Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 15th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 15th

Daily Reflections

THE GOD IDEA

When we saw others solve their problems by a simple
reliance upon the Spirit of the Universe, we had to
stop doubting the power of God. Our ideas did not work.
But the God idea did.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 52

Like a blind man gradually being restored to sight, I
slowly groped my way to the Third Step. Having realized
that only a Power greater than myself could rescue me
from the hopeless abyss I was in, I knew that this was
a Power that I had to grasp, and that it would be my
anchor in the midst of a sea of woes. Even though my
faith at that time was minuscule, it was big enough to
make me see that it was time for me to discard my
reliance on my prideful ego and replace it with the
steadying strength that could only come from a Power
far greater than myself.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We alcoholics were on a merry-go-round, going round and
round, and we couldn’t get off. That merry-go-round is a
kind of hell on earth. In A.A. I got off that merry-go-round
by learning to stay sober. I pray to that Higher Power every
morning to help me to keep sober. And I get the strength
from that Power to do what I could never do with my own
strength. I do not doubt the existence of that Power. We’re not
speaking into a vacuum when we pray. That Power is there,
if we will use it. Am I off the merry-go-round of drinking for good?

Meditation For The Day

I must remember that in spiritual matters I am only an
instrument. It is not mine to decide how or when I am to
act. God plans all spiritual matters. It is up to me to
make myself fit to do God’s work. All that hinders my
spiritual activity must be eliminated. I can depend on God
for all the strength I need to overcome those faults which
are blocks. I must keep myself fit, so that God can use me
as a channel for His spirit.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that my selfishness may not hinder my progress in
spiritual matters. I pray that I may be a good instrument
for God to work with.

 

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As Bill Sees It

Breach The Walls Of Ego, p. 74

People who are driven by pride of self unconsciously blind themselves
to their liabilities. Newcomers of this sort scarcely need comforting.
The problem is to help them discover a chink in the walls their ego
has built, through which the light of reason can shine.

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

The attainment of greater humility is the foundation principle of each
A.A.’s Twelve Steps. For without some degree of humility, no
alcoholic can stay sober at all.

Nearly all A.A.’s have found, too, that unless they develop much more
of this precious quality than may be required just for sobriety, they
still haven’t much chance of becoming truly happy. Without it, they
cannot live to much useful purpose, or, in adversity, be able to
summon the faith that can meet any emergency.

12 & 12
1. p. 46
2. p. 70

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Walk in Dry Places

The Secret of Detachment___Dealing with others.
“Detaching with love” is what those close to alcoholics do when they realize they can’t change them.  The same principle should apply to any distressing situation, but how does it work?  How can I detach from people who really bother me____ especially fellow workers, or perhaps a boss or customer?
The secret of detachment is expressed in the biblical charge, “Resist not evil.”  We don’t fight or resist the other person, or even try to change their behavior. We stop believing that the other person’s behavior can really control us in the future.  We become impersonal about something that was once highly charged with resentment and bitterness. At no point, however, do we say that the others’ wrong behavior is all right, nor do we lie to ourselves about what the other is doing.
Detachment does not mean that the outcome will be recovery or change for the other person. That sometimes happens, and we’re grateful when it does. If we detach in the right way, however, the outcome will always be better than anything we could bring about by fighting the situation. We have to count an outcome favorable if we stay sober and under control in the midst of an insane situation.
I will detach myself from conflicts with others if they arise today.  I am not going to fight anything or anybody, and I know this will bring me closer to the ideal of living at peace with everybody.


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Keep It Simple

I never loved another person the way I loved myself.—Mae West
This sums up how we used to live. We were in love with ourselves. We had to be on center stage.
Our self-will ran riot. Recovery pulls us out of that world. We learn to focus on others. We learn to reach out to them with love. This is the best way to love ourselves. This doesn’t  mean that we live our lives through others. It means we invite others into our lives. It also means we ask to be invited into their lives. Recovery breaks down our self-will. It makes room for others in our lives.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I give You my self-will. I know You’ll do better with it than me.
Action for the Day:  I’ll list three ways my self-will has messed up my life. How am I doing at turning over these things to my Higher Power?

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Each Day a New Beginning

Flattery is so necessary to all of us that we flatter one another just to be flattered in return.  –Marjorie Bowen
We are all deserving of unconditional love and acceptance. And all the people in our lives, past and present, deserve our unconditional love and acceptance, too. However, it’s doubtful that we either feel it all of the time from others or give it away.
It’s human of us to find fault–to have expectations that are too high. But for this we pay a price. Instead of experiencing our lives serenely, contentedly, flowing with what is, we often criticize, judge, and feel generally disgruntled throughout the day. What a waste! We do have another choice, fortunately. We can let go and let God, and live and let live. Also we can recall, today and every day, that we are all special individuals in this world who are loved, fully, by our Creator.
The greatest contribution we can make to the lives of others is to be affirming. We can let our spouse, children, and friends know we care about them. That we love and accept them. The love that we also long for will come back to us. We thrill at being affirmed. And we will thrill at affirming.
It feels good to help another feel appreciated. Love and acceptance is my lifeline, from God around us all.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition 

BILL’S STORY

My brother-in-law is a physician, and through his kindness and that of my mother I was placed in a nationally-known hospital for the mental and physical rehabilitation of alcoholics. Under the so-called belladonna treatment my brain cleared. Hydrotherapy and mild exercise helped much. Best of all, I met a kind doctor who explained that though certainly selfish and foolish, I had been seriously ill, bodily and mentally.

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.
When my daughter had to go to the hospital, I stayed sober for the five days she was there and told myself that I had licked the alcohol problem.  On the way home from the hospital, I got drunk again.  I cannot tell you the number of times I tried to stop on my own,  My son would look at me and say, “Mom, why do you have to drink?”  He was about eleven years old at the time.  So one night I got on my knees and said, “God, change me or let me die.”

p. 377

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

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

This Tradition is packed with meaning. For A.A. is really saying to every serious drinker, “You are an A.A. member if you say so. You can declare yourself in; nobody can keep you out. No matter who you are, no matter how low you’ve gone, no matter how grave your emotional complications – even your crimes – we still can’t deny you A.A. We don’t want to keep you out. We aren’t a bit afraid you’ll harm us, never mind how twisted or violent you may be. We just want to be sure that you get the same great chance for sobriety that we’ve had. So you’re an A.A. member the minute you declare yourself.”

p. 139

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

I am responsible. Although I may not be able to prevent the worst
from happening, I am responsible for my attitude toward the inevitable
misfortunes that darken life. Bad things do happen; how I respond to
them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to
sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can
choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I
have – life itself.
–Walter Anderson

“Remember the difference between a boss and a leader; a boss says
‘Go!’ – a leader says ‘Let’s go!'”
–E.M. Kelly

God backs me up, there is no greater power. I am safe.
–SweetyZee

If you listen carefully to what a child is saying to you, you’ll see that
he has a point to make. So I listen. And I answer them just
as seriously as possible. And if I don’t know the answer, I’ll tell them I don’t know.
–Bill Cosby


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

THOUGHT

“By thought I embrace the
universal.”
— Blaise Pascal

My ability to think and communicate enables me not only to live in this
world, but also to understand this world. Relationships are dependent
upon me understanding my responsibilities — and when I do not think,
I am usually very irresponsible.

Alcohol stopped me from thinking and behaving responsibly and
created dishonesty in my life. Instead of feeling I belonged, I felt I was
on the outside; instead of enjoying relationships, I was forever fighting
and involved in bitter disputes; instead of enjoying the peace that
comes from being a “child of God”, I felt like an abandoned creature.
My problem was alcohol, and I needed to do something about it.

I did — I stopped taking the first drink. Today I am alive in my life,
alive in God’s world and enjoying this universe.

When I think clearly, I know I belong.

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He [God] Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever
forsake you.”
Hebrews 13:5

“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

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting
away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light
and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far
outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what
is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is
eternal.”
2 Corinthians 4:16-18

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
3 John 1:4

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against
such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23


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Daily Inspiration

To be rich is to have good friends, good health, and the energy to experience the many things that life offers. Lord, I rejoice in the true and most meaningful riches of my life.

God will give you strength because He gives of Himself. Lord, bless us, deliver us from all evil, and bring us to everlasting life.

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NA Just For Today

Feeling A “Part Of”

“The get-togethers after our meetings are good opportunities to share things that we didn’t get to discuss during the meeting.”
Basic Text p. 29

Active addiction set us apart from society, isolating us. Fear was at the core of that alienation. We believed that if we let others get to know us, they would only find out how terribly flawed we were. Rejection would be only a short step away. When we come to our first NA meeting, we are usually impressed by the familiarity and friendliness we see other recovering addicts share. We, too, can quickly become a part of this fellowship, if we allow ourselves to. One way to start is by tagging along to the local coffee shop after the meeting.

At these gatherings, we can let down the walls that separate us from others and discover things about ourselves and other NA members. One on one, we can sometimes disclose things that we may be reluctant to share at the group level. We learn to make small talk at many of these late-night gatherings and forge deep, strong friendships as well.

With our newfound friends in NA, we no longer have to live lives of isolation. We can become a part of the greater whole, the Fellowship of Narcotics Anonymous.

Just for today: I will break free of isolation. I will strive to feel a part of the NA Fellowship.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The difficulty in life is the choice. –George Moore
How we choose to spend our time says much about what is important to us. If we have no goals, we may try to kill time. If we have too many goals, there may not be enough time in the day to do all we set out to do. We must make some choices based on our values. We may need to take more time for some things, and let go of others. For example, this year will we try to learn to play the guitar? Perhaps we have finally decided to drop out of that club which seems to have little purpose. Will we give more time to work, or less time? With each of these choices, we shape our lives. We can do it with the touch of an artist if we pay attention to the choices we are making.
What is truly important to me today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye. –Antoine de Saint Exupery
It has been said that intuition is a talent of women, but in this program we, as men, are learning to listen to our own inner feelings. This is a strength which has nothing to do with gender. Many times we have a quiet inner knowing of something, but in the past we developed insensitivity to these messages. Our growing self respect includes the ability to stand up for what simply feels right. We don’t have to prove anything to ourselves. If we dismiss our own private feelings, all we have left to go on is someone else’s idea of reality.
This realm of inner feeling is the realm of wisdom. It is the creative part, the mysterious part, the spiritual part. It is the foundation of honesty with ourselves. In these quiet moments, we are more able to perceive what we know in our hearts. As we grow, we respect and trust it more.
Help me respect my private messages from within.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Flattery is so necessary to all of us that we flatter one another just to be flattered in return. –Marjorie Bowen
We are all deserving of unconditional love and acceptance. And all the people in our lives, past and present, deserve our unconditional love and acceptance, too. However, it’s doubtful that we either feel it all of the time from others or give it away.
It’s human of us to find fault–to have expectations that are too high. But for this we pay a price. Instead of experiencing our lives serenely, contentedly, flowing with what is, we often criticize, judge, and feel generally disgruntled throughout the day. What a waste! We do have another choice, fortunately. We can let go and let God, and live and let live. Also we can recall, today and every day, that we are all special individuals in this world who are loved, fully, by our Creator.
The greatest contribution we can make to the lives of others is to be affirming. We can let our spouse, children, and friends know we care about them. That we love and accept them. The love that we also long for will come back to us. We thrill at being affirmed. And we will thrill at affirming.
It feels good to help another feel appreciated. Love and acceptance is my lifeline, from God around us all.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Removing the Victim
Dont others see how much Im hurting? Cant they see I need help? Dont they care?
The issue is not whether others see or care. The issue is whether we see and care about ourselves. Often, when we are pointing a finger at others, waiting for them to have compassion for us, its because we have not fully accepted our pain. We have not yet reached that point of caring about ourselves. We are hoping for awareness in another that we have not yet had.
It is our job to have compassion for ourselves. When we do, we have taken the first step toward removing ourselves as victims. We are on the way to self-responsibility, self-care, and change.
Today, I will not wait for others to see and care; I will take responsibility for being aware of my pain and problems, and caring about myself.

My Higher Power guides me in directions that fills positive needs in my life today. I have grown to see that my true needs are love and peace and joy. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Learn to Say Good-Bye

Sometimes we need to say good-bye. Some good-byes come suddenly, without warning. Others are anticipated. Sometimes they’re a relief. And sometimes they hurt deeply. We say good-bye to things, people, and places. We say good-bye to beliefs and behaviors that become outdated.

Occasionally along the journey we need to say good-bye to something else,too– our dreams.

Dreams are precious. They become embedded in our minds and our hearts. When they die, it can be painful to let go of them. But if we’re not careful, dead dreams we haven’t released can sabotage our lives and hearts. We will continue to try to place people and things in the vacant roles in our dreams. Our dead dreams will, in fact, be controlling our lives and blocking our hearts. Living with dreams that are dead closes the door to finding new visions and creating new dreams.

If you can’t see today or tomorrow clearly because of yesterday’s dreams, it may be time for a funeral. Tenderly take your dearest dreams, your highest hopes and aims– the ones from yesterday that are now never to be– and place them gently in the ground. Tell them how dear they were, and are. But tell them also, it’s time to say good-bye. Cover them up. Dry your eyes.

And open yourself to the new hopes and dreams of today.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let go of the controls

“You have the controls,” my fllight instructor says. “No, you have the controls,” I say back. “No I don’t,” he says. “You do.”

My banter with my flight instructor can be amusing at times. It’s not so funny when we fight about issues of power and control in our lives. And usually it goes the other way. We don’t want to give the controls to someone else; we want those reins ourselves.

We want to get our way. And we get upset when things don’t work out. Sometimes, after we’ve been working on ourselves and our control issues for a while, we begin to get complacent. Because we’ve been so effectively using and directing our power, we rarely get in battles we can’t win. Things work out smoothly. We mostly get our way, because we’re not trying to control what we can’t. That’s when it’s easy to think we’re more powerful than we are.

Are you engaged in a power struggle with someone or something you can’t change? Spend a moment thinking about it. Is that really the way you want to use your energy and power, trying to do the impossible, creating rifts, and fighting battles you can’t win? When we try to control someone else or events beyond the scope of our power, we lose.

When we learn to discern the difference between what we can change and what we can’t, we usually have an easier time expressing our power in our lives. Because we’re not wasting all our energy using our power to change things we can’t, we have a lot of energy left over to live our lives.

Learn to say whatever when you don’t get what you want. Learn to let things be the way they are.

God, help me let go of my need to control and to be open to the flow of the universe.

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In God’s Care

You should practice humility first toward man, and only then toward God. He who despises men has no respect for God.
~~Paracelsus

It is easier for us to be humble before God than before people. When we have to admit we need help, we are swallowing a a dose of humility, but if it’s just between us and God, it’s not as hard to take.

Being humble with our fellow human beings is different. An act of humility before a visible, breathing, thinking witness may be frightening. The witness, after all, could be judgmental.

Are we afraid to be vulnerable? More importantly, can we afford not to be? When we can face fellow suffers and admit the need for help, recovery begins. Humbling ourselves in this way is our introduction to Divine power: through the compassion our brothers and sisters show for us, we come to know the love of God.

I receive help for all my spiritual needs by being open, first to my brothers and sisters. and then to God.

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The Valley of Despair
Seeds of Light

by Madisyn Taylor

Even in our darkest times, there are seeds of light within ourselves, we need only call them forward.

Anyone who has walked through the valley of despair and come out the other side knows that even in that darkness, seeds of light can be found. Often their tendrils reach out of the gloom and into the daylight alongside the journeyer who emerges from that deep sorrow. When we find ourselves in a place of despair, it can help us to know this, so that we don’t give up. We can stop, take a deep breath, and remind ourselves that we will find ourselves on the other side of this troubled time, and that we may even emerge with something new to offer.

It seems that despair has been around for as long as humans have been able to express themselves, and many of the great artists, teachers, and visionaries have labored through times of depression and hopelessness. Their words, images, and lives can serve as beacons in the darkness, even if they can’t always immediately lead us out. In the end, we must find our own way, and this is why despair often overwhelms us when it comes; we doubt that we have the resources to contend with such a formidable presence all by ourselves. This is when we must come to our own aid and know in our hearts that we have what it takes to keep moving forward in the general direction of the light.

Even though we must ultimately rely on ourselves, this doesn’t mean we can’t ask for help. Our friends and families can help us, as can our inner guides and helping spirits. They can serve the purpose of a fire that burns throughout the night, keeping us warm, and providing a light by which we might see the changes we may need to make in order to move forward. In addition, there truly are seeds of light inside us, however small, waiting to unfurl their green shoots, if only we will give them the time. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

There have been days during my recovery when just about everything seemed bleak and even hopeless. I allowed myself to become depressed and angry. I see now that it doesn’t matter what I think, and it doesn’t matter how I feel. It’s what I do that counts. So when I become anxious or upset, I try to get into action by going to meetings, participating, and working with others in The Program. If God seems far away, who moved?

Today I Pray

May I not be immobilized by sadness or anger to the point of despair. May I look for the roots of despair in my tangle of emotions, sort out the tangle, pulll out there culprit feelings, acknowledge that they belong to me. Only then can I get into gear,m take action,m begin to accomplish. May I learn to make use of the energy generated by anger to strengthen my will and achieve my goals.

Today I Will Remember

To sort out my feelings.

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One More Day

A man without a plan for the day is lost before he starts.
– Levis K. Bendele

Some mornings we are tempted, especially when we are having more than our usual share of pain, to resist the demands and responsibilities of the day before us. We are enticed by the thought5 of making a cup of coffee, climbing back into bed with the newspaper, and hiding from the world.

Although emptying, this is usually not a good plan for us, and what we need is a plan that encourages us to live the day fully. We may actually have to contrive a plan to push us into action. Personal care, chores needing to be done, letters or phone calls to friends, a trip to the store for groceries — these emphasize our importance and the importance of the day. Without a plan, we risk wasting twenty-four hours in loneliness and self-pity.

I and this day are important, and my plan reflects this.

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Food For Thought

Keep Planning

Maintaining our abstinence means that we continue to plan our three measured meals each day. To leave them to chance is to invite trouble, since compulsive overeaters do not learn how to eat spontaneously, no matter how long they try.

Planning means that we have the food we need available when we need it. We make decisions about what we will eat when we are rested and strong, not when we are in a rush, overtired, or over hungry.

Preparing meals ahead for busy days, shopping for food after a meal rather than before, remembering to allow time for defrosting – there are many ways to make it easy to follow a food plan. When we are convinced that abstinence is the most important thing in our lives, we are able to find ways to maintain it no matter how difficult the circumstances.

Help me to remember to plan.

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One Day At A Time

LOYALTY

“We are all in the same boat, in a stormy sea,
and we owe each other our loyalty.”
~ G. K. Chesterton

As is often typical of a compulsive overeater, the more I struggled to be loyal in my relationships with others, God, and myself, the more I found myself to be capable of loyalty only to food, shame, hiding my secrets, and despairing of any hope for recovery.

It was my shame that drove me to ineffectual attempts at loyalty – and shame breeds loyalty only to shame.

My relationships were in chaos, my mind was my enemy, and my emotions were tumultuous. When my pain overcame my attempts to be loyal, and my addiction to shame led to broken relationships, I had to finally admit that my efforts to control my life were fruitless – and would remain fruitless – unless I sought help.

When I entered recovery I feared the honesty and transparency that loyalty to self, others, God, and the truth would require of me. Among others who struggled with the same disease, however, I found that there can be no loyalty without taking a fearless inventory of my life and making a faithful accounting of my legacy. I found that I must surrender my loyalty to my disease, and place my loyalty in the hands of my Higher Power and in the open sharing of my reality. Only then could I cultivate loyalty in my relationships.

One day at a time …
I will choose loyalty to healthy relationships with others, God, and myself – and I will resist the temptation to be loyal to my disease.
Lisa

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Whatever the precise definition of the word may be, we call this plain insanity. How can such a lack of proportion, of the ability to think straight, be called anything else? – Pg. 37 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

It is easy to ‘beat ourselves up’ when we are lonely, scared, and feeling rejected by those we love. But if we go to meetings every day, find a sponsor and use him/her, read our literature, and follow the suggestions being give to us now, we really don’t have much time to dwell on ‘lonely, scared, and rejected.’

Show me right now what I need to do to live this hour through, clean and sober.

Opening to the New

Each new day is a gift. Today I will open the day slowly, like a present that’s wrapped in hours. I will be open to what my world offers me. The world comes to greet me like an old friend each morning. My daily habits comfort and ground me. The thought of moving into my day pleases me. Life unfolds one second at a time and today I will be present to witness it. How much of my life do I let pass by unnoticed? How many of my feelings go unfelt? Today I will recognize that my time on earth is limited. I choose to value my life a day at a time and embrace it while I have it.

I am open to life.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

We find that the winners do what they have to do and the losers do what they want to do.

The winners are stuck with me.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Denial is not a river in Egypt, but you can drown in it.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

My Higher Power guides me in directions that fills positive needs in my life today. I have grown to see that my true needs are love and peace and joy.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I was a functioning alcoholic; I had a wife who worked. – Sean A.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 15

Awareness
Yes, we’re alcoholics. Yes, it was vitally important that we come to that awareness.
Yes, we’ve got to be honest with ourselves and one another.
But we’re more than alcoholics. Much more.
We’re alcoholics who are living sober lives!
Alcoholics who have a choice whether or not to take that first drink.
For the first time in our lives, we are really alive!
Our message is good news, and we need to say so.
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol. 2], p. 24

Thought to Ponder . . .
In AA we carry the message … not the mess.

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

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

Procrastination
“After a preliminary trial at making amends, we may enjoy such a sense of relief that we conclude our task is finished.
We will want to rest on our laurels. The temptation to skip the more humiliating and dreaded meetings that still remain
may be great. We may just procrastinate, telling ourselves the time is not yet, when in reality we have already passed up
many a fine chance to right a serious wrong. Let’s not talk prudence while practicing evasion.
“Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 85

Thought to Consider . . .
Procrastination is really sloth in five syllables.
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 67

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
ISM
I Sponsor Myself

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

Generosity
>From “Thousands of ‘Founders:'””A.A. was not invented! Its basics were brought to us through the experience and
wisdom of many great friends. We simply borrowed and adapted their ideas.”Thankfully, we have accepted the devoted services
of many nonalcoholics. We owe our very lives to the men and women of medicine and religion. And, speaking
for Dr. Bob and myself, I gratefully declare that had it not been for our wives, Anne and Lois, neither of us
could have lived to see A.A.’s beginning.”
c. 1967, As Bill Sees It, page 67

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

“Each AA has been an individual who, because of his alcoholism, could seldom govern himself. Nor could any other human being govern the alcoholic’s obsession to drink, his drive to have things his own way … Yet we alcoholics can be led, we can be inspired.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1947
“Will AA Ever Have a Personal Government?”
The Language of the Heart

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

“Although financial recovery is on the way for many of us, we found
we could not place money first. For us, material well-being always
followed spiritual progress; it never preceded.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 127~

“Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going
to believe they are in that class. By every form of self-deception
and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to
the rule, therefore nonalcoholic. If anyone who is showing inability
to control his drinking can do the right-about-face and drink like a
gentleman, our hats are off to him. Heaven knows, we have tried hard
enough and long enough to drink like other people!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 31~

Since recovery from alcoholism is life itself to us, it is imperative that we preserve in full strength our means of survival.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 177

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Breach the Walls of Ego
People who are driven by pride of self unconsciously blind themselves to their liabilities. Newcomers of this sort scarcely need comforting. The problem is to help them discover a chink in the walls their ego has built, through which the light of reason can shine.
The attainment of greater humility is the foundation principle of each of A.A.’s Twelve Steps. For without some degree of humility, no alcoholic can stay sober at all.
Nearly all A.A.’s have found, too, that unless they develop much more of this precious quality than may be required just for sobriety, they still haven’t much chance of becoming truly happy. Without it, they cannot live to much useful purpose, or, in adversity, be able to summon the faith that can meet any emergency. TWELVE AND TWELVE – 1. p. 46 – 2. p. 70

Prayer For The Day: Today’s Prayer: Lord, I ask that You help me to be aware of those people that You have put in my life today. Help me minister to them today. I ask that You give me the words to say to them. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen!

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 14th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 14th

Daily Reflections

THE KEYSTONE

He is the Father, and we are His children. Most good
ideas are simple, and this concept was the keystone of
the new and triumphant arch through which we passed to
freedom.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62

A keystone is the wedge-shaped piece at the highest part
of an arch that locks the other pieces in place. The
“other pieces” are Steps One, Two, and Four through
Twelve. In one sense this sounds like Step Three is the
most important Step, that the other eleven depend on
the third for support. In reality however, Step Three
is just one of twelve. It is the keystone, but without
eleven other stones to build the base and the arms,
keystone or not, there will be no arch. Through working
of all Twelve Steps, I find that triumphant arch waiting
for me to pass through to another day of freedom.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Can I get well? If I mean: “Can I ever drink normally
again,” the answer is no. But if I mean, “Can I stay sober?”
the answer is definitely yes. I can get well by turning
my drink problem over to a Power greater than myself, that
Divine Principle in the universe which we call God, and
by asking that Power each morning to give me the strength
to stay sober for the next twenty-four hours. I know from
the experience of thousands of people that if I honestly
want to get well, I can get well. Am I faithfully following the
A.A. program?

Meditation For The Day

Persevere in all that God’s guidance moves you to do.
The persistent carrying out of what seems right and good
will bring you to that place where you would be. If you
look back over God’s guidance, you will see that His
leading has been very gradual and that only as you have
carried out His wishes, as far as you can understand them,
has God been able to give you more clear and definite
leading. Man is led by God’s touch on a quickened
responsive mind.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may persevere in what seems right. I pray
that I may carry out all of God’s leading, as far as I
can understand it.

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As Bill Sees It

Two-Way Tolerance, p. 73

“Your point of view was once mine. Fortunately, A.A. is constructed
so that we need not debate the existence of God; but for best results,
most of us must depend upon a Higher Power, and no right-minded
A.A. would challenge your privilege to believe precisely that way.
We should all be glad that good recoveries can be made even on this
limited basis.

“But turnabout is fair play. If you would expect tolerance for your
point of view, I am sure you would be willing to reciprocate. I try to
remember that, down through the centuries, lots of brighter people
than I have been found on both sides of this debate about belief. For
myself, of late years, I am finding it much easier to believe that God
made man, than that man made God.”

Letter, 1966

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Walk in Dry Places

Living with depression___Mood management
Getting sober is often only a first small step in getting well. Many recovering alcoholics must also face an underlying depression that seems to mock their efforts to attain real serenity. But sobriety does not cause the depression. It simply lays bare a condition that was present all along, but had been masked by repeated binges. It’s probably true, too, that many of us used alcohol partly as a drug to combat depression because it temporarily lifted our mood and relieved our pain.
One fact about depression is that it comes and goes; we can endure it partly by knowing that “this too shall pass.”  Another fact is that physical activity helps in copying with it.  AA co-founder Bill W., victimized by profound depression even in his sober years, found that walking provided some relief, though he had to force himself to do it at times. A third fact about depression is that we can usually alleviate its effects by helping others and by staying close to AA circles, even when we’re too depressed to contribute much.  It’s also helpful to discuss the problem with understanding friends and sponsors, or a therapist, if necessary.
I’ll believe today that I can maintain a good mood level that continues to build as I carry out my responsibilities and make AA first in my life. Depression may challenge me, but I don’t have to give in to it.


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Keep It Simple

Archie doesn’t know how to worry without getting upset. — Edith Bunker
Most us are like Edith’s television husband, Archie. When we worry, we get upset. Problems seem too big for us. We get afraid. We feel powerless. What does the program tell us to do when we feel powerless and our life is upset? We look at the problem honestly . Than we ask our Higher Power to help us with the problem. We take it One Day at a Time. We believe our Higher Power will take care of us and help. We’ll have problems. That’s life! But we can get through them with care and support. We don’t have to get crazy. We don’t have to make things worst. We can be kind to ourselves and live through problems just fine—with our Higher Powers help.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me do what I can today about my problems. Help me stop worrying.
Action for the Day:  If I have problems today, I’ll do what I can—and leave the outcome to my Higher Power.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The child is an almost universal symbol for the soul’s transformation.  The child is whole, not yet divided. . .when we would heal the mind. . .we ask this child to speak to us.  –Susan Griffin
Was there ever a time when we did not feel divided from ourselves?  Occasionally we get a glimpse of what such spiritual wholeness would be like, but most of the time we struggle with feelings of conflict, unevenness, a divided heart.  Perhaps, “the child” is a metaphor for a spiritual guide, like our own higher power, that can help us in our journey toward self-acceptance.
“I may not be perfect, but parts of me are excellent,” writes author Ashleigh Brilliant.  If we can be happy with this proud, funny boast then perhaps we can stop berating ourselves for our imperfections.  If we dwell on our own contradictory impulses, we give them too much important, too much power.
Let me trust to my glimpses of harmony and wholeness and be grateful for the richness of my spirit.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

The mind and body are marvelous mechanisms, for mine endured this agony two more years. Sometimes I stole from my wife’s slender purse when the morning terror and madness were on me. Again I swayed dizzily before an open window, or the medicine cabinet where there was poison, cursing myself for a weakling. There were flights from city to country and back, as my wife and I sought escape. Then came the night when the physical and mental torture was so hellish I feared I would burst through my window, sash and all. Somehow I managed to drag my mattress to a lower floor, lest I suddenly leap. A doctor came with a heavy sedative. Next day found me drinking both gin and sedative. This combination soon landed me on the rocks. People feared for my sanity. So did I. I could eat little or nothing when drinking, and I was forty pounds under weight.

pp. 6-7

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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.
Several years later alcohol had control over my life.  I had a tee shirt that I just loved; it said, “I used to hate myself in the morning.  Now I sleep till noon.”  That described my feelings totally.

p. 377

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

“So spoke the group conscience. The group was right and I was wrong; the voice on the subway was not the voice of God. Here was the true voice, welling up out of my friends. I listened, and – thank God – I obeyed.”

p. 138

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“Happiness is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with
it.”
–Anon.

