Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 5th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 5th

Daily Reflections

A NEW STATE OF CONSCIOUSNESS

He has been granted a gift which amounts to a new state of consciousness and being.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p 107

Many of us in A.A. puzzle over what is a spiritual awakening. I tended to look for a
miracle, something dramatic and earth shattering. But what usually happens is that a
sense of well-being, a feeling of peace, transforms us into a new level of awareness.
That’s what happened to me. My insanity and inner turmoil disappeared and I entered
into a new dimension of hope, love and peace. I think the degree to which I continue
to experience this new dimension is in direct proportion to the sincerity, depth and devotion
with which I practice the Twelve Steps of A.A.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In spite of all we have learned in A.A., our old way of thinking comes back on us,
sometimes with overwhelming force, and occasionally some of us have slips. We forget
or refuse to call on the Higher Power for help. We seem to deliberately make our minds
a blank so far as A.A. training goes, and we take a drink. We eventually get drunk. We
are temporarily right back where we started from. Those who have had slips say
unanimously that they were no fun. They say A.A. had taken all the pleasure out of
drinking. They knew they were doing the wrong thing. The old mental conflict was back
in full force. They were disgusted with themselves. Am I convinced that I can never get
anything more out of drinking?

Meditation For The Day

Give something to those who are having trouble, to those whose thoughts are confused,
something of your sympathy, your prayers, your time, your love, your thought, your self.
Then give of your own confidence, as you have had it given to you by the grace of God.
Give of yourself and of your loving sympathy. Give your best to those who need it and
will accept it. Give according to need, never according to deserts. Remember that the
giving of advice can never take the place of giving of your self.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that as I have received, so may I give. I pray that I may have the right answer to
those who are confused.


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As Bill Sees It

Relapses–and the Group, p. 154

An early fear was that of slips or relapses. At first nearly every
alcoholic we approached began to slip, if indeed he sobered up at all.
Others would stay dry six months or maybe a year and then take a
skid. This was always a genuine catastrophe. We would all look at
each other and say, “Who next?”

Today, though slips are a very serious difficulty, as a group we take
them in stride. Fear has evaporated. Alcohol always threatens the
individual, but we know that it cannot destroy the common welfare.

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

“It does not seem to pay to argue with ‘slippers’ about the proper
method of getting dry. After all, why should people who are drinking
tell people who are dry how it should be done?

“Just kid the boys along–ask them if they are having fun. If they are
too noisy or troublesome, amiably keep out of their way.”

1. A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 97
2. Letter, 1942


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Walk In Dry Places

Holding hands and hugging
Sincerity
The custom of holding hands while saying the Lord’s Prayer has been adopted by many AA groups.  We have also seen more hugging than in the past, even between the most unlikely members.
Are these new practices good or bad?   In accordance with AA tradition, we have to leave such questions to the group conscience.
One thought, however, is that such physical actions do not necessarily mean that any true spiritual bonding has taken place.  The old-timers who never held hands or hugged still had a great closeness in spirit and in feeling.
We must also consider that we may be violating the privacy of the person who doesn’t wish to hold hands or hug. If such a person chooses to stand outside the hand=holding circle, he or she maybe cast in the role of dissenter. Would that be fair?
Hand -holding and hugging may be here to stay, but let’s not make them out to be more than mere physical expressions.  The program of the heart is still first.
I’ll remember today that true bonding is spiritual, not physical.

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Keep It Simple

Each day, somewhere in the world, recovery begins when one alcoholic talks with another alcoholic, sharing experience, strength, and hope. —Alcoholics Anonymous
All over the world, recovering men and women use the same Twelve Steps to live their lives.
Our fellowship keeps growing. The bigger it gets, the faster it grows. Why? Because the program brings our spirits back to life. All over the world, many of us were dying, and now we’re full of life and love. We are bringing our world bake to life. As we share our experience, strength, and hope, we help others join us in coming back to life.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me stay sober today. Guide me and all others who are doing Your will today.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll think of three things I can do to help spread the message of AA and NA.

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Each Day a New Beginning

It is a long baptism into the seas of humankind, my daughter. Better immersion than to live untouched.  –Tillie Olsen
We have each had days when we preferred hiding under the covers, avoiding life at all costs. And in times gone by, we did just that, sometimes too frequently. What we didn’t always know, and what we still forget on occasion, is that we have a ready and willing partner who will join us in every pursuit.
The more fully we commit ourselves to one another and to all our experience, the closer we will come to the very serenity we long for. Serenity accompanies our increasing understanding of life’s many mysteries. It’s easy to cheat ourselves out of the prizes any day offers us. Fear fosters inertia, leaving us separate, alone, even more afraid. But we have an appointment with life. And our appointment will bring us to the place of full understanding, the place where we’ll be certain, forever after, that all is well. And that life is good.
Today’s appointments are part of the bigger plan for my life. I will face them, enjoy them, and reap their rewards.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

When our friend related his experience, the man agreed that no amount of will power he might muster could stop his drinking for long. A spiritual experience, he conceded, was absolutely necessary, but the price seemed high upon the basis suggested. He told how he lived in constant worry about those who might find out about his alcoholism. He had, of course, the familiar alcoholic obsession that few knew of his drinking. Why, he argued, should he lose the remainder of his business, only to bring still more suffering to his family by foolishly admitting his plight to people from whom he made his livelihood? He would do anything, he said, but that.

p. 155

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I healed physically, felt good, my senses returned. I began to hear the delicate sound of autumn leaves rattling in the wind, to feel the touch of snowflakes on my face, to see the first new leaves of spring.

p. 345

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Ten – “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

Although all inventories are alike in principle, the time factor does distinguish one from another. There’s the spot check inventory, taken at any time of the day, whenever we find ourselves getting tangled up. There’s the one we take at day’s end, when we review the happenings of the hours just past. Here we cast up a balance sheet, crediting ourselves with things well done, and chalking up debits where due. Then there are those occasions when alone, or in the company of our sponsor or spiritual adviser, we make a careful review of our progress since the last time. Many A.A.’s go in for annual or semiannual housecleanings. Many of us also like the experience of an occasional retreat from the outside world where we can quiet down for an undisturbed day or so of self-overhaul and meditation.

p. 89

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Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.
–William James

Money is not required to buy one necessity of the soul.
–Henry David Thoreau

If you want to accomplish the goals of your life, you have to begin with the Spirit.
–Oprah Winfrey

The steps did for me the very thing I kept hoping alcohol would do for me — they gave me the
peace and serenity I had been looking for in a bottle.
–unknown

Today is full of miracles!
–Ruth Fishel

“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

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

The ultimate lesson all of us have is unconditional love, which includes not only others but
ourselves as well.
–Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

BEAUTY

“Not every woman in old
slippers can manage to look like
Cinderella.”
— Don Marquis

Beauty is not what you wear or look like; beauty is within. We begin to love ourselves
when we see the beauty that God has given to each and every one of us forever. God’s
image and beauty is expressed through our attitudes and feelings, how we greet and
listen to each other and the gentle dignity we afford to another human being.

For years I saw myself as ugly, boring, useless and stupid. This message came from
parents who forever compared me with others and for years I believed their message.
I hid through my teen-age years and quietly tried to escape in food, alcohol and
drugs.

Then after a crisis I met people who had felt the same but were now feeling different.
They loved me until I could begin to love myself. Now I like me. Now I can love me.
Today I can like and love you.

Help me to see the beauty in the wrinkle; the power in the pain.

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“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the
Almighty.”
Psalm 91:1

“Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. This
then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in
his presence.”
I John 3:18-19

“Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows
me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.'”
John 8:12


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Daily Inspiration

Imagine joy and you will find it. Lord, I thank You for the people that need me and love me, for the ability to hope and especially for the ability to love.

One of life’s greatest rewards is not what we get, but what we become. Lord, give me the courage to be all that I can.

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NA Just For Today

Those Who Want To Recover

“We have seen the program work for any addict who honestly and sincerely wants to stop [using drugs]”
Basic Text pg. 10

How do we know when someone honestly and sincerely wants to stop using drugs? The truth is that we don’t know! Because we cannot read minds or know another’s motives and desires, we simply have to hope for the best. We may talk to a newcomer at a meeting and think we’ll never see them again, only to find them several years later doing well in their recovery. We may be tempted to give up on someone who keeps relapsing or doesn’t get clean right away, but we must not. No matter how unwilling someone may seem, a simple fact remains – the addict is at a meeting.

We may never know the results of our Twelfth Step work; it is not up to us to gauge the willingness of a newcomer. The message we carry is a part of us. We carry it everywhere and share it freely, leaving the results to a Power greater than ourselves.

Just for today: I will share my recovery with any addict, anywhere, anytime, and under any circumstances. I will leave the results to my Higher Power.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
My true god is always with me.
I am learning to trust myself. . . .
–Joan Parsons
Sometimes a book we read at a very young age stays with us our whole lives.
One girl loved Heidi more than any other book. She always thought about the grandfather’s hut. It was a special place in the world–with the fresh mountain air, the spring flowers, the winter fire on the hearth. But the part she carried with her to adulthood was the part about the grandfather pouring goat’s milk into a bowl and telling Heidi to drink it all up so she could grow to be healthy and happy.
Now that girl is a woman. Sometimes, when she wants to feel taken care of, she pours herself a bowl of milk. Then she sits down, picks up the bowl with two hands, and drinks out of it like Heidi. She feels comforted and connected to the universe.
The private rituals we discover in childhood can befriend us all our lives, if we let them.
What do I want when I want comfort?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
[A relationship] takes time and deeds, and this involves trust, it involves making ourselves naked, to become sitting ducks for each other. –Eldridge Cleaver
When we were lost in our excesses, we were limited in our relationships. The history of our friendships and loves may be evidence of that. Many of us had a primary relationship with a substance or an addictive behavior, and people had only second place. Many of us were so lost in our codependency that our relationships were two-dimensional. We didn’t know how to be there with our whole selves. In recovery our ability to relate to others charges slowly. We learn how to love like everyone else learned – only we are learning a little later.
We have to be willing to be vulnerable. We also must be willing to be accountable – willing to say to our loved ones, “You can count on me to never leave without saying good bye.” “You can count on me to be respectful of you.” “You can count on me to tell you how I feel, even when it hurts.” As we mature, with the help of the Steps, we also grow in our relationships with others.
Today, I will be true to my relationships.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
It is a long baptism into the seas of humankind, my daughter. Better immersion than to live untouched. –Tillie Olsen
We have each had days when we preferred hiding under the covers, avoiding life at all costs. And in times gone by, we did just that, sometimes too frequently. What we didn’t always know, and what we still forget on occasion, is that we have a ready and willing partner who will join us in every pursuit.
The more fully we commit ourselves to one another and to all our experience, the closer we will come to the very serenity we long for. Serenity accompanies our increasing understanding of life’s many mysteries. It’s easy to cheat ourselves out of the prizes any day offers us. Fear fosters inertia, leaving us separate, alone, even more afraid. But we have an appointment with life. And our appointment will bring us to the place of full understanding, the place where we’ll be certain, forever after, that all is well. And that life is good.
Today’s appointments are part of the bigger plan for my life. I will face them, enjoy them, and reap their rewards.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Difficult People
Few things can make us feel crazier than expecting something from someone who has nothing to give. Few things can frustrate us more than trying to make a person someone he or she isn’t; we feel crazy when we try to pretend that person is someone he or she is not. We may have spent years negotiating with reality concerning particular people from our past and our present. We may have spent years trying to get someone to love us in a certain way, when that person cannot or will not.
It is time to let it go. It is time to let him or her go. That doesn’t mean we can’t love that person anymore. It means that we will feel the immense relief that comes when we stop denying reality and begin accepting. We release that person to be who he or she actually is. We stop trying to make that person be someone he or she is not. We deal with our feelings and walk away from the destructive system.
We learn to love and care differently in a way that takes reality into account.
We enter into a relationship with that person on new terms – taking our needs and ourselves into account. If a person is addicted to alcohol, other drugs, misery, or other people, we let go of his or her addiction; we take our hands off it. We give his or her life back. And we, in the process, are given our life and freedom in return.
We stop letting what we are not getting from that person control us. We take responsibility for our life. We go ahead with the process of loving and taking care of ourselves.
We decide how we want to interact with that person, taking reality and our own best interests into account. We get angry, we feel hurt, but we land in a place of forgiveness. We set him or her free, and we become set free from bondage.
This is the heart of detaching in love.
Today, I will work at detaching in love from troublesome people in my life. I will strive to accept reality in my relationships. I will give myself permission to take care of myself in my relationships, with emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual freedom for both people as my goal.

Today is full of miracles! –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Life Can Be Fun

How careful and guarded we’ve been with fun, with playing, with sheer enjoyment– whether we’re working, traveling, or wandering around town on a Saturday afternoon. Sometimes, we act as though there’s a limited amount, a scarce supply of fun available. We can’t take too much, or it’ll all be gone.

That’s how I was for a long time.

One Saturday afternoon my son, Shane, asked if he could spend the night at a friend’s house to play and have a sleepover.

“Why?” I asked.

“You just did something fun last night,” I reminded him.

He thought for a moment. “Who said you can’t have fun two days in a row.?”

Have some fun– with life, with love, with work. Then go out and have some more.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Be happy now

“Time is what keeps everything from happening at once,” the bumper sticker ahead of me read.

Maybe, I thought. I was racing back home from the computer store, busily doing my errands, trying to get things done. I noticed a restaurant and shopping center to my right, on the freeway. I’d been curious about this place for almost a year. Today, instead of driving by, I turned off the highway and pulled into the parking lot. I spent the next three hours browsing through the stores filled with antiques, trinkets, and gourmet foods. Then I enjoyed a leisurely dinner– a juicy hamburger and a chocolate malt– at the restaurant before returning home. The stores had always been there, I’d always driven past. Today I stopped, satisfied my curiosity, and enjoyed myself.

It’s easy to spend our lives working toward a goal, convinced that if we could only get there, we’d be truly happy then. Today is the only moment we have. If we wait until tomorrow to be happy, we’ll miss out on the beauty of today.

Have your plans. Set goals.

Let yourself be happy now.

God, help me be aware of the joy that’s in front of me now instead of waiting for tomorrow to bring me happiness.

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Blue Skies
The Sky Is Blue Even on a Cloudy Day

by Madisyn Taylor

Darker days are just as much a part of life as are the days graced with sunshine.

When we refer to a “beautiful day,” we are often describing a day that is sunny, clear, and without a cloud in sight to mar a sky that is a brilliantly perfect blue. We find ourselves bouncing along, light in spirit, free from worries, and enjoying the moment. That is, until the clouds begin to form. The sky may turn grey, and a fog may roll in. Puffs of white take on whimsical, darker shades, and our beautiful day disappears along with the sunshine… or so it seems.

A clear blue sky often inspires in us good cheer, bringing on a lighter, more carefree day. We may find ourselves spending time outdoors, breathing in the fresh air, and basking in the warmth of the sun. Yet should clouds appear to wash the sky with shadows, we may let this change of weather decrease our energy and enthusiasm, pulling us into our own cloudy funk. Darker days are just as much a part of life as are the days graced with sunshine. They show us a different perspective of our world, while helping us appreciate the moments of illumination that inevitably follow. A rainy day with clouds helps to clear the air, washing away stagnation. Still, it’s hard not to feel gloomy or think that the day has been ruined when there are clouds hanging over us. Yet if you can remember that these shades of grey won’t last forever, and that hidden behind the clouds is the blue sky, you will find that the beauty of your day is merely playing a game of peek-a-boo with you. Like the mis! haps and interruptions that occasionally block the brilliance that is our own lives from shining through, clouds eventually clear away so we can open up to a brighter horizon.

The next time you wake up to a cloudy day, remember that these shades of grey in life are there just for the moment. And that no matter how hard the rain falls or how chilly the fog is, the clouds will go away, the sun will break through, and you will be able to see the sky that has always and forever been a beautiful and brilliant blue. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

“It is of low benefit to give me something. It is of high benefit to enable me to do something for myself.” Emerson

I’ve been taught in The Program that I begin to use my will properly when I try to make it conform with God’s will. In the past, most of my problems resulted from the improper use of will power. I’d always tried to use it, in sledgehammer fashion, as a way of solving my problems or changing the conditions of my life. Do I see that a primary purpose of the Twelve Steps is to help me channel my will into agreement with God’s intentions for me?

Today I Pray

May I direct my will-power into a channel where it can pick up the will of God. May I no longer use my will-power — which has not proved mighty in the past — as willfulness. May I think of my will only as an extension of God’s will, listening always for direction.

Today I Will Remember

To use my will-power as willingness, not willfulness.

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One More Day

Forgiveness is the answer to the child’s dream of a miracle by which what is broken is made whole again, what is soiled is again made clean.
– Dag Hammarskjold

We all may feel a measure of guilt when relationships deteriorate or friends become angry with each other. Sometimes, it’s not the people around us who are to blame; sometimes it really is our fault. We’ve misspoken or said harsh and unfeeling words to a friend.

We can’t undo our mistakes or take back our words, but we can ask for forgiveness and try to make amends. WE can forgive others when they have hurt us, knowing that forgiveness keeps our relationships whole.

I don’t have to wait for forgiveness from others; I can make my amends first.

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Food For Thought

Challenges

When we were overeating compulsively, we accepted few challenges other than how much food we could cram into our stomachs without getting sick. As our disease progressed, outside interests narrowed and we “got by” with minimum accomplishment instead of being inspired to do our best.

Life is a challenge. None of us has an easy, free ride. The problems and difficulties we overcome are what ensure our continual growth. Without obstacles and tension, we would stagnate. By overeating, we kept ourselves too doped up and lethargic to respond to many of the challenges life presented.

Abstinence is a challenge. It requires our devotion, determination, and dedication. There are some days when maintaining abstinence is all the challenge we can handle. As we progress in the program, we are increasingly capable of responding to the challenges that come to us through our families, jobs, leisure activities, and community involvements.

Today, I will be challenged to become what You intend.

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One Day At A Time

PERFECTION
My imperfections and failures are as much a blessing from God
as my successes and my talents,
and I lay them both at His feet.
Mahatma Gandhi

I don’t know why I used to think that if something wasn’t done perfectly, it wasn’t worth doing. I was an all-time overachiever, and to fail at something was totally unacceptable. It was hardly surprising that I couldn’t like, let alone love, myself, since I set such impossibly high standards for myself. I was constantly pushing myself to excel at those things I was good at, and would beat up on myself if I failed to measure up to the high expectations I held. I was especially critical of my body and thought that if I had the perfect body, then my life would be perfect.

When I came into the program, I had to learn not to be so hard on myself. For the first time I began to realize that I was human and could still be lovable and worthy, even with all my imperfections and character defects. I am lovingly reminded by my sponsor and my friends in the fellowship to be more gentle on myself, and that I don’t even have to do the program perfectly. I just need to do the best I know how for that day; then I can see progress one day at a time. I don’t have to push myself to be perfect all the time in order to win approval or gain love. What a relief that is!

One day at a time . . .
I don’t have to be perfect all the time. I just need to to be the best me that I can for today, and that’s the way God intended me to be.
Sharon S.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We have found nothing incompatible between a powerful spiritual experience and a life of sane and happy usefulness. – Pg. 130 – The Family Afterward

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

One Foot In Front Of The Other

All I need to do today is to put one foot in front of the other. I can only walk this walk a step at a time. Each time I take a step, I will trust that the next will follow, along with the next, and the next and the next. What I know today is that no matter what does or does not come my way, I will wake up each morning to one more day of my spiritual journey, nothing more, nothing less. I will keep putting one foot in front of the other.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Doing the next right thing in the face of a tricky situation is not a choice you can run away from. As the saying goes: Wherever you go, there you are.

I do the next right thing first, so the ‘situation’ doesn’t last.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I went outside and leaned up against the wall. I was throwing up on my shoes. And a man came out and he brought a towel and he cleaned me up, put his arms around me and said: ‘Honey this is the last drunk you’ll ever have to shake out.’ – Gayle W.

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AA Thought for the Day

December 5

Courage
Before we could recognize the illness in ourselves, we had to unload this tired old myth:
It would be a sign of shameful weakness to admit we couldn’t handle the sauce any more (if we ever could).
Weakness? Actually, it takes considerable courage to stare unblinkingly at the hard truth, sparing nothing,
without glossing over anything, without excuses, and without kidding ourselves.
– Living Sober, p. 72

Thought to Ponder . . .
If I have the courage to begin, I have the courage to succeed.

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

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

A New Notion
“The idea that religion and spirituality
were not one and the same was a new notion.
My sponsor asked that I merely remain open-minded
to the possibility that there was a Power greater than myself,
one of my own understanding.
He assured me that no person was going to impose
a belief system on me, that it was a personal matter.
Reluctantly, I opened my mind to the fact that maybe,
just maybe, there was something to this spiritual lifestyle.
Slowly, but surely, I realized there was indeed
a Power greater than myself,
and I soon found myself with a full-time God in my life
and following a spiritual path that didn’t conflict
with my personal religious convictions.”
c. 2001AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 287

Thought to Consider . . .
God enters us through our wounds.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
S W A T = Surrender, Willingness, Acceptance, Trust

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

Hope
>From “Window of Opportunity”:
“I once knew a woman who was crying before a meeting. She was approached by a five-year-old girl who told her, ‘You don’t have to cry here. This is a good place. They took my daddy and they made him better.’ That is exactly what A.A. did for me; it took me and it made me better. For that I am eternally grateful.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 431

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

“Some of us take a long time to ‘come to’ before we can ‘come to believe’ that there is any hope for us.”
Nanaimo, British Columbia, February 2003
“My Name Is Gary and I’m a Human Being,”
Spiritual Awakenings

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

“When we became alcoholics, crushed by a self-imposed crisis we could
not postpone or evade, we had to fearlessly face the proposition that
either God is everything or else He is nothing. God either is or He
isn’t.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 53

To be vital, faith must be accompanied by self sacrifice and unselfish, constructive action.
~Alcoholics Anonymous page 93

The power of God goes deep!
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.114

Almost any experienced A.A. will tell how his affairs have taken remarkable and unexpected turns for the better as he tried to improve his conscious contact with God.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.105

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

When I was a child, I acquired some of the traits that had a lot to do with my insatiable craving for alcohol. I was brought up in a little town in Vermont, under the shadow of Mount Aeolus. An early recollection is that of looking up at this vast and mysterious mountain, wondering what it meant and whether I could ever climb that high. But I was presently distracted by my aunt who, as a fourth-birthday present, made me a plate of fudge. For the next thirty-five years I pursued the fudge of life and quite forgot about the mountain.
When self-indulgence is less than ruinous, we have a milder word for it. We call it ‘taking our comfort.

Prayer for the Day: Eleventh Step Prayer – Higher Power, as I understand You, I pray to keep my connection with You open and clear from the confusion of daily life. Through my prayers and meditation I ask especially for freedom from self-will, rationalization and wishful thinking. I pray for the guidance of correct thought and positive action. Your will, Higher Power, not mine, be done.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 4th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 4th

Daily Reflections


INTO ACTION

A.A. is more than a set of principles; it is a society of
alcoholics in action. We must carry the message, else we
ourselves can wither and those who haven’t been given the
truth may die.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 13

I desperately wanted to live, but if I was to succeed, I
had to become active in our God-given program. I joined
what became my group, where I opened the hall, made coffee,
and cleaned up. I had been sober about three months when
an oldtimer told me I was doing Twelfth-Step work. What a
satisfying realization that was! I felt I was really
accomplishing something. God had given me a second chance,
A.A. had shown me the way, and these gifts were not only
free – they were also priceless! Now the joy of seeing
newcomers grow reminds me of where I have come from, where
I am now, and the limitless possibilities that lie ahead.
I need to attend meetings because they recharge my
batteries so that I have light when it’s needed. I’m still
a beginner in service work, but already I am receiving
more than I’m giving. I can’t keep it unless I give it
away. I am responsible when another reaches out for help.
I want to be there – sober.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

If we allow an alcoholic thought to lodge in our minds for
any length of time, we are in danger of having a slip.
Therefore we must dispel such thoughts at once, by refusing
their admittance and by immediately putting constructive
thoughts in their place. Remember that alcohol is poison to
you. Remember that it is impossible for you to drink
normally. Remember that one drink will lead to another and
you will eventually be drunk. Remember what happened to you
in the past as a result of your drinking. Think of every
reason you have learned in A.A. for not taking that drink.
Fill your mind with constructive thoughts. Am I keeping my
thoughts constructive?

Meditation For The Day

Always seek to set aside the valuations of the world which
seem wrong and try to judge only by those valuations which
seem right to you. Do not seek too much the praise and
notice of men. Be one of those who, though sometimes scoffed
at, have a serenity and peace of mind which the scoffers
never know. Be one of that band who feel the Divine Principle
in the universe, though He be often rejected by men because
He cannot be seen.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not heed too much the judgment of men.
I pray that I may test things by what seems right to me.


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

As Bill Sees It

Those Other People, p.268

“Just like you, I have often thought myself the victim of what other
people say and do. Yet every time I confessed the sins of such
people, especially those whose sins did not correspond exactly with
my own, I found that I only increased the total damage. My own
resentment, my self-pity would often render me well-nigh useless to
anybody.

“So, nowadays, if anyone talks of me so as to hurt, I first ask myself if
there is any truth at all in what they say. If there is none, I try to
remember that I too have had my periods of speaking bitterly of
others; that hurtful gossip is but a symptom of our remaining
emotional illness; and consequently that I must never be angry at the
unreasonableness of sick people.

“Under very trying conditions I have had, again and again, to forgive
others–also myself. Have you recently tried this?”

Letter, 1946

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

Walk In Dry Places

The Lure of Greener Pastures
Gratitude
One of our old-timers spent a great deal of time trying to find a new job but never succeeding.  When he finally retired, on a good pension, it became clear that the job he had kept was probably better and provided more benefits than any job he had been seeking.  He was fortunate that none of his proposed job searches ever worked out.
The fantasy of finding “greener pastures” is something many of us face, in both drinking and sobriety.
We may be very well off where we are, yet feel that something rich and exciting is over in the next meadow.  We can feel this way about our jobs, our lifestyles, and our locations.
The answer to this greener-pastures obsession is to feel more gratitude for what we have here and now. We might also focus more upon today’s activities and less upon impossible dreams of other places.
There may be greener pastures somewhere, but I’ll first look for the opportunities and benefits of my own life and surroundings.  I may be richly blessed without knowing it.

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

Keep It Simple

And to practice these principles in all our affairs. Third part of Step Twelve.
This is a statement about us. We are now people of values. These values reflect our spiritual growth. We know how to help others. We know how to admit our wrongs.
We know how to look at ourselves and change our defects. We know how to live an honest life.
Step Twelve tells us. “Go use these tools for better living. Go be all you can be. Enjoy life and live a life you can be proud of.” Step Twelve also tells us about how to have loving relationships. By the time we complete Step Twelve, we make or regain many relationships. The most important one is with our Higher Power. As we grow in the program, we realize all our relationships are spiritual gifts.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I now have one face instead of many masks. Help me be a person who will stand before You with pride, not shame.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll talk with a friend and talk about my new values. I will talk about how much my life has changed.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

I want to feel myself part of things, of the great drift and swirl; not cut off, missing things, like being sent to bed early as a child.  –Joanna Field
Feeling apart from the action and always looking on; wanting attention, and yet afraid of being noticed; no doubt these are familiar memories to most of us. We may still struggle with our self-perception, but we can celebrate that we no longer drown our moods. Connecting with the people next to us, though difficult, is no longer impossible when we rely on the program.
There is a way to be a part of the action, a way that never fails. It takes only a small effort, really. We can simply look, with love, at someone nearby today and extend our hearts in honest attention. When we make someone else feel special, we’ll become special too.
Recovery can help each of us move beyond the boundaries of our own ego. Trusting that our lives are in the loving care of God, however we understand God, relieves us of the need for self-centeredness. We can let go of ourselves now that God is in charge, and we’ll discover that we have joined the action.
I will open my heart, and I’ll be joined to all that’s around me.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

His call to the clergyman led him presently to a certain resident of the town, who, though formerly able and respected, was then nearing the nadir of alcoholic despair. It was the usual situation; home in jeopardy, wife ill, children distracted, bills in arrears and standing damaged. He had a desperate desire to stop, but saw no way out, for he had earnestly tried many avenues of escape. Painfully aware of being somehow abnormal, the man did not fully realize what it meant to be alcoholic.*

* This refers to Bill’s first visit with Dr. Bob. These men later became co-founders of A.A. Bill’s story opens the text of this book; Dr. Bob’s heads the Story Section.

p. 155

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I found that now I could do many things without a drink–write, answer the telephone, eat out, go to parties, make love, get through the day and the evenings. Sleep at night and get up the next morning ready to begin another day. I was amazed and proud to have gone a week without a drink, then a month. Then I lived an entire year sober, through my birthday, Christmas, problems, successes, the mixture that makes up life.

p. 345

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Ten – “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

When a drunk has a terrific hangover because he drank heavily yesterday, he cannot live well today. But there is another kind of hangover which we all experience whether we are drinking or not. That is the emotional hangover, the direct result of yesterday’s and sometimes today’s excesses of negative emotion–anger, fear, jealousy, and the like. If we would live serenely today and tomorrow, we certainly need to eliminate these hangovers. This doesn’t mean we need to wander morbidly around in the past. It requires an admission and correction of errors now. Our inventory enables us to settle with the past. When this is done, we are really able to leave it behind us. When our inventory is carefully taken, and we have made peace with ourselves, the conviction follows that tomorrow’s challenges can be met as they come.

pp. 88-89

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

Gratitude is one of the sweet shortcuts to finding peace of mind and happiness
inside. No matter what’s going on outside of us, there’s always something we could
be grateful for.
–Barry Neil Kaufman

If we wait for perfection before enjoying life, we will never enjoy life.
–unknown

One moment of patience may ward off a great disaster; one moment of impatience may
ruin a whole life.
–Chinese proverb

I am getting to know myself today.
I accept who I am today.
I like myself today.
–Ruth Fishel

The Lord will drench you with His showers, but He will dry you with His sun.
–Czech Proverb

“Good morning, This is your Higher Power speaking.
I will not be needing your help today.”

We win half the battle when we make up our minds to take the world as we find it,
including the thorns.
–unknown

Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly!
–unknown

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PREJUDICE

“Everyone is a prisoner of his own
experiences. No one can eliminate
prejudices just recognize
–them.”
Edward R. Murrow

In recovery I am accepting that I am not perfect and some prejudices are part of my
life what it is to be human. On a daily basis I am trying to deal with them, and talking
about them helps. They don’t go away just because I talk about them, but I get them in
perspective and I grow in an understanding of myself through the recognition of
my prejudices.

