Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 16th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 16th

Daily Reflections

COMMITMENT

Understanding is the key to right principles and attitudes, and right
action is the key to good living.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 125

There came a time in my program of recovery when the third stanza
of the Serenity Prayer — “The wisdom to know the difference” —
became indelibly imprinted in my mind. From that time on, I had to
face the ever-present knowledge that my every action, word and
thought was within, or outside, the principles of the program. I could no
longer hide behind self-rationalization, nor behind the insanity of my
disease. The only course open to me, if I was to attain a joyous life
for myself (and subsequently for those I love), was one in which I
imposed on myself an effort of commitment, discipline, and
responsibility.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

One drink started a train of thought that became an obsession, and
from then on, we couldn’t stop drinking. We developed a mental
compulsion to keep drinking until we got good and drunk. People
generally make two mistakes about alcoholism. One mistake is that
it can be cured by physical treatment only. The other mistake is that
it can be cured by willpower only. Most alcoholics have tried both of
these and have found that they don’t work. But we members of A.A.
have found a way to arrest alcoholism. Have I got over my obsession
by following the A.A. program?

Meditation For The Day

I will try to be unruffled, no matter what happens. I will keep my
emotions in check, although others about me are letting theirs go. I
will keep calm in the face of disturbance, keep that deep, inner calm
through all the experiences of the day. In the rush of work and
worry, the deep, inner silence is necessary to keep me on an even
keel. I must learn to take the calm with me into the most hurried
days.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be still and commune with God.
I pray that I may learn patience, humility, and peace.

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As Bill Sees It

Seeing Is Believing, p. 47

The Wright Brothers’ almost childish faith that they could build a
machine which would fly was the mainspring of their accomplishment.
Without that, nothing could have happened.

We agnostics and atheists were sticking to the idea that
self-sufficiency would solve our problems. When others showed us
that God-sufficiency worked with them, we began to feel like those
who had insisted the Wrights would never fly. We were seeing
another kind of flight, a spiritual liberation from this world, people who
rose above their problems.

Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 52-53

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Walk In Dry Places

Mental Arguments are bad Thinking____Serenity
Again and again we hear that bad thinking and drinking are linked together. Bad thinking is any line of thought that tends to be destructive.  Mental arguments are in that class because they destroy peace of mind and self-control.  We can avoid them by learning acceptance and maintaining serenity at all costs.
Sometimes we engage in mental arguments with those who seem to have defeated us or put us down. This only gives more life to the hurt we have been feeling: in effect, we cooperate in hurting ourselves repeatedly.  Even the satisfaction of letting ourselves “win” the mental argument doesn’t really settle the matter.
We can maintain our serenity in all situations by accepting people as they are.  We are not responsible for changing their opinions.  We must also accept and dismiss past mistakes and failures, no matter who was at fault.  We owe it to ourselves not to destroy another moment’s happiness with futile mental arguments that serve no good purpose in our lives.
Once we dismiss mental arguments, we can give our time and attention to things that really matter.
I will not waste a single second on any kid of mental argument.  Anything another person said or did is forgiven and forgotten, and it has no power to hurt me a second time.

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Keep It Simple

Friendships, like marriages, are dependent on avoiding the unforgivable.—John D. MacDonald
We need to remember that relationships are made up of people—people who are strong, but also fragile.
We don’t break easily, but we do break. We need to be aware of how fragile relationships are. Don’t say something that will hurt others even if it’s honest. It’s mean to be honest with someone, without showing that you care for the person’s feelings. We can learn to be honest without being cruel. The backbone of any relationship is this: we need to honor the rules and agreements we make. If we promise to be faithful to someone, we follow this rule. And we need to trust the other person to do the same. When we see that our agreements don’t work, we need to go to that person and talk about them.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me become a person who honors rules and agreements in my relationships.
Actions for the Day:  I’ll make no promises today that I will not keep.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Within our dreams and aspirations we find our opportunities. –Sue Atchley Ebaugh
Our dreams beckon us to new heights. All that we may need is the courage to move toward them, taking the necessary steps to realize those dreams. Trusting that we will be shown the steps, one at a time, patiently waiting for the right step and right time is all we need to do, today.
Our dreams, when they are for the good of ourselves and others, are invitations from God to spread our wings, to attempt new heights. Those dreams are part of the destiny designed for us. They are not happenstance. Our gifts are unique. Our contributions are ours alone. Our dreams reflect the contributions we are called on to make in this life.
Our opportunities for fulfillment are varied and not always recognized as for our good. Again and again we need to turn to God, be patient, and trust that we are being called to offer something very special to those around us. No one of us has escaped a special plan. And everyone of us is inspired in particular ways, with particular talents. Our recovery is clearing the way for us to burst forth with our talents.
I will be grateful for all that I am, for all that I have. And I will remember, what I give today to friends around me is mine only to give.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

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 a 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.

p. xxviii

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.

I had a great time that summer between high school and college.  It revolved around drinking; drinking and football, drinking and hunting, drinking and playing pool, drinking and driving.  Nothing really bad happened, but it could have.  I nearly got arrested. A friend just missed being shot.  The car I was riding in stopped just before it crashed.

pp. 369-370

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

Practically every boy in the United States dreams of becoming our President. He wants to be his country’s number one man. As he gets older and sees the impossibility of this, he can smile good-naturedly at his childhood dream. In later life he finds that real happiness is not to be found in just trying to be a number one man, or even a first-rater in the heartbreaking struggle for money, romance, or self-importance. He learns that he can be content as long as he plays well whatever cards life deals him. He’s still ambitious, but not absurdly so, because he can now see and accept actual reality. He’s willing to stay right size.

p. 122

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What you are is God’s Gift to you. What you become is your gift to God.

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

In my pain I seek the comfort and guidance of my Higher Power. Grace and gratitude are the gifts I receive.  –Rose Casey

God does not require that we be successful, only that we be faithful.  –Mother Teresa

Spiritual experience is personal and individual.  –Veronica Ray

Like a loving parent, God prepares good things for us.  –Einar Ingvi Magnusson

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

ENEMIES

“The Bible tells us to love our
neighbors and also to love our
enemies; probably because they
are generally the same people.”
— G. K. Chesterton

The spiritual program that I embrace makes me look to where I am,
rather than where I want to be. I must live in the now, rather than the
never-never-land of tomorrow.

To love my world I need to seek to understand those people who live
in my world. To love my world involves an acceptance of those who
are different from me. I must seek to build bridges, rather than
barriers. It is so easy for me to talk about loving and being concerned
for the starving millions and forgetting to love and relate to the typist
in my office or the neighbor down the street.

I have some experience of people who can be difficult because I lived
with the addicted me for many years; I am the key to my enemies.

Teach me to accept in love those who, for today, I do not like.

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If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.  1 Corinthians 1: 1-13

Show me Your ways, O LORD; Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; On You I wait all the day.  Psalm 25:4-5

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Daily Inspiration

No troubles that we face are new to this world. Guide and protect me, Lord, and strengthen my faith and trust in You so that I will not falter.

God gives us power, love and self-discipline, not fear and timidness. Lord, I will not be afraid to proclaim that You are my God. All will see it in my actions.

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NA Just For Today

Faithful Feelings

“When we refuse to accept the reality of today we are denying faith in our Higher Power This can only bring more suffering.”
IP No. 8, “Just for Today”

Some days just aren’t the way we wish they would be. Our problems may be as simple as a broken shoelace or having to stand in line at the supermarket. Or we may experience something far more serious, such as the loss of a job, a home, or a loved one. Either way, we often end up looking for a way to avoid our feelings instead of simply acknowledging that those feelings are painful.

No one promises us that everything will go our way when we stop using. In fact, we can be sure that life will go on whether we’re using or not. We will face good days and bad days, comfortable feelings and painful feelings. But we don’t have to run from any of them any longer.

We can experience pain, grief, sadness, anger, frustration- all those feelings we once avoided with drugs. We find that we can get through those emotions clean. We won’t die and the world won’t come to an end just because we have uncomfortable feelings. We learn to trust that we can survive what each day brings.

Just for today: I will demonstrate my trust in God by experiencing this day just as it is. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Shame-filled people feel that something is wrong at their very core. It is a sense of being bad . . .. –Susan Kwiecien
Nobody is rotten to the core. Whenever we start to believe we are bad all the way through, we can picture good things we have done, days when someone else was happy to be with us, and see for ourselves that we have many good points that outweigh the bad.
If we have done something wrong, we must apologize and make amends. Making a mistake is not the same as being worthless. Mistakes are a natural part of living, not something to be ashamed of. Our freedom to make mistakes is one of our greatest assets, for this is the way we learn humility, persistence, courage to take risks, and better ways of doing things. All of us are valuable and lovable. How could we be otherwise? Since mistakes are natural aspects of growth, we can salute them in others and ourselves as signs of life and celebrate our ability to learn and to forgive.
What mistakes have helped me grow?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Hatred is never anything but fear – if you feared no one, you would hate no one. –Hugh Downs
On those occasions when we find the bigger man within, we are more generous in spirit toward others. But sometimes we think too much about what is wrong with others and how they ought to change. That is a form of hate. If we are searching for what we have power to change in our families, in our friendships, in the world, we can learn to be big enough to set aside our fears.
Do we bear ill will toward someone today? When we are honest with ourselves, do we feel a sense of fear in relation to this person? What are we really afraid of? Perhaps the same person fears us. When we can do something about our fear, the hatred melts with no further effort. Then we are in touch with the bigger man within.
I have the inner, strength to face my fears today. I will not send them outward as hatred.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Detachment
The concept of letting go can be confusing to many of us. When are we doing too much or trying too hard to control people and outcomes? When are we doing too little? When is what we’re doing an appropriate part of taking care of ourselves? What is our responsibility, and what isn’t?
These issues can challenge us whether we’ve been in recovery ten days or ten years. Sometimes, we may let go so much that we neglect responsibility to others or ourselves. Other times, we may cross the line from taking care of ourselves to controlling others and outcomes.
There is no rulebook. But we don’t have to make ourselves crazy; we don’t have to be so afraid. We don’t have to do recovery perfectly. If it feels like we need to do a particular action, we can do it. If no action feels timely or inspired, don’t act on it.
Having and setting healthy limits – healthy boundaries – isn’t a tidy process. We can give ourselves permission to experiment, to make mistakes, to learn, to grow.
We can talk to people, ask questions, and question ourselves. If there’s something we need to do or learn, it will become apparent. Lessons don’t go away. If we’re not taking
care of ourselves enough, well see that. If we are being too controlling, we’ll grow to understand that too. Things will work out. The way will become dear.
Today, I will take actions that appear appropriate. I will let go of the rest. I will strive for the balance between self-responsibility, responsibility to others, and letting go.


Peace and relaxation flow through me with every breath that I take. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

The Answer May Be Right in Front of You

It was late at night. I had just pulled into Chimayo, New Mexico. The streets were poorly lit, addresses and signs were difficult to see. I had been driving around for what seemed like hours, looking for an address. Finally, in desperation. I stopped the car, got out, and flagged someone down. A man stopped, but said he couldn’t help me. I was at my wits end. I turned around, staring frantically at the mailbox in front of me. To my surprise, I was right where I wanted to go.

How often we wave our hands in panic and despair, certain the answer, the insight, the piece of information we need will never come. Yet often the answer we’re seeking is right in front of us.

There’s a part of us, our heart, that knows where we’re going, knows what we need, knows what the next step is. Our heart will lead us on. Our soul will move us forward. Our instincts will take us home like a radar signal beaming us to safety.

Feel your panic. Feel your frustration. But keep your eyes and your heart open. The answer may be closer than you think– maybe it’s right in front of you.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Joy is your destiny

Adam fell that man might be, and men are that they might have joy.
–Book of Mormon

In the garden, original man was perfect, unchanging, never knowing sickness or the sorrow of separation. It was only after the fall that we could learn the contrast between joy and sorrow and truly learn what joy is. More than the absence of sorrow, it is the embrace of life in all its turmoil. To live joyously means living with full awareness of how impermanent each life on earth is– how precious each moment, each conversation, each sunrise is.

Each day is the beginning of another new adventure, another opportunity to take a chance and live life to its fullest.

Look around you. Find the joy in your world.

After all, that’s why you’re here.

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

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

What about “justifiable anger?” If somebody cheats us or acts toward us in an outrageous manner, don’t we have the right to be furious? The hard-learned experiences of countless others in The Program tell us that adventures in rage are usually extremely dangerous. So, while we must recognize anger enough to say “I am angry,” we must not allow the build-up of rage, however justifiable. Can I accept the fact that if I am to live, I have to be free of anger?

Today I Pray

Even though I go out of the way to skirt them, may I be aware that there always will be certain situations or certain people who will make me angry. When my anger doesn’t seem justifiable — with arguable reason behind it — I may deny it, even to myself. May I recognize my anger, whether it is reasonable or not, before I bury it alive.

Today I Will Remember

It is alright to feel anger.

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One More Day

Every Soul is a melody which needs renewing.
– Stephne Mellarme

It may be difficult to admit how discordant our lives become at times — and even more difficult to restore a sense of peace. We may plunge into self-improvement programs with the idea that we, and we alone, can fix ourselves and ease our emotional pain. In doing this, we ignore the spiritual resources outside ourselves.

We better understand and accept our human flaws now and find it easier to ask God for help. Occasionally we may feel inadequate or angry or frightened. We question and doubt ourselves; we get lost in the maze of our own emotions. But we know these feelings are only temporary and that the calming spiritual tempo of our lives is briefly being drowned out by the emotions of the moment. It is comforting to know the melody is always there.

Today, I trust God to keep me in tune with the peace within.


Food For Thought

Meetings

We have proved that we cannot control our eating alone. Through OA, we have found a way that works, provided we work the program. If we become careless about attending meetings, we are thrown back on our own weakness.

It is the OA meeting which gives us the hope and enthusiasm we need to continue in the program. The sharing and fellowship of the group provides strength and encouragement. In times of difficulty, most of us find that the more meetings we attend, the better able we are to cope.

When we don’t feel like going to a meeting, it may be because our old overeating habit is trying to surface. We are never cured of our disease and we never outgrow our need for the strength, fellowship, and love we receive from OA meetings.

I give thanks for OA.

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One Day At A Time

A TEENAGER’S PRAYER

“I felt as if angels were pushing.”
Adolf Galland – on his first flight in a jet aircraft

A letter from a TRG Teenager . . . . .

Sometimes I feel I really can’t take anymore, I really can’t do it. I feel so alone. I feel no one cares. I just want to hide away and eat and eat until I am so sick I can’t eat anymore.

A minute at a time I got through my day, and it was so hard. Didn’t anyone understand how hard it is to get through school with the teachers giving me a hard time. The other kids laughing at me in a corner, I know they are, I can feel them. They don’t know what it’s like to be me. And when I get home, I get even more of a hard time.

But sometimes I feel so bad and I come here on my computer and share or I go to an online meeting, and I know I’m not alone after all. Someone cares, they really do.

I feel heaps better and I suddenly realize that angels had pushed me through the day. And even though the day had been hard, I HAD got through it! I had a whole day of abstinence!

Suddenly I feel so much better about myself, about you and about the world in general.

One day at a time …
I will remember tonight. An angel walked with me today, and if I close my eyes and sleep, maybe, just maybe an angel will walk with me in my dreams.
Anonymous 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Faith without works was dead, he said. And how appallingly true for the alcoholic! For if an alcoholic failed to perfect and enlarge his spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, he could not survive the certain trials and low spots ahead. – Pg. 14-15 – Bill’s Story

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

There is no one with a ‘better’ program than another if they are clean and sober for we know that we are only one drink away from a drunk–each and everyone of us!

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

Looking Toward What is Good

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

I hold a beautiful vision of life

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘Rather than put a label on yourself as Christian, Jew, Moslem, Buddhist, or whatever, instead make a commitment to be Christ-like, God-like, Buddha-like and Mohammed-like.’ -Dr. Wayne Dryer

I make a commitment to be ‘Twelve Step-like’ today.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Real change requires real change.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Peace and relaxation flow through me with every breath that I take.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

An alcoholic is a fellow who is trying to get his religion out of a bottle, when what he really wants is unity within himself. Unity with God. – Bill W. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 16

Easy Does It
We find it hard to relax and savor life.
When one of us is in a dither to get something done or get somewhere in a hurry,
a friend may gently remonstrate, “‘Easy Does It,’ remember?”
Then there’s often a flash of annoyance at the adviser.
And that indicates the advice must have hit home, wouldn’t you say?
– Living Sober, p. 44

Thought to Ponder . . .
While it isn’t always easy, if I keep it simple, it works.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
J F T = Just For Today.

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

Cheerfulness
But we aren’t a glum lot. . .
We absolutely insist on enjoying life. . .
So we think cheerfulness and laughter
make for usefulness.
Outsiders are sometimes shocked when we
burst into merriment over a seemingly tragic
experience out of the past.
But why shouldn’t we laugh?
We have recovered,
and have been given the power to help others.
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 132

Thought to Consider . . .
Laughter is the sound of recovery.

~~AACRONYMS~~
B E S T = Been Enjoying Sobriety Today?