Courage can’t see around corners, but goes around them anyway.
–Mignon McLaughlin

I have a capacity in my soul for taking in God entirely. I am as sure
as I live that nothing is so near to me as God. God is nearer to me
than I am to myself; my existence depends on the nearness and the
presence of God.
–Meister Eckhart

Never does the human soul appear so strong and noble as when it
forgoes revenge and dares to forgive injury.
–Edwin Hubbel Chapin

The gift of the Spirit is that we are God’s children.
–Rita Jorgensen


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

WINE

“Wine that maketh glad the
heart of man.”
— Psalm 104:15

Every good thing can be abused and alcohol is no exception. Although
most people are able to enjoy the fruits of the grape and the quality
of their lives are enriched by good wine, not a few are destroyed by
wine! Millions of people in this world are alcoholic. They did not want
to be alcoholic but they are. Their lives and relationships are
destroyed by alcohol. They need to stop drinking if they are to find
“gladness” in their lives. Alcoholism is a disease that cannot be
cured, but it can be arrested by giving up the grape!

God can be appreciated in the grape, but He can also be experienced
in the soda. We need to find new ways to be happy.

Thank You for the precious gift of choice.

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“Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.”
Psalms 50:15

“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”
Psalms 51:10

Every word of God is pure: He is a shield unto them that put their trust in Him.
Proverbs 30:5

“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans for welfare
and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 29:11

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of
God! And that is what we are!
1 John 3:1


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Daily Inspiration

Treat your family as you would treat a best friend. Lord, help me to treasure my family with all of their imperfections as well as my own and cherish the time we have together.

Do not act as though you are watching a parade because we are each one of the marchers. Lord, things change so quickly. Help me to celebrate the constant newness of my life.

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NA Just For Today

Relationships

“Also, our inventories usually include material on relationships.”
Basic Text p. 29

What an understatement this is! Especially in later recovery, entire inventories may focus on our relationships with others. Our lives have been filled with relationships with lovers, friends, parents, co-workers, children, and others with whom we come in contact. A look at these associations can tell us much about our essential character.

Often our inventories catalog the resentments that arise from our day-to-day interactions with others. We strive to look at our part in these frictions. Are we placing unrealistic expectations on other people? Do we impose our standards on others? Are we sometimes downright intolerant?

Often just the writing of our inventory will release some of the pressure that a troubled relationship can produce. But we must also share this inventory with another human being. That way, we get some needed perspective on our part in the problem and how we can work toward a solution.

The inventory is a tool that allows us to begin healing our relationships. We learn that today, with the help of an inventory, we can start to enjoy our relationships with others.

Just for today: I will inventory the part I play in my relationships. I will seek to play a richer, more responsible part in those relationships.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Each man with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds. –Mark Twain
What does it mean to be different? How does it feel? Is it okay to act or look or be different from everyone else at times? Sometimes, maybe even most of the time, it feels safer to blend into the crowd. We don’t want to stick out like a sore thumb. But sometimes it’s when we are different that we discover new things no one has ever thought of or done before.
We don’t want to spend our whole lives doing only what others do. And there are times when we must take a stand if what others are doing is wrong. Perhaps it’s good practice to try to do some little things differently once in a while, to stand out from the crowd, just to get use to it. After all, if no one ever dares to be different, how would our world ever change for the better?
What little thing can I do to stand out from the crowd today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
This above all, to refuse to be a victim. Unless I can do that I can do nothing. –Margaret Atwood
Men have often become victims by seeing themselves as saviors. We forgot that we have needs too. We thought if we gave enough, our needs would eventually be met. In the process we became great controllers, not for the sake of power, but to make everything okay. We turn ourselves inside out to make our mates happy or to please our children or friends. But being a savior is a disrespectful role to play. When people became angry with us for it, we absorbed their anger and felt misunderstood.
No relationship is healthy for either person if one is victim. We must do our loved ones the favor of letting them see our strength–let them bump up against it–even when that means we say a loud and strong no! After we have said no, our yes is much more believable.
Today. I will take responsibility for my own life and try not to be a savior for others. I won’t undermine my relationships by being a victim.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The child is an almost universal symbol for the soul’s transformation. The child is whole, not yet divided. . .when we would heal the mind. . .we ask this child to speak to us. –Susan Griffin
Was there ever a time when we did not feel divided from ourselves? Occasionally we get a glimpse of what such spiritual wholeness would be like, but most of the time we struggle with feelings of conflict, unevenness, a divided heart. Perhaps, “the child” is a metaphor for a spiritual guide, like our own higher power, that can help us in our journey toward self-acceptance.
“I may not be perfect, but parts of me are excellent,” writes author Ashleigh Brilliant. If we can be happy with this proud, funny boast then perhaps we can stop berating ourselves for our imperfections. If we dwell on our own contradictory impulses, we give them too much important, too much power.
Let me trust to my glimpses of harmony and wholeness and be grateful for the richness of my spirit.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Trusting Ourselves
Trust can be one of the most confusing concepts in recovery. Who do we trust? For what?
The most important trust issue we face is learning to trust ourselves. The most detrimental thing that’s happened to us is that we came to believe we couldn’t trust ourselves.
There will be some who tell us we cannot trust ourselves, we are off base and out of whack. There are those who would benefit by our mistrusting ourselves.
Fear and doubt are our enemies. Panic is our enemy. Confusion is our opposition. Self-trust is a healing gift we can give ourselves. How do we acquire it? We learn it. What do we do about our mistakes, about those times we thought we could trust ourselves but were wrong? We accept them, and trust ourselves anyway.
We know what is best for us. We know what is right for us. If we are wrong, if we need to change our mind, we will be guided into that–but only by trusting where we are today.
We can look for others for support and reinforcement, but trust in ourselves is essential.
Do not trust fear. Do not trust panic. We can trust ourselves, stand in our own truth, stand in our own light. We have it now. Already. We have all the light we need for today. And tomorrow’s light shall be given to us then.
Trust ourselves, and we will know whom to trust. Trust ourselves, and we will know what to do. When we feel we absolutely cannot trust ourselves, trust that God will guide us into truth.
God, help me to let go of fear, doubt, and confusion–the enemies of self-trust. Help me go forward in peace and confidence. Help me grown in trust for myself and You, one day at a time, one experience at a time.

I will value myself today both for my perfections and especially for my imperfections. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Observe Yourself

Watch yourself. That’s not a grim admonition. It’s a call to observe yourself and is a helpful tool on the journey.

When you get stuck in a behavior, stuck in a pattern, stuck in a place, a thought, a feeling, a job, or a relationship and you don’t know how to get unstuck, watch yourself. When you’ve tried everything you know and your feelings and old ways of reacting still come to the fore– even when you don’t want them to and especially when you’ve made an effort to do things differently– watch yourself. When it feels hopeless, when it seems things will never change or shift, when you can’t help yourself and it doesn’t look like those around you can either, look at yourself.

The act of watching ourselves, neutrally observing ourselves without judgement or reproach, can be a powerful tool for change. If you’ve tried and tried to change but it hasn’t worked, then watch yourself. Watch what you say, what you think, how you feel, how you act, how you react. Don’t try to stop yourself. Don’t judge. Just observe. Do it as long as you need to, although it may not take long.

Watch yourself. Then watch how you grow and change.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Learn something new about yourself

Wildfires scorch large chunks of the Western United States every summer. It’s part of the natural cycle of things. After a while, nature decides that it’s time to start over and a patch of the woods goes up in smoke.

This year, one fire burned near Mesa Verde National Park in southwesten Colorado. I read the news wires with interest, hoping that the archeological sites there wouldn’t be destroyed. The crews worked on the fires, and though there was damage in the area, the main ruins were left unharmed. While the fires had burned thousands of acres around the park, they had also done something else– they had burned away the undergrowth that had sprung up around twelve perviously undiscovered sites.

Sometimes life sends fires raging through our lives,too. Those fires are also part of the natural cycle of things. Life, nature, our Higher Power says it’s time to start over again.

Use misfortune as an opportunity. Who knows? That fire rampaging through your life just might clear away the brush of the past. Keep your heart open and stay aware. You might learn something new and previously undiscovered about yourself.

God, help me stay alert to the lessons of today.

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In God’s Care

We are all special cases.
~~Albert Camus

We spend so much time and energy comparing ourselves to others and far too frequently end up feeling inferior. Perhaps someone at work is more articulate than we are or an acquaintance always seems more striking and self-assured. And most of you know couples who seem to have the perfect relationship while we continue to struggle in ours or have no significant other.

On occasion we might even feel superior to some people–like the gruff man in line ahead of us at the bank or the rude cashier at the grocery store. But in all cases, the moment we compare and thus create a separation between ourselves and others, we deny the blessing of God’s all-encompassing plan for each of us.

We are all one in God. When we realize our connection to one another, we learn our task is to care for each other rather than artificially set ourselves apart.

I will look around me carefully today and notice how I’m connected to others rather than how I’m separate.

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Giving Your Gifts to the World
Being Happy with Your Job

In our search to define ourselves, we often look to our job to show us our worth. Society does not judge all professions equally, however, and it is not uncommon for the individuals who hold what others may consider to be ordinary or menial jobs to feel that they themselves are ordinary or menial. Yet, in truth, many wonderful and wise people throughout history have held what have typically been perceived as ordinary jobs, and this in no way has had any bearing on whether or not they have managed to contribute their skills and talents to the world. Whether you work in business, education, medicine, retail, or another profession, you worth is inherent to who you are and not what you do for a living.

A job that you enjoy, lets you meet your needs, and allows you to live in accordance with your values will always be more gratifying than a high-status job that you dislike. But while experiencing professional satisfaction can be a vital part of being fulfilled by your work, it is important to remember that it is possible to find happiness in any job. This is because what you do is often less important than how you do it. Your attitude and intention can turn a mediocre job into work that fulfills you because of the way that you approach it. If you do your job well and what you do benefits others, then you are doing work that is making this world a better place.

If you are happy in your current line of work and feel that it allows you to be yourself and live authentically while meeting your emotional and physical needs and allowing time for you to enjoy the fruits of your labor, then you have found a job that adds value to your life. If you are a waitress, then be the best waitress you can, take pride in your work and others will notice your passion. You can contribute your talents and skills to this world while doing any job. It is not the kind of work you do that allows you to be of service. It is you who must choose to be of service through the work that you do. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

One thing that keeps me on the right track today is a feeling of loyalty to other members of The Program, no matter where they may be. We depend on each other. I know, for example, that I’d be letting them down if I ever took a drink. When I came into The Program, I found a group of people who were not only helping each other to stay sober, but who were loyal to each other by staying sober themselves. Am I loyal to my group and to my friends in The Program?

Today I Pray

I thank God for the loyalty and fellowship of the group and for the mutuality of commitment that binds us together. May I give to the group in the same proportion that I take from it. Having been a taker during so many of my years, my giving used to be no more than a commodity, for which I expected to be paid in approval or love or favors. May I learn the joy of pure giving, with no strings attached, no expectations of reward.

Today I Will Remember

A perfect gift asks nothing in return.

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One More Day

A cheerful face is nearly as good for an invalid as healthy eather.
–Benjamin Franklin

Health changes, like other changes in life circumstances, cna undermine friendships. When we are dealing with chronic pain or discomfort or when we have become impaired with illness, some friends just aren’t sure how t act under the new circumstances.

People who love us want to help us; they want to be with us. The hard part for u is how to let them. Visits won’t be easy for us or them at first because our lives and relationships are changed by illness. But soon we realize that we still care for and need these special people and that we want to show our affection, during the trying times as well as during the better times.

I can find comfort and stability by maintaining my friendships.

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Food For Thought

Power

Our group is infused with a Power that changes lives, the Power of love and fellowship. So many of us can attest to the daily miracles that God has performed and is performing as we live this program. The changes and miracles may happen slowly, and our spiritual growth may be gradual; nevertheless, the Power is real.

As we become aware of this Power, we see how weak and unnecessary were the false supports we had relied on in the past. We probably sought strength in material possessions, personal achievement, social status. These supports all failed us, and we ate to hide our weakness.

Now that we have experienced the Power of the OA fellowship, we no longer have to rely on false supports. We can grow in the program and in closer contact with the One who creates and sustains us.

May I rely more completely on You.

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One Day At A Time

Cease Striving

“Cease Striving – Let Go, Relax – And Know that I Am God”
. . . . Psalms 46:10

I can count on one hand the times in my life in which I’ve been able to feel truly relaxed. Our disease is often driven by our efforts to control our lives: we labor to control our emotions, our relationships, our image, and our “masks” which we wear in a valiant effort to control how other people see and respond to us.

This effort to control ourselves and our lives is a ruthless taskmaster and a double-edged sword. It cuts like a knife through our very souls and requires that we forsake who we are in a misguided – and fruitless – attempt to be who we believe we “should be.” I have worked so hard at trying to mold myself into an Acceptable Person that I have lost who I truly Am. All of my ceaseless efforts to mold myself into who I thought I Should Be have cost me my very sense of Self, and has been a painful eroding of my own Identity – it is a tragic self-imposed suicide of my Soul.

Like many of us, in order to enter recovery I had to come to the End of Myself and lose any sense of Control I had over my life. This was terrifying for me – I believed that even without a false sense of control, my life would implode and leave only ruined remnants in its place.

But I have not imploded. I have not been destroyed. With the crumbling of my masks and my frantic efforts to control everything, I have found a surprising sense of peace and safety – even in the midst of the chaos in my life. I am convinced that had God not brought me to the end of my own efforts, I would not be in a place in which I can hear His Voice. My ears would have remained deaf to His promise to never forsake me. Had He not firmly – yet gently – gotten my attention, my unsettled Mind would have continued to shout warnings and commands into my withered soul. Hitting Bottom is the best thing that could have happened to me, for I landed not in destruction, but in His eternal loving arms.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will choose to cease my own striving and efforts to control my life. I will practice being still and knowing that my Higher Power is with me at all times, in every circumstance of my life
~ Lisa

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

All went well for a time, but he failed to enlarge his spiritual life. To his consternation, he found himself drunk half a dozen times in rapid succession. – Pg. 35 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Don’t jump ship five minutes before the miracle is going to happen in your life. Stick around long enough to see that miracle grow for you day by day. Right now you are a champion of sobriety and we see you as a miracle. Soon you will see the miracle yourself.

I can only do my best. Please God, as I understand You, do the rest.

Today

I will live in the present grateful to be alive and in this radiant world for one more day. Living in the present brings its own perspective. What is not worth getting preoccupied about falls away while what is truly meaningful and important rises up and into focus. I am here to appreciate and live life, to grow, to share my heart and soul with those around me. If I miss today, I will not get it back. If I allow it to work its beauty inside of me, it will fertilize tomorrow’s garden. Today is what I know I have. All of life is here, woven into the atoms of the world that surrounds me. If I am with this day, I am with all of life.

I am part of an alive universe.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

All our suggestions are free. The ones you don’t take are the ones you end up paying for.

When all else fails, I take the suggestions.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Maybe you didn’t die because of H & I.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I will value myself today both for my perfections and especially for my imperfections.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I hear some say that their best thinking got them into AA. My best thinking didn’t get me here – A power greater than myself did. – Al A.

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AA Thought For the Day

March 14

Responsibility
In the last analysis, as a recovering alcoholic I need only have two concerns.
The first is to maintain my sobriety on a daily basis and to practice the program of AA one day at a time.
The second is to ensure that what was here yesterday will be here tomorrow
for the next alcoholic who walks through the doors of the Fellowship.
And for that I am responsible.
– Thank You For Sharing, p. 181

Thought to Ponder . . .
Every recovery from alcoholism began with one sober hour.

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

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

Humility
“The attainment of greater humility is the foundation principle of each of AA’s Twelve Steps. For without some degree of
humility, no alcoholic can stay sober at all.
“Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 70

Thought to Consider . . .
As I thus get down to my right size and stature,
my self-concern and importance become amusing.
Bill W., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, June 1961
As Bill Sees It, p. 106

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
FEAR
False Expectations Appearing Real

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

Spirituality
>From “In His Own Individual Right”:
“When people look at you and wonder what’s with you, the look in your eyes will answer them: ‘Because I can cut it!’
“The singular thing that is spirituality cannot be given to a fellowman by word of mouth. If every man is to have it, then
every man must earn it, in his own way, by his own hand, stamped by the seal of himself, in his own individual right.–
New York, New York, USA”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 6

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

“My heart sings with each new day.”
Cleveland, Ohio, February 1993
“Facing the Truth”
AA Grapevine

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

“We alcoholics are sensitive people. It takes some of us a long time
to outgrow that serious handicap.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 125~

“Many of us keep liquor in our homes. We often need it to carry
green recruits through a severe hangover. Some of us still serve it
to our friends provided they are not alcoholic. But some of us think
we should not serve liquor to anyone. We never argue this question.
We feel that each family, in the light of their own circumstances,
ought to decide for themselves.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 102~

These were some of the ways in which fear conspired with pride to hinder our making a list of all the people we had harmed.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 79

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Two-Way Tolerance
‘Your point of view was once mine. Fortunately, A.A. is constructed so that we need not debate the existence of God; but
for best results, most of us must depend upon a Higher Power. You say the group is your Higher Power, and no right-
minded A.A. would challenge your privilege to believe precisely that way. We should all be glad that good recoveries can
be made even on this limited basis.
‘But turnabout is fair play. If you would expect tolerance for your point of view, I am sure you would be willing to
reciprocate. I try to remember that, down through the centuries, lots of brighter people than 1 have been found on both
sides of this debate about belief. For myself, of late years, I am finding it much easier to believe that God made man,
than that man made God.’ LETTER, 1950

Prayer For The Day: Father, preserve in us a sense of wonder at the marvels of life. May all that we see around us lead us to you. Amen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 13th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 13th

Daily Reflections

A WORLD OF THE SPIRIT

We have entered the world of the Spirit. Our next
function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness.
This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for
our lifetime.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

The word “entered” . . . and the phrase “entered into
the world of the Spirit” are very significant. They
imply action, a beginning, getting into, a prerequisite
to maintaining my spiritual growth, the “Spirit” being
the immaterial part of me. Barriers to my spiritual
growth are self-centeredness and a materialistic focus
on worldly things. Spirituality means devotion to
spiritual rather than worldly things, it means obedience
to God’s will for me. I understand spiritual things to
be: unconditional love, joy, patience, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, self-control and humility. Any time I
allow selfishness, dishonesty, resentment and fear to
be a part of me, I block out spiritual things. As I
maintain my sobriety, growing spiritually becomes a
lifelong process. My goal is spiritual growth, accepting
that I’ll never have spiritual perfection.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We’ve got rid of our false, drinking selves and found our
real, sober selves. And we turn to God, our Father, for
help, just as the Prodigal Son arose and went to his
father. At the end of the story, the father of the
Prodigal Son says: “He was dead and is alive again, he
was lost and he is found.” We alcoholics who have found
sobriety in A.A. were certainly dead and are alive again.
We were lost and are found. Am I alive again?

Meditation For The Day

Gently breathe in God’s spirit, that spirit which, if not
barred out of selfishness, will enable you to do good works.
This means rather that God will be enabled to do good works
through you. You can become a channel for God’s spirit to
flow through you and into the lives of others. The works
that you can do will only be limited by your spiritual
development. Let your spirit be in harmony with God’s spirit
and there is no limit to what you can do in the realm of
human relationships.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may become a channel for God’s spirit.
I pray that God’s spirit may flow through me and into the
lives of others.

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As Bill Sees It

Dependence–Unhealthy or Healthy, p. 72

“Nothing can be more demoralizing than a clinging and abject
dependence upon another human being. This often amounts to the
demand for a degree of protection and love that no one could possibly
satisfy. So our hoped-for protectors finally flee, and once more we
are left alone–either to grow up or to disintegrate.”

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

We discovered the best possible source of emotional stability to be
God Himself. We found that dependence upon His perfect justice,
forgiveness, and love was healthy, and that it would work where
nothing else would.

If we really depended upon God, we couldn’t very well play God to
our fellows, nor would we feel the urge to rely wholly on human
protection and care.

1. Letter, 1966
2. 12 & 12, p. 116

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Walk in Dry Places

Believing In Justice____Justice
“What goes around, comes around,” is a popular saying.  It’s often used to suggest that certain arrogant, unprincipled people will eventually receive their comeuppance.  It conveys the idea that there’s a hidden justice at work in human affairs that assures all injustice will eventually be punished.
But if it works to punish, this hidden justice also rewards right actions, and this is more important in our working of the program.  If we act from good motives, we’ll always find that our work is rewarded in some way.  No alcoholic who performs a service in the fellowship goes unrewarded.  Quite often the reward is simply a personal sense of well-being and growth in character, but these may be more important than money or recognition.
Justice is one of the cardinal virtues–a Godlike attribute that human beings strive to understand.  Believing in justice is believing in the Hidden Power that orders justice in all things.
I’ll view my world today as something that is controlled and ordered by a Just Power.  Reward and retribution are built into the scheme of things, but I’ll focus more on actions that bring the right kind of rewards.

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Keep It Simple

God loves the world through us—Mother Teresa
In Step Three, we turn our will and our lives over to the care of God. How do we feel God’s care, God’s love? We feel God’s care and love through how people treat us. Our Higher Power works through people who love us back to life. With time, we begin returning this care and love to others. We feel this warm love flow right through us and out to others. We’re kind without trying to be. We smile at others for no reason. We comfort those who hurt just by holding them.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, use me to make Your love real to someone today.
Action for the Day:  Fear sometimes keeps me from loving. I’ll list three things I’m afraid will happen if I’m “to loving.”
I’ll share these fears with my sponsor.

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Each Day a New Beginning

People need joy. Quite as much as clothing. Some of them need it far more.  –Margaret Collier Graham
Life is not without pain and travail. They are necessary to new awareness which prompts growth. And the gift of growth is joy. Pain and joy are thus intertwined. It is possible to feel only the burden of pain and not the exhilaration of joy, however.
Before seeking help to change our lives, many of us were heavily burdened by pain. But we were unable to open ourselves to the knowledge made possible by that pain. We were on a treadmill, accumulating painful experiences at every step, unable to capture the joy that was ever present.
We can have hope. Joy does await each of us today. We must open our eyes to it, just as we must open our hearts to one another. We must be willing to peel away the layers of pain to expose the core, the seedling of joy. And we need joy in our lives, just as surely as we need rest and a good diet. We need the light heart that joy fosters for a better perspective on the many experiences we’ll face today, and every day.
Recovery has given me this new option. It guarantees me that every hurdle will be lightened. The knowledge that joy is inherent, within every experience, is mine, now and forever.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

The remorse, horror and hopelessness of the next morning are unforgettable. The courage to do battle was not there. My brain raced uncontrollably and there was a terrible sense of impending calamity. I hardly dared cross the street, lest I collapse and be run down by an early morning truck, for it was scarcely daylight. An all night place supplied me with a dozen glasses of ale. My writhing nerves were stilled at last. A morning paper had told me the market had gone to hell again. Well, so had I. The market would recover, but I wouldn’t. That was a hard thought. Should I kill myself? No – not now. Then a mental fog settled down. Gin would fix that. So two bottles, and–oblivion.

p. 6

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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 got married and had two children.  I married a man who was not or could not be honest.  For several years after we were married, I did not drink.  My sister went through a divorce and moved to the town I was living in.  To be a good sister I went out with her, for she knew no one in town.  We went to a country western place that had a beer bust.  You just paid a certain amount to get in, and you could drink all you wanted to drink.  I thought I had arrived in heaven.  We did this several times a week, and then she started meeting people and started dating.  Well, I couldn’t drive, so I started drinking more and more at home.

p. 377

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

“Almost timidly, one of my friends began to speak. `We know how hard up you are, Bill. It bothers us a lot. We’ve often wondered what we might do about it. But I think I speak for everyone here when I say that what you now propose bothers us an awful lot more.’ The speaker’s voice grew more confident. `Don’t you realize,’ he went on, `that you can never become a professional? As generous as Charlie has been to us, don’t you see that we can’t tie this thing up with his hospital or any other? You tell us that Charlie’s proposal is ethical. Sure, it’s ethical, but what we’ve got won’t run on ethics only; it has to be better. Sure, Charlie’s idea is good, but it isn’t good enough. This is a matter of life and death, Bill, and nothing but the very best will do!’ Challengingly, my friends looked at me as their spokesman continued. `Bill, haven’t you often said right here in this meeting that sometimes the good is the enemy of the best? Well, this is a plain case of it. You can’t do this thing to us!’

pp. 137-138

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The solution is simple.
The solution is spiritual.

You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the
circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change
yourself. That is something you have charge of.
–Jim Rohn

“Happiness is not in our circumstances, but in ourselves.”
–John B. Sheerin

“Nothing is worth more than this day.”
–Goethe

“It is a sign of strength, not of weakness, to admit that you don’t know all the answers.”
–John P. Lougbrane


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

BALANCE

“There are two ways to slide easily
through life: To believe everything
or to doubt everything. Both ways
save us from thinking.”
— Alfred Korzybski

This statement is so true for me. I was so compulsive and obsessive
not only about the things that I believed in but also about the things I
didn’t believe in. I was extreme. Everything I did was exaggerated. I
either raced through life at ten thousand miles an hour or was in
neutral. Balance was absent.

Today I am developing balance in my life, more patience and more
tolerance. I have discovered that my extremism was a mask by which
I hid from life; I did not have to think, consider or ponder — I simply
reacted.

Now I know that to believe in everything is to believe nothing; and to
doubt everything is not to think. Life is “a many splendored thing”
but it has a variety of options.

God of the many, help me to discover You in the myriad of thoughts
that life produces.

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

“As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my
commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s
commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may
be in you, and that your joy may be complete. This is my commandment, that you
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. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not
call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is
doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that
I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me but I chose you. And I
appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you
whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may
love one another.”
John 15:9-17

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have
life, and have it to the full.”
John 10:10

Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.
Philippians 2:4


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Daily Inspiration

Take care of your own emotional and spiritual needs first and it will become natural to reach out lovingly to others. Lord, I depend on Your help in every situation.

Delighting in the happiness of others will make your heart too big for your body. Lord, help me set aside my jealousies and celebrate the blessings of others. Their blessings will then be a blessing for me too.

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NA Just For Today

That One Special Person

“A sponsor is not necessarily a friend, but may be someone in whom we confide. We can share things with our sponsor that we might not be comfortable sharing in a meeting.”
IP No. 11, “Sponsorship, Revised”

We’ve asked someone to sponsor us, and the reasons we have for asking that particular person are as many as the grains of sand on a beach. Perhaps we heard them share at a speaker meeting and thought they were funny or inspiring. Perhaps we thought they had a great car and we would get one by working the same program they work. Or maybe we live in a small town and they were the only person who had the time available to help.

Whatever our initial reasons for getting the sponsor we have, we’re sure to find that our reasons for keeping them are quite different. Suddenly they’ll amaze us with some stunning insight, making us wonder whether they’ve been sneaking peeks at our Fourth Step. Or maybe we’re going through some sort of life crisis, and their experience with the same problem helps us in ways we never dreamed possible. We call them in pain, and they come up with a special combination of caring words that provide genuine comfort.

None of these remarkable feats on the part of our sponsor are mere coincidence. They’ve simply walked the same path before us. A Higher Power has placed that one special person in our lives, and we are grateful for their presence.