Alcoholism made me into a ” fake “. I appeared to be what I was not and my
prejudices were part of the camouflage. My prejudices revealed my fears and my
need to “people-please”. Slowly, in my daily spiritual program, I am discovering the
courage to stand alone.

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

Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good spirit lead me on level
ground.
Psalm 143:10

“But I tell you: Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who
hate you.”
Matthew 5:44


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

Daily Inspiration

Be yourself in all that you do and you will soon learn that you are very special. Lord, help me find the peace that You have already placed within my soul.

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

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

NA Just For Today

God’s Will, Not Ours

“We know that if we pray for God’s will we will receive what is best for us, regardless of what we think.”
Basic Text pg. 44

By the time we came to NA, our inner voices had become unreliable and self-destructive. Addiction had warped our desires, our interests, our sense of what was best for ourselves. That’s why it’s been so important in recovery to develop our belief in a Power greater than ourselves, something that could provide saner, more reliable guidance than our own. We’ve begun learning how to rely on this Power’s care and to trust the inner direction it provides us.

As with all learning processes, it takes practice to “pray only for knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out.” The selfish, ego-driven attitudes we developed in our addiction are not cast off overnight. Those attitudes may affect the way we pray. We may even find ourselves praying something like, “Relieve me of this character defect so I can look good.”

The more straightforward we are about our own ideas and desires, the easier it will be to distinguish between our own will and our Higher Power’s will. “Just for your information, God;” we might pray, “here’s what I want in this situation. Nonetheless, I ask that your will, not mine, be done.” Once we do this, we are prepared to recognize and accept our Higher Power’s guidance.

Just for today: Higher Power, I’ve learned to trust your guidance, yet I still have my own ideas about how I want to live my life. Let me share those ideas with you, and then let me clearly understand your will for me. In the end, let your will, not mine, be done.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
They were the first . . . self-created people in the history of the world. And their manners were their own business. And so were their politics. And so, but ten times so, were their souls. –Archibald MacLeish
There once was a child named Yemaya. Even before she could walk or talk, her mother introduced her to the trees. Yemaya touched them and they accepted her. They told her she was wonderful and she knew it was true.
As she grew up, Yemaya occasionally met people who said unkind things to her. When this happened, she went back to her trees, who continued to tell her she was just fine. She couldn’t understand what was wrong with those who were mean to her. Whenever they appeared and insisted on being mean, she pretended what they said was an arrow that sailed right by as she stepped out of the way.
We can do the same. What others say or think is part of them and their lives, not ours. When we are wise enough to let go of things that don’t belong to us, we will find our own treasures.
What can I step out of the way of today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
“He doesn’t talk to me,” says a woman. “I don’t know what she wants me to talk about,” says a man. –Lillian B. Rubin
We have often heard that it’s better to be men of deeds, not words. In our relationships with other males, we have learned to do things together, work together, or play a sport together. But in our relationships with women, we often see the other side of this coin. If we haven’t learned to express our thoughts and feelings, the women in our lives may request or demand that we learn now. There is nothing wrong with our not yet having this skill, and there is nothing wrong with women longing to talk with us.
A close relationship promotes talking, and revealing thoughts and feelings. Words, when we are honest, are ways of becoming clearer and being more personal. We have the right to stumble around with our words. We also have the right to feel unsure of ourselves or frightened of saying what we feel. That kind of fear is the excitement of being close to someone we love.
Today, I will express my feelings and ideas so others can know me better.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
I want to feel myself part of things, of the great drift and swirl; not cut off, missing things, like being sent to bed early as a child. –Joanna Field
Feeling apart from the action and always looking on; wanting attention, and yet afraid of being noticed; no doubt these are familiar memories to most of us. We may still struggle with our self-perception, but we can celebrate that we no longer drown our moods. Connecting with the people next to us, though difficult, is no longer impossible when we rely on the program.
There is a way to be a part of the action, a way that never fails. It takes only a small effort, really. We can simply look, with love, at someone nearby today and extend our hearts in honest attention. When we make someone else feel special, we’ll become special too.
Recovery can help each of us move beyond the boundaries of our own ego. Trusting that our lives are in the loving care of God, however we understand God, relieves us of the need for self-centeredness. We can let go of ourselves now that God is in charge, and we’ll discover that we have joined the action.
I will open my heart, and I’ll be joined to all that’s around me.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting Go
“How much do we need to let go of?” a friend asked one day.
“I’m not certain,” I replied, “but maybe everything.”
Letting go is a spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical process, a sometimes mysterious metaphysical process of releasing to God and the Universe that which we are clinging to so tightly.
We let go of our grasp on people, outcomes, ideas, feelings, wants, needs, desires – everything. We let go of trying to control our progress in recovery. Yes, it’s important to acknowledge and accept what we want and what we want to happen. But it’s equally important to follow through by letting go.
Letting go is the action part of faith. It is a behavior that gives God and the Universe permission to send us what we’re meant to have.
Letting go means we acknowledge that hanging on so tightly isn’t helping to solve the problem, change the person, or get the outcome we desire. It isn’t helping us. In fact, we learn that hanging on often blocks us from getting what we want and need.
Who are we to say that things aren’t happening exactly as they need to happen?
There is magic in letting go. Sometimes we get what we want soon after we let go. Sometimes it takes longer. Sometimes the specific outcome we desire doesn’t happen. Something better does.
Letting go sets us free and connects us to our Source.
Letting go creates the optimum environment for the best possible outcomes and solutions.
Today, I will relax. I will let go of that which is upsetting me the most. I will trust that by letting go, I have started the wheels in motion for things to work out in the best possible way.

I am getting to know myself today. I accept who I am today. I like myself today. –Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart

You Decide

This is an old lesson, but it bears repeating and remembering. We don’t have to let anyone control our lives, our choices, our joy.

No matter how well we thought we learned that lesson, it often reappears. Another person starts to pull our strings. We get involved, entangled, hooked in. We hear ourselves singing an old tune– If only she would, if only he wouldn’t, then I would be… We realize that once again we have given up too much control. We have deferred our lives to the wishes, whims, and choices of another.

Yes, if we are living fully, we will have reactions to those around us. Our relationships will help shape us, teach us things. And yes, there are times we are so connected to others, love them so much, that their path does affect ours. But we don’t have to let another person control our choices, our behaviors, or our lives.

Maybe she will. Maybe he won’t. But what about you? What do you want? What course of action feels right for you, for your life? Do you want to assign responsibility for whether you take that course to another? Do you really?

Sometimes, no matter how much you love others, it’s time to let go, time to let them walk their path. Time to realize that it is your responsibility to walk your own. Go in love. Go in peace. Go in gentle power. You are responsible for your life. You are responsible for your choices. It doesn’t matter what the other person does. You are still responsible for you.

Take care of yourself, then take it one step further. Love, nurture, honor, and respect yourself.

Only you can decide what you’re going to do.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

The miracle of rebirth

Birth is an exhilarating experience. Walking into a hospital room seconds after a child has been born, you can almost touch the emotion and power of the moment.

Rebirth is like that,too. Sitting in a powerful religious ceremony, standing alone atop a high hill, or walking in the footsteps of an ancient civilization, we can feel our hearts being changed as our spirit is given new birth. “What have I done to deserve this?” we whisper. And the universe whispers, “It’s to move you along your path. It’s to teach you to live.” And we emerge from our experience reborn.

Sometimes, it goes the other way,too. In a single moment, all that we know can be stripped away– the death of a loved one, a divorce, the loss of a job– and suddenly we’re left standing at the mercy of the universe. “Why did this happen? What did I do to deserve this?” we cry. And the universe answers, “It’s to move you along your path. It’s to teach you to live.” And once again, we rise from the ashes, reborn.

Surrender to the exhilarating moments of creation in your life, both the uplifting and the heartrending ones. Touch the emotion and power.

Trust that you’re being moved along your path. You’re learning how to live.

Let yourself be reborn.

God, please help me to accept all the life changing experiences that I may have. Help me to see the wonder in rebirth and to learn your lessons.

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

Now Is the Time
Bloom Where You Are Planted

by Madisyn Taylor

The time to blossom is now, not sometime in the future when you believe the stars will be aligned for you.

Having a vision for our future that differs from our current circumstances can be inspiring and exciting, but it can also keep us from fully committing to our present placement. We may become aware that this is happening when we notice our thoughts about the future distracting us from our participation in the moment. We may find upon searching our hearts that we are waiting for some future time or situation in order to self-actualize. This would be like a flower planted in North Dakota putting off blooming because it would prefer to do so in Illinois.

There are no guarantees in this life, so when we hold back we do so at the risk of never fully blossoming. This present moment always offers us the ground in which we can take root and open our hearts now. What this means is that we live fully, wherever we are, not hesitating because conditions are not perfect, or we might end up moving, or we haven’t found our life partner. This can be scary, because we might feel that we are giving up our cherished dreams if we do not agree to wait for them. But this notion that we have to hold back our life force now in order to find happiness later doesn’t really make sense. What might really be happening is that we are afraid to embrace this moment, and ourselves, just exactly as we are right now. This constitutes a tendency to hold back from fully loving ourselves, as we are, where we are.

We have a habit of presenting life with a set of conditions—ifs and whens that must be fulfilled before we will say yes to the gift of our lives. Now is the time for each of us to bloom where we are planted, overriding our tendency to hold back. Now is the time to say yes, to be brave and commit fully to ourselves, because until we do no one else will. Now is the time to be vulnerable, unfolding delicately yet fully into the space in which we find ourselves. Published with permission from Daily OM

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

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Most of us in The Program are far more comfortable with the determination that we won’t take the first drink today, than we are with the “vow” that we’ll never drink again. Saying “I intend never to drink again” is quite different from the saying, “I’ll never drink again.” The last statement is far too reflective of self-will; it doesn’t leave much room for the idea that God will remove our obsession to drink if we practice The Program’s Twelve Steps one day at a time. Will I continue to fight against complacency, realizing that I’ll always be just one drink away from disaster?

Today I Pray

“Never again” demands too binding a commitment, even for the strongest among us. Our past lives were full of “never agains” and won’t evers,” promises that were broken before the next dawn. May I, for now, set my sites on just one straight, sober day at a time.

Today I Will Remember

Never say “Never again.”

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

One More Day

A tragedy means always a man’s struggles with that which is stronger than man.
– G. K. Chesteron

Once the diagnosis of a long-term illness is learned, some of us may use it as an excuse to be sad, morbid, sullen, unfeeling, and uncaring. These behaviors are all counterproductive to the fulfilling life we want to lead.

Those of us who undergo a major health change may consider it a tragedy. It is; loss of good health is a frightening change. But to keep our personal problems hidden, to never reach out for help and for support — that is the truest tragedy.

We can reach out to those who love us and extend our arms to our Higher Power. Rather than being bitter, we can involve ourselves in the lives of others and allow our personal tragedies to generate triumphs.

My faith in a Higher Power and my faith in myself grow stronger each day.

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

Food For Thought

Our Daily Bread

Doing the will of our Higher Power each day is what sustains us. We trust Him to provide the food we need, both physical and spiritual. We do not have to be anxious about our supply for the future. If we seek to do God’s will today. He will take care of us in the future as well.

Anxiety over material things arises when we forget to stay in touch with the source of our existence. By ourselves, we cannot even assure an adequate intake of oxygen; much less all of the other elements we need for survival. Since we are dependent on our environment to sustain us, we make life extremely difficult when we try to live a self-centered existence.

Our daily sustenance comes from a Power greater than ourselves. As children of God, we have faith that He will take care of us. Exaggerated emotional dependence on physical food blocks us from the spiritual nourishment, which our Higher Power offers us today and every day.

Give us this day our daily bread.

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

One Day At A Time

~ COURAGE ~
Courage faces fear and thereby masters it.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

I’ve never been a brave person and was always very fearful. I would watch movies where the hero would rescue the heroine, or where someone would climb Mount Everest, or perform some feat of daring, and I would be totally in awe. I was afraid of the dark, of rejection, of failure and of most other things that I was convinced took courage. No way would I go parasailing or deep sea diving as that seemed to require the courage that I lacked. I didn’t understand then that people who do those kinds of things are not totally without fear, but they have a way of overcoming their fear and still doing it anyway.

When I came into the program and learned that I would have to do an inventory and then, worse still, make amends to the people I had harmed, I was paralyzed by fear. Eventually I realized that, even though I feared doing these things, all I had to do was ask my Higher Power for strength and guidance and then do the things I’d most feared. Perhaps these weren’t the feats of daring that I had seen heroes perform, but for me they were great victories, and in being able to do them, I knew that I was developing courage.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will continue to walk through my fear with my Higher Power at my side, knowing that I am developing the courage that I thought I lacked.
Sharon S.

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

AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Having persevered with the rest of the program, they wondered why they fell. We think the reason is that they never completed their housecleaning. They took inventory all right, but hung on to some of the worst items in stock. They only THOUGHT they had lost their egoism and fear; they only THOUGHT they had humbled themselves. But they had not learned enough of humility, fearlessness and honesty, in the sense we find it necessary, until they told someone else ALL their life story. – Pg. 73 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

We need special people in our lives so that we can travel the path of recovery. The special people are easy to find, they are right in front of you, your Higher Power puts them there.

Let me recognize and use the special people my Divine Source has placed before me to walk beside me on this road of recovery.

Feeling Good Inside

I am in the present, I can actually see what the next right action might be and I can take it seamlessly, easily, fruitfully. I will see my day as an opportunity to grow; to learn to allow more of who I am to flow through me. Naturally, quietly and without force. I will become worthy of the life I have been given, grateful just to be alive for one more day. I will let life work out.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘We weren’t perfect at it. Sometimes we rebelled, and rejected our sponsors’ feedback or the guidance of the Steps. Still, the recovery process was always there when we needed and accepted it. (P 80, CDA First Edition)

I worked my using hard, so now I work my recovery hard.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Strive for perfection; accept progress.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am getting to know myself today. I accept who I am today. I like myself today.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I ran out of the meeting screaming; ‘You’re not going to railroad me into being happy!’ A while later I realized what I’d said. – Serenity Sam.

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

AA Thought for the Day

December 4

Hope
Hope is the priceless ingredient for recovery. This, AA gives most frequently not in mere words.
Upon the alcoholic’s first contact with AA, as he looks across the room
and sees men and women respectably clothed and in their right minds, enjoying themselves,
that flicker of hope begins to burn.
And he says to himself, “If those jokers can do it, I can.”
The first need, beyond any other, is hope. Without it, there is nothing.
– The Best of the Grapevine [Vol 1], pp. 156-157

Thought to Ponder . . .
Hope sees the invisible, feels the intangible, and achieves the impossible.

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

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

Rewards
“The rewards of sobriety are bountiful
and as progressive as the disease they counteract.
Certainly among these rewards for me
are release from the prison of uniqueness,
and the realization that participation in the AA way of life
is a blessing and a privilege beyond estimate —
a blessing to live a life free from the
pain and degradation of drinking
and filled with the joy of useful, sober living,
and a privilege to grow in sobriety one day at a time
and bring the message of hope as it was brought to me.”
>From the new Fourth Edition of Alcoholics Anonymous
AAGrapevine, December 2001, p. 47

Thought to Consider . . .
Sobriety is a choice and a treasure.

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

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

Gift
Step Twelve: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
“When a man or a woman has a spiritual awakening, the most important meaning of it is that he has now become able to do, feel, and believe that which he could not do before on his unaided strength and resources alone. He has been granted a gift which amounts to a new state of consciousness and being. He has been set on a path which tells him he is really going somewhere, that life is not a dead end, not something to be endured or mastered.”
1952, AAWS, Inc.; Printed 2005; Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pgs. 106-07

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

“No matter how truthful the words of my message, there could be no deep communication if what I said and did was colored by pride, arrogance, intolerance, resentment, imprudence, or desire for personal acclaim — even though I was largely unconscious of these attitudes”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1960
“The Language of the Heart”

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

“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.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 62~

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

Just to the extent that we do as we think He would have us, and humbly rely on Him, does He enable us to match calamity with serenity.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.68

And when humility and serenity are so combined, something else of great moment is apt to occur.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.62

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

It was discovered that when one alcoholic had planted in the mind of another the true nature of his malady, that person could never be the same again. Following every spree, he would say to himself, ‘Maybe those A.A.’s were right.’ After a few such experiences, often before the onset of extreme difficulties, he would return to us convinced.
In the first years, those of us who sobered up in A.A. had been grim and utterly hopeless cases. But then we began to have success with milder alcoholics and even some potential alcoholics. Younger folks appeared. Lots of people turned up who still had jobs, homes, health, and even good social standing.
Of course, it was necessary for these newcomers to hit bottom emotionally. But they did not have to hit every possible bottom in order to admit that they were licked.

Prayer for the Day: Tenth Step Prayer –
I pray I may continue:
To grow in understanding and effectiveness;
To take daily spot-check inventories of myself;
To correct mistakes when I make them;
To take responsibility for my actions;
To be ever aware of my negative and self-defeating attitudes and behaviors;
To keep my willfulness in check;
To always remember I need Your help;
To keep love and tolerance of others as my code;
And to continue in daily prayer how I can best serve You, my Higher Power.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 3rd

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 3rd

Daily Reflections

IN ALL OUR AFFAIRS

. . . . we tried to carry this message to alcoholics,
and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 106

I find that carrying the message of recovery to other
alcoholics is easy because it helps me to stay sober
and it provides me with a sense of well-being about
my own recovery. The hard part is practicing these
principles in all my affairs. It is important that I
share the benefits I receive from A.A., especially at
home. Doesn’t my family deserve the same patience,
tolerance and understanding I so readily give to the
alcoholic? When reviewing my day I try to ask, “Did I
have a chance to be a friend today and miss it?” ” Did
I have a chance to rise above a nasty situation and
avoid it?” “Did I have a chance to say ‘I’m sorry,’
and refuse to?” Just as I ask God for help with my
alcoholism each day, I ask for help in extending my
recovery to include all situations and all people!

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

There is some alcoholic thought, conscious or
unconscious, that comes before every slip. As long as
we live, we must be on the lookout for such thoughts
and guard against them. In fact, our A.A. training is
mostly to prepare us, to make us ready to recognize
such thoughts at once and to reject them at once. The
slip comes when we allow such thoughts to remain in
our minds, even before we go through the motions of
lifting the glass to our lips. The A.A. program is
largely one of mental training. How well is my mind
prepared?

Meditation For The Day

Fret not your mind with puzzles you cannot solve. The
solutions may never be shown to you until you have left
this life. The loss of dear ones, the inequality of life,
the deformed and the maimed, and many other puzzling
things may not be known to you until you reach the life
beyond. “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye
cannot hear them now.” Only step by step, stage by stage,
can you proceed in your journey into greater knowledge and
understanding.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be content that things which I now see
darkly will some day be made clear. I pray that I may have
faith that someday I will see face to face.


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As Bill Sees It

The “Slipper” Needs Understanding, p. 99

“Slips can often be charged to rebellion; some of us are more rebellious
than others. Slips may be due to the illusion that one can be ‘cured’ of
alcoholism. Slips can also be charged to carelessness and
complacency. Many of us fail to ride out these periods sober. Things
go fine for two or three years–then the member is seen no more. Some
of us suffer extreme guilt because of vices or practices that we can’t or
won’t let go of. Too little self-forgiveness and too little prayer–well,
this combination adds up to slips.

“Then some of us are far more alcohol-damaged than others. Still
others encounter a series of calamities and cannot seem to find the
spiritual resources to meet them. There are those of us who are
physically ill. Others are subject to more or less continuous exhaustion,
anxiety, and depression. These conditions often play a part in
slips–sometimes they are utterly controlling.”

Talk, 1960

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Walk In Dry Places

Raising the frustration threshold
Achievement
What happens when we hit snags in our lives?  In drinking, it was a common practice to chuck everything and just get drunk.  This always made things worse, sometimes so much so that we forgot about the problem that triggered our frustrations.
Dealing with frustration is another part of growing up emotionally.  Self-understanding in sobriety will help us detect surges of anger and irritation when things aren’t going as planned.  We’ll recognize these feelings as being the same emotions that plagued us in our drinking days.
In sobriety, however, we are given choices.  We actually do have the choice of pausing, letting the anger drain away, and then taking charge of the situation by knowing that God is working along with us. By doing this, we can eventually raise our threshold of frustration.
If some task or issue makes me angry today, I’ll back off and place the outcome in God’s hands. I’ll know this is working when I have a change in feeling about it.

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Keep It Simple

And to practice these principles in all our affairs. Third part of Step Twelve.
This is a statement about us. We are now people of values. These values reflect our spiritual growth. We know how to help others. We know how to admit our wrongs.
We know how to look at ourselves and change our defects. We know how to live an honest life.
Step Twelve tells us. “Go use these tools for better living. Go be all you can be. Enjoy life and live a life you can be proud of.” Step Twelve also tells us about how to have loving relationships. By the time we complete Step Twelve, we make or regain many relationships. The most important one is with our Higher Power. As we grow in the program, we realize all our relationships are spiritual gifts.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I now have one face instead of many masks. Help me be a person who will stand before You with pride, not shame.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll talk with a friend and talk about my new values. I will talk about how much my life has changed.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Sometimes, sisters have the same journey in their hearts. One may help the other or betray her. Will they cross over? Will the ship sail without them?  –Louise Bernikow
Other women share our struggle. When we treat our women friends as sisters and fellow pilgrims, we find great joy in our mutual help. We pray for the wisdom to let go our feelings of insecurity and rivalry with other women.
Rivalry is not good for us. It leads us to forget our own unique qualities. We each are the best person in the world at one thing: being ourselves. When we compete, we need to retain a balanced perspective and to think well of ourselves whether we win or lose. We run the best race we can; therefore, let us not regard other women as rivals. They are our sisters, and they, too, are doing the best they can.
Today, I will pray for the serenity that will let me see when my sisters have the same journey in their hearts as I.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

But what about his responsibilities—his family and the men who would die because they would not know how to get well, ah—yes, those other alcoholics? There must be many such in this town. He would phone a clergyman. His sanity returned and he thanked God. Selecting a church at random from the directory, he stepped into a booth and lifted the receiver.

pp. 154-155

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

Commitment and service were part of recovery. I was told that to keep it we have to give it away. At first I made the coffee and later volunteered at the intergroup office answering telephones on the evening shift. I went on Twelfth Step calls, spoke at meetings, served as group officer. Ever so gradually I began to open. Just a crack at a first, with my hand on the door ready to slam it shut in a moment of fear. But my fears subsided too. I found that I could be there, open to all kinds of people from this solid base that we shared. Then I began to go back into the world, carrying that strength with me.

p. 345

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Ten – “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

A continuous look at our assets and liabilities, and a real desire to learn and grow by this means, are necessities for us. We alcoholics have learned this the hard way. More experienced people, of course, in all times and places have practiced unsparing self-survey and criticism. For the wise have always known that no one can make much of his life until self-searching becomes a regular habit, until he is able to admit and accept what he finds, and until he patiently and persistently tries to correct what is wrong.

p. 88

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

A smooth sea never made a skilled mariner.
–English Proverb

“History has demonstrated that the most notable winners usually encountered
heartbreaking obstacles before they triumphed. They won because they refused to
become discouraged by their defeats.”
–B. C. Forbes

“Spend unbroken chunks of time with the most important people in your life.”
–Brian Tracy

“Forget past mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you’re going to
do now and do it.”
–William Durant

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

WONDER

“Wonder rather than doubt is the
root of knowledge.”
— Abraham Heschel

Living with paradox is part of my sobriety. Things are never quite what they seem.
When I think I have something figured out, I am made to be confused again
especially around my life, relationships, people, events and the universe. Life is both
simple and incomprehensible. God seems to demand an agnostic faith! There is
so much I do not know or understand.

But all of this leads to a creative and exciting sobriety. It makes life an adventure. It
feeds that artistic part of me that is reborn in my sobriety. Things I used to dislike
when I drank, I now enjoy. People and writers that once bored me now fascinate me;
even modern art has a spiritual message!

O God, let the feelings of amazement always be a part of my faith.

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“For you were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord;
walk as children of light.”
Ephesians 5:8

“Wherefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God.”
Romans 15:7

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes
in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
John 3:16

“God has given gifts to each of you from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Manage
them well so that God’s generosity can flow through you.”
1 Peter 4:10


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Daily Inspiration

Allow your mind to become quiet and less judgmental and you will feel improvements in all areas of your life. Lord, help my mind avoid twisting the words I hear and misjudging the intentions of others in order to justify my own righteousness. Help me to spread Your peace.

There is not one moment that we are separated from God’s care unless we choose to be. Lord, You provide for my daily needs and deliver me from evil. You are my refuge.

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NA Just For Today

Vision Without Limits

“Perhaps for the first time, we see a vision of our new life.”
Basic Text pg. 34

In our addiction, our vision of ourselves was very limited. Each day, we went through the same routine: getting, using, and finding ways and means to get more. And that’s all we could reasonably expect for the duration of our lives. Our potential was limited.

Today, our prospects are changed. Recovery has given us a new vision of ourselves and our lives. We are no longer trapped in the endlessly gray routine of addiction. We are free to stretch ourselves in new ways, trying out new ideas and new activities. In doing so, we come to see ourselves in a new way. Our potential is limited only by the strength of the Higher Power that cares for us – and that strength has no limits.

In recovery, life and everything in it appears open to us. Guided by our spiritual principles, driven by the power given us by the God of our understanding, our horizons are limitless.

Just for today: I will open my eyes to the possibilities before me. My potential is as limitless and as powerful as the God of my understanding. Today, I will act on that potential.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields that it kisses them so gently. –Lewis Carroll
In different times and places, clouds can produce snowflakes, raindrops, or even hailstones. Each one seems to have its own purpose and mood as it falls from the sky. The snowflake is the lightest of these, and so it falls slowly and softly. Rainfall can be soft or hard. It sometimes feels angry, almost cleansing.
No matter how thick the snowfall is, it is still soft. We can rarely hear it land. It covers the world in a peaceful white. If we look closely, we can see that each small snowflake is unique.
Like the snowflakes, each of us has a unique design. Perhaps what we can learn from the snowflakes is how to gently touch the lives and growing things around us. Times of anger and rain are necessary, but a soft snowfall brings peace to all humanity.
How can I show my gentle side today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Sometimes I go about pitying myself, and all the time I am being carried, on great winds across the sky. –Ojibway
“Ah, poor me,” we sometimes say, “I have to work so hard!” “I have so much stress!” “If only my problem with money would get better, then I could be content!” “I just don’t understand women!” “Why can’t my family have fewer troubles?” This attitude of self-pity is as ancient as humanity. The Ojibway recognized blindness to the spiritual path. Every man has problems and challenges, and life often is not fair. Self-pity becomes a stumbling block when we get so narrowly focused upon our problems. We forget we are a part of a whole throng of fellow pilgrims on this path. It helps to notice others beside ourselves who are seeking courage to live their lives.
Sometimes we reawaken our awareness of our Higher Power by seeing that we are “carried on great winds across the sky.” We have many blessings; we are not alone. Often within problems we discover our greatest blessings.
God, help me find the spiritual path in the choices I make today. Help me turn away from self-pity.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Sometimes, sisters have the same journey in their hearts. One may help the other or betray her. Will they cross over? Will the ship sail without them? –Louise Bernikow
Other women share our struggle. When we treat our women friends as sisters and fellow pilgrims, we find great joy in our mutual help. We pray for the wisdom to let go our feelings of insecurity and rivalry with other women.
Rivalry is not good for us. It leads us to forget our own unique qualities. We each are the best person in the world at one thing: being ourselves. When we compete, we need to retain a balanced perspective and to think well of ourselves whether we win or lose. We run the best race we can; therefore, let us not regard other women as rivals. They are our sisters, and they, too, are doing the best they can.
Today, I will pray for the serenity that will let me see when my sisters have the same journey in their hearts as I.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Developing Healthy Tolerance
Many of us are skilled at denying and discounting what hurts us. We may endure a particular situation, telling ourselves repeatedly it’s not that bad; we shouldn’t be so demanding; it’ll change any day; we should be able to live with it; it doesn’t annoy us; the other person didn’t really mean it; it doesn’t hurt; maybe it’s just us.
We may fight and argue with ourselves about the reality and validity of our pain – our right to feel it and do something about it.
Often we will tolerate too much or so much that we become furious and refuse to tolerate any more.
We can learn to develop healthy tolerance.
We do that by setting healthy boundaries and trusting ourselves to own our power with people. We can lessen our pain and suffering by validating and paying attention to ourselves. We can work at shortening the time between identifying a need to set a boundary, and taking clear, direct action.
We aren’t crazy. Some behaviors really do bug us. Some behaviors really are inappropriate, annoying, hurtful, or abusive.
We don’t have to feel guilty about taking care of ourselves once we identify a boundary that needs to be set. Look at the experience as an experiment in owning our power, in establishing new, healthy boundaries and limits for ourselves.
We don’t have to feel guilty or apologize or explain ourselves after we’ve set a boundary. We can learn to accept the awkwardness and discomfort of setting boundaries with people. We can establish our rights to have these limits. We can give the other person room to have and explore his or her feelings; we can give ourselves room to have our feelings – as we struggle to own our power and create good, working relationships.
Once we can trust our ability to take care of ourselves, we will develop healthy reasonable tolerance of others.
God, help me begin striving for healthy boundaries and healthy tolerance for others and myself.

I am beginning to trust myself today. There is a place deep within me that tells me that I am okay and guides me along my path in recovery. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Let Go of Leftover Guilt

Why do you feel guilty when you’re doing what you’ve been led to do?

That nagging, gnawing feeling of guilt is leftovers– leftovers from another period when we didn’t love ourselves. It’s left over from another time when we didn’t trust ourselves. Left over from another place when we didn’t know life could be fun, easy, natural, and joy could be ours.

Feeling guilty and anxious about that new thing you’re doing, that new place you’re going, that new adventure you’re on is part of your resistance to the lesson. Part of your shying back from the idea that you can truly, absolutely, and fundamentally love yourself and enjoy all parts of your life.

Soon you will see that you’ve been led to the very place you’re at right now. The very thing you are feeling guilty and anxious about is the very thing you’ve been led to do to take you on your next adventure.

Life is abundant. We can bask in self-love and the healing resources around us. Our movements, our activities, our days and hours and nights can flow easily. Naturally. And we can do the things we’re led to do without feeling guilty.