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

Change
>From “A Glacier Melts”:
“I had thought I was happy in that first eighteen months of sobriety, but now everything began to look brighter; people
seemed nicer; and I had moments of tremendous insight. It was as if words and sentences I had heard all my life had a
deeper meaning and were reaching my feelings, rather than my intellect. It was as if my head and my heart finally had
gotten glued together. I no longer seemed like two people in one, engaging in a tug of war. I experienced within this six-
week period a feeling of being totally forgiven, and never since have I felt the guilt that I had throughout my life prior to
that time. More than once, I had as sense of Presence which I can describe only as being marvelously warm, uplifting,
and comfortable.”
1973 AAWS, Inc., printed 2004; Came to Believe, pg. 58

~~~~^ Big Book Quotes ^~~~~

“Some day we hope that Alcoholics Anonymous will help the public to
a better realization of the gravity of the alcoholic problem, but we
shall be of little use if our attitude is one of bitterness or
hostility. Drinkers will not stand for it.
After all, our problems were of our own making. Bottles were only a
symbol. Besides, we have stopped fighting anybody or anything. We have to!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 103~

“Since the home has suffered more than anything else, it is well that
a man exert himself there. He is not likely to get far in any
direction if he fails to show unselfishness and love under his own
roof. We know there are difficult wives and families, but the man
who is getting over alcoholism must remember he did much to make them so.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 127~

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

Misc. AA Literature – Quote
The Wright brothers’ almost childish faith that they could build a machine which would fly was the mainspring of their
accomplishment. Without that, nothing could have happened.
We agnostics and atheists were sticking to the idea that self-sufficiency would solve our problems. When others
showed us that God-sufficiency worked with them, we began to feel like those who had insisted the Wrights would never
fly. We were seeing another kind of flight, a spiritual liberation from this world, people who rose above their problems.

Prayer for the Day: Lord Jesus, as you touched the eyes of the blind man, touch us so that our eyes may be opened so
that we can “really see” the many wonderful things around us and in our own lives. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 15th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 15th

Daily Reflections

TAKING ACTION

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are
being fulfilled among us–sometimes quickly, sometimes
slowly. They will always materialize if we work for
them.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

One of the most important things A.A. has given me, in
addition to freedom from booze, is the ability to take
“right action.” It says the promises will ALWAYS
materialize if I WORK for them. Fantasizing about them,
debating them, preaching about them and faking them
just won’t work. I’ll remain a miserable, rationalizing
dry drunk. By taking action and working the Twelve Steps
in all my affairs, I’ll have a life beyond my wildest
dreams.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

If alcoholism were just a physical allergy, like asthma
or hay fever, it would be easy for us, by taking a skin
test with alcohol, to find out whether or not we’re
alcoholics. But alcoholism is not just a physical allergy.
It’s also a mental allergy or obsession. After we’ve
become alcoholics, we can still tolerate alcohol physically
for quite a while, although we suffer a little more after
each binge and each time it takes a little longer to get
over our hangovers. Do I realize that since I have become
an alcoholic, I cannot tolerate alcohol mentally at all?

Meditation For The Day

The world does not need super-men or women, but super-natural
people. People who will persistently turn the self out of their lives
and let Divine Power work through them. Let inspiration
take the place of aspiration. Seek to grow spiritually,
rather than to acquire fame and riches. Our chief ambition
should be to be used by God. The Divine Force is sufficient
for all the spiritual work in the world. God only needs the
instruments for His use. His instruments can remake
the world.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be an instrument of the Divine Power.
I pray that I may do my share in remaking the world.

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As Bill Sees It

True Ambition–and False, p. 46

We have had a much keener look at ourselves and those about us. We
have seen that we were prodded by unreasonable fears or anxieties
into making a life business of winning fame, money, and what we
thought was leadership. So false pride became the reverse side of that
ruinous coin marked “Fear.” We simply had to be Number One
people to cover up our deep-lying inferiorities.

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

True ambition is not what we thought it was. True ambition is the
profound desire to live usefully and walk humbly under the grace of
God.

12 & 12
1. p. 123
2. pp. 124-125

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Walk In Dry Places

AA is an Automatic Sprinkler System
Emotional Emergencies
Wise managers install automatic sprinkler systems to protect their businesses. The system’s great value is that it goers into action during the first few minutes of a fire, before it gets out of control. This gives the fire department precious time to arrive and put the fire out.
Our AA program gives us something like a sprinkler system. We never know when the flames of resentment might leap up, seemingly out of nowhere. If we’ve been working our program, something takes over automatically to begin dealing with resentment.
This gives us time to bring more of our valuable spiritual tools into use. Knowing that resentment is burning away, we can try one thing and then another until it is brought to rest. Perhaps we will try prayer. We might also discuss our problem with a close friend or sponsor. Maybe we’ll attend a meeting and lay the mater out for the group attention.  We may help somebody, even in a small way. An amazing healing of resentment can come from any helpful action.  Even a simple action like helping a person in a stalled automobile can work wonders in deflecting the pain of ongoing resentment.
I need not fear the sudden appearance of resentment if I have been following my program.

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Keep It Simple

Easy Does It.—Twelve Steps slogan
We are people who push ourselves to hard. We try to be perfect. Well, we need to lighten up. Easy Does It.
We need to slow down our pace. Why? Because our program teaches us to give up trying to be perfect.
We begin to love ourselves for who we are. We are enough. Over and over we hear this as we live the Steps. It’s the message of God’s love. Our Higher Power want us to live at a pace that’s not fast and hard, so we always know we’re loved. Remember, we’ve turned our life over to the care of God. And our life is a wonderful gift. As recovering people, we may know better than others.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, teach me to live at Your pace, not mine. Help me keep in mind that life isn’t a race. It’s a spiritual journey. Walk with me.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll take two hours just to relax and do loving things for myself. I’ll take time to count my blessings.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Fortuitous circumstances constitute the moulds that shape the majority of human lives.  –Augusta Evans
Being in the right place at the right time is how we generally explain our good fortune or the good fortune of a friend. But it’s to our advantage to understand how we managed to be in the right place at just the right moment.
We have probably heard many times at meetings that God’s timetable is not necessarily the same as our timetable. That events will happen as scheduled to fit a picture bigger than the picture encompassed by our egos. And frequently our patience wears thin because we aren’t privy to God’s timetable. But we can trust, today and always, that doors open on time. Opportunities are offered when we are ready for them. Nary a moment passes that doesn’t invite us to both give and receive a special message–a particular lesson. We are always in God’s care, and every circumstance of our lives is helping to mold the women we are meant to be.
I will take a long look at where I am today and be grateful for my place. It’s right for me, now, and is preparing me for the adventure ahead.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

Frothy emotional appeal seldom suffices. The message which can interest and hold these alcoholic people must have depth and weight. In nearly all cases, their ideals must be grounded in a power greater than themselves, if they are to re-create their lives.

p. xxviii

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.

The next week, a bunch of us went camping, and we brought cases of beer.  We finished it all.  The others drank a lot too, but I was the one who woke up in the middle of the night and started wandering around the countryside by the light of the moon.  I was the one who walked for miles searching for something.  I know now what I was looking for.  Unlike the rest of them, I wanted another drink.

p. 369

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

Let’s here take note of our improved outlook upon the problems of personal importance, power, ambition, and leadership. These were reefs upon which many of us came to shipwreck during our drinking careers.

p. 122

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We are responsible for the effort, not the outcome.

Better the foot slip than the tongue.  –French Proverb

“The walls we build around us to keep out the sadness also keep out the joy.”  –Jim Rohn

“You must look into people, as well as at them.”  –Lord Chesterfield

God, help me recognize that I am a part of your creation and don’t need to fight it. Help me live in peace and celebration of life.  –Melody Beattie

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

HUMILITY

“I am a man; nothing human is
alien to me.”
— Terence

Humility is not so much about trying to be “good” as accepting that I
am imperfect. For too long I thought that humility was “keeping the
peace”, appearing to be “perfect”, bottling up my anger and
resentments — living a life of “people-pleasing”.

Today I understand that humility is being real. It is accepting my
humanity and being honest in my relationships. Humility is respecting
the lives of others but also respecting my own. Humility is seeking to
reveal that divinity that God has given to my life. Humility is knowing
that in the lives of my fellow man — the good and the bad — is me.

Master, let me have the humility to be real.

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“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.”  John 14:1

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”  Proverbs 3:6-5

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Daily Inspiration

Hide your troubles and disappointments and you will find that they grow much smaller from neglect. Lord, help me to direct my focus so that I can make a difference today with a smile and a kind word.

Prayer may not always change a situation, but it will always change us. Lord, I accept Your answers to my prayers because I know that they will always be right and, in Your wisdom, best for me.

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NA Just For Today

An Awakening Of The Spirit

“The last thing we expected was an awakening of the spirit”

Basic Text, p. 48

Few of us came to our first Narcotics Anonymous meeting aching to take a personal inventory or believing that a spiritual void existed in our souls. We had no inkling that we were about to embark on a journey which would awaken our sleeping spirits.

Like a loud alarm clock, the First Step brings us to semiconsciousness—although at this point, we may not be sure whether we want to climb out of bed or maybe sleep for just five more minutes. The gentle hand shaking our shoulders as we apply the Second and Third Steps causes us to stand up, stretch, and yawn. We need to wipe the sleep from our eyes to write the Fourth Step and share our Fifth. But as we work the Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth Steps, we begin noticing a spring in our step and the start of a smile on our lips. Our spirits sing in the shower as we take the Tenth and Eleventh Steps. And then we practice the Twelfth, leaving the house in search of others to awaken.

We don’t have to spend the rest of our lives in a spiritual coma. We may not like to get up in the morning but, once out of bed, we’re almost always glad we did.

Just for today: To awaken my sleepy spirit, I will use the Twelve Steps. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
It is always a mistake not to close one’s eyes, whether to forgive or to look better into oneself. –Maurice Maeterlinck
It is easy to look outward and find faults with the world and people around us. We criticize family members or complain about our friends. We always notice disease in the trees around us.
But if we take time to be quiet, to sit alone in a tree or by a lake, we become more aware of how connected we are to the life around us. We are part of the beauty and the imperfection. When we notice our own tree is not perfect, it becomes easier to forgive the blights of those around us. It is also important to forgive ourselves our faults. Though all the trees are beautiful, they each have their scars. Being human means we are, like all humanity, both beautiful and imperfect.
Will I see through the flaws to anther’s beauty today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If I truly showed my feelings, the other guys would eat me alive. It’s too dog eat dog out there to be honest about the things that really count to you. You can’t leave yourself wide open like that. –Michael E. McGill
As we deepen our commitment to strong and mature manhood, we see a conflict between this program and much of what we learned as young men. When we drop our defenses and are honest, we take the chance of getting hurt. Many of us learned long ago that when we became vulnerable, others became abusive. It is difficult to abandon everything we learned about being nobody’s fool and staying safe.
In fact, we don’t have to leave ourselves wide open. We can be selective about how open we will be and whom we will trust. But for our spiritual growth to continue, we must be an open book to ourselves, to our Higher Power, and to a few friends. We must face the fear of being open to others in this program. Developing true friends is part of the change, which the program brings.
I pray for the courage to be honest with myself and to stand up for who I truly am with my friends.


You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Fortuitous circumstances constitute the moulds that shape the majority of human lives. –Augusta Evans
Being in the right place at the right time is how we generally explain our good fortune or the good fortune of a friend. But it’s to our advantage to understand how we managed to be in the right place at just the right moment.
We have probably heard many times at meetings that God’s timetable is not necessarily the same as our timetable. That events will happen as scheduled to fit a picture bigger than the picture encompassed by our egos. And frequently our patience wears thin because we aren’t privy to God’s timetable. But we can trust, today and always, that doors open on time. Opportunities are offered when we are ready for them. Nary a moment passes that doesn’t invite us to both give and receive a special message–a particular lesson. We are always in God’s care, and every circumstance of our lives is helping to mold the women we are meant to be.
I will take a long look at where I am today and be grateful for my place. It’s right for me, now, and is preparing me for the adventure ahead.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Control
Sometimes, the gray days scare us. Those are the days when the old feelings come rushing back. We may feel needy, scared, ashamed, and unable to care for ourselves.
When this happens, it’s hard to trust ourselves, others, the goodness of life, and the good intentions of our Higher Power. Problems seem overwhelming. The past seems senseless; the future, bleak. We feel certain the things we want in life will never happen.
In those moments, we may become convinced that things and people outside of ourselves hold the key to our happiness. That’s when we may try to control people and situations to mask our pain. When these “codependent crazies” strike, others often begin to react negatively to our controlling.
When we’re in a frenzied state, searching for happiness outside ourselves and looking to others to provide our peace and stability, remember this: Even if we could control things and people, even if we got what we wanted, we would still be ourselves. Our emotional state would still be in turmoil.
People and things don’t stop our pain or heal us. In recovery, we learn that this is our job, and we can do it by using our resources: our Higher Power, our support systems, our recovery program, and ourselves.
Often, after we’ve become peaceful, trusting, and accepting, what we want comes to us – with ease and naturalness.
The sun begins to shine again. Isn’t it funny, and isn’t it true, how all change really does begin with us?
I can let go of things and people and my need to control today. I can deal with my feelings. I can get peaceful. I can get calm. I can get back on track and find the true key to happiness – myself. I mil remember that a gray day is just that – one gray day.


Today I will “act as if” I am worth loving. I am beginning to tell myself that I am worthy of loving myself. I will acknowledge all the good and lovable things about me. I will “act as if” until I know that it is true. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Ask the Universe for Help

You have come so far. You have learned to ask for help from people when you need it. You have learned to ask God. God as you understand God, for help,too. Now you’re entering into a relationship with the universe, an active, vital, living relationship. Now you can learn to ask the universe for help as well.

Talk to the universe. Talk aloud if you can. Say: Show me, guide me, lead me, help me. This is what I want, this is what I need. Say: Show me which road to follow, where to go, and what to do. Yes, talk to people. Talk to God. They are part of the universe and world we live in. But talk aloud to the universe,too.

Then listen to your inner voice. hear what it says and trust what you hear. Answers come in many ways, from many sources, many places. But if the answer is right for you, your heart will know, and it will feel true.

Talk to the universe. Ask it for help. Then listen to your heart. Because that quiet voice, the one in your heart, is how the universe talks to you.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let a friend be there for you

I was at a carnival somewhere, sitting on a bench, eating blue cotton candy and experiencing the noise and color and the big carousel. Garishly colored horses bounced up and down, round and round, lights flashed; people whirred past. The little girl was on the verge of tears as her mother brought her up to the gate. She stalled, trying desperately to convince her mom, that no, she really didn’t want to go on the merry-go-round after all. Mom was reassuring but firm, and finally a deal was reached. Daughter would go on the big ride if her Mom would go,too.

They gave the man their tickets and walked around, the little one in awe of the multihued beasts that surrounded her. Finally, she settled on a white one with a gold mane and tail, and directed her mom to sit on the blue one next to her. Mom smiled, a little embarrassed, but complied with her daughter’s request.

Then the music started. And suddenly, they were both five years old, shrieking and laughing as their horses bounded away. I laughed,too, watching from my bench. They raced around an imaginary track through valleys, over rivers, across plains. The music screamed, the lights flashed, and for a few minutes, they could fly.

They were still laughing when the ride ended. “Again Mommy. Let’s go again!” laughed the girl excitedly. So they turned and got back in line. In letting go of her fear, that little girl was able to feel the wonder and excitement of a new experience, and in helping her daughter to overcome fear, the mother was able to recapture some of that thrill, as well. In our everyday lives, there are times when we are frightened, times when we need a friend to give us courage, and times when we can be a friend giving courage to someone else. Be grateful for those who have helped you find strength. Be grateful for the times when you have helped your friends find courage of their own.

Both sides of the coin are winners, and sometimes, experience is sweetest when shared.

God, help me reach out my hand in friendship and strength to those I meet along the way. And when I’m scared, help me give up my pride and ask a friend to stand by my side.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

When I become angry, can I admit to it and state it as a fact without allowing it to build up and burst out in inappropriate ways? Pent-up anger, I’ve finally begun to learn, quickly shatters the peace of mind that’s so critical to my on-going recovery. When I become enraged and lose control, I unwittingly handover control to the person, place, or thing with which I am enraged. When I’m angry will I tr to remember that I am endangering myself? Will I “count to ten” by calling a friend in The Program and say the Serenity Prayer aloud?

Today I Pray

May I recognize angry feelings and let them out a little a time, stating my anger as a fat, instead of allowing it to fester into rage and explode uncontrollable.

Today I Will Remember

Anger is. Rage need not be.

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One More Day

Reality is a staircase going neither up nor down, we don’t move, today is today, always is today.
–Octavio Paz

Reality is a harsh word and can invade our everyday lives. When we are struggling to cope with the physical changes which occur with long-term medical problems, reality becomes our constant companion. No longer can we deny anxiety or discomfort.

Our self-imposed rules might be the framework of our lives, but we can build a new structure which accepts illness as part of the reality of our lives. This new structure can have much more depth and greater dimension than the original, for we are older and wiser. Part of the framework which gives our days meaning is our love for friends and family, and recognition of our spiritual capacity. These, too, become our new reality.

I no longer expect perfect health, but I can minimize my complaining and maximize my efforts to live a meaningful life.

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Food For Thought

Beginnings

Each day is a new start. Each moment is a beginning.

We do not have to wait until Monday to get back on the program or clean a closet or tackle a difficult report. We do not have to wait until tomorrow morning, either. Now is the moment to stop eating, to make a phone call, to begin whatever project we have been putting off.

There is no way we can change what we did five minutes ago, nor can we predict what will happen half an hour from now. We can only deal with now.

By doing what needs to be done right now, we make the most of each present moment. As long as we are alive, we are always free to begin again. Instead of following an old, worn out habit, make a fresh start this moment on the rest of your life.

Give me grace, Lord, to begin again.

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One Day At A Time

SETTING EXAMPLES

“Don’t worry that children never listen to you;
worry that they are always watching you.
Robert Fulgham

How many overweight people blame their size on genes? My whole family had weight problems. Everywhere I turn I see obese families. In my house we were taught that it is a sin to waste food. After all, there are starving people in the world. As if my cleaning my plate would really help a starving child. How many times was I rewarded with a sweet treat instead of a hug and a “Gee you did good – I’m really proud of you.” A scraped knee always felt better if you put a candy on it. I could eat the treat after the pain was gone, so of course eating made you feel better fast. My parents didn’t actually teach me that food would give me instant gratification in so many words, but I learned those lessons from observation. Food helped me get through some very difficult years. I never realized that there were tools that could help through them. Unfortunately, I only found OA after my children were grown up and had watched their coe mother make the same mistakes that her parents taught her. I am trying to set a better example now. I no longer have a pantry full of junk food and when I give my grandchildren treats, it’s books, stickers, hairclips, toys, anything non-edible.

God, I realize that my parents unintentionally taught me bad eating habits and I forgive them. Please let my children forgive me for making the same mistakes. Help me to set a better example for the next generation. Please be with me when I buy groceries and let me bring only healthy food into my house. Help me to be satisfied with my abstinent meals so that I won’t be tempted to binge and graze with little eyes upon me. I am so grateful for Your presence in my life, because I can’t do this alone.

One day at a time . . .
Please remind me that there are tools I can use instead of slipping into my old eating habits and let me be an example of the miracles that come with abstinence.
Jeanette 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Faith has to work twenty-four hours a day in and through us, or we perish. – Pg. 16 – Bill’s Story

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Family and fellowship, sponsors and counselors are our source of strength and good feelings today, not Jim Beam and Mary Jane.

May I try not to control the people who help long enough to listen to their words of guidance.

Appreciating Life

I have the gift of life. I am here. I am alive, with all of my senses and able to experience the magic of this incredible world. Whatever this day has in store for me, I am open to receive. I will act on my day and allow my day to act on me. I am open. I will take steps that I know will make my day feel good, productive and pleasurable, and then I will let the rest happen. Each day presents me with gifts and surprises, if I know how to unwrap the present, if I remember how to be astonished or pleased.

Life itself is the gift.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Often the difference between a bad attitude and a good one is simply what you call it. You can be lonely or enjoy blessed solitude. You can be burdened or building strength. People can use you or you can be of use to others.

Whether it is AA for ‘Altered Attitude,’ NA for ‘New Attitude,’ or CDA for ‘Change’D Attitude,’ my attitude today is a direct reflection of my personal growth.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Misery is an option. But acceptance and gratitude did not come as standard equipment either.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will ‘act as if’ I am worth loving. I am beginning to tell myself that I am worthy of loving myself. I will acknowledge all the good and lovable things about me. I will ‘act as if’ until I know that it is true.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I’d called AA and they sent this fella Kevin around. He came into my office, put his hand out and asked how I was. I said my standard ‘Great’. And he kept hold of my hand pulled me up close, eye-balled me and said; ‘Bull s…’ – He was my sponsor from that day. – Dave B. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 15

Change
It never occurred to us that we needed to change ourselves
to meet conditions, whatever they were.
In AA, we slowly learned that something had to be done about our vengeful resentments,
self-pity, and unwarranted pride. . .
We learned that if we were seriously disturbed, our first need was to quiet that disturbance,
regardless of who or what we thought caused it.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 47

Thought to Ponder . . .
If I don’t change, my sobriety date will.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
C H A N G E = Choosing Honesty Allows New Gifts and Energy.

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

Children of Chaos
Over the years, every conceivable deviation
from our Twelve Steps and Traditions has been tried.
That was sure to be,
since we are largely a band of ego-driven individuals.
Children of chaos, we have definitely played
with every brand of fire,
only to emerge unharmed and, we think, wiser.
These very deviations created a vast process
of trial and error which, under the grace of God,
has brought us to where we stand today.
c. 1952 AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 146

Thought to Consider . . .
Once we clear a hurdle, it doesn’t seem so high

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
C H A O S = Can’t Handle Another Overwhelming Situation

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

Accept
>From “‘The Belief Will Come'”:
“I don’t recall any immediate, dramatic change in my life. I began rereading the Big Book and the Twelve Steps, and
now I found in these much that I had never found before. I didn’t reject any of it. I accepted it just as it was written. Nor
did I read into it anything that wasn’t there.
“Again, nothing changed overnight. But, as time has passed, I have acquired a blind and, yes, childlike faith that, by
accepting a God I don’t understand and the program of A.A. just as it is written, I can maintain my sobriety one day at a time.”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 47

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

“One night after a Step Two meeting, I decided to find out what those courageous early members who put our Twelve
Steps together really meant by sanity. I was a little surprised to find that my dictionary defined it as the quality of being
sound of mind, sound of judgment, reasonable and rational in one’s thoughts … As I sat there mulling over the definition,
an idea occurred to me: ‘This is what I’m to be restored to — sound, reasonable, rational thinking.'”
Shenandoah, Iowa, February 1982
From: “Sanity Clause”
Step By Step

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

“Actually we were fooling ourselves, for 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.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 55~

“There is action and more action. ‘Faith without works is dead.'”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 88~

It brought a measure of humility, which we soon discovered to be a healer of pain.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 75

Misc. AA Literature – Quote
We have had a much keener look at ourselves and those about us. We have seen that we were prodded by
unreasonable fears or anxieties into making a life business of winning fame, money, and what we thought was
leadership. So false pride became the reverse side of that ruinous coin marked ‘Fear.’ We simply had to be Number
One people to cover up our deep-lying inferiorities.
True ambition is not what we thought it was. True ambition is the profound desire to live usefully and walk humbly under
the grace of God.

Prayer for the Day: God, There are many difficulties and challenges in life, and we see or experience more of them
each day we live. Give us the power of your Holy Spirit that we may have courage and determination, and may live in
such a way that we encourage one another. Enable us to transform whatever is negative, and remain positive in attitude
throughout our lives. Lighten our darkness and keep us safe. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 14th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 14th

Happy Valentines Day!

Daily Reflections

EXPECTATIONS vs. DEMANDS

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

Dealing with expectations is a frequent topic at
meetings. It isn’t wrong to expect progress of myself,
good things from life, or decent treatment from others.
Where I get into trouble is when my expectations become
demands. I will fall short of what I wish to be and
situations will go in ways I do not like, because
people will let me down sometimes. The only question
is: “What am I going to about it?” Wallow in self-pity
or anger; retaliate and make a bad situation worse; or
will I trust in God’s power to bring blessings on the
messes in which I find myself? Will I ask Him what I
should be learning; do I keep on doing the right things
I know how to do, no matter what; do I take the time to
share my faith and blessings with others?

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

After that first drink, we had a single track mind. It
was like a railroad train. The first drink started it
off and it kept going on the single track until it got
to the end of the line, drunkenness. We knew this would
happen when we sat down at a bar to have the first drink,
but still we couldn’t keep away from liquor. Our will-power
was gone. We had become helpless and hopeless before the
power of alcohol. It’s not the second drink or the tenth
drink that does the damage. It’s the first drink. Will I ever
take that first drink again?

Meditation For The Day

I must keep a time apart with God every day. Gradually I
will be transformed mentally and spiritually. It is not the
praying so much as just being in God’s presence. The
strengthening and curative powers of this I cannot
understand, but I can experience them. The poor, sick
world would be cured if every day each soul waited before
God for the inspiration to live aright. My greatest
spiritual growth occurs in this time apart with God.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may faithfully keep a quiet time apart with
God. I pray that I may grow spiritually each day.
 

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As Bill Sees It

Our Companions, p. 45

Today, the vast majority of us welcome any new light that can be
thrown on the alcoholic’s mysterious and baffling malady. We
welcome new and valuable knowledge whether it is issues from a test
tube, from a psychiatrist’s couch, or from revealing social studies. We
are glad of any kind of education that accurately informs the public
and changes its age-old attitude toward the drunk.

More and more we regard all who labor in the total field of alcoholism
as our companions on a march from darkness into light. We see that
we can accomplish together what we could never accomplish in
separation and in rivalry.

Grapevine, March 1958

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Walk In Dry Places

Releasing the Past_____ Living in the Present.
Some of us waste time brooding over past failures and lost opportunities. Since the past is beyond our reach, we can’t change anything that happened. We do, however, have the power to change the way we view the present.  We can begin by realizing that our past troubles really may have been valuable lessons.
We can also get a better perspective by releasing the idea that anything from the past controls our future. The real meaning of the saying “with God, all things are possible” is that our Higher Power can transform anything that happened in our past.  AA has had its share of miraculous changes that came to people who seemingly had lost all hope.  These changes have included miraculous restorations in health, finances, and relationships.
A new saying is that something or some person who bothered us in the past is history, as far as we’re concerned.  Let’s put history where it belongs__ on the shelves and away from our daily thinking and activities.
I can be a new person today and every day.  The past cannot control or limit me, but I do benefit from its lessons.

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Keep It Simple

Some things have to be believed to be seen. –Ralph Hodgson
In recovery, we learn to trust. We trust that our Higher Power is on our side. Maybe we can’t see our Higher Power , but once we start trusting things change. Step Two says, “Came to believe. . . ” Once we come to believe, we start to see our Higher Power working in many ways. We make new program friends. We find new peace. Our family and friends trust us again. Life won’t always be fair. We won’t get all we want. But we’ll find the love and care we need. If we’re open to believing in love, the easy times will be easier and the harder times a bit softer. Do I believe in love?
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me believe, especially when times are hard. Help me not blame You for the hard times.
Action for the Day:  I will write what I believe the program and my Higher Power want for me.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Friendship of a kind that cannot easily be reversed tomorrow must have its roots in common interests and shared beliefs.  –Barbara W. Tuchman
The gift of friendship has been extended to each of us sharing this program. Our interest is common: we want to stay abstinent. And we share the belief that a power greater than ourselves can restore us to sanity. We trust our commitment to one another here. We are learning to live the program’s principles in all our affairs.
In years gone by, friendships were often missing from our lives. We had a friend, here and there, certainly, but could she really be trusted – with our secrets, with our spouse? An overriding fear and one not without reason. It’s likely that we, too, failed to be good friends. Friendship, anytime, means risking vulnerability. It means making a decision to be trustworthy. And it means not backing away from either, anytime.
Friendships so enrich our lives; they complete us. The experiences shared among friends give us all an edge on living. It is no accident that we have been drawn here together. What we have will help another.
I must be willing to give away my intimate self to my sisters in trust. My strength as a woman recovering will increase as my ties of friendship increase.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

We believe, and so suggested a few years ago, that the action of alcohol on these chronic alcoholics is a manifestation of an allergy; that the phenomenon of craving is limited to this class and never occurs in the average temperate drinker. These allergic types can never safely use alcohol in any form at all; and once having formed the habit and found they cannot break it, once having lost their self-confidence, their reliance upon things human, their problems pile up on them and become astonishingly difficult to solve.

p. xxviii

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.

I had my first drink in my senior year of high school.  That first night, I slipped out of the window so my parents wouldn’t hear me leave.  There were four of us, and we only brought four bottles of home brew.  I never made that mistake again!

p. 369

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

But as time passed we found that with the help of A.A.’s Twelve Steps we could lose those fears, no matter what our material prospects were. We could cheerfully perform humble labor without worrying about tomorrow. If our circumstances happened to be good, we no longer dreaded a change for the worse, for we had learned that these troubles could be turned into great values. It did not matter too much what our material condition was, but it did matter what our spiritual condition was. Money gradually became our servant and not our master. It became a means of exchanging love and service with those about us. When, with God’s help, we calmly accepted our lot, then we found we could live at peace with ourselves and show others who still suffered the same fears that they could get over them, too. We found that freedom from fear was more important than freedom from want.

pp. 121-122

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If you keep falling in the same hole, go down a different road.

It is not easy to straighten in the oak the crook that grew in the sapling.  –American Proverb

“Silence is one of the hardest things to refute.”  –Josh Billings

Little deeds of kindness, little words of love, help to make earth happy like the heaven above.  –Julia A. Fletcher Carney

Faith is not only a belief and a feeling, it is an action. Action, really does speak louder than words.  –Shelley

Let us dedicate ourselves to peace within ourselves, that wherever we go, we bring peace and we learn to find peace in all things.  –John Morton

God treasures each of us as a rare and lovely flower.  –Patricia Bellah

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

LOVE

“Let there be spaces in your
togetherness.
— Kahlil Gibran

As an alcoholic I demanded love and was possessive of others. I had a
selfish love that treated people as “things” — for my own
satisfaction and survival. I was claustrophobic in my affection and
smothered any creative love; my fear of being alone made me
blackmail people with my needs and emotions.

Today I can love people while still allowing them to breathe. An
important part of my program is detachment; I take responsibility for
me and I allow others to take responsibility for themselves. I give the
people I love space.

Sometimes I need to love a person enough to let them go. Spiritually I
am beginning to understand that in order to be free, I must give
freedom to others.

God, in the “spaces” of my love is the growth experienced.

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Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in the mighty heavens. Psalm 150:1

“Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles.” Isaiah 40:31

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. 1 John 3:1

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Daily Inspiration

Don’t ever grow too old for your birthdays or give up on your dreams. Lord, help me to know where You are leading me today and face this adventure with excitement.

Never let what you can’t do get in the way of what you can do. Lord, help me to recognize my abilities and focus only on my strengths so that each day I will get nearer to my goals.

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NA Just For Today

Honesty And Spirituality

“The right to a God of your understanding is total and without any catches. Because we have this right, it is necessary to be honest about our belief if we are to grow spiritually”

Basic Text, p. 25

In meetings, over refreshments, in talks with our sponsor, we hear our NA friends talking about the way they understand their Higher Power. It would be easy to “go with the flow;” adopting someone else’s beliefs. But just as no one else can recover for us, so no one else’s spirituality can substitute for our own. We must honestly search for an understanding of God that truly works for us.

Many of us begin that search with prayer and meditation, and continue with our experiences in recovery. Have there been instances where we have been given power beyond our own to face life’s challenges? When we have quietly sought direction in times of trouble, have we found it? What kind of Power do we believe has guided and strengthened us? What kind of Power do we seek? With the answers to these questions, we will understand our Higher Power well enough to feel safe and confident about asking it to care for our will and lives.

A borrowed understanding of God may do on a short haul. But in the long run, we must come to our own understanding of a Higher Power, for it is that Power which will carry us through our recovery.

Just for today: I seek a Power greater than myself that can help me grow spiritually. Today, I will examine my beliefs honestly and come to my own understanding of God. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Love cures people–both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it. –Karl Menninger
Receiving a loving hug from a parent or perhaps a smile from a friend or even a stranger gives us a special feeling inside. We know we are important to others when they show us their love through attention. And we sometimes forget that we matter to others. Family members and friends feel good in the same way when we show them our love. Everyone needs to be loved.
How can we show our love? Must it be through a hug? Doing a favor for someone is loving. Helping around the house or the yard is loving, particularly when we’ve volunteered our help. Giving an unexpected gift to a friend is a way of showing love. Showing others we care, even when they are angry, is perhaps the nicest of all expressions of love.
What new way can I show someone I care today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The less able I am to believe in our epoch and the more arid and depraved mankind seems in my eyes, the less I look to revolution as the remedy and the more I believe in the magic of love. –Hermann Hesse
Men have been more likely to look outward than inward for solutions to problems. Yet this program is changing us from within. As we come to terms with ourselves, as we learn to be in relationships with friends and family, the same picture that looked so dismal in past years may look full of possibilities and even rich in the present. The love we feel toward others and the love we receive change our perceptions.
We need not expect all relationships to be alike. One friend may be wonderful as a recreational buddy, but perhaps we wouldn’t talk about everything in our life with him. Another friend is comfortable and we can be ourselves with him, although he may not challenge us to grow or change. No friendship, no spouse, no one person can be enough in our life. But as a group they sustain and enrich us. We need the love and contact with them all.
I am thankful for love, which gives meaning and hope to life.


You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Valentine’s Day
For children, Valentine’s Day means candy hearts, silly cards, and excitement in the air.
How different Valentine’s Day can be for us as adults. The Love Day can be a symbol that we have not yet gotten love to work for us as we would like.
Or it can be a symbol of something different, something better. We are in recovery now. We have begun the healing process. Our most painful relationships, we have learned, have assisted us on the journey to healing, even if they did little more than point out our own issues or show us what we don’t want in our life.
We have started the journey of learning to love ourselves. We have started the process of opening our heart to love, real love that flows from us, to others, and back again. Do something loving for yourself. Do something loving and fun for your friends, for your children, or for anyone you choose.
It is the Love Day. Wherever we are in our healing process, we can have as much fun with it as we choose. Whatever our circumstances, we can be grateful that our heart is opening to love.
I will open myself to the love available to me from people, the Universe, and my Higher Power today. I will allow myself to give and receive the love I want today. I am grateful that my heart is healing, that I am learning to love.


I am beginning to actually feel the energy of love that I have inside. My entire being is in the process of being transformed with love. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Send Love Letters

Sending love letters to people we care about is a rewarding experience, both for us and for them. Making the time to take pen in hand and express our thoughts is valuable. But there’s another way to send love letters,too. This way takes as much time and attention as writing a loving note does, but it doesn’t require a pen and paper. It requires concentrated thought.

There’s an invisible thread of energy winding through the universe, one that connects us all. Have you ever noticed that sometimes you can tell if someone’s angry or upset with you, even if you haven’t talked to or seen this person? You can feel his or her anger, even if you haven’t been physically present to experience it. Thoughts have power, particularly those charged with intense emotional energy. When we think mean, bitter thoughts, it can be like sending hate mail along our connecting wires. It can almost be a sensory attack.

Why not send loving thoughts charged with positive emotional energy? We can consciously choose to use our connections to others to send love. Send positive thoughts. Blessings. Peace. Assistance in time of crisis. We can send our thoughts in the form of a prayer, or we can simply think a blessing or positive thought, charge it with energy, and send it along the wires with love.

When someone you know or love comes to mind, or even someone you don’t– perhaps someone in another part of the country or the world, perhaps someone going through a particular crisis– and you’re not certain what to do, send a love letter. Your loving thoughts will touch them and your blessings will all come back to you.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Say woohoo because there’s hope

The doorbell rang one day. I was slumping about in the big house I had just purchased in Minnesota. It was going to be the dream home for the children and me. The problem was, Shane had been killed the day after I closed the deal. Now Nichole and I were rambling around wondering what to do.

I answered the door. The FedEx man asked me to sign for a delivery. I did. And he handed me a large cardboard box. I brought it into the living room and put it down without opening it up. I didn’t get excited about much of anything back then. I was sad and angry. People, my readers, said they liked my writing because it gave them hope. The problem was, I didn’t have any of that hope for myself. I couldn’t see how life could or would ever make any kind of sense again. The one thing I wanted– my son alive and well, and my family intact– would not ever come to pass.

One day I got around to opening that big cardboard box. I took a knife, sliced it down the center, and looked at what was inside. It was filled with stuffed animals. A big green parrot with a fuzzy beak was sitting on top. There were monkeys, bears, and assorted things. They didn’t look brand new, but they were happy, cheerful little things. I took out the card and read the note inside. This is what it said.

“I make my living out of taking all the stuffed animals that people throw away. Then I take them home and clean them up. I guess I like doing it just to prove a point,” the woman wrote. “Sometimes, we start thinking something’s no good anymore, so we throw it in the trash. Sometimes we throw things away too quickly, but all they really need is a little tender, loving care to bring them back to life. I heard about your son’s death. I thought maybe getting a box of my reborn animals might help.”

Many years have passed since then. I’ve gotten rid of a lot of my possessions, especially when I moved from Minnesota to California in 1994. But one of the things I’ve held on to– in fact he’s still sitting in this room with me next to my desk– is that happy green parrot with the big fuzzy beak.

He’s a gentle reminder that even something as broken and scaggly as I was can be brought back to life again. Some things in life are true, whether we believe them or not.

Hope is one of those things.

Even if you have to say it in disbelief, say woohoo.

God, help me believe in me as much as you do. Thanks for getting me through those tough spots when I lose my faith.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Today I will take the time to list the positive aspects of my new life and the blessings that accompany the miracle of my recovery. I will be grateful for the seemingly simple ability to eat normally, to fall asleep with a feeling of contentment, to awaken with a gladness to be alive. I will be grateful for the ability to face life on life’s terms — with peace of mind, self-respect, and full possession of all my faculties. On a daily basis, do I count my blessings? Do I seek through prayer and meditation to improve my conscious contact with God as I understand Him?

Today I Pray

On this day of love-giving,may I count all the good things in my life and give thanks for them. May I take no blessing for granted, including the beating of my own heart and the fresh feel of new air as I breathe.

Today I Will Remember

To count — and consider — my blessings.

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One More Day

We don’t love qualities, we love persons..

.–Jacques Maritain

No matter what happens to us in our lifetime, regardless of whether we are rich or poor,m strong or weak, ill or well, we always have room for love. Unqualified love and caring cost nothing. Despite our financial position, allowing ourselves to love, allowing ourselves to be loved strengthens and lends greater value to our lives.

In loving others and in being loved, we’re reminded that people, not events or even characteristics, are th important elements of our lives. We don’t look for perfection in our loved ones, and we’re freed of the notion that we must earn another’s love. Love balances our lives; it helps us keep sight of our values and priorities.

I will remember today that I love people for themselves, not for their potential. The love I receive is given just as freely.


Food For Thought

Satisfaction

When we were overeating, we thought mainly about trying to satisfy ourselves. The more we ate, the more we wanted to eat. The more we ate, the less satisfied we were. We finally realized that satisfaction was not to be found by consuming more and more food.

When we stopped overeating, we suddenly had much more time and energy available for constructive activities. We began to contribute more to our families, our jobs, our recreation. We found new areas where we could be of service to others.

Because OA has given us so much, we in turn are able to share with our groups. As we give to others, we receive self-satisfaction as a by-product. This is a much more powerful satisfaction than we ever found in the refrigerator!

For each of us, serving and contributing to the best of our abilities means abstaining. Without abstinence, we can never be satisfied.

Thank You for opportunities to give and for the satisfaction of abstinence.

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One Day At A Time

OZ

“Oz never did give nothing to the Tin Man
That he didn’t, didn’t already have.”
Tin Man
Written by Dewey Bunnell, ©1974

These are simple words, and at first glance look like a song from the ‘Wizard of Oz.’ However, to me they are complex and have deep meaning.

I have a body, a mind and a spirit; yet for the better part of my growing-up years I thought I had a flaw. I never felt complete and kept searching for whatever-it-was that would make me whole and fix me. I had no idea I was looking in the wrong places; but the real problem was I didn’t know what I was looking for.

I never knew how to just ‘be’ without expecting some kind of negative feedback or teasing or criticism or uncertainty in return. Because I never felt good enough, I learned to ‘not be’ and to make myself invisible emotionally while eating, and in later years eating and purging.

Coming to OA was like surfacing for air after staying under water too long. People who didn’t know me understood and supported me. I slowly opened up and shared at meetings and did service and stopped hiding, and the void created with food and loneliness began to fill with hugs and support and recovery.

Today I have a Program with wonderful friends who reinforce I am OK as I am. God gave me and continues to give me what I need – physically (help with my food plan), emotionally and spiritually. The miracles in my life keep coming when I least expect them and only when I turn them over to God. Each new miracle and blessing nourishes me.

I began writing professionally again; writing is my passion, and my disease stole it from me. My spirit is happy, and I am grateful to my loving friend who had confidence and faith in me.

One day at a time …
I am discovering my emerging identity was inside me all the time.
Janie 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

After they have succumbed to the desire again, as so many do, and the phenomenon of craving develops, they pass through the well-known stages of a spree, emerging remorseful, with a firm resolution not to drink again. This is repeated over and over, and unless this person can experience and entire psychic change there is little hope of his recovery. – Pg. XXIX – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Under stress men are more likely to do the ‘fight or flight’ thing and counter stress with anger or desertion. Women are more likely to adopt the ‘tend and befriend’ mode where they begin to nurture others and make alliances. You will be adopting a number of strategies in your growing recovery. Try to make as many of them proactive as you can. The more you respond ( with thought and deliberation ) then react ( instinctively ), the better you will weather the journey.

I seek solutions and guidelines for my behaviors and the coming decisions I must make. I do not ‘react’ but ‘respond’ to the situations in my life.

The Power is in the Now

I recognize that the present is alive and vibrant and creative. All of the creative power of this alive and radiant universe is in the present, in the here and now. If I align myself with the present, if I allow myself to fully experience this moment, I will find all I need in it. There is magic in this moment, there is beauty and vibrancy in it that resonates throughout my life. What I experience now, creates my future.

There is nothing like the present

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Sometimes you are the wind; sometimes you are the bug; sometimes you are the windshield.

Experience is what I get when I don’t get what I want.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

When we use, addiction makes all our decisions.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am beginning to actually feel the energy of love that I have inside. My entire being is in the process of being transformed with love.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Don’t point the finger, reach out the hand. – Anon. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 14

Love
Love is always positive and constructive. It does not tolerate negativism.
It must be given and received unconditionally, without reservations, with no strings attached.
When we love, we will see in others what we wish to have in ourselves.
We will know that love is a privilege given to us by God.
When we love, we will never be bored with life or our program. . .
It shows us that the things that count are never held in the hand but always in the heart.
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol. 3], p. 297

Thought to Ponder . . .
Giving love is more important than being loved.

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

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

Results
We found that as soon as we were able
to lay aside prejudice
and express even a willingness
to believe in a Power greater than ourselves,
we commenced to get results,
even though it was impossible for any of us
to fully define or comprehend that Power,
which is God.
c. 2001AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 46

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

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

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

Overseas
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“Maybe A.A. was just a Yankee gadget that would be no good for Ireland, England, Holland, Scandinavia, Australia, and
the Pacific. Since their countries were so different, maybe their alcoholics were different too. ‘Will A.A. work in our
cultures”‘ they asked. We became heavily involved in correspondence, much helped by our American members in New
York who could translate for us. We searched out and briefed A.A. travelers going abroad. Gradually headway was
made. It was a long time, however, before we knew for sure that A.A. could cross the barriers of distance, race, creed,
and language. But today [1957], the A.A. map shows our society in more than seventy countries and the U.S. possessions.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 200

