Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 14th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 14th

Daily Reflections

WHEN THE GOING GETS ROUGH

It is a design for living that works in rough going.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 15

When I came to A.A., I realized that A.A. worked wonderfully
to help keep me sober. But could it work on real life problems,
not concerned with drinking? I had my doubts. After being
sober for more than two years I got my answer. I lost my job,
developed physical problems, my diabetic father lost a leg,
and someone I loved left me for another – and all of this
happened during a two-week period. Reality crashed in, yet
A.A. was there to support, comfort, and strengthen me. The
principles I had learned during my early days of sobriety
became a mainstay of my life for not only did I come through,
but I never stopped being able to help newcomers. A.A. taught me
not to be overwhelmed, but rather to accept and understand my
life as it unfolded.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In A.A. we have to learn that drink is our greatest enemy.
Although we used to think that liquor was our friend, the time
came when it turned against us and became our enemy. We don’t
know just when this happened, but we know that it did because
we began to get into trouble – jails and hospitals. We realize
now that liquor is our enemy. Is it still my main business to
keep sober?

Meditation For The Day

It is not your circumstances that need altering so much as
yourself. After you have changed, conditions will naturally
change. Spare no effort to become all that God would have you
become. Follow every good leading of your conscience. Take each
day with no backward look. Face the day’s problems with God, and
seek God’s help and guidance as to what you should do in every
situation that may arise. Never look back. Never leave until
tomorrow the thing that you are guided to do today.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that God will help me to become all that He would have me
be. I pray that I may face today’s problem as with good grace.

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As Bill Sees It

“Success” in Twelfth-Stepping, p. 165

“We now see that in twelfth-stepping the immediate results are not so important.
Some people start out working with others and have immediate success. They are
likely to get cocky. Those of us who are not so successful at first get depressed.

“As a matter of fact, the successful worker differs from the unsuccessful only in
being lucky about his prospects. He simply hits newcomers who are ready and able
to stop at once. Given the same prospects, the seemingly unsuccessful person would
have produced almost the same results. You have to work on a lot of newcomers
before the law of averages commences to assert itself.”

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

All true communications must be founded on mutual need. We saw that each sponsor
would have to admit humbly his own needs as clearly as those of his prospect.

1. Letter, 1942
2. A.A. Today, p. 10

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Walk In Dry Places

True Satisfaction
Contentment
True satisfaction never comes from feeding addition. Nothing is ever enough. The only possible outcomes for those who do not seek recovery from their additions will be complete breakdown and untimely death.
St. Augustine explained why it’s impossible for humans to find true satisfaction in pursuing pleasure. “Thou hast made us for thyself and our hearts are restless until they repose  in thee,” he wrote, with reference to the Divine.
As we come to understand that true satisfaction comes from the Spirit, we will, surprisingly, receive more satisfaction from the worldly things we use. We will begin to look upon our possessions for the service they give rather than as things that should make us happy.  A new car should give us comfortable satisfactory transportation, but it cannot give us peace and true self-esteem.  New clothes can please us, but they will not do anything for our spiritual depression.
Why didn’t we know this all along?  Probably because we falsely believed that certain possessions would bring fulfillment.  They can’t do that, but when we are thinking right, our appreciation of everything should increase.
I’ll not expect true satisfaction in this world, although I’ll get more out of it if I put things in right order.

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Keep It Simple

Time is nature’s way of keeping everything from happening at once.—unknown
Time always seems to pass too slowly or too quickly for us. .We want the fun times to last longer. We want the boring or painful times to go faster. But times goes at just the right pace. Any faster, and we wouldn’t have enough time to learn as we go. Any slower, and we’d lose interest. In our program, we learn to respect the pace of time. We let go, and we let time go at it’s own pace. We call this patience.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, thank-you for patience. Help me look forward to the future without rushing. Help me live fully in the here and now. Help me make today a good one by doing Your will.
Action for the Day:  I’ll list five ways I can use time to be more healthy—in body, mind and spirit. Which of these five things can I do today?

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Each Day a New Beginning

All of us have unique talents and gifts. No obstacle, be it physical, mental or emotional, has the power to destroy our innate creative energies.  –Liane Cordes
Believing this fully is difficult at times; for some of us, most of the time. But it is true. What each of us can contribute to the world is unlike every other contribution. Each talent is slightly different from every other talent. And they are all needed. We are all needed.
Creativity–any kind–writing, photography, cooking, child care, weaving, managing, woodworking–nourishes the self that feels isolated and worthless. And as the self is nourished, it grows; it recovers.
Recovery means changing our lifestyle. It means reaching out to others and being there for one another. It means rejoining the human race by giving of ourselves. Our talents are the gifts the human race awaits, needs, in fact. Do we know our talents?
I will search out my secret dreams today. In them lie my talents. I will develop them. Help awaits me.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

“In this frame of mind, I went about my business and for a time all was well. I had no trouble refusing drinks, and began to wonder if I had not been making too hard work of a simple matter. One day I went to Washington to present some accounting evidence to a government bureau. I had been out of town before during this particular dry spell, so there was nothing new about that. Physically, I felt fine. Neither did I have any pressing problems or worries. My business came off well, I was pleased and knew my partners would be too. It was the end of a perfect day, not a cloud on the horizon.

pp. 40-41

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

ACCEPTANCE WAS THE ANSWER – The physician wasn’t hooked, he thought–he just prescribed drugs medically indicated for his many ailments.  Acceptance was his key to liberation.
Max hadn’t gotten that way because I didn’t care.  Indeed, it seemed that I cared too much.  I had sent her to four consecutive psychiatrists, and not one of them had gotten me sober.  I also sent my kids to psychiatrists.  I remember, one time, even the dog had a psychiatric diagnosis.  I yelled at Max, “What do you mean, ‘The dog needs more love’?  You tell that dumb cat-and-dog doctor he’s not a Beverly Hills psychiatrist.  All I want to know is, why does that dog wet in my lap every time I hold him?”  (That dog hasn’t wet my pants once since I joined A.A., and neither have I!)

p. 408

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Eleven – “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.”

The way this restraint paid off was startling. It resulted in more favorable publicity of Alcoholics Anonymous than could possibly have been obtained through all the arts and abilities of A.A.’s best press agents. Obviously, A.A. had to be publicized somehow, so we resorted to the idea that it would be far better to let our friends do this for us. Precisely that has happened, to an unbelievable extent. Veteran newsmen, trained doubters that they are, have gone all out to carry A.A.’s message. To them, we are something more than the source of good stories. On almost every newsfront, the men and women of the press have attached themselves to us as friends.

p. 181

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The memories of tomorrow depend on your attitude today.
–Dave Weinbaum

“Make sure the thing you’re living for is worth dying for.”
–Charles Mayes

“I have a special purpose!”
–Steve Martin

“When we become aware of our humility, we’ve lost it.”
–Anonymous

We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have
the life that is waiting for us.
–Joseph Campbell

Injure others, injure yourself.
–Chinese Proverb

“I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I
can do something. I will not refuse to do the something I can do.”
–Helen Keller

“I’ve never known a man worth his salt who in the long run, deep
down in his heart, didn’t appreciate the grind, the discipline… I firmly
believe that any man’s finest hour – this greatest fulfillment to all he
holds dear – is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a
good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle, victorious.”
–Vince Lombardi

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

LIFE

“To be free is to have achieved
your life.”
–Tennessee Williams

Yesterday’s tapes: I need a drink. I can’t exist without a fix. How will
I get through the morning without taking something? Do people see
me shake? Are people watching me? Where can I get money? The
prison of addiction!

Today I am free because I took courage and asked for help. Today I
am free because I still ask for help. Today I have learned to say “no”
to the first drink and life is more comfortable and less painful.

Freedom is a precious spiritual gift that I work for on a daily basis.
God is involved – but so am I. The freedom from alcoholism is only
guaranteed by the creative choices I make and in the choice is the
freedom.

God, my memory is the key to today’s freedom; may I continue to
remember.

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“Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy
name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits, who
forgives all your inquiry, who heals all your diseases.”
Psalm 103:1-3

“For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor
principalities, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor
height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to
separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:38-39

“I will praise You, O LORD, among the peoples, And I will sing praises
to You among the nations.”
Psalms 108:3


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Daily Inspiration

To be successful in the projects you undertake today, you must believe in yourself and your abilities even if you are walking on new ground. Lord, guide me in my endeavors and open my mind to new solutions if things aren’t going as I have planned.

The smallest kindness is worth more than the greatest intention. Lord, help me not to overlook the opportunities that I have to enrich the lives of others or think I am too busy to reach out with a word or even a smile.

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NA Just For Today

Maintaining Our Faith

“If we maintain our spiritual condition daily, we find it easier to deal with the pain and confusion.”
Basic Text, p. 92

When we first began searching for a Power greater than ourselves, many of us got stuck in old beliefs or ideas. These ranged from the fear of a punishing or vengeful God to no belief at all. Some of us felt we had done such terrible things that a loving Power would never have anything to do with us. Others were convinced that the “bad” things that happened to us would not have occurred if a loving Power had actually existed. It took time, effort, open-mindedness, and faith to acquire a working belief in a loving Higher Power that would guide us through life’s challenges.

Even after we come to believe in a Power greater than ourselves, our old ideas can come back to haunt us. Major setbacks in our lives and the insecurity such events can trigger may give rise to the return of our old, inadequate ideas about God. When this happens, we need to assure ourselves that our Higher Power has not abandoned us but is waiting to help us make it through the hard times in our recovery. No matter how painful our loss may be, we will survive our setback and continue to grow if we maintain the faith our program has given us.

Just for today: I have worked hard to build my faith in a loving, caring Higher Power that will guide me through life’s challenges. Today, I will trust that Power.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Fear not that life shall come to an end, but rather fear that it shall never have a beginning. –J. H. Newman
Our fears lock us up if we let them. They can prevent us from tasting adventure, from experiencing new wonders. We are often terrified of unknowns and fret about what might happen if we try something new. We worry if new people will like us–if we’ll fit in.
It is natural to be cautious about the unknown, and anything new is just that. But we can keep our caution from becoming fear by taking action, with the faith that we never encounter anything we can’t handle in some way.
Unknowns are merely joys we haven’t met. We hold the keys to our own cages and can free ourselves when we use our courage and inner strength to overcome our fears.
What new joy can I discover beneath my fear today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The turning point in the process of growing up is when you discover the core of strength within you that survives all hurt.
–Max Lerner
When we consider all of the troubles and crises in our lives and all of the scrapes we’ve gotten into, we might feel overwhelmed. With what we have gone through, it seems miraculous for many of us to be here today. When we stop feeling sorry for ourselves and when we stop complaining about the unfairness of it all, we may get a new insight: “I have survived!”
We see the strength and persistence, which brought us through the toughest times we have known. Even when some of us did not know it, we were being carried along by our Higher Power. We can draw strength from that knowledge. We can remind ourselves today that, knowing what we have lived through with the help of our Higher Power, we can deal with anything to come.
I am grateful to my Higher Power for help in surviving the hard times in life.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
All of us have unique talents and gifts. No obstacle, be it physical, mental or emotional, has the power to destroy our innate creative energies. –Liane Cordes
Believing this fully is difficult at times; for some of us, most of the time. But it is true. What each of us can contribute to the world is unlike every other contribution. Each talent is slightly different from every other talent. And they are all needed. We are all needed.
Creativity–any kind–writing, photography, cooking, child care, weaving, managing, woodworking–nourishes the self that feels isolated and worthless. And as the self is nourished, it grows; it recovers.
Recovery means changing our lifestyle. It means reaching out to others and being there for one another. It means rejoining the human race by giving of ourselves. Our talents are the gifts the human race awaits, needs, in fact. Do we know our talents?
I will search out my secret dreams today. In them lie my talents. I will develop them. Help awaits me.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Timing
When the time is right, child. When the time is right. How often have we heard those words – from a friend, a sponsor, our Higher Power?
We want things so badly – that job, that check, a relationship, a possession. We want our life to change.
So we wait, sometimes patiently, sometimes anxiously, wondering all the while: When will the future bring me what I long for? Will I be happy then?
We try to predict, circling dates on the calendar, asking questions. We forget that we don’t hold the answers. The answers come from God. If we listen closely, we’ll hear them. When the time is right, child. When the time is right.
Be happy now.
Today, I will relax. I am being prepared. I can let go of timing. I can stop manipulating outcomes. Good things will happen when the time is right, and they will happen naturally.

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

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Journey To The Heart

Learn the Power of Respect

I watched as my journey unfolded this spring. Each place I visited gave me a lesson. People would show up at the right time and place with exactly the words I needed to hear. Sometimes the lesson would be announced loudly, clearly. Sometimes an awareness would surface softly when I least expected it, when I was beginning to wonder if any lesson or purpose was there at all. Everything I saw and experienced ultimately reinforced my trust in God, the universe, and the power of my heart to lead me on. After all, I had taken this trip on just a moment’s notice with no itinerary, and a magical adventure had unfolded. By the time the journey ended and I pulled into the driveway at home, I had learned more than just to trust the process, I had learned to respect it.

Do more than trust the process, the journey you’re on. Become so awestruck by it that you respect it,too. Respect your feelings and the timely manner in which they surface, heal, and lead you into new discoveries. Respect your experiences, the places you’ve been, the scenarios you’ve been through. Respect the way you’ve gained gold and jewels, the treasures of the soul, from each one.

Respect the darker moments, the more difficult times when you’re uncertain and don’t know what to do next. Respect the timing as your life and journey unfolds. Don’t murmur about why such and such has to be the way it is. Don’t limit how your growth can happen.

Learn to respect the path of others. Learn to respect your own.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Your attitude is contagious

“I like skydiving with Todd,” Pat said. “He’s got such a good attitude. When you’re in the air with him, no matter what happens, you just get the feeling that everything’s okay.”

Being relaxed is contagious. Just as someone who’s miserable, frightened, and negative can affect the people around him or her, being relaxed, clear, and humbly confident can affect the people we touch,too. Have you ever known anyone like that– someone with a sense of humor, someone who’s surrendered, full of joy, and at peace with himself or herself? This is someone who not only knows things are going to be okay– that person knows things are okay now.

Today, if you are going to spread anything, let it be joy and goodwill.

God, help me lighten up. Make my joy contagious.

Activity: Today, watch yourself as you go through your day. If you were a neutral observer of yourself, how would you describe yourself? What words would you use? Which words would you like to use to describe yourself? Watch your interactions with other people– people you know and strangers, such as clerks in stores and banks. Don’t judge yourself, just observe. Awareness is the key. Become aware of who you are, how you respond to other people, and how they react to you. Decide what attitude you’d like to share with the people in your world.

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In God’s Care

The bird of paradise alights only upon the hand that does not grasp.  ~~John Berry

In time we’ve come to understand that we are only responsible for ourselves. Many of us have had to rediscover this many times. How often we’ve fooled ourselves into thinking that we know what’s best for others, better even than they know for themselves. Perhaps the most meaningful lesson any of us has learned is that every person’s perspective has value and validity for that person. When we withdrow our opinions as to who people should be, we loosen our grasp and give ourselves the opportunity to know people for who they are. We are then free to truly know ourselves and share what we learn with others.

Holding tightly to the past – the known – can shut us off from God’s invitations to grow. Our openness to the unfamiliar, whether ideas or people or new opportunities, will enrich us imeasurably.

I will loosen my grip today and enjoy people for who they are. I will regard all that is new and unfamiliar as God’s invitations to grow.

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Providing Support
Fathers by Madisyn Taylor

In a time when the sacred feminine is being honored strongly, let’s not forget fathers.

The idea of fatherhood is both personal and universal. We all have ideal concepts surrounding fatherhood, and we also have our real fathers—fathers who were there or not there for us, fathers who provided financial support for our families or failed to do so, fathers who loved or neglected us, fathers who were our role models or gave us someone to rebel against. Our father may have been there for us sometimes and not there for us at other times. The process of reconciling the ideal father that resides in our minds with the father that we actually have is a fertile one that can teach us a great deal about ourselves.

Our relationship with our father will often affect our relationships with the other men who will come into our lives. You may have learned to behave and think in certain ways because those were the ways that your father acted and thought. Certain talents that you possess may have been passed down to you by your father. There also may be personal issues that you inherited by virtue of who your father is. Understanding how your relationship with your father has influenced you can help you better understand yourself and the life that you have created.

In a time when mothers, the sacred feminine, and female energy are being honored, it is important not to forget the importance of fathers. Father energy and mother energy are the two complementary energies necessary to bring a healthy human being to fruition in the world. Many of the ideas surrounding fathers are changing in the wake of more modern parenting styles and the more egalitarian roles that are evolving between the sexes. More men are embodying the mother energy these days, and a woman can provide father energy for her children. Either way, we can all benefit from thinking about our fathers and how they have influenced who we’ve become and the ways that we walk through this world. Let us remember to honor our fathers. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Refection For The Day

Somewhere along the lines as we become more involved in The Program, we reach a sharp awareness of the growth-value of honesty and condor. When this happens, on of the first things we’re able to admit is that our past behavior has been far from sane or even reasonable. As soon as we can make this admission — without shame or embarrassment — we find still another dimension of freedom. In my gradual recovery, am I expectant that life will become richer and even more serene?

Today I Pray

May I know, even as I take that mighty First Step, which may be the first really honest move I have made in a long time, that honesty takes practice. My old, deluded, head-tripping self is as different from the honest self that I must become as night is from day. May I realize that it will take more than just one gray dawn to change me.

Today I Will Remember

Honesty takes practice.

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One More Day

Do not sit long with a sad friend, When you go to a garden, do you look at the flowers? Spend more time with roses and jasmines.
– Jelahuddin Rumi

Sometimes we slip over the boundary line of a close friendship. Up to that point, it may have been a real union, a true meeting of the minds. But then we might not only share our thoughts and our problems, but that on each other’s problems as if they were our own. We may become obsessed with finding answers for our friends.

Just as we don’t focus on the weeds in our garden, we can’t see only the negative aspects of our friends’ lives. We can be supportive, but we serve our friends and ourselves best when we let them confront their own problems.

I will remember that friends can comfort each other, but cannot carry the other’s burdens.

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Food For Thought

Positive Addiction

Since we seem to have addictive types of personalities, we can make this characteristic work for us, rather than against us. We can develop life-enhancing habits – positive addictions.

The OA program is an example of positive addiction. We become habituated to writing down a food plan, attending meetings, making phone calls, and working the program. We replace the negative addiction to compulsive overeating with a positive commitment to abstinence.

Other activities, which we perform regularly take on the character of positive habits. Exercise is a healthy routine. Hobbies and creative self-expression can be habitual parts of our daily schedule. Whenever we choose a life-enhancing activity and perform it regularly until it becomes an ingrained habit, we are using our addictive tendency to build ourselves up rather than tear ourselves down.

Thank You, Lord, for positive addictions.

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One Day At A Time

PEACE
“If you do not find peace in yourself,
you will never find it anywhere else.”
Paula A. Bendry

No outside reality can bring me peace. In the past, I tried to find it in many things, including relationships, ownership, and my vocation. But none of these externals brought me real peace. I had the opportunity of having all of them stripped away by a crisis in my life. I had surgery and got an infection that required a long period of recovery and resulted in disability. Many of my relationships ended, my income was reduced drastically, my capacity for ownership was decreased greatly, and I could no longer work. Although it was a painful lesson, it has been good for my spiritual condition.

I have been forced to look inside myself and realize that true peace and joy are found within. It is not about externals. Once I realized that, I found a relationship with my Higher Power that was deeper and more intimate than before, and the peace in my life settled inside of me in even greater measure.

One day at a time…
I will look inwardly for the peace that I long for.
~ Carolyn H.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

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. – Pgs. 31-32 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

We’ve heard people say, ‘Be humble and you will not stumble.’ There’s more truth in this then its simplicity implies.

May the God of my understanding enable me to be humble without being humiliated.

Ego Death

When I begin to experience real love, I go through an ego death. On my road to spiritual freedom, which is nothing more than learning to love, I go through what has long been called a dark night of the soul. This is a death of the ego, not in the Freudian sense, but in the way ego is defined in Eastern philosophy. I have a small ‘I’ and a large ‘I.’
Part of my path toward expansion into my larger external self, which is of God and Love, is a death of my smaller self, which sees the world as here only to feed my needs. Really it is through the recognition of giving and receiving and of loving that we become full.
I allow and understand my ego death.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

This too shall pass. Sometimes it passes like a gentle breeze and sometimes it passes kinda like a kidney stone. Whichever, we can promise that whatever vexes you now, shall pass.

I give time, time because I know that when God made time, He/She made plenty of it.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If resentment is not relinquished entirely, it is not relinquished at all.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am open to experience my connection to God and all the people i meet on my path today. There is new joy each time I realize our sameness rather than our separateness.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Detach = Don’t Even Try To Change Him/Her. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 14

Stay Here
If you want to Get Ahead with any degree of peace, you must first learn to Stay Here.
It takes guts to Stay Here; it takes self-discipline and resolution.
Anyone with a one-track mind can Get Ahead. . .
But to Stay Here, you must know where you are before you can know where you are going.
You must seek before you can find, and you must ask before you really learn to seek.
It takes humility to ask, patience to wait for the answer, and faith that the answer will come.
– Came To Believe . . ., p. 114

Thought to Ponder . . .
When in doubt, be silent. Grow where you are planted.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
S I T = Stay In Today.

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

Traditions
“The Twelve Traditions point straight
at many of our individual defects.
By implication they ask each of us to lay aside
pride and resentments.
They ask for personal as well as group sacrifice.
They ask us never to use the AA name
in any quest for personal power or distinction or money.
The Traditions guarantee the equality
of all members and the independence of all groups.
They show how we may best relate ourselves to each other
and to the world outside.”
Bill W.,
1967AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, p. 96

Thought to Consider . . .
If you have the courage to begin,
you have the courage to succeed.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A A’s – R – U S = Alcoholics Anonymous Recovery Unity Service

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

Core
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“On many a day I felt like throwing the book out the window. “I was in this anything-but-spiritual mood on the night when
the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous were written. I was sore and tired clear through. I lay in bed at 182 Clinton
Street with pencil in hand and with a tablet of scratch paper on my knee. I could not get my mind on the job, much less
put my heart in it. But here was one of those things that had to be done. Slowly my mind came into some kind of focus.
“Since Ebby’s visit to me in the fall of 1934 we had gradually evolved what we called ‘the word-of-mouth program.’ Most
of the basic ideas had come from the Oxford Groups, William James, and Dr. Silkworth.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 160

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

“I’m working diligently to improve my character. I work daily on trying to reign in my impetuous temper, my obsession with reaction rather than reflection, and that silly ego that keeps rearing its ugly head.
“I’m grateful for AA’s reference to progress rather than perfection. Despite my shortcomings, with the help of the AA program and my brothers in AA, improvements will continue to be made”
April 2011
“Mistakes Have Been Made,”
AA Grapevine

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

“‘My old manner of life was by no means a bad one, but I would not
exchange its best moments for the worst I have now. I would not go
back to it even if I could.'”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 43~

“…I humbly offered myself to God, as I then I understood Him, to do
with me as He would. I placed myself unreservedly under His care and
direction. I admitted for the first time that of myself I was
nothing; that without Him I was lost. I ruthlessly faced my sins and
became willing to have my new-found Friend take them away, root and branch.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, pg. 13~

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We now see that in twelfth-stepping the immediate results are not so important. Some people start out working with others and have immediate success. They are likely to get cocky. Those of us who are not so successful at first get depressed.
As a matter of fact, the successful worker differs from the unsuccessful only in being lucky about his prospects. He simply hits newcomers who are ready and able to stop at once. Given the same prospects, the seemingly unsuccessful person would have produced almost the same results. You have to work on a lot of newcomers before the law of averages commences to assert itself.
All true communication must be founded on mutual need. We saw that each sponsor would have to admit humbly his own needs as clearly as those of his prospect.

Prayer For The Day: Dear heavenly Father, I do thank you for Your goodness to me. Lord, help me to guard my mouth so that those things that are edifying and good will come out and not those things that contribute to a negative lifestyle. May I bless others with my tongue and never be guilty of cursing anyone. Let my words be gracious and may they bring healing to others. Let my words be kind and gentle and loving. May I reflect Your goodness in all that I do. Forgive me when I say the wrong things. Let me speak and pray the Word of God over my life and others. Give us all grace to say things that bring life into this world. I ask this in Jesus’ Holy name. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 13th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 13th

Daily Reflections

LIVING OUR AMENDS

“Years of living with an alcoholic is almost sure to make any
wife or child neurotic. The entire family is to some extent,
ill.”
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 122

It is important for me to realize that, as an alcoholic, I not
only hurt myself, but also those around me. Making amends to
my family, and to the families of alcoholics still suffering,
will always be important. Understanding the havoc I created
and trying to repair the destruction, will be a lifelong
endeavor. The example of my sobriety may give others hope,
and faith to help themselves.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

In A.A. we have to reeducate our minds. We have to learn to
think differently. We have to take a long view of drinking
instead of a short view. We have to look through the glass
to what lies beyond it. We have to look through the night
before to the morning after. No matter how good liquor looks
from the short view, we must realize that in the long run it
is poison to us. Have I learned to look through the bottle
to the better life that lies ahead?

Meditation For The Day

If you are honestly trying to live the way you believe God
wants you to live, you can get guidance from God in times of
quiet communion with Him, provided your thoughts are directed
toward God’s will and all good things. The attitude of
“Thy will, not mine, be done’ leads to clear guidance. Act on
this guidance and you will be led to better things. Your
impulses seem to become less your own and more the leading of
God’s spirit acting through your thoughts. Obeyed, they will
bring you the answers to your prayers.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may try to think God’s thoughts after Him. I
pray that my thoughts may be guided by His thoughts
.

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As Bill Sees It

A Saving Principle, p. 164

The practice of admitting one’s defects to another person is, of course, very ancient.
It has been validated in every century, and it characterizes the lives of all spiritually
centered and truly religious people.

But today religion is by no means the sole advocate of this saving principle.
Psychiatrists and psychologists point out the deep need every human being has for
practical insight and knowledge of his own personal flaws and a discussion of them with
an understanding and trustworthy person.

So far as alcoholics are concerned, A.A. would go even further. Most of us would
declare that without a fearless admission of our defects to another human being, we
could not stay sober. It seems plain that the grace of God will not enter to expel our
destructive obsessions until we are willing to try this.

12 & 12, pp. 56-57

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Walk in Dry Places 

The Boredom Battle
Acceptance and Patience.
All of us have times when we don=t enjoy our sobriety as much as we feel we should. Thought we’re still grateful, we sometimes feel bored and depressed.
What we have to remember at such times is our bleak history of using alcohol as a quick fix for boredom.  However ruinous and false it proved to be, alcohol did temporarily bring the miraculous change we sought.
We thought of alcohol as a means of uplifting our mood.  We were very surprised to learn that it’s a really a depressant.  Maybe it lifted us up by depressing our self-doubt and self-criticism.
Whatever the nature of our drinking, we need to stay sober while fighting our battles with boredom.  We can do that by accepting a bit of boredom without succumbing to it.  Meanwhile, we can look for ways of easing boredom that don=t get us into trouble or lead back to the bottle.

I’ll not feel guilty or unworthy if boredom strikes me now and then.  Today I’ll help manage my long-term boredom tendencies by practicing acceptance and patience for twenty-four hours.

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Keep It Simple

The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work. —Robert Frost
Worry—it’s a lonely activity. It puts distance between us and others. Our program is full of ideas about what to do with worry. On Step Three, we turn our will and our lives over to God. This includes worry.
Our slogans also suggest what to do with worry. One Day at a Time. Live and Let Live. Easy Does It. Let Go and Let God. Their main message is stop worrying. Trust the program. Trust your Higher Power. Everything will be okay.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I give You my worries. Teach me how to trust again. I want to trust in You, my program, and myself.
Action for the Day:  I’ll write the program slogans listed above on a piece of paper, and I’ll read them over today. I’ll let myself live them today.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Everyday . . . life confronts us with new problems to be solved which force us to adjust our old programs accordingly.
–Dr. Ann Faraday
Facing the day straight on is occasionally difficult to do. There are those days we feel like crawling under the covers and staying there, certain that we can’t handle whatever might be asked of us. Maybe today is one of those days. Perhaps we feel 12 years old, instead of 42. To consciously behave like a responsible 42-year-old is out of the question. Acting “as if” is the next best thing, the program tells us, and it is.
Acting “as if” also comes in handy when only a minor kink interferes with the day’s progression. Most problems don’t fit an easy solution or a familiar one. However, most problems are dispensed with by seeing them as opportunities for creative response, calmly seeking guidance and then moving ahead slowly, being aware of the effects of our actions.
Today, and every day, I will have an opportunity to think creatively and to rely on my inner guide. Instead of dreading the unfamiliar, I will be glad for it. It’s moving me ever closer to understanding life’s mysteries.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

Let him tell you about it: “I was much impressed with what you fellows said about alcoholism, and I frankly did not believe it would be possible for me to drink again. I rather appreciated your ideas about the subtle insanity which precedes the first drink, but I was confident it could not happen to me after what I had learned. I reasoned I was not so far advanced as most of you fellows, that I had been usually successful in licking my other personal problems, and that I would therefore be successful where you men failed. I felt I had every right to be self-confident, that it would be only a matter of exercising my will power and keeping on guard.

p. 40

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

ACCEPTANCE WAS THE ANSWER – The physician wasn’t hooked, he thought–he just prescribed drugs medically indicated for his many ailments.  Acceptance was his key to liberation.
I remember very well saying, “There’s only one person in the world whose guts I hate worse than yours, and those are my own.”  She cried a bit and went to bed; that was the only answer to problems that she had left.  I cried a bit and then fixed myself another drink.  (Today, we don’t have to live like that any more.)

p. 408

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Eleven – “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.”

Let’s see how these two contrasting ideas–attraction and promotion–work out. A political party wishes to win an election, so it advertises the virtues of its leadership to draw votes. A worthy charity wants to raise money; forthwith, its letterhead shows the name of every distinguished person who support can be obtained. Much of the political, economic, and religious life of the world is dependent upon publicized leadership. 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. By temperament, nearly every one of us had been an irrepressible promoter, and the prospect of a society composed almost entirely of promoters was frightening. Considering this explosive factor, we knew we had to exercise self-restraint.

p. 181

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A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
–unknown

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of
comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
–Martin Luther King, Jr.

Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through
experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision
cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved.
–Helen Keller

Laughter is God’s sunshine.
–Anonymous

“A fear faced is a fear erased.”
–unknown

When we step off the path it is up to us to step back on it.
–SweetyZee

Faith can take us to a place beyond time and space where God dwells.
–SweetyZee

Faith relieves worry and cares, brings peace and harmony, gives us all
the strength we need.
–SweetyZee

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

WORLD

“We are citizens of the world; and
the tragedy of our time is that we
do not know this.”
–Woodrow Wilson

In recovery I have learned to “go home” to who I am – and part of this
involves my understanding my place in this vast universe. I am a child
of God and my “family” is not just my immediate blood relatives, but
also the millions of other people that inhabit this planet.

God did not just make me. God does not just love me. God is
concerned for all His children. As an alcoholic I did not have this
attitude and I was always feeling lost and different. I became selfish
and narrow in my lifestyle. Other people were tolerated.

Today I have a “big” God and He has enabled me to grow not only in
my acceptance of self but also in my acceptance of others. Today I am
a citizen of the world and it feels good.

Lord, today I know what it is to belong to the human family. And with
this awareness comes responsibility.

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“Thy word is a lamp to my feet and a lamp to my path.  I have sworn
an oath and confirmed it, to observe thy righteous ordinances.”
Psalm 119:105-106

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to
be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
Romans 8:18

If we walk in the light as He Himself is in the light, we have
fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, His Son,
cleanses us from all sin.
1 John 1:7

“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in
you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your
mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.”
Romans 8:11


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Daily Inspiration

The phrase “Never Again” is too large a commitment and too easily discarded when we stumble. Lord, help me to work on being a better person today, so that in time, my good habits will require little or no effort.

Tragedy and suffering often opens the soul to the heights of spiritual growth. Lord, let the hardships of my life be my prayer and work to draw You closer and closer.

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NA Just For Today

A Full Life

“The program works a miracle in our lives….We become free to live.”
Basic Text, p. 11

Most of us-if we’ve been in recovery for any length of time at all-have heard some member complaining in a meeting about being terribly overworked, too busy for meetings or sponsorship or other activities. In fact, we may have been the complaining member. The days seem so full: job, family and friends, meetings, activities, sponsorship, step work. “There just aren’t enough hours in the day;” the member complains, “to get everything done and meet everyone’s demands on my time!”

When this happens, usually there’s soft laughter from some of the other members-probably members who had planned to grumble about the same sort of thing. The laughter stems from our recognition that we are complaining about the miracle of the life that is ours today. Not so long ago, few of us were capable of having any of these “problems” in our life. We devoted all of our energy to maintaining our active addiction. Today we have full lives, complete with all the feelings and problems that go with living in reality.

Just for today: I will remember that my life is a miracle. Instead of resenting how busy I am, I will be thankful my life is so full.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Let the gentle bush dig its root deep and spread upward to split one boulder. –Carl Sandburg
There is a fable about the sun and wind having a contest to see who can get the old man to take his coat off first. The wind blows fiercely, but the old man just pulls his coat tighter around him. Finally, the wind gives up and the sun comes out. The sun shines a steady warm light down on the old man, who soon takes his coat off.
More and better things are accomplished in this world by kindness and gentleness than by force. When we find ourselves most frustrated, it is often because we are trying to force certain things to happen. Our own patient and steady desire to grow, fed by the love and kindness of others, will not be stopped by anything or anyone. Our own gentleness is a powerful force in our lives. It is like the gentle bush that grows through granite.
What can I gain by gentleness today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
You must fight off a “bad luck” way of thinking as if you were dealing with an invasion of hostile forces for that is precisely what you are dealing with. –Maxwell Maltz
Life is an ongoing experience with two opposing forces. One force is constantly building up, and the other is constantly tearing down. We have successes and accomplishments, and we have failures and defeats. We finally get our house in order, and it immediately begins to become disordered again.
There are forces supporting our self-esteem and forces tearing us down. Friends who wish us well, goodwill and generosity among people, and the momentum of our healthy actions are constructive forces in our lives. Destructive forces are the pull of old habits, bad luck, accidents, and negative thoughts. We must choose on which side we will put our energies. Are we men who hate ourselves, believe in bad luck and despair, and thereby join the forces that would tear us down? Or will we choose to be on the side that builds us up?
Today, by the grace of God, I will join the forces that are on my side. I will stand up for myself and my worth.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Everyday . . . life confronts us with new problems to be solved which force us to adjust our old programs accordingly.
–Dr. Ann Faraday
Facing the day straight on is occasionally difficult to do. There are those days we feel like crawling under the covers and staying there, certain that we can’t handle whatever might be asked of us. Maybe today is one of those days. Perhaps we feel 12 years old, instead of 42. To consciously behave like a responsible 42-year-old is out of the question. Acting “as if” is the next best thing, the program tells us, and it is.
Acting “as if” also comes in handy when only a minor kink interferes with the day’s progression. Most problems don’t fit an easy solution or a familiar one. However, most problems are dispensed with by seeing them as opportunities for creative response, calmly seeking guidance and then moving ahead slowly, being aware of the effects of our actions.
Today, and every day, I will have an opportunity to think creatively and to rely on my inner guide. Instead of dreading the unfamiliar, I will be glad for it. It’s moving me ever closer to understanding life’s mysteries.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Hanging on to Old Relationships
We want to travel baggage free on this journey. It makes the trip easier.
Some of the baggage we can let go of is lingering feelings and unfinished business with past relationships: anger, resentments; feelings of victimization, hurt, or longing.
If we have not put closure on a relationship, if we cannot walk away in peace, we have not yet learned our lesson. That may mean we will have to have another go around with that lesson before we are ready to move on.
We may want to do a Fourth Step (a written inventory of our relationships) and a Fifth Step (an admission of our wrongs). What feelings did we leave with in a particular relationship? Are we still carrying those feelings around? Do we want the heaviness and impact of that baggage on our behavior today?
Are we still feeling victimized, rejected, or bitter about something that happened two, five, ten, or even twenty years ago?
It may be time to let it go. It may be time to open ourselves to the true lesson from that experience. It may be time to put past relationships to rest, so we are free to go on to new, more rewarding experiences.
We can choose to live in the past, or we can choose to finish our old business from the past and open ourselves to the beauty of today.
Let go of your baggage from past relationships.
Today, I will open myself to the cleansing and healing process that will put closure on yesterday and open me to the best today, and tomorrow, has to offer in my relationships.

I am open to experience my connection with God and all the people I meet on my path today. There is new joy each time I realize our sameness rather than our separateness. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Trust the Process of Growth

Be patient with yourself. It takes time to work out issues, to work through things. It takes time to learn lessons. The more important the lesson, the longer the cycle to work it out and work it through.

We may live in a technical age, but our souls aren’t technical. They’re still connected to nature. We grow and change as nature does. Learn her ways. Study her seasons and cycles, and know those same seasons and cycles are in each of us. The process of change is like planting a seed and watching it grow and bloom into a flower.

What are you trying to develop? A project? A change in yourself? Is there something new you’re learning, trying to do? Are you trying to adjust to a major change in your life? Is there an old habit you’re struggling to let go of? A love relationship or friendship you’re hoping to begin or attempting to end?

Each stage of the process of growth and change is important. From those first moments when we see the idea, or the change begins, to those long moments of nurturing and nourishing the idea, each stage counts. Is there a change in your life that’s begun, one you’ve started to notice? Are you thinking about it a lot, talking about it a lot, but not quite ready to take action? That stage is important too. You’re nurturing and nourishing the seeds of change.

It takes time for nature to change things into what they’re becoming. It takes time for things to develop. Be patient with yourself and life. Trust the process of growth.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Relax and flow

I visited the Hoover Dam in Nevada some time ago and marveled at its construction and purpose. Here was a huge structure that had been built into a canyon to harness the power of thousands of tons of moving water.

The water flows through the machinery, and the energy of the moving water is transformed into electricity that powers thousands of homes and businesses. But it wouldn’t work if you dammed up a lake, because the water has to be moving for it to have power.

The secret to the power is in the flowing.

How often we try to stifle the flow of events in our lives with control. We think that if we could only get things to go the way we want, then everything would be all right. We take the energy of the universe and bottle it up. And we kill its energy.

Let go of control.

Let the energy of life flow through and around you. You can learn to direct the flow, but you don’t need to control it. Become open to the energy that is flowing around you, and rather than trying to bottle it up, let it flow. Energy is useful only when it is flowing.

Relax and go with the flow of the universe. You’ll be better able to harness its power.

God, help me let go of my need to control. Help me let go of my fear.

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In God’s Care

Who can control his fate? ~~William Shakespeare

We often think we are in control when we’re not. For instance, the place we live, our friends, our co-workers, the amount of money we have, our spare time – how much can we really control these? How many people are in our life as a result of our own control? Were we able to control the outcome of situations we cared about?

Why, then, should we be reluctant to relinquish our questionable control to a Higher Power who knows far better how to handle our life? Questions about our work, how to spend our money, who our friends are, where we go, and what we do – these are not decisions we have to make alone. Even when we think we’re in control, we’re getting guidance from God. Acknowledging God’s presence is the surest way to accept who really is in control of our life.

Today I will exercise the greatest power I have – my decision to ask God for help.

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Coming Full Circle
A New Level of Mastery by Madisyn Taylor

Often the reappearance of an old pattern is a sign that it has come full circle ready to be released.

Life is a circular journey through our issues and processes, and this is why things that are technically new often seem very familiar. It is also why, whenever we work to release a habit, change a pattern, or overcome a fear, we often encounter that issue one last time, even after we thought we had conquered it. Often, when this happens, we feel defeated or frustrated that after all our hard work we are still dealing with the same problem. However, the reappearance of a pattern, habit, or fear, is often a sign that we have come full circle, and that if we can maintain our resolve through one last test, we will achieve a new level of mastery in our lives.

When we come full circle, there is often the feeling that we have arrived in a familiar place, but that we ourselves are somehow different. We know that we can handle challenges that seemed insurmountable when we began our journey, and there is the feeling that we might be ready to take on a new problem, or some new aspect of the old problem. We feel empowered and courageous to have taken on the challenge of stopping a pattern, releasing a habit, or overcoming a fear, and to have succeeded. At times like these, we deserve a moment of rest and self-congratulation before we move on to the next challenge.

Coming full circle is like stepping into a clearing where, for a moment, we can see where we came from and where we are standing at the same time. Remembering that we will be tested again is important, but it’s also important to pause and take a look at the ground we’ve covered, honoring our courage, our persistence, and our achievement. Then we can begin the next leg of our circular journey with a fuller understanding of where we are coming from. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

I don’t believe that The Program and Twelve Steps work because I read it in a book, or because I hear other people say so. I believe it because I see other people recovering and because I know that I, too, am recovering. No longer do I believe that I am “helpless and hopeless.” When I see the change in other people and in myself, I know that The Program works. When a television reporter once asked the philosopher Jung if he believed in God, Jung replied slowly, “I don’t believe — I know” Do I know that The Program works?

Today I Pray

Show me the happy endings, the mended lives, the reconstituted selves, the rebuilt bridges, so I will not have to accept on faith the fact that The Program works. May I see it working — for others and for me. May I be grateful for the documented reality of The Program’s success. May this certainty help me find the faith I need to follow the Twelve Steps.

Today I Will Remember

The Program works.

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One More Day

A desperate disease requires a dangerous remedy.
– Guy Fawkes

Safety is important to all of us, but sometimes it is so important that we refuse to take risks. We may stay in unhealthy relationships or ignore our own or others’ bizarre behavior because we’re afraid of leaving the safety of our routine.

We become more willing, however, to take risks when things become desperate. The we might take desperate measures. We might seek counseling or file for divorce in order to rescue or end a hurting relationship. If we feel emotionally upset, we might as for professional help. That, too, involves taking a risk. These decisions don’t come lightly. There is much soul-searching involved but we’re able to make the decision when we realize that safety is sometimes more dangerous than risk.

I can make choices that are good for me, even if they threaten my safe routine.

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Food For Thought

Research

In OA meetings, we sometimes hear reports of “research” done by a member who breaks abstinence in order to find out whether he or she is still a compulsive overeater. The experiment invariably proves that once a compulsive overeater, always a compulsive overeater. Among the results are remorse, regained weight, and weakened control.

It has been said that we are like someone who has lost a leg. We do not grow a new one. We can, nevertheless, learn to live with our disability if we are willing to abstain and follow the OA program. Most of us find that we cannot go back to eating binge foods moderately, but we can avoid them. We are like the alcoholic who can lead a normal, satisfying life as long as he or she stays away from alcohol.

Further research is not necessary. By accepting our need for a disciplined eating plan, we can benefit from the experience of those who have been in the program longer than we.

May I remember that further research is unnecessary.

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One Day At A Time

LONERS
“I never found a companion
that was so companionable as solitude.”
Henry David Thoreau

When I am physically, emotionally or spiritually unfit, I find myself isolating. On the other hand, I also find there are differences between solitude and isolation. Granted, sometimes those differences are subtle; nevertheless, they are different. It only takes abstinence to clearly see the difference and unless one has experienced that state, I doubt if this can really be understood.

Isolation shuts us off, not only from other people, but from God Himself. We tuck in our tails and busy ourselves with whatever comes to mind and our sole purpose is to avoid human contact. Isolation is not good. When I am isolating, I feel shame and I risk overeating. While I may not do this consciously, I run a risk of depression. I also feel guilty and the negative thoughts run amok.

Solitude is not hiding from others as isolation can be. On the contrary, I can nourish myself by being in solitude. Because I have a creative nature, solitude allows me the freedom to explore and be as creative as God intends for me to be. If I don’t allow myself solitude on occasion, I am in essence damming up the gifts God has given me. These gifts need the freedom of solitude to make them materialize and be all they can be. Because I have experienced the disease of compulsive eating and all the manifestations of this disease, I can clearly see the differences between solitude and isolation. I learned that I can be in a crowd of people and still be isolating. I can also be in a crowd of people and be in solitude. If I have spiritually and emotionally shut down, I would be going through the motions but deep down in my soul I would know that I’m isolating. When my spirit is free and I am working the program, one might glance at me and see me drifting off to a room where there is a piano and recapturing a moment of music … or staring out a window at a view so beautiful that it takes my breath away … or sipping a cup of coffee and observing those around me but not actively participating in their small talk but wondering who they really are.

One day at a time… let me remove myself from the pain of the seclusion of isolation and substitute the wonderful state of solitude that brings me such great joy and peace of mind.
~ Mari

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This is the baffling feature of alcoholism as we know it – this utter inability to leave it alone, no matter how great the necessity or the wish. – Pg. 34 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Today we begin the greatest journey of our life. Before we lived to the dictates of that first fix, pill, drink, smoke, or snort. Today we begin living to the dictates of spiritual law. It is our most challenging task. This will take everything we have and it will be worth a thousand times more then that.

Take my hand God, as I understand You, and lead me in this most important task.

Resentment Incoherence

The incoherence that results from holding onto resentments and unforgiving attitudes keeps you from being aligned with your true self. It can block you from your next level of quality life experience. Metaphorically, it’s the curtain standing between the room you’re living in now and a new room, much larger and full of beautiful objects. The act of forgiveness removes the curtain. Clearing up your old accounts can free up so much energy that you jump right into a whole new house. Forgiving releases you from the punishment of a self-made prison where you are both the inmate and the jailer.

– Doc Childre and Howard Martin

submitted by Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

You don’t have to eat, breathe, and bathe in our fellowship, but you do need to eat, breathe, and bathe in program. This is because you must practice these principles in all your affairs. The only way to do it in all your affairs is to DO IT in all your affairs.

If I’m working my program, I needn’t worry about others working theirs.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

In NA, there are no losers–just slow winners.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I am open to experience my connection with God and all the people I meet on my path today. There is new joy each time I realize our sameness rather than our separateness.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I was so full of fury and I loathed people but I wanted everybody to like me …which really creates torque. – Charlie C.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 13

A New Direction
Where my life had been full of mental turmoil there is now an ever-increasing depth of calmness.
Where there was a hit or miss attitude toward living there is now new direction and force.
– Experience, Strength and Hope, p. 134

Thought to Ponder . . .
In the depth of winter I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A = Attitude Adjustment.

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

Change
“How many of us would presume to declare,
‘Well, I’m sober and I’m happy.
What more can I want, or do? I’m fine the way I am.’
We know that the price of such self-satisfaction is
an inevitable backslide,
punctuated at some point by a very rude awakening.
We have to grow or else deteriorate.
For us, the status quo can only be for today,
never for tomorrow.
Change we must; we cannot stand still.”
Bill W., Grapevine, February 1961
1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 25

Thought to Consider . . .
There are only two things an alcoholic doesn’t like –
the way things are, and change.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
C H A N G E = Choosing Honesty Allows New Growth Every day

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

Future
>From “Heard at Meetings”:
“‘It is wise to pray for the future, but not to worry about it, because we can’t live it until it becomes the present. The depth
of our anxiety measures the distance we are from God.’ – Sydney, Australia”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 26

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

“The compulsion among most of us to survive and to grow soon becomes far stronger than the temptation to drink, or
to misbehave. Literally, we must ‘do or die.’ So we make the choice to live. This, in turn, means the choice of AA
principles, practices and attitudes that can salvage us from total disaster by insuring our sobriety.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., May 1960
“What Is Freedom in AA?”
The Language of the Heart

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

“Actually we were fooling ourselves, for deep down in every man,
woman, and child, is the fundamental idea of God. It may be obscured
by calamity, by pomp, by worship of other things, but in some form
or other it is there. For faith in a Power greater than ourselves, and
miraculous demonstrations of that power in human lives, are facts as
old as man himself.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 55~

“Cessation of drinking is but the first step away from a highly
strained, abnormal condition.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 122~

We have gained some understanding of the ancient words ‘Freely ye have received, freely give.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 166

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

The practice of admitting one’s defects to another person is, of course, very ancient. It has been validated in every
century, and it characterizes the lives of all spiritually centered and truly religious people.
But today religion is by no means the sole advocate of this saving principle. Psychiatrists and psychologists point out
the deep need every human being has for practical insight and knowledge of his own personality flaws and for a
discussion of them with an understanding and trustworthy person.
So far as alcoholics are concerned, A.A. would go even further. Most of us would declare that without a fearless
admission of our defects to another human being, we could not stay sober. It seems plain that the grace of God will not
enter to expel our destructive obsessions until we are willing to try this.

Prayer For The Day: “A Prayer During Times Of Fear” – Father, You want us to have peace instead of fear. Therefore You speak to our hearts many times, “Fear not” and give us many reasons why we are not to be fearful people. The most compelling reason that we need not fear is that You promise never to leave us nor forsake us. You are our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble. So we ask that You embolden us and fill our hearts with courage in place of fear. As someone once said, “Courage is fear that has said its prayers.”

Bsober Listen Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 12th

Bsober Listen

Bsober Listen Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 12th

Daily Reflections

FORMING TRUE PARTNERSHIPS

But it is from our twisted relations with family, friends,
and society at large that many of us have suffered the most.
We have been especially stupid and stubborn about them. The
primary fact that we fail to recognize is our total inability
to form a true partnership with another human being.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 53

Can these words apply to me, am I still unable to form a true
partnership with another human being? What a terrible handicap
that would be for me to carry into my sober life! In my
sobriety I will meditate and pray to discover how I may be a
trusted friend and companion.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

When we came into A.A., we made a tremendous discovery. We
found that we were sick persons rather than moral lepers. We
were not such odd ducks as we thought we were. We found other
people who had the same illness that we had, who had been
through the same experiences that we had been through. They
had recovered. if they could do it, we could do it. Was hope
born in me the day I walked into A.A.?

Meditation For The Day

“He that heareth these sayings and doeth them is like unto a
man who built his house upon a rock and the rain descended and
the floods came and the wind blew and beat upon that house and
it fell not for it was founded upon a rock.” When your life is
built upon obedience to God and upon doing His will as you
understand it, you will be steadfast and unmovable even in the
midst of storms. The serene, steadfast, unmovable life – the
rock home – is laid stone by stone – foundation, walls, and
roof – by acts of obedience to the heavenly vision. The daily
following of God’s guidance and the daily doing of His will
shall build your house upon a rock.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that my life may be founded upon the rock of faith.
I pray that I may be obedient to the heavenly vision.

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As Bill Sees It

Release and Joy, p. 163

Who can render an account of all the miseries that once were ours, and who can
estimate the release and joy that later years have brought to us? Who can possibly
tell the vast consequences of what God’s work through A.A. has already set in
motion?

And who can penetrate the deeper mystery of our wholesale deliverance from
slavery, a bondage to a most hopeless and fatal obsession which for centuries
possessed the minds and bodies of men and women like ourselves?

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

We think cheerfulness and laughter make for usefulness. Outsiders are sometimes
shocked when we burst into merriment over a seemingly tragic experience out of the
past. But why shouldn’t we laugh? We have recovered, and have helped others to
recover. What greater cause could there be for rejoicing than this?

1. A.A. Comes Of Age, pp. 44-45
2. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 132

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Walk in Dry Places

Being right or wrong____ Honesty
Step Ten advises us to promptly admit it when we’re wrong. Perhaps there should be another Step warning us not to be too confident when we’re sure we’re right.
It’s true that there are many times when we are right. It’s also possible, however, that we might be only 99 percent right, and that tiny fractions of error could mean our downfall.
Something is also wrong when we find ourselves vigorously asserting that we’re right. We don’t have to “admit it” when we’re right because being right speaks for itself. In the long run, truth and right action don’t really have to be defended. Part of being right is the willingness to believe that we may be wrong, however hard that is to accept.
If I’m wrong today, I’ll admit it. If I’m right, I’ll refrain from announcing it with too much assurance. 


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Keep It Simple

The lust for power is not rooted in strength, but to weakness.
We believed Alcohol or other drugs could help us control our happiness. But now we’re learning to rely on faith for our happiness. Faith is about leaving things to our Higher Power’s control. Instead of wanting the control ourselves, we trust our Higher Power will help us handle things that come along.
In recovery, we work at having more faith. Faith in a Higher Power. Faith in the Steps. Faith in our groups. Faith that our lives will get better, if we don’t use chemicals and we work an honest recovery program. Faith makes life a lot easier.

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Each Day a New Beginning

If people only knew the healing power of laughter and joy, many of our fine doctors would be out of business. Joy is one of nature’s greatest medicines. Joy is always healthy. A pleasant state of mind tends to bring abnormal conditions back to normal.  –Catherine Ponder
Feeling joy may not come naturally to us most of the time. We may, in fact, have to act “as if” with great effort. We may not even recognize genuine joy in the beginning. A technique for finding it is living fully in the present and with gratitude for all we can see, touch, and feel.
The open and honest expression of gratitude for the presence of the ones closest to us now creates a rush within our breasts, a rush that will be shared by our friends, too. Joy is contagious. Joy is freeing. Joy brings into focus our distorted perceptions. Greeting life with joy alters every experience for us and for those we share it with.
I will bring joy wherever I go today. I will give the gift of joy to everyone I meet.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

We heard no more of Fred for a while. One day we were told that he was back in the hospital. This time he was quite shaky. He soon indicated he was anxious to see us. The story he told is most instructive, for here was a chap absolutely convinced he had to stop drinking, who had no excuse for drinking, who exhibited splendid judgment and determination in all his other concerns, yet was flat on his back nevertheless.

p. 40

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

ACCEPTANCE WAS THE ANSWER – The physician wasn’t hooked, he thought–he just prescribed drugs medically indicated for his many ailments.  Acceptance was his key to liberation.
My major problems were marital.  “If you had my wife, you’d drink too.”  Max and I had been married for twenty-eight years when I ended up in A.A.  It started out as a good marriage, but it deteriorated over the years as she progressed through various stages of qualifying for Al-Anon.  At first, she would say, “You don’t love me.  Why don’t you admit it?”  Later, she would say, “You don’t like me.  Why don’t you admit it?”  And as her disease was reaching its terminal stages, she was screaming, “You hate me! You hate me! Why don’t you admit you hate me?”  So I admitted it.

p. 407

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Eleven – “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.”

Therefore, a great responsibility fell upon us to develop the best possible public relations policy for Alcoholics Anonymous. 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 of promotion.

pp. 180-181

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It is not enough to love those who are near and dear to us. We must
show them that we do so.
–Lord Eric Avebury

Never say more than is necessary.
–Richard Brinsley Sheridan

“The power behind me is greater than the problem in front of me.”
–unknown

The surest sign of wisdom is constant cheerfulness.
–Montaigne

Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, but only saps today of its
strength.
–A. J. Cronin

“… when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but
are grateful for the abundance that’s present–love, health, family,
friends, work, the joys of nature, and personal pursuits that bring us
pleasure–the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience
heaven on earth.”
–Sarah Ban Brethnach

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

POTENTIAL

“There is no meaning to life
except the meaning man gives
his life by the unfolding of his
powers.”
–Eric Fromm

My life was powerless when I was drinking. The drug alcohol stopped
me from reaching my full potential – I was depressed, tired, angry,
lonely and confused. Incredible as it may sound, I was the enemy to my
life. By drinking alcohol, I fed the disease and made my life
unmanageable.

Then I had a “moment” when I saw what I was doing to my life. The
pain caused by drinking outweighed any advantages. I had hit my
bottom. I began to change my life by refusing the first drink, and I
began to experience a new vitality and potential. A new and creative
life dawned. Friendships and relationships were possible again. God
became understandable in His world. My power as a human being
was unleashed in my sobriety.

Master, may I discover my potential in the loving decisions I
undertake.

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

“For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle
than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”
Luke 18:25

Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate when people say unkind
things about you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what
God wants you to do, and he will bless you for it.
1 Peter 3:9

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are
passed away; behold, all things are become new.
2 Corinthians 5:17

The LORD will continually guide you.
Isaiah 58:11


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Daily Inspiration

The more generous and kind we are, the more thoughtful and forgiving, the closer we come to awareness of God’s powerful love. Lord, let Your love take over in me and lead and guide me to goodness.

You cannot ask too much if you use your blessings ceaselessly. Lord, help me to reflect on and live in Your spirit.

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NA Just For Today

A Vision Of Hope

“Yes, we are a vision of hope…”
Basic Text, p. 51

By the time we reached the end of our road, many of us had lost all hope for a life without the use of drugs. We believed we were destined to die from our disease. What an inspiration it was, then, coming to our first meeting and seeing a room full of addicts who were staying clean! A clean addict is, indeed, a vision of hope.

Today, we give that same hope to others. The newcomers see the joyful light in our eyes, notice how we carry ourselves, listen to us speak in meetings, and often want what we have found. They believe in us until they learn to believe in themselves.

Newcomers hear us carry a message of hope to them. They tend to see us through “rose-colored glasses,” They don’t always recognize our struggle with a particular character defect or our difficulties with improving our conscious contact with our Higher Power. It takes them time to realize that we, the “old-timers” with three or six or ten years clean, often place personalities before principles or suffer from some other unsightly character defects. Yes, the newcomer sometimes places us on a pedestal. It is good, though, to openly admit the nature of our struggles in recovery for, in time, the newcomer will be walking through those same trials. And that newcomer will remember that others walked through that difficulty and stayed clean.

Just for today: I will remember that I am a beacon to all who follow in my path, a vision of hope.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The more a diamond is cut the more it sparkles. –Anonymous
There is something of value to be found even in the worst of things. Consider the oyster. When a grain of sand penetrates an oyster’s shell, it irritates the oyster, making it uncomfortable. The oyster relieves the pain by coating the sand with a soothing liquid. When this liquid hardens, a pearl is formed. The very process that healed the oyster creates a precious jewel for others to cherish and admire.
The way in which we deal with our own frustrations–painful though they may be–can make a difference. Pearls can be formed from our experiences, making us wiser and stronger, or grains of sand–anger, bitterness, resentment–can remain imbedded inside us. The choice is ours.
How can I turn my irritations into pearls today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Originality is unexplored territory. You get there by carrying a canoe – you can’t take a taxi. –Alan Alda
We are on an adventure trip in this program. Each of us is a wilderness that is only partly explored and mapped. We can’t know exactly what we will find along the way, but we can expect to find some great and moving beauty, some spectacular experiences, as well as awesome and frightening ones, and some soft, pleasant rest spots. Any day will have a mixture of various feelings.
This program is not a map of the uncharted territory. It is a guide for survival in the wilderness. It tells us how to orient ourselves when there are no familiar landmarks and how to learn and grow from the experience. The more time we spend in this wilderness, exploring the mystery of living, the more comfortable we become with it and the greater appreciation we have for its unique beauty.
Today, I pray for the courage to explore the original person I was created to be.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
If people only knew the healing power of laughter and joy, many of our fine doctors would be out of business. Joy is one of nature’s greatest medicines. Joy is always healthy. A pleasant state of mind tends to bring abnormal conditions back to normal. –Catherine Ponder
Feeling joy may not come naturally to us most of the time. We may, in fact, have to act “as if” with great effort. We may not even recognize genuine joy in the beginning. A technique for finding it is living fully in the present and with gratitude for all we can see, touch, and feel.
The open and honest expression of gratitude for the presence of the ones closest to us now creates a rush within our breasts, a rush that will be shared by our friends, too. Joy is contagious. Joy is freeing. Joy brings into focus our distorted perceptions. Greeting life with joy alters every experience for us and for those we share it with.
I will bring joy wherever I go today. I will give the gift of joy to everyone I meet.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Spontaneity and Fun
Practice being spontaneous. Practice having fun.
The joy of recovery is that we finally get to experiment. We get to learn new behaviors, and we don’t have to do them perfectly. We only need to find a way that works for us. We even have fun experimenting, learning what we like, and how to do what we like.
Many of us have gotten into a rut with rigidity, martyrdom, and deprivation. One of the “normal” experiences many of us have been deprived of is having fun. Another one is being spontaneous. We may not have the foggiest notion what we would like to do for fun. And we may hold ourselves in check so tightly that we wouldn’t allow ourselves to try something fun, anyway.
We can let ourselves go a little now and then. We can loosen up a bit. We don’t have to be so stiff and rigid, so frightened about being who we are. Take some risks. Try some new activities. What would we like to do? What might we enjoy doing? Then, take another risk. Pick out a movie we’d like to see; call a friend, and invite him or her to go along. If that person says no, try someone else, or try again another time.
Decide to try something, then go through with it. Go once. Go twice. Practice having fun until fun becomes fun.
Today, I will do something just for fun. I will practice having fun until I actually enjoy it.

Today I will honor my own values and be open to change as a result of growth. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey to the Heart

Recharge Your Battery

Rest when you’re tired. Take a break when life stales. Take time to recharge your battery.

Energy isn’t something you have– it’s something you are. To give and give, to put out without taking in, depletes your battery. It drains you, runs you down. Running on a low battery is no longer necessary, because now we know how to live differently.

