Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 17th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 17th

Daily Reflections

SURRENDER AND SELF-EXAMINATION

My stability came out of trying to give, not out of demanding that I receive. Thus I think it can work out with emotional sobriety. If we examine every disturbance we have, great or small, we will find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its consequent unhealthy demand. Let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these hobbling demands. Then we can be set free to live and love; we may then be able to Twelfth Step ourselves and others into emotional sobriety.
THE LANGUAGE OF THE HEART, p. 238

Years of dependency on alcohol as a chemical mood-changer deprived me of the capability to interact emotionally with my fellows. I thought I had to be self-sufficient, self-reliant, and self-motivated in a world of unreliable people. Finally I lost my self-respect and was left with dependency, lacking any ability to trust myself or to believe in anything. Surrender and self-examination while sharing with newcomers helped me to ask humbly for help.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

The new life of sobriety that we are learning to live in A.A. is slowly
growing on us and we are beginning to get some of that deep peace
of mind and serenity that we never thought were possible. At first we
may have doubted that this could happen to us, but after any
considerable length of time in A.A., looking at the happy faces
around us, we know that somehow it is happening to us . In
fact, it cannot help happening to anyone who takes the
A.A. program seriously day by day. Can I see my own happiness
reflected in the faces of others?

Meditation for the Day

God does not withhold His presence from you. He does not refuse to
reveal more of His truth to you. He does not hold back His spirit from
you. He does not withhold the strength that you need. His presence,
His truth, His spirit, His strength are always immediately available to
you, whenever you are fully willing to receive them. But they may be
blocked off by selfishness, intellectual pride, fear, greed, and
materialism. We must try to get rid of these blocks and let God’s
spirit come in.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may remove all blocks that are keeping me from God. I
pray that I may let God come into my life with power.

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As Bill Sees It

Tell the Public?, p. 198

“A.A.’s of worldly prominence sometimes say, ‘If I tell the public that I
am in Alcoholics Anonymous, then that will bring in many others.’
Thus they express the belief that our anonymity Tradition is wrong–at
least for them.

“They forget that, during their drinking days, prestige and the
achievement of worldly ambition were their principal aims. They do
not realize that, by breaking anonymity, they are unconsciously
pursuing those old and perilous illusions once more. They forget that
the keeping of one’s anonymity often means a sacrifice of one’s desire
for power, prestige, and money. They do not see that if these strivings
became general in A.A., the course of our whole history would be
changed; that we would be sowing the seeds of our own destruction as
a society.

“Yet I can happily report that while many of us are tempted–and I
have been one–few of us in America actually break our anonymity at
the public-media level.”

Letter, 1958

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Walk In Dry Places

We never arrive
Finding Happiness.
We delude ourselves if we believe that our happiness and well-being will come when we reach a certain goal.  Whatever happiness and well-being we obtain must come through the process of living in ordinary, everyday situations.
If we observe carefully, we’ll find lots of happy people who are in situations or work that we might consider unpleasant. It is not the work or situation that creates happiness and fulfillment. What counts is the ATTITUDE toward it.
Those of us in 12 Step programs should have special insight into the issue of happiness. We tried to find it, here and now, in false ways.  But it is available to us, here and now, in ordinary living.
I’ll be happy today in knowing that I’m blessed with the ordinary tasks of life.

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Keep It Simple

Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.-–Marie Curie
We have many sides, some good, and some bad. Maybe we’re afraid to see our faults. But we don’t need to be afraid. After all, we need to know our dark side before we can change it. When we see ourselves clearly, we can stop our dark side from causing trouble.
When we shine light on our fears and secrets, we’ll begin to feel better about ourselves. We’ll feel more safe about sharing our worries. The more honest we are with ourselves and others, the better and stronger we become. The goodness and love in us will blossom. We have a Higher Power and a program to help us.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me be brave enough to see myself clearly. Gently teach me to see who I really am. Help me know enough to stay sober today.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll look myself in the eyes. I’ll spend two minutes looking into my eyes in a mirror. I’ll talk to my sponsor about what I see.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The problem is not merely one of woman and career, woman and the home, woman and independence. It is more basically: how to remain whole in the midst of the distractions of life; how to remain balanced, no matter what centrifugal forces tend to pull one off center; how to remain strong, no matter what shocks come in at the periphery and tend to crack the hub of the wheel.  –Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Before getting into this recovery program, many of us didn’t cope with life’s distractions except with the help of our addiction. We had no sense of wholeness and were constantly bouncing from one crisis to another. We may still feel pulled. The crises may still trip us up. But we have a center now that we are beginning to understand and rely upon. That center is our spiritual selves.
Slowing down, going within to our center, listening to the message therein, unravels our problem, smooths the waves of the storm. The strength to go forward awaits us.
We can absorb the shocks that “crack the hub of the wheel” and be enriched by them. Each moment we are weaving our tapestry of life. Each experience colors our design. Our pain and sorrow and joy give the depth that one-day will move us to say, “I see, I understand.”
I will be grateful for the experiences today that give my tapestry its beauty.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

Logic is great stuff. We like it. We still like it. It is not by chance we were given the power to reason, to examine the evidence of our sense, and to draw conclusions. That is one of man’s magnificent attributes. We agnostically inclined would not feel satisfied with a proposal which does not lend itself to reasonable approach and interpretation. Hence we are at pains to tell why we think our present faith is reasonable, why we think it more sane and logical to believe than not to believe, why we say our former thinking was soft and mushy when we threw up our hands in doubt and said, “We don’t know.”

p. 53

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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 must keep my magic magnifying mind on my acceptance and off my expectations, for my serenity is directly proportional to my level of acceptance.  When I remember this, I can see I’ve never had it so good.  Thank God for A.A.!

p. 420

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step One – “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol–that our lives had become unmanageable. ”

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. Until he so humbles himself, his sobriety–if any–will be precarious. Of real happiness he will find none at all. Proved beyond doubt by an immense experience, this is one of the facts of A.A. life. The principle that we shall find no enduring strength until we first admit complete defeat is the main taproot from which our whole Society has sprung and flowered.

pp. 21-22

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With love and patience, nothing is impossible.
–Daisaku Ikeda

This is the way of peace. Overcome evil with good. Falsehood with truth, And hatred with love.
–Peace Pilgrim

“Better keep yourself clean and bright; you are the window through which you must see the world.”
–George Bernard Shaw

The purpose of man is in action not thought.
–Thomas Carlyle

Thanks, but I won’t need your help today.
–GOD

To attain Knowledge, add things every day. To attain Wisdom, remove things every day.
–Lao Tzu

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

NEGATIVITY

“My life has been nothing but a
failure.”
–Claude Monet

I can identify with Claude Monet because for years I considered myself a complete failure. For years I wallowed on my pity-pot until it became too painful. Whatever the “pay-off” was in the previous years had dried up, and I was left with a rock bottom pain that forced me to consider the alternative: I needed to set about doing something to change things!

Astounding! Impossible! How could this ever be? I was forever to be a victim of alcoholism. “Not so.” I heard a voice of hope from a recovering alcoholic who had made the change. Slowly I took small steps towards recovery and self-esteem.

I am a failure so long as I consider myself a failure. I am what I create in my life. God requires my cooperation to make miracles in my life. My decision to listen to those who had achieved sobriety provided the seeds for my recovery today. I wonder if Claude Monet was an alcoholic who never heard the words of hope?

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

At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven,
and of those on earth, and of those under the earth.
Phil. 2:10

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with
God’s people who are in need.  Practice hospitality.
Romans 12:12-13

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Daily Inspiration

Share the lighthearted moments of your life with others. Lord, may I be instrumental in relieving tensions by lifting the spirits of others with a little cheerfulness.

Be a patient person but, most of all, be patient with yourself. Lord, may I be blessed with a calm spirit and diligence as I do my work today.

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NA Just For Today

Using Our “Using Dreams”

“Do we fully accept the fact that our every attempt to stop using or to control our using failed?”
Basic Text, p. 18

The room is dark. Your forehead is bathed in cold sweat. Your heart is racing. You open your eyes, sure that you’ve just blown your clean time. You’ve had a “using dream”, and it was just like being there-the people, the places, the routine, the sick feeling in your stomach, everything. It takes a few moments to realize it was just a nightmare, that it didn’t actually happen. Slowly, you settle down and return to sleep.

The next morning is the time to examine what really happened the night before. You didn’t use last night – but how close are you to using today? Do you have any illusions about your ability to control your using? Do you know, without a doubt, what would happen once you took the first drug? What stands between you and a real, live relapse? How strong is your program? Your relationships with your sponsor, your home group, and your Higher Power?

Using dreams don’t necessarily indicate a hole in our program; for a drug addict, there’s nothing more natural than to dream of using drugs. Some of us think of using dreams as gifts from our Higher Power, vividly reminding us of the insanity of active addiction and encouraging us to strengthen our recovery. Seen in that light, we can be grateful for using dreams. Frightening as they are, they can prove to be great blessings – if we use them to reinforce our recovery.

