Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 4th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 4th

Daily Reflections

WEEDING THE GARDEN

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

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

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

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

Meditation For The Day

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

Prayer For The Day

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

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As Bill Sees It

Free Of Dependence, p. 63

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

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

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

Grapevine, January 1958

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Walk in Dry Places

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

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Keep It Simple

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

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Each Day a New Beginning

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

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Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

BILL’S STORY

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

p. 3

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

p. 373

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

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

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

pp. 132-133

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

I have been given a quiet place in bright sunshine.

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

Learning and maturation in the life of the spirit cannot be hurried,
and as in physical and intellectual development, a great deal depends
on our readiness.
–Mary McDermott Shideler

God’s will never takes me where his grace will not sustain me.
–Ruth Humlecker

Forgiveness is the key that unlocks the door to everlasting love.

Antidote for stress:
Take a deep breath and think of something that pleases you.

An argument had with a spouse is a loving moment lost forever.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

HELL

“The hottest places in Hell are
reserved for those, who in time
of great moral crises, maintain
their neutrality.”
— Dante Alighieri

Each human being makes a personal hell here on earth. Often we do
it not by what we perpetrate but in what we allow to happen. So much
of the loneliness and isolation that many addicts and their families
experience is caused by them remaining hidden and silent. The
pretense that everything is okay is not only untrue but deadly.
Silence and compliance kills more addicts than a thousand needles!

Today I choose not to be neutral in my life. I speak about my
alcoholism so that I can on a daily basis make war on the disease that
nearly killed me. I speak out about the disease of addiction so that
society cannot say that it did not know what was happening. I speak
up for treatment and recovery because I know it can work in the vast
majority of cases. I am not neutral when it comes to addiction
because I am fighting for my life.

God, give me the courage to speak up in the crowd; let me live the
message I was privileged to receive.

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“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be
dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9

God is not unjust, he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you
have helped people and continue to help them.
Hebrews 6:10

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we
do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially
to those who belong to the family of believers.
Galatians 6:9-10

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Daily Inspiration

Life isn’t always fair, but don’t let that stop you from making the world a better place every chance you get. Lord, help me to serve You where I am right now.

The first and most powerful commandment is love. Through love we unite ourselves together with God and with each other and bring ourselves closer to our desired goal. Lord, I love You with all my heart and soul and mind.

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NA Just For Today

The Process

“This program has become a part of me…. I understand more clearly the things that are happening in my life today I no longer fight the process.”
Basic Text, p. 78

In active addiction, things happened seemingly without rhyme or reason. We just “did things”; often without knowing why or what the results would be. Life had little value or meaning.

The Twelve Step process gives meaning to our lives; in working the steps, we come to accept both the dark and the bright sides of ourselves. We strip away the denial that kept us from comprehending addiction’s affect on us. We honestly examine ourselves, picking out the patterns in our thoughts, our feelings, and our behavior We gain humility and perspective by fully disclosing ourselves to another human being. In seeking to have our shortcomings removed, we develop a working appreciation of our own powerlessness and the strength provided by a Power greater than we are. With our enhanced understanding of ourselves, we gain greater insight into and acceptance of others.

The Twelve Steps are the key to a process we call “life”: In working the steps, they become a part of us—and we become a part of the life around us. Our world is no longer meaningless; we understand more about what happens in our lives today. We no longer fight the process. Today, in working the steps, we live it.

Just for today: Life is a process; the Twelve Steps are the key. Today, I will use the steps to participate in that process, understanding and enjoying myself and my recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I celebrate myself, and sing myself, and what I assume, you shall assume. –Walt Whitman
Some of us may think Walt Whitman must have been terribly conceited to have written words like that. But he wasn’t. He knew himself well, and accepted himself, even his darker side. He could laugh at himself and celebrate his humanness.
And because he loved and accepted himself just as he was, others could do the same. That’s difficult to understand sometimes, but it’s true: no one else is going to love and accept us until we come to love and accept ourselves.
We teach others how to treat us by the way we treat ourselves, so perhaps it makes sense to apply a variation of the Golden Rule: “Do unto ourselves as we would have others do unto us.”
Can I allow my kindness to myself overflow to another person today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Heaven ne’er helps the men who will not act. –Sophocles
Growing into masculine wholeness is a journey into greater responsibility for our lives. We have choices to make every day. Taking responsibility means choosing between the options we have and then accepting the consequences. Sometimes both choices are undesirable, but we have to choose anyway. Do I expect to be perfect in my choices? Do I demand that someone else take responsibility for me? Do I defiantly refuse to accept the options I have?
This program seems like a paradox- the First Step asks us to accept our powerlessness, then we are expected to go on and stop being passive in our lives. The Serenity Prayer speaks to us about this dilemma. We ask for the serenity to accept what we cannot change and the courage to change what we can. Fully admitting our powerlessness sheds a burden and frees us to go on from there, actively doing what we can.
If something is awaiting my action today, may I have the courage to move forward with it. Even small movement is progress.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Higher Power as a Source
I’ve learned I can take care of myself, and what I cant do, God will do for me. –Al Anon member
God, a Higher Power as we understand Him, is our source of guidance and positive change. This doesn’t mean were not responsible for ourselves. We are. But we aren’t in this alone.
Recovery is not a do it yourself project. We don’t have to become overly concerned about changing ourselves. We can do our part, relax, and trust that the changes well experience will be right for us.
Recovery means we don’t have to look to other people as our source to meet our needs. They can help us, but they are not the source.
As we learn to trust the recovery process, we start to understand that a relationship with our Higher Power is no substitute for relationships with people. We don’t need to hide behind religious beliefs or use our relationship with a Higher Power as an excuse to stop taking responsibility for ourselves and taking care of ourselves in relationships. But we can tap into and trust a Power greater than ourselves for the energy, wisdom, and guidance to do that.
Today, I will look to my Higher Power as a source for all my needs, including the changes I want to make in my recovery.
I will not forget that every moment of every day I can be God-centered and joyous. The goal I’m striving toward will carry with it a special gift; it will offer the growing person within me an extra thrill, if I’ve attended to the journey as much as its end.

Today I will stop and ask, “How important is it?” When I find myself defending or trying to prove my point, I am in the process of learning to trust my own truth. When it feels right inside, I am seeing that is all that I need. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

One Step at a Time

One step at a time. That’s all you can take, That’s all you have to take,

Yes, you have visions you’ve created of where you want to go. But you don’t get there in one leap. You get there one step at a time. That’s how you receive your guidance. That’s how you respond to the guidance you’ve received.

Let your faith be strong. Your faith will keep you going through those moments in between steps. When your faith is strong, you don’t look in fear at the journey ahead, wondering if you will get all the guidance you need, or if you will get to where you’re going. You know you will, so take the simple steps, one at a time, that lie ahead. You take them in joy, because you know you’re being guided. You have faith that the simple steps you are led to do will take you to your destination.

One step at a time. That’s how you will get where you are going. You are being led, each step of the way.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Allow for differences

He’s rational. He wants examples of the problem and wants to focus on and find a solution.

She wants to talk about how she feels.

He wants to sit in front of the television and click the remote control.

She wants to cuddle on the couch and look into his eyes.

He deals with his stress by playing basketball with his friends, tinkering with the car or going for a hike.

She wants to go to a movie, preferably one that makes her cry.

I spent much of my life thinking that men and women– and generally all people– should just be the same. It took me a long time to realize that while we have much in common with other people, we’re each unique.

It took me even longer to realize that the practical application of this meant I had to learn to allow for differences between the people I loved and myself.

Just because we have something in common with someone, and might even think we’re in love, doesn’t mean that each person is going to respond and be the same.

So often in our relationships, we try to get the other person to behave the way we want. This forcing of our will on them will ultimately become a great strain. It can also block love. When we’re trying to change someone else, we overlook his or her gifts. We don’t value the parts of the person that are different from us, because we’re too busy trying to change the person into someone else.

Allow for differences, but don’t just allow. Appreciate the differences. Value what each person has to offer and the gifts each person can bring.

Learn to say whatever, with a spark of amusement and curiosity, when someone isn’t the same as you. Try getting a kick out of the unique way each person approaches life.

God, help me understand the rich gifts that letting go of control will bring to my life.

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The Energy of an Embrace
Hugs

The need to touch and be touched is established early in our lives, as we develop and grow in the omnipresent embrace of our mother’s womb. Once we are born, separated from that sanctuary of connectivity, we begin to crave the physical embrace of our parents. As we age, we become more independent. Yet during times of triumph or trouble and during those moments when we are in need of reassurance, we can’t help but long for a hug.

Because a hug requires two active participants, each individual taking part in the embrace experiences the pleasure of being embraced and the joy that comes from hugging someone. As both individuals wrap their arms around one another, their energy blends together, and they experience a tangible feeling of togetherness that lingers long after physical contact has been broken. A heart hug is when you put your left arm over someone’s shoulder and your right arm around their waist. As they do the same to you, your hearts become aligned with one another other and loving, comforting energy flows between the two of you to flood your souls with feelings of love, caring, and compassion.

A hug is a pleasurable way to share your feelings with someone who is important to you. Depending on your relationship with the other person and the kind of message you wish to send to them, a hug can communicate love, friendship, romance, congratulations, support, greeting, and any other sentiment you wish to convey. A hug communicates to others that you are there for them in a positive way. In an instant, a hug can reestablish a bond between long lost friends and comfort those in pain. The next time you hug someone, focus all of your energy into the embrace. You will create a profound connection that infuses your feelings and sentiments into a single beautiful gesture. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We may not know any specifics about the activities of today; we may not know whether we’ll be alone or with others. We may feel the day contains too much time — or not enough. We may be facing tasks we’re eager to complete, or tasks we’ve been resisting. Though the details of each person’s day differ, each person’s day does hold one similarity: We each have the opportunity to choose to thing positive thoughts. The choice depends less on our outside activities than on our inner commitment. Can I accept that I alone have the power to control my attitude?

Today I Pray

May I keep the fire of inner commitment alive through this whole, glorious day, whether my activities are a succession of workaday tasks or free-form and creative. May I choose to make this a good day for me, and for those around me.

Today I Will Remember

Keep the commitment.

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One More Day

Whatever limits us, we call fate.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

We like to plan ahead, but w cannot plan for the ravages of chronic illness. No one expects to travel down the winding road of an unhidden, unwanted trip. Unused to the whims of a chronic illness, we may at first try to chart, plan, and control its course. We may dwell too much on the medical conditions.

We cannot change the course of illness, but we can influence its twists and turns by keeping a positive frame of mind. Rather than being obsessed with how our medical conditions are affecting us, we can focus on the many things we can still do. Can we enjoy a sunset? Watch a child smile? Can we listen to music or pursue a handcraft? Our angry, dour thoughts can be replaced so easily with pleasant dreams, fond memories, and hope for the future.

I am feeling comfortable once again as I finally realize that I can still make choices in how I want to live my life.

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Food For Thought

Doing What Feels Good

Doing anything as long as it feels good is a trap. We like to eat for the sheer sensual pleasure of the experience, and we would like to continue long after our need for nourishment has been met. Once our appetites are out of control, we cannot stop, not even when the pleasure has turned to pain.

Unbridled, uncontrolled sensuality will destroy us. Rational knowledge of when to stop is not enough. We may know with our minds that we should not be eating, but still be unable to stop the action of our bodies. If we are unable to control our sensuality with our minds, then how is it to be done?

OA members testify that there is One who has all power, including the power to enlighten our darkness and prevent our self destruction. Through daily contact with this Higher Power, we develop spiritual strength which will control and direct our physical drives so that they do not control and destroy us.

Take my sensuality, Lord, and control it.

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One Day At A Time

March

“March is the month of expectation, the things we do not know,
The ‘Persons of Prognostication’ are coming now.”
~ Emily Dickinson
I’m not sure whether it’s because I’m embroiled at the moment in working the Steps I love so much … or whether the beginnings of Springtime are beginning to happen … but there is a feeling that I have that “something” is beginning. The long winters of life have taken their toll on me and when I experience this awesome feeling of hope I am grateful.

If there were doubts of the promises coming true, March overshadows them. If the Spring and Summer times of program loomed large in the distance, they are no longer. Just the smell of a new Spring morning is enough to know that hope for spiritual, emotional and physical wellness abounds.

One day at a time … I must forget the winters of my life and hold on to the promises of March … and of my Twelve Step program.

~ A TRG Member

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do. People have said we must not go where liquor is served; we must not have it in our homes; we must shun friends who drink; we must avoid moving pictures which show drinking scenes; we must not go into bars; our friends must hide their bottles if we go to their houses; we mustn’t think or be reminded about alcohol at all. Our experience shows that this is not necessarily so. – Pg. 100-101 – Working With Others

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

Thank you, God, for the beautiful day I’m going to have if I can just get rid of my attitude.

Recall a Pleasant Moment: Soothe the Heart and You Soothe the Self

You can calm and nourish your heart by regularly meditating or praying. These activities produce the ‘relaxation response’ – a physiological state that is exactly the opposite of stress – a state that reduces blood pressure and increases blood flow to the heart. Many forms of meditation and prayer organically incorporate feelings of love, appreciation and forgiveness. Some traditional Buddhist practice use ‘loving-kindness meditation,’ during which they focus their attention on the heart and generate feelings of loving kindness for others and themselves. Not only does this create the feelings in your mind, but it creates them in the body as well. A form of such ‘intentional heart focus’ has been found by the HeartMath researchers to create greater coherence in the heart in as little as one minute. To experience the benefits of this ‘intentional heart focus,’ try the following next time you’re feeling stressed: Take a break and mentally disengage from the situation. Bring your attention to the area of your heart. Recall an experience with a loved one in which you felt happiness, love or appreciation or just meditate for a moment on those kinds of thoughts and feelings.

Re-experience these feelings while keeping your attention on your heart. Let your breathing be relaxed and regular.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

There are no victims, only volun-teers. When we cry, ‘They did this to me. They did that to me.’ what we are really saying, is I placed myself in a position for this or that to happen. I volunteered for it.

I volunteer for sobriety today.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

What if there is no God? Believe anyway.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Where I am at this moment is perfect. My past is my friend today as I take the lessons that I can learn from it and say thank you. Everything that has brought me to this moment is a gift and I am a stronger and wiser person because of it.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

We’re all here because we’re not all there.- Fr Joe M.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 4

Perfection
I never have been and never can be perfect.
As that realization became a part of me — and it took time —
it brought me one of the greatest of the many blessings that have come to me from AA.
I learned to accept myself as a fallible human being.
I do not have to strive for perfection. Mistakes are permissible. I have the right to be wrong.
And what a comfort that thought is to me, as I make my bemused way through life,
one foot in a bucket, pushing on doors marked “Pull.”
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol. 2], pp. 167-168

Thought to Ponder . . .
Give me the courage to be imperfect.

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

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

Motives
“Suppose we fall short of the chosen ideal and stumble? Does this mean we are going to get drunk? Some people tell
us so. But this is only a half-truth. It depends on us and our motives. If we are sorry for what we have done, and have the
honest desire to let God take us to better things, we believe we will be forgiven and will have learned our lesson. If we
are not sorry, and our conduct continues to harm others, we are quite sure to drink.
“Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 70

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

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

Fear
>From “Fear of Fear”:
“Many women who have reached the stage that I had reached in my drinking have lost husbands, children, homes,
everything they hold dear. I have been very fortunate in many ways. The important thing I lost was my own self-respect. I
could feel fear coming into my life. I couldn’t face people. I couldn’t look them straight in the eyes, although I had always
been a self-possessed, brazen person. I’d brazen anything out. I lied like a trooper to get out of many scrapes.
“But I felt a fear coming into my life, and I couldn’t cope with it. I got so that I hid quite a bit of the time, wouldn’t answer
the phone, and stayed by myself as much as I could. I noticed that I was avoiding all my social friends, except for my
bridge club. I couldn’t keep up with many of my other friends, and I wouldn’t go to anyone’s house unless I knew they
drank as heavily as I did. I never knew it was the first drink that did it. I thought I was losing my mind when I realized that I
couldn’t stop drinking. That frightened me terribly.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pgs. 291-92

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

“Alcoholics have short memories.”
Paradise, Calif., October 2003
“‘How It Works Works for Me”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“When we decide who is to hear our story, we waste no time. We have
a written inventory and we are prepared for a long talk. We explain
to our partner what we are about to do and why we have to do it. He
should realize that we are engaged upon a life-and-death errand.
Most people approached in this way will be glad to help; they will be
honored by our confidence.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 75

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

For alcoholism had been a lonely business, even though we had been surrounded by people who loved us.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 116

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Free of Dependence
I asked myself, ‘Why can’t the Twelve Steps work to release me from this unbearable depression?’ By the hour, I stared
at the St. Francis Prayer: ‘It is better to comfort than to be comforted .’
Suddenly I realized what the answer might be. My basic flaw had always been dependence on people or circumstances
to supply me with prestige, security, and confidence. Failing to get these things according to my perfectionist dreams
and specifications, I fought for them. And when defeat came, so did my depression.
Reinforced by what grace 1 could find in prayer, I had to exert every ounce of will and action to cut off these faulty
emotional dependencies upon people and upon circumstances. Then only could I be free to love as Francis had loved.
GRAPEVINE, JANUARY 1958

Prayer For The Day: Dear Lord, please help me to do what I can, and understand that I cannot do everything. Help me make what I can do count.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 3rd

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 3rd

Daily Reflections

OVERCOMING SELF-WILL

So our troubles, we think, are basically of our
own making. They arise out of ourselves, and the
alcoholic is an extreme example of self-will run
riot, though he usually doesn’t think so. Above
everything, we alcoholics must be rid of this
selfishness. We must, or it kills us!
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62

For so many years my life revolved solely around
myself. I was consumed with self in all forms–
self-centeredness, self-pity, self-seeking, all
of which stemmed from pride. Today I have been
given the gift, through the Fellowship of Alcoholics
Anonymous, of practicing the Steps and Traditions
in my daily life, of my group and sponsor, and the
capacity–if I so choose–to put my pride aside in
all situations which arise in my life. Until I could
honestly look at myself and see that I was the problem
in many situations and react appropriately inside and
out; until I could discard my expectations and
understand that my serenity was directly proportional
to them, I could not experience serenity and sound
sobriety.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

After we’ve made a surrender, the drink problem is out
of our hands and in the hands of God. The thing we have
to do is to be sure that we never reach out and take the
problem back into our own hands. Leave it in God’s hands.
Whenever I’m tempted to take a drink, I must say to
myself: “I can’t do that. I’ve made a bargain with God not
to drink. I know God doesn’t want me to drink and so I
won’t do it.” At the same time I say a little prayer to
God for the strength needed to keep the bargain with Him.
Am I going to keep my bargain with God?

Meditation For The Day

I will try to grow in this new life. I will think of
spiritual things often and unconsciously I will grow. The
nearer I get to the new life, the more I will see my
unfitness. My sense of failure is a sure sign that I am
growing in the new life. It is only struggle that hurts.
In sloth–physical, mental or spiritual–there is no sense
of failure or discomfort. But with struggle and effort, I
am conscious not of strength but of weakness, until I am
really living the new life. But in the struggle, I can
always rely on the power of God to help me.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may see signs of my growth in the new life.
I pray that I may always keep trying to grow.

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As Bill Sees It

A Different Swinging Door, p. 62

When a drunk shows up among us and says that he doesn’t like the
A.A. principles, people, or service management, when he declares that
he can do better somewhere else–we are not worried. We simply say,
“Maybe your case really is different. Why don’t you try something
else?”

If an A.A. member says he doesn’t like his own group, we are not
disturbed. We simply say, “Why don’t you try another one? Or start
one of your own.”

To those who wish to secede from A.A. altogether, we extend a cheerful
invitation to do just that. If they can do better by other means, we are
glad. If after trial they cannot do better, we know they face a choice:
They can go mad or die or they can return to A.A. The decision is
wholly theirs. (As a matter of fact, most of them do come back.)

Twelve Conceptions, p. 72

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Walk in Dry Places

What will this change bring?    ____  Change
When facing change, it’s not unusual to feel both apprehension and expectancy. We are apprehensive because we know that change includes risk. We feel expectancy, however, because we know that improvement can come only through some kind of change.
The way to handle change is to see it as part of the higher plan working in our lives.  If we believe that our lives are in the care and keeping of our Higher Power, we have to know that everything is in good hands.  As change occurs, it is simply part of a plan that is unfolding in order to bring more good into our lives.
We should not expect change without temporary disruptions or even surprises that appear to be setbacks.  All that’s necessary is to know that change is good if we maintain the right attitude toward it.
It’s also helpful to review the past changes that have been so important in our lives.  Once change has occurred, we come to accept it as normal, forgetting that it involved a lot of anxiety at one time. So it is with any change that is unfolding now.  It’s part of a wonderful plan that cannot fail.
I accept change without fear or superstition.  Change is built into the nature of things, and will always be part of our lives.  I accept it as readily as I accept change of the seasons.

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Keep It Simple

But the alcoholic . . . will be absolutely unable to stop drinking on the basis of self-knowledge.  Alcoholics Anonymous
Our program says three things are more important than knowing ourselves: (1) admitting we have no control over our addiction, (2) believing in a Higher Power, and (3) turning our lives over to the care of that Higher Power. knowing ourselves makes our lives better in recovery. But it does not give us sobriety. Sobriety starts with surrender to our Higher Power. We now know we need faith and strength we get from a Higher Power. We also need the support of others in our program.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, thanks you for my sobriety today. Teach me what I need to know about myself to do Your will today.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll talk with my sponsor about the change in my spirit that keeps me sober.

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Each Day A New Beginning

Most kids hear what you say; some kids do what you say; but all kids do what you do.  –Kathleen Casey Theisen
We are role models for many people:  our children, our co-workers, other women in the program.  Step Twelve encourages us to set good examples for anyone who might be looking on.  Living a principled life takes practice, and progress, not perfection, is hoped for.
Abstinence has offered is a new set of tools for shaping our behavior.  No longer must we regret what we did yesterday or last week.  We are learning to monitor our actions, but even more importantly, we are defining our values.  They, in turn, influence what we say and do.
Thoughtful responses to the situations we encounter require conscious attention to those events.  We need reminding, perhaps, that our behavior is continuously telling others who we are, what we value, and how we view people close to us.  All of us, consciously or otherwise, imitate behavior patterns of persons we admire.  Unfortunately, we sometimes mimic unfavorable behavior, too.
There are those casting their attentions our way.  The opportunity to model favorable behavior awaits us.
People will follow my lead.  I shall walk softly, humbly and lovingly.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

BILL’S STORY

We gave up our positions and off we roared on a motorcycle, the sidecar stuffed with tent, blankets, a change of clothes, and three huge volumes of a financial reference service. Our friends thought a lunacy commission should be appointed. Perhaps they were right. I had had some success at speculation, so we had little money, but we once worked on a farm for a month to avoid drawing on our small capital. That was the last honest manual labor on my part for many a day. We covered the whole eastern United States in a year. At the end of it, my reports to Wall Street procured me a position there and the use of a large expense account. The exercise of an option brought in more money, leaving us with a profit of several thousand dollars for that year.

pp. 2-3

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

I knew where to look in the Big Book, and I had been careful to avoid it until then.  I turned to the Third Step Prayer and quietly read it to her over the phone.  Nothing happened.  I didn’t expect anything to happen.  Then, for some reason, I turned back to the words, “No one among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles.”  They echoed in my mind.

p. 373

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

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

Where does A.A. get its direction? Who runs it? This, too, is a puzzler for every friend and newcomer. When told that our Society has no president having authority to govern it, no treasurer who can compel the payment of any dues, no board of directors who can cast an erring member into outer darkness, when indeed no A.A. can give another a directive and enforce obedience, our friends gasp and exclaim, “This simply can’t be. There must be an angle somewhere.” These practical folk then read Tradition Two, and learn that the sole authority in A.A. is a loving God as He may express Himself in the group conscience. They dubiously ask an experienced A.A. member if this really works. The member, sane to all appearances, immediately answers, “Yes! It definitely does.” The friends mutter that this looks vague, nebulous, pretty naive to them. Then they commence to watch us with speculative eyes, pick up a fragment of A.A. history, and soon have the solid facts.

p. 132

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Let us always love the best in others – and never fear their worst.

“In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light,
and what is elusive and deceptive resolves itself into crystal
clearness. Our life is a long and arduous quest after Truth.”
–Mahatma Gandhi

Whenever you fail or miss out on something you always have
tomorrow.
Every dawn is a symbol of renewal, telling you to get up, go out and
try again.

The night of fear has passed, the light of God defines my pathway.

God, help me let go of my unreasonable fears, the ones that are
preventing me from living my life.
–Melody Beattie

Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

We surrender to win.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

GENIUS

“The principal mark of genius is
not perfection but originality,
the opening of new frontiers.”
— Arthur Koestler

I need to remember that genius is often simplicity itself. The original
thought need not be abstract, intellectual or technical; the thought
exists to transmit the message.

In the slogans “Keep it Simple”, “One Day at a Time”, and “Don’t
Pick up the First Drink”, wisdom combines with simplicity to produce
sobriety. God is at work outside of His church and the spiritual
message always brings healing. A.A. is more than a “fellowship of
genius”, it is divinity set to a program. What began with a group of
alcoholics will cross new frontiers into the healing of the world.

Lord of Truth, let us always be open and receptive to Your voice.