~~~^ Grapevine Quote ^~~~

“With respect to its own affairs, the collective conscience of the group will, given time, almost surely demonstrate its
perfect dependability. The group conscience will, in the end, prove a far more infallible guide for group affairs than the
decision of any individual member, however good or wise he may be.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1948
From: “Tradition Two”
The Language of the Heart

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

“We are careful never to show intolerance or hatred of drinking as
an institution. Experience shows that such an attitude is not
helpful to anyone. Every new alcoholic looks for this spirit among
us and is immensely relieved when he finds we are not witch-burners.
A spirit of intolerance might repel alcoholics whose lives could
have been saved, had it not been for such stupidity.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 103~

“This painful past may be of infinite value to other families still
struggling with their problem. We think each family which has been
relieved owes something to those who have not, and when the occasion
requires, each member of it should be only too willing to bring
former mistakes, no matter how grievous, out of their hiding places.
Showing others who suffer how we were given help is the very thing
which makes life seem so worth while to us now.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 124~

With clear understanding and right, grown-up attitudes, very happy results do follow.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 120

Misc. AA Literature – Quote
Today, the vast majority of us welcome any new light that can be thrown on the alcoholic’s mysterious and baffling
malady. We welcome new and valuable knowledge whether it issues from a test tube, from a psychiatrist’s couch, or
from revealing social studies. We are glad of any kind of education that accurately informs the public and changes its
age-old attitude toward the drunk.
More and more we regard all who labor in the total field of alcoholism as our companions on a march from darkness into
light. We see that we can accomplish together what we could never accomplish in separation and in rivalry.

Prayer for the Day: Lord, help us to do your will and open our spiritual ears to always listen to your voice as we make all
our plans and decisions. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 13th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 13th

Daily Reflections

WE CAN’T THINK OUR WAY SOBER

To the intellectually self-sufficient man or woman,
many A.A.’s can say, “Yes, we were like you–far too
smart for our own good…. Secretly, we felt we could
float above the rest of the folks on our brain power
alone.”
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 60

Even the most brilliant mind is no defense against the
disease of alcoholism. I can’t think my way sober. I
try to remember that intelligence is a God-given
attribute that I may use, a joy–like having a talent
for dancing or drawing or carpentry. It does not make
me better than anyone else, and it is not a particularly
reliable tool for recovery, for it is a power greater
than myself who will restore me to sanity–not a high
IQ or a college degree.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Sometimes we can’t help thinking: Why can’t we ever drink
again? We know it’s because we’re alcoholics, but why did
we have to get that way? The answer is that at some point
in our drinking careers, we passed what is called our
“tolerance point.” When we passed this point, we passed
from a condition in which we could tolerate alcohol to a
condition in which we could not tolerate it at all. After
that, if we took one drink we would sooner or later end
up drunk. When I think of liquor now, do I think of it as
something that I can never tolerate again?

Meditation For The Day

In a race, it is when a goal is in sight that heart and
nerves and muscles and courage are strained almost to the
breaking point. So with us. The goal of the spiritual life
is in sight. All we need is the final effort. The saddest
records made by people are those who ran well, with brave
stout hearts, until the sight of the goal and then some
weakness or self-indulgence held them back. They never
knew how near the goal they were or how near they were to
victory.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may press on until the goal is reached.
I pray that I may not give up in the final stretch.

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As Bill Sees It

Daily Acceptance, p. 44

“Too much of my life has been spent in dwelling upon the faults of
others. This is a most subtle and perverse form of self-satisfaction,
which permits us to remain comfortably unaware of our own defects.
Too often we are heard to say, ‘If it weren’t for him (or her), how
happy I’d be!”

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

Our very first problem is to accept our present circumstances as they
are, ourselves as we are, and the people about us as they are. This is
to adopt a realistic humility without which no genuine advance can
even begin. Again and again, we shall need to return to that
unflattering point of departure. This is an exercise in acceptance that
we can profitably practice every day of our lives.

Provided we strenuously avoid turning these realistic surveys of the
facts of life into unrealistic alibis for apathy or defeatism, they can be
the sure foundation upon which increased emotional heath and
therefore spiritual progress can be built.

  1. Letter, 1966
  2. Grapevine, March 1962

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Walk In Dry Places

When Others Don’t perform____Personal Responsibility
There will be times when other people will disappoint us.. either intentionally or because of indifference or incompetence. If we have been counting on them, their nonperformance can cause us real anger and frustration.
Our growth, however, should teach us that such failures are part of life.  While never losing trust in others, we must accept them as fallible people. Their mistakes and lapses come from the human shortcomings all of us have.
Our best course is to live without expecting too much from others.  They are not here to please or satisfy us.  It’s possible, too, that we’ve been unrealistic in some of our expectations and have set ourselves up for disappointments.
Our personal responsibility is to do our best even when others fall short of our expectations. At the same time, we can grow by becoming more reliable and dependable ourselves.
We cannot use another’s failure as an excuse for negligence on our part.
Today I’ll expect the best, but I will know that I also have the spiritual resources to deal with the worst that can happen.

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Keep It Simple

Tomorrow doesn’t matter, for I have lived today. –Horace
Life is found in the present. One of the first things we hear when we enter the program is, One Day at a Time. We break life into short time periods. This give us the power to change. We’re not sure we can stay sober for a lifetime. But we know that with God, and our program, we can stay sober for today.
This holds true for many other things in out lives. We’re not sure we can go a lifetime without feeling self-pity, but we can give it up for a day. By living One Day at a Time, we become more sure of our strength. We have the power to change things only in the present. The present holds much for us, if we get a hold on it.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, You are found in the moment. You are here. I will stay with You minute by minute.
Action for the Day:  I will ground myself in the present. Today, I’ll not worry about the past or the future.

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Each Day a New Beginning

I have sacrificed everything in my life that I consider precious in order to advance the political career of my husband.  –Pat Nixon
Putting another person’s needs first is what most of us were trained to do when growing up. We were seldom encouraged to embark on an individual course, and years of taking a back seat taught us that our hopes mattered little.
Now, for some of us, the future looks like a blank wall. It is time to carve out a plan for ourselves, yet how do we decide where we want to go? And how do we get there? The program says, “Live one day at a time.” Our friends say, “Take one step at a time.”
We have chosen to do something about the circumstances we found ourselves in, or we wouldn’t be reading these words. We can stop for a moment and reflect on the many changes thus far. We are already on our way. We have taken a number of necessary steps. What an exciting adventure we have embarked upon! And we will be helped all along the way.
We can trust our inner yearnings, the ones we may have stifled in times past. We can realize our hearts’ pure desires, if we seek guidance.
My time has come. I can mold my future. I will take each day, each experience, and let it draw me to the next important step.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

Many years ago one of the leading contributors to this book came under our care in this hospital and while here he acquired some ideas which he put into practical application at once.
Later, he requested the privilege of being allowed to tell his story to other patients here and with some misgiving, we consented. The cases we have followed through have been most interesting; in fact, many of them are amazing. The unselfishness of these men as we have come to know them, the entire absence of profit motive, and their community spirit, is indeed inspiring to one who has labored long and wearily in this alcoholic field. They believe in themselves, and still more in the Power which pulls chronic alcoholics back from the gates of death.
Of course an alcoholic ought to be freed from his physical craving for liquor, and this often requires a definite hospital procedure, before psychological measures can be of maximum benefit.

pp. xxvii-xxviii

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

FLOODED WITH FEELING – When a barrier to God collapsed, this self-described agnostic was at Step Three.

When I first came to A.A., I thought everybody had drunk more than I had, that everybody had gotten into more trouble.  But I kept coming to meetings, and after a while, I began to hear the beginnings of their stories.  I came to realize that I was on the same road.  I just hadn’t gone as far–yet.

p. 369

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

This all meant, of course, that we were still far off balance. When a job still looked like a mere means of getting money rather than an opportunity for service, when the acquisition of money for financial independence looked more important than a right dependence upon God, we were still the victims of unreasonable fears. And these were fears which would make a serene and useful existence, at any financial level, quite impossible.

p. 121

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“Letting go of the past and not worrying about the future seems a small price to pay for all the happiness to be found in the present.”

The richest man, whatever his lot, is he who is content with what he has got.  –Dutch Proverb

If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.  –Booker T. Washington

God help me relax and let my answer about what to do next come naturally from you.  –Melody Beattie

We are loved completely by a God who knows us completely.  –Pedro A. Sandin-Fremaint

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

REALITY

“It is the chiefest point of
happiness that man is willing to
be what he is.”
— Desiderious Erasmus

I am an alcoholic. Today I am able to love myself because I am able
to accept myself.

More than this: because I am able to accept myself, I am able to be
myself. The acceptance of my disease around alcohol has taught me
that I am not perfect, and I do not live in a perfect world — this leads
to an acceptance of others. My pain around alcohol has given me an
insight into the sufferings of others — and this has produced spiritual
growth.

I am happy not because I am an alcoholic but because I know that I
am an alcoholic. Today I can be what I was meant to be, rather than
the “fake” that I was becoming.

In the spiritual journey is the happiness.

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“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  Romans 8:28

‘Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’  Matthew 11:28

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Daily Inspiration

Leave behind your faults and know that your past is forgiven. Lord, You have freed me to live today and allowed me to know that my future is secure in You.

Live a God-filled life and it will be only natural that you will express enthusiasm for life, joy, laughter and happiness. Lord, may the way I live always express my love for You.

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NA Just For Today

The Ties That Bind

“As long as the ties that bind us together are stronger than those that would tear us apart, all will be well.”
Basic Text, p. 57

Many of us feel that without NA we would surely have died from our disease. Hence, its existence is our very lifeline. However, disunity is an occasional fact of life in Narcotics Anonymous; we must learn to respond in a constructive way to the destructive influences that sometimes arise in our fellowship. If we decide to be part of the solution instead of the problem, we are headed in the right direction.

Our personal recovery and the growth of NA is contingent upon maintaining an atmosphere of recovery in our meetings. Are we willing to help our group deal constructively with conflict? As group members, do we strive to work out difficulties openly, honestly, and fairly? Do we seek to promote the common welfare of all our members rather than our own agenda? And, as trusted servants, do we take into consideration the effect our actions might have on newcomers?

Service can bring out both the best and the worst in us. But it is often through service that we begin to get in touch with some of our more pressing defects of character Do we shrink from service commitments rather than face what we might find out about ourselves? If we bear in mind the strength of the ties that bind us together—our recovery from active addiction—all will be well.

Just for today: I will strive to be of service to our fellowship. I will be unafraid to discover who I am. 

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You are reading from the book  Today’s Gift.
“Shall I give you a kiss?” Peter asked, and jerking an acorn button off his coat, solemnly presented it to her.  –James Barrie
If kisses can be made of acorn buttons, they can be made of any good thing. Think of kisses made of candy. Therefore, there must be a thousand and one ways to give a kiss. We can give one made of wild flowers picked in the ditch, the melody in a music box, the few true words in a note, or the picture we ourselves draw to give to the one we love. Think of how we can hide them here and there under pillows, in corners, in pockets where they’re sure to be seen and felt. Think of how hearts kiss when we hug or hold hands, how sleeping beauties suddenly wake up.
Does it matter that we try new ways to show our same old love?

You are reading from the book  Touchstones.
It is a cheap generosity, which promises the future in compensation for the present.  –J. A. Spender
Living in this moment is all we really have. We are constantly bombarded with advice to live for the future, but it perpetually exists beyond our grasp like the carrot tempting the donkey. We are told to be mindful of our career paths, to save for the future, and to sacrifice now for later rewards. We put off spending time with our children, but later they are no longer the same children. We postpone seeing friends now and discover later that we have lost our relationships.
Of course, we can’t be foolish about our future. We need to make some plans and delay some immediate pleasures. But for now, we can only have a rapport with others and ourselves and experience life in this moment. The present is the only time when anything can happen, any change can occur. This moment is like a fresh, cool breeze. The rest exists only in our imaginations or memories.
May I feel the exhilaration of being alive in this moment and maintain a balance in my perspective today.

You are reading from the book  The Language Of Letting Go.
Trusting Ourselves
What a great gift we’ve been given – ourselves. To listen to ourselves, to trust instinct and intuition, is to pay tribute to that gift.
What a disservice not to heed the leadings and leanings that so naturally arise from within. When will we learn that these leadings and leanings draw us into God’s rich plan for us?
We will learn. We will learn by listening, trusting, and following through. What is it time to do?… What do I need to do to take care of myself?… What am I being led to do?… What do I know?
Listen, and we will know. Listen to the voice within.
Today, I will listen and trust. I will be helped to take action when that is needed. I can trust God and myself.

Fill your world with color and Beauty
Fill your life and your world with the colors, textures, scents, and objects that are beautiful to you, that have meaning to you.
Remember that we are connected to our environment.
The objects and the colors in our world have energy and meaning.  They have an impact on us.
The more we see how connected we are, the more carefully and thoughtfully we may want o choose the items we place in our home, or our space at work, if we have a special area, because these objects and colors can reflect how we feel about ourselves and what is important to us.
Objects have energy.  They have energy already in them when we obtain them, and they have the energy and meaning we attribute to them.  Choose carefully the possessions you want around you, for they tell a story all day long.
Fill your world, your life, with objects that are beautiful and have special meaning to you.  What articles and hues have you surrounded yourself with at home, at work?  Is there a special article you want close to you, on your desk, in your locker, in your pocket?
What story do these things tell about you, about what you’re going through, about your place in your journey?  –Melody Beattie

Today my faith and confidence grow as I learn to accept all that I discover without judgment. I feel energy and life flow through me with this new freedom.  –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Don’t Let People Put Thoughts in Your Head

Respect the power of words and thoughts, both your own and others’.

Our ideas and inspirations sometimes come from other people, come from outside us. But if we’re not careful, it’s easy for others to put their ideas and intentions into our minds, to cast their spells on us. You aren’t very creative. Your heart isn’t open. You’re really not that healthy. You need me to succeed. You don’t deserve success. In fact, you don’t deserve… How easy it is to be unaware of the process, to walk around with other people’s words in your head, taking them as truth, taking them as our own, letting their ideas about us control our lives and our beliefs.

We don’t have to let others put their spells on us. We don’t have to believe what they say.

What are the words others have spoken to you, the spells they’ve cast on you and your life? What phrases are echoing in your mind, and who do they belong to? Listen to what you hear, and if they are not yours, get them out.

Words are powerful. Don’t let other people put them in your head. And choose carefully the words you speak to them.

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More Language Of Letting Go

You’re not alone

I felt a searing pain in my heart. It was physical– I swear it was– when that nurse asked me if I had someone I could call. Over the next few days at the hospital, I was surrounded by people, but at no previous time in my life had I ever felt this isolated and alone. I knew that the path I was about to walk, I had to walk alone.

Larer, another nurse walked over to me. She looked straight into my eyes. “It’s going to be difficult, harder than you can imagine,” she said. “And it’ll take about eight years. But you can do it. You’ll come through. I know. I lost a child,too. My daughter was nine when she died.”

There are places in our lives that we’re called to go alone. People can surround us, call us, and offer support. But the journey we’re about to take is solely and uniquely ours. People can watch us, reach out to us, and even say they know how it feels. But the world we’re entering is ours, and ours alone.

Slowly, as we walk this path that life has thrust on us, we begin to see the outline of a few faces– way out in the distance, waving to us, cheering us on. As we continue along the path, the faces and forms fill in. Before long, we see that we’re in the midst of a large, large group. Where did all these people come from? we wonder. I thought I was alone.

No matter what path you’re on, others have walked it before you, and some will follow you there. Each step you take is uniquely yours, but you are never, never alone.

While many experiences are isolated and uniquely ours, we’re simultaneously part of a collecive force. What we go through and what we do matters– sometimes much more than we know.

God, help me know how much you care. No matter what I’m going through, help me see the other faces along the way.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We sometimes hear someone say, “He is standing in his own light,” A mental picture then clearly reveals that many of us tend to shadow our own happiness by mistaken thinking. Let us learn to stand aside so the light can shine on us and all we do. For only then can we see ourselves and our circumstances with true clarity With The Program and the Twelves Steps, we no longer need to stand in our own light and try alone to solve our problems in dearness. When I am faced with a seemingly insoluble problem, will I ask myself if I am standing in my own light?

Today I Pray

May I not get in my own way, obscure my own clarity of thought, stumble over my own feet, block my own doorway to recovery. If I find that I am standing in my own light, may I ask my Higher Power and my friends in the group to show me a new vantage point.

Today I Will Remember

If all I an see is my shadow, I’m in my own light.

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One More Day

Joy waits for no man.
–Tanhuma

Joyfulness is one of God’s greatest gifts. Joy transcends all time and place. Joy causes unmeasurable and often indescribable feelings which we might only have for a fleeting moment. Joy is like opening a special present. It is a state of mind, a frame of reference for future memories.

While we may quite easily recognize the joy of watching an exquisite sunset, we forget too often that it is natural that its beauty changes, dims, and then disappears within moments. And this is true of many of our joy-filled experiences — they change, they dim, and often they disappear. Joy does not always stay with us, so we need to make the most of it when it is upon us — in a sunset, child’s hug, or a friend’s offered hand.

To live life to the fullest, I am open to those special moments of joy, even if they don’t last forever.


Food For Thought

Being Honest

During our compulsive overeating careers, many of us have been dishonest with others about what we were eating. Some of us have been closet eaters and some of us have stolen food. Most of us have eaten more when we were alone than when we were with other people.

We have almost surely been dishonest with ourselves, too. How many times have we promised ourselves to stick to a diet, only to find ourselves cheating a short time later? We tell ourselves that one small bite won’t make any difference, when deep down we know that we intend to eat many more bites than one.