Just for today: I will examine my personal program. I will talk with my sponsor about what I find, and seek ways to strengthen my recovery.
pg. 207

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
When you feel rejected, start accepting yourself, and then go out and accept someone. –Sondra Ray
There was once a mother who felt rejected when her children grew up and needed to separate from her. She felt hurt when they pushed her away and no longer wanted all the love and caring that she wanted to give them. She thought, What’s wrong with me?
Encouraged by her friends, she began to ask herself another question: What’s right with me? The more answers she found to that question, the better she liked herself. The better she liked herself, the more she was able to see her children’s need to separate from her as their own natural and healthy urge for independence, and not the result of her shortcomings.
Our good points may seem undesirable to others, but that’s not our fault. Sometimes, too much of a good thing can be inappropriate, but that doesn’t make it bad.
What’s right with me today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
I loafe and invite my soul, I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass. –Walt Whitman
How foreign the thought is to many men that we might make progress by loafing. Yet we probably have experienced it. We have felt more in tune with ourselves after taking a break. After an especially relaxing weekend we feel more alive or clearer about ourselves. At those times we have invited our soul and have been rejuvenated.
Centuries of spiritual practice from different ideologies have taught the need for quiet relaxation in some form to invite the soul. Some have practiced a Sabbath day each week, others a time of prayer every day – even several times a day – others have practiced a daily period of deep meditation. Simply a period of loafing, with no particular goal in mind, may invite conscious contact with our Higher Power.
I pray for the ability to set aside my busy pace of life, my worrying and fretting, my “take charge” attitude for a period of time today.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The problem is not merely one of woman and career, woman and the home, woman and independence. It is more basically: how to remain whole in the midst of the distractions of life; how to remain balanced, no matter what centrifugal forces tend to pull one off center; how to remain strong, no matter what shocks come in at the periphery and tend to crack the hub of the wheel. –Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Before getting into this recovery program, many of us didn’t cope with life’s distractions except with the help of our addiction. We had no sense of wholeness and were constantly bouncing from one crisis to another. We may still feel pulled. The crises may still trip us up. But we have a center now that we are beginning to understand and rely upon. That center is our spiritual selves.
Slowing down, going within to our center, listening to the message therein, unravels our problem, smooths the waves of the storm. The strength to go forward awaits us.
We can absorb the shocks that “crack the hub of the wheel” and be enriched by them. Each moment we are weaving our tapestry of life. Each experience colors our design. Our pain and sorrow and joy give the depth that one-day will move us to say, “I see, I understand.”
I will be grateful for the experiences today that give my tapestry its beauty.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Love, in Words and Actions
Many of us have confused notions about what it means to be loved and cared about.
Many of us were loved and cared for by people who had discrepancies between what they said and did.
We may have had a mother or father who said, “I love you” to us, and then abandoned or neglected us, giving us confused ideas about love. Thus that pattern feels like love – the only love we knew.
Some of us may have been cared for by people who provided for our needs and said they loved us, but simultaneously abused or mistreated us. That, then, becomes our idea of love.
Some of us many have lived in emotionally sterile environments, where people said they loved us, but no feelings or nurturing were available. That may have become our idea of love.
We may learn to love others or ourselves the way we have been loved, or we may let others love us the way we have been loved, whether or not that feels good. It’s time to let our needs be met in ways that actually work. Unhealthy love may meet some surface needs, but not our need to be loved.
We can come to expect congruency in behavior from others. We can diminish the impact of words alone and insist that behavior and words match.
We can find the courage, when appropriate, to confront discrepancies in words and actions – not to shame, blame, or find fault, but to help us stay in touch with reality and with our needs.
We can give and receive love where behavior matches one’s words. We deserve to receive and give the best that love has to offer.
Today, I will be open to giving and receiving the healthiest love possible. I will watch for discrepancies between words and behaviors that confuse me and make me feel crazy. When that happens, I will understand that I am not crazy; I am in the midst of a discrepancy.

God gives me all the answers I need at the right time. Today I trust that it is okay not to know everything and that I will know when the time is right. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Put Yourself on Equal Ground

I sat in the booth across from my friend. I was fiddling with an empty soda can in front of me while we discussed the subject of power. Suddenly he snatched the can away from me and began tossing it in the air, catching it, then tossing it up again. “See how easy it is to take your power?” he said. “See how you just gave it to me?”

I watched, amazed at how quickly I had relinquished my power, how vulnerable I was to the world around me.

Then my friend smiled and stopped juggling the can. “Relax,” he said. “It’s an illusion. That’s not really your power– it’s an empty can. And it’s an illusion that anyone can take your power away from you.”

Each of us has an unlimited supply of power available– the power to think, to feel, to take care of ourselves. The power to open our hearts, love, be gentle, honest, and kind. We each have the power to be clear and to trust and follow the guidance of our own hearts.

Part of our journey to freedom, an important part, is equalizing our relationships. For many years, we may have believed the scales were tipped one way or the other in our work and love relationships. We may have believed that others knew a great deal more than we did, or we may have begun to believe that we had all the answers. But no one has our power. That’s an illusion. So much so that sometimes the person we believe is more powerful than us may be looking at us thinking we’re the ones pulling the strings.

Remember, if you give up your power or decide that someone has power over you, you’ll begin grousing, sabotaging, and doing sneaky little things to equalize that relationship, to feel like you have your power. There’s another way, a better way, one that will help you heal.

Put yourself on equal ground.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Relief is around the bend

I needed to go into the city for errands. It was a chilly morning at the beach, not even 70 degrees. I put on my jacket, got in the car, and headed out. I made the turn onto the canyon road and was struck by the beauty of the fog burning off, playing peekaboo with the canyon walls. It was 94 and sunny when I arrived in town.

I ran my errands and stopped at In and Out Burger for lunch. When I got back in the car, the thermometer read 102. It was hot. Traffic was bad, the temperature reached 106 on the freeway, and even the air conditioning didn’t help much.

Finally, I turned back onto the canyon road. The grass was brown and I worried about wildfires– they get so bad here. Soon, I noticed the temperature was down to 94 again, then 90, then 88. The hills turned green. I rounded a corner and could see the Pacific Ocean. The temp was 82. By the time I made it home it was back to 74.

I was surprised at the big difference a few miles made.

Sometimes, a small change can impact the way we’re feeling– a lot. Feeling overwhelmed or pressured? Do something else for a while. Give yourself a treat. Sometimes, the smallest change in our routine can do wonders to change the temperature in our lives.

God, help me see any changes I can make that will have a positive effect on my energy and on the way I feel.

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Food for Thought

The Narrow Path

Abstinence is the narrow path that leads out of the swamp of compulsive overeating. If we allow ourselves to deviate from the path, we immediately put ourselves on slippery ground and run the risk of falling into a bog of quicksand.

The longer we maintain firm abstinence, the more sure our steps become as we walk away from the crippling effects of our disease. It is so much easier to stay on the narrow path than to slip off and have to find it again. Without abstinence, we compulsive overeaters are lost.

If abstinence is not the most important thing in our lives, then food becomes our number one priority, and we gradually destroy ourselves.

Guide my steps, I pray, on the narrow path of abstinence.

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Becoming Whole Again
The Process of Grieving by Madisyn Taylor

Grief can arise from many life situations, but know it is not a permanent state of being.

When we experience any kind of devastating loss, whether it is the loss of a loved one, a dream, or a relationship, feelings may arise within us that are overwhelming or difficult to cope with. This sense of grief can also come up when we are separated from anyone or anything we have welcomed into our lives. And while it may feel like we are caught up in a never-ending spiral of sadness and emptiness, it is important to remember that the grief we are feeling is not a permanent state of being. Rather, grief is part of the process of letting go that in many ways can be a gift, allowing us to go deeper within ourselves to rediscover the light amidst the seeming darkness.

The emotions that accompany any kind of loss can be intense and varied. A sense of shock or denial is often the first reaction, to be replaced by anger. Sometimes this anger can be directed at your loved one for “abandoning” you; at other times you may feel outrage toward the universe for what you are enduring. And while there are stages of grief that people go through – moving from denial to anger to bargaining to depression to acceptance – the cycles of grief often move in spirals, sometimes circling forward and then back again. You may even experience moments of strength, faith, and laughter in between. While these emotions seem to come and go sporadically, it is important to feel them, accept them, and allow them to flow. With time, patience, and compassion, you will eventually find your center again.

As we move through our grief, we may find ourselves reluctant to release our pain, fearing we are letting go of who or what we have lost. We may even regard our movement toward healing as an act of disloyalty or giving up. Know that while the hurt may fade, the essence of what you had and who you loved will have already transformed you and forever stay with you. If anything, once you are ready for the pain of your loss to subside, their memories can then live more fully within you. Remember, that healing is a part of the spiraling cycles of grief, and that in letting yourself feel restored again, you are surrendering to a natural movement that is part of the dance of life. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

For my own good, I’ll go to meetings and participate in discussions with an open mind that’s ready to receive and accept new ideas. For my own peace and comfort, I’ll determinedly try to apply those new ideas to my own life. I’ll remember that The Program offers me the instruction and support I can’t find elsewhere. I’ll seek out others who understand my problems, and I’ll accept their guidance in matters which cause me discomfort and confusion. Will I try to be willing to listen — and to share?

Today I Pray

Thank you, God, for bringing The Program into my life, and with it a better understanding of Divine Power. Help me to remember that attendance and attentiveness at meetings are all-important to continuing in this happily-discovered way of life. May I listen and share with honesty, open-mindedness and willingness.

Today I Will Remember

Her’s HOW; honesty, open-mindedness, willingness.

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One More Day

A thing of beauty is a joy forever: Its loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness.
– John Keats

We know a work of fine art can only increase in value. As the years pass by, art develops character lines which further define and highlight its beauty.

We wonder about people. There is grace which comes with age, we know, but how can people last forever? The answer, of course, is what do not. But all that we comprise and create — the love, the caring, the storytelling, the things we make with our hands — will endure forever. Just as enduring, and perhaps even more value, is the respect we give to our family and traditions. These and other family heirlooms are our assurance that no one or no thing passes into nothingness.

I am comforted by the traditions of family and faith and by the meaningfulness they add to my life.

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One Day At A Time

LIVING RIGHT
“Life is not a matter of having good cards
…. but of playing a poor hand well.”
Robert Louis Stevenson

There are many things in this world we have no control over, such as: our gender, our stature, our race, or physical abnormalities. But we always have the power to choose how we deal with events and circumstances. We can always take the right action ~ if it is not predicated on achieving a favorable outcome.

The Big Book tells us that it is a “well-understood fact that in God’s sight all human beings are important, the proof that love freely given surely brings a full return.”

I must ask myself ~

One day at a time …
Am I living properly?
Am I living properly today?
Am I really trying at all?
~ Jeremiah ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Some of our alcoholic readers may think they can do without spiritual help. Let us tell you the rest of the conversation our friend had with his doctor.
The doctor said: ‘You have the mind of a chronic alcoholic. I have never seen one single case recover, where that state of mind existed to the extent that it does in you.’ Our friend felt as though the gates of hell had closed on him with a clang.
He said to the doctor, ‘Is there no exception?’
‘Yes,’ replied the doctor, ‘there is. Exceptions to cases such as yours have been occurring since early times. Here and there, once in a while, alcoholics have had what are called vital spiritual experiences. To me these occurrences are phenomena. They appear to be in the nature of huge emotional displacements adn rearrangements. Ideas, emotions, and attitudes which were once the guiding forces of the lives of these men are suddenly cast to one side, and a completely new set of conceptions and motives begin to dominate them. – Pg. 27 – There Is A Solution

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Right now you are safe. Whatever is troubling you is not so bad that your sponsor or another group member cannot help. Call them as soon as you find a phone.

Grant me the humbleness to call for help whenever I feel threatened, lonely, angry, or in any way separated from my spiritual health.

