new things. One step at a time, we are led into action. Not to move according to the direction of God as we understand Him is to fall backwards and stagnate. Each positive action we take strengthens our recovery.

Direct my actions, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

Positive Thinking

“It takes but one positive when given
a chance to survive and thrive to overpower
and entire army of negative thoughts.”
Robert H. Schuller

A positive attitude is crucial for a successful recovery. This summer, I wasn laid up with two torn tendons in my left ankle. This happened right at the start of my summer vacation. When it first happened, I was VERY dejected. This had to happen NOW!!! Just when my holidays are starting? (not that ANY time is a good time to receive an injury!). However, upon reflection it WAS good timing. I didn’t have get myself to and from work. My daughter was finished school for the summer and was able to be home to assist me with day to day stuff. Plus I had just taken on some new OA service responsibilities and being home allowed me the time to really focus and internalize my new roles. Instead of looking at this as a negative – I think HP gave me an opportunity here to rest up and do some service at the same time. My daughter and I did some wonderful bonding as well. It would have been very easy just to turn negative and feel sorry for myself . But I simply would have made myself (and everyone around me) miserable during the my six weeks of recovery. Instead, it’s turned out to be a wonderful learning experience (not to mention it provided a good idea for this meditation topic!). Life’s too short for cheap wHine, n’est past?

One Day at a Time . . .
I will look at life from a positive point of view.
~ Rob R.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

‘The way you fellows put this spiritual stuff makes sense. – Pg. 159 – A Vision For You

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Do you sometimes feel like fate made a fool of you with this disease? This is a normal reaction to any chronic disease just like diabetes, lupus, or others. We are the fortunate ones because we can arrest this disease with a simple behavior change, many others can’t.

God, as I understand You, grant me the willingness to be grateful for a way out of this devastating disease of addiction.

Golden Moments

I will pay attention to guidance from within and without. There are moments when I know I am doing what lights my spirit and challenges me. Moments when I feel alive and in tune; in touch with a force beyond me that is guiding me towards something that’s right for me. Those moments are golden. They carry me through my fears and hard times, they sustain me when inevitable doubts creep in, they give me strength to carry on and stay on course.

I will hold inspiration close to me heart.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

They say you don’t have to like your sponsor; they just have to have something you want-like a life. It is your sponsor’s job to give you a program to work until you develop a program of your own.

People who sponsor themselves have fools for sponsors.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Action Not Distraction

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I forgive myself and all others today.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

There are two types of people to watch in AA; those who make it, and those who don’t. – Dr. Bob S.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 24

Stability
My stability came out of trying to give, not out of demanding that I receive.
Thus I think it can work out with emotional sobriety.
If we examine every disturbance we have, we will find at the root of it
some unhealthy dependency and its consequent unhealthy demand.
Let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these hobbling demands.
– The Best of Bill, p. 58

Thought to Ponder . . .
Sobriety is a journey, not a destination.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
K I S S = Keep It Simple; Surrender.

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

Traditions
“The Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous
are a distillate of our experience of living and working together.
They apply the spirit of the Twelve recovery Steps
to our group life and security.
They deal with the world outside and with each other;
they state our attitudes toward power and prestige,
toward property and money.
They would save us from tempting alliances
and major controversies;
they would elevate principles far above personal ambitions.
And as a token of this last, they request that we
maintain personal anonymity before the open public
as a protection to AA and as proof of the fact that
our society intends to practice true humility.”
Bill W., The Language of the Heart, p. 96

Thought to Consider . . .
The reason they are called Principles is
because they always work.
If they didn’t always work we’d just call them “good ideas.”

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
WILLING
When I Live Life, I Need God

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

Growth
>From “A Vision for You”:
“So our fellow worker will soon have friends galore. Some of them may sink and perhaps never get up, but if our experience is a criterion, more than half of those approached will become fellows of Alcoholics Anonymous. When a few men in this city have found themselves, and have discovered the joy of helping others to face life again, there will be no stopping until everyone in that town has had his opportunity to recover if he can and will.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pgs. 163-64

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

“My emotional bottom came in sobriety … I actually had to sit and feel all those feelings I had worked so hard to drown out with alcohol.”
New York, N.Y., January 2006
“Attitude Adjustment”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a
fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. There you will find release from
care, boredom and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will
mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your
existence lie ahead.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 152~

“we have ceased fighting anything or anyone— even alcohol.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 84~

We can try to stop making unreasonable demands upon those we love.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 93

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

WE Cannot Live Alone
All of A.A.’s Twelve Steps ask us to go contrary to our natural desires; they all deflate our egos. When it come to ego deflation, few Steps are harder to take than the Fifth. Scarcely and Step is more necessary to long-time sobriety and peace of mind.
A.A. experience has taught us we cannot live alone with our pressing problems and the character defects which cause or aggravate them. If Step Four has revealed in stark relief those experiences we’d rather not remember, than the need to quit living by ourselves with those tormenting ghosts of yesterday gets more urgent than ever. We have to talk to somebody about them.
We cannot wholly rely on friends to solve all our difficulties. A good adviser will never do all our thinking for us. He knows that each final choice must be ours. He will therefore help to eliminate fear, expediency, and self-deception, so enabling us to make choices which are loving, wise, and honest.
1. TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 55
GRAPEVINE, AUGUST 1961

Prayer For The Day: Dear heavenly Father, I am grateful for Your constant provision. You have never failed me, Lord and I know that You never will. You are a faithful God, and I ask You to help me to trust You before my answer arrives. Lord, You are my source, and I know as I continue to look to You, I need never to worry about how You will provide. I just know that You will. Guard my mouth and remind me to speak what Your Word says about my situation. Deliver me from every vestige of fear, and fill me with Your Holy Spirit so that I will always walk in faith. Lord, I pray that all my brothers and sisters in the family of God will also be granted this favor. May we each fulfill Your will in our lives. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 22nd

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 22nd

Daily Reflections

NO MORE STRUGGLE

And we have ceased fighting anything or anyone —
even alcohol.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

When A.A. found me, I thought I was in for a struggle,
and that A.A. might provide the strength I needed to
beat alcohol. Victorious in that fight, who knows what
other battles I could win. I would need to be strong,
though. All my previous experience with life provided
that. Today I do not have to struggle or exert my will.
If I take those Twelve Steps and let my Higher Power do
the real work, my alcohol problem disappears all by
itself. My living problems also cease to be struggles.
I just have to ask whether acceptance — or change —
is required. It is not my will, but His, that needs
doing.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We’re all looking for the power to overcome drinking. A
fellow comes into A.A. and his first question is: How do
I get the strength to quit? At first, it seems to him that
he will never get the necessary strength. He sees older
members who have found the power he is looking for, but he
doesn’t know the process by which they got it. This
necessary strength comes in many ways. Have I found all the
strength I need?

Meditation For The Day

You cannot have a spiritual need which God cannot supply.
Your fundamental need is a spiritual need, the need of
power to lead the good life. The best spiritual supply is
received by you when you want it to pass on to other
people. You get it largely by giving it away. God gives
you strength as you pass it on to another person. That
strength means increased health; increased health means
more good work, and more good work means more people
helped. And so it goes on, a constant supply to meet all
spiritual needs.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that my every spiritual need will be supplied by
God. I pray that I may use the power I receive to help
others.


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As Bill Sees It

“Selfish”?, p.81

“I can see why you are disturbed to hear some A.A. speakers say,
‘A.A. is a selfish program.’ The word ‘selfish’ ordinarily implies that
one is acquisitive, demanding, and thoughtless of the welfare of
others. Of course, the A.A. way of life does not at all imply such
undesirable traits.

“What do these speakers mean? Well, any theologian will tell you
that the salvation of his own soul is the highest vocation that a man
can have. Without salvation–however we may define this–he will
have little or nothing. For us of A.A., there is even more urgency.

“If we cannot or will not achieve sobriety, then we become truly lost,
right in the here and now. We are of no value to anyone, including
ourselves, until we find salvation from alcohol. Therefore, our own
recovery and spiritual growth have to come first–a right and
necessary kind of self-concern.”

Letter, 1966

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Walk in Dry Places

Let Go and Let God
Guidance.
Though it came from outside AA, the idea of “letting go and letting God” has taken root in the fellowship. The trouble comes when we try to decide what it really means.  We obviously need to continue working and we still have to make important decisions. SO how d o we let God take charge?
Surrendering to God’s will is a shift that takes place in our attitude. We take whatever actions seem reasonable and proper according to our view of things. We remember, however, that a better plan may be unfolding in every situation. In many cases, it can even be a case of wanting too little rather than too much. One member, for example, sought guidance in a business decision. He was disappointed when the deal feel through, but discovered, only a few weeks later, an even better opportunity that worked out perfectly.
“Letting God” is really a form of working Step Eleven.. Seeking “Knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.”  As we do that, our lives must become enriched and improved in every way.
I’ll approach the day with the idea that God is working it out for the highest good of everybody. Temporary setbacks won’t bother me if I know that God’s plan is unfolding in my life.

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Keep It Simple

If anything, we have tended to be people who wanted it all now. To hope is not
Not to demand.  — On Hope
Maybe we were a bit demanding. Maybe we were a bit impatient. Maybe that’s why we had such little hope.
Hope is believing good will come even in bad time. Hope is knowing that “this, too, shall pass.”
Hope is knowing that no matter how afraid we are, God will be with us. Hope is knowing we never
have to be alone again. It is knowing that time that time is on our side. Hope is giving up control. Hope is knowing we never had control in the first place. Hope is believing in ourselves. Hope is what our program is all about.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, in our program we share our experiences, our strengths, and our hopes. Thank you for giving all three of these to me to share.
Action for the Day:  I will share my hope for the future with myself, my Higher Power, and my friends. I also will share this with someone who has lost hope.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Reared as we were in a youth and beauty oriented society, we measured ourselves by our ornamental value.  –Janet Harris
Rare is the woman who doesn’t long for a svelte body, firm breasts, pretty teeth, a smooth complexion. Rare is the woman who feels content, truly satisfied with her total person. We are often torn between wanting to be noticed and yet not wanting eyes to gaze upon us.
We are all that we need to be today, at this moment. And we have an inner beauty, each of us, that is our real blessing in the lives of others. Our inner beauty will shine forth if we invite it to do so. Whatever our outer appearance, it doesn’t gently touch or bring relief where suffering is–like our words which come from the heart, the home of our inner beauty.
Perhaps a better mirror for reflecting our true beauty is the presence or absence of friends in our lives. We each have known stunning women who seemed to cast only cold glances our way and handsome men who arrogantly belittled others. It’s our inner beauty that is valued by others. The surprise in store for each of us is discovering that the glow of our inner beauty transforms our outer appearance too.
My beauty today will be enhanced by my gentle attention to the other people sharing my experiences.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

My musing was interrupted by the telephone. The cheery voice of an old school friend asked if he might come over. HE WAS SOBER. It was years since I could remember his coming to New York in that condition. I was amazed. Rumor had it that he had been committed for alcoholic insanity. I wondered how he had escaped. Of course he would have dinner, and then I could drink openly with him. Unmindful of his welfare, I thought only of recapturing the spirit of other days. There was that time we had chartered an airplane to complete a jag! His coming was an oasis in this dreary desert of futility. The very thing – an oasis! Drinkers are like that.

pp. 8-9

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
Through the commission for the blind, I got involved in a program that helps blind people become self-employed.  After three months of training, I moved to a city a couple of hundred miles away where I knew no one.  I lived in an apartment that was about a mile from a coffee shop that I operated.  I would walk to work at 6:30am, carrying $200 in opening cash on a dark road, and I was afraid.  I had two people working for me, and on my second day one of them did not show up.  I had never run a business before, and my three months of training just didn’t seem enough.  It was a hard time for me.  A lady from a major food company came by to take my grocery order, and I didn’t have a clue how much coffee, bacon, or hamburger meat I needed.  She shared with me what the previous manager had ordered and helped me place an order.

pp. 379-380

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

A newcomer appeared at one of these groups, knocked on the door and asked to be let in. He talked frankly with that group’s oldest member. He soon proved that his was a desperate case, and that above all he wanted to get well. “But,” he asked, “will you let me join your group? Since I am the victim of another addiction even worse stigmatized than alcoholism, you may not want me among you. Or will you?”
There was the dilemma. What should the group do? The oldest member summoned two others, and in confidence laid the explosive facts in their laps. Said he, “Well, what about it? If we turn this man away, he’ll soon die. If we allow him in, only god knows what trouble he’ll brew. What shall the answer be – yes or no?”

pp. 141-142

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God, please show me how to put ideas like fun and joy back into my
life. Show me how to have more fun in work, in love, and in play.
–Melody Beattie

“There are lessons to be learned in every place. The mark of spiritual
mastery is the ability to remember God wherever we go, and through
whatever we experience.”
–Alan Cohen

“A friend will see us at our worst, as well as our best.
A friend will not close his or her heart when we have made a mistake.
A friend will not condemn us but will compassionately support our
return to a state of grace.”
–Marianne Williamson

Someone’s opinion of you does not have to become your reality.
–Les Brown

However I pray, God hears my prayers.
–Katrina Cassel


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

FORGIVENESS

“God will forgive me; that’s his
business.”
— Heinrich Heine

It took me a long time to accept that God had forgiven the deeds done
in my addiction. It took me a long time to comprehend that God is
forgiveness, “forgiving love”. Forgiveness unites us with God because
it is His nature to forgive.

When I am living the spiritual life, I can unite myself with Him by my
acts of forgiveness. And when I forgive others, I am doing a kindness,
an act of forgiveness, to myself. Hate used to drain me of energy and
it still can if I get caught up in resentments. Forgiveness restores
energy and peace.

When I forgive, I am at one with God.

In the forgiveness of others I discover me.

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“But You, O GOD the Lord, Deal with me for Your name’s sake;
Because Your mercy is good, deliver me”
Psalm 109:21

He that followeth after righteousness and mercy findeth life,
righteousness, and honor.
Proverbs 21:21


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Daily Inspiration

Think often of your friends and seldom of your enemies and you will surround yourself with good thoughts, leaving little or no room for darkness. Lord, help me search for goodness so that it is goodness that I find.

We take for granted so much of what God has planned for us. Lord, may I have sufficient preparation to meet the challenges of today and rejoice in the person that I am.

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NA Just For Today

The Principle Of Self-Support

“In our addiction, we were dependent upon people, places, and things. We looked to them to support us and supply the things we found lacking in ourselves.”
Basic Text pg. 67

In the animal kingdom, there is a creature that thrives on others. It is called a leech. It attaches itself to people and takes what it needs. When one victim brushes the leech off, it simply goes to the next.

In our active addiction, we behaved similarly. We drained our families, our friends, and our communities. Consciously or unconsciously, we sought to get something for nothing from virtually everyone we encountered.

When we saw the basket passed at our first meeting we may have thought, “Self-Support! Now what kind of odd notion is this?” As we watched, we noticed something. These self-supporting addicts were free. By paying their own way, they had earned the privilege of making their own decisions.

By applying the principle of self-support in our personal lives, we gain for ourselves the same kind of freedom. No longer does anyone have the right to tell us where to live, because we pay our own rent. We can eat, wear, or drive whatever we choose, because we provide it for ourselves.

Unlike the leech, we don’t have to depend on others for our sustenance. The more responsibility we assume, the more freedom we’ll gain.

Just for today: There are no limits to the freedom I can earn by supporting myself. I will accept personal responsibility and pay my own way today.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Real men don’t vacuum. –Anna Genich
Once, not so long ago, there was a family who tried to divide up housework equally. The father signed up for vacuuming, but he never got around to doing it.
One morning he told everyone about his dream the night before. He was lined up in the dining room with an entire football team, and they all ran in a line through the house, pushing the clutter and dirt up against the walls and out of the way. They came to a finish at the picture window, where the father turned and raised his arms in victory. Then he saw his wife watching him, so he explained, “Heroes don’t vacuum.”
Perhaps each of us is a hero at one time or another. In that case, we might take turns at different chores, rewarding the day’s hero with a day off from vacuuming or dishwashing. When we work together to get the chores done, we become a family of heroes, and can feel a healthy pride in our warm, loving, and clean home.
How can we share housework more equally?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Let no one be deluded that a knowledge of the path can substitute for putting one foot in front of the other. –M. C. Richards
Recovering men know this path is not always easy. We usually talk about the benefits of recovery and the many promises of the program. Today, in our fellowship, we talk of the challenges we must face in order to recover. Honesty may be the greatest challenge. It is frightening to be honest with ourselves about things we have never really admitted or faced before.
Sometimes we have new and confusing feelings and think something must be wrong with us. But we may be just experiencing the logical outcome of our earlier commitment to be honest. No one recovers by thinking about it. We must actively take each Step and meet the challenges presented. We are not alone with our difficulties. We are part of a large movement of men committed to recovery, and this quiet moment is one way in which we are simply putting one foot in front of the other.
Today, I pray for the courage to remain faithful when the fears and pains of my transformation are overwhelming.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Reared as we were in a youth and beauty oriented society, we measured ourselves by our ornamental value. –Janet Harris
Rare is the woman who doesn’t long for a svelte body, firm breasts, pretty teeth, a smooth complexion. Rare is the woman who feels content, truly satisfied with her total person. We are often torn between wanting to be noticed and yet not wanting eyes to gaze upon us.
We are all that we need to be today, at this moment. And we have an inner beauty, each of us, that is our real blessing in the lives of others. Our inner beauty will shine forth if we invite it to do so. Whatever our outer appearance, it doesn’t gently touch or bring relief where suffering is–like our words which come from the heart, the home of our inner beauty.
Perhaps a better mirror for reflecting our true beauty is the presence or absence of friends in our lives. We each have known stunning women who seemed to cast only cold glances our way and handsome men who arrogantly belittled others. It’s our inner beauty that is valued by others. The surprise in store for each of us is discovering that the glow of our inner beauty transforms our outer appearance too.
My beauty today will be enhanced by my gentle attention to the other people sharing my experiences.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Being a Victim
Its okay to have a good day. Really.
Its okay to be doing okay and to feel like our life is manageable and on track.
Many of us have learned, as part of our survival behaviors, that the way to get the attention and approval we want is to be victims. If life is awful, too difficult, unmanageable, too hard, unfair, then others will accept, like, and approve of us, we think.
We may have learned this from living and associating with people who also learned to survive by being a victim.
We are not victims. We do not need to be victimized. We do not need to be helpless and out of control to get the attention and love we desire. In fact, the kind of love we are seeking cannot be obtained that way.
We can get the love we really want and need by only owning our power. We learn that we can stand on our own two feet, even though it sometimes feels good to lean a little. We learn that the people we are leaning on are not holding us up. They are standing next to us.
We all have bad days- -days when things are not going the way wed like, days when we have feelings of sadness and fear. But we can deal with our bad days and darker feelings in ways that reflect self-responsibility rather than victimization.
Its okay to have a good day too. We might not have as much to talk about, but well have more to enjoy.
God, help me let go of my need to be a victim. Help me let go of my belief that to be loved and get attention I need to be a victim. Surround me with people who love me when I own my power. Help me start having good days and enjoying them.