Taking time to rest, renew, and refresh yourself isn’t wasted time. Recharge. Choose what energizes you. Nature. A song. The voice of a friend. A nap. A hot bath. A cup of tea. A favorite program. A movie that makes you laugh or cry. A walk. A run. A prayer. A poem. A book that speaks to your soul.

Actions that emerge from an energized source are easier, go further, accomplish more. Let your work and love come from a vital spirit.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Relaxing will help you work

Joe is a professional chef. He started working in kitchens before he was in his teens. Gradually, he worked his way up from washing dishes until he found himself running a successful catering operation. The only problem was, the more successful the business became, the less time Joe had for the rest of his life. Joe reveled in the knowledge that he was the hardest-working guy he knew. In his mind, the company existed solely because he was there.

Joe was surprised when his wife left him for someone less successful.

“How could she do that to me?” he moaned to friends. “I worked my tail off so she could have nice things and this is how she repays me?” Then one day while catering a wedding, he realized what happened. He hadn’t been present for his marriage. He had fallen victim to his own success, imprisoned by the company he had created. He took a day off. Then a weekend. Then he trained an assistant to help run the company. It cost him money at the outset, but he discovered life in the process. “I was so busy being a success,” he says, “that I didn’t realize how miserable I was.” When he took a vacation to the Southwest, his culinary instincts got the best of him and he spent half of the vacation learning new recipes, but he had fun.”For the first time in years, I was playing in the kitchen again rather than just working,” Joe says.

Today Joe has discovered the joy of balance. He no longer feels that he alone must bear the weight of the world, and is stronger for it. His business is growing and he has gotten a reputation as an innovator, largely due to things he has learned while not in the kitchen. When we’re successful, it’s difficult to take time away from our work; it feels like the success that we worked so hard for will slip away if we’re not there tending to it every moment. The truth is, we get so busy earning a living that we forget to have a life.

Take some time to see if you could spend a little less time at the office and a little more time with yourself and the ones you love. You might be pleasantly surprised at the effect a break can have on your motivation and the joy you have for what you do.

God, teach me– and help me learn– to have fun in my life, my work, and my relationships with the people I love.

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In God’s Care

When a person is concerned only with giving, there is no anxiety.
~~Gerald Jampolsky

Whatever we give away returns to us, many-fold. When we show love or understanding, when we are gentle or express genuine concern, usually the same will come right back to us. Perhaps not in kind, maybe not in ways we expected, nevertheless our gifts bear fruit.

Many of us have longed for love and security to come from others with a promise of forever; inevitably, we became anxious that, in time, that love or security would disappear. When we view life from such a narrow perspective, no amount of love can bolster our sense of worth.

How different the world looks when we unselfishly give out love rather than longingly await the love, attention, or understanding of others. We guarantee receiving the good feelings we crave every time we share those feelings with a fellow traveler.

I am in charge of what I receive from others today. I will get back what I willingly give.

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Wherever You Are
Home Is Where the Heart Is by Madisyn Taylor

Allow HOME to be a feeling you carry inside yourself, wherever you are.

The word “home” has a wide variety of connotations. To some, home is merely a place where basic needs are addressed. To others, home is the foundation from which they draw their strength and tranquility. Still, others view home as a place inexorably linked to family. Yet all these definitions of home imply somewhere we can be ourselves and are totally accepted. There, we feel safe enough to let down our guard, peaceful enough to really relax, and loved enough to want to return day after day. However, these qualities need not be linked to a single space or any space at all. Home is where the heart is and can be the locale you live in, a community you once lived in, or the country where you plan to live someday. Or home can be a feeling you carry inside yourself, wherever you are.

The process of evolution can require you to undergo transformations that uproot you. Moving from place to place can seem to literally divide you from the foundations you have come to depend on. Since your home is so intimately tied to the memories that define you, you may feel that you are losing a vital part of yourself when you leave behind your previous house, city, state, or country. And as it may take some time before you fashion new memories, you may feel homeless even after settling into your new abode. To carry your home with you, you need only become your own foundation. Doing so is merely a matter of staying grounded and centered, and recognizing that the pleasures you enjoyed in one place will still touch your heart in another if you allow them.

Your home can be any space or state of being that fulfills you, provided you are at peace with yourself and your surroundings. A person can feel like home to you, as can seasons and activities. If you feel disconnected from what you once thought of as home, your detachment may be a signal that you are ready to move one. Simply put, you will know you have found your home when both your physical environment and energetic surroundings are in harmony with the individual you are within. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Many of us have had difficulty ridding ourselves of the ravages of guilt. In my own case, during the early days in The Program, I either misunderstood certain of the Steps, or tried to apply them too quickly and too eagerly. The result was that I increased my feelings of guilt and worthlessness, rather than freeing myself as The Steps intend. Soon, though, I became at least willing to forgive myself, and I made a new beginning. I undertook all the soul-searching and cleansing Steps in our Program as they were intended to be taken, and not from a below-ground position of crippling hate and guilt. Have I made amends to myself?

Today I Pray

May I forgive myself, as God has forgiven me. May I know that if I am hanging onto an old satchel full of guilt, then I am to following the example He has shown me. If God can forgive me — and He has demonstrated His forgiveness by leading me to this healing place — then so can I. May I not begrudge myself what He has so generously offered.

Today I Will Remember

God forgives; so must I.

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One More Day

Develop an expanding sense of wonder at the world at yourself, at God. The world will never starve for wonders — only for the want of wonder.
– Bernard S. Raskas

A crisis in our lives can make us cruel and bitter but can also cause us to do some soul-searching. Those of us who take inventory, who soul-search, may have a personal awakening to our capacity for joy and giving. Being aware of the beauty and symmetry that constantly surround us allows the horizons of our minds to expand.

As our sense of spirituality becomes whole again, we are aware of our impact upon others and upon nature.

A spiritual sense of self is important in my quest to find out who I am and what kind of person I want to be.

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

Food For Thought

More Than Bread

Without a Higher Power, we grasp at material things for security and inspiration. Since they do not give us the ultimate satisfaction we seek, we are left in despair. We need more than bread, but we do not know how to go about getting it.

OA leads us back to the spiritual basis of our lives, which we may have lost. All we have to do is be willing to believe in a Power greater than ourselves. When we see what has happened to others who have suffered from the same hunger that plagues us and who have found meaning and fulfillment, we let go of some of our doubt and cynicism.

Lack of faith is perhaps our greatest impediment to spiritual progress. We have been thing-oriented for so long that it is difficult to change. We can agree, however, that the food we overate was not enough to satisfy us. That there is a spiritual source of nourishment, which will be adequate for our needs, is a conviction, which grows stronger the longer we work the OA program.

I pray for the spiritual food which satisfies.

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One Day At A Time

EXPECTATIONS
“It’s astonishing in this world how things don’t
turn out at all the way you expect them to.”
Agatha Christie

My life has been strangled by expectations ~ expectations I’ve held for myself; expectations others had of me; expectations I had of others; expectations I had for my life; and expectations I had of the God of my understanding. Again and again, my expectations were not met ~ and I was angry. I felt grossly let down and I was filled with resentment and shame. Eventually I became consumed by a toxic sense of angry and depressing apathy. If nothing turned out as I expected, why bother? I’d held so tightly to my expectations that they choked the life out of my soul. They condemned me to an existence of futility, frustration, selfishness, and despair. I thought that my expectations were realistic and “right”; therefore each variance from my expectations seemed a violation of the natural order of things.

Since beginning my Recovery work, I’ve come to recognize that I virtually believed that I was God. I thought I knew what was “best”, what was “right”, and what was “supposed” to happen. Though I am sometimes resistant, I am learning to let go of my expectations. I am learning to change my focus from my finite understanding to the mysterious and omniscient plan held safely and sanely in the hands of God. As I work my steps and learn from others, I find that I am relieved that my earlier expectations did not come to fruition.

One day at a time…
I surrender my former expectations and now expect only one thing: that as I work my steps, God will bring me increasing depths of sanity.
~ Sharon

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Without knowing it, had we not been brought to where we stood by a certain kind of faith? For did we not believe in our own reasoning? Did we not have confidence in our ability to think? What was that but a sort of faith? Yes, we had been faithful, abjectly faithful to the God of Reason. So, in one way or another, we discovered that faith had been involved all the time! – Pgs. 53-54 – We Agnostics

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Just as we begin to learn that others are not responsible for us using or drinking, we learn that they are not responsible for keeping us clean and sober. Only we can not pick up that first fix, pill or drink. Only we can lay the foundation of our recovery — abstinence.

When I am tempted to use again, let me see the excuses as the mental tricks they are. I will talk to a sober person first!

Healing

Sometimes, healing doesn’t feel good. Sometimes, it involves deep pain. The effect of healing is gentle, freeing and wonderful, but the road leading to it can be hellish. Now, I understand what the Psalms mean by, ‘valley of the shadow of death.’ They were referring to a spiritual enlightenment involving a death and a rebirth. In order to be born into enlightenment, it is necessary that I face and clear out the dark and scary parts of myself. I need all of me for a life of spiritual freedom.

Today, I know that I was never alone along the way, and that I need never feel alone again.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

If there is someone weaker than you, be kind to them. If there is someone stronger than you, be kind to yourself.

What kind of person am I? The kind, kind.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

There is no situation so bad that a compulsive action can’t make it worse.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote 

Today I will honor my own values and be open to change as a result of growth; ok once more.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

A lot of alcoholics say: ‘Well there’s us, and then there’s normal people.’ Read my lips: There are no normal people. There are just people who haven’t shared with you yet. – Ken D

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AA Thought for the Day

June 12

Defects
We shall have to come to grips with some of our worst character defects
and take action toward their removal as quickly as we can.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 69

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

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

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

Sacrifices
“At the beginning we sacrificed alcohol.
We had to, or it would have killed us.
But we couldn’t get rid of alcohol
unless we made other sacrifices.
Big-shotism and phony thinking had to go.
We had to toss self-justification, self-pity,
and anger right out the window.
We had to quit the crazy contest for personal prestige
and big bank balances.
We had to take personal responsibility for our sorry state
and quit blaming others for it.
Were these sacrifices? Yes, they were.
To gain enough humility and self-respect
to stay alive at all we had to give up
what had really been our dearest possessions –
our ambitions and our illegitimate pride.”
Bill W., January 1955
1988AAGrapevine, The Language of the Heart, p. 210

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

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
S O B E R = Son Of a Basket, Everything’s Real

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

Core
>From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“On many a day I felt like throwing the book out the window.
“I was in this anything-but-spiritual mood on the night when the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous were written. I
was sore and tired clear through. I lay in bed at 182 Clinton Street with pencil in hand and with a tablet of scratch paper
on my knee. I could not get my mind on the job, much less put my heart in it. But here was one of those things that had
to be done. Slowly my mind came into some kind of focus.
“Since Ebby’s visit to me in the fall of 1934 we had gradually evolved what we called ‘the word-of-mouth program.’ Most
of the basic ideas had come from the Oxford Groups, William James, and Dr. Silkworth.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 160

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

“Where before there was a gaping hole of emptiness, I seek within me that faint ember of self-love, self-worth, and desire for goodness.”
Westfield, Mass., July 1997
“The Faint Ember”
AA Grapevine

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

“Faith without works was dead, he said. And how appallingly true for
the alcoholic! For if an alcoholic failed to perfect and enlarge his
spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, he could
not survive the certain trials and low spots ahead. If he did not
work, he would surely drink again, and if he drank, he would surely
die. Then faith would be dead indeed. With us it is just like that.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, pg. 14~

“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 alcoholics these things are poison.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 66~

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.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 89

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Who can render an account of all the miseries that once were ours, and who can estimate the release and joy that the
later years have brought to us? Who can possibly tell the vast consequences of what God’s work through A.A. has
already set in motion?
And who can penetrate the deeper mystery of our wholesale deliverance from slavery, a bondage to a most hopeless
and fatal obsession which for centuries possessed the minds and bodies of men and women like ourselves?
We think cheerfulness and laughter make for usefulness. Outsiders are sometimes shocked when we burst into
merriment over a seemingly tragic experience out of the past. But why shouldn’t we laugh? We have recovered, and
have helped others to recover. What greater cause could there be for rejoicing than this?

Prayer For The Day: Dear heavenly Father, we do appreciate Your patience and love toward us. May we show this same love to those around us; especially to those with whom we might have a disagreement. Lord, grant us grace to be gracious and not get into contention with others. Lord, remove murmuring and disputing from our hearts and let us be joyful and peace makers. Father, guard our tongues that we do not say things that we will later regret. Forgive us when we fail You and give us Your grace to forgive others who have hurt us. We ask this in Your son, Jesus’ name. Amen.

Bsober Listen Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 11th

Bsober Listen

Bsober Listen Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 11th

Daily Reflections

FAMILY OBLIGATIONS

. . . a spiritual life which does not include . . . family
obligations may not be so perfect after all.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 129

I can be doing great in the program–applying it at meetings,
at work, and in service activities–and find that things have
gone to pieces at home. I expect my loved ones to understand,
but they cannot. I expect them to see and value my progress,
but they don’t–unless I show them. Do I neglect their needs
and desire for my attention and concern? When I’m around them,
am I irritable or boring? Are my “amends” a mumbled “Sorry,”
or do they take the form of patience and tolerance? Do I
preach to them, trying to reform or “fix” them? Have I ever
really cleaned house with them? “The spiritual life is not a
theory. We have to live it.”
(Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 83).

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We alcoholics have to believe in some Power greater than
ourselves. Yes, we have to believe in God. Not to believe in
a Higher Power drives us to atheism. Atheism, it has been
said before, is blind faith in the strange proposition that
this universe originated in a cipher and aimlessly rushes
nowhere. That’s practically impossible to believe. So we turn
to that Divine Principle in the universe that we call God.
Have I stopped trying to run my own life?

Meditation For The Day

“Lord, we thank Thee for the great gift of peace, that peace
which passeth all understanding, that peace which the world
can neither give nor take away.” That is the peace that only
God can give in the midst of a restless world and surrounded
by trouble and difficulty. To know that peace is to have
received the stamp of the kingdom of God. When you have earned
that peace, you are fit to judge between true and false values,
between the values of the kingdom of God and the values of all
that the world has to offer.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that today I may have inner peace. I pray that today I
may be at peace with myself.

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

As Bill Sees It

“Let’s Keep It Simple”, p. 162

“We need to distinguish sharply between spiritual simplicity and functional
simplicity.”

“When we say that A.A. advocates no theological proposition except God as we
understand Him, we greatly simplify A.A. life by avoiding conflict and exclusiveness.

“But when we get into questions of action by groups, by areas, and by A.A. as a whole,
we find that we must to some extent organize to carry the message–or else face
chaos. And chaos is not simplicity.”

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

I learned that the temporary or seeming good can often be the deadly enemy of the
permanent best. When it comes to survival for A.A., nothing short of our best will be
good enough.

1. Letter, 1966
2. A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 294

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Walk in Dry Places

What can we change ?
Handling limitations.
There’s always danger that resignation will masquerade as acceptance.  In 12 Step programs, we must learn the difference between the two. Resignation refers to putting up with conditions that we should actually change; it regards self-imposed limitation. Acceptance meansx recognizing reality and becoming comfortable with it.
We might resign ourselves to bad treatment that is unacceptable, or we might put up with personal shortcomings that we could change. When someone points this out, we defend ourselves by asserting points this out., we defend ourselves by asserting that we’re practicing acceptance.
As human beings and children of God, we are entitled to live with dignity and to receive fair treatment. We should never resign ourselves to anything that robs us of this basic humanity. Our Higher Power will show us how to eliminate resignation if we have been practicing it. The message of the program is that we never have to accept the things we can and should change.
Today if I am uncomfortable with something, I’ll ask myself if I’ve been practicing resignation instead of acceptance.  There may be many things in my life that can and should be changed.


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

Keep It Simple

Who is the bravest hero? He who turns his enemy into a friend. — Hebrew Proverb
In recovery we take our worst enemy, addiction, and turn it around. We were ashamed of our addiction. Over time we become proud of our recovery. We were our own worst enemy. Now we’re our own best friend. We are brave people.
Being brave is about facing our fears. Often we think brave people don’t get afraid, but this isn’t true. Brave people learn to stay put, even when their knees are shaking. Many times in recovery, we will want to run when we should stay put. We may even think about using chemicals again.
We need to remember our bravery and how we turned our worst enemy into a friend.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, teach me when to run and when to stay put. Help me be brave.
Action for the Day:  I will claim bravery today. I’ll hold my head up high and be proud of how far I’ve come. I now have nothing to be ashamed of.

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Each Day a New Beginning

My lifetime listens to yours.  –Muriel Rukeyser
Our experiences educate us to help show each other the way. Others’ experiences, likewise, will help still others. We need to share our histories. And the program offers us the way. There is no greater honor we can give one another than rapt attention. We each want to be heard, to be special, to be acknowledged. And recognition may will be the balm that will heal someone’s hurt today.
A new day faces us, a day filled with opportunities to really listen to someone who needs to be heard. And the surprise is that we will hear a message just right for us, where we are now. A message that may well point us in a new, better direction. Guidance is always at hand, if only we listen for it. But when we are trapped in our own narrow world of problems and confusion, we scramble whatever messages are trying to reach us. And we miss the many opportunities to make another person feel special and necessary to our lives.
My growth is enhanced every time I give my attention fully to another person. And this process is multiplied over and over and over. I will be there for someone today.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

Fred is a partner in a well known accounting firm. His income is good, he has a fine home, is happily married and the father of promising children of college age. He has so attractive a personality that he makes friends with everyone. If ever there was a successful business man, it is Fred. To all appearance he is a stable, well balanced individual. Yet, he is alcoholic. We first saw Fred about a year ago in a hospital where he had gone to recover from a bad case of jitters. It was his first experience of this kind, and he was much ashamed of it. Far from admitting he was an alcoholic , he told himself he came to the hospital to rest his nerves. The doctor intimated strongly that he might be worse than he realized. For a few days he was depressed about his condition. He made up his mind to quit drinking altogether. It never occurred to him that perhaps he could not do so, in spite of his character and standing. Fred would not believe himself an alcoholic, much less accept a spiritual remedy for his problem. We told him what we knew about alcoholism. He was interested and conceded that he had some of the symptoms, but he was a long way from admitting that he could do nothing about it himself. He was positive that this humiliating experience, plus the knowledge he had acquired, would keep him sober the rest of his life. Self-knowledge would fix it.

pp. 39-40

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

ACCEPTANCE WAS THE ANSWER – The physician wasn’t hooked, he thought–he just prescribed drugs medically indicated for his many ailments.  Acceptance was his key to liberation.

If there ever was anyone who came to A.A. by mistake, it was I.  I just didn’t belong here.  Never in my wildest moments had it occurred to me that I might like to be an alcoholic.  Never once had my mother even hinted at the idea that, when I grew up, I might like to be president of A.A.  Not only did I not think that being an alcoholic was a good idea, I didn’t even feel that I had all that much of a drinking problem!  Of course, I had problems, all sorts of problems.  “If you had my problems, you’d drink too” was my feeling.

p. 407

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Eleven – “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.”

The inquiring voices are not all alcoholics or their families. Doctors read medical papers about Alcoholics Anonymous and call for more information. Clergymen see articles in their church journals and also make inquiries. Employers learn that great corporations have set their approval upon us, and wish to discover what can be done about alcoholism in their own firms.

p. 180

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“No matter how much cats fight, there always seem to be plenty of
kittens.”
–Abraham Lincoln

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could;
some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as
you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with
too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

The right time for the journey is when you begin it. Why not today?
God, motivate me to live a fuller, richer life.
–An excerpt from Melody Beattie – (More Language of Letting Go)

“There is a very little difference between people; it is called attitude;
and it makes a really big difference. The big difference is whether it’s
positive or negative.”
–W. Clement Stone

“Kindness can become its own motive.
We are made kind by being kind.”
–Eric Hoffer

Look past the body, past the personality, past the behavior, into the
window of one another’s souls. There we make a connection. The
God in me recognizes and honors the God in you.
–Mary Manin Morrissey

God, grant me the serenity to not try to force outcomes and solutions
too soon.
–Melody Beattie

Wish not so much to live long, as to live well.
— Benjamin Franklin

It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows.
–Epictetus

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

SOLITUDE

“Everyone should try to find a
spot to be alone.”
–Queen Juliana (Netherlands)

Greta Garbo was reported to have said, “I want to be alone.” Life
brings its pressures, but we all need to find a place where we can be
“alone”.

Alone – not to “think” or “do” – simply to be. We need time to simply
rest in our lives. A time in the day which we can call our own, to have a
visit with the most important person we have got in our lives –
ourselves.

To rest in self is to experience “spiritual selfishness” – the joy of
self-love.

And how much we look forward to setting aside a time just for heart
and mind to center on the pathway to listening to God.

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

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be
no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any
more pain: for the former things are passed away.
Revelation 21:4

Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man. Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice.
Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever. He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD. His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes. He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor, his righteousness endures forever; his horn will be lifted
high in honor.
Psalm 112:4-9


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

Daily Inspiration

It is laughter that helps us cope with the upsets and chaos of everyday living. Lord, lighten my spirit so that I will not take myself so seriously and be able to find more moments to laugh.

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.

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

NA Just For Today

Living Clean

“As we recover; we gain a new outlook on being clean…. Life can become a new adventure for us.”
Basic Text, p. 88

The using life is not a clean one-no one knows this better than we do. Some of us lived in physical squalor, caring neither for our surroundings nor ourselves. Worse, though, than any external filth was the way most of us felt inside. The things we did to get our drugs, the way we treated other people, and the way we treated ourselves had us feeling dirty. Many of us recall waking too many mornings just wishing that, for once, we could feel clean about ourselves and our lives.

Today, we have a chance to feel clean by living clean. For us addicts, living clean starts with not using – after all, that’s our primary use for the word “clean” in Narcotics Anonymous. But as we stay “clean” and work the Twelve Steps, we discover another kind of clean. It’s the clean that comes from admitting the truth about our addiction rather than hiding or denying our disease. It’s the freshness that comes from owning up to our wrongs and making amends for them. It’s the vitality that comes from the new set of values we develop as we seek a Higher Power’s will for us. When we practice the principles of our program in all our affairs, we have no reason to feel dirty about our lives or our lifestyles – we’re living clean, and grateful to be doing so at last.

“Clean living” used to be just for the “squares.” Today, living clean is the only way we’d have it.

Just for today: I feel clean because I’m living clean – and that’s the way I want to keep it.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, but only saps today of its strength. –A. J. Cronin
There is always something to worry about. What if it rains tomorrow on the family picnic? What if the baby gets sick and we can’t go? What if we can’t find a shady spot for our lunch table? Will the water be too cold for swimming? Will the boat motor conk out in the middle of the lake? What if we forget the charcoal? Or the lighter fluid?
Today, while preparing the potato salad for tomorrow’s picnic, all we need to know is whether the potatoes are cool enough to peel and slice.
Our worries about tomorrow change nothing but ourselves, and they have nothing to do with what we are doing right now. Tomorrow will become today soon enough, and today is the day we have.
Which of my worries belong only to tomorrow, and should be left alone until then?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
We are each so much more than what some reduce to measuring. –Karen Kaiser Clark
Our society places great emphasis on how well each person is doing. It makes us judgmental and competitive. As children we may have thought that our real value was measured by the grades we got in school or the scores of our baseball games. As grown men we continue measuring our worth by things like the size of our wages, the model of the car we drive, or even how many months or years we have in recovery.
We can’t stop the measuring, but we are in a program that helps us step outside this system. We seek to know and do the will of our Higher Power, which is beyond the limitations of such measurements. Submitting our own will to our Higher Power releases us from the competition and the judgments in these games of measurement. Our loyalties are to values like honesty, respect, peace, and wholeness.
Today, I will remember that my value as a man isn’t measured on a man-made scale.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
My lifetime listens to yours. –Muriel Rukeyser
Our experiences educate us to help show each other the way. Others’ experiences, likewise, will help still others. We need to share our histories. And the program offers us the way. There is no greater honor we can give one another than rapt attention. We each want to be heard, to be special, to be acknowledged. And recognition may will be the balm that will heal someone’s hurt today.
A new day faces us, a day filled with opportunities to really listen to someone who needs to be heard. And the surprise is that we will hear a message just right for us, where we are now. A message that may well point us in a new, better direction. Guidance is always at hand, if only we listen for it. But when we are trapped in our own narrow world of problems and confusion, we scramble whatever messages are trying to reach us. And we miss the many opportunities to make another person feel special and necessary to our lives.
My growth is enhanced every time I give my attention fully to another person. And this process is multiplied over and over and over. I will be there for someone today.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Moving Forward
Much as we would like, we cannot bring everyone with us on this journey called recovery. We are not being disloyal by allowing ourselves to move forward. We don’t have to wait for those we love to decide to change as well.
Sometimes we need to give ourselves permission to grow, even though the people we love are not ready to change. We may even need to leave people behind in their dysfunction or suffering because we cannot recover for them. We don’t need to suffer with them.
It doesn’t help.
It doesn’t help for us to stay stuck just because someone we love is stuck. The potential for helping others is far greater when we detach, work on ourselves, and stop trying to force others to change with us.
Changing ourselves, allowing ourselves to grow while others seek their own path, is how we have the most beneficial impact on people we love. We’re accountable for ourselves. They’re accountable for themselves. We let them go, and let ourselves grow.
Today, I will affirm that it is my right to grow and change, even though someone I love may not be growing and changing alongside me.

Today I have the courage to look within without fear at what needs to be changed in my life. –Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart

Be Honest with Yourself

What are you feeling deep down inside? Under the anger. Under the rage. Under the numb I don’t care, it doesn’t matter. Are you really feeling scared? Hurt? Abandoned? Go more deeply into yourself and your emotions than you have ever gone before. The way to joy, the way to the heart is tender, soft, gentle, and honest. The way to the heart is to be vulnerable.

You don’t have to be so brave. You don’t have to be so strong. You don’t always have to walk away with your head held high saying, I can handle this. Ive been through worse before.

Become angry if you must. Feel your rage if it’s there. Go numb once in a while, if you must. Then take a chance, and go a little deeper. Go way down deep inside. See what’s there. Take a look. Risk being vulnerable.

Love yourself and all your emotions. Be as honest with yourself as you can be. Say how you really feel.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

Stop defending yourself

Do you walk around wearing a suit of armor? Often, if we were hurt as children or hurt frequently as adults, we put on a suit of emotional armor to protect us from being hurt more. We lower our visor to avoid seeing the pain and block out all hurtful sights. We pick up weapons, sharp words, manipulative behaviors, acting out– anything to help us defend ourselves against those who would hurt us again. We get used to being in battle and soon all of life is a struggle.

Stop fighting. Yes, you have been hurt. Many of us have. But when you project the characteristics of one person onto everyone you know, you don’t allow their true selves to shine through. All you can see is the limited view from your visor.

You are growing and gaining strength every day. You’re safe now. Why not put down the weapons for a little while, lift the visor on your suit of armor, and see the people around you for who they are– mostly kind, good-hearted ordinary people just like you. They have been hurt and healed, they have won and lost. They laugh and they cry. Open up to them, and allow the sharing to begin to heal you and your heart.

God, help me to lower my defenses today, to be open to the good in the people around me and to the good that I have to offer them.

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

In God’s Care

“What do you think of God,” the teacher asked. After a pause, the young pupil replied, “He’s not a think, he’s a feel.”
~~Paul Frost

If our approach to God rested on how much brain power we could summon, a lot of us would be in trouble. We can’t think our way to God. We have to feel our way there. We have to need God so much, love God so much (or love the idea of God so much) that we just find ourselves in communion with God. It’s our feelings that bring us there.

Our reaching out to God usually comes as a last resort. It’s the result of finally realizing that everything else we’ve tried has failed to bring us peace of mind. It doesn’t say much for our good sense that we have a tendency to approach God only when we’re desperate, but then it isn’t intellectual power that brings us to our knees. Let’s face it, we need God, not in our head, but in our gut.

I don’t have to use my intelligence to get to God. I only have to want God in my life

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Friends
Gifts We Give Ourselves by Madisyn Taylor

Friends give us the gift of helping us learn more about our selves while also being a mirror for the other.

Good friends enrich our lives in so many ways. Through a magical combination of similarities and differences, friends offer us the opportunity to know ourselves as we are and help us grow into who we want to be. Our similarities attract us to each other, comforting us with familiarity when we see ourselves in them. When we are drawn to those we admire, the same recognition is at work, unconsciously acknowledging that these people possess qualities that we ourselves possess. By acting as mirrors, friends help us define who we are by reflecting our selves back to us.

Friends also help us know ourselves through our differences. Differences allow us to see other options and make choices about who we want to be. Sometimes we are drawn to those who appear to be our opposites, and we learn to accept the parts of them we love and the parts of them that don’t resonate with us, thus allowing us a valuable learning experience. By expanding our understanding to include others’ experiences, friends help us accept others. By understanding when someone’s life differs from our own, we can learn about ourselves in contrast. There are times when we see in friends what we don’t like about ourselves. That mirror reflection may be hard to take, but a good friend helps us find ways we can change and supports us in that choice.

Part of the joy of friendship is the feeling that we are accepted just the way we are, with no need to change. It is a gift they give us, and one we can give back every day. Ultimately, we choose friends because they make us feel good about ourselves and life. Through tears and difficulties, friends help us find the laughter. When we find those special people who offer us that perfect combination of comfort and stimulus to grow, we are very fortunate. Friends, those wonderful companions that walk with us through life, help us define and refine who we are and who we choose to be every day. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Guilt is a cunning weapon in the armory of the addictive person which continues to lurk patiently inside each of us. We can use the weapon against ourselves in many subtle ways; it can be deftly wielded, for example, in an attempt to convince us that The Program doesn’t really work. I have to protect myself constantly against guilt an d self-accusations concerning my past. If necessary, I must constantly “re-forgive” myself, accepting myself as a mixture of good as well as bad. Am I striving for spiritual progress? Or will I settle for working less than the human impossibility of spiritual perfection?

Today I Pray

May I look inside myself now and then for any slow-burning, leftover guilt which can, when I’m unwary, damage any purpose. may I stop kicking myself and pointing our my own imperfections — all those leaser qualities which detract from the ideal and “perfect” me. May I no longer try to be unreachable, inhumanly perfect, but just spiritually whole.

Today I Will Remember

I am human — part good, part no-so-good.

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

One More Day

What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.
– George Eliot

Sometimes a painful ending can be the beginning of a new way of life which is a happy reality. The end of grief brings us new acceptance and balance. The end of a bad relationship might be a welcome beginning.