Just for today: I will appreciate that one special person in my life — my sponsor.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I never dreamed of so much happiness when I was the ugly duckling. –Hans Christian Andersen
The ugly duckling was not really ugly at all, he was just different. The other ducks teased and pecked and even bit him until the ugly duckling flew away. He wandered around for a year, and was treated as an outcast everywhere. In the spring, he saw a group of swans on a lake, and wanted very much to join them. As he swam out toward them, he was astounded to notice his reflection in the water–he was a swan! The other swans welcomed him warmly, and found him to be beautiful.
Most of us go through times when we feel different from those around us. These are painful and lonely times, but it doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with us. Like the ugly duckling, we will come into a time when we will be loved. All the pain and loneliness we have felt will help us fully appreciate the acceptance when we find it.
How can I treasure the ways I am different from others today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Victory is won not in miles but in inches. Win a little now, hold your ground, and later win a little more. –Louis L’Amour
How much fuller each day feels when we can be patient and accept the inches we have progressed. Yet, we are aware of large problems which require miles of progress. We may want others in our lives to change quickly, we may be impatient with a work situation, or we may feel angry about an addiction.
Perhaps the spiritual message to us is we need to surrender to time. We are on the road moving in the direction of recovery. The forces of progress are at work. Our growth now may come in learning patience and trusting this process. Looking back we might see a mile of progress. It was made an inch at a time.
Today, I will accept my progress. There are many rewards already.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
People need joy. Quite as much as clothing. Some of them need it far more. –Margaret Collier Graham
Life is not without pain and travail. They are necessary to new awareness which prompts growth. And the gift of growth is joy. Pain and joy are thus intertwined. It is possible to feel only the burden of pain and not the exhilaration of joy, however.
Before seeking help to change our lives, many of us were heavily burdened by pain. But we were unable to open ourselves to the knowledge made possible by that pain. We were on a treadmill, accumulating painful experiences at every step, unable to capture the joy that was ever present.
We can have hope. Joy does await each of us today. We must open our eyes to it, just as we must open our hearts to one another. We must be willing to peel away the layers of pain to expose the core, the seedling of joy. And we need joy in our lives, just as surely as we need rest and a good diet. We need the light heart that joy fosters for a better perspective on the many experiences we’ll face today, and every day.
Recovery has given me this new option. It guarantees me that every hurdle will be lightened. The knowledge that joy is inherent, within every experience, is mine, now and forever.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Clarity and direction
In spite of our best efforts to work our programs and lean on Gods guidance, we sometimes don’t understand what’s going on in our life. We trust, wait, pray, listen to people, listen to ourselves, and the answer still does not come.
During those times, we need to understand that we are right where we need to be, even though that place may feel awkward and uncomfortable. Our life does have purpose and direction.
We are being changed, healed, and transformed at levels deeper than we can imagine. Good things, beyond our capacity to imagine, are being prepared and brought to us. We are being led and guided.
We can become peaceful. We do not have to act in haste or urgency just to relieve our discomfort, just to get an answer. We can wait until our mind is peaceful. We can wait for clear direction. Clarity will come.
The answer will come, and it will be good for us and those around us.
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.

I have a purpose today. As I let go and let God, This purpose is becoming more and more clear. My heart is full of joy and love as I move towards God’s Will for me. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Connect to Creativity

The more open and connected you are to the world around you, the more creative you will become.

You will become more creative in your own growth and in how you live your life. You will be more creative in problem solving in work and play. You’ll be more willing to try new things– whether it’s learning to play a flute, build a stone fence, ride a horse, or create a Japanese garden in your front yard. You’ll find yourself more open in solving problems with loved ones, trying less traditional approaches than you might have considered in the past. You’ll find yourself gaining insights, information, and healing from sources you may have previously overlooked. Your participation in all your activities will be less controlled and more spontaneous.

You will hear the universe prompting you more. You will imagine more. You will recognize the quiet voice of intuition, the voice of your heart. You will see possibilities. And because you are open to your heart, the guidance of your inner voice, you will know what to do, and when to do it.

The more connected you are to the universe, to life, to yourself, the more creative you will be.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

Say whatever when it’s out of your hands

We cannot control everything that happens to us. But we can control our response to those things. We cannot control the feelings of others– their fear, their power trips, their issues. All that we can choose is how we want to respond.

Maybe you have been wronged. Maybe you have had a dream taken from you due to the actions of another. What are you going to do about it? You can give up and give in, or you can make the best of the situation, move on if you can, or make a life where you are.

Say whatever.

Learn to live and let live.

You can start over, again and again, if necessary.

God, give me the strength to stand up when the actions or thoughts of others drag me down. Help me practice right thought and right action. Help me walk the path that is set before me, no matter what it may bring.

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The Question of Worthiness
Shifting into Gratitude

by Madisyn Taylor

When we question whether or not we are worthy of something it is important at that time to shift into gratitude.

We all know what it’s like to finally get something we want, only to find ourselves feeling as if we don’t deserve it. Whether it’s a car, a new job, or a date with someone wonderful, we suddenly feel as if we are not up to it. Something in us wants to reject this gift from the universe, perhaps because it requires that we think of ourselves in a new way or makes us question why we should have something that others don’t have. If these feelings of unworthiness are not consciously acknowledged, they can lead us to sabotage ourselves out of the gift being offered. Perhaps the best way to avoid rejection and sabotage is to simply shift into a state of gratitude, bypassing the question of worthiness altogether.

The question of whether we or anyone else deserves something is not really in our jurisdiction. These themes play themselves out in ways we can’t fully comprehend—on the level of the soul, over the course of many lifetimes. What we do know is that the universe has its own way of shifting the balance over the course of time so that all things are ultimately fair. We can trust in this process and understand that when a gift comes our way, it is because we are meant to have it. Otherwise, it would not be available to us. Accepting the gift with gratitude and using it to the best of our ability is true humility.

When we receive a gift and find that feelings of unworthiness crop up, we can simply acknowledge the feelings and then remind ourselves that they are beside the point. We might say to ourselves, “I am meant to have this.” As we allow ourselves to accept the gift, we might feel tenderness in our hearts that naturally shifts into a deep feeling of gratitude. As we sit for a moment, consciously holding the gift in our hands or in our hearts, we say “yes” to the universe’s many blessings, and we also say “thank you.” Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

All my life, I looked to others for comfort, security and all the other things that add up to what I now call serenity. But I’ve come to realize that I was always looking in the wrong place. The source of serenity is not outside, but within myself. The kingdom is within me, and I already have the key. All I have to do is to be wiling to use it. Am I using the tools of The Program on a daily basis? Am I Willing?

Today I Pray

God gave me the courage to seek out the kingdom inside myself, to find that well-spring within me which has its source in the never-ending, life-giving river of God. May my soul be restored there. May I find the serenity I seek.

Today I Will Remember

To seek the inner Kingdom.

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One More Day

The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes.
–Frank Lloyd Wright

When we were younger, day and night were two separate entities. Day was when we played and night was when we slept. The distinction is not that sharp as we get older, especially if we have any problems with disturb our sleep. Worry and pain have a tendency to make nights much longer — and lonelier.

What looked hopeless the night before can take on a whole new light in the morning. It would be wonderful if we could learn to treat each new day with the same freshness we had as children. We can learn, once again, to experience and to savor each each moment. Once we separate the more likely we are to allow ourselves wonderful days again.

My expectations are that I will achieve the best of reach day has to offer.

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In God’s Care

Inspirations never go in for long engagements; they demand immediate marriage to action.
~~Brendan Francis

God speaks to us in many ways at many times. If we are spiritually alert, we will know it when it happens. A stray thought occurs; we overhear a bit of conversation; a passage in something we are reading suddenly stands out–and we know we have connected. A feeling of assurance and peace comes over us.

The trouble is that we might acknowledge this contact only briefly, and then it slips away. The time to act passes. The favor we could have done; the advice of support we could have offered; the help we could have given or received–all are missed opportunities.

When God speaks, we must do more than listen.

Today I will act when inspired.

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Food For Thought

No More Diets

OA is not another diet club. Abstinence is not something we go on for a while, until we achieve a desired weight goal, and then go off. We are through with diets. In the past, they may have worked for a time, but sooner or later we became bored with them, quit, and regained the weight we had lost.

OA is a program of recovery. We discover that what we eat is not the most important thing in our lives. Each day we plan what is necessary for the nourishment of our bodies, and then we are free to forget about food and go on with our living.

Instead of following a diet for a certain length of time, we maintain abstinence from compulsive overeating every day of our lives so that we may feel good and function effectively. We work the program, live the Twelve Steps, and enjoy each day as never before. We are recovering.

Thank You for the gift of recovery.

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One Day At A Time

Love

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength,
While loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
~ Lao Tzu

As we explore our twelve step program and peel away the onion that is us, we find many parts of ourselves that we had never known before. Those parts have always been there … we just weren’t aware of the importance of them. Suddenly, as though it were a light bulb flashing, it hits us full in the face and we find ourselves seeing what our deepest need in life is.

It took practically a lifetime to realize that my deepest need was to love and to be loved. How could I have lived so long and not realized that before? I am grateful that the twelve step program gave me the ability to feel love, perhaps for the very first time. I am also grateful that this beautiful way of living also gave me the ability to give love.

One day at a time … I will keep my heart open for opportunities to love … and quietly but expectantly to be loved.
~ A TRG Member

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This seemed to prove that one alcoholic could affect another as no nonalcoholic could. It also indicated that strenuous work, one alcoholic with another, was vital to permanent recovery. – Pg. xvi – xvii – 4th. Edition – Forward To Second Edition

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Some people’s missionary zeal in helping us is quite annoying. They tell us what to do, know what’s best for us, get preachy. We, however, can be charitable as we know: they preach best what THEY most need to learn!

My Spiritual Source helps me tolerate the ‘preachers’ of the program, as one day I may act like that too!

Forgiveness

I forgive myself for being less than perfect, that’s how I will love myself and others today. Perfection is that myth that I carry around in my head to beat myself up with and to make it seem others fall short. That celluloid image against which I measure myself and come out feeling lacking, that yard stick with which I hit my own back side. Today, I will see perfection and beauty in what is. I will have an attitude of forgiveness toward myself and others for being other than what is expected. We’re all just bumbling along mostly doing the best we can, sometimes worse than we should, sometimes better. Just for today, I won’t get hung up on imperfection.

I forgive imperfection

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Prayer does not change what you are praying about. Prayer changes you.

I learn to ‘hit’ it with a prayer, not a chair and I change!

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Take charge of your attitude. Don’t let someone else choose it for you.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I have a purpose today. As I let go and let God, this purpose is becoming more and more clear. My heart is full of joy and love as I move more towards God’s Will for me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I didn’t think my sponsor could read for the first six months. I’d say; ‘John, I need a better paying job.’ and he’d say: ‘Read page 127, what does it say on page 127?’
I’m expecting to find a credit card application there or something, and it says; ‘Material well-being always follows spiritual progress, it never preceded. – Chris C.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 13

Dependency
Plainly, I could not avail myself of God’s love until I was able to offer it back to Him
by loving others as He would have me.
And I couldn’t possibly do that as long as I was victimized by false dependencies.
For my dependency meant demand — a demand for the possession and control
of the people and the conditions surrounding me.
– The Best of Bill, p. 56

Thought to Ponder . . .
What I am is Gods gift to me. What I make of myself is my gift to Him.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
G R A C E = Gently Releasing All Conscious Expectations.

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

Spiritual Growth
“When we speak to you of God, we mean your own conception of God. Do not let any prejudice you may have against
spiritual terms deter you from honestly asking yourself what they mean to you. At the start, this was all we needed to
commence spiritual growth, to effect our first conscious relation with God as we understood Him. If we wished to grow
we had to begin somewhere. So we used our own conception, however limited it was.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 47

Thought to Consider . . .
Spirituality is the ability to get our minds off ourselves.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
WISDOM
When Into Self, Discover Our Motives

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

Traditions
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“‘Please don’t talk any more about those damned Traditions.’ [in the late 1940s]
“Time has changed all that. Several years later it was recognized that the Twelve Traditions were going to be just as
necessary to the life of our society as the Twelve Steps were to the life of each member. We saw that the A.A.
Traditions were the key to the unity, the functioning, and even the survival of Alcoholics Anonymous.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 204

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

“Because of this program I am starting to love myself again. I still get urges to ‘drink and drug’ but I don’t let them run my
life. I value good friends today. I value my serenity, and I value life today.”
Thornton, Penn., April 1993
“A Valuable Commodity”
AA Grapevine

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

“…the actual or potential alcoholic, with hardly an exception,
will be absolutely unable to stop drinking on the basis of self
knowledge. This is a point we wish to emphasize and re-emphasize, to
smash home upon our alcoholic readers as it has been revealed to us
out of bitter experience.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 39~

“To be gravely affected, one does not necessarily have to drink a
long time nor take the quantities some of us have. This is
particularly true of women. Potential female alcoholics often turn
into the real thing and are gone beyond recall in a few years.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 33~

Could we then foresee that troublesome people were to become our principal teachers of patience and tolerance?
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 141

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Dependence – Unhealthy or Healthy
We discovered the best possible source of emotional stability to be God Himself. We found that dependence upon His
perfect justice, forgiveness, and love was healthy, and that it would work where nothing else would.
If we really depended upon God, we couldn’t very well play God to our fellows, nor would we feel the urge to rely wholly
on human protection and care. 1. LETTER, 1966 – 2. TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 116

Prayer For The Day: Lord, inspire us to act justly, love tenderly, and walk humbly with you, our God. Breathe upon us
your Spirit of peace that we may be bearers of reconciliation wherever you place us. May there be peace in our hearts, in
our homes, in our land, and between all people. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 12th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 12th

Daily Reflections

A DAY’S PLAN

On awakening let us think of 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.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 86

Every day I ask God to kindle within me the fire of
His love, so that love, burning bright and clear, will
illuminate my thinking and permit me to better do His
will. Throughout the day, as I allow outside
circumstances to dampen my spirits, I ask God to sear
my consciousness with the awareness that I can start
my day over any time I choose; a hundred times, if
necessary.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The Prodigal Son “took his journey into a far country
and wasted his substance on riotous living.” That’s what
we alcoholics do. We waste our substance with riotous
living. “When he came to himself, he said: I will arise
and go to my father.” That’s what an alcoholic does in
A.A. He comes to himself. His alcoholic self is not his
real self. His sane, sober, respectable self is his real
self. That’s why we’re so happy in A.A. Have I come to
myself?

Meditation For The Day

Simplicity is the keynote of a good life. Choose the
simple things always. Life can become complicated if you
let it be so. You can be swamped by difficulties if you
let them take up too much of your time. Every difficulty
can be either solved or ignored and something better
substituted for it. Love the humble things of life.
Reverence the simple things. Your standard must never
be the world’s standard of wealth and power.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may love the simple things of life.
I pray that I may keep my life uncomplicated and free.

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As Bill Sees It

“How Can You Roll With A Punch?”, p. 71

On the day that the calamity of Pearl Harbor fell upon our country, a
great friend of A.A. was walking along a St. Louis street. Father
Edward Dowling was not an alcoholic, but he had been one of the
founders of the struggling A.A. group in his city. Because many of his
usually sober friends had already taken to their bottles that they might
blot out the implications of the Pearl Harbor disaster, Father Ed was
anguished by the thought that his cherished A.A. group would probably
do the same.

Then a member, sober less than a year, stepped alongside and engaged
Father Ed in a spirited conversation--mostly about A.A. Father Ed
saw, with relief, that his companion was perfectly sober.

“How is it that you have nothing to say about Pearl Harbor? How can
you roll with a punch like that?”

“Well,” replied the yearling, “each of us in A.A. has already had his
own private Pearl Harbor. So why should we drunks crack up over
this one?”

Grapevine, January 1962

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Walk in Dry Places

Popular Gossip____Higher Thinking
The newsstands are full of publications that seem to delight in exposing the sins and foibles of celebrities and prominent officials.  Think of the excitement that’s been generated just over the sexual misadventures of important people running for public office.
While some of these disclosures may be true, we don’t help ourselves by reveling in them or reading them.  We may even harm ourselves if we get secret enjoyment over the fall of a celebrity. It’s never beneficial to find ourselves thinking, “it serves him right.”
Reading such trash, even in the daily newspapers, is a form of gossip.  We can use our time in better ways if we wish to enhance our sobriety.
If this sounds a little too stringent, we should remind ourselves that growth in sobriety calls for better management of our thinking and attitudes. Nobody ever got drunk simply because he or she read gossipy trash. But neither did that person make progress over the general problem of gossip.
I’ll have no interest in the weaknesses or shortcomings of those who might be in the news.  Popular gossip can be just as harmful as personal gossip.

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Keep It Simple

The Twelve Step program is spiritual, based on action coming from love . . . Martha Cleveland
To be spiritual means to be an active person. It means spending time with others. It means sharing love. It means looking for ways to be more loving to others. It means looking for ways to make the world a better place. Step Three helps us to look at the world better. We turn our lives over to the care of our Higher Power. So Lets allow care to direct our lives. Let’s always be asking ourselves, “Is what I’m doing something that shows care?”
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, let me be active in a loving, caring way. Let the love in my heart be my guide.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll do something good for someone and keep it a secret.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Love is not getting, but giving. It is sacrifice. And sacrifice is glorious!  –Joanna Field
How easily we mistake attention for love. Even more easily, we trick ourselves into thinking our ability to control someone signifies love – especially theirs for us. But love is something far different from either attention or control. Far different.
Love frees others from our grasp–and lets them return on their own. Love is placing another’s personal needs above our own, without regret. Love is selfless, yet it exhilarates the self. Giving love softens our edges, completes us, and connects us to the people with whom we are fulfilling our destinies.
Wanting love is a normal human desire, not one we should deny. And we shall receive love, the less our emphasis is on getting it, the more on giving it. We invite love when we freely and honestly give it. Another invitation for love comes from loving ourselves; self-hatred, which trapped many of us for years, hampers us no longer.
Love inspires–ourselves and those we give it to. It brightens our way, lessens our burdens, makes possible our rightful unfolding.
I won’t look for love today. I will just give it. It will bless me tenfold.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

Renewing my resolve, I tried again. Some time passed, and confidence began to be replaced by cocksureness. I could laugh at the gin mills. Now I had what it takes! One day I walked into a cafe to telephone. In no time I was beating on the bar asking myself how it happened. As the whisky rose to my head I told myself I would manage better next time, but I might as well get good and drunk then. And I did.

pp. 5-6

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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.
It was during my high school years that I discovered alcohol, and my problems were over.  Now I was pretty and smart.  For the first time I felt as if I fit in.  I still could not see–oh well, no big deal, I felt good.

pp. 376-377

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

“It was meeting night. Although none of the alcoholics we boarded seemed to get sober, some others had. With their wives they crowded into our downstairs parlor. At once I burst into the story of my opportunity. Never shall I forget their impassive faces, and the steady gaze they focused upon me. With waning enthusiasm, my tale trailed off to the end. There was a long silence.

p. 137

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“Take time for solitude. How else can you contemplate the blessings
of recovery,”
–Abby Warman

“What we must realize is that we cannot see everything. We do not
know everything. More important, we must understand that it is
impossible for us to control anything. The process of life is a spiritual
one, governed by invisible, intangible spiritual laws and principles.”
–Iyanla Vanzant

“Everyone who has been mistreated by another has mistreated
others at one time or another.”
–Paul Ferrini

“Deep faith eliminates fear.”
–Lech Walesa

It’s not the burdens of everyday that drive men mad.
It is the regret of yesterday and the fear of tomorrow.
Regret and fear are twin thieves that rob us of today.
–Unknown

I completely, and whole heartedly trust Gods love, it will never fail
me.
–SweetyZee

God’s grace can turn pain into joy and blessing.
–Isabelle Zeigler Ross


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

DREAMS

“I have learned this at least by
my experiment: that if one
advances confidently in the
direction of his dreams and
endeavors to live the life which
he has imagined, he will meet
with a success unexpected in
common hours.”
— Henry David Thoreau

Drugs brought me nightmares, never dreams. For years I lived in
fear. In the night I imagined horrible shapes, strange colors and
sounds, experienced unspeakable tortures and awake in tension and
sweat.

Today in sobriety my dreams are serene and tranquil; I remember
friends and loved ones and those I most admire. I imagine God in the
beauty of His creation. He breathes His love through me. My dreams
are part of my wellness.

God, who created men to dream their dreams, help me to live mine.

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Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all
your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5, 6

“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your
sight, O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer.”
Psalms 19:14

I sought the Lord , and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who
look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.
Psalm 34:4-5


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Daily Inspiration

If you count your blessings and answered prayers, there is less time for grumbling and complaining. Lord, may I always appreciate the wonders of my life and celebrate Your presence in it.

You cannot be discouraged for long if you are close to our Heavenly Father, the giver of all hope and blessings. Lord, I will spend time daily with You and strengthen my faith.

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NA Just For Today

Getting Out Of The Rut

“Many times in our recovery, the old bugaboos will haunt us. Life may again become meaningless, monotonous, and boring.”
Basic Text, p. 75

Sometimes it seems as though nothing changes. We get up and go to the same job every day. We eat dinner at the same time every night. We attend the same meetings each week. This morning’s rituals were identical to the ones we performed yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that. After the hell of our addiction and the roller-coaster craziness of early recovery, the stable life may have some appeal—for a while. But, eventually, we realize we want something more. Sooner or later, we become turned off to the creeping monotony and boredom in our lives.

There are sure to be times when we feel vaguely dissatisfied with our recovery. We feel as though we’re missing something for some reason, but we don’t know what or why. We draw up our gratitude lists and find literally hundreds of things to be grateful for. All our needs are being met; our lives are fuller than we had ever hoped they’d be. So what’s up?

Maybe it’s time to stretch our potential to its fullest. Our possibilities are only limited by what we can dream. We can learn something new, set a new goal, help another newcomer, or make a new friend. We’re sure to find something challenging if we look hard enough, and life will again become meaningful, varied, and fulfilling.

Just for today: I’ll take a break from the routine and stretch my potential to its fullest.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Gentleness is not a quality exclusive to women. –Helen Reddy
Each of us has our soft side: maybe it’s when we’re petting a kitten, caring for a baby robin with an injured wing, or soothing a crying child who is afraid. Behaving in a gentle way toward others gives us warm feelings inside. It also encourages others to treat us gently, too.
We don’t always feel like being gentle. If we’re sad or worried about school or a friend, we might not even notice the people around us who need our gentleness. But when we remember gentleness, it lifts our spirits. Two people will always be happier when we’re gentle–the person we’ve been gentle to and ourselves.
Who can I share my gentleness with today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
No sooner do we think we have assembled a comfortable life than we find a piece of ourselves that has no place to fit in.
–Gail Sheehy
We usually think of children going through stages. If we talk about a man going through a stage, there is usually a tone of a put down in it. But adults go through stages in their lives too. We have different drives and needs at 22 than we had at 16. Age 40 brings a different experience than 30. It would be sad to reach age 60 or 70 and have no more wisdom than we had twenty years earlier. An adult life crisis can come anytime. We may have grown out of a formerly comfortable job. Perhaps we feel new urgings for a more satisfactory relationship than we have settled for. From our recovery experience we know that crisis can bring growth.
Courage is required of us from the cradle to the grave. Change continues throughout life With courage, we can face our crises and the changes that come, and eventually we find the gift of new growth.
Help me find courage enough to live this day and meet the challenges it brings.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Love is not getting, but giving. It is sacrifice. And sacrifice is glorious! –Joanna Field
How easily we mistake attention for love. Even more easily, we trick ourselves into thinking our ability to control someone signifies love – especially theirs for us. But love is something far different from either attention or control. Far different.
Love frees others from our grasp–and lets them return on their own. Love is placing another’s personal needs above our own, without regret. Love is selfless, yet it exhilarates the self. Giving love softens our edges, completes us, and connects us to the people with whom we are fulfilling our destinies.
Wanting love is a normal human desire, not one we should deny. And we shall receive love, the less our emphasis is on getting it, the more on giving it. We invite love when we freely and honestly give it. Another invitation for love comes from loving ourselves; self-hatred, which trapped many of us for years, hampers us no longer.
Love inspires–ourselves and those we give it to. It brightens our way, lessens our burdens, makes possible our rightful unfolding.
I won’t look for love today. I will just give it. It will bless me tenfold.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Timing
If we could untangle the mysteries of life and unravel the energies, which run through the world; if we could evaluate correctly the significance of passing events; if we could measure the struggles, dilemmas, and aspirations of mankind, we could find that nothing is born out of time. Everything comes at its appointed moment. –Joseph R. Sizoo
Timing can be frustrating. We can wait and wait for something to happen, and it seems to be forever until it comes to pass. Or, suddenly, an event or circumstance is thrust upon us, catching us by surprise. Believing that things happen too slowly or too quickly is an illusion. Timing is perfect.
Today, I will trust and work with Divine Order. I will accept the timing in my life today and in my past as being perfect.

I can be centered and at peace inside when the world is going my way, as well as when things are happening that are not my choice. I am learning to focus on this newly found inner peace, especially at times of confusion and stress. –Ruth Fishel

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In God’s Care

God made the world round so we would never be able to see too far down the road.
~~Isaak Dinesen

When our addictive behaviors had control of us, we probably would have laughed if someone told us we would be in a Twelve Step program someday. We spent a lot of our time trying to control and predict the future, and we fought anything that threatened the delusion that we could.

When we were ready, our program was there. We discovered that this is a daily program, that by letting God unfold our life twenty-four hours at a time we are released from our obsession to control everything. One of the best gifts of our program is discovering that our Higher Power is in charge of every situation. And as a result, our obsessive need to control no longer controls us.

So now we are free to fully experience this moment. We can trust we will benefit somehow because each moment is a gift from God.

Whatever God wants me to know today is sufficient.

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Journey to the Heart

You Have the Power to Redefine Your World

One power we gain on our journey to the heart is the ability to redefine what we believe. We learn to see things in a new way.

We usually have a definition for most areas of our lives, particularly important areas such as work, love, money, and ourselves, but we’re not always conscious of it. The experiences we go through can help our definitions surface, help us see more clearly how we define these areas. That’s called growth. This growth, this process of redefining, will happen naturally on our path. But we can also consciously, actively work on our definitions.

Ask yourself if you’re defining something or someone right now in a way that you’d like to change. Perhaps a work relationship, a love relationship, a project, or an issue is causing you distress. You may find you have the power to redefine this area in a way that minimizes or reduces your pain.

A healing professional and friend once taught me a technique that can be used on any subject you’re trying to define. On a sheet of paper write down everything you currently believe, including and especially everything negative, about the subject or issue. Include all the “I Can’t’s” and the “Wny Nots.” That’s your current definition.

On a clean sheet of paper write down how you want to redefine this area, and your involvment in it. Write down everything you want it to be, what you wish for it, what you think the highest truth possible about this subject could be.

Burn the paper with the old definitions. Let the smoke clear away from your eyes. Save your new definition. Then watch how the new definition comes to life and take shape.

You don’t have to let past definitions of life, love, God, and yourself limit you anymore. You are free to redefine and help create the life you choose; you’re free to see life in a new way.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Don’t cut yourself on your gifts

Mishaps are like knives, that either serve us or cut us, as we grasp them by the blade or by the handle.
–James Russel Lowell

Success rains down for no apparent reason. Tragedy strikes like a freight train. We’re left to deal with the results. We can allow our egos to swell over our sudden good fortune, or we can humbly accept the fruit of our labor and continue to better ourselves. We can lie down and give up after a tragedy, or we can grieve, get up, and begin taking steps to move on with our lives.

Look at the situations in your life. Have you been given success? Are you learning the lessons of loss? Perhaps yours is the gift of the ordinary. Don’t walk too boastfully through your successes, nor remain too long in your grief. And don’t sleep through an ordinary life. You’ll lose your sense of wonder and awe, and when it ends, you won’t know where you’ve been.

We cannot always control what will happen to us. We need to let go of any false thoughts that we can. We can choose how we’ll handle the situation just like we choose how we’ll pick up a knife– by grabbing the handle or the blade.

Watch out for the cutting edge.

What you do with what you have been given is important.

God, thank you for what I’ve been given.

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Cause, Effect, and Transformation
Feeling Depleted

by Madisyn Taylor

If you are feeling depleted, your body is asking you to take time to make some real changes in your life.

There are times in our lives when it seems our bodies are running on empty. We are not sick, nor are we necessarily pushing ourselves to the limit—rather, the energy we typical enjoy has mysteriously dissipated, leaving only fatigue. Many people grow accustomed to feeling this way because they do not know that it is possible to exist in any other state. The body’s natural state, however, is one of energy, clarity, and balance. Cultivating these virtues in our own bodies so that we can combat feelings of depletion is a matter of developing a refined awareness of the self and then making changes based on our observations.

A few scant moments of focused self-examination in which you assess your recent schedule, diet, and general health may help you zero in on the factors causing your depletion. If you are struggling to cope with an overfull agenda, prioritization can provide you with more time to sleep and otherwise refresh yourself. Switching to a diet containing plenty of nutritious foods may serve to restore your vigor, especially when augmented by supplements like B vitamins or ginseng. Consider, too, that a visit to a healer or homeopath will likely provide you with wonderful insights into your tiredness. But identifying the source of your exhaustion will occasionally be more complicated than spotting a void in your lifestyle and filling it with some form of literal nourishment. Since your earthly and ethereal forms are so intimately entwined, matters of the mind and heart can take their toll on your physical self. Intense emotions such as anger, sadness, jealousy, and regret need fuel to! manifest in your consciousness, and this fuel is more often than not corporeal energy. Conversely, a lack of mental and emotional stimulation may leave you feeling listless and lethargic.

Coping with and healing physical depletion will be easier when you accept that the underlying cause might be more complex than you at first imagined. A harried lifestyle or a diet low in vital nutrients can represent only one part of a larger issue affecting your mood, stamina, and energy levels. When you believe that you are ultimately in control of how you feel, you will be empowered to transform yourself and your day-to-day life so that lasting fatigue can no longer gain a foothold in your existence. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

If we examine every disturbance we haved, great or small, we’ll find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its cnsequent unhealthy demand. So let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these crippling liabilities. Then we cna be set free to live and love. W may then be able to Stwlfth-Step ourselves, as well as others, into emotional sobriety. Do I try to carry the message of The Program?

Today I Pray

Ma I first get my emotional and spiritual house in order before I seek to carry out serious commitments in human relationships. May I look long and thoroughly at “dependency” — upon alcohol or other drugs or upon other human beings — and recognize it as the source of my unrest. May I transfer my dependency to God, as I understand Him.

Today I Will Remember

I am God-dependent.