As I start this day with quiet meditation, I feel myself becoming still and at peace. At any time during the day I can bring my mind back to this moment. I will bring my attention and awareness back to the peace that I have when I am with my breath and I know that my breath is with me at all times, whether I remember it or not. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Don’t Be Controlled by Love

Using love to control and manipulate is heartbreaking. It can break the heart of the person doing it, it can break the heart of the person it’s being done to.

So often, controlling through love is done almost unconsciously. It’s a dance people do out of habit to get their needs met. Their reasons don’t matter, although it’s easier to have compassion for those who control unknowingly than those who use the power of love maliciously and viciously.

What matters is how you respond if it’s being done to you. What matters is that you don’t do it to other people.

Open your heart and see the truth. Set yourself free. If someone is controlling you by using your love for them or your need to be loved, acknowledge it. If you are doing it to someone else, acknowledge that,too. Once you see the truth, you can set yourself free.

So much of what we need to do to free our hearts and souls is simply to acknowledge the truth. The rest will happen naturally.

Love has no price. It’s only love if it’s free.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let go of the future

Many years ago, in ancient times, Moses led a group of slaves out of Egypt and back to their homeland. Along the way, they had to wander for many years through the Sinai Peninsula, a barren, rocky, lifeless stretch of land.

During their extended stay in the wilderness, God provided them with manna, a food that appeared out of nowhere and sustained the people with the nourishment they needed each day. The trick to this rhythm of trusting God, and receiving what they needed, was that any manna they received had to be used that day.

Manna couldn’t be hoarded. It could not be stored or saved up for a rainy day. If the people hoarded their manna, it would spoil and rot away. Or it would mysteriously disappear as magically and certainly as it had appeared.

Most of us know what it means to receive our daily bread. It’s the love, the guidance, the grace, and the material things we need each day on our journey.

Sometimes, we can sit down and anticipate the times to come. We can look at our money, our strength, our abilities, our stamina, and say wearily, “There just won’t be enough.” That’s because we’re looking too far ahead.

Look around at what you have available, this moment or this hour. Use the resources and gifts you’ve been given. Tomorrow’s manna will come at its appointed hour.

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Yellow Miracles
Daffodils

by Madisyn Taylor

Almost nothing else represents the emergence of spring as the beloved yellow daffodil happy and bright after a long winter’s nap.

Some things on this earth look as if they were designed to bring happiness to the hearts of humans. The daffodil, with its bright yellow coloring and green stem, is one such creation. The daffodil makes its appearance in the spring, abundant and inexpensive, bringing gladness as sure as sunshine itself to whoever is lucky enough to receive a single stem, or a bunch, of these delicate yellow miracles. It is as if the sun has shed a layer of skin and fashioned a flower out of it.

Color psychologists suggest that too much yellow can be too stimulating, but in small doses it inspires hope and good cheer. The daffodil is a perfect-sized package of yellow for anyone feeling glum or energetically low. It can spur us to action or simply imbue us with a feeling of optimism as it vibrantly glows in our homes or on our desks at work. The daffodil’s presence is ideal in any region where sunshine is scarce as it seems to carry the sun in the soft flesh of its petals. The bulbs are not expensive, and the flowers give so much that you may decide to plant a few in your yard or in a window box. Then again, you may simply wait until they arrive in neat little bundles in the grocery store or flower shop. They are usually very reasonably priced, so you can afford to spoil yourself, and those you love, with a large bouquet.

A daffodil placed under the windshield wiper of a loved one’s car says, “Be happy! Spring has sprung! I love you!” A collection of stems gathered and placed in a Mason jar can be left on someone’s doorstep to remind them of the simple beauties that abound in this life. Don’t forget to bless yourself with a vase of these bright blossoms on your kitchen table or nightstand. Every time you see them, you will be filled with the happiness and warmth of the sun. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Once in a great while, I find myself thinking that perhaps things weren’t quite so bad as they seemed to be. At such moments, I force myself to realize that my illness is talking to me, trying to tempt me in to denying that I am. In fact, afflicted with an illness. One of the key action steps of The Program is that we give our illness to God as we understand Him, accepting our powerlessness in the face of His greater Power. Do I believe that the grace of God can do fo rme what I could never do for myself?

Today I Pray

May I know that much of our lives depends on faith. For we cannot know the limits of space and time — or explain the mysteries of life and death. But when we see God working through us – and through others who have found new life in The Program — it is all the evidence we need to know that He exists.

Today I Will Remember

The Big Wheel runs by faith.

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One More Day

Courage is the resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.
– Mark Twain

So many of us suffer from flagging self-esteem. This may occur for many reasons, all complex. When we finally decide we are going to create change in our lives, we may be uncertain as to how to make the change. How do we start? One of the best starting places is to adopt on premise of the Twelve Step Programs and begin to act “as if” we have all the confidence in the world, “as if” we have great faith in ourselves. We start to spend time thinking about the possibilities, rather than the impossibilities.

We all fear the unknown, but to act “as if” helps us deal with the things we can’t see. Eventually, contrived as it feels, our new behavior will become new habits, and we won’t need to act “as if” – because we truly “are.”

I am willing to try to act “as if” I can create change.

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Food For Thought

Abstinence Is a Way of Life

Each morning when we wake up, we give thanks for another day of abstinence. Our bodies feel good, function well, and look better. To go back to our old ways of eating compulsively would be to give up the new health and peace of mind, which we have acquired through OA.

We do not want to go back. We are learning a new way of life, one that is infinitely preferable to our old ways. In order to maintain our abstinence and continue to make progress, we need a program. For most of us, this involves working the Twelve Steps each day.

Program sponsors can help us with this new way of life. Other OA members share their experience and tell us what has worked for them. Most of us find that we need the spiritual part of the program if we are to maintain our abstinence. Abstaining purely for weight control is usually not enough.

If we are to keep what OA has given us, we have to share it with others. We find that the more we give it away, the more progress we make with our own program.

To abstain is no sacrifice; it is growth and life.

I am grateful for this new life.

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One Day At A Time

PUSHING BUTTONS & PATIENCE

“Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is Patience.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

When I first came to Program, I didn’t really know what abstinence was. I thought it was a diet. It turned out to be far more than I ever imagined. Since beginning, I’ve gained abstinence, I’ve lost weight and my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being has changed more than I ever thought possible. I’ve come so far … beyond my wildest dreams … yet, sometimes it feels like it’s still not enough. I’ll get in a row with my 12 year old daughter over some minor issue. She has a way of pushing my buttons which sends me into “fingerpointing” and “lecture” mode – good intentions gone totally awry! She’ll ultimately tune me out – and I’ll walk away feeling like a bad parent. The guilt will set in and I’ll deride myself for lacking patience and having bad judgement! But once I’ve calmed down – I’ll remind myself that my intentions were good and – as in my food plan – progress not perfection has to apply to my parenting just as it does to my any other aspect of my recovery. This requires me to be patient with MYSELF as well as with others.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will learn to be patient with myself as well as with others.
Rob R.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action. We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day ‘Thy will be done.’ We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves. – Pg 87-88 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Reliance for our recovery must be placed upon spiritual faculties and not objective things. People, places, and things are transitory, flitting through our lives at different speeds. We can trust no person, no place, and often not even our own best intentions. We can only trust our spiritual foundation.

I know that staying clean and sober is a gift based on the spiritual foundation I lay hour to hour, one day at a time.

Actualizing the Gifts that are In Me

I will actualize that gifts that are in me today. I will be less preoccupied with who I’m not and more occupied with who I am. When I spend all of my time looking outside of me or wanting what others have, I forget that I have my own special gifts. God has placed gifts within me that I am meant to develop and share. My responsibility is to come to know what my gifts are, then to cultivate and strengthen them as I share them with the world.

I look for the gifts that are in me.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘It is time to speak your Truth. Create your community. Be good to each other. And do not look outside yourself for the leader. This could be a good time!’ Oraibi, Arizona Hopi Nation

I enjoy the Fellowship of the Spirit.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If you are clean and sober, the miracle has already happened. Stick around, the impossibilities take a little longer.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

No matter how busy I am today, I will begin and end my day with quiet time. I look forward to that time when I stop all outward activity, rest and look within for my peace and truth.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I’m definitely an alcoholic. My friend asked; ‘If they discovered a pill that if you took one you could drink safely, what would you do?’ I said; ‘I’d want to know what happens if you take two.’ – Larry S.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 22

Emotional Pain
When I am hurt or upset, I have to continually look for the cause in me,
and then I have to admit and correct my mistakes.
It isn’t easy, but as long as I know I am progressing spiritually,
I know I can mark my effort up as a job well done.
I have found that pain is a friend . . ..
– Daily Reflections, p. 284

Thought to Ponder . . .
Pain is what I walk through. Misery is what I sit in.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
T R U S T = Try Relying Upon Steps and Traditions.

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

Tolerance
“Honesty with ourselves and others gets us sober,
but it is tolerance that keeps us that way.
In other words, once an alcoholic fully realizes
that he can’t get well alone,
he will somehow find a way to get well and stay well
in the company of others.
It has been that way from the beginning of AA
and probably always will be so.”
Bill W., Letter, 1943
As Bill Sees It, p. 312

Thought to Consider . . .
Together we can do what we could never do alone.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
TIME
Things I Must Earn

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

Nameless
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“[Tradition Eleven] represents more than a sound public relations policy. It is more than a denial of self-seeking. Tradition Eleven is certainly a constant reminder that personal ambition has no place in A.A., but it also implies that each member ought to become an active guardian of our fellowship in its relation with the general public.
“As we have seen, anonymity is the protective mantle that covers our whole society. But it is more than protection; it has another dimension, a spiritual significance. And this leads to Tradition Twelve, which reads: ‘Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.’
“In my belief, the entire future of our fellowship hangs upon this vital principle. If we continue to be filled with the spirit and practice of anonymity, no shoal or reef can wreck us. If we forget this principle, the lid to Pandora’s box will be off and the spirits of Money, Power, and Prestige will be loosed among us.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 131

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

“In AA, we discover that it is impossible to give without receiving, or receive without giving.”
North Hollywood, Calif., February 1993
“The Gift of Sobriety”
AA Grapevine

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

“If we were to live, we had to be free of anger. The grouch and the
brainstorm were not for us. They may be the dubious luxury of normal
men, but for alcoholics these things are poison.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 66~

“If a repetition is to be prevented, place the problem, along with
everything else, in God’s hands.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, To Wives, Page 120~

Nor were we ever skillful in separating justified from unjustified anger.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 90

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

‘Selfish’?
‘I can see why you are disturbed to hear some A.A. speakers say, ‘A.A. is a selfish program.’ The word ‘selfish’ ordinarily implies that one is acquisitive, demanding, and thoughtless of the welfare of others. Of course, the A.A. way of life does not at all imply such undesirable traits.
‘What do these speakers mean? Well, any theologian will tell you that the salvation of his own soul is the highest vocation that a man can have. Without salvation–however we may define this–he will have little or nothing. For us of A.A., there is even more urgency.
‘If we cannot or will not achieve sobriety, then we become truly lost, right in the here and now. We are of no value to anyone, including ourselves, until we find salvation from alcohol. Therefore, our own recovery and spiritual growth have to come first–a right and necessary kind of self-concern.

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, thank you for this day. Thank you for being the hope I need, the peace I look for, and the answer I seek.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 21st

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 21st

Daily Reflections

MATERIAL AND SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING

Fear… of economic insecurity will leave us.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

Having fear reduced or eliminated and having economic
circumstances improve, are two different things. When
I was new in A.A., I had those two ideas confused. I
thought fear would leave me only when I started making
money. However, another line from the Big Book jumped
off the page one day when I was chewing on my financial
difficulties: “For us, material well-being always
followed spiritual progress; it never preceded.”(p. 127).
I suddenly understood that this promise was a guarantee.
I saw that it put priorities in the correct order, that
spiritual progress would diminish that terrible fear of
being destitute, just as it diminished many other fears.
Today I try to use the talents God gave me to benefit
others. I’ve found that is what others valued all along.
I try to remember that I no longer work for myself. I
only get the use of the wealth God created, I never have
“owned” it. My life’s purpose is much clearer when I just
work to help, not to possess.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In A.A. we forget about the future. We know from
experience that as time goes on, the future takes care of
itself. Everything works out well, as long as we stay
sober. All we need to think about is today. When we get
up in the morning and see the sun shining in the window,
we thank God that He has given us another day to enjoy
because we’re sober. A day in which we may have a chance
to help somebody. Do I know that this day is all I have
and that with God’s help I can stay sober today?

Meditation For The Day

All is fundamentally well. That does not mean that all is
well on the surface of things. But it does mean that God’s
in His heaven and that He has a purpose for the world,
which will eventually work out when enough human beings
are willing to follow His way. “Wearing the world as a
loose garment” means not to be upset by the surface
wrongness of things, but to feel deeply secure in the
fundamental goodness and purpose in the universe.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that God may be with me in my journey through the
world. I pray that I may know that God is planning that
journey.


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

As Bill Sees It

Debits and Credits, p. 80

Following a gossip binge, we can well ask ourselves these questions:
“Why did we say what we did? Were we only trying to be helpful and
informative? Or were we not trying to feel superior by confessing
the other fellow’s sins? Or, because of fear and dislike, were we not
really aiming to damage him?”

This would be an honest attempt to examine ourselves, rather than
the other fellow.

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

Inventory-taking is not always done in red ink. It’s a poor day indeed
when we haven’t done something right. As a matter of fact, the
waking hours are usually well filled with things that are constructive.
Good intentions, good thoughts, and good acts are there for us to see.

Even when we tried hard and failed, we may chalk that up as one of
the greatest credits of all.

1. Grapevine, August 1961
2. 12 & 12, p. 93

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

Walk in Dry Places

Living One Day at a  Time
Time management
It’s surprising that some alcoholics learn how to “live one day at a time” while drinking.   It had to work that way, or their drinking life would have been even more intolerable.  It was convenient to shut off thoughts of tomorrow if one had enough money to drink today.  It was also convenient to blot out thoughts of yesterday, which only meant remorse.
In sobriety, living one day at a time is an excellent way to focus our minds so we can pour our energies into the work at hand. In reviewing the wasted yesterdays, we can always find ways that we could have been more productive and effective.  But we missed opportunities because we were still struggling with regrets or fearing what might happen in the future.
It’s never too late to change all that.  We need neither regret the past nor fear the future.  The AA secret is to make the best of today’s challenges.  It may mean just chipping away at a massive problem that seems insurmountable.  Living just for today, we can do today’s job well.
I’ll live comfortably and happily in the here and now. This means releasing the past and accepting the future as something I’ll deal with at the proper time.


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Keep It Simple

With each sunrise, we start anew.  —-Anonymous
Like a tree, our life depends on new growth. There are many ways to bring new ideas and growth into our lives. We can attend Twelve Step retreats. We can study books and tapes on spirituality.
We can attend different Twelve Step meetings.
But our spiritual newness may not just come from the Twelve Steps. We can do volunteer work or be active in other types of groups. We need to invite new ideas into our lives. We need to stay open to change. It doesn’t matter what renews our spiritual growth. What matters is that we keep our spiritual lives fresh and growing.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, spring is one of the four seasons. Help me feel like spring. Help me to be strong but not stuck Help me be firm yet open to spiritual growth.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll try to do something new. When I get stuck or stubborn, I’ll see that it’s due to my fear of trying new ideas.

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

Each Day A New Beginning

Children are surely one of God’s greatest gifts and truest challenges. To share your life with a child is to humble yourself so that you may learn from them and discover with them the beautiful secrets that are only uncovered in searching.
–Kathleen Tierney Crilly
Humility accompanies every experience wherein we let ourselves fully listen to others, to learn from them, to be changed by their words, their presence. Each opportunity we take to be fully present to another person, totally with them in mind and spirit, will bless us while it blesses them. Offering and receiving the gift of genuine attention is basic to the emotional growth of every human being.
Before recovering, many of us so suffered from obsessive self-centered pity that we seldom noted the real needs or pain of the people close to us. We closed ourselves off, wallowing in our own selfish worries, and our growth was stunted.
Some days we still wallow. But a new day has dawned. The Steps offer us new understanding. They are helping us look beyond ourselves to all the “children of God” in our daily lives. From each of them we have many secrets to learn.
I will be joyous today. Many secrets about life are mine to learn if I will stay close to all the people who cross my path. I will be mindful they are there because they have something to give me. I will be ready to receive it.


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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

Near the end of that bleak November, I sat drinking in my kitchen. With a certain satisfaction I reflected there was enough gin concealed about the house to carry me through that night and the next day. My wife was at work. I wondered whether I dared hide a full bottle of gin near the head of our bed. I would need it before daylight.

p. 8

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
When I was three years sober, I made one of the most difficult decisions I had ever made.  I left the marriage.  I did not leave because I didn’t love him.  I still love him, but the marriage was not a healthy place for me to be.  I found myself with two children to support.  I was legally blind and had no job skills.  When I moved out, I first moved into public housing for blind people.  This was a shocking experience for me, but it was full of growth.  For the first time in my life, I was learning to accept my handicap.  Before this I would plan out my day as if I could see and then plan it out again based on the fact that my vision was limited.

p. 379

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

As group after group saw these possibilities, they finally abandoned all membership regulations. One dramatic experience after another clinched this determination until it became our universal tradition. Here are two examples:
On the A.A. calendar it was Year Two. In that time nothing could be seen but two struggling, nameless groups of alcoholics trying to hold their faces up to the light.

p. 141

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Don’t go through life, grow through life.
–Eric Butterworth

“You see what you choose to see, because all perception is a choice.
And when you cease to impose your meanings on what you see,
your spiritual eyes will open, and you will see a world free of judgment
and shining in its endless beauty.”
–Paul Ferrini

To gain that which is worth having, it may be necessary to lose
everything else.
–Bernadette Devlin

God is the architect. I am the builder.

“Stop talking about the problem and start thinking about the
solution.” -–Brian Tracy

The highest reward for a man’s toil is not what he gets for it
but what he becomes by it.
–John Ruskin


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

BROTHERHOOD

“I love my country better than my
family; but I love humanity better
than my country.”
— Francois Fenelon

We need to think “big”. We need to escape from those little concepts
that keep us small. Life is more than we can ever perceive. We need
to see it in its totality. The nuclear family can be restrictive if taken as
the center of our loyalty. Even our national citizenship needs to be
placed in the context of the world. Our freedom rests in our universal
humanity.