When we take inventory, and as our insights are sharpened, we may discover other areas besides eating where we have not been honest with ourselves.

The OA program gives us a chance to practice rigorous honesty, especially with ourselves. The light from our Higher Power will gradually clear away our confusion and darkness.

May I not be afraid to know the truth. 

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One Day At A Time

ADMITTING MISTAKES

“A man should never be ashamed
to own he has been in the wrong,
which is but saying, in other words,
that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.”
Alexander Pope

Most of my life I had spent in blaming others for all the bad things that happened in my life, and I never learned to take responsibilty for my part in anything. I thought that life had treated me unfairly, but mostly it was because someone else had wronged me. I wallowed in self pity and justifiable anger, and not surprisingly, I found comfort in food so I could get through the pain of being treated so badly by others.

When I came into the program and began working the steps, I was horrified to learn that I was expected to do a searching and fearless inventory of my wrongdoings, for after all wasn’t it others who had harmed me and not the other way around? Slowly I realised that I had a part to play in all the events in my life, and that only by clearing up the wreckage of my past and keeping my side of the street clean, did I have any hope of recovery. I had to swallow my pride and admit when I was wrong, and when I did that, miracles began to happen. Instead of feeling hard done by and bad about myself as I had thought I would, the exact opposite happened, and I started on a journey of growth and increasing self esteem that never ceases to surprise me. When I am able to admit that I’m wrong and apologise for my part in any conflict or misunderstanding, without expectation of anything back from the other person, I strengthen my recovery in this program.

One day at a time …
I will admit my mistakes whether I believe that the fault is mine or not, because that is the way that I grow in my recovery.
Sharon 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This is the how and why of it. First of all, we had to quit playing God. It didn’t work. – Pg. 62 – How It Works

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Life is not fair. You see it in the headlines; you see it in people racked with chronic pain; you see it in senseless street violence and children starving in third world countries. It will be a challenge for you in the coming weeks to understand it is not an unfair thing that has just happened, addiction and then recovery, but the greatest fight you shall ever receive.

Creator, I do not know why good people suffer addiction. For if it is the very act of not understanding and still trusting in the good of the universe, that comprises the very essence of faith.

Silver Linings

I search for silver linings, for the deeper meaning of events in my life. I will look for the lesson. When life offers up its inevitable challenges, I will try to understand what I am meant to see that I am not seeing, what I am meant to hear that I am not hearing. There is always a silver lining if I look for it. Even if I don’t see it readily, I trust that it is there and that it will reveal itself to me over time. Life isn’t simple. One of the ways that I can have a better experience is to see what is positive, about a given situation, to look for the silver lining. I can grow in joy and in pain. It doesn’t need to be one or the other because pain can transform into joy. It can be the fire that clears the the field for new and tender growth.

There is always a silver lining

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

As a general rule, questions that ask ‘why’ go in the wrong direction, seeking explanations that blame and shame. Questions that begin with ‘How’ and ‘What’ as in ‘How do I start my Fourth?’ and ‘What can I learn from this?’ lead to solutions, where the light bulb goes on in your head.

I ask questions that lead to exclamations not explanations.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Acceptance: Life is 10% what you make it and 90% how you take it

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today my faith and confidence grow as I learn to accept all that I discover without judgment. I feel energy and life flow through me with this new freedom.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Alcohol is a great remover. It removes stains, inhibitions, worries, jobs, families, freedom, choices, dignity, livers, – and lives. – Anon. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 13

An Open Mind
First, AA does not demand that you believe anything.
All of its Twelve Steps are but suggestions. Second, to get sober and stay sober,
you don’t have to swallow all of Step Two right now. . . .
Third, all you need is a truly open mind.
Just resign from the debating society and quit bothering yourself
with such deep questions as whether it was the chicken or the egg that came first.
Again I say, all you need is the open mind.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 26

Thought to Ponder . . .
It’s hard to keep an open mind with an open mouth.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A B C = Accept, Belief, Change.

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

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

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

~~AACRONYMS~~
H E A R T = Healing, Enjoying, And Recovering, Together.
* *
F A I T H = Finding Answers In The Heart

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

Rewards
>From “He Lived Only to Drink”:
“The rewards of sobriety are bountiful and as progressive as the disease they counteract. Certainly among these
rewards for me are release from the prison of uniqueness, and the realization that participation in the A.A. way of life is a
blessing and privilege beyond estimate’ a blessing to live a life free from the pain and degradation of drinking and filled
with the joy of useful, sober living, and a privilege to grow in sobriety one day at a time and bring the message of hope as
it was brought to me.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 451

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

“Empathy, not sympathy or pity, is the most useful quality
a sponsor can cultivate.”
Bellevue, Wash., January 1975
From: “Need a Sponsor? Who? Me?”
One on One: AA Sponsorship in Action

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

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

Next, we decided that hereafter in this drama of life, God was going
to be our Director. He is the Principal; we are His agents. He is
the Father, and we are His children. Most good ideas are simple, and
this concept was the keystone of the new and triumphant arch through
which we passed to freedom.
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 62

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.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 69

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Too much of my life has been spent in dwelling upon the faults of others. This is a most subtle and perverse form of
self-satisfaction, which permits us to remain comfortably unaware of our own defects. Too often we are heard to say, ‘If
it weren’t for him (or her), how happy I’d be!’
Our very first problem is to accept our present circumstances as they are, ourselves as we are, and the people about
us as they are. This is to adopt a realistic humility without which no genuine advance can even begin. Again and again,
we shall need to return to that unflattering point of departure. This is an exercise in acceptance that we can profitably
practice every day of our lives.
Provided we strenuously avoid turning these realistic surveys of the facts of life into unrealistic alibis for apathy or
defeatism, they can be the sure foundation upon which increased emotional health and therefore spiritual progress can
be built.

Prayer for the Day: God our Father, the Bible reminds us that your love for each of us is great and that you are faithful
for ever, never letting us down or forgetting your promises to us. Inspire us to value friendship and loyalty, that we may
be faithful to those who love and trust us. We pray that we may live in such a way that we may make others feel
welcome and secure. Show us how to look upon other people in the same generous way that you look upon each of us.
Extend our horizons that we may understand better those who are far from us. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 12th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 12th

Daily Reflections

“THE ROOT OF OUR TROUBLES”

Selfishness--self-centeredness! That, we think, is the
root of all our troubles.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62

How amazing the revelation that the world, and everyone
in it, can get along just fine with or without me. What
a relief to know that people, places and things will be
perfectly okay without my control and direction. And
how wordlessly wonderful to come to believe that a power
greater than me exists separate and apart from myself.
I believe that the feeling of separation I experience
between me and God will one day vanish. In the meantime,
faith must serve as the pathway to the center of my
life.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

As we look back on all those troubles we used to have
when we were drinking, the hospitals, the jails, we
wonder how we could have wanted that kind of life. As we
look back on it now, we see our drinking life as it
really was and we’re glad we’re out of it. So after a few
months in A.A., we find that we can honestly say that we
want something else more than drinking. We’ve learned by
experience that a sober life is really enjoyable and we
wouldn’t go back to the old drunken way of living for
anything in the world. Do I want to keep sober a lot more
than I want to get drunk?

Meditation For The Day

My spiritual life depends on an inner consciousness of
God. I must be led in all things by my consciousness of
God and I must trust Him in all things. My consciousness
of God will always bring peace to me. I will have no fear,
because a good future lies before me as long as I keep my
consciousness of God. If in every single happening, event
and plan I am conscious of God, then no matter what
happens, I will be safe in God’s hands.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have this ever-consciousness of God.
I pray for a new and better life through this God
consciousness.

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As Bill Sees It

How Much Anonymity?, p. 43

As a rule, the average newcomer wanted his family to know
immediately what he was trying to do. He also wanted to tell others
who had tried to help him–his doctor, his minister, and close friends.
As he gained confidence, he felt it right to explain his new way of life
to his employer and business associates. When opportunities to be
helpful came along, he found he could talk easily about A.A. to almost
anyone.

These quiet disclosures helped him to lose his fear of the alcoholic
stigma, and spread the news of A.A.’s existence in his community.
Many a man and woman came to A.A. because of such conversations.
Since it is only at the top public level that anonymity is expected, such
communications were well within its spirit.

12 & 12, pp. 185-186

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Walk In Dry Places

Do it sober___ Practicing Principles
There may be a hidden meaning in that bumper sticker that reminds us to “Do it Sober,”  but we can also read it to mean that real sobriety should guide everything we do today.
Real sobriety is emotional sobriety.  We have it when our principles protect us from overpowering feelings growing out of greed, fear, and resentment. Even without the bottle, an attack of fear or resentment can distort personal judgment and lead to foolish mistakes. Whatever we do, whether it’s sweeping a factory floor or leading a corporate board meeting, we should do with confidence and calm self-control.
When we work in this way, we help others. We only harm them if we bring bitterness and resentment into their space.  True emotional sobriety helps us set a better example and assures others that AA really works in people’s lives.  One AA member was pleasantly surprised when he was complimented for remaining calm in confrontations with angry people.  HE realized that his AA principles had been at work in his workplace, helping him to maintain a calm dignity that made him assertive and effective. Whatever we do sober, we always do better.
Today I’ll remind myself to stay emotionally as well as physically sober. So-called Dry Drunks are not slips, but they destroy my effectiveness and should have no place in my life.

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Keep It Simple

We are always the same age inside.—Gertrude Stein
Deep inside, we each have a child’s spirit. We still have many of the feelings we had when we were young. Some of us have a hurting child inside. There’s sadness, fear, or anger that hasn’t gone away. We’re still lonely, no matter how many people care about us. Our inner child needs special help to heal. We can be good parents to our inner child. We do this by being gentle and caring with ourselves. In time, this child can be a happy center in our hearts.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, please heal the child inside of me a little more each day. Help my inner child be alive, free, and full of joy.
Action for the Day:  Right now, I’ll close my eyes for a minute. I’ll think kind thoughts about myself. Than I’ll say out loud, “Inner child, I love you. I’ll take good care of you.” I’ll do this two more times today.

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Each Day a New Beginning

There are no new truths, but only truths that have not been recognized by those who have perceived them without noticing. –Mary McCarthy
We understand today ideas we couldn’t grasp yesterday. We are conscious this year of details of our past that we may have glossed over at the time. Our blinders are slowly giving way, readying us for the truths we couldn’t absorb before.
“When the student is ready, the teacher appears.” And the teacher comes bearing truths that we need to assimilate into our growing bank of knowledge. The truths we may be given today, or any day, won’t always make us happy immediately. We may learn that a job is no longer right for us. Or that a relationship has reached an end. And the impending changes create unrest. But in the grand scheme of our lives, the changes wrought by these truths are good and will contribute in time to our happiness.
Let’s celebrate the truths as they come and trust the outcome to God. We are traveling a very special road. The way is rocky. The bends limit our vision, but we will be given all the direction we need.
The truths I receive today will guide my steps. I shall move in peace.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

The doctor writes:
We doctors have realized for a long time that some form of moral psychology was of urgent importance to alcoholics, but its application presented difficulties beyond our conception. What with our ultra-modern standards, our scientific approach to everything, we are perhaps not well equipped to apply the powers of good that lie outside our synthetic knowledge.

p. xxvii

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

TIGHTROPE
Trying to separate worlds was a lonely charade that ended when this gay alcoholic finally landed in A.A.

When I first came to this Fellowship, I had lost my health and sanity, my friends, much of my family, my self-respect, and my God.  In the years since, all of these have been restored to me.  I no longer have the sense of impending doom.  I no longer wish for death or stare at myself in the mirror with loathing.  I have a dozen years in the A.A. Fellowship, I was able to join a religious group and have now become active in the organization.  I have a full, happy life, with friends and loving family.  Recently I retired and have begun to travel throughout the world.  I have attended and felt welcome at A.A. meetings wherever I have gone inside and outside the United States.  Even more important, I have returned to my home group and am still asked to make coffee.  I now have an extended family that is international in scope, all the members of which are joined by bonds of shared pain and joy.

pp. 368

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

Upon entering A.A., these attitudes were sharply reversed, often going much too far in the opposite direction. The spectacle of years of waste threw us into panic. There simply wouldn’t be time, we thought, to rebuild our shattered fortunes. How could we ever take care of those awful debts, possess a decent home, educate the kids, and set something by for old age? Financial importance was no longer our principal aim; we now clamored for material security. Even when we were well reestablished in our business, these terrible fears often continued to haunt us. This made us misers and penny pinchers all over again. Complete financial security we must have–or else. We forgot that most alcoholics in A.A. have an earning power considerably above average; we forgot the immense goodwill of our brother A.A.’s who were only too eager to help us to better jobs when we deserved them; we forgot the actual or potential financial insecurity of every human being in the world. And, worst of all, we forgot God. In money matters we had faith only in ourselves, and not too much of that.

pp. 120-121

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When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

May I be an example to those whose lives touch mine.  –Shelley

The man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.  –Chinese Proverb

Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after another.  –Walter Elliott

There is no pillow so soft as a clear conscience.  –French Proverb

You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.  –Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

FREEDOM

“Freedom comes from human
beings, rather than from laws and
institutions.
— Clarence Darrow

The disease of alcoholism does not live in bottles or books. It lives in
people. Drug problems are people problems. Sobriety exists in the
man, not the theory.

In this sense recovery must be experienced, rather than simply talked
about. The Program is essentially not written in books or taught in
lecture rooms but is lived in the lives of people; the program stems
from the heart of man.

I believe the program is that spark of divinity that God has bestowed
upon all of us — and we must discover it within.

Teach me to remember that to think a smile without revealing a smile
is to be grumpy.

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May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.  Psalms 19:14

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.  Ephesians 6:10

But you, O Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, and the one who lifts up my head.  Psalm 3:3

Praise the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, praise him with tambourine and dancing, praise him with the strings and flute, praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals. Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD.  Psalm 150

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Daily Inspiration

Closeness with family makes us one in heart and mind. Lord, help me to fill our home with love and make it our safe haven from the troubles of the world.

Forget what you have done for others and remember what they have done for you. Lord, a gift is given freely with no expectation. May I become a truly giving person.

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NA Just For Today

Living In The Moment
“We regretted the past, dreaded the future, and weren’t too thrilled about the present.” Basic Text, p. 7

Until we experience the healing that happens when we work the Twelve Steps, it is doubtful that we can find a statement more true than the quote above. Most of us come to NA hanging our heads in shame, thinking about the past and wishing we could go back and change it. Our fantasies and expectations about the future may be so extreme that, on our first date with someone, we find ourselves wondering which lawyer we’ll use for the divorce. Almost every experience causes us to remember something from the past or begin projecting into the future.

At first, it’s difficult to stay in the moment. It seems as though our minds won’t stop. We have a hard time just enjoying ourselves. Each time we realize that our thoughts are not focused on what’s happening right now, we can pray and ask a loving God to help us get out of ourselves. If we regret the past, we make amends by living differently today; if we dread the future, we work on living responsibly today.

When we work the steps and pray each time we discover we’re not living in the present, we’ll notice that those times aren’t occurring as often as they used to. Our faith will help us live just for today. We’ll have hours, even days, when our full attention is focused on the current moment in time, not the regrettable past or fearful future.

Just for today: When I live fully in each moment, I open myself to joys that might otherwise escape me. If I am having trouble, I will ask a loving God for help.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Oh, a trouble’s a ton, or a trouble’s an ounce, Or a trouble is what you make it, And it isn’t the fact that you’re hurt that counts, But only how you take it. –Edmund Vance Cooke
Once, a woman decided to throw a problem-exchange party. As guests arrived, they shed all their personal problems and tossed them onto a pile with everyone else’s. After all had discussed their own problem for others to hear, the party ended with guests selecting from the problem pile those they wished to carry away. Each person left with the same troubles he or she had brought to the party.
We who worry a great deal about our problems are always sure no one else has troubles as bad as ours. Too often, we complain, “If you had my problems, you’d really hurt.” Our problems are tailored to us, and geared to help us learn by solving them. No one else’s would be quite right.
When we cope with problems, rather than wailing about them, we discover that our own are minor irritations compared to those we see in others.
What problems am I lucky to have?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live up to the light I have.
–Abraham Lincoln
With too much focus on control, we men have been preoccupied by our overemphasis on outcomes. We say winning is everything, and the way we play the game doesn’t matter. We give honor to a man who has accumulated great wealth, regardless of how he has lived. We develop sexual problems because we focus on performance and achieving orgasm rather than on the joy of loving.
As our integrity grows, our emphasis changes. It is not crucial that we always be right, only that we be honest. We do not have to be winners or high achievers so much as we have to be real human beings. Conquest is not as important as connection. We do not always have to compare ourselves and be better than the next guy. We can exchange and appreciate the communication.
Today, I will grow in my relationships with others by being more true to myself and less driven toward a particular outcome.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Those Not in Recovery
We can go forward with our life and recoveries, even though someone we love is not yet recovering.
Picture a bridge. On one side of the bridge it is cold and dark. We stood there with others in the cold and darkness, doubled over in pain. Some of us developed an eating disorder to cope with the pain. Some drank; some used other drugs. Some of us lost control of our sexual behavior. Some of us obsessively focused on addicted people’s pain to distract us from our own pain. Many of us did both: we developed an addictive behavior, and distracted ourselves by focusing on other addicted people. We did not know there was a bridge. We thought we were trapped on a cliff.
Then, some of us got lucky. Our eyes opened, by the Grace of God, because it was time. We saw the bridge. People told us what was on the other side: warmth, light, and healing from our pain. We could barely glimpse or imagine this, but we decided to start the trek across the bridge anyway.
We tried to convince the people around us on the cliff that there was a bridge to a better place, but they wouldn’t listen. They couldn’t see it; they couldn’t believe. They were not ready for the journey. We decided to go alone, because we believed, and because people on the other side were cheering us onward. The closer we got to the other side, the more we could see, and feel, that what we had been promised was real. There was light, warmth, healing, and love. The other side was a better place.
But now, there is a bridge between those on the other side and us. Sometimes, we may be tempted to go back and drag them over with us, but it cannot be done. No one can be dragged or forced across this bridge. Each person must go at his or her own choice, when the time is right. Some will come; some will stay on the other side. The choice is not ours.
We can love them. We can wave to them. We can holler back and forth. We can cheer them on, as others have cheered and encouraged us. But we cannot make them come over with us.
If our time has come to cross the bridge, or if we have already crossed and are standing in the light and warmth, we do not have to feel guilty. It is where we are meant to be. We do not have to go back to the dark cliff because another’s time has not yet come.
The best thing we can do is stay in the light, because it reassures others that there is a better place. And if others ever do decide to cross the bridge, we will be there to cheer them on.
Today, I will move forward with my life, despite what others are doing or not doing. I will know it is my right to cross the bridge to a better life, even if I must leave others behind to do that. I will not feel guilty. I will not feel ashamed. I know that where I am now is a better place and where I’m meant to be.


As I let go of all the negative tapes that block my truth, I trust and follow the energy that leads me to peace and joy. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Fill Your World with Color and Beauty

Fill your life and your world with the colors, textures, scents, and objects that are beautiful to you, that have meaning to you. Remember that we are connected to our environment. The objects and the colors in our world have energy and meaning. They have an impact on us.

The more we see how connected we are, the more carefully and thoughtfully we may want to choose the items we place in our home, or our space at work, if we have a special area, because these objects and colors can reflect how we feel about ourselves and what is important to us.

Objects have energy. They have energy already in them when we obtain them, and they have the energy and meaning we attribute to them. Choose carefully the possessions you want around you, for they tell a story all day long.

Fill your world, your life, with objects that are beautiful and have special meaning to you. What articles and hues have you surrounded yourself with at home, at work? Is there a special article you want close to you, on your desk, in your locker, in your pocket? What story do these things tell about you, about what you’re going through, about your place in your journey?

Choose objects and colors that make your heart smile.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Starting over

How many times do we have to start over?

Many changes in our lives signal a major ending or beginning: death, birth, graduation, marriage, divorce, moving to a new home, getting sober, losing a job, or beginning a new career. We look around and think, Here we go. I’m starting over again.

Sometimes we don’t catch on at first. Sometimes it just feels like day after day of the same old thing as the old fades away and the new begins. Sometimes it feels like our lives have just stopped. Whether we believe it or not, when one cycle ends, a new one begins.

If life as you have known it is disappearing, it may be time to let go. Even if you can’t see it now– and you probably can’t– a new life will begin fading in to take its place. You and your life are being transformed.

How many times do we have to start over? As many times as life as we know it ends.

Say woohoo. You’re being born again.

God, help me trust that a new life awaits me if life as I’ve known it is fading away. Give me the patience and trust to sink joyfully into the void.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I am grateful for my friends in The Program. Right now I am aware of the blessings of friendship — the blessings of meeting, of sharing, of smiling, of listening, and of being available when needed. right now I know that if I want a friend, I must be a friend. Will i vow, this day, to be a better friend to more people? Will I strive, this day — in my thoughts, words and actions — to disclose the kind of friend I am?

Today I Pray

May I restore in kind to the fellowship of The Program the friendship I have so hungrily taken from it. After years of glossing my lonely existence with superficial acquaintanceship, may I learn again the reciprocal joys of caring and sharing.

Today I Will Remember

Be A Friend.

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One More Day

I am where I am because I believe in life’s possibilities.
– Oprah Winfrey

During the years of our youth we were continually reminded, “You can do it. Just set a goal and then reach a little beyond it.” Many of us were better at this as youngsters than we are as adults. We each have fought our own battles — to become educated or perhaps to achieve a promotion or new job. We tend to get a little short-sighted when a new variable enters the picture — a changing health pattern.

Too many of us back away, fearful the we’ll have all we can do to just orchestrate our own health care. It’s imperative that we continue to believe in ourselves as human beings with great potential — it matters less that we reach each goal. It matters most that we try.

I am setting new goals that offer challenge and the chance for success.


Food For Thought

Acceptance

When we have given our lives back to our Higher Power, we gradually learn to accept what happens to us as part of His plan. Most of us made a mess of trying to run our own lives. We are amazed at how much better things go when we acknowledge that the Power greater than ourselves is in control.

Every experience, the bad one as well as the good one, becomes an opportunity to learn and to serve. We may not like what it is that we are given to do or to feel on a particular day, but we learn to accept it as necessary for our growth. We can look back and see that we have learned even more from our failures than from our successes.

When we accept our lives and ourselves as part of God’s creation, we are open to the work of His spirit and His love. Then positive change and growth become possible.

Teach me to accept Your will.

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One Day At A Time

~ POSITIVE THINKING ~

“We could accomplish many more things
if we did not think of them as impossible”
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
from his “Lettres à M. de Malesherbes

I have spent a lifetime dieting. My life can be easily separated into two sections: the dieting periods and the non-dieting, or bingeing, periods. When I first start losing weight, I am positive about it, to the point where, if I go clothes shopping, I even buy things in smaller sizes because soon I won’t be as big as I am. This works fine while I’m losing weight, but when I reach a plateau and remain at the same weight level for a while, or even worse, gain a bit, I start to think that I’ll never lose the weight I need to lose, that my sticking to a “diet” for the rest of my life is nigh to impossible.

Well, with stinking thinking like this, I’m defeated before I’ve even started. Through this program, I’ve learned that anything is possible. First of all, it’s true that sticking to a diet for the rest of my life would be an impossible feat, but in program we don’t “go on diets.” We follow a sensible eating plan, and this plan should be flexible enough that it IS something we can follow indefinitely. Secondly, I have to correct my time spans. Instead of thinking of it as “the rest of my life,” I have the option to think of it as “One Day at a Time,” and we can do anything for just one day, can’t we?

One day at a time …
I remember that’s all it takes…one day at a time.
Marjee 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

In any meeting, anywhere, A.A.’s share experience, strength, and hope with each other, in order to stay sober and help other alcoholics. Modem-to-modem or face-to-face, A.A.’s speak the language of the heart in all its power and simplicity. – Pg. xxiv – Foreword To Fourth Edition

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Slogans seem silly but they are important tools: first things first; one day at a time; kiss. We say them frequently because we need to burn them into our thoughts. Slogans are not ‘fillers’ for reluctant speakers. They embody important principles necessary to our path of recovery.

With the next slogan I hear, let me really HEAR it, know its importance, and practice it.

Treasures

If I am alive then I need to look around me and feel thankful for the gifts that are mine. There is so much to be grateful for if I am willing to consider the blessings I already have. There is a wisdom in gratitude because what I focus on with appreciation has a way of expanding in my life. If I erase my blessings, I don’t feed them with the grace of gratitude. If I give thanks for them, I show the creative force that brings forth all good things that I am worthy enough to appreciate what has been so generously given to me.

I know enough to say thank you

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

You are either progressing or regressing. There is no such thing as standing still; there is no such thing as simply ‘gressing.’

I can only coast one way, and that’s downhill.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Sobriety is never an accident.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

As I let go of all the negative tapes that block my truth, I trust and follow the energy that leads me to peace and joy.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Willpower tells me I must. Willingness tells me I can. – Anon. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 12

Helping Others
When trying to help a fellow alcoholic,
I’ve given in to an impulse to give advice, and perhaps that’s inevitable.
But allowing others the right to be wrong reaps its own benefits.
The best I can do — and it sounds easier than it is to put into practice —
is to listen, share personal experience, and pray for others.
– Daily Reflections, p. 364

Thought to Ponder . . .
Learn to listen; listen to learn.

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

~A.A. Thoughts For The Day~

Faith
We had seen spiritual release,
but liked to tell ourselves it wasn’t true.
Actually, we were fooling ourselves,
for 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.
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 55

Thought to Consider . . .
We found the Great Reality deep down within us.

~~AACRONYMS~~
F A I T H = Found Always In Trusting Him.