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One More Day

Never bend your head. . . Look at the world straight in the face.
– Helen Keller

Pride is elusive when we’re hurting emotionally. We may act and feel overwhelmed. It is very difficult to be mindful of all we can accomplish and we may focus on what is out of our reach. Or we may tend to hide from our problems by withdrawing from social gatherings or by isolating ourselves emotionally. feeling ashamed that we are hurting makes asking for help very hard.

Now, as we hide less often from our feelings we find it easier to face the world straight on. We may not have made this transition easily or even by ourselves, but we are making it with the help of loving friends. Increasingly we accept our limitations, make the effort to do what we can, and ask for help when we must. And with this, we raise our heads with pride.

I need not be ashamed when I must ask others for help.

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Food For Thought

Nourishment or Drug?

During our overeating days, many of us used food as an all purpose drug. It was a pep pill when we were depressed and a tranquilizer when we were uptight. We turned especially to refined carbohydrates as uppers and downers. As a result, we spent most of our time either artificially stimulated or lethargic.

When we stop using food as a drug and eat only what our bodies need for proper nourishment, we experience emotions which had been buried by overeating. We feel anxiety, fear, and anger. We also feel joy, enthusiasm, and love. We are alive instead of doped up.

We need to express and share our emotions, and in OA we find people who will help us do that. We no longer have to bury our true feelings with food. As we learn to rely on our Higher Power for support in the little things that come up as well as the big things, then we are able to face the day without a drug.

By abstaining, we learn who we really are and what we really feel.

May I not be afraid to live without a drug.

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One Day At A Time

SEASONS OF OUR SOUL

“You will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does
not wither and whatever you do prospers.”
….. Psalms 1:3

For much of my life I have felt rootless, insecure, lost, ineffectual, and scattered by the seemingly-unforgiving winds of chaos, confusion, change, and pain in my life. I certainly do not feel the sense of strength, stability, and solidity that I imagine I’d feel as a “firmly planted tree.” Many of my choices and behaviors add to the storms and fruitlessness of my life…yet I consider again the Tree. The Tree bears its fruit “in its season”. The Tree participates in the work of its Creator by patiently standing strong through the winds, snow, and barrenness of winter…and the Tree knows that winter is only for a Season. The Tree does not rail against God, nor demand that it produce fruit in its season of barrenness; rather, the Tree patiently rests and knows that Spring will return, as it always does and always will.

Working our program calls us to trust God – to believe that which we might not yet see, feel, or experience. We can choose to accept with Serenity the seasons of our lives.

One day at a time … I will choose to believe that my Higher Power is at work in me through every season of my life. I will remember that He brings the Life of Spring after the “death” of winter. In trusting Him, I will be stable and fruitful, even when I feel overwhelmed by the winds of life.
~ Lisa

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

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. – Pg. 9 – Bill’s Story

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.

Guide my faith, in this program and in You, my Spiritual Source.

Staying with Myself

Today, I see that taking care of myself begins inside of me. It is not just a function of what I do, but the attitude with which I move through my day. Having my own life is about checking in with myself to see how I’m doing. It’s wearing a sweater if I’m cold and taking a break if I’m tired. It’s making sure that I’m having enough fun in my life, paying attention to what I enjoy doing, doing more of that and finding ways of reducing what doesn’t feel good. Having a life that is well suited to me is letting myself have my own unique likes and dislikes, and acting on them in constructive ways. It is not organizing my life so that it is good enough for everyone else, forgetting that it needs to be good enough for me as well. I occupy the center of my own life.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Whatever spiritual values you adopt are unique to you. You may adopt a strong religious stance or a more intimate spiritual philosophy from within. In any case, the spiritual path you seek is up to you and not those around you. Be comfortable with your spiritual choices and don’t try to please others.

The more I have on the inside, the less I need on the outside.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Detach, don’t desert

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I can be centered and at peace inside when the world is going my way, as well as when things are happening that are not my choice. I am learning to focus on this newly found inner peace, especially at times of confusion and stress.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It’s clean and sober across the board. I don’t get to take chips in AA for 60. or 90 days or a year, if I’m smoking pot or doing a little social heroin between meetings. Even if pot wasn’t my drug of choice. – – Earl H.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 12

Turning It Over
Step Three became a cheerful acceptance of my place in the world:
“I have no idea Who or What is running the show, but I know I’m not!”
And I could also see Step Three as a good attitude, an effective approach to life:
“If I am swimming in salt water and I panic and start thrashing around and fighting it, it will drown me.
But if I relax and have faith in it, it will hold me afloat.”
– Came To Believe . . ., p. 84

Thought to Ponder . . .
I can’t do His will my way.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H O W = Honesty, Open-mindedness, Willingness.

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

Fear
“Unreasonable fear that our instincts will not be satisfied drives us to covet the possessions of others, to lust for sex and
power, to become angry when our instinctive demands are threatened, to be envious when the ambitions of others
seem to be realized while ours are not. These fears are the termites that cease lessly devour the foundations of
whatever sort of life we try to build.
“Bill W., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 49

Thought to Consider . . .
Courage is not the absence of fear, but the action in spite of the fear.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
ANONYMOUS
Actions Not Our Names Yield Maintenance Of Unity & Service

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

Awakening
>From Fear of Fear”:
“As we walked back through the hall, I, for the first time in my life, said to another human being, ‘I’m having trouble with
my drinking too.’ She took me by the hand and introduced me to the woman that I’m very proud to call my sponsor. This
woman and her husband are both in A.A., and she said to me, ‘Oh, but you’re not the alcoholic; it’s your husband.’ I said,
‘Yes.’ She said, ‘How long have you been married?’ I said, ‘Twenty-seven years.’ She said “Twenty-seven years to an
alcoholic! How did you ever stand it?’ I thought, now here’s a nice sympathetic soul! This is for me. I said, “Well, I stood
it to keep the home together, and for the children’s sake.’ She said, ‘Yes, I know. You’re just a martyr, aren’t you?’ I
walked away from that woman grinding my teeth and cursing under my breath. But that night I tried to go to sleep. And I
thought, ‘You’re some martyr, Jane! Let’s look at the record.’ And when I looked at it, I knew I was just as much a drunk
as George was, if not worse. I nudged George next morning, and I said I’m in,’ and he said, ‘Oh, I knew you’d make it.’
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pgs. 289-90

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

“Some days are harder than others, but I have been told a person is not measured by what she has achieved but by what she has overcome.”
Toledo, Ohio, September 2008
“The Measure of Success”
AA Grapevine

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

“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.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 17

“When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 64~

The philosophy of self-sufficiency is not paying off. Plainly enough, it is a bone-crushing juggernaut whose final achievement is ruin.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 37

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

‘How Can You Roll With A Punch?’
On the day that the calamity of Pearl Harbor fell upon our country, a great friend of A.A. was walking along a St. Louis
street. Father Edward Dowling was not an alcoholic, but he had been one of the founders of the struggling A.A. group in
his city. Because many of his usually sober friends had already taken to their bottles that they might blot out the
implications of the Pearl Harbor disaster, Father Ed was anguished by the thought that his cherished A.A. group would
probably do the same.
Then a member, sober less than a year, stepped alongside and engaged Father Ed in a spirited conversation – mostly
about A.A. Father Ed saw, with relief, that his companion was perfectly sober.
‘How is it that you have nothing to say about Pearl Harbor? How can you roll with a punch like that?’
”Well,’ replied the yearling, ‘each of us in A.A. has already had his own private Pearl Harbor. So why should we drunks
crack up over this one?’ GRAPEVINE, JANUARY 1962

Prayer For The Day: God our Father, you call each of us by name and you know the innermost thoughts that we keep to
ourselves. Stay with us, day by day, in good times and in bad. Empower us with your Spirit that we may grow in
character and develop a true sense of values and ideals through following Jesus. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 9th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 9th

Daily Reflections

SURRENDERING SELF-WILL

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to
the care of God as we understood Him.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 34

No matter how much one wishes to try, exactly how can
one turn his own will and his own life over to the care
of whatever God he thinks there is? In my search for
the answer to this question, I became aware of the
wisdom with which it was written: that this is a
two-part Step. I could see many times where I should
have died, or at least been injured, during my previous
style of living, and it never happened. Someone, or
something, was looking after me. I choose to believe
my life has always been in God’s care. He alone controls
the number of days I will be granted until physical
death. The matter of will (self-will or God’s will) is
the more difficult part of the Step for me. It is only
when I have experienced enough emotional pain, through
failed attempts to fix myself, that I become willing
to surrender to God’s will for my life. Surrender is
like the calm after the storm. When my will is in line
with God’s will for me, there is peace within.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

If we had absolute faith in the power of God to keep us
from drinking and if we turned our drink problem entirely
over to God without reservations, we wouldn’t have to do
anything more about it. We’d be free from drink once and
for all. But since our faith is apt to be weak, we have
to strengthen and build up this faith. We do this in
several ways. One way is by going to meetings and
listening to others tell how they have found all the
strength they need to overcome drink. Is my faith being
strengthened by this personal witness of other alcoholics?

Meditation For The Day

It is the quality of my life that determines its value.
In order to judge the value of a man’s life, we must set
up a standard. The most valuable life is one of honesty,
purity, unselfishness, and love. All men’s lives must be
judged by this standard in order to determine their value
to the world. By this standard, most of the so-called
heroes of history were not great men. “What shall it profit
a man if he gain the whole world, if he loseth his own
soul?”

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be honest, pure, unselfish and loving.
I pray that I may make the quality of my life good by
these standards.

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As Bill Sees It

Renew Your Effort, p. 68

“Though I know how hurt and sorry you must be after this slip, please
do not worry about a temporary loss of your inner peace. As calmly
as you can, just renew your effort in the A.A. program, especially
those parts of it which have to do with meditation and self-analysis.

“Could I also suggest that you look at excessive guilt for what it is?
Nothing but a sort of reverse pride. A decent regret for what has
happened is fine. But guilt–no.

“Indeed, the slip could well have been brought about by unreasonable
feelings of guilt because of other moral failures, so called. Surely,
you ought to look into this possibility. Even here you should not
blame yourself for failure; you can be penalized only for refusing to
try for better things.”

Letter, 1958

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Walk in Dry Places

The Best outcome is just and equitable.
Principle over personality.
Looking ahead to this day, I may face a possible conflict with another person over a certain issue. How should I respond to this?
If I’m  to follow my principles, I should hold to the idea of seeking the best outcome for everybody concerned.  It may be very  harmful to look at these conflicts as a case of winning or losing. If I seem to win when I’m wrong, I will lose in the long run. If I seem to lose even when I’m right, I can know that there’s just resolution of everything in time.  I will always win, however, if I keep my thinking straight and take care to avoid resentment and bitterness.
It’s not surprising that the world is beset by conflicts. Millions of people have conditioned themselves to selfish ways of thinking and behaving that are bound to cause such conflicts. Much harm is done by people who are absolutely sure they are right at all times.
As human beings, we cannot expect to be excluded from these conflicts simply because we have a Twelve Step program. We do, however, have a means of dealing with such conflicts effectively when we respond according to principle.  This makes us privileged people in a way, but it is good to know that any person can have the same privileges by following the right principles.
Unpleasant as any conflict may seem, it does give me an opportunity to learn and to grow.  I will seek to benefit from any such conflict today.

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Keep It Simple

You’ve got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your grandfather was.—Irish Proverb
Each of us has been given recovery. Now it’s up to each of us what we do with it. At times, we’ll work hard to grow quickly. At other times, our growth will be slower. This is okay. We’re not in a race. Our pace is not important. What is important is that we’re always working on our recovery.
We’re all part of a fellowship, a caring group. We’re one of many. But we’re each important. Each of us will have a special way to work our programs through our readings, friends, meetings, and what we know of how life works. each of us puts together a miracle of recovery. We than take our miracle and share it with others, so they can build their miracle.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me work at growing. Help me be a person who is an important part of a group.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll work at seeing myself as very important. I’ll remind myself that other’s recovery also depends on my recovery. I am needed.

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Each Day a New Beginning

I want to get you excited about who you are, what you are, what you have, and what can still be for you. I want to inspire you to see that you can go far beyond where you are right now.  –Virginia Satir
Deciding to recover was our first step. That decision meant we did want to go beyond where we were. We did want something better for ourselves. And at times, in fleeting moments, we have been excited about who we are and our prospects for a better life.
The excitement and the inspiration come and go; they are seldom stationary. We can actively create the excitement and the inspiration. We need not wait for them to come to us. That’s one of the choices we have as human beings, as women.
Passively waiting for “the good life” is past behavior. Each day, this day, we can set our sights on reaching a goal–we can take a step, or two, toward that goal. Progress is there for the making–achievement is there for the taking.
Whatever our hearts’ pure desires, we can move toward that goal. We are what we need to be. We have what we need to move ahead.
Today, I will let my excitement for life’s possibilities spur me on.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

We went to live with my wife’s parents. I found a job; then lost it as a result of a brawl with a taxi driver. Mercifully, no one could guess that I was to have no real employment for five years, or hardly draw a sober breath. My wife began to work in a department store, coming home exhausted to find me drunk. I became an unwelcome hanger-on at brokerage places.

pp. 4-5

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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.
One miracle that brought them some joy in the midst of all the pain was that Mom found out she was pregnant.  When this little girl was born, she brought them great joy.  She did not take the place of her little brother, but in her own right she did bring them joy.  They tried again to have another little boy, but they had me instead.  Not only was I a girl, but I was also born legally blind.  A year or so later they finally did get the boy they wanted, and there was a big party to celebrate his birth.

p. 375

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

When A.A. was only three years old, an event occurred demonstrating this principle. One of the first members of A.A., entirely contrary to his own desires, was obliged to conform to group opinion.
Here is the story in his words. “One day I was doing a Twelfth Step job at a hospital in New York. The proprietor, Charlie, summoned me to his office. `Bill,’ he said, `I think it’s a shame that you are financially so hard up. All around you these drunks are getting well and making money. But you’re giving this work full time, and you’re broke. It isn’t fair.’ Charlie fished in his desk and came up with and old financial statement. Handing it to me, he continued, `This shows the kind of money the hospital used to make back in the 1920’s. Thousands of dollars a month. It should be doing just as well now, and it would – if only you’d help me. so why don’t you move your work in here? I’ll give you and office, a decent drawing account, and a very healthy slice of the profits. Three years ago, when my head doctor, Silkworth, began to tell me of the idea of helping drunks by spirituality, I thought it was crackpot stuff, but I’ve changed my mind. some day this bunch of ex-drunks of yours will fill Madison Square Garden, and I don’t see why you should starve meanwhile. What I propose is perfectly ethical. You can become a lay therapist, and more successful than anybody in the business.’

pp. 135-136

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Speaking without thinking is shooting without aiming.
–French Proverb

Help your brother across the stream and you’ll find yourself on the
other side.

“You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than
you can by what others say about him.”
–Leo Aikman

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word,
a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all
of which have the potential to turn a life around.
–Leo Buscaglia

Smile, it is the key that fits the lock of everybody’s heart.
–Anthony J. D’Angelo

Make the most of your life by choosing to enjoy everything you do.

God, help me open my heart to the full potential of every moment in my
life.
–Melody Beattie

“We aren’t bodies at all; who we are is the love inside us, and it is that
love alone that determines our value. When our minds are filled with
light, there is no room for darkness.”
–Marianne Williamson

Whether our sins are known or not, God offers us forgiveness.
–Charles P. Axe


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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

GREED

“Not he who has little, but he
who wishes more, is poor.”
— Seneca (4 B. C. — A. D. 65)

In my recovery I must still deal with that compulsive side of my nature
that always wants more.

I forget to be grateful for what I have. I ruin relationships because I
have a code of behavior that I expect from others but not myself! I miss
the fun of the moment because I am preoccupied with what I am
missing elsewhere. I miss the comfort of my own home as I fantasize
about country mansions owned by millionaires. Always I want more —
and yet in my own experience more has always been less.

Today I work hard on a spiritual program of gratitude. I have a
checklist of things I need to be grateful for; I work on my disease of
greed by talking about it.

Thank You for that part of me that must remain “poor”.

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“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be
exalted to the earth!”
Psalms 46:10

God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.
1 John 1:5

Accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God.
Romans 15:7


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Daily Inspiration

We all need time for ourselves and time to be with our friends in order to be joyful. Lord, help me to balance my day and renew my spirit.

Keep yourself young in spirit always by thinking new thoughts and getting rid of old habits. Lord, may my spirit never become frail and my abilities never become barren.

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NA Just For Today

Small Things

“In the past, we made simple situations into problems; we made mountains out of molehills.”
Basic Text, p. 87

Making mountains out of molehills seems to be our specialty. Have you heard it said that to an addict, a flat tire is a traumatic event? Or how about those of us who forget all pretense of principle when confronted with a bad driver? And what about that can opener that won’t work—you know, the one you just threw out the second story window? We can relate when we hear others share, “God, grant me patience right now!”

No, it’s not the major setbacks that drive us to distraction. The big things—divorce, death, serious illness, the loss of a job—will throw us, but we survive them. We’ve learned from experience that we must reach out to our Higher Power and others to make it through life’s major crises. It’s the small things, the constant day-to-day challenges of living life without the use of drugs, that seem to affect most addicts most strongly in recovery.

When the little things get to us, the Serenity Prayer can help us regain our perspective. We can all remember that “turning over” these small matters to the care of our Higher Power results in peace of mind and a refreshed perspective on life.

Just for today: I will work on patience. I will try to keep from blowing things out of proportion, and walk with my Higher Power through my day.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
There is no such thing as a long piece of work, except one that you dare not start. –Charles Baudelaire
A big assignment can be scary to face. We may start to think that how we do on the assignment will determine if we’re good or bad people. The more we think about it, the harder that task seems. The key to overcoming our negative feelings is to say to ourselves that we are capable of finishing our projects. We must say it over and over until we start believing it’s true. Then we can attack the assignment with vitality and positive energy we didn’t know we had.
We can make up our minds to do our best and accept that from ourselves. We say Edison was a genius, but our light bulbs still burn out regularly. Even Einstein was wrong once in a while, and he knew it, but that didn’t stop him from trying.
When we feel afraid to start something because it seems too big a job, let’s stop and think what the first step would be, and do each small step in its own time.
What can I start that I’ve been putting off?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
We all wear masks, and the time comes when we cannot remove them without removing some of our own shin.
–Andre Berthiaume
The masks men wear are as varied as those who wear them, but their purpose is quite simple. We wear masks to hide our real faces from those around us and even from ourselves. There are seductive masks, innocent masks, white knight masks, tough guy masks, black sheep masks, lone wolf masks, and many more. Sometimes we want to take on another identity so others won’t see our insecurities. Or we think taking the form of someone else will give us power over others, or they will like us better, or we can escape ourselves.
The cost of wearing a mask is not getting a chance to develop our real personalities. What masks are we attached to? Are we willing to give them up in the interest of our spiritual growth?
May I have the courage to drop my phony masks in order to grow stronger in self knowledge.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Taking Care of Ourselves
We cannot simultaneously set a boundary and take care of another persons feelings. Its impossible; the two acts contradict.
What a tremendous asset to have compassion for others! How difficult that same quality can make it to set boundaries!
Its good to care about other people and their feelings; its essential to care about ourselves too. Sometimes, to take good care of ourselves, we need to make a choice.
Some of us live with a deeply ingrained message from our family, or from church, about never hurting other peoples feelings. We can replace that message with a new one; one that says its not okay to hurt ourselves. Sometimes, when we take care of ourselves, others will react with hurt feelings.
That’s okay. We will learn, grow, and benefit by the experience; they will too. The most powerful and positive impact we can have on other people is accomplished by taking responsibility for ourselves, and allows others to be responsible for themselves.
Caring works. Caretaking doesn’t. We can learn to walk the line between the two.
Today, I will set the limits I need to set. I will let go of my need to take care of other peoples feelings and instead take care of my own. I will give myself permission to take care of myself, knowing its the best thing I can do for others and myself.

Today I know that I am in charge of the quality of my life. I am growing in the ability to become aware of the thoughts that have been controlling me. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Let Your Visions Guide You

Visions are different from dreams. A vision is a picture that comes from the soul and comes out through the heart.

A vision is a small glimpse of light that shines and shows us our path. It is a quick flash of something that hasn’t happened yet. It may tell us something about today or ten years from now. Visions occur when our souls look at the map for our lives, get a sense of where we’re going, and tell our hearts how to find that place. The more conscious and clear and direct we are, the more we can tune into and help create the highest vision for our lives.

What do you want? What would feel right? What do you see yourself doing? Be clear and concise, then let it go. Sometimes when we run out of dreams, we have to rely on our visions, these small glimpses of light, to lead the way. Learn to see the visions in your heart. Learn to trust them. Learn to help create them. Allow them to manifest themselves. When the path is dark, learn to be comfortable with these small bursts of light.

Let your visions guide you home.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Know your limits

While it’s good to be compassionate, we can become overly compassionate,too. Don’t work so hard at not judging other people that you forget to pay attention to what you don’t like.

“I know what it feels like to be abandoned and left. I don’t like the feeling, so I’m not going to leave my boyfriend,” Clara says. She’s living with a man who abuses her, emotionally and physically.

“I’m not going to judge her,” Ralph says about his new wife. She’s using cocaine and stealing money from him to get high. “She’s had a hard life, and I haven’t walked in her shoes.”

“I need to be compassionate and nonjudgemental with my son,” Robert says about a child who’s driving him to distraction with his manipulations and lies. “He’s had a hard life. His mother died when he was three. And I’m the only person he’s got left.”

You can set boundaries with someone, without judging that person. You can decide that behaviors are inappropriate and hurt you, without condemning that person.

Don’t forget, you have a right to say “ouch.”

We can say whatever with compassion and still take care of ourselves.

God, help me set appropriate limits with the people in my life.

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Capturing Life’s Flavor
Taking a Field Trip

When we were children, few words were more exciting to hear than the phrase “field trip.” Field trips were a break from schoolwork and an opportunity to go on an adventure with friends. Now that we are grown ups, taking a field trip can be just as fun and memorable – if only we were willing to sign our own permission slips so we could go on one.

Allowing yourself to get stuck in your routine can make life seem boring. Adding a touch of variety to your life in the form of a field trip can break up the monotony of your days and lead you to adventure. Unlike the jaunts that were regulated by teachers or monitored by parents, taking a field trip as an adult can lead you anywhere you want. You can go on a daylong retreat or spend just a few hours at your destination. A field trip can be an opportunity to explore a new landscape or discover something about yourself. Taking a day trip to another town or visiting an unfamiliar spot in your neighborhood can be educational and fun. There is also much to be said for finding a beautiful spot under a tree where you can read a book. You can even go to one of your favorite spots and allow yourself to experience it as if you were visiting there for the first time. Going on a field trip is as much a state of mind as it is a change in the scenery.

During a “grown up” field trip, schedules, clocks, and duties are put aside so you can focus wholeheartedly on mindfully enjoying yourself. Planning a field trip can be almost as fun as going on one. A field trip is an excursion to look forward to and an experience to be savored after the fact. Wherever you decide to go and whatever you decide to do, going on a field trip can add much pleasure and excitement to your life. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We learn in The Program and its Twelve Steps that as we grow spiritually, we find that our old attitudes toward our instinctual drives need to undergo drastic revisions. Our demands for emotional security and wealth,for personal prestige and power, all have to be tempered and redirected. We learn that the full satisfaction of these demands cannot be the sole end and aim of our lives. But when we’re willing to place spiritual growth first — then and only then do we have a real chance to grow in healthy awareness and mature love. Am I willing to place spiritual growth first?

Today I Pray

May my development as a spiritual person temper my habitual hankerings for materil security. May I understand that the only real security in life is spiritual. If I have faith in my Higher Power, these revisions in my attitudes will follow. May I grow first in spiritual awareness.

Today I Will Remember

Value the life of the spirit.

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One More Day

Don’t waste today regretting yesterday instead of making a memory for tomorrow.
– Laura Palmer

Our youthful dreams were filled with grand expectations of our impact on the world. Some of those goals were reached; many were not.

Now, it’s easier to accept that not all our plans will come to pass. In accepting that, we are able to set new goals that better reflect our dreams and ideals today. For a while it may seem as though we are “just surviving,” but we can have more.

At our stage of life we are capable of making mature decisions, of setting more realistic goals. Each day we can reflect upon our accomplishments and upon the joy of family, friends, and job. Finally, we can feel comfortable with ourselves, and we can look forward to our tomorrows.

Yesterday is gone and unchangeable, but today is real and is mine to use.

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Food For Thought

No Ultimate “ah”

When we were overeating, we sought an ultimate experience of satisfaction from food. No matter what kind of food we ate, or how much, we never found that moment of satisfaction, that ultimate “ah.” It was always just ahead, in the next bite.

Have we finally realized that the ultimate “ah” which we looked for in food does not exist? No matter what we eat, or how much, it will always elude us. Whatever we are looking for–happiness, success, peace, and fulfillment–it is not to be found in the refrigerator.

We do not promise that working the OA program will bring instant gratification or constant happiness. What we do know is that through the Twelve Steps we are given positive experiences which we did not have before OA. We are happier, more successful, more at peace, and more fulfilled than we ever were before we found this program.

By realizing that food holds no ultimate “ah,” we can stop destroying ourselves by chasing a rainbow which does not exist.

May I stop searching for happiness where it is not to be found.

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One Day At A Time

~ THE ITSY BITSY SPIDER ~

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”
Frank Herbert, Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear, Dune

Recently in our meeting room we had a new ‘member’. He was HUGE – well, we thought so, but who are we to judge? He was hairy, well maybe we’re not perfect…He strode into the room like he owned the place. Well certainly he had as much right to be there as we all did.

We shrieked. Maybe it was those 8 hairy legs, maybe it’s because he ran towards us like a streak of lightening, who knows.

Whatever he must have thought watching us giants leaping around the room we can only guess. He certainly seemed far more scared of us than we of him. It got me thinking of the insanity of some fears. After all what could this fragile little hairy thing do to me? He didn’t have 8 giant slippers to hit ME on the head. I was the one with the power, yet, through my fear I was giving HIM the power he really didn’t have. Instead of using the Power to give myself more confidence and behave rationally, I was wasting it away, GIVING it away. So many times I seem to repeat this same pattern. Of course some fears are rational, but most aren’t.
This program gives ME the freedom to ask my Higher Power to take away my shortcomings. To relax and step back and make a fresh start. I need never be afraid again of irrational things, not if I truly work the program.

Itsy Bitsy Spider scuttled out of the meeting in rather a hurry that night. Was he trying to avoid participating in the 7th Tradition? Or did he have a genuine rational fear?

Maybe he was quite simply restored to sanity.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will not be afraid … I will not empower anything to cause me to be fearful.
~ Marlene

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Now about health: A body badly burned by alcohol does not often recover overnight nor do twisted thinking and depression vanish in a twinkling. – Pg. 133 – The Family Afterward

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Now is the time to get into action and into the solution and stop being a part of your problem! Do this by remembering your last high, your last run, your last hopeless desperation. Then share that story with the next person you see and tell them how it led you to this new path of sobriety.

Show me the next person I am to share my story with.

Giving My Body a Voice

Today I will write in my journal as a part of my body. I might say something like, ‘I am your back and I want to cry. I am tired o being silent and this is what I want you to hear. Or maybe I’ll say, ‘as your stomach I want to rebel. I want to relax, and let go of all this’..’Or I am your legs and I wish you appreciated me. I carry you all around the world but you are constantly wishing I were different.’ I will let my body parts have a voice and scribble their thoughts onto paper them I will read what they have said to me and wonder about what they have told me.

I will put pen to paper

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

If you are not happy with what you have, what makes you think you would be happy with more?

Happiness is not having what I want but wanting what I have.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If you meet more than three assholes in one day, you need a meeting.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that I am in charge of the quality of my life. I am growing in the ability to become aware of the thoughts that have been controlling me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

God washed my eyes with tears until I could finally see. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 9

Choice
The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink.
Our so-called will power becomes practically nonexistent.
We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force
the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago.
We are without defense against the first drink.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p.24

Thought to Ponder . . .
Just for today, I choose not to drink.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
N E W = Nothing Else Worked.