Spirituality is about thinking “big”. It is finding God in the richness of
His creation. Our insistence on our shared humanity is the path to
world peace and serenity. Divisions should not exist for the
humanitarian who seeks acceptance for all men simply because they
are men.

May I seek to find the One in the many — and the many in the One.

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

“We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed,
but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not
destroyed.”
2 Corinthians 4:8-9

“For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and
glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
Psalms 84:11


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Daily Inspiration

God not only answers prayer, but He has all the answers to the prayers that we haven’t bothered to ask. Lord, when you said “ask and you shall receive”, may I keep in mind that no request is too small.

It is far wiser to ask God for what He thinks is good for us, than for what we think is good for us. Lord, Your Will not mine be done.

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

NA Just For Today

A Treatable Illness

“Addiction is a disease that involves more than the use of drugs.”
Basic Text p. 3

At our first meeting, we may have been taken aback at the way members shared about how the disease of addiction had affected their lives. We thought to ourselves, “Disease? I’ve just got a drug problem! What in the world are they talking about?”

After some time in the program, we began to see that our addiction ran deeper than our obsessive, compulsive drug use. We saw that we suffered from a chronic illness that affected many areas of our lives. We didn’t know where we’d “caught” this disease, but in examining ourselves we realized that it had been present in us for many years.

Just as the disease of addiction affects every area of our lives, so does the NA program. We attend our first meeting with all the symptoms present: the spiritual void, the emotional agony, the powerlessness, the unmanageability.

Treating our illness involves much more than mere abstinence. We use the Twelve Steps, and though they don’t “cure” our illness, they do begin to heal us. And as we recover, we experience the gift of life.

Just for today: I will treat my illness with the Twelve Steps.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. –Mother Goose
Poor Humpty ended up such a scrambled egg. Maybe that’s what comes from sitting too long in one place, choosing neither this way nor that, playing both sides against the middle. Maybe he played too much politics, got too much advice, had too much to think about. When the centipede was asked which leg he first moved when setting out on a stroll, he got those legs all tangled in his mind and couldn’t walk at all. It is better to be simply moved by those around us, or by our Higher Power, with faith and love. When our thoughts fail, their hearts, hands, and eyes will show the way.
Do I sometimes decide my fate by refusing to decide?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If I Had My Life to Live Over … I’d relax…. I would take fewer things seriously. I would take more chances. I would climb more mountains and swim more rivers…. I’d start barefoot earlier in the spring and stay that way later in the fall. I would go to more dances. I would ride more merry go rounds. I would pick more daisies. –Nadine Stair
“Letting go” is a theme with many variations. When we live with gusto and are released to experience the full excitement of life, we are letting go. When we turn our lives and wills over to the care of our Higher Power, we are freed of many cares. If we orient our lives with a compass that always points to fear and insecurity, or to power and success, we are giving ourselves over to those forces. But we can orient our lives to our Higher Power’s care and support. That makes it possible to drop our guard, allow for some mistakes, and delight in the pleasures of creation.
Today, let me forget my worries and enjoy the fullness of life.

You are reading from the book Each Day A New Beginning
Children are surely one of God’s greatest gifts and truest challenges. To share your life with a child is to humble yourself so that you may learn from them and discover with them the beautiful secrets that are only uncovered in searching.
–Kathleen Tierney Crilly
Humility accompanies every experience wherein we let ourselves fully listen to others, to learn from them, to be changed by their words, their presence. Each opportunity we take to be fully present to another person, totally with them in mind and spirit, will bless us while it blesses them. Offering and receiving the gift of genuine attention is basic to the emotional growth of every human being.
Before recovering, many of us so suffered from obsessive self-centered pity that we seldom noted the real needs or pain of the people close to us. We closed ourselves off, wallowing in our own selfish worries, and our growth was stunted.
Some days we still wallow. But a new day has dawned. The Steps offer us new understanding. They are helping us look beyond ourselves to all the “children of God” in our daily lives. From each of them we have many secrets to learn.
I will be joyous today. Many secrets about life are mine to learn if I will stay close to all the people who cross my path. I will be mindful they are there because they have something to give me. I will be ready to receive it.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Considering Commitment
Pay attention to your commitments.
While many of us fear committing, its good to weigh the cost of any commitment we are considering. We need to feel consistently positive that its an appropriate commitment for us.
Many of us have a history of jumping- -leaping headfirst- -into commitments without weighing the cost and the possible consequences of that particular commitment. When we get in, we find that we do not really want to commit, and feel trapped.
Some of us may become afraid of losing out on a particular opportunity if we don’t commit. It is true that we will lose out on certain opportunities if we are unwilling to commit. We still need to weigh the commitment. We still need to become clear about whether that commitment seems right for us. If it isn’t, we need to be direct and honest with others and ourselves.
Be patient. Do some soul searching. Wait for a clear answer. We need to make our commitments not in urgency or panic but in quiet confidence that what we are committing to is right for us.
If something within says no, find the courage to trust that voice.
This is not our last chance. It is not the only opportunity well ever have. Don’t panic. We don’t have to commit to what isn’t right for us, even if we try to tell ourselves it should be right for us and we should commit.
Often, we can trust our intuitive sense more than we can trust our intellect about commitments.
In the excitement of making a commitment and beginning, we may overlook the realities of the middle. That is what we need to consider.
We don’t have to commit out of urgency, impulsivity, or fear. We are entitled to ask, Will this be good for me? We are entitled to ask if this commitment feels right.
Today, God, guide me in making my commitments. Help me say yes to what is in my highest good, and no to what isn’t. I will give serious consideration before I commit myself to any activity or person. Ii will take the time to consider if the commitment is really what I want.

God is guiding me in peace and calm today. I know that everything that upsets this feeling is not permanent and will pass. I no longer allow upsets to keep me from seeing the good in others. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Nurture the Seasons of Your Soul

Study nature’s ways. Learn her rhythms, her seasons, her cycles. See how she hibernates and rests during the cold winter, using that time to replenish and heal. See how she bursts forth in a slow crescendo of green and bright colors over the spring, rejoicing in the inevitable new growth. See how she gives her all, her grandest performance, over the summer months before gradually descending into a final burst of changing colors in autumn. Watch her cool down, return to her depths, and again take time to replenish.

These same seasons are within us. There are times to take action, to be busily involved with creating and doing and participating and giving. There are quieter times when we are being prepared for those times of activity. We cannot give and give without taking time to replenish ourselves. There are times of gentle growth when the first blades of grass, the first signs of spring begin to emerge in our lives– whether those signal a new stage of personal growth, a new stage in a love relationship, or the first buds of life on a project we’re creating.

And each season, each time, leads into the next.

There is purpose and value in each day of your life, in each season of your life. Nurture your times of action, of creating, of doing, and value your quieter times of going within. The more you study nature, the more you will learn about yourself. Nurture and trust the seasons of your soul.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Letting go of finances

Letting go doesn’t mean we don’t care. It’s about having faith that things will work out. Let’s take a look at how letting go applies to the issue of money.

John had been an alcoholic for years. Over time, the disease destoyed his life, including his financial health. He hit bottom and finally began recovery. After a while, he was able to start making progress in life. But his finances were in terrible shape. For a while, he hid all the bills in a drawer. Then one day, he took out the bills and started to make a plan. Instead of feeling hopeless and overwhelmed, he applied the Twelve Steps to this area of his life. He called his creditors. He gave himself a budget. He did the best that he could and he let go of the rest.

Slowly, over the years, he began to rebuild his credit. He paid off his debts, a little at a time. He applied for a credit card, the kind you have to pay in advance. Then after a year, his limit was raised. He doesn’t use the card for credit; he uses it for a credit rating. He’s now got a checking and savings account. He pays his taxes and manages to save a little every week.

Sometimes things happen. Cars break down. People get sick. The rent gets raised. That unexpected expense comes up, out of the blue, just when you thought you were ahead.

Worry never helped.

An attitude of taking responsibility for myself did.

What we cannot do for ourselves, God will do for us. And God knows we need money to live here on earth. What was that the Bible said? Seek money first, and then you’ll have peace? Nope, I got that backwards. “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all else shall be added unto you.”

Manifest what you need from a place of responsibility, trust, and peace.

God, teach me to let go of worrying about money.

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Remembering Who We Are
Brave Spirits

Most of us are familiar with the idea that we are not human beings having spiritual experiences; instead, we are spiritual beings having human experiences. We hear this and even though we may experience a resounding yes in our bodies, we may not take the time to really acknowledge the truth of these statements. Integrating this idea into how we view ourselves can broaden our sense of who we are and help us appreciate ourselves as brave spirits on an important mission to learn and grow here on earth.

As spiritual beings, we are visitors in this physical realm. The fact that we came here and lost all memory of what happened to us before we were born is one of the many reasons that it takes so much courage for a soul to incarnate on earth. This is why spiritual inquiry so often feels like a remembering—because it is. Remembering that we are spiritual beings is part of the work that we are here on earth to do. When we operate from a place of remembering, we tap into the wisdom that our spirit accumulated even before we stepped into this lifetime. Remembering who we are can give us the patience to persevere when we become overwhelmed or frustrated. It can give us the courage to work through the most daunting challenges and help us trust the ancient wisdom we carry that is offered to us by our intuition.

We have chosen to be on earth because there is something we want to learn that can only happen by inhabiting a body. Some of us are here to repay a debt, learn about love, or teach forgiveness. Most of us are here for a combination of reasons, we carry this information in our souls, all we have to do is remember. As you go through your journey, try not to forget how brave you are, being here now. Honor yourself. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

The Program teaches us that we have an incurable illness. We alwys get worse, never better. But we’re fortunate in that our incurable illness can be arrested, so long as we don’t tkae the first drink one day at a time. Hightoned academic rsearch and ivory tower studies to th contrary, we know rom experiece that we can no more control our drinking than we can control the ocean tides. Do I have any doubt that I am owerless over alcohol?

Today I Pray

May I never fall prey to any short-term research sresults which tell me that alcoholism can be cured, that I would be safe to bbegin drinking again, suppoosedly, in a responsible manner. My experience — and the experience of those in The Program — will outshout such threories. May I know thaat my disease is arrestablke, but not curable. May I know that if I took up my active addiction again, I would begin whre I left off — closer than ever to possible death or insanity.

Today I Will Remember

Be wary of new theories.

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One More Day

It is a happy talent to know how to play. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

As the carefree days of childhood give way to adulthood, we sometimes forfeit too much of the child. We become what we think is mature — serious and busy. Quite unintentionally we might become caught up in the importance of being married, working hard at our jobs, raising children, or paying off the mortgage. Even at home we might be rushing here and there – mowing the lawn, getting a haircut, buying clothes or groceries, and performing all the small household chores which need doing regularly.

Where is the time we need for ourselves, to spend with friends, or just to play? We can find time, right now, if we want to. We can momentarily shrug off the demands of home or career and lend ourselves to carefree play.

It’s sometimes easy to be too serious. Today, I will let myself participate in play.

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Food For Thought

Letting Go

By admitting that we are unable to manage our own lives, we become ready to let a Higher Power take over. Before we can fully benefit from God’s direction, we must let go completely of the idea that we are in control.

We say that we are grateful compulsive overeaters, because if it had not been for our inability to control what we ate and the resulting turmoil in our lives, we might never have realized our need to “let go and let God.”

When we turn our problems over to our Higher Power, we leave them with Him and move as He directs. If we take the problems back, we are like a child who has given his or her parent a broken toy to fix, but snatches it back before the parent can make the repair.

If we had been able to fix our problems ourselves, our way, we would not be in this program. Since we know we need help, let’s be willing to let go and try God’s way.

May I let go of my problems so that You may direct my life.

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One Day At A Time

PATIENCE

“Patience is the companion of wisdom.”
Saint Augustine

Patience is an area that I have had some REAL problems with in the past. I had a tendency to want – what I want – NOW! That included recovery. Gaining recovery, as I would eventually realize, is not the same as earning a university credit. It is a process not an end result. You have to be willing to learn to do things in HP’s time and manner rather than your own. What began to happen was – the more impatient I became – the more life tended to resist my efforts. It took a long time for me to realize this. Instead of calming down, I would get even more impatient and struggle even harder. Eventually, I would have a big meltdown and feel like a fool afterwards.

The end result was absolutely no different for having done this. It took time for me to muster the willingness to do things in HP’s time and manner. But when I did – life became much more peaceful and things had a tendency to work themselves out – without all the dramatics.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will learn to patiently and willingly do things in HP’s time and manner.
Rob R.

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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

Take the name of the person who has caused you the most trouble today and say: ______________, I don’t have to use you as an excuse to drink or take drugs right now, because I know chemical dependency is a disease, not a reaction to people, places, or things.

Thank You for showing me that people are not good excuses for practicing a chronic and deadly disease.

Living the Segments of My Day Intentionally

I will divide my day into segments of intention. When I wake up in the morning I will picture feeling good as I go about my early routines. When I move into the next part of my day I will see my morning going smoothly, whatever I have to do I will picture doing with ease and a happy feeling. I will be intentional about each segment of my mid day, seeing myself operating effectively, competently and enjoying my interactions with those I encounter and interact. As afternoon approaches, I will imagine, in my mind’s eye, a pleasant and peaceful evening. And as evening gives way to night, I will imagine myself enjoying a peaceful and restful sleep.

I will be intentional about how I live each part of my day.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

If you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re probably right.

The state of my world is a reflection of the state of my mind.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

To belittle is to be little.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

God is guiding me in peace and calm today. I know that everything that upsets this feeling is not permanent and will pass. I no longer allow upsets to keep me from seeing the good in others.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

God stands for; Group Of Drunks. – John L.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 21

Progress
Walk day by day in the path of spiritual progress.
If you persist, remarkable things will happen.
When we look back, we realize that the things we put in God’s hands
were better than anything we could have planned.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 100

Thought to Ponder . . .
When in doubt, be silent. Grow where you are planted.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
G R O W T H = God Reveals Other Ways To Heal.

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

Rationalization
“There are cases where our ancient enemy, rationalization, has stepped in and has justified conduct which was really
wrong. The temptation here is to imagine that we had good motives and reasons when we really didn’t. We
‘constructively criticized’ someone who needed it, when our real motive was to win a useless argument. We sometimes
hurt those we love because they’ need to be taught a lesson, ‘when we really want to punish. This perverse wish to hide
a bad motive underneath a good one, permeates human affairs from top to bottom.
“Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 94

Thought to Consider . . .
Recognizing someone else’s human dignity cannot cost you your own.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
PUSH
Pray Until Something Happens

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

Rapture
>From “Total Surrender”:
“What has always impressed me most about the program and myself is the constant, continuing challenge to try
recapturing some of the true and honest rapture I felt upon total surrender, when I first came into A.A. For me, that
special peace of mind has never been duplicated. Now, after all the accumulated twenty-four-hour periods, I realize that
it probably never will be. I have come close to it a few times, but it’s never the same.”Des Plaines, Illinois, USA”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 29

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

“We are losing all fear of those violent emotional storms which sometimes cross our alcoholic world; perhaps it
bespeaks our confidence that every storm will be followed by a calm; a calm which is more understanding, more
compassionate, more tolerant than any we ever knew before.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., August 1946
“Who Is a Member of Alcoholics Anonymous?”
The Language of the Heart

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

“Abandon yourself to God as you understand God. Admit your faults to
Him and to your fellows. Clear away the wreckage of your past. Give
freely of what you find and join us. We shall be with you in the
Fellowship of the Spirit, and you will surely meet some of us as you
trudge the Road of Happy Destiny.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 164~

“A body badly burned by alcohol does not often recover overnight nor do
twisted thinking and depression vanish in a twinkling. We are convinced
that a spiritual mode of living is a most powerful health restorative.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, Page 133~

Just as firmly bound by obligation are the members of Alcoholics Anonymous, who have demonstrated that they can
help problem drinkers as others seldom can.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 150

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Debits and Credits
Following a gossip binge, we can well ask ourselves these questions: ‘Why did we say what we did? Were we only
trying to be helpful and informative? Or were we not trying to feel superior by confessing the other fellow’s sins? Or,
because of fear and dislike, were we not really aiming to damage him?’
This would be an honest attempt to examine ourselves, rather than the other fellow.
Inventory-taking is not always done in red ink. It’s a poor day indeed when we haven’t done something right. As a matter
of fact, the waking hours are usually filled with things that are constructive. Good intentions, good thoughts, and good
acts are there for us to see.
Even when we have tried hard and failed, we may chalk that up as one of the greatest credits of all.
1. GRAPEVINE, AUGUST 1961
2. TWELVE AND TWELVE, p.93

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, please help me find confidence in myself. Help me understand that when I have confidence in myself others will have confidence in me.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 20th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 20th

Daily Reflections

LOVE AND TOLERANCE

Love and tolerance of others in our code.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

I have found that I have to forgive others in all
situations to maintain any real spiritual progress.
The vital importance of forgiving may not be obvious
to me at first sight, but my studies tell me that every
great spiritual teacher has insisted strongly upon it.
I must forgive injuries, not just in words, or as a
matter of form, but in my heart. I do this not for the
other persons’ sake, but for my own sake. Resentment,
anger, or a desire to see someone punished, are things
that rot my soul. Such things fasten my troubles to me
with chains. They tie me to other problems that have
nothing to do with my original problem.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When we were drinking, we used to worry about the future.
Worry is terrible mental punishment. What’s going to
become of me? Where will I end up? In the gutter or the
sanitarium? We can see ourselves slipping, getting worse
and worse, and we wonder what the finish will be.
Sometimes we get so discouraged in thinking about the
future that we toy with the idea of suicide. In A.A.
have I stopped worrying about the future?

Meditation For The Day

Functioning on a material plane alone takes me away from
God. I must also try to function on a spiritual plane.
Functioning on a spiritual plane as well as on a material
plane will make life what it should be. All material
activities are valueless in themselves alone. But all
activities, seemingly trivial or of seemingly great moment,
are all alike if directed by God’s guidance. I must try to
obey God as I would expect a faithful, willing servant to
carry out directions.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that the flow of God’s spirit may come to me through
many channels. I pray that I may function on a spiritual
plane as well as on a material plane.


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

As Bill Sees It

Whose Responsibility?, p. 79

“An A.A. group, as such, cannot take on all the personal problems of
its members, let alone those of nonalcoholics in the world around us.
The A.A. group is not, for example, a mediator of domestic relations,
nor does it furnish personal financial aid to anyone.

“Though a member may sometimes be helped in such matters by his
friends in A.A., the primary responsibility for the solutions of all his
problems of living and growing rests squarely upon the individual
himself. Should an A.A. group attempt this sort of help, its
effectiveness and energies would be hopelessly dissipated.

“This is why sobriety–freedom from alcohol–through the teaching
and practice of A.A.’s Twelve Steps, is the sole purpose of the group.
If we don’t stick to this cardinal principle, we shall almost certainly
collapse. And if we collapse we cannot help anyone.”