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

HP?
Step Two: Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
“‘You can, if you wish, make A.A. itself your “higher power.” Here’s a very large group of people who have solved their alcohol problem. In this respect they are certainly a power greater than you, who have not even come close to a solution. Surely you can have faith in them. Even this minimum of faith will be enough. You will find many members who have crossed the threshold just this way. All of them will tell you that, once across, their faith broadened and deepened. Relieved of the alcohol obsession, their lives unaccountably transformed, they came to believe in a Higher Power, and most of them began to talk of God.'”
1952, AAWS, Inc.; Printed 2005; Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pgs. 27-28

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

“Clearly, the chief mark of restoration to sanity is our
not taking the first drink.”
March 1981
From: “Sanity”
Step By Step

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

“We realized that the people who wronged us were perhaps spiritually
sick. Though we did not like their symptoms and the way these
disturbed us, they, like ourselves, were sick too. We asked God to
help us show them the same tolerance, pity, and patience that we
would cheerfully grant a sick friend. When a person offended we said
to ourselves, ‘This is a sick man. How can I be helpful to him? God
save me from being angry. Thy will be done.'”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 66~

“We, who have recovered from serious drinking, are miracles of mental health.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 133~

We eat, drink, and grab for more of everything than we need, fearing we shall never have enough.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 49

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

As a rule, the average newcomer wanted his family to know immediately what he was trying to do. He also wanted to tell others who had tried to help him – his doctor, his minister, and close friends. As he gained confidence, he felt it right to explain his new way of life to his employer and business associates. When opportunities to be helpful came along, he found he could talk easily about A.A. to almost anyone.
These quiet disclosures helped him to lose his fear of the alcoholic stigma, and spread the news of A.A.’s existence in his community. Many a new man and woman came to A.A. because of such conversations. Since it is only at the top public level that anonymity is expected, such communications were well within its spirit.

Prayer for the Day: Dear Father, thank you for today. Please give me wisdom and guidance to help those who are in need. Please grant me the patience and understanding to deal with those who are less forgiving, for they are the ones who need help the most.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 11th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 11th
Daily Reflections

THE LIMITS OF SELF-RELIANCE

We asked ourselves why we had them [fears]. Wasn’t it
because self-reliance failed us?
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p.68

All of my character defects separate me from God’s will.
When I ignore my association with Him I face the world
and my alcoholism alone and must depend on self-reliance.
I have never found security and happiness through
self-will and the only result is a life of fear and
discontent. God provides the path back to Him and to
His gift of security and comfort. First, however, I
must be willing to acknowledge my fears and understand
their source and power over me. I frequently ask God to
help me understand how I separate myself from Him.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

If we’re going to stay sober, we’ve got to learn to want
something else more than we want to drink. When we first
came into A.A., we couldn’t imagine wanting anything else
so much or more than drinking. So we had to stop drinking
on faith, on faith that someday we really would want
something else more than drinking. But after we’ve been
in A.A. for a while, we learn that a sober life can
really be enjoyed. We learn how nice it is to get along
well with our family at home, how nice it is to do our
work well at the office, how nice it is to try to help
others. Have I found that when I keep sober, everything
goes well for me?

Meditation For The Day

There is almost no work in life so hard as waiting. And
yet God wants me to wait. All motion is more easy than
calm waiting, and yet I must wait until God shows me His
will. So many people have marred their work and hindered
the growth of their spiritual lives by too much activity.
If I wait patiently, preparing myself always, I will be
some day at the place where I would be. And much toil
and activity could not have accomplished the journey so
soon.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may wait patiently. I pray that I may trust
God and keep preparing myself for a better life.

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As Bill Sees It

Self-Confidence and Will Power, p. 42

When first challenged to admit defeat, most of us revolted. We had
approached A.A. expecting to be taught self-confidence. Then we had
been told that so far as alcohol was concerned, self-confidence was no
good whatever; in fact, it was a total liability. There was no such thing
as personal conquest of the alcoholic compulsion by the unaided will.

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

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

12 & 12
1. p. 22
2. p. 40 

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Walk In Dry Places

Practice makes patience.
Acquiring Maturity
Extreme impatience is part of most alcoholic stories: “I want what I want when I want it.”  When it continues in sobriety, impatience leads to mistakes and accidents.  How can we bring impatience under control without losing all drive and initiative?
One route may be to acquire patience through practice. We can devote some time each day to a task that must be done, even if it is tedious and boring. We can make a real effort to be more patient with somebody who is slow or difficult.  We can face the fear and anxiety that sometimes make us overwork or turn us into people-pleasers.
These exercises won’t eliminate impatience overnight.  But they’ll produce the satisfaction of knowing that we’re getting control of our lives. They will also make us more effective in our dealings with others.
Reminding ourselves that all outcomes aqre in God’s hands can help us acquire patience. Willful pushing does not bring the serenity and well being we really seek. We labor in vain if we are seeking goals that are not in line with God’s will for us.
I will do my work today with the knowledge that God really is in charge of my life… I do not have to let anything or anyone rob me of my serenity and self-control.  I will practice patience in situations where it is needed.

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Keep It Simple

Sanity is madness put to good use.—George Santayana
In Step Two we come to believe a Power greater than ourselves can restore us to sanity. In a way, as we work Step Two, we’re praying that our madness can be put to good use. This is just what happens. Addiction was wrecking our life. But it’s also our addiction that forced us into a new way of life.
As long as we remember what our madness was like, we can put it to good use. When we feel like giving up, let’s remember our madness. It will help us go on. When we see someone suffering from the illness of addiction, let’s remember our days of madness. It will help us be there for that person. It’s also good to remember that our madness is only a pill or a drink away.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I believe You can put my madness to good use. I give up my madness; do with it what You want.
Action for the Day:  I’ll list a couple ways my Higher Power and I have changed my madness into sanity.

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Each Day a New Beginning

It’s odd that you can get so anesthetized by your own pain or your own problem that you don’t quite fully share the hell of someone close to you.  –Lady Bird Johnson
Preoccupation with self can be the bane of our existence. It prevents all but the narrowest perspective on any problem. It cuts off any guidance from our higher power that may be offered through a friend. It blocks whatever truths are trying to gain our attention. The paradox is that whatever our pain, it is lessened by turning our attention elsewhere, to another’s pain or her joy.
When we open our minds to fresh input from others, insights emerge. We need the messages others are trying to give us. Nothing that is said in a loving spirit is empty of meaning for our lives.
We might consider that every conversation we have is a conversation with our Creator. What we need to know, for our own growth, is guaranteed to be revealed in our many conversations with others. But we can’t hear another’s thoughts until we let go of our own.
Full attention to the persons sent to me will offer me exactly what I need, today. My inner guide has beckoned them. I can be alert, expect solutions, and celebrate the wonder of it all.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

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

pp. xxvi-xxvii

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

TIGHTROPE
Trying to separate worlds was a lonely charade that ended when this gay alcoholic finally landed in A.A.

In all these positions I never felt obligated to conceal or deny my sexuality.  I have always felt that the representatives of groups in my area were concerned only with how we carried the message of recovery, not with what I might do in my personal life.

pp. 367-368

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

Where the possession of money and material things was concerned, our outlook underwent the same revolutionary change. With a few exceptions, all of us had been spendthrifts. We threw money about in every direction with the purpose of pleasing ourselves and impressing other people. In our drinking time, we acted as if the money supply was inexhaustible, though between binges we’d sometimes go to the other extreme and become almost miserly. Without realizing it we were just accumulating funds for the next spree. Money was the symbol of pleasure and self-importance. When our drinking had become much worse, money was only an urgent requirement which could supply us with the next drink and the temporary comfort of oblivion it brought.

p. 120

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Serenity isn’t freedom from the storm, it is peace within the storm.

When we release the bitterness, judgment and blame of the past, whether of ourselves or others, the past becomes a stepping stone to spiritual growth, to increased compassion, understanding and love. Today, repeat several times, “I bless my past and see it as a stepping stone to greater good.”  –Mary Manin Morrissey

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.  –William Arthur Ward

Great Spirit, grant that I may not criticize my neighbor until I have walked a mile in his moccasins.  –Native American Proverb

Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man’s growth without destroying his roots.  –Frank A. Clark

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PITY

“When a man has pity on all
living creatures, then only is he
noble.”
— Buddha

We all need each other. More than this, we need to help and sustain
each other. And this concept extends beyond human beings — the
world is full of other creatures that God has made and which make our
lives so fascinating and entertaining. Animals and plants make up our
ecological history and yet so often we rob and hurt our environment.

Recovery from alcoholism means more than putting down “the drink”.
Today I am picking up a responsible attitude that makes me care, on a
spiritual level, for my world.

Lord, as I look around my world I cannot help but worship You.

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If we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.  1 John 5:14-15

“I sought the Lord, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears. Look to him, and be radiant.  Psalm 34:4-5

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Daily Inspiration

God will answer our prayers if we believe, but first we must ask. Lord, I need the strength that only You can give.

God will give you strength because He will give of Himself. Lord, thank You for the many gifts of which You always bless me.

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NA Just For Today

A Curse Into A Blessing

“We have become very grateful in the course of our recovery…. We have a disease, but we do recover” Basic Text, p. 8

Active addiction was no picnic; many of us barely came out of it alive. But ranting against the disease, lamenting what it has done to us, pitying ourselves for the condition it has left us in—these things can only keep us locked in the spirit of bitterness and resentment. The path to freedom and spiritual growth begins where bitterness ends, with acceptance.

There is no denying the suffering brought by addiction. Yet it was this disease that brought us to Narcotics Anonymous; without it, we would neither have sought nor found the blessing of recovery. In isolating us, it forced us to seek fellowship. In causing us to suffer, it gave us the experience needed to help others, help no one else was so uniquely suited to offer. In forcing us to our knees, addiction gave us the opportunity to surrender to the care of a loving Higher Power.

We would not wish the disease of addiction on anyone. But the fact remains that we addicts already have this disease— and further, that without this disease we may never have embarked on our spiritual journey. Thousands of people search their whole lives for what we have found in Narcotics Anonymous: fellowship, a sense of purpose, and conscious contact with a Higher Power. Today, we are grateful for everything that has brought us this blessing.

Just for today: I will accept the fact of my disease, and pursue the blessing of my recovery. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Life deals more rigorously with some than others. –Lewis F. Presnall
How often we think about a friend, He sure is lucky! And probably just as often we say to ourselves, Why did that happen to me? It’s not fair! The truth is, life isn’t always fair. We don’t all get the same experiences, the same lessons. But we each learn what we need to learn in order to fulfill our destiny.
We have to learn to trust. Maybe a bike gets stolen or a friend moves away. It’s not easy to accept such things as these, but we must all learn to understand and accept losses in our lives.
Perhaps we fail a test. The lesson we learn from this may be to study harder or to consider a different course of study in school. There are always reasons for why things happen, but we don’t have to know them.
Can I trust in the lessons of my failures today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Too much agreement kills a chat. –Eldridge Cleaver
Many of us haven’t learned there is room for disagreement in a relationship. Some men who grew up in addicted families saw a lot of pain, anger, and quarreling. Many learned to be always pleasing and agreeable, no matter how they felt. Others took it as a personal insult when someone disagreed with them.
We choke the vitality and excitement in our love relationships if we are too intent on avoiding conflict. Nothing can be resolved if we smooth everything over. Differences between people don’t just go away. If we don’t bring them out, they fester and create silent tension or boredom. If we willingly express our thoughts and feelings, we can learn how to resolve our disagreements and to appreciate each other for our differences as well as our similarities. If two people in a relationship were exactly alike, one of them would be unnecessary.
Today, I will try to be more open about my differences with people, not as a way of fighting, but as a way of letting them know me better.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Divinely Led
Send me the right thought, word, or action. Shaw me what my next step should be. In times of doubt and indecision please send your inspiration and guidance.
–Alcoholics Anonymous
The good news of surrendering ourselves and our life to a Power greater than ourselves is that we come into harmony with a Grand Plan, one greater than we can imagine.
We are promised Divine Guidance if we ask for it if we work the Twelve Steps. What greater gift could we receive than knowing our thoughts, words, and actions are being directed?
We aren’t a mistake. And we don’t have to control or repress others or ourselves for life to work out. Even the strange, the unplanned, the painful, and those things we call errors can evolve into harmony.
We will be guided into understanding what we need to do to take care of ourselves. We will begin to trust our instincts, our feelings, and our thoughts. We will know when to go, to stop, and to wait. We will learn a great truth: the plan will happen in spite of us not because of us.
I pray today and each day that my thoughts, words, and actions may be Divinely led. I pray that I can move forward in confidence, knowing my steps are guided.


Even in moments of doubting, I know that my Higher Power has been guiding me on my path today. –Ruth Fishel

*****

Journey to the Heart
The Universe Is Abundant

Watch out for greed– greed for money, for resources, for love. Greed can slowly corrupt the heart. Greed can slowly take over our lives. Greed and fear can block our connection with the universe, and with universal love.

Let go of the fears of deprivation, of doing without, that haunt you from the past. Having more and more won’t solve your problem if what you need is to heal your fears. Look around with love at your life and the people in it. If you open your heart and look without fear, you may see that you have enough now.

Go back to your heart. Let love, not fear and greed, lead the way. Be led by your desire to joyfully serve, by the desire to bring your gifts, your healing, your comforts and talents to others. Go back to your heart as often as you need. And remember what is honorable and true. Say to those you love. This is what I shall give. And I’ll give it because my heart leads me to do so.


The universe is abundant. Take your part, take your place, in universal love. Go back to your heart. Give from the heart. And the universe will respond in kind.

*****

more language of letting go
Grief


No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear. I am not afraid, but the sensation is like being afraid. The same fluttering in the stomach, the same restlessness, the yawning. I keep on swallowing. … Not that I am (I think) in much danger of ceasing to believe in God. The real danger is of coming to believe such dreadful things about Him. The conclusion I dread is not “So there’s no God after all,” but ” So this is what God’s really like. Deceive yourself no longer.”
–C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

There’s no way to prepare for deep grief, for the pain that shatters a heart and a life when a beloved leaves.

No one can coach us on it. Those who could, who knew exactly how it felt; who could describe it in detail, wouldn’t do it, would not presume to encroach on this most intimate part of our relationship with a loved one. Those who casually say, “Aren’t you over that yet?” don’t understand.

This much I will tell you about grief. If there was ever a second, or a moment, when you suspected or knew you had been betrayed at the deepest level by someone you adored, and a splintering pain began to shred your heart, turn your world grimly unbearable to the point where you would consciously choose denial and ignorance about the betrayal rather than feel this way, that is one-millionth of what it feels like to grieve.

Grief is not an abnormal condition, nor is it something to be treated with words. It is a universe, a world, unto itself. If you are called to enter this world, there is no turning back. We are not allowed to refuse that call. Grief is like nothing else, with the possible exception of the pounding waves of the ocean. To the untrained, casual eye, each wave looks the same. It is not. No two are the same. And each one washes away the old, and washes in the new.

Gradually, almost imperceptibly, whether we believe it or not, we are being transformed.


God, take care of me those moments and hours when I cannot find the will or power to take care of myself. Transform me, if not in the twinkling of an eye, then over the slow movement of the years, into who I will become.

*****

A Day at a Time

Reflection for the Day
I can always take strength and comfort from knowing I belong to a worldwide fellowship. Hundreds and hundreds of thousands, just like myself, are working together for the same purpose. None of us needs to ever be alone again, because each of us in our own way works for the good of others. We are bound together by a common problem that can be solved by love and understanding and mutual service. The Program – like the little wheel in the old hymn – runs by the grace of God.

Have I thanked God today for helping me to find The Program, which is showing me the way to a new life?

Today I Pray
May my thanks be lifted to God each day for dispelling my self-inflicted loneliness, for warming my stoicism, for leading me to the boundless fund of friendship in The Program.

Today I Will Remember
I have a world of friends.

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One More Day

“You are responsible for your own life and have a job to perform in your healthcare.”
– Neil A. Fiore

It’s a real shock to find out that we have an ongoing medical problem. Lots of us may get quite angry and blame the doctor for the diagnosis. Or we may want to turn it all over to the professionals. But soon we begin to see that we are the primary ones responsible for ourselves. Eventually, we begin to give full cooperation to our doctors and therapist. We become equal members of our healthcare team.

Adjustments are difficult in the best of circumstance, but with the help of those who love us, with the assistance of our doctors, and with our participation, we adjust to chronic illness. Then we can see our problems in their proper perspective and begin again to enjoy our lives.

In accepting changes in my life, I find balance once again.

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Food For Thought

Simplicity

Someone has said that God is simple; it is we who cause the complications. The more we are able to simplify our lives, the more effective we become.

A simple eating plan frees us from being preoccupied with food. We decide what we will have for our three measured meals, we may call the plan in to a sponsor, and then we can forget about food. We are free to concentrate on the jobs and activities of the day. In contrast, how muddled and messy our lives were when we were bingeing!

Turning our will and our life over to our Higher Power frees us from preoccupation with self. Rather than trying to figure out complicated methods of getting things to go our way, we are free to live each day as God gives it to us, trusting His will.

As we grow in this program, may we grow in simplicity.

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One Day At A Time

FREEDOM

“Always be a first-rate version of yourself,
instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.”
Judy Garland

As far back as I can remember I always wanted to be like — or act like — someone else. I never allowed myself the freedom to be me. I was my parents’ child, my husband’s wife, and my children’s mother. It wasn’t until I came into program wearing all of my identities on my body — 150 pounds’ worth — that I was able to see how unhappy I really was.

I began my journey to recovery by slowly discovering the real me underneath all that extra weight. Working the Twelve Steps of recovery helped me to peel away the layers of fear that kept me stuck.


One Day at a Time . . .
I am free to be me ~
And I am enough.
~ Eileen 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

But what about the real alcoholic? He may start off as a moderate drinker; he may or may not become a continuous hard drinker; but at some stage of his drinking career he begins to lose all control of his liquor consumption, once he starts to drink. – Pg. 21 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Even when we consciously don’t think we want to get high, our disease of addiction works through our subconscious and calls, ‘what do they know; just one won’t hurt; well, if they’re going to be like that!’ Our subconscious pops silly excuses for using into our minds. We must learn to recognize and neutralize these thoughts.

May my subconscious ‘arguments’ that subtly tell me to use, have no power to influence my true goal of staying clean and clear.

I Can Lift My Own Spirits

I will lift my own spirits today. I will look for that place in me that is still and serene, that isn’t just constantly in response mode. Somewhere there is a constant, meditative place where the little and even the even big concerns of the day slip away and become less important. A place where life is just life and I can breathe in and out of a place of inner calm. Life doesn’t have to prove itself to me today for me to treasure it. It is enough that I am here, that I have my freedom of thought and movement. I will appreciate the life I have.

I am connected with the divine

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

People who seek a sponsor without faults, will be without a sponsor.

I know that my sponsor is willing to make mistakes, if I am willing to learn from them.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Focus on the program, not the problem.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Even in moments of doubting I know that my Higher Power has been guiding me on my path today.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I wanted to be Clint Eastwood but I was more like Woody Allen. – Trip S. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 11

Discovery
I learned that when I stopped trying to analyze AA or God
I found both sobriety and a Higher Power.
I also realized that I could easily have found sobriety and God by honestly saying,
“God, I am so confused — please help me.”
– Thank You For Sharing, p. 41

Thought to Ponder . . .
Recovery is discovery.

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

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

Miracles
Since these things have happened among us,
they can happen with you.
Should you wish them above all else,
and be willing to make use of our experience,
we are sure they will come.
The age of miracles is still with us.
Our own recovery proves that!
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 153

Thought to Consider . . .
Don’t give up before the miracle happens.

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

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

Request
>From “Into Action”:
“On awakening, let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we
ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 86

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

“From the moment I pulled open the doors to my very first meeting, I felt something different, something good was going
to happen. Those doors, which at the time I believed to be the heaviest ever made, allowed me to walk into a new way of life.”
New York, N.Y., January 2006
From: “Attitude Adjustment”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“The greatest enemies of us alcoholics are resentment, jealousy,
envy, frustration, and fear.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, To Employers, pg. 145~

“Thus we grow. And so can you, though you be but one man with this
book in your hand. We believe and hope it contains all you will need
to begin.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 162

For we had started to get perspective on ourselves, which is another way of saying that we were gaining in humility.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 48

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

When first challenged to admit defeat, most of us revolted. We had approached A.A. expecting to be taught self-
confidence. Then we had been told that so far as alcohol was concerned, self-confidence was no good whatever; in
fact, it was a total liability. There was no such thing as personal conquest of the alcoholic compulsion by the unaided will.
It is when we try to make our will conform with God’s that we begin to use it rightly. To all of us, this was a most
wonderful revelation. Our whole trouble had been the misuse of will power. We had tried to bombard our problems with
it instead of attempting to bring it into agreement with God’s intention for us. To make this increasingly possible is the
purpose of A.A.’s Twelve Steps.

Prayer for the Day: As we travel through the rest of our day, may the God of hope fill us with all joy and peace in
believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit we may abound in hope. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 10th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 10th

Daily Reflections

I DON’T RUN THE SHOW

When we became alcoholics, crushed by a self-imposed
crisis we could not postpone or evade, we had to
fearlessly face the proposition that either God is
everything or else He is nothing. God either is, or
He isn’t. What was our choice to be?
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p.53

Today my choice is God. He is everything. For this I
am truly grateful. When I think I am running the show
I am blocking God from my life. I pray I can remember
this when I allow myself to get caught up into self.
The most important thing is that today I am willing
to grow along spiritual lines, and that God is
everything. When I was trying to quit drinking on my
own, it never worked; with God and A.A., it is
working. This seems to be a simple thought for a
complicated alcoholic.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Since I realize that I had become an alcoholic and
could never have any more fun with liquor and since
I knew that from then on liquor would always get me
into trouble, common sense told me that the only
thing left for me was a life of sobriety. But I
learned another thing in A.A., the most important
thing anyone can ever learn, that I could
call on a Higher Power to help me keep away from
liquor, that I could work with that Divine Principle
in the universe and that God would help me to live
a sober, useful, happy life. So now I no longer care
about the fact that I can never have any more fun
with drinking. Have I learned that I am much happier
without it?

Meditation For The Day

Like a tree, I must be pruned of a lot of dead
branches, before I will be ready to bear good fruit.
Think of changed people as trees which have been
stripped of their old branches, pruned, cut and bare,
but through the dark, seemingly dead branches flows
silently, secretly, the new sap, until with the sun
of spring, comes new life. There are new leaves, buds,
blossoms and fruit, many times better because of the
pruning. Remember, I am in the hands of a Master
Gardener, who makes no mistakes in His pruning.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may cut away the dead branches of my
life. I pray that I may not mind the pruning, since
it helps me to bear good fruit later.

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As Bill Sees It

Membership Rules?, p. 41

Around 1943 or 1944, the Central Office asked the groups to list their
membership rules and send them in. After they arrived we set them all
down. A little reflection upon these many rules brought us to an
astonishing conclusion.

If all of these edicts had been in force everywhere at once it would have
been practically impossible for any alcoholic to have ever joined A.A.
About nine-tenths of our oldest and best members could have never
gotten by!

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

At last experience taught us that to take away any alcoholic’s full chance
for sobriety in A.A. was sometimes to pronounce his death sentence, and
often to condemn him to endless misery. Who dared to be judge, jury,
and executioner of his own sick brother?

  1. Grapevine, August 1946
  2. 12 & 12, p. 141

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Walk In Dry Places

What is rightfully mine___Personal Gains
One of the hard lessons of life is that we can’t always “win” in the worldly game for prestige, power, and property.  It is especially galling to see rewards going to others that don’t seem to have earned them.  Much of the world’s conflict, in fact, grows out of disputes over what rightfully belongs to whom.
In sobriety, we need a higher perspective than what we’re likely to find in the brawling world around us.  Rather than demanding rights to anything, we should know that everything is part of a spiritual world.  The real meaning of the last line of The Lord’s Prayer is that all power, prestige, and property belong to our Higher Power. Whatever we have or will acquire is only temporary, at best, and can easily be lost through wrong thinking and bad actions.
Emmet Fox, whose writings guided the early A members, taught that we possess things only through “rights of consciousness.”  In perfectly legitimate ways, we will always possess whatever is necessary for our real work in this life. If one door closes, another will always open.  We do not have to envy anything that others possess, nor should we attempt to wrestle it from them.  God will always lead us to whatever we need for our highest good.

I will not fret this day about any lost property or opportunities. My needs will be met in a satisfactory manner as I continue to seek the highest and best in every situation.


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Keep It Simple

Life didn’t promise to be wonderful. —Teddy Pendergrass
Life doesn’t promise us anything, except a chance. We have a chance to live any way we like. No matter how we choose to live, we’ll have pain and we’ll have joy. And we can learn from both.
Because of our recovery program, we can have life’s biggest wonder—love. We share it in a smile, a touch, a phone call, or a note. We share it with our friends, our partners, our family. Life didn’t promise to be wonderful, but it sure is full of little wonders! And we only have to open up and see them, feel them, and let them happen.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me see the wonders of life today, in nature, in people’s faces, in my own heart.
Action for the Day:  I can help make a wonderful things happen for others, with a smile, a greeting, a helping hand. What “little” things will I do for somebody today?

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Each Day a New Beginning

God knows no distance.  –Charleszetta Waddles
As close as our breath is the strength we need to carry us through any troubled time. But our memory often fails us. We try, alone, to solve our problems, to determine the proper course of action. And we stumble. In time we will turn, automatically, to that power available. And whatever our need, it will be met.
Relying on God, however we understand God’s presence, is foreign to many of us. We were encouraged from early childhood to be self-reliant. Even when we desperately needed another’s help, we feared asking for it. When confidence wavered, as it so often did, we hid the fear–sometimes with alcohol, sometimes with pills. Sometimes we simply hid at home. Our fears never fully abated.
Finding out, as we all have found, that we have never needed to fear anything, that God was never distant, takes time to sink in. Slowly and with practice it will become natural to turn within, to be God-reliant rather than self-reliant.
Whatever our needs today, God is the answer.
There is nothing to fear. At last, I have come to know God. All roads will be made smooth.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

The doctor’s theory that we have an allergy to alcohol interests us. As laymen, our opinion as to its soundness may, of course, mean little. But as exproblem drinkers, we can say that his explanation makes good sense. It explains many things for which we cannot otherwise account.

p. xxvi

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

TIGHTROPE
Trying to separate worlds was a lonely charade that ended when this gay alcoholic finally landed in A.A.