An ending? Or a beginning? Often the answer depends on how we choose to see it. Grown children leaving home can be a sad end, or it can be an exciting opportunity to begin living more for ourselves. A move can mean leaving old friends or meeting new ones. Almost every event in life — marriage, a new job, graduation, even a vacation — means an ending of some sort. As we face each ending, we can choose to see a new beginning.

Today, I will remember that life is made of many new beginnings.

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

Food For Thought

Our Security Blanket

Turning to food when we are afraid is a tendency shared by many of us. Since being fed reassured us as infants and children, we compulsive overeaters reach for something to eat when we are anxious or apprehensive. When the anxiety does not disappear, we eat more.

The desire for security is basic to all of us. Unfortunately, we often look for it in the wrong places. A fortress of fat is not much protection against the hurts and dangers to which we are all vulnerable as human beings. Overeating does not keep us safe from real or imagined threats.

We need to accept the fact that there is no such thing as absolute security. All of us are mortal and subject to hazards and destruction. Paradoxically, our security consists in relinquishing our lives to the care of our Higher Power. When we feel safely centered in Him, we have the courage to take risks and give up our worn-out security blankets.

I trust You to care for me, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

PAIN
“Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses
your understanding. Even as the stone of the fruit
must break, that its heart may stand in the sun,
so must you know pain.”
Kahlil Gibran

There was much to be unhappy about in my childhood. There was also a lot of unhappiness in my adult life. Until I found The Recovery Group online, that unhappiness was the driving force in my life. That force robbed me of the ability to see and enjoy the many wonderful things that I had experienced. I wore a cloak of sadness, bitterness and resentment ~ I had been short-changed. It was the old glass-half-empty, glass-half-full story….poor me.

Being able to share the pain and unhappiness I have known has freed me from the power it had over me. Clearing away the wreckage is enabling me to see my part in some of the unhappiness I’ve known. It has enabled me to see more clearly that there is so much for which I can be grateful. It has enabled me to see that I truly AM the person of value which I had represented myself to be towards others. I am integrating that person into the “unacceptable” being I carried within. I have seen others here endure challenge, pain and hardships with so much grace. I have learned that pain is, indeed, inevitable. I have the choice whether to dwell on the pain morbidly, or to instead focus on the joy of this day.

One day at a time…
I will live in the joy of this day and I will strive to share this wonderful gift of self-acceptance to others in program.
~ Karen A.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

All changes made over the years in the Big Book ( A.A. members’ fond nickname for this volume ) have had the same purpose: to represent the current membership of Alcoholics Anonymous more accurately, and thereby to reach more alcoholics. If you have a drinking problem, we hope that you may pause in reading one of the forty-two personal stories and think: ‘Yes, that happened to me’; or, more important, ‘Yes, I’ve felt like that’; or, most important, ‘Yes, I believe this program can work for me too.’ – Pg. xii – 4th. Edition – Preface

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

When we feel like we can’t hold on for a whole day, we get a clock and hold on for an hour. When an hour is too long, we hold on for 10 minutes. At the end of 10, do another 10, and another and another, until it’s OK.

Help me make it from hour to hour, or minute to minute if need be!

Truth

Today, I accept that without truth there is nothing. Truth is the soil out of which sustenance grows and nourishment comes, so that we can move in healthy directions. Lies have no food value and starve my spirit; but truth though it can hurt, has a way of hoeing and tilling the soil so that some new growth can occur. Even though knowing the truth may seem unnecessary somewhere inside, I know it anyway. Bringing truth out into the open gives me a chance to lift the veil of secrecy that has made a wound feel like a dark hole. It allows angst to transform and break into a thousand little somethings that each contain usable and illuminating information that can again nurture health and life.

I am willing to live with truth.
– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

‘Take the cotton out of your ears and put it in your mouth- applies to the old-timer as well as the beginner-anyone who is too fond of their own voice.

I listen to learn and learn to listen.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You must go within or you go without.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote 

Today I have the courage to look within without fear at what needs to be changed in my life.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

They’ve got me stretched out – the paramedics who are dedicated to saving your life when you don’t want your life saved – and next to the bed are two nuns; one old, one young. The old one walked away, she’s had me because I was giving her a lot of lip – I always gave a people a lot of lip when I was the most afraid – but the young nun stayed. She looked down at me, so beautiful. I’ve come to believe in earth angels. She had on a white habit, and all I could see was her face. Her eyes were a blue as the heavens. And this young nun started to cry over me as she looked down at me, the spiritual being that she was. She had never seen me before. The tears were falling on the covers of that bed. And she said, ‘ How did you ever let your life get into such a state?’ and I heard her. No one had ever asked that before. They’d always told me how I should stop drinking; do this, do that, do this…. – Clara S.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 11

Powerlessness
Every newcomer in AA is told, and soon learns for himself,
that his humble admission of powerlessness over alcohol is his first step
toward liberation from its paralyzing grip.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 72-73

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

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

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

Gratitude
“Another exercise that I practice
is to try for a full inventory of my blessings
and then for a right acceptance of the many gifts that are mine –
both temporal and spiritual.
Here I try to achieve a state of joyful gratitude.
When such a brand of gratitude is repeatedly affirmed
and pondered,
it can finally displace the natural tendency
to congratulate myself on whatever progress
I may have been enabled to make in some areas of living.
I try hard to hold fast to the truth
that a full and thankful heart cannot entertain great conceits.
When brimming with gratitude,
one’s heartbeat must surely result in outgoing love,
the finest emotion that we can ever know.”
Bill W., March 1962
1988AAGrapevine, The Language of the Heart, p. 271

Thought to Consider . . .
I have learned what a heart full of gratitude feels like.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
T H I N K = The Happiness I Never Knew

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

Illness
>From “Building a New Life”:
“That year I went to an alcohol treatment program twice. The first time I was in treatment, I was shaving at the mirror in
the bathroom and it seemed to me that my beard was growing back in as fast as I could shave it off. Even though I was
in a hospital gown, I escaped, running down the streets and jumping up and over fences. I was on the porch of a
woman’s house banging on the door for her to let me in when the police arrived. I tried to convince them she was my
wife and my children were inside, but they saw the hospital bracelet on my wrist, and they took me back to the program.
“The doctor told me that if I went into D.T.’s like that again I might not come out.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 482

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

“Asking for help is not just a path to humility; it is a path to connection with my fellows and with God.”
Phoenix, Arizona, April 2011
“HELP,”
AA Grapevine

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

“In this book you read again and again that faith did for us what we
could not do for ourselves. We hope you are convinced now that God can remove whatever self-will has blocked you off
from Him. If you have already made a decision, and an inventory of your grosser handicaps,
you have made a good beginning. That being so you have swallowed and
digested some big chunks of truth about yourself.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 70~

“Selfishness—self-centeredness! That, we think, is the root of
our troubles. Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-
seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they
retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation,
but we invariably find that at some time in the past we have made
decisions based on self which later placed us in a position to be hurt.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 62~

Even these “last-gaspers” often had difficulty in realizing how hopeless they actually were.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 22

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We need to distinguish sharply between spiritual simplicity and functional simplicity.
When we say that A.A. advocates no theological proposition except God as we understand Him, we greatly simplify A.A.
life by avoiding conflict and exclusiveness.
But when we get into questions of action by groups, by areas, and by A.A. as a whole, we find that we must to some
extent organize to carry the message–or else face chaos. And chaos is not simplicity.
I learned that the temporary or seeming good can often be the deadly enemy of the permanent best. When it comes to
survival for A.A., nothing short of our very best will be good enough.

Prayer For The Day: Gracious Father, I beseech thee to give me wisdom for kind thoughts and deeds. Teach me true hospitality, that I may be gracious in my own home and appreciative in the home of others. May I not temper my hospitality for certain reasons, but have a genuine welcome for all. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 10th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 10th

Daily Reflections

IMPATIENT? TRY LEVITATING

We reacted more strongly to frustrations than normal people.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 111

Impatience with other people is one of my principal failings.
Following a slow car in a no-passing lane, or waiting in a
restaurant for the check, drives me to distraction. Before I
give God a chance to slow me down, I explode, and that’s what
I call being quicker than God. That repeated experience gave
me an idea. I thought if I could look down on these events
from God’s point of view, I might better control my feelings
and behavior. I tried it and when I encountered the next slow
driver, I levitated and looked down on the other car and upon
myself. I saw an elderly couple driving along, happily chatting
about their grandchildren. They were followed by me–bug eyed
and red of face–who had no time schedule to meet anyway. I
looked so silly that I dropped back into reality and slowed down.
Seeing things from God’s angle of vision can be very relaxing.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

If we have had some moral, religious, or spiritual training,
we’re better prospects for A.A. When we reach the bottom, at
this crucial moment when we’re thoroughly licked, we turn
instinctively to whatever decency is left in us. We call upon
whatever reserves of morality and faith are left down deep in
our heart. Have I had this spiritual experience?

Meditation For The Day

The world wonders when it sees a person who can unexpectedly
draw large and unsuspected sums from the bank for some emergency.
But what the world has not seen are the countless small sums paid
into that bank, earned by faithful work over a long time. And so
is the bank of the spirit. The world sees the person of faith
make a demand on God’s stores of power and the demand is met.
The world does not see what that person has been putting in, in
thanks and praise, in prayer and communion, in small good deeds
done faithfully, steadily over the years.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may keep making deposits in God’s bank. I pray that
in my hour of need, I may call upon these.

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As Bill Sees It

Whose Inventory?, p. 161

We do not relate intimate experiences of another member unless we are sure he would
approve. We find it better, when possible, to stick to our own stories. A man may
criticize or laugh at himself and it will affect others favorably, but criticism or ridicule
aimed at someone else often produces the contrary effect.

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

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.

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 125
2. 12 & 12, p. 88

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Walk in Dry Places

Expecting quick results
Acceptance
Most human progress comes slowly, though we see exciting breakthroughs at various times. The same is true in the lives of individuals.  Though a few people do make exciting leaps forward, most of us must be content with gradual, steady improvements.
Our problem as compulsive people is in wanting quick results all the time. In fact, one of the things that reinforced our addition was the continuous need for a quick fix. We saw life as something that should be taken in frantic gulps.  When a sudden break or advantage appeared, it never really satisfied us. There was always the hunger for more.
We can find real satisfaction, however, in accepting progress in small stages. If we are having small gains here and there, we are on the road to improvement.  A surprising amount can be accomplished when we are moving continuously ahead, one small step at a time.
The old fable of the tortoise and the hare still applies in human affairs.  If we continue to move ahead, even at a slow speed, we will reach our goals.
I’ll be content today with whatever progress I can make.  If I’m expecting too many quick results, I might be setting myself up for disappointment.


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

Keep It Simple

Never grow a wishbone, daughter, where your backbone ought to be.—Clementine Pappleford
At meetings, we meet people who have what we want. Our old way is to think these people are better or luckier than us. Our old way is to wish we were like them. But our program tells us how to work to change, not just wish for it. There is a big difference!
There are many ways to work for recovery. We practice the Steps. We attend meetings, and we help out at meetings. We welcome new members. We call our sponsor often. And we sponsor others when we’re ready. It takes more than a wishbone. It takes courage and hard work, with the help of our Higher Power.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me know that wishing is lost energy. I must work at recovery. As I do today’s work, guide me.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll do an extra bit of work on my recovery. I’ll call a group member. I’ll read. I’ll spend extra time in prayer and meditation.

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Each Day a New Beginning

When we start at the center of ourselves, we discover something worthwhile extending toward the periphery of the circle. We find again some of the joy in the now, some of the peace in the here, some of the love in me and thee which go to make up the kingdom of heaven on earth.  –G. F. Sear
Perhaps we have feared discovering our center; perhaps we have feared finding nothing there. The struggle to believe in ourselves, to know we have an important part to play in the circle of life, the circle encompassing all life, is a hard-fought struggle for many of us. But we are learning. We are finding treasures within ourselves. Others are helping us to find those treasures. Sharing special moments in time with loved ones and ones we are learning to love reveals many treasures.
All we have is here–now–us. We are all we ever need to be–here and now. We are, at every moment, what we need to be if only we’d trust revealing our true selves, our centers, to one another. Our centers each need that of another.
This program needs each of us for what we add to it. The worthiness of the program, of the whole circle, is enhanced by the inclusion of our centers.
I will share my center today with you.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

That may be true of certain nonalcoholic people who, though drinking foolishly and heavily at the present time, are able to stop or moderate, because their brains and bodies have not been damaged as ours were. But the actual or potential alcoholic, with hardly any exception, will be absolutely unable to stop drinking on the basis of self-knowledge. This is a point we wish to emphasize and re-emphasize, to smash home upon our alcoholic readers as it has been revealed to us out of bitter experience. Let us take another illustration.

p. 39

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

A DRUNK, LIKE YOU – The more he listened at meetings, the more he came to know about his own drinking history.
Everything has turned around.  I found a new job, which I then decided to leave.  I opened my own business.  I was able to put my two sons through college at large universities.  My oldest son’s great passion was to go on road trips to get away from home when it was time to come home on school breaks; now he comes home regularly and brings friends.  The younger son comes home often and calls regularly.
My marriage is no longer on the brink and is better than ever.  And the best is yet to come.  All this and more I owe to the Fellowship in the rooms and the program in the book.

p. 406

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Eleven – “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.”

WITHOUT its legions of well-wishers, A.A. could never have grown as it has. Throughout the world, immense and favorable publicity of every description has been the principal means of bringing alcoholics into our Fellowship. In A.A. offices, clubs, and homes, telephones ring constantly. One voice says, “I read a piece in the newspapers . . .”; another, “We heard a radio program . . .”; and still another, “We saw a moving picture . . .” or “We something about A.A. on television. . . .” It is no exaggeration to say that half of A.A.’s membership has been led to us through channels like these.

p. 180

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The quieter we become, the more we hear.
–unknown

There are glimpses of heaven in every act, or thought, or word that
raises us above ourselves.
–Arthur Stanley

When everything seems to go wrong, just P.U.S.H.!
When the job gets you down, just P.U.S.H.!
When people don’t react the way you think they should, just P.U.S.H.!
When your money looks funny and the bills are due, just P.U.S.H.!
When you want to give up because it looks hopeless, just P.U.S.H.!
P.U.S.H – Pray Until Something Happens!!!!!
–Randy Walker

“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how
good things really are.”
–Marianne Williamson

“I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all;
but whatever I have placed in Gods hands, that I still possess.”
–Martin Luther

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

LAUGHTER

“God cannot be solemn, or he
would not have blessed man
with the incalculable gift of
laughter.”
–Sydney Harris

I think the way to understand God is to begin to understand man!
Sometimes we forget that we bear the “image” of God – and this is
not so much physical as emotional, our inner selves, the soul. So much
of what I feel, what hurts me, what causes me distress and pain I
believe also affects God. Also the gifts, the creative intelligence and
spiritual sacrifice that has characterized so many people in history
reflects something of God. Involved in this is “laughter”. I believe that
laughter is derived from God and is part of the spiritual gift He has
bequeathed to every one of us: we need only discover it.

“Let go – and let God.” Sometimes we need to get out of our own way
so that we can begin to laugh.

You gave the gift of laughter to be used. May it be used in the precious
art of healing.

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

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
Proverbs 15:1

The joy of the LORD is your strength.
Nehemiah 8:10


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Daily Inspiration

It is not as significant to have a good life, but rather to do good things with your life. Lord, I am grateful for the talents with which You have blessed me and I pray that they will not go unused.

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

Changing Motives

“When we finally get our own selfish motives out of the way, we begin to find a peace that we never imagined possible.”
Basic Text, p. 44

As we examine our beliefs, our actions, and our motives in recovery, we’ll find that sometimes we do things for the wrong reasons. In our early recovery, we may have spent a great deal of money and time on people, wanting only for them to like us. Later on, we may find that we still spend money on people, but our motives have changed. We do it because we like them. Or perhaps we used to get romantically involved because we felt hollow inside and were seeking fulfillment through another person. Now our reasons for romantic involvement are based in a desire to share our already rewarding lives with an equal partner. Maybe we used to work the steps because we were afraid we’d relapse if we didn’t. Today we work the steps because we want to grow spiritually.

We have a new purpose in life today, and our changing motives reflect that. We have so much more to offer than our neediness and insecurities. We have developed a wholesomeness of spirit and a peace of mind that moves our recovery into a new realm. We extend our love and share our recovery with complete generosity, and the difference we make is the legacy we leave to those who have yet to join us.

Just for today: In recovery, my motives have changed. I want to do things for the right reason, not just for my personal benefit. Today, I will examine my motives.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Whoever I am or whatever I am doing, some kind of excellence is within my reach. –John W.Gardner
It’s easy to forget how important we each are — to our parents, to other family members, to our friends. We are in this world, even in our particular family, because we are important and necessary in the lives of others. It’s easy to feel not so important though, especially when we think we’re not good enough at anything we try. School or work comes easy for some. Maybe not us. Athletics come easy to others. May it’s helping around the house that’s easiest. Each of us is very good at some things. And it’s okay to not be good at everything.
How can I show my talent today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
We learn more by seeing someone play good tennis than by reading a book about how to play good tennis. –W. Timothy Gallwey
In our program we learn from each other. Most of us would rather have thought our problems through on our own or read about them without having to ask for help. Recovery requires us to break this old habit. We can no longer say at a meeting, “I had some problems this week, but I’ve worked them out now” or “I know what I have to do.” The change for us is to ask for help from other men in this program. We need to say, “What do you think about my problem?” or “Would you be willing to talk to me for a while?”
Having a sponsor is an important way of getting to know how another man applies his program to his life. We need to select a sponsor we admire, who has learned the Steps well and who truly lives them. Then we need to spend time with our sponsor outside of meetings, perhaps while drinking a cup of coffee or going for a walk. By associating with others who are diligent about recovery, we will learn more than we could any other way.
Today, I will make personal contact with others in this program.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
When we start at the center of ourselves, we discover something worthwhile extending toward the periphery of the circle. We find again some of the joy in the now, some of the peace in the here, some of the love in me and thee which go to make up the kingdom of heaven on earth. –G. F. Sear
Perhaps we have feared discovering our center; perhaps we have feared finding nothing there. The struggle to believe in ourselves, to know we have an important part to play in the circle of life, the circle encompassing all life, is a hard-fought struggle for many of us. But we are learning. We are finding treasures within ourselves. Others are helping us to find those treasures. Sharing special moments in time with loved ones and ones we are learning to love reveals many treasures.
All we have is here–now–us. We are all we ever need to be–here and now. We are, at every moment, what we need to be if only we’d trust revealing our true selves, our centers, to one another. Our centers each need that of another.
This program needs each of us for what we add to it. The worthiness of the program, of the whole circle, is enhanced by the inclusion of our centers.
I will share my center today with you.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Responsibility
Self care means taking responsibility for ourselves. Taking responsibility for ourselves includes assuming our true responsibilities to others.
Sometimes, when we begin recovery, we’re worn down from feeling responsible for so many other people. Learning that we need only take responsibility for ourselves may be such a great relief that, for a time, we disown our responsibilities to others.
The goal in recovery is to find the balance: we take responsibility for ourselves, and we identify our true responsibilities to others.
This may take some sorting through, especially if we have functioned for years on distorted notions about our responsibilities to others. We may be responsible to one person as a friend or as an employee; to another person, we’re responsible as an employer or as a spouse. With each person, we have certain responsibilities. When we tend to those true responsibilities, we’ll find balance in our life.
We are also learning that while others aren’t responsible for us, they are accountable to us in certain ways.
We can learn to discern our true responsibilities for ourselves, and to others. We can allow others to be responsible for themselves and expect them to be appropriately responsible to us.
We’ll need to be gentle with ourselves while we learn.
Today, I will strive for clear thinking about my actual responsibilities to others. I will assume these responsibilities as part of taking care of myself.

Today my heart brings me to new places of giving and sharing that I have not yet experienced. I am a friend today and get great satisfaction when I put the needs of others first because I want to, not because I think I have to do so. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Enjoy Summer

Learn to enjoy summer, that wonderful warm time when everything is in full bloom.

Summer isn’t forever, but don’t ruin it by fussing. Forget about the winter just past, the autumn that lies ahead. Immerse yourself in the good times, the fullness of summertime.

We may have gotten so used to the other times, the colder times, that we’ve forgotten how to enjoy the sun, the warmth, the play times. The good times. Each moment of our lives is important. Each moment of our lives is a spiritual experience. To live fully in joy, we need to learn to enjoy the good times as well as weather the storms. Most of us are proficient at hunkering down and getting through the winters of our lives. Now it’s time to learn something different.

Take off your heavy wrap. Grab your straw hat and go bask in the sun. Tomorrow’s lessons will take care of themselves.

Today the lesson is learning to enjoy summer.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let go of guilt

Guilt is a rock. It lies in the pit of our stomachs and keeps us awake at night. All of our muscles work overtime just to carry it around, and yet we still hold on to it.

Yesterday, you stumbled. That was yesterday. But you also righted your wrong and vowed to do better today. So why are you still carrying that guilt around with you?

If you’re in recovery, you probably did some terrible things before you got sober. How can you ever move on? But you got sober. You made amends. What happened yesterday belongs to yesterday. Today, you can let go of your guilt and relax in the peace that comes from walking a path with heart.

Have you made a list of people you have harmed and made amends to them, as suggested in the Eighth and Ninth Steps of the Twelve Step programs? That’s an excellent way to begin clearing and releasing guilt. If you’re not in a Twelve Step program, there are other options. Most religions offer rituals to clear guilt. Sometimes, we’ve taken all these steps and we still feel guilty. What’s wrong? We’re hanging on to our guilt, and we’re being hard on ourselves.

You will find it easier to relax and flow through the experiences of your life if you let go of the weight of yesterday’s guilt.

God, today I give you all of the guilt from my past. Take it from me, and allow me to begin fresh right now. Help me make the amends I need to make, then let my guilt go.

Activity: If you’ve taken steps to make amends and clear away your legitimate guilt, and your guilt is still haunting your every move, try this: First thing in the morning and last thing in the evening, look in your mirror. Look yourself in the eye. Then say out loud seven times, “I now release all my guilt, earned and unearned.” Try this for a week. See if your guilt doesn’t disappear.

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Meeting of the Minds
Fragments of the Self by Madisyn Taylor

We all have many fragments of self which need attention to help make our whole selves better.

Sometimes it feels as if we have many different people living inside of us, expressing themselves in voices that seem distinct from one another. There is the inner child with its wants and needs, the angry voice that expresses its opinion and probably several more as well. With all these different parts of ourselves express differing desires and needs and opinions, we may begin to feel as if we have no clarity. It is difficult to know which voices to pay attention to and which ones to ignore or dismiss. Even if we manage to move forward amidst the confusion, doubts and concerns may linger in our psyches simply because they have not been fully expressed and examined. As a result, we may have trouble being at peace with the decisions we do make.

One way to handle this dilemma is to consciously make time for a meeting of the minds within our psyche. This can be done as a guided meditation or as a journaling exercise. In both we can summon the many fragments that make up the whole of who we are and give them each a chance to speak. This can be a helpful tool in the face of a decision we need to make, and it can also be a fruitful path to take in the interest of self-exploration and self-care. When we gather the many fragments of our psyche together, the health and power of the whole is greatly increased.

We can imagine a roundtable in which we gather all the various representatives of our being, allowing them to name themselves and giving them a chance to speak. We allow each one to weigh in, fully expressing the perspective they represent, and we listen without comment. As we listen, we may be amazed at the wisdom and energy stored in these fragments of our self. This gathering brings the fragmented pieces of our psyche into a closer relationship, enabling us to move forward as a unified whole. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

When I least expect it, my keen addictive mind will try to divert me back toward my old ideas and old ways. My mind is expert, in fact, at planting and nourishing negative feelings within me — feeling such as envy, fear, anxiety, or guilt. The minute I spot any of these poisonous feelings rising up, I have to deal with them. If not, the more I think about them, the stronger they’ll get; the stronger they get, the more I’ll think about them — to the point of obsession. When negative feelings arise, do I “name the, claim them, an dump them…”?

Today I Pray

I should know — and may I please never forget — that a sure way to let my feelings get the best of me is to pretend they aren’t there. Like spoiled offspring, they act up when they are ignored. But also like when they are ignored. But also like offspring’s, they are here, they are mine and I am responsible for them. May I learn to pay attention to my feelings, even if sometimes I would rather make-believe they didn’t belong to me.

Today I Will Remember

Name them, claim them, dump them.

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One More Day

Pain is hard to bear….
But with patience, day by day,
Even this shall pass away.
– Theodore Tilton

When emotional or physical pain becomes unbearable, the duration of each day seems longer than twenty-four hours. Any movement is intolerable; any attempt to begin the day is met with the shrilling objections of the voice of pain.

It is at this exact moment, each time it occurs, that we are tempted to give up the fight and become invalids. Then something prods us to try just one more time — just one more day. And so we struggle, and we are amazed to discover that we have successfully met and conquered another sunrise and another sunset. The strength to go on was there all the time, deep within us.

When my pain becomes greater than i can ever remember, I must draw on my inner resources to keep going.

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Food For Thought

Procrastination

This is a particularly dangerous habit for compulsive overeaters, since when we put off unpleasant or difficult tasks, we may revert back to our old escape route – eating. The result is that the unpleasant situation is still with us, and we are less able to deal with it. The longer we procrastinate, the larger the difficulty looms. Even small responsibilities left undone weaken our self-respect.

Often we procrastinate because of fear that we are inadequate for the job to be done. Sometimes we are simply rebelling against doing something we do not want to do. If we are taking a daily inventory, we will examine our motives and use the subsequent self-knowledge for constructive action.

Whatever it is that we are putting off, it will rarely become easier to do later. This is especially true if we are procrastinating about our abstinence! The time is now.

Since today is all I have, may I use it wisely.

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One Day At A Time

GROWTH
“You will either step forward into growth,
or you will step back into safety.”
Abraham Maslow

In my early years in program, one of my sponsors told me, “You’re in a very well-decorated rut. You even have wall-to-wall carpeting and curtains in it.” As I continued trudging my road to happy destiny, her words would crop up in my head any time I got “stuck.” I could see how far I had come each time, so I persevered and kept turning my fear into faith. As I continued to work the steps, I was led to new levels of recovery.

One day at a time…
I put one foot in front of the other, keep taking the next right action and continue working the steps. I live the promises of the program. Safety or growth? My choice is clear.
~ Rory

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

I earnestly advise every alcoholic to read this book through, and though perhaps he came to scoff, he may remain to pray.

William D. Silkworth, M.D. – Pg. xxxii – 4th. Edition – The Doctor’s Opinion

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Many times we thought we used chemicals because we were unhappy, but coming to this program, we discovered that using too many chemicals is what made us unhappy. Now is the time to break the old unhappy pattern.

This hour, I am beginning the new clean and sober pattern of my life.

Suffering

Today, I will not hide my pain and suffering from myself or from my Higher Power. When I bring my most honest and pure self to the fore and understand my essential powerlessness over situations, when I am truly willing to turn over this angst to a power greater than myself, something changes. I let go and create space for a shift in perception. I experience a quiet awakening in my life, and forces that did not have room to enter are coming in to heal me. It is in letting go that I have a chance of achieving what I desire in my life. Holding on pushes away what I want, while releasing lets it all have enough breathing room so it can stay alive.

I open my heart to my Higher Power.

– Tian Dayton PhD

‘ Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody… I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat…. We must find each other. ‘
– Mother Teresa

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Many problems will be averted with a very simple code for behavior. This is called ‘kindness.’ Kindness is more then politeness; it means a warm concern for the other person’s feelings.

I let my kindness be a gift to another and the tag reads, ‘Please handle with tender loving care.’

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Live today as you want to remember your life.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote 

Today my heart brings me to new places of giving and sharing that I have not yet experienced. I am a friend today and get great satisfaction when I put the needs of others first because I want to, not because I think I have to do so.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

We have fought this fight as long, and as well as we know how. We have been defeated There is but one course to pursue; We must accept the situation. – Robert E Lee.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 10

Action
In shame and despair, I went to my first AA meeting.
By some minor miracle, I was able to suspend opinion, analysis, judgment, and criticism,
and instead to listen and hear.
I heard someone say that AA works for those who work for it,
those who put action into the program. . .
I heard that I should forget about yesterday and instead concentrate on today
and staying away from the first drink today — now. I tried it and it worked.
– Came To Believe. . ., p. 42

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

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

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

Anger
“Then the miracle happened – to me!
It isn’t always so sudden with everyone,
but I ran into a personal crisis which filled me
with a raging and righteous anger.
And as I fumed helplessly and planned
to get good and drunk and show them,
my eye caught a sentence to
the book lying open on my bed.
‘We cannot live with anger.’
The walls crumpled – and the light streamed in.
I wasn’t trapped. I wasn’t helpless.
I was free, and I didn’t have to drink to ‘show them.’
This wasn’t ‘religion’ – this was freedom!
Freedom from anger and fear,
freedom to know happiness and love.”
1976 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 228

Thought to Consider …

Anger is the hot wind that extinguishes
the light of reason.

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

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

Beginning
from: “Two alcoholics meet”
“‘I have placed both operation and myself in God’s hands. I’m going to do what it takes to get sober and stay that way.’
“Just before they stopped [at the hospital, where Dr. Bob was to perform surgery], Bill, who also had his practical side,
gave him a bottle of beer…The bottle of beer Bill gave him that morning was the last drink he [Dr. Bob] ever had.
“Although arguments have been and will be made for other significant occasions in A.A. history, it is generally agreed
that Alcoholics Anonymous began there, in Akron, on that date: June 10, 1935.”
1980, Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers, pages 74-75

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

“Alone in the town, I was scared to death of getting drunk. I was no longer a teacher or a preacher, I was an alcoholic
who knew that he needed another alcoholic, as much as that one could possibly need me. Driven by that urge, I was
soon face to face with Dr. Bob.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1965
“A Fragment of History: Origin of the Twelve Steps”
The Language of the Heart

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

“We will seldom be interested in liquor. If tempted, we recoil from
it as from a hot flame. We react sanely and normally, and we will
find that this has happened automatically. We will see that our new
attitude toward liquor has been given us without any thought or
effort on our part. It just comes!”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 84~

“Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get
well regardless of anyone. The only condition is that he trust in
God and clean house.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 98~

During this process of learning more about humility, the most profound result of all was the change in our attitude toward God.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 75

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We do not relate intimate experiences of another member unless we are sure he would approve. We find it better, when possible, to stick to our own stories. A man may criticize or laugh at himself and it will affect others favorably, but criticism or ridicule aimed at someone else produces the contrary effect.
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.