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The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and
no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.
Isaiah 57:1

“Show me Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths.”
Psalms 25:4

Physical birth only gains us physical life. Spiritual life, the eternal life Christ promises to
those who come to Him, is only gained through spiritual birth.
John 3:36

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Daily Inspiration

Know that you make a difference, so choose to make your contribution one of goodness. Lord, help me to touch my world in a positive manner.

Each day has a new door. It is up to you to open it. Lord, help me to remember that my life is my choice. Bless me with wisdom and give me guidance as I make my choices.

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NA Just For Today

Relapse

“There will be times, however, when we really feel like using. We want to run, and we feel lousy We need to be reminded of where we came from and that it will be worse this time. This is when we need the program the most.”
Basic Text, p. 78

If we’re contemplating a relapse, we should think our using through to the bitter ends. For many of us, those ends would include severe medical problems, imprisonment, or even death. How many of us have known people who relapsed after many years clean, only to die from their disease?

But there is a death that accompanies a return to active addiction that may be worse than physical death. That is the spiritual death we experience when we are separated from our Higher Power. If we use, the spiritual relationship we have nurtured over the years will weaken and perhaps disappear. We will feel truly alone.

There is no doubt that we have periods of darkness in our recovery. There is only one way we can make it through those troubling times: with faith. If we believe that our Higher Power is with us, then we know that all will be well.

No matter how badly we may feel in our recovery, a relapse is never the answer. Together, we find recovery. If we stay clean, the darkness will lift and we will find a deeper connection to our Higher Power.

Just for today: I thank my Higher Power for the gift of NA. I know that relapse is not the way out. Whatever challenges I face, I will face them with the God of my understanding.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Nothing is troublesome that we do willingly. –Thomas Jefferson
Some of the necessary things we do are tiring and annoying. Many of these things we must do regardless of how we feel about them. Doing dishes day after day can be a tiresome job but, no matter how much we hate it, it must be done sooner or later. We might discover, if we look hard enough, how chores like this can actually be enjoyable, if we do them right. Perhaps dish washing is a time for listening to music and singing along, or an opportunity for conversation between family members as we help one another.
Our willingness to look for the hidden treasure and opportunities in tasks we might otherwise consider dreary will never fail to reward us.
What opportunity can I see in my next chore?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
“Why are you rushing so much?” asked the rabbi. “I’m rushing after my livelihood,” the man answered.
“And how do you know,” said the rabbi, “that your livelihood is running on before you, so that you have to rush after it? Perhaps it’s behind you, and all you need to do is stand still.” –Tale about Rabbi Ben Meir of Berdichev
Most of us accept the standard ideas we were taught. “Men should be good providers.” “We will get self-esteem from hard work.” “It is a virtue to be productive.” “It’s better now to have too much time to think.”
A major crisis can quickly change our perspective. Perhaps someone close to us dies, and we are faced with how temporary life is. Or we have a health crisis, or a relationship crisis, or an addiction crisis. The standard ideas come crashing down. We look closely at the rush of our lives and ask deeper questions: Are we hurrying to a worthwhile goal? Or are we losing out in our great rush? These doubts can teach us personal things that society can never teach us. Wisdom comes out of pain and the willingness to learn from it.
Today, I will allow some time to stand still and reflect.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Accepting Ourselves
While driving one day, a woman’s attention focused on the license plate of the car ahead. The license read: “B-WHO-UR.” How can I? she thought. I don’t know who I am!
Some of us may have felt confused when people encouraged us to be ourselves. How could we know ourselves, or be who we are, when, for years, many of us submerged ourselves in the need of others?
We do have a self. We’re discovering more about ourselves daily. We’re learning we’re deserving of love.
We’re learning to accept ourselves, as we are for the present moment–to accept our feelings, thoughts, flaws, wants, needs, and desires. If our thoughts or feelings are confused, we accept that too.
To be who we are means we accept our past–our history–exactly as is.
To be ourselves means we are entitled to our opinions and beliefs–for the present moment and subject to change. We accept our limitations and our strengths.
To be who we are means we accept our physical selves, as well as our mental, emotional, and spiritual selves, for now. Being who we are in recovery means we take that acceptance one step further. We can appreciate ourselves and our history.
Being who we are, loving and accepting ourselves, is not a limiting attitude. Accepting and loving ourselves is how we enable growth and change.
Today, I will be who I am. If I’m not yet certain who I am, I will affirm that I have a right to that exciting discovery,

Today I am open to all the powers of the universe. I am letting them work for me and carry me to my next step…JOY! –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Treasure Your Experiences

Gather experiences. Treat them as precious jewels.

The purpose of the journey is not to guard and restrain yourself. The purpose is to learn. You do not teach and lead your soul. Your soul leads and teaches you. It takes you wading across streams, strolling through meadows, deep into valleys, and high onto mountaintops. It takes you down winding, narrow roads and long fast-moving four-lane highways. It takes you into tiny cafes, bustling cities, and out-of-the-way hostels where people break bread and tell what they have learned.

Let yourself have all your experiences. Don’t limit or judge yourself or the adventure you have had. All were necessary, all were important, all have helped shape and form you. Your heart will lead you, guide you where you are to go. Don’t worry about getting lost or off track. Don’t worry about being wrong, or in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Gather experiences. Go through them. Select the gems from each. Listen while others tell their stories, their adventures, and show you their jewels, the triths that they have learned. Then, when your friends break and sip soup with others, open your heart and joyfully share what has happened to you along the way.

Having experiences is called living. Sharing experiences is called loving. Let yourself enjoy both.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Don’t take storms personally

Somewhere out in the Pacific, a storm brewed and swirled and thrashed and died without ever touching the land. Three days later, under a clear blue sky, the storm surge reached the California coast near Los Angeles. The sea threw rocks at my house, and the waves stacked up and crashed down against the pilings of the foundation. Farther up the street, the ocean ate the back porch of two houses. All night the shoreline trembled and shook from the power of the sea.

The next morning the tide pulled back, the swells calmed, and the sky stayed blue. I walked down the beach, impressed at the way the ocean had littered it with huge chunks of driftwood and rocks. Then I walked back upstairs and drank my morning coffee.

Sometimes, storms aren’t about us.

Sometimes, friends or loved ones will attack us for no apparent reason. They’ll fuss, fume, and snap at us. When we ask them why, they’ll say, “Oh, I’m sorry. I had a bad day at work.”

But we still feel hurt and upset.

Hold people accountable for their behavior. Don’t let people treat you badly. But don’t take the storms in their lives personally. These storms may have nothing to do with you.

Seek shelter if necessary. Get away from curt friends until they have time to calm down; then approach when it’s safe. If the storm isn’t about you, there’s nothing you need to do. Would you stop the ocean waves by standing in the surf with your arms outstetched?

Say whatever. Let the storms blow through.

God, help me not to take the storms in the lives of my friends and loved ones too personally.

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Quiet Please!
Taming Monkey Mind In Meditation

It’s been called the monkey mind – the endless chattering in your head as you jump in your mind from thought to thought while you daydream, analyze your relationships, or worry over the future. Eventually, you start to feel like your thoughts are spinning in circles and you’re left totally confused.

One way to tame this wild creature in your head is through meditation – although the paradox is that when you clear your mind for meditation you actually invite the monkey in your mind to play. This is when you are given the opportunity to tame this mental beast by moving beyond thought – to become aware of a thought rather than thinking a thought. The difference is subtle, but significant. When you are aware of your thoughts, you can let your thoughts rise and float away without letting them pull you in different directions. Being able to concentrate is one of the tools that allows you to slow down your thought process and focus on observing your thoughts.

To develop your concentration, you may want to start by focusing on the breath while you meditate. Whenever your monkey mind starts acting up, observe your thoughts and then return your focus to your breath. Some breathing meditations call on you to focus on the rise and fall of the breath through the abdomen, while others have you concentrate on the sound of the breath. Fire can also be mesmerizing, and focusing on a candle flame is another useful tool for harnessing the mind. Keep the gaze soft and unfocused while observing the color, shape, and movement of the flame, and try not to blink. Close your eyes when you feel the need and continue watching the flame in your head. Chanting, devotional singing, and mantras also still the mind. However you choose to tame the monkey mind, do so with firm kindness. The next time the chattering arises, notice it and then allow it to go away. With practice, your monkey mind will become quiet and so will you. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I’ve begun to better understand myself since I’ve come to The Program. One of the most important things I’ve learned is that opinions aren’t facts. Just because I feel that a thing is so doesn’t necessarily make it so. “Men are not worried by things,” wrote the Greek philosopher Epictetus, “but by their ideas about things. When we meet with difficulties, become anxious or troubled, let us not blame others, but rather ourselves. That is: our ideas about things.” Do I believe that I can never entirely lose what I have learned during my recovery?

Today I Pray

May I learn to sort out realities from my ideas about those realities. May I understand that situations, things, — even people — take on the colors and dimensions of my attitudes about them.

Today I Will Remember

To sort the real from the unreal.

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One More Day

People, by and large, will relate to the image you project …. If you project the image of a sick, dependent person, that’s how you’ll be treated.
– Chyatte

Accepting chronic illness is not easy. Our whole lives are different. We can’t do all the things we used to do. We may feel changed and be afraid of the changes our illnesses will bring. But as we learn to project a strong, positive image, we feel better about ourselves.

For the benefit of ourselves, we must act as if we are doing all right. When we act as if we are strong, our new behavior can become a new habit, and that habit can actually develop greater emotional strength within us. We can put illness into perspective as being just one of the changes that occur during a lifetime.

Today, I will allow myself the right to change. I can survive my health change and live a worthwhile life.

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Food For Thought

Precision

For the success of our program, many of us have found that it is important to be precise when we weigh and measure our food. It has been our experience that carelessness and sloppiness lead to cheating and bingeing.

An extra spoonful or ounce here and there may not seem important, but it can soon become an extra portion. Then it is easy to think that since we have not followed our plan exactly, we might as well go ahead and really indulge.

There are circumstances when weighing and measuring is impossible; then we estimate as best we can. However, for most of us, most of the time, precise measurements are possible and are a valuable aid in maintaining abstinence. Each time we put back the extra spoonful of carrots and cut away the extra ounce of meat, we are stronger. It is always the first extra bite that is the downfall of the compulsive overeater. If we are careful and precise in our measurements, we will not take it.

Accuracy is honesty.

Make me honest with myself, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

A Disease?

“Doc! What do you mean – nothing! What? An incurable disease?
Doc, you’re kidding me! You’re trying to scare me into stopping!
What’s that you say? You wish you were?
Why are there tears in your eyes, Doc?”
The Big Book, The Unbeliever, Page 196

For a very long time I scoffed at those who said my overweight was because I had a disease. Yes, my body had doubled in size … but it was because I ate more calories than my body burned. My doctor said so … he didn’t say I had a disease. His “treatment” was to tell me to go on a diet and join a gym. The diet lasted for a few months and I believe I used the gym about six or seven times. I know now without a single doubt that I have a disease … a serious one. I know that it is incurable and that I will have to live with this disease for the rest of my life. Dieting made me fat. Somewhere along the way I didn’t “get it.”

One day at a time…
I will resist thinking that being a compulsive eater is not a disease. I will aggressively and tenaciously do the footwork necessarily to combat it.
A TRG Member

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

If you are an alcoholic who wants to get over it, you may already be asking — ‘What do I have to do?’

It is the purpose of this book to answer such questions specifically. We shall tell you what we have done. – Pg. 20 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

Accepting Caring from Others

I will soak up any extra attention that I get while I’m not feeling up to par. Even if I don’t need it at the moment, I will soak it into my pores and store it up for a time when I do need it. I will let the attention feel good. I will allow it to restore my faith in and affection for people. I enjoy the little things people are willing to do for me, going a bit out of their way, worrying about how I’m doing. It feels good if I let it. It restores me if I willing to feel good.

Feeling grateful for what is coming my way has a healing power all its own.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

All of us chemical dependents have come from the same place, no where. We all enter the world of recovery by changing our place to now here. No Where to Now Here. It works.

NOW is the working unit of my life.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You used to be good at being bad. Now you’re going to get good a being good.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will stop and ask, ‘How important is it?’

When I find myself defending or trying to prove my point, I am in the process of learning to trust my own truth. When it feels right inside, I am seeing that it is all I need.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Alcoholics Anonymous has the best record for recovery from alcoholism in the world. Why not avail yourself of the best. – Bede.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 3

Communication
>From the beginning, communication in AA has been no ordinary transmission
of helpful ideas and attitudes. It has been unusual and sometimes unique.
Because of our kinship in suffering, and because our common means of deliverance
are effective for ourselves only when constantly carried to others,
our channels of contact have always been charged with the language of the heart.
– The Language of the Heart, p. 243

Thought to Ponder . . .
Modem-to-modem or face-to-face, AA’s speak the language of the heart.

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

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

Meetings
“We have also found that going to meetings is not something to
be done only when we feel the temptation to drink. We often
get more good from the meetings by attending them when we
feel fine and haven’t so much as thought of drinking. And
even a meeting which is not totally, instantly satisfying, is
better than no meeting at all.
“Living Sober, p. 81

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
ALCOHOLICS = A Life Centered On Helping Others Live In Complete Sobriety

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

Bottom
From “Bill’s Story”:
“No words can tell of the loneliness and despair I found in that bitter morass of self-pity. Quicksand stretched around me
in all directions. I had met my match. I had been overwhelmed. Alcohol was my master.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 8

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

“Ever deepening humility, accompanied by an ever greater willingness to accept and to act upon clear obligations —
these are truly our touchstones for all growth in the life of the spirit.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1966
“The Guidance of AA’s World Affairs”
The Language of the Heart

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

“We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: ‘Once an
alcoholic, always an alcoholic.’ Commencing to drink after a period
of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.”
“We have learned that whatever the human frailties of various faiths
may be, those faiths have given purpose and direction to millions.
People of faith have a logical idea of what life is all about.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 49

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

The idea that we can be possessively loving of a few, can ignore the many, and can continue to fear or hate anybody,
has to be abandoned, if only a little at a time.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 93

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

A Different Swinging Door
When a drunk shows up among us and says that he doesn’t like the A.A. principles, people, or service management, when he declares that he can do better elsewhere – we are not worried. We simply say, ‘Maybe your case really is different. Why don’t you try something else?’
If an A.A. member says he doesn’t like his own group, we are not disturbed. We simply say, ‘Why don’t you try another one? Or start one of your own.’ To those who wish to secede from A.A. altogether, we extend a cheerful invitation to do just that. If they can do better by other means, we are glad. If after a trial they cannot do better, we know they face a choice: They can go mad or die or they can return to A.A. The decision is wholly theirs. ( As a matter of fact, most of them do come back. ) TWELVE CONCEPTS, pp. 72 – 73

Prayer For The Day: Lord, protect me as I strive everyday to draw closer to You! Remind me that I am not alone for You are my help. You are my strong shelter that I know I can trust and rely on. Thank you for never leaving me.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 2nd

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 2nd

Daily Reflections

HOPE

Do not be discouraged.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 60

Few experiences are of less value to me than fast sobriety. Too
many times discouragement has been the bonus for unrealistic
expectations, not to mention self-pity or fatigue from my wanting to
change the world by the weekend. Discouragement is a warning
signal that I may have wandered across the God line. The secret of
fulfilling my potential is in acknowledging my limitations and believing
that time is a gift, not a threat.

Hope is the key that unlocks the door of discouragement. The
program promises me that if I do not pick up the first drink today, I
will always have hope. Having come to believe that I keep what I
share, every time I encourage, I receive courage. It is with others
that, with the grace of God and the Fellowship of A.A., I trudge the road
of happy destiny. May I always remember that the power within me is
far greater than any fear before me. May I always have patience, for
I am on the right road.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Over a period of drinking years, we’ve proved to ourselves and to
everybody else that we can’t stop drinking by our own willpower. We
have been proved helpless before the power of alcohol. So the only
way we could stop drinking was by turning to a Power greater than
ourselves. We call that Power God. The time that you really get this
program is when you get down on your knees and surrender yourself
to God, as you understand Him. Surrender means putting your life
into God’s hands. Have I made a promise to God that I will try to live
the way He wants me to live?

Meditation For The Day

Spirit-power comes from communication with God in prayer and
times of quiet meditation. I must constantly seek
spirit-communication with God. This is a matter directly between me
and God. Those who seek it through the medium of the church do not
always get the joy and the wonder of spirit communication with God.
>From this communication comes life, joy, peace, and healing. Many
people do not realize the power that can come to them from direct
spirit-communication.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may feel that God’s power is mine. I pray that I may be
able to face anything through that power.

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As Bill Sees It

Resolving Fear, p. 61

Fear somehow touched about every aspect of our lives. It was an evil
and corroding thread; the fabric of our existence was shot through
with it. It set in motion trains of circumstances which brought us
misfortune we felt we didn’t deserve. But did we not often set the
ball rolling ourselves?

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

The problem of resolving fear has two aspects. We shall have to try
for all the freedom from fear that is possible for us to attain. Then
we shall need to find both the courage and the grace to deal
constructively with whatever fears remain.

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 67-68
2. Grapevine, January 1962

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Walk in Dry Places

Do we need some Fear?
Courage
It’s easy to get into an argument about the role of fear in our lives. Some say that we need some fear…. It helps us get out of the path of an oncoming truck.
Is that really true?  If it is, it’s still not like the fear that was present with alcoholism. This fear was more likely to make us freeze and lose all power of action in the face of a threat. It was the sort of fear that paralyzes us, making us unable to move out of the way when the truck is bearing down on us.
Fear is even more destructive when it keeps us from doing the simple things we need to function in our lives.  Fear certainly can’t be helpful when it makes us unable to face a new customer or ride in an airplane for necessary business travel.  Some people even put off medical exams simply because they fear bad news… and thus delay treatment, so that their condition becomes worse.
We might not need to get rid of all fear, but we do need to dispose of the unhealthy kind that keeps us from necessary actions on our own behalf.
A really strong sense of the program can help me deal with fear today. One good idea for coping with fear is to remember that if God is for us, nobody can really be against us.  Keeping that thought in mind can help stabilize our feelings in the face of threatening situations.

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Keep It Simple

Love conquers all; let us surrender to love.—Virgil
In Step Three, we turn our lives over to God’s care, God love. If we turn our lives over to a loving God, we can conquer all. If you need proof, look around at your next meeting. The room will be full of people who know that love conquers addiction. Like them, we’ve surrendered to love. Once we’ve done this, we  can’t use again. For us, using alcohol or others drugs is an act of hate, not love. To Face the hard things in life,
we’ll need a lot of love. We’ll find love in our Higher Power, groups, and friends .We’re all working at turning our lives over to love.
Prayer for the Day:  There was a time that love scared me. It still does, at times. Higher Power, help me see that You are love, and I must follow where love takes me.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark place where it leads.  –Erica Jong
There was a time when we didn’t believe we had any talents. We couldn’t imagine we had any purpose or any gift to give to the world. But it’s true: We all have talents, many of them. If we each haven’t yet discovered ours, we soon will. With time and the Steps and friends, we will be encouraged to recognize them, to celebrate them, to cultivate them, to dare to give them away.
Utilizing our talents fully, which is part of life’s bigger plan, may lead us to new jobs, new friends, to places presently unknown. The prospect of new horizons may excite us. It may also elicit dread. We can trust that, just as we are given no problems too big to handle, we are given no talents too great to develop. The strength to move ahead will always be available if we have faith. And the program offers us faith.
I will look for my talents today. I will also look for talents in my friends. I can celebrate them, and soon the way to use them will become clear.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – First Edition

BILL’S STORY

By the time I had completed the course, I knew the law was not for me. The inviting maelstrom of Wall Street had me in its grip. Business and financial leaders were my heroes. Out of this alloy of drink and speculation, I commenced to forge the weapon that one day would turn in its flight like a boomerang and all but cut me to ribbons. Living modestly, my wife and I saved $1,000. It went into certain securities, then cheap and rather unpopular. I rightly imagined that they would some day have a great rise. I failed to persuade my broker friends to send me out looking over factories and managements, but my wife and I decided to go anyway. I had developed a theory that most people lost money in stocks through ignorance of markets. I discovered many more reasons later on.

p. 2

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

After not drinking for three months, I was on the phone with the friend who had taken me to that first meeting.  I was complaining to her about problems at work and how my sponsor didn’t understand me.  Later in the conversation I mentioned that even when I described myself as agnostic, I thought maybe something was watching out for me.  She asked, “Isn’t it about time you made a decision?”

p. 373

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

Thus has it been with A.A. By faith and by works we have been able to build upon the lessons of an incredible experience. They live today in the Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous, which – God willing – shall sustain us in unity for so long as He may need us.

p. 131

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The alcoholic is in no greater peril than when he takes sobriety for
granted.

God, help me remember that letting go is a powerful behavior, one
that can change my life and impact the lives of others. Help me be
patient with others and myself as letting go becomes a way of life.
–Melody Beattie

Laughter, like a drenching rain, settles the dust, cleans and brightens
the world around us, and changes our whole perspective.
–Jan Pishok

A big part of my “conversion” has been full acceptance of myself,
warts and all.
–Mary Zink

God is all around us, all the time.
–Martha Leonard

“Let us always be open to the miracle of the second chance.”
–Reverend David Stier

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

INTEGRITY

“Men of integrity, by their very
existence, rekindle the belief
that as a people we can live
above the level of moral
squalor.”
— John Gardner

I understand integrity to be a willingness to make sacrifices for what
we believe to be true. The living of a spiritual program must lead to
integrity.

Not so many years ago integrity was not an understood word in my
vocabulary because of my unwillingness to make sacrifices. I was so
selfishly preoccupied with my “wants” that I gave little thought to
the needs of others. The more I lost myself in “self”, the greater was
the emotional pain.

Today I live the paradox that it is only in giving that I truly receive.

May I daily express the paradox of sacrifice in my life.

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

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His
own special people, that you may proclaim the praises
of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. Of Him
1 Peter 2:9

“Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your
heart; wait, I say, on the Lord!”  Psalms 27:14

“We can rejoice when we run into problems… they help us learn to be
patient. And patience develops strength of character in us
and helps us trust God more each time we use it until finally our hope
and faith are strong and steady.”  Romans 5:3-4

In quietness and in trust shall be your strength.  Isaiah 30:15

[God] is not far from each of us.  Acts 17:27

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Daily Inspiration

Speak to God openly and honestly from your heart and then do not allow yourself to worry. Lord, You are my protection and my provider when I put my trust in you.

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

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

NA Just For Today

Success

“Any form of success was frightening and unfamiliar.”
Basic Text, p. 14

Before coming to NA, few of us had much experience with success. Every attempt to stop using on our own had ended in failure. We had begun to give up hope of finding any relief from active addiction. We had grown accustomed to failure, expecting it, accepting it, thinking it was just part of our makeup.

When we stay clean, we begin to experience success in our lives. We begin to take pride in our accomplishments. We start to take healthy risks. We may take some knocks in the process, but even these can be counted as successes if we learn from them.

Sometimes when we fulfill a goal, we hesitate to “pat ourselves on the back” for fear that we will seem arrogant. But our Higher Power wants us to succeed, and wants us to share with our loved ones the pride we take in our accomplishments. When we share our successes with others in NA, they often begin to believe that they can achieve their goals as well. When we succeed, we help lay the groundwork for others who follow in our path.

Just for today: I will take time to savor my successes. I will share my victories with an “attitude of gratitude.”

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I was angry with my friend: I told my wrath, my wrath did end. I was angry with my foe: I told it not, my wrath did grow.
–William Blake
We have a right to claim our own feelings. Sometimes we get angry, but hold it inside because we think it’s wrong to feel it. If anger builds inside us, it expands like a balloon ready to burst. If not released, it can make us depressed, or even physically ill. When we give ourselves permission to feel anger, we are better able to get rid of it in a healthy way. Our inner voice can tell us how to let go of our anger. And once we’ve released it, we can easily get in touch with the feelings that caused it.
When we recognize our anger for what it is–one feeling among many others that makes us unique–it loses its significance, and we can prevent it from consuming us. Indira Ghandi said, “You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.” When we let go of our anger we can honestly embrace each other with open arms.
Am I carrying around anger which could be released today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The fir tree has no choice about starting its life in the crack of a rock…. What [nourishment] it finds is often meager, and above the ground appears a twisted trunk, grown in irregular spurts, marred by dead and broken branches, and bent far to one side by the battering winds. Yet at the top … some twigs hold their green needles year after year, giving proof that – misshapen, imperfect, scarred – the tree lives. –Harriet Arrow
We often wish we had been born into better circumstances or blame our parents for our problems. Like the fir tree we could say, “If only I had taken sprout in a fertile meadow, life would be easier.” “If only I had had a better life as a boy . . .” “If only I didn’t have my particular hardships . . .”
By accepting the facts of our own lives, we mature into feelings of joy and pleasure alongside our griefs. Every man has to struggle with his own unique set of circumstances, even if they are not fair. Fairness is not an issue. Reality is what we have to deal with.
I will accept life on its own terms and rejoice in it.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Feelings on the Job
Im furious about my job. Another man got a promotion that I believe I deserve. Im so mad I feel like quitting. Now my wife says I should deal with my feelings. What good will that does? He still got the promotion. –Anonymous
Our feelings at work are as important as our feelings in any other area of our life. Feelings are feelings – and wherever we incur them, dealing with them is what helps us move forward and grow.
Not acknowledging our feelings is what keeps us stuck and gives us stomachaches, headaches, and heartburn.
Yes, it can be a challenge to deal with feelings on the job. Sometimes, things can appear useless. One of our favorite tricks to avoid dealing with feelings is telling ourselves its useless.
We want to give careful consideration to how we deal with our feelings on our job. It may be appropriate to take our intense feelings to someone not connected to our workplace and sort through them in a safe way.
Once we’ve experienced the intensity of the feelings, we can figure out what we need to do to take care of ourselves on the job.
Sometimes, as in any area of our life, feelings are to be felt and accepted. Sometimes, they are pointing to a problem in us, or a problem we need to resolve with someone else.
Sometimes, our feelings are helping to point us in a direction. Sometimes, they’re connected to a message, or a fear: Ill never be successful. . .. Ill never get what I want. . .. Im not good enough. . . .
Sometimes, the solution is a spiritual approach or remedy. Remember, whenever we bring a spiritual approach to any area of our life, we get the benefit.
We wont know what the lesson is until we summon the courage to stand still and deal with our feelings.
Today, I will consider my feelings at work as important as my feelings at home or anywhere else. I will find an appropriate way to deal with them.