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

The Light
“To what extent I was personally responsible for my drinking, I don’t know. Yet I’m not one to take complete refuge in the
idea that I was a sick man only. In earlier years, I certainly had some degree of free will. That free will I used badly, to the
great misery of my mother and countless others. I am deeply ashamed. As one who knows me a little, you may have
heard how, ten years ago, a friend, himself a liberated alcoholic, came to me bearing the light which finally led me out of
the toils. There will come a day like that for you and yours–I’m so confident!”
Bill W., Letter to the Mother of an Alcoholic, Dec. Language of the Heart, p. 102

Thought to Consider . . .
It’s impossible for me to love God and hate myself.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
ISM = I, Self, Me

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

Substitute
>From “Stay Sober on Love”:
“The things I thought I needed for so many years no longer seem important, now that I have become aware of the
spiritual resources God has given me. With these, I don’t need alcohol to function. What a joy to stay sober on love on
love instead of fear!” Toronto, Ontario/Canada
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 35

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

“If there are challenges to be met today, I remember other days when what seemed impossible was made possible.”
Huntington, W.V., August 2006
“Never Sober Today Before”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“We feel that elimination of our drinking is but a beginning. A much
more important demonstration of our principles lies before us in our
respective homes, occupations and affairs.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 19

“When people presented us with spiritual approaches, how frequently
did we all say, “I wish I had what that man has. I’m sure it
would work if I could only believe as he believes. But I cannot
accept as surely true the many articles of faith which are so plain
to him.” So it was comforting to learn that we could commence at a
simpler level.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 47~

True ambition is not what we thought it was. True ambition is the deep desire to live usefully and walk humbly under the grave of God.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 124

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Renew Your Effort
‘Though I know how hurt and sorry you must be after this slip, please do not worry about a temporary loss of your inner
peace. As calmly as you can, just renew your effort on the A.A. program, especially those parts of it which have to do
with meditation and self-analysis.
‘Could I also suggest that you look at excessive guilt for what it is? Nothing but a sort of reverse pride. A decent regret
for what has happened is fine. But guilt – no.
‘Indeed, the slip could well have been brought about by unreasonable feelings of guilt because of other moral failures, so
called. Surely, you ought to look into this possibility. Even here you should not blame yourself for failure; you can be
penalized only for refusing to try for better things.’ LETTER, 1958

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, please grant me the wisdom to understand that I do make a difference in the world.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 7th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 7th

Daily Reflections

THE KEY IS WILLINGNESS

Once we have placed the key of willingness in the lock
and have the door ever so slightly open, we find that
we can always open it some more.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 35

The willingness to give up my pride and self-will to a
Power greater than myself has proved to be the only
ingredient absolutely necessary to solve all of my
problems today. Even the smallest amount of willingness,
if sincere, is sufficient to allow God to enter and
take control over my problem, pain, or obsession. My
level of comfort is in direct relation to the degree of
willingness I possess at any given moment to give up my
self-will, and allow God’s will to be manifested in my
life. With the key of willingness, my worries and fears
are powerfully transformed into serenity.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

There are two important things we have to do if we want
to get sober and stay sober. First, having admitted that
we are helpless before alcohol, we have to turn our
alcoholic problem over to God and trust Him to take care
of it for us. This means asking Him every morning for the
strength to stay sober for that day and thanking Him
every night. It means really leaving the problem in God’s
hands and not reaching out and getting the problem back
to ourselves. Second, having given our drink problem to
God, we must cooperate with Him by doing something about
it ourselves. Am I doing these two things?

Meditation For The Day

I must prepare myself by doing each day what I can to
develop spiritually and to help others to do so. God tests
me and trains me and bends me to His will. If I am not
properly trained, I cannot meet the test when it comes. I
must want God’s will for me above all else. I must expect
to have what I am not prepared for. This preparation
consists of quiet communion with God every day and
gradually gaining the strength I need.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may really try to do God’s will in all my
affairs. I pray that I may do all I can to help others
find God’s will for them.

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

As Bill Sees It

For Emergencies Only?, p. 66

Whether we had been believers or unbelievers, we began to get over
the idea that the Higher Power was a sort of bush-league pinch
hitter, to be called upon only in an emergency.

The notion that we would still live our own lives, God helping a little
now and then, began to evaporate. Many of us who had thought
ourselves religious awoke to the limitations of this attitude. Refusing
to place God first, we had deprived ourselves of His help.

But now the words “Of myself I am nothing, the Father doeth the
works” began to carry bright promise and meaning.

12 & 12, p. 75

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Walk in Dry Places

First things First
Order
The struggle to bring order into our lives starts with lots of little things.  One recovering person discovered that it was a good exercise simply to put the cap back on the toothpaste tube in the morning.  This was a reminder that things should be put in their proper place, and the discipline helped later in organizing larger matters.
It is very easy to overlook orderly procedures in the haste to get things done, or to avoid anything that seems unpleasant or demanding. But such oversight  always carries a heavy price later on.  When we don’t return things to their proper place, for example, we lose them or waste hours  looking for them. We may bungle a job simply because we were too lazy to look up the right information or to read directions.
That’s why “First things First” is much more than just a slogan.  It’s actually a principle for living, a guide that tells us there is an orderly approach to everything.   If we can find that order without  becoming slavishly compulsive about it, we’ll find that it simplifies lots of things later on.
I’ll try to do things in an orderly manner today.  When I find myself taking short cuts or becoming too hurried, I’ll regain control by remembering to establish priorities.

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Keep It Simple

To make the world a friendly place One must show it a friendly face.—James Whitcomb Riley
We are beginning to learn that we get what we expect. Why? If we believe that people are out to get us, we’ll not treat them well. We will think it’s okay to “get them” before they “get us.” Then, they’ll be angry and want to get even. And on it goes. It’s great when we can meet the world with a balance. We are honest people. We can expect others to be fair with us. We get the faith, strength, and courage to do this because of our trust in our Higher Power.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I put my life in Your care. Use me to spread Your love to others.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll spread friendliness. I will greet people with a smile.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.  –Anne Frank
We must take responsibility for ourselves, for who we become, for how we live each day. The temptation to blame others may be ever present. And much of our past adds up to wasted days or years perhaps, because we did blame someone else for the unhappiness in our lives.
We may have blamed our own parents for not loving us enough. We may have labeled our husbands the villains. Other people did affect us. That’s true. However, we chose, you and I, to let them control us, overwhelm us, shame us. We always had other options, but we didn’t choose them.
Today is a new day. Recovery has opened up our options. We are learning who we are and how we want to live our lives. How exhilarating to know that you and I can take today and put our own special flavor in it. We can meet our personal needs. We can, with anticipation, chart our course. The days of passivity are over, if we choose to move ahead with this day.
I will look to this day. Every day is a new beginning.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

Abruptly in October 1929 hell broke loose on the New York stock exchange. After one of those days of inferno, I wobbled from a hotel bar to a brokerage office. It was eight o’clock-five hours after the market closed. The ticker still clattered. I was staring at an inch of the tape which bore the inscription XYZ-32. It had been 52 that morning. I was finished and so were many friends. The papers reported men jumping to death from the towers of High Finance. That disgusted me. I would not jump. I went back to the bar. My friends had dropped several million since ten o’clock-so what? Tomorrow was another day. As I drank, the old fierce determination to win came back.

p. 4

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.
I do know that my life is different now.  I haven’t had a drink since I came to A.A.  I have fewer resentments, and I don’t spend much time thinking about the past.  I’ve found my experience can be of help to other people.  I have come to believe that hard times are not just meaningless suffering and that something good might turn up at any moment.  That’s a big change for someone who used to come to in the morning feeling sentenced to another day of life.  When I wake up today, there are lots of possibilities.  I can hardly wait to see what’s going to happen next.
I keep coming back because it works.

p. 374

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

Now comes the election. If the founder and his friends have served well, they may – to their surprise – be reinstated for a time. If, however, they have heavily resisted the rising tide of democracy, they may be summarily beached. In either case, the group now has a so-called rotating committee, very sharply limited in its authority. In no sense whatever can its members govern or direct the group. They are servants. Theirs is the sometimes thankless privilege of doing the group’s chores. Headed by the chairman, they look after public relations and arrange meetings. Their treasurer, strictly accountable, takes money from the hat that is passed, banks it, pays the rent and other bills, and makes a regular report at business meetings. The secretary sees that literature is on the table, looks after the phone-answering service, answers the mail, and sends out notices of meetings. Such are the simple services that enable the group to function. the committee gives no spiritual advice, judges no one’s conduct, issues no orders. Every one of them may be promptly eliminated at the next election if they try this. And so they make the belated discovery that they are really servants, not senators. These are universal experiences. Thus throughout A.A. does the group conscience decree the terms upon which its leaders shall serve.

p. 134

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

“I used to say, ‘I sure hope things will change.’ Then I learned that
the only way things are going to change for me is when I change.”
–Jim Rohn

Troubles are often the tools by which God fashions us for better
things.
–Henry Ward Beecher

Expecting the world to be fair to you because you are a good person
is like expecting the bull not to charge because you are a vegetarian.

Today I will do something I should have done yesterday.
–Nelle Bruner Weddington

It’s so important to treat others like you would expect to be treated.
It’s a universal law that the hurt and pain you have caused on others
will come back and affect you, but the love and joy you have inspired
in others, will also inspire you.

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

IDEALS

“An idealist is one who, on
noticing that a rose smells
better than a cabbage,
concludes that it will also make
better soup.”
— H.L. Mencken

The spiritual program teaches me to be an idealist with my feet on
the ground. People will continue to hurt, get angry and tell lies;
wrestling with imperfections is not just my problem. I need to accept
that I live in an imperfect world and recovery involves reality, not
illusion.

My responsibility in recovery is for my life. I cannot change other
people, events or relationships — I can only change me. I am not
God. Each time I forget this fact, I risk another hurt.

Help me to aspire for ideals that are within my grasp.

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

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
Psalms 46:1

For the Lord gives wisdom and from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.
Proverbs 2:6

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart
of stone and give you a heart of flesh.
Ezek 36:26

Let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us.
Hebrews 12:1


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

Daily Inspiration

It is not in the good times, but rather in the times of stress and misfortune, that our faith is tested. Lord, remove my doubts as they creep in and help me turn my times of turmoil into times of spiritual growth.

No matter what you must confront today, know that God is with you. Lord, today is part of Your plan for me. I do not doubt You and therefore I will not doubt You within me.

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

NA Just For Today

Priorities

“The good times can also be a trap; the danger is that we may forget that our first priority is to stay clean.”
Basic Text, p. 42

Things can get really good in our recovery. Perhaps we’ve found our “soul mate” built a rewarding career, started a family. Maybe our relationships with our family members have healed. Things are going so well, we barely have time to attend meetings. Perhaps we begin to reintegrate into society so successfully that we forget that we don’t always react to situations like others do.

Maybe, just maybe, we’ve put some priorities ahead of themselves. Is meeting attendance still a priority with us? Do we still sponsor? Do we phone our sponsor? What step are we working? Are we still willing to drag ourselves out of bed at some ungodly hour for a Twelfth Step call? Do we remember to practice principles in all our affairs? If others in NA reach out to us, are we available? Do we remember where we came from, or have the “good times” allowed us to forget?

To stay clean, we must remember that we are only one drug away from our past. We stay grateful for the good times, but we don’t let them divert us from our continuing recovery in Narcotics Anonymous.

Just for today: I’m grateful for the good times, but I’ve not forgotten from where I’ve come. Today, my first priority is staying clean and growing in my recovery.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
He who distributes the milk of human kindness cannot help but spill a little on himself. –James Barrie
We like ourselves best when we like those around us. When we smile at them, they smile back; when we ask them, they tell us about themselves. When we scowl at people, they’ll frown back; when we ignore them, they’ll walk away.
It’s true that we get back what we put into things, whether it’s work, play, love, or gardening. We decide by the extent of our commitment how valuable or enjoyable or depressing an experience can be for us.
Our actions toward others come right back to us. When we smile at people, they smile back, and we feel good. Sometimes feeling good about ourselves depends on feeling good about others. When we send out that smile of ours, those who get it pass it on, and we have added power to the happiness of the world.
What can I do to show my fondness for others today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
A controller doesn’t trust his/her ability to live through the pain and chaos of life. There is no life without pain just as there is no art without submitting to chaos. –Rita Mae Brown
It is very hard for most of us to see how controlling we are. We may feel uptight or careful, but we haven’t seen it as controlling ourselves or controlling how people respond to us. We may be worried about a loved one’s behavior or safety, but not realize our hovering over that person is a controlling activity. We may be keenly aware of other people’s controlling behavior with us, but unaware we have equaled their control by monitoring them and trying to change their behavior.
What a moment of spiritual adventure it is to risk living through the pain! When we do not seek an escape or a quick fix but have patience with the process, new possibilities often do develop. We can only let go of our control – or turn it over to our Higher Power. And we will do it and forget, taking control back within minutes or within an hour. Then we let go again.
Today, I will submit to the insecurity of a changing universe and have faith that 1 can live through the process and grow.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Fulfillment
Everything I need shall be provided today. Everything. Say it, until you believe it. Say it at the beginning of the day. Say it throughout the day.
Sometimes, it helps to know what we want and need. But if we don’t, we can trust that God does.
When we ask, trust, and believe that our needs will be met, our needs will be met. Sometimes God cares about the silliest little things, if we do.
Today, I will affirm that my needs will be met. I will affirm that God cares and is the Source of my supply. Then I will let go and see that what I have risked to believe is the truth.

It is exciting to know that my thoughts and my actions in the present moment condition the next moment. I am responsible for my future. Today I am bringing awareness to my self-talk and replacing all negative thoughts with positive thoughts as soon as they appear on my mindscape. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Redefine Service

Service is a key, an important one. It’s a key to joy, to love. And a gold key to the journey.

How long we thought service meant doing everything for everyone. How long we thought service had to be hard, taxing, boring– that it meant doing something we didn’t want to do to help someone who didn’t want to be helped.

Now, we’re defining service differently. Service is joyful. It’s an attitude, a belief, a way of looking at ourselves and our lives. Our very life is service. Our being is service. Service arises and springs naturally out of self-love. It arises from being who we are and from doing the things we want to do and are led to do. The things that bring us the most joy will bring the most service to the world. Doing things we don’t want to do will leave us and the world around us cold, untouched, unmoved.

Service is love and joy. Service is being who you are. Bask in self-love. Service will flow naturally from that. It will be freely given and freely received. And now what you do will really help.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Recognize manipulations

Herein lies an irony: the person who is trying to manipulate you views you as having greater strength or power than he or she does.
–George H. Green and Carolyn Cotter

Stop Being Manipulated

George Green and Carolyn Cotter describe manipulation as an encounter in which someone else attempts to control how you feel, behave, or think– without your permission– and it causes you discomfort as a result.

Most of us use manipulation, from time to time, to get what we want. Sometimes our manipulations are harmless’ even cute. Both people know a low-grade manipulation is at hand. Both people basically want what the manipulator is working so hard to get– dinner out, a movie, a walk through the park. It’s not a big deal.

Other times, the stakes are higher and the people involved don’t agree. That’s when manipulations can be harmful. When we don’t know what we want, when we’re not clear with others and ourselves about how we feel, a manipulation is in the air.

Sometimes manipulationx are conscious and deliberate. Other times they’re unconscious, foggy attempts to get what we want.

“Let’s simplify our definition of manipulation,” suggest Green and Cotter. “If an encounter leaves you feeling crummy, it probably involves manipulation of some sort.”

Isn’t it ironic that sometimes the very feeling we’re trying to deny is exactly what we need to be feeling to take care of ourselves?

Next time you’re faced with a situation that leaves you feeling crummy, take a moment to see if a manipulation was involved. Remember that whenever others try to manipulate you, they perceive you as having something they want and as being more powerful than they are. If you’re powerful enough to be a target for a manipulation, you’re powerful enough to take care of yourself.

God, help me let go of my belief that I need to manipulate other people to get what I want. Help me stop letting others manipulate me.

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Letting Go of Understanding
Deeper Meanings

by Madisyn Taylor

We don’t always need to know the deeper meaning of everything that happens in our lives.

All of us who seek to be conscious and aware regard our experiences as teachers, and we try to discern what lessons we are learning from the things that happen in our lives. Sometimes the lesson is very clear from the get-go, and other times we have to really search to understand the deeper meaning behind some event. While this search often yields results, there also comes a point in the search where what we really need to do is move forward. It is possible that we are not meant to know the deeper meaning of certain occurrences. Answers may come later in our lives, or they may come as a result of letting go, or they may never come.

We are all part of a complex system of being, and things work themselves out in the system as a whole. Sometimes we are just playing a necessary part in that process with a result larger than we can understand. It may have very little to do with us personally, and while that can be hard to understand, it can also free us from overthinking the matter. Sometimes it is best to see it in terms of karma, a past debt we have been able to repay in this way, or as the clearing of energy. We can simply thank the event for being part of our experience and let it go. This completes the process that the occurrence has made possible.

To make this letting go official, we can perform a ritual, make a final journal entry on the subject, or sit in meditation with the intention of releasing the event from our consciousness. As we do so, we summon it one last time, honoring it with our attention, thanking it, and saying good-bye. We then let it go out the door, out the window, out the top of our heads, or into the earth through the bottoms of our feet, liberating ourselves from any burden we have carried in association with it. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

It’s time for me to realize that my attitude — toward the life I’m living and the people in it — can have a tangible, measurable and profound effect on what happens to me day by day. If I expect good, then good will surely come to me. And If I try each day to base my attitude and point of view on a sound spiritual foundation, I know it will change all the circumstances of my life for the better, too. Do I accept the fact that I have been given only a daily reprieve that is contingent on my spiritual condition?

Today I Pray

since my illness was spiritual — as well as physical and emotional — may I mend spiritually through daily communion with God. May I find a corner of quiet within me where I can spend a few moments with Him. May He make His will known to me. May I worship Him from that inner temple that is in myself.

Today I will Remember

To spend a quiet moment with God.

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One More Day

Life if you will, is a work of art, and if we have paid loving attention to its details, we will be able to take pride in the finished product.
– Harold Kushner

Without even realizing it, we often do things that are good for us and make us happy. We do something that creates well-being, and we have a successful day. When we pay attention to actions that create well-being we can have a successful week. Taking good care of our homes makes us feel proud and so does helping a fellow human being in need. Making volunteer work a part of how we live, showing kindness to others and ourselves, reaching out — all these choices enhance our well-being.

When we pay attention to those around us, a transformation occurs within our spiritual selves. Then we shall have given ourselves the gift of a meaningful life.

I will pay loving attention to the details of my day.

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

Food For Thought

Accepting Abstinence

Abstinence is not so much something we achieve as it is a gift from our Higher Power. It is given to us constantly, from the time we wake up in the morning through every minute of the day.

If we think of abstinence as something we have to acquire through great effort, we will be afraid that we will fail. We will think of weeks and months and years stretching ahead of us and say, “I’ll never make it.”

Abstinence is given to us now, each day, and all we need to do is accept it. It is not something we do only in order to lose a certain number of pounds. By abstaining, we will lose the pounds, but when we are at our desired weight we continue to maintain abstinence. Abstinence is our freedom from compulsive overeating and the gift of new life.

Thank you, Lord, for abstinence.

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One Day At A Time

Perseverance
To keep a lamp burning we have to keep putting oil on it.
Mother Teresa

As a child I can still remember being terribly stubborn, and would even have a temper tantrum if I didn’t want to do something. As I grew up, the trait of stubbornness remained, and it would be hard to get me to budge if I had decided I didn’t want to do something. After coming into the program, I realized that stubbornness is actually a character defect of mine, and whilst I am praying to be relieved of it in its negative form, I also know that that same character defect in its positive form has helped me tremendously in the program, especially seeing my journey has been one which has been characterized with many slips along the way. But one of the things that I’ve never stopped doing is coming back, and I know that it is this very character defect of stubbornness, turned into perseverance, that has made me keep working at the program, even when it would be easier to just give up. So I have kept coming to meetings, and working the steps and the tools even when I was struggling, because I know that it is only when I do that, I have a chance of recovery.

It has been said that this is a program of action, and so I repeat on a daily basis the actions that have brought recovery to thousands. Some days it is harder than others, especially when the willingness is not there, and on those days my old pattern of wanting to block out the feelings with food resurfaces. But I also know that when I use the tools and work the steps, I can deal with the feelings without resorting to food, because my Higher Power will help me to get through the daily struggles when I turn them over to Him. So what I need to do on a daily basis is to ask for help from my Higher Power with my unmanageable life, instead of turning to food, and even on days where I’m struggling, I just need to keep putting one foot in front of the other and persevering with working the program.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will persevere with working the program, so that I can recover from this disease of compulsive overeating and be restored to sanity on a daily basis.
~ Sharon ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The old pleasures were gone. They were but memories. Never could we recapture the great moments of the past. There was an insistent yearning to enjoy life as we once did and a heartbreaking obsession that some new miracle of control would enable us to do it. There was always one more attempt — and one more failure. – Pg. 151 – A Vision For You

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Right now, whatever is bothering you, set it aside. Turn to the next person you see and smile. Tell them hi and wish them well for the moment. That is the first step to getting out of self.

When I am tempted to obsess on myself, please show me the way to be kind to someone else.

Letting My Body Speak

I will let my body have a voice today and I will listen to what it’s trying to say to me. If my body’s voice has tears in it, I will allow those tears to come out. If my body is holding anger, I will allow myself to experience that anger so that it can dissolve and my cells no longer have to hold it for me. If my body wants to shiver and shake I will let it, knowing that it just needs to release something it doesn’t want to hang onto any more.

I allow my body to let go of the emotions it is holding

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘Being angry at God won’t hurt God, and neither will it provoke Him to take measures against us. If it makes us feel better to vent our anger at Him over a painful situation, we are free to do it. The only thing wrong with doing it is that what happened to us was not really God’s fault.’ -Harold S. Kushner, When Bad Things Happen to Good People

Usually, things don’t happen TO make me angry; things happen THAT make me angry.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You may be the only copy of the Big Book some people ever see.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I feel so good knowing that I am a power of example for future generations today as I walk on my new path of truth. I am making a difference not only in my own life but in the lives of those who follow me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I had an open mind; everything went right through. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 7

No Reservation
We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again:
“Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic.”
Commencing to drink after a period of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.
If we are planning to stop drinking, there must be no reservation of any kind,
nor any lurking notion that someday we will be immune to alcohol.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 33

Thought to Ponder . . .
If we want to quit drinking, we are going to have to quit drinking.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
K C B = Keep Coming Back.

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

Obsession
“Under the lash of alcoholism, we are driven to AA, and there we discover the fatal nature of our situation. Then, and only
then, do we become as open-minded and as willing to listen as the dying can be. We stand ready to do anything which
will lift the merciless obsession from us.

Thought to Consider . . .
The best things in life aren’t things.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
NUTS Not Using The Steps

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

Illogical
>From “I Must Learn”:
“‘Man is ready to die for an idea, provided that idea is not quite clear to him,’ Paul Eldridge wrote. That is the way the
spiritual side of the A.A. program appears to me. I’m in trouble if I attempt to parse it: I don’t attempt to understand it.”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 101

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

“AA gives us a Ph.D. in life and a black belt in common sense.”
Keego Harbor, Mich., June 1998
“Paradoxes of Sobriety”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

~*~*~*~*^ 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~

“It did not satisfy us to be told that we could not control our
drinking just because we were maladjusted to life, that we were in
full flight from reality, or were outright mental defectives. These
things were true to some extent, in fact, to a considerable extent
with some of us. But we are sure that our bodies were sickened as
well. In our belief, any picture of the alcoholic which leaves out
this physical factor is incomplete.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctor’s Opinion, pg. xxvi~

Then, in Step Seven, we humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings such as He could or would under the
conditions of the day we asked. In step Eight, we continued our house-cleaning, for we saw that we were not only in
conflict with ourselves, but also with people and situations in the world in which we lived. We had to begin to make our peace.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 108

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

For Emergencies Only?
Whether we had been believers or unbelievers, we began to get over the idea that the Higher Power was a sort of bush-
league pinch hitter, to be called upon only in an emergency.
The notion that we would still live our own lives, God helping a little now and then, began to evaporate. Many of us who
had thought ourselves religious awoke to the limitations of this attitude. Refusing to place God first, we had deprived
ourselves of His help.
But now the words ‘Of myself I am nothing, the Father doeth the works’ began to carry bright promise and meaning.
TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 75

Prayer For The Day: Holy God, as I face another day, I know I am going to face many challenges: to my faith, to my
patience, to my love for others. I am going to have constant temptations to lapse into sin. Come to me now, Lord, and
stay with me all day. Let your Spirit encompass my mind. Let me know your presence. Steer my hand, direct my words,
guide my thoughts in everything I think and say and do. I resolve to live this day as a beacon of your glory, the best I can,
with your help. I commit myself to give this day to you. In the name of Christ, be with me and help me. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 6th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 6th

Daily Reflections

THE IDEA OF FAITH

Do not let any prejudice you might have against
spiritual terms deter you from honestly asking yourself
what they mean to you.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 47

The idea of faith is a very large chunk to swallow when
fear, doubt and anger abound in and around me. Sometimes
just the idea of doing something different, something I
am not accustomed to doing, can eventually become an act
of faith if I do it regularly, and do it without
debating whether it’s the right thing to do. When a bad
day comes along and everything is going wrong, a meeting
or a talk with another drunk often distracts me just
enough to persuade me that everything is not quite as
impossible, as overwhelming as I had thought. In the
same way, going to a meeting or talking to a fellow
alcoholic are acts of faith; I believe I’m arresting
my disease. These are ways I slowly move toward faith
in a Higher Power.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In A.A., we must surrender, give up, admit that we’re
helpless. We surrender our lives to God and ask Him for
help. When He knows that we’re ready, He gives us
by His grace the free gift of sobriety. And we can’t take
any credit for having stopped drinking, because we didn’t
do it by our own willpower. There’s no place for pride or
boasting. We can only be grateful to God for doing for us
what we could never do for ourselves. Do I believe that
God has made me a free gift of the strength to stay sober?

Meditation For The Day

I must work for God, with God and through God’s help. By
doing all I can to bring about a true fellowship of human beings,
I am working for God. I am also working with God, because
this is the way God works, and He is with me when I am
doing such work. I cannot do good work, however, without
God’s help. In the final analysis, it is through the
grace of God that any real change in human personality
takes place. I have to rely on God’s power and anything
I accomplish is through His help.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may work for God and with God. I pray that
I may be used to change human personalities through
God’s help.

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As Bill Sees It

Growth By The Tenth Step, p. 65

In the years ahead A.A. will, of course, make mistakes. Experience
has taught us that we need have no fear of doing this, providing that
we always remain willing to admit our faults and to correct them
promptly. Our growth as individuals has depended upon this healthy
process of trial and error. So will our growth as a fellowship.

Let us always remember that any society of men and women that
cannot freely correct its own faults must surely fall into decay if not
into collapse. Such is the universe penalty for the failure to go on
growing. Just as each A.A. must continue to take his moral inventory
and act upon it, so must our whole Society if we are to survive and if
we are to serve usefully and well.

A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 231

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Walk in Dry Places

Example, not exception___Helping Others.
It’s always heady stuff when others congratulate us on our victory over alcohol.  Fair-minded people will have considerable admiration for what appears to be a bootstrap effort to make a comeback from despair and defeat.
We can accept this praise with grace and modesty.  At some point, however, we should emphasize that our recovery was an example of spiritual principles at work and that thousands have been able to follow in the same path.  Sober AA members are not exceptions; they are examples of what the program can do in people’s lives.
It is important to emphasize that we are ordinary people.  The marvelous thing about the program is that it works for ordinary people like ourselves.  Many people in the fellowship have great talent and ability, but those gifts have nothing to do with staying sober.  The gifted person gets sober the same way anybody does…..  by admitting powerlessness over alcohol and by accepting the program.
We are also helped most by people who can serve as examples in our lives.  It is always inspiring to know that we can follow in their paths and find what has been given to them.
I want to provide a good example for others today.  I will go through the day remembering that my sobriety is a gift that can be bestowed on anybody___it was not an exception just for me.


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Keep It Simple

When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck.
Remember how we tried to make others think we were not in trouble? We walked and talked like addicts. We acted like addicts. Most everyone knew the truth but us. We were like ducks pretending to be eagles.
We see ourselves as we really are. But sometimes we can’t see ourselves that way. This is normal.
That’s why we need others to help us see what we can’t. We were addicts. We are now recovering addicts. We need friends, sponsors, and family members to tell us when we may be acting like addicts again. It may save our lives.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, give my friends and family members the strength to tell me when I’m acting like an addict.
Action for the Day:  I’ll go to people whom I trust and ask them to tell me when I’m acting like an addict.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Life is made up of desires that seem big and vital one minute, and little and absurd the next. I guess we get what’s best for us in the end.  –Alice Caldwell Rice
It is often said that we will be granted our heart’s “pure desires.” When we have many unmet desires, maybe we should be grateful. Wants, ultimately not for our good, can open the way to many unneeded and painful experiences.
How often we sit, wishing for a better job, a more loving relationship, a different weather forecast. How seldom we take positive advantage of what is at hand, not realizing that whatever is, right now, is the ticket to the next act in the drama of our lives.
We have before us a very limited picture. We cannot possibly know just what we need to travel the distance that’s in store for us. Our desires, when they are pure, will carry us to the right destination. They are inspired. But the desires that are motivated by our selfish egos will lead us astray. Many times in the past we did not give up those desires. And the painful memories linger.
Desiring God’s will is my most fruitful desire. It’s also what is best for me; thus, what I need. All things are working for good when I let my higher power determine my desires.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

In 1929 I contracted golf fever. We went at once to the country, my wife to applaud while I started out to overtake Walter Hagen. Liquor caught up with me much faster than I came up behind Walter. I began to be jittery in the morning. Golf permitted drinking every day and every night. It was fun to carom around the exclusive course which had inspired such awe in me as a lad. I acquired the impeccable coat of tan one sees upon the well-to-do. The local banker watched me whirl fat checks in and out of his till with amused skepticism.

pp. 3-4

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.
More than eleven years later it’s hard to recapture the feelings of that night.  What do I believe as a result?  I can say that doubting God’s existence was no barrier at all to spiritual experience.  Also, I can say that having such an experience didn’t lead me to any certainty about God.  Alcoholics Anonymous gives me the freedom to believe and to doubt as much as I need to.

p. 373-374

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

Growing pains now beset the group. Panhandlers panhandle. Lonely hearts pine. Problems descend like an avalanche. Still more important, murmurs are heard in the body politic, which swell into a loud cry: “Do these oldtimers think they can run this group forever? Let’s have an election!” The founder and his friends are hurt and depressed. They rush from crisis to crisis and from member to member, pleading; but it’s no use, the revolution is on. The group conscience is about to take over.

pp. 133-134

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We surrender to win.