Prayer For The Day: Lord, lead me to look for the positive in all people and in all situations. May I help bring light to those in darkness, and encouragement to those who feel unhappy. May I show as much care for others as I would like them to show for me. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 9th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 9th

Daily Reflections

LIVING IN THE NOW

First, we try living in the now just in order to stay sober — and it
works. Once the idea has become a part of our thinking, we find that
living life in 24 hour segments is an effective and satisfying way to
handle many other matters as well.
LIVING SOBER, p. 7

“One Day At A Time.” To a newcomer this and other one-liners of
A.A. may seem ridiculous. The passwords of the A.A. Fellowship can
become lifelines in moments of stress. Each day can be like a rose
unfurling according to the plan of a Power greater than myself. My
program should be planted in the right location, just as it will need to be
groomed, nourished, and protected from disease. My planting will
require patience, and my realizing that some flowers will be more
perfect than others. Each stage of the petals’ unfolding can bring
wonder and delight if I do not interfere or let my expectations override my
acceptance — and this brings serenity.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We finally came to the bottom. We did not have to be financially
broke, although many of us were. But we were spiritually bankrupt.
We had a soul-sickness, a revulsion against ourselves and against our way of
living. Life had become impossible for us. We had to end it all or do
something about it. Am I glad I did something about it?

Meditation For The Day

Faith is not seeing, but believing. I am in a box of space and time and
cannot see spacelessness or eternity. But God is not within the shell of
time and space. He is timeless and spaceless. He cannot be fully
comprehended by our finite minds. But we must try to make a union
between our purposes and the purposes of God. By trying to merge
our minds with the mind of God, a oneness of purpose results. This
oneness of purpose puts us in harmony with God and others. Evil
comes from being in disharmony with God and good comes from being
in harmony with Him.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be in harmony with God. I pray that I may get into
the stream of goodness in the universe.

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

As Bill Sees It

The Rationalizers and the Self-Effacing, p. 160

We alcoholics are the biggest rationalizers in the world. Fortified with the excuse
that we are doing great things for A.A., we can, through broken anonymity, resume
our old and disastrous pursuit of personal power and prestige, public honors, and
money–the same implacable urges that, when frustrated, once caused us to drink.

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

Dr. Bob was essentially a far more humble person than I, and anonymity came rather
easily to him. When it was sure that he was mortally afflicted, some of his friends
suggested that there should be a monument erected in honor of him and his wife,
Anne–befitting a founder and his lady. Telling me about this, Dr. Bob grinned
broadly and said, “God bless ’em. They mean well. But let’s you and me get
buried just like other folks.”

In the Akron cemetery where Dr. Bob and Anne lie, the simple stone says not a word
about A.A. This final example of self-effacement is of more permanent worth to A.A.
than any amount of public attention or any great monument.

A.A. Comes Of Age
1. pp. 292-293
2. pp. 136-137

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Walk in Dry Places

Do I feel uneasy?         Serenity
When facing difficult situations, we can expect to feel a certain amount of discomfort. What’s more often a problem for compulsive people is being tense and apprehensive even when things seem to be going well.
Although many explanations are offered for this unpleasant feeling, the solution is to be found in the 12 Steps.  The more secure we feel in our program, the less apprehension we’ll have in facing the problems of living. With the program as our foundation, we will continue to develop more self-assurance as we go along.
We may not immediately find this self-assurance, yet we should not hold back from normal duties and responsibilities. Most of the world’s work and accomplishments are undertaken by people who do not necessarily feel confident and self-assured all the time.  Why should it be any different for us?
Whether I feel confident or not, I’ll do my best today.  I know that my fellowship, my program, and my Higher Power are fully supporting me.


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

Keep It Simple

Anyone can blame; it takes a specialist to praise.—Konstantin Stanislawski
Are we blamers? We sure were blamers when we were using alcohol and other drugs. Then everything was someone’s fault. Some of us did our blaming out loud. And some of us blamed others silently.
It’s harder to praise than to blame people. Faults stand out like street
signs, but the good things about people may be harder to see. We can see the good in people when we slow down, watch, and listen.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me pay attention to people around me. Help me praise them.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list three people who mean a lot to me. I’ll write what I like about each of them. I’ll talk to them and tell them what I wrote.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The process of living, for each of us, is pretty similar. For every gain there is a setback. For every success, a failure. For every moment of joy, a time of sadness. For every hope realized, one is dashed.  –Sue Atchley Ebaugh
The balance of events in our lives is much like the balance of nature. The pendulum swings; every extreme condition is offset by its opposite, and we learn to appreciate the gifts . . . of the bad times as well as the periods of rest.
On occasion we’ll discover that our course in life has changed direction. We need not be alarmed. Step Three has promised that we are in caring hands. Our every concern, every detail of our lives will be taken care of, in the right way, at the right time.
We can develop gratitude for all conditions, good or bad. Each has its necessary place in our development as healthy, happy women. We need the sorrows along with the joys if we are to gain new insights. Our failures keep us humble; they remind us of our need for the care and guidance of others. And for every hope dashed, we can remember, one will be realized.
Life is a process. I will accept the variations with gratitude. Each, in its own way, blesses me.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

Some of you are thinking: “Yes, what you tell is true, but it doesn’t fully apply. We admit we have some of these symptoms, but we have not gone to the extremes you fellows did, nor are we likely to, for we understand ourselves so well after what you have told us that such things cannot happen again. We have not lost everything in life through drinking and we certainly do not intend to. Thanks for the information.”

pp. 38-39

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

A DRUNK, LIKE YOU – The more he listened at meetings, the more he came to know about his own drinking history.
That was a big step for me; I finally began to separate the religious aspect of my life from A.A.’s spiritual program.  Now the big difference to me is that religion is the ritual, and we all differ there, and spirituality is the way we feel about what we do.  It’s about my personal contact with my personal Higher Power, as I understand Him.

p. 406

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Ten – “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”

The lesson to be learned from the Washingtonians was not overlooked by Alcoholics Anonymous. As we surveyed the wreck of that movement, early A.A. members resolved to keep our Society out of public controversy. Thus was laid the cornerstone for Tradition Ten: “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”

pp. 178-179

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

Love should never be a conditional emotion. It should be a gift where
you expect nothing in return.
–unknown

Take the program seriously, not yourself.
–unknown

We all have within us the capacity to be happy and to suffer. It all
depends on which one our mind chooses to feed.
–unknown

Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be
changed until it is faced.”
–James Baldwin

“There is no greater treasure than the respect and love of a true
friend.”
–Anonymous

“Until you make peace with who you are, you’ll never be content with
what you have.”
–unknown

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

IDEALS

“Every dogma has its day, but
ideals are eternal.”
–Israel Zangwill

For too long I lived in a box of rules and dogma. Life had to have
definable answers and everything needed to be structured. Then the
answers didn’t seem to work. Nobody seemed interested in the
answers I was giving. The world had moved on!

I realized that life had to be lived, not simply talked about. Having the
answers to questions that nobody was asking (including myself)
seemed a waste of time. I was uncomfortable. I was living in the past.

Spirituality is reality. It is okay to benefit from a tradition and then
move on. I was not disloyal or a traitor because I had changed my
mind. God and truth live in a changing world and if we are to grow, our
perception of ourselves and life must change. Today I can accept this.

Give me the willingness to change in my life.

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

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you
present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this
world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you
may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of
God.
Romans 12:1-2

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will
give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28

“I will save you; you will not fall by the sword but will escape with
your life, because you trust in me, declares the LORD.”
Jeremiah 39:18

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who
loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels
nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,
neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able
to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:37-39


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

Daily Inspiration

Seek God’s guidance, but know that the responsibility to act on it is yours. Lord, may I not be lazy because I have prayed and expect You to do everything for me.

It is a bigger mistake to fear making a mistake than to actually make one. Lord, give me the confidence to live a full life and the ability to try again if I stumble.

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

NA Just For Today

Old Dreams Needn’t Die

“Lost dreams awaken and new possibilities arise.”
Basic Text, p. 88

Most of us had dreams when we were young. Whether we dreamed of a dynamic career, a large and loving family, or travels abroad, our dreams died when our addiction took hold. Anything we ever wanted for ourselves was cast away in our pursuit of drugs. Our dreams didn’t go beyond the next drug and the euphoria we hoped it would bring.

Now in recovery, we find a reason to hope that our lost dreams could still come true. No matter how old we are, how much our addiction has taken from us, or how unlikely it may seem, our freedom from active addiction gives us the freedom to pursue our ambitions. We may discover that we’re very talented at something, or find a hobby we love, or learn that continuing our education can bring remarkable rewards.

We used to put most of our energy into spinning excuses and rationalizations for our failures. Today, we go forward and make use of the many opportunities life presents to us. We may be amazed at what we’re capable of. With our foundation of recovery, success, fulfillment, and satisfaction are within our reach at last.

Just for today: Starting today, I’ll do whatever I can to realize my dreams.

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

You are reading from the book  Today’s Gift.
We never know how high we are ‘Til we are called to rise; And then, if we are true to plan, Our statures touch the skies.
–Emily Dickinson
We are all capable of far more than we think we are. It’s in the tough times, however, that we discover the depths of our strength, and it’s then that we know that some power has enabled us to do what we thought we could not. Whatever we call that power, it is there for us when we need it.
To do what seems impossible, all we need to do is ask for the help we think we need. And we can look within, too, and summon our whole selves to the task at hand. With all that going for us, how can we fail? And when the tough work is over, we’ll look back and know we’ve grown from the experience. And yes, our statures will have touched the skies.
When I am faced with a tough task, how do I respond?

You are reading from the book  Touchstones.
I believe our concept of romantic love is irrational, impossible to fulfill, and the cause of many broken homes. No human being can maintain that rarified atmosphere of “true love.”  –Rita Mae Brown
What the popular media teach us about marriage and love is poor preparation for the real thing. When we enter a relationship we may be filled with a feeling of magic and excitement of new love. But that is not a good basis for a lifelong commitment. Love at first sight is no reason for marriage. Many of us, upon meeting difficulties in our relationships, said to ourselves, “Maybe it wasn’t true love after all, because now I don’t feel in love with my mate anymore.”
Honesty and learning how to resolve difficulties provide a solid foundation for durable love. Some relationships do not survive the honesty of recovery. Sometimes the development of honest love only begins with recovery. The love that endures, the love of real intimacy, comes when we know the real person. Loyalty to our loved ones may deepen as we deal more and more with reality.
As I grow in this program, married or single, I become more able to have an enduring love.

You are reading from the book  Each Day a New Beginning.
Many of us achieve only the semblance of communication with others; what we say is often not contingent on what the other has just said, and neither of us is aware that we are not communicating.  –Desy Safn-Gerard
When we don’t listen fully to each other, when we don’t revere the Spirit within others that’s trying to talk to us, we destroy the connection that wants to be made between our Spirits. Our inner selves have messages to give and messages to receive for the good of all. Our ego selves often keep us from hearing the very words that would unravel a problem in our lives.
How hard it is, how often, to be still and to fully listen to the words, rather than the person. How much more familiar it is to filter the message with our own ongoing inner dialogue–our own ongoing continual assessment of another’s personhood at the very time our higher power is trying to reach us through them.
There really are no wasted words. Messages are everywhere. We can learn to listen.
I will hear just what I need to hear today. I will open myself fully to the words.

You are reading from the book  The Language of Letting Go.
Panic
Few situations – no matter how greatly they appear to demand it – can be bettered by us going berserk.  –Codependent No More
Don’t panic!
If a swimmer was crossing a great lake, then suddenly focused too heavily on the distance remaining, he might start to flounder and go under–not because he couldn’t swim, but because he became overwhelmed by panic.
Panic, not the task, is the enemy.
Many of us have moments when we feel crowded and overwhelmed. We have times when we feel like we cannot possibly accomplish all that needs to be done.
We may be facing a task at work, an improvement in ourselves, or change in our family life.
For a moment, it is helpful to look forward and envision the project. It is normal, when we look ahead at what need to be done, to have moments of panic. Feel the fear, then let it go. Take our eyes off the future and the enormity of the task. If we have envisioned the goal, it will be ours. We do not have to do everything today, or at once.
Focus on today. Focus on the belief that all is well. All we need to do to reach our goal is to focus on what presents itself naturally, and in an orderly way, to us today. We shall be empowered to accomplish, peacefully, what we need to get where we want to be tomorrow.
Panic will stop this process. Trust and guided action will further it. Breathe deeply. Get peaceful. Trust. Act as guided, today.
We can get back on track by treading water until we regain our composure. Once we feel peaceful, we can begin swimming again, with confidence. Keep the focus simple, on one stroke, one movement at a time. If we can make one movement, we have progressed. If we get tired, we can float – but only if we are relaxed. Before we know it, we shall reach the shore.
Today, I will believe that all is well. I am being led, but I shall only be led one day at a time. I will focus my energy on living this day to the best of my ability. If panic arises, I will stop all activity and deal with panic as a separate issue.

I am discovering who I am with joy today!  –Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart

Believe in Life, Not Loss

Believing in life means we can trust– trust in the nature and rhythm of life with all its constant change. We believe in transformation, change, and purpose.

Believing in life means we’re not in bondage to the past. No matter what we’ve done, what decisions we’ve made, we set ourselves free to trust ourselves now. We trust what we feel, we trust what we know, we trust what we think we need to do next. Belieivng in life means we trust that the lessons we’re learning are real. They’re valuable and Divinely ordained– even when learning a lesson means feeling pain.

Believing in loss means we focus on the grief, on the pain, on the tragedy, on the inescapable reality of certain events. Belieivng in loss means we get fixated on what was taken from us, what we did wrong. We judge ourselves and our lives harshly. Believing in loss often means we stay stuck. We’re afraid to let go of a person, place, or thing that’s no longer right for us because we’re afraid to lose anything more.

Do you believe in loss? Or do you believe in life?

Believing in life means it’s okay to let go. We can trust where we’ve been. We trust where we’re going. And we’re right where we need to be now. Believe in life.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

Manifest your life

Today, try this activity. Go down to the local harware store and buy a patio stone. Get one of the nice flat round ones, one that will fit into your briefcase or backpack. Take that patio stone home and look at it. Then take out a marker and start to think about one of your goals that you wrote on the list at the start of the year. Think about all that is keeping you from reaching that goal– all your fears, excuses, and prerequisites. Each time you think of a reason why you are not walking down that path, write it on the stone in marker. Keep writing until you can’t think of another reason.

Then carry the stone with you. You did write down a fear of looking ridiculous, didn’t you? Carry the stone to dinner– hold it on your lap while you eat. Hold it while you watch TV, while you go to the bathroom, in the shower, and even to bed this evening. Tomorrow, spend the day with your stone. Let it be a reminder of both your dream and your fear. Feel how rough, heavy, cumbersome it is. Makes it kind of difficult to get anything done, doesn’t it? Now, at the end of the day, sit down again with your stone. Look at all of your excuses written there. Make a conscious decision to let them go. Put down the stone– put it right next to the front door. Feel how much lighter your step is, how much easier it is to do things. Now, as you leave for your day each morning, look at the stone sitting there on the step– heavy, rough, cumbersome– and leave it there. Let life and the elements wear your fears away.

You have dreams, hopes, ambitions. All of your fears and excuses are stones, which fill your hands and weigh you down. Leave them behind. Start to manifest your dreams in your life.

God, help me let go of everything that is blocking me from fully and joyfully living my life today.

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

Generosity of Spirit
Being Happy for Others

We all want to be the kind of people who are happy for others when they experience success or a cause for celebration in their lives, but it isn’t always easy. Sometimes powerful, dark feelings come up at times when decorum dictates that we should be feeling the opposite. Instead of reaching out and celebrating for our loved one, we may feel the rising up of our own pain. This pain may arise because we feel jealous of our friend for having something we don’t have. It may arise because our friend’s success will lead to us losing them in some way. And it may arise for reasons we don’t yet understand. The important thing is not to brush it under the rug, but to take it seriously and look at it; suppressing it will only make it worse. At the same time, we need to be sure to find a way to congratulate our friends and celebrate their successes as if they were our own.

The struggle with being happy for others presents itself early in life. If a child wants a toy and another child has it, the child will try to get it or will break down in tears. Those primal feelings are still present in most of us, and we have to acknowledge them when they arise. At the same time, it is when we care enough for someone to let go of what we want for ourselves that we grow as people. It can be a difficult dance to find ourselves suspended between wanting the toy and throwing a party for our friend who got the toy. Yet, it is in throwing the party that we share in the joy—and, to some extent, the toy—rather than cutting ourselves out of it.

Extending ourselves to celebrate the happiness of others requires a generosity of spirit that we sometimes find only in the process of doing it. So when your best friend moves to Spain with the person you had a crush on, tend to your broken heart but throw them a going away party too. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Some of us, new in The Program, couldn’t resist telling anyone who would listen just how “terrible” we were. Just as we often exaggerated our mdest accomplishments by pride, so we exaggerated our defects through guilt. Facing about and “confessing all,” we somehow considered the widespread exposure of our sins to be true humility, considering it a great spiritual asset. Only as we grew in The Program did we realize that our theatrics and storytelling were merely forms of exhibitionism. And with that realization came the beginning of a certain amount of humility. Am I starting to become aware that I’m not so important after all?

Today I Pray

May I learn that there is a chasm of difference between real humility and the dramatic self-put-down. May I be confronted if I unconsciously demand center-stage to out-do and “out-drunk” others with my “adventrue” stories. May I be cautious that the accounts of my addictive misdeeds do not take on the epic grandeur of heroic exploits.

Today I Will Remember

I will not star in my own drunkologue (or junkologue).

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One More Day

No man is an island, entire of itself.
John Donne

It’s sometimes easy to develop a sense of aloneness. During our emotional an physical lows, we might sadly or bitterly isolate from other people because we feel so different from them. Our lives seem so much more complicated than theirs.

Usually, though, we do not choose to be completely independent of others. As we go through the motions of our day, our lives are touched by many people. They are part of the normal rhythm and flow of our experience.

And we are part of theirs. In hundreds of ways, we all support and nurture each other. We share their joys and pains because we care, because we’re human.

When I am in need, caring people surround me. I will make sure that I am available for others when they need me too.

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Food For Thought

Greedy Thinking, Greedy Eating

Contentment comes from being satisfied with what we have. Since “bread” is a symbol for material things, it is easy to use food as a substitute for the money and possessions we may avidly desire. Overeating can be a form of compensation for the enticing worldly wealth, which seems so attractive, yet is out of our grasp.

When we desire abstinence more than we desire material things, we are able to maintain it. When we allow material cares and concerns to obscure our spiritual goals, then our abstinence is in danger! Each of us is confronted with the choice of striving to satisfy physical cravings or working toward spiritual ideals. We cannot serve two masters.

We may have thought that we could get rid of our greed for food and continue to indulge our greed for other material things. Our Higher Power does not work that way. He demands nothing less than complete allegiance.

May I serve You without reservations.

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One Day At A Time

PROMISES
“Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.”
Oscar Wilde

Before program, I would dwell in my mistakes. Experience, feh! I was all about self-abuse and feeling rotten about mistakes. My mistakes would certainly lead to overeating, since there was no other option in my mind. Even with years of therapy – with the same therapist – I still used eating as a soothing tool for those times when the mistake was enough to send me into a tailspin. Time and time again people would tell me I was too hard on myself, or that I should just relax and smile. Another mistake for me to internalize — I couldn’t even make a mistake right. I wonder now if I sometimes looked for things to call mistakes so I’d have a reason to feel as rotten as I did most of the time. Having been abused as a child wasn’t enough, blaming other people for my pain never satiated me.

In my first OA meeting, I heard the promises and I started to feel something melt away. Some of the shame and self-pity evaporated into the room of men and women who also felt this lack of satisfaction. A room of men and women loved me because I struggled with the same addictive behaviors. I don’t think I’d ever been loved for my weakness, and there is something powerful in that. When I make a mistake, I can think about my friends in OA who tell me that there is no wrong way, just another way.

One day at a time…
I can know that there are people who love me because I share in their weakness, and I can read the promises to realize that recovery is possible.
~ AJ

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Perhaps you have a husband who is at large, but who should be committed. Some men cannot or will not get over alcoholism. When they become too dangerous, we think the kind thing is to lock them up, but of course a good doctor should always be consulted. The wives and children of such men suffer horribly, but not more than the men themselves.

But sometimes you must start life anew. We know women who have done it. If such women adopt a spiritual way of life their road will be smoother. – Pg. 114 – To Wives

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

KISS. Keep It Simple Stupid. We are not suggesting we are stupid, but our disease is. It will do anything it can to keep us using even though it ultimately means death of itself along with the body. But through following a few SIMPLE suggestions we can release ourselves from the stupidity.

May I understand that my stupid disease will argue and complicate simple procedures so it can gain a foothold in the confusion it creates. KISS off addiction.

Freeing Me

Today, I understand that in forgiving someone else I free myself. I held back on forgiveness because it seemed too kind an act for those who had hurt me. Why should I make them feel good? Why should I let them off the hook? I understand now that forgiving someone else and letting go – when I am truly ready – dissolves the resentment that is stored within me. I will not jump to forgiveness too quickly, forcing myself to do what I am not sincerely able to do. I will not forgive because it is the right thing to do. I will fully feel and acknowledge all that blocks me, and I will give myself the time I need to do this. When I do forgive, it will be to set myself free, to let go of the past and move on.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

People in our fellowships who think they are too big to do little things are perhaps too little to be asked to do big things.

I remember where I came from.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You can’t be fired for on-the-job sobriety.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote 

I am discovering who I am with joy today!

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

When I was new, I was sure that what was wrong with me was that I was not loved enough. A lot of people tried but what I didn’t know about me, is that there isn’t enough. I’m the Black Hole of Lovedom. My little sponsor knew that my problem was I never loved enough. And he knew that I didn’t know how to start to love. So he made me do loving things; go pick up members, stand at the door and greet everybody: ‘Hi there, I’m Cliff. What’s your name – (under breath) like I really give a …’ And somewhere along the way I learned to love newcomers. – Cliff R.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 9

Responsibility
We found that all progress, material or spiritual,
consisted of finding out what our responsibilities actually were
and then proceeding to do something about them. These activities began to pay off.
We found that we didn’t always have to be driven by our own discomforts as, more willingly,
we picked up the burdens of living and growing.
– The Language of the Heart, p. 329

Thought to Ponder . . .
I am responsible for the effort — not the outcome.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A G O = Another Growth Opportunity.

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

Wants or Needs?
“We are taught to differentiate between our wants
(which are never satisfied)
and our needs (which are always provided for).
We cast off the burdens of the past
and the anxieties of the future,
as we begin to live in the present, one day at a time.
We are granted
‘the serenity to accept the things we cannot change’
– and thus lose our quickness to anger
and our sensitivity to criticism.”
1976 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 560

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

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

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

Doubt
>From “We Agnostics”:
“Its main object is to enable you to find a Power greater than yourself which will solve your problem. That means we
have written a book which we believe to be spiritual as well as moral. And it means, of course, that we are going to talk
about God. Here difficulty arises with agnostics. Many times we talk to a new man and watch his hope rise as we
discuss his alcoholic problems and explain our fellowship. But his face falls when we speak of spiritual matters,
especially when we mention God, for we have re-opened a subject which our man thought he had neatly evaded or
entirely ignored. “We know how he feels. We have shared his honest doubt and prejudice.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 44

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

“I can change my viewpoint anytime I want to. I can look at things from down, by lying back and waiting for someone to
rescue me. Or I can stand tall and look at the way things are as the way they’re meant to be.”
York Harbor, Maine, September 1994
“Attitude Adjustment,”
AA Grapevine

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

“We found that as soon as we were able to lay aside prejudice and
express even a willingness to believe in a Power greater than
ourselves, we commenced to get results, even though it was impossible
for any of us to fully define or comprehend that Power, which is God.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 46~

“Let no alcoholic say he cannot recover unless he has his family
back. This just isn’t so. In some cases the wife will never come
back for one reason or another. Remind the prospect that his
recovery is not dependent upon people. It is dependent upon his
relationship with God. We have seen men get well whose families have
not returned at all. We have seen others slip when the family came
back too soon.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 99~

We had lacked the perspective to see that character-building and spiritual values had to come first, and that material
satisfactions were not the purpose of living.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 71

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We alcoholics are the biggest rationalizers in the world. Fortified with the excuse that we are doing great things for A.A.,
we can, through broken anonymity, resume our old and disastrous pursuit of personal power and prestige, public
honors, and money–the same implacable urges that, when frustrated, once caused us to drink.
Dr. Bob was essentially a far more humble person than I, and anonymity came rather easily to him. When it was sure
that he was mortally afflicted, some of his friends suggested that there should be a monument erected in honor of him
and his wife, Anne–befitting a founder and his lady. Telling me about this, Dr. Bob grinned broadly and said, ‘God bless
’em. They mean well. But let’s you and me get buried just like other folks.’
In the Akron cemetery where Dr. Bob and Anne lie, the simple stone says not a word about A.A. This final example of
self-effacement is of more permanent worth to A.A. than any amount of public attention or any great monument.

Prayer For The Day: Lord our God, may I learn to treat others generously, with respect, and with care and understanding, that we may all bring out the best in one another. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 8th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 8th

Daily Reflections

OPENING UP TO CHANGE

Self-searching is the means by which we bring new vision, action, and
grace to bear upon the dark and negative side of our natures. With it
comes the development of that kind of humility that makes it possible
for us to receive God’s help. . . . we find that bit by bit we can discard
the old life — the one that did not work — for a new life that can and
does work under any conditions whatever.
AS BILL SEES IT, pp. 10, 8

I have been given a daily reprieve contingent upon my spiritual
condition, provided I seek progress, not perfection. To become ready
for change, I practice willingness, opening myself to possibilities of
change. If I realize there are defects that hinder my usefulness in
A.A. and toward others, I become ready by meditating and receiving
direction. “Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas and the
result was nil until we let go absolutely” (Alcoholics Anonymous, p.
58). To let go and let God, I need only surrender my old ways to Him;
I no longer fight nor do I try to control, but simply believe that, with God’s
help, I am changed and affirming this belief makes me ready. I empty
myself to be full of awareness, light, and love, and I am ready to face
each day with hope.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic. We always get worse, never
better. We are never cured. Our alcoholism can only be arrested. No
matter how long we have been sober, if we try liquor again, we’re as
bad or worse than we ever were. There is no exception to this rule in
the whole history of A.A. We can never recapture the good times of
the past. They are gone forever. Will I try to recapture them?

Meditation For The Day

Your life has been given to you mainly for the purpose of training your
soul. This life we live is not so much for the body as for the soul. We
often choose the way of life that best suits the body, not the way that
best suits the soul. God wants you to choose what suits the soul as well
as the body. Accept this belief and a wonderful molding of character is
the result. Reject it and God’s purpose for your life is frustrated, and
your spiritual progress is delayed. Your soul is being trained by the
good you choose. Thus the purpose of your life is being accomplished.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may choose what is good for my soul. I pray that I may
realize God’s purpose for my life.

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As Bill Sees It

Between the Extremes, p. 159

“The real question is whether we can learn anything from our experiences upon which we
may grow and help others to grow in the likeness and image of God.

“We know that if we rebel against doing that which is reasonably possible for us, then we
will be penalized. And we will be equally penalized if we presume in ourselves a
perfection that simply is not there.

“Apparently, the course of relative humility and progress will have to lie somewhere
between these extremes. In our slow progress away from rebellion, true perfection is
doubtless several millennia away.”

Letter, 1959

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Walk in Dry Places

Quality Of Sobriety
Self-Improvement
There is such a thing as length—or quantity—of sobriety, and there is also quality.  It’s generally accepted that sobriety ought to be something more than the single process of staying free from alcohol or drugs.
We’re on shaky ground, however, when we begin passing judgment on another person’s quality of sobriety.  We only have responsibility for the quality of our own sobriety, and it is not for us to decide how another should think or live.
We may not be able to avoid noticing others’ actions that we consider to be wrong, but we can keep our thoughts and opinions to ourselves.  If we do wish to voice any opinions, it should be in terms of our own inventory—not the other person’s.
Some old-timers in Twelve Step programs develop crankiness that borders on resentment.  Out of this crankiness come complaints about the way newcomers work the program.  Our only responsibility is to treat these complaints with good humor and to avoid becoming cranky ourselves.  Recovery alcoholics must continue to have the freedom to select any quality of sobriety they choose.
Today I’ll strive for a high-quality sobriety that includes cheerfulness, confidence, patience, and good humor.  I won’t be responsible for monitoring another’s sobriety.

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Keep It Simple

It’s not enough to talk to plants, you also have to listen.—David Bergman
Sometimes, we find ourselves doing all the talking. When this happens, we need to stop, think, and listen.
When we do all the talking, we’re trying to control what happens. But when we listen, we get better results. No one has to be in control. What a relief!
And we’re learning to listen better every day. It’s great—the care, love, and help we find—just by listening.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me learn the “give-and-take” of talking and listening.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll focus on listening, not only to other people but to my Higher Power’s voice.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The process of living, for each of us, is pretty similar. For every gain there is a setback. For every success, a failure. For every moment of joy, a time of sadness. For every hope realized, one is dashed.  –Sue Atchley Ebaugh
The balance of events in our lives is much like the balance of nature. The pendulum swings; every extreme condition is offset by its opposite, and we learn to appreciate the gifts . . . of the bad times as well as the periods of rest.
On occasion we’ll discover that our course in life has changed direction. We need not be alarmed. Step Three has promised that we are in caring hands. Our every concern, every detail of our lives will be taken care of, in the right way, at the right time.
We can develop gratitude for all conditions, good or bad. Each has its necessary place in our development as healthy, happy women. We need the sorrows along with the joys if we are to gain new insights. Our failures keep us humble; they remind us of our need for the care and guidance of others. And for every hope dashed, we can remember, one will be realized.
Life is a process. I will accept the variations with gratitude. Each, in its own way, blesses me.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

You may think our illustration is too ridiculous. But is it? We, who have been through the wringer, have to admit if we substituted alcoholism for jay-walking, the illustration would fit exactly. However intelligent we may have been in other respects, where alcohol has been involved, we have been strangely insane. It’s strong language—but isn’t it true?

p. 38

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

A DRUNK, LIKE YOU – The more he listened at meetings, the more he came to know about his own drinking history.
The last big hurdle was closing the meeting with the Lord’s Prayer.  As a Jew, I was uncomfortable with it and decided to talk to my sponsor about it.  So I said, “The Lord’s Prayer bothers me.”  Oh,” he said, “what’s the problem?”  “Well, I’m Jewish and it’s not a Jewish prayer.”  “Well, then,” he said “say it in Jewish.”  I said, “It would still be the Lord’s Prayer.”  “Right,” he said.  “Then say something else that you like.  Your Higher Power, whatever you call it, is helping you, and you need to say thank you.”

p. 406

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Ten – “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”

The Washingtonian Society, a movement among alcoholics which started in Baltimore a century ago, almost discovered the answer to alcoholism. At first, the society was composed entirely of alcoholics trying to help one another. The early members foresaw that they should dedicate themselves to this sole aim. In many respects, the Washingtonians were akin to A.A. of today. Their membership passed the hundred thousand mark. Had they been left to themselves, and had they stuck to their one goal, they might have found the rest of the answer. But this didn’t happen. Instead, the Washingtonians permitted politicians and reformers, both alcoholic and nonalcoholic, to use the society for their own purposes. Abolition of slavery, for example, was a stormy political issue then. Soon, Washingtonian speakers violently and publicly took sides on this question. Maybe the society could have survived the abolition controversy, but it didn’t have a chance from the moment it determined to reform America’s drinking habits. When the Washingtonians became temperance crusaders, within a very few years they had completely lost their effectiveness in helping alcoholics.

p. 178

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“Love does not measure; it just gives.”
–Mother Teresa

We do not let things change us, we change things.
–Joyce Meyer

Well done is better than well said.
–Benjamin Franklin

“Worry is rehearsing fear about a made-up, fabricated event in the
future that most of the time never happens.”
–Jeff Alexander

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

“When a man points a finger at someone else, he should remember
that four of his fingers are pointing at himself.”
–Louis Nizer

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

DOUBT

“I respect faith but doubt is what
gets you an education.”
–Wilson Mizner

It is okay to question things. It is okay to say that I do not agree.
Today I have the freedom to doubt opinions and attitudes.