Today I am letting go of all energy that is resisting the truth about me. That energy is being replaced with positive and loving energy, and I am accepting that I am okay just the way that I am. I am now open to see the miracle of love in my life. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Value Your Past

Value your past and all the lessons you have learned.

How easy it is to diminish the importance of our past and look on our history with a critical eye. We see the mistakes, we see what we think we should have known, we see what we could have done better. What we forget is that the reason we are able to see so clearly is because of the past and because of what we have learned. Often, it is the very experiences we regret that have created this clear vision.

Value what you’ve learned in your past. Each lesson has led to the next. Every person and event in each part of your life has been invaluable in shaping and forming you– in creating the person you are today. Each part of your past, each person who has come into your life and shared experiences with you has helped you to open your heart more to life, love, God, others, and yourself. Even those experiences you think of as wrong, or mistakes, have been an important and necessary part in creating you. Sometimes, those experiences formed the most important parts of you because they created in you compassion and understanding for others. Often the most painful events of your life are the ones that opened you to your ability to bring healing, help, and hope to others. Your past taught you to love– others and yourself. It has helped you become a channel for Divine love and a force for good in this world.

When you look back at your past, look tenderly and gently at all you have been through. Look with the eyes of the soul. See that each experience was necessary to bring you home to your heart.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Don’t stir the emotional pot

“My bill collector called today,” a friend said to me one day. “I love it when she calls. Every time she does, we have a good fight. She tells me that I owe her company money. Then I say I know. She tells me that my balance is due. I tell her I know that,too. Then she asks why I haven’t sent a payment. I tell her that the reason I didn’t send a payment is because I told her last month I could send only twenty dollars a month and she said not to send it, because that wasn’t enough. That’s when the screaming starts. Then she yells at me to get a job. I scream back that I’m trying and she ought to get a better job herself. Then we both slam down the phone and don’t talk to each other until she calls again next month.”

Some of us intentionally stir up drama to release emotions, get the pot brewing, and add a little energy to our lives. Sometimes we can cause trouble in areas where we’d be better off without it. Turning our home into a battleground doesn’t leave us a good place to live.

Sometimes when we’re stressed, we just like to get those emotions out. And what better way to get them out than by engaging in a good, old-fashioned fight. Just make sure you’re not making an enemy out of someone whom you’d rather have as a friend. And check to see that you’re not taking your stress out on an innocent bystander, a lover, family, or friend.

God, help me let go of my need for dysfunctional drama in my life. Help me make sure I’m not taking my stress out on the people I love. If I am, show me another way to release my emotions.

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That Which Sustains You
Home and Land Meditation

Just as we take care of our friends and families, our homes and Mother Earth take care of us. Our homes give us a place of refuge—a sanctuary that stands between us and the elements of nature and the rest of the world. The earth is an unselfish giver of life and the steward of our physical and spiritual needs. The earth’s bountiful plant life nourishes us, gives us air, and offers us cooling shade. Her waters quench our thirst, and her beauty stirs our souls. Yet it is easy to take both of these wonderful sources of our blessings for granted. Expressing the gratitude you feel toward your home and the earth for the blessings each provides you can help you stay conscious of where many of the gifts in your life come from. Each time you give thanks, you’ll be reminded of the importance of caring for your home and for Mother Earth. There is a simple and beautiful meditation you can perform to show your gratitude. Begin by finding a quiet place where you can be alone. Sit comforta! bly and breathe deeply until you feel relaxed and then read the following out loud:

“Thank you, home, for allowing me to live within your walls. Thank you for giving me shelter, warmth, and security. Thank you for allowing me to live my life in your womb, for staying strong and sturdy, for supporting me, and for your beauty.

Thank you, earth, for the land that I live on and for allowing me to steward life with you. Thank you for allowing me to walk upon your soil, cultivate you, and live in partnership with you. Thank you for supporting my home and my family.

Thank you, plants, minerals, and animals that dwell on the land that I steward. Thank you for allowing me to experience your beauty, share in your wonderment of life, and for the honor of living with all of you on this earth. Thank you for the wisdom and joy you bring to humanity.

I honor you.”

You can perform this meditation as often as you like and anytime you feel particularly thankful for the many blessings that you have received. Each time you do, you’ll reaffirm and strengthen your connection with all that protects, supports, and sustains you. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Why don’t I spend part of today thinking about my assets, rather than my liabilities? Why not think about victories, instead of defeats — about the ways in which I am gentle and kind? It’s always been my tendency to fall into a sort of cynical self-hypnosis, putting derogatory labels on practically everything I’ve done, said or felt. Just for today, I’ll spend a quiet half hour trying to gain a more positive perspective on my life. Do I have the courage to change the things I can?

Today I Pray

Through quietness and a reassessment of myself, may I develop a more positive attitude. If I am a child of God, created in His image, there must be goodness in me. I will think about that goodness, and the ways it manifest itself. I will stop putting myself down, even in my secret thoughts. I will respect what is God’s. I will respect myself.

Today I Will Remember

Self-Respect is Respect For God.

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

One More Day

Bitterness and anger seem to be very closely related and are interchangeable words for the same emotion.
– Robert Lovering

Why me? We may rage with anger or disbelief when we finally realize we may never fully regain good health. In the beginning, while we are still getting used to our new situation, this happens to most of us. And then we ask, “Why me?”

Having a chronic medical condition is not as likely to create bitterness as much as making poor choices about how to respond to it. If we choose loneliness or a lifestyle which allows no room for laughter, we choose bitterness.

By making healthier choices, we affirm our belief in ourselves, in the possibilities life has to offer. We feel more loving toward the people around us and in doing so, are more loving toward ourselves.

I can learn to balance my negative feelings with contentment and happiness. I can gain strength from my illness.

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

Food For Thought

Changing

As we lose weight, we adjust to a new self. Part of the body we had is disappearing, and this can be frightening. As our physical appearance changes, others may react to us differently. Along with the physical changes come new attitudes and expectations. Though for years we may have wished to be rid of the fat, when it actually begins to go we may fear the change.

What is new and unknown is often frightening. We may have used food and fat to retreat from uncomfortable situations. We may have spent so much time eating that there was little left for anything else. We may have expected all our troubles to vanish with the excess pounds. Now we can no longer hide behind fat or kill time with food, and our troubles may very well still be with us. What do we do?

It takes courage to change, to become a new person. We may decide at age forty to learn to play tennis. That takes lots of courage. New activities, new attitudes, changes in relationships with others–all require courage.

Change is frightening, but it is also an adventure. We are not alone. We have OA. Others have gone through the same changes and can reassure us, one step at a time.

May I not be afraid to change.

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One Day At A Time

EXPERIENCE

“I’m not afraid of storms . . .
for I’m learning how to sail my ship.”
Louisa May Alcott

We spend our youth living and experiencing life. At some point our experiences become lessons. We who are compulsive eaters weren’t aware of that when we began to eat out of control. Deep down, however, we were living and experiencing food issues. These issues later would become our lessons.

I am so grateful that the Twelve Steps made it possible for me to look at my past experiences and see the reality they presented. If not, I may have continued life in denial.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will use the lessons I have learned to make the quality of my life better.
~ Mari ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We feel that elimination of our drinking is but a beginning. A much more important demonstration of our principles lies before us in our respective homes, occupations and affairs. – Pg. 19 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

During crisis, we must not act as isolated persons with nothing gained from fellowship. We stick together. If one of us pulls away, we pull them back. WE recover as WE, not as an I.

As I walk this road of recovery, let me know I don’t walk alone. In fact I march in an army of WE.

Being Authentic

I will stop fighting with myself and give my mind, body and heart the rest and inner quiet that they are craving. I’m not going to rush myself into wellness or force my thoughts into a phony sort of gaiety. I will accept myself as I am and feel what I feel. Thoughts and feelings won’t kill me. Resisting the ones I don’t want to experience puts me in a constant struggle with my own insides. My random thoughts and feelings are trying to tell me something. If I turn away and refuse to listen, I only hurt myself. Instead I will let the adult in me listen to those younger, fearful or anxious selves that are bubbling up inside of me just as a loving parent would allow a child who is hurt to pour out all of their feelings knowing that the simple act of pouring, it in itself, the cure.

I am willing to know myself

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

If people don’t agree with you, so what? If people do agree with you, so what? Our program is one of suggestions, not conformity.

I do not need to conform to be comfortable. ‘Comfortable’ is conscious contact, not conscious copycat.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Change your behavior to meet your goals, not your goals to meet your behavior.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am letting go of all energy that is resisting the truth about me. That energy is being replaced with positive and loving energy, and I am accepting that I am okay just the way I am.

I am now open to see the miracle of love in my life.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

If everyone approached getting their driver’s license like they approach the Twelve Steps, I’d have the highways to myself. – Ted H.

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AA Thought for the Day

March 2

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.”
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 132

Thought to Ponder . . .
The Twelve Steps tell us how it works; the Twelve Traditions tell us why it works.

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

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

Why Worry?
“There are many short phrases and expressions in AA
which make sound sense.
‘First Things First’: solving our immediate problems
before we try to solve all the others . . .
‘Easy Does it.’ Relax a little.
Try for inner contentment. No one individual
can carry all the burdens of the world.
Everyone has problems. Getting drunk won’t solve them.
‘Twenty-four hours a day.’
Today is the day. Doing our best,
living each day to the fullest is the art of living.
Yesterday is gone, and we don’t know whether
we will be here tomorrow.
If we do a good job of living today,
and if tomorrow comes for us,
then the chances are we will do a good job when it arrives –
so why worry about it?”
1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 382

Thought to Consider . . .
Every day is a gift.
That is why we call it the present.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
S I T = Stay In Today

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

Within
>From “Inner Voice”:
“Long before nagging and pressures from others concerning my excessive use of alcohol made any impression on me,
the nagging voice of conscience my own inner voice of truth and right apprised me of the irrevocable fact that I had lost
control of alcohol, that I was powerless. I know now that the inner voice was God, as I understand Him, speaking. For,
as I had been taught from earliest memory and as A.A. has emphasized, God or good emanates from within each of
us. Lakewood, Ohio, USA
1973 AAWS, Inc.; 30th Printing 2004, Came to Believe, pg. 83

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

“I started to understand that while I didn’t believe in churches, I had to see that something or someone was working in
my life that hadn’t been there before.”
Naples, Italy, January 1994
“Get With the Program”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

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

“So our rule is not to avoid a place where there is drinking, if we
have a legitimate reason for being there. That includes bars,
nightclubs, dances, receptions, weddings, even plain ordinary whoopee
parties. To a person who has had experience with an alcoholic, this
may seem like tempting Providence, but it isn’t.
You will note that we made an important qualification. Therefore,
ask yourself on each occasion, ‘Have I any good social, business, or
personal reason for going to this place? Or am I expecting to steal a
little vicarious pleasure from the atmosphere of such places?’ If you
answer these questions satisfactorily, you need have no
apprehension. Go or stay away, whichever seems best. But be sure
you are on solid spiritual ground before you start and that your
motive in going is thoroughly good. Do not think of what you will
get out of the occasion. Think of what you can bring to it. But if
you are shaky, you had better work with another alcoholic instead”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 101

These fears are the termites that ceaselessly devour the foundations of whatever sort of life we try to build.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 49

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Resolving Fear
Fear somehow touched about every aspect of our lives. It was an evil and corroding thread; the fabric of our existence
was shot through with it. It set in motion trains of circumstances which brought us misfortune we felt we didn’t deserve.
But did not we often set the ball rolling ourselves?
The problem of resolving fear has two aspects. We shall have to try for all the freedom from fear that is possible for us
to attain. Then we shall need to find both the courage and the grace to deal constructively with whatever fears remain.
1. ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pp. 67-68 – 2. GRAPEVINE, JANUARY 1962

Prayer for the Day: Dear Father in heaven, we ask you from our hearts to give us your peace. Grant that nothing may take your peace from us, and protect us from all that is evil. May we always be mindful that we should serve you in self-denial. May we be faithful on all our ways, looking to the great promise you have given each one of us. Keep us under your protection, as you have always done. We praise and thank you for all that comes to our hearts from you, making us full of trust and certain of your further help. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 1st

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings March 1st

IT WORKS
It works — it really does.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 88

When I got sober I initially had faith only in the program of Alcoholics
Anonymous. Desperation and fear kept me sober (and maybe a caring
and/or tough sponsor helped!). Faith in a Higher Power came much
later. This faith came slowly at first, after I began listening to
others share at meetings about their experiences — experiences that
I had never faced sober, but that they were facing with strength from
a Higher Power. Out of their sharing came hope that I too would —
and could — “get” a Higher Power. In time, I learned that a Higher
Power — a faith that works under all conditions — is possible. Today
this faith, plus the honesty, openmindedness and willingness to work
the Steps of the program, gives me the serenity that I seek. It works
— it really does.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When I find myself thinking about taking a drink, I say to myself.
“Don’t reach out and take that problem back. You’ve given it to God
and there’s nothing you can do about it.” So I forget about the
drink. One of the most important parts of the A.A. program is to give
our drink problem to God honestly and fully and never to reach out
and take the problem back to ourselves. If we let God have it and
keep it for good and then cooperate with Him, we’ll stay sober. Have
I determined not to take the drink problem back to myself?

Meditation For The Day

Constant effort is necessary if I am to grow spiritually and develop
my spiritual life. I must keep the spiritual rules persistently,
perseveringly, lovingly, patiently, and hopefully. By keeping them, every
mountain of difficulty shall be laid low, the rough places of poverty of
spirit shall be made smooth, and all who know me shall know that God is
the Lord of all my ways. To get close to the spirit of God is to find
life and healing and strength.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that God’s spirit may be everything to my soul. I pray that
God’s spirit may grow within me.


As Bill Sees It

Brain Power Alone?, p. 60

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. We
loved to have people call us precocious. We used our education to
blow ourselves up into prideful balloons, though we were careful to
hide this from others. Secretly, we felt we could float above the rest
of the folks on our brain power alone.

“Scientific progress told us there was nothing man couldn’t do.
Knowledge was all powerful. Intellect could conquer nature. Since
we were brighter than most folks (so we thought), the spoils of
victory would be ours for the thinking. The god of intellect displaced
God of our fathers.

“But John Barleycorn had other ideas. We who had won so
handsomely in a walk turned into all-time losers. We saw that we had
to reconsider or die.”

12 & 12, pp. 29-30


Walk in Dry Places

Danger in excitement____Mood alterations
The lure of excitement is hard to understand. While we may think of ourselves as sensible, practical people, the hard truth is that many alcoholics have a strong need to feel excited. This excitement can take many forms, and some of them are dangerous.
One lure of excitement comes through the impulsive need for change.  Some of us have had weird habits of suddenly quitting jobs and pulling up stakes for no reason other than being bored.  An even more destructive attraction is the belief that a new romance can restore our zest for living and bring new joys and happiness.
The sober truth is that nobody can live sensibly and sanely by seeking continuous excitement and stimulation.  We are better off with steady growth in the patterns we know best than with seeking excitement that finally leads to destruction.
At the same time, we should not belittle the pleasures and joys we get through ordinary living.  If we earn those pleasures and joys through responsible actions, they will give us far more happiness than momentary feelings of excitement.
In quietness and confidence is our strength.  I do not need to be excited in any way today.  I am more effective and more in control when I am not being swayed by feverish emotion that distorts my judgment.

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

Keep It Simple

Made the decision to turn our will and lives over to God as we understand Him.–Step Three
Care. This is what turn our will and lives over to care of our Higher Power. What peace follows! We see our God as caring, as loving. We turn everything over to this Higher Power, who can take better care of us than we can by ourselves. Care can guide us. If we want to do something, we can ask ourselves, “Would my Higher Power see this as an act of care?” If the answer is yes, then we go ahead. If the answer is no, we don’t it. If we can’t be sure, we wait and talk it over with our friends and sponsor. We wait until we know whether it would be an act of care or not. What wonderful guidance!
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I give to You my will. I give to you my life. I gladly jump into Your loving arms.
Action for the day:  Today, I’ll care about others. I’ll find as many as I can to care for others.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

What a strange pattern the shuttle of life can weave.  –Frances Marion
Each experience we have plays its part in the total picture of our lives. The steps we have taken, the path we travel today, and our direction tomorrow are not by chance. There is a pattern. We each have a destiny. We may have veered off the path in the past, and we may veer off it again. But we’ll be guided back, and our paths intersect. None of us is traveling alone. We have each other and the creative force that is at the helm.
When we look around us and reflect on how our lives are influenced by the persons close to us, we become aware that our presence affects their lives as well. Most of us could never have predicted the events that have influenced us. Nor can we anticipate what the future may hold. We can be certain, however, that we are safe; a power greater than ourselves is orchestrating our affairs.
There were times we feared we’d never survive an experience. Perhaps we still struggle with fears about new experiences. But every experience adds a necessary thread to the pattern our life is weaving. We have the gift of reflection. We can understand, today, the importance of particular events of the past. Next month, next year, we’ll understand today.
I shall enjoy the richness of today. My life is weaving an intricate, necessary pattern that is uniquely mine.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

I took a night law course, and obtained employment as an investigator for a surety company. The drive for success was on. I’d prove to the world I was important. My work took me about Wall Street and little by little I became interested in the market. Many people lost money – but some became very rich. Why not I? I studied economics and business as well as law. Potential alcoholic that I was, I nearly failed my law course. At one of the finals I was too drunk to think or write. Though my drinking was not yet continuous, it disturbed my wife. We had long talks when I would still her forebodings by telling her that men of genius conceived their best projects when drunk; that the most majestic constructions of philosophic thought were so derived.

p. 2

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

I remember telling a friend years ago that I didn’t have a drinking problem, I had a stopping problem.  We laughed.  It was true, but there was something else going on, something that never occurred to me until I came to A.A.  I didn’t just have a stopping problem.  I had a starting problem too.  No matter how often I stopped, or for how long, I always started drinking again.

pp. 372-373

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

Countless times, in as many cities and hamlets, we reenacted the story of Eddie Rickenbacker and his courageous company when their plane crashed in the Pacific. Like us, they had suddenly found themselves saved from death, but still floating upon a perilous sea. How well they saw that their common welfare came first. None might become selfish of water or bread. Each needed to consider the others, and in abiding faith they knew they must find their real strength. And as they did find, in measure to transcend all the defects of their frail craft, every test of uncertainty, pain, fear, and despair, and even the death of one.

p. 131

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

Those who laugh…last.
–Cited in BITS & PIECES

Don’t give up before the miracle happens.

“When I dig another out of trouble, the hole from which I lift him
is the place where I bury my own.”
–Chinese proverb

“Winners do what they have to do and losers do what they want.”

Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo
or willow survives by bending with the wind.
–Bruce Lee

“The spiritual journey, the path of recovery and personal growth,
is a detoxification process in which we bring up and out the negative
beliefs we have carried with us from the past and that now poison the
present.”
–Marianne Williamson

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

Sometimes there are no answers, there are only examples.
–Mark Kostew

Part of intimacy with God is listening.
–Lori Sweety


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

UNDERSTANDING

“Understanding is the reward of
faith. Therefore seek not to
understand that thou mayest
believe, but believe that thou
mayest understand.”
— Saint Augustine

Today I understand that God is love and that it makes more sense to
live my life with love than with anger, resentment and despair. I know
that the answer to life, with all the problems that may arise, is love.
Not simply loving those people who love me, but beginning to love and
understand those who dislike or hate me. Being imperfect people in
an imperfect world produces enemies. Today I love my world by
listening to my critics, changing unreasonable attitudes, growing in
the humility that comes from silence. Change is part of God’s blessing
of love.

This I believe. This I understand. And step by step it is beginning to
work in my life.

May my love for the world give me an understanding of self.


“Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the Lord.”
Psalm 31:24

“See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause
trouble and defile many.”
Hebrews 12:15

“Those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with
wings like eagles.”
Isaiah 40:31.

But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by
every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Matthew 4:4

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more
than those who watch for the morning.
Psalm 130:5-6


Daily Inspiration

If you look for things that make you happy, those are the things that you’ll find. Lord, help me remember how lucky I am to be alive and how much goodness surrounds me.

Determination and faith will carry you through to your goals. Lord, You and I together can accomplish my dreams.


NA Just For Today

Anxiety Attack?

“[The] Power that brought us to this program is still with us and will continue to guide us if we allow it.”
Basic Text, p. 26

Ever had a panic attack? Everywhere we turn, life’s demands overwhelm us. We’re paralyzed, and we don’t know what to do about it. How do we break an anxiety attack?

First, we stop. We can’t deal with everything at once, so we stop for a moment to let things settle. Then we take a “spot inventory” of the things that are bothering us. We examine each item, asking ourselves this question: “How important is it, really?” In most cases, we’ll find that most of our fears and concerns don’t need our immediate attention. We can put those aside, and focus on the issues that really need to be resolved right away. Then we stop again and ask ourselves, “Who’s in control here, anyway?” This helps remind us that our Higher Power is in control.

We seek our Higher Power’s will for the situation, whatever it is. We can do this in any number of ways: through prayer, talks with our sponsor or NA friends, or by attending a meeting and asking others to share their experience. When our Higher Power’s will becomes clear to us, we pray for the ability to carry it out. Finally, we take action.

Anxiety attacks need not paralyze us. We can utilize the resources of the NA program to deal with anything that comes our way.

Just for today: My Higher Power has not brought me all this way in recovery only to abandon me! When anxiety strikes, I will take specific steps to seek God’s continuing care and guidance.


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty: not knowing what comes next. –Ursula LeGuin
The world around us changes constantly. Trees turn from green to beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and brown in the fall. Yet, even if we watched the trees carefully, every minute of the day, we could not actually see the colors change. Change requires time, preparation, and patience.
To make the changes we want, we need to let go of unhealthy but comfortable patterns that we’re stuck in, the way the trees let their colors change and finally let go of their leaves altogether. We can’t have total change right now, no matter how much we want it. It’s important to accept both who we are now and who we are becoming. Just as the tree trusts without question that its leaves will grow and lets go of them when the time comes, we can believe in our own power to grow and let go of our accomplishments when the time is right.
When we do, we can be assured that our lives will blossom again, like trees in the spring coming to life after a cold winter.
Do I have any new blossoms today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
As my fathers planted/or me, so do I plant for my children. –The Talmud
The first seeds of this spiritual program were planted years ago by men who also were desperately in need. Rather than restrict their attention to their own painful circumstances, they broke through to a new creative idea – it is in helping others that we help ourselves. They reached out eagerly to help fellow men and women in need. In the process they carried the message to others and found new healing relationships for themselves. This program, which is saving our lives, is here because men before us were willing to reach out and pass it along.
We inherit countless resources and teachings from both our biological and our “foster” fathers in this program. The gift of a spiritually full life inspires and requires us to do as they did – pass it on. We keep the benefits of our recovery, not by holding on to them, but by planting new seeds from our harvest for those who come after us.
I will give freely of my time and resources because the giving enriches me.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Anger
In recovery, we often discuss anger objectively. Yes, we reason, its an emotion were all prone to experience. Yes, the goal in recovery is to be free of resentment and anger. Yes, its okay to feel angry, we agree. Well, maybe. . ..
Anger is a powerful and sometimes frightening emotion. Its also a beneficial one if its not allowed to harden into resentment or used as a battering ram to punish or abuse people.
Anger is a warning signal. It points to problems. Sometimes, it signals problems we need to solve. Sometimes, it points to boundaries we need to set. Sometimes, its the final burst of energy before letting go, or acceptance, settles in.
And, sometimes, anger just is. It doesnt have to be justified. It usually cant be confined to a tidy package. And it need not cause us to stifle our energy or ourselves.
We don’t have to feel guilty whenever we expense anger. We dont have to feel guilty.
Breathe deeply. We can shamelessly feel all our feelings, including anger, and still take responsibility for our behaviors.
I will feel and release any angry feelings I have today. I can do that appropriately and safely.

Today I will feel good about myself and accept myself just the way I am. I am open and ready to discover all the miracles of this day. –Ruth Fishel


Journey to the heart for March

Find Healing and Magic Within Yourself

She was an Osage shaman. Her land, next to Cathedral Rock in Sedona, Arizona, was landscaped with a totem pole, a fire pit, a bridge leading to her house, and a garden of flowers and rocks. A river ran across her property, singing to all who quieted themselves enough to listen. A teepee stood close by, one used to house the sweat lodge ceremonies.

It was during one such ceremony I had met her. I returned later to talk with her for a while. She welcomed me back, welcomed all who visited her to return to her land. She didn’t call it her land, she called it the land. She said it belonged to us all.

“You don’t have to take this journey,” she said. “You don’t have to travel around searching for spiritual spots. All the wisdom, the experiences, the spiritual places you seek on this quest are within you.”

