Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 22nd Daily Reflections.

Bsober's Chainbreakers

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 21st Daily Reflections.

Daily Reflections

TRUE TOLERANCE

Finally, we begin to see that all people, including ourselves, are to some extent
emotionally ill as well as frequently wrong, and then we approach true tolerance and see
what real love for our fellows actually means.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 92

The thought occurred to me that all people are emotionally ill to some extent. How could
we not be? Who among us is spiritually perfect? Who among us is physically perfect?
How could any of us be emotionally perfect? Therefore, what else are we to do but bear
with one another and treat each other as we would be treated in similar circumstances?
That is what love really is.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

I am content to face the rest of my life without alcohol. I have made the great decision
once and for all. I have surrendered as gracefully as possible to the inevitable. I hope I
have no more reservations. I hope that nothing can happen to me now that would justify
my taking a drink. No death of a dear one. No great calamity in any area of my life
should justify me in drinking. Even if I were on some desert isle, far from the rest of the
world, but not far from God, should I ever feel it right to drink. For me, alcohol is
out–period. I will always be safe unless I take that first drink. Am I fully resigned to
this fact?

Meditation For The Day

Day by day we should slowly build up an unshakable faith in a Higher Power in that
Power’s ability to give us all the help we need. By having these quiet times each morning,
we start each day with a renewing of our faith, until it becomes almost a part of us and is a
strong habit. We should keep furnishing the quiet places of our souls with all the furniture
of faith. We should try to fill our thoughts each day with all that is harmonious and good,
beautiful, and enduring.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may build a house in my soul for the spirit of God to dwell in. I pray that I
may come at last to an unshakable faith.


As Bill Sees It

Rebellion Or Acceptance, p.293

All of us pass through the times when we can pray only with the
greatest exertion. Occasionally we go even further than this. We
are seized with a rebellion so sickening that we simply won’t pray.
When these things happen, we should not think too ill of ourselves.
We should simply resume prayer as soon as we can, doing what we
know to be good for us.


A man who persists in prayer finds himself in possession of great
gifts. When he has to deal with hard circumstances, he finds he can
face them. He can accept himself and the world around him.

He can do this because he now accepts a God who is All–and who
loves all. When he says, “Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be
Thy name,” he deeply and humbly means it. When in good
meditation and thus freed from the clamors of the world, he knows
that he’s in God’s hands, that his own ultimate destiny is really
secure, here and hereafter, come what may.

  1. TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 105
  2. GRAPEVINE, JUNE 1958

Walk In Dry Places

When the bath is negative
Personal relations
A member referred to getting a “negative bath” every day at work. She was talking about her boss’s bad disposition and the poor attitudes of several co-workers. How does one deal with this negativity?
It’s not satisfactory to say that this member created her own “negative bath” by her attitudes toward her boss and others. In fact, in many businesses, the atmosphere is negative… and dealing with it takes more than trite comment.
In such situations, we can employ detachment, as practiced in Al-Anon, and accept the things we cannot change, as stated in the Serenity Prayer.
The longer-term solution may require making a major change, such as finding a new job, but we must be careful not to exchange one negative situation for another. We will make the right decision if we’re careful to avoid resentment and self-pity while being completely honest about our own motives and intentions.
I may find myself in a “negative bath” of some kind today, but I can detach from it by avoiding resentment or the tendency to blame others.


Keep It Simple

Life is what happens to us while we’re making other plans.
—Thomas LaMance
What happened to our years of drinking and using other drugs? They seemed to pass so quickly with so little to show for them. We had plans, but we didn’t get where we wanted to go. There was always “tomorrow.”
What a difference today! Now we work a program that helps us really live each day. We’re not losing time out of our lives anymore. Now every day is full of life: sights, sounds, people, feelings—those things we used to miss out on. We have the help of a Higher Power who makes every day important.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me do Your will for me today. I place this day in Your care.
Action for the Day: Be on the lookout today for signs of life!


Each Day a New Beginning

Children awaken you own sense of self when you see them hurting, struggling, testing; when you watch their eyes and listen to their hearts. Children are gifts, if we accept them. –Kathleen Tierney Crilly
Children look to us and their world with fresh eyes, uncynical attitudes, open hearts. They react spontaneously to the events in their lives; what they feel is who they are.
Close observation of children can help us. See how complex we have made our lives! Their simple honesty can serve us well. To look at the world, once again, with wonder, is a byproduct offered us when we live the principles of this program.
So many gifts await us when we accept the program and its principles. We dispense with the baggage of the past. We learn to live this day only. And we come to believe that there is a power greater than ourselves that has everything and us in our lives under control. Children instinctively trust those who take care of them. We can learn to trust, once again, when we apply the Steps of this program to our lives.
I will look to this day with wonder and trust. Everything is okay. I am in the care of a power greater.


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

I well remember the shock I received when a prominent doctor in Chicago told me of cases where pressure of the spinal fluid actually ruptured the brain. No wonder an alcoholic is strangely irrational. Who wouldn’t be, with such a fevered brain? Normal drinkers are not so affected, nor can they understand the aberrations of the alcoholic.

p. 140


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Crossing The River Of Denial

She finally realized that when she enjoyed her drinking, she couldn’t control it, and when she controlled it, she couldn’t enjoy it.

One such companion led to my first arrest. If the driver of the car had only pulled over when the police lights flashed, we would have been fine. If, when I had practically talked our way out of it, the driver had kept his mouth shut, we would have been fine. But no, he started babbling about how he was in rehab. I got off with a misdemeanor, and for years, I completely discounted that arrest because it was all his fault. I simply ignored that I had been drinking all day.

pp. 329-330


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Seven – “Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.”

Humility, as a word and as an ideal, has a very bad time of it in our world. Not only is the idea misunderstood; the word itself is often intensely disliked. Many people haven’t even a nodding acquaintance with humility as a way of life. Much of the everyday talk we hear, and a great deal of what we read, highlights man’s pride in his own achievements.

p. 70


With the power of God in my actions and thinking I can do all things with love and
kindness.
–Shelley

“God Loves You – even when you are not looking.”

He created me to be a light of love and life. Letting go, I allow the light of Him within me
to shine forth in my life and out into my world.
–unknown

Express love through acknowledgment. Notice the good in those around you and freely
comment on it.
–Mary Manin Morrissey

The value of persistent prayer is not that He will hear us, but we will finally hear Him.
–William McGill

We are not living just to be sober; we are living to learn, to serve, and to love.

The express elevator to sobriety doesn’t work – please use the Steps.

S T E P S = Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety.


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

UNITY

“This land of ours cannot be a
good place for any of us to live
in unless we make it a good
place for all of us to live in.”
— Richard Nixon

My sobriety has given me a comprehensive view of life and my neighbor. Today I believe
that we are all connected and if I hurt or am hurt, then everybody at some level is
affected. Because we are all children of God, it follows that we are all one big family —
speaking different languages, having different customs, revealing different
physical characteristics and complexions, requiring different satisfaction (both sexual
and emotional), but we are still one big family under God.

This means I have a responsibility to all in the family and I can best exercise that
responsibility by having a healthy respect for myself. I should treat people as I would
want to be treated, allowing them the freedom and love I require in my life. I am the
key to the world’s needs.

Lord, let me find my neighbor in myself.


“Just as it is bearing fruit and growing in the whole world, so it has been bearing fruit
among yourselves from the day you heard it and truly comprehended the grace of
God.”
Colossians 1:6

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your
strength.”
Deuteronomy 6:5

For your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. You rule generation after generation. The
LORD is faithful in all he says; he is gracious in all he does. The LORD helps the fallen
and lifts up those bent beneath their loads. All eyes look to you for help; you give them
their food as they need it. When you open your hand, you satisfy the hunger and thirst of
every living thing.
Psalm 145:13-16


Daily Inspiration

Do not take any action until you’ve prayed and listened and then you will have guidance to reach the understanding necessary to complete the things you need to do. Lord, I know that there is no obstacle for You and ask that You will guide me along the right path.

Rejoice and be happy for others when they are blessed. Lord, bless me with the ability to be free of envy so that I can truly share the joy of my neighbors.


NA Just For Today

Look Who’s Talking

“Our disease is so cunning that it can get us into impossible situations.”

Basic Text, p.80

Some of us say, “My disease is talking to me.” Others say, “My head won’t turn off.” Still others refer to “the committee in my mind” or “the monkey on my back.” Let’s face it. We suffer from an incurable malady that continues to affect us, even in recovery. Our disease gives us warped information about what’s going on in our lives. It tells us not to look at ourselves because what we’ll see is too scary. Sometimes it tells us we’re not responsible for ourselves and our actions; other times, it tells us that everything wrong with the world is our fault. Our disease tricks us into trusting it.

The NA program provides us with many voices that counter our addiction, voices we can trust. We can call our sponsor for a reality check. We can listen to the voice of an addict trying to get clean. The ultimate solution is to work the steps and draw on the strength of a Higher Power. That will get us through those times when “our disease is talking.”

Just for today: I will ignore the “voice” of my addiction. I will listen to the voice of my program and a Power greater than myself.

pg. 308


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Sometimes it takes a rainy day just to let you know, everything’s gonna be alright. –Cris Williamson
Rainy days let us slow down. We are busy people, driving ourselves to go places and get things done. But rain seems to slow life down, even in our hearts. And slowing down can show us the peace in our lives, the peace of knowing we have all we need right inside us. The pressures of the world can drop away for a time while we reflect.
As the rain soaks into the ground, its serenity enters our hearts. Leaves on trees begin to look more green. Plants and flowers are no longer thirsty. When we slow down, we can be comforted by what we have in our hearts, knowing everything is going to be all right.
What comfort can I find within myself right now?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Self-righteousness is a loud din raised to drown the voice of guilt within us. –Eric Hoffer
A holier-than-thou attitude within us is often a sign of unconscious dishonesty. Who hasn’t had the feeling of being superior to the angry outburst or the near slip of another man – and then found himself in the very same spot the next day? What we least want to admit about ourselves is what we are most likely to feel self-righteous about.
Since our blind spots and self-deception leave us vulnerable to returning to old behaviors, we must attack them vigorously. The man we feel most self-righteous toward may be the man we could learn the most from. When we stop focusing on him, we may notice he touches our most sensitive area. We’re all creatures of God and equals in God’s sight. The ways we create inequality are the ways we fall short of God’s wisdom.
I will use my self-righteous feelings to point me to my own blind spots.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Children awaken you own sense of self when you see them hurting, struggling, testing; when you watch their eyes and listen to their hearts. Children are gifts, if we accept them. –Kathleen Tierney Crilly
Children look to us and their world with fresh eyes, uncynical attitudes, open hearts. They react spontaneously to the events in their lives; what they feel is who they are.
Close observation of children can help us. See how complex we have made our lives! Their simple honesty can serve us well. To look at the world, once again, with wonder, is a byproduct offered us when we live the principles of this program.
So many gifts await us when we accept the program and its principles. We dispense with the baggage of the past. We learn to live this day only. And we come to believe that there is a power greater than ourselves that has everything and us in our lives under control. Children instinctively trust those who take care of them. We can learn to trust, once again, when we apply the Steps of this program to our lives.
I will look to this day with wonder and trust. Everything is okay. I am in the care of a power greater.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Holding Your Own
Trust yourself. Trust what you know.
Sometimes, it is hard to stand in our own truth and trust what we know, especially when others would try to convince us otherwise.
In these cases, others may be dealing with issues of guilt and shame. They may have their own agenda. They may be immersed in denial. They would like us to believe that we do not know what we know; they would like us not to trust ourselves; they would prefer to engage us in their nonsense.
We don’t have to forfeit our truth or our power to others. That is codependency.
Believing lies is dangerous. When we stop trusting our truth, when we repress our instincts, when we tell ourselves there must be something wrong with us for feeling what we feel or believing what we believe, we deal a deadly blow to our self and our health.
When we discount that important part of ourselves that knows what is the truth, we cut ourselves off from our center. We feel crazy. We get into shame, fear, and confusion. We can’t get our bearings when we allow someone to pull the rug from under us.
This does not mean that we are never wrong. But we are not always wrong.
Be open. Stand in our truth. Trust what you know. And refuse to buy into denial, nonsense, bullying, or coercion that would like to take you off course.
Ask to be shown the truth, clearly – not by the person trying to manipulate or convince you, but by yourself, your Higher Power, and the Universe.
Today, I will trust my truth, my instincts, and my ability to ground myself in reality. I will not allow myself to be swayed by bullying, manipulating, games, dishonesty, or people with peculiar agendas.

Today I pray for the knowledge of God’s Will for me and the power to carry it through. –Ruth Fishel


Journey to the Heart
Heal Your Past

Open your heart to the universe. Let it bring you love and comfort. Let it bring you healing. Let it take you back to your past long enough to heal, so you can move forward into joy.

Universal love can bring something other than straightforward movement. Sometimes it takes us backward into our past and leaves us there long enough to heal. An incident occurs, and we react strongly; our emotions are more intense than necessary for the present moment. We may not notice. We may think, This is now; this is how I’m feeling about what’s happening today. But as we become more aware, some part of us says, I’m feeling something from yesterday,too, something I wasn’t safe rnough to see and feel then.

Let yourself feel your past. Then let yourself heal. Take responsibility for your behaviors. Let the emotions clear. Then you will see what the universe has done. It has just created a healing scenario for you– a gentle trigger to the past, a gentle step forward for your heart.


more language of letting go
Be aware of your heroes

Heroes and mentors can inspire and teach us to do great things in our lives. They can help point us in the right direction whenr we’re unsure. They can bring us just the right message, at just the right time. Usually we can find someone who has walked the path before us, and can lead us with his or her example. The problem comes when he or she stops being a mentor to us and becomes an idol instead. If we spend too much time revering an individual, we can easily lose sight of the message.

Take a look at the people in your life that you have chosen as mentors, heroes, sponsors, or teachers. Appreciate all the help they give you. But be aware that they don’t and can’t have all the answers. They’re human,too. They to have blind spots, prejudices, and their own lessons to go through. And yes, they’ll make mistakes. But if their hearts are true, they’ll come back to the path. And if your heart is true, maybe you’ll be a light helping guide them there.

Listen to your mentors. Respect then for who they are. Be grateful for the inspiration and messages that come through them to you. But don;t worship your heroes.

Learn to think for yourself as well.

God, help me remember that it’s the message, not the messenger, that counts. Thank you for my heroes, teachers, and mentors, but help me remember not to lift them up too high.


Spiritualizing the Planet
Ascension by Madisyn Taylor

As we ascend, we gain consciousness of the more subtle aspects of our being and begin to connect with all that is.

We are one with the cosmos whether we realize it or not. Realizing it, though, quickens our spiritual energy and allows us access to higher realms. In those higher realms lies the awareness that we are more than just finite physical beings living one life in one place at one point in time. Connecting with this awareness is to awaken to the truth and take a step forward, and upward, on our soul’s journey. This upward movement is known as ascension because the more we remember who we are and embody that truth, the higher our energy vibrates; we ascend up the scale from the gross physical plane to the subtle spiritual plane. As we ascend, we gain consciousness of the more subtle aspects of our being, with the ultimate outcome being a complete identification with the light body, an experience of unification with the cosmos.

As you look around you, you will see that many people are not even interested in these ideas. Others are open and paying attention. Still others have devoted their lives to deepening their understanding of the truth. All these people are on the path of ascension, but they will ascend at different rates. Each soul chooses its own path. The more devoted a person is to remembering and being guided by spirit, the more quickly the soul will ascend. These people are at the forefront of an important process of raising the energetic vibration of the whole planet. The earth, made of the same energy we are, is undergoing this shift along with us. This evolutionary process, while seemingly chaotic at times, is as natural as the process that unfolds a flower from a seed and we are all part of it.

It shouldn’t be forgotten that the earth too is on her own ascension path as she is sentient. The best way to support this process in yourself and in the world is simply to relax and be open to its unfolding. Listen to your inner guidance, and let it guide you to the path that brings your heart the most joy. Published with permission Daily OM


A Day at a Time

Reflection for the Day
“Not all those who know their minds know their hearts as well,” wrote LaRochefoucauld. The Program is of inestimable value for those of us, formerly addicted, who want to know ourselves and who are courageous enough to seek growth through self-examination and self-improvement. If I remain honest, open-minded and willing, The Program will enable me to rid myself of my self-deceptive attitudes and character flaws that for so long prevented me from growing into the kind of person I want to be.

Do I try to help others understand The Program and Twelve Steps? Do I carry the message by example?

Today I Pray
I ask God’s blessing for the group, which has shown me so much about myself that I was not willing to face on my own. May I have the courage to be confronted and to confront, not only to be honest for honesty’s sake – which may be reason enough – but to allow myself and the others in the group to grow in self-knowledge.

Today I Will Remember
We are mirrors of each other.


One More Day

This is the bitterest knowledge among men, to have much knowledge but no power.
–Herodotus

We have the power to influence others’ lives only when we share what we have learned. If we fail to or refuse to recognize the value of our knowledge, we force ourselves into a sort of isolation and — worse still — deprive others of our insights.

We know how to handle intricate personal relationships and delicate problems. We have gained the emotional stability to allow ourselves to depend on others and on our Higher Power. We can share this knowledge with others, not to serve our own needs, but to help our fellow human beings.

A loving power is mine when I gently share the knowledge I have with others.


Food For Thought

Healing

God, as understood by each of us, has the Power to heal our bodies, minds, and hearts. Once we realize that we are sick, we can open ourselves to the Power, which will affect our recovery. As we delve more deeply into the OA program, we see that it is not only the body, which suffers from the disease of compulsive overeating. Mind and emotions are also muddled and in need of God’s cleansing.

The healing process can be painful. Sometimes we have to get worse in order to get better. Sometimes we have to be more devastated by overeating, by pride, by fear and selfishness before we are willing to turn ourselves over to our Higher Power for healing. We do not make the effort to work the Twelve Steps until we see how desperately ill we are.

God heals, but He requires our cooperation and effort. The extent of our recovery is determined by the intensity of our desire to get well. When our desire is focused on the source of health and held there steadily, we can become whole.

We pray for healing.


One Day At A Time

Scars
“Dwelling on the negative
simply contributes to its power.”
Shirley MacLaine

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


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

It is probably true that you and your husband have been living too much alone, for drinking many times isolates the wife of an alcoholic. Therefore, you probably need fresh interests and a great cause to live for as much as your husband. If you cooperate, rather than complain, you will find that his excess enthusiasm will tone down. Both of you will awaken to a new sense of responsibility for others. You, as well as your husband, ought to think of what you can put into life instead of how much you can take out. Inevitably your lives will be fuller for doing so. You will lose the old life to find one much better. – Pgs. 119-120 – To Wives

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

By now you may be hearing things you don’t like. It can be difficult to accept the truth, but eventually most of it will make sense. For now, just listen without argument–let things settle a little before you discard them.

Even if I don’t agree or accept everything told to me now, rather then outright discard it, let me listen, file away for future reference, and process the information later.

Releasing of Perfectionism

Today, I will not demand that my life be perfect in order for me to love it, nor will I demand that all my relationships be perfect for me to value and respect them. If I try to make my life and relationships perfect, I will be constantly engaged in a neurotic battle with my transitory illusion of perfection. There is no such thing as an ideal, and to insist that life be ideal is to miss the forest for the trees. I will not condemn myself to the constant feeling that I have drawn the short straw. Perfection is in the eyes of the beholder — it is subjective. I will not ask the moment to be more than the moment — I will not be conditional in my love.

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

It has been said that we are not human beings having a spiritual experience but spiritual beings having a human experience. As a dream is to your human experience, addiction is to your spiritual experience. When you awake, you realize it no longer has power over you.

Sometimes I need a rude awakening before I can have a spiritual awakening.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Recovery is an inside job.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I pray for the knowledge of God’s Will for me and the power to carry it through.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

The bigger my head. The bigger the target. Anon.


AA Thought for the Day

October 22

Happy, Joyous, and Free
We are sure God wants us to be happy, joyous, and free.
We cannot subscribe to the belief that this life is a vale of tears, though it once was just that for many of us.
But it is clear that we made our own misery. God didn’t do it.
Avoid then, the deliberate manufacture of misery, but if trouble comes, cheerfully capitalize it
as an opportunity to demonstrate His omnipotence.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 133

Thought to Ponder . . .
True happiness is found in the journey, not the destination.

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

~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~~

Amends
“This is a very large order.
It is a task which we may perform with increasing skill,
but we never really finish.
Learning how to live in the greatest peace, partnership,
and brotherhood with all men and women,
of whatever description,
is a moving and fascinating adventure.
Every AA has found that he can make little headway
in this new adventure of living until he first backtracks
and really makes an accurate and unsparing survey
of the human wreckage he has left in his wake.”
c.1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 77

Thought to Consider . . .
It is the highest form of self-respect to admit mistakes
and to make amends for them.

~~AACRONYMS~~
T I M E = Things I Must Earn

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

Message that Transcends
From: “Window of Opportunity”
I was fortunate to have an opportunity to spend time abroad during law school. That was something I had dreamed of doing while drinking, but when push came to shove, I drank. Now sober, I have been in meetings in probably a dozen countries and have always been amazed at the message that transcends all linguistic and cultural differences. There is a solution. Together, we can live soberly, joyously, and freely.
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, page 430