Recognize the guilt and anxiety of resistance as just that: resistance. Then let yourself go on your journey of love without spoiling it with guilt.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Enjoy the void

We begin to walk down a path– recovery, a new job, a new relationship. We’re busy, even overwhelmed, with everything that lies before us. We work and work and walk our path and grow. Then one day the relationship changes. The job changes. Or we’re far anough along to look past the next minute of sobriety and when we look, we can’t see anything.

We get scared. Nothingness can be frightening. There’s no way to plan for the future. We can’t make the right move. We’re surrounded with decisions, and none of them feel like the right ones.

Relax. Savor this moment,too. Stop trying to fill it up. You’re in the void, that magical place from which all creation arises. Breathe the air, look at the flowers, feel the sun. Or build a fire to keep you warm. There’s no need to be frightened of this place; there’s nothing you need to do. Keep walking your path, and the creative way will become clear to you soon.

God, help me to let go of worry when I’m in the in-between places in my life. Help me to walk in peace and let the universe show me the path that I am to follow. Help me relax in this space and garner energy for the journey ahead.

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Relating to the Negative
The Danger of Repression by Madisyn Taylor

When negative thoughts arise it is best to address them rather than pushing them down where they will surface again.

For the last several years, there has been a lot of focus on the power of positive thinking. Many people have come to misinterpret this wisdom to mean that it is not okay to have a bad mood or a negative thought or feeling. This can lend a kind of superficiality to their relationship with life and relationships with other people. It can also lead them to feel that if a negative thought or feeling comes up, in themselves or someone else, they must immediately block it out. When they do this, they are engaging in the act of repressing a part of themselves that needs to seen, heard, and processed.

When we repress parts of ourselves, they don’t go away so much as they get buried deep within us, and they often come out when we least expect it. On the other hand, if we allow ourselves to be fully human, honoring all the thoughts, feelings, and moods that pass through us on a given day, we create a more conscious relationship with ourselves. Instead of blocking out thoughts and feelings that we label as negative, we can simply observe them and then let them go. They only get stuck when we react to them negatively, pushing them down and out of sight where they get lodged in our unconscious minds. A healthier solution might be to develop a practice of following any negative thought we may have with a positive thought. This works well because positive thoughts are many times more powerful than negative thoughts.

Rather than setting our minds up in such a way that we become fearful of the contents of our own consciousness, blocking out anything that is less than 100 percent positive, we might resolve to develop a friendlier attitude toward ourselves, trusting in our inherent goodness. When we recognize our true inner worth, a few dark clouds passing through our minds will not intimidate us. We will see them for what they are—small, dark figures passing through an expansive sky of well-being and truth. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Our ancient enemy, self-will, wears a mask, confronting me with this sort of rationalization: “Why do I have to lean on God? Hasn’t He already given me the intelligence to think for myself?” I have to pause when such thoughts creep into my mind, remembering that I’ve never really been able to bring about the results I wanted simply by relying on my own devices. I’m not self-sufficient, nor do I know all the answers; bitter experience alone teaches me that. Do I know that I need God’s guidance? Am I willing to accept it?

Today I Pray

I pray that, as I become stronger in my conviction and in my sobriety, I will not begin to shrug off my dependence on a Higher Power. May I continue to pray for guidance, even when things seem to be going along smoothly. May I know that I need my Higher Power as much in times of triumph as in times of trauma.

Today I Will Remember

Self-sufficiency is a godless myth.

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One More Day

Happiness is not being pained in body nor troubled in mind. -Thomas Jefferson

Teenagers say it all the time: “Hey! Mellow Out! Hype down!” These words may be alien to us, but we can listen to these somewhat flippant admonitions.

Perhaps we do get too tense at times during certain phases of our lives. Pain, anxiety, or stress can cause us to tighten our muscles, to brace our bodies against the impact of our medical problems. The tighter our bodies become, the less patient and kind we are to those we love.

To help ourselves “mellow out” we first have to identify the feelings associated with tenseness. We can calm down by taking deep, slow, cleansing breaths. Let’s do ourselves a favor and learn to relax, to mellow out.

By learning to let my body rest and relax, I can concentrate on keeping my mind free and untroubled.

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Food For Thought

Insanity

The longer we maintain abstinence from compulsive overeating, the more we realize how insane we were before we found OA. Our withdrawal from people and reality into eating to excess was definitely not a sane way to live. As we work the Steps of this program, we see that many of our thoughts and attitudes were as insane as our destructive behavior.

It is our Higher Power who restores us to sanity, but He requires our surrender and cooperation. We can actively seek out the people and experiences which are life enhancing rather than detrimental to our mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being. The activities and associations, which went along with our compulsive overeating in the past, may have to be eliminated if we are to enjoy a sane, sober life in the present and future.

Continuing to beat our heads against the brick walls of past failures is insanity. We have a new life to live, provided we relinquish the attitudes and behavior, which we now know to be insane.

Preserve us from old insanities.

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One Day At A Time

INTUITION
Don’t listen to friends when the Friend inside you says, “Do this!”
Mahatma Gandhi

The Oxford dictionary describes intuition as “immediate apprehension by the mind without reasoning.” Well, I certainly never acted on intuition for most of my life because, in order for me to make any decision, it had to be based on cold hard logic. I would literally make a scientific “if – then hypothesis” based on all the possible consequences of any action I was contemplating, and by the time I’d looked into all the possible negative outcomes, I’d more than likely have talked myself out of it. Part of the problem was fear that if it didn’t turn out well, I would not be taken care of. How could I trust that my Higher Power would take care of me, seeing I had for a long time been angry at God and believed that He was definitely not there for me?

One of the miracles of the program has been my returning belief in a Higher Power who is always there for me when I need Him. I am slowly learning that I just need to turn my will and my life over to Him on a daily basis as it tells me in Step Three, and amazing things are beginning to happen. Because I wasn’t able to do this for many years, I had blocked my intuition, which we are told is the way in which we are in direct contact with our Higher Power. Slowly, the intuitive thoughts are returning as I work on a daily relationship with my Higher Power, and I am now more able to act on them, knowing that I will always be taken care of.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will continue to turn my will and my life over to my Higher Power knowing that my connection with Him, my intuition, is getting stronger each day, and that I am more able to do God’s will for today.
~ Sharon S.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

For most normal folks, drinking means conviviality, companionship and colorful imagination. It means release from care, boredom and worry. It is joyous intimacy with friends and a feeling that life is good. But not so with us in those last days of heavy drinking. – Pg. 151 – A Vision For You

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

A Little Magic

Each day is a gift especially for me. I will look through innocent eyes at the world today and see the gifts that are meant just for me. Children think the sun rises for and because of them. They’re sure that the moon hangs in the sky because they waved their arm towards the heavens. That flowers bloom for their eyes alone to see. They are magical thinkers. They take delight in the antics of a squirrel, in a balloon sailing in a bright, blue sky. They see the world fresh, in color and alive each new day, each new moment. They are constantly being surprised. Today, I think I’ll borrow a little of their magic. Their magic and my maturity may just be a winning combination.

I believe anything is possible

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Some days you will be shocked at how nasty and short tempered you are. You’ll think, ‘This can’t be me being so unreasonable.’ Yet it is. You may deny it’s really you by jostling the blame on another, ‘If they hadn’t….’. No, your bad behavior is your fault. You have no excuse. Now, can you love you anyway?

I learn to love me even when I don’t like me.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

On the first drink: When you get hit by a train, which kills you, the engine or the caboose?

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am beginning to trust myself today. There is a place deep within me that tells me that I am okay and guides me along my path in recovery.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It’s fine to drink like a fish.
If you drink what fish drink. – Jim M.

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AA Thought for the Day

December 3

Helpfulness
Now you are getting back into the social life of this world. Don’t start to withdraw again just because your friends drink

liquor.
Your job now is to be at the place where you may be of maximum helpfulness to others,
so never hesitate to go anywhere if you can be helpful.
– Alcoholics Anonymous,p. 102

Thought to Ponder . . .
Trust God. Clean house. Help others.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H O P E = Helping Other People Every day.

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

Fear
“We have had a much keener look at ourselves
and those about us.
We have seen that we were prodded by
unreasonable fears and anxieties
into making a life business of winning fame, money,
and what we thought was leadership.
So false pride became the reverse side
of that ruinous coin marked ‘Fear.’
We simply had to be Number One people
to cover up our deep-lying inferiorities.”
1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 123

Thought to Consider . . .
Situations I fear are rarely as bad as the fear itself.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F E A R = Frantic Efforts to Appear Recovered

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

An Avocation
From: “Foreword”
It is important that we remain anonymous because we are too few, at present to handle the overwhelming number of personal appeals which may result from this publication. Being mostly business or professional folk, we could not well carry on our occupations in such an event. We would like it understood that our alcoholic work is an avocation.
When writing or speaking publicly about alcoholism, we urge each of our Fellowship to omit his personal name, designating himself instead as “a member of Alcoholics Anonymous.”
Very earnestly we ask the press also, to observe this request, for otherwise we shall be greatly handicapped.
1989, Carry the Message, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, [First Edition facsimile], page vii

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

“Only the sharing of despair can bring us … illumination.”
Pleasantville, N.Y., August 1959
“The Sense of Sobriety,”
Spiritual Awakenings

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

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

” When we saw others solve their problems by a simple reliance upon the
Spirit of the Universe, we had to stop doubting the power of God. Our
ideas did not work. But the God idea did.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, Page 52~

Now we go out to our fellows and repair the damage done in the past.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.76

Our inventory enables us to settle with the past.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.89

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

In A.A., we found that it did not matter too much what our material condition was, but it mattered greatly what our spiritual condition was. As we improved our spiritual outlook, money gradually became our servant and not our master. It became a means of exchanging love and service with those about us.
One of A.A.’s Loners is an Australian sheepman who lives two thousand miles from the nearest town, where yearly he sells his wool. In order to be paid the best prices he has to get to town during a certain month. But when he heard that a big regional A.A. meeting was to be held at a later date when wool prices would have fallen, he gladly took a heavy financial loss in order to make his journey then. That’s how much an A.A. meeting means to him.

Prayer for the Day: Ninth Step Prayer – Higher Power, I pray for the right attitude to make my amends, being ever mindful not to harm others in the process. I ask for Your guidance in making indirect amends. Most important, I will continue to make amends by staying abstinent, helping others and growing in spiritual progress.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 2nd

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 2nd

Daily Reflections

SERENITY

Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, . . .
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 106

As I continued to go to meetings and work the Steps, something began to happen to me. I
felt confused because I wasn’t sure what it was that I was feeling, and then I realized I
was experiencing serenity. It was a good feeling, but where had it come from? Then I
realized it had come “. . .as the result of these steps.” The program may not always be
easy to practice, but I had to acknowledge that my serenity had come to me after working
the Steps. As I work the Steps in everything I do, practicing these principles in all my
affairs, now I find that I am awake to God, to others, and to myself. The spiritual
awakening I have enjoyed as the result of working the Steps is the awareness that I am
no longer alone.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The thoughts that come before having a slip seem to be partly subconscious. And yet it is
likely that at least part of these thoughts get into our consciousness. An idle thought
connected with drinking casually pops into our mind. That is the crucial moment. Will I
harbor that thought even for one minute or will I banish it from my mind at once? If I let it
stay, it may develop into a daydream. I may begin to see a cool glass of beer or a
Manhattan cocktail in my mind’s eye. If I allow the daydream to stay in my mind, it
may lead to a decision, however unconscious, to take a drink. Then I am headed for a
slip. Do I let myself daydream?

Meditation For The Day

Many of us have a sort of vision of the kind of person God wants us to be. We must be
true to that vision, whatever it is, and we must try to live up to it, by living the way we
believe we should live. We can all believe that God has a vision of what He wants us to be
like. In all people there is a good person whom God sees in us, the person we could be
and that God would like us to be. But many a person fails to fulfill that promise and God’s
disappointments must be many.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may strive to be the kind of a person that God would have me be. I pray that
I may try to fulfill God’s vision of what I could be.


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As Bill Sees It

Renew Your Effort, p. 68

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

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

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

Letter, 1958

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Walk In Dry Places

Bringing Projects to Completion.
Fortitude
Starting projects without completing them can be part of our alcoholic nature. It’s related to immaturity and a tendency to become bored and discouraged quickly.
The 12 Step program can help us overcome this problem. First, we realize and admit to such tendencies, fearlessly facing what has really been a very bad habit. Then we become honest about our motives. We realize that we didn’t actually have the abiding interest that would have helped us complete some projects. In such cases, the projects never should have been started…   and in the future we’ll take are not to embark on similar projects.
When something does need to be completed, the program will help us stay with it until it’s done. We will always find that the satisfaction of completing a necessary project will be part of sober living.  We’ll also know that we’re growing in the program.
I’ll take the necessary steps today to move any project toward completion. This will also help with future projects.

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Keep It Simple

…we tried to carry this message to alcoholics...–Second part of Step 12.
In this part of Step 12, we carry the message of hope. But it’s not up to us if anyone accepts the message or not. This keeps us from playing God. We just gently deliver the message. We don’t force the program down people’s throats. In general, Step Twelve tells us, “Be helpful to those we can help.” When a neighbor is sick, mow her lawn. When a friend is in the hospital, visit him. Step Twelve reminds us that we make a difference. We have hope to give the world. And hope is what we stand for to the addict who still suffers. Hope is what we stand for to the addict’s family. How beautiful to stand for hope! Remember when our lives stood for despair?? What a change!
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me shine brightly as a symbol of Your hope.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll help someone in need. It may be an alcoholic or other drug addict, or just someone in need. I’ll help make the world a better place.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The old woman I shall become will be quite different from the woman I am now. Another I is beginning . . .  –George Sand
Change is constant. And we are always becoming. Each chance, each feeling, each responsibility we commit ourselves to adds to the richness of our womanhood. We are not yesterday’s woman, today. Our new awarenesses have brought us beyond her. And we can’t go back without knowing, somehow, that she no longer meets the needs of today.
We can look forward to our changes, to the older woman we are becoming. She will have the wisdom that we still lack. She will have learned to live and let live. She will have acquired, through years of experiences, a perspective that lends sanity to all situations.
The lessons we are learning today, the pain that overwhelms us now and again, are nurturing the developing woman within each of us. If only we could accept the lessons and master them. If only we could trust the gift of change that accompanies the pain.
I am becoming. And with the becoming, comes peace. I can sense it today. I know where I was yesterday. 

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

Bitterly discouraged, he found himself in a strange place, discredited and almost broke. Still physically weak, and sober but a few months, he saw that his predicament was dangerous. He wanted so much to talk with someone, but whom?
One dismal afternoon he paced a hotel lobby wondering how his bill was to be paid. At the end of the room stood a glass covered directory of local churches. Down the lobby a door opened into an attractive bar. He could see the gay crowd inside. In there he would find companionship and release. Unless he took some drinks, he might not have the courage to scrape an acquaintance and would have a lonely week-end.
Of course he couldn’t drink, but why not sit hopefully at a table, a bottle of ginger ale before him? After all, had he not been sober six months now? Perhaps he could handle, say, three drinks—no more! Fear gripped him. He was on thin ice. Again it was the old, insidious insanity—that first drink. With a shiver, he turned away and walked down the lobby to the church directory. Music and gay chatter still floated to him from the bar.

p. 154

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I was blessed to live in a city where there were meetings at all hours of the day and night. There I would be safe. And there, within a few blocks of my apartment, at last I would find the self I had traveled thousands of miles in search of. The slogans on the walls, which at first made me shudder, began to impress me as truths I could live by: “One Day at a Time.” “Easy Does It.” “Keep It Simple.” “Live and Let Live.” “Let Go and Let God.” “The Serenity Prayer.”

pp. 344-345

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Ten – “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

As we work the first nine Steps, we prepare ourselves for the adventure of a new life. But when we approach Step Ten we commence to put our A.A. way of living to practical use, day by day, in fair weather or foul. Then comes the acid test: can we stay sober, keep in emotional balance, and live to good purpose under all conditions?

p. 88

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Destroying pride — man becomes endearing;
Destroying anger — man gets rid of sorrow;
Destroying desire — man acquires peace;
Destroying greed — man achieves happiness.
–Satya Sai Baba

Whoever seeks God . . . has already found God.
–unknown

It’s never too late to begin making an effort.
–unknown

When you find yourself rundown from life, pace yourself and take a refreshing break.
–unknown

BIG BOOK – Believing In God Beats Our Old Knowledge

WILLING – When I Live Life, I Need God

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PROBLEMS

“The certainties of one age are
the problems of the next.”
— R. H. Tawney

Life is a process of change that inevitably produces problems; the fear of the new, the
discomfort of old values being seen to be wrong, the confusion that so often accompanies
growth. Problems are part of life and we can only escape them in death. (Even then
nobody can be sure we will be free of problems!)

As an alcoholic I tried to run away from my problems by drinking. But the next day the
old problems were still there and my drinking had usually brought new problems. Alcohol
only produced a momentary escape but reality always returned.

Today, with the acceptance of my alcoholism and my decision not to “pick up the first
drink”, I face my problems. I deal with my problems. I live with the problems of life.

Teach me to accept joyously the problems that life and growth inevitably bring.

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“But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.”
Matthew 13:16

“Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have,
because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.'”
Hebrews 13:5


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Daily Inspiration

Life will be so much easier if you can accept that things don’t always go as planned and see that these are often magnificent opportunities. Lord, help me learn from the occurences of today that seem to go awry and show me how to make the situation better through my own flexibility and creativity.

Enthusiasm keeps the mind young and the spirit growing. Lord, may I always see wonder in the ordinary happenings of my day.

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NA Just For Today

Recovery: Our First Priority

“We have to keep our recovery first and our priorities in order.”
Basic Text pg. 79

Before coming to NA, we used many excuses to justify our use of drugs: “He yelled at me” “She said this.” “My partner left.” “I got fired.” We used these same excuses for not seeking help for our drug problem. We had to realize that these things kept happening because we kept using drugs. Only when we made recovery our first priority did these situations begin to change.

We may be subject to the same tendency today, using excuses for not attending meetings and being of service. Our current excuses may be of a different nature: “I can’t leave my kids.” “My vacation wore me out.” “I have to finish this project so I can impress my boss.” But still, if we don’t make recovery our first priority, chances are that we won’t have to worry about these excuses anymore. Kids, vacations, and jobs probably won’t be in our lives if we relapse.

Our recovery must come first. Job or no job, relationship or no relationship, we have to attend meetings, work the steps, call our sponsor, and be of service to God and others. These simple actions are what make it possible for us to have vacations, families, and bosses to worry about. Recovery is the foundation of our lives, making everything else possible.

Just for today: I will keep my priorities in order. Number One on the list is my recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
When one is a stranger to oneself, then one is estranged from others, too. –Anne Morrow Lindbergh
There’s a person inside each of us just itching to be known and loved. But if we don’t get to know and love that person, how can we expect anyone else to know us?
That’s why it’s so important to spend time alone getting acquainted with ourselves. And how do we do that? We can sit quietly with ourselves, thinking and listening. Then we can write our thoughts in a journal, or we can draw or paint them. If we play a musical instrument, we can put our thoughts and feelings into music.
When we make the time and effort to know ourselves, it encourages others to want to know us, too. Since everything we do and feel begins inside us, we must feel good about ourselves in order to feel good about anything else. What wonders we are, that we have all the power we need to make our world a happy one!
How do I feel about myself today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The management assumes no responsibility for what is found. –Abraham Maslow
There are so many occasions when we would like to blame somebody–wife, child, parent, or “the management,” for our feelings. When we get frustrated, overworked, or angry, we want somebody else to take responsibility. In truth, each of us has his own path and is responsible for his feelings. One man said that living alone made it clear to him that his wife wasn’t creating his feelings. Until then he thought she was responsible.
This blaming and not taking responsibility keep a man in the role of victim. When we accept the difficult message that our feelings are ours to deal with and no one else’s, self-improvement begins. We begin to walk the difficult but self respecting path of spiritual awakening. We can do something about whatever hurts. Even in that awakening there are no guarantees that who we are will be totally what we want to find. Our only guarantee is that our Higher Power is with us to deal with the realities of our lives.
Today, help me be responsible for what I feel and do.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The old woman I shall become will be quite different from the woman I am now. Another I is beginning . . . –George Sand
Change is constant. And we are always becoming. Each chance, each feeling, each responsibility we commit ourselves to adds to the richness of our womanhood. We are not yesterday’s woman, today. Our new awarenesses have brought us beyond her. And we can’t go back without knowing, somehow, that she no longer meets the needs of today.
We can look forward to our changes, to the older woman we are becoming. She will have the wisdom that we still lack. She will have learned to live and let live. She will have acquired, through years of experiences, a perspective that lends sanity to all situations.
The lessons we are learning today, the pain that overwhelms us now and again, are nurturing the developing woman within each of us. If only we could accept the lessons and master them. If only we could trust the gift of change that accompanies the pain.
I am becoming. And with the becoming, comes peace. I can sense it today. I know where I was yesterday.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Putting Our Life on Hold
We cannot afford to put our needs on hold, waiting for another person to fulfill us, make our life better, or come around and be who and what we want that person to be. That will create resentment, hostility, an unhealthy dependency, and a mess to deal with later on.
If we have decided we want a particular relationship or want to wait about making a decision in a particular relationship, then we must go on with our own life in the interim.
That can be hard. It can feel natural to put our life on hold. That is when we get caught up in the codependent beliefs: That person can make me happy… I need that particular person to do a particular thing in order to be happy….
That’s a circumstance that can hook our low self-esteem, our self-doubt, and our tendency to neglect ourselves.
We can get into this situation in a number of ways. We can do this waiting for a letter, waiting for a job, waiting for a person, waiting for an event.
We do not have to put our life on hold. There will be repercussions from doing this. Go on with your life. Take life a day at a time.
What is something I could be doing now to take care of myself, make myself feel better, get my needs met in an appropriate, healthy way?
How can I own my power to take care of myself, despite what the other person is or isn’t doing?
What will happen if I break the system and begin taking care of myself?
Sometimes, we get the answer we want immediately. Sometimes, we wait for a while. Sometimes, things don’t work out exactly the way we hoped. But they always work out for good, and often better than we expected.
And in the meantime, we have manifested love for ourselves by living our own life and taking the control away from others. That always comes back to us tenfold, because when we actually manifest love for ourselves, we give our Higher Power, other people, and the Universe permission to send us the love we want and need. Stopping living our life to make a thing happen doesn’t work. All it does is make us miserable, because we have stopped living our life.
Today, I will force myself, if necessary, to live my own life. I will act in my own best interest, in a way that reflects self-love. If I have given power or control of my life to someone other than myself, and someone besides a Power greater than myself, I will take it back. I will begin acting in my own best interests, even if it feels awkward to do that.

No matter what is going on in my life today, I can always find something for which to be grateful. When I stop and think about this and make a gratitude list, there is no room for depression or self pity. There is so much to be grateful for today. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Learn to Visualize Your Path

Learn to visualize what you would like to see happen in your life. Use your mind and your imagination, in connection with your heart, to create a picture of the future.

Visions can help create our future and guide us down the path. If we have a picture of where we’re going, it will help us know when we get there. It will help us know we’re on track.

At times, we find ourselves easily using our imaginations to create a clear picture. We can see ourselves doing something a particular way, comfortably functioning in a particular situation. We can see how what we’re working on is going to look. We can see ourselves living in a particular place, working at a particular job, or vacationing at that special spot. We know clearly what we want.

Other times, our vision may not be as clear. We may have only a few vague ideas about how a thing or place will look. We need to focus our attention and create as clear a picture as we can. Making a list of all we know about what we’d like it to be helps here.

Other times, we may be completely in the dark without a clue about where we’re going. That doesn’t mean we can’t get there or that there is no place for us to go. It means that we need to ask God, the universe, to help us become clear on what would be good, clear enough so we can recognize the answer when it comes.

Learn to use your imagination to create the life you want. Take time at the beginning to develop a vision, an idea about what you want. Visualize how you would like things to be. Then let your vision guide you where you need to go.

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More Language Of Letting Go

The lesson is joy

I was visiting a counselor in Minnesota one cold January day in 1991. We were talking about the present and speculating about the lessons to come. She grabbed my hand and looked at me, looked right into my eyes. “This I know for sure,” she said. “You’ve been through enough pain. Now you’re going to learn about joy.”

One week later, my son Shane died.

Mixed in with my grief was rage. I was so angry with her for saying that. It was another instance of getting my hopes up that I could finally be happy. Now, I felt tricked and let down.

The years passed slowly. I lost almost everything, including my desire to write. Nichole graduated from high school. Then she moved out of the house, and to New York. Life kept changing and moving along, in spite of how I felt.

One year I noticed that the anniversary of Shane’s death had passed, and I hadn’t become depressed. Then I began to notice something else. I was beginning to feel alive, vibrant, awestruck with life. It wasn’t a naive assumption that whatever I wanted, I’d get. It was a newfound ability to surrender to each moment and enjoy what life brought my way. I made new friends. My relationships with old friends changed. What inspired me was my new relationship with life. I stopped looking for outward circumstances to provide me with happiness. I began to see that I held that key myself.

If you’re going through something in your life that isn’t what you planned, a transformation is at hand. While we might prefer to be transformed in the twinkling of an eye, it usually doesn’t happen that fast. It takes all the moments added together, and sometimes those moments go on and on. But one day when you least expect it– a phoenix rises from the ashes. That phoenix is you.

Some of us encounter a lot of pain. Some of us have less. If I could sit across from you right now, I’d look into your eyes and say these words to you: “I know you’ve been through a lot. But there’s a new cycle coming. You’re going to learn about joy.”

Life is going to take you on your own journey of personal transformation. You may have let go of some things. But don’t worry, you’ll get some of those things back. And sometimes when we think something is lost, it’s not. It’s just moved to a different place. No pain, no gain, is what many people say. And usually they say that because when the lesson is learned, the pain stops. But then something happens. It just clicks in. The moments start getting better and better. And it’s not because of what we get. It happens because we’ve surrendered. And although it looks like what we’ve surrendered to is pain and heartache, we’ve really surrendered to God’s will.

There’s a world out there– right outside your door. And the key that opens the door is in your hand. The ultimate lesson is learning joy. Put your fears aside. Live your life, whatever that means to you today. It may happen today, tomorrow, next week, or in ten years. but you won’t be able to help yourself. You’ll throw your hat up in the air, look around, and shout, “Oh my God, how sweet life is.”

God, help me get through my lessons, one by one. Then bring me to that place where I learn about joy.

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Choosing Not To Be a Target
Emotional Attacks

Hurtful confrontations often leave us feeling drained and confused. When someone attacks us emotionally, we may wonder what we did to rouse their anger, and we take their actions personally. We may ask ourselves what we could have done to compel them to behave or speak that way toward us. It’s important to remember that there are no real targets in an emotional attack and that it is usually a way for the attacker to redirect their uncomfortable feelings away from themselves. When people are overcome by strong emotions, like hurt or anguish, they may see themselves as victims and lash out at others as a means of protection or to make themselves feel better. You may be able to shield yourself from an emotional attack by not taking the behavior personally. First, however, it is good to cultivate a state of detachment that can provide you with some protection from the person who is attacking you. This will allow you to feel compassion for this person and remember that their beha! vior isn’t as much about you as it is about their need to vent their emotions.

If you have difficulty remaining unaffected by someone’s behavior, take a moment to breathe deeply and remind yourself that you didn’t do anything wrong, and you aren’t responsible for people’s feelings. If you can see that this person is indirectly expressing a need to you—whether they are reaching out for help or wanting to be heard—you may be able to diffuse the attack by getting them to talk about what is really bothering them.

You cannot control other people’s emotions, but you can control your own. If you sense yourself responding to their negativity, try not to let yourself. Keep your heart open to them, and they may let go of their defensiveness and yield to your compassion and openness. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Once at a meeting held in a church, I saw a stained glass window on which was written, “God Is Love.” For some reason, my mind transposed the words into “Love Is God.” Either way is correct and true, I realized, looking about me and becoming even more conscious of the spirit of love and Power in the small meeting room. I’ll continue to seek out that love and Power, following The Program as if my life depended upon it — as indeed it does. Does life to me today mean living — in the active sense — joyously and comfortably?

Today I Pray

May I feel the spirit of love that gives our prayers their energy. May I feel the oneness in this room, the concentration of love that gives the group its power. May I feel the exemplary love of a Higher Power, which our love echoes.

Today I Will Remember

Love Is God.

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One More Day

Habituation is a falling asleep or fatiguing of the sense of time; which explains why young years pass slowly, while later life finds itself faster and faster upon its course.
–Thomas Mann

Our routines can become so rote that we’re unaware of making choices. Suddenly, we realize we haven’t done many of the things which matter most to us. With this realization comes another: sometimes making no choice is, in fact a choice in the same things, saying the same words, living a copy of the day before – we have chosen to live safely. But we may think, I wish I had…

We don’t have to completely change our lives in order to make better choices for ourselves. All we have to do is see all the choices open to us.

What and how I choose makes every day different from the last.

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Food For Thought

Guilt

It was often a feeling of guilt, which led us to overeat, and the more we overate, the guiltier we felt. A Fourth Step inventory can pinpoint the reasons for the guilt that we still experience, and by taking the Fifth Step we are able to express and release this guilt.

Some of our guilt feelings are unnecessary. We may experience a sense of guilt when we say no to requests and demands, which infringe on our legitimate rights. We may feel guilty when we do not live up to the expectations of someone close to us. We need to develop a strong sense of self worth so that we do not suffer from guilt at not conforming to someone else’s image of who we should be.

Working our program relieves us of unnecessary guilt. When we make amends to those we have in fact injured, we are freed from a heavy burden of real guilt. When we experience confirmation of who we are through contact with our Higher Power, we are liberated from the constraint of imagined guilt.

Show us how to deal with guilt.

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One Day At A Time

FAITH
I try to avoid looking forward or backward,
and try to keep looking upward.
Charlotte Bronte

If only I would remember to keep my focus on God and today, not yesterday and not tomorrow. The past is just that … the past. I can’t change any of it, the good memories or the bad. They are just memories. I don’t have to forget my past; I just have to stop hurting myself by constantly agonizing over what I consider mistakes and failures.

Tomorrow is in God’s hands. What better place for it to be! I have to learn to trust God to hold me in the palm of His hands, the same way He holds tomorrow. He isn’t going to drop me or close His fist around me so tightly that I can’t breathe.

We are all created with the ability to make choices, and He gives us that freedom. He will hold us securely, and help us make the right choices, if only we let go and let Him.