Letter, 1966

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Walk in Dry Places

Think, Think, Think
Prudence.
It’s hard to believe, but some AA members insist that newcomers shouldn’t think. “Whoever said you should think?” some members are told. The newcomer is apparently supposed to suspend all thinking for several months until reaching a certain level of recovery.
This is nonsense, and it also contradicts AA teaching.  If we don’t want people to use their heads, why do we have printed cards on meeting room walls that say, “Think, Think, Think”?   We are always capable of thinking, even in moments of deep despair. Indeed, we could not keep from thinking.
A constructive approach to thinking is to form complete sentences from the slogan on the wall:  THINK what might happen if I take one drink. THINK of the wonderful new life that awaits me in sobriety.  THINK about ways of improving myself and following a more satisfactory lifestyle.
It’s also important to remember that good thinking will drive out bad thinking…. But good thinking has to be cultivated.
I’ll keep my thinking centered today on the good things that can be done in life.  I’ll focus my attention only on matters that are under my control, and I know that better thinking will bring better conditions.


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Keep It Simple

You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years of trying to get other people interested in you. —Dale Carnegie
We wanted friends, but our addiction wanted all our attention. We had no time to be close to others.
Well, stand aside, addiction! The program has taught us that others are important. Our purpose is to help others. People have become what’s important to us.
Now we listen to others. We help them do what they want to do, not what we want them to do. We help people instead of use them. Friendship is now a way of life. And another promise of the program becomes a part of us.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me to know that I’m here to help others, not just myself. Through others, I find myself.
Today’s’ Action:  Today I’ll help someone the way he or she wants to be helped.

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Each Day a New Beginning

There’s a period of life where we swallow a knowledge of ourselves and it becomes either good or sour inside.  –Pearl Bailey
For too many of us, feelings of shame, even self-hatred, are paramount. No one of us has a fully untarnished past. Every man, every woman, even every child experiences regret over some action. We are not perfect. Perfection is not expected in the Divine plan. But we are expected to take our experiences and grow from them, to move beyond the shame of them, to celebrate what they have taught us.
Each day offers us a fresh start at assimilating all that we have been. What has gone before enriches who we are now, and through the many experiences we’ve survived, we have been prepared to help others, to smooth the way for another woman, perhaps, who is searching for a new direction.
We can let go of our shame and know instead that it sweetens the nuggets of the wisdom we can offer to others. We are alike. We are not without faults. Our trials help another to smoother sailing.
I will relish the joy at hand. I can share my wisdom. All painful pasts brighten someone’s future, when openly shared.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

Trembling, I stepped from the hospital a broken man. Fear sobered me for a bit. Then came the insidious insanity of that first drink, and on Armistice Day 1934, I was off again. Everyone became resigned to the certainty that I would have to be shut up somewhere, or would stumble along to a miserable end. How dark it is before the dawn! In reality that was the beginning of my last debauch. I was soon to be catapulted into what I like to call the forth dimension of existence. I was to know happiness, peace, and usefulness as time passes.

p. 8

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
I met a lady who had a handicapped child, and we learned so much from each other.  One important thing was that handicapped is not a four-letter word.  Handicapped is not a dirty word.  I learned that I was not bad–that I was one of God’s special children, that God had a plan for my life.  The people of A.A. showed me how my past could and would become an asset.  I got a sponsor and started working the steps.  The promises of the Big Book started coming true for me.  The feeling of uselessness and self-pity went away, and I could see how my experiences could help others.

pp. 378-379

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

Why did A.A. finally drop all its membership regulations? Why did we leave it to each newcomer to decide himself whether he was an alcoholic and whether he should join us? Why did we dare say, contrary to the experience of society and government everywhere, that we would neither punish nor deprive any A.A. of membership, believe anything, or conform to anything?
The answer, now seen in Tradition Three, was simplicity itself. At last experience taught us that to take away any alcoholic’s full chance was sometimes to pronounce his death sentence, and often to condemn him to endless misery. Who dared to be judge, jury, and executioner of his own sick brother?

p. 141

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“There is only one small letter between the words CAN and
CAN’T…and that one letter will TOTALLY change your destiny.”
-–Doug Firebaugh

Happiness is intrinsic, it’s an internal thing. When you build it
into yourself, no external circumstances can take it away. That kind of
happiness is a twenty-four-hour thing.
–Leo F. Buscaglia

God, if I can’t see the joy in life, help me look again.
–Melody Beattie

Now and then I like to lift my eyes up from the details of daily life and
remember the bigger picture, and take a breath of God, and feel and
remember that ultimately, it’s all okay.
–Dan Millman

God wants us to give from the heart when we see a need.
–Nancy Shelton


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

APATHY

“Science may have found a cure
for most evils; but it has found no
remedy for the worst of them all —
the apathy of human beings.”
— Helen Keller

I read today of a woman who ate herself to death. Friends and family
when interviewed said, “She simply didn’t seem to care.” She had
stuffed her feelings for so long that she had forgotten what they were;
she had lost her spirituality. Apathy kills people.

So long as people do nothing, the disease of addiction gets worse and
more victims are claimed. Apathy feeds ignorance because it stops
activity; apathy stops life.

The antidote for apathy is spirituality. The spiritual person is alive with
positive attitudes and creative hope — he is infectious. People are
challenged to discover a meaning to life in their own lives. Hope
produces recovery; recovery produces a message that must be shared; in
the message is the miracle of life.

I pray that in the face of apathy I can discover hope.

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“He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be
greatly moved.”
Psalms 62:2

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”
2 Corinthians 5:7

When you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets.
Matthew 6:2


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Daily Inspiration

To run the life’s race successfully we must run toward life, not away from it. Lord, bless me with the courage to meet my challenges as they happen and never allow fear to set up roadblocks.

No one can live for himself alone for then he will have no purpose in life. To give of self is one of life’s greatest joys and blesses us with a full and rich life. Lord, help me to be selfless and loving to those around me.

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NA Just For Today

Higher Power

“Most of us have no trouble admitting that addiction had become a destructive force in our lives. Our best efforts resulted in ever greater destruction and despair. At some point, we realized that we needed the help of some Power greater than our addiction.”
Basic Text p. 24

Most of us know without a doubt that our lives have been filled with destruction. Learning that we have a disease called addiction helps us understand the source or cause of this destruction. We can recognize addiction as a power that has worked devastation in our lives. When we take the First Step, we admit that the destructive force of addiction is bigger than we are. We are powerless over it.

At this point, our only hope is to find some Power greater than the force of our addiction—a Power bent on preserving life, not ending it. We don’t have to understand it or even name it; we only have to believe that there could be such a Higher Power. The belief that a benevolent Power greater than our addiction just might exist gives us enough hope to stay clean, a day at a time.

Just for today: I believe in the possibility of some Power that’s bigger than my addiction.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I want, by understanding myself, to understand others. –Katherine Mansfield
Growing up to be the best people we can be is a lifelong process. As teenagers, we may have thought that twenty-one would be a magic year for us because then we would become adults. We’d be grown up and able to handle any problems that came along, if any did.
But the older we get, the more we realize that growing up is a process that never ends. We are always becoming the people we are capable of being. We’re always learning new things about ourselves, and in that process, we’re always coming to new understandings about other people and how we can get along with them.
How wonderful that life always offers us room to grow! It makes new discoveries possible all through our lives, and ensures us that we will always have something to offer.
What discovery have I made just today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
New life comes from shedding old skins and pressing through the darkness toward the light. Spring is the season of new beginnings and of growth. –Karen Kaiser Clark
All of us in this program have had great turning points in our lives. In these new beginnings we have pressed onward or groped through the darkness, hoping to find the light, much like a new sprout arising from the cold soil in spring. Our recovery has pointed us toward the light. As spiritually alive men, we also have smaller beginnings all the time. Spring exists for us on the inside regardless of the time of year.
On this particular day, we can think about the changes we see growing in our lives. It may be unclear to some of us just what is changing or how. We may not be able to name the change or describe it until it’s in the past. Springtime brings a feeling of liberation, and our growth in this program frees us from muddled thinking, denial, addictions, and codependency.
I am thankful for new beginnings in the world and the eternal spring within my being.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
There’s a period of life where we swallow a knowledge of ourselves and it becomes either good or sour inside. –Pearl Bailey
For too many of us, feelings of shame, even self-hatred, are paramount. No one of us has a fully untarnished past. Every man, every woman, even every child experiences regret over some action. We are not perfect. Perfection is not expected in the Divine plan. But we are expected to take our experiences and grow from them, to move beyond the shame of them, to celebrate what they have taught us.
Each day offers us a fresh start at assimilating all that we have been. What has gone before enriches who we are now, and through the many experiences we’ve survived, we have been prepared to help others, to smooth the way for another woman, perhaps, who is searching for a new direction.
We can let go of our shame and know instead that it sweetens the nuggets of the wisdom we can offer to others. We are alike. We are not without faults. Our trials help another to smoother sailing.
I will relish the joy at hand. I can share my wisdom. All painful pasts brighten someone’s future, when openly shared.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Releasing
Let fears slip away.
Release any negative, limiting, or self-defeating beliefs buried in your subconscious too. These beliefs may be about life, love, or yourself. Beliefs create reality.
Let go. From as deep within as your fears, resentments, and negative beliefs are stored, let them all go. Let the belief or feeling surface. Accept it; surrender to it. Feel the discomfort or unrest. Then let it go. Let new beliefs replace the old. Let peace and joy and love replace fear.
Give yourself and your body permission to let go of fears, resentments, and negative beliefs. Release that which is no longer useful. Trust that you are being healed and prepared for receiving what is good.
Today, God, help me become willing to let go of old beliefs and feelings that may be hurting me. Gently take them from me and replace them with new beliefs and feelings. I do deserve the best life and love has to offer. Help me believe that.

I am becoming more open to look within me today for my solutions. I trust that I will find the right answers if I go quietly within and follow my inner guide. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Learn to Heal Yourself

Sometimes we trick ourselves. If we feel unhappy, troubled, or scared, we race toward what we think will make us feel better. In desperation, in fear, we grasp for something, anything to stop our pain. Finding that job. Making more money. Getting married. Having a relationship. If I get that one thing I need, then I’ll be happy. Then my pain will stop.

Sometimes it’s true that finding the solution to a problem improves the quality of our lives. Having enough money enables us to fix the furnace when it breaks. Having people in our lives we love and who love us can be an important part of our happiness. Having work to do that we enjoy and that we feel is worthwhile helps us feel good about ourselves.

But when we’re in pain– no matter what’s causing it– the way to heal that pain doesn’t come from outside of ourselves. External circumstances don’t make internal emotions disappear. Even if we get what we think we want, the painful emotion we haven’t had the strength or courage to face will still be there.

The way to heal pain, the only way, is to feel and release it. Your pain is your pain. Your fear, desperation, and resentments are yours, too. All these emotions belong to you. Feel them, learn from them, and let them go.

Walk courageously each step of the path on the journey to the heart. Emjoy when the universe sends you its gifts– a lover, some money, a good job. But know the ultimate key to happiness lies not in external things, but within you. Feel all your feelings. Learn to heal yourself.

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More Language of Letting Go

Let go of what others think

We had gone for a walk in the snow down into the bowl of Bryce Canyon in Utah earlier that day. After a quick shower in the hotel room, we headed down to the restaurant for dinner. Our boots were soaked from the snow, so we wore our flip-flops to the restaurant.

The hostess was the first to notice. “Hey, you’ve got the wrong shoes on!” she admonished. “There’s snow outside!”

“Yeah, I know. We’re from California,” Chip replied.

“Humph,” the hostess sniffed, as she showed us our table.

When our server approached our table, the hostess was right there again, quick to point out our inappropriate footwear to him. We tried to explain that we had been hiking and our boots were wet, but it only set her off more.

“I certainly hope you didn’t wear those,” she said. “There’s snow on the trails.” Then she trotted back to her station.

Our server didn’t care. He listened to the story about our hike, told us one of his own, and kept our glasses full.

Later during the meal, the hostess guided another couple past our table and pointed at our feet. “Look at these people,” she said. “They’re from California and they’re wearing the wrong shoes!”

We giggled all through dinner that night, all because our hiking boots got soaked.

Sometimes what’s appropriate for a situation just doesn’t work for you and you’re forced to improvise. Wear the wrong shoes if you must, but don’t miss the party because of what someone else might think.

God, help me remember that the important thing is how I live, not how I look.

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A Separate Reality
Disconnecting from the Source

by Madisyn Taylor

We can all experience times when we feel disconnected from the universe, but you have never been abandoned.

We all experience periods where we feel separated from the loving ebb and flow of the universe. These times of feeling disconnected from the source may occur for many reasons, but self-sabotage is the most common cause for us choosing to cut ourselves off from the flow of the universe. We purposefully, though often unconsciously, cut ourselves off from this flow and from the embrace of humanity so we can avoid dealing with painful issues, shun the necessary steps for growth, or prevent the success that we are afraid of achieving from ever happening. When you choose to disconnect from the source, you block the flow of the universe’s energy from passing through you. You become like a sleepwalker who is not fully awake to life, and your hopes, plans, and dreams begin to appear as distant blurs on a faraway horizon. Universal support has never left you, but if you can remember that you became disconnected from source by choice, you can choose to reconnect.

Reconnecting with the universe grounds you and is as easy as you making a concerted effort to become interested in the activities you love or responding to what nurtures or stimulates you. You may also want to make a list of the activities and kinds of experiences that touch your soul. Try to pinpoint the times when you have felt fully engaged and aware and ask yourself what you were doing. But one of the easiest ways to reconnect is simply by stating the intention of doing so.

When you disconnect from the universe, your sense of purpose, creativity, and ability to be innovative are not as easy to access. You may also experience a deep and empty sense of longing or feel devoid of ideas or unworthy of love. It’s important, however, to recognize that being disconnected from the universe is never a permanent state, and it can be reversed any time you decide that you are ready to reconnect. When you are connected to the universe, all aspects of your being will feel alive as the flow of the universe pours through your being and into your life. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

The longer I’m in The Program, the more important becomes the slogan “First Things First” I used to believe that my family came first, that my home life came first, that my job came first. But I know today, in the depths of my heart, that If I can’t stay sober I’ll have nothing. “First Things First.” to me, means that everything in my life depends on my sobriety. Am I grateful fo be sober today?

Today I Pray

May my first priority, the topmost item on my list of concerns, be my sobriety — maintaining it, learning to live comfortably with it, sharing the tools by which I maintain it. When other things crowd into my life and I am caught up in the busyness of living, may I still preserve that first -of-all goal — remaining free of chemicals.

Today I Will Remember

First Things First.

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One More Day

Understanding human needs is half the job of meeting them.
– Adiai Stevenson

We may have needed constant reminding to do our chores when we were children. We expected to be told what to do. Today we are adults and are chronically ill, and we find ourselves giving reminders to the people around us. Now, however, the suggestions have to be extremely delicate and carefully given.

We can gently guide the behavior of spouse, friends, parents, and children regarding our medical problems. Our comments can be honest and direct: “It would help me if your would let me try to do things for myself before offering me your help.” Or “Please sweep the floor.” Or “Would you put the towels into the dryer?” Those around us are not able to read our minds. We can lear to say “I need” or “I want.” Our needs will be met if we ask directly.

Learn to ask for help is hard, but I can learn.

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Food For Thought

Peeling Off Layers

As we work our program, we peel off layers of old, worn out thoughts and habits. OA gives us a place to share old hurts and fears so that we are able to get rid of them. Our OA friends accept us and give us the benefit of their experience. With their help, we are able to leave the old layers behind and move ahead.

We never stop learning and growing. When we are ready to accept it, our Higher Power reveals just as much truth to us as we can assimilate. He directs our progress through the Steps of this program as we are prepared to take them.

If we are sincere in our efforts, the right help will come when we need it. It may come through another member, a piece of literature, a new insight, or even a difficult experience. Peeling off and discarding worn out layers of ourselves is hard work and is often painful. But when we look back and see how we have grown, the satisfaction more than outweighs the pain.

Guide me as I peel away and leave behind the useless thoughts and habits I have accumulated.

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One Day At A Time

Maintenance

“Another flaw in the human character is
that everybody wants to build and nobody
wants to do maintenance.”
Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

With the help of our Higher Power, sponsors, and fellow Program members we have completed the 12 Steps, studied the Big Book, hit regular meetings, worked the loops, given service, etc …. and finally were able to achieve abstinence and reach our recovery goals! Reaching our goals is one thing, but now we must maintain what we’ve struggled so hard to achieve. As COE’s, we never truly lose our addiction for food. Relape is only a heartbeat away. Therefore, we must diligently strive to continue working the Program tools to guard this precious gift that we have earned.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will diligently maintain the recovery goals I have worked so long and hard to achieve.
Rob R.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We must be entirely honest with somebody if we expect to live long or happily in this world. – Pg. 73 – 74 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

It seems insane that we have to be brought to our knees before we seek help, but for most of us that’s the way it is. Whatever crisis got us here, we will eventually see as a blessing in disguise.

Thank You Higher Power, of my understanding, for the crisis–the one that brought me to my knees, because it also bought me this hour of clean and sober time.

Seeing Clearly

Today I will use my mind to actually visualize what I want my life to look like. I will give myself the gift of seeing my life through this beautiful lens. My thoughts have a creative power, they reach out, shape and template my experience. What I see as true for me, can be true for me, if I am willing sustain my vision and do the work I need to do to get there. Today I will picture doors opening for me where there were none before. I will take my thoughts seriously. I’ll decide on what I’d like to see manifest in my life and I will carry it in my mind’s eye and take daily steps toward actualizing it. I will see it as if it is already a reality. Then I’ll let it go again and again and again and allow the wisdom of the universe to bring those experiences and opportunities toward me that allow me to take the next right action.

I have faith in my own vision

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘To doubt everything or to believe everything are two equally convenient solutions; both dispense with the necessity of reflection.’ -Jules Henri Poincsre

I question myself, ‘Am I a nay sayer to all suggestions?’ or equally destructive ‘Am I a disciple of a God Squad, blindly following a hard and inflexible line of thought?’

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

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

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am becoming more open to look within me today for my solutions. I trust that I will find the right answers if I go quietly within and follow my inner guide.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It’s ironic; when I looked like an alcoholic I wasn’t one. Now I am an alcoholic I don’t look like one. – Anon.

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AA Thought For the Day

March 20

Understanding
Gradually, God began to clear my channels so that real understanding began to come.
Then was the time when full realization and acknowledgement came to me.
It was realization and acknowledgement of the fact that I had not fully given my problems to God.
I was still trying to do my own fixing.
– Experience, Strength and Hope, p. 22

Thought to Ponder . . .
God seldom becomes a reality until God becomes a necessity.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
G O D = Good Orderly Direction.