Feeling Good Inside

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

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

No God; No Peace. Know God; Know Peace.

My program teaches me that I will have peace of mind in the exact proportion of the peace of mind I bring into the lives of others.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Relax, God is in charge.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

God gives me all the answers I need at the right time. Today I trust that it is okay not to know everything and that I will know when the time is right.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

If I was at your house, I’d ask to use the bathroom and I’d go through the medicine cabinet and take whatever’s there. I don’t need to know what it is. Sometimes I’d be up for days, saying the same thing over and over, chewing my tongue. Other times I’d be falling down, bouncing off the walls. Sometimes I’d get real ‘regular’. And I probably took enough pills out of those wheels that there’s no chance I’m going to get pregnant this century. – Bob D.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 17

Sponsorship
Every sponsor is necessarily a leader. The stakes are huge.
A human life and usually the happiness of a whole family hang in the balance.
What a sponsor does and says, how well he estimates the reactions of his prospect, . . .
how well he handles criticisms, and how well he leads his prospect on by personal spiritual example —
well, these attributes of leadership can make all the difference,
often the difference between life and death.
– The Language of the Heart, p. 292

Thought to Ponder . . .
My sponsor offers me self-forgetfulness
and kinship with another human being of my own kind.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
H E A R T = Healing, Enjoying, And Recovering Together.

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

Love
“For me, AA is a synthesis of all the philosophy
I’ve ever read,
all of the positive, good philosophy,
all of it based on love.
I have seen that there is only one law,
the law of love,
and there are only two sins;
the first is to interfere with the growth
of another human being,
and the second is to interfere with one’s own growth.”
1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 542

Thought to Consider . . .
When we love, we see in others what we wish to have in ourselves.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
H A L T = Hope, Acceptance, Love, Tolerance

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

Pass It On
From: “Preface”
“I’ll never forget the first time I met Bill Wilson. I was a couple of months sober and so excited, so thrilled to actually meet the co-founder that I gushed all over him with what my sobriety meant to me and my undying gratitude for his starting A.A. When I ran down, he took my hand in his and said simply, Pass it on.
1984, AAWS, Inc., ‘Pass It On,’ page 7

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

“Self-centeredness is a poison to my emotional system. It frustrates my every effort toward a comfortable and happy existence. A terrible chain reaction begins. Fear sets in. Anger, resentment, and self-pity become my guiding forces. My only escape is to put this awful selfishness aside and become involved with the world around me.”
December 1979
“The Root of Our Troubles,”
Emotional Sobriety

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

“We never apologize to anyone for depending upon our Creator. We can
laugh at those who think spirituality the way of weakness.
Paradoxically, it is the way of strength. The verdict of the ages is
that faith means courage. All men of faith have courage. They trust
their God. We never apologize for God. Instead we let Him
demonstrate, through us, what He can do. We ask Him to remove our
fear and direct our attention to what He would have us be. At once,
we commence to outgrow fear.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 68~

“‘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~

“We may have had certain spiritual beliefs, but now we begin to have a spiritual experience.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 75 (Into Action)

“We rest quietly with the thoughts of someone who knows, so that we may experience and learn.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 100 (Step Eleven)

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

A.A.’s of worldly prominence sometimes say, ‘If I tell the public that I am in Alcoholics Anonymous, then that will bring in many others.’ Thus they express the belief that our anonymity Tradition is wrong – at least for them. ‘They forget that, during their drinking days, prestige and the achievement of worldly ambition were their principal aims. They do not realize that, by breaking anonymity, they are unconsciously pursuing those old and perilous illusions once more. They forget that the keeping of one’s anonymity often means a sacrifice of one’s desire for power, prestige, and money. They do not see that if these strivings became general in A.A., the course of our whole history would be changed; that we would be sowing the seeds of our own destruction as a society. ‘Yet I can happily report that while many of us are tempted – and I have been one – few of us in America actually break our anonymity at the public-media level.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, thank you for the experience that I have had. I will utilize even my most difficult experiences today by learning and growing from them.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 16th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 16th

Daily Reflections

“A MEASURE OF HUMILITY”

In every case, pain had been the price of admission into a new life.
But this admission price had purchased more than we expected. It
brought a measure of humility, which we soon discovered to be a
healer of pain.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 75

It was painful to give up trying to control my life, even though success
eluded me, and when life got too rough, I drank to escape. Accepting
life on life’s terms will be mastered through the humility I experience
when I turn my will and my life over to the care of God, as I
understand Him. With my life in God’s care, fear, uncertainty, and anger
are no longer my response to those portions of life that I would rather
not have happen to me. The pain of living through these times will be
healed by the knowledge that I have received the spiritual strength to
survive.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We can believe that God is in His heaven and that He has a
purpose for our lives, which will eventually work out as long as we
try to live the way we believe He wants us to live. It has been said
that we should “wear the world like a loose garment.” That
means nothing should seriously upset us because we have a deep,
abiding faith that God will always take care of us. To us that
means not to be too upset by the surface wrongness of things, but to
feel deeply secure in the fundamental goodness and purpose in the
universe. Do I feel deeply secure?

Meditation For The Day

Like the shadow of a great rock in a desert land, God is your
refuge from the ills of life. The old hymn says: “Rock of ages
cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee.” God can be your shelter
from the storm. God’s power can protect you from every temptation
and defeat. Try to feel His divine power–call on it–accept it–and
use it. Armed with that power, you can face anything. Each day,
seek safety in God’s secret place, in communion with Him. You
cannot be wholly touched or seriously harmed there. God can be
your refuge.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may find a haven in the thought of God. I pray that I
may abide in that Strong Tower, strongly guarded.

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As Bill Sees It

Where Rationalizing Leads, p. 197

“You know what our genius for rationalization is. If, to ourselves, we
fully justify one slip, then our rationalizing propensities are almost
sure to justify another one, perhaps with a different set of excuses.
But one justification leads to another and presently we are back on
the bottle full-time.”

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

Experience shows, all too often, that even the “controlled” pill-taker
may get out of control. The same crazy rationalizations that once
characterized his drinking begin to blight his existence. He thinks that
if pills can cure insomnia so may they cure his worry.

Our friends the doctors are seldom directly to blame for the dire
results we so often experience. It is much too easy for alcoholics to
buy these dangerous drugs, and once possessed of them the drinker is
often likely to use them without any judgment whatever.

1. Letter, 1959
2. Grapevine, November 1945

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Walk In Dry Places

Accepting and correcting mistakes.
Mature living.
Being in error now and then is part of our human existence.  Many of us, however, feel unbearable self-reproach when we make a mistake. Some compulsive people even blame themselves for errors beyond their control.
But the worst mistake is the refusal, or denial, of responsibility for mistakes. This comes from a strange belief that we can erase the mistake by refusing to accept it.  It may stem from the belief that we should be above mistakes. This is immature thinking.
We are learning and growing when we accept our mistakes graciously and immediately move to correct them.  Most of the time, when this is done, the distress passes quickly and we can go on to other matters.
I’ll take full responsibility for all of my actions today, and I’ll move quickly to correct any of my mistakes.

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Keep It Simple

We can’t all be heroes because someone has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by.
—Will Rogers
Humility is being thankful for the chance to watch the parade. There were days we thought that all that counted were the heroes. But our program has no heroes. It has many fine, spiritual people. . . but no heroes.
When someone is needed to make coffee or pick up after a meeting, we can be willing to do those things. Let’s look at doing these little jobs as our way of looking for a good spot on the curb. . . .to watch the parade! The floats are so colorful, and the bands play so loud!
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me be proud of who I am, instead of always putting myself down because I’m not who I “should” be.
Action for the Day:  I will look and help someone today. Service to others is service to my Higher Power.

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Each Day a New Beginning

I have come to believe in the “Sacrament of the Moment,” which presupposes trust in the ultimate goodness of my creator. –Ruth Casey
The moment, realized, is like a bud blossoming. The day unfolds and with each minute we are moved along to the experiences right for us at this place and this time. Our resistance to certain experiences and particular people creates the barrier that blocks the good in store for us.
We can rest assured; our higher power is caring for us. Each breath we take is Spirit-filled, and the plan for our lives is an accumulation of necessary experiences that is helping us to grow and develop our special talents. What we often forget is that the difficult periods of our lives stretch us, enlighten us, ready us to be the women we desire within to be.
This moment is sacred. All moments are sacred. They will not come again. What is offered this moment for us to grow on will not be offered in exactly this way again. Our higher power knows our needs and is caring for them. We can trust the goodness of today.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

The Wright brothers’ almost childish faith that they could build a machine which would fly was the mainspring of their accomplishment. Without that, nothing could have happened. We agnostics and atheists were sticking to the idea that self-sufficiency would solve our problems. When others showed us that “God-sufficiency” worked with them, we began to feel like those who had insisted the Wrights would never fly.

pp. 52-53

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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.
Acceptance is the key to my relationship with God today.  I never just sit and do nothing while waiting for Him to tell me what to do.  Rather, I do whatever is in front of me to be done, and leave the results up to Him; however it turns out, that’s God’s will for me.

p. 420

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step One – “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol–that our lives had become unmanageable. ”

But upon entering A.A. we soon take quite another view of this absolute humiliation. We perceive that only through utter defeat are we able to take our first steps toward liberation and strength. Our admissions of personal powerlessness finally turn out to be firm bedrock upon which happy and purposeful lives may be built.

p. 21

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Let a joy keep you. Reach out your hands and take it when it runs by.
–Carl Sandburg

You can have fun and still be efficient. In fact, you will be more
efficient.
–Stress Fractures, p.155

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds
you plant.
–Robert Louis Stevenson

It is easy to sit up and take notice. What is difficult is getting up
and taking action.
–Al Batt

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind
word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of
caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
–Leo Buscaglia

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

DESIRE

“One must not lose desires. They
are mighty stimulating to
creativeness, to love, and to long
life.”
–Alexander A. Bogomoletz

Today I desire to live. I have discovered value in my life. I have
experienced personal self-esteem. I am able to feel again, talk,
trust and laugh again. Today I desire to live.

But I can remember when I felt lonely, isolated, angry, shutdown
and hopeless. The desires I had were destructive, desiring
isolation mingled with alcohol. Then the pain became too great and
I experienced a vital “moment”. I realized I needed to make a
choice — was I to live or die? I chose to live!