One day at a time . . .
I will forget yesterday and tomorrow. I will not look backward or forward. I will look up and put myself in God’s care, knowing He will hold me safely in the palm of His hand.
Debbie K.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The man in the bed was told of the acute poisoning from which he suffered, how it deteriorates the body of an alcoholic and warps his mind. There was much talk about the mental state preceding the first drink. – Pg. 157 – A Vision For You

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

We always wanted our image to be so good, yet we always seemed to come off bad. No amount of mind-affecting chemicals ever made us come off good, either. They just made us think we were OK. But there is nothing so bad right now, that a fix, pill, drink, smoke, or snort won’t make it worse.

May I clearly see that drugs only provided an illusion of good time, not the real thing.

Hesitation

Today, I will walk the walk and talk the talk. It will not be good for me, ultimately, to half commit myself. In a way, the particular path that I take is less significant than that I take a path. I can second-guess myself and my experience. Commitment to a path is really commitment to myself. I am allowing myself to take a clear direction, one in which I can actualize my talents on a day-to-day basis, one that will allow me to build a foundation and a structure in which I can live. I will have a passion in life, a passion that takes me beyond myself, a passion to love, nourish, be led and challenged by. I will follow it, and it will follow me.

I deserve a passion in my life.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

There are a lot more reasons for working the Ninth Step than freedom, serenity, and moral responsibility. Making amends is a good way of having the last word.

I take my program seriously and myself lightly.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Thinking about what you’ll say before you share, or what you should have said after you share means you missed the meeting.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

No matter what is going on in my life today, I can always find something for which to be grateful. When I stop and think about this and make a gratitude list, there is no room for depression or self pity. There is so much to be grateful for today.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I know if I take a drink, I’m gone. It’s going to just keep feeding itself. But I secretly suspected that everybody who drinks must surely get that same fired-up feeling and want more, but because they don’t have a problem with it they can control it. But in the AA Big Book Dr. Silkworth says that’s not true; non alcoholics never experience that phenomenon of craving. – Bob D.

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AA Thought for the Day

December 2

Instincts
We have learned that the satisfaction of instincts cannot be the sole end of our lives.
If we place instincts first, we have got the cart before the horse; we shall be pulled backward into disillusionment.
But when we are willing to place spiritual growth first — then and only then do we have a real chance.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 114

Thought to Ponder . . .
A spiritual awakening is our greatest gift.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
K I S S = Keeping It Simple, Spiritually.

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

Grandiosity
“In my teens, I had to be an athlete
because I was not an athlete.
I had to be a musician because I could not carry a tune.
I had to be first in everything
because in my perverse heart
I felt myself the least of God’s creatures.
I could not accept my deep sense of inferiority,
and so I strove to become captain of the baseball team,
and I did learn to play the fiddle.
Lead I must — or else.
This was the ‘all or nothing’ kind of demand
that later did me in.”
– Bill W., AA Comes of Age, p. 53
1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 214

Thought to Consider . . .
We claim spiritual progress
rather than spiritual perfection.

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

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

December 1944
AA History
The New York World-Telegram reported on the dinner held in honor of the tenth anniversary of Bill W’s sobriety (December 11, 1934). That newspaper erroneously called it the 10th anniversary of the founding of AA. There were 1500 members in attendance that night at the Commodore Hotel.
The New York Herald Tribune recounted that Bill’s report of AA’s 10 year history was impressive. AA went from 15 alcoholics released from the “drinking habit” in the first year to 40 “conversions” after 3 years. At the end of 4 years there were 100 members, and the book Alcoholics Anonymous had been written. After nearly 10 years there were more than 12,000 members in 370 groups throughout the United States and Canada and a “new unit” functioning successfully in Hawaii (Hawaii would not become a state for another 15 years – in August of 1959).

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

“I sabotage myself if I attach my sobriety to people, places, or things.”
Carbondale, Ill., August 1988
“It’s Always Dark at the Beginning,”
Spiritual Awakenings

~*~*~*~*^ 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

“If there be divorce or separation, there should be no undue haste
for the couple to get together. The man should be sure of his
recovery. The wife should fully understand his new way of life. If
their old relationship is to be resumed it must be on a better basis,
since the former did not work. This means a new attitude and spirit
all around. Sometimes it is to the best interests of all concerned
that a couple remain apart. Obviously, no rule can be laid down.
Let the alcoholic continue his program day by day. When the time for
living together has come, it will be apparent to both parties.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, Page 99

I must turn in all things to the Father of Light who presides over us all.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.14

We all need the light of God’s reality, the nourishment of His strength, and the atmosphere of His grace.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.97

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We admitted we couldn’t lick alcohol with our own remaining resources, and so we accepted the further fact that dependence upon a Higher Power (if only our A.A. group) could do this hitherto impossible job. The moment we were able to accept these facts fully, our release from the alcohol compulsion had begun.
For most of us, this pair of acceptances had required a lot of exertion to achieve. Our whole treasured a lot of exertion to achieve. Our whole treasured philosophy of self-sufficiency had to be cast aside. This had not been done with sheer will power; it came instead as the result of developing the willingness to accept these new facts of living.
We neither ran nor fought. But accept we did. And then we began to be free.

Prayer for the Day: Eighth Step Prayer – Higher Power, I ask Your help in making my list of all those I have harmed. I will take responsibility for my mistakes and be forgiving to others as You are forgiving to me. Grant me the willingness to begin my restitution. This I pray.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 1st

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Dec 1st

Daily Reflections

“SUGGESTED” STEPS

Our Twelfth Step also says that as a result of practicing
all the Steps, we have each found something called a
spiritual awakening. . . . A.A.’s manner of making ready
to receive this gift lies in the practice of the Twelve
Steps in our program.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 106-07

I remember my sponsor’s answer when I told him that the
Steps were “suggested.” He replied that they are
“suggested” in the same way that, if you were to jump
out of a airplane with a parachute, it is “suggested”
that you pull the ripcord to save your life. He pointed
out that it was “suggested” I practice the Twelve Steps,
if I wanted to save my life. So I try to remember daily
that I have a whole program of recovery based on all
Twelve of the “suggested” Steps.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The thoughts that come before having a slip are often
largely subconscious. It is a question whether or not
our subconscious minds ever become entirely free from
alcoholic thoughts as long as we live. For instance,
some of us dream about being drunk when we are asleep,
even after several years of sobriety in A.A. During the
period of our drinking days, our subconscious minds have
been thoroughly conditioned by our alcoholic way of
thinking and it is doubtful that they ever become
entirely free of such thoughts during our lifetime. But
when our conscious minds are fully conditioned against
drinking, we can stay sober and our subconscious minds
do not often bother us. Am I still conditioning my conscious
mind?

Meditation For The Day

Having sympathy and compassion for all who are in
temptation, a condition which we are sometimes in, we
have a responsibility towards them. Sympathy always
includes responsibility. Pity is useless because it does
not have a remedy for the need. But wherever our sympathy
goes, our responsibility goes too. When we are moved with
compassion, we should go to the one in need and bind up
his wounds as best we can.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have sympathy for those in temptation.
I pray that I may have compassion for others’ trials.


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As Bill Sees It

Quantity or Quality, p. 11

“About this slip business–I would not be too discouraged.  I think you
are suffering a great deal from a needless guilt.  For some reason or
other, the Lord has laid out tougher paths for some of us, and I guess
you are treading one of them.  God is not asking us to be successful.  He
is only asking us to try to be.  That, you surely are doing, and have been
doing.  So I would not stay away from A.A. through any feeling of
discouragement or shame.  It’s just the place you should be.  Why don’t
you try just as a member?  You don’t have to carry the whole A.A. on
your back, you know!

“It is not always the quantity of good things that you do, it is also the
quality that counts.

“Above all, take it one day at a time.”

Letter, 1958 

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Walk In Dry Places

Why do bad things happen?
Understanding life
No one has been able to explain why pain and misfortune must be part of the human condition.  Bad things can and do happen to everybody, and sometimes there’s no way to explain it.
Even in sobriety, AA members have misfortunes-–times when it appears that God is hiding. We even hear members share such experiences at meetings.
Many of us have found ways to use misfortunes constructively, however, by seeing how the program helps us deal with it. In some cases—but not all—we even learn that a misfortune was a disguised blessing.
Most important, by using the program, we are eliminating the drinking that has been the cause of many misfortunes in our lives. That alone makes our immediate world a much better place for everyone.
My life today can be both easy and hard. It gives me great comfort to know that I am not making conditions worse for myself and others.

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

Keep It Simple

Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps—First part of Step Twelve.
We are awake! Our spirits are alive. We are part of the world. Our addiction no longer clouds our vision. How? Step
Twelve answers this.
The beauty of Step Twelve is that if we feel our spirits starting to go dead, we know how to awaken them. It’s simple. Turn to the Steps. After all, working the Steps has awakened our spirits. The hope and serenity we feel are gifts given to us through the Steps of our program. And the more we turn to the Steps for help, the more life we’ll feel. The Steps are what feed and heal our souls. Prayer for the Day
Higher Power:  Thank you for the Steps. If I start to believe it is I who keeps me sober, remind me of my life before the Twelve Steps.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll read the Twelve Steps. I’ll think of how each Step helped awaken my spirit.

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Each Day a New Beginning

And it isn’t the thing you do, dear,
It’s the thing you leave undone
Which gives you a bit of a heartache
At the setting of the sun.
–Margaret Sangster
A quality we all share, a very human quality, is to expect perfection from ourselves, to expect the impossible in all tasks done. We must rejoice for the good we do. Each time we pat ourselves on the back for a job well done, our confidence grows a little bit more. Recovery is best measured by our emotional and spiritual health, expressed in our apparent confidence and trust in “the process.”
We need to recognize and celebrate our strong points, and they’ll gain even more strength. Likewise, we need to practice prayer and listening to guidance first to develop our ties to God, but more importantly to be able to acknowledge when help is at hand. We can do all we need to do with God’s help.
Having goals but keeping them realistic, for the day or the year, is a sign of emotional health. Not dwelling on those that can’t be accomplished, at the moment, is another sign. A change of attitude is all most of us need to move from where we are to a better place emotionally.
There’s never a better time than right now for rejoicing over what I’ve done.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

In the chapter “Working With Others” you gathered an idea of how we approach and aid others to health. Suppose now that through you several families have adopted this way of life. You will want to know more of how to proceed from that point. Perhaps the best way of treating you to a glimpse of your future will be to describe the growth or the fellowship among us. Here is a brief account:
Years ago, in 1935, one of our number made a journey to a certain western city. From a business standpoint, his trip came off badly. Had he been successful in his enterprise, he would have been set on his feet financially which, at the time, seemed vitally important. But his venture would up in a law suit and bogged down completely. The proceeding was shot through with much hard feeling and controversy.

pp. 153-154

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I read everything I could about this disease I have. My readings recounted the course I had lived and predicted the way I would die if I continued drinking. I had access to a good medical library, but after a while, I realized genetics and chemistry of the disease were of no use to me as an alcoholic. All that I needed to know about it, what would help get me sober, help me recover, I could learn in A.A.

p. 344

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Nine – “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

Above all, we should try to be absolutely sure that we are not delaying because we are afraid. For the readiness to take the full consequences of our past acts, and to take responsibility for the well-being of others at the same time, is the very spirit of Step Nine.

p. 87

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

“Beware of little expenses. A small leak will sink a great ship.”
–Benjamin Franklin

“There are no gains without pains.”
–Benjamin Franklin

Kindness is more than deeds. It is an attitude, an expression, a look, a touch. It is
anything that lifts another person.
–C. Neil Strait

Kind words do not cost much. Yet they accomplish much.
–Blaise Pascal

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

“What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity.”
–Joseph Addison

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

GOSSIP

“Great minds discuss ideas,
average minds discuss wants,
small minds discuss people.”
— Laurence J. Peter

Gossip is ultimately a form of malicious cowardice. It is a “blasphemy” because it
seeks to denigrate the human being that God has made in His image.

As a practicing alcoholic I was a gossip. I exaggerated and manipulated the truth with
my gossip. I made up stories against those people I had a resentment towards;
innocent people were abused and victimized by my gossip.

Also I loved listening to gossip. The listener plays an important role in the life of
“gossip” because without the listener it could not exist. It takes two to gossip!

Today gossip is unacceptable behavior in my program.

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

But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds,
and I will show you my faith by what I do.
James 2:18

“If I say I will forget my complaint, I will change my expression and smile.”
Job 9:27


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

Daily Inspiration

Accept yourself for who you are because who you are has a purpose and an important reason for being. Lord, Your love for me makes me special and lovable.

Take care of yourself so that you may give care to others. Lord, may I never totally ignore myself and my feelings for the sake of others and fit in time daily to refresh my spirit.

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NA Just For Today

Life’s Rewards

“We begin to pray only for God’s will for us. That way, we get only what we are capable of handling.”
Basic Text pg. 47

Imagine what might happen if God gave us everything we wanted. A fabulous new car, straight A’s, a triple salary raise – all ours without effort, just for the asking.

Now imagine the problems that come along with unearned riches, new luxury cars, and unmerited scholastic recognition. What would we do with a huge salary raise that had been granted for no reason? How would we handle our new financial responsibilities? And how would we live up to that raise? Could we ever make it appear that we deserve such pay when we know we don’t?

What about that fantastic new car? Most come with expensive insurance premiums and hefty maintenance costs. Are we prepared to care for what we’ve asked for?

Academic honors? Could we perform like A students after we’d been given high marks we hadn’t earned? What would we do if we were exposed as frauds?

When we talk to God, we need to remember that we live in the real world. We earn rewards and learn to handle them as we do. Confining our prayers to requests for knowledge of God’s will, the power to carry it out, and the ability to live with the consequences will ensure that we get no more than we can handle.

Just for today: I will pray only for knowledge of God’s will and the power to carry that out in the real world.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Go rich in poverty. Go rich in poetry. –May Sarton
Poetry lets us put the beauty of nature–the clouds, the flowers, and the waterfall–into words. Poetry lets us see that things, which appear to be opposites, may just be different ways of looking at the same thing. How can we be rich in poverty? Wealth in poverty means finding pleasure in simplicity, finding the core of what’s important, and saying it in the fewest possible words.
We are so often caught up in the pursuit of more–more money, more toys, more prestige that we forget how satisfying the simple things can be. Think of the beauty of a sunset or a walk by the river, the fun of playing in a sandbox or swinging on the swings in the park, or in simply taking time to get something done the right way, without hurry.
What riches lie around me right this moment?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer. –Albert Camus
Sometimes we suddenly see or sense opposite emotions within ourselves. The cold of winter presses in on us, and we may feel tested by its bite. Yet, when we think we cannot bear it a moment longer, we find a counterforce within, an inner reassurance that comes like a summer breeze and says we can do what we must. Perhaps it comes in a time of dark despair, and we realize that at least we’ve made it this far. We are pretty tough. In our deepest sadness about the loss of a love, we may find a more meaningful contact with our Higher Power.
The opposites in our lives may tempt us to fight them. One side may be very clear and obvious while the other side is hidden. When we are open, these extremes are spiritual teachers for us. As we think about life and our feelings today, what opposites do we find?
Today, I will remember that I have an invincible summer at the deepest part of winter in my life.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
And it isn’t the thing you do, dear,
It’s the thing you leave undone
Which gives you a bit of a heartache
At the setting of the sun.
–Margaret Sangster
A quality we all share, a very human quality, is to expect perfection from ourselves, to expect the impossible in all tasks done. We must rejoice for the good we do. Each time we pat ourselves on the back for a job well done, our confidence grows a little bit more. Recovery is best measured by our emotional and spiritual health, expressed in our apparent confidence and trust in “the process.”
We need to recognize and celebrate our strong points, and they’ll gain even more strength. Likewise, we need to practice prayer and listening to guidance first to develop our ties to God, but more importantly to be able to acknowledge when help is at hand. We can do all we need to do with God’s help.
Having goals but keeping them realistic, for the day or the year, is a sign of emotional health. Not dwelling on those that can’t be accomplished, at the moment, is another sign. A change of attitude is all most of us need to move from where we are to a better place emotionally.
There’s never a better time than right now for rejoicing over what I’ve done.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting People Be There for Us
Sometimes, we need nurturing. Sometimes, we need people to support us.
Many of us have been deprived of support and nurturing for so long we may not realize it’s something we want and need. Many of us have learned to block our stop ourselves from getting what we want and need.
We may not reach out to have our needs met. We may be in relationships with people who cannot or will not be available to meet our needs. Or we may be in relationships with people who would be happy to respond to a direct request from us.
We may have to give up something to do this. We may have to let go of our martyr or victim role. If we ask for what we want and need, and get those needs met, we will not be able to punish people, or push them away later on, for disappointing us.
We may have to let go of our fears enough to experience the intimacy that will occur when we allow someone to love and support us. We may even have to learn, one day at a time, how to be happy and content.
Learn to let others be there for us.
Today, I will be open to identifying what I need from people, and I will ask for what I want directly. I will let others be there for me.

I am okay about me today and that is terrific. –Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart

Let Yourself Be Who You Are

It’s difficult to be around people who are trying to be perfect– perfectly healthy , perfectly polite, perfectly poised, perfectly controlled.

Remember that being human means being imperfect, being flawed. Let yourself be. Let others be. Slouch in your chair. Eat with the wrong fork. Laugh out loud. Stand up and reveal who you are and know that you’re good enough.

Stop worrying that people will find out who you really are. Instead, hope that they do. Help them by openly sharing yourself and being not who you think you should be, but who you really are.

Freedom is just a small step away– a step into self-love and acceptance. When you take it, others will follow. And they’ll be grateful you led the way.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

Say how sweet it is

Many of us have been seeking diligently for the meaning of life, at least for the meaning of our lives. I thought I had found it when I began recovering from chemical dependency. Aha, I thought. The meaning of life is to stay sober. Then along came codependecy and my need to recover from those issues. Surely, the seach for enlightenment would culminate there.

No, not yet.

It was as if there was a big locked metal door. On one side of it was supreme knowledge of why we’re here, that elusive “thing” called enlightenment. I was on the other side of the door, locked out, searching for the key.

Over the years, I’ve been to therapists, doctors, and healers. I’ve used homeopathy, kinesiology, acupuncture, and acupressure. In my youth, I tried alcohol and drugs, thinking they were the answer. I looked for the answer to the meaning of life in relationships. Then I searched for enlightenent by avoiding commitment and romantic love at any cost. I’ve tried Gestalt therapy, transactional analysis, hypnotherapy, prayer, and meditation,too. Over the past twenty-seven years, I’ve actively participated in more than one Twelve Step program in this quest for truth.

I’ve dutifully plodded through the grinding work so many people have come to know as family of origin work. Hooray, I finally found and healed my inner child. I even have a fuzzy teddy bear on the floor next to my bed. After my son died, I stayed with every moment of my grief until I worked through it by finally accepting the lifetime handicap that I would live in spite of the loss of Shane.

I’ve perused A Course in Miracles, learning with Marianne Williamson’s help about the magic of love in all its myriad shapes and forms. At last, I opened my heart. But the search for enlightenment eluded me. I wasn’t depressed, but my spirit ached.

I started traveling, first around the United States and then around the world. I visited the vortexes of Sedona, the ancient Anasazi village in Chaco Canyon, and the Santuarior de Chimayo, the blessed Mexican church. I should have been glowing in the dark. Occasionally, I glimpsed the Light. But I still didn’t understand what life was all about. Maybe tomorrow I’ll find that key, I’d think. It seemed as if enlightenment was always one day, one step, one therapist, one book, one healer away. Over twenty years ago, when I was already well immersed in this quest, a trusted friend told me that the secret to life was simple: there wasn’t one. Maybe my friend was right. Maybe I was looking for something that didn’t exist.

One day, I stopped looking. It wasn’t that I gave up. I gave in. I stopped waiting to win the spiritual lottery. Stopped trying to become enlightened. Stopped looking for that perfect soul mate. And started surrendering to enjoying each moment of my life– just as it is.

That’s when I found joy. Or maybe joy found me.

The key to enlightenment might be simpler than we think. We’re here to experience joy. Look at each moment in your life and learn to say, How sweet it is.

God, help me learn joy.

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Learning To Meditate
From the Learning To Meditate On-Line Course by Madisyn Taylor

The following is an excerpt from the “Learning to Meditate” on-line course. If you would like to take the entire course, click here.

My wish for you is that meditation can be an opportunity to begin a simple practice of self-acceptance and self-love. If the mere idea of meditating feels uncomfortable—or scary even, that’s okay. Exploring unknown territory usually does. But don’t worry, you won’t turn into a hippie, have to change your friends, or pack up and move to a commune in order to reap the benefits of your meditation practice. This is a gift you’re giving yourself and nobody even needs to know you are meditating, but you just might love it so much that you will want to teach your friends and family.

Let’s take a moment to get clear on what meditation really is. The term “meditation” can refer to any process that leads you to an inner state of relaxed awareness. There needn’t be any big mystery or drama about the process itself, and there’s really no right or wrong way of doing it. There are simply different techniques that can be used as tools to help you focus and quiet your mind, and we’ll work with some of these as the weeks unfold. This will allow you to choose which method works best for you as a person. We have all seen the vision of the yogi sitting crossed legged wearing robes and perhaps meditating in a cave. This is not what meditation is about for most of us and starting with an unrealistic idea of what meditation is about won’t make it an enjoyable experience for you. I still have a hard time quieting my mind and I find that my meditation practice is more fulfilling for me while I’m in nature. Our main purpose here is to help you develop a meditation pra! ctice that’s right for you. It’ll be something you feel comfortable doing and that you’re willing and able to do regularly.

For those of us who already have a meditation routine, we’ve come to depend on the way our practice enhances our lives. We’ve discovered an ever-present source of inner peace and wisdom from which we can now draw strength, courage, clarity and compassion. It has become easier to respond to situations from a calm and grounded place, rather than acting out old dysfunctional patterns. We’re also better able to navigate our lives in alignment with our own needs and goals. By giving ourselves the space to simply be ourselves, many of the distractions from other people’s agendas melt away. For many of us, meditation has become an important way to take really good care of ourselves. You wouldn’t dream about leaving your house in the morning without bathing or brushing your teeth and this is eventually how you will feel about your practice. A morning meditation will give you the quiet confidence and the strength you will need for your day.

Research has linked a regular practice of meditation to reduced levels of anxiety and stress, in addition to improved immune function and a host of other health benefits. Studies have shown that the nervous system actually begins responding differently to stressful situations—creativity flows more freely and new solutions begin to emerge. What’s wonderful is that many of these advantages occur after just one session and continue evolving with regular practice. As you develop your own meditation program, you’ll be able to track the benefits for yourself, from changes in your mood to improvements in your energy. Soon you will find yourself reacting from a place of centered calm rather than from your head.

GETTING STARTED

The best results of meditation are seen in those who make it a regular practice. And as with anything, practicing consistently carves out a behavioral pattern that becomes more established and easier to follow over time. Try not to be hard on yourself as you begin this process. You’re the only one who can take this journey and the best place to start is right where you are. At first you may not be able to sit for more than a few minutes and that’s ok, but soon you’ll be meditating for 10, 20 or 30 minutes with ease. The idea is to get a habit started, so aim for consistency (i.e., meditating 10 minutes a day, every day) over longer sessions (i.e., meditating for a whole half hour, every once in a while).

You generally don’t need to purchase anything to start a meditation routine and no special equipment or clothing is required as long as you’re comfortable. Some people buy what’s known as a meditation cushion, but it’s certainly not necessary. Some also find that lighting a candle or incense signals an official start to their meditation and this can help the mind to focus. (Chimes, singing bowls and bells may also be used for this purpose.) Next week, we’ll be exploring some particular meditation practices that use candles and incense, so if you don’t already have these around your home, you may want to get some that you’ll enjoy working with.

It is not uncommon for inspiring ideas and solutions to emerge during meditation. I always have a journal with me so I can jot down what comes up and return to my session without fear of losing the idea. You may want to experiment with this as well. It can help your mind return to silence.

Positioning

Let’s explore a few different ways of sitting. You may be familiar with the classic lotus position or half-lotus position (see photos below) in which many long-term meditators are pictured. This position is ideal because it allows for a balanced and unobstructed flow of energy throughout the energy centers of your body. Some people cannot sit this way because they are physically inflexible or having back or knee issues. You may find that over time you gain the flexibility to meditate in the lotus position; or, you may simply decide that an alternate posture works better for you. Please don’t feel that you have to sit in these positions right away, it can take time to build up to it.

The key to remember when selecting your meditation position is that you’ll want to keep your back straight and your palms open or facing upward. There are a few different positions for your hands to take during meditation, but for the purpose of this course we will place our hands open toward the sky and having them rest on your thighs, knees or ankles depending on what is comfortable once you are in position with the rest of your body.

Here are some positions you might try:

Using a Chair: Sit with your feet on the floor, spine straight against the back of the chair, and your shoulders back. If needed, you can add a pillow behind you for lower back support.

On the Floor: Sit crossed legged or in half or full lotus position. You may want to place a pillow under your tailbone for comfort.

On the Floor, against the Wall: If you have trouble getting your back straight, start out sitting against a wall. If necessary, fold up a small towel to tuck under your tailbone. This is usually the easiest position for beginners, with a wall supporting the back. Over time your muscles will get stronger and the support of a wall will likely become unnecessary.

In Your Bed: If sitting up straight is difficult or painful for you, start out lying down. Most of us associate our bed with sleeping and this can be a problem, as it may create the tendency to fall asleep. But turn yourself 90 degrees on the bed if it’s big enough, or turn yourself 180 degrees and do not use pillows—this may trick your mind to stay awake, as your head will be at a different place than it usually is during the night. Once you have more meditation experience under your belt, try to move from the bed. The bed may also be used in a sitting position with your back against your headboard and pillows placed under your hipbones to get a nice straight spine. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

It has truly been said that “We become what we do.” It’s emphasized to us over and over in The Program that our thoughts and actions toward others color and shape our spiritual lives. Words and acts of kindness, generosity, thoughtfulness and forgiveness serve to strengthen those qualities within us that heighten our consciousness of God’s love. In asking God to direct and guide my life, am I also asking love to take over and lead me where it will?

Today I Pray

May I make a resolute attempt at acting out the way I want to be — loving, forgiving, kind, thoughtful. May I be aware that each small, attentive act carries with it an echo of God’s all-caring. For God so loved the world; may we make His love our example.

Today I Will Remember

We become what we do.

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One More Day

The wise man looks at death with honesty, dignityu and calm, recognizing that the tragedy it brings is inherent in the great gift of life.
– Corliss Lamont

Chronic illness trends to heighten our awareness of the fragility of life. Some of us may even become concerned that due to poor health we may not live as long as we’d once expected.

To ease our fears, we may feel better if we initiated a conversation with family members about dying. Since each one of us have personal ideas about how we would like our funeral handled — which hymns, who will say the eulogy, and where it should be held — it only makes sense to share that information with loved ones. Few people feel comfortable talking about the possibility of dying, but with a straightforward discussion we can, at least for a while, set aside our own anxieties.

I am comforted knowing my family understands my fears and needs.

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Food For Thought

Emotional Distress

In the past, we translated emotional distress into physical hunger. Physical hunger was something we could deal with when emotional pain was too much for us. The reason our hunger was not satisfied by any amount of food was that the hunger was really distressed emotion.

If as children we were unable to recognize and express our distress, we buried it. As adults, we may still have ignored painful feelings and tried to make them go away with quantities of food and drink. Eventually, we became so dishonest with ourselves that we did not know what it was we really felt. We may have pretended for so long that everything was fine that we believed it. The telltale sign that all was not fine was our compulsive overeating behavior.

When we abstain, we sometimes fear that we will be overwhelmed with the emotional pain that is no longer buried with food. By turning this distress over to our Higher Power, we are able to survive it and learn from it.

I give You the pain that I cannot handle.

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One Day At A Time

~ SPIRITUALITY ~
When the heart weeps for what it has lost,
the spirit laughs for what it has found.
Sufi proverb

Before I came into this program, I had thrown God out the window. In fact, I was plain angry at Him. Where was He when my only brother was killed in a car accident, when my only nephews were lost to me for many years as a result? Where was He when my parents died, when I went through my ugly divorce, when my step-son committed suicide, or when I had two major car accidents? I didn’t know how to deal with all the feelings around the grief, loss and pain. I was spiritually bereft, although I didn’t know it then. All I knew was that I was depressed a lot of the time, and had this great big hole in my soul that I had to keep feeding so I wouldn’t have to feel the pain or deal with anything in my life. But the truth was that no amount of food could relieve that constant ache, and all that happened was that I felt more and more fat, bloated and miserable. The food that was supposed to take away all the pain of living was really causing me more pain.

When I came into program and heard the three letter word, God, I nearly ran away. I’m a very rational, logical person so it was really hard for me to believe what these crazy people were saying, but I was desperate enough to keep coming back. I had to act as if I did believe that I could recover and that a Higher Power might help me. When the miracles started to happen, my faith began to develop, and I slowly realized that my Higher Power was always with me. I now have a far better way to fill that hole in my soul, and it is a far more satisfying and saner way than filling it with mountains of food.

One Day at a Time . . .
I pray to keep my Higher Power in my heart and in my soul, because if I do, my life will be enriched immeasurably in ways that food could never do.
~ Sharon S.~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We are convinced to a man that alcoholics of our type are in the grip of a progressive illness. Over any considerable period we get worse, never better. – Pg. 30 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Many people in meetings will talk about having a spiritual awakening or experience regarding recovery. These awakenings come in many forms, some in a flash of lightening, some in the slow revelation of sobriety. Whatever way it comes for you will be in your best interests.

Help me accept whatever awakening is right for me, so that I am not wishing for the experience of another but content with my own.

I Am Whole

Today, I see that my life is up to me. How I choose to live, what I will accomplish, how I conduct my intimate relationships, how I treat myself, all are in my own hands. I am no longer afraid that pain and anxiety will return me to a state of helplessness and vulnerability. Let it come; I am ready to meet it head-on. I am strong in the awareness that I can live as I choose to live. I have been willing to walk a path of recovery that, though difficult, has built a strength in me and a knowledge that I can survive my most painful feelings. I do not need to be afraid of my life if I am not afraid of myself or an emotional death. I have met and tamed the monsters that live inside me. I am comfortable in my own skin.

I am free to be who I am.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘When one door closes another door opens, but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the new worlds which open for us.’ ~Alexander Graham Bell

God wants for me what I would want for myself, IF I had all the facts.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If you must talk about others, speak as though they were standing next to you.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am okay about me today and that is terrific.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Sober: Son Of A ***** Everything’s Real. – Mickey B.