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

Illusion
“Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 30

Thought to Consider . . .
“Many alcoholics are enthusiasts. They run to extremes.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
DENIAL
Don’t Even Notice I Am Lying

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

Cooperation
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“In 1949 the American Psychiatric Association did exactly the same thing [recognizing A.A. as a valid aid for alcoholics]. I [Bill W.] read a paper at its annual meeting in Montreal. I wound up by describing the spiritual experience as we understand it in A.A. As I read, I doubted if even a handful of the audience could possibly agree with the views expressed in my paper. To my astonishment there was a sustained round of applause. But this was not at all a tribute to me or to the contents of my paper; it was instead a tribute to Alcoholics Anonymous, a tribute to a way of life which had worked for alcoholics when other approaches had failed. This generous response was evidence that our friends the psychiatrists were being much more tolerant of us than we had been of them. If we ourselves became more open-minded, then far greater co-operation with this profession would be assured.
“The Association promptly confirmed the view of its members in Montreal. My paper was carried in the American Journal of Psychiatry and we were permitted to reprint it in a pamphlet, now entitled Alcoholism the Illness.* Our standing with the psychiatric profession has increased greatly since that time.
“*Later retitled Three Talks to Medical Societies by Bill W., this pamphlet also includes Bill’s paper before the Medical Society of the State of New York”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 205

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

“If you haven’t been to a meeting for a while, come, and add to the mix … we need you. Come for yourself, come for the Fellowship, come to celebrate sobriety, and come for the alcoholic who still suffers.”
San Francisco, Calif., February 1993
“Torn Asunder”
AA Grapevine

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

“Reminding ourselves that we have decided to go to any lengths to
find a spiritual experience, we ask that we be given strength and
direction to do the right thing, no matter what the personal
consequences may be.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 79~

“To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered is the main
purpose of this book.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Foreword To First Edition, pg. xiii~

But its object is always the same: to improve our conscious contact with God, with His grace, wisdom, and love.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 101

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Whose Responsibility?
‘An A.A. group, as such, cannot take on all the personal problems of its members, let alone those of nonalcoholics in the world around us. The A.A. group is not, for example, a mediator of domestic problems, nor does it furnish personal financial aid to anyone.
‘Though a member may sometimes be helped in such matters by his friends in A.A., the primary responsibility for the solutions of all his problems of living and growing rests squarely upon the individual himself. Should an A.A. group attempt this sort of help, its effectiveness and energies would be hopelessly dissapated.
‘This is why sobriety — freedom from alcohol — through the teaching and practice of A.A.’s Twelve Steps, is the sole purpose of the group. If we don’t stick to this cardinal principle, we shall almost certainly collapse. And if we collapse we cannot help anyone.’ Letter, 1966

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, thank you for this day. Please give me the wisdom to understand that the only way to have a friend is by being a friend.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 19th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 19th

Daily Reflections

PRAYER: IT WORKS

It has been well said that “almost the only scoffers at prayer are those
who never tried it enough.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 97

Having grown up in an agnostic household, I felt somewhat foolish
when I first tried praying. I knew there was a Higher Power working
in my life — how else was I staying sober? — but I certainly wasn’t
convinced he/she/it wanted to hear my prayers. People who had what
I wanted said prayer was an important part of practicing the program,
so I persevered. With a commitment to daily prayer, I was amazed
to find myself becoming more serene and comfortable with my place in the
world. In other words, life became easier and less of a struggle. I’m still
not sure who, or what, listens to my prayers, but I’d never stop saying them
for the simple reason that they work.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When we were drinking, we used to be ashamed of the past. Remorse
is terrible mental punishment: ashamed of ourselves for the things
we’ve said and done, afraid to face people because of what they might
think of us, afraid of the consequences of what we did when we were
drunk. In A.A. we forget about the past. Do I believe that God has
forgiven me for everything I’ve done in the past, no matter how black
it was, provided I’m honestly trying to do the right thing today?

Meditation For The Day

God’s spirit is all about you all day long. You have no thoughts, no
plans, no impulses, no emotions, that He does not know about. You can
hide nothing from Him. Do not make your conduct conform only to
that of the world and do not depend on the approval or disapproval of
others. God sees in secret, but He rewards openly. If you are in
harmony with the Divine Spirit, doing your best to live the way you
believe God wants you to live, you will be at peace.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may always feel God’s presence. I pray that I may realize
this Presence constantly all through the day.


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As Bill Sees It

Clearing A Channel, p. 78

During the day, we can pause where situations must be met and
decisions made, and renew the simple request “Thy will, not mine, be
done.”

If at these points our emotional disturbances happens to be great, we
will more surely keep our balance provided we remember, and repeat
to ourselves, a particular prayer or phrase that has appealed to us in
our reading or meditation. Just saying it over and over will often
enable us to clear a channel choked up with anger, fear, frustration,
or misunderstanding, and permit us to return to the surest help of
all–our search for God’s will, not our own, in the moment of stress.

12 & 12, pp. 102-103

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Walk in Dry Places

Where is God?
Guidance.
AA members have always had a difficult time explaining the “God business”.  We didn’t want to be considered religious, but at the same time we’ve always believed some contact with a Higher Power is necessary for real personal growth.
There’s nothing wrong… for our purposes… in simply visualizing God as a  Higher Power that has always been within us and around us.  “Before they call, I will answer,” goes an old saying, and that was true even in our darkest days.  Many of us also believe that a higher power helped bring AA into being and move it along to become a worldwide force for good.
But God works in ways that can seem to come from change or coincidence. Quite often, we’ll find that little events had far-reaching results in our lives. When we review how such things happened, we should not conclude that this happens only to certain  “special” people. All human beings are part of God’s creation and can avail themselves of guidance and direction.  The more serious problem is that guidance and direction are sometimes ignored or rejected.
I’ll go about my affairs today with the knowledge that my Higher Power is making the important decisions in my life.  I’ll come out about where God wants me to be.

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Keep It Simple

Speak when you’re angry and you’ll make the best speech you’ll ever regret. Lawrence J. Peter
When we used alcohol or other drugs, most of us were hotheads. We thought we were right. If we were proven wrong, we may have made life hell for everyone. People knew enough to stay away from us. In recovery, things will still go badly at times. We’ll get hurt. And we’ll get angry. But now, we turn our anger to our Higher Power. In our groups, we talk about what makes us angry. Then we leave the anger behind when the meeting is over. We find that being at peace is now more important than getting even.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, when I’m angry, help me slow down, Help me remember it’s okay to be angry, but its not okay to abuse people.
Action for the Day:  I will remember a time when I turned anger, into rage and hurt someone. I will also remember a time I was angry in a respectful way.

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Each Day a New Beginning

I realized a long time ago that a belief which does not spring from a conviction in the emotions is no belief at all.  –Evelyn Scott
>From pillar to post we bounced, most of us not knowing what we actually believed about nearly any situation before getting to this program. Perhaps we believed what was most convenient at the time because of the people we were with. And maybe we jumped the fence quickly when in a new setting. Values were sometimes talked about but not defined, and certainly not adhered to.
It’s difficult to develop a strong sense of self, to have a very secure self-image when the parameters offered by a value system are lacking. Our values define who we are. They offer us direction when making choices. They quietly demand that we behave responsibly. Living in concert with our values brings peace to our souls.
Gone are the days when we rode first one fence and then another, never knowing what side of any issue we honestly believed in. The program has offered us a plan for living, a plan that erases the many uncertainties, the inner turmoil of past years.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

No words can tell of the loneliness and despair I found in that bitter morass of self-pity. Quicksand stretched around me in all directions. I had met my match. I had been overwhelmed. Alcohol was my master.

p. 8

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
Then one night at an A.A. meeting a friend said that even though he had been in jail and done lots and lots of stuff, he was no different from me.  He felt the same things I felt.  It was then that I knew I was not unique, that the people did understand the pain inside me.

p. 378

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

How could we then guess that all those fears were to prove groundless? How could we know that thousands of these sometimes frightening people were to make astonishing recoveries and become our greatest workers and intimate friends? Was it credible that A.A. was to have a divorce rate far lower than average? Could we then foresee that troublesome people were to become our principle teachers of patience and tolerance? Could any then imagine a society which would include every conceivable kind of character, and cut across every barrier of race, creed, politics, and language with ease?

pp. 140-141

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“All of us, at certain moments of our lives, need to take advice and to
receive help from other people.”
-Alexis Carrel, Reflections on Life

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

“If you want to be respected by others, the great thing is to respect
yourself.”
–Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“A closed mouth gathers no feet.”
–Anon.

We cannot think our way into sober living. We live our way into sober thinking.

We in AA don’t carry the alcoholic; we carry the message.

Listening feeds the spirit.

When I am too busy to pray – I am just too busy.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

MADNESS

“Sanity is madness put to good use.”
— George Santayana

I heard the phrase “make the disease work for you”. It made a great
deal of sense to me and still does. I am a recovering alcoholic. My
alcoholism is still within me and every day I take the necessary steps
to stay sober. My disease is that “mad” part of me that wants to
destroy my life, relationships and understanding of God. What I need
to do is accept my “madness” and turn it around so that it works for me.
My suffering is the key to my spiritual growth. My anger and manipulation
helps me to understand the imperfections of others. My powerlessness over
alcohol give me an understanding of humility that is based on reality.
The acceptance of my “madness” keeps me sane!

O God, give me the sanity to accept my imperfections so that I can
grow into the “best” that I can be.

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

“From the end of the earth I will cry to You, when my heart is
overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
Psalms 61:2

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

Jesus said, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me.
John 14:1


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Daily Inspiration

When you meet God in prayer, everything becomes new. Lord, may I be humbly joyful in my faith.

Take less for granted and you will become very busy enjoying all that you have. Lord, thank you for my blessings and for all those that I am able to share them with.

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

NA Just For Today

Something Valuable To Share

“A simple, honest message of recovery from addiction rings true.”
Basic Text p. 50

You’re in a meeting. The sharing has been going on for some time. One or two members have described their spiritual experiences in an especially meaningful way. Another has had us all rolling in the aisles with entertaining stories. And then the leader calls on you.., gulp. You shyly introduce yourself, apologetically stammer out a few lines, thank everyone for listening, and sit out the rest of the meeting in embarrassed silence. Sound familiar? Well, you’re not alone.

We’ve all had times when we’ve felt that what we had to share wasn’t spiritual enough, wasn’t entertaining enough, wasn’t something enough. But sharing is not a competitive sport. The meat of our meetings is identification and experience, something all of us have in abundance. When we share from our hearts the truth of our experience, other addicts feel they can trust us because they know we’re just like them. When we simply share what’s been effective in our lives, we can be sure that our message will be helpful to others.

Our sharing doesn’t have to be either fancy or funny to ring true. Every addict working an honest program that brings meaningful recovery has something of immense value to share, something no one else can give: his or her own experience.

Just for today: I have something valuable to share. I will attend a meeting today and share my experience in recovery from addiction.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Where is the yesterday that worried us so? –Joan Walsh Anglund
In the fairy tale The Last Dream of the Old Oak Tree, the oak tree felt sorry for the day-fly. The day-fly only lives for one day, and the tree was already 365 years old. But the day-fly was so enjoying his one day that the tree’s sympathy puzzled him. The day-fly said to the tree, “You may have thousands of my days, but I have thousands of moments to be pleased and happy in.”
And so the day-fly continued to dance in the sun and smell the clover and honeysuckle. His day ended as happily as he spent it, and he settled down on a blade of grass.
If all of us could approach our day the way the day-fly does, as though this were our only day, we would spend less time worrying about yesterday and tomorrow.
How can I show my gratitude for the gift of this day?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
There seemed not to be another living thing in all the world. There was something of bliss in this stillness, and something ominous too. It was the kind of stillness that beckons us to turn inward, toward the beginnings of our existence. –Paul Gruchow
We cannot create profound stillness. We can allow it. We can move into it. We can receive it. Many of us have been frightened by such a stillness because we are not familiar with the spiritual moment. We felt moved, awestruck, and we may have run to escape that inward moment. Some men are endlessly busy just keeping the stillness at a comfortable distance. Many recovering men have unwittingly thrown themselves into a workaholic life because they were frightened by their emerging spirits.
We can change this pattern by allowing ourselves a little quiet at a time. At first, it may be just a few minutes alone. We may be more able to meet the stillness outdoors, or we can learn to be still in the presence of someone else. The stillness is a moment of meditation. It is contact with God.
God, give me the courage to allow spiritual experiences to be part of my life.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
I realized a long time ago that a belief which does not spring from a conviction in the emotions is no belief at all. –Evelyn Scott
>From pillar to post we bounced, most of us not knowing what we actually believed about nearly any situation before getting to this program. Perhaps we believed what was most convenient at the time because of the people we were with. And maybe we jumped the fence quickly when in a new setting. Values were sometimes talked about but not defined, and certainly not adhered to.
It’s difficult to develop a strong sense of self, to have a very secure self-image when the parameters offered by a value system are lacking. Our values define who we are. They offer us direction when making choices. They quietly demand that we behave responsibly. Living in concert with our values brings peace to our souls.
Gone are the days when we rode first one fence and then another, never knowing what side of any issue we honestly believed in. The program has offered us a plan for living, a plan that erases the many uncertainties, the inner turmoil of past years.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Staying Out of the Middle
I don’t want to get in the middle, but . . . is a sign that we may have just stepped into the middle.
We do not have to get caught in the middle of other peoples issues, problems, or communication. We can let others take responsibility for themselves in their relationships. We can let them work out their issues with each other.
Being a peacemaker does not mean we get in the middle. We are bearers of peace by staying peaceful ourselves and not harboring turmoil. We are peacemakers by not causing the extra chaos created when we get in the middle of other peoples affairs and relationships.
Don’t get in the middle unless you want to be there.
Today, I will refuse to accept any invitations to jump in the middle of others affairs, issues, and relationships. I will trust others to work out their own affairs, including the ideas and feelings they want to communicate to each other.
Today will have a clarity about it that I can appreciate. I know who I am. I know what I believe. All I need do is act accordingly.

Today I dare to openly express my needs and find healthy ways to get them met. I like feeling good today. I like myself today.
–Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Learn to Heal Yourself

Sometimes we trick ourselves. If we feel unhappy, troubled, or scared, we race toward what we think will make us feel better. In desperation, in fear, we grasp for something, anything to stop our pain. Finding that job. Making more money. Getting married. Having a relationship. If I get that one thing I need, then I’ll be happy. Then my pain will stop.

Sometimes it’s true that finding the solution to a problem improves the quality of our lives. Having enough money enables us to fix the furnace when it breaks. Having people in our lives we love and who love us can be an important part of our happiness. Having work to do that we enjoy and that we feel is worthwhile helps us feel good about ourselves.

But when we’re in pain– no matter what’s causing it– the way to heal that pain doesn’t come from outside of ourselves. External circumstances don’t make internal emotions disappear. Even if we get what we think we want, the painful emotion we haven’t had the strength or courage to face will still be there.

The way to heal pain, the only way, is to feel and release it. Your pain is your pain. Your fear, desperation, and resentments are yours, too. All these emotions belong to you. Feel them, learn from them, and let them go.

Walk courageously each step of the path on the journey to the heart. Emjoy when the universe sends you its gifts– a lover, some money, a good job. But know the ultimate key to happiness lies not in external things, but within you. Feel all your feelings. Learn to heal yourself.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Lighten up

The matter at hand is serious. It’s grave. We need to get serious about the relationship. We need to get serious about the task.

Maybe what we really need to do is learn to lighten up.

Nations rise and fall, heroes are born and die, the sun rises and sets, and you want me to take seriously the notion that arriving to church wearing the right clothes is going to make any difference at all.

What matters is what’s in our hearts.

“The reason angels can fly is that they take themselves so lightly,” G.K. Chesterton once wrote. Once you stop taking yourself so seriously and let go of the gravity of all that you do, you can learn to fly,too.

God, help me lighten up.

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Working with Space
Intuit Your Home’s Decor

by Madisyn Taylor

When decorating spaces in your home, allow the space to speak to you by being still and observing each room.

When we decide the time has come to change the look or feel of our personal spaces, it is the spaces themselves that can provide us with the most useful guidance. Working with a single room, an apartment, or an entire house allows us to unearth the innate potential of these spaces and also better understand how we want to relate to them. To be conscious of the possibilities of a space, we need to listen to, look at, and bond with that space in a deep and personal way. Just as no two people are alike, no two rooms, however similar, are identical. The more we know about the spaces we wish to change, the better equipped we are to make them both beautiful and functional.

Before you contemplate colors and layouts, spend some time in the rooms you plan to modify. Observe the way light moves through each space at different times of day. In the course of a week or so, note those times when you feel drawn to a particular space. You may naturally gravitate toward one room when you want to relax and toward another when you want to socialize. Also, remember that not all rooms have to be used as originally planed, for example a dining room may make a wonderful sitting area. As you make these observations, think about whether the spaces under consideration remind you of anything or bring certain thoughts to mind. Writing your thoughts down can make the process of examination simpler. The discoveries you make regarding the rooms in your home can help guide you as you choose color schemes, furniture layouts, and decorative styles, so that you bring out the natural qualities of each using your creativity and eye for detail. Using the cues you pick up, yo! u can design a beautiful room that is bright and exciting, or one that calms the soul and invites meditation.

By treating the layout and décor of your personal spaces in this mindful way, you can honor their natural rhythms while creating a cohesive and comfortable home through which energy can flow unencumbered. The design elements you subsequently choose will work together like the diverse instruments that come together to form a symphony orchestra. Each will resonate harmoniously with the next, ensuring that your home resounds with a lasting message of beauty, serenity, reassurance, and comfort. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I know today that “stopping in fo9r a drink” will never again be — for me — simply killing a few minutes and leaving a luck on the air. In exchange for the first drink, what I’d plunk down now would be my bank account, my family, our home, or car, my job, my sanity, and probably my life. It’s too big a price, and too great a risk. Do you remember your last drunk?

Today I Pray

May I be strong in the knowledge that God’s spirit is with me at all times. May I learn to feel His presence. May I know that nothing is hidden from Him. Unlike the world which approves or disapproves of my outward behavior, God sees all that I do, think or feel. If I seek to do His will, I can always count on His reward for me — peace of mind.

Today I Will Remember

God Knows all.

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One More Day

Faith is a holy cause is to a considerable extent a substitute for the lost faith in ourselves.
– Eric Hoffer

Busy! Busy! Busy! We might feel as though we’re living our lives on a treadmill — always on the go, helping, and giving our time to people and causes.

Service and volunteerism can be wonderful ways to help, but only if they augment an already full life. We truly are living on a treadmill if our involvement is an escape from facing our inner-most thought and fears. We are getting nowhere if our outside activities are all we have to wake up for each morning.