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

“The simplicity of this program never changes — what works is constant: trust in God, clean house, and work with others.”
Concord, Calif., May 1997
“Take My Advice — I’m Not Using It,”
Emotional Sobriety

~~~~^ 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.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 33

Many a man, yet dazed from his hospital experience, has stepped over
the threshold of that home into freedom. Many an alcoholic who
entered there came away with an answer. He succumbed to that gay
crowd inside, who laughed at their own misfortunes and understood
his. Impressed by those who visited him at the hospital, he
capitulated entirely when, later, in an upper room of this house, he
heard the story of some man whose experience closely tallied with his
own. The expression on the faces of the women, that indefinable
something in the eyes of the men, the stimulating and electric
atmosphere of the place, conspired to let him know that here was
haven at last.
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 160

He may be an example of the truth that faith alone is insufficient.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.93

Faith, to be sure, is necessary, but faith alone can avail nothing.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.34

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We thought we had been deeply serious about religious practices. However, upon honest appraisal we found that we had been most superficial. Or sometimes, going to extremes, we had wallowed in emotionalism and had also mistaken this for true religious feeling. In both cases, we had been asking something for nothing.
We had not prayed rightly. We had always said, ‘Grant me my wishes,’ instead of ‘Thy will be done.’ The love of God and man we understood not at all. Therefore we remained self-deceived, and so incapable of receiving enough grace to restore us to sanity.

Prayer for the Day: True Power – Take from me, High Power, my false pride and grandiosity, all my phoniness and self-importance, and help me find the courage that shows itself in gentleness, the wisdom that shows itself in simplicity, and the true power that shows itself in modesty and humility.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 21st

Bsober's Chainbreakers

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 21st Daily Reflections.

Daily Reflections

NOTHING GROWS IN THE DARK

We will want the good that is in us all, even in the worst of us, to flower and to grow.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 10

With the self-discipline and insight gained from practicing Step Ten, I begin to know the
gratifications of sobriety — not as mere abstinence from alcohol, but as recovery in every
department of my life.
I renew hope, regenerate faith, and regain the dignity of self-respect. I discover the word
“and” in the phrase “and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.”
Reassured that I am no longer always wrong, I learn to accept myself as I am, with a new
sense of the miracles of sobriety and serenity.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Now that we have considered the obligations of real, working members of A.A., let us
examine what the rewards are that have come to us as a result of our new way of living.
First, I understand myself more than I ever did before. I have learned what was the
matter with me and I know now a lot of what makes me tick. I will never be alone again. I
am just one of many who have the illness of alcoholism and one of many who have learned
what to do about it. I am not an odd fish or a square peg in a round hole. I seem to have
found my right place in the world. Am I beginning to understand myself?

Meditation For The Day

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If any man hear my voice and open the door, I
will come in to him and will remain with him and him with me.” The knocking of God’s
spirit, asking to come into your life, is due to no merit of yours, though it is in response to
the longing of your heart. Keep a listening ear, an ear bent to catch the sound of
the gentle knocking at the door of your heart by the spirit of God. Then open the
door of your heart and let God’s spirit come in.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may let God’s spirit come into my heart. I pray that it may fill me with an
abiding peace.


As Bill Sees It

Toward Partnership, p. 292

When the distortion of family life through alcohol has been great, a
long period of patient striving may be necessary. After the husband
joins A.A., the wife may become discontented, even highly resentful
that A.A. has done the very thing that all her years of devotion had
failed to do. Her husband may become so wrapped up in A.A. and his
new friends that he is inconsiderately away from home more than
when he drank. Each then blames the other.

But eventually the alcoholic, now fully understanding how much he did
to hurt his wife and children, nearly always takes up his marriage
responsibilities with a willingness to repair what he can and accept
what he can’t. He persistently tries all of A.A.’s Twelve Steps in his
home, often with fine results. He firmly but lovingly commences to
behave like a partner instead of like a bad boy.

12 & 12, pp. 118-119


Walk In Dry Places

What is a disappointment?
Handling My Outlook
Try as we will for success and achievement, we still must face a number of disappointments in our lives. We may be disappointed by a sales presentation that failed, a repair project that became a nightmare, or a vacation plan that turned sour. How can we handle such disappointments in the spirit of the Twelve Step program?
We must remember not to be too hard on ourselves when disappointments occur. Disappoints are part of the human experience, not misfortunes that come only to certain individuals. If we=ve done our best in any situation, we are not responsible if it did not work out.
Even more important, we should use every disappointment as a learning experience. It=s always possible that one disappointment will provide kernels of truth that will help us succeed in our next effort. Many people point to specific disappointments or setbacks as times when they are able to find new direction.
There are even times when disappointment in a lesser enterprise clears the way for success in a larger one. Whatever the outcome, no disappointment need be final—- nor should we take it as proof that we=re somehow inadequate and unworthy.
I will be positive in my outlook, expecting every effort to be effective and successful. If disappointment comes, however, I will take it in stride, knowing that it=s only a temporary detour in my successful life.


Keep It Simple

Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.—Anonymous
Nobody’s always wrong. Nobody’s all bad. And that includes us.
Sometimes, we really get down on ourselves. When we do Step Four, we sometimes see only our faults. When we make our Step Ten checkup, we see only our mistakes. We can’t afford to do this. We need to see our strengths too. But even our faults have a good side. Are you stubborn? Good—be stubborn, you know how to hang on to feelings. So, hang on to the good feelings instead of the bad ones.
Each of us is good and wise. What’s good about us got twisted by our disease. But now we can get the kinks out. We are sober, and we have a program to help us.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me to see the good in myself and others.
Action for the Day: I’ll take another look at my faults today. How can I use them in good ways?


Each Day a New Beginning

The strength of the drive determines the force required to suppress it. –Mary Jane Sherfey
We are all struggling to succeed. And each day of our lives we’ll be confronted with major or minor adversities that might well interfere with our success. Adversities don’t have to hinder us, however. They can strengthen us, if we incorporate them as opportunities for growth.
For many of us, the ability to handle adversity is a fairly recent phenomenon. And not always can we do it securely and with ease. But we are coming to believe that a power greater than ourselves is at hand and will guarantee us all the strength we’ll ever need. Knowing that action is always possible, that passive acceptance of any condition need never be necessary are unconditional gifts of living the Twelve Step program.
Our path forward is as certain as our commitment to it, our belief in the strength of the program, and our faith that all is well even when times are troubled. No one ever promised that our new way of life would be always easy. But we have been promised that we’ll arrive at our proper destination if we do the footwork and let God do the navigating.
Success is at hand. I will apply what I’m learning, and I’ll meet it.


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

Can you discard the feeling that you are dealing only with habit, with stubbornness, or a weak will? If this presents difficulty, re-reading chapters two and three, where alcoholic sickness is discussed at length might be worth while. You, as a business man, want to know the necessities before considering the result. If you concede that your employee is ill, can he be forgiven for what he has done in the past? Can his past absurdities be forgotten? Can it be appreciated that he has been a victim of crooked thinking, directly caused by the action of alcohol on his brain?

p. 140


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Crossing The River Of Denial

She finally realized that when she enjoyed her drinking, she couldn’t control it, and when she controlled it, she couldn’t enjoy it.

Well, I made it all right, to full-blown alcoholism. A big city is a great place to be an alcoholic. Nobody notices. Three-martini lunches. drinks after work, and a nightcap at the corner bar was just a normal day. And didn’t everyone have blackouts? I used to joke about how great blackouts were because you saved so much time in transit. One minute you’re here, the next minute you’re there! In retrospect, making jokes, just laughing it off helped solidify my unfaltering denial. Another trick was selecting companions who drank just a little bit more than I did. Then I could always point to their problem.

p. 329


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Seven – “Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.”

Indeed, 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.

p. 70


S T E P S = Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety.

C H A N G E = Choosing Honesty Allows New Growth Every day.

Love begins at home, and it is not how much we do… but how much love we put in that
action.
–Mother Teresa

Joy increases as you give it, and diminishes as you try to keep it for yourself. In giving it,
you will accumulate a deposit of joy greater than you ever believed possible.
–Norman Vincent Peale, Positive Thinking Every Day

God is singing and Creation is the melody.
–David Palmer

Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.
–unknown

I didn’t learn humility with my head. I learned humility with my heart.
–unknown


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

CONSCIENCE

“In matters of conscience, the
law of the majority has no
place.”
— Mohandas Gandhi

How I used to hate myself. So many times I caught myself pleasing the crowd, agreeing
with people I did not understand or respect, laughing at jokes and opinions I loathed. How
I used to hate myself!

Today I have a healthy respect for what the majority may feel but I also trust and follow
my conscience. I know that to be in the minority is not necessarily to be in the wrong. My
recovery insists that I listen to my conscience, that inner self that is based on a program
of honesty, that spiritual cornerstone of my life that I have come to trust.

Now I can say to people, “I do not agree.” Today I give myself permission to disagree
with family, friends and colleagues.

May I never follow the crowd because of the numbers: God is one.


The LORD himself watches over you! The LORD stands beside you as your protective
shade. The sun will not hurt you by day, nor the moon at night. The LORD keeps you
from all evil and preserves your life. The LORD keeps watch over you as you come and
go, both now and forever.
Psalm 121:5-8

Let me hear of your unfailing love to me in the morning, for I am trusting you. Show me
where to walk, for I have come to you in prayer. Save me from my enemies, LORD; I run
to you to hide me. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. May your gracious
Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing.
Psalm 143:8-10

“Without wood a fire goes out; without gossip a quarrel dies down.”
Proverbs 26:20


Daily Inspiration

There are far more solutions than problems and knowing this is very empowering. Lord, in the encounters of my daily life, may I choose to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.

No gift is so precious as love. Gratefully trust God and give Him your love. Lord, I give You my heart.


NA Just For Today

God’s Will Today

“This decision demands continued acceptance, ever – increasing faith, and a daily commitment to recovery.”

IP No.14, “One Addict’s Experience…”

Sometimes, we really live the Third Step – and it’s great! We don’t regret the past, we aren’t afraid of the future, and we’re generally pleased with the present. Sometimes, though, we lose our vision of God’s will in our life.

Many of us dream of erasing the mistakes of our past, but the past cannot be erased. Many of us are grateful this is so, for our past experiences have brought us to the recovery we enjoy today. By working the program, we can learn to accept the past and reconcile ourselves with it by amending our wrongs. Those same Twelve Steps can help eliminate our worries over the future. When we practice NA principles on a daily basis in all our affairs, we can leave the results up to our Higher Power.

It seems as though our members with the strongest faith are the ones who are best able to live in the present moment. Enjoyment, appreciation, and gratitude for the quality of our lives – these are the results of faith in life itself. When we practice the principles of our program, today is the only day we need.

Just for today: I will make the most of today, and trust that yesterday and tomorrow are in God’s care.

pg. 307


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Great events make me quiet and calm; it is only trifles that irritate my nerves. –Queen Victoria
Isn’t that always the way? We cope with major events, like births and weddings, fairly well. It is the little things–so inconsequential in the long run–that upset us. If the kids don’t pick up their rooms, or dinner is late, or we can’t go to the movies because we haven’t done our homework, we become irritated and annoyed. Minor things like these upset us much more than they should.
Are they really so important? A messy room is not a terminal illness. A late dinner won’t affect our health unless we get so upset about it we make ourselves sick. We’ll survive.
If we think back to the last time we were angry or upset, does it seem important now? We probably can’t even remember why we reacted that way. How much better life is when we let go of the little irritations.
What irritation can I let go of today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
No man can produce great things who is not thoroughly sincere in dealing with himself. –James Russell Lowell
We are in the business of producing miracles. The renewal of life in us and others in this program is a great event and happens only after we establish an honest relationship with ourselves. No longer can we excuse our minimizing and little white lies that push aside the truth. No longer can we deny our private fears and self doubts. In our growing sincerity with ourselves, we can admit our weaknesses. Some of us feel inadequate at our work, many of us have feelings that we aren’t masculine enough, and many of us feel tempted to return to old destructive behaviors.
In this program we have a renewal based on truth. We build upon solid reality rather than upon fiction. Denying the truth to ourselves always made us weaker and sicker than the facts themselves ever could. Viewing the facts from a new position of acceptance shows they aren’t nearly as bad as we thought. Our sincerity with ourselves becomes a solid footing for growth.
My strength today is based upon a sincere relationship with myself.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The strength of the drive determines the force required to suppress it. –Mary Jane Sherfey
We are all struggling to succeed. And each day of our lives we’ll be confronted with major or minor adversities that might well interfere with our success. Adversities don’t have to hinder us, however. They can strengthen us, if we incorporate them as opportunities for growth.
For many of us, the ability to handle adversity is a fairly recent phenomenon. And not always can we do it securely and with ease. But we are coming to believe that a power greater than ourselves is at hand and will guarantee us all the strength we’ll ever need. Knowing that action is always possible, that passive acceptance of any condition need never be necessary are unconditional gifts of living the Twelve Step program.
Our path forward is as certain as our commitment to it, our belief in the strength of the program, and our faith that all is well even when times are troubled. No one ever promised that our new way of life would be always easy. But we have been promised that we’ll arrive at our proper destination if we do the footwork and let God do the navigating.
Success is at hand. I will apply what I’m learning, and I’ll meet it.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Financial Responsibility
“When I began recovery from chemical dependency, I had to face my money mess stone cold sober, and I really had a mess,” said one woman.
“I wasn’t able to earn much at first, and it was important to me to make amends. I had past due bills from years before. I needed to try to stay current with my new bills. I had a lot more money before I sobered up. But in time, slowly, gradually, my financial situation cleared up. I restored my credit. I had a checking account. I had a little money in the bank.
“Then I married an alcoholic and began to learn about my codependency – the hard way. I lost myself, my feelings, my sanity, and all the progress I had made with my financial affairs. My husband and I opened a checking account together, and he over drafted checks until I lost the right to have a checking account. I let him charge and charge on my credit card, and he drove that into the ground.
“We borrowed and borrowed to keep our sinking ship afloat – and we borrowed a lot from my parents,” she said. “By the time I began my recovery from codependency, I was again facing a real financial mess. I was furious, but it didn’t matter who did what. I had some serious financial matters to face if that part of my life was ever going to become manageable again.
“Slowly – very slowly – I began to work out of my mess. It seemed impossible! I didn’t even want to face it, it felt so overwhelming and hopeless. But I did. And each day I did the best I could to be responsible for myself.
“One decision I made was to separate and protect myself financially from my husband, the best I could, before and after we divorced. The other decision I made was to face and begin reconstructing the financial affairs in my life.
“It was difficult. We owed over fifty thousand dollars, and my ability to produce income had dramatically decreased. I was grieving; my self-esteem was at an all time low; my energy was low. I did not know how I would ever untangle this nightmare. But it did happen. Slowly, gradually, with the help of a Higher Power, manageability crept in and replaces chaos.
“I began by not spending more than I earned. I paid back some creditors, a little at a time. I let go of what I couldn’t do, and focused on what I could do.
“Now, eight years have passed. I am debt free, which I never imagined possible. I am living comfortably, with money in the bank. My credit has been restored, again. And I intend to keep it that way.
“I am not willing to lose my financial sanity and security again, ever, for love or for alcoholism. With the help of God and the Twelve Steps, I won’t have to.”
One day at a time, we can be restored in recovery – mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically, and financially. It may get worse before it gets better – because we are finally facing reality instead of dodging it. But once we make the decision to take financial responsibility for ourselves, we are on our way.
God, help me remember that what seems hopeless today can often be solved tomorrow, even if I can’t see the solution. If I have allowed the problems of others to hurt me financially, help me repair and restore my boundaries around money – and what I am willing to lose. Help me understand that I do not have to allow anyone else’s financial irresponsibility, addiction, disease, or problem to hurt me financially. Help me go on with my life in spite of my present financial circumstances, trusting that if I am willing to make amends and be responsible, things will work out.

Today I know that I am not alone. Today I know that God guides me in all situations and all I have to do to get help is to ask for it. –Ruth Fishel God help me to stay sober and clean today!


Journey to the Heart
Learn to Nurture and Be Nurtured

It was a quiet morning. I was holed up in a hotel room at the mouth of Bryce Canyon, working on this book. Working on my life. I stayed in bed for a while– thinking, pondering, wondering. Finally I got up, went to the restaurant for coffee and a roll, then went for a drive. Soak up nature, I told myself. This journey is a living meditation.

I drove into Bryce Canyon Park, letting the massive stones, the colors and spirals, the eternity of the canyon touch me, heal me, soothe my soul. An hour later, when I felt calmer and more energized, I got back in the car and headed for the park exit. Several cars were jammed up. I wondered if there had been an accident. Then I saw why the others had stopped. A mother deer was standing on the side of the road, gently nuzzling her fawn. She stood by her off-spring’s side, protecting and nurturing.

Many of us barely remember a mother’s nurturing love; some of us do, with fondness and joy. Many of us have experienced the great gift of nurturing and loving our children, a joy that opens the heart in a way little else can. Some of us have learned to give and receive nurturing in other ways, to people outside our immediate families. But most of us, along the way, have learned the gift, the wonder, the awe, and the healing blessings of nurturing. Giving and reveiving is a continuous cycle, a necessary part of the road to the heart.

Learn to nurture others. Nurture and love yourself. The whole universe will rally round and help. Others will applaud your efforts and learn from them, the way the passersby stopped to gaze on the deer and her fawn.

Celebrate the power of nurturing. Release its gentle love. It rests inside each of us, waiting to be seen, appreciated, and brought to life.


more language of letting go
Cultivate awareness

Often the words “consciousness” and “awareness” are used interchangebly. … Consciousness is the pulsing vibration that is the essence of all things. Awareness is the individuating “I AM” in each of us. Wherever I am, my awareness is also. When I move, my awareness goes with me. When I focus my awareness on something, I perceive that thing. Through my physical sensory organs I am aware of sights, sounds, tastes, smells and touch. Through higher sensory perception I am aware of much more.
–Enid Hoffman

Use all your senses, whether you are visualizing the future or sinking into a joyful awareness of where you are right now. Don’t just look at the flower– touch it. Smell it. Feel it.

Don’t just gaze at the people in your life. Hear them. Feel their power and presence.

Slow down. Don’t move so fast. You’ll miss important things. Cultivate awareness. Bring your senses, all of them, into the heart of your life.

Awareness isn’t about looking. It’s about seeing with more than our eyes. Often when we look for a thing, whether it’s a home or a girlfriend, all we can see is our projections– our hopes, fears, past, and desires.

Relax. Stop projecting yourself onto the world. Let go of judgements. Let things and people be what and who they are.

Cultivate awareness by using all your senses.

Learn to see what is.

God, help me slow down and become aware.


The Joyful Flow
Good Vibrations

Feelings vibrate, just as all things in the universe do, at a particular frequency. Negative feelings like anger, guilt, and depression vibrate at low frequencies, while positive feelings like joy, appreciation, and passion vibrate at high frequencies. These high frequency vibrations make us feel good. This is why people and places that inspire and cultivate positive feelings have what we call good vibrations.

Good vibrations inspire health, happiness, and optimism. When we are tuned in to good vibrations, our bodies heal, our hearts open, and our minds shift toward the light. We see new possibilities and feel powerfully energized to follow our inner visions. At the same time, we feel relaxed and capable of manifesting these visions without giving in to stress or struggle. Good vibrations put us in a state of perfect receptivity so that we feel it is the energy flowing through us that accomplishes what needs to be done. We feel guided, supported, protected, and nourished within this joyful flow. We sometimes forget that we are allowed to feel this way all the time.

Lower frequency vibrations are not bad in a moral sense, but they are bad in the sense that they simply don’t feel good. Still, they have a purpose, which is to alert us to the fact that we are blocking out the higher frequency vibrations that we need to function well. They are a call for healing ourselves from within. The key to our healing lies in remembering that it is our birthright to feel good and that feeling good is the essence of our true nature. When we are receiving and sending out good vibrations, we are in the flow. When we are not, we can begin to raise our vibration by seeking out people, places, and situations that vibrate at a higher frequency. Whether we need to go on retreat or just call a friend who makes us laugh, seeking out those good vibrations and basking in them is a sacred and loving practice that returns us, time and again, to the joyful flow of the universe. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day at a Time

Reflection for the Day
There’s a world of difference between the idea of self-love and love of self. Self-love is a reflection of an inflated ego, around which – in our distorted view of our own self-importance – everything must revolve. Self-love is the breeding ground for hostility, arrogance and a host of other character defects which blind us to any point of view but our own. Love of self, in contrast, is an appreciation of our dignity and value as human beings. Love of self is an expression of self-realization, from which springs humility.

Do I believe that I can love others best when I have gained love of self?

Today I Pray
May God, who loves me, teach me to love myself. May I notice that the most arrogant and officious humans are not so completely sure of themselves, after all. Instead, they are apt to have a painfully low self-image, an insecurity which they cloak in pomp and princely trappings. May God show me that when I can like myself, I am duly crediting Him, since every living thing is a work of God.

Today I Will Remember
I will try to like myself.


One More Day

Business runs after nobody; people cling to it of their own free will and think that to be busy is proof of happiness. –Lucius Annacus Seneca

Sometimes we need to keep busy just to fill time. After a loss or health change, we may have great amounts of time to fill. We may turn to busy work — work having no significance but marking time as we move toward yet another adjustment. Tool-shop organizing, closet cleaning, and other tasks might be ploys we need, emotionally, to perform in rote fashion.
When we are adjusting, we may need to be busy —- to think, to decide on new plans of action, and to move forward. We won’t need busy work, and we’ll be able to make gains again. As we make our adjustments, very, very, slowly, the purpose of our lives will return.

I will put effort into my days to find meaning. It may be difficult to stay busy, but I can do it.


Food For Thought

New Memories

If certain times of the year and certain activities are associated in our minds with overeating, we need to create new memories to blot out the old ones. If we are hung up on past loves, hates, and hurts, we need to let go of them so that we can live in the present.

Old eating habits keep alive old wounds and frustrations. Even after we have maintained abstinence for a significant length of time, we may be troubled by unresolved conflicts from the past. The fact that we are abstaining from compulsive overeating gives us a chance to see the problems more clearly and to then walk away from them when we have done all that we can do to resolve them.

The past and the future are in the hands of our Higher Power. If we work our program now and live the best we can today, we are creating good memories, which will sustain us in the days to come.

Take charge of my memories. Lord.


One Day At A Time

Ready
“If we wait for the moment when everything,
absolutely everything is ready, we shall never begin.”
Ivan Turgenev

This was one of my biggest obstacles in recovery: I wanted everything to be perfect. This type of thinking kept me stuck for many years in the disease. Instead of my program being One Day At A Time, it was always “one day later and I will do your will God.”

Now I know that today is all I have. I have no guarantees for tomorrow. So I let go and let God, and do the best I can. I have discovered that I do not have to work a perfect program. Not everything has to be just “right.”

One day at a time…
One day at a time I do the footwork that is required of me and leave the results to God.
~ Terri


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

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! – Pg. 31 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Infatuation with our past life tends to produce a false sense of security based on wishful thinking. ‘Those people like me; I understand what they expect of me; they aren’t phonies.’ In the end we find those old securities only lasted as long as our usefulness did.

God, as I understand You, may I not be infatuated with wishful thinking of ‘the good old days!’

Blaming Others

Today, I understand that dumping blame on someone else does not relieve pain or make my life better in any way. If I reach out to others by attacking and blaming them, how can I expect them to hear anything that I say? If I want to be heard, I need to risk being see — not as I wish to be seen but as I am. I ask too much of someone else when I say obnoxious things and yet insist on being heard. If I really want someone to understand me, I need to risk being vulnerable and let me feelings show. Pointing a finger at someone else will only make them want to point a finger at me. It is hard to feel vulnerable, but with practice, it will become easier. I will be left with more of my real self if I don’t tear at the self of someone else.

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Sarcasm is derived from a Greek word meaning ‘to tear flesh!’ We know that the only weapon that gets sharper with use is the tongue.

I use my wit to amuse and not to abuse.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Silence is often misinterpreted, but never misquoted.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that I am not alone. Today I know that God guides me in all situations and all I have to do to get help is to ask for it.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Our 2nd Tradition says that a loving God speaks through our group conscience. So I have the assurance that if I go to a meeting, willing to listen, there’ll probably be a wino in the room who’ll hit me right between the eyes with exactly what I need to hear. – Doug D.


AA Thought for the Day

October 21

A New Meaning
Life will take on new meaning.
To watch people recover, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends
— this is an experience you must not miss. We know you will not want to miss it.
Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 89

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

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

~~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.
Nearly all AA’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.”
c.1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 70

Thought to Consider . . .
I didn’t learn humility with my head.
I learned humility with my heart.

~~AACRONYMS~~
T R U S T = Try Relying Upon Steps and Traditions

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

Forthright and Generous
Step Nine: Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
As soon as we begin to feel confident in our new way of life and have begun, by our behavior and example, to convince those about us that we are indeed changing for the better, it is usually safe to talk in complete frankness with those who have been seriously affected, even those who may be only a little or not at all aware of what we have done to them. The only exceptions we will make will be cases where our disclosure would cause actual harm. These conversations can begin in a casual or natural way. But if no such opportunity presents itself, at some point we will want to summon all our courage, head straight for the person concerned, and lay our cards on the table. We needn’t wallow in excessive remorse before those we have harmed, but amends at this level should always be forthright and generous.
1981, AAWS, Inc., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pages 85-86

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

“Only by accepting my powerlessness over alcohol did I begin to discover the powers that alcohol had obliterated: God, health, truth, love, nature, fellowship, humor, creativity, and even simple daily kindness.”
Barrington, Ill., June 2007
“In Your Bones,”
Into Action

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

“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~

“Therefore, we started upon a personal inventory. This was Step Four. A business which takes no regular inventory usually goes broke. Taking a commercial inventory is a fact-finding and a fact-facing process.”
Alcoholics Anonymous p.64

We do talk about each other a great deal, but we almost invariably temper such talk by a spirit of love and tolerance.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.125

Can we bring the same spirit of love and tolerance into our sometimes deranged family lives that we bring to our A.A. group?
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.112

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

It seems to me that the primary object of any human being is to grow, as God intended, that being the nature of all growing things.
‘Our search must be for what reality we can find, which includes the best definition and feeling of love that we can acquire. If the capability of loving is in the human being, then it must surely be in his Creator.
‘Theology helps me in that many of its concepts cause me to believe that I live in a rational universe under a loving God, and that my own irrationality can be chipped away, little by little. This is, I suppose, the process of growth for which we are intended.

Prayer for the Day: Run The Race – Help me this day, Higher Power, to run with patience the race that is set before me. May neither opposition without nor discouragement within divert me from my progress in recovery. Inspire in me strength of mind, willingness, and acceptance, that I may meet all fears and diffivulties with courage, and may complete the tasks set before me today.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 20th

Bsober's Chainbreakers

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 20th
Daily Reflections

SOLACE FOR CONFUSION

Obviously, the dilemma of the wanderer from faith is that of profound confusion. He
thinks himself lost to the comfort of any conviction at all. He cannot attain in even a small
degree the assurance of the believer, the agnostic, or the atheist. He is the bewildered
one.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 28

The concept of God was one that I struggled with during my early years of sobriety. The
images that came to me, conjured from my past, were heavy with fear, rejection and
condemnation. Then I heard my friend Ed’s image of a Higher Power: As a boy he had
been allowed a litter of puppies, provided that he assume responsibility for their care.
Each morning he would find the unavoidable “byproducts” of the puppies on the kitchen
floor. Despite frustration, Ed said he couldn’t get angry because “that’s the nature of
puppies.” Ed felt that God viewed our defects and shortcomings with a similar
understanding and warmth. I’ve often found solace from my personal confusion in Ed’s
calming concept of God.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

For the past few weeks we have been asking ourselves some searching questions. We
have not been able to answer them all as we would like. But on the right answers to these
questions will depend the usefulness and effectiveness of our lives and to some extent the
usefulness and effectiveness of the whole A.A. movement. It all boils down to this: I
owe a deep debt to A.A. and to the grace of God. Am I going to do all I can to repay this
debt? Let us search our souls, make our own decisions, and act accordingly. Any real
success we have in life will depend on that. Now is the time to put our conclusions into
effect. What am I going to do about it?

Meditation For The Day

“Our Lord and our God, be it done unto us according to Thy will.” Simple acceptance of
God’s will in whatever happens is the key to abundant living. We must continue to pray:
Not my will but Thy will be done. It may not turn out the way you want it to, but it will be
the best way in the long run, because it is God’s way. If you decide to accept whatever
happens as God’s will for yourself, whatever it may be, your burdens will be lighter. Try
to see in all things some fulfillment of the Divine Intent.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may see the working out of God’s will in my life. I pray that I may be content
with whatever He will for me.


As Bill Sees It

Pain-Killer—-or Pain-Healer, p. 291

“I believe that when we were active alcoholics we drank mostly to
kill pain of one kind or another–physical or emotional or psychic.
Of course, everybody has a cracking point, and I suppose you
reached yours–hence, the resort once more to the bottle.

“If I were you, I wouldn’t heap devastating blame on myself for
this; on the other hand, the experience should redouble your
conviction that alcohol has no permanent value as a pain-killer.”


In every A.A. story, pain has been the price of admission into a
new life. But this admission price purchased more than we
expected. It led us to a measure of humility, which we soon discovered
to be a healer of pain. We began to fear pain less, and desire humility
more than ever.

  1. LETTER, 1959
  2. TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 75

Walk In Dry Places

This too shall pass
Acceptance
When personal problems are brought up in group discussions, someone usually remembers the saying, “This too shall pass.” We use it in reference to unpleasant matters, but it also applies to happier experiences. It is a certainty that nothing will ever stay the same.
Our responsibility to ourselves is to see all situations constructively, whether they are seen as good or bad at the time. WHat seems a disappoint today might be seen as a blessing tomorrow. And we can’t always be sure that today’s wonderful opportunity doesn’t have a few hidden nettles in it.
The one certainty is that everything will pass. We should extract the good from everything, and let what is unpleasant fade into the past.
Whatever I’m facing today will certainly change as I do my best in the 24 hours ahead. None of us is permanently bound to any problem.


Keep It Simple

We lie loudest when we lie to ourselves.—Eric Hoffer
When we’re not honest with others, we’re not being honest with ourselves. In recovery, we’re taught how to heal our hearts. We admit we’re wrong, and we do it quickly. We let our spirit have the loudest voice. This way, lies lose power over us. We find a way to be true to our spirit.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, You have a soft, quiet voice inside me. Help me, through meditation, to hear You better. Yours is the voice to follow.
Action for the Day: I’ll listen to my Higher Power. I’ll list any lies I’ve been telling myself and others lately. Then I’ll find someone I trust and tell that person what I’ve lied about.


Each Day a New Beginning

…You don’t get to choose how you’re going to die. Or when. You can only decide how you’re going to live. Now. –Joan Baez
How thrilling to contemplate that we can choose every attitude we have and every action we take. We have been gifted with full responsibility for our development. What will we try today? It’s our personal choice. How will we decide on a particular issue? Our options are only limited by our vision.
Every situation in life offers us a significant opportunity for making a decision that will, of necessity, influence the remaining situations we encounter. Just as we are interdependent, needing and influencing one another in all instances that bring us together, likewise our decisions are never inviolate. Each is singly important; however, its impact is multiplied by the variety of other decisions triggered.
The choice is ours for livings fully today, for taking advantage of all the opportunities that present themselves. Our personal growths, our emotional and spiritual development, are in our hands. God will provide us with the guidance, and the program offers us the tools. The decision to act is ours, alone.
I will exercise my personal power. My choices determine my development.


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

A look at the alcoholic in your organization is many times illuminating. Is he not usually brilliant, fast-thinking, imaginative and likable? When sober, does he not work hard and have a knack of getting things done? If he had these qualities and did not drink would he be worth retaining? Should he have the same consideration as other ailing employees? Is he worth salvaging? If your decision is yes, whether the reason be humanitarian or business or both, then the following suggestions may be helpful.

pp. 139-140


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Crossing The River Of Denial

She finally realized that when she enjoyed her drinking, she couldn’t control it, and when she controlled it, she couldn’t enjoy it.

I went through college on scholarships, work study programs, and student loans. Classes and work kept me too busy to do much drinking, plus I was engaged to a boy who was not alcoholic. However, I broke off our relationship during my senior year, after discovering drugs, sex, and rock n’ roll–companions to my best friend, alcohol. I proceeded to explore all that the late sixties and early seventies offered. After backpacking around Europe, I decided to settle in a large city.

p. 329


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Seven – “Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.”

Since this Step so specifically concerns itself with humility, we should pause here to consider what humility is and what the practice of it can mean to us.

p. 70


Faith that the thing can be done is essential to any great achievement.
–Thomas N. Carter

Knowing Gods gift of inner strength and courage, I move forward with the things that
once terrified me.
–Shelly

You could have everything in life and still have nothing or you could seek the Truth.
–unknown

The surface holds only illusions. Search deeper for the truth.
–unknown

Communication is the key to unlocking many doors in life.
–unknown

Change is hard, explaining why it is easier to stay in a negative frame of mind rather than
a positive one.
–unknown

God is there when we need him the most. When we are afflicted, when trials are facing us,
he is there for us. But what we need to understand is that God is there for us even when
there are no trials, or when we are not afflicted. In knowing this truth, we can appeal to
God at any time. We need not look to God only in testing times, but in fertile times. We
should look to cultivate a relationship with Him in good times, and not just bad.
–unknown


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

OBSERVANCE

“The older I grow, the more I
listen to people who don’t say
much.”
— German G. Gladden

I’ve noticed that an important part of my recovery is people watching. I have fun watching
people — at a party, on a train or in a park. I find the daily “theater” of life fascinating
and stimulating. I also learn so much about me by observing others. I can identify with
their mannerisms, actions and facial antics and intuitively sense what they are feeling. I
see their fear, hesitancy and shame and connect it with mine. People are a mirror to
my life.

Part of my recovery is developing that instinctive spirituality that grows through
observation. The human being is forever communicating, sending energy and messages
not only with words but by his existence — and especially by his silence. Sometimes a
person’s silence can be deafening! God is most alive to me in the lives and behavior of
His people, and part of my worship and prayer is observing the splendor and richness of
my fellow human beings.

You, who have created the universe in such magnificent silence, touch me with Your
stillness.


“Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the
kingdom.”
Luke 12:32

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

“No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but
only the Father.”
Matthew 24:36

“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to
everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with
gentleness and respect.”
1 Peter 3:15

“This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily
bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into
temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’ For if you forgive men when they sin against
you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins,
your Father will not forgive your sins.
Matthew 6:9-15


Daily Inspiration

When we are in a bad mood we are often reactive and irrational. A few moments of gratitude for all that we have will quickly change our feelings. Lord, help me gratefully remember that there is always more good in my life than bad.

Through the power of God within me, I am stronger than any of my circumstances. Lord, I seek, I knock and I ask and You are always there and ready to give me the miracles that I need.


NA Just For Today

Freedom To Choose

“Enforced morality lacks the power that comes to us when we choose to live a spiritual life.”

Basic Text, p.44

In our active addiction, many of us lived our lives by default. We were unwilling or unable to make choices about how we wanted to act, what we preferred to do, or even where we would live. We allowed the drugs or other people to make our most basic decisions for us. Freedom from active addiction means, among other things, the freedom to make those choices for ourselves.

Freedom of choice is a wonderful gift, but it’s also a great responsibility. Choice allows us to find out who we are and what we believe in. However, in exercising it, we’re called on to weigh our own choices and accept the consequences. This leads some of us to seek out someone who will make our choices for us-our sponsor, our home group, our NA friends-just as our disease made our choices for us when we were using. That’s not recovery.

Seeking others’ experience is one thing; abdicating personal responsibility is something else. If we don’t use the gift of freedom we’ve been given, if we refuse to accept the responsibilities that go along with it, we’ll lose that gift and our lives will be diminished. We are responsible for our own recovery and our own choices. Difficult as it may seem; we must make those choices for ourselves and become willing to accept the consequences.

Just for today: I am grateful for the freedom to live as I choose. Today, I will accept responsibility for my recovery, make my own choices, and accept the consequences.

pg. 306


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The bough, which has been downward thrust by force of strength to bend its top to earth, so soon as the pressing hand is gone, looks up again straight to the sky above. –Boethius
When we are down, low, depressed, why can’t we ignore the desire to rise up again? Because we’re like plants that need pure air, water, and sun. Because no matter how bent and old, we just keep wanting to grow up. Because there is a natural spring in us like that which makes flowers leap from the earth in May. Because we have hidden wings. And if we listen, we can feel the difference between wrong and right: we know the difference even with our eyes closed. Therefore we should not try putting ourselves down, for we will spring up again, sure as Spring.
What is the main way I try to put myself down?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Life is not a spectacle or a feast; it is a predicament. –George Santayana
We could probably feel more tranquil if the world were a simpler place and always gave us simple answers. But we are faced with many ambiguous and uncertain situations. The changing roles of men and women can often leave us bewildered. We are engaged in the development of relationships that have lives of their own, and it’s not always clear where they are headed. Even within ourselves we have contradictory feelings, and it’s difficult to come up with clear answers.
Since we cannot force simplicity upon the world, we must turn to ourselves for a new response. We can become more tolerant of our unsettled predicaments. We can learn to have faith that good comes from change. Things have a way of settling out and clarifying with time. As we develop patience with the questions and the unclear issues in our lives, we gain a deeper serenity.
Today, I will recall the predicaments in my past life that, in time, became clearer, and I will have patience with what seems unsettled.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
…You don’t get to choose how you’re going to die. Or when. You can only decide how you’re going to live. Now. –Joan Baez
How thrilling to contemplate that we can choose every attitude we have and every action we take. We have been gifted with full responsibility for our development. What will we try today? It’s our personal choice. How will we decide on a particular issue? Our options are only limited by our vision.
Every situation in life offers us a significant opportunity for making a decision that will, of necessity, influence the remaining situations we encounter. Just as we are interdependent, needing and influencing one another in all instances that bring us together, likewise our decisions are never inviolate. Each is singly important; however, its impact is multiplied by the variety of other decisions triggered.
The choice is ours for livings fully today, for taking advantage of all the opportunities that present themselves. Our personal growths, our emotional and spiritual development, are in our hands. God will provide us with the guidance, and the program offers us the tools. The decision to act is ours, alone.
I will exercise my personal power. My choices determine my development.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Detaching with Love
Sometimes people we love do things we don’t like or approve of. We react. They react. Before long, we’re all reacting to each other, and the problem escalates.
When do we detach? When we’re hooked into a reaction of anger, fear, guilt, or shame. When we get hooked into a power play – an attempt to control or force others to do something they don’t want to do. When the way we’re reacting isn’t helping the other person or solving the problem. When the way we’re reacting is hurting us.
Often, it’s time to detach when detachment appears to be the least likely, or possible, thing to do.
The first step toward detachment is understanding that reacting and controlling don’t help. The next step is getting peaceful – getting centered and restoring our balance.
Take a walk. Leave the room. Go to a meeting. Take a long, hot bath. Call a friend. Call on God. Breathe deeply. Find peace. From that place of peace and centering will emerge an answer, a solution.
Today, I will surrender and trust that the answer is near.

It feels so good to know that I am healing from my old wounds. As I bring love and acceptance to myself today I can watch the pain disappear and I feel so much better about myself. –Ruth Fishel


Journey To The Heart
October 20
Fall into the Arms of Universal Love

Often in our lives we stand on a precipice. Something happens, a situation occurs, and in one moment our life changes dramatically in a way we hoped and prayed it wouldn’t. We topple off. In that moment, we may feel as if we’ve been pushed off a cliff.

Other times when we stand poised and our life changes radically in one moment, it’s a welcome change. We feel delightfully spontaneous, guided, powerful, centered. Ready to take risks. Ready to leap into the adventure.

Sometimes we’re pushed, sometimes we decide to make the leap on our own. Either way, we’re safe, we’re protected. Either way we can trust that we’ll land in the arms of universal love.


more language of letting go
Be present now

Take time, but not too much, to see where you want to go. Learn the lessons from your past. Then let go of yesterday. Let tomorrow take care of itself. Even our best prediction about what may come in the future is only an educated guess, no matter how diligently we try to see ahead. If all you look at is where you’re going, you’ll miss all the wonder and beauty along the way. And once you get there– your future– you may not even remember where you’ve been. Rushing may be such a habit that you won’t enjoy your future once it arrives.

Be where you are right now. See what’s in front of you, not what you wish were there. Take time to see, enjoy, and appreciate what’s present. Take action if you need to. Or just enjoy the view. You’ve worked hard to get here. Enjoy it.

The past is important. It’s where we’ve been. The future is important,too. But there’s no time– and no time as real– as the present.

Learn to be here,now.

God heighten my awareness and appreciation of each moment in my life.


Argument
Stepping Back from Anger by Madisyn Taylor

The emotional trigger than begins an argument may have little to do with your present situation, but has dug up a wound.

When we find ourselves in an argument, we may feel like we are losing control of emotions that have taken on lives of their own. When we can become aware that this is happening, taking a deep breath can help us step back from the situation. Once we can separate ourselves from the heat of the moment, we may find that the emotional trigger that began the argument has little to do with the present situation, but may have brought up feelings related to something else entirely. Looking honestly at what caused our reaction allows us to consciously respond more appropriately to the situation and make the best choices.

We can make an agreement with our partners and those closest to us that asking questions can help all of us discover the source of the argument. The shared awareness can result in finding simple solutions to something physical, like low blood sugar or even a hormonal surge. Maybe we are taking ourselves too seriously, and we can just laugh and watch the tension dissolve. We could also discover that perhaps we are addicted to the excitement that drama brings and the chemicals that our body creates when we are angry. But there may be a deeper issue that requires discussion, understanding, and patience. The more we allow ourselves to step back and examine our reasons for arguing, the easier it becomes to allow real feelings to surface and guide us toward solutions that improve our lives.

When we can be clear about our feelings and intentions and communicate them clearly, we have a far better chance of getting what we want than if we lose control or allow our subconscious minds to manipulate the situation. We might take our frustrations out on the people closest to us because we feel safe and comfortable with them, but misplaced anger can cause more harm than good. Arguing for what we truly believe can empower us and help us to direct our passions toward greater life experiences. Truly knowing our reasons for arguing enables us to grow emotionally in ways that will affect our whole being. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Before I admitted my powerlessness over alcohol and other chemicals, I had as much self-worth as a “peeled zero.” I came into The Program as a nobody who desperately wanted to be a somebody. In retrospect, my self-esteem was shredded, seemingly beyond repair. Gradually, The Program has enabled me to achieve an even-stronger sense of self-worth. I’ve come to accept myself, realizing that I’m not so bad as I had always supposed myself to be. Am I learning that my self-worth is not dependent on the approval of others, but instead is truly an “inside job”?

Today I Pray

When I am feeling down and worthless, may my Higher Power and my friends in the group help me see that, although I was “fallen,” I was not “cast down.” However sick I might have been in my worst days, with all the self-esteem of an earth worm, may I know that I still had the power of choice. And I chose to do something about myself. May that good choice be the basis for my reactivated self-worth.

Today I Will Remember

I will not kick myself when I’m down.


One More Day

By a tranquil mind I mean nothing else than a mind well ordered.
– Marcus Aurelius Antoninus

When we are diagnosed as having a permanent medical condition, we may think we’ll never know tranquility again. Before too long, though, we realize that whether we are entirely healthy or not, we bring to our new challenge the same value system we always had. We can still find peace and serenity in our lives, for we continue to live our lives as well as we are able.

We owe it to ourselves to search out tranquility — a state in which we feel extremely peaceful, at eas3e with our inner strength, with nature, and with our sense of higher purpose. Walking hand in hand with tranquility creates harmony, a time when our thoughts are orderly and we feel little distress.

I will work on keeping a peaceful mind in order to smooth out my rougher days.


Food For Thought

Physical Restraint

Self-control is hard work. When the urge comes to do something, which we know is not in our best interest, we physically restrain ourselves from performing the destructive action. This often requires hard, physical effort.

We may want to eat when we should not be eating, we may want to lash out in anger, we may want to retreat from a difficult task, we may want to continue a harmful relationship. Whatever the urge, if we know deep down that it is contrary to God’s will for us, we need to control it and not act on it.

Time spent with our Higher Power each day builds the strength and integrity, which can control our destructive urges. Alone, we are powerless, but with the OA program supporting us we find strength we never had before. With abstinence comes the clarity of mind necessary to evaluate our urges and desires.

May I have the moral strength to physically restrain myself when necessary.


One Day At A Time

Limitations
“You cannot help men permanently
by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.”
Abraham Lincoln

I love the idea of helping people. Seeing the other person shine after my input gives me a great feeling. The flipside of this peak experience is the sadness and bleakness I feel when the person I am helping does not succeed. When it is all about me, I have to accept responsibility for everything: the good and the bad.

Thank You, God, that it is not really me who is the source of all help, it is You. I can point the way and make suggestions, but I cannot make someone change for the better. What causes people to change is something for which no person can take credit. It is simply divine!

The real question is whether or not the person I want to help will turn to his or her Higher Power and use the help that is offered. I cannot actually take these steps for others. I can pretend to do that, and perhaps offer some temporary relief, but lasting recovery will come only to those who make a quality decision to take the necessary steps on their own.

One day at a time…
I will realize the limitations of my help. I will not try to do for others what only they can and should do for themselves.
~ Q


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Of far more importance was the fact that he was the first living human with whom I had ever talked, who knew what he was talking about in regard to alcoholism from actual experience. In other words, ‘he talked my language. He knew all the answers, and certainly not because he had picked them up in his reading. – Pg. 180 – Doctor Bob’s Nightmare

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

It is easier for us to blame others (parents, spouses, friends) for our addiction then it is to look at self. We must never forget that we drank that drink, snorted that coke, toked that joint, and took that fix. US. ‘They’ didn’t do it.

May I never forget that I used too many mind affecting chemicals because I have the disease of addiction! Other reasons are not causes. Everyone has problems yet not everyone suffers from addiction.

Patience with Myself

Today, I will be patient with myself. When I do not do as well as I wish I would, I will not make that a reason to get down on myself. I will instead recognize that the fastest way to bring myself out of a painful funk is through understanding and being good to myself. I needn’t get caught in my own cycle of shame, resentment and blame. If a child is upset, I comfort the child because I understand that is what will makes things better. I give myself the same comfort that I would extend to a hurt child knowing that it will help me have the strength to forgive and move on.

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

We recommend that you take your Third Step every morning and turn your will over to the care of God, as you understand God. Then at night, take a Tenth Step to see how God is doing.

I talk often to my Higher Power. S/He understands better than most people.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

These are not the Steps we discussed, or memorized, or analyzed. These are the steps we took.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

It feels so good to know that I am healing from my old wounds. As I bring love and acceptance to myself today I can watch the pain disappear and I feel so much better about myself.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

YET = You’re Eligible Too. Anon.


AA Thought for the Day

October 20

Willingness
My friend suggested what then seemed a novel idea. He said, “Why don’t you choose your own conception of God?”
That statement hit me hard. It melted the icy intellectual mountain in whose shadow I had lived and shivered many

years.
I stood in the sunlight at last. It was only a matter of being willing to believe in a Power greater than myself.
Nothing more was required of me to make my beginning.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 12

Thought to Ponder . . .
What have I been given today? Am I willing to reach out and grasp it?

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

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

Change
“Let us never fear needed change.
Certainly we have to discriminate between changes for worse
and changes for better.
But once a need becomes clearly apparent
in an individual, in a group, or in AA as a whole,
it has long been found out that we cannot stand still
and look the other way.
The essence of all growth is a willingness
to change for the better
and then an unremitting willingness
to shoulder whatever responsibility this entails.”
Bill W., July 1965
c.1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 115

Thought to Consider . . .
Not to change is not to adapt;
not to adapt is to become extinct.

~~AACRONYMS~~
C H A N G E = Choosing Honesty Allows New Growth Everyday

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

We Hope
From: “Foreword to First Edition” [1939]
We, of Alcoholics Anonymous, are more than one hundred men and women who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered is the main purpose of this book. For them, we hope these pages will prove so convincing that no further authentication will be necessary. We think this account of our experiences will help everyone to better understand the alcoholic. Many do not comprehend that the alcoholic is a very sick person. And besides, we are sure that our way of living has its advantages for all.
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, page xiii

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

“First Things First. That’s a real gem.”
New York, N.Y., November 1958
“Using the Slogans,”
Into Action

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

“Our description of the alcoholic, the chapter to the agnostic, and
our personal adventure before and after make clear three pertinent
ideas:
(a) That we were alcoholic and could not manage our
own lives.
(b) That probably no human power could have relieved
our alcoholism.
(c) That God could and would if He were sought.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, Page 60

“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.”
Alcoholics Anonymous p.19

In spite of the great increase in the size and the span of this Fellowship, at its core it remains simple and personal.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.xxii

The answer, now seen in Tradition Three, was simplicity itself.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.141

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

All of us pass through times when we can pray only with the greatest exertion. Occasionally we go even further than this. We are seized with a rebellion so sickening that we simply won’t pray. When these things happen, we should not think too ill of ourselves. We should simply resume prayer as soon as we can, doing what we know to be good for us.
A man who persists in prayer finds himself in possession of great gifts. When he has to deal with hard circumstances, he finds he can face them. He can accept himself and the world around him.
He can do this because he now accepts a God who is All – and who loves all. When he says, ‘Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name,’ he deeply and humbly means it. When in good meditation and thus freed from the clamors of the world, he knows that he is in God’s hands, that his own ultimate destiny is really secure, here and hereafter, come what may.

Prayer for the Day: Do The Right Thing – Help me, Higher Power, to get out of myself, to stop always thinking what I need. Show me the way I can be helpful to others and supply me with the strength to do the right thing.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 19th

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 18th

Daily Reflections

A. A.’S “MAIN TAPROOT”

The principle that we shall find no enduring strength until we first admit complete defeat
is the main taproot from which our whole Society has sprung and flowered.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 21-22

Defeated, and knowing it, I arrived at the doors of A.A., alone and afraid of the unknown.
A power outside of myself had picked me up off my bed, guided me to the phone book,
then to the bus stop, and through the doors of Alcoholics Anonymous. Once inside A.A. I
experienced a sense of being loved and accepted, something I had not felt since early
childhood. May I never lose the sense of wonder I experienced on that first evening with
A.A., the greatest event of my entire life.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Do I realize that I do not know how much time I have left? It may be later than I think.
Am I going to do the things that I know I should do before my time runs out? By the way,
what is my purpose for the rest of my life? Do I realize all I have to make up for in my
past wasted life? Do I know that I am living on borrowed time and that I would not have
even this much time left without A.A. and the grace of God? Am I going to make what
time I have left count for A.A.?

Meditation For The Day

We can believe that somehow the cry of the human soul is never unheard by God. It may
be that God hears the cry, even if we fail to notice God’s response to it. The human cry
for help must always evoke a response of some sort from God. It may be that our failure
to discern properly keeps us unaware of the response. But one thing we can believe is
that the grace of God is always available for every human being who sincerely calls for
help. Many changed lives are living proofs of this fact.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may trust God to answer my prayer as He sees fit. I pray that I may be
content with whatever form that answer may take.


As Bill Sees It

TIME VERSUS MONEY, p. 290

Our attitude toward the giving of time when compared with our
attitude toward giving money presents an interesting contrast. We
give a lot of our time to A.A. activities for our own protection and
growth, but also for the sake of our groups, our areas, A.A. as a
whole, and, above all, the newcomer. Translated into terms of money,
these collective sacrifices would add up to a huge sum.

But when it comes to the actual spending of cash, particularly for
A.A. service overhead, many of us are apt to turn a bit reluctant. We
think of the loss of all that earning power in our drinking years, of
those sums we might have laid by for emergencies or for education
of the kids.

In recent years, this attitude is everywhere on the decline; it
quickly disappears when the real need for a given A.A. service
becomes clear. Donors can seldom see what the exact result has
been. They well know, however, that countless thousands of other
alcoholics and their families are being helped.

TWELVE CONCEPTS, pp. 63-64


Walk In Dry Places

The same situation… over and over
Growth in Maturity.
Our drinking experience should have taught us that we’ll continue to repeat old destructive behaviors until we change our attitudes.
In sobriety, we can take this idea a step further and apply it to other areas. If we have trouble with other people, for example, we should ask what we’re doing to bring about unpleasant situations.
This is not to say that we’re responsible for everything that goes wrong, but we are getting a message ourselves if we continuously meet the same problem in different forms. Some people, for example, repeatedly become involved in bad relationships or find themselves working for abusive bosses.
Just as a changed attitude helped us recover from our drinking problem, so can a new attitude keep us from repeating other destructive situations.
I’ll be on the lookout today for any indications of a tendency to “attract” trouble. It’s true that I can have bad luck, but I don’t need to bring it on myself.


Keep It Simple

A wise man changes his mind, a fool never will.—Seventeenth century proverb
We addicts used to be stubborn. Once we got an idea in our heads, we wouldn’t change it.
We didn’t listen to others ideas. We almost seemed to say, “Don’t tell me the facts. I’ve already made up my mind.”
But lately , some new ideas are making sense to us. We are starting to change our minds. Maybe we are good people, after all. Maybe we do deserve to be happy. Maybe other people can help us. Maybe our Higher Power does know best.
We’re not acting like fools any longer. We’re learning to change our old ideas.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, when I hear a better idea, help me change my mind.
Action for the Day: When I hear or read a new idea today, I’ll really think about it. If it fits, I’ll try it.


Each Day a New Beginning

One of the conclusions I have come to in my old age is the importance of living in the ever-present now. In the past, too often I indulged in the belief that somehow or other tomorrow would be brighter or happier or richer. –Ruth Casey
How easily our minds jump from the present to the foibles of the past or our fears about the future. How seldom are our minds on this moment, and only this moment.
Before we picked up this book, where were our thoughts? We need to practice, with diligence, returning our minds to whatever the experience at hand. A truly creative response to any situation can only be made when we are giving it our undivided attention. And each creative response initiates an even more exciting follow-up experience.
All we have of life, all that it can offer us is here, now. If we close our mind to the present, this present, we’ll only continue to do so when the tomorrow we dream of now becomes the present. There are no tomorrows.
I will let go of the past and the future. My only reality is here, now. God’s gifts are here, today, right now.


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

When dealing with an alcoholic, there may be a natural annoyance that a man could be so weak, stupid and irresponsible. Even when you understand the malady better, you may feel this feeling rising.

p. 139


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Crossing The River Of Denial

She finally realized that when she enjoyed her drinking, she couldn’t control it, and when she controlled it, she couldn’t enjoy it.

I grew up feeling as if I was the only thing keeping my family together. This, compounded by the fear of not being good enough, was a lot of pressure for a little girl. Everything changed with my first drink at the age of sixteen. All the fear, shyness, and disease evaporated with the first burning swallow of bourbon straight from the bottle during a liquor cabinet raid at a slumber party. I got drunk, blacked out, threw up, had dry heaves, was sick to death the next day, and I knew I would do it again. For the first time, I felt part of a group without having to be perfect to get approval.

pp. 328-329


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six – “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”

The moment we say, “No, never!” our minds close against the grace of God. Delay is dangerous, and rebellion may be fatal. This is the exact point at which we abandon limited objectives, and move toward God’s will for us

p. 69


I am never alone
never abandoned
never deserted
never judged
never chastised
and never without Gods aid.
–Shelley

“As a deer longs for flowing streams, so my soul longs for you, O God.
My soul thirsts for God.”

Those who are lifting the world upward and onward are those who encourage more than criticize.
–Elizabeth Harrison

Correction does much, but encouragement does more.
–Goethe

Words to live by are just words, unless you live by them. You have to walk the talk.
–Cited in BITS & PIECES

Handle them carefully, for words have more power than atom bombs.
–Cited in More of…The Best of BITS & PIECES

The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right time, but also to
leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.
–unknown

We are never so lost that God can’t find us.


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

TACT

“Tact is the art of making a
point without making an
enemy.”
— Howard W. Newton

An aspect of my recovery is not hurting people’s feelings unnecessarily. I am learning
how to say what I have to say without causing offense. Today I am learning to be tactful
and respectful.

As a drunk I would say the first thing that came into my head without any regard for
the feelings of others. I was often violent with words, sarcastic with comments and
cruel in dialogue. Tact was a sign of weakness; gentleness and sensitivity were