A tree is known by its fruit; a man by his deeds. A good deed is
never lost; he who sows courtesy reaps friendship, and he who plants
kindness gathers love.
–Basil (329-379 A.D.)

“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”
–John Lubbock

“Age is a matter of feeling…not of years.”
–George William Curtis

“The future comes one day at a time.”
–Dean Acheson

Sharing love and life with someone is the one of the greatest gifts of
all. Take the time to appreciate it and enjoy it.

“Joy is the feeling of grinning on the inside.”
–Dr. Melba Colgrove

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

HYPOCRISY

“Hypocrisy: prejudice with a halo.”
— Ambrose Bierce

As a religious person I could be such a hypocrite. I thought that my
“goodness” was dependent upon my judging others to be inferior. I
was always putting other people down so that I could appear terrific.

But a part of me always knew this was wrong. I ignored the religious
teaching that emphasized forgiveness and acceptance and instead
focused on judgment and condemnation. It was all part of my sickness.
Inside I was hurting and feeling guilty but I hid these feelings with a
mask of hypocrisy and respectability.

Today I do not need to do this. I have a religion that can accept the
non-religious and rejoice in the different cultures and creeds. I do not
fear those who are different, and I am slowly beginning to accept my
many imperfections.

You, who have loved me through forgiveness, help me to forgive.

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“Put away your former way of life, your old self … be renewed in the spirit of your
minds … according to the likeness of God.”
Ephesians 4:22-24

“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
John 15:13

Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what
you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body
more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom
or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you
by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing,
why do you worry about the rest?
Luke 12:22-26


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Daily Inspiration

Repeatedly remind yourself what a wonderful person you are. Lord, help me to believe in myself as You believe in me and focus on my goodness.

God’s plans for you are beyond your imagination. Lord, may I not limit myself to my past experiences, but be willing to accept new opportunities and challenges into my life.

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NA Just For Today

Rationalizing Away Our Recovery

“As a result of the Twelve Steps, I’m not able to hold on to old ways of deceiving myself.”
Basic Text, pg. 176

We all rationalize. Sometimes we know we are rationalizing, admit we are rationalizing, yet continue to behave according to our rationalizations! Recovery can become very painful when we decide that, for one reason or another, the simple principals of the program don’t apply to us.

With the help of our sponsors and others in NA we can begin to look at the excuse we use for our behavior. Do we find that some principals just don’t apply to us? Do we believe that we know more that everyone else in Narcotics Anonymous, even those who have been clean for many years? What makes us think that we’re so special

There is no doubt, we can successfully rationalize our way through part of our recovery. But, eventually, we must squarely face the truth and start acting accordingly. The principals in the Twelve Steps guide us to a new life in recovery. There is little room for rationalization there.

Just for today: I cannot work the steps and also continue deceiving myself. I will examine my thinking for rationalizations, reveal them to my sponsor, and be rid of them.

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This Mouse must give up one of the Mouse ways of seeing things in order that he may grow. –Hyemeyohsts Storm
There is an American Indian tale of a mouse who heard a roaring in his ears and set out to discover what it was. He encountered many animals who helped him on his way. Finally, the mouse had a chance to offer help to another. He gave away his eyes to help two other animals.
Without his sight, defenseless, he waited for the end. Soon he heard the sound eagles make when they dive for their prey. The next thing the mouse knew, he was flying. He could see all the splendor around him. Then he heard a voice say, “You have a new name. You are Eagle.”
Like the mouse, we also feel something inside us we’d like to explore. That secret, like all others, has its answer hidden deep within us, yet right under our very nose. Often, we merely have to give up our eyes and see in a different way. When we do this, we are rewarded with a new kind of vision, one that lets us discover our true potential.
How can I look at things differently today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
A boy must be initiated into the world of men. It doesn’t happen by itself; it doesn’t happen just because he eats Wheaties. And only men can do this work. –Robert Ely
Many of us grew into manhood with a surface picture of what it means to be masculine. We had images of tough guys playing rough, but we weren’t emotionally close enough to another man to really know him. Many of us never knew our fathers’ strengths, passions, and weak points. It left us with a distorted picture of masculinity and not with an inner knowing. Getting close to other men is a new experience, and it may feel frightening or threatening.
We can develop close friendships with other males and let them know us as we are, rather than as this picture we try to imitate. This kind of relationship in play and work and troubled times is a central part of our spiritual recovery. Close relationships with other men teach us confidence in ourselves and give us inner security.
I will be aware today of men with whom 1 can develop a friendship and will take one small step toward them.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Peace
Anxiety is often our first reaction to conflict, problems, or even our own fears. In those moments, detaching and getting peaceful may seem disloyal or apathetic. We think: If I really care, Ill worry; if this is really important to me, I must stay upset. We convince ourselves that outcomes will be positively affected by the amount of time we spend worrying.
Our best problem solving resource is peace. Solutions arise easily and naturally out of a peaceful state. Often, fear and anxiety block solutions. Anxiety gives power to the problem, not the solution. It does not help to harbor turmoil. It does not help.
Peace is available if we choose it. In spite of chaos and unsolved problems around us, all is well. Things will work out. We can surround ourselves with the resources of the Universe: water, earth, a sunset, a walk, a prayer, a friend. We can relax and let ourselves feel peace.
Today, I will let go of my need to stay in turmoil. I will cultivate peace and trust that timely solutions and goodness will arise naturally and harmoniously out of the wellspring of peace. I will consciously let go and let God.

I am learning to trust my instincts and move away from unpleasant and stressful people, places and things. I no longer have to stay in situations that bring me unhappiness and pain. I am turning around today to see the joy. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Let Your Sexuality Be Connected to Your Heart

He was a handsome man. An acotr. “Something happened to me lately,” he shared. “It’s about my sexuality. I used to be sexual when and where I felt like it. No more. And it’s not connected to fear of disease, although that’s certainly a concern. What happened to me is that my sexuality has become connected to my heart.”

Let go of sexual shame. Embrace your sexuality. Value your senses, all of them– touch, smell, taste, seeing, and hearing. Value your other senses,too– your intuition, your spirituality, your spirit’s reaction to the world that dances around you. Open up to colors, textures, scents, and sounds.

Open up to your energy, all of it, including your sexuality. Let yourself see that all expressions of your love and your being are beautiful. Let yourself learn to express and receive love in sensual ways, ways that work for you.

Be done with sexual shame. Trust your body and what it likes. We aren’t disconnected parts. Open up. Discover your sexuality. Let it be connected to your heart.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Neutralize conflicts

Unless you want a fight or an argument, don’t give people anything to push against.

Here is a key to harmonizing with people who are upset or have a point of view different from your own. Stay so relaxed when you talk to them that you allow yourself to empathize with how they think and feel. That doesn’t mean that you give in to people’s every whim. It means, instead, that you are so clear and focused that you can genuinely let other people be who they are, too.

It’s both naive and egotistical to think that everyone thinks and feels the same as us. It’s ridiculous to beliieve that everyone will agree with our point of view. One of the true signs of a person who is growing in consciousness is that he or she recognizes that each person has individual motives, desires, and feelings.

“Instead of meeting a verbal attack with a verbal conterattack you respond first by coming around to your attacker’s point of view, seeing the situation from his or her viewpoint,” wrote George Leonard in the Way of Akido.

He was talking about using a concept called “blending” to deal with verbal confromtations in our daily lives. “The response, whether physical or verbal, is quite disarming, leaving the attacker with no target to focus on. It’s a means by which you can multiply your options in responding to any kind of attack.”

If the person espousing his or her point of view is just trying to get us to react or has no desire for reconciliation, we can still neutralize the conflict by staying relaxed, letting the other person be, and responding by saying “hmmmm.” It’s a polite way of saying whatever, when expressing your disagreement would only lead to a senseless fight. At the least, you’ll become a great conversationalist, a respectable art to be acquired. At best, you’ll bring about world peace, at least in your corner of the world.

God, help me be so clear on who I am that I can generously afford to let other people be who they are,too. Help me to set aside my defensive behavior, and teach me to blend with other people and see their point of view while not relinquishing my own.

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Exploring an Alternate Universe
What Makes People Tick?

by Madisyn Taylor

Interacting peacefully with people from all walks of life is a matter of first understanding where they are coming from.

All people have their own way of being in the world. It is easiest to comprehend this basic yet profound fact when we consider that every human being on the planet occupies a distinct role in the universe. We grow up in different environments, affected by a unique range of influences. The preferences, values, and beliefs we embrace are frequently related intimately to our origins. And the need to individualize our experiences is instinctive, as doing so enables us to cope when we must face challenges on our own. Consequently, each of us has developed a perspective that is uniquely ours. Interacting peacefully and constructively with people from all walks of life is a matter of first understanding where they are coming from. Then we can adjust our expectations so that we avoid making undue assumptions about what they are about.

In the face of emerging interpersonal conflict, it is easy to assume that others are being difficult, unreasonable, or stubborn. We are apt to grow frustrated when someone in our environment does not share our opinions or feel compelled to support us in our endeavors. It is likely that the individual or individuals before us may simply possess differing notions with regard to what is and what is not important in this life. We can ease the tension that exists between us by reaffirming our belief in the fundamental right of all beings to determine their own destinies. To foster a harmonious relationship, we need to do our best to relate to the unique universes they inhabit. And as we discover what makes them tick, our ability to find a mode of interaction that is pleasing to both of us is enhanced.

When there are barriers keeping you from connecting with someone else, think of questions you can ask them to gain a more thorough understanding of their point of view. You may discover that in addition to the differences in perspective dividing you, they are subject to insecurities and other personal issues that influence their way of seeing the world. It is likely that you will never fully grasp the myriad complexities embodied by humanity, but you can go a long way toward encouraging mutually satisfying relations by reaching out to others in the spirit of sympathetic comprehension. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

There is no advantage, no profit and certainly no growth when I deceive myself merely to escape the consequences of my own mistakes. When I realize this, I know I’ll be making progress. “We must be true inside, true to ourselves, before we can know a truth that is outside us,” wrote Thomas Merton in No Man Is An Island. “But we make ourselves true inside by manifesting the truth as we set it.” Am I true to myself?

Today I Pray

May I count on my Higher Power to help me carry out the truth as I see it. May I never duck a consequence again. Consequence-ducking became a parlor game for chemically addictive persons like me, until we lost all sense of relationship between action and outcome. Now that I am healing, please God, restore my balance.

Today I Will Remember

Match the Act with the consequence.

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One More Day

The unfortunate thing about this world is that good habits are so much easier to give up than bad ones.
–Somerset Maugham

Old habits often die hard, especially bad ones. We may need to be tactfully silent when we become irritated with the behavior or habits of our loved ones. It may seem at times as though everyone around us is either nail biting, smoking, cussing, or overeating. When illness enters the scene, or any other stressor for that matter, bad habits tend to resurface. We may be less tolerant of others’ faults and even of their good health.

It’s hard to put away old habits, especially the old pattern of being critical, but we can learn to let go. Even with extra stress in our lives we can begin to work on developing new habits. We can learn to recognize the growth we’ve achieved and to feel proud.

I can begin today to develop strong, new habits and to hold on to my old, strong habits.

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Food For Thought

Living Now

When we were eating compulsively, we left the here and now. We escaped into fantasy, and we were often unaware of how much we were eating. By some strange mental quirk, we were able to forget that we should have been burning up our excess fat, not adding more.

God is now. To make contact with Him is to bring ourselves in touch with what is real. When we first came to OA, we may have had doubts, if not downright disbelief, about the reality of God, but concrete experience has convinced most of us that a Higher Power is indeed in control.

In order to be rid of the mental obsession which drives us to the insane behavior of compulsive overeating, we practice being constantly tuned in to our Higher Power. He can restore us to sanity and keep us living in the present. By giving Him our past resentments and future fears, we become free to focus on the here and now. Without resentment and fear, we can see the beauty of the present moment.

Lord, keep me living in the here and now.

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One Day At A Time

Scars

“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls;
the most massive characters are seared with scars.”
~ Kahlil Gibran
I’ve lived most of my life filled with bitterness towards people, God and myself. My mind, soul, and body were consumed by hatred, self-pity, pain, hopelessness, and a complete sense of powerlessness. I focused my energy on reviewing my scars. I counted them, checked them, nurtured them, and flaunted them. They were proof of all the wrongs I’d endured. They were my source of energy. They were my identity. They were my badge of sorrow.

As I work my recovery, I am beginning to see everything from a new perspective. Gradually my head is lifted and my eyes are turned away from my once-beloved scars. The more I allow myself to accept that my powerlessness is not a prison of doom, the more I discover that it is my doorway to faith, surrender, and serenity.

My scars are still here. There is no magic potion to remove them. What is magical, however, is that I see them so differently. I find that I have a choice to make every day: I can cherish my scars as proof of the pain I have suffered, or I can be thankful for them as evidence of things I have survived. Scar tissue forms and creates a stronger, thicker skin in its place. I can either pick at it and make it bleed, or I can welcome the lessons and endurance it has built into my life.

One day at a time…
I will choose to see my scars as proof of the difficulties I have survived. I will choose to appreciate them as evidence that God has brought me through suffering and has used all things to strengthen my faith in Him, my hope for tomorrow, and my serenity for today.

Lisa
A TRG Member

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This fourth edition of ‘Alcoholics Anonymous’ came off the press in November 2001, at the start of a new millennium. Since the third edition was published in 1976, worldwide membership of A.A. has just about doubled, to an estimated two million or more, with nearly 100,800 groups meeting in approximately 150 countries around the world. – Pg. xxiii – Forward To Fourth Edition

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Even in the confusion and chaos of beginning sobriety, a place exists for spiritual promise and character. Freud once remarked, gazing on a crystal, that the place where that crystal is broken is the very place where we can see its structure. The place where you are broken is the very place that reveals your character.

I use my broken places to show what I am made of–integrity, courage, and determination.

Prayer 

Prayer helps me to heal. Study after study scientifically prove that prayer is beneficial to my health. I will pray for my healing throughout my day when ever it occurs to me. I will accept and be grateful or the prayers of others knowing that they are being carried to me by unseen hands. Just as radio waves pulse through the air and become voices, prayers come to me in an inner voice. I will ask my body to hear the prayers that are coming toward me and to invite them into each and every cell.

I accept the power of prayer to heal

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

You certainly are not good at every aspect of service to your group. You may be good at opening meetings, emptying ash trays, remembering to contact people, or going out on Twelve Step calls. Maybe you are lousy at greeting people at the door, holding office, getting birthday cakes, or paying the rent. Whatever you lack skills for, others can pick up; whatever you are good at, recognize!

For my shortcomings, I delegate; for my strengths, I congratulate.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

The smallest deed is better than the grandest intention.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am learning to trust my instincts and move away from unpleasant and stressful people, places and things. I no longer have to stay in situations that bring me unhappiness and pain. I am turning around today to see the joy.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Being a speaker is not the measure of an alcoholic. Some of the finest speakers I’ve heard in AA died drunk. And some of the finest AA members I’ve ever known never spoke from podiums. – Gayle W.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 6

Challenges
There is no easier, softer way.
To bring the great escape act into sobriety is to travel with a companion
that led me to despair long ago.
The teaching I receive in Alcoholics Anonymous about courage and love
helps me to continue to grapple with the challenges of life as they are given to me, one day at a time.
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol.3], p. 320

Thought to Ponder . . .
Life is a steady drizzle of small things — carry an umbrella.

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

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

Lessons
“I find the willingness to give thanks by contemplatingthe lessons learned from past suffering–lessons which have led to
blessings I now enjoy. I can remember how the agonies of alcoholism,the pain of rebellion and thwarted pride,have often
led me to God’s grace,and so to a new freedom.
“Bill W., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, March 1962As Bill Sees It, p. 266

Thought to Consider . . .
Remember that we deal with alcohol —
cunning, baffling, powerful!

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
TRUST
Try Relying Upon The Steps

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

Self-sufficient
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“At the Foundation, meanwhile, we had taken a significant action that was incorporated in these Traditions. In 1945 we
wrote [our early supporters] Mr. John D. Rockefeller, Jr., and the 1940 dinner guests that we would no longer need their
financial help. The book royalties could now look after Dr. Bob and me; group contributions could pay the general office
expenses. If these were insufficient, the reserve accumulated out of literature sales could meet the deficit. This meant
that we had finally declared for full self-support. Since that time A.A.’s Board of Trustees has steadfastly refused outside
contributions.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pgs. 203-04

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

“Today, my short version of the Third Step is this: Keep taking care of me, Lord, because I appreciate it now.”
Berrien Springs, Mich., April 1991
“Dear God: Keep Coming Back”
AA Grapevine

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

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.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 87~

“Above everything, we alcoholics must be rid of this selfishness. We
must, or it kill us! God makes that possible. And there often seems
no way of entirely getting rid of self without His aid. Many of us
had moral and philosophical convictions galore, but we could not live
up to them even though we would have liked to.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 62~

It is when we try to make our will conform with God’s that we begin to use it rightly. To all of us, this was a most wonderful revelation. Our whole trouble had been the misuse of willpower. We had tried to bombard our problems with it instead of attempting to bring it into agreement with God’s intention for us. To make this increasingly possible is the purpose of A.A.’s Twelve Steps, and Step Three opens the door.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 40

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Growth by the Tenth Step
In the years ahead A.A. will, of course, make mistakes. Experience has taught us that we need have no fear of doing this, providing that we always remain willing to admit our faults and to correct them promptly. Our growth as individuals has depended upon this healthy process of trial and error. So will our growth as a fellowship.
Let us always remember that any society of men and women that cannot freely correct its own faults must surely fall into decay if not into collapse. Such is the universal penalty for the failure to go on growing. Just as each A.A. must continue to take his moral inventory and act upon it, so must our whole Society if we are to survive and if we are to serve usefully and well. A.A. COMES OF AGE, p. 231

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, thank you for this day. Please give me the strength to move in the direction I need to go. Help me realize that if I just stay were I am I will get no where.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 5th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 5th

Daily Reflections

A LIFELONG TASK

“But just how, in these circumstances, does a fellow ‘take it easy?’
That’s what I want to know.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 26

I was never known for my patience. How many times have I asked,
“Why should I wait, when I can have it all right now?” Indeed, when
I was first presented the Twelve Steps, I was like the proverbial “kid
in a candy store.” I couldn’t wait to get to Step Twelve; it was surely
just a few months’ work, or so I thought! I realize now that living
the Twelve Steps of A.A. is a lifelong undertaking.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Sometimes we try too hard to get this program. It is better to relax
and accept it. It will be given to us, with no effort on our part, if we
stop trying too hard to get it. Sobriety can be a free gift of God,
which he gives us by His grace when He knows we are ready for it.
But we have to be ready. Then we must relax, take it easy, and
accept the gift with gratitude and humility. We must put ourselves in
God’s hands. We must say to God: “Here I am and here are all my
troubles. I’ve made a mess of things and can’t do anything about it.
You take me and all my troubles and do anything you want with me.”
Do I believe that the grace of God can do for me what I could never
do for myself?

Meditation For The Day

Fear is the curse of the world. Many are our fears. Fear is
everywhere. I must fight fear as I would a plague. I must turn it out
of my life. There is no room for fear in the heart in which God
dwells. Fear cannot exist where true love is or where faith abides.
So I must have no fear. Fear is evil, but “perfect love casteth out all
fear.” Fear destroys hope and hope is necessary for all of humanity.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have no fear. I pray that I may cast all fear out of
my life.

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As Bill Sees It

Search For Motives, p. 64

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

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

12 & 12, p. 79

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Walk in Dry Places

A vision for you___A Positive attitude
One of the methods that helps in recovery is to see yourself as a sober person living a clean life.  This is the “vision for you” that society’s founders offered in AA’s early days, and it’s still powerful today.
While being careful to avoid self-will, we can use this method with great success in living each day. Along with seeing ourselves sober, we can see ourselves living and working according to the best principles we know.  We can see a business relationship improving. We can see some long-standing problems being solved.  We can see a brighter side to negative situations that have persisted in spite of our best efforts to change them.
One author also talked about “seeing God on both sides of the table in any business negotiation.”  We desire success, of course, but it’s also important to know that any negotiation ought to be successful for both parties. If we’re really practicing spiritual principles in all our affairs, there should be no desire to outmaneuver another person in any negotiation. There is always a price that is fair and satisfactory for both parties, and there are always terms suitable for both sides.
I will go through this day visualizing it as I think it should be according to the highest and best principles I know.  I will put aside self-will and see everybody benefiting fro any negotiations in which I am involved.


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Keep It Simple

I am not afraid of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday and I love today.—William Allen White
Big changes are happening to us, but we can trust that changes will bring good things. After all, what have we got to lose? We have lived through the days and years of our addiction. Now, with the help of our Higher Power, the pain of those days has ended. We have no reason to worry.
Yet, recovery won’t make our lives perfect. Hard things still happened. But we never have to lose hope again. We never have to feel alone with our problems. What will come next? We don’t know the details, but we can be sure the future will be good if we stay on our path of recovery.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I know life holds many new things for me. Help me and protect me as I live in Your care today.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll trust that each day of my life will bring me good. I will share this idea with one friend.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Loving, like prayer, is a power as well as a process. It’s curative. It is creative.  –Zona Gale
The expression of love softens us and the ones we love. It opens a channel between us. It invites an intimate response that closes the distance.
It feels good to express love, whether through a smile, a touch, or a prayer. It heightens our sense of being alive. Acknowledging another’s presence means that we, too, are acknowledged. Each of us is familiar with feeling forgotten, unnoticed, or taken for granted, and recognition assures us all that we haven’t been overlooked.
Knowing we are loved may be the key to our doing the things we fear. Love supports us to charge ahead, and we can support others to charge ahead. We know that if we fail, we have someone to turn to.
Love heals. It strengthens, making us courageous both when we receive it and when we give it. Knowing we are loved makes our existence special. It affirms that we count in another’s life. We need to honor our friends by assuring them of their specialness, too.
I need others. I need to strengthen my supports, my connections to others for the security, even success, of each of us. I can express my love today, and assure my loved ones that they are needed. Then, they and I will surge ahead with new life.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

My drinking assumed more serious proportions, continuing all day and almost every night. The remonstrances of my friends terminated in a row and I became a lone wolf. There were many unhappy scenes in our sumptuous apartment. There had been no real infidelity, for loyalty to my wife, helped at times by extreme drunkenness, kept me out of those scrapes.

p. 3

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.
I know that I took the Third Step (turning my will and my life over to a Higher Power) that night because I began writing a Fourth Step inventory the next day, and I continued to write until I did the Fifth Step with my sponsor.  Soon I had a list of people I had harmed.  I talked about each of the amends with my sponsor.  By the time I had started setting things right with my family, I began to feel a lot better.

p. 373

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

Being the founder, he is at first the boss. Who else could be? Very soon, though, his assumed authority to run everything begins to be shared with the first alcoholics he has helped. At this moment, the benign dictator becomes the chairman of a committee composed of his friends. These are the growing group’s hierarchy of service – self-appointed, of course, because there is no other way. In a matter of months, A.A. booms in Middletown.

p. 133

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Today I will ignore “what might have been,” and concentrate on
“what is…”

“Forget regret, or life is yours to miss.”
-Jonathan Larson

It is never too late to be what you might have been.
–George Eliot

God, help me welcome all the new experiences in my life. Give me
the courage to calmly walk my path today, knowing I’m right where I
need to be.
–Melody Beattie

When hate, anger, fear, attack, victimization is thrown at us, we find
solace in returning to Spiritual sanity. These emotions only harm us if
we embrace them, rather than embrace Gods love.

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
–Eleanor Roosevelt

The past and the future are great places to visit, but you don’t want to live there.
–Tom Payne

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

DENTITY

“Without freedom, no one really
has a name.”
— Milton Acorda

Part of my identity involves my disease. I am an alcoholic and my
name is . . . And with this recognition of who I am comes the liberty
and freedom to live and create in God’s world. Who I am involves
what I am; in the fusion of the two is my spiritual identity.

For years I ran from myself because I wanted to be different. I felt
that I would not be acceptable or good enough for you. In running
from me, I lost my identity; the seed of low self-esteem was sown.

With the spiritual recognition that I can only be who I am came the
freedom of existence and identity. I am what I am!

Lord, You said once, “I am who I am.” Well, so am I!

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Turn your ear to wisdom and apply your heart to understanding.
Proverbs 2 : 2

“But surely, God is my helper; the Lord is the upholder of my life.”
Psalm 54:4


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Daily Inspiration

Shine and give praise and it will encourage others to do the same. Lord, may my actions show those in my life that I appreciate and love them.

When we give in to fears and worries they will take charge of our lives. Lord, I place my trust in You so that I may experience every opportunity and not miss in life that which is meant for me.

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NA Just For Today

From Rude Awakening To Spiritual Awakening

“When a need arises for us to admit our powerlessness, we may first look for ways to exert power against it. After exhausting these ways, we begin sharing with others and find hope.”
Basic Text, p. 79

We’ve sometimes heard it said in our meetings that “rude awakenings lead to spiritual awakenings.” What kind of rude awakenings do we have in recovery? Such an awakening might occur when some undesirable bit of our behavior that we thought safely hidden away is suddenly revealed for all the world to see. Or our sponsor might provoke such an awakening by informing us that, just like everyone else, we have to work the steps if we expect to stay clean and recover.

Most of us hate to have our covers pulled; we don’t like being laid naked in full view. The experience delivers a strong dose of humility. Our first reaction to such a disclosure is usually shock and anger, yet we recognize the truth when we hear it. What we are having is a rude awakening.

Such awakenings often disclose barriers that block us from making spiritual progress in our recovery. Once those barriers are exposed, we can work the steps to begin removing them from our lives. We can begin experiencing the healing and serenity which are the preludes to a renewed awakening of the spirit.

Just for today: I will recognize the rude awakenings I have as opportunities to grow toward spiritual awakening. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The farmer may only be planting a seed, but if he opens his eyes he is feeding the whole world. –Omaha Bee
A traveler journeying through a small village came upon some workers building an impressive structure. “What are you doing?” he asked. The first worker, a young, impatient man, replied in disgust, “I am making three dollars an hour and I’m getting very tired!” The visitor asked another man the same question. “I’m mixing concrete, as you can plainly see,” came the sarcastic reply. Finally, a woman working nearby left her wheelbarrow full of bricks and approached the stranger. “We are building a hospital,” she said with pride. “Now we will be able to care for all the region’s people. Babies will be born here. Lives will be saved.”
The stranger looked at the woman with admiration and spoke directly to her. “I know, for this is my hospital. Only you hold the vision of what it is you are creating.” The wealthy benefactor then put the woman in charge of construction so his hospital would be built by one who truly understood.
Will I see the importance of even the small things I do today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If not for the beast within us we would be castrated angels. –Hermann Hesse
Let’s not confuse the surrender, humility, and serenity of this program with the perfection of angels. Today we are more alive because we are no longer destroying ourselves, or numbing ourselves, or shaming ourselves. We are men with the strength we need to meet the problems and excitements of the day. We may also get ourselves into trouble by our shortsightedness or mistaken ideas. That is why we need to continue to take inventory of ourselves and continue to be accountable.
We are on a spiritual path that leads toward fuller manhood. We accept the beast within. More than that, we like him and take pleasure in him. He has the same source as our spiritual strength. As we get better acquainted with him, he brings a sense of awe and mystery about the untamed parts of ourselves. He instills us with zest and vitality that we release as explosions of energy and power. He is in the music we love and in our dancing. He comes out in our daydreams and night dreams – in our labor and sweat. And he is in our trickery and humor.
I am filled with gratitude for the beast within.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Be Who You Are
When I meet people or get in a new relationship, I start putting all these repressive restrictions on myself. I cant have my feelings. Cant have my wants and needs. Cant have my history. Cant do the things I want, feel the feelings Im feeling, or say what I need to say. I turn into this repressed, perfectionistic robot, instead of being who I am: Me. –Anonymous
Sometimes, our instinctive reaction to being in a new situation is: Don’t be yourself.
Who else can we be? Who else would you want to be? We don’t need to be anyone else.
The greatest gift we can bring to any relationship wherever we go is being who we are.
We may think others wont like us. We may be afraid that if we just relax and be ourselves, the other person will go away or shame us. We may worry about what the other person will think.
But, when we relax and accept ourselves, people often feel much better being around us than when we are rigid and repressed. Were fun to be around.
If others don’t appreciate us, do we really want to be around them? Do we need to let the opinions of others control our behavior and us?
Giving ourselves permission to be who we are can have a healing influence on our relationships. The tone relaxes. We relax. The other person relaxes. Then everybody feels a little less shame, because they have learned the truth. Who we are is all we can be, all were meant to be, and its enough. Its fine.
Our opinion of ourselves is truly all that matters. And we can give ourselves all the approval we want and need.
Today, I will relax and be who I am in my relationships. I will do this not in a demeaning or inappropriate way, but in a way that shows I accept myself and value who I am. Help me, God, let go of my fears about being myself.