This was the beginning of my spiritual journey into self from which
I discovered God and His world. Creative and positive desires
were re-born in my life, and I am able to live and love again.

O Lord, may I continue to desire those things that do not hurt me.

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Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
John 10:10b

If you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.
Mark 11:26

God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength.
1 Corinthians 1:25

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Daily Inspiration

More strength is found in the ability to be flexible than in stubborn determination. Lord, when life makes extra demands on me, guide me and help me adapt easily to the necessary changes for the best results.

Worse than being a quitter is the one who is afraid to begin. Lord, grant me the courage to believe in myself and the ability to focus on what I can do, not what I can’t do.

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NA Just For Today

Self-esteem

“Deep inside, I had feellngs of inadequacy and inferiority.”
Basic Text, p. 112

Somewhere along the way, many of us developed strong feelings of inadequacy and inferiority. Deep inside was a voice that continually cried out, “You’re worthless!” Many of us learn to recognize this characteristic of low self-esteem very early in our recovery. Some of us may feel that our feelings of inferiority were where all our problems began.

Whether we learn this low self-esteem in our families or through our interactions with others, in NA we learn the tools for reclaiming ourselves. Building up our fractured self-esteem sometimes begins by simply accepting a service position. Or perhaps our phone begins to ring, and for the first time people are calling just to see how we are. They don’t want anything from us but to reach out and help.

Next we get a sponsor, someone who teaches us that we are worthwhile and believes in us until we can believe in ourselves. Our sponsor guides us through the Twelve Steps where we learn who we really are, not who we have built ourselves up or down to be.

Low self-esteem doesn’t go away overnight. Sometimes it takes years for us to really get in touch with ourselves. But with the help of other members of NA who share our same feelings, and by working the Twelve Steps, we blossom into individuals that others and, most importantly, we ourselves respect.

Just for today: I will remember that I am deserving of my Higher Power’s love. I know that I am a worthy human being.
pg. 206

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Let a joy keep you. Reach out your hands and take it when it runs by. –Carl Sandburg
There is a song that says joy is like the rain. It comes across our window pane and then goes away again. When joy comes knocking at our window we can reach out and let it in. Joy comes to us in many ways–through deep laughter, through games played together in a spirit of fun and sharing. Singing together, skating, and being around a campfire are all ways we share joy. Yet joy can also be felt alone.
Each moment of joy we reach for strengthens our spirits. Joyful memories can sustain us through days of long hard work. Like rain, joy comes and goes, yet its nourishment keeps our spirits alive.
How can I share my joy today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Do not seek death. Death will find you. –Dag Hammarskjold
When we accept deep within ourselves the fact that we will die, that our days are numbered as certainly as those of each thriving, bustling generation before us, then we become more fully alive and vital men. Facing this raises grief over our loss, and we wish to avoid it. Yet, death keeps us honest. It highlights the folly of our questions about whether we should live or die and confronts us with the self-destructive behaviors we have used. Some of us have nearly killed ourselves by our extreme behaviors.
Since death is certain, the real question is. How shall we live? By pursuing recovery and spiritual growth we have chosen to live more fully and to use our energies well. We live with commitment to our highest values. We stay in tune with our inner voice to help us make choices. We play, we love, and we celebrate the miracle of life every day, not because there is no grief, but because life is precious and time is limited.
Today, I will accept my grief over the limits of life. I will celebrate its wonder.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
I have come to believe in the “Sacrament of the Moment,” which presupposes trust in the ultimate goodness of my creator.
–Ruth Casey
The moment, realized, is like a bud blossoming. The day unfolds and with each minute we are moved along to the experiences right for us at this place and this time. Our resistance to certain experiences and particular people creates the barrier that blocks the good in store for us.
We can rest assured; our higher power is caring for us. Each breath we take is Spirit-filled, and the plan for our lives is an accumulation of necessary experiences that is helping us to grow and develop our special talents. What we often forget is that the difficult periods of our lives stretch us, enlighten us, ready us to be the women we desire within to be.
This moment is sacred. All moments are sacred. They will not come again. What is offered this moment for us to grow on will not be offered in exactly this way again. Our higher power knows our needs and is caring for them. We can trust the goodness of today.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Insisting on the Best
We deserve the best life and love has to offer, but we are each faced with the challenge of learning to identify what that means in our life. We must each come to grips with our own understanding of what we believe we deserve, what we want, and whether we are receiving it.
There is only one place to start, and that is right where we are, in our current circumstances. The place we begin is with us.
What hurts? What makes us angry? What are we whining and complaining about? Are we discounting how much a particular behavior is hurting us? Are we making excuses for the other person, telling ourselves we’re “too demanding”?
Are we reluctant, for a variety of reasons, especially fear, to tackle the issues in our relationships that may be hurting us? Do we know what’s hurting us and do we know that we have a right to stop our pain, if we want to do that?
We can begin the journey from deprived to deserving. We can start it today. We can also be patient and gentle with ourselves, as we travel in important increments from believing we deserve second best, to knowing in our hearts that we deserve the best, and taking responsibility for that.
Today, I will pay attention to how I allow people to treat me, and how I feel about that. I will also watch how I treat others. I will not overreact by taking their issues too personally and too seriously; I will not under react by denying that certain behaviors are inappropriate and not acceptable to me.
Whatever situation I encounter today, I will believe in its goodness. It is right for me. It may stretch my patience rather than elicit laughter, but it is right for me at this time.

Today I am willing to give away what I need for myself. I am willing to listen to someone else’s problems. That way we will both see that we are traveling together on the same journey and are not alone. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Go a Little Further

I arrived at Oregon’s Willamette National Forest after dark. Suddenly I found myself at a fork in the road. To the right was a chained gate marked “Foot Travelers Welcome. To the left was an open road marked “Nature Sanctuary, Authorized Visitors Only.”

I stared at both signs, then headed to the left. I didn’t see anything that looked like lodging and I began to feel uncomfortable, like one of the unauthorized visitors the sign warned about. I backed the car out to the fork, turned around and left.

Two hours later, I still hadn’t found the retreat. I was tired and worried about running out of gas. I tried to remember what I’d been learning– that desperation attracts more desperation. I relaxed and visualized myself finding the retreat, being given a key to a room, and going to sleep in a bed. I visualized it until I could see the scene clearly in my mind.

Before long I found myself back at the fork. I mean no harm, I thought. So I’ll just drive down that nature sanctuary road again, the one for authorized visitors only. I drove as far as I had before, then decided to push ahead a bit more. I rounded the bend and there it was– the parking lot, the night office, and a man who could give me a key to my room. Within twenty minutes, I was in bed for the evening.

Sometimes we need to go further than we thought we could. We need to go past our fear, past our uncertainty, past the bend we can’t see beyond. If we stay on the course, give it that extra push, and go round the bend, we may find what we’re looking for.

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More Language Of Letting Go

There’s a bottom to the well

“I’m not disconnected from my emotions,” said Jan. “But what I am is frightened. I go so deeply into some feelings that I think that how I’m feeling now is the way I’ll always feel. I get frightened, especially with sadness, that there’s no end, no bottom, to what I’m going through.”

Some feelings are just plain big. It feels like we’ve fallen into an emotional well with no bottom.

We haven’t. There is a bottom. It may take a while to ge there, but there is a bottom. And there are ways we can take care of ourselves when we’re feeling this way. Some people get professional help. Others make a decision to go through it, giving special care to themselves. If you’re going through an emotionally exhausting time, you may want to design your own care routine. Here are some suggestions that have helped some people get through these times.

. If you’re involved with a support group, go to your meetings, even and especially if you don’t feel like going out.

. Let a trusted friend know what you’re going through. Ask that person for support, be clear in asking for what you need.

. Get plenty of rest. It takes a lot of energy to go through feelings this big.

. Make yourself get up and get out sometimes,too. Just the sheer act of being around people, in a park or at the mall, reminds us that life goes on when it feels like our life has stopped. Ask yourself what might feel good, and listen to any positive ideas you get.

. Exercise, even if you don’t want to. Move your body around. It’ll help move those feelings around,too.

. Make daily goals, a list of things you want and need to do each day. Give yourself room to feel your feelings, but exercise your will and volition,too.

. Don’t let your environment reflect what you’re feeling; let it reflect how you want to feel. Tidy up your living space.

. Give yourself time deadlines for emotions. For instance, give yourself half an hour to thoroughly and completely give in to the feeling, then go do something else for a while. Go for a walk, watch TV, go to a movie, read a book. Tell yourself you’re not running away from the feeling. You’re just going to take a break for a while.

. Journal. Write about how you feel. Few things in life can substitute or work better than actually making a connection with ourselves.

. Then pray. Connecting with God always help.

God, help me accept and get through all my feelings, even the big ones.

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Food for Thought

Hard Right or Easy Wrong?

We are constantly faced with choices, and often we are tempted to follow the way of least resistance. In our dealings with others and ourselves it is usually easier to say yes than no, but yes is not always the best answer. If we are too permissive, we become lax and ineffective.

The problem with taking the easy way is that it usually ends up being harder in the long run. If we do not control our eating, we will have all of the problems of obesity. If we do not limit our spending, we will eventually lack funds for what we need. If we do not follow moral and ethical principles, our lives become chaotic and we live in constant fear and tension.

Although choosing the hard right is difficult, it is by exercising our ethical muscles that we become strong and gain self-respect.

By Your grace, may I make the right choices.

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Recognizing Our Own Greatness
The Greatness in Others by Madisyn Taylor

We are all moved by greatness when we see it we know the feeling of it and have it within ourselves.

A person who is said to possess greatness stands apart from others in some way, usually by the size or originality of their vision and their ability to manifest that vision. And yet those who recognize that greatness, whether they display it themselves or not, also have greatness within them; otherwise, they could not see it in another. In many ways, the achievements of one person always belong to many people for we accomplish nothing alone in this world. People who display greatness rely upon others who are able to see as they do, to listen, encourage, and support. Without those people who recognize greatness and move in to support it, even the greatest ideas, works of art, and political movements would remain unborn.

We are all moved by greatness when we see it, and although the experience is to some degree subjective, we know the feeling of it. When we encounter it, it is as if something in us stirs, awakens, and comes forth to meet what was inside us all along. When we respond to someone else’s greatness, we feed our own. We may feel called to dedicate ourselves to their vision, or we may be inspired to follow a path we forge ourselves. Either way, we cannot lose when we recognize that the greatness we see in others belongs also to us. Our recognition of this is a call to action that, if heeded, will inspire others to see in us the greatness they also possess. This creates a chain reaction of greatness unfolding itself endlessly into the future.