While it’s fun to go on a trip, and trips often coincide with going to new places in our personal lives, we don’t have to load up the car and hit the road to find what we’re looking for. The places of power we seek are within us. Places of comfort, joy, wisdom, silence, healing, peace. The places we visit often reflect those qualities, reinforce them, remind us that they’re there. But the places, the locations we visit, are only mirrors, extensions of ourselves.

The healing and magic we seek are not someplace else. They are within each of us.


More Language Of Letting Go

Learn to say whatever

“Do you have issues with drama addiction?” I asked my daughter one day, in a serious interviewer kind of voice.

“Of course I do,” she said. “I’m the original drama queen.”

“Can I interview you about it?” I asked.

There was a long pause on the phone. “I’ve got a better suggestion,” she said. “Why don’t you interview yourself?”

I’ve been addicted to many things this lifetime– alcohol, heroin, morphine, Dilaudid, cocaine, barbituates, Valium, and any other substance that physically or psychologically promised to change the way I feel. I’ve been addicted to caffeine, tobacco and nicotine– cigarettes and Cuban cigars– and opium and hashish,too. I’ve been caught up in other people’s addictions to these substances as well. Some people might say I have an addictive personality. I don’t know if I agree with the concept that we can become addicted to people, but if the folks say you can are right. I’ve probably been addicted to certain of those,too.

But of all the addictions possible on this planet, I’ve found my addiction to drama absolutely the hardest to recognize, accept, deal with, and overcome. The rush of emotional energy I feel from drama at the theater, on television (small or big screen), in a book, and most preferably acted out in real life (mine) is the last legal, legitimate jones that society allows.

It’s not politically correct to smoke, act out sexually, be a nonrecovering alcoholic, or shoot drugs. But despite all the evolution in consciousness that’s unfolded and gotten us to this point, drama addiction is more than politically correct.

Drama addiction is in. Right now, for many people, it’s one of the only things giving meaning to life.

Potential guests line up, volunteering to have their relationship and court battles– things which once were guarded secrets– broadcast on international cable and satellite TV. Our society can’t wait to peek and snoop into their lives. Broadcasting real-life soap operas guarantees the ratings will soar.

In 1999, I wrote the above words in a chapter on drama addiction in my book called Playing It By Heart. But the concept of drama addiction, and transcending it, has been around for a long, long time.

In 1937, author Emmet Fox wrote an essay in Find and Use Your Inner Power. The essay’s title was “Don’t Be a Tragedy Queen.”

“Self pity, by making us feel sorry for ourselves, seems to provide an escape from responsibility, but it is a fatal drug nevertheless,” he wrote. “It confuses the feelings, blinds the reason, and puts us at the mercy of outer conditions. … Don’t be a tragedy queen– whether you are a man or a woman, for it is not a question of gender but of mental outlook. Absolutely repudiate a crown of martyrdom. If you cannot laugh at yourself (which is the best medicine of all), at least try to handle the difficulty in an objective way, as though it concerned somebody else.”

Maybe the antithesis to being a drama king or queen has been around even longer than that.

Three tiny Buddha statues sit before me on my writing desk. One is Serene. One is Smiling. One is Sorrowful, doubled over in compassion for the world. All you can see is the top of his head.

“The Kingdom of Heaven is within you,” Jesus said.

“Nirvana is a state of consciousness,” wrote Anne Bancroft, in an introduction to the Dhammapada, a book containing the teachings of Buddha.

Enlightenment and paradise aren’t places we visit. They’re within our hearts and heads.

Say, “It’s a nightmare,” if you must. Even say, “Oh my God, I can’t believe this is happening, much less happening to me.” But whether you say the words with calmness and serenity, bursting with laughter or a mere giggle, or doubled over with compassion for the pain of the world, learning to speak the language of letting go in the days, months, and years of the millennium ahead means learning to say whatever,too.


Decorating Life
The World as Home

by Madisyn Taylor

Each day we choose to decorate our life just as we do our homes.

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

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

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


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Now that we’re free and no longer chemically-dependent, we have so much more control over our thinking. More than anything, we’re able to alter our attitudes. Some members of Alcoholics Anonymous, in fact, choose to think of the letters AA as an abbreviation for “Altered Attitudes.” In the bad old days, I almost always responded to any optimistic or positive statement with “Yes, but…” Today, in contrast, I’m learning to eliminate that negative phrase from my vocabulary. Am I working to change my attitude? Am I determined to “accentuate the positive…”?

Today I Pray

May I find that healing and strength which God provides to those who stay near Him. May I keep to the spiritual guidelines of The Program. Considering the Steps, taking the Steps — one by one — then practicing them again and again. In this is my salvation.

Today I Will Remember

To practice at least one Step.


One More Day

There is no way to peace. Peace is the way.
– A. J. Muste

So often we look for the easy answers and quick remedies. We want to reach our goals — now. Whatever we’re looking for (peace, love, acceptance) we may be making the mistake of seeing these qualities as concrete, hold-in-my-hand goals.

Gradually, we’re coming to the understanding that those qualities we seek are not destinations; they are paths and directions; we can consiously take. We can’t go out and find love, but we can choose to be loving. There is no path to peace or to acceptance or to understanding, but we can base our lives on these qualities, and by doing so we claim them.

What I seek may already be within my soul.


Food For Thought

Other People’s Problems

Sometimes we wear ourselves out trying to solve another person’s problem. Is this not perhaps a form of egotism? We feel that somehow we should have all the answers and be able to find a solution to every problem, especially when someone close to us is in trouble.

We may be sympathetic and supportive and helpful, but we cannot play the role of God in another person’s life. Even our children must learn from their mistakes, just as we continue to learn from our own. If I trust my Higher Power to lead and direct me, then surely He will also direct my family and friends.

The best thing I can do for anyone else is to maintain my own sanity and sobriety. If I eat over a problem–whether it is mine or yours or ours–then I am less able to deal with it.

There are times when no solution seems forthcoming, when an unfortunate or tragic circumstance must be accepted and lived with in the best manner possible. We may not be able to change the circumstance, but we can be sure that God will give us the strength to deal with it.

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.


One Day At A Time

ANONYMITY

Don’t walk behind me, I may not lead.
Don’t walk in front of me, I may not follow.
Just walk beside me and be my friend.
Albert Camus

When I first joined OA, the tool and tradition of Anonymity seemed a little strange to me. What’s wrong with people knowing what members do for work? I’m not ashamed of my career, why should I not talk about it? What’s with this cult-like behavior around initials for names? And what do they mean by Anonymity being the spiritual foundation of recovery?

And then, bit by bit, it dawned on me. When we don’t talk about our jobs, when we don’t care about our last names, three very important things happen. First, we don’t get distracted. Second, it makes us all equal. Third, it starts us on the road of leaving judgment behind. An Elizabeth is just an Elizabeth, whether she’s a queen, a unemployed single mother or an actress. The equality that comes with that means that I am not more or less, not better or worse than you. This equality strengthens our unity. We are all in the same boat. And with this equality we can row in unity towards recovery.

One day at a time …
I will remember that my fellow OA members are my equals, that I can let go of judgment, and that the freedom that comes with this helps me concentrate on recovery.
~ Isabella


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Lack of power, that was our dilemma. We had to find a power by which we could live, and it had to be a POWER GREATER THAN OURSELVES. Obviously. But where and how were we to find this Power?

Well, that’s exactly what this book is about. It’s main object is to enable you to find a Power greater than yourself which will solve your problem. – Pg. 45 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

You transform into your own best ally as you face your fears. Humanity’s greasiest fear is the fear of death, physiologists tell us. The death of your addiction is forcing you to confront how close you brushed by death and in this confrontation an equally potent force will rise up to meet your fear and demonstrate your courage.

Even in the face of fear and death my true ally inside arises to demonstrate my courage.

Healing Light

I am surrounding myself with healing light. I am inviting a warm, yellow/white light to surround me. I breathe it in deeply into all parts of me and I breathe out any lingering fear or darkness. Healing energy is quietly pulsing in and around me, imbuing me with a feeling of well being. I allow this energy to fill each pore of my body. This healing energy has its own intelligence and I become one with it and direct it towards those parts of me that need healing. I rest in this vibrating yellow-white light and let it fill me, surround me and make me well. Even the act of allowing this lifts me up.

I am filled with healing energy

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Even when it hurts like hell, hold fast. The pain is the arrow coming out, not the arrow going in. Faith is not about trusting a God who will rescue you from arrows but trusting in the process. Faith will center you, not rescue you.

As the pain and fear pass, I hold fast.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If you believe the Big Book, live it.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will feel good about myself and accept myself just the way I am.

I am open and ready to discover all the miracles of this day.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It takes a whole lot of medicine darlin’, for me to pretend I’m somebody else.- ‘Guilty’ Randy Newman.


AA Thought for the Day

March 1

Step Three
“Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.”

I was at one of my meetings when I suddenly realized that the pivotal word in this Step is .. care.
So I looked it up. Foremost, the word has no shame to it.
There is no control, servitude, or any other form of denigration, humiliation or degradation implied by that word.
But I had chosen to infer that there was. I realize now that I was just unwilling.
– AA Grapevine, March 2014

Thought to Ponder . . .
Scales of pride and prejudice fell from my eyes.

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

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

Selfishness
Selfishness, self-centeredness!
That, we think, is the root of our troubles.
Driven by a hundred forms of fear,
self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity,
we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate.
Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation,
but we invariably find that at some time in the past
we have made decisions based on self
which later placed us in a position to be hurt.
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 62

Thought to Consider . . .
Swallowing your pride will not get you drunk.

~~AACRONYMS~~
A A = Altered Attitudes

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

Opinion

From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“As by some deep instinct, we have known from the very beginning that, no matter what the provocation, we must never
publicly take sides, as A.A.s, in any fight, even a worthy one. All history affords us the spectacle of striving nations and
groups finally torn asunder because they were designed for, or tempted into, controversy. Others fell apart because of
sheer self-righteousness while trying to force upon the rest of mankind some millennium of their own specification. In
our own times we have seen millions die in political and economic wars often spurred by religious and racial differences.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 123

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

“If I want to be of some use to someone (my family, my employer, my community) then I can be a leader by becoming a
servant. This is one of those crazy paradoxes we find all over the AA program: being a servant to be a leader.”
Humbolt, Saskatchewan, February 1996
“I Wish You Well”
AA Grapevine

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

“We do not like to pronounce any individual as alcoholic, but you can
quickly diagnose yourself, Step over to the nearest barroom and try
some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it
more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are
honest with yourself about it. It may be worth a bad case of jitters
if you get a full knowledge of your condition.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg.31

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

His sponsor probably says, “Take it easy.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 26

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Brain Power Alone?
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. We loved to have people call us precocious. We used our education to blow ourselves up into prideful
balloons, though we were careful to hide this from others. Secretly, we felt we could float above the rest of the folks on
our brain power alone.
‘Scientific progress told Us there was nothing man couldn’t do. Knowledge was all powerful. Intellect could conquer
nature. Since we were brighter than most folks (so we thought), the spoils of victory would be ours for the thinking. The
god of intellect displaced the God of our fathers.
‘But John Barleycorn had other ideas. We who had won so handsomely in a walk turned into alltime losers. We saw that
we had to reconsider or die.’ TWELVE AND TWELVE, pp. 29-30

Prayer for the Day: Father, As we quietly wait in your presence this early morning, we give you praise for a new day. The storms of life may rage around us, but if we are grounded in you, we will not lose our footing. As we listen to the storm with the wind and rain, we know that we dwell in your peace, for we are surrounded with shelter. So it is in the midst of the many issues that so many are facing, your are their stillness, comfort, hope, and peace. May we draw from your strength today and know that you alone see our heart, and know us. How we praise you for your forgiving love and grace.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 28th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 28th

Daily Reflections
WHAT? NO PRESIDENT?

When told that our Society has no president having authority to govern it, no treasurer
who can compel the payment of any dues. . . . our friends gasp and exclaim, “This
simply can’t be . . .”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 132

When I finally made my way to A.A., I could not believe that there was no treasurer to
“compel the payment of dues.” I could not imagine an organization that didn’t require
monetary contributions in return for a service. It was my first and, thus far, only
experience with getting “something for nothing.” Because I did not feel used or conned
by those in A.A., I was able to approach the program free from bias and with an open
mind. They wanted nothing from me. What could I lose? I thank God for the wisdom of
the early founders who knew so well the alcoholic’s disdain for being manipulated.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We should be free from alcohol for good. It’s out of our hands and in the hands of God,
so we don’t need to worry about it or even think about it any more. But if we haven’t
done this honestly and fully, the chances are that it will become our problem again. Since
we don’t trust God to take care of our problem for us, we reach out and take the problem
back to ourselves. Then it’s our problem again and we’re in the same old mess we were
in before. Do I trust God to take care of the problem for me?

Meditation For The Day

No work is of value without preparation. Every spiritual work must have behind it much
spiritual preparation. Cut short times of prayer and times of spiritual preparation and
many hours of work may be profitless. From the point of view of God, one poor tool
working all the time, but doing bad work because of lack of preparation, is of small value
compared with a sharp, keen, perfect instrument working only for a short time, but that
turns out perfect work because of long hours of spiritual preparation.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may spend more time alone with God. I pray that I may get more strength
and joy from such times, so that they will add much to my work.

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As Bill Sees It

Conviction and Compromise, p. 59

One qualification for a useful life is give-and-take, the ability to
compromise cheerfully. Compromise comes hard to us “all or nothing”
drunks. Nevertheless, we must never lose sight of the fact that
progress is nearly always characterized by a series of improving
compromises.

Of course, we cannot always compromise. There are circumstances in
which it is necessary to stick flat-footed to one’s convictions until the
issue is resolved. Deciding when to compromise and when not to
compromise always calls for the most careful discrimination.

Twelve Concepts, pp. 39-40

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Walk In Dry Places

Seeking Excitement____ Seeking Serenity
“I haven’t found anything to replace the excitement I felt while drinking,” a member complained.  “Sure, Im grateful to be sober.  But sometimes it’s so darned boring!
Let’ talk about that need for excitement, or “high.”  For many of us, it was an important part of our drinking.  At times, our drinking was exciting—it came with celebrations, graduations, marriage receptions, engagements, and just about anything else out of the ordinary.  Along with it, we wanted other excitement:  exciting love affairs, exciting experiences, exciting stories.
For us, however, excitement always ended with a crash, often a terrible one.  Waking up after an exciting binge was a horrible moment.  It stretched out to become horrible It never seemed to have a happy ending.
We can take this addiction to excitement in hand by recognizing it as a component of our alcoholism.  We’ll still be able to be excited at times, but it must be a type of excitement that brings neither crash nor hangover.
I will not let boredom push me into actions that I know will be destructive in the long run.  I do not want thrills at the expense of my self-respect and sense of well-being.

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

Keep It Simple

Leave yourself alone.—Jenny Janacek
We often pick on ourselves. We put ourselves down. But doing this isn’t part of our recovery.
In fact, it goes against our program. Our program is based on loving care. We have turned our lives over to a caring, loving Higher Power who will give us the answers. We are told Easy Does It. We back off. As recovering addicts, we learn not to judge. Instead, we learn to be kind to ourselves. Our job is not to figure out the world, butt to add more love to it. Let’s start with ourselves.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, stop me from judging. Help me know what You want to do. Help me work the Steps Two and Three.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll leave myself alone. I will remember that picking on myself is another from of control.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The weariest night, the longest day, sooner or later must perforce come to an end.  –Baroness Orczy
The difficult spells in our lives come to an end. And no matter the depth of our disturbance, we will survive. We forget that the depths teach us how to better appreciate the heights.
Sorrow heightens joy. Depression heightens laughter. We wouldn’t know the joys and laughter were it not for the sorrows. In them we learn to be patient, waiting for the wisdom which will light our way. In them we learn to listen for the guidance that beckons us forth.
We must reflect on the troubling experiences we’ve passed through of late. They made us wiser; they gave us strength. They changed us, moving us ever closer to the women, whole and happy, we desire to be.
Difficulties often precede enlightenment. They pull us inward, perhaps push us to search for our connectedness to God, a connectedness that is at home in our hearts. The paradox is that these painful periods strengthen our oneness with the Spirit.
If the day looks bleak, I will accept it as a hand reaching toward me, to pull me forward, to secure my place in the spiritual family.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

Twenty-two, and a veteran of foreign wars, I went home at last. I fancied myself a leader, for had not the men of my battery given me a special token of appreciation? My talent for leadership, I imagined, would place me at the head of vast enterprises which I would manage with the utmost assurance.

p. 1

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

I called him everyday.  I told him that I just didn’t want to be an alcoholic.  He said it didn’t matter what I wanted.  The question I had to answer for myself was whether I was or wasn’t.  He suggested that I could try a little controlled drinking if I wasn’t sure.  I knew I had never been able to do that.  I didn’t have to do any more “research.”  All I really had to do was review the drinking I had already done.

p. 372

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

So at the outset, how best to live and work together as groups became the prime question. In the world about us we saw personalities destroying whole peoples. The struggle for wealth, power, and prestige was tearing humanity apart as never before. If strong people were stalemated in the search for peace and harmony, what was to become of our erratic band of alcoholics? As we had once struggled and prayed for individual recovery, just so earnestly did we commence to quest for the principles through which A.A. itself might survive. on anvils of experience, the structure of our Society was hammered out.

pp. 130-131

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“The value of life lies not in the length of days, but in the use we make of them …”
–Michel de Montaigne

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

There is in each of us a God-shaped vacuum that only God can fill.
–Blaise Pascal

Expectation is the greatest impediment to living. In anticipation of tomorrow, it loses
today.
–Seneca

And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.
–Abraham Lincoln

Sometimes even to live is an act of courage.
–Seneca

“This day I choose to spend in perfect peace.”
–A Course in Miracles

When we are fearful, God’s love can help us to be confident.
–Amanda Graham

O God, help us let your love conquer our fears.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PERFECTION

“He that is without sin amongst
you, let him cast the first stone.”
— Jesus Christ

It is so easy for me to focus on the failings of others and miss my own. My attraction to
gossip is that it is usually about other people and that keeps the attention away from me.
Sometimes I am made to “feel good” by exposing the weaknesses of others.

This attitude needs to be changed if I am ever to fully enjoy the fruits of sobriety. I do not
need to be drinking to behave like a drunk; gossip and character assassination are
reminiscent of my past addictive behavior. I do not need the side of me that seeks to
destroy the character of others. With my spiritual program, I am trying to change.

May I grow in my forgiveness and acceptance of others.

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

God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility
consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not
only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
Philippians 2:3-4

Jesus said, “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure,
pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into
your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
Luke 6:38

“If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.”
Matthew 5:41

“Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
Luke 6:31


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Daily Inspiration

Set your priorities daily because some things in our path are just not important enough to use up our time and energy. Lord, with Your help I can have a full and enjoyable day.

God doesn’t always end the storm, but He will calm your spirit and give you the courage you need. Lord, I have come to know and believe in the love You have for me.


NA Just For Today

The Greatest Gift

“Our newly found faith serves as a firm foundation for courage in the future.”
Basic Text, p. 93
When we begin coming to meetings, we hear other addicts talking about the gifts they have received as a result of this program, things we never thought of as “gifts” before. One such “gift” is the renewed ability to feel the emotions we had deadened for so long with drugs. It’s not difficult to think of love, joy, and happiness as gifts, even if it’s been a long time since we’ve felt them. But what about “bad” feelings like anger, sadness, fear, and loneliness? Such emotions can’t be seen as gifts, we tell ourselves. After all, how can we be thankful for things we want to run from?

We can become grateful for these emotions in our lives if we place them in their proper perspective. We need to remember that we’ve come to believe in a loving Higher Power, and we’ve asked that Power to care for us – and our Higher Power doesn’t make mistakes. The feelings we’re given, “good” or “bad;” are given to us for a reason. With this in mind, we come to realize that there are no “bad” feelings, only lessons to be learned. Our faith and our Higher Power’s care give us the courage we need to face whatever feelings may come up on a daily basis.

As we heard early in recovery, “Your Higher Power won’t give you more than you can handle in just one day.” And the ability to feel our emotions is one of the greatest gifts of recovery.

Just for today: I will try to welcome my feelings, firm in the belief that I have the courage to face whatever emotions may come up in my life.


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Nothing that is worth doing can be done alone, but has to be done with others. –Dr. Reinhold Niebuhr
We who are blessed with a closely-knit family life, where thoughts and actions can be discussed and developed, are aware that what is given is not as important as what is shared. As we help one another, we learn that sharing can never exist unless we care first. This is the major ingredient of love.
Albert Schweitzer described human service toward a common goal as the greatest of deeds. Charles Dickens assured us that when we lighten the burdens of another; we can never consider ourselves useless. Those of us who are led today may show the way tomorrow. In giving, we receive, and in getting we cannot avoid being givers.
What do I receive by giving today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
All of my life I been like a doubled up fist… poundin’, smashin’, drivin’ – now I’m going to loosen these doubled up hands and touch things easy with them. –Tennessee Williams
Every man has many sides. Some sides are highly developed and other sides aren’t at all. We need not fear turning to a new side and exploring it. This recovery program has enabled us to pursue sides of ourselves that were closed before. When we were lost in our narrow world of codependency and addiction, we had fewer options. Now we have far greater access to our strength and our self-esteem, and we find new parts of ourselves.
Many of us have found relationships, which were never possible before, job choices we would never have had, and the pleasure of greater involvement in life. It is reassuring to see that we don’t always have to give up one side of ourselves to add new ones.
Thanks to God for the many options opening up to me in this renewed life.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Denial
We are slow to believe that which if believed would hurt our feelings. –Ovid
Most of us in recovery have engaged in denial from time to time. Some of us relied on this tool.
We may have denied events or feelings from our past. We may have denied other people’s problems; we may have denied our own problems/ feelings, thoughts, wants, or needs. We denied the truth.
Denial means we didn’t let ourselves face reality, usually because facing that particular reality would hurt. It would be a loss of something: trust, love, family, perhaps a marriage, a friendship, or a dream. And it hurts to lose something or someone. ‘
Denial is a protective device, a shock absorber for the soul It prevents us from acknowledging reality until we feel prepared to cope with that particular reality People can shout and scream the truth at us, but we will not see or hear it until we are ready.
We are sturdy yet fragile beings. Sometimes, we need time to get prepared, time to ready ourselves to cope. We do not let go of our need to deny by beating ourselves into acceptance; we let go of our need to deny by allowing ourselves to become safe and strong enough to cope with the truth
We will do this, when the time is right. We do not need to punish ourselves for having denied reality; we need only love ourselves into safety and strength so that each day we are better equipped to face and deal with the truth. We will face and deal with reality – on our own time schedule, when we are ready, and in our Higher Power’s timing. We do not have to accept chastisement from anyone, including ourselves, for this schedule.
We will know what we need to know, when it’s time to know it.
Today, I will concentrate on making myself feel safe and confident. I will let myself have my awarenesses on my own time schedule.

I am at choice today. I accept the responsibility of my life with a new sense of maturity, confidence, and even excitement.
–Ruth Fishel


Journey to the Heart

Let Life’s Rhythm Find You

I sat in my room, a small cabin in Chimayo, New mexico. The clock whizzed through the hours, but I didn’t whiz through my morning. I felt overwhelmed. Lost. I had more to do than I could handle. I didn’t know where to begin. So there I sat. Stuck.

Genera, who ran the hostel, knocked on my door about noon. “Are you okay?” she asked. “Come have coffee and fruit with us.” Her quiet kindness, her gentle concern, and the simple act of having coffee and fruit with a friend brought me back to balance.

There’s a life force, a movement, a momentum that transcends our fears and hopes, our limitations, our overwhelmed feelings, and even our confusion. There’s a heartbeat, a rhythm to life and the universe. It’s gentle, easy, natural. It’s in us; it’s around us. It comes gently, naturally, like a friend knocking quietly on the door, asking if we are okay, if we have lost our way.

There is purpose, meaning, and rhythm to each step, each beat of your life. Each step, each feeling, each beat of your life is another mile traveled on your journey, your journey to your heart.

If you’ve lost your way and can’t find life’s rhythm, don’t worry. Keep your heart open and it will find you.


More Language Of Letting Go

Experience life for yourself

We learn to do something by doing it. There is no other way.
–John Holt

“I’m an armchair adventurer,” I’ve heard more than one person say. This means that they never actually go out and do anything. They let others take all the risk. Through books, they’ve climbed Mount Everest, sailed around the world, hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, and snowshoed to the South Pole. They were even able to tell me all about how to fly a plane before my first lesson.

It’s one thing to spend our time reading books or listening to lectures about how to do this or that– how to have a successful relationship, how to build a business, how to live life more fully, whatever comes after how to. The trick is to finally put the books down, walk away from the lecture, and do it. Getting information, support, and encouragement is helpful. Necessary,too. But life was meant to be lived, not studied. The only way that you’ll have a successful career, relationship, or hobby is to go out and get one for yourself.

God, help me take the risk of actually doing something I want to learn to do.


Dealing with Difficult People
Opening the Channels of Communication

by Madisyn Taylor

We all have the experience of difficult people in our lives at one point or another and honest but clear communication is the answer.

We encounter a wide variety of people throughout our lives. Many of them touch us in some positive way. Occasionally, however, we encounter those individuals who, for whatever reason, can be difficult to deal with. Perhaps this person is a colleague or close friend that you feel is deliberately being obtuse, inviting in trouble, or doing foolish things that you find annoying. Sometimes, it may be possible to appease or avoid those people short term. Dealing with them in the long term, however, can be exhausting. The behavior of difficult people can even make you feel like losing your temper, but keep your cool. Staying calm is the first step, especially when you are ready to confront them.