Today I will accept what I have and what I am and what I see in this moment. I will be fully alive in this moment and feel the joy of knowing that it is all that there is right now. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Operate from Desire, Not Will

There are times when we need to force ourselves to put one foot in front of the other and do what needs to be done. But when we operate that way for too long, we can be separated from our heart, separated from our desres, instincts, and healthy inclinations. Separated from that part of us that lives and loves naturally. Separated from joy.

After years of grieving the loss of my son, I needed to come back to life. To do that, I had to force myself through the motions of living, those acts that I knew would create a good life for myself and my daughter. I was operating from sheer will, and that will was struggling hard to overcome the desire to give up. After a time of doing that though, I noticed that forcing myself forward had come habitual. Somewhere along the journey, I had forgotten about relaxing, trusting my heart, trusting my desires to carry me through. I became tired. Tired of forcing myself. Tired of pushing through.

I realized something else. It was safe to let go of willing my way through life. I had climbed the mountain. I was over the top. I was coming alive again. I had survived the toughest time. It was okay to relax and trust the guidance and desires of my heart. It was safe to relax and enjoy life again, to celebrate being alive.

If you’ve been operating from will, that was probably what you needed to do at that point in your life. It helped you survive, learn the lessons, get to the place you are now. But it no longer fits, not on a journey of joy. Not on the journey to the heart.

Let desire and inclination replace will. Let your heart and soul lead you forward. Then trust that they will, and trust where they lead. Let living from your heart’s desires reconnect you to joy.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Don’t let anger run your life

Cheryl’s husband was a tyrant. His anger controlled most of her moves. He didn’t get angry often, but when he did, he exploded in a rage. He broke things; he carried on. His rage terrified her.

“I’ve never done well with anger,” Cheryl said, “either my own, or someone else’s. I spent my childhood walking on eggshells, trying not to annoy my dad. Then I married a man whom I allowed to completely control me by the mere threat of his rage.”

Whether we call them rageholics, tyrants, or bullies, a lot of people in our world get their way by being mean. We may find ourselves instinctively walking on eggshells around these people, praying to God we don’t set them off.

Anger is a powerful emotion. But we don’t have to let anybody else’s rage take control of our lives. If somebody you know or love is a bully or a tyrant, don’t take it on yourself. Stop walking on eggshells and letting their rage control your every step. Instead of taking on their problem, try something different. Give their problem with being a bully back to them.

How do you deal with anger? Does somebody in your life use anger as a way of controlling you? It may be time to let go of your fear of setting off people.

If you are in a dangerous situation, then by all means, get out. If you are just allowing yourself to be controlled by the fear of an emotional outburst, then learn to say whatever when someone spouts off.

God, please don’t let anyone’s anger, including my own, be the master of my life.

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Positivity Revisited
Keeping a Diary with Purpose

by Madisyn Taylor

A diary that is kept for a specific purpose can be a great way to focus on a specific issue that you want to work through.

A diary can play many roles. It can be a confidant, a vehicle of self expression, a tool that facilitates clarity of thought, or a repository of dreams. A diary can also be a powerful source of comfort during challenging or traumatic periods. When you record those insights and incidents that clearly demonstrate you are on the right track, you can return to your words days, weeks, or months later and find uniquely soothing reassurance. A diary with a specific purpose can be a good tool for keeping track of experiences before the passage of time can skew your perception of events. It reflects the immediacy of your life and thus provides you with a landmark to return to when you begin to doubt yourself. If doubt does arise, simply open your diary to reaffirm your experiences. The confidence, surety, passion, and bravery you felt in a single moment is preserved, giving you a means to recapture those feelings in any place, at any time.

Your diary serves as a repository of personalized encouragement. Since a diary is, by its very nature, as individual as you are, you should give some thought to the type of diary that will serve you best. A synchronicity-and-connections diary might describe those instances where seemingly random occurrences came together in a meaningful way, propelling you forward. Or you may find strength in the pages of a pride diary that makes note not only of those times you felt proud of yourself but also precisely why you were pleased with your efforts. And a cause-and-effect diary can help you become more decisive by reminding you of all the wise, life-affirming choices you have made. Your diary should be small enough to be readily portable and on hand whenever possible because the faster you put your thoughts down on paper, the more authentic your declarations are apt to be.

Regardless of the type of focused diary you choose to keep, your recollections will create a positive feedback loop that helps you cope with doubt in a constructive way. Reading through your diary when life seems uncertain can show you that your misgivings are unfounded. As you draw consolation from your uplifting words, you will know without a doubt that you are indeed living your purpose and following the path that you committed to before birth. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Before I became sober in The Program, I blamed all my problems on other people, or on places and things. Now I’m learning to look squarely at each difficulty, not seeking whom to “blame,” but to discover how my attitude helped create my problem or aggravate it. I must also learn to face the consequences of my own actions and words, and to correct myself when I’m wrong. Do I practice the Tenth Step by continuing to take personal inventory? When I am wrong, do I promptly admit it?

Today I Pray

May I know the blessed relief and unburdening that comes when I admit I have done something wrong. May I learn — perhaps for the first time in my entire life — to take responsibility for my own actions and to face the consequences. May I learn again how to match actions with consequences.

Today I Will Remember

To take responsibility for my own actions.

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One More Day

Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thoughts.
– Percy Bysshe Shelley

Our inner messages are much like tuning a radio; we choose what we want to hear. With a turn of the radio dial, the music changes from mellow and happy to sad and lonely and back again.

The inner messages we choose to hear may fill our days with memories that are difficult to hear. But we can tune our minds to more positive thoughts, by noticing the beauty of our surroundings, by focusing on more pluses and on fewer minuses. We can, willingly, switch our minds to thoughts that are better for us and for our health.

Why should we listen to the sad, lonely sounds when we have other choices? We can choose a daily program to suit our goals and needs, one that enhances desires and improves general well-being.

Today, I will turn my personal dial to more positive messages.

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Food For Thought

Old Tapes

In the recesses of our minds, each of us has old tapes stored away which tend to be played over and over again. These tapes may have been recorded so long ago that they have little if anything to do with our present situation.

The tapes, which are recordings of positive thoughts and experiences, can be helpful when replayed. Unfortunately, we each possess many tapes which are negative and self-destructive. They include resentments, fears, and hates. When one of these negative tapes begins to play, we may find ourselves opening the refrigerator or going out to buy food which we should not have. Often the tapes continue to play while we are eating.

Taking an inventory each day makes us increasingly aware of our negative emotions: anger, envy, irrational anxiety. Admitting mistakes and making amends relieves us of the guilt associated with our character defects.

By giving our lives to God and staying in contact with Him, we are able to turn off the negative tapes. We receive new thoughts and positive feelings: hope, faith, love.

I pray that my thoughts and feelings may be purified.

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One Day At A Time

~ IMPULSIVENESS ~

“It is especially important not to make major life changes
when you are guided by emotions. If you are emotionally excited
(either in the positive or negative), wait until you calm down before taking action.”
Rabbi Zelig Pliskin

When I first entered into recovery this was one of my main character defects. Since my life was out of control and spiraling downward, I acted impulsively and rarely did any thinking before acting. I wouldn’t even admit that my actions were impulsive. I would get so mad at people if they said I was impulsive.

Thanks to the steps I now have the tools that allow me to look at my actions in a new light – one of sanity and direction. Step One allowed me to admit that I was addicted to food and my life was unmanageable. Step Two allowed me to let others in to help with my problem. I was not in this alone. Step Three gave me a loving G-d to take care of growing me up and helping me with all my problems. Step Four brought things into perspective, Step Five brought healing from the shame of making those irreparable mistakes. Steps Six and Seven helped me look at what in me could be prayed about and improved. They taught me that this character defect was just a character asset being used improperly. Steps Eight and Nine brought me back into a right relationship with others. Step Ten keeps me focused in the now not the “what if’s” or “you need to’s” of the past. Sanity seemed to be coming from that awareness of living in today. Step Eleven gave me the gift of a G-d that is ever caring and always present to help me if I just do my side of the work. As a result I have a spirit of love today rather than a spirit of resentment and self-pity. Step Twelve might be the most important one because it is what keeps me in recovery and living a productive life.

Today I do not have to react immediately to every thing that happens, I can even go to my sponsor and ask for guidance. If my sponsor doesn’t have experience in that area I have a world full of people like me to go to who understand what I am experiencing. The tools give me a way to handle life on life’s terms.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will chose to live and recover in the 12 steps.
~ Judith ~ 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Most of us sense that real tolerance of other people’s shortcomings and viewpoints and a respect for their opinions are attitudes which make us more useful to others. Our very lives , as ex-problem drinkers, depend upon our constant thought of others and how we may help meet their needs. – Pg. 19-20 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The first few months are the hardest task we’ll ever have to complete. Anyone who tells us how ‘wonderful’ it is, has lost touch with the pain and agony of beginning recovery. Although it is not wonderful in these first hours, first weeks, we can say, IT WILL BE WORTH IT.

I sometimes feel this sucks, but grant me the ability to go clean and sober into the next hour.

Inside My Mind

I am changing, I can feel it. I am learning and growing just by being still. I am sensing more than I normally sense and feeling more than I normally feel. I am grateful to feel alive and to recognize that life is a spiritual journey. All my life circumstances are spiritual challenges, opportunities to see new sides of myself, new sides of life. Life surrounds me; it is inside, outside and everywhere. If I am open and still inside, life is there. If I am not lost in a million unnecessary distractions, life is there, spirit is there-waiting to be seen and felt.

I allow my mind its freedom.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

He who laughs, lasts! ‘But why shouldn’t we laugh? We have recovered.’ (P 132, AA Big Book)

My laughter is good medicine.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Count your blessings so your blessings count.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will accept what I have and what I am and what I see in this moment. I will be fully alive in this moment and feel the joy of knowing that it is all that there is right now.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I look inside these bars and know that seconds and inches are between me and that girl sitting on that bar-stool, or that person vomiting on their shoes, or that one getting beat up around the corner. It’s just seconds and inches. – Sharon B. 

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AA Thought for the Day

March 5

Service to Others
Our very lives, as ex-problem drinkers, depend upon our constant thought of others
and how we may help to meet their needs.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 20

Thought to Ponder . . .
Into service out of self.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H E L P = Hope, Encouragement, Love, Patience.

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

Self-will
“No matter how one wishes to try, exactly how can he turn his own will and his own life over to the care of whatever God
he thinks there is? A beginning, even the smallest, is all that is needed. Once we have placed the key of willingness in
the lock and have the door ever so slightly open, we find that we can always open it some more. Though self-will may
slam it shut again, as it frequently does, it will always respond the moment we again pick up the key of willingness.
“Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 35As Bill Sees It, p. 35

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
EDI not DIE Easy Does It not Does It Easy

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

Explanation
>From “More about Alcoholism”:
“We learned we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery.
The delusion that we are like other people, or presently may be, has to be smashed.
“We alcoholics are men and women who have lost the ability to control our drinking. We know that no real alcoholic ever
recovers control. All of us felt at times that we were regaining control, but such intervals usually brief were inevitably
followed by still less control, which led in time to pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 30

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

“I still don’t have answers for all the eternal questions, like why bad things happen to good people, or why babies die. But
I have found that life works better when I focus more on how I am contributing to God’s world than musing about what he
is or is not doing in mine.”
Woodinville, Wash., November 2013
“The Scoop”
AA Grapevine

~*~*~*~*^ 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~

“Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things
alcoholics are not supposed to do. People have said we must not go
where liquor is served; we must not have it in our homes; we must
shun friends who drink; we must avoid moving pictures which show
drinking scenes; we must not go into bars; our friends must hide
their bottles if we go to their houses; we mustn’t think or be
reminded about alcohol at all. Our experience shows that this is not
necessarily so.
We meet these conditions every day. An alcoholic who cannot meet
them, still has an alcoholic mind; there is something the matter with
his spiritual status.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 100~

Next came the expression of an aspiration and a hope for himself.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 101

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Search for Motives
Some of us clung to the claim that when drinking we never hurt anybody but ourselves. Our families didn’t suffer, because we always paid the bills and seldom drank at home. Our business associates didn’t suffer, because we were usually on the job. Our reputations didn’t suffer, because we were certain few knew of our drinking. Those who did would sometimes assure us that, after all, a lively bender was only a good man’s fault. What real harm, therefore, had we done? No more, surely, than we could easily mend with a few casual apologies.
This attitude, of course, is the end result of purposeful forgetting. It is an attitude which can be changed only by a deep and honest search of our motives and actions. TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 79

Prayer For The Day: Father as we come to you in prayer today, we give you praise once again for your word of comfort. So often we go through the day filled with anxiety and pain. We carry our burdens around with us, and they consume us. We are filled with fear and uncertainty, and are searching for answers that never come. Will you lead us today to a place of rest and comfort? Will you forgive us and teach us how to listen with our heart to your word of truth?

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 4th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 4th

Daily Reflections

WEEDING THE GARDEN

The essence of all growth is a willingness to make a
change for the better and then an unremitting
willingness to shoulder whatever responsibility this
entails.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 115

By the time I had reached Step Three I had been freed
of my dependence on alcohol, but bitter experience has
shown me that continuous sobriety requires continuous
effort. Every now and then I pause to take a good look
at my progress. More and more of my garden is weeded
each time I look, but each time I also find new weeds
sprouting where I thought I had made my final pass with
the blade. As I head back to get the newly sprouted
weed (it’s easier when they are young), I take a moment
to admire how lush the growing vegetables and flowers
are, and my labors are rewarded. My sobriety grows and
bears fruit.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Having surrendered our lives to God and put our drink
problem in His Hands doesn’t mean that we’ll never be
tempted to drink. So we must build up strength for the
time when temptation will come. In this quiet time, we
read and pray and get our minds in the right mood for
the day. Starting the day right is a great help in keeping
sober. As the days go by and we get used to the sober
life, it gets easier and easier. We begin to develop a
deep gratitude to God for saving us from that old life.
And we begin to enjoy peace and serenity and real quiet
happiness. Am I trying to live the way God wants me to live?

Meditation For The Day

The elimination of selfishness is the key to happiness
and can only be accomplished with God’s help. We start
out with a spark of the Divine Spirit but a large amount
of selfishness. As we grow and come in contact with other
people, we can take one of two paths. We can become more
and more selfish and practically extinguish the Divine
Spark within us or we can become more unselfish and develop
our spirituality until it becomes the most important thing
in our lives.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may grow more and more unselfish, honest, pure
and loving. I pray that I may take the right path every day.

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As Bill Sees It

Free Of Dependence, p. 63

I asked myself, “Why can’t the Twelve Steps work to release me
from this unbearable depression?” By the hour, I stared at the St.
Francis Prayer: “It is better to comfort than to be comforted.”

Suddenly I realized what the answer might be. My basic flaw had
always been dependence on people or circumstances to supply me
with prestige, security, and confidence. Failing to get these things
according to my perfectionists dreams and specifications, I fought for
them. And when defeat came, so did my depression.

Reinforced by what grace I could find in prayer, I had to exert every
ounce of will and action to cut off these faulty emotional
dependencies upon people and upon circumstances. Then only could I
be free to love as Francis had loved.

Grapevine, January 1958

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Walk in Dry Places

Don’t feed the Habit _____  Enhancing Sobriety
We quickly learn that it’s wrong to do anything that “feeds” a drinking habit. A recovering person would be foolish, for example, to spend time in a drinking environment simply to “be with friends.”
It’s constructive to take that same approach toward other problems we’d like to get out of our lives.  If gossip has been my problem, I should not feed it by listening to gossip or even by reading gossipy articles and books.  IF I have accumulated debts through overspending, I should cut off window shopping and other practices that may bring on more unnecessary debt.  And if I want to rid my life of self-pity, I should not spend a single moment brooding over the bad breaks I have had in the past.
Bad habits have a life of their own. They are somewhat like rodents that have found their way into the house and have become star borders. One way to control rodents is to eliminate their food supply.  That same principle applies to bad habits we want to eliminate from our own lives.
I’ll make a strong effort to cut off any line of thinking that feeds my bad habits, whatever they are.  This might include avoiding practices that others see as harmless and trivial.  However, nothing is harmless or trivial if it has become destructive in my life.

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Keep It Simple

Better bend than break.——-Scottish proverb
Our program is based on bending. We call it “surrender.” We surrender our self-will to the care of God. We do what we believe our Higher Power want us to do. We learn this as an act of love.
Many of us believed surrender was a sign of weakness. We tried to control everything. But we change as we’re in the program longer and longer. We learn to bend. We start to see that what is important is learning. We learn to do what’s best for us and others. To learn, we need an open mind. To bend, we must stay open. Love and care become the center of our lives.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, teach me that strength comes from knowing how and when to bend.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll check myself. How open am I? Do I bend when I need to?

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Each Day a New Beginning

It is good to have an end to journey towards; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.  –Ursula K. LeGuin
Goals give direction to our lives. We need to know who we are and where we want to go. But the trip itself, the steps we travel, offer us daily satisfaction moment by moment–fulfillment, if we’d but realize it. Too often we keep our sights on the goal’s completion, rather than the process–the day-to-day living that makes the completion possible.
How often do we think, “When I finish college, I’ll feel stronger.” Or, “After the divorce is final, I can get back to work.” Or even, “When I land that promotion, my troubles are over.” Life will begin “when”–or so it seems in our minds. And when this attitude controls our thinking, we pass up our opportunity to live, altogether.
Looking back on goals already completed in our lives, what so quickly follows the end of a job well done is a let-down. And how sad that the hours, the days, the weeks, maybe even the months we toiled are gone, with little sense of all they could have meant.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

BILL’S STORY

For the next few years fortune threw money and applause my way. I had arrived. My judgment and ideas were followed by many to the tune of paper millions. The great boom of the late twenties was seething and swelling. Drink was taking an important and exhilarating part in my life. There was loud talk in the jazz places uptown. Everyone spent in thousands and chattered in millions. Scoffers could scoff and be damned. I made a host of fair-weather friends.

p. 3

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.
Something happened.  A barrier collapsed.  Without moving or speaking, I was carried away on a flood of emotion, yet at the same time, I was completely aware of myself and my surroundings.  I could hear my friend’s voice asking what had happened to me.  I couldn’t answer.  I still can’t explain it.

p. 373

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

What are these facts of A.A. life which brought us to this apparently impractical principle?
John Doe, a good A.A. moves – let us say – to Middletown, U.S.A. Alone now, he reflects that he may not be able to stay sober, or even alive, unless he passes on to other alcoholics what was so freely given him. He feels a spiritual and ethical compulsion, because hundreds may be suffering within reach of his help. Then, too, he misses his home group. He needs other alcoholics as much as they need him. He visits preachers, doctors, editors, policemen , and bartenders … with the result that Middletown now has a group, and he is the founder.

pp. 132-133

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God, help me find and create true joy and peace in my world.
–Melody Beattie

I have been given a quiet place in bright sunshine.

It doesn’t matter what we have done in the past.
–Melody Beattie

Learning and maturation in the life of the spirit cannot be hurried,
and as in physical and intellectual development, a great deal depends
on our readiness.
–Mary McDermott Shideler

God’s will never takes me where his grace will not sustain me.
–Ruth Humlecker

Forgiveness is the key that unlocks the door to everlasting love.

Antidote for stress:
Take a deep breath and think of something that pleases you.

An argument had with a spouse is a loving moment lost forever.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

HELL

“The hottest places in Hell are
reserved for those, who in time
of great moral crises, maintain
their neutrality.”
— Dante Alighieri

Each human being makes a personal hell here on earth. Often we do
it not by what we perpetrate but in what we allow to happen. So much
of the loneliness and isolation that many addicts and their families
experience is caused by them remaining hidden and silent. The
pretense that everything is okay is not only untrue but deadly.
Silence and compliance kills more addicts than a thousand needles!

Today I choose not to be neutral in my life. I speak about my
alcoholism so that I can on a daily basis make war on the disease that
nearly killed me. I speak out about the disease of addiction so that
society cannot say that it did not know what was happening. I speak
up for treatment and recovery because I know it can work in the vast
majority of cases. I am not neutral when it comes to addiction
because I am fighting for my life.

God, give me the courage to speak up in the crowd; let me live the
message I was privileged to receive.

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“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be
dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9

God is not unjust, he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you
have helped people and continue to help them.
Hebrews 6:10

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we
do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially
to those who belong to the family of believers.
Galatians 6:9-10

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Daily Inspiration

Life isn’t always fair, but don’t let that stop you from making the world a better place every chance you get. Lord, help me to serve You where I am right now.

The first and most powerful commandment is love. Through love we unite ourselves together with God and with each other and bring ourselves closer to our desired goal. Lord, I love You with all my heart and soul and mind.

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NA Just For Today

The Process

“This program has become a part of me…. I understand more clearly the things that are happening in my life today I no longer fight the process.”
Basic Text, p. 78

In active addiction, things happened seemingly without rhyme or reason. We just “did things”; often without knowing why or what the results would be. Life had little value or meaning.

The Twelve Step process gives meaning to our lives; in working the steps, we come to accept both the dark and the bright sides of ourselves. We strip away the denial that kept us from comprehending addiction’s affect on us. We honestly examine ourselves, picking out the patterns in our thoughts, our feelings, and our behavior We gain humility and perspective by fully disclosing ourselves to another human being. In seeking to have our shortcomings removed, we develop a working appreciation of our own powerlessness and the strength provided by a Power greater than we are. With our enhanced understanding of ourselves, we gain greater insight into and acceptance of others.

The Twelve Steps are the key to a process we call “life”: In working the steps, they become a part of us—and we become a part of the life around us. Our world is no longer meaningless; we understand more about what happens in our lives today. We no longer fight the process. Today, in working the steps, we live it.

Just for today: Life is a process; the Twelve Steps are the key. Today, I will use the steps to participate in that process, understanding and enjoying myself and my recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I celebrate myself, and sing myself, and what I assume, you shall assume. –Walt Whitman
Some of us may think Walt Whitman must have been terribly conceited to have written words like that. But he wasn’t. He knew himself well, and accepted himself, even his darker side. He could laugh at himself and celebrate his humanness.
And because he loved and accepted himself just as he was, others could do the same. That’s difficult to understand sometimes, but it’s true: no one else is going to love and accept us until we come to love and accept ourselves.
We teach others how to treat us by the way we treat ourselves, so perhaps it makes sense to apply a variation of the Golden Rule: “Do unto ourselves as we would have others do unto us.”
Can I allow my kindness to myself overflow to another person today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Heaven ne’er helps the men who will not act. –Sophocles
Growing into masculine wholeness is a journey into greater responsibility for our lives. We have choices to make every day. Taking responsibility means choosing between the options we have and then accepting the consequences. Sometimes both choices are undesirable, but we have to choose anyway. Do I expect to be perfect in my choices? Do I demand that someone else take responsibility for me? Do I defiantly refuse to accept the options I have?
This program seems like a paradox- the First Step asks us to accept our powerlessness, then we are expected to go on and stop being passive in our lives. The Serenity Prayer speaks to us about this dilemma. We ask for the serenity to accept what we cannot change and the courage to change what we can. Fully admitting our powerlessness sheds a burden and frees us to go on from there, actively doing what we can.
If something is awaiting my action today, may I have the courage to move forward with it. Even small movement is progress.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Higher Power as a Source
I’ve learned I can take care of myself, and what I cant do, God will do for me. –Al Anon member
God, a Higher Power as we understand Him, is our source of guidance and positive change. This doesn’t mean were not responsible for ourselves. We are. But we aren’t in this alone.
Recovery is not a do it yourself project. We don’t have to become overly concerned about changing ourselves. We can do our part, relax, and trust that the changes well experience will be right for us.
Recovery means we don’t have to look to other people as our source to meet our needs. They can help us, but they are not the source.
As we learn to trust the recovery process, we start to understand that a relationship with our Higher Power is no substitute for relationships with people. We don’t need to hide behind religious beliefs or use our relationship with a Higher Power as an excuse to stop taking responsibility for ourselves and taking care of ourselves in relationships. But we can tap into and trust a Power greater than ourselves for the energy, wisdom, and guidance to do that.
Today, I will look to my Higher Power as a source for all my needs, including the changes I want to make in my recovery.
I will not forget that every moment of every day I can be God-centered and joyous. The goal I’m striving toward will carry with it a special gift; it will offer the growing person within me an extra thrill, if I’ve attended to the journey as much as its end.

Today I will stop and ask, “How important is it?” When I find myself defending or trying to prove my point, I am in the process of learning to trust my own truth. When it feels right inside, I am seeing that is all that I need. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

One Step at a Time

One step at a time. That’s all you can take, That’s all you have to take,

Yes, you have visions you’ve created of where you want to go. But you don’t get there in one leap. You get there one step at a time. That’s how you receive your guidance. That’s how you respond to the guidance you’ve received.

Let your faith be strong. Your faith will keep you going through those moments in between steps. When your faith is strong, you don’t look in fear at the journey ahead, wondering if you will get all the guidance you need, or if you will get to where you’re going. You know you will, so take the simple steps, one at a time, that lie ahead. You take them in joy, because you know you’re being guided. You have faith that the simple steps you are led to do will take you to your destination.

One step at a time. That’s how you will get where you are going. You are being led, each step of the way.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Allow for differences

He’s rational. He wants examples of the problem and wants to focus on and find a solution.

She wants to talk about how she feels.

He wants to sit in front of the television and click the remote control.

She wants to cuddle on the couch and look into his eyes.

He deals with his stress by playing basketball with his friends, tinkering with the car or going for a hike.

She wants to go to a movie, preferably one that makes her cry.

I spent much of my life thinking that men and women– and generally all people– should just be the same. It took me a long time to realize that while we have much in common with other people, we’re each unique.

It took me even longer to realize that the practical application of this meant I had to learn to allow for differences between the people I loved and myself.

Just because we have something in common with someone, and might even think we’re in love, doesn’t mean that each person is going to respond and be the same.

So often in our relationships, we try to get the other person to behave the way we want. This forcing of our will on them will ultimately become a great strain. It can also block love. When we’re trying to change someone else, we overlook his or her gifts. We don’t value the parts of the person that are different from us, because we’re too busy trying to change the person into someone else.

Allow for differences, but don’t just allow. Appreciate the differences. Value what each person has to offer and the gifts each person can bring.

Learn to say whatever, with a spark of amusement and curiosity, when someone isn’t the same as you. Try getting a kick out of the unique way each person approaches life.

God, help me understand the rich gifts that letting go of control will bring to my life.

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The Energy of an Embrace
Hugs

The need to touch and be touched is established early in our lives, as we develop and grow in the omnipresent embrace of our mother’s womb. Once we are born, separated from that sanctuary of connectivity, we begin to crave the physical embrace of our parents. As we age, we become more independent. Yet during times of triumph or trouble and during those moments when we are in need of reassurance, we can’t help but long for a hug.

Because a hug requires two active participants, each individual taking part in the embrace experiences the pleasure of being embraced and the joy that comes from hugging someone. As both individuals wrap their arms around one another, their energy blends together, and they experience a tangible feeling of togetherness that lingers long after physical contact has been broken. A heart hug is when you put your left arm over someone’s shoulder and your right arm around their waist. As they do the same to you, your hearts become aligned with one another other and loving, comforting energy flows between the two of you to flood your souls with feelings of love, caring, and compassion.

A hug is a pleasurable way to share your feelings with someone who is important to you. Depending on your relationship with the other person and the kind of message you wish to send to them, a hug can communicate love, friendship, romance, congratulations, support, greeting, and any other sentiment you wish to convey. A hug communicates to others that you are there for them in a positive way. In an instant, a hug can reestablish a bond between long lost friends and comfort those in pain. The next time you hug someone, focus all of your energy into the embrace. You will create a profound connection that infuses your feelings and sentiments into a single beautiful gesture. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We may not know any specifics about the activities of today; we may not know whether we’ll be alone or with others. We may feel the day contains too much time — or not enough. We may be facing tasks we’re eager to complete, or tasks we’ve been resisting. Though the details of each person’s day differ, each person’s day does hold one similarity: We each have the opportunity to choose to thing positive thoughts. The choice depends less on our outside activities than on our inner commitment. Can I accept that I alone have the power to control my attitude?

Today I Pray

May I keep the fire of inner commitment alive through this whole, glorious day, whether my activities are a succession of workaday tasks or free-form and creative. May I choose to make this a good day for me, and for those around me.

Today I Will Remember

Keep the commitment.

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One More Day

Whatever limits us, we call fate.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

We like to plan ahead, but w cannot plan for the ravages of chronic illness. No one expects to travel down the winding road of an unhidden, unwanted trip. Unused to the whims of a chronic illness, we may at first try to chart, plan, and control its course. We may dwell too much on the medical conditions.

We cannot change the course of illness, but we can influence its twists and turns by keeping a positive frame of mind. Rather than being obsessed with how our medical conditions are affecting us, we can focus on the many things we can still do. Can we enjoy a sunset? Watch a child smile? Can we listen to music or pursue a handcraft? Our angry, dour thoughts can be replaced so easily with pleasant dreams, fond memories, and hope for the future.

I am feeling comfortable once again as I finally realize that I can still make choices in how I want to live my life.

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Food For Thought

Doing What Feels Good

Doing anything as long as it feels good is a trap. We like to eat for the sheer sensual pleasure of the experience, and we would like to continue long after our need for nourishment has been met. Once our appetites are out of control, we cannot stop, not even when the pleasure has turned to pain.