Ultimately, greatness is simply the best of what humanity has to offer. Greatness does what has not been done before and inspires the same courage that it requires. When we see it in others, we know it, and when we trust its presence in ourselves, we embody it. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Long experience has proven that The Program and Twelve Steps will work for any person who approaches it with an open mind. We have to remember that we can’t expect miracles overnight; after all, it took years to create the situation in which we find ourselves today. I’ll try to be receptive and to listen. I’ll try to e less hasty in drawing judgmental conclusions. I’ll hand on to the expectation that The Program can change my entire life as long as I give it a chance. Have I begun to realize that my ultimate contentment doesn’t depend on having things work out my way?

Today I Pray

I pray for a more receptive attitude; for a little more patience; a little less haste and more humility in my judgments. May I always understand that change will come — it will all happen — if I will listen for God’s will, God grant me perseverance, for sometimes I must wait a while for The Program’s Steps to take effect.

Today I Will Remember

Patience.

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One More Day

What is experience? A poor little hut constructed from the ruins of the palace of gold and marble called our illusion.
– Joseph Roux

Our youthful dreams of glory, adventure, and wealth have, for most of us, been unfulfilled, yet we are not disappointed. Childlike illusions that a meaningful life had to be based on excitement and power have give way to a maturity that values simpler, yet more important, goals.

Our long-ago need to importance was based on the judgment of others. We want other people to see our wealth, feel our power, possibly even envy our influence. Today, we seek our own approval. We value serenity, not adventure. Love, not envy. Acceptance, now power. We live with goals, not illusions.

I am thankful that my values are strong.

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One Day At A Time

SELF-RESPECT
“In his private heart …
no man much respects himself.”
Mark Twain

I had no confidence or satisfaction in myself. I covered my lack of self-respect with absurd and harmful behaviors. I shielded myself from the respect and love of others by using these behaviors. I wanted to hide from the truth I knew – that I was behaving badly and dishonestly.

Having begun this program which restores us to sanity, we have stepped into a new realm of learning to love and respect ourselves. We have come to realize that we gain self-respect by working the Steps, surrendering ego, doing service for others, and relying on a Higher Power. Our lives become useful, our hearts are healed, and we are filled with respect for who we have become.

One day at a time …
May I come to realize I am worthy of self-respect because I am doing the right things for the right reasons … and giving credit to my Higher Power.
~ Judy N.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We usually conclude the period of meditation with a prayer that we be shown all through the day what our next step is to be, that we be given whatever we need to take care of such problems. We asked especially for freedom from self-will, and are careful to make no request for ourselves only. We may ask for ourselves, however, if others will be helped. We are careful never to pray for our own selfish ends. Many of us have wasted a lot of time doing that and it doesn’t work. You can easily see why. – Pg. 87 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

It is important for us to think in the positive. It doesn’t help to think ‘I don’t want to use, I don’t want to use,’ because we end up having to think of what we don’t want to use. It stays on our mind. But if we think, ‘I like having a clear mind; I like remembering; I like growing,’ we have positive thoughts directed away from our diseases.

May my thoughts focus on what I’m working toward, not what I’m escaping from.

A Little Magic

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

I believe anything is possible

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Do not become one of these people who have two excuses for everything: one excuse for what you don’t do and another for what you don’t have.

Excuses are simply my lack of faith in me.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Encouragement from an old-timer can turn a newcomer’s life around.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am willing to give away what I need for myself. I am willing to listen to someone else’s problems. That way we will both see that we are traveling together on the same journey and are not alone.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

My life is none of my business. I just suit up, show up; be an example of AA and leave the rest to God. – Sharon B.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 16

Freedom
We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness.
We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.
We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 83-84

Thought to Ponder . . .
Serenity isn’t freedom from the storm; it is peace within the storm.

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

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

Selfishness
“So our troubles, we think, are basically of our own making.
They arise out of ourselves,
and the alcoholic is an extreme example of self-will run riot,
though he usually doesn’t think so.
Above everything, we alcoholics
must be rid of this selfishness.
We must, or it kills us!
God makes that possible . . .
We had to have God’s help.”
1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 62

Thought to Consider . . .
The smallest package in the world
is an alcoholic all wrapped up in himself.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
P R I D E  =  Pretty Ridiculous Individual Directing Everything

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

Peace of Mind
from: “Freedom from Bondage”
“A.A. has taught me that I will have peace of mind in exact proportion to the peace of mind I bring into the lives of other people, and it has taught me the true meaning of the admonition happy are ye who know these things and do them. For the only problems I have now are those I create when I break out in a rash of self-will.”
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, pages 550-551

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

“In the years that lie just ahead Alcoholics Anonymous faces a supreme test – the great ordeal of its own prosperity and success. I think it will prove the greatest trial of all. Can we but weather that, the waves of time and circumstance may beat upon us in vain.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1946
“Policy on Gift Funds”
The Language of the Heart

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

“One of the many doctors who had the opportunity of reading this
book in manuscript form told us that the use of sweets was often
helpful, of course depending upon a doctor’s advice. He thought all
alcoholics should constantly have chocolate available for its quick
energy value at times of fatigue. He added that occasionally in the
night a vague craving arose which would be satisfied by candy. Many
of us have noticed a tendency to eat sweets and have found this
practice beneficial.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 133~

“Many of us felt that we had plenty of character. There was a
tremendous urge to cease forever. Yet we found it impossible. 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.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 34~

“He finally realizes that he has undergone a profound altera  tion in his reaction to life; that such a change could hardly   have been brought about by himself alone.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 567 (Appendix II: Spiritual Experience)

“It never occurred to us that we needed to change ourselves  to meet conditions, whatever  they were.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 47 (Step Four)

Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, I fully give myself to you in faith that the necessary change will take place if I take the action.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 15th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 15th

Daily Reflections

PRIDE

For thousands of years we have been demanding more than our share of security, prestige, and romance.
When we seemed to be succeeding, we drank to dream still greater dreams. When we were frustrated,
even in part, we drank for oblivion. Never was there enough of what we thought we wanted. In all these
strivings, so many of them well-intentioned, our crippling handicap had been our lack of humility. 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

Time and again I approached the Seventh Step, only to fall back and regroup. Something was missing and the
impact of the Step escaped me. What had I overlooked? A single word: read but ignored, the foundation of all the
Steps, indeed the entire Alcoholics Anonymous program – that word is “humbly”. I understood my shortcomings:
I constantly put tasks off; I angered easily; I felt too much self-pity; and thought, why me? Then I remembered,
“Pride goeth before the fall,” and I eliminated pride from my life.


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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day
After we had sobered up through the A.A. program, we gradually began to get a peace of mind and serenity which we never thought were possible. This peace of mind is based on a feeling that fundamentally all is well. That does not mean that all is well on the surface of things. Little things can keep going wrong and big things can keep on upsetting us. But deep down in our hearts we know that everything is eventually going to be all right, now that we are living sober lives. Have I achieved a deep down, inner calm?

Meditation For The Day
You are climbing up the ladder of life, which reaches into eternity. Would God plant your feet upon an insecure ladder? Its supports may be out of sight, hidden in secret places, but if God has asked you to step on and up firmly, then surely He has secured your ladder. Faith gives you the strength to climb steadily this ladder of life. You should leave your security to God and trust Him not to let you fall. He is there to give you all the power you need to keep on climbing.

Prayer For The Day
I pray that I may climb the ladder of life without fear. I pray that I may progress steadily through the rest of my life with faith and confidence.

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As Bill Sees It

Antidote For Fear, p. 196

When our failings generate fear, we then have soul-sickness. This
sickness, in turn, generates still more character defects.

Unreasonable fear that our instincts will not be satisfied drives us to
covet the possessions of others, to lust for sex and power, to become
angry when our instinctive demands are threatened, to be envious
when the ambitions of others seem to be realized while ours are not.
We eat, drink, and grab for more of everything than we need, fearing
we shall never have enough. And, with genuine alarm at the prospect
of work, we stay lazy. We loaf and procrastinate, or at best work
grudgingly and under half steam.

These fears are the termites that ceaselessly devour the foundations
of whatever sort of life we try to build.

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As faith grows, so does inner security. The vast underlying fear of
nothingness commences to subside. We of A.A. find that our basic
antidote for fear is a spiritual awakening.

1. 12 & 12, p. 49
2. Grapevine, January 1962


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Walk In Dry Places

The Possible Dream
Reaching objectives.
Although we hear people ridicule the practice of daydreaming, we also hear them express admiration for people who pursued and realized their dreams.  How do we know when we are pursing the right dreams?
Useful, effective dreams may seem farfetched, but they still have a possibility of fulfillment. In some ways, they’re tied to what we can do if we have the right opportunities and use our talents properly.
Fantasies, or useless dreams, can never happen. Fantasies are often based on our past and how it might have been different. It’s also useless to fantasize about feats that are completely beyond anything we could ever do.  These dreams are a waste of time and energy.
What’s exciting, however, is that very person can find dreams that are possible and based on reality.  It’s important to pursue these dreams and bring them into realization.
I’ll keep my realistic dreams very much alive today, knowing they’re the patterns I need for reaching my long-term objectives.

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Keep It Simple

Let there be spaces in your togetherness.—Kahil Gilran
We all need time alone. Then we can get to know our Higher Power better too.
When we were using chemicals, we were afraid of being alone. We didn’t want to think too much.
So we got high.
Now we know we’re never totally alone. Our Higher Power is with us. We can relax. We can rest.
We can think, read, and meditate. We can our own best friend.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me use my time alone to know myself better. Help me get to know You too.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll plan to spend two hours alone to get to know myself better. I could take a long walk, or enjoy a park, or my garden. What will I do, and when?