In my childhood I was never allowed to do this. I had to accept the
Bible because the preacher said it was God’s word. I had to accept
that only Christians went to Heaven because Grandma said so! I had
to believe that Jews and Blacks were “inferior” because family and
friends said so – and to doubt them was to be different. I was
dependent upon an attitude towards life that I was uncomfortable
with. It brought me pain, anger, loneliness and guilt in later life.

Then I learned that growth comes to those who are prepared to doubt
or disagree with an existing system. God is to be found in the
questions. Spirituality is discovered in the shades of life.

O God, part of Your glory and splendor is Your unending mystery.

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

My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish
His work.
John 4:34

My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
James 1:19-20


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Daily Inspiration

Little acts of kindness throughout the day will make your life so much better and bring a little sunshine to others as well. Lord, may I make a habit of being gentle and loving with those around me.

Everything we need to deal with life’s problems lies within us. Our trials are tests to see if we can discover the solution. Lord, I call out Your name when I face my difficulties and together we will overcome them.

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NA Just For Today

The Only Requirement

“This program offers hope. All you have to bring with you is the desire to stop using and the willingness to try this new way of life.”
IP No. 16, “For the Newcomer”

From time to time we wonder if we’re “doing it right” in Narcotics Anonymous. Are we attending enough meetings? Are we using our sponsor, or working the steps, or speaking, or reading, or living the “right” way? We value the fellowship of recovering addicts – we don’t know what we’d do without it. What if the way we’re practicing our program is “wrong?” Does that make us “bad” NA members?

We can settle our insecurities by reviewing our Third Tradition, which assures us that “the only requirement for membership is a desire to stop using.” There aren’t any rules that say we’ve got to attend this many meetings or these particular meetings, or work the “steps” this way at this pace, or live our lives to suit these people in order to remain NA members in good standing.

It’s true that, if we want the kind of recovery we see in members we respect, well want to practice the kind of program that’s made their recovery possible. But NA is a fellowship of freedom; we work the program the best way for us, not for someone else. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop using.

Just for today: I will look at the program I’m working in light of my own recovery. I will practice that program to the best of my ability.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Caring is everything; nothing matters but caring. –Baron Friedrich Von Hugel
The caring we receive from someone we love when we’re sick can heal us just as much as the medicine we take. For children, Mom is usually the one who makes sure we get enough rest by having us stay in bed. By bringing us juice and aspirins she helps us keep our fevers down. She also lifts our spirits when she tells us a funny story.
Perhaps the next time a loved one is sick we can do the special and caring things. We can bring a favorite magazine or a cold glass of water, tell a joke, or just sit and be there for a while. Whether the sick person is a parent or a brother or sister, when we help care for another, we complete a circle of caring begun by a parent so long ago.
Does someone need my care today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Come, Love! Sing On! Let me hear you sing this song – sing for joy and laugh, for I the creator am truly subject to all creatures. –Mechtild of Magdeburg
Recovery without joy and song and playfulness is incomplete. The beauty of music uplifts our spirits and shows us the face of our Creator. For many men, music is their means of meditation and conscious contact with their Higher Power. When we experience the creativity of a musical piece, as it speaks to us, we take a step beyond the practical world, into the profound level of creation.
Some people say, “How can you celebrate when there is so much suffering, so much to grieve about?” We have grieved; we continue to grieve alongside our joy. But we need not pour all our energies into the painful and sad. Life is also wonderful. Music and dance and the joy of good fellowship enrich our lives and strengthen us to go on.
Praise the spirit of our Creator for all that is given to us!

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The process of living, for each of us, is pretty similar. For every gain there is a setback. For every success, a failure. For every moment of joy, a time of sadness. For every hope realized, one is dashed. –Sue Atchley Ebaugh
The balance of events in our lives is much like the balance of nature. The pendulum swings; every extreme condition is offset by its opposite, and we learn to appreciate the gifts . . . of the bad times as well as the periods of rest.
On occasion we’ll discover that our course in life has changed direction. We need not be alarmed. Step Three has promised that we are in caring hands. Our every concern, every detail of our lives will be taken care of, in the right way, at the right time.
We can develop gratitude for all conditions, good or bad. Each has its necessary place in our development as healthy, happy women. We need the sorrows along with the joys if we are to gain new insights. Our failures keep us humble; they remind us of our need for the care and guidance of others. And for every hope dashed, we can remember, one will be realized.
Life is a process. I will accept the variations with gratitude. Each, in its own way, blesses me.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Fun
Have some fun – with life, with the day.
Life is not drudgery; that is an old belief. Let go of it. We are on an adventure, a journey. Events will come to pass that we cannot now fathom.
Replace heaviness and weariness of spirit with joy. Surround yourself with people and things that bring lightness of spirit.
Become sensitive to lightness of spirit.
The journey can be an exciting adventure. Let yourself enjoy it.
God, help me let go of my need to meet dysfunctional challenges in my relationships.

Today I do all the footwork I can to make my life work. I trust the results to God and know that they will be just what is good and right for me. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Be Gentle and Loving

As I drove into Utah, past Zion National Park. I began to feel the oddest sensation emanating from the earth, emanating from me. It was soft. Lovely Light. All evening, deer had been crossing my path, coming to me from out of the woods. That’s when I remembered. In the Medicine Cards, deer are the symbol for gentleness and love. The feeling coming from the ground, through the air was gentleness, kindness, and love.

The universe was reminding me of something. Iy was a place inside me, one I had discovered before, a place of gentleness and love. Somewhere along my life’s journey, with all its trials, moving about, business, and experiences, I had let the gentleness slip away. Now it was time to go there again. It was a reminder to be gentle and kind to others, be gentle and kind to myself.

Gentleness, kindness, and love are more than places to visit. They are places we can take with us wherever we go.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let go of judgements

We can’t relax when we’re being judgemental. As soon as we decide that a thing or situation is either good or bad, we place ourselves in the situation of having to do something about it. For example, if someone is good, we begin to compare ourselves to that person. Am I better or worse? What can I do to improve? If we decide that a thing is bad, then our conscience tells us that we must try to get rid of it.

Either way, we get so busy thinking about our judgements and allowing our minds to create scenarios that we cannot relax and enjoy things the way they are.

Drop your judgemental mind today and relax. If blessings or good people have come into your life, let them be. You do not have to be better or worse than they are.

If a thing is damaging or hurtful to you, you will know that and you can deal with it when the time comes.

Be aware of the people and things in your life. Relax and enjoy them without passing judgement on them.

God, help me learn to enjoy the people and experiences in my life.

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Sitting with Our Sadness
The Heart of Humanity by Madisyn Taylor

Sitting with our sadness takes the courage to believe that we can bear the pain and we will come out the other side.

The last thing most of us want to hear or think about when we are dealing with profound feelings of sadness is that deep learning can be found in this place. In the midst of our pain, we often feel picked on by life, or overwhelmed by the enormity of some loss, or simply too exhausted to try and examine the situation. We may feel far too disappointed and angry to look for anything resembling a bright side to our suffering. Still, somewhere in our hearts, we know that we will eventually emerge from the depths into the light of greater awareness. Remembering this truth, no matter how elusive it seems, can help.

The other thing we often would rather not hear when we are dealing with intense sadness is that the only way out of it is through it. Sitting with our sadness takes the courage to believe that we can bear the pain and the faith that we will come out the other side. With courage, we can allow ourselves to cycle through the grieving process with full inner permission to experience it. This is a powerful teaching that sadness has to offer us—the ability to surrender and the acceptance of change go hand in hand.

Another teaching of sadness is compassion for others who are in pain, because it is only in feeling our own pain that we can really understand and allow for someone else’s. Sadness is something we all go through, and we all learn from it and are deepened by its presence in our lives. While our own individual experiences of sadness carry with them unique lessons, the implications of what we learn are universal. The wisdom we gain from going through the process of feeling loss, heartbreak, or deep disappointment gives us access to the heart of humanity. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

A friend in The Program taught me to look at excessive guilt in an entirely new way, suggesting that guilt was nothing but a sore of reverse pride. A decent regret for what has happened is fine, he said. But guilt, no. I’ve since learned that condemning ourselves for mistakes we’ve made is just as bad as condemning others for theirs. We’re not really equipped to make judgments, not even of ourselves. Do I still sometimes “beat myself to death” when I appear to be failing?

Today I Pray

May I be wary of keeping my guilty role alive long after I should have left it behind. May I know the difference between regret and guilt. May I recognize that long-term guilt may infer an exaggerated idea of my own importance, as well as present self-righteousness. May God alone be my judge.

Today I Will Remember

Guilt may be pride in reverse.

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One More Day

Sometimes what we think is so impossible turns out to be possible after all.
K. O’Brien

The pure joy of imagination is that it holds no bounds. Even if we are tethered by poor health we can still believe there are better days ahead. And in truth, we can find worthwhile ways to spend our precious time and energy if we wish.

Time spent lost in thought is not wasted, for these precious moments let us remember wonderful times gone by and allow us to rehearse our role in the future. We should imagine ourselves as proud and fully capable. This may, of course, not be true, but the more we try to the better we will be able to present ourselves in public. The easier it is for us to be in public, the more often we will go out.

I am not wasting time when I daydream, for my dreams help me accept the changes in my life and allow me to practice for the future.

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Food For Thought

Trick or Treat

Our devious minds have a way of enticing us with visions of sugar plum “goodies” which can trick us into forgetting that we are compulsive overeaters. What may once have been a treat is now, for us, poison. The so-called treat can trick us into taking the first compulsive bite, which we know is always our downfall.

We need to change our thinking so that we no longer consider refined sugars and starches and former binge foods to be treats. Eating them has caused us great unhappiness in the past, and we will not be deluded into thinking that another time will be different.

Through the OA program, we are gaining the self-knowledge which arms us against the assaults of temptation. Our enemy is clever. We need the protection of our Higher Power and the strength that comes from working the Twelve Steps.

Protect me, Lord.

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One Day At A Time

TOGETHERNESS
“The Praying Hands – let them be your reminder,
if you need one, that no one ever makes it alone.”
Anonymous

“I don’t need a sponsor; God and I walk alone.”

“Why do I need to go to a meeting tonight? I’ll be OK; I’ve got other things I need to be doing.”

“I can’t sponsor, I haven’t worked enough of the Steps yet, and besides, I haven’t got time; it takes all my time to do MY program.”

When my thoughts drift in these directions, I am reminded of an old picture my grandfather had of “The Praying Hands” and of the story of two brothers, Albrecht and Albert Durer, both gifted in art.

The Durer family was poor and only one brother could go to art school, so they tossed a coin; Albrecht went to art school while Albert worked hard to pay his brother’s tuition at the Academy in Nuremburg.

After a few years, the artist, Albrecht, said to his brother Albert, “I can afford for you to go to art school now, so I will finance YOUR education.” But Albert, who had worked so hard in the dangerous mines, looked down at his work-worn, arthritic hands which had been smashed numerous times, and knew it was too late for him. He would never be an artist. So Albrecht painted his brother’s hands and they are the hands we now see in copies of the painting … two hands lifted up towards a Power Greater.

I know that I, too, have my Higher Power waiting to help me if only I seek the help I need. I am reminded of the friends I have found in the fellowship. I remember how it feels to hold the hand of a shaky newcomer at the end of their first meeting, or the hand of my sponsor who reaches out to give me comfort when I share a personal hurt.

One Day at a Time . . .
Alone I have proved again and again that I am defenseless over my disease, but together – TOGETHER – with my Higher Power and all of my fellows, I have a Power and Strength I never believed possible.
~ Marlene

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We will be more reconciled to discussing ourselves with another person when we see good reasons why we should do so. The best reason first: If we skip this vital step, we may not overcome drinking. Time after time newcomers have tried to keep to themselves certain facts about their lives. Trying to avoid this humbling experience, they have turned to easier methods. Almost invariably they got drunk. – Pgs. 72-73 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The worst form of blindness is emotional blindness. We say ‘love is blind’ but we must recognize that ‘hate is blind’, ‘fear is blind’, and ‘anger is blind’ as well. Intense emotions obscure our sight and in this first month, our emotions run amuck. We must accept this and use our program, treatment center, counselor, sponsor, and meetings as our ‘seeing eye dog.’

My Spiritual Source helps me recognize that my emotions are more intense now then usual. I may not be seeing life as clearly as I will in the future.

Our Own Good

Today, I accept that I do not always know what is best for me. There are times when I am completely confused about what to do for myself and for those around me, because I can’t see how my own issues are surfacing and coloring my present. These are the days when I need to pray and to understand that my prayers are heard. I never whisper to God that I am not heard. Prayer is my medium for change and growth. It is with me all the time, and there is no moment when I can’t elevate my consciousness and conscious contact through it. It is my way of talking to my higher self and turning over my lower self to the loving, compassionate care of a Higher Power.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Progress, not perfection– No matter how long you have been in recovery, no matter how long you have worked the steps, you will never raise above the level of human being.

I claim spiritual progress today, not spiritual perfection.

Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Take the First Step, not the Thirst Step

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I do all the footwork I can to make my life work. I trust the results to God and know that they will be just what is good and right for me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Robert Louis Stevenson nailed alcoholism with ‘Dr. Jekell and Mr. Hyde’. He was either an alcoholic or he did very extensive research. Trip S.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 8

Release From Fear
The practice of AA’s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions in our personal lives
also brought incredible releases from fear of every description,
despite the wide prevalence of formidable personal problems.
When fear did persist, we knew it for what it was,
and under God’s grace we became able to handle it.
– The Language of the Heart, p. 268

Thought to Ponder . . .
A fear faced is a fear erased.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
F E A R = Fear Expressed Allows Relief.

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

Fellowship
“We are average Americans.
All sections of this country and many of its occupations
are represented,
as well as many political, economic, social,
and religious backgrounds.
We are people who normally would not mix.
But there exists among us a fellowship,
a friendliness, and an understanding
which is indescribably wonderful …
The tremendous fact for every one of us
is that we have discovered a common solution.”
1976 AAWS, Alcholics Anonymous, p. 17

Thought to Ponder …
The Journey is the Destination.

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

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

Commitment
>From “Destinations”:
“That first step is very important, whether it is the first step of a beloved child learning to walk or the First Step, taken by
a man on his way to a new life. Looking into my little ones faces, I can see the same qualities that we need for the
Twelve Steps of A.A.: daring, to stake everything on the attempt; a sense of direction, to be followed with no swerving,
no detour; decision, to move forward without hesitation or reservation; determination, to make it all the way. Destination:
a full life, a free life, a serene life. “Albany, Australia”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 93

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

“Our resentments, anxieties and depressions were definitely caused, we claimed, by our unfortunate circumstances and by the inconsiderate behavior of other people. To our consternation, our sponsors didn’t seem impressed … They just grinned and said, ‘Why don’t we sit down and take a hard look at all of AA’s Twelve Steps? Maybe you have been missing a lot — in fact, nearly everything.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1965
“Responsibility Is Our Theme”
The Language of the Heart

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

“We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: ‘Once an
alcoholic, always an alcoholic.’ Commencing to drink after a period
of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 33

“It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on
our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a
subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is
a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 85~

We know that little good can come to any alcoholic who joins A.A. unless he has first accepted his devastating
weakness and all its consequences.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 21

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

The real question is whether we can learn anything from our experiences upon which we may grow and help others to
grow in the likeness and image of God.
We know that if we rebel against doing that which is reasonably possible for us, then we will be penalized. And we will
be equally penalized if we presume in ourselves a perfection that simply is not there.
Apparently, the course of relative humility and progress will have to lie somewhere between these extremes. In our slow
progress away from rebellion, true perfection is doubtless several millennia away.

Prayer For The Day: Lord, I pray that you may lift up the light of your countenance upon me, and give me peace; in my going out and in my coming in; in my sitting down and my rising up; in my work and in my play; in my joy and in my sorrow, in my laughter and in my tears.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 7th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 7th

Daily Reflections

LONG-TERM HOPE

Since most of us are born with an abundance of natural desires, it isn’t
strange that we often let these far exceed their intended purpose.
When they drive us blindly, or we willfully demand that they supply us
with more satisfactions or pleasures than are possible or due us, that is
the point at which we depart from the degree of perfection that God
wishes for us here on earth. That is the measure of our character
defects, or, if you wish, of our sins.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 65

This is where long-term hope is born and perspective is gained, both of
the nature of my illness and the path of my recovery. The beauty of
A.A. lies in knowing that my life, with God’s help, will improve. The
A.A. journey becomes richer, the understanding becomes truth, the
dreams become realities and today becomes forever.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Alcoholism is a progressive illness. We go through the three stages of
social drinking, trouble drinking, and merry-go-round drinking. We
land in hospitals and jails. We eventually lose our homes, our families,
and our self-respect. Yes, alcoholism is a progressive illness and there
are only three ends to it–the insane asylum, the morgue, or total
abstinence. Will I choose not to take the first drink?

Meditation For The Day

You not only can live a new life but you also can grow in grace and
power and beauty. Reach ever forward and upward after the things of
the spirit. In the animal world, the very form of an animal changes to
enable it to reach that upon which it delights to feed. Your whole
character changes as you reach upward for the things of the spirit for
beauty, for love, for honesty, for purity, and for unselfishness.
Reaching after these things of the spirit, your whole nature becomes
changed so that you can best receive and delight in the wonders of the
abundant life.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may reach forward and upward. I pray that my character
may be changed by this reaching upward for the things of the spirit
.

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As Bill Sees It

Tolerance in Practice, p. 158

“We found that the principles of tolerance and love had to be emphasized in actual
practice. We can never say (or insinuate) to anyone that he must agree to our formula or
be excommunicated. The atheist may stand up in an A.A. meeting still denying the Deity,
yet reporting how vastly he has been changed in attitude and outlook. Much experience
tells us he will presently change his mind about God, but nobody tells him he must do so.

“In order to carry the principles of inclusiveness and tolerance still further, we make no
religious requirement of anyone. All people having an alcoholic problem who wish to get
rid of it and so make a happy adjustment with the circumstances of their lives, become A.A.
members by simply associating with us. Nothing but sincerity is needed. But we do not
demand even this.

“In such an atmosphere the orthodox, the unorthodox, and the believer mix happily and
usefully together. An opportunity for spiritual growth is open to all.”

Letter, 1940

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Walk in Dry Places

Deciding outcomes
Guidance
No matter how limited our opportunities may be, we always have choices and decisions to make.  With any choice or decision, it’s only good sense to make the one that seems likely to have the best outcome.
If we’re following our program, however, we should not be dismayed when outcomes turn out to be unfavorable or take turns that disappoint us.  We can see only dimly into the future, and we have no way of knowing what will eventually come about as a result of our choices.
We do know that the meeting of the first two AA members actually came about as a result of a business disappointment. We can always find other examples of disappointing outcomes that proved to be good breaks as time passed.
This is not an attempt to rationalize bad situations, if God is in charge of our lives, we need not fear what each outcome might be.
Though I will choose and decide as sensibly as possible, I’ll not be excessively concerned about outcomes.  My long-term good is assured as I follow God’s plan in my life.  “For those who love God, all things work together for good.”


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Keep It Simple

Forgiveness is the way to true health and happiness.—Gerald Jampolsky
We can’t afford to hold grudges. We have all felt hurt by others at times. But when we stay angry at another person, it hurts us. It keeps our wounds open. It takes our energy away from healing.
We can forgive now. We know that living our program of honesty and love make us safe. We don’t have to be afraid. We don’t have to be angry. We don’t have to let old hurts stand in our way. We let them go. We empty the angers from the hearts to clear the way for love.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me forgive the people I’m still angry with. Help me see that each of those people taught me something about myself.
Action for the Day:  Am I holding on to anger and resentment? If so, I’ll make a list today, and I’ll talk with my sponsor about ways to let go of them.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Without discipline, there’s no life at all.  –Katharine Hepburn
Procrastination is habitual. It’s perhaps a habit we’ve struggled with over the years, and not one that can be willed away. It eats at us, no doubt. How many times have we gone to bed at night depressed, discouraged, angry with ourselves for not finishing a job we promised ourselves, or someone else, we’d do! Sometimes it feels hopeless. The tasks awaiting our attention pile up, seem impossible to complete. But there is hope. The program has offered us an easy solution.
We have only this day to concern ourselves with. We can break the spell of procrastination, lethargy, immobility, if we choose. We can pick a task that needs attention, any task, preferably a small one for today. Maybe it’s writing a letter, or fixing a hem, or making an appointment to see a doctor. Deciding to do something, and then doing it, breaks through the barriers that have caged us. Immediately we will sense the surge of freedom. In this moment we can always act. And any act will free us.
When procrastination blocks us, our senses are dead to the friends close to us. It’s as though we have stepped outside of the circle of life. The real gifts of sobriety are beyond our reach when we choose inaction.
I will get free. I will tackle a small task today. It will bless me in special ways.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

On through the years this conduct continues, accompanied by his continual promises to be careful or to keep off the streets altogether. Finally, he can no longer work, his wife gets a divorce and he is held up to ridicule. He tries every known means to get the jaywalking idea out of his head. He shuts himself up in an asylum, hoping to mend his ways. But the day he comes out he races in front of a fire engine, which breaks his back. Such a man would be crazy, wouldn’t he?

p. 38

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

A DRUNK, LIKE YOU – The more he listened at meetings, the more he came to know about his own drinking history.
Well, that worked for me.  I have stayed in the Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous long enough to find the program in the Big Book and to practice all its principles in all my affairs on a daily basis.

pp. 405-406

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Ten – “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”

Maybe this sounds as though the alcoholics in A.A. had suddenly gone peaceable, and become one great big happy family. Of course, this isn’t so at all. Human beings that we are, we squabble. Before we leveled off a bit, A.A. looked more like one prodigious squabble than anything else, at least on the surface. A corporation director who had just voted a company expenditure of a hundred thousand dollars would appear at an A.A. business meeting and blow his top over an outlay of twenty-five dollars’ worth of needed postage stamps. Disliking the attempt of some to manage a group, half its membership might angrily rush off to form another group more to their liking. Elders, temporarily turned Pharisee, have sulked. Bitter attacks have been directed against people suspected of mixed motives. Despite their din, our puny rows never did A.A. a particle of harm. They were just part and parcel of learning to work and live together. Let it be noted, too, that they were almost always concerned with ways to make A.A. more effective, how to do the most good for the most alcoholics.

pp. 177-178

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God’s gracious gifts can be experienced by all who believe, and we can
fully enjoy its blessings without diminishing their enjoyment by others.
Knowing God and His limitless provisions, we are never deprived,
even though others are drawing on them, too. Joy, assurance, peace
and the awareness of God’s presence are just a few of the many
benefits that are given without measure for everyone to enjoy. We
need only accept our gifts. Remember, the well of God’s blessings will
never run dry.
–Our Daily Bread

We must be the change we wish to see in the world.
–Mahatma Gandhi

Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.
–Confucius (551 – 479 B.C.) Philosopher

Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.
–Khalil Gibbon (1883 – 1931) Poet

Our greatest glory consists not in never falling but in rising every time
we fall.
–Oliver Goldsmith

“We learn the magical lesson that making the most of what we have
turns it into more.”
–Codependent No More

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

GREED

“One of the weakness of our age is
our apparent inability to
distinguish our needs from our
greeds.”
–Don Robinson

I was a greedy drunk. A greedy man. Spoiled, selfish and demanding. I
felt that the world owed me a living and if I did not get my way, I
sulked, cried or tried to hurt people. And this greedy attitude to life
only made me sad, dull and boring. Greed, in this sense, could not work
because what I was craving would never satisfy me.

Then I learned how to “let go”. Instead of demanding, I learned how
to wait. Instead of consuming large amounts of alcohol, I practiced
abstinence. Instead of expecting life on my terms, I went with the
natural flow of life. I became happy, joyous and free. A miracle? Yes. I
accepted my “needs” and with the acceptance came the satisfaction.

Lord, only when I accept my hunger for You am I truly satisfied.

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Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become
blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a
crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in
the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day
of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.
Philippians 2:14-16

“From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after
another.”
John 1:16


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Daily Inspiration

Your thoughts can be your worst enemy if you let them run away with you. Lord, free me to enjoy each moment of my day no matter what circumstances surround me.

Be honest with yourself in every situation. Lord, help me recognize that my needs, feelings and my being are important just as they are in all others.

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NA Just For Today

Someone Who Believes In Me

“Just for today I will have faith in someone in NA who believes in me and wants to help me in my recovery.”
Basic Text, p. 96

Not all of us arrive in NA and automatically stay clean. But if we keep coming back, we find in Narcotics Anonymous the support we need for our recovery. Staying clean is easier when we have someone who believes in us even when we don’t believe in ourselves.

Even the most frequent relapser in NA usually has one staunch supporter who is always there, no matter what. It is imperative that we find that one person or group of people who believes in us. When we ask them if we will ever get clean, they will always reply, “Yes, you can and you will. Just keep coming back!”

We all need someone who believes in us, especially when we can’t believe in ourselves. When we relapse, we undermine our already shattered self-confidence, sometimes so badly that we begin to feel utterly hopeless. At such times, we need the support of our loyal NA friends. They tell us that this can be our last relapse. They know from experience that if we keep coming to meetings, we will eventually get clean and stay clean.

It’s hard for many of us to believe in ourselves. But when someone loves us unconditionally, offering support no matter how many times we’ve relapsed, recovery in NA becomes a little more real for us.

Just for today: I will find someone who believes in me. I will believe in them.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
The human brain forgets ninety percent of what goes on. –Jan Milner
There were two women who shared a house and raised their daughters, two toddlers, together. Then one of the women got transferred to another city and moved with her daughter.
Ten years later, they had a reunion. The mothers asked their kids what they remembered about living together. Did they remember all the books? No. Did they remember a mom in the kitchen every morning, fixing eggs and toast? No.
What they remembered was playing in the pink bathtub for hours, pulling the pink shower curtain shut for privacy. And the morning the mothers sneaked in, turned off the lights, threw plastic cups and spoons over the curtain and cried, “It’s raining spoons!” They laughed and laughed.
We are lucky in this life–our minds think laughter is what’s worth remembering.
What laughter from yesterday can I remember today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
A shortcut is often the quickest way to some place you weren’t going. –Classic Crossword Puzzles
We try shortcuts when we are in a hurry. The founders of this program tell us many people tried to find an easier, softer way because this one seemed too hard and too slow. Shortcuts to growth lead to dead ends and detours. Many men have experimented with shortcuts like “the geographical cure,” “controlled use,” “get rid of this partner and try someone else,” “abstinence without the spiritual part of recovery,” or “selecting some of the Steps and bypassing others.”
The shortest road to one’s own spirituality is the long road we see before us. We may wish for something more to our liking. But that is not an option for those of us who choose to grow toward full manhood. We deal with one day’s – or one hour’s – part of the road at a time. Maybe we see a job we have to do, a challenge to face, an unfinished talk with someone. Our task is to take this day and, in partnership with our Higher Power, see it in the light of our spiritual path.
I pray for faithfulness to this program. I will avoid shortcuts, allowing my spirituality to grow and deepen.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Without discipline, there’s no life at all. –Katharine Hepburn
Procrastination is habitual. It’s perhaps a habit we’ve struggled with over the years, and not one that can be willed away. It eats at us, no doubt. How many times have we gone to bed at night depressed, discouraged, angry with ourselves for not finishing a job we promised ourselves, or someone else, we’d do! Sometimes it feels hopeless. The tasks awaiting our attention pile up, seem impossible to complete. But there is hope. The program has offered us an easy solution.
We have only this day to concern ourselves with. We can break the spell of procrastination, lethargy, immobility, if we choose. We can pick a task that needs attention, any task, preferably a small one for today. Maybe it’s writing a letter, or fixing a hem, or making an appointment to see a doctor. Deciding to do something, and then doing it, breaks through the barriers that have caged us. Immediately we will sense the surge of freedom. In this moment we can always act. And any act will free us.
When procrastination blocks us, our senses are dead to the friends close to us. It’s as though we have stepped outside of the circle of life. The real gifts of sobriety are beyond our reach when we choose inaction.
I will get free. I will tackle a small task today. It will bless me in special ways.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Into Orbit
It doesn’t matter if they’re hurting themselves. It doesn’t matter that we could help them if they’d only listen to, and cooperate with, us. IT DOESN’T MATTER, DOESN’T MATTER, DOESN’T MATTER, DOESN’T MATTER. –Codependent No More
I think I can change him. Nobody’s ever really loved him and appreciated him before. I’ll be the one to do that, and then he’ll change. . . . She’s never been with anybody trustworthy before. I’ll prove how trustworthy I am, and then she’ll be able to love. . . . Nobody’s been able to get to her, to conquer her, before. I’ll be the one to do that. . . . Nobody’s ever really given him a chance. . . . Nobody’s ever really believed in him before. . . .
These are warning signs. Red lights. Red flags. In fact, if we’re thinking these thoughts, they need to be stop signs.
If we have gotten hooked into believing that somehow we will be the one who will make the difference in someone’s life, if we are trying to prove how good we can be for someone, we may be in trouble.
This is a game. A deception. It won’t work. It’ll make us crazy. We can trust that. We’re not seeing things clearly. Something’s going on with us.
It will be self-defeating.
We may be “the one” all right – the one to wind up victimized.
The whole thought pattern reeks of codependency, of not being responsible for oneself, and of victimization. Each person needs to do his or her own work.
Nobody in the past has really understood him. . . . Nobody has seen what I see in her. . . . It’s a set up. It sets us up to stop paying attention to ourselves while we focus too much on the other person. It takes us away from our path and often puts us in orbit.
Nobody has appreciated him enough. . . . Nobody has been good enough to her, or done for her what I can do. . . . It’s a rescue. It’s a game move, a game we don’t have to play. We don’t have to prove we’re the one. If we’re out to show people we’re the best thing that ever happened to them, it may be time to see if they’re the best thing that ever happened to us.
We have not been appointed as guardian angel, godmother, godfather, or “the one who will.”
The help, support, and encouragement that truly benefits others and ourselves emerges naturally. Let it.
God, help me let go of my need to meet dysfunctional challenges in my relationships.