Unbridled, uncontrolled sensuality will destroy us. Rational knowledge of when to stop is not enough. We may know with our minds that we should not be eating, but still be unable to stop the action of our bodies. If we are unable to control our sensuality with our minds, then how is it to be done?

OA members testify that there is One who has all power, including the power to enlighten our darkness and prevent our self destruction. Through daily contact with this Higher Power, we develop spiritual strength which will control and direct our physical drives so that they do not control and destroy us.

Take my sensuality, Lord, and control it.

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One Day At A Time

March

“March is the month of expectation, the things we do not know,
The ‘Persons of Prognostication’ are coming now.”
~ Emily Dickinson
I’m not sure whether it’s because I’m embroiled at the moment in working the Steps I love so much … or whether the beginnings of Springtime are beginning to happen … but there is a feeling that I have that “something” is beginning. The long winters of life have taken their toll on me and when I experience this awesome feeling of hope I am grateful.

If there were doubts of the promises coming true, March overshadows them. If the Spring and Summer times of program loomed large in the distance, they are no longer. Just the smell of a new Spring morning is enough to know that hope for spiritual, emotional and physical wellness abounds.

One day at a time … I must forget the winters of my life and hold on to the promises of March … and of my Twelve Step program.

~ A TRG Member

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do. People have said we must not go where liquor is served; we must not have it in our homes; we must shun friends who drink; we must avoid moving pictures which show drinking scenes; we must not go into bars; our friends must hide their bottles if we go to their houses; we mustn’t think or be reminded about alcohol at all. Our experience shows that this is not necessarily so. – Pg. 100-101 – Working With Others

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

Thank you, God, for the beautiful day I’m going to have if I can just get rid of my attitude.

Recall a Pleasant Moment: Soothe the Heart and You Soothe the Self

You can calm and nourish your heart by regularly meditating or praying. These activities produce the ‘relaxation response’ – a physiological state that is exactly the opposite of stress – a state that reduces blood pressure and increases blood flow to the heart. Many forms of meditation and prayer organically incorporate feelings of love, appreciation and forgiveness. Some traditional Buddhist practice use ‘loving-kindness meditation,’ during which they focus their attention on the heart and generate feelings of loving kindness for others and themselves. Not only does this create the feelings in your mind, but it creates them in the body as well. A form of such ‘intentional heart focus’ has been found by the HeartMath researchers to create greater coherence in the heart in as little as one minute. To experience the benefits of this ‘intentional heart focus,’ try the following next time you’re feeling stressed: Take a break and mentally disengage from the situation. Bring your attention to the area of your heart. Recall an experience with a loved one in which you felt happiness, love or appreciation or just meditate for a moment on those kinds of thoughts and feelings.

Re-experience these feelings while keeping your attention on your heart. Let your breathing be relaxed and regular.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

There are no victims, only volun-teers. When we cry, ‘They did this to me. They did that to me.’ what we are really saying, is I placed myself in a position for this or that to happen. I volunteered for it.

I volunteer for sobriety today.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

What if there is no God? Believe anyway.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Where I am at this moment is perfect. My past is my friend today as I take the lessons that I can learn from it and say thank you. Everything that has brought me to this moment is a gift and I am a stronger and wiser person because of it.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

We’re all here because we’re not all there.- Fr Joe M.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 4

Perfection
I never have been and never can be perfect.
As that realization became a part of me — and it took time —
it brought me one of the greatest of the many blessings that have come to me from AA.
I learned to accept myself as a fallible human being.
I do not have to strive for perfection. Mistakes are permissible. I have the right to be wrong.
And what a comfort that thought is to me, as I make my bemused way through life,
one foot in a bucket, pushing on doors marked “Pull.”
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol. 2], pp. 167-168

Thought to Ponder . . .
Give me the courage to be imperfect.

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

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

Motives
“Suppose we fall short of the chosen ideal and stumble? Does this mean we are going to get drunk? Some people tell
us so. But this is only a half-truth. It depends on us and our motives. If we are sorry for what we have done, and have the
honest desire to let God take us to better things, we believe we will be forgiven and will have learned our lesson. If we
are not sorry, and our conduct continues to harm others, we are quite sure to drink.
“Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 70

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
TRUST Try Relying Upon The Steps

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

Fear
>From “Fear of Fear”:
“Many women who have reached the stage that I had reached in my drinking have lost husbands, children, homes,
everything they hold dear. I have been very fortunate in many ways. The important thing I lost was my own self-respect. I
could feel fear coming into my life. I couldn’t face people. I couldn’t look them straight in the eyes, although I had always
been a self-possessed, brazen person. I’d brazen anything out. I lied like a trooper to get out of many scrapes.
“But I felt a fear coming into my life, and I couldn’t cope with it. I got so that I hid quite a bit of the time, wouldn’t answer
the phone, and stayed by myself as much as I could. I noticed that I was avoiding all my social friends, except for my
bridge club. I couldn’t keep up with many of my other friends, and I wouldn’t go to anyone’s house unless I knew they
drank as heavily as I did. I never knew it was the first drink that did it. I thought I was losing my mind when I realized that I
couldn’t stop drinking. That frightened me terribly.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pgs. 291-92

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

“Alcoholics have short memories.”
Paradise, Calif., October 2003
“‘How It Works Works for Me”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“When we decide who is to hear our story, we waste no time. We have
a written inventory and we are prepared for a long talk. We explain
to our partner what we are about to do and why we have to do it. He
should realize that we are engaged upon a life-and-death errand.
Most people approached in this way will be glad to help; they will be
honored by our confidence.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 75

“Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going
to believe they are in that class. By every form of self deception
and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to
the rule, therefore nonalcoholic. If anyone who is showing inability
to control his drinking can do the right about face and drink like a
gentleman, our hats are off to him. Heaven knows, we have tried hard
enough and long enough to drink like other people!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 31~

For alcoholism had been a lonely business, even though we had been surrounded by people who loved us.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 116

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Free of Dependence
I asked myself, ‘Why can’t the Twelve Steps work to release me from this unbearable depression?’ By the hour, I stared
at the St. Francis Prayer: ‘It is better to comfort than to be comforted .’
Suddenly I realized what the answer might be. My basic flaw had always been dependence on people or circumstances
to supply me with prestige, security, and confidence. Failing to get these things according to my perfectionist dreams
and specifications, I fought for them. And when defeat came, so did my depression.
Reinforced by what grace 1 could find in prayer, I had to exert every ounce of will and action to cut off these faulty
emotional dependencies upon people and upon circumstances. Then only could I be free to love as Francis had loved.
GRAPEVINE, JANUARY 1958

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, please help me to do what I can, and understand that I cannot do everything. Help me make what I can do count.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 3rd

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 3rd

Daily Reflections

OVERCOMING SELF-WILL

So our troubles, we think, are basically of our
own making. They arise out of ourselves, and the
alcoholic is an extreme example of self-will run
riot, though he usually doesn’t think so. Above
everything, we alcoholics must be rid of this
selfishness. We must, or it kills us!
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62

For so many years my life revolved solely around
myself. I was consumed with self in all forms–
self-centeredness, self-pity, self-seeking, all
of which stemmed from pride. Today I have been
given the gift, through the Fellowship of Alcoholics
Anonymous, of practicing the Steps and Traditions
in my daily life, of my group and sponsor, and the
capacity–if I so choose–to put my pride aside in
all situations which arise in my life. Until I could
honestly look at myself and see that I was the problem
in many situations and react appropriately inside and
out; until I could discard my expectations and
understand that my serenity was directly proportional
to them, I could not experience serenity and sound
sobriety.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

After we’ve made a surrender, the drink problem is out
of our hands and in the hands of God. The thing we have
to do is to be sure that we never reach out and take the
problem back into our own hands. Leave it in God’s hands.
Whenever I’m tempted to take a drink, I must say to
myself: “I can’t do that. I’ve made a bargain with God not
to drink. I know God doesn’t want me to drink and so I
won’t do it.” At the same time I say a little prayer to
God for the strength needed to keep the bargain with Him.
Am I going to keep my bargain with God?

Meditation For The Day

I will try to grow in this new life. I will think of
spiritual things often and unconsciously I will grow. The
nearer I get to the new life, the more I will see my
unfitness. My sense of failure is a sure sign that I am
growing in the new life. It is only struggle that hurts.
In sloth–physical, mental or spiritual–there is no sense
of failure or discomfort. But with struggle and effort, I
am conscious not of strength but of weakness, until I am
really living the new life. But in the struggle, I can
always rely on the power of God to help me.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may see signs of my growth in the new life.
I pray that I may always keep trying to grow.

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As Bill Sees It

A Different Swinging Door, p. 62

When a drunk shows up among us and says that he doesn’t like the
A.A. principles, people, or service management, when he declares that
he can do better somewhere else–we are not worried. We simply say,
“Maybe your case really is different. Why don’t you try something
else?”

If an A.A. member says he doesn’t like his own group, we are not
disturbed. We simply say, “Why don’t you try another one? Or start
one of your own.”

To those who wish to secede from A.A. altogether, we extend a cheerful
invitation to do just that. If they can do better by other means, we are
glad. If after trial they cannot do better, we know they face a choice:
They can go mad or die or they can return to A.A. The decision is
wholly theirs. (As a matter of fact, most of them do come back.)

Twelve Conceptions, p. 72

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Walk in Dry Places

What will this change bring?    ____  Change
When facing change, it’s not unusual to feel both apprehension and expectancy. We are apprehensive because we know that change includes risk. We feel expectancy, however, because we know that improvement can come only through some kind of change.
The way to handle change is to see it as part of the higher plan working in our lives.  If we believe that our lives are in the care and keeping of our Higher Power, we have to know that everything is in good hands.  As change occurs, it is simply part of a plan that is unfolding in order to bring more good into our lives.
We should not expect change without temporary disruptions or even surprises that appear to be setbacks.  All that’s necessary is to know that change is good if we maintain the right attitude toward it.
It’s also helpful to review the past changes that have been so important in our lives.  Once change has occurred, we come to accept it as normal, forgetting that it involved a lot of anxiety at one time. So it is with any change that is unfolding now.  It’s part of a wonderful plan that cannot fail.
I accept change without fear or superstition.  Change is built into the nature of things, and will always be part of our lives.  I accept it as readily as I accept change of the seasons.

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Keep It Simple

But the alcoholic . . . will be absolutely unable to stop drinking on the basis of self-knowledge.  Alcoholics Anonymous
Our program says three things are more important than knowing ourselves: (1) admitting we have no control over our addiction, (2) believing in a Higher Power, and (3) turning our lives over to the care of that Higher Power. knowing ourselves makes our lives better in recovery. But it does not give us sobriety. Sobriety starts with surrender to our Higher Power. We now know we need faith and strength we get from a Higher Power. We also need the support of others in our program.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, thanks you for my sobriety today. Teach me what I need to know about myself to do Your will today.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll talk with my sponsor about the change in my spirit that keeps me sober.

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


Each Day A New Beginning

Most kids hear what you say; some kids do what you say; but all kids do what you do.  –Kathleen Casey Theisen
We are role models for many people:  our children, our co-workers, other women in the program.  Step Twelve encourages us to set good examples for anyone who might be looking on.  Living a principled life takes practice, and progress, not perfection, is hoped for.
Abstinence has offered is a new set of tools for shaping our behavior.  No longer must we regret what we did yesterday or last week.  We are learning to monitor our actions, but even more importantly, we are defining our values.  They, in turn, influence what we say and do.
Thoughtful responses to the situations we encounter require conscious attention to those events.  We need reminding, perhaps, that our behavior is continuously telling others who we are, what we value, and how we view people close to us.  All of us, consciously or otherwise, imitate behavior patterns of persons we admire.  Unfortunately, we sometimes mimic unfavorable behavior, too.
There are those casting their attentions our way.  The opportunity to model favorable behavior awaits us.
People will follow my lead.  I shall walk softly, humbly and lovingly.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

BILL’S STORY

We gave up our positions and off we roared on a motorcycle, the sidecar stuffed with tent, blankets, a change of clothes, and three huge volumes of a financial reference service. Our friends thought a lunacy commission should be appointed. Perhaps they were right. I had had some success at speculation, so we had little money, but we once worked on a farm for a month to avoid drawing on our small capital. That was the last honest manual labor on my part for many a day. We covered the whole eastern United States in a year. At the end of it, my reports to Wall Street procured me a position there and the use of a large expense account. The exercise of an option brought in more money, leaving us with a profit of several thousand dollars for that year.

pp. 2-3

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.

I knew where to look in the Big Book, and I had been careful to avoid it until then.  I turned to the Third Step Prayer and quietly read it to her over the phone.  Nothing happened.  I didn’t expect anything to happen.  Then, for some reason, I turned back to the words, “No one among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles.”  They echoed in my mind.

p. 373

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Two – “For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.”

Where does A.A. get its direction? Who runs it? This, too, is a puzzler for every friend and newcomer. When told that our Society has no president having authority to govern it, no treasurer who can compel the payment of any dues, no board of directors who can cast an erring member into outer darkness, when indeed no A.A. can give another a directive and enforce obedience, our friends gasp and exclaim, “This simply can’t be. There must be an angle somewhere.” These practical folk then read Tradition Two, and learn that the sole authority in A.A. is a loving God as He may express Himself in the group conscience. They dubiously ask an experienced A.A. member if this really works. The member, sane to all appearances, immediately answers, “Yes! It definitely does.” The friends mutter that this looks vague, nebulous, pretty naive to them. Then they commence to watch us with speculative eyes, pick up a fragment of A.A. history, and soon have the solid facts.

p. 132

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Let us always love the best in others – and never fear their worst.

“In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light,
and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal
clearness. Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth.”
–Mahatma Gandhi

Whenever you fail or miss out on something you always have
tomorrow.
Every dawn is a symbol of renewal, telling you to get up, go out and
try again.

The night of fear has passed, the light of God defines my pathway.

God, help me let go of my unreasonable fears, the ones that are
preventing me from living my life.
–Melody Beattie

Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

We surrender to win.

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

GENIUS

“The principal mark of genius is
not perfection but originality,
the opening of new frontiers.”
— Arthur Koestler

I need to remember that genius is often simplicity itself. The original
thought need not be abstract, intellectual or technical; the thought
exists to transmit the message.

In the slogans “Keep it Simple”, “One Day at a Time”, and “Don’t
Pick up the First Drink”, wisdom combines with simplicity to produce
sobriety. God is at work outside of His church and the spiritual
message always brings healing. A.A. is more than a “fellowship of
genius”, it is divinity set to a program. What began with a group of
alcoholics will cross new frontiers into the healing of the world.

Lord of Truth, let us always be open and receptive to Your voice.

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The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and
no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.
Isaiah 57:1

“Show me Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths.”
Psalms 25:4

Physical birth only gains us physical life. Spiritual life, the eternal life Christ promises to
those who come to Him, is only gained through spiritual birth.
John 3:36

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Daily Inspiration

Know that you make a difference, so choose to make your contribution one of goodness. Lord, help me to touch my world in a positive manner.

Each day has a new door. It is up to you to open it. Lord, help me to remember that my life is my choice. Bless me with wisdom and give me guidance as I make my choices.

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NA Just For Today

Relapse

“There will be times, however, when we really feel like using. We want to run, and we feel lousy We need to be reminded of where we came from and that it will be worse this time. This is when we need the program the most.”
Basic Text, p. 78

If we’re contemplating a relapse, we should think our using through to the bitter ends. For many of us, those ends would include severe medical problems, imprisonment, or even death. How many of us have known people who relapsed after many years clean, only to die from their disease?

But there is a death that accompanies a return to active addiction that may be worse than physical death. That is the spiritual death we experience when we are separated from our Higher Power. If we use, the spiritual relationship we have nurtured over the years will weaken and perhaps disappear. We will feel truly alone.

There is no doubt that we have periods of darkness in our recovery. There is only one way we can make it through those troubling times: with faith. If we believe that our Higher Power is with us, then we know that all will be well.

No matter how badly we may feel in our recovery, a relapse is never the answer. Together, we find recovery. If we stay clean, the darkness will lift and we will find a deeper connection to our Higher Power.

Just for today: I thank my Higher Power for the gift of NA. I know that relapse is not the way out. Whatever challenges I face, I will face them with the God of my understanding.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Nothing is troublesome that we do willingly. –Thomas Jefferson
Some of the necessary things we do are tiring and annoying. Many of these things we must do regardless of how we feel about them. Doing dishes day after day can be a tiresome job but, no matter how much we hate it, it must be done sooner or later. We might discover, if we look hard enough, how chores like this can actually be enjoyable, if we do them right. Perhaps dish washing is a time for listening to music and singing along, or an opportunity for conversation between family members as we help one another.
Our willingness to look for the hidden treasure and opportunities in tasks we might otherwise consider dreary will never fail to reward us.
What opportunity can I see in my next chore?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
“Why are you rushing so much?” asked the rabbi. “I’m rushing after my livelihood,” the man answered.
“And how do you know,” said the rabbi, “that your livelihood is running on before you, so that you have to rush after it? Perhaps it’s behind you, and all you need to do is stand still.” –Tale about Rabbi Ben Meir of Berdichev
Most of us accept the standard ideas we were taught. “Men should be good providers.” “We will get self-esteem from hard work.” “It is a virtue to be productive.” “It’s better now to have too much time to think.”
A major crisis can quickly change our perspective. Perhaps someone close to us dies, and we are faced with how temporary life is. Or we have a health crisis, or a relationship crisis, or an addiction crisis. The standard ideas come crashing down. We look closely at the rush of our lives and ask deeper questions: Are we hurrying to a worthwhile goal? Or are we losing out in our great rush? These doubts can teach us personal things that society can never teach us. Wisdom comes out of pain and the willingness to learn from it.
Today, I will allow some time to stand still and reflect.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Accepting Ourselves
While driving one day, a woman’s attention focused on the license plate of the car ahead. The license read: “B-WHO-UR.” How can I? she thought. I don’t know who I am!
Some of us may have felt confused when people encouraged us to be ourselves. How could we know ourselves, or be who we are, when, for years, many of us submerged ourselves in the need of others?
We do have a self. We’re discovering more about ourselves daily. We’re learning we’re deserving of love.
We’re learning to accept ourselves, as we are for the present moment–to accept our feelings, thoughts, flaws, wants, needs, and desires. If our thoughts or feelings are confused, we accept that too.
To be who we are means we accept our past–our history–exactly as is.
To be ourselves means we are entitled to our opinions and beliefs–for the present moment and subject to change. We accept our limitations and our strengths.
To be who we are means we accept our physical selves, as well as our mental, emotional, and spiritual selves, for now. Being who we are in recovery means we take that acceptance one step further. We can appreciate ourselves and our history.
Being who we are, loving and accepting ourselves, is not a limiting attitude. Accepting and loving ourselves is how we enable growth and change.
Today, I will be who I am. If I’m not yet certain who I am, I will affirm that I have a right to that exciting discovery,

Today I am open to all the powers of the universe. I am letting them work for me and carry me to my next step…JOY! –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Treasure Your Experiences

Gather experiences. Treat them as precious jewels.

The purpose of the journey is not to guard and restrain yourself. The purpose is to learn. You do not teach and lead your soul. Your soul leads and teaches you. It takes you wading across streams, strolling through meadows, deep into valleys, and high onto mountaintops. It takes you down winding, narrow roads and long fast-moving four-lane highways. It takes you into tiny cafes, bustling cities, and out-of-the-way hostels where people break bread and tell what they have learned.

Let yourself have all your experiences. Don’t limit or judge yourself or the adventure you have had. All were necessary, all were important, all have helped shape and form you. Your heart will lead you, guide you where you are to go. Don’t worry about getting lost or off track. Don’t worry about being wrong, or in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Gather experiences. Go through them. Select the gems from each. Listen while others tell their stories, their adventures, and show you their jewels, the triths that they have learned. Then, when your friends break and sip soup with others, open your heart and joyfully share what has happened to you along the way.

Having experiences is called living. Sharing experiences is called loving. Let yourself enjoy both.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Don’t take storms personally

Somewhere out in the Pacific, a storm brewed and swirled and thrashed and died without ever touching the land. Three days later, under a clear blue sky, the storm surge reached the California coast near Los Angeles. The sea threw rocks at my house, and the waves stacked up and crashed down against the pilings of the foundation. Farther up the street, the ocean ate the back porch of two houses. All night the shoreline trembled and shook from the power of the sea.

The next morning the tide pulled back, the swells calmed, and the sky stayed blue. I walked down the beach, impressed at the way the ocean had littered it with huge chunks of driftwood and rocks. Then I walked back upstairs and drank my morning coffee.

Sometimes, storms aren’t about us.

Sometimes, friends or loved ones will attack us for no apparent reason. They’ll fuss, fume, and snap at us. When we ask them why, they’ll say, “Oh, I’m sorry. I had a bad day at work.”

But we still feel hurt and upset.

Hold people accountable for their behavior. Don’t let people treat you badly. But don’t take the storms in their lives personally. These storms may have nothing to do with you.

Seek shelter if necessary. Get away from curt friends until they have time to calm down; then approach when it’s safe. If the storm isn’t about you, there’s nothing you need to do. Would you stop the ocean waves by standing in the surf with your arms outstetched?

Say whatever. Let the storms blow through.

God, help me not to take the storms in the lives of my friends and loved ones too personally.

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Quiet Please!
Taming Monkey Mind In Meditation

It’s been called the monkey mind – the endless chattering in your head as you jump in your mind from thought to thought while you daydream, analyze your relationships, or worry over the future. Eventually, you start to feel like your thoughts are spinning in circles and you’re left totally confused.

One way to tame this wild creature in your head is through meditation – although the paradox is that when you clear your mind for meditation you actually invite the monkey in your mind to play. This is when you are given the opportunity to tame this mental beast by moving beyond thought – to become aware of a thought rather than thinking a thought. The difference is subtle, but significant. When you are aware of your thoughts, you can let your thoughts rise and float away without letting them pull you in different directions. Being able to concentrate is one of the tools that allows you to slow down your thought process and focus on observing your thoughts.

To develop your concentration, you may want to start by focusing on the breath while you meditate. Whenever your monkey mind starts acting up, observe your thoughts and then return your focus to your breath. Some breathing meditations call on you to focus on the rise and fall of the breath through the abdomen, while others have you concentrate on the sound of the breath. Fire can also be mesmerizing, and focusing on a candle flame is another useful tool for harnessing the mind. Keep the gaze soft and unfocused while observing the color, shape, and movement of the flame, and try not to blink. Close your eyes when you feel the need and continue watching the flame in your head. Chanting, devotional singing, and mantras also still the mind. However you choose to tame the monkey mind, do so with firm kindness. The next time the chattering arises, notice it and then allow it to go away. With practice, your monkey mind will become quiet and so will you. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I’ve begun to better understand myself since I’ve come to The Program. One of the most important things I’ve learned is that opinions aren’t facts. Just because I feel that a thing is so doesn’t necessarily make it so. “Men are not worried by things,” wrote the Greek philosopher Epictetus, “but by their ideas about things. When we meet with difficulties, become anxious or troubled, let us not blame others, but rather ourselves. That is: our ideas about things.” Do I believe that I can never entirely lose what I have learned during my recovery?

Today I Pray

May I learn to sort out realities from my ideas about those realities. May I understand that situations, things, — even people — take on the colors and dimensions of my attitudes about them.

Today I Will Remember

To sort the real from the unreal.

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One More Day

People, by and large, will relate to the image you project …. If you project the image of a sick, dependent person, that’s how you’ll be treated.
– Chyatte

Accepting chronic illness is not easy. Our whole lives are different. We can’t do all the things we used to do. We may feel changed and be afraid of the changes our illnesses will bring. But as we learn to project a strong, positive image, we feel better about ourselves.

For the benefit of ourselves, we must act as if we are doing all right. When we act as if we are strong, our new behavior can become a new habit, and that habit can actually develop greater emotional strength within us. We can put illness into perspective as being just one of the changes that occur during a lifetime.

Today, I will allow myself the right to change. I can survive my health change and live a worthwhile life.

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Food For Thought

Precision

For the success of our program, many of us have found that it is important to be precise when we weigh and measure our food. It has been our experience that carelessness and sloppiness lead to cheating and bingeing.

An extra spoonful or ounce here and there may not seem important, but it can soon become an extra portion. Then it is easy to think that since we have not followed our plan exactly, we might as well go ahead and really indulge.

There are circumstances when weighing and measuring is impossible; then we estimate as best we can. However, for most of us, most of the time, precise measurements are possible and are a valuable aid in maintaining abstinence. Each time we put back the extra spoonful of carrots and cut away the extra ounce of meat, we are stronger. It is always the first extra bite that is the downfall of the compulsive overeater. If we are careful and precise in our measurements, we will not take it.

Accuracy is honesty.

Make me honest with myself, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

A Disease?

“Doc! What do you mean – nothing! What? An incurable disease?
Doc, you’re kidding me! You’re trying to scare me into stopping!
What’s that you say? You wish you were?
Why are there tears in your eyes, Doc?”
The Big Book, The Unbeliever, Page 196

For a very long time I scoffed at those who said my overweight was because I had a disease. Yes, my body had doubled in size … but it was because I ate more calories than my body burned. My doctor said so … he didn’t say I had a disease. His “treatment” was to tell me to go on a diet and join a gym. The diet lasted for a few months and I believe I used the gym about six or seven times. I know now without a single doubt that I have a disease … a serious one. I know that it is incurable and that I will have to live with this disease for the rest of my life. Dieting made me fat. Somewhere along the way I didn’t “get it.”

One day at a time…
I will resist thinking that being a compulsive eater is not a disease. I will aggressively and tenaciously do the footwork necessarily to combat it.
A TRG Member

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

If you are an alcoholic who wants to get over it, you may already be asking — ‘What do I have to do?’

It is the purpose of this book to answer such questions specifically. We shall tell you what we have done. – Pg. 20 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

Accepting Caring from Others

I will soak up any extra attention that I get while I’m not feeling up to par. Even if I don’t need it at the moment, I will soak it into my pores and store it up for a time when I do need it. I will let the attention feel good. I will allow it to restore my faith in and affection for people. I enjoy the little things people are willing to do for me, going a bit out of their way, worrying about how I’m doing. It feels good if I let it. It restores me if I willing to feel good.

Feeling grateful for what is coming my way has a healing power all its own.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

All of us chemical dependents have come from the same place, no where. We all enter the world of recovery by changing our place to now here. No Where to Now Here. It works.

NOW is the working unit of my life.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You used to be good at being bad. Now you’re going to get good a being good.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will stop and ask, ‘How important is it?’

When I find myself defending or trying to prove my point, I am in the process of learning to trust my own truth. When it feels right inside, I am seeing that it is all I need.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Alcoholics Anonymous has the best record for recovery from alcoholism in the world. Why not avail yourself of the best. – Bede.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 3

Communication
>From the beginning, communication in AA has been no ordinary transmission
of helpful ideas and attitudes. It has been unusual and sometimes unique.
Because of our kinship in suffering, and because our common means of deliverance
are effective for ourselves only when constantly carried to others,
our channels of contact have always been charged with the language of the heart.
– The Language of the Heart, p. 243

Thought to Ponder . . .
Modem-to-modem or face-to-face, AA’s speak the language of the heart.

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

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

Meetings
“We have also found that going to meetings is not something to
be done only when we feel the temptation to drink. We often
get more good from the meetings by attending them when we
feel fine and haven’t so much as thought of drinking. And
even a meeting which is not totally, instantly satisfying, is
better than no meeting at all.
“Living Sober, p. 81

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
ALCOHOLICS = A Life Centered On Helping Others Live In Complete Sobriety

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

Bottom
From “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.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 8

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

“Ever deepening humility, accompanied by an ever greater willingness to accept and to act upon clear obligations —
these are truly our touchstones for all growth in the life of the spirit.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1966
“The Guidance of AA’s World Affairs”
The Language of the Heart

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

“We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: ‘Once an
alcoholic, always an alcoholic.’ Commencing to drink after a period
of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.”
“We have learned that whatever the human frailties of various faiths
may be, those faiths have given purpose and direction to millions.
People of faith have a logical idea of what life is all about.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 49

“Many of us keep liquor in our homes. We often need it to carry
green recruits through a severe hangover. Some of us still serve it
to our friends provided they are not alcoholic. But some of us think
we should not serve liquor to anyone. We never argue this question.
We feel that each family, in the light of their own circumstances,
ought to decide for themselves.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 102~

The idea that we can be possessively loving of a few, can ignore the many, and can continue to fear or hate anybody,
has to be abandoned, if only a little at a time.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 93

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

A Different Swinging Door
When a drunk shows up among us and says that he doesn’t like the A.A. principles, people, or service management, when he declares that he can do better elsewhere – we are not worried. We simply say, ‘Maybe your case really is different. Why don’t you try something else?’
If an A.A. member says he doesn’t like his own group, we are not disturbed. We simply say, ‘Why don’t you try another one? Or start one of your own.’ To those who wish to secede from A.A. altogether, we extend a cheerful invitation to do just that. If they can do better by other means, we are glad. If after a trial they cannot do better, we know they face a choice: They can go mad or die or they can return to A.A. The decision is wholly theirs. ( As a matter of fact, most of them do come back. ) TWELVE CONCEPTS, pp. 72 – 73

Prayer For The Day: Lord, protect me as I strive everyday to draw closer to You! Remind me that I am not alone for You are my help. You are my strong shelter that I know I can trust and rely on. Thank you for never leaving me.