unmanly; my power was seen in forcing people to change their minds!

Today I do not wish to be like this. Today I desire to be tactful.

Lord, let me always express my opinion respectfully.


For great is Your love higher than the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
Psalm 108:4

You are my refuge and my shield; your word is my only source of hope. Get out of my
life, you evil-minded people, for I intend to obey the commands of my God. LORD,
sustain me as you promised, that I may live! Do not let my hope be crushed. Sustain me,
and I will be saved; then I will meditate on your principles continually.
Psalm 119:114-117

Let not kindness and truth forsake thee: Bind them about thy neck; Write them upon the
tablet of thy heart.
Proverbs 3:3


Daily Inspiration

Complaining reinforces your own unhappiness. Lord, when I speak, help to say things that are worth listening to and reinforce a joyful spirit.

Life is what our thinking makes it. Lord, help me visualize myself richly living each day, believing, achieving, and then succeeding.


NA Just For Today

Standing For Something

“… we could feel time, touch reality, and recognize spiritual values long lost to many of us.”

Basic Text, p.85

In our active addiction, we were prepared to compromise everything we believed in just to get our hands on more drugs. Whether we stole from our families and friends, sold ourselves, or lied to our employers, we were ignoring the values that mattered most to us. Each time we compromised another dearly held belief, another chunk of the mortar holding our characters together fell away. By the time many of us came to our first meeting, nothing was left but the ruin of our former selves.

We will locate our lost values as we carry out our first honest self-examination. But in order to rebuild our characters, we’ll find it necessary to maintain those values, no matter how great the temptation to shove them aside. We will need to be honest, even when we think we could fool everyone by lying. If we ignore our values, we’ll discover that the biggest fibs we’ve told have been the ones we’ve told ourselves.

We don’t want to start the demolition of our spirits again after all the work we’ve put into their restoration. It’s essential that we stand for something, or we risk falling for anything. Whatever we find important to us, we honor.

Just for today: I stand for something. My strength is the result of living my values.

pg. 305


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
All power is a trust. We are accountable for its exercise. From people and for people all power springs, and all must exist. –Benjamin Disraeli
The sun is power. It warms, it burns, it feeds the plants without which we could not live. Yet, for all its power, the sun cannot make so much as a rainbow by itself. For that, it needs the rain, at just the right time and angle.
No matter how strong we are–or smart or talented or attractive–we realize our full power only by filtering it through others. Our most meaningful achievements are born of combined efforts. Even when we do something that feels like ours alone–paint a painting, win an award, hit a home run–there is always a constellation of friends and family and teachers, even enemies, who’ve been a part of our success.
Like the rain’s part in the rainbow, the contributions of others do not detract from our achievements, but enhance them and bring them to their fullest light.
How are others enhancing my growth today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If only I could throw away the urge to trace my patterns in your heart I could really see you. –David Brandon
Trying to control and change the people around us creates great problems in our relationships. When people we love are expressing themselves, we’re thinking about what we wish they would say, and it blocks us from hearing clearly. A need for safety and for a guarantee that we won’t be abandoned urges us to manipulate the people we love. We know we have innocent motives. We say we only want what is best and that we are only trying to protect ourselves or be helpful. But we hide from the effects our actions have on our relationships.
We seem to be more trapped in these self-centered behaviors with the ones we are closest to. We can change ourselves by slowly releasing our security grip on others. We can focus more on understanding what others are saying to us than on changing how they think and feel. Intimacy is clearly seeing each other and knowing the differences as well as the similarities. It requires that both people be allowed to walk on separate paths.
I will release my grip on my loved ones and turn to my Higher Power for security and serenity.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
One of the conclusions I have come to in my old age is the importance of living in the ever-present now. In the past, too often I indulged in the belief that somehow or other tomorrow would be brighter or happier or richer. –Ruth Casey
How easily our minds jump from the present to the foibles of the past or our fears about the future. How seldom are our minds on this moment, and only this moment.
Before we picked up this book, where were our thoughts? We need to practice, with diligence, returning our minds to whatever the experience at hand. A truly creative response to any situation can only be made when we are giving it our undivided attention. And each creative response initiates an even more exciting follow-up experience.
All we have of life, all that it can offer us is here, now. If we close our mind to the present, this present, we’ll only continue to do so when the tomorrow we dream of now becomes the present. There are no tomorrows.
I will let go of the past and the future. My only reality is here, now. God’s gifts are here, today, right now.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Our Good Points
What’s a codependent? The answer’s easy. They’re some of the most loving, caring people I know. –Beyond Codependency
We don’t need to limit an inventory of ourselves to the negatives. Focusing only on what’s wrong is a core issue in our codependency.
Honestly, fearlessly, ask: “What’s right with me? What are my good points?”
“Am I a loving, caring, nurturing person?” We may have neglected to love ourselves in the process of caring for others, but nurturing is an asset.
“Is there something I do particularly well?” “Do I have a strong faith?” “Am I good at being there for others?” “Am I good as part of a team, or as a leader?” “Do I have a way with words or with emotions?”
“Do I have a sense of humor?” “Do I brighten people up?” “Am I good at comforting others?” “Do I have an ability to make something good out of barely nothing at all?” “Do I see the best in people?”
These are character assets. We may have gone to an extreme with these, but that’s okay. We are now on our way to finding balance.
Recovery is not about eliminating our personality. Recovery aims at changing, accepting, working around, or transforming our negatives, and building on our positives. We all have assets; we only need to focus on them, empower them, and draw them out in ourselves.
Codependents are some of the most loving, caring people around. Now, we’re learning to give some of that concern and nurturing to ourselves.
Today, I will focus on what’s right about me. I will give myself some of the caring I’ve extended to the world.

I am so grateful I have a power greater than myself to turn to when I do not have the answers. I am so grateful for the program of recovery that has brought me joy and purpose and love. –Ruth Fishel


Journey To The Heart
October 19
Honor This Time of Change

I left Point Reyes, a seashore town close to San Francisco, heading for Sequoia National Park. I wanted to cross the Golden Gate Bridge, but I wasn’t certain I could find it. City traffic was jarring after being in the woods, the mountains, and by the sea. Before long, however, I found myself at the foot of the Golden Gate. As I drove the span of the bridge, I felt the same electric charge surge through me as I had felt in Chimayo, in Ojo Caliente, and on the Flathead Reservation. It was the first time I realized that bridges are holy, sacred ground.

Times of change are holy. We may not know where we’re going. It may not feel like our feet are on solid ground. They aren’t. We’re crossing a bridge to another part of our lives.

Sometimes we may find ourselves at this bridge unwittingly, not certain how we got there, not certain we want to cross. Other times, we may have sought, prayed for, hoped for, longed for this time of change.

Drive across the bridge. You don’t have to understand it all right now. Information and understanding will come later. You’ll get to the other side. For now, trust and experience what you’re going through. Know that this time of change is sacred,too.


more language of letting go
See for yourself

I have a friend who likes to hike and backpack. He always takes beautiful pictures of the places that he visits. After one trip he was telling me about a camp high in the California Sierras while showing me a photo of a stunning sunset. He told me about the night that he returned to camp after walking to the top of the mountain.

“When I got down, I found that everyone else had packed up and left camp. I was alone at twelve thousand feet. The silence was so thick I could almost touch it. You should have seen the sunset that night. It was even better than this picture.”

“Why didn’t you take a picture if the sunset was even more beautiful?” I asked.

“I figured that no one else cared to see the world from that viewpoint that night but me, so I just kept the sunset all to myself,” he explained. “If you weren’t there, you just missed out.”

This summer I watched the sun set over a lake in a corner of New Mexico, then I spent the night under the stars in a sleeping bag. The stars were so clear, so close, so brilliant I felt like I could touch them. And no, I didn’t take a picture. If you weren’t there, you just missed out.

You can read a meditation book, make a list, and even talk to people who live their lives fully, but unless you make the trip yourself, you won’t see all this life has to offer.

Is there a picture that you’ve been to busy to see lately? Break out of the ordinary. See something new or see the ordinary in a new way. Don’t just glance. Really look. Then bring back the picture in your heart. Unless you’re there, you’re just missing out. Some things you just need to see for yourself.

God, help me live my life to the fullest. Help me see and treasure all the beauty in the world.


Appreciating Suggestions
Other People’s Agendas

As children, our parents had dreams for us. They wanted us to do well in school, and to do whatever was necessary to reach our highest potential. Later in life, friends may try to set us up with their idea of the perfect partner or the perfect job. Spouses may have agendas for us, too. People close to us may have ideas about how we should live our lives, ideas that usually come from love and the desire for us to be happy. Other times, they come from a place of need within them—whether it is the parent who wants us to live out his or her dreams or the friend or spouse who wants us to play an already-defined role. Whatever the case, we can appreciate and consider those people’s input, but ultimately we must follow our own inner guidance.

There may come a time when all the suggestions can become overbearing. We may feel that the people we love don’t approve of our judgment, which can hurt our feelings. It can interfere with the choices we make for our lives by making us doubt ourselves, or filling a void with their wishes before we’ve had a chance to decide what we want. It can affect us energetically as well. We may have to deal with feelings of resistance or the need to shut ourselves off from them. But we can take some time to rid ourselves of any unnecessary doubts and go within to become clear on what we desire for ourselves.

We can tell our loved ones how much we appreciate their thoughts and ideas, but that we need to live our own lives and make our own decisions. We can explain that they need to let us learn from our own experiences rather than rob us of wonderful life lessons and the opportunity to fine-tune our own judgment. When they see that we are happy with our lives and the path we are taking to reach our goals, they can rest assured that all we need them to do is to share in our joy. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

There are countless ways by which my progress and growth in The Program can be measured. One of the most important is my awareness that I’m no longer compelled, almost obsessively, to go around judging everything and everybody. My only business today is to work on changing myself, rather than other people, places and things. In its own way, the obsession of being forever judgmental was as burdensome to me as the obsession of my addiction; I’m grateful that both weights have been lifted from my shoulders. When I become judgmental, will I remind myself that I’m trespassing on God’s territory?

Today I Pray

Forgive me my trespasses, when I have become the self-proclaimed judge-and-jury of my peers. By being judgmental, I have trespassed on the rights of others to judge themselves– and on the rights of God in the Highest Court of all. May I throw away all my judgmental tools — my own yardstick and measuring tapes, my own comparisons, my unreachable standards — and accept each person as an individual beyond compare.

Today I Will Remember

Throw away old tapes – especially measuring tapes.


One More Day

There must be something strangely sacred in salt. It is in our tears and in the sea.
– Kahlil Gibran

Emotion plays around a person’s face, making it strained or relaxed. We say we can “read” someone else’s face. Few of us burst into spontaneous tears or laughter, but instead first show slight emotion on our faces or in the way we speak.

Laughter is instrumental to our well-being, but tears are also essential to our emotional survival. When we finally release the emotions we feel and the dams break loose, the tears are healing. They allow us to cleanse ourselves of pent-up angers, fears, and frustrations.

I know crying is a human characteristic. I will not be ashamed of my need to cry, for tears are part of my human experience.


Food For Thought

To Abstain Is to Live

If we do not abstain from compulsive overeating, we do not live – we merely survive. Without abstinence, joy and creativity fade and we are left with only the effort of getting from one day to the next. We remember the despair of living without the OA program, and we are grateful that we have been given a reprieve from our former misery.

Abstaining is what we do each day in order to live the life our Higher Power intends us to have. There are good days and bad days and mediocre days. As long as we abstain from compulsive overeating, we are able to accept our passing moods and the events of each day with inner serenity. We make progress in our activities and in our understanding. We are alive to the possibilities of each moment.

To abstain requires that we choose a long-term satisfaction rather than a short-lived indulgence. To abstain is to walk with our Higher Power in the way He shows us.

Thank You for the power to abstain.


One Day At A Time

Live and Let Live
“If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house
with the conscious design of doing me good,
I should run for my life.”
Henry David Thoreau

I have gleaned from the OA program that I can let others be themselves and make their own decisions unless an issue involves me as well. What a powerful concept. I have struggled long and hard with the issue of letting others live their lives as they choose without the benefit of my wise, profound advice. I really believed that I had all the answers and that by listening to me, one could get his or her life on the right track and be forever grateful to me for the magnanimous favor I had done them. I really believed this! I was also deeply frustrated when people did not immediately do whatever it was I had “advised” them to do. How could they be so dumb?

More importantly, how did I overlook the fact that my own life was heading downhill at a remarkable clip? Thanks to the OA program, I have slowly learned to keep my mouth shut. My motto for relationships is simple: sweep off my side of the street. It makes being me so much easier and it makes the lives of those around me a bit better too.

One day at a time…
Today I will accept and love those around me without acting on the urge to make their lives “better.” I will live and let live as I continue to realize the freedom the program offers me.
~ Pete


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This is not to say that all alcoholics are honest and upright when not drinking. Of course that isn’t so, and such people often may impose on you. Seeing your attempt to understand and help, some men will try to take advantage of your kindness. – Pg. 141 – To Employers

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Right now there probably isn’t much time that goes by when you don’t think about using. Although sometimes frightening, understand that slowly this will fade away. Only time will remove your constant thoughts of using or drinking, but it does pass.

Every time I think getting high would feel good, let me remember the pain in my gut and fear in my heart just not so long ago.

Responsibility

Today, I see that I can’t release something just because someone tells me that it is the right or nice thing to do. Until I have moved through an internal process of identifying honestly what is going on with me, I can’t really let it go. Honesty means that I am willing to be responsible. Whatever negative characteristics may have become a part of me from living with unhealed pain are, unfortunately, mine to deal with now. Projecting and blaming will not get me closer to getting rid of them. If I do not own my feelings, they will own me.

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

In order to forgive, you have to have blamed.

I don’t have to forgive people, places, and things, if I don’t blame people, places, and things.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

The process is perfect; let it work.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am so grateful I have a power greater than myself to turn to when I do not have the answers. I am so grateful for the program of recovery that has brought me joy and purpose and love.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I play the ball from where it lies – not where I wish it was. – Arnold Palmer.


AA Thought for the Day

October 19

A Prayer for All Seasons
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.
Courage to change the things I can.
And the wisdom to know the difference.
– ©1950, The AA Grapevine, Inc.

Thought to Ponder . . .
Courage is faith that has said its prayers.

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

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

Solution
“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.”
c.1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 17

Thought to Consider . . .
The joy is in the journey, so enjoy the ride.

~~AACRONYMS~~
S T E P S = Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety

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

Healing

From “A Lifetime Process”:
“I have more problems than alcohol . . . alcohol is only a symptom of a more pervasive disease. When I stopped drinking I began a lifetime process of recovery from unruly emotions, painful relationships, and unmanageable situations. This process is too much for most of us without help from a Higher Power and our friends in the Fellowship. . . . One day at a time, almost imperceptibly, I healed.”
1990 AAWS, Inc.; Daily Reflections, pg. 105

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

“My greatest challenges are before me. But my experience with the Third Step, even in the smallest matters, gives me the courage to meet whatever lies ahead, twenty-four hours at a time.”
Manhattan, N.Y., March 2001
“Wait for the Pitch,”
Emotional Sobriety

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

“Much has already been said about receiving strength, inspiration,
and direction from Him who has all knowledge and power. If we have
carefully followed directions, we have begun to sense the flow of
His Spirit into us. To some extent we have become God-conscious. We
have begun to develop this vital sixth sense. But we must go further
and that means more action.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 85~

“If our testimony helps sweep away prejudice, enables you to think honestly, encourages you to search diligently within yourself, then, if you wish, you can join us on the Broad Highway. With this attitude you cannot fail. the consciousness of your belief is sure to come to you.” ~Alcoholics Anonymous page 55

We commenced to make many fast friends and a fellowship has grown up among us of which it is a wonderful thing to feel a part.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.15

I explained what a wonderful Fellowship we had, how well we understood each other.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.152

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

When the distortion of family life through alcohol has been great, a long period of patient striving may be necessary. After the husband joins A.A., the wife may become discontented, even highly resentful that A.A. has done the very thing that all her years of devotion had failed to do. Her husband may become so wrapped up in A.A. and his new friends that he is inconsiderately away from home more than when he drank. Each then blames the other.
But eventually the alcoholic, now fully understanding how much he did to hurt his wife and children, nearly always takes up his marriage responsibilities with a willingness to repair what he can and accept what he can’t. He persistently tries all of A.A.’s Twelve Steps in his home, often with fine results. He firmly but lovingly commences to behave like a partner instead of like a bad boy.

Prayer for the Day: Open Mind – Higher Power, may I understand: To be alert to my own needs, not to the faults of others; To remain teachable; To listen; To keep an open mind; and To learn not who’s right but what’s right

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 18th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 18th

Daily Reflections

AN OPEN MIND

True humility and an open mind can lead us to faith . . .
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 33

My alcoholic thinking led me to believe that I could control my drinking, but I couldn’t.
When I came to A.A., I realized that God was speaking to me through my group. My mind
was open just enough to know that I needed His help. A real, honest acceptance of A.A.
took more time, but with it came humility. I know how insane I was, and I am extremely grateful
to have my sanity restored to me and to be a sober alcoholic. The new, sober me is a much
better person than I ever could have been without A.A.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Have I got over most of my sensitiveness, my feelings which are too easily hurt, and my
just plain laziness and self-satisfaction? Am I willing to go all out for A.A. at no matter what
cost to my precious self? Is my own comfort more important to me than doing the things
that need to be done? Have I got to the point where what happens to me is not so
important? Can I face up to things that are embarrassing or uncomfortable if they are
the right things to do for the good of A.A.? Have I given A.A. just a small piece of myself?
Am I willing to give all of myself whenever necessary?

Meditation For The Day

Not until you have failed can you learn true humility. Humility arises from a deep sense of
gratitude to God for giving you the strength to rise above past failures. Humility is not
inconsistent with self-respect. The true person has self-respect and the respect of others
and yet is humble. The humble person is tolerant of other’s failings, and does not have a
critical attitude toward the foibles of others. Humble people are hard on themselves and
easy on others.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be truly humble and yet have self-respect. I pray that I may see the good
in myself as well as the bad.


As Bill Sees It

WHEN CONFLICTS MOUNT, p. 289

Sometimes I would be forced to look at situations where I was
doing badly. Right away, the search for excuses would become
frantic.

“These,” I would exclaim, “are really a good man’s faults.” When
that pet gadget broke apart, I would think, “Well, if those people
would only treat me right, I wouldn’t have to behave the way I
do.” Next was this: “God well knows that I do have awful
compulsions. I just can’t get over this one. So He will have to
release me.” At last came the time when I would shout, “This, I
positively will not do! I won’t even try.”

Of course, my conflicts went right on mounting, because I was
simply loaded with excuses, refusals, and outright rebellion.


Walk In Dry Places

Those who want it, Not those who need it.
Honest Desire
In the first bloom of sobriety, many recovering people confront drinking companions who also “need” the program. They’re often surprised and disillusion when efforts to help their friends are rejected… sometimes curtly.
We’re truly limited to helping those who desire recovery, not those who we think need it. Though intervention methods can be effective, we’re still largely helpless to assist those who don’t desire recovery.
We regret that we really have no answers for the millions who perish from alcoholism, unaware of their problem. We also can hold out little hope that any future recovery attempts will succeed without the individual alcoholic’s cooperation.
Desire….. a personal determination and decision…. is necessary for almost any kind of change. We have the freedom to choose in many areas of our lives, and alcoholics must eventually choose recovery in order to find and maintain it.
Though I’d love to see others recover, I must accept the fact that their personal desire and choice is necessary. I’ll remember this if any opportunities arise today to carry the message.


Keep It Simple

When people bother you in any way, it is because their souls are trying to get your divine attention and your blessing.
–Catherine Ponder
We are in constant communication with one another and with God in the spiritual realm. No matter how singular our particular course may appear, our path is running parallel to many paths. And all paths will intersect when the need is present. The point of intersection is the moment when another soul seeks our attention. We can be attentive and loving to the people seeking our attention. Their growth and ours is at stake,
We can be grateful for our involvement with other lives. We can be mindful that our particular blessing is like no one else’s and that we all need input from the many significant persons in our lives. There is no insignificant encounter in our passage through life. Each juncture with someone else is part of the destiny of both participants.
I will look carefully and lovingly at the people around me today and bless them, one and all. They are in my life because they need to be. I, likewise, need them.


Each Day a New Beginning

Pride, we are told, my children, “goeth before a fall” and oh, the pride was there, and so the fall was not far away. –Wilhelmina Kemp Johnstone
Requesting help. Admitting we are wrong. Owning our mistake in either a big or small matter. Asking for another chance or someone’s love. All very difficult to do, and yet necessary if we are to grow. The difficulty is our pride, the big ego. We think, “We need to always be right. If we’re wrong, then others may think less of us, look down on us, and question our worth.” Perfectionism versus worthlessness.
If we are not perfect (and of course we never are), then we must be worthless. In between these two points on the scale is “being human.” Our emotional growth, as women, is equal to how readily we accept our humanness, how able we are to be wrong. With humility comes a softness that smoothes our every experience, our every relationship. Pride makes us hard, keeps us hard, keeps others away, and sets us up for the fall.
I will let myself be human today. It will soften my vision of life.


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

If you desire to help it might be well to disregard your own drinking, or lack of it. Whether you are a hard drinker, a moderate drinker or a teetotaler, you may have some pretty strong opinions, perhaps prejudices. Those who drink moderately may be more annoyed with an alcoholic than a total abstainer would be. Drinking occasionally, and understanding your own reactions, it is possible for you to become quite sure of many things which, so far as the alcoholic is concerned, are not always so. As a moderate drinker, you can take your liquor or leave it alone. Whenever you want to, you control your drinking. Of an evening, you can go on a mild bender, get up in the morning, shake your head and go to business. To you, liquor is no real problem. You cannot see why it should be to anyone else, save the spineless and stupid.

p. 139


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Crossing The River Of Denial

She finally realized that when she enjoyed her drinking, she couldn’t control it, and when she controlled it, she couldn’t enjoy it.

Dad was an alcoholic, and my mother drank throughout her pregnancy, but I don’t blame my parents for my alcoholism. Kids with a lot worse upbringings than mine did not turn out alcoholic, while some that had it alot better did. In fact, I stopped wondering, “Why me?” a long time ago. It’s like a man standing on a bridge in the middle of a river with his pants on fire wondering why his pants are on fire. It doesn’t matter. Just jump in! And that is exactly what I did with A.A. once I finally crossed the river of denial!

p. 328


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six – “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”

Let’s dispose of what appears to be a hazardous open end we have left. It is suggested that we ought to become entirely willing to aim toward perfection. We note that some delay, however, might be pardoned. That word, in the mind of a rationalizing alcoholic, could certainly be given a long term meaning. He could say, “How very easy! Sure, I’ll head toward perfection, but I’m certainly not going to hurry any. Maybe I can postpone dealing with some of my problems indefinitely.” Of course, this won’t do. Such a bluffing of oneself will have to go the way of many another pleasant rationalization. At the very least, we shall have to come to grips with some of our worst character defects and take action toward their removal as quickly as we can.

p. 69


“To make mistakes is human; to stumble is commonplace; to be able to laugh at
yourself is maturity.”
–William A. Ward

To remain young while growing old is the highest blessing.
–German Proverb

“Make rest a necessity, not an objective.”
–Jim Rohn

“Action may not always bring happiness; but there is no happiness without action.”
–Benjamin Disraeli

“The past is a guidepost, not a hitching post.”
–L. Thomas Holdcroft

“Once you say you are going to settle for second, that’s what happens to you.”
–John F. Kennedy

Friends are the sunshine of life.
–John Hay


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

WORSHIP

“Our concern is not how to
worship in the catacombs but
how to remain human in the
skyscrapers.”
— Abraham Heschel

Worship requires the discovery of “true worth” in my own life. True worship is not only
historical and traditional but also contemporary. I need to discover not only the God of
yesterday, but also the God of the modern city.

My past addiction to fantasy often made me place God in an unreal world. I was happy
talking about the Jews, Roman and Philistines but I missed God in Las Vegas, on
freeways and in local politics.

God is alive in His world, and it is tragic to make Him a prisoner of history.

Let me find You in the place where I live.


He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.
They were glad when it grew calm and He guided them to their desired haven.
Psalm 107:29-30

“You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the arrow that flies by day, Nor of
the pestilence that walks in darkness, Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.”
Psalm 91:5-6

“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new
person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do,
and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is.”
Romans 12:2


Daily Inspiration

It is hard to be upset with yourself when you are being nice to someone else. Lord, bless me with a giving spirit be I know that all I give comes back to shine on me in many different ways.

With our blessings come responsibilities. Much is required of those to whom much has been given. Lord, may I use my blessings to be a blessing to others.


NA Just For Today

We All Belong

“Although ‘politics makes strange bedfellows,’ as the old saying goes, addiction makes us one of a kind.”

Basic Text, p.84

What a mixture of folks we have in Narcotics Anonymous! In any given meeting on any given night, we’ll find a variety of people that probably never would have sat down in a room together if it weren’t for the disease of addiction.

A member who is a physician described his unwillingness to identify at his first meeting by refusing to go into “that room full of junkies.” Another member with an extensive background in jails and institutions shared a similar story, except that her shock and surprise stemmed from the realization that “there were nice people there – wearing suits, yet!” These two friends recently celebrated their seventh wedding anniversary.

The most unlikely people form friendships, sponsor each other, and do service work together. We meet in the rooms of recovery together, sharing the bonds of past suffering and hope for the future. We meet on mutual ground with our focus on the two things we all have in common – addiction and recovery.

Just for today: No matter what my personal circumstances, I belong.

pg. 304


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
One will rarely err if extreme actions be ascribed to vanity, ordinary actions to habit, and mean actions to fear. –Friedrich Nietzsche
Sometimes we begin to believe someone close to us is being mean deliberately. This may happen when a good friend suddenly stops inviting us to her house. She may be scared to have others over because her parents are having problems, or for some other reason that has nothing to do with us.
But we often fear that it is because of something we said or did. We find ourselves becoming scared and pulling away. If we ask for God’s help in turning our fear around, we can overcome it and ask our friend why she stopped inviting us over. Most times we will find that our friend had no idea her actions affected us the way they did. We can then laugh at ourselves for our fears and applaud ourselves for overcoming them.
What treasure might I find beneath my fear today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Thou art everywhere, but I worship you here;
Thou art without form, but I worship you in these forms;
Thou neediest no praise, yet I offer you these prayers and salutations.
–Hindu prayer
The history of the Twelve Steps tells us that in the first small A.A. group there was controversy about the word God. For some of the men, God was known in traditional religious ways; other members were agnostic. This first group followed their group conscience. The resolution they achieved has inspired many new Twelve Step members ever since. They were guided through their disagreement to a new expression of their spiritual relationship. They began to speak of a “Power greater than ourselves” and of “God, as we understood Him.”
Today we turn to God as we understand God, because our definitions are restricted by human limitations. We know from our own experiences and from the stories of thousands of men and women who have preceded us, that this spiritual program is very practical and simple. It works. It restores our lives.
To a Power greater than myself, I am filled with gratitude.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
When people bother you in any way, it is because their souls are trying to get your divine attention and your blessing.
–Catherine Ponder
We are in constant communication with one another and with God in the spiritual realm. No matter how singular our particular course may appear, our path is running parallel to many paths. And all paths will intersect when the need is present. The point of intersection is the moment when another soul seeks our attention. We can be attentive and loving to the people seeking our attention. Their growth and ours is at stake,
We can be grateful for our involvement with other lives. We can be mindful that our particular blessing is like no one else’s and that we all need input from the many significant persons in our lives. There is no insignificant encounter in our passage through life. Each juncture with someone else is part of the destiny of both participants.
I will look carefully and lovingly at the people around me today and bless them, one and all. They are in my life because they need to be. I, likewise, need them.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Throwing Out the Rule Book
Many of us feel like we need a rulebook, a microscope, and a warranty to get through life. We feel uncertain, frightened. We want the security of knowing what’s going to happen, and how we shall act.
We don’t trust life or ourselves.
We don’t trust the Plan.
We want to be in control.
“I’ve made terrible mistakes about my choices, mistakes that nearly destroyed me. Life has really shocked me. How can I trust myself? How can I trust life, and my instincts, after where I’ve been?” asked one woman.
It is understandable that we fear being crushed again, considering the way many of us were when we bottomed out on our codependency. We don’t have to be fearful. We can trust our self, our path, and our instincts.