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AA Thought for the Day

December 1

Carry The Message
Carry this message to other alcoholics! You can help when no one else can.
You can secure their confidence when others fail. Remember they are very ill.
Life will take on new meaning. . . .
— this is an experience you must not miss. We know you will not want to miss it.
Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 89

Thought to Ponder . . .
In AA we don’t carry the alcoholic; we carry the message.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A W O L = A A Way Of Life.

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

Action
“But the program of action, though entirely sensible,
was pretty drastic. It meant I would have to throw several lifelong conceptions out of the window.
That was not easy.
But the moment I made up my mind to go through
with the process, I had the curious feeling that my alcoholic condition
was relieved, as in fact it proved to be.
Quite as important was the discovery that spiritual principles
would solve all my problems.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 42

Thought to Consider . . .
Never mistake motion for action.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A C T I O N = Any Change Toward Improving One’s Nature

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

Friendship
>From “Learning To Love Ourselves”:
“When I did my personal inventory I found that I had unhealthy relationships with most people in my life my friends and family, for example. I always felt isolated and lonely. I drank to dull emotional pain. “It was through staying sober, having a good sponsor and working the Twelve Steps that I was able to build up my low self-esteem. First the Twelve Steps taught me to become my own best friend, and then, when I was able to love myself, I could reach out and love others.”
1990 AAWS, Inc.; Daily Reflections, pg. 123

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

“The greatest promise in the program is the one in the Twelfth Step. It tells me I will have a spiritual awakening as the result of the Steps. I know I need that awakening to have a chance to stay sober”
White Rock, British Columbia, May 2005
“Life — It Happens”
No Matter What: Dealing with Adversity in Sobriety

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

“The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost
the power of choice in drink. Our so-called will power becomes
practically nonexistent. We are unable, at certain times, to bring
into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the
suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago. We are
without defense against the first drink.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 24~

My friend had emphasized the absolute necessity of demonstrating these principles in all my affairs .particularly was it imperative to work with others as he had worked with me. Faith without works was dead, he said.
Alcoholics Anonymous page 14

I was to test my thinking by the new God-consciousness within.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.13

Both his pride and his fear beat him back every time he tries to look within himself.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.49

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Start by Forgiving
The moment we ponder a twisted or broken relationship with another person, our emotions go on the defensive. To escape looking at the wrongs we have done another, we resentfully focus on the wrong he has done us. Triumphantly we seize upon his slightest misbehavior as the perfect excuse for minimizing or forgetting our own.
Right here we need to fetch ourselves up sharply. Let’s remember that alcoholics are not the only ones bedeviled by sick emotions. In many instances we are really dealing with fellow sufferers, people whose woes we have increased.
If we are about to ask forgiveness for ourselves, why shouldn’t we start out by forgiving them, one and all?

Prayer for the Day: Seventh Step Prayer – My Creator, I am now willing that You should have all of me, good and bad. I pray that You now remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to You and my fellows. Grant me strength, as I go out from here, to do Your bidding. Amen.

 

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 30th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 30th

Daily Reflections

PROTECTION FOR ALL

At the personal level, anonymity provides protection for
all members from identification as alcoholics, a safeguard
often of special importance to newcomers. At the level of
press, radio, TV, and films, anonymity stresses the
equality in the Fellowship of all members by putting the
brake on those who might otherwise exploit their A.A.
affiliation to achieve recognition, power, or personal
gain.
“UNDERSTANDING ANONYMITY,” p. 5

Attraction is the main force in the Fellowship of A.A. The
miracle of continuous sobriety of alcoholics within A.A.
confirms this fact every day. It would be harmful if the
Fellowship promoted itself by publicizing, through the
media of radio and TV, the sobriety of well-known public
personalities who became members of A.A. If these
personalities happened to have slips, outsiders would think
our movement is not strong and they might question the
veracity of the miracle of the century. Alcoholics Anonymous
is not anonymous, but its members should be.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We have slips in A.A. It has been said these are not slips
but premeditated drunks, because we have to think about
taking a drink before we actually take one. The thought always
comes before the act. It has been suggested that people
should always get in touch with an A.A. before taking that
first drink. The failure to do so makes it probable that
they decided to take the drink anyway. And yet the thoughts
that come before taking a drink are often largely
subconscious. People usually don’t know consciously what
made them do it. Therefore, the common practice is to call
these things slips. Am I on guard against wrong thinking?

Meditation For The Day

“The eternal God is thy refuge.” He is a sanctuary, a refuge
from the cares of life. You can get away from the
misunderstanding of others by retiring into your own place of
meditation. But from yourself, from your sense of failure,
your weakness, your shortcomings, whither can you flee? Only
to the eternal God, your refuge, until the immensity of His
spirit envelopes your spirit and it loses its smallness and
weakness and comes into harmony again with His.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may lose my limitations in the immensity of
God’s love. I pray that my spirit may be in harmony with
His spirit.


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

As Bill Sees It

I Am Responsible . . ., p. 332

When anyone, anywhere, reaches out for help, I want the hand of A.A. always to be there.
And for that: I am responsible.
–Declaration of 30th Anniversary International Convention, 1965


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Walk In Dry Places

Spiritual pride
Seeking humility
Those of us who have found a Higher Power in our lives can feel truly blessed. We know we’re on the right path by witnessing the wonderful changes that continue to come into our lives.
One pitfall in this, however, is the risk of becoming “spiritually proud.”  We sometimes feel that our beliefs are so superior that others should accept them as well.  We even become critical of the beliefs of others.
If this happens, we actually will be severing our own conscious contact with our higher power. False pride is a new form will be back in charge. Others will sense this too, and may withdraw from us.
Our best safeguard against this trap of spiritual pride is a reminder that we don’t have all the answers. We can share our understanding with others, but we should never imply that we know what’s best for them.  Spiritual growth should being humility, not more of the pride that was destroying us.
I can leave all outcomes in God’s hands today, knowing that everything is being controlled in a spiritual way.

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Keep It Simple

The purpose of freedom is to create it for others.—Bernard Malamud
Sobriety is freedom. With this freedom, we have a responsibility to help other addicts who still suffer. The program tells us this in Step Twelve. We do this by telling our stories and offering hope.
We must be ready to care, to give ourselves. This is what spirituality is about. When we help others, we prepare the road for those who enter the program after us.
Tradition Five of the Twelve Traditions says, “Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.” It means we get better by helping others.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me create more freedom. Bring me to where I’m needed. Help me carry the message well.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll think of ways I can help the addict who still suffers. Then I’ll chose one way I can be of help. I’ll talk with my sponsor about it, and I’ll follow through with my plan.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Doubt indulged soon becomes doubt realized.  –Frances Ridley Havergal
We are powerless over our addictions, whether liquor, pills, people, food. We are powerless over the outcome of all events involving us. And we are powerless over the lives of our friends and family members. We are not powerless, however, over our own attitudes, our own behavior, our own self-image, our own determination, our own commitment to life and this simple program.
Power aplenty we have, but we must exercise it in order to understand its breadth. We’ll find all the day’s activities, interactions, plans decidedly more exciting when we exercise control over our responses. We don’t have to feel or respond except in the way that pleases us. We have total control and we’ll find this realization exhilarating.
Our recovery is strengthened each time we determine the proper behavior, choose an action that feels right, take responsibility where it is clearly ours to take. The benefits will startle us and bring us joy.
I will take charge of my life today.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

Our hope is that when this chip of a book is launched on the world tide of alcoholism, defeated drinkers will seize upon it, to follow its suggestions. Many, we are sure, will rise to their feet and march on. They will approach still other sick ones and fellowships of Alcoholics Anonymous may spring up in each city and hamlet, havens for those who must find a way out.

p. 153

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

They said keep coming back.
And I did. For weeks I sat in the back of the rooms, silent when others shared their experience, strength, and hope. I listened to their stories and found so many areas where we overlapped–not all of the deeds, but the feelings of remorse and hopelessness. I learned that alcoholism isn’t a sin, it’s a disease. That lifted the guilt I felt. I learned that I didn’t have to stop drinking forever, but just not pick up that first drink, one hour at a time. I could manage that. There was laughter in those rooms and sometimes tears, but always love, and when I was able to let it in, that love helped me heal.

p. 344

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Nine – “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

Many a razor-edged question can arise in other departments of life where this same principle is involved. Suppose, for instance, that we have drunk up a good chunk of our firm’s money, whether by “borrowing” or on a heavily padded expense account. Suppose that this may continue to go undetected, if we say nothing. Do we instantly confess our irregularities to the firm, in the practical certainty that we will be fired and become unemployable? Are we going to be so rigidly righteous about making amends that we don’t care what happens to the family and home? Or do we first consult those who are to be gravely affected? Do we lay the matter before our sponsor or spiritual adviser, earnestly asking God’s help and guidance–meanwhile resolving to do the right thing when it becomes clear, cost what it may? Of course, there is no pat answer which can fit all such dilemmas. But all of them do require a complete willingness to make amends as fast and as far as may be possible in a given set of conditions.

pp. 86-87

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A loving heart is the truest wisdom.
–Charles Dickens

“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all
yourself.”
–unknown

He is rich or poor according to what he is, not according to what he has.
–Henry Ward Beecher

All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

“To love another person is to see the face of God.”
–Victor Hugo

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

FATE

“I am the master of my fate; I
am the captain of my soul.”
— William E. Henley

Things do not just happen, we make them happen. For years I thought that my getting
well was dependent upon my family getting well. I rooted my recovery in the recovery
of others. I was the typical co-dependent.

Then somebody said, “Why don’t you start taking responsibility for your own life?” I
thought about that remark for weeks. I spent nights dwelling on the implications of
those words. I am sure that I had heard similar sentiments a hundred times but that
night, that special night, I was ready to hear them. A spiritual moment.

Today I believe that such spiritual moments produce a spiritual process that I must
keep alive. I am the deciding factor in what happens to me and what I can achieve.
God has created me to be involved in my recovery.

May I always steer my life in the direction of truth and love.

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

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the
body is weak.”
Matthew 26:41

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


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

Daily Inspiration

You cannot really listen to someone and do something else at the same time. Lord, teach me to truly pay attention when someone speaks to me because it is in listening that I will gain wisdom.

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

Sharing The Real Me

“Sharing with others keeps us from feeling isolated and alone.”
Basic Text pg. 81

Intimacy is the sharing of our innermost thoughts and feelings with another human being. Many of us long for the warmth and companionship intimacy brings, but those things don’t come without effort. In our addiction, we learned to guard ourselves from others lest they threaten our using. In recovery, we learn how to trust others. Intimacy requires us to lower our defenses. To feel the closeness intimacy brings, we must allow others to get close to us – the real us.

If we are to share our innermost selves with others, we must first have an idea of what those innermost selves are truly like. We regularly examine our lives to find out who we really are, what we really want, and how we really feel. Then, based on our regular inventories of ourselves, we must be as completely and consistently honest with our friends as we can be.

Intimacy is a part of life, and therefore a part of living clean – and intimacy, like everything in recovery, has its price. The painstaking self-scrutiny intimacy calls for can be hard work. And the total honesty of intimacy often brings its own complications. But the freedom from isolation and loneliness that intimacy brings is well worth the effort.

Just for today: I seek the freedom from isolation and loneliness that intimacy brings. Today, I will get to know “the real me” by taking a personal inventory, and I will practice being completely honest with another person.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I’ve never sung anything that I wasn’t ready to sing. –Claudia Schmidt
Most of us are curious about the “olden days” before we were born. We ask our parents what life was like when they were kids, what they did, what they looked like, and what they thought about. But most of us, even those who are parents ourselves, have probably never asked our parents, “Were you ready to go to school, to grow up, to get married, to get a job, to have me?”
So often we are afraid to take even a small new step, afraid of change. We feel so alone in our uncertainty. From our point of view, if often looks as though everybody’s ready except us.
Perhaps another way to look at it is that, for most of our lives, readiness really isn’t much of an issue. Were we ready to be born? Were we ready to walk, to read, to sing? Maybe we were; maybe not. What’s important is what we did, not what we were ready to do. For life is mostly a matter of jumping in feet first shouting, “Here I come, ready or not!”
What am I going to do today, ready or not?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval. –Mark Twain
It is hard for many of us to learn to admit the wrongs we do. We have followed lifestyles that led us away from recognizing our true feelings. Remnants of this blindness continue into our recovery. In this quiet time we can deepen and nourish a relationship with ourselves. Facing our disapproval and admitting it lead us to comfort and self-respect. Right now we can ask ourselves, “What messages do 1 receive from myself? What is my Higher Power telling me? Do I sense some gut feeling? Am I true to my relationships with loved ones? Have I been open to the feelings of my spouse. Of my friends? Of my boss? Do I owe anyone an apology which I can promptly make?”
Some of us indulge in worry, fear, and anger beyond a useful or meaningful point. What can we do about these excesses of feeling? First, we admit them to ourselves and to others. Then, we trust our Higher Power for the outcome, and they will fall away.
Today, I will nourish a relationship with myself by facing my own disapproval and growing toward greater comfort.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Doubt indulged soon becomes doubt realized. –Frances Ridley Havergal
We are powerless over our addictions, whether liquor, pills, people, food. We are powerless over the outcome of all events involving us. And we are powerless over the lives of our friends and family members. We are not powerless, however, over our own attitudes, our own behavior, our own self-image, our own determination, our own commitment to life and this simple program.
Power aplenty we have, but we must exercise it in order to understand its breadth. We’ll find all the day’s activities, interactions, plans decidedly more exciting when we exercise control over our responses. We don’t have to feel or respond except in the way that pleases us. We have total control and we’ll find this realization exhilarating.
Our recovery is strengthened each time we determine the proper behavior, choose an action that feels right, take responsibility where it is clearly ours to take. The benefits will startle us and bring us joy.
I will take charge of my life today.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Detachment
One day, my son brought a gerbil home to live with us. We put it in a cage. Some time later, the gerbil escaped. For the next six months, the animal ran frightened and wild through the house. So did we – chasing it.
“There it is. Get it!” we’d scream, each time someone spotted the gerbil. I, or my son, would throw down whatever we were working on, race across the house, and lunge at the animal hoping to catch it.
I worried about it, even when we didn’t see it. “This isn’t right,” I’d think. “I can’t have a gerbil running loose in the house. We’ve got to catch it. We’ve got to do something.”
A small animal, the size of a mouse had the entire household in a tizzy.
One day, while sitting in the living room, I watched the animal scurry across the hallway. In frenzy, I started to lunge at it, as I usually did, then I stopped myself.
No, I said, I’m all done. If that animal wants to live in the nooks and crannies of this house, I’m going to let it. I’m done worrying about it. I’m done chasing it. It’s an irregular circumstance, but that’s just the way it’s going to have to be.
I let the gerbil run past without reacting. I felt slightly uncomfortable with my new reaction – not reacting – but I stuck to it anyway.
I got more comfortable with my new reaction – not reacting. Before long, I became downright peaceful with the situation. I had stopped fighting the gerbil. One afternoon, only weeks after I started practicing my new attitude, the gerbil ran by me, as it had so many times, and I barely glanced at it. The animal stopped in its tracks, turned around, and looked at me. I started to lunge at it. It started to run away. I relaxed.
“Fine,” I said. “Do what you want.” And I meant it.
One hour later, the gerbil came and stood by me, and waited. I gently picked it up and placed it in its cage, where it has lived happily ever since. The moral of the story? Don’t lunge at the gerbil. He’s already frightened, and chasing him just scares him more and makes us crazy.
Detachment works.
Today, I will be comfortable with my new reaction – not reacting. I will feel at peace.

Today I know my journey to peace and serenity begins with me. Today I have the faith and trust to seek my answers from within. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Trust Each Moment

Trust. Trust. Trust. Again and again, that’s the issue. See how much of your pain, your anguish, your tension arises simply from not trusting the absolute perfection of the present moment. I’ve lost my way. I’m off track. I’m somehow wrong– in the wrong place at the wrong time, doing the wrong thing. Where I’m going is a dead end. Oh, dear…

You are not off track. You haven’t lost your way. You’re going somewhere worth going. Somewhere magnificent beyond the ability of your mind to comprehend. By trusting the perfection of each moment, you give yourself a gift: permission to enjoy the journey.

Don’t just take the trip. Let yourself enjoy the ride.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

Believe in the magic of life

Listen to the Never haves
Then listen close to me–
Anything can happen, child,
Anything can be.
–Shel Silverstein

All around us every day are those who would have us believe we can’t. They haven’t grown in their lives, so they tell us we can’t grow and change in ours. Belief systems are strong, but ideas are stronger. In 1899, the then chief of the U.S. patent office proposed closing it down. He said, “Everything that can be invented already has been.”

We look back on a statement like that today and laugh, but how often do we believe it in our own lives? I can’t go back to school because I’m nearly fifty. I shouldn’t change careers now; I’ll lose my retirement. Sure, a boat like that is nice, but I’ll never have one; I’m just not rich enough. Maybe he can stay sober, but I can’t change my life.

As children we’re filled with wonder at the world around us. Anything is possible, anything at all. But all too soon the weight of the shouldn’t’s, impossible’s, and won’t’s comes sneaking in around our shoulders tying us down to lowered expectations and limited beliefs.

The world is flat. If you sail to the edge, you will fall off. Everything that can be invented already has been. Man will never walk on the moon.

Believe in yourself. Believe in a wonderful God. Believe in the programs and support structures that help you every day. Say what it is you want, the lessons you want to learn, the goals you want to achieve, the relationships that you want to have, and then go out and allow the universe to manifest them in your life.

The never have’s sit on the sidelines and tell you about all that can’t be. Will you join them or will you quietly go about doing the impossible on your own?

Believe in the magic of I can. Tell the naysayers and never have’s I can, too. And so can you.

Today, why not go to a park, sit on a bench, and think back to when you were a child. What were your dreams, your hopes? Are they really that far out of reach? Remember, anything can happen and quite often, it does.

Thank you, God, for the glory of my journey so far. Be with me as I learn more about what I can accomplish through you.

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

Gladdening Nourishment
Silliness by Madisyn Taylor

Giving yourself permission to be silly will nourish your creativity and is a good exercise in letting go.

Children appreciate all that is silly as a matter of course. Their grasp of humor is instinctual, and even the smallest absurdities provoke joyous gales of earnest laughter. As we age, this innate ability to see the value of silliness can diminish. Work takes precedence over play, and we have less incentive to exercise our imaginative minds by focusing on what is humorous. When we remember childhood, we may recall the pleasures of donning funny costumes, reciting nonsense poems, making up strange games, or playing pretend. This unabashed silliness nourished our vitality and creativity. We can take in this nourishment once again by giving ourselves permission to lighten up and be silly.

Too often we reject the wonderful silliness that is an inherent, inborn aspect of the self because we believe that it serves no purpose or is at odds with the grown-up culture of maturity. We play yet we do not lose ourselves in play, and our imaginations are never truly given free reign because we regard the products of irrational creativity as being valueless. Yet silliness itself does indeed constitute a vital part of human existence on a myriad of levels. Our first taste of ethereal bliss is often a consequence of our willingness to dabble in what we deem outrageous, nonsensical, or absurd. We delight in ridiculousness not only because laughter is intrinsically pleasurable, but also because it serves as a reminder that existence itself is fun. Skipping, doodling, and singing funny songs are no less entertaining than they were when we were children. We need not lose all interest in these cheerful and amusing activities, but to make them a part of our lives we must be read! y to sacrifice a little dignity and a lot of fear.

It is precisely because so much of life is inescapably serious that silliness should be regarded as a priority. Through the magic of imagination, you can be or become anything—a photographer, a professional athlete, a dancer, a pilot. Whether you take hundreds of silly pictures, revel in the adulation of your fans as you make the winning catch, boogie down rock-star style in front of your bedroom mirror, or turn your desk into a cockpit, the ensuing hilarity will help you see that lighthearted fun and adulthood are not at all incompatible. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

If you’re a negative thinker and are not yet ready to do an about-face, here are some guidelines that can keep you miserable for just as long as you wish to remain so. First, don’t go to meetings of The Program, especially discussion groups. If you somehow find yourself at a meeting, keep your mouth shut, your hands in your pockets, and your mind closed. Don’t try to solve an of your problems, never laugh at yourself, and don’t trust the other people in The Program. Above all, under no conditions should you try to live in the Now. Am I aware that negative thinking means taking myself deadly serious at all times, leaving no time for laughter — and for living.

Today I Pray

If I am feeling negative, may I check myself in the mirror that is the group for my symptoms of a closed mind; tight lips, forced smile, set law, straight-ahead glance — and not a glimmer of humor. God, grant me the ability to laugh at myself — often — for I need that laughter to cope with the everyday commotion of living.

Today I Will Remember

To laugh at myself.

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One More Day

It is in vain to say human beings outright to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it.
–Charolotte Bronte

Tranquil: free from agitation; calm, peaceful. This we understand; this we desire. We surely want to have tranquil lives. Before chronic illness, we may have taken peace and tranquility for granted, for we were actively involved with the pursuit of life. Happiness and contentment came automatically along with the rest, with no conscious thought about it.

Before long we began to understand that if we wished to be tranquil, our minds and our bodies needed activity. Tranquility, that inner sense of calm, comes from contentment with how we are living our lives — and how actively we are living.

Tranquility will increase with my activity.

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Food For Thought

Survival

We will never make it if we feel we are responsible for solving everyone else’s problems. It is tempting to our ego to feel that we can exercise control over the lives of those around us, but it is counter to reality. We cannot protect those we love from sadness, sickness, or pain. Making martyrs of ourselves only prepares the ground for future retaliation.

Our primary task is to remember our dependence on our Higher Power and by His grace to maintain our abstinence. The problems, which we face, are best deal with if our spiritual condition is strong. Without abstinence from compulsive overeating, we are not much help to anyone, least of all ourselves.

There are times when all we can manage is to hang on, to survive. We know in our heads that these times will eventually pass. Practicing Step Eleven convinces us in our hearts that God is in charge, no matter how far away He may seem to be.

By Your grace, may I survive the hard times.

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One Day At A Time

BOUNDARIES
People are lonely because they build walls instead of bridges.
Joseph Fort Newton

When I was growing up I remember always being lonely and I never had many friends. In order to protect myself from the pain of rejection, or perhaps because I didn’t have self-esteem or believe in myself, I gave the impression that I didn’t need people. I was probably thought of as a snob. I thought that people didn’t like me because I was shy and introverted, but I had built up around myself an impenetrable protective wall which didn’t invite anyone in. It was small wonder that I spent many lonely nights buried in a book or food or any other solitary pursuit for that matter.

In my adult years I became a people-pleaser in the hopes that people would like me more. That even spilled over to include my children as well, which meant that I wasn’t able to say no to them or anyone else unless they stopped loving me. I would say yes when I really meant no, and consequently I was always filled with resentment and felt even lonelier than ever. I didn’t know how to set boundaries and was terrified that if I said no, people wouldn’t love me anymore.

I now know that when I set boundaries, it is an affirmation of my worth, and in most cases I am respected and liked by those people who are really my true friends. My children, too, have benefitted from my having set boundaries with them, and they have more respect for me than before. I am beginning to realize that it is just fine to do what is right for me, and that it doesn’t have to jeopardize any of my relationships.

One day at a time . . .
I am learning that it is right for me
to define my boundaries with those that I love,
knowing that I set these boundaries in love and friendship,
rather than hostility, and that I am still a lovable person.
Sharon S.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death. – Pg. 30 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

The Treasures Within

Within me is the perfect life waiting to awaken. The gifts I seek are already within me. A deep pool of awareness and aliveness is present all of the time but I am too distracted to know it. I get so lost in the superficial details and tasks of my life that I forget to live it, to drop down and contact the spirit that God has planted within me. It is the best kept secret that spirit lives within me, that the way in which I come in touch with my inner light is through letting the constant preoccupations of my mind float by, not taking them so seriously, not trying to control them. Today I realize that the gold is not in my ability to control my mind, the gold is in what lies beneath. What emerges when my mind, for a precious moment, is stilled.

Spirit is with me always

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

How important are the slogans? Sometimes, these are the only things we can bring to mind when we stand at a turning point, the thresh-hold of a crisis.

The slogans work much better for me when I decorate my life with them rather than decorating the walls with them.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Judge yourself by your insides not by someone else’s outsides.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know my journey to peace and serenity begins with me. Today I have the faith and trust to seek my answers from within.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

After a few drinks I was capable of doing anything. As a result of which I stand before you tonight with no fantasy unlived. I have done everything that it has ever occurred to me to do – I’m deeply grateful that there are some things I never thought of. – Sean A.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 30

Meditation and Prayer
Perhaps one of the greatest rewards of meditation and prayer is the sense of belonging that comes to us.
We no longer live in a completely hostile world. We are no longer lost and frightened and purposeless.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions,p. 105

Thought to Ponder . . .
Trying to pray is praying.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
P U S H = Pray Until Something Happens.

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

Perfection
“Day by day, we try to move a little
toward God’s perfection.
So we need not be consumed by maudlin guilt
for failure to achieve His likeness and image by Thursday next.
Progress is our aim,
and His perfection is the beacon, light-years away,
that draws us on.”
Bill W., Letter, 1966
c. 1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 15

Thought to Consider . . .
Remember the 3 P’s:
Perfectionism (leads to) Procrastination (leads to) Paralysis.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
P U T = Patience, Understanding, Tolerance.

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

Belief
>From “He Took Control”:
“One of the oldtimers used the electricity metaphor, which I later found in the Big Book. ‘A person walking into a dark room does not worry about understanding electricity,’ he said. ‘He just finds the switch and turns on the light.’ He explained that we can turn on the switch of spirituality by simply asking God each morning for another day of sobriety and thanking Him at night for another beautiful sober day. He said, ‘Do it mechanically if you really don’t believe in it. But do it every day. There is probably no one who really understands the wonderful ways of the Higher Power, and we don’t need to. He understands us.'”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 30

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

“I began to find … a more centered, purposeful life, at least in the sense that my body, mind, emotions, and soul were all more or less heading in the same direction. I was riding one horse instead of four.”
La Canada, Calif., November 1989
“Stepping Into the Sunlight,”
Spiritual Awakenings

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

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

“We never apologize to anyone for depending upon our Creator. We can laugh at those who think spirituality the way of weakness. Paradoxically, it is the way of strength. ”
Alcoholics Anonymous page 68

When resentful thoughts come, try to pause and count your blessings.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.119

When in doubt we can always pause, saying, “Not my will, but Thine, be done.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.93

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

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.

Prayer for the Day: Sixth Step Prayer – Dear God, I am ready for Your help in removing from me the defects of character which I now realize are an obstacle to my recovery. Help me to continue being honest with myself and guide me toward spiritual and mental health.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 29th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 29th

Daily Reflections

ACTIVE GUARDIANS

To us, however, it represents far more than a sound
public relations policy. It is more than a denial of
self-seeking. This Tradition is a constant and practical
reminder that personal ambition has no place in A.A.
In it, each member becomes an active guardian of our
Fellowship.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 183

The basic concept of humility is expressed in the
Eleventh Tradition: it allows me to participate
completely in the program in such a simple, yet profound,
manner; it fulfills my need to be an integral part of a
significant whole. Humility brings me closer to the
actual spirit of togetherness and oneness, without which
I could not stay sober. In remembering that every member
is an example of sobriety, each one living the Eleventh
Tradition, I am able to experience freedom because each
one of us is anonymous.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The A.A. way is the way of sobriety, and yet there are
slips. Why do these slips occur? Why don’t we all accept
A.A. and stay sober from then on? There are many reasons,
but it has been proven without exception that once we have
become alcoholics we can never drink successfully again.
This has never been disproved by any case we know of. Many
alcoholics have tried drinking after a period of sobriety
from a few days to a few years and no one that we know of
has been successful in becoming a normal drinker. Could I be
the only exception to this rule?

Meditation For The Day

“We are gathered together in Thy name.” First, we are
gathered together, bound by a common loyalty to God and
to each other. Then, when this condition has been fulfilled,
God is present with us. Then, when God is there and one
with us, we voice a common prayer. Then it follows that our
prayer will be answered according to God’s will. Then, when
our prayer is answered, we are bound together in a lasting
brotherhood of the spirit.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be loyal to God and my fellow men. I pray
that my life today may be lived close to His and theirs.


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As Bill Sees It

The Great Fact, p. 331

We realize we know only a little. God will constantly disclose more to
you and to us. Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do
each day for the man who is still sick. The answers will come, if your
own house is in order.

But obviously you cannot transmit something you haven’t got. See to it
that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come to
pass for you and countless others. This is the great fact for us.

To the Newcomer:
Abandon yourself to God as you understand God. Admit your faults to
Him and to your fellows. Clear away the wreckage of your past. Give
freely of what you find and join us. We shall be with you in the
fellowship of the spirit, and you will surely meet some of us as you
trudge the road of happy destiny.

May God bless you and keep you–until then.

Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 164

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Walk In Dry Places

None are obligated to us.
Service
Service is considered an essential part of AA.    As Dr. Bob said, AA is really love and service.
If this service is delivered in the right spirit…..  the true AA spirit….  no sense of obligation is crated. If others feel they are incurring an obligation, they will resent us in time.  Moreover, our carrying of the message will be flawed.
The proper way to look at service is to see it as something we perform for our own benefit. While we hope that it will benefit others, that does not have to happen in order for us to benefit.  Our good comes from the giving of SERVICE, not the measurement of its results for others. No one is obligated to us; nor does anyone have the right to complain if our services did not help.  We serve entirely for our own benefit.
For my own good, I’ll give service today. I want to be effective for others, but I realize my real purpose is to help myself.