It was in this period that I started to turn to service beyond the group level.  I had helped in founding the first gay A.A. group in my part of town and was elected general service representative after having served in other group offices.  I knew nothing of general service at that time, and I decided to learn what it was all about so I could do a decent job and be able to pass it on to a successor as quickly as possible.  After two years I went on to a number of other service jobs for A.A.

p. 367

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

And what can be said of many A.A. members who, for a variety of reasons, cannot have a family life? At first many of these feel lonely, hurt, and left out as they witness so much domestic happiness about them. If they cannot have this kind of happiness, can A.A. offer them satisfactions of similar worth and durability? Yes–whenever they try hard to seek
them out. Surrounded by so many A.A. friends, these so-called loners tell us they no longer feel alone. In partnership with others–women and men–they can devote themselves to any number of ideas, people, and constructive projects. Free of marital responsibilities, they can participate in enterprises which would be denied to family men and women. We daily see such members render prodigies of service, and receive great joys in return.

p. 120

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“Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.”  –Henry James

“You have it easily in your power to increase the sum total of this world’s happiness now. How? By giving a few words of sincere appreciation to someone who is lonely or discouraged. Perhaps you will forget tomorrow the kind words you say today, but the recipient may cherish them over a lifetime.”  –Dale Carnegie

“You will regret many things in life but you will never regret being too kind or too fair.”  -–Brian Tracy

In the process of growing to spiritual maturity, we all go through many adolescent stages.  –Miki L. Bowen

Love is not an exchange of favors. Love is something you give away.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

INSIGHT

“Nothing is more terrible than
activity without insight.”
— Thomas Carlyle

I believe that recovery can only begin when we “see” or start to get a
glimpse of who we are and what we are dealing with . . . insight; an
insight into self.

However, the moment we begin to see must be followed by a
determined effort to discover more; digging through the denial, pain
and manipulation to the disease. Then after discovering the disease in
our lives, we must be prepared to risk talking about it — on a daily
basis.

Recovery requires a daily desire to see, discover and talk about our
addiction — with this insight comes recovery.

You are the light of the world; shine through my honesty.

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“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord!”  Psalms 150:6

“Remember to welcome strangers, because some who have done this have welcomed angels without knowing it.”  Hebrews 13:2

“Love your neighbor as you love yourself.”  Galatians 5:14

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Daily Inspiration

Each morning gives us one more chance to pray, one more chance to help another and one more chance to make this a better world. Lord, thank you for working in and through everything.

Not one day passes without receiving wonderful blessings from our loving and generous God. Lord, may I forget the irritations that distract me from Your happiness.

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NA Just For Today

Fun!

“In recovery our ideas of fun change”

Basic Text, p. 102

In retrospect, many of us realize that when we used, our ideas of fun were rather bizarre. Some of us would get dressed up and head for the local club. We would dance, drink and do other drugs until the sun rose. On more than one occasion, gun battles broke out. What we then called fun, we now call insanity.

Today, our notion of fun has changed. Fun to us today is a walk along the ocean, watching the dolphins frolic as the sun sets behind them. Fun is going to an NA picnic, or attending the comedy show at an NA convention. Fun is getting dressed up to go to the banquet and not worrying about any gun battles breaking out over who did what to whom.

Through the grace of a Higher Power and the Fellowship of Narcotics Anonymous, our ideas of fun have changed radically. Today when we are up to see the sun rise, it’s usually because we went to bed early the night before, not because we left a club at six in the morning, eyes bleary from a night of drug use. And if that’s all we have received from Narcotics Anonymous, that would be enough.

Just for today: I will have fun in my recovery! 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
A bird does not sing because he has an answer. He sings because he has a song. –Joan Walsh Anglund
Each of us has a song to sing, just as birds do. Part of knowing who we are is appreciating our own songs. Are our songs gentle like the robins, or are we brilliant leaders like the bluejay? Are we easy to be around like the sparrow, or do we radiate joy and laughter like the loon?
Each of these birds has something special to offer. So do we, with our own unique personalities and talents. What a waste it would be if the loon never dashed across the lake because he wanted to be a robin instead. It is important to learn who we are and to believe we are special in our own way. We give joy to the world around us when we sing our own songs.
Have I listened to my own song lately?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few. –Shunryu Suzuki
As we travel the path of recovery, we are sometimes overwhelmed by a feeling of how much we lack. It rises within us as a feeling of inadequacy, emptiness, or loneliness. We are in pain because we feel like such beginners. Now we need to discard our competitive thinking, our drive to be on top, and accept another, wiser, way of seeing. The big difference is in being on the path of recovery rather than lost on some diversion, as we have been in the past. It is not important how far along we are or who is ahead of whom. The important thing is that we are on the path and experiencing the process.
In recovery, wisdom comes with staying a beginner. Then we remain open to further learning. In some sense this program and our mutual powerlessness are the great levelers. Once on the path, we are all equals.
Today, I will appreciate my vulnerability. It keeps me spiritually alive and growing.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Sadness
A block to joy and love can be unresolved sadness from the past.
In the past, we told ourselves many things to deny the pain: It doesn’t hurt that much…. Maybe if I just wait, things will change…. It’s no big deal. I can get through this…. Maybe if I try to change the other person, I won’t have to change myself.
We denied that it hurt because we didn’t want to feel the pain.
Unfinished business doesn’t go away. It keeps repeating itself, until it gets our attention, until we feel it, deal with it, and heal. That’s one lesson we are learning in recovery from codependency and adult children issues.
Many of us didn’t have the tools, support, or safety we needed to acknowledge and accept pain in our past. It’s okay. We’re safe now. Slowly, carefully, we can begin to open ourselves up to our feelings. We can begin the process of feeling what we have denied so long – not to blame, not to shame, but to heal ourselves in preparation for a better life.
It’s okay to cry when we need to cry and feel the sadness many of us have stored within for so long. We can feel and release these feelings.
Grief is a cleansing process. It’s an acceptance process. It moves us from our past, into today, and into a better future – a future free of sabotaging behaviors, a future that holds more options than our past.
God, as I move through this day, let me be open to my feelings Today, help me know that I don’t have to either force or repress the healing available to me in recovery. Help me trust that if I am open and available, the healing will happen naturally, in a manageable way.


Today I look inside for my answers. Today I will trust my instincts and my connecting to my Higher Power. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Free Yourself from Manipulation

Learn to recognize passive-aggressive hits. Learn to recognize when other people have hidden agendas, when they’re trying to control or manipulate you. When we’re being controlled, we may feel guilty, obligated, indebted. In our muddled state, we agree to another’s wishes but we’re not sure why. Then we wander around feeling uncertain, unbalanced, confused.

The lesson still isn’t about them. The lesson is about how we respond. If their behavior, their energy, is affecting us that strongly, it’s because something in us needs to be healed. A part of us isn’t clear, is still mucked up by something old and outworn, such as guilt or fear. Once we heal ourselves, we will know how to deal with their energy, how to handle their passive-aggressive behavior and their attempts to control us. Then we can thank them for helping trigger our healing process, for helping us grow.

Everything that happens along the way is part of the journey. Everything can be incorporated into our healing process. All roads lead to growth.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Say woohoo even if you don’t like where you are

“Once you get into the desert there’s no going back,” said the camel driver.” And when you can’t get back, you have to worry only about the best way of moving forward.”
–Paulo Coello, The Alchemist

Sometimes we get into situations and we can easily get out. We date someone, it’s not right for us, and we stop seeing that person. We experiment with drinking or drugs, decide that this isn’t for us, and we stop experimenting. We accept a job, it’s not what we want or hoped it would be, so we leave and find another.We may even marry someone who’s not right for us, and we get out. No children. No excessive property or financial entanglements. It’s a mistake. We’re sorry. There may be a few emotions involved, but correction is relatively painless and easy.

There are other times when it’s not easy. We don’t just date the person. We get married, have one or more children, and then realize we’ve made a mistake. We begin using alcohol or drugs, and wake up one day to find that our life is out of control. What we need to do is stop drinking, and it’s the very thing we can’t do, at least not without help. Or we accept the job or sign a contract, one with serious legal entanglements and consequences.

These are the situations that bring us to our knees. It is in these situations that we work out our destiny. If we’ve hit a point of no return with some situation in our lives, the only way out is through.

Surrender to the experience. You may not have bargained for this, may not have consciously desired it. Learn to say woohoo anyway. You’re meeting your destiny head-on. A spiritual adventure has just begun.

God, help me be gentle with others and myself as we each work out our destinies, karma, and fate. Give me the courage, help, insight, resilience, and grace to learn all the lessons I came here to face.

Activity: Write your memoirs. This is an extensive activity. If you take the time to do it, you will learn much about yourself. Break down your life into stories. Don’t worry about writing a literary masterpiece. Just break your life down into sections and write about what you learned. Write about what you went through– how you thought it would be, what it actually turned into, how you struggled against this, and how you finally saw the light and learned the lesson at hand. We all have ways of keeping a timeline of our lives, for instance, graduation, marriage, divorce, getting that big job, our sobriety date. This is a journal you may want to keep and add to for the rest of your life. It is your book of life. An interesting twist on this activity is to give your memoirs to your children, or ask your parents to do this activity as a gift. Reading your parents’ memoirs can be an enlightening and healing event.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Until now, we may have equated the idea of beginning again with a previous record of failure. This isn’t necessarily so. Like students who finish grade school and begin again in high school, or workers who find new ways to use their abilities, our beginnings must not be tinged with a sense of failure. In a sense, every day is a time of beginning again. We need never look back with regret. Life is not necessarily like a blackboard that must be erased because we didn’t solve problems correctly, but rather a blackboard that must be cleaned to make way for the new. Am I grateful for all that has prepared me for this moment of beginning?

Today I Pray

May I understand that past failures need not hamper my new courage or give a murky cast to my new beginnings. May I know, from the examples of others in The Program, that former failings, once faced and rectified, can be a more solid foundation for a new life than easy-come successes.

Today I Will Remember

Failings can be footings for recovery.

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One More Day

The best thinking has been done in solitude. The worst has been done in turmoil.
– Thomas Edison

When the rush of a busy world becomes overwhelming, we can restore ourselves to peace and tranquility. When we feel battered by the stress of the day, it’s time to take a few moments for relaxation. We need to steady ourselves; in fact, we owe it to ourselves.

Solitude, meditation, serenity — these can be ourse if we settle in for a few moments of private time. Alne. Taking this time is not self-indulgent; it’s self-care and simple to do. We can tune the radio to some beautiful, soft music and sit back with a cup of herbal tea. Taking slow breaths, we can allow our bodies to relax with the warmth of the tea, the beauty of the music and the solitude of the moment.

I relish the gift of privacy and relaxation each day.


Food For Thought

Write Before You Eat

When you are tempted to grab an extra bite, stop and make contact with another OA member. If you cannot bring yourself to make the call, or if you make it and still want to eat, then try writing.

Before you take the bite, write down exactly how you are feeling, what you think the extra food will do for you, what the likely result will be, and how you will feel an hour later. It is a good idea to keep a pad of paper handy in the kitchen; you can grab a pencil instead of food.

Often the process of writing down exactly how you are feeling will reveal the hidden emotions which are masquerading as hunger and a desire to eat. You may discover that you are angry, or fearful, or lonely. Write the feelings and write the consequences of eating because of them.

Grant me insight, Lord, and self-understanding.

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One Day At A Time

~ ATTITUDE ~

The last of the human freedoms is to choose one’s attitude.
Viktor Frankl

I have always found someone like Viktor Frankl to be an inspiration. His attitude to life totally amazes me, especially after suffering and losing all his family in the Nazi concentration camps. How could anyone come away from an experience like that and still find meaning in life, much less meaning in suffering? I certainly could never find any meaning in all the years of suffering through compulsive eating which caused me so much pain. Life didn’t seem meaningful at the time, and I wondered if it ever could. But one of the things I have learned in the program is that I can allow myself to wallow in self pity, which I did many times, or I can take the lessons from my life’s experiences and use them as opportunities for growth. That has not been an easy one for me in my journey, and there have been many times when life just seemed to be too hard. I wondered whether I had the same strength and positive attitude that Viktor Frankl did. Intellectually I know that attitude is a choice I make. There have been times when I’ve been depressed and full of self pity and I allowed myself to sink into that abyss of despair. But now, knowing that I have a choice, that I can pick myself up and “act as if,” I can have a positive attitude. When I make the positive choice, miraculous things happen, and life somehow seems a lot easier.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will make a choice to think positive thoughts, and try to emulate people like Viktor Frankl and others who have battled enormous difficulties and yet kept a positive attitude. When I do that, I know my life will become infinitely better.
~ Sharon ~ 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Here are thousands of men and women, worldly indeed. They flatly declare that since they have come to believe in a Power greater than themselves, to take a certain attitude toward that Power, and to do certain simple things, there has been a revolutionary change in their simple way of living and thinking. – Pg.50 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

In the beginning there probably isn’t much time that goes by when you don’t think about using. This is normal, after all, you’ve just lost your constant companion. Only time will remove your constant thoughts of your old buddies, drugs and alcohol, 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 a short time ago.

Getting Even Today

I will push myself through to letting go of some recent insult, knowing that if I don’t I bind myself to that energy. Revenge only keeps me stuck at the place of wrong doing. Better to let go the hurt or insult than the act of kindness. If I want to continue to grow my blessings in life, I will look up not down. Today I will look toward someone who has been good to me and I will think of a way to repay their kindness, knowing that when I do that, my own life feels better, too.

I connect myself to the energy of goodness.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Do not ask what your Higher Power can do for you, but rather what you can do for your Higher Power. This gets us out of self.

Dear God, what can I do for you today?

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Formula for failure: try to please everyone.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I look inside for my answers. Today I will trust my instincts and my connecting to my Higher Power.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

An alcoholic is anyone I don’t like who drinks more than me. – Dylan Thomas. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 10

The Ladder
No one who drank as I did wakes up on the edge of the abyss one morning and says:
Things look pretty scary; I think I’d better stop drinking before I fall in.
I was convinced I could go as far as I wanted,
and then climb back out when it wasn’t fun anymore. What happened was,
I found myself at the bottom of the canyon thinking I’d never see the sun again.
AA didn’t pull me out of that hole.
It did give me the tools to construct a ladder, with Twelve Steps.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 316

Thought to Ponder . . .
I stood in the sunlight at last.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
S T E P S = Solutions Through Each Positive Step.

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

Let Go
If you have decided you want what we have
and are willing to go to any length to get it —
then you are ready to take certain steps.
At some of these we balked.
We thought we could find an easier, softer way.
But we could not.
With all the earnestness at our command,
we beg of you to be fearless and thorough
from the very start.
Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas
and the result was nil until we let go absolutely.
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 58

Thought to Consider . . .
When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

~~AACRONYMS~~
G I F T S = Getting It From The Steps

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

Stereotypes
Tradition Two: For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority- a loving God as He may express Himself in our
group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
“Former group leaders divide into two classes known in A.A. slang as ‘elder statesmen’ and ‘bleeding deacons.’ The
elder statesman is the one who sees the wisdom of the group’s decision, who holds no resentment over his reduced
status, whose judgment, fortified by considerable experience, is sound, and who is willing to sit quietly on the sidelines
awaiting developments. The bleeding deacon is one who is just as surely convinced that the group cannot get along
without him, who constantly connives for reelection to office, and who continues to be consumed with self-pity.”
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, 2005, Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc., pg. 135

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

“A vast communications net now covers the earth, even to its remotest reaches … Nothing can matter more to the
future welfare of AA than the manner in which we use this colossus of communication. Used unselfishly and well, the
results can surpass our present imagination. Should we handle this great instrument badly, we shall be shattered by the
ego demands of our own people — often with the best of intention on their part.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1960
From: “Freedom Under God: The Choice Is Ours”
The Language of the Heart

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

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

“We try not to indulge in cynicism over the state of the nations, nor
do we carry the world’s troubles on our shoulders. When we see a man
sinking into the mire that is alcoholism, we give him first aid and
place what we have at his disposal.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 132

“What used to be the hunch or the occasional inspiration gradually
becomes a working part of the mind. Being still inexperienced and
having just made conscious contact with God, it is not probable that
we are going to be inspired at all times. We might pay for this
presumption in all sorts of absurd actions and ideas. Nevertheless,
we find that our thinking will, as time passes, be more and more on
the plane of inspiration. We come to rely upon it.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 87~

Perhaps we shall need to share with this person facts about ourselves which no others ought to know.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 61

Misc. AA Literature – Quote
Around 1943 or 1944, the Central Office asked the groups to list their membership rules and send them in. After they arrived we set them all down. A little reflection upon these many rules brought us to an astonishing conclusion.
If all of these edicts had been in force everywhere at once it would have been practically impossible for any alcoholic to have ever joined A.A. About nine-tenths of our oldest and best members could never have got by!
At last experience taught us that to take away any alcoholic’s full chance for sobriety in A.A. was sometimes to pronounce his death sentence, and often to condemn him to endless misery. Who dared to be judge, jury, and executioner of his own sick brother?

Prayer for the Day: Dear Lord, please help me through today. Help me share your wisdom and glory with others so they may benefit from your love.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 9th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 9th

Daily Reflections

GETTING THE “SPIRITUAL ANGLE”

How often do we sit in AA meetings and hear the speaker declare,
“But I haven’t yet got the spiritual angle.” Prior to this statement, he
had described a miracle of transformation which had occurred in him —
not only his release from alcohol, but a complete change in his whole
attitude toward life and the living of it. It is apparent to nearly
everyone else present that he has received a great gift; ” . . . except
that he doesn’t seem to know it yet!” We well know that this
questioning individual will tell us six months or a year hence that he
has found faith in God.
LANGUAGE OF THE HEART, p. 275

A spiritual experience can be the realization that a life which once
seemed empty and devoid of meaning is now joyous and full. In my life
today, daily prayer and meditation, coupled with living the Twelve
Steps, has brought about an inner peace and feeling of belonging which
was missing when I was drinking.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In the past, we kept right on drinking in spite of all the trouble we got
into. We were foolish enough to believe that drinking could still be fun
in spite of everything that happened to us. When we came into A.A.,
we found a lot of people who, like ourselves, had had fun with drinking,
but who now admitted that liquor had become nothing but trouble for
them. And when we found that this thing had happened to a lot of other
people besides ourselves, we realized that perhaps we weren’t such
odd ducks after all. Have I learned to admit that for me drinking has
ceased to be fun and has become nothing but trouble?

Meditation For The Day

The lifeline, the line of rescue, is the line from the soul to God. On one
end of the lifeline is our faith and on the other end is God’s power. It
can be a strong line and no soul can be overwhelmed who is linked to
God by it. I will trust in this lifeline and never be afraid. God will save
me from doing wrong and from the cares and troubles of life. I will
look to God for help and trust Him for aid when I am emotionally
upset.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that no lack of trust or fearfulness will make me disloyal to
God. I pray that I may keep a strong hold on the lifeline of faith.

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As Bill Sees It

Dealing with Resentments, p. 39

Resentment is the Number One offender. It destroys more alcoholics
than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we
have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have also been
spiritually ill. When our spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out
mentally and physically.

In dealing with our resentments, we set them on paper. We listed
people, institutions, or principles with whom we were angry. We asked
ourselves why we were angry. In most cases it was found that our
self-esteem, our pocketbooks, our ambitions, our personal relationships
(including sex) were hurt or threatened.

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

“The most heated bit of letter-writing can be a wonderful safety
valve–providing the wastebasket is somewhere nearby.”

  1. Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 64-65
  2. Letter, 1949

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Walk In Dry Places

Getting started Today____ Responsible activity
For the recovering person, every assignment or day’s work can have a disagreeable moment.  The problem is getting started____ overcoming our fear of taking the plunge.
The real problem is deeper than the wish to avoid mere unpleasantness. Some of our resistance to getting started may be fear of failure.  It could also be a deep-seated desire to live in a problem free environment, where all of our needs can be met without effort on our part. It can even be a desire to return to the quest for constant excitement and stimulation.
We need to know that our answer is in guidance and acceptance.  If we have truly committed our will and lives to the care and keeping of our Higher Power, we will find the right path for each day’s work.  We can also accept any work or challenge that occurs, knowing it is part of a higher order for our lives.  Our current situation may be depressing or boring, but it can easily be a stepping stone to our long-term good.
I will meet today’s challenges and responsibilities with gratitude and confidence, knowing that God is guiding and directing my life.

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Keep It Simple

H.A.L.T.     —   AA Slogan
H.A.L.T. stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely, and Tired. These feelings can be danger to us. They can lead us away from our program. We need to eat regular meals. When we get too hungry, we get cranky. Then we say and do things we regret.  We need to turn anger over to our Higher Power, or else our anger turns into rage. We need friends to help us in recovery. If we get to lonely, we may turn our addictive way for friendship. We don’t stay sober by ourselves. We need a clear mind to deal with life. If we get too tried, we tend to feel sorry for ourselves. Being tired get us into crazy thinking.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, remind me to H.A.L.T. Help me to not get too Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll review the four parts of H.A.L.T. In which areas do I practice good self-care? In which areas do I not? How can I improve?

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Each Day a New Beginning

We have seen too much defeatism, too much pessimism, too much of a negative approach. The answer is simple: if you want something very badly, you can achieve it. It may take patience, very hard work, a real struggle, and a long time; but it can be done . . . faith is a prerequisite of any undertaking. . . .  –Margo Jones
How many dreams have we let die? How many projects did we start, only to leave them unfinished? How many times have we promised ourselves, “This time will be different,” but then didn’t work to make it so? Negativity breeds more negativity. Fortunately, its opposite does likewise. Our attitude will carry us a long way. And a positive attitude will make all things possible.
We are meant for good living. But we must seek it out and be open to its invitation, be willing to put forth the necessary effort. Our dreams are our invitations to move forward, to strive for a further goal. And having faith in our ability to achieve our dreams will make easier the necessary steps.
We have been blessed with dreams, all of us. They are gifts meant to stretch our capabilities.
I can trust my dreams and aspirations. They are mine, alone, and special to me. Achievement is possible; faith and a positive attitude will ease my efforts.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

The physician who, at our request, gave us this letter, has been kind enough to enlarge upon his views in another statement which follows. In this statement he confirms what we who have suffered alcoholic torture must believe—that the body of the alcoholic is quite as abnormal as his mind. It did not satisfy us to be told that we could not control our drinking just because we were maladjusted to life, that we were in full flight from reality, or were outright mental defectives. These things were true to some extent, in fact, to a considerable extent with some of us. But we are sure that our bodies were sickened as well. In our belief, any picture of the alcoholic which leaves out this physical factor is incomplete.

p. xxvi

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition Stories

TIGHTROPE
Trying to separate worlds was a lonely charade that ended when this gay alcoholic finally landed in A.A.

A later sponsor took me through Steps Eight and Nine and provided me with support during some trying times.  In my third year of sobriety, I was bedridden for over a month as a result of that earlier injury to my spinal discs, my father died, a relationship ended, and the AIDS epidemic started to hit home among my friends and acquaintances.  Over the course of that and the next few years, almost half of my gay friends died.  I learned in that year that if I ask for help, my Higher Power will never give me anything I can’t handle.

p. 367

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

A.A. has many single alcoholics who wish to marry and are in a position to do so. Some marry fellow A.A.’s. How do they come out? On the whole these marriages are very good ones. Their common suffering as drinkers, their common interest in A.A. and spiritual things, often enhance such unions. It is only where “boy meets girl on A.A. campus,” and love follows at first sight, that difficulties may develop. The prospective partners need to be solid A.A.’s and long enough acquainted to know that their compatibility at spiritual, mental, and emotional levels is a fact and not wishful thinking. They need to be as sure as possible that no deep-lying emotional handicap in either will be likely to rise up under later pressures to cripple them. The considerations are equally true and important for the A.A.’s who marry “outside” A.A. With clear understanding and right, grown-up attitudes, very happy results do follow.

pp. 119-120

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Decision is the spark that ignites action. Until a decision is made, nothing happens.  –Wilfred A. Peterson

“You’ve got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your grandfather was.”  –Irish Proverb

“Don’t rent space to anyone in your head.”  –Anon.

I trust and believe God wants good things for me.  –Shelley

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.
It turns what we have into enough, and more.
It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.
It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.
Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.
–Melody Beattie

When we look around us with eyes of faith, we may see paradise.  –Scott Sawyer

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

ENVIRONMENT

“Love your neighbor as thyself,
but choose your neighbor.”
— Louise Beal

Part of my recovery and sobriety involves change. It is not enough to
“put down the jug” to gain sobriety; I need to make substantial
changes in my life.

Where I live, with whom I live, the friends I keep and the relationships
I make are crucial to my sobriety. Human beings imitate. They imitate
clothes, hairstyles and mannerisms. Sobriety is also imitated.

As a recovering alcoholic, I can only be spiritually happy with those
who are joyous and free; I need to find them.

God, You are to be found in Your creation. Let me seek You in a noble
lifestyle.

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“For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down themiddle wall of separation.”  Ephesians 2:14

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne.
Revelation 3:21

“My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power.”  I Corinthians 2:4

“Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.”  Psalm 62:8

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Daily Inspiration

When you feel down, look up. Lord, at all times and in the midst of all that is happening, You are there comforting, healing, and bringing peace to my life.

Know that you can do even if things are not always easy. Lord, in You I have the support of an unlimited power source and can accomplish great things because You strengthen me.

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NA Just For Today

Self-acceptance

“When we accept ourselves, we can accept others into our lives, unconditionally
probably for the first time.”

IP No. 19, “Self-Acceptance”

From our earliest memories, many of us felt like we never belonged. No matter
how big the gathering, we always felt apart from the crowd. We had a hard time
“fitting in.” Deep down, we believed that if we really let others get to know
us, they would reject us. Perhaps our addiction began to germinate in this
climate of self-centeredness.

Many of us hid the pain of our alienation with an attitude of defiance. In
effect, we told the world, “You don’t need me? Well, I don’t need any of you,
either. I’ve got my drugs and I can take care of myself!” The further our
addiction progressed, the higher the walls we built around ourselves.

Those walls begin to fall when we start finding acceptance from other recovering
addicts. With this acceptance from others, we begin to learn the important
principle of self-acceptance. And when we start to accept ourselves, we can
allow others to take part in our lives without fear of rejection.