Yes, we want to avoid making the same mistakes again. We are not the same people we were yesterday or last year. We’ve learned, grown, changed. We did what we needed to do then. If we made a mistake, we cannot let that stop us from living and fully experiencing today.
We have arrived at the understanding that we needed our experiences – even our mistakes – to get to where we are today. Do we know that we needed our life to unfold exactly as it did to find ourselves, our Higher Power, and this new way of life? Or is part of us still calling our past a mistake?
We can let go of our past and trust ourselves now. We do not have to punish ourselves with our past. We don’t need a rulebook, a microscope, a warranty. All we really need is a mirror. We can look into the mirror and say, “I trust you. No matter what happens, you can take care of yourself. And what happens will continue to be good, better than you think.”
Today, I will stop clinging to the painful lessons of the past. I will open myself to the positive lessons today and tomorrow hold for me. I trust that I can and will take care of myself now. I trust that the Plan is good, even when I don’t know what it is.

Today I will be aware not to judge myself when I feel less than perfect. I am beginning to love myself just as I am and that feels so nice. –Ruth Fishel


Journey To The Heart
October 18
Trust the Morning

I arrived in Sedona late at night, after ten o’clock. Motel offices were closed everywhere I went. The signs flashed “No Vacancy.” I hung around the convenience store for a while, trying to figure out what to do, having second thoughts about spontaneity and trusting the universe. I regretted not having an itinerary. I was too tired to drive much longer. I no longer cared if my journey was magical; it was back to basics. I wanted to sleep in a bed that night.

I bought the local paper and spotted an ad for a lodge. I called the number, but no luck. I got in my car, wondering what to do.

On the edge of town, I saw a motel with lights in the office and a person behind the desk. I went inside and pestered the girl behind the desk for help. She finally relented, telling me of a little known hotel about an hour away. She lived close by, she said. I could follow her there. An hour later, I gratefully checked into a room. I couldn’t find the heat, but I did have a bed, pillow, and blanket.

The next morning, I discovered I was staying on the edge of a dry, dusty golf course. The area was surrounded by low, barren hills barely covered with shrubs. I headed the car to Sedona, still tired, still wondering why I was there.

My car rounded a curve. Suddenly I was surrounded by spiraling red mesas shaped by nature into forms of bells, cathedrals, and carved towers reaching to the sky. The sunlight danced on the rusty red sculptures, lighting them with an orange-yellow glow. I smiled at the breathtaking view, grateful the experience had unfolded as it had.

Sometimes, the darkness and loneliness of night make the color and beauty of the sunrise and the new day all that much more beautiful. Contrast is an important part of creativity. Our Creator knows that. So does our heart.

Things look different in the morning. Trust that the morning will come.


more language of letting go
Take another look

It’s amazing the difference
A bit of sky can make.
–Shel Silverstein

We spend morning at the Blue Sky Lodge drinking coffee on the back porch watching the world wake up. One morning, after grabbing my cup, I walked out back to find Frank, a skydiving friend staying at the Lodge while visiting from the United Kingdom, busliy snapping pictures of the surrounding terrain.

“Frank, why are you taking pictures of this?” I asked. “If you want, we can take you to some of the more scenic areas around here.”

“No way,” he replied. “No one back home will believe that I got to spend my time in a place with a view like this.”

I looked around and tried to see the view through his eyes. The rolling hills of southern California were bathed in golden early morning sunlight, while a light marine layer curled over the ridgeline of the Ortega Mountains just three miles to the west. San Jacinto rose high in the eastern sky, a pale silhouette in the morning sun.

I smiled and for the first time in a while took in the sheer beauty of the view. Lately all I had been seeing were the piles of leaves and construction materials scattered around the yard or the cars driving along the road in the valley below us. I had been surrounded with beauty and yet had grown so accustomed to it that I didn’t even notice it anymore.

Many times what we need isn’t a change of scenery, but a renewed vision of what’s already there. Take another look at your life– where you live, your friends, your work– all your gifts. Maybe the view in your life is better than you think.

God, renew my spirit. Help me look at my life with a fresh vision. If I don’t like what I see, help me look again.


Complementary Energies
Balancing Self with Family Life by Madisyn Taylor

It is vital to the energy of your spirit and the energy of your family unit that you take time for yourself each day to balance and center.

Many of us have a hard time balancing taking care of ourselves with taking care of our family responsibilities. For people with young children, this can be especially challenging, but even people without children have obligations to care for extended family, partners, pets, and the home in which they live. It’s easy to lose track of our own needs as we give ourselves to the people, pets, and places we love. However, it is essential to their well-being that we take care of ourselves, filling our own wells with water so that we have something to offer when we return home each day.

It is easy to get caught up in the demands of home life because they never stop. There is always one more thing you can do, another dish in the sink, a counter that needs wiping, or a person who needs a ride somewhere. If you don’t set some boundaries, you will find yourself on an endless journey of housework and doing for others. Eventually, you will probably feel drained and out of touch with your inner life force. Instead of waiting for this to happen, integrate self-care into your daily schedule. Even Buddha insisted that he have one hour completely to himself every day. There are times when even that will not be possible—for example, with a new baby or a sick relative. At times like this, retreating inward energetically can be a lifesaver. You can always find five minutes to close your eyes and breathe consciously. You may even be able to meditate.

Most of the time, though, it is possible to set aside a full hour for yourself each day. In addition, scheduling a longer interval of time, perhaps on a weekly basis, can really help to restore your energy. Get a massage or go to a movie or out with a friend. Taking time to experience the world outside of your home makes returning home all the more wonderful. In the same way, taking care of yourself is a natural complement to taking care of your home and family. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Not in my wildest dreams could I have imagined the rewards that would be mine when I first contemplated turning my life and will over to the care of God as I understand Him. Now I can rejoice in the blessing of my own recovery, as well as the recoveries of countless others who have found hope and a new way of life in The Program. After all the years of waste and terror, I realize today that God has always been on my side and at my side. Isn’t my clearer understanding of God’s will one of the best things that has happened to me?

Today I Pray

May I be thankful for the blessed contrast between the way my life used to be (Part 1) and the way it is now (Part II). In Part I, I was the practicing addict, adrift among my fears and delusions. In Part II, I am the recovering addict, rediscovering my emotions, accepting my responsibilities, learning what the real world has to offer, growing close to my Higher Power. Without the contrast, I could never feel the joy I know today or sense the peaceful nearness of my Higher Power.

Today I Will Remember

I am grateful for such contrast.


One More Day

Quote:He that can’t endure the bad, will not live to see the good.
– Yiddish Proverb

Maturity means taking thee bitter with the sweet. Wisdom is the realization that sometimes the two are interrelated. An we might have been bitter because quality of our lives was changed.

Now, with a clearer perspective and greater maturity, we realize that many of the sweeter aspects of our lives today have grown out of our learning to cope with chronic illness. We live more in the moment, rather than always pursuing some distant goal. Our values reflect a stronger sense of self; they emphasize people over things. For many of us, the growth, the joy, and the self-esteem that now sweeten our lives come from the bitter experiences of chronic illness.

I accept that my life experiences will be both good and bad. Although my illness is unwanted. I have been strengthen by it.


Food For Thought

Relying on God

As compulsive overeaters, we relied on food to pick us up, calm us down, console us, excite us, help us, and sustain us. Since food was inadequate to do all of these things, we had to eat more and more until we became physically and emotionally addicted.

Recovery from our disease requires that dependency on food be replaced by dependency on a Higher Power. Only God, as each of us understands Him, is capable of supporting us at all times and in all situations. Food simply will not work. If we are not controlled by our Higher Power, we will be controlled by our addiction to compulsive overeating.

At first, we find it difficult to rely on a Power we cannot see. Our materialistic orientation makes us distrustful of the things that are of the spirit. Gradually, we come to believe as we witness the work of God through OA. We see evidence of His activity in our own lives, and we sense the peace and security that He gives. Reliance on God is our strength.

I depend on You for recovery.


One Day At A Time

Looking for Love
“The most important thing in life
is to learn how to give out love,
and to let it come in.”
Morrie Schwartz

As a compulsive overeater I was always looking outside of myself for love, yet I was terrified of letting it in. “What if it hurts me once I let it in?” I was just as afraid of giving out love. “What if I lost myself or was taken advantage of?” My life was ruled by fear, and at a very young age I discovered the false security of food. I used food as a source of companionship and as a way to numb out my pain. It became a substitute for love.

As the disease gained control, the more I ate and the more shut down I became. I built huge walls around myself. As the weight came on, I was convinced that this was the reason people didn’t love me the way that I wanted to be loved. I believed that “if only I was thin enough” I would get what I wanted. It never occurred to me that I was already so full of the food that there was no room inside to receive anything else.

When I came into program and began to put down the food, I slowly discovered that this love that I was searching for was within me all along. My Higher Power is love and dwells within and all around me. In recovery I am graced with the freedom to act out of love and therefore be with my Higher Power.

One day at a time…
I will choose to act out of love and to keep my heart open to the love that my Higher Power brings into my life. If I just open my eyes, my ears and my heart, it is everywhere.
~ Jessica M.


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This world of ours has made more material progress in the last century than in all the millenniums which went before. Almost everyone knows the reason. Students of ancient history tell us that the intellect of men in those days was equal to the best of today. Yet in ancient times material progress was painfully slow. The spirit of modern scientific inquiry, research and invention was almost unknown. In the realm of the material, men’s minds were fettered by superstition, tradition, and all sorts of fixed ideas. Some of the contemporaries of Columbus though a round earth preposterous. Others came near putting Galileo to death for his astronomical heresies.

We asked ourselves this: Are not some of us just as biased and unreasonable about the realm of the spirit as were the ancients about the realm of the material? – Pg. 51 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

There is a certain universality to the truths taught in our 12 step programs. They are nothing new. These principles are derived from eons of experience and spirituality. What is new is our personal understanding that living these principles gives us a reprieve from our addiction.

Thank you God, as I understand You, for my daily reprieve from addiction based on my sincere attempt to practice these principles.

Owning My Own Anger Responsibly

Today, I am willing to take responsibility for the anger that I carry within me. I am not a bad person because I feel angry. No one wants to think of himself or herself as an angry person, and I am no exception. But when I refuse to acknowledge the anger and resentment that I have stored within me, (1) I turn my back on me and refuse to accept a very important part of myself, and (2) I ask the people close to me to hold my feelings for me, to be the containers of my unconscious or the feelings inside me that I do not wish to see. Because I deny my anger to myself does not mean that it goes away. Today, I am willing to consider that there might be something more to it, that I may be carrying feelings of anger that I need to accept.

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Want to know about your Spiritual Source? ‘It is a simple procedure to calculate the number of seeds in an apple. But who among us can ever say how many apples are in a seed?’ ~Dr. Wayne Dyer, Everyday Wisdom

Even though I feel very small when the stars come out at night, I remember that I, too, am made of stardust.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Don’t believe in miracles. Rely on them.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am full of joy in the discovery that I am okay just the way I am. Today I can accept all of me today and that is a miracle.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I don’t have to figure out God’s will for me anymore. God’s will is defined for me by taking Steps 10 and 11. Because it’s all a process of weeding out everything which isn’t God’s will. – Cindy F.


AA Thought for the Day

October 18

Hangovers
When a drunk has a terrific hangover because he drank heavily yesterday, he cannot live well today.
But there is another kind of hangover which we all experience whether we are drinking or not.
That is the emotional hangover, the direct result of yesterday’s and sometimes today’s excesses of negative emotion


anger, fear, jealousy, and the like.
If we would live serenely today and tomorrow, we certainly need to eliminate these hangovers.
This doesn’t mean we need to wander morbidly around in the past.
It requires an admission and correction of errors now.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 88-89

Thought to Ponder . . .
Make a change, move a muscle.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
N O W = No Other Way.

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

Touchy
“Many of us have been so touchy
that even casual reference to spiritual things
make us bristle with antagonism.
This sort of thinking had to be abandoned.
Though some of us resisted,
we found no great difficulty in casting aside such feelings.
Faced with alcoholic destruction,
we soon became as open minded on spiritual matters
as we had tried to be on other questions.
In this respect alcohol was a great persuader.
It finally beat us into a state of reasonableness.
Sometimes this was a tedious process;
we hope no one else will prejudiced for as long as
some of us were.”
c.1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 48

Thought to Consider . . .
The solution is simple.
The solution is spiritual.

~~AACRONYMS~~
A A = Altered Attitudes

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

Inspiration

From “When A.A. Came of Age”:
“There came next to the lectern [at the 1955 Convention] a figure that not many A.A.’s had seen before, the Episcopal clergyman Sam Shoemaker. It was from him that Dr. Bob and I [Bill W.] in the beginning had absorbed most of the principles that were afterward embodied in the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, steps that express the heart of A.A.’s way of life. Dr. Silkworth gave us the needed knowledge of our illness, but Sam Shoemaker had given us the concrete knowledge of what we could do about it. One showed us the mysteries of the lock that held us in prison; the other passed on the spiritual keys by which we were liberated.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pgs. 38-39

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

“One day leads to the next, no matter how unhappy I choose to be.”
Sioux Rapids, IA, January 2004
“Adult Love,”
No Matter What: Dealing with Adversity in Sobriety

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

“Doubtless you are curious to discover how and why, in the face of
expert opinion to the contrary, we have recovered from a hopeless
condition of mind and body. 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.
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, Page 20~

‘ I realize that all I’m guaranteed in life is today. The poorest person has no less and the wealthiest has no more–each of us has but one day. What we do with it is our own business; how we use it is up to us individually.
I feel that I have been restored to health and sanity these past years not through my own efforts nor as a result of anything I may have done, but because I’ve come to believe–to really believe–that alone I can do nothing. That my own innate selfishness and stubbornness are the evils which which, if left unguarded, can drive me to alcohol.’
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.473

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

Already a willingness has been achieved to cast out one’s own will and one’s own ideas about the alcohol problem in favor of those suggested by A.A.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.35

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

I believe that when we were active alcoholics we drank mostly to kill pain of one kind or another – physical or emotional or psychic. Of course, everybody has a cracking point, and I suppose you reached yours – hence, the resort once more to the bottle.
‘If I were you, I wouldn’t heap devastating blame on myself for this; on the other hand, the experience should redouble your conviction that alcohol has no permanent value as a pain-killer?’
In every A.A. story, pain has been the price of admission into a new life. But this admission price purchased more than we expected. It led us to a measure of humility, which we soon discovered to be a healer of pain. We began to fear pain less, and desire humility more than ever.

Prayer for the Day: First Things First – Dear Higher Power, remind me: To tidy up my own mind, To keep my sense of values straight, To sort out the possible and the impossible, To turn the impossible over to you, And get busy on the possible.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 17th

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 17th

Daily Reflections

A DAILY TUNE-UP

Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will
into all of our activities.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 85

How do I maintain my spiritual condition? For me it’s quite simple:
on a daily basis I ask my Higher Power to grant me the gift of
sobriety for that day! I have talked to many alcoholics who have
gone back to drinking and I always ask them: “Did you pray for
sobriety the day you took your first drink?” Not one of them said
yes. As I practice Step Ten and try to keep my house in order on
a daily basis, I have the knowledge that if I ask for a daily
reprieve, it will be granted.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

What am I going to do today for A.A.? Is there someone I should
call up on the telephone or someone I should go to see? Is there
a letter I should write? Is there an opportunity somewhere to
advance the work of A.A. which I have been putting off or
neglecting? If so, will I do it today? Will I be done with
procrastination and do what I have to do today? Tomorrow may
be too late. How do I know there will be a tomorrow for me?
How about getting out of my easy chair and getting going? Do I
feel that A.A. depends partly on me today?

Meditation For The Day

Today look upward toward God, not downward toward yourself. Look
away from unpleasant surroundings, from lack of beauty, from the
imperfections in yourself and in those around you. In your
unrest, behold God’s calmness; in your impatience, God’s
patience; in your limitations, God’s perfection. Looking upward
toward God, your spirit will begin to grow. Then others will
see something in you that they also want. As you grow in the
spiritual life, you will be enabled to do many things that seemed too
hard for you before.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may keep my eyes trained above the horizon of
myself. I pray that I may see infinite possibilities for spiritual growth.


As Bill Sees It

EMOTIONAL SOBRIETY, p. 288

If we examine every disturbance we have, great or small, we will
find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its
consequent unhealthy demand. Let us, with God’s help,
continually surrender these hobbling liabilities.

Then we can be set free to live and love; we may then be able to
twelfth-step ourselves, as well as others, into emotional sobriety.

GRAPEVINE, JANUARY 1958


Walk In Dry Places

Driven by Fear
Finding courage.
During any group discussion of fear, someone usually points out that it serves a protective purpose by keeping us out of harm’s way.
With the type of fear that drove us, however, we more often fled into further harm while trying to avoid the threats at hand. No person whose fear reaches a panic stage can effectively control his or her actions.
We cannot expect sobriety alone to make us exempt from fear. What it can do is give us an ability to handle our fear constructively.
There are steps to doing this. FIRST, we should not be too prideful to admit that fear can come to us. SECOND, we should admit it when we do feel fear. THIRD, we can discuss our fear with others while turning it over to our Higher Power.
It would be wonderful if these steps then lifted us above any sense of fear. Even if this doesn’t happen completely, we’ve succeeded in mastering our problems if we don’t let fear drives us to work against ourselves. If I am afraid to give a presentation for work or go for a job interview, for example, I am being driven into inaction. This must no be allowed to happen.
I can find courage today in the Twelve Step program. This will enable me to act properly and responsibly, even if I’m a bit queasy with fear.


Keep It Simple

Every child is an artist. The problem is remain an artist once your grow up.—Pablo Picasso
We each have colorful ideas waiting to be shared. We’re alive inside. But do we let this side of us show? Our disease stole much of the child like openness. Many of us were taught that growing up meant denying the child within us. Many of us grew up in homes where it wasn’t safe to act alive and creative. Whatever the reason, it’s time to claim the child, the artist, in each of us. Each of our programs is different, and each has its artistic touch. When we tell our stories, we share our life. And our lives are unique and alive. The more alive we become, the more color we bring to others and ourselves. Let’s not be afraid to add color to our lives.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me claim the child inside of me. Joy is choice. Help me choose it.
Action for the Day: Today, I’ll work at not hiding myself from others. I’ll be alive, and I’ll greet everyone I meet with the openness of a child.


Each Day a New Beginning

Pride, we are told, my children, “goeth before a fall” and oh, the pride was there, and so the fall was not far away.
–Wilhelmina Kemp Johnstone
Requesting help. Admitting we are wrong. Owning our mistake in either a big or small matter. Asking for another chance or someone’s love. All very difficult to do, and yet necessary if we are to grow. The difficulty is our pride, the big ego. We think, “We need to always be right. If we’re wrong, then others may think less of us, look down on us, and question our worth.” Perfectionism versus worthlessness.
If we are not perfect (and of course we never are), then we must be worthless. In between these two points on the scale is “being human.” Our emotional growth, as women, is equal to how readily we accept our humanness, how able we are to be wrong. With humility comes a softness that smoothes our every experience, our every relationship. Pride makes us hard, keeps us hard, keeps others away, and sets us up for the fall.
I will let myself be human today. It will soften my vision of life.


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

Presently the man did slip and was fired. Following his discharge, we contacted him. Without much ado, he accepted the principles and procedure that had helped us. To me, this incident illustrates lack of understanding as to what really ails the alcoholic, and lack of knowledge as to what part employers might profitably take in salvaging their sick employees.

p. 139


Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Crossing The River Of Denial

She finally realized that when she enjoyed her drinking, she couldn’t control it, and when she controlled it, she couldn’t enjoy it.

Denial is the most cunning, baffling, and powerful part of my disease of alcoholism. When I look back now, it’s hard to imagine I didn’t see a problem with my drinking. But instead of seeing the truth when all the “yets” (as in, that hasn’t happened to me–yet) started happening, I just kept lowering my standards.

p. 328


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six – “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”

Looking again at those defects we are still unwilling to give up, we ought to erase the hard-and-fast lines that we have drawn. Perhaps we shall be obliged in some cases still to say, “This I cannot give up yet…,” but we should not say to ourselves, “This I will never give up!”

pp. 68-69


Acceptance does not mean that I have to agree, I don’t have to approve, I don’t even
have to like it. I just have to accept.
–unknown

“I can forgive, but I can not forget” is only another way of saying, “I will not forgive.”
Forgiveness ought to be like a cancel note – torn in two and burned up so that it never
can be shown against one.
–Henry Ward Beecher

To carry a grudge is like being stung to death by one bee.
–William H. Walton

Life is not always what one wants it to be, but to make the best of it as it is, is the only
way of being happy.
–Jennie Jerome Churchill

Until you make peace with who you are, you’ll never be content with what you have.
–Doris Mortman

Ask not that events should happen as you will, but let your will be that events should
happen as they do, and you shall have peace.
–Epicetus

God’s word refreshes our minds; God’s spirit renews our strength.
–unknown

God is all-knowing, righteous, longsuffering, all powerful, and good.”
–unknown


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PROGRESS

You’ve got to be a fool to want to stop the march of time.”
–Pierre Renoir

My fear of the future gave me a fear of change. My need to control made me avoid
any new or confusing ideas. My alcoholism wanted me to escape and hide in the
past–tomorrow was too fearful to be contemplated. At other times–and this is why
alcohol is cunning, baffling and powerful–I would want to escape into tomorrow
and avoid the reality of today.

Time and reality were to be “played with” rather than experienced. But time moves
on, it progresses just like the disease, and if I am to be a winner in this world, I need to
move with it. God is to be experienced in the march of time and today I want to be in
a relationship with God.

Teach me to respect time as an opportunity for growth.


Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and He saved them from their distress.
Psalm 107:19

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

Your principles have been the music of my life throughout the years of my pilgrimage. I
reflect at night on who you are, O LORD, and I obey your law because of this. This is my
happy way of life: obeying your commandments.
Psalm 119:54-56


Daily Inspiration

Mistakes are often a great source of learning. Lord, may I treat myself kindly when I appear to fall short of my expectations and anticipate the goodness that often is not very obvious.

The source of courage is having a deep sense of God’s presence and hearing Him say, “I am with you always.”. Lord, You are my solution. You are with me always giving me all that I need.


NA Just For Today

“The Truth”

“Everything we know is subject to revision, especially what we know about the truth.”

Basic Text, p.91

Many of us thought we could recognize “The Truth.” We believed the truth was one thing, certain and unchanging, which we could grasp easily and without question. The real truth, however, was that we often couldn’t see the truth if it hit us square in the face. Our disease colored everything in our lives, especially our perception of the truth – in fact, what we “knew” about the truth nearly killed us. Before we could begin to recognize truth, we had to switch our allegiance from our addiction to a Higher Power the source of all that is good and true.

The truth has changed as our faith in a Higher Power has grown. As we’ve worked the steps, our entire lives have begun to change through the healing power of the principles of recovery. In order to open the door for that change, we have had to surrender our attachment to an unchanging and rigid truth.

The truth becomes purer and simpler each time we encounter it. And just as the steps work in our lives every day – if we allow them – our understanding of the truth may change each day as we grow.

Just for today: I will open my eyes and my heart to changes brought about by the steps. With an open mind, I can understand the truth in my life today.

pg. 303


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Fear makes strangers of people who should be friends. –Shirley MacLaine
No one is brave every moment; each of us feels awkward, shy, perhaps even ugly or dumb part of the time. If we could understand that about each other, it would make it easier for us to be friendly and willing to talk to someone new. Instead, we often sit back, waiting to be noticed; waiting for someone to invite us to join in an activity.
We are all so much alike, yet we are so certain we’re different. Being self-conscious is normal. Even those who are the most popular suffer the same fears as the rest of us. The better we understand the ways we are the same, the easier it will be to make friends with someone new. And it’s through friends that we grow and are strengthened for whatever lies ahead.
What new person can I offer friendship to today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I never suspected that I would have to learn how to live – that there were specific disciplines and ways of seeing the world I had to master before I could awaken to a simple happy, uncomplicated life. –Dan Millman
Wisdom begins in seeing how much we do not know. Sometimes it’s a painful blow to our egos to face what we still have to learn. Many of us have believed we know how to live. Yet, when we look at our lives, we see something has been missing. When we continue to have great stress, when we haven’t made progress in simplifying our lives, when our lives seem full of crises – perhaps then it is time to open ourselves to some new learning.
We can talk to sponsors and get ideas from group members. Perhaps they have noticed our blind spots and will tell us if asked. Expressing our problems in specific ways may point us to new learning. Our program teaches us twelve specific disciplines for our growth. We need to return to them again and again. We can always ask ourselves, “What Step am I working on at this time?” We may need to learn new ways to work on a specific Step.
I will turn to my fellow group members and focus on one Step for my growth today.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Pride, we are told, my children, “goeth before a fall” and oh, the pride was there, and so the fall was not far away.
–Wilhelmina Kemp Johnstone
Requesting help. Admitting we are wrong. Owning our mistake in either a big or small matter. Asking for another chance or someone’s love. All very difficult to do, and yet necessary if we are to grow. The difficulty is our pride, the big ego. We think, “We need to always be right. If we’re wrong, then others may think less of us, look down on us, and question our worth.” Perfectionism versus worthlessness.
If we are not perfect (and of course we never are), then we must be worthless. In between these two points on the scale is “being human.” Our emotional growth, as women, is equal to how readily we accept our humanness, how able we are to be wrong. With humility comes a softness that smoothes our every experience, our every relationship. Pride makes us hard, keeps us hard, keeps others away, and sets us up for the fall.
I will let myself be human today. It will soften my vision of life.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Feelings and Surrender
Surrendering is a highly personal and spiritual experience.
Surrender is not something we can do in our heads. It is not something we can force or control by willpower. It is something we experience.
Acceptance, or surrender, is not a tidy package. Often, it is a package full of hard feelings – anger, rage, and sadness, followed by release and relief. As we surrender, we experience our frustration and anger at God, at other people, at ourselves, and at life. Then we come to the core of the pain and sadness, the heavy emotional burden inside that must come out before we can feel good. Often, these emotions are connected to healing and release at a deep level.
Surrender sets the wheels in motion. Our fear and anxiety about the future are released when we surrender.
We are protected. We are guided. Good things have been planned. The next step is now being taken. Surrender is the process that allows us to move forward. It is how our Higher Power moves us forward. Trust in the rightness of timing, and the freedom at the other end, as you struggle humanly through this spiritual experience.
I will be open to the process of surrender in my life. I will allow myself all the awkward and potent emotions that must be released.

Today I look to my Higher Power for strength, courage and direction. I gather my own strength and confidence from all possible resources and follow my own inner voice. –Ruth Fishel


Journey To The Heart
October 17
Feeling Overwhelmed Is a Trap

Feeling overwhelmed is a trap, a tricky one at that. When we’re overwhelmed, we see all that needs to be done and say, That’s too much. I can’t do it. So instead, I shall do nothing. Feeling overwhelmed occurs when we say, I am already too busy so I can’t do that and now all is pressing in on me and I can’t do anything. And the acts that are ours to do keep piling up and pulling on us. And we keep resisting. And stress and pressure build up.

Feeling overwhelmed leads to feeling stuck, and both are an illusion. How simple those things that overwhelm us actually become when we release the feeling and return to the rhythm of our lives. When we say, Yes, I need to make that phone call, do that task. How simple the task becomes, how simple life becomes.

What’s bothering you that needs to be done? What’s pulling on you? What’s causing you to feel overwhelmed and maybe stuck, too? Make a list. Put your list aside, and begin by taking one simple action. Then watch as life unfolds. One act at a time, one thing at a time, all that needs to be done will get done. The stress will disappear, and you’ll feel back on track.

You’ll be given the ability, power, and guidance to do all that is on your path to do. Begin simply, quietly, by acknowledging feeling overwhelmed. Denying the pull of life and its tasks doesn’t remove stress, it compounds it.

Surrendering to the simple truths, even the simple truth of what we’re really feeling, will always set us free.


more language of letting go
The beauty is easy to see

It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.
–Ursula K. Le Guin

One lesson road trips have taught me is that while it’s good to have a destination, it’s good to see what the trip has to offer rather than waiting for it to bring us what we expected.

Recently, a friend and I made a trip to Santuario de Chimayo to visit the church and bring home some of the healing dust from the sacred place. Along the way, we planned to pass through other beautiful places in the Southwest, a spiritual pilgrimage we thought. We left the house ready to be enlightened. But something happened. In the hot Arizona air, we stopped letting the trip happen and started looking for a specific experience. The Indian ruins were overrun with tourist groups, and the beautiful red rock vortex center had been reduced to strip malls and time-share condos. Or spiritual quest had yielded nothing but disappointment so far. We felt antsy, irritable, and let down.

Then we saw the sign Meteor Crater road next right. We turned down that road, giving in to the cheesy kitsch of the trip. A mile wide and over five hundred feet deep the crater was left over fifty thousand years ago in the middle of what is now the Arizona desert. A man bought the land and he and his family became meteor experts– marketing experts as well since they now charge ten dollars to see a big hole in the ground. Nice enough folks though, and we smiled for the first time on the trip.

I’d always wanted to see the Petrified Forest, Though I feared that once again the hype would overpower the reality of what it was. It didn’t. The giant log-turned-to-stone were scarce but the place had a powerful timelessness to it. The sky was pastel blue. I lay on a giant wave of sand while Chip ran around taking pictures that would end up overexposed.