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Keep It Simple

One is happy as the result of one’s own efforts.— George Sand
Happiness is not an accident. It comes from following the spiritual voice found in each of us.
This isn’t always easy. Sometimes, the voice tells us to do things we’re afraid of. For Example, if we’re lonely and the voice tells us to call someone on our phone list, we may make excuses to not do it. Again, the voice may say, “Just make the call. It will be okay.” If we follow the
voice, we will find happiness. The spiritual voice inside us speaks of care and love. It will never tell us to hurt others or ourselves. It’s our Higher Power’s voice . It’s what Step Eleven calls “conscious contact.” If we follow this guiding voice, it will lead us to happiness.
Prayer for the Day:  I pray that I’ll come to know my Higher Power by listening to the spiritual voice in me.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll meditate and listen to my higher power gentle voice within.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Faith is like the air in a balloon. If you’ve got it you’re filled. If you don’t, you’re empty.  –Peggy Cahn
Being faith-filled takes effort, not unlike becoming a good writer, tennis player, or pianist. Faith grows within our hearts, but we must devote time to foster this growth. Daily discussions with God are required, frequent quiet times to hear God’s messages to us–just as practice on the court, hitting balls or sitting for extended periods at the typewriter or a piano are necessary to attainment of these goals.
Life’s difficulties are eased when we have faith. The most frightening situation, a job interview, an evaluation with our boss, a showdown with a friend, can be handled confidently when we let our faith work for us. But, we must first work for it, work to attain it and work to keep it. Like any skill, it gets rusty with lack of use.
I will make sure to add to my reserves today. We never know when we may need to let our faith direct our every action. I will make a friend of my higher power, and that partnership will carry me over any troubled time.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

It may seem incredible that these men are to become happy, respected, and useful once more. How can they rise out of such misery, bad repute and hopelessness? The practical answer is that since these things have happened among us, they can happen with you. Should you wish them above all else, and be willing to make use of our experience, we are sure they will come. The age of miracles is till with us. Our own recovery proves that!

p. 153

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

I went to that meeting–a small women’s group. I was scared and in withdrawal. Someone greeted me and I muttered my name aloud. Someone brought me a cup of coffee. People gave me their phone numbers and urged me to call, to pick up the telephone instead of a drink. They were warm and friendly. They said keep coming back.

p. 344

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Nine – “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

There can only be one consideration which should qualify our desire for a complete disclosure of the damage we have done. That will arise in the occasional situation where to make a full revelation would seriously harm the one to whom we are making amends. Or–quite as important–other people. We cannot, for example, unload a detailed account of extramarital adventuring upon the shoulders of our unsuspecting wife or husband. And even in those cases where such a matter must be discussed, let’s try to avoid harming third parties, whoever they may be. It does not lighten our burden when we recklessly make the crosses of others heavier.

p. 86

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Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.
–Mother Teresa

I let go of shame, as it will hold me prisoner to myself.
–Shelley

What you are is God’s gift to you; what you make of yourself is your gift to God.
–unknown

God will not look you over for medals, degrees, or diplomas, but for scars.
–Elbert Hubbard

I work the steps and practice the principles because when I was out
there I drank away my principles and my values.
–unknown

Today I have choices. I can stay in a bad mood, I can stay in a bad
moment. Or, I can let them pass me by.
–unknown

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

TRUST

“Men become civilized, not in
proportion to their willingness
to believe, but in their readiness
to doubt.”
— H. L. Mencken

A civilized nation is essentially a spiritual nation. A civilized person is one who seeks
the truth and is willing to grow with change.

Sobriety is adventuresome because it is bigger than simply “not drinking”; it seeks
to address all areas of life and all situations. An example is trust. When I was
drinking, I trusted no one because I felt that everybody was like me out for
themselves! Today I know that the real enemy in my life is me; I am the one who
brings pain into my life. I am beginning to love myself by my decision not to drink. I
can trust today. I am beginning to trust myself and others.

O God, who trusted man with freedom, help me to freely trust.

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Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will
take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.
Psalms 57:1

Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be
compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with
blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. For,
“Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips
from deceitful speech. He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it.
1 Peter 3:8-11


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Daily Inspiration

Praise others when they do right and speak positive things and you will find it hard not to relax and rejoice in a new found source of peace. Lord, may I care less what others think of me and more and more what You think.

Gossip betrays trust. The harm done is often irreparable. Lord, may I never be responsible for hurting anyone through my conversations.

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NA Just For Today

Our Higher Power’s Care

“We believe that our Higher Power will take care of us.”
Basic Text pg. 55

Our program is based on the idea that the application of simple principles can produce profound effects in our lives. One such principle is that, if we ask, our Higher Power will care for us. Because this principle is so basic, we may tend to ignore it. Unless we learn to consciously apply this spiritual truth, we may miss out on something as essential to our recovery as breathing is to life itself.

What happens when we find ourselves stressed or panicked? If we have consistently sought to improve our relationship with our Higher Power, we’ll have no problem. Rather than acting rashly, we will stop for a moment and briefly remind ourselves of particular instances in the past when our Higher Power has shown its care for us. This will assure us that our Higher Power is still in charge of our lives. Then, we will seek guidance and power for the situation at hand and proceed calmly, confident that our lives are in God’s hands.

“Our program is a set of principles,” our White Booklet tells us. The more consistently we seek to improve our conscious appreciation of these principles, the more readily we will be able to apply them.

Just for today: I will seek to improve my conscious contact with the Higher Power that cares for me. When the need arises, I know I will be able to trust in that care.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
When written in Chinese, the word crisis is composed of two characters–one represents danger and the other represents opportunity. –John F. Kennedy
Family crises are unavoidable. At times, things are going to break down. This is no reason to give up and abandon ship. These breakdowns are the things, which will strengthen our lives together if we do not lose faith. The Einstein family had a crisis of sorts when their little boy, Albert, did not talk until he was four years old. But what looked like a problem at first did not end up that way in the long run.
We can expect downhill slides once in a while, and we may even start to feel full of self-pity. With faith that these setbacks are meant to help us grow stronger, we won’t waste them and end up having to face them again and again until we do recognize their true purpose.
What setback can I use to grow stronger today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
As with expeditions into the wilds when we have endured storms and rapids, cold and sleet, and sometimes lack of food, it is ultimately the good things we remember, not the bad. –Sigurd F. Olson
In our daily lives we often take a very short perspective. We see what is worrisome today, what is pressing hardest, or what is most frightening or confusing. Eventually, we may look back and have a totally different idea about what was truly important on this day.
Let us take a moment now to remember what does endure, what we value most, what counts in the long run. For a brief quiet time we can let go of all the anxieties of this moment. During these few quiet moments, we will identify our tensions and then place them totally into the hands of our Higher Power. This is our time to let go of our worries and be refreshed. It will provide a background of serenity for our day.
Today, help me remember this corner of serenity as I meet the tasks and activities on my path.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Faith is like the air in a balloon. If you’ve got it you’re filled. If you don’t, you’re empty. –Peggy Cahn
Being faith-filled takes effort, not unlike becoming a good writer, tennis player, or pianist. Faith grows within our hearts, but we must devote time to foster this growth. Daily discussions with God are required, frequent quiet times to hear God’s messages to us–just as practice on the court, hitting balls or sitting for extended periods at the typewriter or a piano are necessary to attainment of these goals.
Life’s difficulties are eased when we have faith. The most frightening situation, a job interview, an evaluation with our boss, a showdown with a friend, can be handled confidently when we let our faith work for us. But, we must first work for it, work to attain it and work to keep it. Like any skill, it gets rusty with lack of use.
I will make sure to add to my reserves today. We never know when we may need to let our faith direct our every action. I will make a friend of my higher power, and that partnership will carry me over any troubled time.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Step Twelve
The Twelfth Step says that having had a spiritual awakening, we try to carry this message to others. Our message is one of hope, love, comfort, health – a better way of life, one that works.
How do we carry it? Not by rescuing. Not by controlling. Not by obsessing. Not by becoming evangelists for the recovery cause.
We carry the message in many small, subtle, but powerful ways. We do our own recovery work and become a living demonstration of hope, self-love, comfort, and health. These quiet behaviors can be a powerful message.
Inviting (not ordering or demanding) someone to go to a meeting is a powerful way to carry the message.
Going to our meetings and sharing how recovery works for us is a powerful way to carry the message.
Being who we are and allowing our Higher Power to guide our actions are powerful ways to carry the message. Often, we find ourselves carrying the message more effectively than we do when we set out to reform, convince, or coerce someone into recovery.
Caretaking and controlling are not ways to carry the message. All those behaviors carry is codependency.
Still, the most powerful form of helping others comes down to helping ourselves. When we do our own work and are honest and open about it, we impact others more than by our most well intentioned “helping” gesture. We cannot change others, but when we change ourselves, we may end up changing the world.
Today, I will strive to carry the message in ways that work. I will let go of my need to “help” people. Instead, I will concentrate on helping and changing myself. If an opportunity comes up to share my recovery with someone, I will do so quietly. God, help me show others comfort, empowerment, and hope. I can be a channel to help others when I am ready. I do not have to force this; it will happen naturally.

I am very grateful for the gift of this day. It is mine to do exactly what I choose and I choose to use it for good and love. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Let Your Heart Open Gently

Let your heart open– gently, safely, surely, and certainly.

Do not let others decide when or even if you will open your heart, when or if you will embrace love. Those choices are too big, too important to let others make for you. Only you can decide when and how.

There was a time when it wasn’t safe to open your heart. Pain was all around you. You were not equipped to be that open. That time is passed. You have learned. You have grown. You have learned that you are a loving being. You know now that your love comes from within you. It is safe to open your heart.

The universe awaits, ready, willing, delighted to be able to help you open, the same way it aids the opening of a flower with the sun, the rain, the earth. To deny your power and ability to love is to deny joy. To deny your loving essence is to deny yourself, your God, and the Divine in you.

Look around. It’s not your location that makes you safe. It’s where you are in your soul, your mind, and your heart. That place is good. That place is safe. Open your heart. Embrace life. Go joyfully on your way.

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More Language Of Letting Go

There’s magic for you, too

I was looking at a photo of my friend Chip. In it, he’s sitting beside his battered, old volkswagon looking nearly as tired and battered as the car. But he’s smiling.

He was smiling the first time I met him,too. He told me the story of this photo prominently displayed on his desk.

“That picture was taken at the trailhead to White Mountain. Elevation twelve thousand feet. The last sixteen miles of the road are two dirt-tire tracks, but I really wanted to go on that hike. You should have seen the expressions on the faces of the research group in their four-wheel drive vans when I pulled up in Carmen.[That’s his name for his car.] It was so high that the carburetor could hardly breathe. I don’t think I got over ten miles an hour for the last sixteen miles. When I got there, the car was on empty, and it was forty-seven miles to the closest gas station.

“After my hike, I put her in neutral and coasted all the way down the mountain. It was insane, my brakes were shot by the time I made it down, and I rolled into the gas station just as the engine died. What a trip!”

You can do things if you think that you can. You can put a backpack into your old car and take that trip with just a few dollars. You can see new things, visit new places, and amaze others and yourself. You can get the career you want, have the relationship you want, reach the dreams in your heart. You can get wherever you want to go from where you are now.

All it takes is faith, desire, and a little belief in the magic of the universe.

“Oh, but that magic only works for other people, not me,” I’ve heard others protest in disbelief.

One of the things I like about Chip is something he always says and means, whether he has $5 in his pocket or $3,000 in the bank. He says this in both the good times and the times most of us would label as bad.

“I can’t believe what a lucky individual I am. I can’t believe how amazing the world is. And I can’t believe and don’t understand why I’ve been this blessed.”

The magic of the universe is there waiting for each of us.

Look around. See how lucky and blessed you are. Then take another look at the limitations in your life and start letting go of those limitations, one by one. Find your dirt track with the great experience at the end. Find and follow your path with heart.

Oh, but do check the gas tank first.

God, once again, teach me the magic of I can.

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Living for Ourselves
Trying to Please Others

We don’t need to live seeking approval from our parents or others; this can be overcome no matter what your age.

Most of us come to a point in our lives when we question why we are doing what we are doing, and many of us come to realize that we may be living our lives in an effort to make our parents happy. This realization can dawn when we are in our 20s, our 40s, or even later, depending upon how tight a hold our family of origin has on our psyche. We may feel shocked or depressed by this information, but we can trust that it is coming to us at this time because we are ready to find out what it would mean to live our lives for ourselves, following the call of our own soul, and refusing any longer to be beholden to someone else’s expectations.

One of the most common reasons we are so tied into making our parents, or others, happy, is that we were not properly mirrored when we were children. We were not honored as individuals in our own right, with a will and purpose of our own, to be determined by our own unfolding. As a result, we learned to look outside of ourselves for approval, support, and direction rather than look within. The good news is that the part of us that was not adequately nurtured is still there, inside us, like a seed that has not yet received the sunlight and moisture it needs to open and to allow its inner contents to unfurl. It is never too late to provide ourselves with what we need to awaken this inner being.

There are many ways to create a safe container for ourselves so that we can turn within and shine the light of awareness there. We may join a support group, go to therapy, or start a practice of journaling every day for half an hour. This experience of becoming is well worth the difficult work that may be required of us to get there. In whatever process we choose, we may feel worse before we feel better, but we will ultimately find out how to live our lives for ourselves and how to make ourselves happy. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Contrary to what some people think, our slogan Let Go and Let God isn’t an expression of apathy, an attitude of defeatism, or an unwillingness to accept responsibility. Those who turn their backs on their problems are not “letting go and letting God,” but not, instead, are abandoning heir commitment to act on God’s inspiration and guidance. They neither ask for it all. In seeking God’s guidance, do I realize their the ultimate responsibility is mine?

Today I Pray

May I not allow myself to be lazy just because I think God is going to do everything anyway. (Such apathy reminds me of my old powerless self, the one that moaned that the world was going up in smoke, civilization was going down the drain and there wasn’t a thing I could do about it.) Neither may I use “letting God” do it as an excuse for shrugging off my problems without even trying. May God be my inspiration; may I be an instrument of God.

Today I Will Remember

God guides those who help themselves.

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One More Day

You should not hold back from making a start because of fears about th future.
–Lewis F. Presnall

Too often we fold up our dreams and set them aside because we can’t envision success. The dream of a new business or of a new home or even of a self-improvement plan is easily discarded if we allow ourselves to think only of reasons why it won’t work. Not enough money, we decided. Or, Id don’t have enough experience. Or — worse yet — I won’t succeed because I never have before.

We can become free to pursue our own dreams when we realize that the future is not an enemy waiting to thwart our efforts. What our tomorrows hold quite often depends on the decisions and moves we make today. right now, we can make a start. We can set aside — not our dreams — but our fears of an unfriendly future.

The choices I make today will affect the quality of my future.

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Food For Thought

Flexibility

If we examine our behavior patterns when we were eating compulsively, we usually find that they were quite rigid. Our mental obsession and physical addiction kept us bound in repetitious behavior, which permitted very little spontaneity. With so much time and energy tied up in eating, we had very little flexibility. Most of our free time was used to support our addiction in one way or another.

As we recover, we may find ourselves threatened by unstructured time or by impromptu changes in schedule. An unexpected holiday can bring on feelings of emptiness or boredom. Changed plans can leave us feeling confused and unsettled. Without a firm routine, we may become uneasy.

Remembering that abstinence is the most important thing in our life without exception can provide an anchor when we are required to be flexible. As long as we remain abstinent, we are free to alter schedules and plans according to preference and convenience. Flexibility and spontaneity are possible when abstinence is firm.

Show me how to be flexible.

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One Day At A Time

To Thine Own Self Be True
“Hide not your talents, they for use were made.
What’s a sun-dial in the shade?”
Benjamin Franklin

In the cups of my illness I was a chameleon and people-pleaser. I was afraid to stand on my own opinions and be myself. My fear of rejection kept me always looking for ways to fit in. I was running from life because I was afraid that I would be found to be a fraud and a compulsive eater. I played dumb in school and with my friends. I was afraid to be smart. I was afraid to have differing opinions. Shame kept me hiding inside of myself and inside of my suit of fat. I was afraid to be me.

Since coming to the program I am learning more each day that it is okay for me to be me. It is more than okay; it is essential. I can spread my wings and let myself out of my self-imposed cage ~ and I can go for a flight gliding on the breeze with ease. My first steps were wobbly, but this program promises me that the sunlight is there and it is okay to come out of the shade and be whom I really am. I have something to offer the world. We all do. It is up to us to find it in our deepest heart’s desire.

One day at a time…
I can take one small step to match my insides to my outsides.
~ Lanaya

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

All these and many others , have one symptom in common: they cannot start drinking without developing the phenomenon of craving. This phenomenon, as we have suggested, may be the manifestation of an allergy which differentiates these people, and sets them apart as a distinct entity. It has never been, by any treatment with which we are familiar, permanently eradicated. The only relief we have to suggest is entire abstinence. – Pg. xxx – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

Inner Hearing, Inner Sight

Today, I will trust my own heart. The clear message that whispers within me has more to tell me than a thousand voices. I have a guide within me who knows what is best for me. There is a part of me that sees the whole picture and knows how it all fits together. My inner voice may come in the form of a strong sense, a pull from within, a gut feeling or a quiet knowing. However my inner voice comes to me, I will learn to pay attention. In my heart I know what is going on. Though I am conditioned by the world to look constantly outside myself for meaning, today I recognize that it is deeply important for me to hear what I am saying from within. I give myself the gift of listening.

I will trust my inner voice.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Sweat the small stuff. The big stuff we can handle, it’s the day to day crap that gets us. How do we attend to the small stuff? Steps Ten and Eleven.

Today I treat myself to quiet time in order to review the small stuff.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Life happens; joy is optional.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am very grateful for the gift of this day. It is mine to do exactly what I choose and I choose to use it for good and love.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Courage is fear that has said a prayer. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 29

Rebellion
Rebellion dogs our every step at first.
When we have finally admitted we are powerless over alcohol, we are apt to breathe a great sigh of relief, saying,
“Well, thank God that’s over! I’ll never have to go through that again!”
Then we learn, often to our consternation, that this is only the first milestone on the new road we are walking.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 73

Thought to Ponder . . .
May the road always lead where you need to be.

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

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

A Friend
“We finally saw that faith in some kind of God
was a part of our make-up,
just as much as the feeling we have for a friend.
Sometimes we had to search fearlessly,
but He was there.
He was as much a fact as we were.
We found the Great Reality deep down within us.
In the last analysis it is only there that He may be found.
It was so with us.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 55

Thought to Consider . . .
Faith dares the soul to go beyond what the eyes can see.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F A I T H = Finding Answers In The Heart.

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

Income
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“The peak of the flood finally passed, but the regular correspondence traffic through Headquarters remained so great that we saw we would have to have permanent paid help. Volunteers could not handle the situation.
“We also realized that these increased demands upon the office could not be met out of book income. So for the first time we asked the A.A. groups to help. Trustees Howard and Bert went on the road. They asked that all A.A. groups contribute to a special fund in the Foundation which would be earmarked ‘for A.A. office expenses only.’ The contributions would be entirely voluntary. As a measuring stick, it was suggested that each group send in one dollar per member per year.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pgs. 191-92

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

“Difficult times bring us to new degrees of acceptance and humility because we learn on a deeper level how close we really are to our next drink. If we hang on, we learn how the grace of the Fellowship and the principles of the program carry us through the tough spots as well as the times of joy.”
Providence, R.I., March 2009
“The Bottom of the Glass,”
Voices of Long-Term Sobriety

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

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

‘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 the, the deliberate manufacture of misery, but if trouble comes, cheerfully capitalize it as an opportunity to demonstrate His omnipotence.”
Alcoholics Anonymous Page 133

Some of us once had great self-confidence, but it didn’t fully solve the fear problem, or any other.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.68

We found that freedom from fear was more important than freedom from want.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.122

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

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.

Prayer for the Day: Fifth Step Prayer – Higher Power, My inventory has shown me who I am, yet I ask for Your help in admitting my wrongs to another person and to You. Assure me, and be with me, in this Step, for without this Step I cannot progress in my recovery. With Your help, I can do this and I will do it.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 28th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 28th

Daily Reflections

ATTRACTION, NOT PROMOTION

Through many painful experiences, we think we have arrived
at what that policy ought to be. It is the opposite in many
ways of usual promotional practice. We found that we had to
rely upon the principle of attraction rather than promotion.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 180-81

While I was drinking I reacted with anger, self-pity and
defiance against anyone who wanted to change me. All I wanted
then was to be accepted by another human simply as I was and,
curiously, that is what I found in A.A. I became the custodian
of this concept of attraction, which is the principle of our
Fellowship’s public relations. It is by attraction that I can
best reach the alcoholic who still suffers. I thank God for
having given me the attraction of a well-planned and
established program of Steps and Traditions. Through humility
and the support of my fellow sober members, I have been able
to practice the A.A. way of life through attraction, not
promotion.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The A.A. way is the way of sobriety. A.A. is known everywhere
as a method that has been successful with alcoholics. Doctors,
psychiatrists and clergymen have had some success. Some men
and women have got sober all by themselves. We believe that A.A.
is the most successful and happiest way to sobriety. And yet
A.A. is not wholly successful. Some are unable to achieve
sobriety and some slip back into alcoholism after they have had
some measure of sobriety. Am I deeply grateful to have found A.A.?

Meditation For The Day

Gratitude to God is the theme of Thanksgiving Day. The pilgrims
gathered to give thanks to God for their harvest, which was
pitifully small. When we look around us at all the things we
have today, how can we help being grateful to God? Our families,
our homes, our friends, our A.A. fellowship; all these things
are free gifts of God to us. “But for the grace of God,” we would
not have them.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be very grateful today. I pray that I may
not forget where I might be but for the grace of God.


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As Bill Sees It

To Grow Up, p. 330

Those adolescent urges that so many of us have for complete approval,
utter security, and perfect romance–urges quite appropriate to age
seventeen–prove to be an impossible way of life at forty-seven or
fifty-seven.

Since A.A. began, I’ve taken huge wallops in all these areas because of
my failure to grow up, emotionally and spiritually.

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

As we grow spiritually, we find that our old attitudes toward instinctual
drives need to undergo drastic revisions. Our demands for emotional
security and wealth, for personal prestige and power all have to be
tempered and redirected.

We learn that the full satisfaction of these demands cannot be the sole
end and aim of our lives. We cannot place the cart before the horse, or
we shall be pulled backward into disillusionment. But when we are
willing to place spiritual growth first–then and only then do we have a
real chance to grow in healthy awareness and mature love.

1. Grapevine, January 1958
2. 12 & 12, p. 114


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Walk In Dry Places

Spaces in Togetherness
Friendship
One of the beautiful aspects of AA is the bonding that develops among members.  We truly do achieve a closeness with some people that is unlike anything we ever had before.
The danger in such friendships is that we may become too close in some ways.  Without realizing it, we may be making too many demands on others’ time.  This can become suffocating to them and eventually detrimental to the friendship.
In such situations, we need to remember the words of Kahlil Gibran; “Let there be spaces in your togetherness.”   However, close we feel to others, we must allow them their space.
We should also remember to respect others’ privacy as well as their anonymity.  AA should give us close friendships, but not to the point of suffocation.
I’ll remember today not to overstep my boundaries in any friendship.  There must be spaces in our togetherness.

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Keep It Simple

The purpose of freedom is to create it for others.—Bernard Malamud
Sobriety is freedom. With this freedom, we have a responsibility to help other addicts who still suffer. The program tells us this in Step Twelve. We do this by telling our stories and offering hope.
We must be ready to care, to give ourselves. This is what spirituality is about. When we help others, we prepare the road for those who enter the program after us.
Tradition Five of the Twelve Traditions says, “Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.” It means we get better by helping others.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me create more freedom. Bring me to where I’m needed. Help me carry the message well.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll think of ways I can help the addict who still suffers. Then I’ll chose one way I can be of help. I’ll talk with my sponsor about it, and I’ll follow through with my plan.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The idea of God is different in every person. The joy of my recovery was to find God within me.  –Angela L. Wozniak
The program promises peace. Day by day, step by step, we move closer to it. Each time we clearly are touched by someone else, and each time we touch another, carries us closer to a realization of God’s presence, in others, in ourselves, in all experiences. The search for God is over, just as soon as we realize the Spirit is as close as our thoughts, our breath.
Coming to believe in a greater power brings such relief to us in our daily struggles. And on occasion we still fight for control to be all-powerful ourselves, only to realize that the barriers we confront are of our own making. We are on easy street, just as soon as we choose to let God be our guide in all decisions, large and small.
The program’s greatest gift to us is relief from anxiety, the anxiety that so often turned us to booze, or pills, or candy. Relief is felt every time we let go of the problem that’s entrapped us and wait for the comfort and guidance God guarantees.
God’s help is mine just as quickly as I fully avail myself of it. I will let go of today’s problems.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

You are going to meet these new friends in your own community. 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.”

pp. 152 – 153

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

When I asked her if I was an alcoholic, she said that from what she’d seen of my drinking I might be and suggested that I talk with her boss. Terrified, I made an appointment and kept it. She told me the symptoms of alcoholism, and I had them all. She gave me a list of A.A. meetings and recommended one.

pp. 343-344

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Nine – “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

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

pp. 85-86

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Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.
–Cindy Clabough

“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”
–Jean Rostand

“The first step to knowledge is to know that we are ignorant.”
–Lord David Cecil

Correction does much, but encouragement does more.
–Goethe

He who knows the precepts by heart, but fails to practice them,
Is like unto one who lights a lamp and then shuts his eyes.
–Nagarjuna

The best remedy for a short temper is a long walk.
–Joseph Joubert

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

CERTAINTY

“The certainties of one age are
the problems of next.”
— R. H. Tawney

I was a religious bigot. I did not know that I was a bigot, but now I see how closed and
narrow my thinking was. I craved for certainty because I felt it would give me security
and happiness but it never did. I argued dogmas that I did not believe; the plight of the
unhappy hypocrite!

Today I live only in the certainty of the day. Today I know that what worked for me
yesterday will work for me today if I am open to love, truth, honesty and change.
Change is not necessarily “difference” if I see it as part of a process rather than an
event. Yesterday is linked to today, and together they forge tomorrow. The one thing
of which I can be certain is change. The God of Truth is revealed in the change;
the acceptance of this fact is spirituality.

May I continue to grow in the spiritual life by my continued desire to change and be
tolerant.

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“But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with
Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been
saved.”
Ephesians 2:4-5

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my
yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find
rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Matthew 11:28-30


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Daily Inspiration

Tranquility lies in self-improvement. Lord, help me to worry less about the faults of others and use my energy to enhance my own strengths and eliminate my weaknesses.

If you have more than you need, but still feel it isn’t enough, then you are poor. Lord, may I take time to recognize and enjoy my blessings.

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NA Just For Today

Being Ourselves

“To be truly humble is to accept and honestly try to be ourselves.”
Basic Text pg. 35

Humility is a puzzling concept. We know a lot about humiliation, but humility is a new idea. It sounds suspiciously like groveling, bowing, and scraping. But that’s not what humility is at all. True humility is, simply, acceptance of who we are.

By the time we reach a step that uses the word “humbly;” we have already started to put this principle into practice. The Fourth Step gives us an opportunity to examine who we really are, and the Fifth Step helps us accept that knowledge.

The practice of humility involves accepting our true nature, honestly being ourselves. We don’t have to grovel or abase ourselves, nor must we try to appear smarter, wealthier, or happier than we really are. Humility simply means we drop all pretense and live as honestly as we can.

Just for today: I will allow knowledge of my true nature to guide my actions. Today, I will face the world as myself.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
for most this amazing day . . .
. . . for everything
which is natural which is infinite
which is yes.
–e. e. cummings
Let us be thankful today for all simple obvious things: for the sun’s rising this morning without our having to awaken it; for another good turn the earth makes today without expecting anything in return; for our ability to know right and wrong by heart. Let us give thanks for all small things that mean the world to us; for bread and cheese and clean running water; for our ability to call our enemies our friends, to forgive even ourselves; for our own bodies, however sagging and worn, which insist on continuing for at least another day.
How much ordinary daily good do I take for granted?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Our job gives most of us a clear role…. Although we may feel relatively lost at home, we know who we are and what to do at work. –Pierre Mornell
Most men have become well adapted to the workaday world. Even if our jobs seem like drudgery, they provide us with a place and a routine, which define us. Many of us have welcomed the end of a weekend or a vacation because we could go back to our jobs and definite roles. This situation has many drawbacks. For one thing, if we are out of work, we may feel adrift. Furthermore, if we have defined ourselves only as breadwinners, we have probably missed the benefits of closeness in our families. Some of us have even said, “I feel like I’m nothing but a meal ticket.”
A good job does have value, but we can also grow by giving more of ourselves in our less clear roles at home. It is healing to just “hang around” with our families and friends and to simply let relationships develop. The personal, familiar relationships that don’t depend on jobs and roles let us be comfortably human.
I am thankful for the humanizing effect of my relationships at home.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The idea of God is different in every person. The joy of my recovery was to find God within me. –Angela L. Wozniak
The program promises peace. Day by day, step by step, we move closer to it. Each time we clearly are touched by someone else, and each time we touch another, carries us closer to a realization of God’s presence, in others, in ourselves, in all experiences. The search for God is over, just as soon as we realize the Spirit is as close as our thoughts, our breath.
Coming to believe in a greater power brings such relief to us in our daily struggles. And on occasion we still fight for control to be all-powerful ourselves, only to realize that the barriers we confront are of our own making. We are on easy street, just as soon as we choose to let God be our guide in all decisions, large and small.
The program’s greatest gift to us is relief from anxiety, the anxiety that so often turned us to booze, or pills, or candy. Relief is felt every time we let go of the problem that’s entrapped us and wait for the comfort and guidance God guarantees.
God’s help is mine just as quickly as I fully avail myself of it. I will let go of today’s problems.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Back to the Steps
Go back to the Steps. Go back to a Step
When we don’t know what to do next, when we feel confused, upset, distraught, at the end of our rope, overwhelmed, full of self will, rage, or despair, go back to the Steps.
No matter what situation we are facing, working a Step will help. Focus on one, trust your instincts, and work it.
What does it mean to work a Step? Think about it. Meditate on it. Instead of focusing on the confusion, the problems, or the situation causing our despair or rage, focus on the Step.
Think about how that Step might apply. Hold on to it. Hang on as tightly as we hang on to our confusion or the problem.
The Steps are a solution. They work. We can trust them to work.
We can trust where the Steps will lead us.
When we don’t know what step to take next, take one of the Twelve.
Today, I will concentrate on using the Twelve Steps to solve problems and keep me in balance and harmony. I will work a Step to the best of my ability. I will learn to trust the Steps, and rely on them instead of on my protective, codependent behaviors.

Today I know that I am nothing alone. I am willing to let go of any struggle that keeps me on a path of doing things my way. I know that all I have to do is ask for help and it is there for me. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Bask in Self-Love

The commitment to love ourselves may be a decision we only need to make once, but we may need to take frequent action to implement that choice. It’s so easy to fall into that place of not loving and accepting ourselves. But it can become just as easy to decide to return to the place. We may need to do it daily, weekly, or whenever we begin a new part of our journey, especially a part that frightens or challenges us.

What would feel good? What would bring healing? What would energize or comfort you? And what purpose is to be fulfilled by depriving yourself of that?

However often we need to do it, we can return to that place of self-love. Each time we do it, it becomes easier. Each time we do it, we see the rewards of self-love, enhanced creativity, clearer decisions, a stronger connection to the Divine, and a more fulfilling connection to the world around us.