Just for today: I am accepted in NA; I fit in. Today, it’s safe to start letting
others into my life. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Leave yourself alone. –Jenny Janacek
Three women were talking. One blamed herself for an unkind remark someone had made to her. Another blamed herself for not getting work done. The other compared her looks to those of the movie stars and thought she was ugly.
The women each noticed how the other two had put themselves down without being aware of it, and they began to laugh. Then they vowed to be as kind to themselves as they were to each other. Each time they caught themselves being mean to themselves, they imagined they were their own best friend, and were as understanding to themselves as they were to one another.
When we are kind to ourselves, only then can we be truly kind to others, and make ourselves a gift to those around us.
How have I been kind to myself lately?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The sad truth is that most evil is done by people who never make up their minds to be either good or evil. –Hannah Arendt
How often have we found ourselves in a predicament and innocently saying, “How did I get into this?” When someone has been injured by our actions because we failed to think about them, do we take the responsibility? If a friend is unfairly treated on the job, do we take a stand for him? When we know people are starving, what do we do about it? When our loved ones say they are lonely and wish we would talk to them, how do we respond?
In this program we have chosen to live by our values. We cannot sit passively and fail to live up to those values. Each situation is different, so we must think about what is called for. When we do not think about our reactions, we are in danger of adding to the evil in the world. When we act upon our principles, we feel more hopeful and wholesome.
Today, I will be alert to the difference between good and evil in my actions. I pray for the strength to take a stand.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go in Love
When people with a compulsive disorder do whatever it is they are compelled to do, they are not saying they don’t love you – they are saying they don’t love themselves. –Codependent No More
Gentle people, gentle souls, go in love.
Yes, at times we need to be firm, assertive: those times when we change, when we acquire a new behavior, when we need to convince others and ourselves we have rights.
Those times are not permanent. We may need to get angry to make a decision or set a boundary, but we can’t afford to stay resentful. It is difficult to have compassion for one who is victimizing us, but once we’ve removed ourselves as victims, we can find compassion.
Our path, our way, is a gentle one, walked in love – love for self, love for others. Set boundaries. Detach. Take care of ourselves. And as quickly as possible, do those things in love.
Today, and whenever possible. God let me be gentle with others and myself. Help me find the balance between assertive action taken in my own best interests, and love for others. Help me understand that at times those two ideas are one. Help me find the right path for me.


Today I have the courage to follow my own inner voice that I hear in prayer and meditation. Today I dare to be true to myself and my own needs, whether anyone agrees with me or not. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Keep Your Heart Open

Keep your heart open, even when you can’t have what you want.

It’s easy to keep our heart open to life’s magic and all its possibilities when we have what we want. It’s more of a challenge, and more necessary than ever, to keep our hearts open when we can’t have what we want.

Even on the best journey, things happen. Plans change. Things shift and move around. This shifting and moving causes doors to close, relationships to end, blocks and frustrations to appear on our path. For now, that is what we see. For now, what we know is disappointment. We can’t have what we want, and it hurts. When that happens, our tendency may be to shut down, close our hearts, forget all we’ve learned.

Keep your heart open anyway. Consciously choose to do that. Yes, you can go away, you can leave, you can shut down, but you don’t need to. Now is a turning point. If you choose to open your heart, even when you can’t have what you want, miracles will unfold.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Get to know yourself

I opened the curtains in the King David Hotel overlooking the walled city in Jerusalem. This entire trip had been an adventure, but not the exciting kind. Nothing had gone as I planned. Usually on my excursions, I met people, connected with them, learned lessons, broke bread, and had fun. This trip had been different. I had barely spoken to anyone.

One night in the hotel restaurant, a woman motioned for me to join her for dinner. She spoke Hebrew. I spoke English. We sat and ate in silence. I had been to Egypt, the Sinai Peninsula. Now here. And that’s the closest I came to human contact on the entire trip.

The past week, I had traveled through Safad, a town in the Holy Land. It was the home of the kabbalah, the mystical sect of Judiasm, and one of the places where the purest, most intense form of meditation had been born. Although I had just wandered lightly through that land, something peculiar had happened to me, ever since I’d been there. I could hear my every thought. I was acutely aware of each emotion I felt.

It was as though my life had become a walking meditation.

But I was feeling lonely, and feeling bored.

“What’s wrong?” I asked. “Why haven’t I connected with anyone on this trip?”

“Yes, you have,” was the gentle answer I heard. “You’ve connected with yourself.”

Rays of light were streaming in through the window, in those first few colorful moments when the sun fills the sky. Music from a flute floated up from the courtyard below. Maybe even when we’re bored and lonely, all is well in the world.

Take some time on a regular basis to write in a journal, to meditate, or to do both. You’ll meet an interesting, exciting person. You’ll get to know yourself.

God, help me welcome those quiet spaces in my life as opportunities to connect with myself.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

The slogan “Live and Let Live” can be extremely helpful when we are having trouble tolerating other people’s behavior. We know for certain that nobody’s behavior — no matter how offensive, distasteful or vicious — is worth the price of a relapse. Our own recovery is primary, and while we must be unafraid of walking away from people or situations that cause us discomfort, we must also make a special effort to try to understand other people — especially those who rub us the wrong way. Can I accept the fat, in my recovery, that it is more important to understand than to be understood?

Today I Pray

When I run headlong into someone’s unpleasant behavior, may I first try my best to understand. Then, if my own sobriety seems threatened, may I have the courage to remove myself from the situation.

Today I Will Remember

Live and Let Live

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One More Day

A chronic illness invades life.
– Kathleen Lewis

Chronic illness means permanently changing our mindset to realize we can move only forward from this point in our life. Chronic illness means pushing back the “front tears” in our mind so we can expand the frontiers of our days. Being ill means sometimes laughing with tears trapped in our hearts, so we won’t have to be singled out as different from others. Chronic illness is becoming used to how we look today, right now, and not wasting more time longing for lost yesterdays.

If we haven’t realized it yet, we will need more emotional support than perhaps at any other time in our experience. Regardless of how strong and independent we may be, we need comfort and support from those who love us.

Longing for the “old days” and “old ways” won’t bring them back. I am learning to accept changes. They are not imposing upon my life — they are my life.


Food For Thought

You are not alone.

In the past, you may have fought a lonely battle with your inability to control your eating and the resultant weight problem. You may have thought that you were the only person who did such crazy, sneaky things in order to stuff yourself with food you did not need but could not stop eating. You may have lied to others about what you ate, and you may also have lied to yourself.

Family and friends probably tried to help. Despite the best intentions, it is difficult for one who is not a compulsive overeater to fully understand and help one who is.

In OA, you have been given a mutual support system. You have found people who understand you because they are like you. We all have the same problem, and together we are strong enough to solve it. Let’s use the help that the OA fellowship gives us and gain strength from the greater strength of the group.

May I contribute to the warmth and support of the OA fellowship.

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One Day At A Time

~ BLESSINGS ~

There are no mistakes, no coincidences.
All events are blessings given to us to learn from.
Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

I certainly never had a charmed life as a child, and when I was told to count my blessings, I never thought that I had that much to shout about. I was a shy and lonely child, always self-conscious about my shape and size, and everyone else seemed to be far better off than I was. When life started to deal out blows that were far more than I thought I could handle, I wondered why bad things always seemed to happen to me. I would hardly recover from one traumatic event when another one was upon me. I felt life was definitely unfair. Using food seemed to be the only way that I knew to cope.

I was looking for a solution, for some way to make my life a happier one. Fortunately, I was finally brought to my knees by the pain of my compulsive overeating. In working the Steps of this wonderful program, I have come to some amazing realizations. All the time I had railed against my misfortunes, I was being brought to some new understanding.

With the growing openness I now have, I can more clearly see why certain things in my life had to happen, and even why I became a compulsive overeater. Unlike the past, when I used to hate this disease, I now see it as a blessing, from which I can learn and grow. If it were not for this disease, I would not have needed to look at my life, nor would I have had to work at trying to make myself into a better person. I most certainly would not have needed to find a God of my understanding, nor would I have met so many wonderful new friends, who always love and support me.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will remember that the events in my life are not dealt out to me as a form of punishment, but rather as motivating factors in my life, that spur me on to grow and change as a person.
~ Sharon S. ~ 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We have learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery. – Pg. 30 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote


Service to another addict/alcoholic or to our group can help calm us when the jitters get rough. Think of one other fellow recoverer who also seemed jittery at the last meeting or maybe didn’t show up. You can get in touch with them today and ask if you can help.

God, as I understand You, give me the right words to comfort or to encourage a fellow alcoholic / addict.

Living Truly

Today I will live the life I wish to have. If I want not be manipulative or deceitful in my relationships, I will be an honest person. If I want goodness and decency surrounding me, I will be good and decent. If I want to feel love coming towards me, I will love others. Today I won’t ask life to be something I’m not willing to be. Today, I accept that what I put out, comes back to me.

I live the life I want to have

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

When you work with others, you allow Divine Intelligence to speak and smile through you. You allow the Divine to reach out and hug the drunk, the junkie, and the dope head.

All people smile in the same language.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Nobody ‘gives’ you a bad day without your permission.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I have the courage to follow my own inner voice that I hear in prayer and meditation. Today I dare to be true to myself and my own needs, whether anyone agrees with me or not.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It says in Chapter Five; ‘If you have decided you want what we have..’ Decision. ‘..and are willing to go to any lengths to get it.’ Action. As far as I can tell, that summarizes everything in life: Decision, Action, Result. – Cubby S. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 9

Twenty-four Hours
They asked, “You can quit twenty-four hours, can’t you?”
I said, “Sure, yes, anybody can do that, for twenty-four hours.”
They said, “That’s what we’re talking about. Just twenty-four hours at a time.”
That sure did take a load off my mind. Every time I’d start thinking about drinking,
I would think of the long, dry years ahead without having a drink;
but this idea of twenty-four hours, that it was up to me from then on, was a lot of help.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 188

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

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

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

Martyrdom
Self-pity is one of the most unhappy
and consuming defects that we know.
It is a bar to all spiritual progress
and can cut off all effective communication with our fellows
because of its inordinate demands for attention
and sympathy.
It is a maudlin form of martyrdom;
which we can ill afford.
Bill W., Letter, 1966
c. 1967 AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 238

Thought to Consider . . .
Poor me! Poor me! Pour me a drink.

~~AACRONYMS~~
N U T S = Not Using The Steps

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

Peace
From “Infinite Need”:
“In practice, I have always found it rather difficult to let Allah’s superior and
flawless will prevail in my life and govern my will. However, when I make
humble efforts, serenely accepting His will for me at some moment in my life,
I feel absolutely relieved of the load I have carried on my shoulders. The mind
does not wander any more [sic], and the heart is full of happiness at every
breath I take.” Karachi, Pakistan
1973 AAWS, Inc., printed 2004; Came to Believe, pg. 21

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

“The Secret is, there is no Secret! Working the Steps with a sponsor, going to meetings, helping others, and above all, keeping God and sobriety first have kept me sober almost five years now. I always had heard that things in plain sight are the hardest to find!”
Vandalia, Ill., February 2001
From: “The Secret”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“When you discover a prospect for Alcoholics Anonymous, find out all
you can about him. If he does not want to stop drinking, don’t
waste time trying to persuade him. You may spoil a later opportunity.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 90

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

Looking at Step Five, we decided that an inventory, taken alone, wouldn’t be enough.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 108

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

No member of A.A. wants to deprecate material achievement. Nor do we enter into debate with the many who cling to
the belief that to satisfy our basic natural desires is the main object of life. But we are sure that no class of people in the
world ever made a worse mess of trying to live by this formula than alcoholics.
We demanded more than our share of security, prestige, and romance. When we seemed to be succeeding, we drank
to dream still greater dreams. When we were frustrated, even in part, we drank for oblivion.
In all these strivings, so many of them well-intentioned, our crippling handicap was our lack of humility. We lacked the
perspective to see that character-building and spiritual values had to come first, and that material satisfactions were
simply by-products and not the chief aims of life.

Prayer for the Day: Dear Lord, please help me through today. Help me share your wisdom and glory with others so they
may benefit from your love.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 8th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 8th

Daily Reflections

CONVINCING “MR. HYDE”

Even then, as we hew away, peace and joy will still elude us. That’s
the place so many of us A.A. oldsters have come to. And it’s a hell of a
spot, literally. How shall our unconscious--from which so many of our
fears, compulsions and phony aspirations still stream–be brought into
line with what we actually believe, know and want! How to convince
our dumb, raging and hidden “Mr. Hyde” becomes our main task.
THE BEST OF BILL, pp. 42-43

Regular attendance at meetings, service and helping others is the
recipe that many have tried and found to be successful. Whenever I
stray from these basic principles, my old habits resurface and my old
self also comes back with all its fears and defects. The ultimate goal of
each A.A. member is permanent sobriety, achieved One Day at a
Time.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When the morning sun comes up on a nice bright day and we jump out
of bed, we’re thankful to God that we feel well and happy instead of
sick and disgusted. Serenity and happiness have become much more
important to us than the excitement of drinking, which lifts us up for a
short while, but lets us way down in the end. Of course, all of us
alcoholics had a lot of fun with drinking. We might as well admit it. We
can look back on a lot of good times, before we became alcoholics. But
the time comes for all of us alcoholics when drinking ceases to be fun
and becomes trouble. Have I learned that drinking can never again be
anything but trouble for me?

Meditation For The Day

I must rely on God. I must trust Him to the limit. I must depend on
the Divine Power in all human relationships. I will wait and trust and hope,
until God shows me the way. I will wait for guidance on each
important decision. I will meet the test of waiting until a thing seems right
before I do it. Every work for God must meet this test of time. The
guidance will come, if I wait for it.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may meet the test of waiting for God’s guidance. I pray
that I will not go off on my own.

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As Bill Sees It

Pipeline to God, p. 38

“I am a firm believer in both guidance and prayer. But I am fully aware,
and humble enough, I hope, to see there may be nothing infallible about
my guidance.

“The minute I figure I have got a perfectly clear pipeline to God, I have
become egotistical enough to get into real trouble. Nobody can cause
more needless grief than a power-driver who thinks he has got it straight
from God.”

Letter, 1950

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Walk In Dry Places

Right attitudes Toward Anonymity.
Traditions.
At both the practical and spiritual levels, anonymity is a great blessing for the AA fellowship.  There is much wisdom behind Traditions Eleven and Twelve.
Yet it is possible to use anonymity as a cloak for pride and fear. This might be the case with alcoholics who insist on concealing their AA membership from fellow workers, neighbors, and friends. They defend this zealous protection of their anonymity by pointing to the traditions.  However, this could reveal a lack of understanding and perhaps a lack of commitment to the program.
Why is it useful to let others know we belong to AA?  Our best opportunities to help others may come from people who watched us in sobriety and were inspired by our example.
However, we must maintain anonymity at the public media level, and nobody has the right to violate another person’s anonymity. Nor is it wise to be critical of the AA member who prefers anonymity at every level.  We have no right to pass judgment on such decisions. Above all, we never have a right to break another’s anonymity.
I’ll try to set a good example for others who may be seeking sobriety. I can find guidance about anonymity.

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Keep It Simple

You must find the ideas that have some promise in them…it’s not enough to just have ideas.  –George E. Woodberry
Each day we’re flooded with ideas. Everyone seems to have found the truth, and now they want to share it. We may feel loaded down with all these ideas. Who and what do we believe? We’ve fallen on a set of ideas that hold great promise: The Twelve Steps. The ideas of the program have much promise because they’re simple. They ask nothing that isn’t good for us. They have been proven to work. Now we’re people with more than ideas that work. We’re people with good ideas that work. When we find ourselves wondering how to live, all we need to do is look to the Steps.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me to put my energy into working the Steps.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list what is right about the Steps for me. What promises do the Steps hold for me?

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Each Day a New Beginning

Reaction isn’t action–that is, it isn’t truly creative.  –Elizabeth Janeway
We must learn how to act rather than react. Unfortunately, we’ve had lots of training at reacting. And we’re all such good imitators. We are a society of reactors. We let the good or the bad behavior of another person determine our own behavior as a matter of course. But the opportunities are unlimited for us to responsibly choose our behavior, independent of all others in our life.
Change is ours, if we want it. A scowl from a spouse need not make us feel rejected. Criticism at work doesn’t have to ruin our day. An inconsiderate bus driver might still be politely thanked. And when we decide for ourselves just how we want to act and follow through, self-esteem soars.
If we are put-down, it may momentarily create self-doubt; but when we quickly reassure ourselves that all is well and respond with respect, we grow. A sense of well-being rushes through our bodies.
Being in command of our own feelings and our own actions, prevents that free-floating anxiety from grasping us. We are who we choose to be. And new adventures await us.
The opportunities to react will be many today. But each time I can pause, determine the action I’d feel better about, and take it. My emotional health gets a booster shot each time I make a responsible choice.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

A well-known doctor, chief physician at a nationally prominent hospital specializing in alcoholic and drug addiction, gave Alcoholics Anonymous this letter:

To Whom It May Concern:
I have specialized in the treatment of alcoholism for many years.
In late 1934 I attended a patient who, though he had been a competent businessman of good earning capacity, was an alcoholic of a type I had come to regard as hopeless.
In the course of his third treatment he acquired certain ideas concerning a possible means of recovery. As part of his rehabilitation he commenced to present his conceptions to other alcoholics, impressing upon them that they must do likewise with still others. This has become the basis of a rapidly growing fellowship of these men and their families. This man and over one hundred others appear to have recovered.
I personally know scores of cases who were of the type with whom other methods had failed completely.
These facts appear to be of extreme medical importance; because of the extraordinary possibilities of rapid growth inherent in this group they may mark a new epoch in the annals of alcoholism. These men may well have a remedy for thousands of such situations.
You may rely absolutely on anything they say about themselves.
Very truly yours,
William D. Silkworth, M.D.

pp. xxv-xxvi

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

TIGHTROPE
Trying to separate worlds was a lonely charade that ended when this gay alcoholic finally landed in A.A.

I started to work on the steps, and even with my difficulty over the Third Step and “the God concept,” I began to develop a sense of trust in the A.A. group and in the ideas of the Fellowship as a manifestation of a Power greater than myself.  Although for many years I did not come to an acceptance of a God who intervened personally and directly in the lives of individuals, I was able to accept the idea of a force that moved in the rooms and animated A.A. members with a sense of unconditional love.  That satisfied my spiritual needs for a long time.

pp. 366-367

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

Compatibility, of course, can be so impossibly damaged that a separation may be necessary. But those cases are the unusual ones. The alcoholic, realizing what his wife has endured, and now fully understanding how much he himself did to damage her and his children, nearly always takes up his marriage responsibilities with a willingness to repair what he can and to accept what he can’t. He persistently tries all of A.A.’s Twelve Steps in his home, often with fine results. At this point he firmly but lovingly commences to behave like a partner instead of like a bad boy. And above all he is finally convinced that reckless romancing is not a way of life for him.

p. 119

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The past remembered is a good guide for the future.  –Chinese Proverb

“One that would have the fruit must climb the tree.”  –Thomas Fuller

Inspire someone to happiness today by sharing your own blessings and good fortune with them.

Blues Ain’t Nothing But A Good Soul Feeling Bad.

When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.  –Helen Keller

Even when we make a mess of our lives, God loves us and helps us.  –Joanne Hillman

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

HOPE

“The hopeful man sees success
where others see failure,
sunshine where others see
shadows and storm.”
— O. S. Marden

Spirituality involves our attitudes and perceptions as well as our
prayers. Spirituality requires a realistic awareness of what we need
and what we have been given. Spirituality sees beyond the problems
into the solution.

Hope is a feeling that is based on a spiritual perception of life that
shuns apathy and negativity. Everything can be used for good if it is
perceived realistically; destructive experiences, painful moments and
failed relationships can all be used to create a new tomorrow.

The hope that stems from our ability to change requires a realistic
understanding of what has happened. No aspect of life should be
wasted because it can point to a glorious tomorrow.

Teach me to discover the secret of success in the problems of life.

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Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.  Hebrews 4:16

The Lord says, “As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you.”  Isaiah 66:13

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Daily Inspiration

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.

It is important to remember that different can be better. Lord, as I resist change and cling to the familiar, help me to remember that Your plan is perfect and will truly make me happy.

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NA Just For Today

What Is A Sponsor?

“…an NA sponsor is a member of Narcotics Anonymous, living our program of
recovery, who is willing to build a special, supportive, one-on-one relationship
with us.”

IP No. 11, “Sponsorship, Revised”

What is a sponsor? You know: That nice person with whom you had coffee after
your first meeting. That generous soul who keeps sharing recovery experience
free of charge. The one who keeps amazing you with stunning insight regarding
your character defects. The one who keeps reminding you to finish your Fourth
Step, who listens to your Fifth Step, and who doesn’t tell anyone how weird you
are.

It’s pretty easy to start taking all this stuff for granted once we’re used to
someone being there for us. We may run wild for a while and tell ourselves,
“I’ll call my sponsor later, but right now I have to clean the house, go
shopping, chase that attractive.” And so we end up in trouble, wondering where
we went wrong.

Our sponsor can’t read minds. It’s up to us to reach out and ask for help.
Whether we need help with our steps, a reality check to help us straighten out
our screwy thinking, or just a friend, it’s our job to make the request.
Sponsors are warm, wise, wonderful people, and their experience with recovery is
ours — all we have to do is ask.

Just for today: I’m grateful for the time, the love, and the experience my
sponsor has shared with me. Today, I will call my sponsor. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
When I look back on all these worries I remember the story of the old man who said on his deathbed that he had had a lot of trouble in his life, most of which never happened. –Winston Churchill
A rolled-up ball of yarn does not take up much space–it sits, ready to be used when needed. It gets unrolled a little bit at a time–just as much as is needed and no more. But a ball of yarn that gets unraveled can be strewn across an entire room. It becomes a jumbled mass, entangled and confusing.
When we live our lives a day at a time, we are like that rolled-up ball of yarn. Our thoughts, feelings, and skills are ready to be used as they are needed. But when we worry, our spirit becomes a jumbled mass of yarn. We get ahead of and behind ourselves–our thoughts are scattered and often our feelings are confused. Worry adds clutter and confusion to life.
What is most helpful is to put the worry away–to roll up the ball of yarn and bring ourselves into the present moment. In this way, we stand ready for each new stitch–and we will never be given more than we are able to handle.
Do I have worries that are cluttering my life today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If the best man’s faults were written on Us forehead, it would make him pull his hat over his eyes. –Gaelic proverb
When we deal with our faults and imperfections, we are dealing with the basic issues of being a person. We can become bitter and cynical about the imperfections of others, or we can realize every person is incomplete but growing, just as we are. The way we look at the faults in others and the way we look at our own are closely tied together. In our spiritual journey, we must begin with the premise that no person ever achieves perfection.
Perfection apparently is not what this life is about at all, since perfection is nonexistent. We are lovable, and we can love in the process of living our lives. Since we are not perfect, we have to be accountable. We must have standards for our behavior and hold ourselves to those standards, admitting our mistakes and making repairs where we can.
I will try to acknowledge my mistakes and give up the idea of ever becoming perfect.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Guilt
Feeling good about ourselves is a choice. So is feeling guilty. When guilt is legitimate, it acts as a warning light, signaling that we’re off course. Then its purpose is finished.
Wallowing in guilt allows others to control us. It makes us feel not good enough. It prevents us from setting boundaries and taking other healthy action to care for ourselves.
We may have learned to habitually feel guilty as an instinctive reaction to life. Now we know that we don’t have to feel guilty. Even if we’ve done something that violates a value, extended guilt does not solve the problem; it prolongs the problem. So make an amend. Change a behavior. Then let guilt go.
Today, God, help me to become entirely ready to let go of guilt. Please take it from me, and replace it with self-love.


Today I am willing to let go of all my thoughts and opinions that are negative and destructive in my life. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Listen to Your Inner Voice

Our inner voice, that quiet guide within, will lead us along our path, will help us create our destiny, will keep us in harmony.

So much stress comes from not listening, not trusting our inner voice. So much confusion comes from trying to act before we have heard, before we are guided. So much pain comes when we deny what that voice is saying, when we try to run from it or make it go away. We wonder how we can trust ourselves. The better question is, How can we not trust ourselves?

Our rage, anger, and most bitter resentments occur when we trust others rather than ourselves. Yes, sometimes promptings come from outside ourselves. The universe is alive, magical, responsive, and will guide us on our way. But the answer must always resonate, must always ultimately come from that place within our heart, our soul, our inner voice. Sometimes, we need to listen to others until we become impassioned enough to hear and trust ourselves.

It takes practice, the quiet practice of listening, until we learn how to hear ourselves, then interpret what we hear. It is neither wasted time nor incidental to our lives to learn to hear ourselves, to learn to tune into our hearts and souls. That’s part of the reason we’re here– part of our destiny, our mission, our purpose.

Our best work, our finest moments, our joy happen when we’re centered, listening to and trusting ourselves, allowing our hearts and souls to guide us. They happen when we allow ourselves to fully, completely, and in love, be who we are.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Watch out for that woohoo

That’s not flying….It’s falling with style.
–Woody, Toy Story

There is a term in skydiving called relative work. That means you’re controlling your fall rate to match those of the other jumpers in the air– falling in formation with them.

“We are flying,” said a sky diver, flush with adrenaline after a jump, “relative to each other.”

“Sure you are,” I said. “But relative to the earth, you’re falling, and that’s all that counts.”

It’s easy to get caught up in the woohoo of the moment. But don’t forget about humility and reality,too. We can make the right moves, assert ourselves, realize our dreams– but our plans need to be brought down to earth.

Find a path with heart, and walk it. Do things. Enjoy your activities. But also be aware that while you may feel like you are flying, there is a big green planet rushing toward you at 120 miles per hour that begs to differ.

Say woohoo. Have confidence. Then remember that there’s always a power greater than you.

God, help me remember to be grounded and humble in all that I do.

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

When we first stopped drinking, using, over-eating, or gambling, it was an enormous relief to find that the people we met in The Program seemed quite different than those apparently hostile masses know as “They.” We were met not with criticism and suspicion, but with understanding and concern. However, we still encounter people who get on our nerves, both within The Program and outside it. Obviously, we must begin to accept the fact that there are people who’ll sometimes say things with which we disagree, or do things we don’t like. Am I beginning to see that learning to live with differences is essential to my comfort and, in turn, to my continuing recovery?

Today I Pray

May I recognize that people’s differences make our world go around and tolerate people who “rub me the wrong way.” May I understand that I must give them room, that some of my hostile attitudes toward others may be leftovers from the unhealthy days when I tended to view others as mobilized against me.

Today I will Remember

Learn to live with Differences.