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Each Day a New Beginning

If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain; If I can ease one life the aching, Or cool one pain, Or help one fainting robin into his nest again, I shall not live in vain.  –Emily Dickinson
The gift of attention to each other is “passing on” the love of God. In order to feel love, we have to give it away. We will know love when we give love.
Our attachment to the world, the sense of belonging most of us longed for the many years prior to recovery, awaits us, is showered upon us even as we reach out to someone else. We are no longer alone, scared, alienated when we let others know they are not alone. We can heal one another. The program opens the way for our healing.
Each day, each one of us can ease the pain of a friend, a co-worker, a child. The beauty of the program, the beauty of God’s plan for us all, is that our own pain is relieved in the process of easing the pain of another. Love is the balm. Loving others makes our lives purposeful.
No day is lived in vain, if I but cherish someone else’s presence.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

When we saw others solve their problems by a simple reliance upon the Spirit of the Universe, we had to stop doubting the power of God. Our ideas did not work. But the God idea did.

p. 52

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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.
Perhaps the best thing of all for me is to remember that my serenity is inversely proportional to my expectations.  The higher my expectations of Max and other people are, the lower is my serenity.  I can watch my serenity level rise when I discard my expectations.  But then my “rights” try to move in, and they too can force my serenity level down.  I have to discard my “rights,” as well as my expectations, by asking myself, How important is it, really?  How important is it compared to my serenity, my emotional sobriety?  And when I place more value on my serenity and sobriety than on anything else, I can maintain them at a higher level–at least for the time being.

p. 420

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step One – “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol–that our lives had become unmanageable. ”

No other kind of bankruptcy is like this one. Alcohol, now become the rapacious creditor, bleeds us of all self-sufficiency and all will to resist its demands. Once this stark fact is accepted, our bankruptcy as going human concerns is complete.

p. 21

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If you let cloudy water settle, it will become clear. If you let your upset mind settle, your course will also become clear.
–Jack Kornfield

All that we are is the result of what we have thought. If a man speaks or acts with an evil thought, pain follows him. If a man speaks or acts with a pure thought, happiness follows him, like a shadow that never leaves him.
–Buddha

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.”
–Aristotle

Today, I will trust that God’s will is happening as it needs to in my life. I will not make myself anxious and upset by searching vigorously for God’s will, taking unnecessary actions to control the course of my destiny or wondering if God’s will has passed me by and I have missed it.
–Melody Beattie

The greatest good we can do for others is not to share our riches with them, but to reveal their own.
–Author Unknown

In seeking wisdom, the first step is silence, the second listening, the third remembering, the fourth practicing, the fifth teaching others.
–Ibn Gabirol, poet and philosopher (ca. 1022-1058)

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

MUSIC

“I know that the twelve notes in
each octave and the varieties of
rhythm offer me opportunities
that all of human genius will
never exhaust.”
–Igor Stravinsky

There is so much to be gained in life. Just when you think you have exhausted all possibilities, a new insight is perceived, permutations and varieties appear in abundance. An example is sobriety. I thought it meant not drinking but today I see that it affects all areas of my life — how I walk, the hugs I freely give, my acceptance of others, my willingness to trust and risk, my optimism for a new day.

Also God is comprehensive for me today. He is alive in church, the Bible and tradition but He is also alive in literature, scripture, sexuality and music. Today I can hear beyond the symphony into the unfathomable message of God’s love for His creation. And always I hear something different and new.

Thank You, Lord, for Your messengers who love through the art of music.

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He replied, “Because you have so little faith, I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Matthew 17:20

[God] is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine.
Ephesians 3:21

“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.'”
Matthew 19: 26

The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.
EX 15:2


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Daily Inspiration

Give thanks for not only all that you have, but all that you are. Lord, may I recognize the goodness within me and know that I am lovable even with my shortcomings.

To give of yourself is when you truly give. Lord, even in my busiest moments may I be able to make time when someone really needs me.

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NA Just For Today

Relations With Others

“We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.”
Step Eight

All human beings struggle with self-centeredness. The chronic self-centeredness that lies at the very core of addiction makes that struggle doubly difficult for people like us. Many of us have lived as if we believed we were the last people on earth, utterly blind to the effect our behavior has had on those around us.

The Eighth Step is the process our program has given us to honestly examine our past relationships. We take a look at the writing we did on our Fourth Step to identify the effects our actions had on the people in our lives. When we recognize harm done to some of those people, we become willing to take responsibility for our actions by making amends to them.

The variety of people we encounter in our day and the quality of our relations with them determines, to a great extent, the quality of our very lives. Love, humor, excitement, caring – the things that make life worth living derive much of their meaning from being shared with others. Understanding this, we want to discover the true nature of our relationships with other people and mend whatever breaks we may find in those relations. We want to work the Eighth Step.

Just for today: I want to fully enjoy the companionship of my fellows. I will examine my relationships with the people in my life. Where I find I’ve harmed others, I will seek the willingness to make amends to them.
pg. 205

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I was forced to live far beyond my years when just a child. Now I have reversed the order and I intend to remain young indefinitely. –Mary Pickford
We can all learn to change our lives so the child within each of us can live in balance with the people we have become. We can learn to give the child a voice, let the child play, let the child express needs and fears and pleasures.
We might look at our old baby pictures for a valuable lesson. We will see pictures of ourselves on rocking horses, grinning and waving; pictures of ourselves with our most precious toy–a crude metal car, perhaps; pictures of ourselves rolling in the grass. The lesson we learn is that it doesn’t take much to make this child happy–even today.
We keep our own happiness safe inside us to call on whenever we need it, as long as we keep a healthy relationship with the child within. When we nourish the child, we can be assured the child will also nourish us.
What simple thing will make me happy today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
There is nothing you can say in answer to a compliment. I have been complimented myself a great many times, and they always embarrass me – I always feel that they have not said enough. –Mark Twain
Hearing the good words and praise of another person is harder for some of us to accept than criticism and abuse. Perhaps it is easier to receive what we are accustomed to, or maybe we feel a loss of control when someone compliments us. This is a time for us to begin accepting others’ actions. We do not need to be in control of our relationships at all times. When friends offer sincere compliments, we don’t need to push them away or brush them off.
All we need to do is allow others’ positive messages to come into us. In a good relationship we listen to the feelings of our friends, and sometimes that means truly listening as they tell us their good feelings about us.
Today, I will be open to the compliments that come my *way without controlling them.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain; If I can ease one life the aching, Or cool one pain, Or help one fainting robin into his nest again, I shall not live in vain. –Emily Dickinson
The gift of attention to each other is “passing on” the love of God. In order to feel love, we have to give it away. We will know love when we give love.
Our attachment to the world, the sense of belonging most of us longed for the many years prior to recovery, awaits us, is showered upon us even as we reach out to someone else. We are no longer alone, scared, alienated when we let others know they are not alone. We can heal one another. The program opens the way for our healing.
Each day, each one of us can ease the pain of a friend, a co-worker, a child. The beauty of the program, the beauty of God’s plan for us all, is that our own pain is relieved in the process of easing the pain of another. Love is the balm. Loving others makes our lives purposeful.
No day is lived in vain, if I but cherish someone else’s presence.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Family Buttons
I was thirty five years old the first time I spoke up to my mother and refused to buy into her games and manipulation. I was terribly frightened and almost couldn’t believe I was doing this. I found I didn’t have to be meant. I didn’t have to start an argument. But I could say what I wanted and needed to say to take care of myself. I learned I could love and honor myself, and still care about my mother – the way I wanted to – not the way she wanted me to. –Anonymous
Who knows better how to push our buttons than family members? Who, besides family members, do we give such power?
No matter how long we or our family members have been recovering, relationships with family members can be provocative.
One telephone conversation can put us in an emotional and psychological tailspin that lasts for hours or days.
Sometimes, it gets worse when we begin recovery because we become even more aware of our reactions and our discomfort. That’s uncomfortable, but good. It is by beginning this process of awareness and acceptance that we change, grow, and heal.
The process of detaching in love from family members can take years. So can the process of learning how to react in a more effective way. We cannot control what they do or try to do, but we can gain some sense of control over how we choose to react.
Stop trying to make them act or treat us any differently. Unhook from their system by refusing to try to change or influence them.
Their patterns, particularly their patterns with us, are their issues. How we react, or allow these patterns to influence us, is our issue. How we take care of ourselves is our issue.
We can love our family and still refuse to buy into their issues. We can love our family but refuse their efforts to manipulate, control, or produce guilt in us.
We can take care of ourselves with family members without feeling guilty. We can learn to be assertive with family members without being aggressive. We can set the boundaries we need and want to set with family members without being disloyal to the family.
We can learn to love our family without forfeiting love and respect for ourselves.
Today, help me start practicing self care with family members. Help me know that I do not have to allow their issues to control my life, my day, or my feelings. Help me know it’s okay to have all my feelings about family members, without guilt or shame.

Today I choose to think positive. Today I let my thoughts lead the way to success and happiness. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Delight in Yourself

Stop picking on yourself, worrying if you’re good enough, wondering what people will see if you let them see your heart. This is what they’ll see: that you are a lovable and delightful soul, beautiful child of God.

Be yourself and accept yourself–warts, waistline,and all. You don’t have to sit up that straight, be that proper, or fear what others may see. Let your imperfections show! Share them! Love yourself anyway! Relax, and be who you are! When you do that, your life will be fun and a joyful gift to others.

People who comfortably accept who they are– both their flaws and their good points– are healing, delightful, and fun to be around. Look at any work of nature: a canyon, a flower, a bird. A mountain or a forest trail. Where does the perfection begin and imperfecting end? It’s the combination that makes a perfect scene. So it is with you.

Relax. Lighten up. Let go of shame and fear. The whole picture is perfect, and perfectly okay.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Expect grief to be a lot of grief

Your grief will take more energy than you would have ever imagined.
–Theresa A. Rondo
How to Go on Living When Someone You Love Dies

Grief is more than one feeling. Depending on the nature of the loss, it may become a temporary way of life. It may last eight weeks or eight years.

Let go of any judgements you have about grief and about how long you think it should take to get over that loss. Instead, practice compassion for other people and for yourself.

Keep your expectations realistic. Give anyone who’s grieving, whether it’s yourself or someone else, more latitude than you think could possibly be needed.

God, there’s a lot of broken hearts on this planet. Please heal them all, including mine.

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In God’s Care

Prayer enlarges the heart until it is capable of containing God’s gift to himself.
~~Mother Teresa

In praying, some of us depend on the traditions of our religion, others on the instructions of spriitual leaders. Some of us just strike out on our own, not knowing what to say or what to do, yet believing that form is not as important as intent. We only know that when we do pray, something happens.

And each time we lift our thoughts to God, it is easier the next time. Then, as we keep praying, we discover that we have begun to establish a familiarity. Our heart is opening to God without our realizing it. When we are willing, God fills our heart. And even though we can leave God, and often do, God never leaves us.

I am grateful that God is in my heart. My prayer is one of thanks.