When we love ourselves, it becomes easier to correct our mistakes, admit our wrongs, share our deepest feelings, and love others. Our spirit dances, thrives. Self-love energizes us. It attracts more love. The universe responds directly and immediately to our choice to love ourselves.

Accept yourself. Love yourself just as you are. Your finest work, your best moments, your joy, peace, and healing come when you love yourself. You give a great gift to the world when you do that. You give others permission to do the same to love themselves.

Revel in self-love. Roll in it. Bask in it, as you would the sunshine.

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More Language Of Letting Go

It’s an opportunity

In order to develop a strong sense of the preciousness of human life, it must connect to one’s belief system. The belief system doesn’t need to be the Buddhist karmic system, but it has to be one that is critically aware of the uniqueness and special nature of this life form.
–Robert Thurman, Circling the Sacred Mountain

Do you see it? Do you see what a special, precious opportunity each day of your life is.

Look more closely. See all the lessons you can learn. See how you can participate in your growth. See how carefully God holds your hand, guides you down the right path, offers just the right words and opportunities at the right moments, sends just the right people your way.

You can feel. You can touch. You can agoniize in despair and giggle with glee. You can make jokes. You can cry at movies. You can weep in bed at night. Then get up the next day refreshed.

You can taste an orange, a lemon, a mango– and describe in detail the difference in each of those tastes. You can smell a forest of pine tree. You can hold a friend’s hand and feel how he trembles because he’s afraid.

You can stumble and fall and feel abandoned, then get up and suddenly, in one moment, understand that lesson you’ve been trying to learn. You can jump out of airplanes, feel the smoothness of your lover’s back, and hold your child to your breast.

You can wait and thank God later.

But you might as well thank God now.

Maybe the best way to thank God is by living your life fully today.

God, help me to use this opportunity, this life that I have been given to the best of my ability every day.

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The Understanding Underneath
Experiences with Multiple Meanings by Madisyn Taylor

The refined impression you glean from your experiences after contemplating their significance can add a new richness and texture to your life.

Though we humans are self-aware, we nonetheless cannot distance ourselves from the world around us and have a natural tendency to ascribe meaning to all that we experience. The significance we perceive in our experiences is rooted in our observation of patterns as they relate to ourselves. One situation has the power to teach us about life because it exposes us to something unfamiliar. Another touches our emotions deeply by enabling us to see how fortunate we are. Yet our initial impressions of an experience may not wholly reveal the true significance of that occurrence because our full response to an experience is like an onion with many layers that all have disparate meanings. Consider that a sunrise may stun us visually while simultaneously evoking memories of childhood and reminding us that each new day is a rebirth.

If you take the time to examine your experiences closely, you will discover that your original impressions may only be a part of a larger story of significance. Peeling away the layers of an event or incident can be a fun and interesting process if you allow it. To begin, relive your experience in your mind’s eye and from multiple perspectives if possible. Your interpretation of any situation is based not only on facts but also on feelings, beliefs, and your values. As you ruminate upon your experience, spend a few moments contemplating how you felt when it began and how your feelings had changed by its end. Ask yourself what abstractions, if any, it awakened in your mind. If an experience stirs up questions within your soul, it may be that in striving to answer them a new layer of meaning may reveal itself to you.

The significance of an experience may remain hidden to you for some time. The meaning of an event can change when viewed from another context or may only become apparent after intense meditation. An incident that seemed superficial may unexpectedly touch us deeply later in our lives. If you take a truly open-minded approach to your examination of each new level and do not shy away from revelations that could prove painful, you will learn much about your relationship to the world around you. And the refined impression you glean from your experiences after contemplating their significance can add a new richness and texture to your life. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Our faith in god’s power — at work in us and in our lives — doesn’t relieve us of responsibility. Instead, our faith strengthens our efforts, makes us confident and assured, and enables us to act decisively and wisely. We’re no longer afraid to make decisions; we’re not afraid to take the steps that seem called for in the proper handling of given situations. Do I believe that God is at work beyond my human efforts, and that my faith and trust in Him will bring forth results for exceeding my expectations?

Today I Pray

May my trust in my Higher Power never falter. May my my faith in that Power continue to shore up my optimism, my confidence, my belief in my own decision-making. May I never shut my eyes to the wonder of God’s work or discount the wisdom of His solutions.

Today I Will Remember

Our hope is ages past, our help for years to come.

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One More Day

Time deals gently only with those who take it gently.
–Anatole France

There have been times when we’ve taken our lives too seriously. For whatever reasons — family problems, money problems, health problems, — we’ve let those concerns distort all the events of the day into sad or personally threatening experiences. When we’ve been preoccupied with negative thoughts, it’s probably been difficult to see good possibilities.

Life magically becomes better, easier, when we take it gently in manageable segments. Problems may seem insurmountable if we insist on seeing them stretch into the coming months or years. But when we challenge ourselves to live in this day, the time treats us more gently by giving us a clearer picture of what we must deal with in this smaller segment of time.

Today, I will concentrate only on the things that must be dealt with in these twenty-four hours.

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Food For Thought

A Strong Father

Many of us understand God in terms of a father, one on whom we can rely no matter what the situation. Our biological father may have been a tyrant or a pal, remote or accessible, firm or weak. However much we loved him and depended on him, he was only a person and not infallible.

For recovery from compulsive overeating, we need a source of strength to which we may turn in any emergency. We require a Power to lean on through the minor ups and downs of every day. Though our families and friends support us, their assistance is not enough. They can provide neither the control nor the sustenance, which we need in order to recover from our illness.

The firm, unfailing guidance which we require comes from our Higher Power. If we are willing to again become as children and cast ourselves on God without reservation, we shall receive His support. It is His Power that frees us from our false dependency on food.

Be for us a strong Father, we pray.

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One Day At A Time

~ GOODNESS ~
Above all, let us never forget that an act of goodness
is in itself an act of happiness.
Count Maurice Maeterlinck

While in the disease, most of the goodness I tried to do was for ulterior motives. It was only in recovery that I learned to give unselfishly and without strings to help another. In doing so, I have found happiness beyond measure. I can create my own happiness in the service of my Higher Power and other compulsive overeaters. I can make the promise of a “new happiness and a new freedom” come true.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will do acts of goodness.
~ Judy N. ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

There is the type of man who is unwilling to admit that he cannot take a drink. He plans various ways of drinking. He changes his brand or his environment. There is the type who always believes that after being entirely free from alcohol for a period of time he can take a drink without danger. There is the manic-depressive type, who is, perhaps, the least understood by his friends, and about whom a whole chapter could be written.

Then there are types entirely normal in every respect except in the effect alcohol has upon them. They are often able, intelligent, friendly people. – Pg. xxx – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

We may be asked to make many difficult decisions about our new life, facing divorce, jail time, loss of our children. Not all of the results will be perfect. We gather the information that we can, ask for advice from professionals, practice principles as best we can and then trust in the process. We do our best; no one expects perfection.

Not all my decisions will turn out the way I expect and that doesn’t make them wrong. I do the best I can and trust in the process.

One Foot in Front of the Other

Today, all I have to do is live the next hour as well as I can. I will not get ahead of myself. I cannot be anywhere but right where I am. When I allow myself to be here now, to live in the present fully and freely, the rest of life takes care of itself. So few people live in the moment, that in itself will make me rare. That will make me someone I feel good about being and others can enjoy being around. When I am in the moment, the next right action reveals itself. When I align my will with the will of my Higher Power, I become one with diving purpose and I connect with the spirituality of life.

I surrender to the path

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

According to the martial arts, Aikido, the best way to win a fight is not to be there in the first place. Think of this the next time you are invited to a bar, to ride in vehicle with a pot smoker, or to celebrate at the office party.

My best path to cease fighting anybody or anything, is not to be in the ring in the first place.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

A sure way to set yourself up for a ‘slip’ is to be convinced that others will slip if they don’t listen to you.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that I am nothing alone. I am willing to let go of any struggle that keeps me on a path of doing things my way. I know that all I have to do is ask for help and it is there for me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

The measure of my anxiety is the measure of my distance from God. – Unknown origin.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 28

The Lesson
This, then, became the opening to the spiritual world.
With the guidance of the program and the encouragement and example within the Fellowship,
I could begin to find out about myself and be prepared to accept what I found.
I learned in the Fellowship that if others could accept me and love me as I was, then I should love myself as I was
— not for what I was, but for what I could become.
So I have learned a little about my mind and about my will and about my emotions and passions.
– Came To Believe . . ., p. 3

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

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A B C = Accept, Begin, Continue.

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

Promises
“We are going to know a new freedom
and a new happiness.
We will not regret the past
nor wish to shut the door on it.
We will comprehend the word serenity
and we will know peace.
No matter how far down the scale we have gone,
we will see how our experience can benefit others.
That feeling of uselessness and self-pity
will disappear.
We will lose interest in selfish things
and gain interest in our fellows.
Self-seeking will slip away.
Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.
Fear of people and of economic insecurity
will leave us.
We will intuitively know how to handle
situations which used to baffle us.
We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us
what we could not do for ourselves.
Are these extravagant promises? We think not.
They are being fulfilled among us —
sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly.
They will always materialize if we work for them.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 83-4

Thought to Consider . . .
The Promises are a result not a right.

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

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

How To Live
From: “Stars Don’t Fall”
AA taught me how not to drink. And also, on the twenty-four hour plan, it taught me how to live. I know I do not have to be queen of them all to salve a frightened ego. Through going to meetings and listening, and occasionally speaking, through doing Twelve Step work, whereby in helping others you are both the teacher and the student, by making many wonderful AA friends, I have been taught all the things in life that are worth having. I am no longer interested in living in a palace, because palace living was not the answer for me. Nor were those impossible dreams I used to have the things I really wanted.
2003, AAWS, Inc., Experience, Strength & Hope, pages 362-363

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

“Recovery is giving it away. If you don’t give it away you can’t have it … Be part of the pipeline.”
Greenwich Village, N.Y., December 1997
“Oh God, You Again?”
I Am Responsible: The Hand of AA

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

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

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 , Page 31-32

The only requirement for membership is an honest desire to stop drinking.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.xiv

When we are honest with another person, it confirms that we have been honest with ourselves and with God.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.60

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

When anyone, anywhere, reaches out for help, I want the hand of A.A. always to be there. And for that: I am responsible.
DEAR FRIENDS: Since 1938, the greatest part of my A.A. life has been spent in helping to create, design, manage, and insure the solvency and effectiveness of A.A.’s world services – the office of which has enabled our Fellowship to function all over the globe, and as a unified whole.
It is no exaggeration to say that, under their trustees, these all important services have accounted for much of our present size and over-all effectiveness.
The A.A. General Service Office is by far the largest single carrier of the A.A. message. It has well related A.A. to the troubled world in which we live. It has fostered the spread of our Fellowship everywhere. A.A. World Services, Inc., stands ready to serve the special needs of any group or isolated individual, no matter the distance or language. Its many years of accumulated experience are available to us all.
The members of our trusteeship – the General Service Board of A.A .- will, in the future, be our primary leaders in all of our world affairs. This high responsibility has long since been delegated to them; they are the successors in world service to Dr. Bob and to me, and they are directly accountable to A.A. as a whole.
This is the legacy of world-service responsibility that we vanishing oldtimers are leaving to you, the A.A.’s of today and tomorrow. We know that you will guard, support, and cherish this world legacy as the greatest collective responsibility that A.A. has or ever can have.
Yours in trust, and in affection,
Bill W. died on January 24, 1971.

Prayer for the Day: Fourth Step Prayer – Dear God, It is I who has made my life a mess. I have done it, but I cannot undo it. My mistakes are mine and I will begin a searching & fearless moral inventory. I will write down my wrongs, but I will also include that which is good. I pray for the strength to complete the task.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 27th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 27th

Daily Reflections

THE PERILS OF THE LIMELIGHT

In the beginning, the press could not understand our
refusal of all personal publicity. They were genuinely
baffled by our insistence upon anonymity. Then they got
the point. Here was something rare in the world — a
society which said it wished to publicize its principles
and its work, but not its individual members. The press
was delighted with this attitude. Ever since, these
friends have reported A.A. with an enthusiasm which the
most ardent members would find hard to match.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 182

It is essential for my personal survival and that of the
Fellowship that I not use A.A. to put myself in the
limelight. Anonymity is a way for me to work on my humility.
Since pride is one of my most dangerous shortcomings, practicing
humility is one of the best ways to overcome it. The Fellowship of A.A.
gains worldwide recognition by its various methods of publicizing its
principles and its work, not by its individual members advertising
themselves. The attraction created by my changing attitudes and my
altruism contributes much more to the welfare of A.A. than
self-promotion.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The way of A.A. is the way of sobriety, fellowship, service
and faith. Let us take up each one of these things and see if
our feet are truly on the way. The first and greatest to us
is sobriety. The others are built on sobriety as a foundation.
We could not have the others if we did not have sobriety. We
all come to A.A. to get sober, and we stay to help others get
sober. We are looking for sobriety first, last and all the
time. We cannot build any kind of decent life unless we stay
sober. Am I on the A.A. way?

Meditation For The Day

To truly desire to do God’s will, therein lies happiness for
a human being. We start out wanting our own way. We want our
wills to be satisfied. We take and we do not give. Gradually
we find that we are not happy when we are selfish, so we begin
to make allowances for other peoples’ wills. But this again
does not give us full happiness, and we begin to see that the
only way to be truly happy is to try to do God’s will. In these
times of meditation, we seek to get guidance so that we can
find God’s will for us.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may subordinate my will to the will of God.
I pray that I may be guided today to find His will for me.


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As Bill Sees It

Do It Our Way?, p. 329

In praying, our immediate temptation will be to ask for specific
solutions to specific problems, and for the ability to help other people
as we have already thought they should be helped. In that case, we
are asking God to do it our way. Therefore, we ought to consider
each request carefully to see what its real merit is.

Even so, when making specific requests, it will be well to add to each
one of them this qualification: “. . . if it be Thy will.”

12 & 12, p. 102

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Walk In Dry Places

Nobody “OD’s”  on AA.
Balance
Do people really need daily AA meetings, perhaps even two or three a day?   Frequent meeting attendance is usually considered beneficial in AA, but non-members may frown on the practice, especially if a person is neglecting other responsibilities in the meantime.
One thing to remember is that nobody can really “OD” on AA. The worst that can happen from attending so many meetings would be eventual boredom from too much of the same thing. But no harm can come form too much of what is essentially a good practice.
If a person is attending lots of meetings, this schedule may eventually be cut back to allow time for other activities. It’s better, especially in early recovery, to attend too many meetings than too few.  We also have to let each person decide how many meetings are required at any stage in his or her recovery.
I know that  everyone needs a balanced life, but that cannot happen without secure recovery. Meetings are may best way of staying active in the fellowship.

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Keep It Simple

Keep It Simple
Life is not lost by dying; life is lost by minute, day by day, in all the thousands, small, uncaring ways.— Stephen V. Benet
Our Twelve Step program promises us a new way of life. But most of us won’t just wake up one day with a new attitude. We only gain this new way of life if we get involved.
The Twelve Step are tools to build a new life. The more we use a tool, the easier it is to use. The same goes for the Twelve Steps, just as carpenters depend on their tools. If we only wait for the new way of life, it’ll never come. The quicker we get involved, the quicker we’ll get fixed.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me get involved. Help me build a new way of life.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll look for ways to use the Twelve Steps. If I have a problem, I’ll first stop and think of how the Twelve Steps can help me solve it.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Limited expectations yield only limited results.  –Susan Laurson Willig
Schoolchildren perform according to the expectations their teachers have of them. Likewise, what we women achieve depends greatly on what we believe about ourselves, and too many of us have too little belief in ourselves. Perhaps we grew up in a negative household or had a non-supportive marriage. But we contributed, too, in our negative self-assessment. The good news is that it no longer needs to control us.
We can boost our own performance by lifting our own expectations, even in the absence of support from others. It may not be easy, but each of us is capable of changing a negative self-image to a positive one. It takes commitment to the program, a serious relationship with our higher power, and the development of positive, healthy relationships with others.
It’s true, we can’t control other people in our lives. And we can’t absolutely control the outcome of any particular situation. But we can control our own attitudes. Interestingly, when we’ve begun tagging ourselves competent and capable, instead of inadequate, we find that other people and other situations become more to our liking, too.
I will be fair with myself. I can do what I need to do wherever I am today. Only I can hold myself down.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. There you will find release from care, boredom and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your existence lie ahead. Thus we find the fellowship, and so will you.
“How is that to come about?” you ask. “Where am I to find these people?”

p. 152

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

The therapist told me then and there to call someone who had been in our therapy group, a doctor on the staff of a hospital alcoholism service. “I’ll call her tomorrow,” I said.
“Call her now.” He handed me the phone.

p. 343

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Nine – “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

After taking this preliminary trial at making amends, we may enjoy such a sense of relief that we conclude our task is finished. We will want to rest on our laurels. The temptation to skip the more humiliating and dreaded meetings that still remain may be great. We will often manufacture plausible excuses for dodging these issues entirely. Or we may just procrastinate, telling ourselves the time is not yet, when in reality we have already passed up many a fine chance to right a serious wrong. Let’s not talk prudence while practicing evasion.

p. 85

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“Each day is a new life. Seize it. Live it.”
–David Guy Powers

No man or woman of the humblest sort can really be strong, gentle and good, without
the world being better for it, without somebody being helped and comforted by the
very existence of that goodness.
–Alan Alda

“What appears to be your biggest problem in life may disguise your greatest
opportunity.
–Brian Tracy

Money is not required to buy one necessity of the soul.
–Henry David Thoreau

“Take your problems to God, then take God to your problems.”
–unknown

“Nothing changes if nothing changes.”
–unknown

“Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?”
–unknown

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PREVARICATION

“Whenever science makes a
discovery, the devil grabs it
while the angels are debating
the best way to use it.”
— Alan Valentine

Sometimes we can spend so long deciding what to do that we miss an opportunity. We
can prevaricate to the point of impotence. Nowhere is this more true than in the
science of relationships. We see somebody that we like and we go home thinking
about what we could have said or done. We create happenings in our mind that
never happened in fact. We miss the spiritual opportunity of risk.

For years I used to be like this. I always thought that I was not good enough, not
important, less than other people: the syndrome of low self-esteem.

Today it is getting better. Part of my spiritual growth is reaching out to other people.
Today I make a point of saying “hello”. Today I will ask for a telephone number,
invite people to dinner, risk a relationship.

Let me not debate myself into sickness and isolation.

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Set me free from my prison that I may praise your Name. Then the righteous will
gather around me, because of Your goodness to me.
Psalm 142:7

Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering
produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does
not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit,
whom he has given us.
Romans 3:3-5

For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of
yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that
no one should boast.
Ephesians 2:8-9

Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the
LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!
Isaiah 30:18


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Daily Inspiration

To be truly successful, put your heart and soul into even the smallest of your tasks. Lord, help me live my life in different ways and by different means, but always with enthusiasm and commitment.

We are the only ones who can change how we think or how we act. Lord, help me make positive decisions so that life doesn’t just happen to me.

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NA Just For Today

Seeking God’s Help

“At times during our recovery, the decision to ask for God’s help is our greatest source of strength and courage.”
Basic Text pg. 26

When we take the Third Step, we decide to allow a loving Higher Power to guide us and care for us in our daily lives. We make the decision to allow this guidance and care into our lives. Some of us believe that, once we’ve made the Third Step decision, God leads us; from that point on, it’s just a matter of paying attention to where we are led.

The Third Step decision is an act of faith, and asking for God’s help is a way of renewing that act of faith. Putting faith to work in our daily lives gives us all the courage and strength we need, because we know we have the help of a loving Higher Power. We trust that our needs will be met. We can tap into that faith and trust just by asking.

Just for today: I will remind myself that I’m not alone by asking my Higher Power for help each step of the way.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. –Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein knew in his heart that the source of all his knowledge was not himself, but a mystery–something or someone outside himself. And it left him in awe and wonder. He knew also that while genius may be ninety percent hard work and only ten percent inspiration, all the hard work in the world amounts to nothing without that outside, mysterious inspiration.
He was right. We can work hard and play hard. We can paint and draw and write and develop formulas all our lives, but none of it will be new or different unless we are open to inspiration from some power outside ourselves that also, somehow, is deep within us. To be really good at anything, whether it’s playing baseball, designing fashion clothing, fixing an engine, or cooking, we must believe in some creative force that helps us excel. When we see that force at work, we stand in awe at the wonderful and mysterious gift we have been given.
How have I been inspired to discover something?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The simplest questions are the most profound. Where were you born? Where is your home? Where are you going? What are you doing? –Richard Bach
As we examine our personal answers to these simple questions, we find profound truths about ourselves. We may have been born in more places than the place of our biological birth. Some of us might say, “I truly was born the day I first felt the nurturing love of another person in my life,” or “My life began on the day I stood up to my father.” Most of us began new lives when we walked into our first meeting to begin recovery.
If we think about where our home is or where we are going and what we are doing as spiritual questions, we may find some comforting answers. Perhaps the place where we find rest, peace, and comfort is our home. That may be in a moment of meditation rather than in a physical place. If we are headed toward a manhood of self-respect, the problems of today are only challenges along the way. As we simplify our lives and let the truth be on the surface, we find profound meaning.
Today, I will keep my attention on the basics in my life.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Limited expectations yield only limited results. –Susan Laurson Willig
Schoolchildren perform according to the expectations their teachers have of them. Likewise, what we women achieve depends greatly on what we believe about ourselves, and too many of us have too little belief in ourselves. Perhaps we grew up in a negative household or had a non-supportive marriage. But we contributed, too, in our negative self-assessment. The good news is that it no longer needs to control us.
We can boost our own performance by lifting our own expectations, even in the absence of support from others. It may not be easy, but each of us is capable of changing a negative self-image to a positive one. It takes commitment to the program, a serious relationship with our higher power, and the development of positive, healthy relationships with others.
It’s true, we can’t control other people in our lives. And we can’t absolutely control the outcome of any particular situation. But we can control our own attitudes. Interestingly, when we’ve begun tagging ourselves competent and capable, instead of inadequate, we find that other people and other situations become more to our liking, too.
I will be fair with myself. I can do what I need to do wherever I am today. Only I can hold myself down.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
We can Trust Ourselves
For many of us, the issue is not whether we can trust another person again; it’s whether we can trust our own judgment again.
“The last mistake I made almost cost me my sanity,” said one recovering woman who married a sex addict. “I can’t afford to make another mistake like that.”
Many of us have trusted people, who went on to deceive, abuse, manipulate, or otherwise exploit us because we trusted them. We may have found these people charming, kind, and decent. There may have been a small voice that said, “No – something’s wrong.” Or we may have been comfortable with trusting that person and shocked when we found our instincts were wrong.
The issue may then reverberate through our life for years. Our trust in others may have been shaken, but our trust in ourselves may have been shattered worse.
How could something feel so right, flow so well, and be such a total mistake? We may wonder. How can I ever trust my selection process again, when it showed itself to be so faulty?
We may never have the answers. I believe I needed to make certain “mistakes” to learn critical lessons I’m not certain I would have otherwise learned. We cannot let our past interfere with our ability to trust ourselves. We cannot afford to function with fear.
If we are always making the wrong decision in business or in love, we may need to learn why we insist on defeating ourselves.
But most of us do improve. We learn. We grow from our mistakes. Slowly, in increments, our relationships improve. Our business choices improve. Our decisions about how to handle situations with friends or children improve. We benefit from our mistakes. We benefit from our past. And if we have made mistakes, we needed to make them in order to learn along the way.
Today, I will let go of my fears about trusting myself because I have made mistakes in the past. I understand that these fears only serve to impair my judgment today. I will give my past, even my mistakes, validity by accepting and being grateful for it all. I will strive to see what I’ve gained from my mistakes. I will try to look at all my good decisions too. I will keep a watchful eye for improvement, for overall progress, in my life.

Today I choose to stay in the reality of my life and feel all there is to feel. I am willing to feel the pain so that I can feel the joy.
–Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Forgiveness Isn’t too Much to Ask

Is your heart blocked? Are you experiencing a barricade you can’t get around in a particular relationship? Forgiveness is a delicate, sometimes difficult subject, but once in a while that’s what we need to ask for.

Part of being clear, and one of our powers, is the ability and ask for what we need from others, from the universe, from God, even from ourselves. We may be extremely skilled at identifying when we need more time with someone, more money, more attention, or a different type of communication. But as proficient as we may have become at asking for some of what we need, we may still find it difficult to ask for forgiveness.

It is one thing to tell a person we’re sorry. It is another to be intimate and bold enough to recognize the damage that comes when forgiveness hasn’t occured. Being unforgiven can block the kindest and warmest heart. It can destroy the most precious, beautiful, passionate, spiritual relationship. It can keep guilt lingering in the air. It can cause people to go away from each other.

Muster your forces. Prepare yourself if you must. Then take a risk, one of the greatest risks you’ll be asked to take. Put your cards on the table. Say you’re sorry, say it from the heart. Then don’t get defensive, ruffle your feathers, or get mad. Ask for forgiveness.

Forgiveness is not too much to ask for, if forgiveness is what you need.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Flex your wings

Walking in the hills of Southern California, I came across a high meadow bursting with the movement of hundreds of moths. I stood for a few moments and drank in the scene, watching them dance lightly around me. There were so many of them I could actually hear their wings beating in the still air.

I walked further along and saw a caterpillar crawling along the ground. I looked more closely and saw that the tiny creature had two small but useless wings protruding from its back. At first I thought that it must have been a deformity, that this poor worm would be forced to spend its days crawling, never able to fly, but all the while having wings. Then as I walked further along, I saw another caterpillar– this one with slightly larger wings. It was slowly flexing its new appendages, looking anxiously at the sky. These moths grew their wings gradually, without the aid of a cocoon to protect them throughout the transformation. They just sprouted their wings right out there for the whole world to see.

We each have different levels of freedom. What I think of as a box might be unthinkable freedom for you today. In the future, when you look back at your life, you may be amazed at the levels of freedom into which you have naturally grown. Perhaps you are looking around today at the freedom of others in awe and envy. “I could never do that,” you might say.

Yes, you can.

And you might.

Feel those wings on your back? They’re there. And they’re growing every day– whether you’re flying yet or not.

Robert Thurman wrote, “The great thing about the horizon of infinity is that there is no limit to how amazing you can become.”

God, help me flex my wings. Teach me how amazing I can become.

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One of a Kind
The Black Sheep by Madisyn Taylor

When we move beyond comparisons and accept our differences, we appreciate the significance of our upbringing and socialization in each of our unique life’s journey.

Many of us have had an experience in which we felt like the lone black sheep in a vast sea of white sheep. For some of us, however, this sense of not belonging runs more deeply and spans a period of many years. It is possible to feel like the black sheep in families and peer groups that are supportive, as well as in those that are not. Even if we receive no overt criticism regarding our values, there will likely be times when it seems that relatives and friends are humoring us or waiting for us to grow out of a phase. Sometimes we may even think we have been adopted because we are so different from our family members. These feelings are not a sign that we have failed in some way to connect with others. Rather, they should be perceived as the natural result of our willingness to articulate our individuality.

Many black sheep respond to the separateness they feel by pulling back from the very people to whom they might otherwise feel closest and embracing a different group with whom they enjoy a greater degree of commonality. But if you feel that your very nature has set you apart from your peers and relatives, consider that you chose long ago to be raised by a specific family and to come together with specific people so that you could have certain experiences that would contribute to your ongoing evolution. You may be much more sensitive than the people around you or more artistic, aware, spiritual, or imaginative. The disparate temperament of your values and those of your family or peers need not be a catalyst for interpersonal conflict. If you can move beyond comparisons and accept these differences, you will come to appreciate the significant role your upbringing and socialization have played in your life’s unique journey.

In time, most black sheep learn to embrace their differences and be thankful for those aspects of their individuality that set them apart from others. We cannot expect that our peers and relatives will suddenly choose to embrace our values and offer us the precise form of support we need. But we can acknowledge the importance of these individuals by devoting a portion of our energy to keeping these relationships healthy while continuing to define our own identities apart from them. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

The Program shows us how to transform the pipe-dreams of our past into reality and a true sense of purpose, together with a growing consciousness of the power of God in our lives. It’s alright to keep our head in the clouds with Him, we’re taught, but our feet should remain firmly planted here on earth. Here’s where other people are; here’s where our work must be accomplished. Do I see anything incompatible between spirituality and a useful life in the here and now?

Today I Pray

May my new “reality” include not only the nuts and bolts and pots and pans of daily lviing, but also my spiritual realty, my growing knowledge of the presence of God. May this new reality have room, too, for my dreams — not the drug-induced, mind-drifting fantasies of the past or the presents of my delusions — but the products of a healthy imagination. May I respect these dreams, anchor them in earth’s possibilities and turn them into useful creativity.

Today I Will Remember

Heaven has a place in the here-and-now.

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One More Day

Bitterness imprisons life; love releases it.
– Harry Emerson Fosdick

We sometimes waste far too much energy licking old wounds, nursing old hurts. Harboring bitterness only causes us pain. It folds all our feelings into a tight little package and keeps them hidden from sight.

Moving from bitter to loving feelings doesn’t happen overnight, but it does happen when we nurture ourselves and open ourselves to others. Letting friends and family help is one way to begin. Soon we will remember how wonderful and unthreatening love feels. Outgoing, warm, and trusting feelings flow through us toward others. We can harness our love and use it for emotional recovery. Eventually, we are freed of unnecessary pain. We are learning once again to love kin an unqualified way — and to love ourselves.

I do not need to be imprisoned by bitterness. I can set myself free.

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Food For Thought

One Bite Means a Binge

By this time; we know that we do not overeat moderately. One extra compulsive bite sooner or later becomes a binge. Keeping this fact firmly planted in our consciousness prevents us from deluding ourselves into disaster. For us, there is abstinence or there is chaos. Nothing in between.

Having proved this fact over and over again, we must avoid at all costs the insanity that makes us think we can handle one small extra bite. Our only sure defense against such inexplicable insanity is a Power greater than ourselves. Alone, we cannot control what we eat and we cannot manage our lives.

Each day we begin by admitting to God our powerlessness over our compulsion, and we ask for His control. Whenever we are tempted or overwhelmed, we release our whole selves into His care and protection. At the end of the day, we give thanks for the Power that keeps us from taking the one small, disastrous bite.

Deliver me from the bite that means a binge.

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One Day At A Time

~ NEW BEGINNINGS ~
There will come a time when you believe everything is finished.
That will be the beginning.
Louis L’Amour

During my life I’ve always found it hard to start anything. I don’t know whether it comes from being a compulsive overeater, but I do know that I took my time in starting a recovery program. Maybe it was a fear that, if I didn’t succeed, I could never start over.