Avoiding a difficult person can improve impossible and not in your best interest, especially if you live or work together. Likewise, attempts to steer clear of them can become a source of stress and anxiety when they are a part of your social circle. When this is the case, it is best to kindly address the problem. Try not to let their actions or mood affect you. You also may want to try expressing your feelings directly. Tell to the person how their actions make you feel and encourage them toward a more positive course of action. Speak assertively, but respectfully, and don’t portray yourself as a victim. Another approach for dealing with a difficult individual is to gain a deeper understanding of who that person is. Ask them why they do or say certain things. If you disagree with their motives, question them further so you can try and discover the root of their behaviors. In doing so, you may be able to gently shift their perceptions, or at least help them understand your ! point of view.

You may want to think about what you want to say to a difficult person before you actually talk to them. If you can, avoid being judgmental or defensive, and try to approach the conversation objectively. If the person is open to the idea, try coming to an agreement. If approaching them fails, let it go and move on. There is no reason to let difficult person or situation have power over your state of being. Remember that a lot can be accomplished when you take the time to listen and offer up alternative perspectives. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We’re taught in The Program and the Twelve Steps that the chief activator of our defects has been self-centered fear — mainly fear that we would lose something we already possessed or that we would fail to get something we demanded. Living on the basis of unsatisfied demands, we obviously were in a state of continuable disturbance and frustration. Therefore, we are taught, no peace will be ours unless we find a means of reducing these demands. Have I become entirely ready to have God remove all my defects of character?

Today I Pray

May I make no unrealistic demands on life, which, because of their grandiosity, can be met. May I place no excessive demands on others, which, when they are not fulfilled, leave me disappointed and let down.

Today I Will Remember

The set-up for a let-down.


One More Day

We all like to forgive, and we all love best not those who offend us least, not those who have done the most for us, but those who make it most easy for us to forgive them.
– Samuel Butler

None of us likes to harbor angry or bitter feelings toward another person. We know that friends may drift apart because of disagreements in which either of us will bend or compromise.

More and more, we know what our values are and the importance of how we reflect those values. When a friendship is threatened by anger or misunderstanding, we’re able to let our values guide us. We’ve been less willing o sacrifice our values to save a weak relationship. We’ve let go of some friends. If we’ve been stubborn or selfish, we’re better able now to preserve the friendship by making amends.

I will nurture my friendships and myself by letting my principles guide my life.


Food For Thought

Conserving Resources

In this fight against compulsive overeating, we need all the strength we can muster. We can learn to conserve our energy for what is important, rather than wasting it on non-essential activities.

An extra hour of sleep may do more for our program than an hour spent reading a novel or watching television. We have to guard against compulsive overactivity as well as overeating. Often, we tend to push too hard to complete something which can just as well wait until tomorrow. If we are tired, we are less able to resist temptation.

Choosing the foods, which will provide us with necessary proteins, vitamins, and minerals, is a vital part of maintaining energy. To take care of our bodies is to nurture the most valuable physical resource we have.

Conserving our resources often means saying no to people and activities, which drain them unnecessarily. Only we ourselves, with the guidance of our Higher Power, can decide how best to use the strength and energy we have.

Teach me to conserve the resources You have given me.


One Day At A Time

~ RECOVERY ~

The people who get on in the world are the people
who get up and look for the circumstances they want.
George Bernard Shaw

There was a time, not so long ago, that my life was much different than it is right now. My weight was skyrocketing because my eating compulsion was out of control. I couldn’t walk very far without huffing and puffing. My lower back hurt because my stomach pulled my spine out of alignment. My feet and ankles were swollen, my knees hurt, just standing was painful. I was hot all the time because my fat acted as insulation, keeping my body temperature high. My wife was hounding me about losing the weight, my doctor was taking her side, and even the kids at my son’s daycare were asking me why I was so big.

I didn’t start the recovery process (and it IS a process!) until I got to the point where I was so uncomfortable with myself that I had to do something. It wasn’t just that I was physically uncomfortable. I had to get past the comfort zone I had mentally and emotionally set up for myself; I had to get uncomfortable. I had to jump into the unknown, which was the most frightening thing I’d ever done.

Sitting around, moaning about my circumstances and suffering the physical consequences of my weight, didn’t get me anywhere. It was only when I became ready to see my life change, mentally, emotionally AND physically, that I began the footwork of this Program. That was the key to the beginning of my recovery, the getting up and actually doing something about it. When I took that first Step, the miracle began.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will take the necessary steps to maintain my
recovery from compulsive eating.
~ JAR ~


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Though they knew they must help other alcoholics if they would remain sober, that motive became secondary. It was transcended by the happiness they found in giving themselves for others. – Pg. 159 – A Vision For You

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

We must always fan the flame of inspiration and enthusiasm or our slight hold on sobriety will flicker and fade. We fan the flame by going to meetings, listening to the professionals we hire, choose and use a sponsor, and we must help others.

God, as I understand You, please show me one person I can give an encouraging word to in this hour.

New Life

I can feel my body and my spirit trying to come back to health. I am breathing in and out with relaxed, complete breaths and with each breath I take, I feel more serene. I sense the life within each pore of my body and it feels good, it feels right, it feels alive. My body needed to fall apart a little, it needed to get my attention and tell me it needed tender, loving care. Today, I will pay attention to what my body is trying to tell me it wants and needs and I will give it what it is calling out for.

I listen to what my body is asking for and I do something about it

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Do you think you deserve special treatment because you are clean and sober? Most of us do at one time or another. Treat us special and we feel normal; treat us normal and we feel rejected.

Do I want my ego to be the first thing people see when I walk into a room?

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

People may not always believe what you say, but they will always believe what you do.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am at choice today. I accept the responsibility of my life with a new sense of maturity, confidence, and even excitement.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

…And the unlived life is not worth examining. – Serenity Sam.


AA Thought for the Day

February 28

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

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

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

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

Self-appraisal
“I used to be a champ at unrealistic self-appraisal.
I wanted to look only at the part of my life
which seemed good.
Then I would greatly exaggerate whatever virtues
I supposed I had attained.
Next I would congratulate myself on the grand job
I was doing.
So my unconscious self-deception never failed
to turn my few good assets into serious liabilities.
This astonishing process was always a pleasant one. . .
I was falling straight back
into the pattern of my drinking days. . .
I shall forever regret the damage I did to people around me.
Indeed, I still tremble when I realize
what I might have done to AA and to its future.”
Bill W., June 1961
1988 AAGrapevine, The Language of the Heart, pp. 256-7

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

~~AACRONYMS~~
A A = Altered Attitudes

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

Renewed

From “An Open Heart”:
“I had nothing to do with this gift coming to me, so my gratitude is beyond description. It did not take me back to the
person I was before drinking. It gave me a new life rather, life itself, because I had attempted suicide and had been
hospitalized in private and state mental hospitals. It must have been spiritual; it was neither intellectual nor physical,
that’s for sure. I believe it was God as I understand Him, working through the love and understanding available in A.A.
May I keep my heart open. The joy which can come to an open heart is unlimited.–New York, New York, USA”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 51

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

“We found that all progress, material or spiritual, consisted of finding out what our responsibilities actually were and then
proceeding to do something about them … We found that we didn’t always have to be driven by our own discomforts as,
more willingly, we picked up the burdens of living and growing … We discovered that full acceptance and action upon
any clear-cut responsibility almost invariably made for true happiness and peace of mind.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1965
From: “Responsibility Is Our Theme”
The Language of the Heart

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

“Without knowing it, had we not been brought to where we stood by a
certain kind of faith? For did we not believe in our own reasoning?
Did we not have confidence in our ability to think? What was that
but a sort of faith? Yes, we had been faithful, abjectly faithful to
the God of Reason. So, in one way or another, we discovered that
faith had been involved all the time!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 53~

“Highly competent psychiatrists who have dealt with us have found it
sometimes impossible to persuade an alcoholic to discuss his
situation without reserve. Strangely enough, wives, parents and
intimate friends usually find us even more unapproachable than do the
psychiatrist and the doctor.
But the ex-problem drinker who has found this solution, who is
properly armed with facts about himself, can generally win the entire
confidence of another alcoholic in a few hours. Until such an
understanding is reached, little or nothing can be accomplished.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 18~

And as we grow spiritually, we find that our old attitudes toward our instincts need to undergo drastic revisions.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 114

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Conviction and Compromise
One qualification for a useful life is give-and-take, the ability to compromise cheerfully. Compromise comes hard to us
‘all or nothing’ drunks. Nevertheless, we must never lose sight of the fact that progress is nearly always characterized
by a series of improving compromises.
Of course, we cannot always compromise. There are circumstances in which it is necessary to stick flat-footed to one’s
convictions until the issue is resolved. Deciding when to compromise and when not to compromise always calls for the
most careful discrimination. TWELVE CONCEPTS, pp. 40-41

Prayer for the Day: May the God of hope fill me and all of us with the joy and peace that comes from believing, so that
we may abound in hope, by the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 27th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 27th

Daily Reflections

A UNIQUE STABILITY

Where does A.A. get its direction? . . . These practical
folk then read Tradition Two, and learn that the sole
authority in A.A. is a loving God as He may express
Himself in the group conscience. . . 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
patiently awaiting developments.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 132, 135

Into the fabric of recovery from alcoholism are woven
the Twelve Steps and the Twelve Traditions. As my
recovery progressed, I realized that the new mantle was
tailor made for me. The elders of the group gently
offered suggestions when change seemed impossible.
Everyone’s shared experiences became the substance for
treasured friendships. I know that the Fellowship is
ready and equipped to aid each suffering alcoholic at
all crossroads in life. In a world beset by many
problems, I find this assurance a unique stability.
I cherish the gift of sobriety. I offer my gratitude
for the strength I receive in a Fellowship that truly
exists for the good of all members.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When we first came into A.A., the first thing we did was
to admit that we couldn’t do anything about our drinking.
We admitted that alcohol had us licked and that we were
helpless against it. We never could decide whether or not
to take a drink. We always took the drink. And since we
couldn’t do anything about it ourselves, we put our whole
drink problem into the hands of God. We turned the whole
thing over to that Power greater than ourselves. And we
have nothing more to do about it, except to trust God to
take care of the problem for us. Have I done this honestly
and fully?

Meditation For The Day

This is the time for my spirit to touch the spirit of God.
I know that the feeling of the spirit-touch is more
important than all the sensations of material things. I
must seek a silence of spirit-touching with God. Just a
moment’s contact and all the fever of life leaves me. Then
I am well, whole, calm and able to arise and minister to
others. God’s touch is a potent healer. I must feel that
touch and sense God’s presence.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that the fever of resentment, worry and fear may
melt into nothingness. I pray that health, joy, peace and
serenity may take its place.

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As Bill Sees It

Righteous Indignation, p. 58

“The positive value of righteous indignation is theoretical–especially
for alcoholics. It leaves every one of us open to the rationalization
that we may be as angry as we like provided we can claim to be
righteous about it.”

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

When we harbored grudges and planned revenge for defeats, we
were really beating ourselves with the club of anger we had intended
to use on others. We learned that if we were seriously disturbed, our
very first need was to quiet that disturbance, regardless of who or
what we thought caused it.

1. Letter, 1954
2. 12 & 12, p. 47

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Walk In Dry Places

Selling myself____ Personal Relations
Thoughtful people tell us that every person has to “sell” himself or herself in daily work.  As alcoholics, we can find that threatening. Uncertainty and the fear of rejection or failure put us under stress.
We can avoid this stress and tension by putting all responsibility for results in God’s hands.  While it is true that we want to succeed and to be accepted, we can never be sure that our idea of success is the right one.  There are times when our strong determination to succeed at all costs makes us overbearing and demanding in our approach. We may be so anxious to appear competent and knowledgeable that we overreach our selves and make stupid blunders.
God can show us how to handle each day’s affairs in an orderly, reasonable way. It is not necessary to win every argument or to make every sale.  We can sell ourselves mor effectively when we go through the day calmly and take a genuine interest in the ideas and concerns of others.
I will look upon my customers and fellow workers as friends and allies. I don’t have to bludgeon every person into accepting my point of view.  If I am sincerely trying to follow God’s will in all my affairs, others will sense my sincerity and will be glad to consider what I have to say.

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Keep It Simple

Without work all life goes rotten.—Albert Camus
Work is more than earning money. Work means using our time and skills to make life better for those around us. Our work can be our hobbies. Growing food or growing flowers can be our work.
Raising children or caring for older people who need help can be our work. Building homes or helping people live in them can be our work. Thanks to our program of recovery, we can do our best work again. What a change from the drugged-up and hung over days when we didn’t do anything well. We are sober, and we have something to offer.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me see that work makes me part of the human family. Help me do Your will in my work today.
Action for the Day:  Good work teaches us good habits. How do the things I’ve learned in my work help me in my recovery program? I’ll list five ways.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Being alone and feeling vulnerable. Like two separate themes, these two parts of myself unite in my being and sow the seeds of my longing for unconditional love.  –Mary Casey
How easily we slip into self-doubt, fearing we’re incapable or unlovable, perhaps both. How common for us to look into the faces of our friends and lovers in search of affirmation and love.
Our alienation from ourselves, from one another, from God’s Spirit which exists everywhere causes our discontent. It is our discontent. When souls touch, love is born, love of self and love of the other. Our aloneness exists when we create barriers that keep us separate from our friends, our family. Only we can reach over or around the barriers to offer love, to receive love.
Recovery offers us the tools for loving, but we must dare to pick them up. Listening to others and sharing ourselves begins the process of loving. Risking to offer love before receiving it will free us from the continual search for love in the faces of others.
I won’t wait to be loved today. I will love someone else, fully. I won’t doubt that I, too, am loved. I will feel it. I will find unconditional love.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

We landed in England. I visited Winchester Cathedral. Much moved, I wandered outside. My attention was caught by a doggerel on an old tombstone:
“Here lies a Hampshire Grenadier
Who caught his death
Drinking cold small beer.
A good soldier is ne’er forgot
Whether he dieth by musket
Or by pot.”
Ominous warning – which I failed to heed.

p. 1

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

From time to time I would tell the truth.  I said in a meeting that I was afraid to get a sponsor because I was afraid he might ask me to do something.  I left that meeting with a phone number.  I called it, and sure enough, my new sponsor started leading me through the steps, using the Big Book.

p. 372

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

Those who look closely soon have the key to this strange paradox. The A.A. member has to conform to the principles of recovery. His life actually depends upon obedience to spiritual principles. If he deviates too far, the penalty is sure and swift; he sickens and dies. At first he goes along because he must, but later he discovers a way of life he really wants to live. Moreover, he finds he cannot keep this priceless gift unless he gives it away. Neither he nor anybody else can survive unless he carries the A.A. message. The moment this Twelfth Step work forms a group, another discovery is made – that most individuals cannot recover unless there is a group. Realization dawns that he is but a small part of a great whole; that no personal sacrifice is too great for preservation of the Fellowship. He learns that the clamor of desires and ambitions within him must be silenced whenever these could damage the group. It becomes plain that the group must survive or the individual will not.

p. 130

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The road to recovery is always under construction.

A cool head keeps you out of hot water.

Blessed are those who can give without remembering and take without
forgetting.
–Elizabeth Bibesco

God, help me take a deep breath and holler woohoo.
–Melody Beattie

A deeper bonding with one’s spirit and with others at an essence level is
the spiritual opportunity of the new millennium, yet the first step is an
inside job — starting with oneself. People have an innate desire to bond
with others in the spirit of love, but an essential first step is rolling up
our sleeves and applying some elbow grease toward managing attitudes
and emotions that are not in line with our heart or authentic self.
Then bonding becomes not an action you do but a way of being, the
way of love.
–Doc Childre

When the storms clouds threaten
And on the sea of life we’re tossed,
When we don’t know where we are going,
Feeling all alone and lost…….
There is a friend to turn to.
A calming hand to guide your way
He will make the dark clouds scatter
and brighter grows the day.
–Gloria Hall Wood

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

FACTS

“To treat your facts with
imagination is one thing, but to
imagine your facts is another.”
— John Burroughs

When I was drinking, I was always confusing fantasy with reality. Lies
got mingled with the facts and the facts became exaggerated. It was
almost impossible for me to distinguish between reality and fantasy,
imagination and fact. My life was a complicated lie.

Today I have a program of “rigorous” honesty; I must be rigorous and
stop the game before it starts. I need to practice the principles of
recovery in every area of my life. The spiritual road involves a
comprehensive journey and nothing need be left out.

God, who created the mountains, help me to take responsibility for the
grit between my toes.

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

“The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My
heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.”
Psalm 28:7

“He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither
you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on
every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD.”
Deuteronomy 8:3

“Come to me all of you who are tired and have heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Accept
my teachings and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit, and you will find
rest for your lives. The teaching I ask you to accept is easy; the load I give you to carry is
light.”
Matthew 11:28-30

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Daily Inspiration

Time passes too quickly so waste none of it on anger, self-pity or the irritations of life. Lord, may my choices remove stress and free me to enjoy the goodness of today.

In your pursuit of happiness, pause to relax and be happy. Lord, slow me down just enough to enjoy all that You have given to me.

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NA Just For Today

“Pure Motives”

“We examine our actions, reactions, and motives. We often find that we’ve been doing better than we’ve been feeling.”
Basic Text, p. 42

Imagine a daily meditation book with this kind of message: “When you wake up in the morning, before you rise from your bed, take a moment for reflection. Lie back, gather your thoughts, and consider your plans for the day. One by one, review the motives behind those plans. If your motives are not entirely pure, roll over and go back to sleep.” Nonsense, isn’t it?

No matter how long we’ve been clean, almost all of us have mixed motives behind almost everything we do. However, that’s no reason to put our lives on hold. We don’t have to wait for our motives to become perfectly pure before we can start living our recovery.

As the program works its way into our lives, we begin acting less frequently on our more questionable motives. We regularly examine ourselves, and we talk with our sponsor about what we find. We pray for knowledge of our Higher Power’s will for us, and we seek the power to act on the knowledge we’re given. The result? We don’t get perfect, but we do get better.

We’ve begun working a spiritual program. We won’t ever become spiritual giants. But if we look at ourselves realistically, we’ll probably realize that we’ve been doing better than we’ve been feeling.

Just for today: I will examine myself realistically. I will seek the power to act on my best motives, and not to act on my worst.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The great pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do. –Walter Babehot
Everyone knew Jacob was a bitter old hermit who hated people. He lived by himself in a cabin in the woods. He never came to town, never talked to anyone, and never put up a mailbox or put in a phone. But he had one thing the townsfolk wanted–the very first Bible brought by a preacher when the town was first settled. They wanted it for their centennial celebration.
Little Tom listened as the townsfolk complained daily about how much they wanted the old book to put on display. One day, he walked on out to the little cabin and just asked the old man if he could borrow the book, just for a week. Imagine the surprise on the faces of the people when the boy wandered back to town with the old dusty book in hand.
Are we like the townspeople sometimes? Do we assume things won’t work out without even trying? Sometimes help is there, just waiting to be asked. What have we got to lose?
What can I request today that I have been afraid to ask for?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Self-interest is but the survival of the animal in us. Humanity only begins for man with self-surrender. –Henri Amiel
When we were lost in our addictive ways, we were driven by self-interest. We didn’t necessarily like ourselves or want to be so self centered. But we had no inner resources to help us escape the trap of our egos. When we were there, we could not see outside ourselves well enough to ask for help. Surrender, we thought, brought only defeat and humiliation.
The inspiration of this program brings us possibilities that cannot originate from within. When we surrender, we are no longer captives within our skins. We are actually restored to a more natural state as men in community with others, who literally cannot survive as isolated individuals. We must be a part of the give and take within the group, just as it has been for human beings since the beginning of time.
Today, I surrender my self-interest again, knowing I must do it over and over.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
People Pleasers
Have you ever been around people pleasers? They tend to be displeasing. Being around someone who is turned inside out to please another is often irritating and anxiety producing.
People-pleasing is a behavior we may have adapted to survive in our family. We may not have been able to get the love and attention we deserved. We may not have been given permission to please ourselves, to trust ourselves, and to choose a course of action that demonstrated self-trust.
People pleasing can be overt or covert. We may run around fussing over others, chattering a mile a minute when what we are really saying is, “I hope I’m pleasing you.” Or, we may be more covert, quietly going through life making important decisions based on pleasing others.
Taking other people’s wants and needs into consideration is an important part of our relationships. We have responsibilities to friends and family and employers. We have a strong inner responsibility to be loving and caring. But, people pleasing backfires. Not only do others get annoyed with us, we often get annoyed when our efforts to please do not work as we planned. The most comfortable people to be around are those who are considerate of others but ultimately please themselves.
Help me, God, work through my fears and begin to please myself.

Today I will trust myself when something does not feel smooth and flowing. I will begin to look around for alternatives for anything that feels rough and irritating. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Open to Life’s Magic

“I will never forget my mother’s words to me the first time she took me to the Hob rain forest,” a woman told me, when she learned I was going there. “We were at the edge of the forest, about to enter. My mother stopped walking and turned to me. “There’s magic here,” she said. It wasn’t her words that impressed me. What struck me was the absolute certainty and matter-of-fact way she said it. It was like she had just told me, ‘Dinner’s ready,’”

There’s magic in the air. It’s the next place on the journey. It’s inevitable. We have been clearing the path so we could do more than merely trudge down the road. The road leads to magic– a magical way of living. A magical way of being here. The magic in the air isn’t an illusion, isn’t a trick. You have done your work. You have stuck with the journey. Now is the time for fun,the time to see and know more of life’s magical ways.

Walk lightly. Enter the enchanted forest. Look around. Keep your eyes and ears open. Tell others what you see. The journey to the heart is a journey of wonder and awe.

“The ancient ones, the trees, are waiting for you,” the woman said. “When you get there, tell them I said hi.” Open to life’s magic. It’s been waiting for your call.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Live your life

A painting of a rice cake does not satisfy hunger.
–Ancient saying

An old man was telling his grandson about how poor he was when he was younger. “Why when I was a kid, we couldn’t even afford cheese for the mousetraps,” he said. “We had to cut out pictures of cheese and use that.”

“Wow, did you catch anything gramps?”

“Yes. We caught pictures of mice.”

I have a picture in my house of a Buddhist ceremony in Tibet. The picture was taken by a photographer who lives close to the Blue Sky Lodge. She told me all about the picture when I bought it from her– told me about the smells in the air, the temperature, the crush of the people around her, the tastes, smells, and sights of that place. When I close my eyes and remember her words, I can almost go there. Almost, but not quite. I hope to travel there sometime, to see those things and to feel my soul filled with the spirituality of a monastery high on a hill. The picture is like a menu. It sits on the counter, tempting me with all that is offered in it. But it doesn’t satisfy my hunger.

We can share our experience, strength, and hope with each other. But I can’t learn your lessons and you can’t learn mine.

I’m planning my trip to Tibet, as I write this book. Will it all work out like the trip in the picture? I don’t know. I do know that I won’t get the experience– the sights, sounds, tastes, smells, and the impact on my soul– from looking at the picture on my wall.

Have you been trying to gain sustenance from looking at a picture of an experience– reading books, taking classes, going to seminars, listening to mentors– instead of going out and living life for yourself? Take another look at your menu, the list you wrote at the beginning of the year. Order something from it.

Stop looking at the picture and go live for yourself.

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Short Getaways
Taking a Day Trip

by Madisyn Taylor

We need not go on an expensive vacation to feel we have had time off as your local park or beach can offer a blissful refuge.

We tend to think of a vacation as something that requires an enormous amount of preparation, but small daylong excursions can be just as refreshing and fulfilling as their lengthier counterparts. A short drive can be the channel that transports you into a world of novel experiences and blissful relaxation. Solo day trips can be a wonderful way to unwind from the stresses of routine existence while simultaneously feeding the soul. And when you choose to share your day trip with someone you care about, a leisurely drive becomes a chance to talk about childhood, recall favorite songs, or simply spend time enjoying one another’s presence.

You may be surprised to see how many day-trip possibilities exist within a mere hour’s time from your home. Forests, beaches, lakes, mountains, rivers, and deserts can serve as the perfect spot for a mini-vacation. The physical and mental rejuvenation you experience in an unfamiliar and engaging setting are enhanced by meditation, journaling, deep breathing, or just being still with nature. Though the cost of gasoline can make taking a day trip seem frivolous, and our commitment to environmental well-being may cause us to hesitate before utilizing our cars in this manner, there are numerous ways we can effectively offset our carbon signature while still seeing to the needs of ourselves on a soul level.

Since day trips tend to require much smaller investments of time and money than traditional outings, you can enjoy a diverse range of experiences day by day. On one weekend, you may be motivated by a need to connect with your natural heritage to explore a vast state park or nature preserve. On another, your curiosity can inspire you to visit a historical site that has long piqued your interest. In the end, where you go will often be less important than your willingness to broaden your horizons by removing yourself from the environment already so familiar to you. Each mini-getaway you take will imbue your existence with a sensation of renewal that prepares you for whatever lies ahead. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

If I live just one day at a time, I won’t so quickly entertain fears of what might happen tomorrow. As long as I’m concentrating on today’s activities, there won’t be room in my mind for worrying. I’ll try to fill every minute of this day with something. Then, when the day is ended, I’ll be able to look back on it with satisfaction, serenity and gratitude. Do I sometimes cherish bad feeling so that I can feel sorry for myself?