We begin to change when we honestly face our greatest fears. We can search our personalities to find our vulnerable points and then strive to correct what defects we can. It is then that we regain faith in ourselves and in our abilities.

Once I regain faith in myself I can open my heart to help others.

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Food For Thought

Strength

In the past, we relied on our own strength to get us where we thought we wanted to go. We were afraid, since deep down we knew how weak and undependable our own strength really was.

When we turn our lives over, we no longer have to go it alone. We have tapped the limitless reservoir of strength provided by our Higher Power, and when we are operating under His guidance we feel confident. What we could not do ourselves can be done when we admit our weakness and ask for help.

Through working the OA program and through closer contact with our Higher Power, we may find that we are going in a new direction. The things we thought we wanted may turn out to be unnecessary, and we may have new goals. Wherever our journey leads, we will have the strength we need, since it does not come from ourselves but from a Power greater than ourselves.

I need Your strength, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

Commitment

Shallow men believe in luck ~
Strong men believe in cause and effect.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Abstinence did not happen for me until I made a commitment to it. I realized that I would have abstinence until something was a bit too uncomfortable for me to face or feel. Then I would have a slip. So it became a game for me. Was this event or circumstance enough to justify another slip? Sure, why not? That’s the nature of the disease. Everything and anything was an excuse to eat.
It wasn’t until I made a commitment to abstinence that I was forced to find my solutions in the Twelve Steps and really let go of my addiction. I’m grateful to my Higher Power that I hit the bottom I did. By accepting the truth about myself and my food addiction, I am now free to live in the solution.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will renew my commitment by receiving the gift of abstinence and practicing my program to the best of my ability.
Christine S.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Physicians who are familiar with alcoholism agree there is no such thing as making a normal drinker out of an alcoholic. Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn’t done so yet. – Pg. 31 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Nothing comes easy for us right now. A lot of energy goes into just staying put and accepting this new way of life. We say that when the going gets tough, we hang tough! We know that it will pass, we make that promise to you. But it will be in God’s time, not yours.

Let me believe in myself, in this program, and in You, my Spiritual Source.

Looking Toward What is Good

I am a creative being. I have the power of reason, the ability to think, hope and dream. I can envision my life not only as it is, but as I might wish it to be. I can then think through the steps I might need to become more of who I am. I have the power to think my way into a happy point of view, to see the glass as half full rather than half empty. My mind can be my greatest enemy or my greatest ally. It depends on how I choose to use it.

I hold a beautiful vision of life.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Grateful addicts don’t drink and drug and drinking and drugging addicts aren’t grateful.

My gratitude is not the word but my desire to say the word. My desire to say the word is a corner stone of my recovery.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Is it odd or is it God?

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I dare to openly express my needs and find healthy ways to get them met. I like feeling good today. I like myself today.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

My sponsor says ‘Mark the places where you find God and go there often.’ AA meetings are a place where I find God – I think that the power of God is in the group. – Chris C.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 19

Why AA?
Wouldn’t you rather recognize you have a health condition which can be successfully treated,
than spend a lot of time miserably wondering about what’s wrong with you?
We have found this is a better-looking, and better-feeling picture of ourselves
than the old gloomy selves we used to see. It is truer, too. We know.
The proof of it is in the way we feel, act, and think — now.
– Living Sober, p. 10

Thought to Ponder . . .
Within our wonderful new world, we have found freedom from our fatal malady.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A = Always Alive.

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

Release
“Who can render an account of all the miseries that have once been ours, and who can estimate the release and joy
that the later years have brought to us? Who could possibly tell the vast consequences of what God’s work through AA
had already set in motion?
“Bill W., Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pp. 44-5
As Bill Sees It, p. 163

Thought to Consider . . .
“I have been given a quiet place in bright sunshine.
“Bill W., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, Jan. 1958.
The Language of the Heart, p. 238

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
PUSH
Pray Until Something Happens

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

Power
>From “Listening to the Wind”:
“Alcohol was only a symptom of much deeper problems of dishonesty and denial. Now it was a matter of coming to
grips with a Power greater than myself. That was very hard for me. How could all these white people even begin to think
they could understand me? So they brought a sober Indian woman up to work with me for a day. That was a very
powerful day. That Indian woman cut me no slack at all. I will never forget her. She convinced me I was not unique. She
said these white folks were the best thing that ever happened to me.
“Where would you be without them?” she asked. “What are the alternatives? You got any better ideas for yourself? How
many Indians do you know who are going to help you sober up?” At the time, I couldn’t think of any. I surrendered behind
the tears of no answers and decided to do it their way. I found the Power greater than myself to be the magic above the
heads of the people in the meetings. I chose to call that magic Great Spirit.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 467

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

“New people are the lifeblood of AA. I am eternally grateful to them. By extension I am, therefore, grateful to Tradition
Three for making it possible for all who want what we have to come to AA.”
Los Gatos, Calif., February 1993
“A Part of the Whole”
AA Grapevine

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

Remember that we deal with alcohol, cunning, baffling, powerful!
Without help it is too much for us. But there is One who has all
power that One is God. May you find Him now!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, Page 58~

“Though we work out our solution on the spiritual as well as an
altruistic plane, we favor hospitalization for the alcoholic who is
very jittery or befogged. More often than not, it is imperative that
a man’s brain be cleared before he is approached, as he has then
a better chance of understanding and accepting what we have to offer.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctor’s Opinion, pg. xxvi~

Then it is explained that the other Steps of the A.A. program can be practiced with Success only when Step Three is
given a determined and persistent trial.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 40

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Clearing a Channel
During the day, we can pause where situations must be met and decisions made, and renew the simple request ‘Thy will, not mine, be done.’
If at these points our emotional disturbances happens to be great, we will more surely keep our balance provided we remember, and repeat to ourselves, a particular prayer or phrase that has appealed to us in our reading or meditations. Just saying it over and over will often enable us to clear a channel choked up with anger, fear, frustration, or misunderstanding, and permit us to return to the surest help of all — our search for God’s will, not our own, in the moment of stress. TWELVE AND TWELVE, PP. 102-103

Prayer For The Day: Father, help us to see and love in others what you see and love in them. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 18th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 18th

Daily Reflections

REAL INDEPENDENCE

The more we become willing to depend upon a Higher Power,
the more independent we actually are.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 36

I start with a little willingness to trust God and He
causes that willingness to grow. The more willingness I
have, the more trust I gain, and the more trust I gain,
the more willingness I have. My dependence on God grows
as my trust in Him grows. Before I became willing, I
depended on myself for all my needs and I was restricted
by my incompleteness. Through my willingness to depend
upon my Higher Power, whom I choose to call God, all
my needs are provided for by Someone Who knows me
better than I know myself – even the needs I may not
realize, as well as the ones yet to come, bring me to be
myself and to help me fill the need in someone else that
only I am meant to fill. There never will be another
exactly like me. And that is real independence.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When alcoholics first come into A.A. and we face the fact
that we must spend the rest of our life without liquor, it
often seems like an impossibility for us. So A.A. tells us to
forget about the future and take it one day at a time.
All we really have is now. We have no past time and no
future time. As the saying goes: “Yesterday is gone,
forget it; tomorrow never comes, don’t worry; today is
here, get busy.” All we have is the present. The past is
gone forever and the future never comes. When
tomorrow gets here, it will be today. Am I living one day
at a time?

Meditation For The Day

Persistence is necessary if you are to advance in
spiritual things. By persistent prayer, persistent firm
and simple trust, you achieve the treasures of the spirit.
By persistent practice, you can eventually obtain joy,
peace, assurance, security, health, happiness and serenity.
Nothing is too great, in the spiritual realm, for you to
obtain, if you persistently prepare yourself for it.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may persistently carry out my spiritual
exercises every day. I pray that I may strive for peace
and serenity.


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As Bill Sees It

R.S.V.P.–Yes or No?, p. 77

Usually, we do not avoid a place where there is drinking–if we have a
legitimate reason for being there. That includes bars, night clubs,
dances, receptions, weddings, even plain ordinary parties.

You will note that we made an important qualification. Therefore,
ask yourself, “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?” Then go or stay away, whichever
seems better. 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.

If you are shaky, you had better work with another alcoholic instead!

Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 101-102

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Walk in Dry Places

Should everybody like me?
Personal Relations.
In AA discussions, the term “people pleasers” doesn’t fare very well.  When people say they are people-pleasers, they’re acknowledging that it’s also a problem
It’s a problem because it reflects a desire to have everybody’s acceptance and approval……  to be universally liked.  But from what we know about human relationships, this is not possible.  No matter how hard we work to be pleasant and likable, some people may still detest us for reasons we cannot understand. When that happens, we should not blame ourselves or step up our efforts to them and to avoid giving offense in any way, while accepting the fact that they do not like us.
If our own behavior is mature and reasonable, even the people who don’t like us will at least respect us.  That may be the best we can hope for , and it is certainly far better than shameless people pleasing.  In the end, people-pleasers don’t please anybody and, as a famous comedian notes about himself, they “get no respect.”
I’ll try hard to be pleasant and cordial to everyone I meet today.  If some people do not respond in the same way.  I’ll accept this without feeling hurt or betrayed.

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Keep It Simple

Money cost to much.—Ross MacDonald
Many people are poor and really need money to live better. But we’re in trouble if we think money will solve all our problems. If money solved all problems, all rich people would be happy.
Consider this: A man talks about his shortcomings in a Twelve Step meeting. He says his main shortcoming is to think being happy means having enough money. But then he says that he has over a million dollars! This man is lucky—not because he has money, but because he knows greed is a shortcoming. He knows he has a spiritual problem. He doesn’t need money; he needs faith in a Higher Power.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me to really believe I’ll be given what I need. This will free me to get on with life.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll read over the promises of the program. They are found at the bottom of page 83 at the top of the page of page 84 in the Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous, Third Edition.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Noble deeds and hot baths are the best cures for depression.  –Dodie Smith
Depression feeds on itself. With attention it worsens, but there are places for our attention. We can move our focus to a woman who is close by, a woman who is struggling to determine her direction in life. We can offer our ears. Or we can observe attentively, today, all the women, children, and men we see on the streets. When we notice their expressions, we realize they, too, may be suffering.
Doing something for someone else will lessen our own problems, no matter what the cause. In fact, just doing something will lift our spirits. Depression becomes habitual, and habits, even those that are detrimental, are easy to hang onto. When we take an action, even a small one, we can note the change: Action that benefits another is guaranteed to benefit us as well.
Depression does get worse with self-pitying attention; however, attention to ourselves that is nurturing has its place. We can pamper ourselves, but not pity ourselves. Pampering reflects approval, caring, self-respect; three attitudes inconsistent with depression. Even more than inconsistent, pampering and depression are incongruent.
Depression must be coddled to maintain it. It’s my choice to move beyond it at any moment. I can put something besides my problem at my center today and enjoy the results.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

They did not need to tell me. I knew, and almost welcomed the idea. It was a devastating blow to my pride. I, who had thought so well of myself and my abilities, of my capacity to surmount obstacles, was cornered at last. Now I was to plunge into the dark, joining that endless procession of sots who had gone on before. I thought of my poor wife. There had been much happiness after all. What would I not give to make amends. But that was over now.

pp. 7-8

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
The truth is, most of my drinking was done at home alone.  I would call people and talk, and the following mornings were awful, trying to piece together what I had said.  I would say things to my husband like, “Wasn’t that an interesting call last night, ” hoping he would volunteer information.  My hands were beginning to shake without the alcohol, yet when I got to A.A., I wasn’t sure I belonged because my drinkalog was not exciting.

p. 378

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

“We were resolved to admit nobody to A.A. but that hypothetical class of people we termed `pure alcoholics.’ Except for their guzzling, and the unfortunate results thereof, they could have no other complications. So beggars, tramps, asylum inmates, prisoners, queers, plain crackpots, and fallen women were definitely out. Yes sir, we’d cater only to pure and respectable alcoholics! Any others would surely destroy us. Besides, if we took in those odd ones, what would decent people say about us? We built a fine-mesh fence right around A.A.
“Maybe this sounds comical now. Maybe you think we oldtimers were pretty intolerant. But I can tell you there was nothing funny about the situation then. We were grim because we felt our lives and homes were threatened, and that was no laughing matter. Intolerant, you say? Well, we were frightened. Naturally, we began to act like most everybody does when afraid. After all, isn’t fear the true basis of intolerance? Yes, we were intolerant.”

p. 140

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Today, God, help me know I am being guided into what’s good about
life, especially when I feel confused and without direction. Help me trust
enough to wait until my mind and vision are clear and consistent.
Help me know that clarity will come.
–Melody Beattie

“The greatest good you can do for another is not just share your riches,
but reveal to them their own.”
— Disraeli

I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.
— Louisa May Alcott

We can be whole persons, even if we are not physically healthy.
–Bonnie Marie Tincher

I am always willing to learn, however I do not always like to be taught.
–Winston Churchill

Faith and Love mixed with Works is so important for a person to not lose Hope.
–Sprintin


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

HUMOR

“Humor may be defined as the
kindly contemplation of the
incongruities of life and the artistic
impression thereof . . . The essence
of humor is human kindliness.”
— Stephen Leacock

Humor for me is a key to balance. In the joke I am able to release some
tension or frustration and cope with my disease of alcoholism. When I
drank, I did not have a genuine sense of humor — rather it was sarcasm,
cruel “put-downs” or insane expressions of my manic personality. My
fun was created at the expense of others. It was a form of violence. It
kept people away from me and created a loneliness in my life.

Today I seek to use humor as an expression of acceptance, tolerance,
understanding and forgiveness. Humor is an aspect of my spiritual
program. In humor I experience God.

Give me the gift of humor that reflects the dignity and hope for us all.

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In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What
can mortal man do to me?
Psalms 56:4

Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes
refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster
has passed.
Psalms 57:1

Paul wrote, “I can do all things through [Christ] who strengthens me.”
Philippians 4:13


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Daily Inspiration

When God answers prayer, He gives us the right answer. Lord, my greatest strength comes when I trust in You.

Have the strength to do what is right regardless of the consequences. Lord, show me Your way so that I may walk in Your truth.

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NA Just For Today

The Full Message

“There is a special feeling for addicts when they discover that there are other people who share their difficulties, past and present.”
Basic Text p. 53

The wealth of our recovery is too good to keep to ourselves. Some of us believe that when we talk in meetings, we should “remember the newcomer” and always try to carry a positive message. But sometimes the most positive message we can carry is that we are going through difficult times in our recovery and are staying clean in spite of them!

Yes, it’s gratifying to send out a strong message of hope to our newer members. After all, no one likes a whiner. But distressing things happen, and life on life’s terms can send shock waves even through the recovery of long-time members of Narcotics Anonymous. If we are equipped with the tools of the program, we can walk through such turmoil and stay clean to tell the tale.

Recovery doesn’t happen all at once; it is an ongoing process, sometimes a struggle. When we dilute the fullness of our message by neglecting to share about the tough times we may walk through on our journey, we fail to allow newcomers the chance to see that they, too, can stay clean, no matter what. If we share the full message of our recovery, we may not know who benefits, but we can be sure someone will.

Just for today: I will honestly share both the good times and the difficult times of my recovery. I will remember that my experience in walking through adversity may benefit another member.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Tyger, Tyger, burning bright, In the forests of the night; What immortal hand or eye, Could frame thy fearful symmetry? Did He who made the Lamb make thee? –William Blake
Is there a lamb and a tiger inside us? Is there any commandment, written on the sky or a stone tablet, denying us our perfect right to be both tiger and lamb? The tiger, beast made of fire and night, shows its teeth when it blazes with love; the lamb, orphan wrapped in soft blanket of cloud, weeps to receive that same love. So we give and take, are strong and weak, guilty and innocent, wrong and right. So we are balanced, even when we seem to be in conflict.
When we learn to accept all the things we can be, we will be able to love all the ways the world outside us can be.
What conflict is helping me grow today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Oh, that one could learn to learn in time! –Enrique Solari
A mark of genuine change, after the pleasure of newfound growth, may be the regret a man feels that he didn’t learn sooner. When we learn something new, we see how it could have made our life better at an earlier time. We regret being stubborn, immature, or impulsive. Now we see our mistakes in a new light and it hurts. This is one of the pains of change. Some people turn away from growth because they refuse to tolerate the pain of honest hindsight.
We need to face these regrets, but not indulge in them. We take a bow to the past and move on to live in the only place we can – the present. We can acknowledge our guilt and remorse and then turn them over to the care of God. We can’t change the past, but we can learn from it. Healthy recovery means an ever lighter load of regrets. Getting stuck in guilt over past deeds only repeats our mistakes by failing to use our learning today.
May I acknowledge and let go of my griefs and regrets so I can attend to life here and now.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Noble deeds and hot baths are the best cures for depression. –Dodie Smith
Depression feeds on itself. With attention it worsens, but there are places for our attention. We can move our focus to a woman who is close by, a woman who is struggling to determine her direction in life. We can offer our ears. Or we can observe attentively, today, all the women, children, and men we see on the streets. When we notice their expressions, we realize they, too, may be suffering.
Doing something for someone else will lessen our own problems, no matter what the cause. In fact, just doing something will lift our spirits. Depression becomes habitual, and habits, even those that are detrimental, are easy to hang onto. When we take an action, even a small one, we can note the change: Action that benefits another is guaranteed to benefit us as well.
Depression does get worse with self-pitying attention; however, attention to ourselves that is nurturing has its place. We can pamper ourselves, but not pity ourselves. Pampering reflects approval, caring, self-respect; three attitudes inconsistent with depression. Even more than inconsistent, pampering and depression are incongruent.
Depression must be coddled to maintain it. It’s my choice to move beyond it at any moment. I can put something besides my problem at my center today and enjoy the results.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Safety
One of the long-term effects of living in a dysfunctional family – as children or adults – is that we don’t feel safe.
Much of what we call codependency happens because we don’t feel safe in relationships. This can cause us to control, obsess, or focus on the other person, while neglecting ourselves or shutting down our feelings.
We can learn to make ourselves feel safe and comfortable, as part of a nurturing, loving attitude toward ourselves.
Often, we get a feeling of safety and comfort when we attend Twelve Step meetings or support groups. Being with a friend or doing something nice for ourselves helps us feel protected and loved. Sometimes, reaching out to another person helps us feel safe. Prayer and meditation help us affirm that our Higher Power cares for us.
We are safe now. We can relax. Perhaps others haven’t been there for us in a consistent, trustworthy way, but we are learning to be there for ourselves.
Today, I will concentrate on making myself feel safe and comfortable.

Today I will be part of the mainstream of life. I will share what I have when it can be useful, looking for opportunities to give to others the best of who I am. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Heart Connections

I went into the office at the lodge where I stayed in Sedona. I turned in my room key, then pulled out my camera and took a picture of Marianne. We had only known each other for eight days, but I felt deeply connected to her. We had been through a series of experiences that would probably stay with me for life. They had changed my life.