Later that evening we crossed the border into New Mexico. Chelle’s– a nice place to eat read the sign on the side of a building in Gallup. And it was nice, just like the sign said.

We can search for joy and enlightenment so frantically that we don’t see the brilliance at our own feet. Sometimes in the search for enlightenment, it helps to remember to lighten up. To paraphrase Winnie the Pooh, if you’re looking for enlightenment and only find the ordinary, then try looking at the ordinary and let it be what it is. You might then find something you weren’t looking for, which might be just what you were looking for when you began.

Don’t let your hopes and expectations be so high that you miss the beauty in what is. Joy and enlightenment, after all, aren’t that hard to see.

God, help me let go of my expectations and delight in what is.


Apologies
Empowered Forgiveness by Madisyn Taylor

If we can remember that our response to others is important, we can realize that trust and forgiveness go hand in hand.

In life there will always be times when we are affected by the actions of another person. When this happens, we often receive an apology. More often than not we say, “It’s alright,” or “ It’s okay,” and by saying this we are allowing, accepting, and giving permission for the behavior to happen again. When we say “thank you,” or “I accept your apology,” we are forced to sit in our feelings rather than ignore them.

There are many of us who feel that it is easier to brush off how we really feel than to express our discomfort with something that has happened to us. While this may initially seem like the best thing to do, what it really does is put us into an unending pattern of behavior; since we are not honest with another person, we continue the cycle of letting them overstep our emotional limits time and time again. By doing this we place ourselves in the position of victim. We can put an end to this karmic chain by first acknowledging to the other person that we accept their request for forgiveness; often a simple “thank you” is enough. To truly create a greater sense of harmony in our relationship, however, we need to gently, and with compassion, express our innermost concerns about what has transpired. By taking a deep breath and calling upon the deepest parts of our spirit, we can usually find the right words to say and verbalize them in a way that lets the other person recognize the consequences of what they have done.

If we can remember that our response to others is important, we can begin to realize that trust and forgiveness go hand in hand. And when we react in a way that engenders a greater amount of honesty and candor, we will establish a more positive and empowering way of being and interacting others. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Now that we’re sober and living in reality, it’s sometimes difficult to see ourselves as others see us and, in the process, determine how much progress we’ve made in recovery. In the old days, the back-of-the-bar mirror presented us with a distorted and illusory view of ourselves; the way we imagined ourselves to be and the way we imagined ourselves to appear in the eyes of others. A good way for me to measure my progress today is imply to look about me at my friends in The Program. As I witness the miracle of their recoveries, I realize that I’m part of the same miracle — and will remain so as long as I’m willing. Am I grateful for reality and the Divine miracle of my recovery?

Today I Pray

May god keep my eyes open for miracles — those marvelous changes that have taken place in my own life and in the lives of my friends in the group. May I ask no other measurement of progress than a smile I can honestly mean and a clear eye and a mind that can, at last, touch reality. May my own joy be my answer to my question. “How am I doing?”

today I Will Remember

Miracles measure our progress: Who needs more?


One More Day

Maturity: among other things — not to hide one’s strength out of fear and consequently live below one’s best.
– Dag Hammarskjold

The fear of being different is a powerful force in our lives, especially in the early times after a chronic illness is diagnosed. We fear being recognized as a victim of an illness, and we become afraid of any recognition at all.

We don’t want to live with this unreasonable fear, and we begin to understand that healthy thinking requires us to develop and use our many strengths. We stop denying and start accepting. The voice of our individuality begins to speak, loudly and clearly, and we answer with definitive action. We start to face our problems, to accept the ways in which we differ from others, and to rejoice in our strengths.

I won’t hid my strengths, for they are the means to life at its best.


Food For Thought

Seeking the Best

We will never be satisfied with less than the best. When we were overeating, we may have settled for less than we were capable of being and achieving, but we were not happy about it. There is something in each of us that hungers for maximum growth and development.

When we stop drugging ourselves with food, we become aware of new possibilities and areas of growth. By controlling our disease, we release potential that had been buried under our obsession. As we come to know our Higher Power through this program, our appetite for the best is reawakened. Though we realize we will never achieve perfection, we are challenged to be and do the best that we can, just for today.

The best force there is directs lives that are committed to the care of God. Only by dedication to knowing and doing His will is our search satisfied.

We seek You, Lord.


One Day At A Time

Self-sabotage
“The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur
when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled.
For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are
likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers.”
M. Scott Peck

For the last fifteen years I have been an avid and restless student of “self-help.” I read popular books, spent years in therapy, and attended various support groups. Because I didn’t see any improvement in my life, I was consumed with anger, shame, bitterness, and a pervasive sense of injustice. I blamed my Higher Power, my family, my partner, and my life circumstances. Only since joining The Recovery Group have I discovered the source of my toxic stagnation. It was myself. When doing a thorough examination of my life, I was absolutely shocked to find that I had been repeatedly practicing destructive acts of self-sabotage.

I was in love with my suffering. I was addicted to my misery. Sometimes we cling to our illnesses and weaknesses because they are so familiar to us. Though they hurt us, we find them oddly comforting. It’s what we’re used to. And change is scary. The unknown is scary. I found that my self-sabotage stemmed from shame, anger, low self-esteem, my lust for being a Victim — and even a Fear of Being Well. I had to reach the profound darkness of depression before I could admit that the damage I did to myself had become unbearable.

Now I make a choice each day to not sabotage myself. It’s not easy. Rather than being my enemy, I choose to be my friend and advocate. With the help of this program and my friends in recovery, I have come to like myself and to truly want good things for myself. The changes are gradual and require me to be patient and gracious with myself. Now I can celebrate each baby step and forgive myself when I fall back into old patterns. I now know that when I do make a mistake, I can admit it, learn from it, and press forward with my Recovery.

One day at a time…
I will choose to accept myself as a person of worth. I will resist temptations to sabotage my recovery and I will choose good things for my life.
~ Lisa


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

If any feel that as psychiatrists directing a hospital for alcoholics we appear somewhat sentimental, let them stand with us a while on the firing line, see the tragedies, the despairing wives, the little children; let the solving of these problems become part of their daily work, and even of their sleeping moments, and the most cynical will not wonder that we have accepted and encouraged this movement. we feel, after many years of experience, that we have found nothing which has contributed more to the rehabilitation of these men than the altruistic movement now growing up among them. – Pg. xxvii – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Let us speculate on another subtle ‘trick’ of our disease: It lies to us! ‘It wasn’t so bad; I’m not really out of control; everyone drinks a little; these people are stupid.’ These are lies.

I pray that the subtle lies of addiction go in one ear and out the other!

Amends

Today, I am willing for healing to take place in ruptured relationships. I have been doing the best that I can. My acknowledgment that I may have hurt someone else does not diminish me. I have also been hurt, and I extend the same understanding to myself that I do to others. We have all been doing the best that we knew how with the awareness we had to work with. My willingness to make amends speaks to my spiritual growth and desire for honesty. Making amends to others sets things straight with myself. My self-respect is growing to the extent that I am no longer comfortable with unfinished business. I will finish up my side for my own self and allow the rest to be where it is. It is for myself that I forgive; I do not need to control the result.

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Before spiritual awakening…work steps, make coffee, carry the message. After spiritual awakening…keep working steps, keep making coffee, keep carrying the message. -Zen for the 12 Steps-

Enlightenment is my ego’s greatest disappointment.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Do not put the sole purpose of any fellowship above the soul purpose.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I look to my Higher Power for strength, courage and direction. I gather my own strength and confidence from all possible resources and follow my own inner voice.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It doesn’t matter so much who is right but what is right. I don’t get indigestion from swallowing my pride. Anon.


AA Thought for the Day

October 17

Burdens
But how often do we begin to fill our newly emptied backpacks anew under fresh loads.
It is as if we had to become accustomed to carrying all that junk around, almost as if we had grown fond of the burden.
So we need to take an occasional look (every day?) into our backpacks to see if we haven’t tossed in a stone every now and then.
And when we discover some load of guilt or shame, some wrong we may have committed, we can toss it out.
Otherwise, we spend all our lives struggling to walk, burdened by these impediments.
– The Best Of The Grapevine [Vol. 3], p. 215

Thought to Ponder . . .
The first step in overcoming mistakes is to admit them.

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

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

Debits
“As we glance down the debit side of the day’s ledger,
we should carefully examine our motives
in each thought or act that appears to be wrong.
In most cases our motives won’t be hard to see and understand.
When prideful, angry, jealous, anxious, or fearful,
we acted accordingly, and that was that.
Here we need only recognize that we did act or think badly,
try to visualize how we might have done better,
and resolve with God’s help to carry these lessons over into tomorrow,
making, of course, any amends still neglected.”
c.1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 94

Thought to Consider . . .
Life is too short to be small.

~~AACRONYMS~~
H O W N O W = Honest, Open-minded, Willing. No Other Way!

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

Forgive Myself
From: “Those Other People”

Just like you, I have often thought myself the victim of what other people say and do. Yet every time I confessed the sins of such people, especially those whose sins did not correspond exactly with my own, I found that I only increased the total damage. My own resentment, my self-pity would often render me well-nigh useless to anybody.
So, nowadays, if anyone talks of me so as to hurt, I first ask myself if there is any truth at all in what they say. If there is none, I try to remember that I too have had my periods of speaking bitterly of others; that hurtful gossip is but a symptom of our remaining emotional illness; and consequently that I must never be angry at the unreasonableness of sick people.
Under very trying conditions I have had, again and again, to forgive others – also myself. Have you recently tried this?
Letter, 1946
1967, AAWS, Inc., As Bill Sees It, page 268

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

“A new spiritual awakening can come at every meeting.”
Hartsdale-Ardsley, N.Y., January 1957
“Twelve Steps to a Meeting,”
Into Action

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

“Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.”
Alcoholics Anonymous 3rd Edition More About Alcoholism Page 30

If we have been thorough about our personal inventory, we have written down a lot.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.70

Step Four is our vigorous and painstaking effort to discover what these liabilities in each of us have been, and are.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.42

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Our attitude toward the giving of time when compared with our attitude toward giving money presents an interesting contrast. We give a lot of our time to A.A. activities for our own protection and growth, but also for the sake of our groups, our areas, A.A. as a whole, and, above all, the newcomer. Translated into terms of money, these collective sacrifices would add up to a huge sum.
But when it comes to the actual spending of cash, particularly for A.A. service overhead, many of us are apt to turn a bit reluctant. We think of the loss of all that earning power in our drinking years, of those sums we might have laid by for emergencies or for education of the kids.
In recent years, this attitude is everywhere on the decline; it quickly disappears when the real need for a given A.A. service becomes clear. Donors can seldom see what the exact result has been. They well know, however, that countless thousands of other alcoholics and their families are being helped.

Prayer for the Day: An Irish Blessing –
May the road rise up to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rain fall soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 16th

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 16th

 

Daily Reflections

THROUGHOUT EACH DAY

This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

During my early years in A.A. I saw Step Ten as a suggestion that I periodically look at
my behavior and reactions. If there was something wrong, I should admit it; if an apology
was necessary, I should give one. After a few years of sobriety I felt I should undertake
a self-examination more frequently. Not until several more years of sobriety had elapsed
did I realize the full meaning of Step Ten, and the word “continued.” “Continued” does
not mean occasionally, or frequently. It means throughout each day.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

How seriously do I take my obligations to A.A.? Have I taken all the
good I can get out of it and then let my obligations slide? Or do I constantly feel a
deep debt of gratitude and a deep sense of loyalty to the whole A.A. movement? Am I
not only grateful but also proud to be a part of such a wonderful fellowship, which is
doing such marvelous work among alcoholics? Am I glad to be a part of the great
work that A.A. is doing and do I feel a deep obligation to carry on that work at
every opportunity? Do I feel that I owe A.A. my loyalty and devotion?

Meditation For The Day

If your heart is right, your world will be right. The beginning of all
reform must be in yourself. It’s not what happens to you, it’s how you take it. However
restricted your circumstances, however little you may be able to remedy financial
affairs, you can always turn to your inward self and, seeing something not in order
there, seek to right it. And as all reform is from within outward, you will always find
that the outward is improved as the inward is improved. As you improve yourself,
your outward circumstances will change for the better. The power released from within
yourself will change your outward life.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that the hidden power within me may be released. I pray that I may not imprison
the spirit that is within me.

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As Bill Sees It

ASPECTS OF SPIRITUALITY, p. 287

“Among A.A.’s there is still a vast amount of mix-up respecting
what is material and what is spiritual. I prefer to believe that it is all
a matter of motive. If we use our worldly possessions too selfishly,
then we are materialists. But if we share these possessions in
helpfulness to others, then the material aids the spiritual.”

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“The idea keeps persisting that the instincts are primarily bad and
are the roadblocks before which all spirituality falters. I believe that
the difference between good and evil is not the difference
between spiritual and instinctual man; it is the difference between
proper and improper use of the instinctual. Recognition and right
channeling of the instinctual are the essence of achieving
wholeness.”

1. LETTER, 1958
2. LETTER, 1954

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Walk In Dry Places

Homeless and unemployed
Economic Insecurity
Alcoholism isn’t the sole cause of the homelessness and unemployment that troubles our world. Even in sobriety, people can lose their jobs and homes, through no fault of their own.
Recovery makes it less likely that we will cause such conditions in our own lives. Beyond that , by keeping sober, we will be better able to deal with any setbacks that do occur.  It is a painful fact that it is almost impossible to help any destitute alcoholic find a home or employment unless he or she stops drinking.  We learn that much through our experience.
Our true home is with our Higher Power, and our best work bay be in the sharing of our experience and strength with others.  Remembering this, we can be sympathetic and understanding about the general problems of homelessness and unemployment. We don’t have the complete answer, but we do have answers.
I’ll be grateful and understanding in any consideration of today’s problems of homelessness and unemployment. By staying sober, I am at least helping to alleviate some of the general problems.


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Keep It Simple

To err is human, but when the eraser wears out ahead of the pencil, you’re overdoing it.  –Josh Jenkins
It’s okay to make mistakes. But we shouldn’t live a life of excuses. We shouldn’t slide over our mistakes; we should learn from them.
Excuses keep us part from ourselves and others. People don’t trust us if we won’t admit and accept our mistakes. Relying on excuses dooms us to repeat the same mistakes.
In recovery, we admit and accept our behavior. We do this by continuing to take an inventory of our lives. We do this so we can learn from our mistakes. “Owning” our mistakes helps us grow.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me own my mistakes. Thank-you for Step Ten and the growth it holds for me.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list my five favorite excuses. I’ll think of the last time I used each of these. What was I trying to avoid.

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Each Day a New Beginning

History provides abundant examples of . . . women whose greatest gift was in redeeming, inspiring, liberating, and nurturing the gifts of others.  –Sonya Rudikoff
Part of our calling as members of the human community is to unconditionally love and support the people emotionally close to us. We have been drawn together for purposes wonderful but seldom readily apparent. We need one another’s gifts, compassion, and inspiration in order to contribute our individual parts to the whole.
Not only do we need to nurture and to inspire others, but also our personal development, emotionally and spiritually, demands that we honor ourselves in like fashion. Self-love, full self-acceptance is necessary before we can give anything of lasting value to someone else. Selflessly must we give to others if, indeed, our love and support are meant to serve, and giving anything selflessly is evidence of healthy self-love.
Selfless love liberates the giver and the recipient. Giving selflessly reveals our personal contentment, and it means we are free to nurture our own gifts.
It’s good and right that I should encourage someone else today. I will pay the same respect to myself, too.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

I wanted to throw up my hands in discouragement, for I saw that I had failed to help my banker friend understand. He simply could not believe that his brother-executive suffered from a serious illness. There was nothing to do but wait.

pp. 138-139

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Student Of Life

Living at home with her parents, she tried using willpower to beat the obsession to drink.  But it wasn’t until she met another alcoholic and went to an A.A. meeting that sobriety took hold.

But just as material losses are not necessary to indicate alcoholism, material gains are not the true indications of sobriety. The real rewards aren’t material in nature. I have friends now because I know how to be a friend and I know how to nurture and encourage valuable friendships. Instead of the prolonged one-night stands I used to call my boyfriends, there is a special man in my life I’ve been involved with for almost five years. And, most importantly, I know who I am. I know my goals, dreams, values, and boundaries, and I know how to protect, nurture, and validate them. Those are the true rewards of sobriety, and they’re what I was looking for all along. I am so grateful that my Higher Power stepped in to show me the way to the truth. I pray every day that I never turn my back on it. I came to A.A. in order to stop drinking; what I received in return was my life.

p. 327

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six – “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”

If we would gain any real advantage in the use of this Step on problems other than alcohol, we shall need to make a brand new venture into open-mindedness. We shall need to raise our eyes toward perfection, and be ready to walk in that direction. It will seldom matter how haltingly we walk. The only question will be “Are we ready?”

p. 68

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Listen in the silence. Listen and you shall hear God speak.
–Frater Achad

Life is for living, love is for sharing. Don’t let the good things pass you by!
–Sue

The hardest thing to learn in life is which bridge to cross and which to burn.
–David Russell

What I am is God’s gift to me. What I make of myself is my gift to Him.
–unknown

G I F T = God Is Forever There.
–unknown

“The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their
troubles.”
–Unknown

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

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

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

CULTURE

“The great law of culture: let
each become all that he was
created capable of being.”
— Thomas Carlyle

We are capable of great things. This history of man, although surrounded by wars
and unspeakable acts of violence, is also the history of art, music, poetry and romance.
Each person is capable of great and noble acts — but do we want to do them? We can be
honest, loving and caring people only if we choose to be that. The power of freedom and
choice is the determining factor in all our lives. Each culture has imaginative and creative
features, but it is the people that make them happen. Nothing will happen unless people
decide to make it happen.

So it is with the culture of recovery. The people who make up the recovering
community in all the addictions are the people who make a decision and acted upon it.
Talk is cheap and cruel unless it is followed by an event. Decisions must be made real.
We all have the capacity to be honest and kind.

May I not only be grateful for my culture but may I live to add something to it.

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The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me; your love O Lord endures forever.
Psalm 138 : 8

“Lead me in your truth, and teach me.”
Psalm 25:5

“Keep sowing the seed, for you never know which will grow, perhaps it all will.”
Ecclesiastes 11:6

“He saved us, not because of the good things we did, but because of His mercy. He
washed away our sins and gave us a new life through the Holy Spirit.
Titus 3:5


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Daily Inspiration

Many of life’s hassles are mere tests of our strength. Lord, help me remember that patience can often diffuse a situation quicker than a snap response.

Spend less time trying to change and more time making the best of who you are. Lord, help me daily to put Your words into action.

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NA Just For Today

The Simplest Prayer

“…praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.”

Step Eleven

How do we pray? With little experience, many of us don’t even know how to begin. The process, however, is neither difficult nor complicated.

We came to Narcotics Anonymous because of our drug addiction. But underlying that, many of us felt a deep sense of bewilderment with life itself. We seemed to be lost, wandering a trackless waste with no one to guide us. Prayer is a way to gain direction in life and the power to follow that direction.

Because prayer plays such a central part in NA recovery, many of us set aside a particular time each day to pray, establishing a pattern. In this quiet time, we “talk” to our Higher Power, either silently or aloud. We share our thoughts, our feelings, our day. We ask, “What would you have me do?” At the same time we ask, “Please give me the power to carry out your will.”

Learning to pray is simple. We ask for “knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.” By doing that, we find the direction we lacked and the strength we need to fulfill our God’s will.
Just for today: I will set aside some quiet time to “talk” with my Higher Power. I will ask for that Power’s direction and the ability to act on it.

pg. 302

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. –Matthew 6:34
To worry about something ahead of time is a waste of time and energy that could be better spent on living a full life today.
For instance, if we spend hours today worrying about an important test at school tomorrow, we can’t very well concentrate on studying. And if we lie awake tonight agonizing over what we don’t know or haven’t studied, we’re going to be exhausted tomorrow when we take the test.
Wouldn’t it be much better to focus on doing all we can today to prepare for the test, and then, knowing we’ve done our best, let go of it tonight and get a good night’s sleep? In fact, if we do that every day of the year, when a big test comes along, we’ll know we’re as ready as we can be, and won’t have a thing to worry about. What a relief it is to know we’ve done our best today and every day.
What can I do well today so I won’t worry about it tomorrow?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
One of the main reasons wealth makes people unhappy is that it gives them too much control over what they experience. They try to translate their own fantasies into reality instead of tasting what reality itself has to offer. –Philip Slater
We are constantly told that the way to happiness is through material possessions. “Men who drive this sports car have all the women after them!” “If I could only own this special tool it would make me happy!” What does a man really want? He wants a feeling that his life makes sense. He wants the give and take of loving relationships. He wants to feel he has a place in the world and can make a contribution. And he wants the feeling that he is not standing still, but growing in those ways.
Being poor certainly limits our options, but material wealth is an empty seduction. Putting all our energies into capturing wealth may make us rich, but it also can become an addiction that causes unhappiness. We become much richer in our souls and in our experiences when we take the risks that help us improve our relationships and teach us how to live balanced lives.
I will live each moment in ways that fit my true values.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
History provides abundant examples of . . . women whose greatest gift was in redeeming, inspiring, liberating, and nurturing the gifts of others. –Sonya Rudikoff
Part of our calling as members of the human community is to unconditionally love and support the people emotionally close to us. We have been drawn together for purposes wonderful but seldom readily apparent. We need one another’s gifts, compassion, and inspiration in order to contribute our individual parts to the whole.
Not only do we need to nurture and to inspire others, but also our personal development, emotionally and spiritually, demands that we honor ourselves in like fashion. Self-love, full self-acceptance is necessary before we can give anything of lasting value to someone else. Selflessly must we give to others if, indeed, our love and support are meant to serve, and giving anything selflessly is evidence of healthy self-love.
Selfless love liberates the giver and the recipient. Giving selflessly reveals our personal contentment, and it means we are free to nurture our own gifts.
It’s good and right that I should encourage someone else today. I will pay the same respect to myself, too.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Being Honest with Ourselves
Our relationship with ourselves is the most important relationship we need to maintain. The quality of that relationship will determine the quality of our other relationships.
When we can tell ourselves how we feel, and accept our feelings, we can tell others.
When we can accept what we want and need, we will be ready to have our wants and needs met.
When we can accept what we think and believe, and accept what’s important to us, we can relay this to others.
When we learn to take ourselves seriously, others will too.
When we learn to chuckle at ourselves, we will be ready to laugh with others.
When we have learned to trust ourselves, we will be trustworthy and ready to trust.
When we can be grateful for who we are, we will have achieved self-love.
When we have achieved self-love and accepting our wants and needs, we will be ready to give and receive love.
When we’ve learned to stand on our own two feet, we’re ready to stand next to someone.
Today, I will focus on having a good relationship with myself.

Today I am following my own inner guide, know that I am coming from the best of who I am. That makes me feel good about me. That gives me great pleasure. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart
October 16
Go for the Ride of Your Life

The roller coaster crawled slowly upward, inching toward the first and biggest hill. And suddenly we were screaming downhill at ninety-seven miles an hour. It is, they claim, the fastest roller coaster in the world. I laughed and yelled and clutched the handlebar. When the ride ended, the attendant turned to us as we were about to leave. “Would you like to go again?” he asked. “It’s the last ride of the night. “We all shouted yes and rode the course again, the wind whipping through our hair. When the ride ended, as all rides do, we sat in our seats and cheered.

Sometimes things happen. Things we didn’t expect. Things we didn’t plan on. An event occurs that changes our life dramatically. The event may be good or bad, desirable or undesirable, fortunate or unfortunate. No matter how we describe it, its impact is the same. We step off our usual path and go for a roller coaster ride.

You may have begun a time of deep transformation, a journey chosen by your soul. Feel all you need to feel. Allow your thoughts to flow. Let your body shift as you go through the curves. Let yourself be transformed. Enjoy the ride, the entire experience, with all its twists and curves. Scream in fear. Cry out in joy. Laugh aloud with glee.

If you find yourself on a roller coaster, turn it into the ride of your life.

*****

more language of letting go
You’ll go where you look

There was only one tree in the landing area. Most of its leaves had been stripped away by the winter winds. I didn’t want to hit it, but that’s exactly what I did.

My parachute opened up right over the student landing area, a blessing for someone as new and unsure as I. I flew along the side of the field, turned onto the base leg, and then carefully turned into my final approach just as I’d been taught. There it was, the tree, its scrawny branches reaching up for me. It was all I could see from that point on. I couldn’t take my eyes off of it. For a moment I thought I might clear it. “NO LOW TURNS, NO LOW TURNS,” kept screaming in my ear as I drifted lower and lower, straight toward that tree.

I watched myself sink right into it.

Laughter and applause drifted out from the packing area.

Later another jumper pulled me aside to talk. “Do you know why you hit the tree?” she asked.

“Yes,” I said. “It was in my way.”

“There’s more to it than that,” she said. “You had plenty of time to turn out of the way of the tree. Instead, you watched yourself land right in it. You’ll always go where you look. Look at something long enough to be aware of the potential for trouble, but don’t fixate on the object. If you don’t want to land on top of something, quit staring at it so hard.”

Sometimes we get so focused on what we don’t want and what we’re afraid of, that’s all we can see. We obsess about it, worry, and mull it around in our heads. It’s all we can talk about, think, or feel. Then when we come crashing right into it, we wonder where we went wrong. After all, it was the very thing we had been trying to avoid.

The moral of this story is simple and sweet. Look at where you’re going, but remember you’ll go where you look.

Know what you don’t want. Release your fears. Stay aware and alert to the dangers looming in your peripheral view. Your mind is more powerful than you might believe. If you put all your concentration and energy on something, that’s exactly where you’ll go.

God, help me stay aware and focus my energy on where you want me to go.

*****

Parts of the One
Ants and Bees, a Metaphor by Madisyn Taylor

We can learn a lot from watching ants and bees living in community and working for the greater good.

When we see ants and bees out in the world, we often see just one, but this belies the reality of their situation. More than any other species, ants and bees function as parts of a whole. They cannot and do not survive as individuals; they survive as members of a group, and the group’s survival is the implicit goal of each individual’s life. There is no concept of life outside the group, so even to use the word individual is somewhat misleading. Often, humans, on the other hand, strongly value individuality and often negatively associate ants and bees with a lack of independence. And yet, if we look closer at these amazing creatures, we can learn valuable lessons about how much we can achieve when we band together with others to work for a higher purpose.

Most ants and bees have highly specified roles within their communities, some of which are biologically dictated, and they work within the confines of their roles without complaint, never wishing to be something other than what they are. In this way, they symbolize self-knowledge and humility. They also display selfless service as they work for the common good. In many ways, they are like the individual cells of one body, living and dying as necessary to preserve the integrity of the whole body, not to protect themselves as individuals. In this way, ants personify the ability to see beyond one’s small self to one’s place within the greater whole, and the ability to serve this whole selflessly.

Ants and bees can inspire us to fully own what we have to offer and to put it to use in the pursuit of a goal that will benefit all of humanity, whether it be raising consciousness about the environment, feeding the hungry, or raising a happy child. Each one of us has certain talents we were born with, as well as skills we have acquired. When we apply these gifts, knowing that we are one part of a greater organism working to better the whole world, we honor and implement the wisdom of ants and bees. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Someone once said that the mind’s direction is more important than its progress. If my direction is correct, then progress is sure to follow. We first come to The Program to receive something for ourselves, but soon learn that we receive most bountifully when we give to others. If the direction of my mind is to give rather than to receive, then I’ll benefit beyond my greatest expectations. The more I give of myself and the more generously I open my heart and mind to others, the more growth and progress I’ll achieve. Am I learning not to measure my giving against my getting, accepting that the act of giving is its own reward?

Today I Pray

May I not lose sight of that pillar of The Program — helping myself through helping others in our purpose of achieving comfortable sobriety. May I feel that marvel of giving and taking and giving back again from the moment I take the First Step. May I care deeply about others’ maintaining their freedom from chemicals, and may I know that they care about me. It is a simple — and beautiful — exchange.

Today I Will Remember

Give and take and give back again

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One More Day

Don’t let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was
– Richard L. Eveans