Luckily, this is a very forgiving program. If I slip, I can get up and start over. I don’t have to stay down. In fact, I can be down, but I can never be counted out, because all I need to do is begin again. My Higher Power helps me stay on track, and it comforts me to know that, if I fall, I can be picked up and allowed to continue my journey to recovery.

One day at a time . . .
I will remain “higher powered” and start over if I need to.
Jeff

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

The classification of alcoholics seems most difficult, and in much detail is outside the scope of this book. There are, of course, the psychopaths who are emotionally unstable. We are all familiar with this type. They are over-remorseful and make many resolutions, but never a decision. – Pg. xxx – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Stick with the winners and hang with the gods’ and you’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sticking with the winners means to only associate with clean and sober people in the program and going to meetings is hanging with the gods.

Grant me the good sense to go to a meeting every day for 90 days and socialize with people on the path of recovery.

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Stick with the winners and hang with the gods’ and you’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sticking with the winners means to only associate with clean and sober people in the program and going to meetings is hanging with the gods.

Grant me the good sense to go to a meeting every day for 90 days and socialize with people on the path of recovery.

Becoming Real

Today, I let go and become real. I know that by holding on too tightly, I squeeze the life out of myself and those around me. Recovery has taught me to value being authentic above being something or someone. Recovery is a process of facing and removing those obstacles that have been in the way on my road back to myself. It has been my willingness to risk and trust that my Higher Power will hold me that has brought me to life again. Now it is time for me to live each day as it comes and give some of what I have received. So many people have helped me along the way – it is also part of my recovery to share what I have learned, in case it might help someone else.

I am open to life and all it holds.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Positive clean thoughts of ourselves are a must. Picture yourself speaking at meetings, greeting newcomers, laughing, sponsoring others, and holding your head high. Clean and sober thoughts help counter years of drunk and dirty thoughts.

I picture myself laughing and sharing with others.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Recovery is a journey, not a destination. May your journey be long.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I choose to stay in the reality of my life and feel all there is to feel. I am willing to feel the pain so that I can feel the joy.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Resentments are like replay cameras at football games; ‘Let’s take a another look at that in slow motion and close-up – Oh yes, that was worse than I thought.. let’s look at that from another angle!’ – Joe McQ.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 27

Gratitude
I am grateful not only for sobriety, but for the quality of life my sobriety has brought.
God has been gracious enough to give me sober days and a life blessed with peace and contentment,
as well as the ability to give and receive love, and the opportunity to serve others
— in our Fellowship, my family and my community.
For all of this, I have a “full and thankful heart.”
– Daily Reflections, p. 93

Thought to Ponder . . .
There is a calmness to a life lived in gratitude; a quiet joy.

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

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

Forgive
“Just like you, I have often thought myself the victim
of what other people say and do.
Yet every time I confessed the sins of such people,
especially those whose sins did not correspond
exactly with my own,
I found that I only increased the total damage. . .
Under very trying circumstances,
I have had, again and again, to forgive others — also myself.
Have you recently tried this?”
Bill W., Letter, 1946
c. 1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 268

Thought to Consider . . .
Life is an adventure in forgiveness.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F E E L = Feel, Experience, Express, Let go

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

Refuge
>From “for AAs, a Season of Gratitude”
The holiday season can be difficult for many AAs, especially the newcomer. The pressure to drink may feel overwhelming when it seems all the world is hoisting glasses in one toast after another. At these times, the prospect of the usual round of holiday parties can be as inviting as a stroll in a minefield to the alcoholic struggling to stay away from the first drink.
The AA group, though, can be a refuge. Meeting marathons provide a safe place for recovering alcoholics who are on their own, as well as those looking for a break from family festivities. Some groups schedule dances or potluck dinners, providing a place to congregate and celebrate in sober fellowship.
It’s safe to say that AA group celebrations are held in most parts of the world, wherever seasonal festivities are celebrated. Large or small, in remote rural areas or big cities, the sharing and hospitality always center on a regular AA meeting. But the styles of group gatherings are as varied as the members and regional customs dictate.
2003, AAWS, Inc., Box 459, 49(6):2

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

“To be happily sober, we must be active — and this does not necessarily mean group activity. The Loner is part of a much larger group of people in far distant places, all members of AA with the same problems, fears, and happiness to be shared … I may not be in face-to-face contact with other AA members, but my real friends in AA are too many to enumerate, and I find there aren’t enough hours in the day to do all I should.”
Salisbury, Rhodesia, February 1970
“Alone? Not This Loner!”
AA Around the World

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

“On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We
consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to
direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-
pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives. Under these conditions we
can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God
gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much
higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 86~

“What about people who proved that man could never fly? Yet we had been seeing another kind of flight, a spiritual liberation from this world, people who rose above their problems. They said God made these things possible, and we only smiled. We had seen spiritual release, but liked to tell ourselves it wasn’t true. Actually we were fooling ourselves, for deep down in every man, woman, and child, is the fundamental idea of God.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous ~page 55

Showing others who suffer how we were given help is the very thing which makes life seem so worth while to us now.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.124

Even the newest of newcomers finds undreamed rewards as he tries to help his brother alcoholic, the one who is even blinder than he.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.109

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We realize we know only a little. God will constantly disclose more to you and to us. Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick. The answers will come, if your own house is in order.
But obviously you cannot transmit something you haven’t got. See to it that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come to pass for you and countless others. This is the great fact for us.
To the Newcomer:
Abandon yourself to God as you understand God. Admit your faults to Him and to your fellows. Clear away the wreckage of your past. Give freely of what you find and join us. We shall be with you in the fellowship of the spirit, and you will surely meet some of us as you trudge the road of happy destiny.
May God bless you and keep you – until then.

Prayer for the Day: Third Step Prayer – God, I offer myself to Thee — to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy Way of life. May I do Thy will always!

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 26th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings Nov 26th

Daily Reflections

THE HAZARDS OF PUBLICITY

People who symbolize causes and ideas fill a deep human
need. We of A.A. do not question that. But we do have to
soberly face the fact that being in the public eye is
hazardous, especially for us.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 181

As a recovered alcoholic I must make an effort to put
into practice the principles of the A.A. program, which
are founded on honesty, truth and humility. While I was
drinking I was constantly trying to be in the limelight.
Now that I am conscious of my mistakes and of my former
lack of integrity, it would not be honest to seek
prestige, even for the justifiable purpose of promoting
the A.A. message of recovery. Is the publicity that
centers around the A.A. Fellowship and the miracles it
produces not worth much more? Why not let the people
around us appreciate by themselves the changes that A.A.
has brought in us, for that will be a far better
recommendation for the Fellowship than any I could make.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Continuing our thoughts about the rewards that have come
to us as a result of our new way of living: We have found
that we have got rid of many of our fears, resentments,
inferiority complexes, negative points of view,
self-centeredness, inner conflicts, the habits of
procrastination, undisciplined sex, wasting money,
boredom, false perfectionism, and jealousy and envy of
others. We are glad to be rid of our drinking, and we
are also very glad to be rid of these other things. We
can now go forward in the new way of life, as shown us by
A.A. Am I ready to go forward in the new life?

Meditation For The Day

“He that has eyes to see, let him see.” To the seeing eye,
the world is good. Pray for a seeing eye, to see the purpose
of God in everything good. Pray for enough faith to see God’s
care in His dealings with you. Try to see how He has brought
you safely through your past life so that now you can be of
use in the world. With the eyes of faith you can see God’s
care and purpose everywhere.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have a seeing eye. I pray that with the
eye of faith I may see God’s purpose everywhere.


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As Bill Sees It

A New-Found Providence, p. 328

When dealing with a prospect of agnostic or atheistic bent, you had
better use everyday language to describe spiritual principles. There is
no use arousing any prejudice he may have against certain theological
terms and conceptions, about which he may already be confused.
Don’t raise such issues, no matter what your own convictions are.

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

Every man and woman who has joined A.A. and intends to stick has,
without realizing it, made a beginning on Step Three. Isn’t it true that,
in all matters touching upon alcohol, each of them has decided to turn
his or her life over to the care, protection, and guidance of A.A.?

Already a willingness has been achieved to cast out one’s own will and
one’s own ideas about the alcohol problem in favor of those suggested
by A.A. Now if this is not turning one’s will and life over to a
new-found “Providence,” then what is it?

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 93
2. 12 & 12, p. 35


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Walk In Dry Places

Waste Utilization
Releasing the past
Today the world faces seemingly insurmountable problems with solid and liquid waste. Communities struggle to find solutions as waste accumulates and space for disposal sites grows scarce.
As recovering people, we have a similar problem with waste residues from our past. We don’t seem to be able to bury bad memories; like the physical waste in the environment, they come back to poison us.
The best answer is to use waste, not throw it away. Instead of trying to bury the past, let’s keep it in view but let it be purified by the sunlight of honesty and humility. By admitting past wrongs and forgiving
everyone involved…. including ourselves….. we turn waste into useful experience. Nature can do this with much physical waste, over time. we can also let our spiritual nature do that with the emotional and
mental waste of our past.
I’ll realize that every past mistake and experience can be properly utilized today for something good and uplifting.

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Keep It Simple

Love is the reward of love.—Johann von Schiller
When we used alcohol and other drugs, we shared little as possible. There was little love in our hearts. We had become selfish. This caused us to be lonely.
Then something happened to change all of that. Remember the first time you walked into a meeting? You were met by people who shared. Maybe they shared a smile, their story, or just a cup of coffee with you. The sharing that goes on in a Twelve Step program is great. We learn that the more we give, the more we get. We get well by giving to others. Helping others is a great way to hold on to sobriety. Love is the reward of love.
Prayer for the Day:  I pray that I will be there when others need me. I pray that service will become a big part of my program.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll think of friends who could use my help. I’ll talk to them and offer to be there for them.

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Each Day a New Beginning

We are all held in place by the pressure of the crowd around us. We must all lean upon others. Let us see that we lean gracefully and freely and acknowledge their support.  –Margaret Collier Graham
We did not come into this world alone. And our voyage through this life is in concert with many others: some who directly aid us, while others seem to hinder our paths. We don’t have full knowledge, however. We can’t determine the many ways we are being helped to take the right steps, even by those who block our way for the moment.
Likewise, our presence is helping to pave the way for both the friends and the strangers we will encounter today, at work, on the street, at the meeting perhaps. We have all been charged, in this life, with a similar responsibility–to help one another fulfill our destinies. Our impatience with one another, our wavering love and acceptance of each other, at times our disavowal of our brothers and sisters comes because we fail to understand the necessary part we each play in the drama of one another’s life.
In my personal drama, I am sharing the stage with everyone else I encounter today. I need a supporting cast. And I need applause. I will give it freely today.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

Chapter 11 – A Vision For You

We have shown how we got out from under. You say, “Yes, I’m willing. But am I to be consigned to a life where I shall be stupid, boring and glum, like some righteous people I see? I know I must get along without liquor, but how can I? Have you a sufficient substitute?”

p. 152

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

Because I’m An Alcoholic

This drinker finally found the answer to her nagging question, “Why?”

My resolution had endured three days and I protested, “I’m not an alcoholic!” That was my very last denial.
“Say it the other way,” he suggested. “I am an alcoholic.” It came out in a whisper, but it sounded right. I’ve said it a thousand times since then, and with gratitude. What I was most afraid to admit that evening was what would set me free.

p. 343

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Nine – “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

This atmosphere of approval and praise is apt to be so exhilarating as to put us off balance by creating an insatiable appetite for more of the same. Or we may be tipped over in the other direction when, in rare cases, we get a cool and skeptical reception. This will tempt us to argue, or to press our point insistently. Or maybe it will tempt us to discouragement and pessimism. But if we have prepared ourselves well in advance, such reactions will not deflect us from our steady and even purpose.

p. 85

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If you wake up one day and feel like you are heading down the wrong
path, don’t go back the way you came, make a new course instead.
–unknown

I immediately release everything I am struggling with today. I release everything to my
Higher Power, knowing that I am getting all the help that I need today.
–Ruth Fishel

If you want to leave footprints in the sands of time, don’t drag your feet.
–Annot L. Sheppard

Today I am thinking about all the things I have to be grateful for and will write them
down. I will make a gratitude list, adding to it every time I think of something new. By
doing this I will be more aware of the things I have to be grateful for and will always have
something about which I can feel good, no matter what is going on in my life.
–Ruth Fishel

He who has never tasted what is bitter does not know what is sweet.
–German Proverb

Love is a fruit in season at all times, and in reach of every hand.
–Mother Teresa

“God will heal your broken heart if you give Him all the pieces.”
–unknown

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

RECOVERY

“There is a destiny that makes
us brothers, none goes his way
alone. All that we send into the
lives of others come back into
our own.”
— Edwin Markham

I can remember when I felt so isolated and alone. I used to look at people talking
with their friends, families playing in the park, lovers holding hands, and I felt so
different and awkward. I always looked at life from the outside. I was the guy without
an invitation to the party. The symptoms of addiction!

Today I know that my actions and behavior around alcohol reinforced these negative
and destructive feelings. By my drinking I was perpetuating the painful disease in my
life.

Sobriety led me into fellowship with others; it brought me into the family of
recovering people. Today I am not alone. I have over a million brothers and sisters
living a day at a time in a spiritual program. I have countless thousands finding joy,
peace and serenity in sister programs. Today I belong in this world.

O God, thank You for giving me the need to give so that I might receive.

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I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I
will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Great is the LORD and most
worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. One generation will commend your
works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor
of your majesty, and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They will tell of the power
of your awesome works, and I will proclaim your great deeds. They will celebrate your
abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. The LORD is gracious
and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all;
he has compassion on all he has made. All you have made will praise you, O LORD; your
saints will extol you. They will tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might,
so that all men may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all
generations. The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made.
The LORD upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all
look to you, and you give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and
satisfy the desires of every living thing. The LORD is righteous in all his ways
and loving toward all he has made. The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who
call on him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and
saves them. The LORD watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy.
My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD. Let every creature praise his holy name
for ever and ever.
Psalm 145


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Daily Inspiration

If you look for happiness outside of yourself you will never find it. Lord, help me turn inward and realize that the source of my happiness has been there all along.

Learn to be peaceful in all situations and trust that through all stages of our lives, God has a plan. Lord, may I have the wisdom to be able to turn my stumbling blocks into building blocks.

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NA Just For Today

Responsibility

“A lot happens in one day, both negative and positive. If we do not take the time to appreciate both, perhaps we will miss something that will help us grow.”
IP No. 8, “Just For Today”

Responsibility, responsibility – the responsibility of life are everywhere. We’re “supposed to” wear seat belts. We’re “supposed to “clean our homes. We’re “supposed to” do certain things for our spouse, our children, the people we sponsor. On top of all of this we’re “supposed to” go to meetings and practice our program as best we can. It’s no wonder that, sometimes, we want to run from all these tasks and escape to some far-off island where we’re not “supposed to” do anything.

At times like these, when we become overwhelmed with our responsibilities, we have forgotten that responsibility need not be burdensome. When we have the desire to run away from our responsibilities we need to slow down, remember why we have chosen them, and pay attention to the gifts they bring. Whether it’s a job we normally find challenging and interesting, or a partner whose personality we are usually excited by, or a child whom we naturally like to play with and care for, there is joy to be found in all the responsibilities of our lives.

Just for today; Each moment is special. I will pay attention, grateful for my responsibilities and the special joys they bring.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Giving up is not giving in, nor is it failing. It is no longer needing to be right. –Anonymous
When someone tells us a riddle, we may give up if we don’t know the answer. We give up because we are tired of trying to get it, or because we are eager to find out what it is.
Giving up in other situations, may be more difficult. We may need to give up eating something that isn’t healthy for us. We may need to give up trying to win an argument. We may need to give up old clothes that we love which no longer fit us. When we don’t want to give up, it may be because we have forgotten the knowledge, health, or peace of mind we gain by doing so.
In each case, giving up means growth and going on with our lives. Giving up may mean many different things in different situations, but it does not mean doing nothing. It means doing what seems right for us and giving up the expectation that what happens will be exactly what we want.
What can I gain by giving up something that is harmful today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If the only prayer you say in your whole life is “thank you,” that would suffice. –Meister Eckhart
“An attitude of gratitude,” we sometimes hear, will help us on our path. There certainly are enough things for us to worry about, grieve over, and complain about. They have their place. But as we mature and no longer use addictive escapes, we learn that joy can exist side by side with grief. Gratitude is a tonic for our self-pity. Saying “thank you” actually opens us to receive more of life’s blessings, which sit there waiting for us to notice.
In a pleasant moment we can look around and say, “Aren’t we lucky!” That’s a kind of prayer, and it connects us with our Higher Power. No matter how painful or worrisome a day may be, we can be thankful for our growth. Gratitude is so simple we sometimes dismiss it while looking for a more complicated answer in our lives. We can say “thank you” for all the simple things like trees, cool air, food, and love between people. It is a risk to be so grateful. Who will be in control? Perhaps God.
God, thank you for all that comes to me without my efforts.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
We are all held in place by the pressure of the crowd around us. We must all lean upon others. Let us see that we lean gracefully and freely and acknowledge their support. –Margaret Collier Graham
We did not come into this world alone. And our voyage through this life is in concert with many others: some who directly aid us, while others seem to hinder our paths. We don’t have full knowledge, however. We can’t determine the many ways we are being helped to take the right steps, even by those who block our way for the moment.
Likewise, our presence is helping to pave the way for both the friends and the strangers we will encounter today, at work, on the street, at the meeting perhaps. We have all been charged, in this life, with a similar responsibility–to help one another fulfill our destinies. Our impatience with one another, our wavering love and acceptance of each other, at times our disavowal of our brothers and sisters comes because we fail to understand the necessary part we each play in the drama of one another’s life.
In my personal drama, I am sharing the stage with everyone else I encounter today. I need a supporting cast. And I need applause. I will give it freely today.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Self Criticism
Look how far we’ve come!
It’s good to focus on the task ahead, on what remains to be done. It’s important to stop and feel pleased about what we’ve accomplished too.
Yes, it may seem that the change has been slow. At times, change is grueling. Yes, we’ve taken steps backward. But we’re right where we’re supposed to be. We’re right where we need to be.
And we have come so far.
Sometimes by leaps, sometimes with tiny steps, sometimes kicking and screaming all the while, sometimes with sleeves rolled up and white knuckles, we’ve learned. Grown. Changed.
Look how far we’ve come.
Today, I will appreciate my progress. I will let myself feel good about what has been accomplished.

Today I let go of all things that keep me from growing on a spiritual path. Today I am willing to push aside all things that stand between me and love. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Take Time to Develop a Vision

As above, so below. First it happens in spirit. Then it manifests in the physical. Not the other way around.

First we see a vision. Our soul tells us through the words and eyes of our heart. Then the steps become clear and we see the order in which they should be taken. Then it is finished. By the time the vision has arrived, it is already, as some say, a done deal.

You waste so much time and effort when you try to accomplish something before you have envisioned it. Learn to let the vision come first. Take time to shape it in spirit before you try to shape it in physical form. If you can’t see something clearly, the vision may not be complete. Take the time you need to think about it, to let it come into focus, to let the vision take shape in your mind.

Operating from vision will guide us onto our highest path. It will also make our life and work much easier.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Open the door

I was having lunch with a friend at a restaurant one day when he realized he had either misplaced his keys or locked them in his car. We had taken my car to the restaurant. His car was at my house.

He went through all the denial and fussing most of us do when we realize we’ve locked ourselves out.

“Maybe I brought them into your house and left them on the table,” he said wistfully. “It’s okay though. I have an extra set in my… “He dug through his pockets. “Other pants.”

Game over.

He didn’t enjoy the rest of his lunch.

When we got back to the house, we looked for the keys inside for a few moments then walked out to his car. Sure enough, there they were– right on the dashboard. We walked around the car a few times.

“Maybe I should just call AAA,” he said. I offered to go get a coat hanger from the house. We walked around the car a few more times, peering longingly through the windows. You could almost touch the keys; they were that close.

I turned to go inside and get the hanger. That’s when I heard it. Popclicksqueek. I turned, and there was my friend standing triumphantly next to his car, keys in hand, a dorky smile plastered on his face.

“The door was unlocked,” he said.

So often we allow ourselves to feel like outsiders. We want to break into a new field or group but we feel we don’t know enough yet, that we may not be liked, that we may fail, or that we may succeed. So we stand outside wistfully looking at others and wishing we could unlock that door and join the group.

The door isn’t locked.

You belong here.

Open it and walk in.

God, help me remember that the only one keeping me an outsider is me. Help me open the door and join the group. Help me live my life.

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Creative Cuts
Editing Your Life

Our lives can be compared to an ongoing movie script over which we have complete creative control. Within us lies the power to examine what works or isn’t working in our lives and make “edits” to our life’s script, accordingly. Choosing to actively edit your life can be incredibly empowering. As you evolve, you have the choice to accept the script you’ve written thus far or edit it so you can create a life that fulfills you. You can cut out from your life’s script what is no longer working for you. Acknowledging that you are responsible for the experience you create gives you the ability to create the life you’ve always longed for.

Granted, editing your real life isn’t always as easy as erasing a line of text. If you’ve carried emotional baggage or held on to an unhealthy relationship for a long time, these may be difficult to edit out. But when you do cut out what isn’t working from your life, you’ll feel lighter and more alive. Editing out activities that you find stressful, disassociating yourself from people that drain your energy, and letting go of your emotional baggage are all beneficial cuts you can make. In the empty spaces that are left behind, you can add in anything you like. Just as you have the power to edit out negative situations or beliefs that you no longer wish to have as part of your life, you can now include the kinds of positive experiences, people, and beliefs that you would like to fill your life with. The manifestation of these thoughts and images as realities in your life will inevitably follow. As you make changes to your life, you can also add in the bits where you choose mo! re intimate, healthier relationships, seek out adventure over tedium, and are no longer negatively impacted by old experiences.

To begin editing your life, simply think about your positive and negative experiences. When you determine what parts of your life are no longer serving you, make the commitment to remove them – though, it is important to remember that there is no proper timing or way to do this, and patience and compassion for yourself are always important during this process. Then, ask yourself what has brought you profound bliss and consider how you can make those experiences and beliefs part of your life now. With a little editing, you’ll be able to clear out what is no longer serving you and make room in your life for more happiness, love, and wisdom. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

During our first days in The Program, we got rid of alcohol and pills. We had to get rid of our chemicals, for we knew they surely would have killed us. We got rid of the addictive substances, but we couldn’t get rid of our addictions until we took further action. So we also had to learn to toss self pity, self-justification, self-righteousness and self-will straight out the window. We had to get off the rickety ladder that supposedly led to money, property and prestige. And we had to take personal responsibility. To gain enough humility and self-respect to stay alive at all, we had to give up our most valued possessions — our ambition and our pride. Am i well rid of the weights and chains that once bound me?

Today I Pray

Ma I give credit to my Higher Power not only for removing my addiction, but for teaching me to remove my old demanding, pushy “self” from all my spiritual and earthly relationships. For all the things I have learned and unlearned, for my own faith and for the grace of God, I am fully and heartily thankful.

Today I Will Remember

Gratitude for the grace of God.

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One More Day

Trees and fields tell me nothing; men are my teachers – Plato

Our earliest teachers were our parents, and from them, if we were lucky, we learned unqualified love and acceptance and developed our religious beliefs. Later, trained professionals taught us specific subject matter. We also learned ethics from our instructors, our parents, and our house of worship.

A few of us may take issue with “trees and fields tell me nothing.” But then we realize that our appreciation of nature’s beauty was really taught and encouraged by our parents and teachers. We observe the glory of nature happening right before our eyes, but our understanding of life, growth, and death comes from our understanding of the teachings of people.

I will keep my mind open to learn so that I can make as many gains in learning as are available to me.

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Food For Thought

What Am I Avoiding Now?

If I am becoming preoccupied with thoughts of food and eating, I am probably avoiding something in the present, which troubles me. We compulsive overeaters have a long history of using food to avoid facing whatever is bothering us. Abstaining may not solve the problem, but at least we do not eat ourselves into a worse situation.

Sometimes we are aware of a difficult task that needs to be done, and we think we require extra food to fortify ourselves in order to accomplish the task. Remembering that excess food incapacitates rather than strengthens is essential to our recovery. A short-term euphoria is not worth the long-term anguish, which inevitably follows loss of control.

We are learning to turn to a Power greater than ourselves when we have problems that we formerly avoided or tried to solve by eating. Whatever our perplexity, God has the answer, if we will surrender our wills and listen for His guidance.

Teach me to trust You completely.

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One Day At A Time

VISION
“The greatest tragedy in life
is people who have sight but no vision.”
Helen Keller

The miracle of recovery has given me new vision! I lived for many years with eyes that viewed the world through fear, pain and resentment. These were the factors that shaded the lenses of my eyes. Because they clouded my entire perspective, they prevented me from seeing reality as it was. Instead, I lived in fear of the distorted realities of my world.

When I took my Fourth Step I began to see with new vision and clarity. It was amazing for me to realize how skewed my perception of life had been all those years. I discovered that my vision hadn’t been focused on the truth! The shades of this illness had cast many shadows upon reality and I had spent my life reacting to those shadows instead of responding to life.

I had years of experience looking at the world through illness, and I was not sure if I could really keep this new vision which was promised through recovery. I was a little worried that it would soon fade away into those old shadows … as had happened in other awakenings I had experienced.

As I continued to take the Steps, I found that my new vision not only remained, but grew broader and deeper every day. As I continue to work a daily Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Step and to practice these principles in all aspects of my life, I continue to celebrate life with the vision that recovery brings. This vision is one of deep joy, gratitude, serenity, and love!

One day at a time… .. . .
I will practice the Steps of recovery in all aspects of my life and I will continue to receive and share the gift of vision that recovery brings.
Cate

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We families of Alcoholics Anonymous keep few skeletons in the closet. Everyone knows about the others’ alcoholic troubles. This is a condition which, in ordinary life, would produce untold grief; there might be scandalous gossip, laughter at the expense of other people, and a tendency to take advantage of intimate information. Among us, these are rare occurrences. We do talk about each other a great deal, but we almost always invariably temper such talk by a spirit of love and tolerance. – Pg. – 125 – The Family Afterward

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

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

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

Spiritual Transformation

Today, I see that to change my life I have to change myself. Nothing less than a spiritual transformation will allow me to experience my current life as an alive, serene and whole person. When I say that I would like world peace, first I will understand that without inner peace there will be no world peace. One of the ways in which I can serve the cause of humanity is to be, within myself, a genuinely spiritual person – respecting all sects and creeds, but standing on my own as a conduit of higher truth, recognizing that each person has equal access to that knowledge. I will look for truth today within myself rather than outside. I will not wait for peace to be handed to me as some sort of prize for good behavior but will do the inner work needed to achieve it.

I seek truth within myself.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Is your ideal to be clean and whole? If so, ask yourself: What sort of neighbor is a clean and sober person? What sort of family member is a clean and sober person? What sort of Twelve Step program will a clean and sober person work?

Sober is as sober does.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Recovery is contagious; we catch it from coffee cups.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am willing to let go of all things that keep me from growing on a spiritual path. Today I am willing to push aside all things that stand between me and love.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I was cool when I got to AA – If I’d have been any cooler I’d have frozen to death. – Eddie C.

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AA Thought for the Day

November 26

Anger
If we were to live, we had to be free of anger. The grouch and the brainstorm were not for us.
They may be the dubious luxury of normal men, but for the alcoholic these things are poison.
– Alcoholics Anonymous,p. 71

Thought to Ponder . . .
Anger rules nothing except itself.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A = Avoid Anger.

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

Diagnosis
“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.”
c. 1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 31-2

Thought to Consider . . .
If you want to quit drinking,
you are going to have to quit drinking.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
D E A D = Drinking Ends All Dreams

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

New
From: “Winner Takes All”
In working the steps, my life changed. I think differently today; I feel different today. I am new. We have a sign at the AA meetings I go to that says, Expect a Miracle. My sobriety is full of miracles. When my son filled out an application for college, I filled one out too, and was accepted. Soon I will be a senior and I have a 3.71 grade point average. Thanks to AA, I have come a long way from being near the bottom of my high school class. It takes me a bit longer to read the material, so I have a CCTV (I put my book under the camera and it comes out in big print on a monitor). I have a talking calculator that helped me get through statistics and a telescope that can help me see the board. I accept help from the disabled student services and gladly make use of the volunteer notetakers.
I learned to accept the things I could not change (in this case my vision) and change the things I can (I could be grateful for and accept the visual aids instead of being embarrassed and rejecting them as I had when I was younger).
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, pages 380-381

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

“I was amazed at the things I was grateful for: those painful situations that served to show me my character defects; the ability to accept and share my pain with others; the opportunities to do things I was afraid to do which gave me strength and confidence.”
State College, Pa., April 1994
“Working Incognito,”
Spiritual Awakenings

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

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

Now we need more action, without which we find
that “Faith without works is dead.’’ Let’s look at
Steps Eight and Nine. We have a list of all persons we have
harmed and to whom we are willing to make amends.
We made it when we took inventory. We subjected
ourselves to a drastic self-appraisal. Now we go out to
our fellows and repair the damage done in the past.
We attempt to sweep away the debris which has accu*
mulated out of our effort to live on self-will and run
the show ourselves. If we haven’t the will to do this,
we ask until it comes. Remember it was agreed at the
beginning we would go to any lengths for victory over alcohol.
Alcoholics Anonymous page 76

This we did because we honestly wanted to, and were willing to make the effort.
-Alcoholics Anonymous p.26

Without a willing and persistent effort to do this, there can be little sobriety or contentment for us.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p.43

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Those adolescent urges that so many of us have for complete approval, utter security, and perfect romance – urges quite appropriate to age seventeen – prove to be an impossible way of life at forty-seven or fifty-seven.
Since A.A. began, I’ve taken huge wallops in all these areas because of my failure to grow up, emotionally and spiritually.
As we grow spiritually, we find that our old attitudes toward our instinctual drives need to undergo drastic revisions. Our demands for emotional security and wealth, for personal prestige and power all have to be tempered and redirected.
We learn that the full satisfaction of these demands cannot be the sole end and aim of our lives. We cannot place the cart before the horse, or we shall be pulled backward into disillusionment. But when we are willing to place spiritual growth first – then and only then do we have a real chance to grow in healthy awareness and mature love.

Prayer for the Day: Second Step Prayer – I pray for an open mind so I may come to believe in a Power greater than myself. I pray for humility and the continued opportunity to increase my faith. I don’t want to be crazy any more.