When we hugged and said good-bye, I told her not to cry– but she did anyway. So did I. “Call me whenever you want,” she said. “I’ll be there for you.” I knew what she meant. She didn’t mean for me to call her on the phone, although that was okay,too. She meant call her in my heart, call her to me in spirit.

For a long time, our connections to people and places may have come from someplace other than our hearts. We may have been connected out of need, fear, unfinished business, or simply the unwillingness to leave– to know there was any other way to be connected. Or we may not have even felt particularly connected to the people around us.

Now is a different time. It is time now to let your connections come from your heart. Open up. Listen. Does someone have something to say, maybe only a sentence or two, that’s just what you need to hear? As you’re going through your day, does someone come to mind, someone you think about getting in touch with?

Don’t shrug off the things you know and sense. Be open to your inner voice. Do what it leads you to do. Love isn’t bound by time or space when our connections come from our heart.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Prayer helps

“Sometimes I talk myself out of praying,” Sheila said. “I convince myself that it’s just more work, because even if I pray about something, I have to do all the work,too.”

I sit down to write. The energy’s not there, but the deadline is. God, please help. I remember a joke I heard from someone, somewhere: “I love deadlines. Especially the whooshing sound they make as they go flying by.” I write anyway, putting one word in front of another. Then, from out of nowhere, comes a string of words I didn’t plan on, a new idea, a fresh perspective, a story, complete with ending. Wow! Where’d that come from?

An issue comes up in a relationship with a friend. He’s hurt and angry. His hurt and anger evoke more hurt and anger in me. I try to reason things out, listen to him, get him to see things my way. He feels justified. So do I. day after day, we work on the relationship. The strain continues. I don’t know what to do next. “God, please help me with this situation. Show me what to do next.” I keep talking to my friend. He keeps talking to me. Then one day, I feel less defensive and guilty. A new feeling surrounds the relationship. “I’m sorry,” I say one day. “So am I,” he says,too. Wow, I think. Where did that come from?

I stand on the scale, glaring at the numbers. I want to lose ten pounds. I start eating less, exercising more. A few days later, I get on the scale again. Dang. Gained a pound. I continue to eat less; the numbers don’t move. God, please help me drop this weight. Why am I holding on to it? I continue to watch my caloric intake and pay attention to exercise. One morning I get on the scale. Wow! I’ve lost five pounds. How did that happen?

Pray. let go. Then act as if you need to do all the work. Don’t plan on magic and miracles. But leave room for them,too.

God, help me remember that when I run out of myself, I run right into you.

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In God’s Care

The most exhausting thing in life…is being insincere.
~~Anne Morrow Lindbergh

The time-worn statement “Honesty is the best policy” holds special meaning to those of us in the program. Being honest with ourselves and with others is paramount to our recovery. But it’s also important for us to define our honesty.

Should we tell people that we don’t like them? Should we confess trangressions from past years if it hurts a loved one today? We each have to decide what honest means in different situations. Not acting or responding in accordance with our anxiety, particularly if we let that wisdome guide us in one instance and not the next.

We’ll know a deeper level of serenity when we decide to be consistently honest and sincere with our companions. A moment’s pause to let our Higher Power guide us will help us decide the best response for each situation.

I will seek God’s guidance as I learn to be more honest today.

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Detoxing Your Body
Inner Spring Cleaning

by Madisyn Taylor

All of our bodies need to detox once in a while and is a wonderful gift to your body, mind and spirit.

When you want to start with a clean slate in life, one way is to cleanse your body. Detoxifying can be done in many ways and for many reasons, depending on your specific goals. You may feel a physical need for cleansing, or a spiritual one where you would cleanse the areas of the body that correspond to your current life challenges. If you feel, for instance, that your inner self is not shining through as you would like, you may want to do a bathing detox to clean the skin of impurities so that you can radiate your inner health like a newly washed stained-glass window that lets the light shine through more brilliantly.

No matter how healthy and conscious our habits are, our bodies move with the cycles of life, which means that our cells sometimes need to fall like leaves from the trees before they can regenerate and be renewed. Just as we need to wash our bodies to remove the buildup of natural processes and contact with the world around us, we need to clean our bodies from the inside as well. So you may want to detoxify your blood or digestive system, or target specific buildup such as plaque or metals. Our bodies are the vessels that allow us to move through life, but we can treat them like wild gardens that need our attention to reach their full potential of beauty and balance in their ecosystem.

The first days of a detoxification process may bring to mind an image of the dust that gets stirred up during spring cleaning. You may feel a little worse before you feel better, but that may indeed be the universe’s way of showing us the benefits by contrast. We live in a world of dualities, so we may need to experience both sides of a situation in order to find our perfect balance. Once the impurities have been cleansed, you could experience a sense of lightness or clarity of vision and purpose. You will know it worked when you feel enhanced ease as you move through the world toward your goals. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

In the old days, we often had such devastating experiences that we fervently swore, “never again.” We were absolutely sincere in those moments of desperation. Yet, despite our intentions, the outcome was inevitably the same. Eventually, the memory of our suffering faded, as did the memory of our “pledge.” so we did it again, ending up in even worse shape than when we had last “sworn off,m” Forever turned out to be only a week, or a day or less. In The Program, we learn that we need only be concerned about today, this particular 24-hour period. Do I live my life just 24 hours at a time?

Today I Pray

May the long-term requirements of such phrases as “never again, ” “not on your life,” “forever,” “I’ll never take another..” not weaken my resolve. “Forever,” when it is broken down into single days — or even just parts of days — does not seem to impossible long. May I awake each day with my goal set realistically at just 24 hours.

Today I Will Remember

Twenty -four hours at a time.

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One More Day

An ordinary man can surround himself with two thousand books … and thenceforward have at least one place in the world in which it is possible to be happy. – Augustine Birrell

A flashlight. A winter storm. Secretly reading under the covers. As children, most of us escaped into books from time to time. Books were a private experience shared with no one. They could also be a warm family time of sharing.

Books will provide a window to the world, to adventures and faraway places that few people ever experience firsthand. Regardless of physical ability — or disability — we can generally find a way to read or listen to a book. We can shed, for a short while, some of the frustrations we experience. We can forget the ravages of illness. We can travel. We can dream.

Reading is a true gift which I can give myself.

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Food For Thought

A New World

Being abstinent puts us into a new world. Instead of trying to cheat ourselves and get away with it, we learn to be straight with ourselves and others. Instead of escaping problems, we learn to face them honestly. Instead of despair, we feel self-respect and a developing self-confidence.

As we get rid of our obsession with food, we get in touch with our feelings and abilities so that we are able to function calmly and efficiently.

All of this does not happen overnight. We take the Twelve Steps under the guidance of a program sponsor. We work our program every day. We continue to use the telephone and go to meetings so that we may learn from other members.

Above all, we maintain contact with our Higher Power, since it is by His grace that we have entered this new world.

Thank You, Lord, for leading me to a new world.

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One Day At A Time

EXAMPLE

“Setting an example is not the main
means of influencing another.
It is the only means.”
Albert Einstein

Program’s philosophy dictates that we gain new members by attraction rather than promotion. We should be striving to become living embodiments of Program principles in order that we might attract and inspire those in need whom we may encounter in our daily lives – just as we were fortunate enough to find our way here because of the amazing effort, inspiration and example of the Program founders. Because of their blood, sweat and tears, Program has grown in leaps and bounds over the years . Now – its future growth rests with us. Are you prepared for this responsibility?

One Day at a Time . . .
I will diligently work the tools of my program and be a shining example of recovery to others.
Rob R.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered a common solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree, and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action. This is the great news this book carries to those who suffer from alcoholism. – Pg. 17 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

At times we get sudden feelings of fear and apprehension. They seem to spring from nowhere. This is a common reaction to the chemicals leaving our body–it often is purely biological and nothing to be concerned with. Simply call a clean and sober friend.

Let me know that not all fear and apprehension come from deep-seated traumas. Some are simply physical reactions to withdrawal.

Lighting My Own Lamp

I will learn to light my own lamp today. I will go within for the deepest sort of experience of joy, of ecstasy in being alive. I will get in touch with the deeper pulse of living – the thread that connects me with the divine experience. I will recognize that in order to be lit from within I need to drop down inside of myself and be in the presence of inner light. Life itself has a purpose apart from any individual task or stage. Life itself is the experience. All of the things I have been trying to accomplish are both inner and outer goals. They are meant to bring me closer to myself, to develop me in ways that allow me to experience life more fully – to be more capable of pleasure. Today I will give myself these gifts of inner sight.

I will find and live from my own inner light.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

They say you need newcomers to tell you where you came from, old-timers to tell you where you could go, and a sponsor to tell you where you are at.

The most important word in my Steps is the first one… ‘WE’.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

The bigger the secret, the more dangerous.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will be part of the mainstream of life. I will share what I have when it can be useful, looking for opportunities to give to others the best of who I am.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

A smooth sea never made a good sailor. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 18

Honesty
I need to remember each day that deceiving myself about myself
is setting myself up for failure or disappointment in life and in Alcoholics Anonymous.
A close, honest relationship with a Higher Power
is the only solid foundation I’ve found for honesty with self and with others.
– Daily Reflections, pp. 117

Thought to Ponder . . .
Honesty isn’t an event — it’s a process.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H O W = Honesty, Open-mindedness, Willingness.

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

Change
“Let us never fear needed change. Certainly we have to discriminate between changes for worse and changes for
better. But once a need becomes clearly apparent in an individual, in a group, or in AA as a whole, it has long since been
found out that we cannot stand still and look the other way.
“Bill W., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, July 1965 As Bill Sees It, p. 115

Thought to Consider . . .
There is no progress without change.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
CHANGE
Choosing Honesty Allows New Growth Everyday

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

Independence
Step Three: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
“‘If I keep on turning my life and my will over to the care of Something or Somebody else, what will become of me? I’ll
look like the hole in the doughnut.’ This, of course, is the process by which instinct and logic always seek to bolster
egotism, and so frustrate spiritual development. The trouble is that this kind of thinking takes no real account of the facts.
And the facts seem to be these: The more we become willing to depend upon a Higher Power, the more independent we
actually are. Therefore dependence, as A.A. practices it, is really a means to gaining true independence of the spirit.”
1952, AAWS, Inc.; Printed 2005; Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pg. 36

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

“Pain is one of our greatest teachers. Though I still find it difficult to accept today’s pain and anxiety with any degree of
serenity — as those more advanced in the spiritual life seem able to do — I can, if I try hard, give thanks for present pain nevertheless.”
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 we became alcoholics, crushed by a self-imposed crisis we could
not postpone or evade, we had to fearlessly face the proposition that
either God is everything or else He is nothing. God either is or He isn’t.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 53~

“…we have ceased fighting anything or anyone—even alcohol.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 84~

These emotional ”dry benders” often led straight to the bottle.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 90

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

R.S.V.P. – Yes or No?
Usually, we do not avoid a place where there is drinking – if we have a legitimate reason for being there. That includes
bars, night clubs, dances, receptions, weddings, even plain ordinary parties.
You will note that we made an important qualification. Therefore, ask yourself, ‘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?’ Then
go or stay away, whichever seems better. 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.
If you are shaky, you had better work with another alcoholic instead! ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, 101-102

Prayer For The Day: Dear Father, please help me understand that a little kindness costs nothing to give and it’s far more valuable.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 17th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 17th

Daily Reflections

MYSTERIOUS WAYS

. . . out of every season of grief or suffering, when
the hand of God seemed heavy or even unjust, new lessons
for living were learned, new resources of courage were
uncovered, and that finally, inescapably, the conviction
came that God does “move in a mysterious way His wonders
to perform.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 105

After losing my career, family and health, I remained
unconvinced that my way of life needed a second look.
My drinking and other drug use were killing me, but I
had never met a recovering person or an A.A. member. I
thought I was destined to die alone and that I deserved
it. At the peak of my despair, my infant son became
critically ill with a rare disease. Doctors’ efforts
to help him proved useless. I redoubled my efforts to
block my feelings, but now the alcohol had stopped
working. I was left staring into God’s eyes, begging
for help. My introduction to A.A. came within days,
through an odd series of coincidences, and I have
remained sober ever since. My son lived and his
disease is in remission. The entire episode convinced
me of my powerlessness and the unmanageability of my
life. Today my son and I thank God for his
intervention.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

A. A. also helps us to hang onto sobriety. By having
regular meetings so that we can associate with other
alcoholics who have come through that same door in the
wall, by encouraging us to tell the story of our own
sad experiences with alcohol, and by showing us how to
help other alcoholics. A.A. keeps us sober. Our attitude
toward life changes from one of pride and selfishness to
one of humility and gratitude. Am I going to step back
through that door in the wall to my old helpless,
hopeless, drunken life?

Meditation For The Day

Withdraw into the calm of communion with God. Rest in that
calm and peace. When the soul finds its home of rest in
God, then it is that real life begins. Only when you are
calm and serene can you do good work. Emotional upsets
make you useless. The eternal life is calmness and when a
man enters into that, then he lives as an eternal being.
Calmness is based on complete trust in God. Nothing in
this world can separate you from the love of God.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may wear the world like a loose garment.
I pray that I may keep serene at the center of my being.


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As Bill Sees It

Only God Is Unchanging, p. 76

“Change is the characteristic of all growth. From drinking to
sobriety, from dishonesty to honesty, from conflict to serenity, from
hate to love, from childish independence to adult responsibility–all
this and infinitely more represent change for the better.

“Such changes are accomplished by a belief in and a practice of sound
principles. Here we must needs discard bad or ineffective principles
in favor of good ones that work. Even good principles can sometimes
be displaced by the discovery of still better ones.

“Only God is unchanging; only He has all the truth there is.”

Letter, 1966

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Walk in Dry Places

Is it Easy?
Practicing principles
There’s no “softer, easier way,” we’re told.  If so,  why are we also urged to embrace the slogan “Easy Does it?”  Which is right?
Both are right, because they express two different ideas. The softer, easier way doesn’t work because it grows out of self-deception and falls short of a thorough working of the program.  “Easy Does it” works because it describes an approach to action that is relaxed, confident, and careful.
The person seeking an easier, softer way usually avoids taking some of the steps that are considered necessary in maintaining sobriety.  It’s a way of trying to win without doing sufficient work.  The person following the “Easy Does it” principle pays attention to every detail, but carries on without reasonable haste or excessive loafing.
In a spiritual sense, “Easy Does  it” also means letting the Higher Power carry the load.  At all times, however, we must continue to make choices and bear responsibility for our actions.
I’ll be relaxed and confident while carrying on a full day’s activity.  There is always time to do things the right way.

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Keep It Simple

Skill to do comes of doing.—Ralph Waldo Emerson
Often, we just want to sit and do nothing. And why not. We go to meetings, work the Twelve Steps, read, make new friends. All this takes energy and means taking risk. Haven’t we earned the right to just sit and take it a break from it all? No! In the past, we avoided life. Now we’re becoming people of action. We take risk. We’re becoming people who get involved in life. We practice caring about people and caring about ourselves. At times, we may complain, but we do what is needed to stay sober. We gain skills by doing. why? We do it to save our lives. How? By trusting. We now trust that our Higher Power and friends will be there for us. They will help us push past our fears. As we practice daily how to stay sober, our skills grow.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, Yours is a spirit of action. Allow me to become skilled at being active.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll work at being active and alive. Maybe I’ll start a new friendship or try a new meeting.

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Each Day a New Beginning.

A woman who is loved always has success.  –Vicki Baum
Being loved, and knowing that we are loved, assures us of our connection to the world outside of ourselves. It affirms us as participants in the bigger picture. And all of us need to know that we count–that what we say and do matters to others–that we are contributing in an important way.
Often we feel unloved, however. And we search for love. We may have begged for love and still didn’t feel it. We have probably become very self-centered in our search. Fortunately, the program helps us to give love to others; the paradox is that love is returned, tenfold.
The wonders of love are many. Love is a healing balm for wounds. And it nurtures, both the one loving and the one loved. Love is an energizer. It spurs us on to successes in work and in play. Love multiplies. If we aren’t feeling loved, we can love someone else–and love will visit us, too.
We can help the women in our lives find the successes they deserve. The confidence to tackle new situations is packaged in the gift of love. We need to help one another count.
My love of another is a contributing factor in her success. Her loving gratitude will enhance my own endeavors. I will take a moment, today, with a friend who needs my love.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

But it was not, for the frightful day came when I drank once more. The curve of my declining moral and bodily health fell off like a ski-jump. After a time I returned to the hospital. This was the finish, the curtain, it seemed to me. My weary and despairing wife was informed that it would all end with heart failure during delirium tremens, or I would soon have to give me over to the undertaker or the asylum.

p. 7

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

WINNER TAKES ALL – Legally blind but no longer alone, she found a way to stay sober, raise a family, and turn her life over to the care of God.
I started going to meetings, and my story sounded so dull next to some of the stories I heard.  The most interesting thing I could think to tell was about the time my friends, who were also drunk, let me drive the car.  I almost got us all killed–but what fun!  Legally blind, drunk, and behind the wheel of a car.  God was really taking care of me and the other people on the road that night; I just didn’t know it at the time.

p. 378

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Three – “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

A member gives us a vivid glimpse of those days. “At one time,” he says, “every A.A. group had many membership rules. Everybody was scared witless that something or somebody would capsize the boat and dump us all back into the drink. Our Foundation office* asked each group to send in its list of `protective’ regulations. The total list was a mile long. If all those rules had been in effect everywhere, nobody could have possibly joined A.A. at all, so great was the sum of our anxiety and fear.

pp. 139-140

*In 1954, The name of the Alcoholic Foundation, Inc. was changed to the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous, Inc. and the Foundation office is now the General Service Office.

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He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the
universe.
–Marcus Aurelius

I have learned what a heart full of gratitude feels like.

If you make yourself a doormat, you will be stepped on.
–American Proverb

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

The Way isn’t something that can be put into words.
You have to practice before you can understand.
You can’t force things, including practice.
Understanding is something that happens naturally.
It’s different for everyone.
The main thing is to reduce your desires and quiet your mind.
–Master Hsueh

Within man is the soul of the whole; the wise silence; the universal beauty; to which
every part and every particle is equally related; the eternal One.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

SAINTS

“The saints are the sinners who
keep on going.”
— Robert Louis Stevenson

At times I do not want to carry on; I do not want to fight anymore for
truth and freedom; it seems so much easier to “give up ” and agree with
everybody — but I know, deep inside myself, this is not true.

At times the disease speaks to me and tells me to “give up” and
everything will be okay — perhaps have one drink, don’t rush off to so
many meetings, get what you can when you can! It all sounds so
tempting, but I know that it does not work.

Sobriety works! The struggle and pain to act responsibly in my life is
paying off and it does get better. I am not going to give up. My life is
worth more than a quick fix!