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Day By Day

Recognizing opportunities

Today is a day of opportunity. Any experiences that we have today – good or bad – can be seen as opportunities, opportunities to grow closer to God.

As bread is food for the body, opportunities are food for the soul.

Do I see all the opportunities in my daily life? Do I take advantage of them?

I pray that I may use my experiences as opportunities to grow closer to God.

Today I will look for opportunities by…

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Food for Thought

Clean Abstinence

It is easy to become sloppy in our abstinence and in our program. This is where a daily inventory is an invaluable aid. When we catch ourselves cheating just a little on measurements, making excuses to skip meetings, neglecting to follow the promptings of our Higher Power, it is time for housecleaning.

If we have stopped calling in our food plan and are having trouble with abstinence, we may need to get in touch with a food sponsor. Many of us find it hard to admit that we cannot do everything alone! False pride can be our downfall. If we pretend that all is well when it is not, we cut ourselves off from the help of the group.

The time to correct small mistakes is immediately, before they get bigger and make us discouraged. Admitting the mistake to another person clears the way for correction and change.

Thank You for those who help me maintain clean abstinence.

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Elegant Blessings
Living a Life of Grace by Madisyn Taylor

When we accept that we always exist in a state of grace, we are able to live our lives more graciously.

Grace exists inside of all of us and around us. It is our inner beauty that radiates outward, touching everyone we meet. It is that unseen hand that comes from the divine, raising us up when we most need it. To be able to live in a state of grace is not based on worthiness, nor is it earned through good deeds, ritual, or sacrifice. Rather it is an unearned favor, freely bestowed and available to all, that is inherent to our birthright. All we must do is open our eyes to its presence and we will find and experience grace everywhere.

Grace is in the rain bringing relief to drought-ridden farms, and the unexpected lead for the perfect job opportunity that comes from a stranger. Grace is what happens to someone when they miraculously escape injury; it is even the simple events that happen to us that we call “good luck,” like when we don’t get a parking ticket after are meter has expired. Grace resides in the love between two people, the gift or check that comes unexpectedly in the mail, the cozy comforts that make up a home, and in the acts of forgiveness we bestow upon others. It is grace that moves us to go out of our way to help a stranger. In music, a grace note is the pause between notes that is so important to the pacing of a song. Grace is the state we are in when we are doing nothing but just being who we are.

When we accept that we always exist in a state of grace, we are able to live our lives more graciously. Knowing we are graced gives us hope, makes us more generous, and allows us to trust that we are taken care of even when we are going through difficult times. Grace is our benevolence of heart, and our generosity of spirit. Grace is unconditional love and the beauty that is our humanity. When we know that we are blessed with grace, we can’t help but want to live our lives in harmony. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Faced with almost certain destruction by our addictions, we eventually had no choice but to become open-minded on spiritual matters. In that sense, the chemicals of drugs we used were potent persuaders; they finally whipped us into a state of reasonableness. We came to learn that when we stubbornly close the doors on our minds, we’re locking out far more than we’re locking in. Do I immediately reject new ideas? Or do I patiently strive to change my old way of living?

Today I Pray

May I keep an open mind especially on spiritual matters, remembering that “spiritual” is a bigger word than “religious.” (I was born of the Spirit, but I was taught religion.) May I remember that a locked mind is a symptom of my addiction and an open mind is essential to my recovery.

Today I Will Remember

If I lock more out than I lock in, what am I protecting?

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One More Day

Let us then be up and doing, with a heart for any fate.
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

There may have been times in our lives when we have been forced, for one reason or another, to eat a bland diet. The reasons don’t matter; what does matter is how totally bored we became with the unvarying beige-and-white soft menu! Before long we had lost our anticipation of eating.

We may sometimes place ourselves on a bland diet of life. Daily routine says much the same, day after day, year after year. From home to work to the sofa to bed, and start all over again. Some routine is like a healthy diet that gives us stability and safety, but a sprinkling of risk is the seasoning that adds zest to our lives. We can reach out for what is not habit. We can continue to try when previous efforts have failed. We can take a generous helping of life.

I can dare to change or to try new things without sacrificing all of my routine and safety.

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One Day At A Time

~ SELF-TRUTH ~
“You cannot be true to God or to anyone else until you are true to yourself.”
Sr. Jeanne Koma, H.M.

I have spent much of my life role-playing. As spouse, parent, employee, addict, I have often lost myself. Who am I? Why am I here? If I played none of those roles, would I still exist?

It wasn’t until I took the time to discover the ‘real’ me, the person God created, that I was able to be a better spouse, parent, and employee. And it was through this discovery that the addict in me began taking a back seat to the child of God that I truly am.

I cannot do God’s will nor be supportive of others if I am dishonest about who I am.

When Moses asked God who He was, God replied, “I am who I am.” I am also who I am. I have nothing of which to be ashamed.

One Day at a Time . . .
I must be true to myself if I wish to be of service to anyone else.
~Debbie~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

I spend a great deal of time passing on what I learned to others who want and need it badly. I do it for four reasons:

1. Sense of duty.
2. It is a pleasure.
3. Because in so doing I am paying my debt to the man who took time to pass it on to me.
4. Because every time I do it I take out a little more insurance for myself against a possible slip. – Page 180-181 – 4th. Edition – Doctor Bob’s Nightmare

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

It is remarkable how often we run across this feeling of ‘uniqueness’ as we recover: we used more, had worse contacts, spent more in bars, treated our family worse, were younger, older, blacker, gayer, more sensitive–whatever.

Let me see in this next hour, one area that I feel I’m ‘unique’ which is actually commonplace for us addicts.

Hesitation

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

I deserve a passion in my life.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Pissing contests about who used how much and who acted bad are ego trips in reverse. ‘It doesn’t matter what or how much we used. In NA, staying clean has to come first. We realize that we cannot use drugs and live.’ (P 19, NA Basic Text).

When I brag about how much I used, how bad it was, and how much damage I did, I am doing one of two things, trying to make myself look larger or them smaller.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Coffee makers make it.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I choose to think positive. Today I let my thoughts lead the way to success and happiness.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

‘The best thing for you is to give up drinking.’ ‘Yeah.. What’s the next best thing?’ – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 15

Complacency
Following the principles laid out in the Big Book has not always been comfortable,
nor will I claim perfection.
I have yet to find a place in the Big Book that says,
“Now that you have completed the Steps; have a nice life.”
The program is a plan for a lifetime of daily living.
There have been occasions when the temptation to slack off has won.
I view each of these as learning opportunities.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 317

Thought to Ponder . . .
There are no endings … only new beginnings.

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

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

Paradox
“We Give Away to Keep.
That seems absurd and untrue.
How can you keep anything if you give it away?
But in order to keep whatever it is we get in AA,
we must go about giving it away to others,
for no fees or rewards of any kind.
When we cannot afford to give away what we have
received so freely in AA,
we had better get ready for our next ‘drunk.’
It will happen every time.
We’ve got to continue to give it away in order to keep it.”
– The Professor and the Paradox
1955AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous (2nd Ed.), pp. 341-2

Thought to Consider . . .
“We are not living just to be sober;
we are living to learn, to serve, and to love.”
As Bill Sees It, p. 94

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
H E L P = Hope, Encouragement, Love, and Patience

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

Attraction
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 whose 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.”
1981, AAWS, Inc., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 181

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

“I opened the door and walked into the warmth, the laughter, the acceptance, and the love that is AA. No one asked me who I was or what I wanted; no one asked me how much money I had or what I did for a living; no one asked me where I did my drinking or what my sexual preferences were. The smiling man who greeted me told me that night that if I thought I had a drinking problem, I was in the right place.”
Toledo, Ohio, September 1982
“Above All, an Alcoholic”
In Our Own Words: Stories of Young AAs in Recovery

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

“If, when you honestly want to, you find you cannot quit entirely,
or if when drinking, you have little control over the amount you take,
you are probably alcoholic. If that be the case, you may be
suffering from an illness which only a spiritual experience will
conquer.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 44~

“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~

“We have begun to learn tolerance, patience and good will toward all men, even our enemies, for we look on them as sick people.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 70 (How It Works)

“We rest quietly with the thoughts of someone who knows, so that we may experience and learn.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 100 (Step Eleven)

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

When our failings generate fear, we then have soul-sickness. This sickness, in turn, generates still more character defects.
Unreasonable fear that our instincts will not be satisfied drives us to covet the possessions of others, to lust for sex and power, to become angry when our instinctive demands are threatened, to be envious when the ambitions of others seem to be realized while ours are not. We eat, drink, and grab for more of everything than we need, fearing we shall never have enough. And, with genuine alarm at the prospect of work, we stay lazy. We loaf and procrastinate, or at best work grudgingly and under half steam.
These fears are the termites that ceaselessly devour the foundations of whatever sort of life we try to build.
As faith grows, so does inner security. The vast underlying fear of nothingness commences to subside. We of A.A. find that our basic antidote for fear is a spiritual awakening.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, allow me to always continue learning.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 14th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 14th

Daily Reflections

A NOURISHING INGREDIENT, p.204

Where humility had formerly stood for a forced feeding on humble pie
it now begins to mean the nourishing ingredient which can give us
serenity.
12 & 12, p.74

How often do I focus on my problems and frustrations? When I am
having a “good day” these same problems shrink in importance
and my preoccupation with them dwindles. Wouldn’t it be better if
I could find a key to unlock the “magic” of my “good days” for use
on the woes of my “bad days?”
I already have the solution! Instead of trying to run away from
my pain and wish my problems away, I can pray for humility!
Humility will heal the pain. Humility will take me out of myself.
Humility, that strength granted me by that “power greater than
myself,” is mine for the asking! Humility will bring balance back
into my life. Humility will allow me to accept my humanness
joyously.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

One of the best things about the A.A. program is the peace of
mind and serenity that it can bring us. In our drinking days, we
had no peace of mind or serenity. We had the exact opposite, a
kind of turmoil and that “quiet desperation” we knew so well.
The turmoil of our drinking days was caused partly by our physical
suffering, the terrible hangovers, the cold sweats, the shakes and
the jitters. But it was caused even more by our mental suffering,
the loneliness, the feeling of inferiority, the lying, the remorse that
every alcoholic understands. Have I achieved more peace of
mind?