Today I am willing to experience all my feelings without hiding or running away. I am feeling alive in all moments and I am living this day to the fullest. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Never Say Never

On my trip, I stayed at several parks. The lodging was usually fine, but the ambiance and setting often weren’t what I wanted. I needed smaller, quieter places. At one point in my journey I said, Never again will I stay in a state park. Shortly after, I found myself nestled in a room at Olympic Park in Washington. It was one of the finest, quietest, most healing places I had ever encountered. I laughed at myself. By saying never, I had nearly cheated myself out of this experience.

Please don’t say never. It sets up resistance. Challenges life. Challenges fate. And closes doors.

Never is dogmatic and judgemental. Never means limited thinking. And never usually means probably.

When we say never it is sometimes because we have prejudged a thing without experiencing it. Other times, we say never because in the past a particular experience with a place or person was unpleasant. To say never means we’re expecting all similar experiences to be unpleasant. It doesn’t leave room for change or new and different experiences.

Learn from the past. Trust yourself. Trust your experiences, even the ones that haven’t worked for you. But please don’t say never. Stay open to all the universe holds.

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More Language Of Letting Go

You’ve got all the time you need

If we believe our relationships or jobs are finite situations, then it becomes easy to feel stressed if things don’t go the way we planned in the time frame that we expected. The promotion doesn’t come in time, and now our career plan is off track. And relationship problems become huge, dramatic monsters– a series of issues– that eat away every spare minute.

But if we believe that we are living in an infinite time frame, stress begins to dissipate. If I don’t get the promotion this week, maybe it will come next month and who knows, I may not even want it by then. Some of those big, monstrous relationship issues just sort themselves out if they’re not constantly held under a magnifying glass. And the moments spent with our loved ones become more enjoyable because we’re not continually working on the relationship.

When we behave on a finite scale, we can get so wrapped up in the details of a few moments that we cannot free ourselves to enjoy the next moment. When we start living on an infinite plane, it is easier to relax and let the universe carry us down the river, bringing us to all the lessons and joy that we need.

God, help me relax and know that if a situation doesn’t come to pass today, eventually it will work itself out. And I’ve got all the time I need.

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Putting Power in Perspective
Always Be for Something by Madisyn Taylor

There is more power in being FOR something rather than AGAINST something.

As human beings, we cannot help but be subject to our preferences. However, we do have control over the manner in which these manifest themselves in our lives. Every value we hold dear is an expression of either support or opposition, and it is our perspective that determines whether we are for something or against it. As an example of a situation we are all familiar with at this time: We can direct our energy and intentions into activities that promote peace rather than using our resources to speak out in opposition of war. On the surface, these appear to be two interchangeable methods of expressing one virtue, yet being for something is a vastly more potent means of inspiring change because it carries with it the power of constructive intent.

When you support a cause, whether your support is active or passive, you contribute to the optimism that fuels all affirmative change. Optimistic thoughts energize people, giving them hope and inspiring them to work diligently on behalf of what they believe in. Being for something creates a positive shift in the universe, which means that neither you nor those who share your vision will have any trouble believing that transformation on a grand scale is indeed possible. To be against something is typically easy, as you need only speak out in opposition to it. Standing up for something is often more challenging, because you may be introducing an idea to people that may scare them on a soul level.

Throughout your life, you have likely been told that the actions of one person will seldom have a measurable impact on the world. Yet your willingness to stand up for what you believe in instead of decrying what you oppose can turn the tides of fate. The thoughts you project when you choose to adopt a positive perspective will provide you with a means to actively promote your values and, eventually, foster lasting change. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Few of us are entirely free from a sense of guilt. We may feel guilty because of our words or actions, or for things left undone. We may even feel guilty because of irrational or false accusations by others. When I’m troubled by a gnawing feeling of guilt, obviously I can’t put into my day all I’m capable of. So I must rid myself of guilt — not by pushing it aside, or ignoring it, but by identifying it and correcting the cause. Have I finally begun to learn to “keep it simple…”?

Today I Pray

May I learn not to let myself be “guilted,” made to feel guilty when I don’t consider that I am. Since I doubtless have the dregs of guilt left over from my addictive behavior, I do not need the extra burden of unreasonable blame laid on me. I count on God to help me sort out and get rid of these twinges and pangs of guilt, which whether justified or not, need to be recognized and unloaded.

Today I Will Remember

The verdict of guilty is not for life.

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One More Day

To know how to grow old is the master-work of wisdom, and one of the most difficult chapters in the great art of living.
– Henri Frederic Amiel

We often strive to imitate people we admire — special teachers, our parents, or friends. Many older people we choose to emulate have remained productive members of their communities and have found significant ways to help people. If we can be active, busy, and helpful we will not only enhance our lives, we become the role models for those younger than we are.

There are some people who seem to age so gracefully that they have the ability to make everyone around them feel special. We all appreciate friends like that, and we can become that way too.

I will live my life so well that I am a role model for young people.

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Food For Thought

Perfectionism

Part of the ego reduction necessary to our recovery is the acceptance of the fact that we are not and never will be perfect. Perfectionism gets in the way of recovery because it imposes impossible, unrealistic goals which guarantee failure. If we do not think we have to be perfect, then we can accept our mistakes as learning experiences and be willing to try again.

Deepening acquaintance with our Higher Power is good insurance against perfectionism. We come to believe that He accepts and loves us as we are, and this gives us the courage and humility to accept ourselves.

We are not perfect, but we are growing. In spite of our weaknesses, we can serve others according to God’s plan for our lives. Accepting our own limitations makes us more tolerant of the faults and weaknesses of those around us. Together, we progress.

I am thankful that I don’t need to be perfect.

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One Day At A Time

COMPASSION
“How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young,
compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving,
and tolerant of the weak and the strong.
Because sometime in your life you will have been all of these.”
~ George Washington Carver

This Twelve Step program works wonders on many levels. But one of the most noticible changes I’ve seen in my life has been in the area of compassion.

Eating disorders can really mess a person up. All of us who have the disease of compulsive eating, in no matter what form, have been laughed at, discriminated against, or generally overlooked by those who don’t suffer from our disease. So, one would think that compulsive eaters would be more loving and understanding to their fellows. For the most part this is true. But I have seen compulsive eaters be just as cruel as our more normal-weight counterparts.

If we can mistreat each other, how can we ever expect others to treat us differently? We need to remember where we were in our disease, for there are others in that same situation. We need to see ourselves in the newcomers to our program, because we run the risk of returning to where they are now. “There but for the grace of God go I” takes on a whole new meaning when we apply that phrase to our situation.

Sometimes we see varying degrees of success in this program of recovery. We must each work our program, and allow our fellows to work their program. It’s not up to us to take someone else’s inventory concerning the success or failure of their program. We need only to keep our own side of the street clean, and to show compassion to those of our fellows who are struggling. After all, compassion was what prompted the founding of our fellowship in the first place.

One day at a time…
I will consciously practice compassion toward those who still suffer, because I remember where I came from on this path, and realize I could return there.
~ JAR

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Next day found the prospect more receptive. He had been thinking it over. ‘Maybe you’re right,’ he said. ‘God ought to be able to do anything.’ Then he added, ‘He sure didn’t do much for me when I was trying to fight this booze racket alone.’

On the third day the lawyer gave his life to the care and direction of his Creator, and said he was perfectly willing to do anything necessary. His wife came, scarcely daring to be hopeful, though she thought she saw something different about her husband already. He had begun to have a spiritual experience. – Pg. 158 – A Vision For You

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The darker the shadow, the brighter the Light. As we stop using and leave the shadow of drug addiction, we slowly begin to see the new light of our life. Sometimes it is so bright, it hurts. We are not used to it.

God, as I understand You, as I clean up and the Light of recovery hurts, help me understand, adjust, and be grateful to leave the shadow.

Prayer and Miracles

Today, I will pray for a miracle in a situation that seems too much for me to handle or understand. There are times when I just don’t have what it takes to work out a situation. I’m too loaded up with fears and anxieties. What could it hurt to pray for a little divine guidance or intervention? At the very least, it will help ease my burden; and at best, it will aid in a genuine shift in perception that might truly help my situation. When I feel stuck and as if I have explored every option and am still nowhere, I will pray for a miracle.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – 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. They are called ‘winners.’

I stick with the winners and win with the stickers.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You’re not responsible for your disease, but you are responsible for your recovery.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am willing to experience all my feelings without hiding or running away. I am feeling alive in all moments and I am living this day to the fullest.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

People talk about an invisible line that you cross and become an alcoholic. Some of us were born on the other side of that line. – Danny T.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 7

Sanity
And we have ceased fighting anything or anyone — even alcohol.
For by this time sanity will have returned. We will seldom be interested in liquor.
If tempted, we recoil from it as from a hot flame.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 84

Thought to Ponder . . .
Alcohol — cunning, baffling, powerful!

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
S O B E R = Staying Off Booze Enjoying Recovery.

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

Freedom
“Through AA, we can experience freedom from self.
After all, it was self ( you, me ) that stood in our own way,
that ran the show and ran ourselves into bankruptcy,
that hurt the ones we loved.
All Twelve Steps of AA are designed to kill the old self
( deflate the old ego )
and build a new, free self.”
1976 AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 459

Thought to Consider . . .
Within our wonderful new world,
we have found freedom from our fatal obsession.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F I N E = Free, Independent, New and Energetic

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

Development
From “The Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous”:
“As the chapters were slowly roughed out I read them to the New York group at its weekly meeting in our parlor at
Clinton Street, and copies were sent to Dr. Bob for checking and criticisms in Akron, where we had nothing but the
warmest support. But in the New York meeting the chapters got a real mauling. I redictated them and Ruth retyped
them over and over. In spite of the heated arguments, the New York group’s criticisms did help a lot, and to some extent
the enthusiasm and confidence increased.”
2001 AAWS, Inc.; Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, pg. 159

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

“I started going to meetings a little early and resisted the urge to bolt out the door the moment the Lord’s Prayer was
finished. I thought I might try some of that ‘get active’ stuff, so I volunteered to make coffee at a meeting I liked to attend
… It wasn’t long before I found myself in the middle of Alcoholics Anonymous.”
I Am Responsible
Manchester, New Hampshire, September 2000
“The Key to Belonging,”
I Am Responsible: The Hand of AA

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

“We are people who normally would not mix. But there exists among us
a fellowship, a friendliness, and an understanding which is
indescribably wonderful.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 17~

These men had found something brand new in life. Though they knew
they must help other alcoholics if they would remain sober, that
motive became secondary. It was transcended by the happiness they
found in giving themselves for others.
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 159~

Still more wonderful is the feeling that we do not have to be specially distinguished among our fellows in order to be
useful and profoundly happy.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 124

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We found that the principals of tolerance and love had to be emphasized in actual practice. We can never say (or
insinuate) to anyone that he must agree to our formula or be excommunicated. The atheist may stand up in an A.A.
meeting still denying the Deity, yet reporting how vastly he has been changed in attitude and outlook. Much experience
tells us he will presently change his mind about God, but nobody tells him he must do so.
In order to carry the principle of inclusiveness and tolerance still further, we make no religious requirement of anyone. All
people having an alcoholic problem who wish to get rid of it and so make a happy adjustment with the sincerity is
needed. But we do not demand even this.
In such as atmosphere the orthodox, the unorthodox, and the unbeliever mix happily and usefully together. An
opportunity for spiritual growth is open to all.

Prayer For The Day: Lord, show me how to learn from others, how to be patient, and how to persevere. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 6th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 6th

Daily Reflections

ALL WE DO IS TRY

Can He now take them all — every one?
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 76

In doing Step Six it helped me a lot to remember that I am striving for
“spiritual progress.” Some of my character defects may be with me for
the rest of my life, but most have been toned down or eliminated. All
that Step Six asks of me is to become willing to name my defects, claim
them as my own, and be willing to discard the ones I can, just for today.
As I grow in the program, many of my defects become more
objectionable to me than previously and, therefore, I need to repeat Step
Six so that I can become happier with myself and maintain my serenity.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Drinking is the way we alcoholics express our maladjustment’s to life. I
believe that I was a potential alcoholic from the start. I had an inferiority
complex. I didn’t make friends easily. There was a wall between me and
other people. And I was lonely. I was not well adjusted to life. Did I
drink to escape from myself?

Meditation For The Day

According to the varying needs of each person, so does each person
think of God. It is not necessary that you think of God as others think of
Him, but it is necessary that you think of Him as supplying what you
personally need. The weak need God’s strength. The strong need God’s
tenderness. The tempted and fallen need God’s saving grace. The
righteous needs God’s pity for sinners. The lonely need God as a friend.
The fighters for righteousness need a leader in God. You may think of
God in any way you wish. We usually do not turn to God until we need
Him.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may think of God as supplying my needs. I pray that I will
bring all my problems to Him for help in meeting them.

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As Bill Sees It

Imagination Can Be Constructive, p. 157

We recall, a little ruefully, how much store we used to set by
imagination as it tried to create reality out of bottles. Yes, we
reveled in that sort of thinking, didn’t we? And, though sober
nowadays, don’t we often try to do much the same thing?

Perhaps our trouble was not that we used our imagination. Perhaps
the real trouble was our almost total inability to point imagination
toward the right objectives. There’s nothing the matter with truly
constructive imagination; all sound achievement rests upon it. After
all, no man can build a house until he first visions a plan for it.

12 & 12, p. 100

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Walk in Dry Places

My opportunities are in change
Personal Growth.
It’s common to hear a recovering person voice apprehensions about an impending change. This apprehension only results from our fear that change will mean loss.
There can never be any permanent loss if we are solidly anchored in our spiritual program. Our Higher Power is the guiding force in all change and will make all things right as events unfold.
We should also remember that change brought us to our present situation. Any good we now enjoy came to us by a certain process.  Even painful experiences have been valuable lessons.
There is no way we can avoid change; it is a built-in condition of life. We can accept it more gracefully if we view it as God’s way of bringing us opportunity.
Any change that I sense today is just a signal for the arrival of new opportunities.  Even if changes seem uncomfortable, I’ll welcome all such change.

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Keep It Simple

Fortunate are the people whose roots are deep.—Agnes Meyer
A tree’s roots seek water and minerals. Though the roots can’t be seen easily seen, they are there.
The life of the tree depends on them. The stronger a tree’s roots, the higher a tree can grow.
We need to set deep roots into the soil of recovery. The soil of recovery is made up of the Twelve Steps, fellowship, and service to others. We’ll have to get through storms and high winds in our return to health. In so doing, we’ll become beautiful, strong, and spiritual. We’ll be able to live with both the gentle breezes and the heavy winds of life.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me believe in what I can’t see. Just as I believe that the roots of a tree are there because I can see the leaves. I believe in a Higher Power because I can see the results.
Action for the Day:  I will ask myself, “Which Step do I need to work on the most right now?”  I will volunteer to give a meeting on that Step.

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Each Day a New Beginning

From early infancy onward we all incorporate into our lives the message we receive concerning our self-worth, or lack of self-worth, and this sense of value is to be found beneath our actions and feelings as a tangled network of self-perception.  –Christina Baldwin
Lifting our self-esteem is not a particularly easy task for most of us. It’s probable that again and again our confidence wavered before we sought help from the program. It’s also probable that our confidence still wanes on occasion. The old fears don’t disappear without effort.
But each day we can do some one thing that will help us to feel better about ourselves. All it takes is one small act or decision, each day. The program can give us the strength we need each day to move forward one step.
Today, I will do one thing I’ve been putting off. A whole collection of “one days” will lay the groundwork for the person I’m building within.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

Our behavior is as absurd and incomprehensible with respect to the first drink as that of an individual with a passion, say, for jay-walking. He gets a thrill out of skipping in front of fast-moving vehicles. He enjoys himself for a few years in spite of friendly warnings. Up to this point you would label him as a foolish chap having queer ideas of fun. Luck then deserts him and he is slightly injured several times in succession. You would expect him, if he were normal, to cut it out. Presently he is hit again and this time has a fractured skull. Within a week after leaving the hospital a fast-moving trolley car breaks his arm. He tells you he has decided to stop jay-walking for good, but in a few weeks he breaks both legs.

pp. 37-38

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

A DRUNK, LIKE YOU – The more he listened at meetings, the more he came to know about his own drinking history.
Well, two people were trying to talk at the same time.  “What have you been telling us about the airplane flight all this time?”  “Well,” I said, “I was drinking and the coin reminded me of what I did.  And I decided I was powerless and couldn’t drink anymore and stopped.”  One man said, “Well, that’s it. What more do you want?”  I said, “What about the blinding white flash?”  “What about it?” he said.  “Read the Big Book.  The Appendix explains the concepts of a sudden change and a gradual change, and that not everybody has a blinding flash.” “Oh,” I said, “That was it–that was mine?”  “Yes,” I was told. “What more do you want?”  Actually I wanted something more dramatic, and my sponsor said what he so often did:  “So?”  And I found myself saying, “Well, if that’s it, it will have to to.”  “Have to do?” he replied.  “It was bigger and better than most, and more importantly, it worked.  You stopped and didn’t start again.”

p. 405

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Ten – “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”

Let us reemphasize that this reluctance to fight one another or anybody else is not counted as some special virtue which makes us feel superior to other people. Nor does it means that the members of Alcoholics Anonymous, now restored as citizens of the world, are going to back away from their individual responsibilities to act as they see the right upon issues of our time. But when it comes to A.A. as a whole, that’s quite a different matter. In this respect, we do not enter into public controversy, because we know that our Society will perish if it does. We conceive the survival and spread of Alcoholics Anonymous to be something of far greater importance than the weight we could collectively throw back of any other cause. Since recovery from alcoholism is life itself to us, it is imperative that we preserve in full strength our means of survival.

p. 177

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Live to learn and you will learn to live.
–Portuguese Proverb

It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the
consequences of dodging our responsibilities.
–Sir Josiah Stamp

You cannot raise a man up by calling him down.
–William Boetcker

“Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are a good person
is like expecting a bull not to attack you because you are a vegetarian.”
–Dennis Wholey

Don’t let yesterday use up too much of today.
–Will Rogers

Realize the acts of others are not for or against you. They are
experiences in his or her life.
–unknown

We do not have to be perfect, self assured, and untarnished, to be
accepted and loved.
–SweetyZee

Anxiety separates us from experiencing a great life. So caught up are we
in our worry, we may even cut ourselves off from giving and receiving
love. God invites us into a fuller life in which we recognize that there is
no anxiety that our Creator cannot handle, if we only remember to ask.
–Mary Manin Morrissey

Nothing can separate us from God’s love.
–Luis Aramayo

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

SCIENCE

“As long as men are free to ask
what they must – free to say what
they think – free to think what they
will – freedom can never be lost
and science can never regress.”
–J. Robert Oppenheimer

We need to press on in this wonderful journey of life because new
discoveries await us in our tomorrows. Spirituality always brings joy in
the journey. In the traveling is the fun for we will never reach our
destination in this life.

The freedom to question is the discipline of science, and science is
involved in the treatment and recovery of addiction. We must always be
looking for better ways of treatment, more vivid ways of teaching and
creative aids to recovery.

Science, and every other creative discipline, should be used in the
treatment of addictions: God is to be found in the many.

Lord, let us remember that You gave mankind a scalpel and a prayer
book.

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“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man;
but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what
you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape,
that you may be able to bear it.”
1 Corinthians 10:13

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 whenever our hearts condemn
us. For God is greater than our hearts, and He knows everything.
1 John 3:18-20

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher
than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.
Isaiah 55:9


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Daily Inspiration

Even the most difficult of trials is God’s way of preparing us for something else. Lord, may I view my challenges as an opportunity to grow rather than as an opportunity to fail.

Jesus said, “Whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”. Lord, I pray, I believe, and I thank you even before it is fulfilled.

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NA Just For Today

Recovery Doesn’t Happen Overnight

“The Twelve Steps of Narcotics Anonymous are a progressive recovery process established in our daily living.”
Basic Text, p. 96

After some time in recovery, we may find we are faced with what seem like overwhelming personal problems, angry feelings, and despair. When we realize what’s going on, we may wail, “But I’ve been working so hard. I thought I was…” Recovered, maybe? Not hardly. Over and over, we hear that recovery is an ongoing process and that we are never cured. Yet we sometimes believe that if we just work our steps enough, pray enough, or go to enough meetings, we’ll eventually… Well, maybe not be cured, but be something!

And we are “something.” We’re recovering-recovering from active addiction. No matter what we’ve dealt with through the process of the steps, there will always be more. What we didn’t remember or didn’t think was important in our first inventory will surely present itself later on. Again and again, we’ll turn to the process of the steps to deal with what’s bothering us. The more we use this process the more we’ll trust it, for we can see the results. We go from anger and resentment to forgiveness, from denial to honesty and acceptance, and from pain to serenity.

Recovery doesn’t happen overnight, and ours will never be complete. But each day brings new healing and the hope for more tomorrow.

Just for today: I will do what I can for my recovery today and maintain hope in the ongoing process of recovery.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
A good anger acted upon is beautiful as lightning and swift with power. A good anger swallowed clots the blood like slime.
–Marge Piercy
How does it feel when someone tells us we should play basketball when we don’t want to? Often, it angers us that someone else is telling us what to do. After we have been told we should do something many times, we begin to believe it and forget how we really feel. Even though we have forgotten what we wanted to do, we feel angry, often without realizing it. Such hidden anger can leave us feeling bad without knowing why.
It is important to know when we are angry, and to say so. There are healthy ways of expressing anger without blaming others. Saying we are angry, and thereby claiming it as our own feeling and not something others force on us, is a way to express it which also affirms our right to be angry.
If there is anger in me today, can I express it correctly?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Words and magic were in the beginning one and the same thing, and even today words retain much of their magical power. –Sigmund Freud
We shape our experiences with the words we use to describe them. Word images create expectations and we naturally move toward them. When a man says, “I can’t!” he is commanding his unconscious self to be helpless. When he has a picture in his mind of moving toward his goal, he may say, “It’s hard, but I’m going to give it my best effort.” If, every time he makes a mistake, he mutters berating statements to himself like, “You idiot! You can’t do anything right,” he is teaching himself to be inadequate.
It’s our responsibility in recovery to use respectful, honest, health- giving words. We can no longer use defeating, shaming, or derogatory words. Our language has a hypnotic effect on us and the people around us. So let’s look at our resources today and name them. Let’s meet our difficulties with our strength, our patience, and the backing of our Higher Power.
Today, I will call forth images and use words to show I respect myself and others.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
>From early infancy onward we all incorporate into our lives the message we receive concerning our self-worth, or lack of self-worth, and this sense of value is to be found beneath our actions and feelings as a tangled network of self-perception. –Christina Baldwin
Lifting our self-esteem is not a particularly easy task for most of us. It’s probable that again and again our confidence wavered before we sought help from the program. It’s also probable that our confidence still wanes on occasion. The old fears don’t disappear without effort.
But each day we can do some one thing that will help us to feel better about ourselves. All it takes is one small act or decision, each day. The program can give us the strength we need each day to move forward one step.
Today, I will do one thing I’ve been putting off. A whole collection of “one days” will lay the groundwork for the person I’m building within.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
The Gift of Readiness
Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. –Step Six of Al-Anon
We progress to the Sixth Step by working diligently, to the best of our ability, on the first Five Steps. This work readies us for a change of heart, openness to becoming changed by a Power greater than ourselves – God.
The path to this willingness can be long and hard. Many of us have to struggle with a behavior or feeling before we become ready to let it go. We need to see, over and over again, that the coping device that once protected us is no longer useful.
The defects of character referred to in Step Six are old survival behaviors that once helped us cope with people, life, and ourselves. But now they are getting in our way, and it is time to be willing to have them removed.
Trust in this time. Trust that you are being readied to let go of that which is no longer useful. Trust that a change of heart is being worked out in you.
God, help me become ready to let go of my defects of character. Help me know, in my mind and soul, that I am ready to let go of my self defeating behaviors, the blocks and barriers to my life.

I know that I cannot be hurt by anyone if I consistently look for their best. Today I continue to search out the best in all my relationships, looking for something I can love in everyone. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Learn to Change Your Energy

The simple act of moving around can change your energy. When your mind starts to flag, move your body around. Go for a walk, take a bath, get a drink of water, work out at the gym. You’re doing more than moving your body, you’re changing and rearranging your energy field.

Listen to your body. It will say what it needs, what it would like, what would be helpful. If you let it, it will even move quite naturally to what would do it good. Stretch your legs. Stretch your arms. Go outside. Do some deep breathing. Call a friend. Meditate. Tell a joke to a co-worker. You don’t have to stay stuck in the energy you’re in. You don’t have to be a victim to the way you feel right now.

One of the powers we learn we have is the ability to shift, refocus, and rearrange our energy. When we get stuck in a particular emotion or reaction or mind-set, when we get bogged down or too fired up, we can save ourselves a lot of time by changing our energy, instead of hammering away at a change in the situation. Learn to tell when it is time to do that. Then discover what works for you– the little acts as well as the big ones.

Be gentle with yourself when you get stuck, when you need a fresh viewpoint. Learn to change and rearrange your energy as needed.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let go of tension

In Find and Use Your Inner Power, author Emmet Fox used the metaphor of trying to force a key into the lock to unlock the door. When we’re tense and afraid, Fox explained, we fumble. Sometimes the very key that is the right key doesn’t work because we’re trying to force it, because we’re so tense and uptight.

Relax. See! The less control and force you use, the better.

Maybe the key you’ve been trying to use all along is the right one. Maybe it was your fear and panic that was keeping you from unlocking the door. Maybe you were trying to force it, after all.

See how easily and naturally things work out when you just simply relax and let go. You will tap into your true power and the power of the universe when you move, love, work, and play from a place of relaxed and calm inner peace.

Move from your center. Let things work out.

God, help me stay serene, confident, and joyful as I go through my day.

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Staying Grounded
Foot Cleansing Rituals by Madisyn Taylor

Our feet are our primary means of connecting with the earth but remain so neglected confined to shoes.

In most contemporary cultures, where there aren’t many opportunities to go barefoot, few acts are as intimate as touching the feet of another person. Our feet are our primary means of connecting with the earth, yet they usually remain confined in shoes or sandals. Cleansing the feet of a friend or loved one is a sign of trust, closeness, and openness. Cleansing your own feet can be a relaxing interlude that can help you feel refreshed. Foot cleansing also has become a popular stress reliever and beautification ritual.

Ritual foot cleansing has a long and intricate history involving many methods and motivations. It has been used as an initiation, a welcoming gesture, a purification ceremony, and as a means to demonstrate humbleness. Cleansing ceremonies involving the feet are performed in many different parts of the world. In many cases, the meaning of the ritual was twofold. It was a way of cleaning a guest’s feet before entering a home and a sign of hospitality. In Buddhism, clean water mixed with sandalwood to clean the feet is one of the eight typical offerings. By cleansing the feet of an enlightened being, it is possible to cleanse one’s own karma.

You can perform a foot washing ritual on yourself or a companion as a ceremonial activity or as a way to unwind. You may want to start by trying a traditional ritual, or you might feel comfortable inventing your own. Try mixing elements like traditional flower infused water with something more modern like a sugar scrub. Take the time to set your intention for the foot washing ritual. Perhaps you would like to cleanse away old energies in your life so you may step freely toward your future. Or, maybe soaking your feet in warm water will help you relax after a long day at work. Remember to thank your feet for their support. Whether done with pleasure or as an offering, a foot cleansing ritual is a sacred act that honors the divine in you and others. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Adjusting myself to things as they are, and being able to love without trying to interfere with or control anyone else, however close to me — that’s one of the important things I search for and can find in The Program. The learning is sometimes painful; however, the reward is life itself — full and serene. Is The Program helping restore me to a sane and reasonable way of thinking, so I can handle my interpersonal relationships with love and understanding?

Today I Pray

May I respect those that I love enough to set them free — to stop controlling, manipulating, scheming, balling them out of trouble. May I love them enough to let them make their own mistakes and take responsibility for them. May I learn to let go.

Today I Will Remember

Love is letting Go.

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One More Day

Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul.
– Mohandas Gandhi

Some people have suggested that we shouldn’t ask for something in prayer. Yes our need to pray is often fueled by emotional or physical pain or by confusion or doubt. Certainly we can’t — certainly we shouldn’t — wait for distressing situations to pass before we pray or meditate.

Our soul long for balance and serenity, and we find this when we turn our pain, doubts, and fears over to the comforting presence of our Higher Power. Often what we seek is not an answer to a question as much as a sense of being loved and understood. When we can’t find these in our physical world, we reach out with our spiritual selves to a balancing presence that understands our deepest pains and fears and our greatest joys.

No matter what I express in prayer, I am comforted in knowing I’m understood.

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Food For Thought

A New Boss

When we turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understand Him, we have a new employer. From now on, we are working first of all for our Higher Power.

Before, we were probably motivated by egotism, the desire for personal power, prestige, and superiority. Since we were number one, we used our appetites to serve ourselves with the inevitable result that no amount of food, sex, or material wealth was enough. God did not create us to satisfy ourselves; He created us to serve Him.

Recovering a sense of stewardship may take time for those of us who have spent many years trying to gratify our own desires. We need to pause often each day to ask for God’s guidance, so that the work we do, the activities we enjoy, and the thoughts we think may all serve Him. Under His direction, our talents and abilities develop and our appetites serve His purpose.

May my thoughts, appetites, and activities serve You.