Lord, let me know that true courage is working through the pain.

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“Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you; He shall
never permit the righteous to be moved.”
Psalms 55:22

“Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You.”
Psalms 56:3

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
James 4:10

Jesus said, “Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to
lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
John 15:12-13


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Daily Inspiration

We have been given a treasure of talents which should be accepted with responsibility and gratitude. Lord, may my gifts flourish in great faith and charity so that they may also benefit others.

Love who you are, for who you are, God loves. Lord, help me to never abuse myself with self pity or excess, emotionally or physically, so that I may live my life to the fullest according to Your Will.

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NA Just For Today

True Courage

“Those who make it through these times show a courage not their own.”
Basic Text p. 82

Before coming to NA, many of us thought we were brave simply because we had never experienced fear. We had drugged all our feelings, fear among them, until we had convinced ourselves that we were tough, courageous people who wouldn’t crack under any circumstances.

But finding our courage in drugs has nothing to do with the way we live our lives today. Clean and in recovery, we are bound to feel frightened at times. When we first realize we are feeling frightened, we may think we are cowards. Were afraid to pick up the phone because the person on the other end might not understand. We’re afraid to ask someone to sponsor us because they might say no. We’re afraid to look for a job. We’re afraid to be honest with our friends. But all of these fears are natural, even healthy. What’s not healthy is allowing fear to paralyze us.

When we permit our fear to stop our growth, we will be defeated. True courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the willingness to walk through it.

Just for today: I will be courageous today. When I’m afraid, I’ll do what I need to do to grow in recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Love is always open arms. –Leo Buscaglia
There is a story about a boy who left home and dishonored his father by spending a large amount of money on fast and reckless living. When the boy’s money ran out, he was faced with the prospect of returning home to face his father, knowing the father had every reason to be disappointed in him. Filled with fear and shame he approached his home, his mind racing with words of apology. Before the boy could say a word, his father rushed to him with open arms and hugged his lost son in joy and love.
Have we done this? Have we found it in our hearts to approve whatever a loved one does, even if we would have wanted something different?
Love like this is the highest kind of love. It finds joy in others no matter what, because it recognizes the freedom of those we love, and doesn’t chain them to our own wants. It is the same kind of love God has for us.
Are my arms open today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The reward of friendship is itself. The man who hopes for anything else does not understand what true friendship is.
–Saint Ailred of Rievaulx
The comfort of a true friend in a time of trouble, the strength we sense in being with someone who truly knows us, the affirmation of life that comes with enduring friendships – no other experience is like these. Recovery, once our addictive behaviors end, is mostly through relationships. In this program we are developing a friendship with ourselves, with other men and women, and with our Higher Power.
True friendship happens when we lower our guard and let our feelings show. It happens when we listen without judgment. It accumulates over time in many little experiences with someone. There is friendship in returning to someone when we feel offended or hurt so the relationship can be repaired – and in returning to him when we have been the offender. Sometimes friendship means humility, or accepting our worthiness to be forgiven. The development and deepening of our friendships, with other men, with women, and with ourselves sustains us in recovery.
Today, I will be true in my friendships.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
A woman who is loved always has success. –Vicki Baum
Being loved, and knowing that we are loved, assures us of our connection to the world outside of ourselves. It affirms us as participants in the bigger picture. And all of us need to know that we count–that what we say and do matters to others–that we are contributing in an important way.
Often we feel unloved, however. And we search for love. We may have begged for love and still didn’t feel it. We have probably become very self-centered in our search. Fortunately, the program helps us to give love to others; the paradox is that love is returned, tenfold.
The wonders of love are many. Love is a healing balm for wounds. And it nurtures, both the one loving and the one loved. Love is an energizer. It spurs us on to successes in work and in play. Love multiplies. If we aren’t feeling loved, we can love someone else–and love will visit us, too.
We can help the women in our lives find the successes they deserve. The confidence to tackle new situations is packaged in the gift of love. We need to help one another count.
My love of another is a contributing factor in her success. Her loving gratitude will enhance my own endeavors. I will take a moment, today, with a friend who needs my love.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Empowering
You can think. You can feel. You can solve your problems. You can take care of yourself.
Those words have often benefited me more than the most profound and elaborate advice.
How easy it is to fall into the trap of doubting others and ourselves.
When someone tells us about a problem, what is our reaction? Do we believe we need to solve it for the person? Do we believe that that persons future rests on our ability to advise him or her? Thats standing on shaky ground – not the stuff of which recovery is made.
When someone is struggling through a feeling, or a morass of feelings, what is our reaction? That the person will never survive that experience? That its not okay for someone to feel? That he or she will never get through this intact?
When a person is faced with the task of assuming responsibility for their life and behaviors, what is our response? That the person cant do that? I must do it myself to save him or her from dissipating into ashes? From crumbling? From failing?
What is our reaction to ourselves when we encounter a problem, a feeling, or when we face the prospect of assuming responsibility for ourselves?
Do we believe in others and ourselves? Do we give power to people – including ourselves – and their abilities? Or do we give the power to the problem, the feeling, or the irresponsibility?
We can learn to check ourselves out. We can learn to think, and consider our response, before we respond. Im sorry youre having that problem. I know you can figure out a solution. Sounds like youve got some feelings going on. I know youll work through them and come out on the other side.
Each of us is responsible for ourselves. That does not mean we dont care. It does not mean a cold, calculated withdrawal of our support from others. It means we learn to love and support people in ways that work. It means we learn to love and support ourselves in ways that work. It means that we connect with friends who love and support us in ways that work.
To believe in people, to believe in each persons inherent ability to think, feel, solve problems, and take care of themselves is a great gift we can give and receive from others.
Today, I will strive to give and receive support that is pure and empowering. I will work at believing in myself and others – and our mutual abilities to be competent at dealing with feelings, solving problems, and taking responsibility for ourselves.

Today I know I have a right to be alive and happy and full of joy. Today I trust that I am where I am supposed to be, and am moving in the right direction. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Cherish Hope

It was a beautiful city in Idaho. The lake that ran alongside the highway was so clear and blue, I pulled the jeep to the roadside just to stop and stare. The air was clear. The city felt light, airy, buoyant. It’s name was hope.

I didn’t stay long. I didn’t need to. But I needed to drive by, drive through, pause for a moment to remember another important power to discover and cherish on our journey. Hope is airy, almost intangible, yet if we don’t have it, we know it. Hope is simple. Clear. Light. Our hearts, our souls, need a good glimpse of it every so often, just to keep us going.

Even those times we can’t have what we want, we can be open to seeing its light shining unexpectedly in another direction, like this small town that caught my eye.

Cherish hope. It adds buoyancy to the spirit, lightness to the day.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Don’t avoid the void

I was sitting at dinner with a group of friends in a restaurant one evening. Everyone but one person was done eating. Feet were shuffling under the table. We were ready to go. One member of the group, an older woman, was picking at her meal. She had ordered dessert, but hadn’t eaten it yet. Instead, she slowly sipped her coffee.

“I don’t eat my dessert until I’ve finished coffee,” she said. when the waiter asked if he could take her plate.

All eyes at the table watched as she took a tiny sip, placed the cup down, and chattered, telling stories and jokes, making meaningless conversation. We watched eagerly as she started to pick her fork up to take a bite of dessert, then sighed quietly as she changed her mind, set the fork down, and began to tell another story.

She was alone, widowed, and her children lived in another state. It was obvious that she was trying to stretch dinner out with her friends as long as she could. She was trying to fill up that empty, silent place we call the void.

There’s a lot of talk in life and in this book about doing, achieving, and going for what we want. There’s much spurring on to activity that shouts, “Yes, I’m alive. And I’m fully and richly living my life the best I can.”

In all the busyness and living, there needs to be mindfulness and careful attention paid to another part of life, too. That part is the repetitive and natural cycle that some people call “the void.”

It’s an empty space in our lives.

The void can be a small space in our lives– lasting a few days or weeks. Or it can go on longer. That relationship has ended. We’re alone. We don’t know what to do next. Or that cycle in our lives has ended– maybe we’ve graduated from school or college, and we don’t know where to go next. Maybe our time as a parent has ended. Maybe someone we loved, a roommate or best friend, who was an important part of our lives has moved away.

Don’t be afraid of the void. Postpone it for a while, if you must. Linger at dinner with friends, refusing to finish your dessert. As dark, cold, and empty as it feels, the void is a friendly place. Its rhythms are slower and often more confusing than other cycles in our lives, but the rhythms of this cycle are still there.

Remember those quiet times in your life, the ones you’ve gone through before, when one cycle has ended and another has not yet begun. Remind yourself when that void comes along that you don’t have to be frightened of it. It’s not the end. It’s only a creative and necessary pause, a cycle of its own, in the cycles and rhythms of life.

God, give me the courage to step into the void in my life with dignity, faith, and a sense of humor. Help me cherish the unknown as much as I enjoy activity and clarity.

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In God’s Care

You have to have a talent for having talent.
~~Ruth Gordon

Each of us brings different gifts along on our journey. We all have a variety of talents We don’t however, always know how to use them. Some people seem to know how to put their talents to good use. Many of us botch them until we get help from God, who gave them to us.

Each of our talents has a purpose. We weren’t given them by accident. We all have talents. And, of course, combinations of talents. But we don’t live up to our potential without God’s direction.

I put my talents in God’s hands so that I can live at full capacity.

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Permission To Feel
Pushing Away Emotions

Throughout our lives, we may experience emotions that disturb or distress us. Often, our first reaction is to push our feelings away. We may say, “I don’t want to think about that right now, I’ll think about it later” and we bury our emotions, deny the validity of our feelings, or distract ourselves with other concerns. But the diverse emotions you experience are neither good nor bad—they are simply a part being human. Choosing not to experience pain, anger, or other intense feelings could cause those feelings to become buried deep into your physical body. There, they may linger unresolved and unable to emerge, even as they affect the way you experience the world. Allowing yourself to experience all of your emotions rather than push the more painful ones away can help you come to terms with your feelings so you can experience them and then move on.

It is possible to bring forth the old feelings you have pushed aside and experience them in a safe and enriching way. It may sound silly to set aside time to feel your old wounds that you haven’t dealt with, but this can be a very beneficial healing experience. Find a safel place and pick a time when you can be alone. Make sure that you feel secure and comfortable in your surroundings. Bring to mind the circumstances that originally triggered the emotions you’ve been pushing away. You may need to revisit these circumstances by reading relevant entries in your journal or using visualization to relive your past. Once you have triggered your long-denied emotions, let yourself feel your feelings, and try not to judge your reactions. Cry or sound your emotions if you need to, and don’t block the flow of your feelings. Allow any thoughts that are connected to your emotions to surface. As you release the feelings you have pushed inside of you, you will find yourself healing from ! the experience associated with these emotions.

When you deal with your feelings directly, they can move through you rather than staying stopped up in your body as emotional blocks that can sometimes turn into disease. Acknowledging your emotions, instead of pushing them away, allows you to stay emotionally healthy and in touch with your feelings. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

“Lead us not into temptation,” we pray, for we know with certainty that temptation lurks around the corner. Temptation is cunning, baffling, powerful — and patient: we never know when it will catch us with our guard down. Temptation could come in the siren song of a four-color advertisement, the fragment of a half-remembered song or, more obviously, in the direct urgings of another person. We must remain forever vigilant, remembering that the first drink gets us drunk, that the first obsessive bite will likely trigger an overeating orgy, that the first roll of the dice could well destroy our lives. Am I aware of my number one priority?

Today I Pray

God, lead me out of temptation — whether it is the jolly-but-alcoholic abandon of my peers at a special-occasion celebration, the pressure from my friends to “get in the spirit” of a party, the familiar aura of an apartment where joints are passed around, the sound of rattling dice, the smell of a bakery. May I know the limits of my resistance and stay well within them. May my surrender to the will of God give a whole new meaning to that old phrase, “Get in the spirit.”

Today I Will Remember

Get in the spirit.

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One More Day

Time is lost when we have not lived a full of human life, time enriched by experience, creative endeavor, enjoyment, and suffering.
– Dietrich Bonhoeffer

“I’ll never make it through today!” While we all may have had that thought from time to time, we did live through that day to rise the next morning and greet the new day. Time can go by very slowly when we are thinking of one but ourselves. Sometimes we can feel overwhelmed by fear of an uncertain future. We may even feel that we have been deserted by our friends and family in a time of need.

When overwhelmed with these helpless feelings, we can turn to our Higher Power for comfort and understanding. Knowing we don’t have to work through the details of our lives alone not only comforts us, it fills our minutes and days with positive thoughts and actions.

My Higher Power lends me strength to carry me through.

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Food For Thought

Vulnerability

When we stop doping ourselves with unnecessary food, we become vulnerable. We have been using extra food as a defense against our feelings. Without it, fears and anxieties surface and new energies are released. Instead of retreating into the refrigerator, we can learn day by day how to live with our exposed selves.

Making an overture of friendship to someone we would like to know better involves the risk of rejection. Saying no to a family member when a request conflicts with our program may make us feel guilty. Asking for help when we need it means admitting our weakness. Exposing our needs destroys our facade of self-sufficiency.

To be vulnerable requires courage, but only as we are able to live without the defense of overeating are we able to grow emotionally and spiritually. When we stop turning to food to cover up our feelings and needs, we are able to be more open with other people. We are nourished by them and by the Higher Power who allays our fears and directs our new energies.

May I not fear being vulnerable.

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One Day At A Time

PAIN AND PRETENDING

“To live is to suffer,
to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.”
Friedrich Nietzsche

I love to walk in the woods. The silent serenity of shadowed sunlight; the soft bounce of scattered needles under my feet; and the cool, clear air breathe peace into my soul.

I’ve long been fascinated by “nurse logs” – those aged, fallen pines who serve as fertile sustenance for younger, healthy trees.

When I look back at my life I see so much death. I see wasted years of hiding, lying, pretending — years of wrapping myself in my sickness. I have held my disease close to me. At first it seemed to bring safety, but I came to find that it was actually a death shroud. I wondered how any good could ever come from my years of pain.

After entering Recovery and working the Program, I have come to see that Nothing Is Wasted. Every sorrow, every injury, and every failure have brought me to this fruitful forest of New Life. Had I never suffered, I would never have found the Serenity that comes from choosing Gratitude. Had my life been easy, I would not have the appreciation I have gained for each new day. No one values safety, peace, and growth quite so profoundly as do those who have lived without them for so very long.

As I keep my mind, heart, and perspective focused on God, growth, and life, I find that my pain has become a nurse log; rich with all that is needed to bring life where once was only death.

One day at a time . . .
I will remember that nothing is wasted. I will choose to appreciate the pain and wisdom of the God-given nurse log which feeds me with hope and peace.
Lisa V

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

If he is sincerely interested and wants to see you again, ask him to read this book in the interval. After doing that, he must decide for himself whether he wants to go on. He should not be pushed or prodded by you, his wife, or his friends. If he is to find God, the desire must come from within. – Pg. 95 – Working With Others

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

You have a monumental task ahead to set your world in order at the same moment that it has completely changed. Setting your world in order does not mean to ‘fix’ everybody around you and take care of their affairs. It means to improve and tend to yourself and your affairs. Do not confuse ‘setting things in order’ with controlling the world around you.

I do not attempt to control what is clearly beyond my sphere. I let my Higher Power tend to the world around me. I affect change from within.

Gathering Wisdom

I am on a spiritual journey. And on this journey I am my own best pilot and my own best philosopher. No one knows me as I know me and no one can synthesize all of the information that I receive each day into a coherent picture of my life as well as I can. If I don’t take charge of my journey, no one else will, no one else can. God has given me to me to take care of. I have been put in charge of my own self. I am the one who steers me through my day, who makes a myriad of tiny decisions that add up to a life. I am the eyes and ears behind each hour. I am the choice maker.

My life is up to me.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Opportunities are often disguised as problems and this is why we miss them. With the next problem you encounter, ask, ‘What can I learn from this?’

I watch for big problems; they disguise big opportunities.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

When you see ‘CRAZY’ coming, hurry up and cross the street!

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know I have the right be alive and happy and full of joy. Today I trust that I am where I’m supposed to be, and am moving in the right direction.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I know I’ve been spared from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. I know today that it’s a miracle standing up here in front of you. I know it. – JoJo S.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 17

Fortunate Indeed
We who are alcoholics can consider ourselves fortunate indeed.
Each of us has had his own near-fatal encounter with the juggernaut of self-will,
and has suffered enough under its weight to look for something better.
So it is by circumstance rather than any virtue that we have been driven to AA,
have admitted defeat, have acquired the rudiments of faith, and now want to make a decision
to turn our will and our lives over to a Higher Power.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 37-38

Thought to Ponder . . .
Life will take on new meaning.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
F A I T H = Found Always In Trusting Him.

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

Prayer
“As the doubter tries the process of prayer,he should begin to add up the results.If he persists, he will 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.Wonderful and unaccountable things will start to happen.
“Bill W., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, June 1958As Bill Sees It, p. 321

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

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
BS
Before Sobriety

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

Self-Care
>From “To Wives”:
“Be determined that your husband’s [or other loved one’s] drinking is not going to spoil your relations with your children
or your friends. They need your companionship and your help. It is possible to have a full and useful life, though your
husband continues to drink. We know women who are unafraid, even happy under these conditions. Do not set your
heart on reforming your husband. You may be unable to do so, no matter how hard you try.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 111

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

“Surrender has nothing to do with giving up. It means to stop fighting.”
Carrollton, Texas, February 1993
“The Gift of Sobriety”
AA Grapevine

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

“On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We
consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to
direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-
pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives. Under these conditions we
can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God
gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much
higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 86~

“Though we work out our solution on the spiritual as well as an
altruistic plane, we favor hospitalization for the alcoholic who is
very jittery or befogged. More often than not, it is imperative that
a man’s brain be cleared before he is approached, as he has then
a better chance of understanding and accepting what we have to offer.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctor’s Opinion, pg. xxvi~

Therefore, thoroughness ought to be the watchword when taking inventory.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 54

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Only God Is Unchanging
‘Change is the characteristic of all growth. From drinking to sobriety, from dishonesty to honesty, from conflict to
serenity, from hate to love, from childish dependence to adult responsibility – all this and infinitely more represent change for the better.
‘Such changes are accomplished by a belief in and a practice of sound principles. Here we must needs discard bad or
ineffective principles in favor of good ones that work. Even good principles can sometimes be displaced by the discovery of still better ones.
‘Only God is unchanging; only He has all the truth there is. LETTER, 1966

Prayer For The Day: Loving Father, search me, and if there be any evil ways in me, correct them, and lead me into the ways everlasting. I pray that I may not be deformed from selfishness, but with a lowly and expectant heart run with patience and triumph the race that is set before me. Amen.