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One More Day

Tragedy is an initiation not of human beings but of action, life, happiness, and unhappiness.
– Aristotle

Our response to tragedy can be rage, sorrow, or even horror. Those responses, as real as they are, are not as accurate as our optimism, for it is optimism … the belief that life will go smoothly … that gives the label “tragedy” to an event. We are surprised, we are shocked when our optimism is leveled by the unexpected.

A tragedy is an event, a time, a moment, and nothing more. People’s lives are constantly see-sawing between emotions and events. No one is always happy, placid, or tragic. In experiencing life to the fullest, we expose ourselves to all the facets. And that simple act makes us all uniquely human.

I accept my life and the ups and downs of my human experience.


Food For Thought

Small Decisions

We live this program one day at a time, one meal at a time. Throughout each day, we make many small decisions one at a time. We may often be tempted to take a tiny extra bite, to estimate a portion on the generous side rather than measuring it exactly, or to include a problem food in our menu plan.

Each time we decide not to take the tiny extra bite, each time we weigh and measure exactly, each time we decide to avoid the problem food, we become stronger. The next wise decision becomes easier to make.

One wrong decision does not have to ruin an entire day. None of us is perfect. We can learn to accept the fact of a mistake and move on to the next decision, which needs to be made. We can let our Higher Power total up our score and be the judge of how well we work the program. Our job is to work it, and at every moment we are free to decide wisely.

I pray for wisdom to make the right decisions.

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One Day At A Time

DISCIPLINE AND FREEDOM

” Freedom to a dancer means discipline.
That is what technique is for … liberation.”
Martha Graham

I was thinking this morning that keeping in fit spiritual condition was like being a dancer. A dancer knows that without the discipline of frequent training and rehearsal, he or she will not be able to dance freely when called upon to do so. The dancer who is not in shape will look wrong, feel wrong and become injured trying to do something wild and free. The training may be dull, boring and repetitive at times, but when the performance is on, the dancer soars in the freedom of movement.

I try to look at my daily program tasks the way a dancer looks at training. I may not like every minute, but I have the continual blessing of freedom as I go about my day and the hope of great moments of breakthrough into new freedoms as I progress.

One day at a time …
I will take each step of my recovery program with my great vision of freedom.
~ Q. 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person like to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. – Pg. 30 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The pain and struggle of early recovery is a powerful wind that blows through your life. It blows open the doors to your deepest emotions and tests the very fiber of your being. Yet, after the storm abates, you rebuild on the foundation of love from the fellowship.

In the coming days when I can’t be grateful, when I cannot see past the storm, I listen to the beating heart of the fellowship.

Lighting One Candle

Today I will light one candle. I know in my heart that the world has so many sincere and good people in it. People who want to contribute to the world, whose hearts are set in the right direction. I join with all of those good souls today in my deep wish to be part of a force that can heal the world. I say a quiet prayer for all who need it and I unite my soul energy with like minded people. I trust that my good wishes for this world will unite with the good wishes of others and form a silent force that will gather in power and attract more and more energy. My prayers will not go unanswered because they are the prayers of so many. There are so many good people from all walks of life, all corners of the world. We have something very profound in common, our love of life, our love of our world.

I do a small thing with a full heart

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Try to live your life without adding to your Eight Step list. You have enough wreckage to clear up from the past without creating wreckage in the now.

When I feel my worst, I try my best.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Better to go through life sober, thinking you’re an alcoholic, than go through life drunk thinking you’re not.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am willing to let go of all my thoughts and opinions that are negative and destructive in my life.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I’ve got a mind that’s trying to kill me. – Bob P. 

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AA Thought for the Day

February 8

Guilt
Day by day, we try to move a little toward God’s perfection.
So we need not to be consumed by maudlin guilt
for failure to achieve His likeness and image by Thursday next.
Progress is our aim, and His perfection is the beacon, light-years away, that draws us on.
– As Bill Sees It, p. 15

Thought to Ponder . . .
Guilt is in the past; worry is the future. Both are manifestations of ego.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
G U I L T = God Understands I Lack Trust.

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

Vigilance
Now that we’re in AA and sober,
and winning back the esteem of our friends
and business associates,
we find that we still need to exercise special vigilance.
As an insurance against “big-shot-ism”
we can often check ourselves by remembering
we are today sober only by the grace of God
and that any success we may be having
is far more His success than ours.
c. 1952 AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 92

Thought to Consider . . .
Always remember you’re unique … just like everyone else.

~~AACRONYMS~~
H A L T = Honestly, Actively, Lovingly, Tolerant.

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

Today
>From “Getting Ahead”:
“I think that one of the main differences between an active alcoholic and a recovering alcoholic can be expressed as a
matter of tense. The active alcoholic tends to live in the future or in the past. The sober alcoholic, using part of the
philosophy he learns in his A.A. experience, lives or strives to live in the present.”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 113

~~~~^ Grapevine Quotes ^~~~~

“If you need a friend who understands, look no further than the rooms of AA and the Big Book. They always hold an
answer and some faith for me.”
Santa Rosa, Calif, October 2006
From: “Imperfect Progress”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“Some day we hope that Alcoholics Anonymous will help the public to
a better realization of the gravity of the alcoholic problem, but we
shall be of little use if our attitude is one of bitterness or
hostility. Drinkers will not stand for it.
After all, our problems were of our own making. Bottles were only a
symbol. Besides, we have stopped fighting anybody or anything. We
have to!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 103~

“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

We should avoid extreme judgments, both of ourselves and of others involved.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 82

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Resentment is the Number One offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have also been spiritually ill. When our spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically.
In dealing with our resentments, we set them on paper. We listed people, institutions, or principles with whom we were angry. We asked ourselves why we were angry. In most cases it was found that our self-esteem, our pocketbooks, our ambitions, our personal relationships (including sex) were hurt or threatened.
‘The most heated bit of letter-writing can be a wonderful safety valve – providing the wastebasket is somewhere nearby.

Prayer for the Day: Lord, we ask you to open our eyes that we may value and appreciate all people, recognizing what we have in common rather than focusing on what our differences might be. Inspire us to distinguish between what is important and what is not, and open our minds and hearts that we may always be people of good will who bring life and joy to others. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 7th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 7th

Daily Reflections

A PATH TO FAITH

True humility and an open mind can lead us to faith, and every A.A. meeting is an
assurance that God will restore us to sanity if we rightly relate ourselves to Him.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 33

My last drunk had landed me in the hospital, totally broken. It was then that I was able
to see my past float in front of me. I realized that, through drinking, I had lived every
nightmare I had ever had. My own self-will and obsession to drink had driven me into a
dark pit of hallucinations, blackouts and despair. Finally beaten, I asked for God’s help.
His presence told me to believe. My obsession for alcohol was taken away and my
paranoia has since been lifted. I am no longer afraid. I know my life is healthy and sane.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

A night club crowded with men and women all dressed up in evening clothes looks like a
very festive place. But you should see the rest rooms of that night club the next morning.
What a mess! People have been sick all over the place and does it smell! The glamour of
the night before is all gone and only the stink of the morning after is left. In A.A. we learn
to take a long view of drinking instead of a short view. We learn to think less about the
pleasure of the moment and more about the consequences. Has the night before become
less important to me and the morning after more important?

Meditation For The Day

Only a few more steps and then God’s power shall be seen and known in my life. I am now
walking in darkness, surrounded by the limitations of space and time. But even in this
darkness, I can have faith and can be a light to guide feet that are afraid. I believe that
God’s power will break through the darkness and my prayers will pierce even to the ears
of God Himself. But only a cry from the heart, a trusting cry, ever pierces that darkness
and reaches to the divine ear of God.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that the divine power of God will help my human weakness. I pray that my prayer
may reach through the darkness to the ear of God.

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As Bill Sees It

Let Go Absolutely, p.242

After failure on my part to dry up any drunks, Dr. Silkworth
reminded me of Professor William James’s observation that truly
transforming spiritual experiences are nearly always founded on
calamity and collapse. “Stop preaching at them,” Dr. Silkworth
said, “and give them the hard medical facts first. This may soften
them up at depth so that they will be willing to do anything to get
well. Then they may accept those spiritual ideas of yours, and
even a Higher Power.”

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

We beg of you to be fearless and thorough from the very start. Some
of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas, and the result was
nil–until we let go absolutely.

1. A.A. Comes Of Age, p.13
2. Alcoholics Anonymous, p.58

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Walk In Dry Places

Responsibility for our actions.
Maturity
The practice of scape-goating goes way back to biblical times. It’s easier to blame others for our problems than to take personal responsibility for facing and solving these problems.
In the AA program, however, there’s nothing that serves as a basis for blaming others. In every way, AA insists that alcoholics take personal responsibility… not only for finding and maintaining sobriety, but also for past wrongs and personal shortcomings. This is a difficult change for alcoholics who have believed that others caused many of their problems.
But being forced to take responsibility for our actions is a blessing in disguise. It fairly shouts the good news that we can take charge of our lives despite what others think and do. With God’s help, we can change ourselves into the people we ought to be.  We are fortunate that life is arranged to give us this personal responsibility.. where would we be if our recovery depended only on others?
We also learn that this responsibility is not limited to our drinking. We are responsible for everything we think and do, and we have the power to make improvements in our lives beginning today.
I will go through the day without blaming others for my problems.

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Keep It Simple

I thank God for my handicaps, for through them, I have found myself, my work and my God.—Helen Keller.
None of us ever wanted to be addicts. It’s not what we would choose to be— just as no one would choose to blind and deaf. Helen Keller, who was blind and deaf, told of how her problems became her biggest gift. Through them, she found true meaning in her life. We can accept our handicap—our addiction— and learn from it. The truth is, we’re all handicapped in some way. Recovery is about facing our addiction and learning to live with it. When we see we can’t do things alone, we see the need for a Higher Power.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me see myself as I really am. Give me the serenity that comes from accepting my handicaps.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list all the ways I am handicapped. I’ll ask myself, “What gift does each of these hold for me?”

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Each Day a New Beginning

However confused the scene of our life appears, however torn we may be who now do face that scene, it can be faced, and we can go on to be whole.  –Muriel Rukeyser
We can expect to feel fear, even dread at some points in our lives. We will always have situations that, for a time at least, seem more than we can bear. But the clouds will lift. We are never given more than we can handle, and with each passing day we become more at ease with ourselves and all that life gives us. We are learning that “this too shall pass.” Our confidence grows as our spiritual program gains strength.
Our ties to one another and our ties to the program make us whole. When we reflect on who we were and how far we’ve come, we will see that problems we drank over in days gone by are handled today and often with ease. The joy we share is that no problem is too great to be faced any longer. And no situation will ever have to be faced alone, unless we reject God’s help.
I will be grateful for my growth toward wholeness and the opportunities I face today. They are bringing me into harmony with the Divine plan for my life.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

WE OF Alcoholics Anonymous believe that the reader will be interested in the medical estimate of the plan of recovery described in this book. Convincing testimony must surely come from medical men who have had experience with the sufferings of our members and have witnessed our return to health.

p. xxv

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

TIGHTROPE
Trying to separate worlds was a lonely charade that ended when this gay alcoholic finally landed in A.A.

I also thought that the people in meetings sometimes seemed too standoffish and overly concerned with their friends and acquaintances rather than with me, the newcomer.  Well on my way toward developing a resentment, I expressed this to my sponsor.  He suggested that I might find people more communicative if I took the coffee-making commitment for the group I had joined.  Although I thought I was far too special to make coffee, I did figure that as coffee maker I would have a chance to select decent cookies, and so I agreed.  My sponsor was right again.  People did start to speak with me–if only to complain about the coffee and cookies.  But once a conversation starts, communication frequently continues.

p. 366

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

When the distortion has been great, however, a long period of patient striving may be necessary. After the husband joins A.A., the wife may become discontented, even highly resentful that Alcoholics Anonymous 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. Seeing her unhappiness, he recommends A.A.’s Twelve Steps and tries to teach her how to live. She naturally feels that for years she has made a far better job of living than he has. Both of them blame each other and ask when their marriage is ever going to be happy again. They may even begin to suspect it had never been any good in the first place.

pp. 118-119

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God, the Master Artist, sees the whole picture and desires to make something delightful of us.  –Gene L. Lankford

The joy is in the journey.

Life didn’t end when I got sober — it started.

Situations I fear are rarely as bad as the fear itself.

If faith without works is dead, then willingness without action is fantasy.

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

Walk softly and carry a Big Book.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

CHILDLIKE

“In every child who is born, under
no matter what circumstances,
and of no matter what parents, the
potentiality of the human race is
born again.”
— James Agee

Today I am able to believe and see the God-given dignity of the human race in
the faces and lifestyles of others. In the challenge and rebelliousness of youth is
the hope for tomorrow.

Today I can associate myself with the need to question, risk and “be
outrageous”. Today I can play, laugh at myself and own my craziness. Today I do
not need to be perfect.

When I used drugs, I was so judgmental, serious and controlling. Everything had
to have a place, or an answer, or be acceptable to others. My moments of guilt
were caused by my inability to please others.

Today I can be childlike and identify with the radical message for tomorrow: “to
thine own self be true!”

I see a child looking at the stars and I smile; I am that child.

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O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. Sing to the Lord, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples. For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; he is to be revered above all gods.
Psalm 96:1-4

I rejoice in the Lord greatly that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned for me, but had no opportunity to show it. Not that I am referring to being in need; for I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.  Phillipians 4:10-13

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.  Matthew 5:6

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Daily Inspiration

There is no moment like right now. Lord, help me start one thing today that I have been putting off.

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

This Is Not A Test

“We have found a loving, personal God to whom we can turn.”
Basic Text p. 27

Some of us come into recovery with the impression that life’s hardships are a series of cosmic tests designed to teach us something. This belief is readily apparent when something traumatic happens and we wail, “My Higher Power is testing me!” We’re convinced that it’s a test of our recovery when someone offers us drugs, or a test of our character when faced with a situation where we could do something unprincipled without getting caught. We may even think it’s a test of our faith when we’re in great pain over a tragedy in our lives.

But a loving Higher Power doesn’t test our recovery, our character, or our faith. Life just happens, and sometimes it hurts. Many of us have lost love through no fault of our own. Some of us have lost all of our material wealth. A few of us have even grieved the loss of our own children. Life can be terribly painful at times, but the pain is not inflicted on us by our Higher Power. Rather, that Power is constantly by our sides, ready to carry us if we can’t walk by ourselves. There is no harm that life can do us that the God of our understanding can’t heal.

Just for today: I will have faith that my Higher Power’s will for me is good, and that I am loved. I will seek my Higher Power’s help in times of need. 

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
It is the weak who are cruel. Gentleness can only be expected from the strong. –Leo Rosten
When we think of strength, do we think of someone who shows no emotion and intimidates others with physical power? True strength is the freedom to show all kinds of feelings. Strong people aren’t afraid of being vulnerable. A person who feels insecure may not feel free to show any kind of softness or be able to share gentle feelings. If we have true inner strength, we are not afraid to show what is a part of us, gentle feelings included.
It is wonderful to see a well-conditioned athlete cry tears of joy after a victory. In such an example we can see physical and emotional strength. In our lives together, we will be stronger if we do not try to hide our feelings out of fear. As our feelings flow, we will increase our self-understanding and build our true strength.
Am I strong enough to show how I really feel today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
We cannot merely pray to You, 0 God, to end war;
For we know that You have made the world in a way
That man must find his own path to peace
Within himself and with his neighbor.
–Jack Riemer
Our conscious contact with God can be called prayer. There are many forms of prayer for a man in this program. For some of us it may take the form of talking to God; for others it may be silent meditation, observing nature, listening to music, or writing in a journal.
We have experienced the healing effect of this relationship. It has allowed us to move out of our willfulness. But we need to take action where we can make a difference. We cannot blame God for every bad thing that happens – or simply wait for God to provide all the good we want. Do we see the power we do have to influence our lives? Can we give up our resentments against God for bad things that have happened?
I am grateful for what God has given me and more aware of what I can do.


You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Owning Our Power
We need to make a distinction between powerlessness and owning our power.
The first step in recovery is accepting powerlessness. There are some things we can’t do, no matter how long or hard we try. These things include changing other people, solving their problems, and controlling their behavior. Sometimes, we feel powerless over ourselves – what we feel or believe, or the effects of a particular situation or person on us.
It’s important to surrender to powerlessness, but it’s equally important to own our power. We aren’t trapped. We aren’t helpless. Sometimes it may feel like we are, but we aren’t. We each have the God given power, and the right, to take care of ourselves in any circumstance, and with any person. The middle ground of self-care lies between the two extremes of controlling others and allowing them to control us. We can walk that ground gently or assertively, but in confidence that it is our right and responsibility.
Let the power come to walk that path.
Today, I will remember that I can take care of my self. I have choices, and. I can exercise the options I choose without guilt.


I feel my entire body unwinding and relaxing as I give up my resistance and struggle. Today I accept life as it comes and learn to flow with it with peace. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Experience Love for Yourself

To find love, you must first find it in yourself. Then the whole universe will mirror it back. See how people smile at you? Feel their tenderness, their affection, their respect. See how the whole world responds lovingly to you when you love yourself.

The world around you reflects how you feel about yourself. The beliefs of many years have kept you trapped in the illusion of separateness, apartness. Your hesitancy to love yourself was mirrored in the eys of others. But you are not alone, you are not estranged. You are not a disconnected part. You are part of the whole, intricately connected to all of life.

Go out, and embrace your connection. Embrace life. Watch the sunrise. Smell the cypress trees, a field of garlic, the gentle scent of an apple orchard. Feel the breeze on your cheek, the rain on your hair, the earth beneath your feet.

Stay open. Keep loving yourself. Know you are a vital part of a living universe. Watch how much better, how much kinder life is, as you grow in peace and harmony with yourself. See how much more love is mirrored in the universe since you committed to loving yourself.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Replace dread by saying woohoo

Let go of dread.

Treat it like a feeling. Identify it. Accept and acknowledge it. Then release it. Do whatever you have to, to get it out of your system. Because dread is more than just a feeling– it’s really a curse.

We throw this dark gray blanket of dread over our lives for hours, sometimes days, months, and sometimes years. We convince ourselves that certain situations will be terrible. Then what we’ve predicted comes true.

Dread is not living in the present moment. It’s living the future before we get there, and living it without any joy. There’s a lot of good about the future that you don’t know. There’s your power to flow. There’s the creative power that exists in the void. There’s your abillity to intuitively handle what comes up. And there’s a lesson, a pulsing potential in the experience that you can’t see yet. There may be a delightful consequence or outcome from this experience on which you haven’t planned. Or it may simply be something you need to get through to experience growth.

If you’re feeling cursed because you’re living in dread, take the curse off yourself.

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

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

What do I do what I do? Why did I say what I said? Why on earth did I put off an important responsibility? Questions like these, best asked of myself in a quiet time of meditation, demand honest answers. I may have to think deeply for those answers, going beyond the tempting rationalizations that lack the luster of truth. Have I accepted the fact that self-deception can only damage me, providing a clouded and unrealistic picture of the person I really am?

Today I Pray

May God allow me to push aside my curtain of fibs, alibis, rationalizations, justification, distortions and downright lies and let in the light on the real truths about myself. May I meet the person I really am and take comfort in the person I can become.

Today I Will Remember

Hello, Me. Meet the Real Me.

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One More Day

Of all sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: It might have been.
– John Greenleaf Whittier

A story is told of a man leaning over his wife’s casket. “I waited too long,” he lamented to no one in particular. “Why didn’t I tell her how much I loved her, how much I cherished our life together? I waited too long.”

Like everyone else, we are guilty of procrastination. We tend to put off difficult decisions, such as ending a bad relationship or quitting a job or making aments with an old friend. Our Procrastinations seem to protect us.

Now we understand that time is important too. The more we put something off, the less time we have for other more positive areas of life. Life gets easier when we don’t procrastinate.

I can resolve many problems with direct actions. I need not procrastinate anymore.

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Food For Thought

Abstinence Is Freedom

In the beginning, when we first practice abstinence, we may look at it as restriction, limitation, or denial. We don’t like the word, we don’t like giving up our favorite foods, we don’t like measuring and weighing and writing down menus. We sometimes decide to abstain grudgingly, considering it punishment for past indulgences and bitter medicine for our disease.

Let’s remember that what we are giving up is fat, lethargy, and the uncontrolled craving for more and more. Not to abstain is to remain a slave to compulsive overeating. Before OA, we were not free. We were prisoners of our compulsion.

Abstinence is not negative denial. It is positive freedom from the obsession with food and the debilitating effects of overeating. Through abstinence we become free to live active, interesting, satisfying lives. We are able to work and love and serve and enjoy in ways, which were unknown to us before.

When we choose to abstain, we choose freedom.

Thank you, Lord, for freedom.

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One Day At A Time

~ FELLOWSHIP ~

We may have all come on different ships,
but we’re in the same boat now.
Martin Luther King Jr.

As a child I never had many friends and I was never one of the “in” crowd. I had many complexes and never thought I was good enough, or clever enough or thin enough. I didn’t date much, nor did I often go to parties. Instead I lived in my perfect fantasy world, where I would one day be thin and beautiful and live happily ever after. As a result food became my best friend, and where friends would constantly disappoint me or leave me, food was always there to numb the pain of loneliness, rejection and loss. There was never anyone in whom I could confide the unbearable pain that I felt, and so I would bury myself in books and food, and thought that as long as I had enough food to soothe that great big hole in my soul, everything would be fine.

Finally, however, when the food was causing me more pain than the pain it was supposed to take away, in desperation I found the doors of this wonderful fellowship. The people in that first meeting were from all walks of life, and of all ages, with some being old enough to be my parents or young enough to be my children. Even though they initially appeared so different to me, I realized that in this motley group of people I had found the friends that I had always been looking for. The common bond we shared in our desire to stop eating compulsively and to heal our lives was the cement that keeps this wonderful fellowship going. These friends listened to me without judging me, they loved me even when I couldn’t love myself, and they were there for me when I needed them. They have become my best friends and my family. It’s a result of this fellowship with other compulsive overeaters, who share with me their experience, strength and hope, that I am constantly able to learn and grow.

One day at a time… One Day at a Time . . .
I will reach out in fellowship to my friends in the program, as they reach out to me, and in doing so I am empowered in ways that are truly miraculous.
~ Sharon S. ~ 

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

In 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. This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements. – Pg. 50 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

You will feel powerless at times, yet once you live through your withdrawal and early confusing recovery, your resiliency to endure, survive, and thrive will amaze you. You are in a unique position to learn from this, turn around, and offer help to others. You are, at this very moment, learning skills that will help other addicts and alcoholics in the future. This is a gift.

I thank my Divine Source for the ability to view the good in the journey I now take.

Giving of Myself

I will not give things instead of love. I will recognize that the people who need and depend on me for that sustaining kind of love and attention will be hurt and confused if I ignore their real need for me. I need to give those who are close to me real love. They have cast their fate with mine and I owe them this. They depend on me and I need to understand that and step up to the plate and do what’s necessary and right. I will also be appropriately grateful, when those I need and depend upon give me the caring and concern that nourishes my heart.

I give of my time and attention

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Some recovering addicts take comfort in their complexity as if they are the exceptionally wounded. They worry their wounds and pick at their pain, giving themselves permission to be difficult, slow, and self-absorbed. Are you simply healing to your own internal rhythm or giving yourself excuses to be difficult?

I don’t make the pity pot too comfortable.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Align your actions so they are in agreement with the picture you paint of yourself at meetings.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I feel my entire body unwinding and relaxing as I give up my resistance and struggle. Today I accept life as it comes and learn to flow with it with peace.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Alcohol gave me wings to fly, then took away my sky. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

February 7

Step Two
“Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”

We have acquired a belief in some force that is external, more powerful than we are,
and capable of helping us return to sanity.
This implies that the external, more powerful force is a force for good,
an orderly force capable of making sense out of the chaos of reality,
and bringing order to our own chaotic lives.
The final stage in a full acceptance of the Second Step is to come to believe
that this greater power — a good and orderly greater power — will indeed help us.
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol. 2], pp. 140-141

Thought to Ponder . . .
Believe more deeply.

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

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

Language of the Heart

>From the beginning,
communication in AA has been no ordinary transmission
of helpful ideas and attitudes.
It has been unusual and sometimes unique.
Because of our kinship in suffering,
and because our common means of deliverance
are effective for ourselves only when
constantly carried to others,
our channels of contact have always been charged
with the language of the heart.
Bill W., July 1960
c. 1988 AAGrapevine, The Language of the Heart, p. 243

Thought to Consider . . .
Walk softly and carry a Big Book.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
S O B E R = Simply Observe Bill’s Exemplary Recovery.

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

Altogether
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“In something of the same fashion this idea began to work out with other kinds of prospects. In the beginning we could
not sober up women. They were different, they said. But when they saw other women get well, they slowly followed suit.
The derelict, the rich man, the socialite, all these once thought A.A. was not for them. So did certain people of other
races and tongues and creeds. But when they clearly saw the alcoholic tragedy for which they were headed, they could
forget their differences and join A.A.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 199

*~*~*~*~*^ Grapevine Quotes ^*~*~*~*~*

“Be willing to be willing to follow directions and you will find your life changing in all areas.”
Milwaukie, Ore., June 1999
From: “A Lady After All”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“Both you and the new man must walk day by day in the path of
spiritual progress. If you persist, remarkable things will happen.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 100~

“Carry this message to other alcoholics! You can help when no one
else can. You can secure their confidence when others fail.
Remember they are very ill.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 89~

We found that freedom from fear was more important than freedom from want.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 122

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

I am a firm believer in both guidance and prayer. But I am fully aware, and humble enough, I hope, to see there may be nothing infallible about my guidance.
‘The minute I figure I have got a perfectly clear pipeline to God, I have become egotistical enough to get into real trouble. Nobody can cause more needless grief than a power-driver who thinks he has got it straight from God.

Prayer for the Day: Praying for Others – Lord, even though others misunderstand and talk about me, I will keep right on praying for them. Thank you for giving me the strength to love my enemies, to do good to those who hate me. I ask you to bless those who have hurt me, and pray for their happiness. For now is the time—you are bending down to hear! You are ready with a plentiful supply of love and kindness. Thank you for answering my prayer, for your loving kindness is wonderful; your mercy is so plentiful, so tender and so kind. Nothing – no activity, work, or relationship – has meaning without you as the center of my life. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.