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One Day At A Time

HUMAN EMOTION
“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet.
Only through experiences of trial and suffering
can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared,
ambition inspired and success achieved.”
Helen Keller

While traveling through life, I have made choices that have injured myself and others. Others have made choices that have hurt me. Remembering and writing about my past has proved to bring up a plethora of negative emotions. At this moment I feel pain, remorse, anger, frustration, and am overwhelmed.

Every human on earth experiences these same feelings at one time or another. This is part of what I am here for. How could I ever comprehend bliss without experiencing misery? How could I enjoy inspiration without suffering depression? How could I appreciate peace without encountering turmoil? I am grateful for the problems life gives me — partnered with the emotions they bring — because without the bad I could not understand the good. Everything has its opposite. Things will always change. Things will always get better, just like the sun shines after each storm. The good news is that even though I may be experiencing negative feelings, I am learning empathy and I am gaining wisdom. And how much more will I value the rays of sunshine that break through the gray clouds?

One day at a time…
I will allow myself the honor of feeling human emotion. I will ask my Higher Power to give me comfort in my hardships and to help me remember why I am here. I will ask my Higher Power to open my heart to the lessons I am learning. For today, with hope and faith, I will look for the sunbeams shining through the haze.
~ Susanne

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

For the type of alcoholic who is able and willing to get well, little charity, in the ordinary sense of the word, is needed or wanted. The men who cry for money and shelter before conquering alcohol, are on the wrong track. – Pg. 97 – Working With Others

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Compulsion is a word you will hear a lot now that you have made the decision to begin recovery. You may often feel compelled to drink or use drugs again even when you don’t want to. Compulsion is a symptom of our disease and we use all the new tools of our program to counteract compulsions.

Please help me understand that compulsion is a symptom of my disease and as such need not be acted upon. I offer my compulsive behavior to God, as I understand God.

Entering the Darkness

Today, I will allow myself to enter into the dark and searing painful experiences of my past, and cry it all out. If I can bring emotional literacy and forgiveness into the ‘occupied territory’ of my inner world, I can give myself the freedom I desire. I have a world within me that is deep and peaceful. The grief that I carry hidden in silence has great feelings in the present, and I release them. There is no longer any safety for me in hiding. My security comes from full awareness and acceptance of who I am. Until I understand my grief and allow myself to know it, I will not be free of its grip.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

You must be prepared to make some unpopular decisions when you live by principle. You will not be able to please everyone. Be firm with others as you chose the principle and not the personality; be firm with your personality as it butts heads with your principles.

By practicing principles in all my affairs, I learn not to ‘people please’ but to ‘Higher Power Please.’

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

If a solution isn’t practical, it isn’t spiritual.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I know that I cannot to hurt by anyone if I consistently look for their best. Today I continue to search out the best in all my relationships, looking for something I can love in everyone.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

It’s amazing how much we can learn after we think we know it all. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 6

Awakening
I think I have had a spiritual awakening, as undramatic as it may have been,
and that it will go on and on as long as I continue to practice this program in my daily affairs.
To me, there is no “spiritual side” to the program of Alcoholics Anonymous;
the entire program is spiritual.
– Came To Believe . . ., p. 48

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

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
G I F T S = Getting It From The Steps.

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

Growing Up
“How many of us would presume to declare,
‘Well, I’m sober and I’m happy.
What more can I want, or do?
I’m fine the way I am.’
We know that the price of such
self-satisfaction is an inevitable backslide,
punctuated at some point
by a very rude awakening.
We have to grow or else deteriorate.
For us, the status quo can only be for today,
never for tomorrow.
Change we must;
we cannot stand still.”
Bill W., Box 1980: The AA Grapevine, June 1961
As Bill Sees It, p. 25

Thought to Consider….
The program has helped me grow up enough
to be a kid again.

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

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

Commitment
From “Destinations”:
“That first step is very important, whether it is the first step of a beloved child learning to walk or the First Step, taken by
a man on his way to a new life. Looking into my little ones’ faces, I can see the same qualities that we need for the
Twelve Steps of A.A.: daring, to stake everything on the attempt; a sense of direction, to be followed with no swerving,
no detour; decision, to move forward with out hesitation or reservation; determination, to make it all the way.
Destination: a full life, a free life, a serene life. Albany, Australia”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 93

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

“There will always be people in the Fellowship with whom I don’t see eye-to-eye, but that doesn’t mean we can’t work
together. The Fellowship wouldn’t be what it is today if we always saw eye-to-eye on everything.”
Goffstown, New Hampshire, September 1994
“Principles Before Personalities,”
AA Grapevine

~*~*~*~*^ 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 learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that
we were alcoholics.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 30~

At the very least, we shall have to come to grips with some of our worst character defects and take action toward their removal as quickly as we can.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 69

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We recall, a little ruefully, how much store we used to set by imagination as it tried to create reality out of bottles. Yes, we revealed in that sort of thinking, didn’t we? And, through sober nowadays, don’t we often try to do much the same thing?
Perhaps our trouble was not that we used our imagination. Perhaps the real trouble was our almost total inability to point imagination toward the right objectives. there’s nothing the matter with truly constructive imagination; all sound achievement rests upon it. After all, no man can build a house until he first visions a plan for it.

Prayer For The Day: Lord our God, inspire us to make our choices well and understand our responsibilities and the consequences of what we do. Help us to make good use of the opportunities that come to us. Lead us to be positive in our attitude, that we may work well with others and live this day to the full. Amen.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 4th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings June 4th

Daily Reflections

LETTING GO OF OUR OLD SELVES

Carefully reading the first five proposals we ask if we have omitted
anything, for we are building an arch through which we shall walk a
free man at last. . . . Are we now ready to let God remove from us all
the things which we have admitted are objectionable?
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pp. 75, 76

The Sixth Step is the last “preparation” Step. Although I have
already used prayer extensively, I have made no formal request of my
Higher Power in the first Six Steps. I have identified my problem,
come to believe that there is a solution, made a decision to seek this
solution, and have “cleaned house.” I now ask: Am I willing to live a
life of sobriety, of change, to let go of my old self? I must determine if
I am truly ready to change. I review what I have done and become
willing for God to remove all my defects of character; for in the next
Step, I will tell my Creator I am willing and will ask for help. If I have
been thorough in the preparation of my foundation and feel that I am
willing to change, I am then ready to continue with the next Step. “If
we still cling to something we will not let go, we ask God to help us be
willing.”
(Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 76)

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Some things I like since becoming dry: feeling good in the morning; full
use of my intelligence; joy in my work; the love and trust of my
children; lack of remorse; the confidence of my friends; the prospect
of a happy future; the appreciation of the beauties of nature; knowing
what it is all about. I’m sure that I like these things, am I not?

Meditation For The Day

Molding your life means cutting and shaping your material into
something good, something that can express the spiritual. All material
things are the clay out of which we mold something spiritual. You must
first recognize the selfishness in your desires and motives, actions and
words, and then mold that selfishness until it is sublimated into a
spiritual weapon for good. As the work of molding proceeds, you see
more and more clearly what must be done to mold your life into
something better.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may mold my life into something useful and good. I pray
that I may not be discouraged by the slow progress that I make.

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As Bill Sees It

Built by the One and the Many, p. 155

We give thanks to our Heavenly Father, who, through so many friends
and through so many means and channels, has allowed us to construct
this wonderful edifice of the spirit in which we are now dwelling–this
cathedral whose foundations already rest upon the corners of the earth.

On its great floor we have inscribed our Twelve Steps of recovery. On
the side walls, the buttresses of the A.A. Traditions have been set in
place to contain us in unity for as long as God may will it so. Eager
hearts and hands have lifted the spire of our cathedral into its place.
That spire bears the name of service. May it ever point straight
upward toward God.

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

“It is not only to the few that we owe the remarkable developments in
our unity and in our ability to carry A.A.’s message everywhere. It is to
the many, indeed, it is to the labors of all of us that we owe these prime
blessings.”

1. A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 234
2. Talk, 1959

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Walk in Dry Places

Needing to receive credit
Humility
“Is it wrong to want credit for the good things I do?” a person asked at a 12 Step meeting.
“Why do people say my ego is showing just because I feel I should get proper credit?”
We should, indeed, receive the right amount of praise and recognition for the good things we do.  We have to remember, however, that we’re trying to get this from human beings… many of whom are poorly informed or indifferent. Whatever credit we receive will be influenced by others perceptions. Sometimes we will be praised too lavishly: at other times, insufficiently.
But the real question is not whether others give us the right amount of praise or credit. The question we should really ask is why we need such recognition. If we are doing a good thing or have made progress, isn’t that sufficient reward?  What can receiving credit do for us that we do not already have?
I’ll take as my guide today the belief that right action is its own reward.  I do not need credit or recognition from others, although I’ll appreciate it if it comes.


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Keep It Simple

We cannot solve life’s problems except by solving them.—M. Scott Peck
Before getting into the program, we ran from problems at all costs. As time went on, we had more problems. As our problems grew, we became afraid of life.
The program—the Twelve Steps—teaches us how to face and solve our problem. We stop running and stand up to problems. That way, life’s problems scare us less and less over time.
In fact, life’s problems help us better know our Higher Power and ourselves. We now know our Higher Power is with us every step of the way.
Prayer for the Day:  I pray for the courage to stand and face life’s problems. I pray for the wisdom to ask my Higher Power for help.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list all problems I now have. I will talk about them with friends and with my Higher Power. I will make plans to solve them (sometimes solving problems means accepting them).

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Each Day a New Beginning

We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.  –Anne Frank
Happiness feels so close and yet so far away. Perhaps we look to a person for it, or to a job, or a new winter coat. We deserve happiness, we know. Yet, we learn so slowly that happiness can only be found within. The person leaves; the job goes sour; the new coat is quickly out of style. Elusive, all of them.
But the happiness that comes from knowing who we are and how our lives fit in the grand design of the Creator, never eludes us. We are one of a kind. And there is no other who can offer to the world of friends just what each of us can. We are needed, and knowing that, really knowing it, brings happiness.
Before we found this program, we no doubt failed to realize our worth. We can celebrate it now. We can glory in our worth, our specialness, and we can cherish the design. We can cherish our parts and cherish the part each other person plays.
Combined, we are as one big orchestra. The conductor reads the music and directs the movements. Being in tune with the conductor feels good. I can call it happiness. All I need do is play my part.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

MORE ABOUT ALCOHOLISM

Whatever the precise definition of the word may be, we call this plain insanity. How can such a lack of proportion, of the ability to think straight, be called anything else?
You may think this an extreme case. To us it is not far-fetched, for this kind of thinking has been characteristic of every single one of us. We have sometimes reflected more than Jim did upon the consequences. But there was always the curious mental phenomenon that parallel with our sound reasoning there inevitably ran some insanely trivial excuse for taking the first drink. Our sound reasoning failed to hold us in check. The insane idea won out. Next day we would ask ourselves, in all earnestness and sincerity, how it could have happened.

p. 37

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition Stories

A DRUNK, LIKE YOU – The more he listened at meetings, the more he came to know about his own drinking history.
When I got back to my meeting. I told them what had happened.  I don’t know why–it was not like the old me to ‘fess up to anything.  They were concerned only whether I was still drinking.  And I said, “No, I’m not.”  I was worried they were going to take my coin back.  All they wanted to know was what I was going to do now.  I had no idea.  They did, however.  They said I needed a sponsor–so I found a sponsor.  They said I needed more meetings.  “How many?”  I wanted to know.  They said I only had to go to meetings on days I would have had a drink.  They said I needed to identify, not compare.  I didn’t know what they meant.  What was the difference?  Identifying, they said, was trying to see how I was like the people I was with.  Comparing, they told me, was looking for differences, usually seeing how I was better than others.

pp. 404-405

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Tradition Ten – “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”

NEVER since it began has Alcoholics Anonymous been divided by a major controversial issue. Nor has our Fellowship ever publicly taken sides on any question in an embattled world. This, however, has been no earned virtue. It could almost be said that we were born with it, for, as one old-timer recently declared, “Practically never have I heard a heated religious, political, or reform argument among A.A. members. So long as we don’t argue these matters privately, it’s a cinch we never shall publicly.”

p. 176

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You can become blind by seeing each day as a similar one. Each day is
a different one, each day brings a miracle of its own. It’s just a
matter of paying attention to this miracle.
–Paulo Coelho

You’re never fully dressed without a smile!
–Anon

God gets our attention in a lot of different ways. For a great many of
us, it was through accident or illness, coming close to death. All of us
come to this program frightened for our life or our sanity or both. God
has our attention.
And now we are learning about the spiritual aspect of our life, the one
we had so long neglected. Now we are partaking of God’s love—soul
food—and discovering that the spiritual life is fuller and more
rewarding than anything we thought possible. Nothing we do to please
our body can compare to the joy of unconditional love. When we lend a
loving hand to anyone, we realize once again that the pain we suffered
was worth it to bring us to this awareness.
Today I will look for ways to help others—-and bless my soul!
–Passing It On

“We often discover what will do, by finding out what will not do; and
probably he who never made a mistake never made a discovery.”
–Samuel Smiles

Some tension is necessary for the soul to grow, and we can put that
tension to good use. We can look for every opportunity to give and
receive love, to appreciate nature, to heal our wounds and the wounds
of others, to forgive, and to serve.
–Joan Borysenko

A life lived in love, goodness, and oneness with God is a life full of joy.
A soul that lives such a life is a soul that grows ever more beautiful.
May your life be joyous then and may your soul’s beauty shine on
forever.
–Joseph J. Mazzella

The soul is made of love and must ever strive to return to love.
Therefore, it can never find rest nor happiness in other things. It must
lose itself in love. By its very nature it must seek God, who is love.
–Mechthild of Magdenburg

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PROFIT

“What is a man to profit if he
shall gain the whole world and
lose his own soul?”
–Jesus (Mt. 16:26)

Spirituality brings with it a sense of priority in my life: first things
first. Unless I discover me and have a love and respect for me, I have
nothing to offer in this world. I am the center of my universe and
through my life God is radiated. I am a part of God’s creative plan and
the pleasures of this world must be seen as secondary to my
developing a right relationship with God.

My disease of obsession and compulsion wants me to place other
things at the center of my life: food, alcohol, drugs, people, money,
success, achievement and ego.

My spiritual program reminds me that my love of self is shown in my
refusal of the first drink. If I am healthy, I can have the world; without
me, I can have nothing!

Let me find Your Kingdom that is within.

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Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not
seen.
Hebrews 11:1

I will exalt you, O Lord, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. O Lord my God, I called to you for help and you healed me. O Lord, you brought me up from the grave; you spared me from going down into the pit. Hear, O Lord, and be merciful to me; O Lord, be my help.”
You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever.
Psalm 30:1-3;10-12


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Daily Inspiration

The more you think about the little difficulties in life, the bigger they become and still nothing is resolved. Lord, may I let go of those problems that I cannot solve and resolve quickly those things that I can.

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

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NA Just For Today

Build, Don’t Destroy

“Our negative sense of self has been replaced by a positive concern for others.”
Basic Text, p. 16

Spreading gossip feeds a dark hunger in us. Sometimes we think the only way we can feel good about ourselves is to make someone else look bad by comparison. But the kind of self-esteem that can be purchased at another’s expense is hollow and not worth the price.

How, then, do we deal with our negative sense of self? Simple. We replace it with a positive concern for others. Rather than dwell on our low self-esteem, we turn to those around us and seek to be of service to them. This may seem to be a way of avoiding the issue, but it’s not. There’s nothing we can do by dwelling on our low sense of self except work ourselves into a stew of self-pity. But by replacing our self-pity with active, loving concern for others, we become the kind of people we can respect.

The way to build our self-esteem is not to tear others down, but to build them up through love and positive concern. To help us with this, we can ask ourselves if we are contributing to the problem or to the solution. Today, we can choose to build instead of destroy.

Just for today: Though I may be feeling low, I don’t need to tear someone down to build myself up. Today, I will replace my negative sense of self with a positive concern for others. I will build, not destroy.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
“Oh, ’tis love, ’tis love, that makes the world go round! Somebody said,” Alice whispered, “that it’s done by everybody minding their own business. Ah well! It means much the same thing.” –Lewis Carroll
No one helps a caterpillar become a butterfly. First it must crawl through the leaves as a many-legged creature, and then it weaves its own cocoon. Nature does its slow, daily work inside the cocoon and one day a butterfly emerges–and each butterfly is a different shape and color. No other creature can step in and speed up this process without hurting the butterfly.
Sometimes we humans confuse love with playing the part of God. We think we can speed up the natural growth of people around us. We interfere by telling them to do what we think best.
Sometimes the greatest love we can offer is to accept our loved ones the way they are. We need to remember that each caterpillar weaves a cocoon in its own time and becomes a butterfly in its own way. The wisdom of the universe is greater than our own.
How will I show my acceptance of others today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I will thank you because I am marvelously made; your works are wonderful, and I know it well. —Psalms 139:14
Some days we feel bad about ourselves. Perhaps there is no real reason except a mood has come over us. Moodiness is a remnant of our past. Or perhaps we feel guilty or ashamed or hurt. We feel blue. We feel grouchy toward ourselves or toward others around us and the world.
This is a time to turn it over to our Higher Power. We are children of the universe. We are loved. Our Creator has endowed us with marvelous strengths and potentials. Today may be a day we allow ourselves to be carried along by the love of our Higher Power. If we reach out we will feel the presence of the spirit in our contact with other people. We need not try so hard. We only need to pray for openness within ourselves to feel the love of God.
I pray for help today to renew the feeling within that God loves me and never abandons me.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same. –Anne Frank
Happiness feels so close and yet so far away. Perhaps we look to a person for it, or to a job, or a new winter coat. We deserve happiness, we know. Yet, we learn so slowly that happiness can only be found within. The person leaves; the job goes sour; the new coat is quickly out of style. Elusive, all of them.
But the happiness that comes from knowing who we are and how our lives fit in the grand design of the Creator, never eludes us. We are one of a kind. And there is no other who can offer to the world of friends just what each of us can. We are needed, and knowing that, really knowing it, brings happiness.
Before we found this program, we no doubt failed to realize our worth. We can celebrate it now. We can glory in our worth, our specialness, and we can cherish the design. We can cherish our parts and cherish the part each other person plays.
Combined, we are as one big orchestra. The conductor reads the music and directs the movements. Being in tune with the conductor feels good. I can call it happiness. All I need do is play my part.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Trusting God
A married couple, friends of mine, decided to make some changes in their living situation. They had always lived in the city, and now they decided they wanted to live in the country, on a lake.
They found a small, lake home. It wasn’t the house of their dreams, but when they sold their city home, they would have money to remodel it. They had saved some money, so they moved into their lake home before selling their city home.
One year passed, and the city home didn’t sell. My friends went through many changes during this time. They had times of patience and impatience. Some days they trusted God; other days they couldn’t figure out why God was making them wait so long, why God wouldn’t let them move forward with their plan. The doors just wouldn’t swing wide open.
One day, a neighbor came to visit my friends. His home on the lake was my friends’ dream home – everything they wanted, plus more. The first time my friends saw this house, they admired it, wishing they could have a home just like it, but then they forgot about the idea. They didn’t believe it could ever be possible.
The reason the neighbor came to visit my friends was that he and his wife had decided to move. He offered my friends the first option on purchasing his home.
My friends accepted his offer, and signed a purchase agreement. Within two months, they sold their city home and their small but adequate lake home. A short time later, they moved into the home of their dreams.
Sometimes, we experience times of frustration in our life. We believe we’re on track, trusting God and ourselves, yet things don’t work out. We have false starts and stops. The door refuses to swing wide open.
We may wonder if God has abandoned us, or doesn’t care. We may not understand where we’re going, or what our direction is.
Then one day we see: the reason we didn’t get what we wanted was because God had something much better planned for us.
Today, I will practice patience. I will ask, and trust, my Higher Power to send me His best.

This day is full of miracle. They are right in front of me on my path. Today I have all the courage to let go of all that is holding me back so that I can step forward and experience each miracle that is waiting for me. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Let Joy Find You

Somewhere along my journey it happened. Quietly, imperceptibly, almost without my knowing it. I relaxed. Got comfortable with myself. I began enjoying myself, accepting life. Liking life. I found joy.

Somewhere along your journey it will happen to you.

Joy is a gift. It appears imperceptibly, without warning, like a morning sunrise lighting our bedroom while we sleep. And it is almost as predictable. Keep doing the activities that bring healing and growth into your life. Keep loving yourself. Keep walking your path. Continue loving.

Don’t worry about finding joy. Because somewhere along your journey, joy will find you.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Stop trying so hard

Stop trying to force and make things happen. Don’t you see that by pushing so hard, you’re sabotaging yourself.

There’s another way, a better way.

Surrender– not to the way you want things to be, but to the way things are, right now. Sometimes that means we surrender to loneliness, defeat, confusion, and helplessness. Sometimes that means we don’t get what we want today. Instead we get what we have today.

We’re not in control of many things and circumstances in this world. By forcing things, we often disconnect from our true power, instead of aligning with it.

Maybe something has to happen first, before you can get what you want or do what you want. Maybe there’s an important lesson you’re trying to skip. Maybe it’s not time. Stop trying so hard to push and force, to make it happen. Stop trying to do the impossible, and instead do what you can do– surrender to the way things are.

Then watch how naturally the impossible falls into place.

God, help me stop trying so hard to force things into place. Help me remember that all is well.

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Growing Your Own Food
Flavors of Life by Madisyn Taylor

When we grow our food, we participate more fully in nature’s cycles and form a closer bond with Mother Earth.

Growing a garden of food at home is an experience anyone can enjoy. Even a hanging basket of rosemary or a cherry tomato plant in a pot on the windowsill can enhance your connection with the cycle of life. If you have space outdoors, the green and blooming colors of the edible delights you are growing will decorate any view while tempting you to enjoy the outdoors. The edible plants we nurture allow us to literally taste the fruits (or vegetables or herbs) of our labor while helping us more consciously participate in the circulating energy of nature.

Allow yourself to begin slowly and simply, so that you can learn to dance with nature’s intricate orchestrations. There are many experienced gardeners out there to assist you as you choose seeds or small plants to start your garden. As you learn to heed the seasons, soil, sun, frost, and shade, you become more than a mere spectator of life’s cycle. Instead, you step into the role of cocreator and enhance what you nurture. No matter how large or small the size of your garden, you can benefit from growing your own organic, fresh, and nutritious food while also reveling in the depth of flavor and texture that comes from plants that have been well-tended, nurtured, and loved. As we appreciate the food we’ve grown, we can recognize the care that farmers put into the produce most of us buy at the supermarket. With this new understanding, we can acknowledge the roles other living creatures fill as participants in cultivating the cycle of life. We may even learn to peacefully coexis! t with the animals and insects that share perhaps too great an interest in our garden.

When we grow our food, we participate more fully in nature’s cycles and form a closer bond with Mother Earth. Knowing how to grow your own food allows for a sense of freedom and pride that you can feed and provide for yourself, one of the most basic necessities. Gratitude may fill us as we marvel at the beauty of nature and the majesty of the universe that orchestrates such natural wonders. When we allow our appreciation of life to expand, we harvest so much more than food and the taste is that much sweeter. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day at a Time

Reflection for the Day
“It seems to me,” wrote AA co-founder Bill W., “that the primary object of any human being is to grow, as God intended, that being the nature of all growing things. Our search must be for what reality we can find, which includes the best definition and feeling of love that we can acquire. If the capability of loving is in the human being, then it must surely be in his Creator.”

Will I pray today not so much to be loved, as to love?

Today I Pray
God grant me the patience of a lifetime in my search for the best answer to the question, “What is love?” May I know that the definition will come to me in snatches as I live life’s several roles – as child, lover, parent, teacher, friend, spiritual being. May I be grateful for my experience as a chemically dependent person, which adds a special dimension to the meaning of love.

Today I Will Remember
All love reflects God’s love.

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Food For Thought

Avoiding Extremes

The Greek ideal of the golden mean is a concept, which we would do well to ponder. Most of us are extremists, as evidenced by our compulsiveness. We are all or nothing people, and our histories are full of times when we “couldn’t believe we ate the whole thing.”

Before coming to OA, many of us alternated between starving and bingeing. Either we attempted a diet so limited and stringent that it was impossible to follow for very long, or we indulged our appetites by eating everything that did not move.

OA endorses the practice of moderation. Learning it is difficult for most of us and something, which we have been unable to do by ourselves. The members who maintain their abstinence and have a strong program serve as guides and sponsors for those of us who are beginners. Old and new, all of us rely every day on our Higher Power to lead us in the way of moderation.

May I avoid extremes and learn moderation.

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One Day At A Time

FOURTH STEP SECRETS
“These are weighty secrets and we must whisper them.”
Sarah Chauncey Woolsey (Susan Coolidge)

When I came to the Recovery Group, I was wearing the pain of a lifetime of well-kept secrets – secrets about a childhood of poverty and secrets about a difficult marriage. No one ever saw my secret pain; I never shared it with anyone. But all could see the effects of the food I used as a coping mechanism.

Because of my willingness “to do whatever it takes,” I shared these secrets with the person who took my 5th step. I later shared it with my sponsor and some of them later with a sponsee during her 5th step. Sharing this pain the first two times was like the bursting of a painful abscess, with poison being released. The poison that kept me living in resentful, negative thinking has been gradually replaced with gratitude for what I had and now have, and with the ability to experience joy in my many, many blessings.

One day at a time…
I will experience gratitude for the gifts I was given in my 4th and 5th steps and for the gifts of this program.
~ Karen A.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

For those who are unable to drink moderately the question is how to stop altogether. We are assuming, of course, that the reader desires to stop. Whether such a person can quit upon a nonspiritual basis depends upon the extent to which he has already lost the power to choose whether he will drink or not. – Pg. 34 – More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Vengeance sometimes seems the only way to get back at who’ve hurt us. But we’ve found the best vengeance is living well, practicing our principles, and letting our Higher Power take care of the offenders.

May I recognize and internalize that vengeance is an attribute of addiction, not recovery.

Releasing of Perfectionism

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

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Humility is not so much thinking less of yourself as it is thinking of yourself less.

True humility is accepting myself without embellishment and without embarrassment.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You need newcomers to tell you where you came from; old-timers, to tell you where you could go, and a sponsor to tell you where you are at.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

This day is full of miracle. They are right in front of me on my path. Today I have all the courage to let go of all that is holding me back so that I can step forward and experience each miracle that is waiting for me.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I was half Irish and half Scot. It was A real dilemma in my life; one half of me wanted to get drunk all the time and the other half didn’t want to pay for it. – Tom M.

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AA Thought for the Day

June 4

Obstinacy
Besides a seeming inability to accept much on faith, we often found ourselves handicapped
by obstinacy, sensitiveness, and unreasoning prejudice.
Many of us have been so touchy that even casual reference to spiritual things made us bristle with antagonism. . .
Faced with alcoholic destruction, we soon became as open minded on spiritual matters
as we had tried to be on other questions.
In this respect alcohol was a great persuader. It finally beat us into a state of reasonableness.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 47-48

Thought to Ponder . . .
The clenched fist never receives.

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

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

Instincts
“The idea keeps persisting that the instincts
are primarily bad and are the roadblocks
before which all spirituality falters.
I believe that the difference between good and evil
is not the difference between spiritual
and instinctual man;
it is the difference between proper and improper
use of the instinctual.
Recognition and right channeling of the instinctual
are the essence of achieving wholeness.”
Bill W., Letter, 1954
1967AAWS, As Bill Sees It, p. 287

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

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
G R A C E = Gently Releasing All Conscious Expectations

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

Model
From “The Man Who Mastered Fear”:
“Poor health and a complete lack of money necessitated my remaining with Dr. Bob and Anne for very close to a year. It
would be impossible for me to pass over this year without mentioning my love for, and my indebtedness to, these two
wonderful people who are no longer with us. They made me feel as if I were a part of their family, and so did their
children. The example that they and Bill W., whose visits to Akron were fairly frequent, set for me of service to their
fellow men imbued me with a great desire to emulate them.”
2001 AAWS, Inc., Fourth Edition; Alcoholics Anonymous, pgs. 251-52

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

“A little voice deep inside me said, ‘Hello, I am here.’ It was a small voice, and sounded as if it were buried underneath
the cushions of my couch. It was my soul … I had forgotten it.””
Apex, N.C., March 2006
“A Soul Checks In,”
AA Grapevine

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

“Let no alcoholic say he cannot recover unless he has his family
back. This just isn’t so. In some cases the wife will never come
back for one reason or another. Remind the prospect that his
recovery is not dependent upon people. It is dependent upon his
relationship with God. We have seen men get well whose families have
not returned at all. We have seen others slip when the family came
back too soon.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 99~

“We believe, and so suggested a few years ago, that the action of
alcohol on these chronic alcoholics is a manifestation of an allergy;
that the phenomenon of craving is limited to this class and never
occurs in the average temperate drinker. These allergic types can
never safely use alcohol in any form at all; and once having formed
the habit and found they cannot break it, once having lost their self-
confidence, their reliance upon things human, their problems pile up
on them and become astonishingly difficult to solve.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctor’s Opinion, pg. xxviii~

Until now, our lives have been largely devoted to running from pain and problems.
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 74

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We give thanks to our Heavenly Father, who through so many friends and through many means and channels, has
allowed us to construct this wonderful edifice of the spirit in which we are now dwelling–this cathedral whose
foundations already rest upon the corners of the earth.
On its great floor we have inscribed our Twelve Steps of recovery. On the side walls, the buttresses of A.A. Traditions
have been set in place to contain us in unity for as long as God may will it so. Eager hearts and hands have lifted the
spire of our cathedral into its place. That spire bears the name of service. May it ever point straight upward toward God.
‘Its is not only to the few that we owe the remarkable developments in our unity and in our ability to carry A.A.’s
message everywhere. It is to the many; indeed, it is to the labors of all of us that owe these prime blessings.

Prayer For The Day: Prayer for the Morning:
Good morning, dear Father; thank you for this day,
Help me to follow you in every way.
Let me speak as you speak, and do as you do;
Let me help others, as you help them, too.
Help me to be honest, don’t let me play games,
Help me to grow, yet still stay the same.
Help me not to be selfish, to give of my heart, my mind and my labor;
Give all – not just part.
Help me to love others, my family, my friends,
Bless all of my foes, help me make amends.
Help me be kind, Father, where I am needed, let
Me give warm attention, and see all needs are met.
Help keep me busy, to strive for the best,
Help me not to be lazy, but find needed rest.
Let me come to you, Father, throughout the day,
Often to thank you, often to pray.
Amen.