Today I Pray

That I will get out of the self-pity act and live for today. May I notice the good things from dawn to nightfall, learn to talk about them and thank God for them. May I catch myself if I seem to be relishing my moans and complaints more often than appreciating the goodness of my life.

Today I Will Remember

Today is good.

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One More Day

I shall not pass this way again;
Then let me now relieve some pain,
Remove some barrier from the road,
Or brighten someone’s heavy load.
– Eva Rose York

Sometimes we help other through – neighborhood clean-up committees, recycling stations, and paint-a-tons. Maybe we’ve volunteered through school or church or community organizations.

Illness has helped us better understand the relationship between those who help and those who need help. Loving help is not prompted by pity or superiority, but by empathy and shared humanness. Also, we’ve learned that no one is always the helper or always the one needing help. We are both. We are bonded to others through what we give — and what we receive.

I will show my love by helping and being willing to be helped.

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Food For Thought

No Standing Still

Life is movement, and to be alive is to change. There is no standing still. Either we are making progress in the control of our disease, or we are getting worse.

Progress forward is an upward climb. To look back with longing at a time which in retrospect seems easier, or to think about the so-called pleasure we once got from food, is to invite disaster. We have long passed the point of being satisfied with a small amount of uncontrolled eating. Now, a small amount will inevitably become a large amount, and instead of pleasure we will eventually feel much physical and emotional pain.

If we are making progress, let’s keep at it and not be deluded into going backwards. If we are losing control and slipping, let’s recognize that we are on a downward course and that our disease is getting worse. Let’s stop rationalizing and making excuses. Right now we can turn around and start climbing.

May I keep climbing.

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One Day At A Time

~ FIGHTING ~

And we have ceased fighting anything or anyone …
The Big Book, page 84

When one goes through life at full speed ahead as I have done, it’s hard to really step back and look at one’s life. Everything is happening too fast and each day seems to blend into the next and, before you know it, the next segment of life seems to take over.

When I began my Twelve Step recovery program, I found myself slowing down … examining my life … observing those around me … and reflecting on my past. I began to know who I was and I didn’t like one of the things I discovered: I was a fighter. I didn’t accept people, places or things unless and until they met my expectations of what they should be. I tried to control situations that I should have walked away from. I clung to people I should have distanced myself from. I tried to manipulate things that were toxic to me, and make them un-toxic … and, in the process, did myself great harm.

When I first read those words from the AABB, “We have ceased fighting anything or anyone,” I felt it didn’t apply to me … because at that point, I hadn’t categorized myself as a fighter. It took living and working the Steps to realize that. And it took living and working the Steps to take the action necessary to stop being a fighter.

Life is calmer now. Relationships are smoother. I sometimes miss the excitement of going through like as though I were on a roller coaster … but I won’t go back there. Serenity means too much to me. Fighting is something I have put away forever.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will direct my thinking and doing to those things in my life which will contribute to a meaningful and pleasant journey.
~ Mari ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

God has abundantly supplied this world with fine doctors, psychologists, and practitioners of various kinds. Do not hesitate to take your health problems to such persons. – Pg. 133 – The Family Afterwards

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Sometimes you won’t be able to trust that all will be well. You’ll think ‘it isn’t well’ and ‘I don’t want to hear others telling me it will be all right.’ OK. Be angry. Now go do something that is suggested to you today. Make a phone call to your sponsor, make a meeting, help another in early recovery. Channel your anger toward action.

Grant me the strength to do one activity today that is suggested in the books or by a fellow member in recovery.

Unseen Hands 

There are forces in this ever alive and vibrating universe that want to help me if I can let them. I will pray to unseen hands to guide me toward wellness, to lift me towards God. If I am low, I will allow this legion of tiny hands to lift me in the blink of an eye. I will ask and trust that help is at hand. I will free my mind so that it can include more experience that it normally does. I will allow the veil to be lifted so that I can see this spiritual and alive universe for what it is and people for the tender and vulnerable creatures that we all are.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

It’s a very interesting thing about human nature, when you stop treating yourself poorly, it will become unacceptable for others to do so.

If I don’t take care of myself, why should anyone else?

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Daily meditation for about 20 minutes is recommended for all in recovery; unless, of course, you’re very busy, then you should meditate for an hour.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will trust myself when something does not feel smooth and flowing. I will begin to look around for alternatives for anything that feels rough and irritating.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

This is a disease of insight. I could see the filth, the deceit, the ugliness, the infidelity. The pain of alcoholism and me. It was all very clear. I could see through myself like glass – As Socrates said: ‘The unexamined life is not worth living.’ – Tom M.

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AA Thought for the Day

February 27

Rallying Point
Step Two is the rallying point for all of us.
Whether agnostic, atheist, or former believer, we can stand together on this Step.
True humility and an open mind can lead us to faith,
and every AA 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

Thought to Ponder . . .
I sit at a meeting until the bus of sanity comes by; then, I climb aboard.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
W E = Walls Evaporate.

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

Foundation
There is a direct linkage among self-examination,
meditation, and prayer.
Taken separately, these practices can bring
much relief and benefit.
but when they are logically related and interwoven,
the result is an unshakable foundation for life.
c. 1952 AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 98

Thought to Consider . . .
Prayer is asking a question.
Meditation is listening for the answer.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A S A P = Always Say A Prayer.

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

Hope
>From “Tightrope”:
“He put me in contact with an individual who took me to my first meeting. Although I can barely recall anything about that
meeting, I heard two things I have never forgotten. The first was ‘You don’t have to drink again.’ This was a total
revelation to me. For a long time I had believed that alcohol was one of the few positive things left in my life. I looked
forward to my first drink every evening and thought that alcohol was holding my life together. I had to drink to survive, let
alone to have any comfort. Yet here, people who had been in the same boat were telling me that I didn’t have to drink. I
don’t think I believed them that night, but it gave me enough hope to avoid drinking the rest of the day.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pgs. 364-65

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

“Today, I don’t have the home, the husband, the three cars in the garage. I have one old clunker that takes me to
meetings. I am not financially well off, but I have a peace of mind I never dreamed possible. My needs are always met —
and even some of my wishes. I am truly happy for the first time in my life. Thank you AA.”
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 ^*~*~*~*~*

“Though there is no way of proving it, we believe that early in our
drinking careers most of us could have stopped drinking. But the
difficulty is that few alcoholics have enough desire to stop while
there is yet time.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 32

“Much to our relief, we discovered we did not need to consider
another’s conception of God. Our own conception, however inadequate,
was sufficient to make the approach and to effect a contact with
Him. As soon as we admitted the possible existence of a Creative
Intelligence, a Spirit of the Universe underlying the totality of
things, we began to be possessed of a new sense of power and
direction, provided we took other simple steps.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 46~

“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

Righteous Indignation
‘The positive value of righteous indignation is theoretical – especially for alcoholics. It leaves every one of us open to the
rationalization that we may be as angry as we like provided we can claim to be righteous about it.’
When we harbored grudges and planned revenge for defeats, we were really beating ourselves with the club of anger
we had intended to use on others. We learned that if we were seriously disturbed, our very first need was to quiet that
disturbance, regardless of who or what we thought caused it. 1. LETTER, 1954 – 2 .TWELVE AND TWELVE, p. 47

Prayer for the Day: God, I pray that I may not neglect my soul in trying to fathom immortal life. If I may be hesitating
between comfort and work, remind me of the greatness of the place which I started to reach. May I not grow weary of
climbing and falter on the stair. Breathe upon me thy inspiration and love, that I may continue in faith all the way. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 26th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 26th

Daily Reflections

NO ORDINARY SUCCESS STORY

A.A. is no success story in the ordinary sense of the
word. It is a story of suffering transmuted, under
grace, into spiritual progress.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 35

Upon entering A.A. I listened to others talk about the
reality of their drinking: loneliness, terror and pain.
As I listened further, I soon heard a description of a
very different kind–the reality of sobriety. It is a
reality of freedom and happiness, of purpose and
direction, and of serenity and peace with God,
ourselves and others. By attending meetings, I am
reintroduced to that reality, over and over. I see it
in the eyes and hear it in the voices of those around
me. By working the program I find the direction and
strength with which to make it mine. The joy of A.A.
is that this new reality is available to me.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When we came into A.A., we came to believe in a Power
greater than ourselves. We came to believe in that Divine
Principle in the universe which we call God, and to whom
we could turn for help. Each morning we have a quiet
time. We ask God for the power to stay sober for the next
twenty-four hours. And each night we thank Him for
helping us to keep sober for that day. Do I believe that
each man or woman I see in A.A. is a demonstration of the
power of God to change a human being from a drunkard
to a sober person?

Meditation For The Day

I should pray for more faith as a thirsty man prays for
water in a desert. Do I know what it means to feel sure
that God will never fail me? Am I sure of this as I am
sure that I still breathe? I should pray daily and most
diligently that my faith may increase. There is nothing
lacking in my life because really all I need is mine,
only I lack the faith to know it. I am a king’s son who
sits in rags and yet all around me are stores of all I
could desire.

Prayer For The Day

I pray for the realization that God has everything I need.
I pray that I may know that His power is always available.

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As Bill Sees It

Better Than Gold, p. 57

As newcomers, many of us have indulged in spiritual intoxication.
Like a gaunt prospector, belt drawn in over the last ounce of food, we
saw our pick strike gold. Joy at our release from a lifetime of
frustration knew no bounds.

The newcomer feels he has struck something better than gold. He
may not see at once that he has barely scratched the limitless lode
which will pay dividends only if he mines it for the rest of his life and
insists on giving away the entire product.

Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 128-129

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Walk In Dry Places

The Fix that Never was_____ Recovery
In all of the despair and defeat that went along with drinking, most of us held to the ideal of a “fantastic fix”—–  a drinking experience so fulfilling and complete that it would solve our problems and leave us searching no more.
Compulsive disorders, like alcoholism, seem to include this delusion. The gambler looks for the big score, the overeater seeks the total enjoyment of food, and the sex junkie searches for the perfect partner.  But the search never ends, because our compulsions always drive us to seek stronger wine and greater excitement.
The only fix that will ever work has to be rooted in sobriety and right living. When we think and live properly, free from alcohol, we find a fix that really works.  We find continuous satisfaction instead of soaring excitement, sound relationships with other people instead of ego-gratifying encounters, and purpose instead of drifting.
The peak experience we had been seeking is a fix that never can be.  We can be truly “fixed” only by staying sober.
I will live calmly and gratefully today, forgetting the drive for excitement that was destroying me.  My Higher Power knows who I am and what I should be doing.

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Keep It Simple

Forewarned. forearmed: being prepared is half the victory.—Miguel de Cervantes
Ther will be hard times in our program. There will be hard times in our lives. That’s the way the life is. It helps if we accept this. Then we can prepare for tough times. We can prepare by getting a good set of habits and sticking to them. We can make it a habit to give time to our program each day. Sticking to good habits is like having a savings account: when hard times come, we can take the “investment” we’ve made and overcome our problems.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me accept that there will be hard times. Help me prepare for them. With Your help, I’ll stay close to You, my friends, and the program.
Action for the Day:  I’ll put something into my program “savings account” today. I’ll make that extra call. I’ll read a little longer or go to an extra meeting.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Happiness is a byproduct of an effort to make someone else happy.  –Gretta Brooker Palmer
We have striven for happiness, generally in self-centered ways. We expected others to favor us with their attention, for example. Or we waited for invitations or gifts. We have probably tried to buy happiness with the purchase of a new dress or shoes. Fleeting moments of happiness were gained, that’s all. And soon we were discontent once again. And the search was begun anew.
But things have changed for some of us. We are learning, maybe slowly, how to find a more permanent happiness. And we know the happiness that comes from “getting” is elusive. Giving to others, giving attention, sharing hope, sharing our own stories, listening to theirs, is the key to finding the happiness for which we’ve searched so long. We must get outside of ourselves and focus on another’s joy or sorrow. Only then do we get a clear perspective on who we are and the necessary role we play in the lives of others who need our attention and who have a message we also need to hear.
The creative power stirring in me needs recognition. Looking deeply into another person, listening intently to the stirring will elicit joy. I will feel in touch with my own creative power, a lasting thrill, not a fleeting moment of happiness.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

BILL’S STORY

War fever ran high in the New England town to which we new, young officers from Plattsburg were assigned, and we were flattered when the first citizens took us to their homes, making us feel heroic. Here was love, applause, war; moments sublime with intervals hilarious. I was part of life at last, and in the midst of the excitement I discovered liquor. I forgot the strong warnings and the prejudices of my people concerning drink. In time we sailed for “Over There.” I was very lonely and again turned to alcohol.

p. 1

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

The next day we went to another meeting, and this time I did say I was an alcoholic.  I went to the third meeting by myself.  I was nervous.  I felt as if I were about to jump out of my skin.  I did something that was amazing to me.  Before the meeting I stuck out my hand and introduced myself as a newcomer.  I had someone to talk to.  I calmed down.

p. 372

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

To many minds all this liberty for the individual spells sheer anarchy. Every newcomer, every friend who looks at A.A. for the first time is greatly puzzled. They see liberty verging on license, yet they recognize at once that A.A. has an irresistible strength of purpose and action. “How,” they ask, “can such a crowd of anarchists function at all? How can they possible place their common welfare first? What in Heaven’s name holds them together?”

pp. 129-130

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This is a great day to be sober, patient, tolerant, kindly and loving.

A positive attitude is a person’s passport to a better tomorrow.  –Anon

Gratitude is our most direct line to God and the angels. If we
take the time, no matter how crazy and troubled we feel, we
can find something to be thankful for. The more we seek gratitude,
the more reason the angels will give us for gratitude and joy to
exist in our lives.
–Terry Lynn Taylor

God, help me learn to respond to whatever environment I’m in by
taking the appropriate actions to take care of myself.
–Melody Beattie

Every new day is the beginning of the rest of your life. On each day
you can make new choices on how to live it.

No matter what the season, God is with us.
–George J. Waggoner

God’s love reaches us wherever we are.
–Karen Christy Kurtz

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

UNIQUENESS

“Each honest calling, each walk of
life, has its own elite, its own
aristocracy based upon excellence
of performance.
— James Bryant Conant

Everybody has a gift and a special feature that is unique to
themselves. Unfortunately so many people are so busy admiring the
gifts of others that they miss their own; they are so caught up in the
lives of others that they miss the “specialness” of their own
existence. One of the symptoms of my alcoholism was low self-esteem.
Of course I acted a role of confidence. I pretended that everything was
okay. I wore the mask of success — but deep within myself, I was always
waiting for the world to find out that I was a fake, that something
was missing in my life.

In recovery I have discovered God’s powerful gift of spirituality and I
know that through my life a uniqueness exists in the world. I have the
capacity to make the day better — not only for myself but also for
others.

Thank You for the “specialness” of my life.

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Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow
to wrath: for the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
James 1:19-20

“Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
Proverbs 12:18

We love because [God] first loved us.
1 John 4:19


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Daily Inspiration

Lift yourself above the seriousness of life by keeping a gentle sense of humor. Lord, You have made me one of a kind. Help me to enjoy who I am.

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

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NA Just For Today

Remorse

“The Eighth Step offers a big change from a life dominated by guilt and remorse.”
Basic Text, p. 38

Remorse was one of the feelings that kept us using. We had stumbled our way through active addiction, leaving a trail of heartbreak and devastation too painful to consider. Our remorse was often intensified by our perception that we couldn’t do anything about the damage we had caused; there was no way to make it right.

We remove some of the power of remorse when we face it squarely. We begin the Eighth Step by actually making a list of all the people we have harmed. We own our part in our painful past.

But the Eighth Step does not ask us to make right all of our mistakes, merely to become willing to make amends to all those people. As we become willing to clean up the damage we’ve caused, we acknowledge our readiness to change. We affirm the healing process of recovery.

Remorse is no longer an instrument we use to torture ourselves. Remorse has become a tool we can use to achieve self-forgiveness.

Just for today: I will use any feelings of remorse I may have as a stepping-stone to healing through the Twelve Steps.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
From harmony, from heavenly harmony,
This universal frame began . . .
–John Dryden
Our family is like a small orchestra. Each of us has an important part to play. To achieve harmony we tune in to how others are sounding. We recognize that every orchestra needs a conductor, a center for direction. We rely on our Higher Power for this support and guidance, and we realize that our family’s music exists in time. It changes, it passes, and we begin a new song. Our music comes and goes. It is not carved in marble. It is a free expression of family love.
No one of us has to play alone, because we are an ensemble. The time for soloing comes later. Today we rejoice that we can play together.
How can my music add to the family’s symphony today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I have never for one instant seen clearly within myself. How then would you nave me judge the deeds of others?
–Maurice Maeterlinck
We have been given the job of getting to know ourselves and dealing with our own craziness. We aren’t so good at it that we have spare time and energy left to make judgments about those around us. We are tempted to become absorbed in their behavior and choices, and it does feel like a welcome distraction from anxieties about ourselves. So we must learn to detach from the family members and friends that we are tempted to fix, or monitor, or judge.
Although we are very close, we are on separate paths in life. We were not born together, and we will not die together. We will make our family or our friendships and the world a little bit better by staying centered on our own sanity.
I pray for a clear separation between what is on my path in this program and what is on someone else’s path. Then we can make good bridges between us.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Twelve Step Programs
I was furious when I found myself at my first Al Anon meeting. It seemed so unfair that he had the problem and I had to go to a meeting. But by that time, I had nowhere left in the world to go with my pain. Now, I’m grateful for Al Anon and my codependency recovery. Al Anon keeps me on track; recovery has given me a life. –Anonymous
There are many Twelve Step programs for codependents: Al Anon, Adult Children of Alcoholics, CoDa, Families Anonymous, Nar-Anon, and more. We have many choices about which kind of group is right for us and which particular group in that category meets our needs. Twelve Step groups for codependents are free, anonymous, and available in most communities. If there is not one that is right for us, we can start one.
Twelve Step groups for codependents are not about how we can help the other person; they’re about how we can help ourselves grow and change. They can help us accept and deal with the ways codependency has affected us. They can help us get on track and stay there.
There is magic in Twelve Step programs. There is healing power in connecting with other recovering people. We access this healing power by working the Steps and by allowing them to work on us. The Twelve Steps are a formula for healing.
How long do we have to go to meetings? We go until we “get the program.” We go until the program “gets us.” Then we keep on going and growing.
Selecting a group and then attending regularly are important ways we can begin and continue to take care of ourselves. Actively participating in our recovery program by working the Steps is another.
I will be open to the healing power available to me from the Twelve Steps and a recovery program.

It is safe to know there is a special place within me where I can feel peace. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Embrace the Lessons of Night

I reached Wyoming’s Yellowstone Park late, much later than I had planned. The park was sprawling. I wasn’t certain how to find the lodge. I couldn’t find anyone to ask for help or directions. Tired and exhausted, I couldn’t make sense of the map. I found myself driving around and around, becoming almost frantic.

Suddenly, beyond the treetops, I spotted a bright light. Good, I thought, it must be the lodge. I drove a little further, then stopped the car and stared in awe. What I saw stilled my heart, and calmed my frantic pace.

Above Yellowstone Lake, nestled between two mountain peaks, glowed a huge, white, full moon, the largest I’d ever seen it. The pines stood guard, quiet and still. A light layer of snow and ice frosted the lake’s surface. I pulled to the side of the road and watched the moon set. It was the single most beautiful, breathtaking scene of the journey.

I would never have seen this scene in the daytime. I would never have seen this moon, had I not gotten lost. I would never have seen it, had it not been this particular time of night. So maybe I’m not lost, I thought. And maybe I’m not late. Maybe what I’m really doing is taking a beautiful evening drive.

When we’re lost, when the way gets dark, sometimes we see things we never would have seen in the daylight. Sometimes, the lessons we learn in the darkness are breathtakingly beautiful.

Enjoy the sunshine, but trust the darkness,too. It is more than to be endured. It is to be experienced, and later cherished.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Open the door to fun experiences

You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm.
–Colette

It was nighttime. A light breeze ruffled through my hair as I sat on the bench looking out over the lights of Las Vegas. How did I get here agaiin? I thought. Then I remembered. It had been another of Chip’s wrong turns that had led us from southern California into the unknown.

The man wrapped a thick cloth around my ankles and then attached the cord to it. Another backup cord ran to the harness around my waist.

I was on a tower 150 feet above the ground getting ready to bungee jump. By my feet. At night. In vegas. Again.

Sometimes the first step is the hardest. Sometimes it’s the second step that gets you. The thing about a new experience is that you have no expectations, there is no frame of reference. But the second time. … I remembered the feeling of looking down off the platform to the ground below, the unnatural, terrifying step into nothingness, then my stomach jumping up into my chest, the long second when time seemed to freeze, the plunge toward the ground, and the tug of the cord slowing me. I remembered the rebound, the hanging there, waiting to be pulled back up. I remembered it all, and it grew in my mind. And besides, this time it was night, and I was going to be hanging by my feet.

I walked to the edge of the platform. I wasn’t holding on. But I was shaking.

“5-4-3-2-1- go!” came the count. I closed my eyes and let myself fall.

And I laughed and I screamed, and I laughed at myself for screaming. It was fun.

Later, as we headed farther down the road, farther away from home on another intuitive road trip, I was still smiling.

Growth is self-perpetuating. Each new experience opens the door for further experiences. Today, remember something that you may have done only once, something you liked; then do it again. Allow your mind to fill you with uncertainty as you remember all of the experiences of the first time. It doesn’t have to be work-related. Maybe you went to a play instead of watching TV. Camped in the woods. Or wrote a poem. Find something that was fun, and do it again. Then, bring that feeling back to your ordinary world. Bring the woohoo of the second time into the third, forth, and fifth times that you do a thing.

Keep the life in your life.

God, please remind me of some fun, interesting things that I like to do. Then help me get out of my chair and do them.

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Dark Night of the Soul
Surrendering the Ego

by Madisyn Taylor

While we are in a dark night of the soul experience, hold steady knowing the light will appear once again.

Whenever a word is overused, it is most likely being misused, and over time, it begins to lose its meaningfulness. For example, we often refer to a fleeting feeling of depression or a period of confusion, as a dark night of the soul, but neither of these things qualifies as such. A dark night of the soul is a very specific experience that some people encounter on their spiritual journeys. There are people who never encounter a dark night of the soul, but others must endure this as part of the process of breaking through to the dawn of higher consciousness.

The dark night of the soul invites us to fully recognize the confines of our egos’ identity. We may feel as if we are trapped in a prison that affords us no access to light or the outside. We are coming from a place of higher knowing, and we may have spent a lot of time and energy reaching toward the light of higher consciousness. This is why the dark night has such a quality of despair: We are suddenly shut off from what we thought we had realized and the emotional pain is very real. We may even begin to feel that it was all an illusion and that we are lost forever in this darkness. The more we struggle, the darker things get, until finally we surrender to our not knowing what to do, how to think, where to turn. It is from this place of losing our sense of ourselves as in control that the ego begins to crack or soften and the possibility of light entering becomes real.

Some of us will have to endure this process only once in our lives, while others may have to go through it many times. The great revelation of the dark night is the releasing of our old, false identity. We finally give up believing in this false self and thus become capable of owning and embracing the light. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

“What if…” How often we hear these words from newcomers to The Program. How often, in fat,we tend to say them ourselves. “What if I lose my job?” “What if my car breaks down?” What if I get sick and can’t work?” “What if my child gets hooked on drugs?” What if — anything our desperate imaginings can project. Only two small words, yet how heavy-laden they are with dread, fear and anxiety. The answer to “What if…” is, plainly and simply, “Don’t project.” We can only live with our problems as they arise, living one day at a time. Am I keeping my thoughts positive?

Today I Pray

May I grow spiritually, without being held back by anxieties. May projected fears not hobble my pursuits or keep me from making the most of today. May I turn out fear by faith. If I will only make a place for God within me, He will remove my fears.

Today I Will Remember

I can only borrow trouble at high interest rates.

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One More Day

I shall not pass this way again;
Then let me now relieve some pain,
Remove some barrier from the road,
Or brighten someone’s heavy load.
– Eva Rose York

Sometimes we help other through – neighborhood clean-up committees, recycling stations, and paint-a-tons. Maybe we’ve volunteered through school or church or community organizations.

Illness has helped us better understand the relationship between those who help and those who need help. Loving help is not prompted by pity or superiority, but by empathy and shared humanness. Also, we’ve learned that no one is always the helper or always the one needing help. We are both. We are bonded to others through what we give — and what we receive.

I will show my love by helping and being willing to be helped.

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Food For Thought

Eating Slowly

We compulsive overeaters are inclined to devour our meals in a great rush. Mealtime often finds us anxious and tense, and sometimes we are just plain greedy! While others at the table are interested in conversation and socializing, we may be narrowly focused on food and preoccupied with trying to satisfy a ravenous appetite.

We need to break out of our self-centeredness. Rather than being completely absorbed with satisfying our own appetite (which we can never do), we can learn to focus some of our attention on the concerns of those around us. When we eat more slowly, we have more time for others and we feel less deprived. Our enjoyment, of both the company and the food, is greatly increased.

Even when we eat a meal alone, we should remember that we do not receive all of our nourishment from physical food. When we eat more slowly, we become more relaxed and refreshed both physically and spiritually. When we are aware of our Higher Power and thankful for all of His blessings, the meal is more satisfying.

Help me to slow down and appreciate Your gifts.