There’s an old adage that good teachers still use: Start the child from where he is. In fact, we all have to begin from where we are. We may, at first, have a tendency to measure all our successes with our healthy life before our medical condition changed. Changed circumstances can play havoc with our lives.

Now we may have to set more realistic goals in order to reach them. We can still begin new jobs or new relationships. We begin over and over again throughout a lifetime — with or without a long-term medical situation. What matters most is how successfully we can handle the change. We’ll do fine as long as we remember we have started anew many times — successfully.

I will not discouraged by changes in my life. I have coped before, and I will again.

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Food For Thought

Admitting Wrongs

Step Ten reminds us to continue to take daily inventory and to promptly admit when we are wrong. By admitting our mistake out loud to the person we have harmed, we clear away bad feelings and guilt. The relationship is healed, and we are able to put the error behind us. Admitting that we are wrong helps us even more than the person we have injured.

Since it usually takes two people to disrupt a relationship, the entire blame may not be ours. Admitting our share of wrong, however, relieves us of guilt and opens the way to reconciliation.

Being able to apologize simply and sincerely means that we are not bound by pride and egotism. We do not always have to be right. By accepting our human fallibility, we are free to be ourselves, to make mistakes, to correct them, and to make amends.

Admitting wrongs keeps us honest with ourselves, with others, and with our Higher Power. We stay anchored in the real world and we practice healthy humility.

May I not be too proud to admit I am wrong.

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One Day At A Time

Fellowship
“When we honestly ask ourselves which persons in our lives mean the most to us, we
often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have
chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand.
Henri Nouwen, Out of Solitude

When I first came into The Recovery Group’s online meeting room nearly a year ago, I was bankrupt of mind, body and soul. I felt so unlovable that even I couldn’t stand myself! I casually observed at the first few meetings and I was intrigued by the warmth of the fellowship there. After a few meetings I finally opened up and shared, “spilling my guts” about what it was like to reach bottom and to desperately need a hand to lift me up. After they heard my share, they told me they would love me until I could learn to love myself. That really blew me away! They told me they had been where I was and that they had found a means to recover. They assured me this program would work for me, if I really wanted it, and to follow their steps ~ their beloved Twelve Steps.

Shortly after joining, I got an online sponsor with whom I have been walking the path of recovery ever since. I eventually shared with her things I had spent a lifetime desperately longing to be able to tell another person, but had needed to keep shrouded in secrecy. Being heard and understood was the gift of a lifetime. The weight has been falling off, I have experienced a lot of emotional healing, and I am in a much better place spiritually. This fellowship, their steps and meetings, and my Higher Power have brought me a long way in a year’s time!

One day at a time…
I will emulate those warm, wonderful people by welcoming newcomers with love and by helping them get started on the road to recovery. I will sponsor with the love and dedication that my sponsor has shown me.
~ Karen A.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Of course, this chapter refers to alcoholics, sick people, deranged men. What our friend, the vice president, had in mind was the habitual or whoopee drinker. As to them, his policy is undoubtedly sound, but he did not distinguish between such people and the alcoholic. – Pg. 149 – To Employers

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Whatever is on our mind at this time is probably something we can do nothing about just now. We’re fighting a fatal disease here and our recovery is our TOP PRIORITY. Other considerations will simply have to wait.

Help me to prioritize my needs: clean time, sober time, recovery.

Lesson and Life

I recognize today that I am in charge of my own learning. Life is constantly offering up circumstances that are useful in my personal growth. I can move through the situation, live it out, extract the wisdom that is in it or repeat it over and over again, exhausting myself and learning very little. The deepest and most appropriate things I need to learn in life are generally right in front of me. Life is my guru if I can use it as such. It is rich with subtle learning if I look for it. The real achievement for me today is to learn to be in my own skin, to see truth in all that surrounds me, to know that placing value and judgment is pointless and illusory — all of life is valuable.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

True morality is what we do when no one is watching. Growth is demonstrated by doing the right thing for the sake of doing the right thing.

I judge my growth by how good I am to people who can do nothing for me.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

None of us came here on a winning streak.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am following my own inner guide, know that I am coming from the best of who I am. That makes me feel good about me. That gives me great pleasure.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Those who can’t forget are worse off than those who can’t remember. Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

October 16

Emotional Roller Coaster
Sobriety is nothing like I thought it would be.
At first it was one big emotional roller coaster, full of sharp highs and deep lows.
My emotions were new, untested, and I wasn’t entirely certain I wanted to deal with them.
I cried when I should have been laughing. I laughed when I should have cried.
Events I thought were the end of the world turned out to be gifts.
It was all very confusing. Slowly things began to even out.
As I began to take the stage of recovery, my role in the pitiful condition of my life became clear.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 316-317

Thought to Ponder . . .
Sobriety is a gift.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
B E S T = Been Enjoying Sobriety Today?

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

Great Reality
“Deep down in every man, woman, and child,
is the fundamental idea of God.
It may be obscured by calamity, by pomp,
by worship of other things,
but in some form or other it is there.
For faith in a Power greater than ourselves,
and miraculous demonstrations of that power in human lives,
are facts as old as man himself.
We finally saw that faith in some kind of God
was a part of our make-up,
just as much as the feeling we have for a friend.
Sometimes we had to search fearlessly,
but He was there.
He was as much a fact as we were.
We found the Great Reality deep down within us.
In the last analysis it is only there that He may be found.
It was so with us.”
c.1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 55

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

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
P R O G R A M = People Relying On God Relay A Message

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

Services
From: “AA’s Legacy of Service”
Our Twelfth Step – carrying the message – is the basic service that the A.A. Fellowship gives; this is our principal aim and the main reason for our existence. Therefore, A.A. is more than a set of principles; it is a society of alcoholics in action. We must carry the message, else we ourselves can wither and those who haven’t been given the truth may die.

Hence, an A.A. service is anything whatever that helps us to reach a fellow sufferer – ranging all the way from the Twelfth Step itself to a ten-cent phone call and a cup of coffee, and to A.A.’s General Service Office for national and international action. The sum total of all these services is our Third Legacy of Service.
Services include meeting places, hospital cooperation, and intergroup offices; they mean pamphlets, books, and good publicity of almost every description. They call for committees, delegates, trustees, and conferences. And, not to be forgotten, they need voluntary money contributions from within the Fellowship.

[Bill W., 1951]
2007, AAWS, Inc., AA Service Manual, page S1

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

“As I continue to struggle, I think of the words of an old-timer in my area. No matter what the topic, he always finishes sharing with the words, ‘and I haven’t had a drink today.’ Remembering his words never fails to bring to my mind the words ‘experience, strength, and hope.'”
“Out of Work, But Not Hope,” Anonymous, December 2000
No Matter What: Dealing with Adversity in Sobriety

*~*~*~*~*^ 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

Stress the spiritual feature freely. If the man be agnostic or atheist, make it emphatic that he does not have to agree with your conception of God.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous p. 93

In the face of collapse and despair, in the face of the total failure of their human resources, they found that a new power, peace, happiness, and sense of direction flowed into them.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.50

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

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Sometimes I would be forced to look at situations where I was doing badly. Right away, the search for excuses would become frantic.
‘These,’ I would exclaim, ‘are really a good man’s faults.’ When that pet gadget broke apart, I would think, ‘Well, if those people would only treat me right, I wouldn’t have to behave the way I do.’ Next was this: ‘God well knows that I do have awful compulsions. 1 just can’t get over this one. So He will have to release me.’ At last came the time when I would shout, ‘This, I positively will not do! I won’t even try.’
Of course, my conflicts went right on mounting, because I was simply loaded with excuses, refusals, and outright rebellion.
In self-appraisal, what comes to us alone may be garbled by our own rationalization and wishful thinking. The benefit of talking to another person is that we can get his direct comment and counsel on our situation.

Prayer for the Day: Sailor’s Prayer – Dear God, be good to me. The sea is so wide and my boat is so small.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 15th

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 15th

Daily Reflections

MY CHECKLIST, NOT YOURS

Gossip barbed with our anger, a polite form of murder by character assassination, has its
satisfactions for us, too. Here we are not trying to help those we criticize; we are trying to
proclaim our own righteousness.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 67

Sometimes I don’t realize that I gossiped about someone until the end of the day, when I
take an inventory of the day’s activities, and then, my gossiping appears like a blemish in
my beautiful day. How could I have said something like that? Gossip shows its ugly head
during a coffee break or lunch with business associates, or I may gossip during the
evening, when I’m tired from the day’s activities, and feel justified in bolstering my ego at
the expense of someone else. Character defects like gossip sneak into my life when I am
not making a constant effort to work the Twelve Steps of recovery. I need to remind
myself that my uniqueness is the blessing of my being, and that applies equally to
everyone who crosses my path in life’s journey. Today the only inventory I need to take
is my own. I’ll leave judgment of others to the Final Judge–Divine Providence.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Am I deeply grateful to A.A. for what it has done for me in regaining my sobriety and
opening up an entirely new life for me? A.A. has made it possible for me to take on other
interests, in business and in various other associations with people. It has made a full life
possible for me. It would perhaps be wrong if all my activities were limited to A.A. work.
It has made a well rounded life possible for me in work, in play and in hobbies of various
kinds. But will I desert A.A. because of this? Will I accept a diploma and become a
graduate of A.A.? Do I realize I could have nothing worth while without A.A.?

Meditation For The Day

There is only one way to get full satisfaction from life and that is to live the way you
believe God wants you to live. Live with God in that secret place of the spirit and you will
have a feeling of being on the right road. You will have a deep sense of satisfaction. The
world will have meaning and you will have a place in the world, work to do that counts in
the eternal order of things. Many things will work for you and with you, as long as you
feel you are on God’s side.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have a sense of the eternal value of the work I do. I pray that I may not
only work for now, but also for eternity.

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As Bill Sees It

MASTERING RESENTMENTS, p. 286

We began to see that the world and its people had really
dominated us. Under that unhappy condition, the wrongdoing of
others, fancied or real, had power to actually kill us, because we
could be driven back to drink through resentment. We saw that
these resentments must be mastered, but how? We could not wish
them away.

This was our course: We realized that the people who wronged us
were perhaps spiritually sick. So we asked God to help us show
them the same tolerance, pity, and patience that we would
cheerfully grant a sick friend.

Today, we avoid retaliation or argument. We cannot treat sick
people that way. If we do, we destroy our chance of being helpful.
We cannot be helpful to all people, but at least God will show us
how to take a kindly and tolerant view of each and every one.

ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pp. 66-67

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Walk In Dry Places

Reading about ourselves.
Gratitude
It’s not only the experiences of our fellow AA members that can help us in recovery. We should also be able to see ourselves in stories about troubled people in the grip of alcoholism and anger.
Quite often, if we’re truly honest, we can even see ourselves in tragic accounts of alcoholics who harmed others during drunken rages or blackouts. We might have stopped short of such behavior, but could this have happened to us?  We might read of a drunken driving accident, for example, and realize that we narrowly escaped one or might have caused one had we not found sobriety.
Reading such accounts gives us deep pity and sympathy for al the people involved. These stories make us realize that alcoholism has many victims in addition to those who are afflicted with the same disease. And we should be grateful that sobriety enabled some of us to stay out of such news stores and not add to the world’s problems.
Whatever happens today, I’ll at least be grateful that sobriety can keep me from causing the out-of-control situations I read about in the daily newspapers.


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Keep It Simple

Not to decide is to decide. —Harvey Cox
We are winners, because everyday we decide to stay sober. Every day we decide to listen to our Higher Power. We win by making active choices. We’ve stopped acting as if we have no choice. Our old way was to us by accident. Not true. We pretend we had no power. Also not true. We lost our power over alcohol and other drugs, but we still had the power to ask for help. Each time we used chemicals was a decision, just as to stay sober each day is a decision.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, thanks for giving me choices. I will not run from them. Help me make good choices. Help me decide every day to listen to you.
Action for the Day:  Not for one minute will I pretend I am a victim. I’ll face my choices squarely and decide.

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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.

We are all deserving of unconditional love an d 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 are my lifeline, from God around us all.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

The only answer I could make was that if the man followed the usual pattern, he would go on a bigger bust than ever. I felt this was inevitable and wondered if the bank was doing the man an injustice. Why not bring him into contact with some of our alcoholic crowd? He might have a chance. I pointed out that I had had nothing to drink whatever for three years, and this in the face of difficulties that would have made nine out of ten men drink their heads off. Why not at least afford him an opportunity to hear my story? “Oh no,” said my friend, “this chap is either through with liquor, or he is minus a job. If he has your will power and guts, he will make the grade.”

p. 138

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition – Stories

Student Of Life

Living at home with her parents, she tried using willpower to beat the obsession to drink.  But it wasn’t until she met another alcoholic and went to an A.A. meeting that sobriety took hold.

It is almost impossible to adequately describe how much the program has given me, even in just these six short years.  I have been financially supporting myself in my own apartment for five years and plan to buy a house next year.  I’ve secured a good job with a promising future–my income has increased more than 150 percent since I got sober.

p.  327

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six – “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”

Many will at once ask, “How can we accept the entire implication of Step Six? Why–that is perfection!” This sounds like a hard question, but practically speaking, it isn’t. Only Step One, where we made the 100 percent admission we were powerless over alcohol, can be practiced with absolute perfection. The remaining eleven Steps state perfect ideals. They are goals toward which we look, and the measuring sticks by which we estimate our progress. Seen in this light, Step Six is still difficult, but not at all impossible. The only urgent thing is that we make a beginning, and keep trying.

p. 68

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Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.
–Carl Jung

“Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and
imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and
growing.”
–Jim Rohn

I may not be where I want to be, but Thank God I am not where I used to be.
–unknown

I am at peace today knowing that God is doing for me what I cannot do for myself.
–Ruth Fishel

God, let my hard times be healing times.
–Melody Beattie

Hatred toward any human being cannot exist in the same heart as love to God.
–Dean William Inge

Prayer is the one thing that can make a change in your life. If you will go direct to God in
simple, affirmative prayer, you can heal your body, bring peace and harmony into your
life, and make well-being a reality.
–Emmet Fox

Don’t quit before the miracle happens.
–unknown

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

MAJORITY

“One man with courage is a
majority.”
— Thomas Jefferson

Alcoholism made me afraid of my shadow. I became so petrified with fear that I could
not enjoy my life. And I felt that I could do nothing. My disease told me I was helpless. I
existed in an atmosphere of doom and gloom.

Then I experienced a “moment” of sanity when I saw that I was the problem in my
life. My pain was being caused by my actions and attitudes. I took courage,
confronted the disease in my life and decided to take small steps towards recovery. I
have built my confidence on that “moment” of courage I took years ago. I am not an
island unto myself. I am not alone. God is with me in my life.

Teach me to have the courage to be what You have created. May I accept my
miracle.

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

Without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that
He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
Hebrews 11:6


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Daily Inspiration

It is very humbling to realize that often what burdens us the most would be very missed if it were taken away. Lord, I will take the time to appreciate my life.

Mistakes give us experience. Without them going forward is almost impossible. Lord, may I always look for the good and use it to make tomorrow better.

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NA Just For Today

Choices

“We did not choose to become addicts.”

Basic Text p. 3

When we were growing up, all of us had dreams. Every child has heard a relative or neighbor ask, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Even if some of us didn’t have elaborate dreams of success, most of us dreamed of work, families, and a future of dignity and respect. But no one asked, “Do you want to be a drug addict when you grow up?”

We didn’t choose to become addicts, and we cannot choose to stop being addicts. We have the disease of addiction. We are not responsible for having it, but we are responsible for our recovery. Having learned that we are sick people and that there is a way of recovery, we can move away from blaming circumstances – or ourselves – and into living the solution. We didn’t choose addiction, but we can choose recovery.

Just for today: I choose recovery.

pg. 301

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
. ..ere it vanishes
Over the margin
After it, follow it,
Follow The Gleam.
–Alfred, Lord Tennyson
It is difficult to find words for the “Gleam” we pursue. What it is, we are never too sure. We see it best in our daily dreams, while we’re staring out a window at nothing at all. Sometimes it appears between the words in a book; it is always sure to be there when we sit alone to write down our own thoughts. We see it in the autumn woods; feel its heavy breathing in ocean waves. It is suddenly a skylark in flight, a falling leaf, a flower we have reluctantly picked. It makes us feel sad but good. It is always luring us on, always beautiful.
Is it love? Success? Peace? It may be any or all of these things, and we may find it through another person, or some talent we have, or a thing of beauty we stumble upon. And it is there within us, always, waiting to be found.
In what ways can I follow the Gleam I see in my life today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
We know about remorse and death. But do we know about hope and life? I believe in life after birth! –Maxie Dunham
We do not need to create difficulties and pain in our lives. They come with the package of human existence. Some of us even feel bewildered when we aren’t pressed by trouble. As we grew in recovery and our lives became better ordered, many of us thought, “Life seems to be going so well; I wonder what’s wrong?” We were more accustomed to remorse and crisis than to joy and serenity.
What lies before us today is an unpainted picture. There are many possibilities for events to take a good turn. This, too, is part of the package, but we must believe and affirm the good things in order to accept them. When our only expectations are pain and trouble, they probably will be our only experiences. However, when we have faith that a better life is possible, we open ourselves to receive it.
Today, I will live with hope for the possibilities and accept the good things that come my way.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Character contributes to beauty. It fortifies a woman as her youth fades. –Jacqueline Bisset
How common it is for us to be overly concerned with our looks. The culture encourages it through our families, our friends, and the media. Many of us anguished over our looks in years past, and the pain of fading youth haunts some even now.
Perhaps it’s time for us to take special note of the women we admire for their achievements. We should emulate them, honor them, and celebrate their particular beauty–a beauty generally enhanced by dignity, perseverance, and courage.
We can cultivate our special interests. They’ll contribute to our achievements, which will add depth to our soul–the home of true beauty. Mature persons who acknowledge this true beauty are those we wish to attract into our lives. How fickle is the beautiful face! And even more fickle is the one who can see no deeper.
Youth and its beauty are fleeting. Not so the beauty of the developing character; time strengthens it. The program makes character development not only possible but also simple. Every Step, any Step, offers us an opportunity to take charge of our lives, right now.
I will remember, it’s who I am inside that truly counts in the lives of others.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Chaos
No good work comes from unrest.
Unrest, fear, anger, or sadness may motivate us. These feelings are sometimes intended to compel action. But our best work emerges after these feelings have been replaced by peace.
We will not accomplish our task any sooner, or any better, by performing it out of a sense of urgency, fear, anger, or sadness.
Let go of unrest. Let peace fill the void. We do not have to forfeit our power, our God given personal power – or our peace – to do the work as we are called upon to do today. We will be given all the power we need to do what we are meant to do, when it is time.
Let peace come first. Then proceed. The task will get done, naturally and on time.
Today, I will get peaceful first, and let my work and life emerge from that base.

I have a quiet place within me where I can rest today, I have a quiet place where I can go that offers peace, comfort and healing. It is as close as this moment…. as close as a breath. This place is mine whenever I want it. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart
October 15
Discover the Power of Vulnerability

A new kind of power will emerge from vulnerability. The more honest we are with ourselves about how we feel and what we really think, the more power we will have.

We may have once thought that being powerful meant not giving in to what we felt, what we thought, or who we really were. But that attitude didn’t garner power for us. It caused life, the universe, us to continue creating situations that would help open our hearts, help us to feel, help us learn the lesson of vulnerability.

The sooner we become honest with ourselves, the sooner we can be honest with others. The sooner we become honest with ourselves, the more quickly we’ll grow and move on to a new place. Become vulnerable, at least with yourself. Be honest about what you think and how you feel. Write it. Speak it. Feel it. Release it. Then you will know where to go, when to go. What you are to do next will emerge naturally, quietly, and clearly.

Try being absolutely honest. Reveal your most private feelings to yourself. It’s a new kind of power, a different kind of power. It is spiritual power, the power of opening the heart.

*****

more language of letting go
Look where you’re going

“I have the controls!” Rob, my flight instructor said. He grabbed the yoke and turned the little Cessna away from an approaching plane. “Did you see him or hear him on the radio?” Rob asked.

“No,” I said. “I was concentrating too much on the flight panel instruments inside to scan outside for other planes.”

“The airplane wants to fly,” Rob said. “Learn to feel what coordinated flight feels like so you won’t need to be glued to the instruments. You need to be looking outside for other aircraft.”

Sometimes we get so engrossed in the world inside our heads that we forget to look outside. We can become so involved with the minor details of a project, something we’re trying to do, that we don’t see the big problem coming at us until it crashes into us. We can get so absorbed in our emotions that we neglect the rest of our lives. We can become so engrossed with our agenda– trying to get someone to like us, to get that job, to buy that house, or to control an outcome– that we don’t see the warning signs and realize that person, thing, or place might not be good for us.

Learn to feel your life and understand intuitively when you’re on the right path. Be aware. Sometimes we can spot potential problems when they’re still small and far away. If you can do this, then only minor corrections to your course may be necessary to avoid conflicts down the road.

Remember, the airplane wants to fly, but you’ve got to keep from hitting anything if you want a safe flight. Relax and look where you’re going. That’s how you stay on course.

God, help me become aware of danger signals before it’s too late.

*****

Finding Answers Within
You Have All the Answers Within You by Madisyn Taylor

When you realize that you always have the answers within yourself, you can stop searching outside of yourself.

Many of us seek the answers to life’s questions by looking outside of ourselves and trying to glean advice from the people around us. But as each of us is unique, with our own personal histories, our own sense of right and wrong, and our own way of experiencing the world that defines our realities, looking to others for our answers is only partially helpful. The answers to our personal questions can be most often found by looking within. When you realize that you always have access to the part of you that always knows what you need and is meant to act as your inner compass, you can stop searching outside of yourself. If you can learn to hear, trust, and embrace the wisdom that lives within you, you will be able to confidently navigate your life.

Trusting your inner wisdom may be awkward at first, particularly if you grew up around people who taught you to look to others for answers. We each have exclusive access to our inner knowing. All we have to do is remember how to listen. Remember to be patient as you relearn how to hear, receive, and follow your own guidance. If you are unsure about whether following your inner wisdom will prove reliable, you may want to think of a time when you did trust your own knowing and everything worked out. Recall how the answers came to you, how they felt in your body as you considered them, and what happened when you acted upon this guidance. Now, recall a time when you didn’t trust yourself and the results didn’t work out as you had hoped. Trusting your own guidance can help you avoid going against what you instinctively know is right for you.

When you second guess yourself and go against what you know to be your truth, you can easily go off course because you are no longer following your inner compass. By looking inside yourself for the answers to your life’s questions, you are consulting your best guide. Only you can know the how’s and why’s of your life. The answers that you seek can be found when you start answering your own questions. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

All too often I unwittingly — and even unconsciously — set standards for others in The Program. Worse yet, I expect those standards to be met. I go so far, on occasion, to decide what progress other people should make in their recoveries, and how their attitudes and actions should change. Not surprisingly, when things don’t work out the way I expect, I become frustrated and even angry. I have to leave others to God. I have to learn neither to demand nor expect changes in others, concentrating solely on my own shortcomings. Finally, I mustn’t look for perfection in another human being until I’ve achieved perfection myself. Can I even be perfect?

Today I Pray

May God ask me to step down immediately if I start to climb up on any of these high places: on my podium, as the know-it-all scholar,; on my soapbox, as the leader who’s out to change the world; into my pulpit, as the holier-than-thou-could-possibly-be messenger of God; into the seat of judgement, as the gavel-banging upholder of the law. May God please keep me from vesting myself with all this unwarranted authority and keep me humble.

Today I Will Remember

A heavy hand is not a helping hand.

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One More Day

We cannot tear out a single page from our life, but we can throw the whole book into the fire.
– George Sand

During those darkest times, we may not be able to think beyond this moment, this pain, this loss. All we’re aware of is this tiny piece of time, and it casts its darkness on all we remember and all we see in the future.

This moment is a fraction of a lifetime; this feeling is just one perception amoung thousands we’ve experienced. We ow it to ourselves to be sure of what we are experiencing before discarding the entire book in order to rid ourselves of one hated page. If needed, we can explore our emotions with a professional. We can work within a group of people who understand. We can wait a while to see what our lives will hold. We can look for change outside and inside ourselves.

My feelings are real, but so is the chance that better things lie ahead. I pray for patience.

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Food For Thought

Cutting Cords

Often we are bound in unhealthy ways to parents, husbands, wives, children, and friends. When dependency and manipulation are masked as love, it is difficult to cut the cords that bind us. By ourselves we are unable to break free.

Listening to other compulsive overeaters helps us to see our own situation and ourselves more objectively. Working the steps builds emotional and spiritual maturity. Abstaining from compulsive overeating gives us the perception we need to see unhealthy relationships for what they are. Our growing self-respect motivates us to make changes.

We ate because we were too weak to face our problems. Now that we see where we have been manipulated and where we have manipulated others, we need the strength to cut the cords of unhealthy dependency. This strength comes from our Higher Power. Since we recognize our complete dependency on Him, we are no longer weakened by pseudo dependencies on those close to us. We learn to relate to them positively, out of God’s strength rather than our own weakness.

By Your power, may I cut the cords that bind me.

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One Day At A Time

Learning New Ideas
“I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas.
I’m frightened of the old ones.”
John Cage

When I look back upon my life before I heard of food being a compulsion, I remember my old thinking — which was not very thoughtful at all! I performed the task of feeding myself without any conscious forethought or planning. It was whatever was in sight, available, or easiest to fix. I never stopped to think why I eat what I eat. I don’t know what I was thinking when I consumed something that I knew would leave me feeling as though I were in a stupor or would send me crashing into naps that lasted hours.

My old ideas were mindless, thoughtless. I was an unhealthy automaton who had never been taught how to think about the “what” and “why” of her food choices. I have learned to listen to others who have recovery, take what I need from their stories, and apply some of their actions to my own life.

One day at a time…
I am willing to put aside old ideas as I discover them, to lay groundwork for the new ideas that have been presented to me, and to continue on a journey of personal growth. My mind is like a garden. I have to pull the weeds so that new flowers can begin to grow.
~ January K.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

There are those too, who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest. – Pg. 58 – How It Works

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

I Am Not Alone

Today, I know that, with God’s help, I can do anything I need to do. When I feel alone or shaken up, I can ask for help within myself and know that it is there. Each of us is ultimately alone. Each of us has to learn our own lessons; that is, what we are here to do. We can’t learn anyone else’s lessons for them, and learning our own is difficult enough. To plow through my own psyche and face the insecurity and wounds that are there is all that I can handle. To try to live other people’s lives for them is to separate myself from God because my first access to God is through and within me.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

You will be happy to know that the universal law that created miracles has not been repealed.

I am a realist. I count on miracles.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Call before you drink and we will help you stay sober. Call after you drink and you will help us stay sober.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I have a quiet place within me where I can go rest today.

I have a quiet place within me where I can go that offers peace, comfort and healing. It is as close as this moment, as close as a breath.

This place is mine whenever I want it.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I realized I had a body which can’t tolerate alcohol, which is OK. except that I had a mind that can’t leave it alone. I’d always said that I could take it or leave it alone – I couldn’t do either. – Doug D.

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AA Thought for the Day

October 15

AA Preamble
Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each

other
that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.
The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking.
There are no dues or fees for AA membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions.
AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization, or institution;
does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes.
Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.
– ©1947, The AA Grapevine, Inc.

Thought to Ponder . . .
Let it begin with me.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
E S H = Experience, Strength and Hope.

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

The Gift
“Perhaps there is a better way — we think so.
For we are now on a different basis of trusting