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One Day At A Time

~ MEMORIES ~

Some memories are realities …
and are better than anything that can ever happen to one again.
Willa Cather

When one is young, the world is large and the thought of exploring it is exciting. Each year that we live we add to our memory chest … and by middle age those memories are substantial. I have found as I have grown older that I remember more of the good things that have happened in my life than the bad. The good things seem to become sharper as time goes by … and the bad seem less so. It’s almost as though the memory has turned into a “feeling” rather than a specific event.

When I work on the fourth and the eighth Steps, my life flashes before me and, like one of those calendars from an old movie, time whizzes by and people who have been part of my life hurtle through space … each triggering a memory.

Memories aren’t made more poignant by time. One might think that a decade of recurring events might be remembered with more clarity than a year … but I have found in the case of my own memories that it is the quality and intensity of time that produces the kind of memories Willa Cather talks about. A year or two or three, given the right circumstances, can produce the feelings we love our memories to trigger, more than those experienced during a lifetime. And a lifetime of memories can be dwindled into just moments.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will cherish my memories ~ Because I may never experience the reality of some of them again.
~ Mari ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

THERE IS A SOLUTION. Almost none of us like the self-searching, the leveling of our pride, the confession of shortcomings which the process requires for its successful consummation. – Pg. 25 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

There is a fundamental unity that underlies the fellowship of our programs. It is this unity that can comfort us and help us hold on when we want a fix, pill, drink, smoke, or snort more than we want this new unfamiliar life.

God, as I understand You, show me how to take comfort from the unity of fellowship when drugs call me back.

Fear

Today, I allow myself to experience my fears as fears. I don’t need to let them control and color the circumstances of my life. They are real, and it is understandable that I have them. Healing can mobilize my deep fears, they come up more intensely than normal. But this is a part of my process, and growth and healing aren’t neat and tidy. When I am very afraid, I will comfort myself or seek comfort from someone else. I will understand that even though I fear the worst, the worst will not necessarily happen. My feelings feel very powerful inside me, but they are not facts. I can survive my fears and understand that they will pass.

I have compassion for the fearful part of me.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Whatever you are trying to avoid, we won’t go away until you confront it.

When I see myself as others see me, do I deny it?

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Your Higher Power makes your life uncomfortable when it’s time for you to change.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

It is safe to know there is a special place within me where I can feel peace.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I’m unique, just like everybody else. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

February 26

Peace of Mind
As we felt new power flow in, as we enjoyed peace of mind,
as we discovered we could face life successfully, as we became conscious of His presence,
we began to lose our fear of today, tomorrow or the hereafter.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 63

Thought to Ponder . . .
Happiness and peace of mind are always here, open and free to anyone.

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

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

Neighbors
Near you, alcoholics are dying helplessly
like people in a sinking ship.
If you live in a large place, there are hundreds.
High and low, rich and poor,
these are future fellows of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Among them you will make lifelong friends.
You will be bound to them with new and wonderful ties,
for you will escape disaster together
and you will commence shoulder to shoulder
your common journey.
Then you will know what it means to give of yourself
that others may survive and rediscover life.
You will learn the full meaning of
“Love Thy neighbor as thyself.”
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 152-3

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

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
T E A M = Together Everyone Achieves More.

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

Illness
Step Two: Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
“Few indeed are the practicing alcoholics who have any idea how irrational they are, or seeing their irrationality, can bear
to face it. Some will be willing to term themselves ‘problem drinkers,’ but cannot endure the suggestion that they are in
fact mentally ill. They are abetted in this blindness by a world which does not understand the difference between sane
drinking and alcoholism. ‘Sanity’ is defined as ‘soundness of mind.’ Yet no alcoholic, soberly analyzing his destructive
behavior, whether the destruction fell on the dining-room furniture or his own moral fiber, can claim ‘soundness of mind’
for himself.”
1952, AAWS, Inc.; Printed 2005; Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pgs. 32-33

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

“I was told by a sober member of AA that if I wanted to stay sober I would need to do three things: get a sobriety date
and don’t change it, get a sponsor, and get a home group.”
Glendale, Calif., March 2002
From: “Three Essentials”
Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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

“We know that while the alcoholic keeps away from drink, as he may do
for months or years, he reacts much like other men. We are equally
positive that once he takes any alcohol whatever into his system,
something happens, both in the bodily and mental sense, which makes
it virtually impossible for him to stop. The experience of any
alcoholic will abundantly confirm this.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 22~

“…we were at Step Three, which is that we decided to turn our will
and our life over to God as we understood Him. Just what do we mean
by that, and just what do we do?
The first requirement is that we be convinced that any life run on
self-will can hardly be a success. On that basis we are almost
always in collision with something or somebody, even though our
motives are good. Most people try to live by self-propulsion.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 60~

“It will become more and more evident as we go forward that it is pointless to become angry, or to get hurt by people
who, like us, are suffering from the pains of growing up.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 92

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Better than Gold
As newcomers, many of us have indulged in spiritual intoxication. Like a gaunt prospector, belt drawn in over the last
ounce of food, we saw our pick strike gold. Joy at our release from a lifetime of frustration knew no bounds.
The newcomer feels he has struck something better than gold. He may not see at once that he has barely scratched a
limitless lode which will pay dividends only if he mines it for the rest of his life and insists on giving away the entire
product. ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pp . 128-129

Prayer for the Day: Dear Lord, Please grant me the wisdom to understand that failing at something is just another
opportunity to start again. Please help me to never give up.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 25th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 25th

Daily Reflections

THE CHALLENGE OF FAILURE

In God’s economy, nothing is wasted. Through failure, we learn a
lesson in humility which is probably needed, painful though it is.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 31

How thankful I am today, to know that all my past failures were
necessary for me to be where I am now. Through much pain came
experience and, in suffering, I became obedient. When I sought God,
as I understand Him, He shared His treasured gifts. Through
experience and obedience, growth started, followed by gratitude. Yes, then
came peace of mind — living in and sharing sobriety.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Some people find it hard to believe in a Power greater than themselves.
But not to believe in such a Power forces us to atheism. It has been said
that atheism is blind faith in the strange proposition that this universe
originated in a cipher and aimlessly rushes nowhere. That’s practically
impossible to believe. I think we all can agree that alcohol is a power
greater than ourselves. It certainly was in my case. I was helpless
before the power of alcohol. Do I remember the things that happened to
me because of the power of alcohol?

Meditation For The Day

The spiritual and moral will eventually overcome the material and
unmoral. That is the purpose and destiny of the human race. Gradually
the spiritual is overcoming the material in our minds. Gradually the
moral is overcoming the unmoral. Faith, fellowship, and service are
cures for most of the ills of the world. There is nothing in the field of
personal relationships that they cannot do.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may do my share in making a better world. I pray that I
may be part of the cure for the ills of the world.

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

As Bill Sees It

Facing Criticism, p. 56

Sometimes, we register surprise, shock, and anger when people find
fault with A.A. We are apt to be disturbed to such an extent that we
cannot benefit by constructive criticism.

This sort of resentment makes no friends and achieves no
constructive purpose. Certainly, this is an area in which we can
improve.

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

It is evident that the harmony, security, and future effectiveness of
A.A. will depend largely upon our maintenance of a thoroughly
nonaggressive and pacific attitude in all our public relations. This is
an exciting assignment, because in our drinking days we were prone
to anger, hostility, rebellion, and aggression. And, even though we
are now sober, the old patterns of behavior are to a degree still with
us, always threatening to explode on any good excuse.

But we now know this, and therefore I feel confident that in the
conduct of our public affairs we shall always find the grace to exert
restraint.

  1. Grapevine, July 1965
  2. Twelve Concepts, p. 68

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

Walk In Dry Places

Malicious Gossip____Honest Motives
“Without really knowing what was happening, I said something bad today about a person I secretly resented. When it occurred to me that my remark could come back to hurt me, I had a moment of panic,”  an AA member said.  “With little reflection, however, I realized that the more serious problem was the dishonesty that caused me to belittle somebody behind hie back!”
We are growing up when we come to see that gossip feeds on our own insecurity and self-deception.  When we are unwilling to part company with gossip, we devise subtle ways to keep it in our lives.  We can gossip by steering the conversation to a topic that is likely to bring revealing comments.  We also gossip by reveling in lurid accounts of others’ sins and failings.  We should even ask ourselves if we are gossiping when we “discuss” another member who is not living up to our ideas of true Twelve Step standards.  This is often prefaced by the remark, “I don’t want to take Joe’s inventory, but…..”
We cannot live freely and happily if we practice gossip in any form.  The practice may be hidden, but it leaves us with guilt, fear, and shame.  We cannot gossip and be completely trustworthy and reliable.
I will truly mind my own business today.  Forgiving myself for past excursions into gossip, I will say nothing about others behind their backs.  If somebody has gossip to share, I will politely move to another topic.

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

Keep It Simple

Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.—Willaim James
Step Two speaks of believing. For many years, we had given up believing in ourselves, in a Higher Power, and in others. We believed in getting high. Now our program tells us to believe in love. We are lovable, and we can love others without hurting them. Of course, believing is an important part of recovery.
To believe means to put aside our doubts. To believe means to have hope. Believing makes the road a little smoother. So, believing lets the healing happen a little faster. All of this is how we get ready to let in the care of our Higher Power.
Prayer for the Day:  I pray for the courage to believe. I’ll not let doubt into my heart. I can recover. I can give myself totally to this simple program.
Action for the Day:  I’ll list four times doubt got in my way. And I’ll think of what I can do to not let that happen again.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

You need only claim the events of your life to make yourself yours.  –Florida Scott-Maxwell
The search is on. Everyone, everywhere, asks the question at some time, “Who am I?” Women like ourselves are fortunate to have this program. It shows us the way to self-discovery. It directs our steps to the celebration of self that is a gift of recovery. The events of our past may plague us. But they did contribute to the fullness we feel today. And for them, for their involvement in who we’ve become, we can be grateful.
Claiming ourselves, the good and the bad, is healing. It’s taking responsibility–for where we were and where we’re going. Claiming ourselves makes us the active participants in our lives. The choices are many and varied. Not actively participating in life is also a choice. Passivity may have been our dominant choice in years gone by. But now, today, we are choosing recovery. We are choosing action that is healing, and wholeness is the result.
Making myself mine, will exhilarate me. It will give me hope. It will prepare me for anything to come. I will know a new joy.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

When I need a mental uplift, I often think of another case brought in by a physician prominent in New York. The patient had made his own diagnosis, and deciding his situation hopeless, had hidden in a deserted barn determined to die. He was rescued by a searching party, and, in desperate condition, brought to me. Following his physical rehabilitation, he had a talk with me in which he frankly stated he thought the treatment a waste of effort, unless I could assure him, which no one ever had, that in the future he would have the “will power’’ to resist the impulse to drink.
His alcoholic problem was so complex, and his depression so great, that we felt his only hope would be through what we then called “moral psychology,’’ and we doubted if even that would have any effect.
However, he did become “sold’’ on the ideas contained in this book. He has not had a drink for a great many years. I see him now and then and he is as fine a specimen of manhood as one could wish to meet.
I earnestly advise every alcoholic to read this book through, and though perhaps he came to scoff, he may remain to pray.
William D. Silkworth, M.D.

pp. xxxi-xxxii

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

Halfway through the meeting I had the strangest ideas.  People were introducing themselves as alcoholics, and I had the urge to do the same.  This was peculiar because I wasn’t, of course.  Later, my friend asked me what I thought of the meeting.  I said that I didn’t really know.  It was only much later I realized that for the first time in years, I felt that I belonged.

pp. 371-372

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

“Does this mean,” some will anxiously ask, “that in A.A. the individual doesn’t count for much? Is he to be dominated by his group and swallowed up in it?”
We may certainly answer this question with a loud “No!” We believe there isn’t a fellowship on earth which lavishes more devoted care upon its individual members; surely there is none which more jealously guards the individual’s right to think, talk, and act as he wishes. No A.A. can compel another to do anything; nobody can be punished or expelled. Our Twelve Steps to recovery are suggestions; the Twelve Traditions which guarantee A.A.’s unity contain not a single “Don’t.” They repeatedly say “We ought . . .” but never “You must!”

p. 129

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

God, protect me from negative influences, which erode my beliefs.
Help me protect myself. Surround me with that which is positive,
edifying, and uplifting.
–Melody Beattie

It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man
can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much
as we speak.
–Epictetus

Have compassion for yourself and others.
Everyone is doing the best they can based on their life experiences.
Everyone is learning and growing, and so are you.
–HeartMath Discovery Program, Doc Childre and Sara Paddison

A great reform would take place in the world if we tried to live truth
instead of preaching it.

“I have been given a quiet place in bright sunshine.”
–Bill W.

I am God’s Melody of Life and He Sings His Song through me.

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

AMBITION

“The child without ambition is
like a watch with a broken
spring.”
— R. W. Stockman

It is not wrong to have ambition. It is not wrong to want to be
“somebody”. The tragedy is that this has to be said!

For too long we have played the tapes in our head that discouraged
ambition and creative pride. We confused humility with timidity and
self-abuse. We waited for things to happen, rather than made them
happen.

Today I know that I am a creature of God — created to create. God is
at work in my life. I am part of His miracle for the world.

O God, may I always have ambition for those things that are good and
true.

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

“Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in
me, and the God of peace will be with you.”
Philippians 4:9

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord
Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand,
and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations,
knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and
character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured
out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Rom. 5:1-5

“So Jesus answered and said to them, Have faith in God.”
Mark 11:22


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

Daily Inspiration

To receive the wonderful healing power of love, wish others well even when things aren’t going so well for you. Lord, I rejoice in You always because You are blessing me daily no matter what my circumstances may be.

We are judged by our actions, not by our intentions. Lord, may I show my love for You through charity and goodness toward others.


NA Just For Today

Sick As Our Secrets

“It would be tragic to write [out an inventory only to] shove it in a drawer These defects grow in the dark and die in the light of exposure.”
Basic Text, p. 31

How many times have we heard it said that we are only as sick as our secrets? While many members choose not to use meetings to share the intimate details of their lives, it is important that we each discover what works best for us. What about those behaviors we have carried into our recovery that, if discovered, would cause us shame? How much are we comfortable disclosing, and to whom? If we are uncomfortable sharing some details of our lives in meetings, to whom do we turn?

We have found the answer to these questions in sponsorship. Although a relationship with a sponsor takes time to build, it is important that we come to trust our sponsor enough to be completely honest. Our defects only have power as long as they stay hidden. If we want to be free of those defects, we must uncover them. Secrets are only secrets until we share them with another human being.

Just for today: I will uncover my secrets. I will practice being honest with my sponsor.


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The most useless day of all is that in which we have not laughed. –Sebastian R. N. Champort
We are told that laughter is sunshine filling a room. And where there is laughter, there also is life. They say that people who laugh a lot live longer than do the sour-faced. When we laugh together, gratitude comes more easily, companionship thrives, and all praise is sincere. Laughter brings us joy that cannot be bought. Such joy is with us throughout each day. To hoard joy, to hide it away deep within us away from others, will make us lonely misers. We cannot buy or trade for joy, but we can give or receive it as a gift.
Laughter’s joy celebrates the moment we are living right now. It is a gift we must share, or it will wither and die. Shared, it grows and thrives, and always returns to us when we need it most.
What can I find to laugh about right now?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Every time I dose the door on Reality, it comes in through the window. –Ashleigh Brilliant
In the past many of us closed the door on the reality of our abuse of others or ourselves. We gave explanations, but our words more often hid the truth than revealed it. The chaos in our lives was reality coming in the window. Many men have come into this program priding themselves on their honesty, but not aware of how dishonest they were with themselves.
Honesty is a pillar of spiritual awakening. There is no growth without it, and it begins with ourselves. We do not define the truth, we accept it, we surrender to it. The truth may not feel good; it can even be painful. This is the pain of birth – the rebirth of a real man. And the promise of this day is the reward of having our integrity and the peace of self-acceptance.
Today, I will surrender to the truth. I will accept the reality, which presses for attention in my life.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Accepting Imperfection
“Why do I do this to myself?” asked a woman who wanted to lose weight. “I went to my support group feeling so guilty and ashamed because I ate half a cookie that wasn’t on the diet. I found out that everyone cheats a little, and some people cheat a lot. I felt so ashamed before I came to the group, as though I were the only one not doing my diet perfectly. Now I know that I’m dieting as well as most, and better than some.”
Why do we do this to ourselves? I’m not talking strictly about dieting; I’m talking about life. Why do we punish ourselves by thinking that we’re inferior while believing that others are perfect – whether in relationships, recovery, or a specific task?
Whether we’re judging others, or ourselves it’s two sides of the same coin: perfection. Neither expectation is valid.
It is far more accurate and beneficial to tell ourselves that who we are is okay and what we are doing is good enough. That doesn’t mean we won’t make mistakes that need correcting; doesn’t mean we won’t get off track from time to time; doesn’t mean we can’t improve. It means with all our mistakes and wandering, we’re basically on course. Encouraging and approving of ourselves is how we help ourselves stay on track.
Today, I will love and encourage myself. I will tell myself that what I’m doing is good enough, and I’ll let myself enjoy that feeling.

I will give myself the gift of time today and be quiet and hear with my heart. I will go to my special place inside where I really live in love and in joy and carry those feelings with me throughout the day. –Ruth Fishel


Journey to the Heart

Learn to Help Heal Yourself

I feel a heaviness in my lungs, almost a pain; the next day, I find myself crying, discharging old grief and sadness. On another occasion, I feel sharp pangs in my stomach; within days, denied rage begins to surface and the pain subsides. My head aches, pounds, throbs; hours later, I feel the fear I’ve been running from. I feel the energy in my body shifting, moving, taking new shape; over the next months, I’m led into a new cycle, a new season in my life.

Some of the pains and illnesses we suffer from are indications of acute physical problems. They’re signs that our body has broken down and we need medical attention. But many of the aches and pains we experience are symptoms of a deeper process– a process of healing and cleansing our heart and soul.

As we go through our daily experiences, circumstances will trigger this healing. Someone says something that makes us feel angry or afraid, which triggers a feeling similar to one we repressed years ago. Or a conversation causes us to remember something that hurt us long ago, and our body begins to release the pain of that old emotion. Sometimes, our aches and pains are signals that some emotion is ready to surface. We need to acknowledge the feeling, feel the energy. Let it pass through us, then watch for the lesson to appear and the pain to dissipate.

If we are committed to a path of spiritual growth, our bodies will soon begin to use everything that happens as a vehicle for healing. Trust yourself and listen, and you’ll know what to do. You’ll find healers and help that will support you as you continue to discover and trust your soul.

Remember to trust the simple everyday wisdom of your body. It’s a barometer for you soul.


More Language Of Letting Go

Let God and your intuition lead the way

I define synchronicity as an external event which triggers an internal knowing. It has to do with events that are significant coincidences, such as when you are trying to solve a problem and someone “just happens” to call. During the conversation the caller “just happens” to give a clue or answer to the difficulty.
–Nancy Rosanoff, Intuition Workout

I was talking to my friend Kyle one day. I was in the final stages of writing Playing It By Heart, but I didn’t know what the ending was. The book was an in-depth life review. I was astounded by the number of experiences I’ve had.

“I’ve been a pauper, a drug addict, a codepepndent, a mid-western housewife, a married woman, a single parent on welfare, a secretary, a journalist, a chemical dependency counselor, a book author, a bereaved parent, and a Californian. I’ve traveled to the Middle East, across the United States, ran a bookstore, and now, although I’ve taken the long hard road to get there, I live at the beach,” I said. “There’s nothing left for me to do.”

“I know one thing you want to do that you haven’t done yet,” Kyle said.

“What?” I asked. There was a long silence. I thought maybe he hung up.

“I know,” he said. “You’ve never jumped out of a plane.”

I forgot about the conversation. Within a few day, the phone rang. A man who had worked on my house about nine months before was on the line. He reintroduced himself. Then he explained why he called. He said he was a sky diver, and he asked if I’d like to go to the drop zone with him sometime, and maybe make a tandem jump.

A few months later, I went with him to Skydive Elsinore. I learned that day that jumping out of airplanes was something I very much wanted to do. And the skydiving experience was exactly the ending I needed for my book.

Trust your inner guidance. Our Higher Power works in mysterious ways. Listen to people, and watch for signs that trigger your inner knowing.

God, help me be open to all the ways you speak to me to help guide me along my path.


Hard Learned Lessons
Bad Days

We all have days from time to time when it feels like the world is against us or that the chaos we are experiencing will never end. One negative circumstance seems to lead to another. You may wonder, on a bad day, whether anything in your life will ever go right again. But a bad day, like any other day, can be a gift. Having a bad day can show you that it is time to slow down, change course, or lighten up. A bad day can help you glean wisdom you might otherwise have overlooked or discounted. Bad days can certainly cause you to experience uncomfortable feelings you would prefer to avoid, yet a bad day may also give you a potent means to learn about yourself.

You may consider a bad day to be one where you’ve missing an important meeting because your car stalled, the dryer broke, and you received a piece of very bad news earlier in the morning. Multiple misfortunes that take place one after the other can leave us feeling vulnerable and intensely cognizant of our fragility. But bad days can only have a long-term negative effect on us if we let them. It is better to ask yourself what you can learn from these kinds of days. The state of your bad day may be an indicator that you need to stay in and hibernate or let go of your growing negativity.

Bad days contribute to the people we become. Though we may feel discouraged and distressed on our bad days, a bad day can teach us patience and perseverance. It is important to remember that your attitude drives your destiny and that one negative experience does not have to be the beginning of an ongoing stroke of bad luck. A bad day is memorable because it is one day among many good days – otherwise, we wouldn’t even bother to acknowledge it as a bad day. Know too, that everybody has bad days, you are not alone, the world is not against you. Tomorrow is guaranteed to be a brighter day. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Before we came to The Program, fear ruled our lives. Tyrannized by our addictions and obsessions, we feared everything and everybody. We feared ourselves and, perhaps most of all, feared fear itself. these days, when I am able to accept the help of my Higher Power, it makes me feel capable of doing anything I am called to do. I am overcoming my fears and acquiring a comfortable new confidence. Can I believe that “courage is fear that has said its prayers…”?

Today I Pray

God grant that through faith in Him I may overcome my obsessive fears. I have been running scared for so long it has become a habit. God help me to see that I may be purposely clinging to my fears to avoid making decisions, perhaps even to shirk the responsibility of success.

Today I Will Remember

Fear keeps me safe from risk-taking.


One More Day

He who attempts to resist the wave is swept away, but he who bends before it abides.
– Leviticus

Just as water transforms the definition of the shoreline, so can our changing health patterns alter the boundaries of our days. What looked and felt normal before may be entirely alien now.

In various stages of life, we’ve repeatedly demonstrated our ability to adapt to new situations. Marriage, children, new jobs all call for personal change. Add to these everyday occurrences a chronic medical condition (physical or emotional) and we may feel we are drowning. Perhaps at these times, we can disengage ourselves from the moment, reassess the past, and recall how well we’ve handled the changes life has demanded. We have been adaptable, and we can continue to be.

Creating a new pattern of living is definitely within my reach.


Food For Thought

A New Place

After a slip, we do not go back and start again in the same place where we were before. Through the experience of making a mistake, we have reached a new place. Out of error, we can gain new knowledge and insight.

Often we find that wrong thinking got us into trouble. Perhaps we fell back into the old perception of ourself as the center of the universe. Perhaps we forgot to turn over whatever was troubling us and instead began to overeat. Perhaps we tried to depend on our own inadequate strength to get us through the day. Undoubtedly, we forgot that abstinence is the most important thing in our lives without exception.

Whatever the mistake, we can profit from it by growing in understanding and insight. We can mark a pitfall to be avoided in the future. We start again a few steps farther ahead, in a new place.

May I not be discouraged by mistakes.


One Day At A Time

~ STARTING OVER ~

Vitality shows not only in the ability to persist,
but in the ability to start over.
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Before coming into this program I was, and probably still am to a certain extent, a perfectionist, so one of the things I really struggled with is being able make mistakes without feeling bad about myself. So when I came into the program, I decided that I was going to do this program perfectly, and proceeded to do just that. I followed a meal plan, lost weight and worked the steps, and I really thought I had it made. But I hadn’t counted on the fact that this is a disease, and it is both cunning, baffling and powerful. So when I had my first slip, I was devastated and felt a real failure.

Fortunately for me, with the help of many loving sponsors over the years, I have realized that I am not a failure if I slip, but I am only one if I fail to get up. This program has enabled me to learn that when I make a mistake, I am not that mistake, and that all I need to do is to pick myself up and start over. In the old days if I failed at a diet, I would never have been able to pick myself up so soon, and it would always be an excuse to carry on eating and start the diet again on Monday. Now I know that my abstinence can even start at the end of the day, rather than waiting till tomorrow, next week or even next month. I am slowly starting to let go of the guilt I feel when I slip, and am also learning to love myself even when I do flounder, because with the love and support I am given in this program, I know I can always start over.

One day at a time…
I will remember that I can start afresh any time I like, and don’t need to feel as if I have failed.
~ Sharon ~


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We avoid retaliation or argument. – Pg. 67 – How It Works

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

I only have one character defect left and it’s just that I think about myself **** near all the time.

Seeing Deeply 

Every day I experience another piece of myself. Yes I am laid low, but at the same time worlds are opening up to me on the inside. My body is struggling to heal and so is the rest of me. I am watching myself deepen inside and become more aware. It is forced upon me by illness, but I cannot help but being a little bit grateful for the time to slow down and go within. I am seeing the subtleties of life, I am watching myself watch the world around me. I have a witness inside that is constantly with me but I seldom take time to be with it. As I witness my own thoughts, I learn about who I am inside, what makes me tick. As I watch myself interact with others, I see how I act in relationships. As I notice the little things, life seems to matter more.

I am renewing my relationship with life

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

The spiritual journey is one of continually falling on your face, getting up, brushing yourself off, looking sheepishly at God, and taking another step.

If I’m faced in the right direction, and fall on my face, I’ve still made progress.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Actions speak louder than bumper stickers.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I will give myself the gift of time today and be quiet and hear with my heart. I will go to my special place inside where I really live in love and in joy and carry those feelings with me throughout the day.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I never let go of anything that didn’t have my claw marks on it. – Tony B.


AA Thought for the Day

February 25

Humility First
We who had won so handsomely in a walk turned into all-time losers.
We saw that we had to reconsider or die.
We found many in AA who once thought as we did.
They helped us to get down to our right size.
By their example they showed us that humility and intellect could be compatible,
provided we placed humility first.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 30

Thought to Ponder . . .
Learning is the very essence of humility; the two walk hand in hand.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A = Attitude Adjustment.

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

Powerlessness
Who cares to admit complete defeat?
Practically no one, of course.
Every natural instinct cries out against the idea
of personal powerlessness.
It is truly awful to admit that, glass in hand,
we have warped our minds into such an obsession
for destructive drinking
that only an act of Providence can remove it from us.
c. 1952 AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 21

Thought to Consider . . .
We surrender to win.

~~AACRONYMS~~
S W A T = Surrender, Willingness, Acceptance, Trust.

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

Insanity

From “Bill’s Story”:
“Shortly afterward I came home drunk. There had been no fight. Where had been my high resolve? I simply didn’t know.
It hadn’t even come to mind. Someone had pushed a drink my way, and I had taken it. Was I crazy? I began to wonder,
for such an appalling lack of perspective seemed near being just that.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 5

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

“I expect to be ‘on tap’ but never again ‘on top,’ this being precisely the stance that AA hopes all its old-timers will take.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1961
From: “Again at the Crossroads”
The Language of the Heart

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

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

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

We will want the good that is in us all, even in the worst of us, to flower and to grow.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 98

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Facing Criticism
Sometimes, we register surprise, shock, and anger when people find fault with A.A. We are apt to be disturbed to such
an extent that we cannot benefit by constructive criticism.
This sort of resentment makes no friends and achieves no constructive purpose. Certainly, this is an area in which we
can improve.
It is evident that the harmony, security, and future effectiveness of A.A. will depend largely upon our maintenance of a
thoroughly nonaggressive and pacific attitude in all our public relations. This is an exacting assignment, because in our
drinking days we were prone to anger, hostility, rebellion, and aggression. And, even though we are now sober, the old
patterns of behavior are to a degree still with us, always threatening to explode on any good excuse.
But we now know this, and therefore I feel confident that in the conduct of our public affairs we shall always find the
grace to exert restraint. 1. GRAPEVINE, JULY 1965 – 2. TWELVE CONCEPTS, p. 69

Prayer for the Day: Lord God, help me to lay my life in the rocks of thy foundation, and not in moving sands which are tossed from shore to shore. May I cling to the rock that was cleft for me and trust for thy care. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 24th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Feb 24th

Daily Reflections

A THANKFUL HEART

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

My sponsor told me that I should be a grateful alcoholic
and always have “an attitude of gratitude”–that
gratitude was the basic ingredient of humility, that
humility was the basic ingredient of anonymity, and that
“anonymity was the spiritual foundation of all our
Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before
personalities.” As a result of his guidance, I start
every morning on my knees, thanking God for three things:
I’m alive, I’m sober, and I’m a member of Alcoholics
Anonymous. Then I try to live an “attitude of gratitude”
and thoroughly enjoy another twenty-four hours of the
A.A. way of life. A.A. is not something I joined; it’s
something I live.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When we came to our first A.A. meeting, we looked up at
the wall at the end of the room and saw the sign: ” But
for the Grace of God.” We knew right then and there that
we would have to call on the grace of God in order to get
sober and get over our soul-sickness. We heard speakers
tell how they had come to depend on a Power greater than
themselves. That made sense to us and we made up our minds
to try it. Am I depending on the grace of God to help keep me
sober?

Meditation For The Day

Share your love, your joy, your happiness, your time, your
food, your money gladly with all. Give out all the love you
can with a glad, free heart and hand. Do all you can for
others and back will come countless stores of blessings.
Sharing draws others to you. Take all who come as sent by
God and give them a royal welcome. You may never see the
results of your sharing. Today they may not need you, but
tomorrow may bring results from the sharing you did today.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may make each visitor desire to return. I pray
that I may never make anyone feel repulsed or unwanted.

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

As Bill Sees It

Seeking Guidance, p. 55

“Man is supposed to think, and act. He wasn’t made in God’s image
to be an automation.

“My own formula along this line runs as follows: First, think through
every situation pro and con, praying meanwhile that I be not
influenced by ego considerations. Affirm that I would like to do
God’s will.

“Then, having turned the problem over in this fashion and getting no
conclusive or compelling answer, I wait for further guidance, which
may come into mind directly or through other people or through
circumstances.

“If I feel I can’t wait, and still get no definite indication, I repeat the
first measure several times, try to pick out the best course, and then
proceed to act. I know if I am wrong, the heavens won’t fall. A
lesson will be learned, in any case.”

Letter, 1950

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

Walk In Dry Places

Selfishness____Self-improvement
We’re told again and again that we have to be selfish about our own recovery, but this seems to be in conflict with the fact that selfishness is the root of our problem. How can selfishness be both good and bad?
The selfishness we need for recovery is a devotion to self-improvement, rather than the selfish indulgence that made us sick. One is a giving of ourselves, the other is frantic taking that leads to destruction. The person who seeks self-improvement is competing only against his or her former self.  The sick brand of selfishness, on the other hand, is usually involved in unhealthy competition with others.
There is no easy way to test whether our selfishness is the right kind. If our conduct leads to long-term happiness and higher self-esteem, it is probably right. If it harms us or others, something is wrong.  We can correct this by getting back to the basics of the program and pursing self-improvement rather than self-indulgence.
Just for today, I will take part in that which will obviously benefit everyone.

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

Keep It Simple

Failure is impossible. —Susan B. Anthony
Failure is an attitude. Having an attitude of failure can’t help us. It can only hurt us. If we’re not careful, it can grow into a way of life. So, when we feel like failures, we better look at our attitudes.
An attitude of failure often comes from making mistakes. But we can learn to see our mistakes as lessons. This turns mistakes into gains, not failures. Sometimes, we try to do things that just can’t be done.
When we act like we know everything, we’re going to fail. if we try to act like God, we’re going to fail.
We can’t control others. We can’t know everything. We’re not God. We’re human. If we act human, we’ve already won.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher power, help me to learn from my attitudes. Whatever the outcome, help me learn.
Action for the Day:  Facing our past “failures” is the first step to learning from them. I’ll talk to my sponsor about a past “failure” and the good that came from it.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

The beauty of the world has two edges, one of laughter, one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder.  –Virginia Woolf
Anguish is undoubtedly more familiar to us than is the beauty of laughter. We feel anguish over our failings; we feel anguish over our losses; we feel anguish over the attempts to succeed that beckon to us.
Anguish comes of fear. And we so hope to avoid it. However, it seasons us as women; it enriches us even while it momentarily diminishes us. It is a major contributor to the sum and substance of our lives. The anguish we experience prepares us to help others experience their own particular anguish.
Our laughter, too, must be savored and shared. And laughter builds more laughter. Laughter lends a perspective on our anguish. Life is made richer, fuller, by the ebb and flow, the laughter and the anguish in concert.
If only we could remember, when the anguish is present, that it is making our Spirits whole. That it, along with laughter, is a healer of the soul. That it lifts our load at the same time that it burdens us. That it prepares us to better receive life’s other gifts.
I can help another face anguish. It brings us together. It softens me. And it makes way for the laughter soon to come.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

The Doctor’s Opinion

What is the solution? Perhaps I can best answer this by relating one of my experiences.
About one year prior to this experience a man was brought in to be treated for chronic alcoholism. He had but partially recovered from a gastric hemorrhage and seemed to be a case of pathological mental deterioration. He had lost everything worthwhile in life and was only living, one might say, to drink. He frankly admitted and believed that for him there was no hope. Following the elimination of alcohol, there was found to be no permanent brain injury. He accepted the plan outlined in this book. One year later he called to see me, and I experienced a very strange sensation. I knew the man by name, and partly recognized his features, but there all resemblance ended. From a trembling, despairing, nervous wreck, had emerged a man brimming over with self-reliance and contentment. I talked with him for some time, but was not able to bring myself to feel that I had known him before. To me he was a stranger, and so he left me. A long time has passed with no return to alcohol.

p. xxxi

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

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

The next day I asked her how often she went to meetings.  “Once a week?” I asked.  No. She said that she had been going nearly every day for almost six months.  That seemed a little extreme, but I thought that maybe if I went to a meeting with her, it might help her out.  Besides, I was lonely.

p. 371

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

The unity of Alcoholics Anonymous it the most cherished quality our Society has. Our lives, the lives of all to come, depend squarely upon it. We stay whole, or A.A. dies. Without unity, the heart of A.A. would cease to beat; our world arteries would no longer carry the life-giving grace of God; His gift to us would be spent aimlessly. Back again in their caves, alcoholics would reproach us and say, “What a great thing A.A. might have been!”

p. 129

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

If I linger with half truths, alibis, excuses, I will reap the
consequences.

Hold your head high. Rise above the situation.
A new day is dawning. Look forward to a better time.
You have done your best. Forget the rest.
This is growth. We struggle, we learn, we overcome.
–Author Unknown

Words you speak can be your best attribute or your worst weapon.
It’s up to you on how you decide to use them. Remember though,
it only takes once to say the wrong thing forever.

A smile is a gift you give to someone else.

We all have a “bad” day every once in a while. Your strength is determined by whether
or not you let that “bad” day ruin your day.

Being thoughtful only takes a moment of your time.
Being thoughtless will require more in explanations and apologies.

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

SELF

“Wherever two people meet,
there are really six people
present. There is each man as he
sees himself, each man as the
other person sees him, and each
man as he really is.”
— William James

Part of my spiritual journey involves the discovery of “self”. For
years I pretended to be what I was not; for years I pretended to be
what I imagined myself to be; for years I pretended to be what you
wanted me to be — always my real “self” eluded me.

Today I am beginning to know myself. I know my needs. I understand
my strengths. I accept my weaknesses and I live with my confusions.

From the time I decided to put down the glass of alcohol, it
progressively got better — but there is still a great deal I do not
understand. Man’s inhumanity to man, the daily violence and
suffering, my own personal greed, cowardice and arrogance — where
does it come from? I don’t know and today that is okay. However, I
still search; my suspicion is that the answer lies within my own
insecurities.

In Your time, Master, may I grow in my understanding of self.

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

“Truly, I say to you, whoever says to the mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’
and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be
done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have
received it and it will be yours.”
Mark 11:23-24

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

“See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and
that is what we are…. Beloved, we are God’s children now.”
1 John 3:1-2


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

Daily Inspiration

When you follow God’s way, your life will flourish according to His great plan for you. Lord, guide me and make me aware of the ways You are working in my life.

Use the power of positive images in your mind to bring about good experiences. Lord, I will let my faith in You nourish my thoughts so that I can develop a healthy and joyful reality.


NA Just For Today

A New Influence

“Personality change was what we really needed. Change from self-destructive patterns of life became necessary.”
Basic Text, p. 15

In early life, most of us were capable of joy and wonder, of giving and receiving unconditional love. When we started

using, we introduced an influence into our lives that slowly drove us away from those things. The further we were

pushed down the path of addiction, the further we withdrew from joy, wonder, and love.

That journey was not taken overnight. But however long it took, we arrived at the doors of NA with more than just a

drug problem. The influence of addiction had warped our whole pattern of living beyond recognition.

The Twelve Steps work miracles, its true, but not many of them are worked overnight. Our disease slowly influenced

our spiritual development for the worse. Recovery introduces a new influence to our lives, a source of fellowship and

spiritual strength slowly impelling us into new, healthy patterns of living.

This change, of course, doesn’t “just happen.” But if we cooperate with the new influence NA has brought to our lives,

over time we will experience the personality change we call recovery. The Twelve Steps provide us with a program for

the kind of cooperation required to restore joy, wonder, and love to our lives.

Just for today: I will cooperate with the new influence of fellowship and spiritual strength NA has introduced to my life, I

will work the next step in my program.


You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Thoughts–just mere thoughts–are as powerful as electric batteries–as good for one as sunlight is, or as bad for one

as poison. –Frances Hodgson Burnett
The truck was in mud to its axles. Three lumberjacks sat in stony silence in the cab. There they were, stuck in the

woods on their way to the cutting site. The first man slammed the steering wheel, cursed, and stormed out of the

truck. The second thought the early morning woods inviting, and said he’d just crawl under a pine to nap until

someone came along to pull them out. The third man, left alone, grabbed an axe and a saw and set about cutting

wood to slide under the wheels. Within an hour he managed to pull the truck out of its muddy bath and they got on

their way.
We can choose how we respond to an obstacle. As with the three men, our response may be to curse and give up, to

sit back and wait for someone else to help us, or to set to work fearlessly to try to overcome it ourselves. The event

itself isn’t important; how we think about it is.
Is there an obstacle in my way today

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
It doesn’t happen all at once…. You become. It takes a long time. –Margery Williams
Our spiritual awakening is partly a process of becoming real. We’re moving from the external controls of image and

others’ opinions to the internal controls of honesty, listening to our inner voice, and having true relationships. We are

shedding the games that maintained our old style of life – “macho” or “hero” or “poor me.”
In place of the old phony surface, we are developing a real relationship with ourselves. We are becoming more aware

  • of emotions, of need for rest, of violations of our values. Sometimes change comes in a flash of insight or a moment

of sudden, piercing awareness, but more often it comes a little bit at a time. As we work the Steps, as we are true to

our inner voice, as we keep returning to conscious contact with our Higher Power, as we get closer to our friends, we

become more real to ourselves.
As I grow, I see that I was always real. I was just looking at the outside.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Recognizing Feelings
Experiencing feelings can be a challenge if we’ve had no previous experience or permission to do that. Learning to

identify what we’re feeling is a challenge we can meet, but we will not become experts overnight. Nor do we have to

deal with our feelings perfectly.
Here are some ideas that might be helpful as you learn to recognize and deal with feelings.
Take out a sheet of paper. On the top of it write, “If it was okay to feel whatever I’m feeling, and I wouldn’t be judged as

bad or wrong, what would I be feeling?” Then write whatever comes to mind. You can also use the favorite standby of

many people in discovering their feelings: writing or journaling. You can keep a diary, write letters you don’t intend to

send, or just scribble thoughts onto a note pad.
Watch and listen to yourself as an objective third person might. Listen to your tone of voice and the words you use.

What do you hear? Sadness, fear, anger, happiness?
What is your body telling you? Is it tense and rigid with anger? Running with fear? Heavy with sadness and grief?

Dancing with joy?
Talking to people in recovery helps too. Going to meetings helps. Once we feel safe, many of us find that we open up

naturally and with ease to our feelings.
We are on a continual treasure hunt in recovery. One of the treasures we’re seeking is the emotional part of

ourselves. We don’t have to do it perfectly. We need only be honest, open, and willing to try. Our emotions are there,

waiting to share themselves with us.
Today, I will watch myself and listen to myself as I go through my day. I will not fudge myself for what I’m feeling; I will

accept myself.

I am growing in my ability to trust what feels good and right. Today I can look with and wait until I know with my heart. –

-Ruth Fishel


Journey to the Heart

There Is Power in Stillness

Our miracles and life’s magic don’t appear when we’re restless and frantic. The miracles and magic happen when

we’re still, quiet, calm, and trusting.

Each of us has favorite items and places that help to calm and quiet us. What stills our mind? A walk in the park, a

special place in the city, a quiet room? An old chenille robe? A rock, a cross, a picture, a lit candle?

Use these places and things to find that place of stillness in yourself. Find the power in stillness. It’s a power that

comes gently, like the morning sunrise or the evening stars.

Take time each day to seek out stillness, to find that sacred spot. Let your mind and soul be at ease. Don’t grasp and

grab for the magic and miracles. When you reside in that place of stillness, the joy, miracles, and magic you’re

seeking will find you.


More Language Of Letting Go

Seek the adventure in your life

…adventure is not made up of distant lands and mountaintops, rather it lies in one’s readiness to exchange the

domestic hearth for an uncertain resting place.
–Reinhold Messner, Free Spirit

It isn’t necessary for us to travel the world in search of the next high mountain or wild, desolate place to find an

adventure. Adventure lies in our perspective and in our attitude. It is our approach to life, rather than the actual

circumstances of it, that determines how much adventure we have. Adventure for one person may mean seeking out

a dream that has been long neglected. Perhaps adventure for another means losing weight, changing an outgrown

image, getting sober, learning to be in a love relationship, or simply experiencing joy.

It’s good to make ourselves comfortable, but don’t get so comfortable in front of that hearth that you never want to

grow or change. Water that never moves become stagnant and poisoned; so it is with the human spirit. We are given

life to live.

Look at your life and see if there is some area where you,too, can seek out an uncertain resting place. Maybe work,

love, or an area of spiritual growth? Some new or long forgotten lesson is waiting to be discovered or rediscovered by

you.

Say woohoo. Be uncomfortable for a while. It’s never too late to learn and experience something new.

God, instill in me a spirit of adventure as I pursue my life.


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I can banish fear by realizing the truth. Am I afraid to be alone? This fear can be banished by the realization that I am

never alone, that god is always with me wherever I am and whatever I do. Am I afraid that I won’t have enough money

to meet my needs? this fear can be banished by the realization that god is my inexhaustible, unfailing resource, now

and always. Today I have the power to change fear into faith. Can I say with confidence, “I will trust, and will not be

afraid..”?

Today I Pray

That I may fear no evil, for God is with me. that I may learn to turn to my Higher Power when I am afraid. I pray

diligently that my faith in god and trust in what He has in store for me is strong enough to banish the fears that

undermine my courage.

Today I Will Remember

Turn fear into Faith.


One More Day

The future is like heaven — everyone exalts it but no one wants to go there now.
– James Baldwin

There are people called futurist who specialize in studying trends and attitudes and who then form theories as to what

the future will hold. Having a reasoned opinion about future needs is important for business, education, and industry.

It’s probably not so important for us. We work harder to understand today and to discover what this day can hold for

us.

We aren’t scientist or researchers; we are more like explorers who face uncharted territory. Each morning we’re

unaware of all teh events and surprises that lie ahead, but we are the only ones who can choose the direction this day

will take. We don’t want to and we don’t need to worry about the future because right now we have this gift of time to

use for ourselves and for those who are close to us.

I will glory in this day and fill it with living.


Food For Thought

Values

What do I value most? What is number one in my life? What is at the center?

When I was overeating, I was the center. I was the biggest thing in my universe, and all else revolved around me – a frightening state of affairs, since egotism does not bring peace of mind or security. Self was most important to me, and that egotism was my downfall. When I fell off my high horse and hit bottom, I had nowhere to go except to something outside of myself.

As we compulsive overeaters take Step Two and come to believe that a Power greater than ourselves can restore us to sanity, then we begin to shift the center of our consciousness from ourselves to God. This is our only hope. As long as our weak selves are at the center, we cannot make real progress, either in controlling our addiction or in living useful lives.

When we hit bottom, we are humbled. When we are humbled, we are able to perceive and acknowledge that God is primary and that abstinence is our most important task. Values are sorted out and order brings inner peace and security.

You, Lord, are the center of my life.


One Day At A Time

~ ANIMAL TEACHERS ~

For perhaps if the truth were known, we’re all a little blind,
a little deaf, a little handicapped, a little lonely, a little less than perfect.
And if we can learn to appreciate and utilize the dog’s full potential,
we will, together, make it in this life on earth.
Charlotte Schwartz

So many times it feels that what we are being asked is too great. We can barely care for ourselves so how can we possibly reach out our hand to another? How many times have we cried out for someone else to please “handle it” because we just weren’t able?

There are so many lessons that come by working with animals. They know nothing of dishonesty. They can’t lie. They force us to be honest with ourselves. They depend on us completely, even when we feel we have nothing to give. And our reward? Unconditional love. There is something extra special about a rescued animal. It is as though they know that their life was in darkest peril and they have been saved. The gratitude shows in their eyes, their kisses of devotion, their entire being. Any kindness shown is rewarded. I think this is no different than a member of OA, especially the new members. Any kindness, and the gratitude flows. These newbies know they too have been saved. So perhaps the next time you feel you have nothing to offer, and that what you have been asked is too great, take a moment to reflect on the moment you were ‘saved’. How did you feel the first time someone reached out to you?

One day at a time…
I can use the memory of my first encounters with OA to find the strength to reach out one more time. I know the rewards will be infinite.
~ Mary W. ~


AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We do not want to be the arbiter of anyone’s sex conduct. We all have sex problems. We’d hardly be human if we didn’t. – Pg. 69 – How It Works

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

For awhile, you will have to adjust to every new day without your beloved and betrayed drug of choice. You will sometimes wonder, ‘Will I ever get used to this?’

Each dawn heralds a new day and I must reinvest with new people and new principles. It is not easy but I emerge from the dark through the dawn of the 12 steps.

Inner Cleansing

I am in a process of healing. I am taking the time to allow my body to become clean and whole and as I do that, my mind seems to heal, too. Thoughts arise, thoughts I have blocked out during normal waking hours. They scare me, sometimes. Where are they coming from. Me? But as I allow them to come forward a curious thing happens. They become less threatening. They are, after all, just thoughts. They only really have power when I fear them and push them away. If I welcome them into the sun lit rooms of my mind, they sort of spread out and relax. They are just fears. Anxieties. Parts of me I don’t want to know about. But today I understand that I cannot really keep secrets from me. Today I let these thoughts have room to breathe and as they do, a curious thing happens. They dissipate.

I awaken to my inner life

  • Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Our disease had so much control over our lives, that it not only made us do things we did not want to do, but would not let us do things that we wanted to.

My disease used to make my choices. Now I do.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If you fail to change the person you were when you came in, that person will take you out!

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am growing in my ability to trust what feels good and right. Today I can look with and wait until I know with my heart.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

If I’d known I was going to live this long I’d have taken better care of myself.’ – Unknown origin.


AA Thought For Today

February 24

A Spiritual Program
I finally began to separate the religious aspects of my life from AA’s spiritual program.
Now the big difference to me is that religion is the ritual, and we all differ there,
and spirituality is the way we feel about what we do.
It’s about my personal contact with my personal Higher Power as I understand Him.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 406

Thought to Ponder . . .
True religion is the life we lead, not the creed we profess.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
K I S S = Keeping It Simple, Spiritually.

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

Resentment
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 been spiritually sick.
When the spiritual malady is overcome,
we straighten our mentally and physically.
In dealing with 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.
c. 2001 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 64-5

Thought to Consider . . .
Resentment is like taking poison
and waiting for the other person to die.

~~AACRONYMS~~
P A C E = Positive Attitudes Change Everything.

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

Reborn
From “Riding the Rods”:
“That was two years ago. The way has not been easy. The new way of life was strange at first, but all my thoughts were
on it. The going was sometimes slow; halting were my steps among the difficulties of the path. But always, when
troubles came, when doubts assailed and temptation was strong and the old desire returned, I knew where to go for aid.
Helping others also strengthened me and helped me to grow.”
2005, AAWS, Inc.; Experience, Strength & Hope, pg. 74

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

“The Italians have a neat way of telling someone ‘I love you.’ Their expression is ‘Ti voglio bene’ — ‘I wish you well.’ It just
seems to put things on a tangible level … Quite often my prayer is nothing more than this little Italian phrase, ‘Ti voglio bene.'”
Humbolt, Saskatchewan, February 1996
From: “I Wish You Well”
AA Grapevine

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

“Most alcoholics owe money. We do not dodge our creditors. Telling
them what we are trying to do, we make no bones about our drinking;
they usually know it anyway, whether we think so or not. Nor are we
afraid of disclosing our alcoholism on the theory it may cause
financial harm. Approached in this way, the most ruthless creditor
will sometimes surprise us. Arranging the best deal we can we let
these people know we are sorry. Our drinking has made us slow to
pay. We must lose our fear of creditors no matter how far we have to go,
for we are liable to drink if we are afraid to face them.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 78~

“Some people cannot be seen–we send them an honest letter. And there
may be a valid reason for postponement in some cases. But we don’t
delay if it can be avoided. We should be sensible, tactful, considerate
and humble without being servile or scraping. As God’s people we stand
on our feet; we don’t crawl before anyone.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, Page 83~

Belief meant reliance, not defiance.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 31

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Seeking Guidance
‘Man is supposed to think, and act. He wasn’t made in God’s image to be an automaton.
‘My own formula along this line runs as follows: First, think through every situation pro and con, praying meanwhile that I
be not influenced by ego considerations. Affirm that I would like to do God’s will.
‘Then, having turned the problem over in this fashion and getting no conclusive or compelling answer, I wait for further
guidance, which may come into the mind directly or through other people or through circumstances.
‘If I feel I can’t wait, and still get no definite indication, I repeat the first measure several times, try to pick out the best
course, and then proceed to act. I know if I am wrong, the heavens won’t fall. A lesson will be learned, in any case.’ LETTER, 1950

Prayer for the Day: Dear Lord, please help me to remember that it is not what I say, but what I do that speaks the loudest.