and relying upon God.
We trust infinite God rather than our finite selves.
We are in the world to play the role He assigns.
Just to the extent that we do as we think He would have us,
and humbly rely on Him,
does He enable us to match calamity with serenity.”
c.1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 68

Thought to Consider . . .
What I am is God’s gift to me.
What I make of myself is my gift to Him.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
G I F T = God Is Forever There

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

Clothing Drop Box
From: “My Bottle, My Resentments and Me”
By this time I was so wild-eyed and filthy, people would shy away from me. I hated the look of fear on their faces when they saw me. They looked at me as if I were not human, and maybe I wasn’t. In one large city I took to sleeping on the grates with a piece of plastic over me so I wouldn’t freeze. One night I found a clothing drop box I could get into; it made a nice warm place to sleep and I could get new clothes in the morning. In the middle of the night someone threw in more clothes. I opened the top, looked out and shouted, “Thanks!” That woman threw up her hands and ran away screaming, “Lordy, Lordy!” She jumped in her car and screeched off.
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, page 441

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

“I found I had to exert every ounce of will and action to cut off these faulty emotional dependencies upon people, upon AA, indeed, upon any set of circumstances whatever. Then only could I be free to love.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958
“The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”
The Language of the Heart

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

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

Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get well regardless of anyone. The only condition is that he trust in God and clean house.
Alcoholics Anonymous p.98

Even though your protégé may not have entirely admitted his condition, he has become very curious to know how you got well.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.93

If I am unable to change the present state of affairs, am I willing to take the measures necessary to shape my life to conditions as they are? Questions like these, more of which will come to mind easily in each individual case, will help turn up the root causes.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 52

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

If we examine every disturbance we have, great or small, we will find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its consequent unhealthy demand. Let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these hobbling liabilities.
Then we can be set free to live and love; we may then be able to twelfth-step ourselves, as well as others, into emotional sobriety.

Prayer for the Day: Reliance on God – O Higher Power, Never let me think that I can stand by myself, and not need You.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 14

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings-October 14

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

Daily Reflections

A PROGRAM FOR LIVING

When we retire at night, we constructively review our day. . . . On awakening let us think

about the twenty-four hours ahead. . . 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

I lacked serenity. With more to do than seemed possible, I fell further behind, no matter

how hard I tried. Worries about things not done yesterday and fear of tomorrow’s

deadlines denied me the calm I needed to be effective each day. Before taking Steps Ten

and Eleven, I tried to focus on God’s will, not my problems, and to trust that He would

manage my day. It worked! Slowly, but it worked!

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

How big a part of my life is A.A.? Is it just one of my activities and a small one at that?

Do I only go to A.A. meetings now and then and sometimes never go at all? Do I think of

A.A. only occasionally? Am I reticent about mentioning A.A. to people who might need

help? Or does A.A. fill a large part of my life? Is it the foundation of my whole life?

Where would I be without A.A.? Does everything I have and I do depend on my A.A.

foundation? Is A.A. the foundation on which I build my life?

Meditation For The Day

Lay upon God your failures and mistakes and shortcomings. Do not dwell upon your

failures, upon the fact that in the past you have been nearer a beast than an angel. You

have a mediator between you and God–your growing faith–which can lift you up from the

mire and point you toward the heavens. You can still be reconciled with the spirit of God.

You can still regain your harmony with the Divine Principle of the universe.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not let the beast in me hold me back from my spiritual destiny. I pray

that I may rise and walk upright.

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

As Bill Sees It

FALSE PRIDE, p. 285

The alarming thing about pride-blindness is the ease with which it is

justified. But we need not look far to see that self-justification is a

universal destroyer of harmony and of love. It sets man against man,

nation against nation. By it, every form of folly and violence can be

made to look right, and even respectable.

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

It would be a product of false pride to claim that A.A. is a cure-all,

even for alcoholism.

1. GRAPEVINE, JUNE 1961

2. A.A. COMES OF AGE, p. 232

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

Walk In Dry Places

What is true sharing?

Sharing

Though it comes without a price, the sharing we undertake in the AA program has value without limits. When we share our experience, strength, and hope with others, we become both teachers and friends.

Sometimes we are led to believe that we should share our material goods with others, but all we learn is that this often fails to help anyone. Such sharing is not wrong, but it can be misused and misdirected.

In the form of sharing we practice, there can be only gain for all involved in the exchange. Our sharing of personal experience may be just what another person needs at the time. What also matters is that we need it and can benefit from it.

True sharing of this kid is one of the great secrets of AA’s success. If our program isn’t working well, perhaps we should do more of this sharing.

I’ll seek to share my true feelings with others today, in the hope that this will help all of us.

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

Keep It Simple

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

Recovery, is also God’s opinion that the world should go on. But when we used alcohol and other drugs, there were days when even the sight of a newborn baby couldn’t bring hope into our hearts. We were spiritually dead. We didn’t care if the world went on. We didn’t care about anything but getting high.

Through recovery, our souls come alive.

The beauty of a fall day can reach our hearts. We can see the miracle found in a baby’s eyes. We can see the beauty of the world. We can feel how much we’re loved by our Higher Power and by others. This is how we know we’re alive. Hope fills our minds and love fill our hearts.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, now that I again believe the world should go on, have me work to improve it. Have me be a person who makes the world more beautiful.

Action for the Day: Today, I’ll notice the children and babies around me. I’ll notice how alive they are. I’ll try to be as alive as they are.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

The balance between mind and spirit comes hard for me. The eternal split. Two entities, perfectly aware and yet perfectly unwilling to cooperate. –Mary Casey

The program directs our spiritual growth, a human aspect that had atrophied, if ever it had existed, for most of us before abstinence. And the process of developing our spiritual nature is painstaking. Living by our wits, or the fervent application of “situational analysis” had been our survival tools for months or years.

To return repeatedly to the old tools for quick solutions to serious situations is second nature. Learning to rely on spiritual guidance for solutions and to use it to sharpen our analytical focus takes patience and continual effort.

Within our spiritual realm we find our connection to God. We have been given the wisdom; all the knowledge we need is at our fingertips. The confidence to move ahead and offer our special talent to others comes from our Spirit. We are all that we need to be. Our mind and our Spirits, in concert, can tackle any challenge and succeed.

My mind and my Spirit can become compatible entities with the development of my trust in each. Knowledge plus courage can move mountains. I have been given both.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 – To Employers

Here, for instance, is a typical example: An officer of one of the largest banking institutions in America knows I no longer drink. One day he told me about an executive of the same bank who, from his description, was undoubtedly alcoholic. This seemed to me like an opportunity to be helpful, so I spent two hours talking about alcoholism, the malady, and described the symptoms and results as well as I could. His comment was, “Very interesting. But I’m sure this man is done drinking. He has just returned from a three-months leave of absence, has taken a cure, looks fine, and to clinch the matter, the board of directors told him this was his last chance.”

p. 138

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition – Stories

Student Of Life

Living at home with her parents, she tried using willpower to beat the obsession to drink. But it wasn’t until she met another alcoholic and went to an A.A. meeting that sobriety took hold.

It is very important to my recovery to study and work the Steps. To this day, I still make at least two Step meetings a week. I have a sponsor who guides me through the Steps gently but firmly, with a sure-handedness I hope I am able to emulate with the two women I now sponsor. The Promises have begun to materialize for me, and there’s still so much work to do.

pp. 326-327

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six – “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”

Some people, of course, may conclude that they are indeed ready to have all such defects taken from them. But even these people, if they construct a list of still milder defects, will be obliged to admit that they prefer to hang on to some of them. Therefore, it seems plain that few of us can quickly or easily become ready to aim at spiritual and moral perfection; we want to settle for only as much perfection as will get us by in life, according, of course, to our various and sundry ideas of what will get us by. So the difference between “the boys and the men” is the difference between striving for a self-determined objective and for the perfect objective which is of God.

pp. 67-68

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

I shall leap! No matter what is ahead, God is there to catch me.

–Shelley

One of the most valuable things we can do to heal one another is listen to each other’s

stories.

–Rebecca Falls

Life is the first gift, love is the second, and understanding is the third.

–Marge Piercy

You get more than you give when you give more than you get.

–Cited in More of…The Best of BITS & PIECES

Much wisdom can be crowded into but four words:

In God we trust. This too shall pass. Live and let live. Still waters run deep. Bad news

travels fast. Love laughs at locksmiths. Nothing succeeds like success. Charity begins

at home. Politics make strange bedfellows. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Man

proposes, God disposes. Let sleeping dogs lie.

–Cited in The Best of BITS & PIECES

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

INDIVIDUALITY

“I am one individual on a small

planet in a little solar system in

one of the galaxies.”

— Roberto Assagioli

Spirituality develops a humility that is realistic. Realism teaches me that I am one among

many. That does not mean that I am less than anybody else, but it certainly doesn’t mean

that I am above others.

Arrogance, fantasy and selfishness are characteristics of addiction that stop the

development of true individuality. To pretend to be something we are not, or have a

grandiose illusion about our own importance, misses the truth, misses our truth and

misses our individuality.

Humility is treating people with the respect we would want, giving people the freedom

we require in our life. Humility is perceiving our God-given talent and individuality.

I pray that I will remember that I am a “part of”, rather than the sum total of this

universe.

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

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in

him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

John 3:16

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them

eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

John 10:27-28

“The LORD will not allow the righteous soul to famish, But He casts away the desire of the

wicked.”

Proverbs 10:3

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

Daily Inspiration

Spend a little time each day taking care of your own physical and emotional needs and the rest of your day will be more effective. Lord, help me to enrich and care for myself so that I am not depleted of energy and health and have something within that I can use to enrich others.

Welcome God into every part of your life. He is always with you, ready to help, waiting to bless you with miracles and able to enrich your every moment. Lord, I call out your name often in praise, in thanksgiving and in every need.

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

NA Just For Today

The End Of Loneliness

“With the love that I am shown in Narcotics Anonymous, I have no excuse for loneliness.”

Basic Text p. 262

Addiction is a lonely disease. We may be surrounded by people but, sooner or later, our addiction drives a wedge between us and even our closest loved ones. Many of us are driven to Narcotics Anonymous by a desperate loneliness.

Though we may approach the rooms of NA with caution and suspicion, we are welcomed with a hug, a smile, and a warm “keep coming back.” This may be the first place where we have felt welcome in a long, long while. We watch other members talking and laughing, leaving the meeting in groups for more talk at the local coffee shop. We wonder if we, too, could become a part of this loving bunch.

Our pattern of isolation can make it difficult for us to join in. Over time, however, we begin to feel “a part of” rather than “apart from.” Soon, when we walk into the rooms, we feel at home. We begin to make friends and our lives start to change.

NA teaches us how to overcome our isolation. Through our first tentative friendships formed in our home group, we start to find that making friends isn’t hard. A sense of belonging comes when we share ourselves with others.

Just for today: I am thankful for the friendships my Higher Power has given me in NA. Because of them, I am lonely no more.

pg. 300

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.

If you’re never scared or embarrassed or hurt, it means you never take any chances. –Julia Soul

Do we avoid making new friends because we’re scared they won’t like us? Do we get embarrassed when we make a mistake and avoid trying again? When we get our feelings hurt, do we think we’re bad, or that something is wrong with us?

Being scared or shy or hurt are all part of being alive. When we try to stay away from painful feelings, we keep ourselves from having many wonderful adventures. If we’re afraid to meet new people, we may never have any close friends. If we stop trying when we’re embarrassed, we may never learn a better way of doing things. And if we don’t share our hurt feelings, we may never find out that everyone else has the same feelings we have.

What can I try again today that I failed at yesterday?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.

No man is more cheated than the selfish man. –Henry Ward Beecher

When we’re selfish, we close off the channels of exchange with others. Not only are we grabbing and holding all the goods or attention we can get, but we are denying others the possibility of sharing with us in the benefits. We may be selfish in material goods, but there are many other ways too. Some of us expect our spouses to meet our needs while we make little effort to meet theirs. Some of us discover our selfishness as we drive, refusing to yield a position to another car or getting furious if we lose a place in heavy traffic.

By contrast, our generosity and welcoming responses nourish the spirit within us and create a good environment for our growth. Sometimes giving does not come easily. We have a more generous spirit when we are in touch with our ultimate vulnerability. All of life is fragile, and we need each other to have a good life. We can truly hold onto nothing but ourselves. Giving what we can of our time, our energy, and our goods, helps create the kind of world we want to live in.

Today, I will look for ways to be generous with those I share this world with.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.

The balance between mind and spirit comes hard for me. The eternal split. Two entities, perfectly aware and yet perfectly unwilling to cooperate. –Mary Casey

The program directs our spiritual growth, a human aspect that had atrophied, if ever it had existed, for most of us before abstinence. And the process of developing our spiritual nature is painstaking. Living by our wits, or the fervent application of “situational analysis” had been our survival tools for months or years.

To return repeatedly to the old tools for quick solutions to serious situations is second nature. Learning to rely on spiritual guidance for solutions and to use it to sharpen our analytical focus takes patience and continual effort.

Within our spiritual realm we find our connection to God. We have been given the wisdom; all the knowledge we need is at our fingertips. The confidence to move ahead and offer our special talent to others comes from our Spirit. We are all that we need to be. Our mind and our Spirits, in concert, can tackle any challenge and succeed.

My mind and my Spirit can become compatible entities with the development of my trust in each. Knowledge plus courage can move mountains. I have been given both.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.

Controlling Versus Trust

There was a time in my life when I felt so afraid of and overwhelmed by the very act of living that I actually wanted to make out a schedule for each day of my life for the next five years. I wanted to include all the chores I had to do, when I would do them, even when I would schedule relaxation. I wanted to get some order into what felt overwhelming. I wanted to feel like I was in control. –Anonymous

Controlling is a direct response to our fear, panic, and sense of helplessness. It is a direct response to feeling overwhelmed, and to distrust.

We may not trust ourselves, our Higher Power, the Plan, the Universe, or the process of life. Instead of trusting, we revert to control.

We can approach this need to control by dealing with our fear. We deal with fear by trusting – ourselves, our Higher Power, the love and support of the Universe, the Plan, and this process we call life and recovery.

We can trust that when things don’t work out the way we want, God has something better planned.

We can trust ourselves to get where we need to go, say what we need to say, do what we need to do, know what we need to know, be who we need to be, and become all we can become, when we are intended to do that, when we are ready, and when the time is right.

We can trust our Higher Power and the Universe to give us all the direction we need.

We can trust ourselves to listen, and respond, accordingly.

We can trust that all we need on this journey shall come to us. We will not get all we need for the entire journey today. We shall receive today’s supplies today, and tomorrow’s supplies tomorrow. We were never intended to carry supplies for the entire journey. The burden would be too heavy, and the way was intended to be light.

Trust in yourself. We do not have to plan, control, and schedule all things. The schedule and plan have been written. All we need to do is show up.

The way will become clear and the supplies will be amply and clearly provided, one day at a time.

Trust, my friend, in today.

Today, I will trust that I will receive all I need to get me through today. I will trust that the same shall happen tomorrow.

I can accept whatever I am feeling today. Without resistance my feelings pass and I am then open to experience whatever is next. –Ruth Fishel

*****

Journey To The Heart

October 14

Clear Out the Clutter

Have you ever noticed how easy it is to accumulate possessions and clutter in your home, things you pick up along the way? Have you ever noticed how easy it is to begin accommodating this clutter, getting used to it, thinking of it as just part of your environment?

It can be that way with our emotions,too. No matter how hard we strive to stay clear, we pick up bits of clutter along the way.

It’s so easy to ignore deeply embedded emotions and their impact on our lives. Many of us have undercurrents of old emotional energy that have been with us for so long we don’t see them. We don’t see the anger, the fear, the sadness. We’ve lived with these feelings for so long they have become embedded in us, part of us. When one of these nudges us, we tuck it back in, pack it away, and go on about our lives. But the feelings stays with us until we consciously acknowledge and address it. It affects us and our lives until we heal it.

Find a way to heal those old feelings, perhaps journaling or writing your memoirs. Whatever technique you choose to begin this journey of deep healing, deep cleansing, take the time to become conscious of what you really feel. Observe yourself; listen closely to yourself. Is there an edge to your voice? Do you talk about a particular person or place with a high degree of emotional energy? Learn to become comfortable with the rhythm of allowing these emotions to surface. They aren’t that hard to find. When it’s time to heal them, they’ll present themselves.

Release your fear of facing what’s there. Tap into that deeper part of you. Acknowledge your emotional energy, and heal.

Start cleaning house. Each piece of emotional clutter you clear out will bring you closer to your soul.

*****

more language of letting go

See Naturally

I was talking to a friend one day about using visualization as a tool to help create the present and the future we desire. Visualization, or using the spiritual energy of thought as a tool, can create physical reality.

“I don’t really do that much,” he said. “I’m not one for visualization.”

Later, we were talking about a project we were working on together. He began to describe the next stage of the process. “I see us working together on it like this,” he said. He described in great detail how he saw things coming to pass.

I listened. When he finished, I told him, “You said you don’t use visualization as a tool. But you just used it naturally, without thinking, to describe how we are going to work on the next stage of this project.”

He thought for a moment, then said he guessed I was right.

Don’t talk yourself out of using visualization as a tool. Most of us often use our imagination to consider things that are taking place now or in the future. Be aware of what you say and see, so that you can use this powerful tool, your imagination, to help create whatever it is that you really want to see.

Pay attention to the ways you use your imagination in your daily life, the number of times you naturally say how you see things working out. If you find yourself using your imaginative powers to create negative events, stop! Erase that scene and create something else.

God, help me become aware of how I see naturally. Help me use and respect my imagination as the powerful creative tool it is.

*****

Blue Skies

The Sky Is Blue Even on a Cloudy Day

When we refer to a “beautiful day,” we are often describing a day that is sunny, clear, and without a cloud in sight to mar a sky that is a brilliantly perfect blue. We find ourselves bouncing along, light in spirit, free from worries, and enjoying the moment. That is, until the clouds begin to form. The sky may turn grey, and a fog may roll in. Puffs of white take on whimsical, darker shades, and our beautiful day disappears along with the sunshine… or so it seems.

A clear blue sky often inspires in us good cheer, bringing on a lighter, more carefree day. We may find ourselves spending time outdoors, breathing in the fresh air, and basking in the warmth of the sun. Yet should clouds appear to wash the sky with shadows, we may let this change of weather decrease our energy and enthusiasm, pulling us into our own cloudy funk. Darker days are just as much a part of life as are the days graced with sunshine. They show us a different perspective of our world, while helping us appreciate the moments of illumination that inevitably follow. A rainy day with clouds helps to clear the air, washing away stagnation. Still, it’s hard not to feel gloomy or think that the day has been ruined when there are clouds hanging over us. Yet if you can remember that these shades of grey won’t last forever, and that hidden behind the clouds is the blue sky, you will find that the beauty of your day is merely playing a game of peek-a-boo with you. Like the mis! haps and interruptions that occasionally block the brilliance that is our own lives from shining through, clouds eventually clear away so we can open up to a brighter horizon.

The next time you wake up to a cloudy day, remember that these shades of grey in life are there just for the moment. And that no matter how hard the rain falls or how chilly the fog is, the clouds will go away, the sun will break through, and you will be able to see the sky that has always and forever been a beautiful and brilliant blue. Published with permission from Daily OM

*****

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

“Fundamental progress has to do with the reinterpretation of basic ideas,” wrote Alfred North Whitehead. When we review the ups and downs of our recovery in The Program, we can see the truth of that statement. We make progress each time we get rid of an old idea, each time we uncover a character defect, each time we become ready to have that defect removed and then humbly ask God to remove it. We make progress, one day at a time, as we shun the first drink, the first pill, the first addictive act that will so quickly swerve us from the path of growth to the road back to torment and despair. Have I considered the progress I’ve made since I’ve come to The Program?

Today I Pray

May I remember that there are few new ideas in this world, only old ones reinterpreted and restated. May I be always conscious that even the big things in life — like love, brotherhood, God, sobriety — become more finely defined in each human life. so may the Twelve steps of the Program be rescinded in each of our lives, as we keep in mind that, basically, these are time-tried principles — which work.

Today I Will Remember

The Twelve step work.

*****

One More Day

Nothing sharpens sight like envy.

– Thomas Fuller

It’s natural to want to own things — a house, a car, nice clothes, a boat. Once in a while we are able to save and buy some things we like, but more often we have to set priorities and choose which items really matter to us most.

Almost all of us know someone who does seem to have it all — materially — and we may be envious. Perhaps, at those times we can better serve our needs if we reexamine our values and cast our eyes toward other people who have the things we really want — peace of mind, a loving nature, spiritual depth, and unjealous nature. Those “things” may be what we should strive for to own. These qualities can be purchased only with time, and enrich our lives more than mere material objects ever could.

I will take inventory of my qualities, not my possessions.

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

Food For Thought

Surrender

Continuing to take the first three Steps enables us to become increasingly surrendered to our Higher Power. Our goal is to let our egotistical selves be dissolved in a greater Self, so that the Higher Power lives through us. The loss of ego frightens us and attacks our illusions of self-sufficiency.

Here is where we can be grateful for our disease. If we were not convinced of our helplessness in the face of our obsession with food, we would not be desperate enough to surrender to a Higher Power. Only after we have tried and failed over and over again in our battle with compulsive overeating are we willing to accept the OA program.

We surrender in order to stop eating compulsively. We gain infinitely more than we had expected. Not only does our Higher Power give us abstinence from compulsive overeating, but also more than that He gives us Himself. No longer do we live as an isolated, weak self, but in us lives the Power of the universe.

May we surrender completely to Your power.

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

One Day At A Time

Patience

“Patience and perseverance have a magical effect

before which difficulties and obstacles vanish.”

John Quincy Adams

When I first walked through the meeting doors, I wanted recovery and I wanted it now! Give me the magic wand, I’ll waive it, then get on with my life—I thought.

One of the most difficult things I’ve had to learn is the art of patience and allowing God to work within his own time while I do the footwork to the best of my ability. It is my belief that the universe and my Higher Power will order the next level of my physical recovery. Physical recovery does not grow without spiritual progress. This Program is a journey, not a crash-course in fad dieting.

When I struggled with bouts of pride connected to my levels of patience and God’s timing, I knew I was uncovering yet another character flaw that could delay my spiritual recovery. Spiritual recovery, as “Old-timers” have told us again and again, is the actual foundation of the program. The “inner” person will eventually make its way to the outer person.

One day at a time…

Today I will slow down, take a deep breath, and just remind myself that my Higher Power is in control and that my natural pattern will develop under His nurture, care, and control.

~ January

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

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

In our belief any scheme of combating alcoholism which proposes to shield the sick man from temptation is doomed to failure. If the alcoholic tries to shield himself he may succeed for a time, but he usually winds up with a bigger explosion than ever. We have tried these methods. These attempts to do the impossible have always failed. – Pg. 101 – Working With Others

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

When intense cravings for our drug of choice overwhelm us, we immediately talk to another person in recovery, even late at night and people are going to bed. Our program teaches us to rely on each other and they will welcome the contact!

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

Acting As If

There will be times when I do not feel up to things, when there seems to be too big a gap between who I think I am and who I want to be. I believe in being true to myself, in being basically honest. When I first try something new, it may feel as if I am trying on an article of clothing that doesn’t quite suit me. But there is nothing wrong with acting ‘as if.’ I may need to practice new behaviors in order to become comfortable with them. Sometimes, when I allow myself to act ‘as if,’ the old me sort of falls away and makes room for something new. Children do this all the time, trying on different roles and playing with them. There is no reason to commit myself to a limited view of who I am.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Do not pay any attention if people accuse you of inconsistency. Of course you are! How else can you change? You cannot progress if you can’t change and you can’t change if you’re always consistent. Practicing new behaviors is sometimes seen as inconsistent-be proud.

Practice makes progress.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

We do it the old fashioned way, we earn our recovery.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I can accept whatever I am feeling today.

Without resistance my feelings pass and I am then open to experience whatever is next.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

You can’t save your face and your butt at the same time. – Unknown Origin.

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

AA Thought for the Day

October 14

True Love

The spiritual growth we enjoy in AA is a product of the never-ending school for living which our Fellowship provides.

The subject in that school that opened my eyes most quickly and filled my heart most fully was love.

I never knew true love until I began my recovery in AA. My schooling in that emotion began early

and led me to the conclusion that love is what creates in a sober AA member the outer show of an inner glow.

– The Best Of The Grapevine [Vol. 3], p. 294

Thought to Ponder . . .

Great love is the sunlight of AA’s tree of life.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .

F E L L O W S H I P =

Faith, Empathy, Learning, Love, Openness, Wisdom, Self-worth, Hope, Identification, People.

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

Foundation

“Taking this book down from our shelf

we turn to the page which contains the twelve steps.

Carefully reading the first five proposals

we ask if we have omitted anything,

for we are building an arch through which

we shall walk free at last.

Is our work solid so far?

Are the stones properly in place?

Have we skimped on the cement put into the foundation?

Have we tried to make mortar without sand?”

c.1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 75

Thought to Consider . . .

This day I choose to spend in perfect peace.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*

G R A C E = Gently Releasing All Conscious Expectations

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

Courtesy, Kindness, Justice and Love

Step Ten: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

We can try to stop making unreasonable demands upon those we love. We can show kindness where we had shown none. With those we dislike we can begin to practice justice and courtesy, perhaps going out of our way to understand and help them.

Whenever we fail any of these people, we can promptly admit it – to ourselves always, and to them also, when the admission would be helpful. Courtesy, kindness, justice, and love are the keynotes by which we may come into harmony with practically anybody. When in doubt we can always pause, saying, “Not my will, but Thine, be done.” And we can often ask ourselves, “Am I doing to others as I would have them do to me – today?”

1981, AAWS, Inc., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 93

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

“How does one tune in to the Higher Power? The answer I have learned from AA is to recharge my spiritual battery every day — ‘you can’t pull today’s load with yesterday’s horse.’”

Joliet, Ill., July 1985

“Willingness to Grow,”

Into Action

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

“Step Eleven suggests prayer and meditation. We shouldn’t be shy

on this matter of prayer. Better men than we are using it constantly.”

Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 85

“If, when you honestly want to, you find you cannot quit entirely, or if when drinking, you have little control over the amount you take, you are probably alcoholic. If that be the case, you may be suffering from an illness which only a spiritual experience will conquer.”

Alcoholics Anonymous p.44

Just to the extent that we do as we think He would have us, and humbly rely on Him, does He enable us to match calamity with serenity.

-Alcoholics Anonymous p.68

Where humility had formerly stood for a forced feeding on humble pie, it now begins to mean the nourishing ingredient which can give us serenity.

-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 74

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Aspects of Spirituality

‘Among A.A.’s there is still a vast amount of mix-up respecting what is material and what is spiritual. I prefer to believe that it is all a matter of motive. If we use our worldly possessions too selfishly, then we are materialists. But if we share these possessions in helpfulness to others, then the material aids the spiritual.’

‘The idea keeps persisting that the instincts are primarily bad and are the roadblocks before which all spirituality falters. I believe that the difference between good and evil is not the difference between spiritual and instinctual man; it is the difference between proper and improper use of the instinctual. Recognition and right channeling of the instinctual are the essence of achieving wholeness.

Prayer for the Day: The Universal Prayer –

Eternal Reality,

You are everywhere.

You are infinite unity, truth, and love;

You permeate our souls,

Every corner of the universe, and beyond.

To some of us You are father, friend, or partner,

To others, Higher Power, Higher Self, or Inner Self.

To many of us You are all of these and more.

You are within us and we within You.

We know You forgive our trespasses

If we forgive ourselves and others.

We know You protect us from destructive temptation

If we continue to seek Your help and guidance.

We know You provide us food and shelter today

If we but place our trust in You and try to do our best.

Give us this day knowledge of Your will for us and the power to carry it out.

For Yours is infinite power and love, Forever.

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