Meditation For The Day

Try to look for God’s leading in all your personal relationships, in
all your dealings with other persons. God will help you to take
care of all your relationships with people, if you are willing to let
Him guide you. Rejoice that God can protect you and keep you from
temptation and failure. God can protect you in all situations during
the day, if you will rely on His strength and go forward. You should
feel that you are entering upon the stage of success in the proper
way of living. You should not doubt that better things are ahead
for you. Go forward unafraid because you feel deeply safe under
God’s protection.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that God may protect and keep me as long as I try to serve
Him. I pray that I may go forward today unafraid.

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As Bill Sees It

The Language of the Heart, p. 195

Why, at this particular point in history, has God chosen to
communicate His healing grace to so many of us? Every aspect of this
global unfoldment can be related to a single crucial word. The word is
“communication.” There has been a lifesaving communication among
ourselves, with the world around us, and with God.

From the beginning, communication in A.A. has been no ordinary
transmission of helpful ideas and attitudes. Because of our kinship in
suffering, and because our common means of deliverance are effective
for ourselves only when constantly carried to others, our channels of
contact have always been charged with the language of the heart.

A.A. Today, pp. 7-8

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Walk In Dry Places

Self-esteem in responsible work
self-confidence.
“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might,” goes an ancient saying. However long ago this was said, it applies to our work here and now.
Part of recovery lies in doing useful and satisfying work. We can’t wait until the “perfect” job appears. Our success will come in doing the very best we can in our present situation. If we’re unemployed, we can still be useful and active in ways that will help us find the right situation.
And as we work for a living, we’ll find that another important benefit of our work will be greater self-esteem.  We’ll have more respect for ourselves as we contiue to be both productive and active.
Whatever my job is, I’ll give it my best today.  I’ll be grateful for having the opportunity to work productively.


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Keep It Simple

Most of the evils of life arise from man’s being unable to sit still in a room.—Blaise Pascal
Our program teaches us to slow down. We learn to slow down by taking time out. During these times-outs, we look at our values and see if we’re staying true to them.
Because of that, meditation is an important part of our program. It teaches us to slow down. Our Higher Power wants us to have fun and play. But we need to bring our Higher Power along. Remember, our Higher Power loves fun. We can have fun, but not at the expense of others.
Prayer for the Day:  I pray for help so I can remember my values. Higher Power, teach me to have fun. Teach me to be true to You at the same time.
Action for the day:  Today. I’ll three times mischief has been good fun. I’ll talk with a friend about the difference between trouble mischief and fun mischief.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Through spontaneity we are reformed into ourselves. Freed from handed-down frames of reference, spontaneity becomes the moment of personal freedom when we are faced with a reality, explore it, and act accordingly.  –Viola Spolin
Living in the here and the now opens up untold possibilities for new growth. Our inner self is enticed in new directions when our attention is fully in the present. When our minds are still on last night’s argument or tomorrow’s board meeting, we wear blinders to the activity at hand. And God, as our teacher and protector, resides in this experience, in the hearts of these people present.
Every single moment has something for us. Maybe a new piece of information. A piece that solves a problem that’s been puzzling us. Perhaps a chance to make a new friend, one who will be there in a time of need.
Letting go of yesterday frees us. We need not be burdened. It is gone. Our lives could be eased, so much, if we kept our focus on the experience at hand, where the problems we ponder have their solutions. Always.
I will greet today, skipping, smiling, ready for the answers, the truths, the directions meant only for me. The wonders of today will bless me.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

We had to ask ourselves why we shouldn’t apply to our human problems this same readiness to change our point of view. We were having trouble with personal relationships, we couldn’t control our emotional natures, we were a prey to misery and depression, we couldn’t make a living, we had a feeling of uselessness, we were full of fear, we were unhappy, we couldn’t seem to be of real help to other people—was not a basic solution of these bedevilments more important than whether we should see newsreels of lunar flight? Of course it was.

p. 52

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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.
It hasn’t been easy to work out this relationship with Max.  On the contrary, the hardest place to work this program has been in my own home, with my own children and, finally, with Max.  It seems I should have learned from my wife and family first; the newcomer to A.A., last.  But it was the other way around.  Eventually I had to redo each of the Twelve Steps specifically with Max in mind, from the First, saying, “I am powerless over alcohol, and my homelife is unmanageable by me,” to the Twelfth, in which I tried to think of her as a sick Al-Anon and treat her with the love I would give a sick A.A. newcomer.  When I do this, we get along fine.

pp. 419-420

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step One – “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol–that our lives had become unmanageable. ”

Who cares to admit complete defeat? Practically no one, of course. Every natural instinct cries out against the idea of personal powerlessness. It is truly awful to admit that, glass in hand, we have warped our minds into such an obsession for destructive drinking that only an act of Providence can remove it from us.

p. 21

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A bird that you set free may be caught again, but a word that escapes
your lips will not return.
–Jewish Proverb

Never let yesterday use up too much of today.
–unknown

I have always heard that I have to “give it away to keep it” but I
could never figure out what “it” was. Now I know what it is…it is
HOPE!
–unknown

If you judge people, you have no time to love them.
–Mother Teresa

Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn here. The
spiritual journey is the relinquishment – or unlearning – of fear and the
acceptance of love back into our hearts.
–Marianne Williamson

In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play.
–Friedrich Nietzsche

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

GREATNESS

“The ability to accept
responsibility is the measure of
the man.”
–Roy L. Smith

I believe the greatest insight into my life is that I am responsible;
my responsibility is an important and dignified gift from God.
My responsibility reveals my involvement in God’s creation, in my
life and my recovery from alcoholism. Greatness is in the choices I
make, and the choices come with God’s gift of freedom. Human
beings are more than puppets on a string or automated machines.
We are creative creatures who carry the burden and joy of
responsibility.

Along with the acceptance of my alcoholism I also accepted the
responsibility to remain sober in my decisions and lifestyle: such is
greatness.

Thank You for giving me the responsibility to co-create with You.

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“Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.”
Isaiah 41:10

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
Isaiah 43:18

But Jesus remains a priest forever; his priesthood will never end.
Therefore he is able, once and forever, to save everyone who comes
to God through him. He lives forever to plead with God on their
behalf.
Hebrews 7:24-25

“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in
harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the
lowly; never be conceited. Repay no one evil for evil, but take
thought for what is noble in the sight of all. If possible, so far as
it depends upon you, live peaceably with all.”
Romans 12:15-18

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such
things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have
crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we
live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.”
Galatians 5:22-25


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Daily Inspiration

By helping others, we enrich our own life even more. Lord, help me be a little kinder today, reach out a little quicker, and share a few more smiles.

God has already prepared you for everything that He plans for you to do. Lord, You believe in me, therefore I can believe in me, and will have all the necessary confidence to succeed in what I will be doing today.

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NA Just For Today

An “Inside Job”

“Social acceptability does not equal recovery.”
Basic Text, p.21

One of the first things that happens to many of us in recovery is that we start to look better. We get healthier; we bathe; we dress more appropriately. And without the goading of active addiction, many of us finally stop stealing, lying, and hustling. We start to look normal – just by removing the drugs.

Looking normal is very different than being normal. Acceptability in the eyes of the world is a benefit of recovery; it is not the same thing as recovery. We can enjoy the benefits of recovery, but we must take care to nurture their true source. Lasting recovery isn’t found in acceptance from others, but in the inner growth set in motion by the Twelve Steps.

Just for today: I know that looking good isn’t enough. Lasting recovery is an inside job.
pg. 204

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Happiness is not a matter of events; it depends upon the tides of the mind. –Alice Meyvell
It’s thought that Abe Lincoln once said, “We’re as happy as we make up our minds to be.” In other words, we decide to be happy. Bad weather, lost toys, broken plans, even angry friends don’t have to ruin our own happiness unless we let them. We’re always in control of our own thoughts and feelings, and happiness is a feeling we can choose even when others around us have chosen to be angry or sad. Even when the day is gloomy and none of our plans are working out, we can still be cheerful if we decide to be. How lucky we are that someone else can’t decide for us how to feel. We’d be nothing more than robots if that were true.
Am I ready to make this day a happy one?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Life is not a “brief candle.” It is a splendid torch that I want to make burn as brightly as possible before handing on to future generations. –George Bernard Shaw
We are men who have sought intensity. Some have said the extremes of our past were a kind of search for a Higher Power, although we went to self-defeating ends. There is no need now for us to give up our intense love of life. Serenity need not be bland. In facing ourselves, confronting our pain, surrendering our arrogant individualism, we are released to live the life we deeply desire.
What do men really want? We want to have true, lasting friendships with other men and women – to be at peace with our Higher Power and ourselves. We want to be fully aware in the present moments of our lives. We want to have some joy and to make a contribution to the world.
I am grateful that my torch burns brightly. I am finding what I really want.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Through spontaneity we are reformed into ourselves. Freed from handed-down frames of reference, spontaneity becomes the moment of personal freedom when we are faced with a reality, explore it, and act accordingly. –Viola Spolin
Living in the here and the now opens up untold possibilities for new growth. Our inner self is enticed in new directions when our attention is fully in the present. When our minds are still on last night’s argument or tomorrow’s board meeting, we wear blinders to the activity at hand. And God, as our teacher and protector, resides in this experience, in the hearts of these people present.
Every single moment has something for us. Maybe a new piece of information. A piece that solves a problem that’s been puzzling us. Perhaps a chance to make a new friend, one who will be there in a time of need.
Letting go of yesterday frees us. We need not be burdened. It is gone. Our lives could be eased, so much, if we kept our focus on the experience at hand, where the problems we ponder have their solutions. Always.
I will greet today, skipping, smiling, ready for the answers, the truths, the directions meant only for me. The wonders of today will bless me.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
We Are Lovable
Even if the most important person in your world rejects you, you are still real, and you are still okay. –Codependent No More
Do you ever find yourself thinking: How could anyone possibly love me? For many of us, this is a deeply ingrained belief that can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Thinking we are unlovable can sabotage our relationships with co-workers, friends, family members, and other loved ones. This belief can cause us to choose, or stay in, relationships that are less than we deserve because we don’t believe we deserve better. We may become desperate and cling as if a particular person was our last chance at love. We may become defensive and push people away. We may withdraw or constantly overreact.
While growing up, many of us did not receive the unconditional love we deserved. Many of us were abandoned or neglected by important people in our life. We may have concluded that the reason we weren’t loved was because we were unlovable. Blaming ourselves is an understandable reaction, but an inappropriate one. If others couldn’t love us, or love us in ways that worked, that’s not our fault. In recovery, we’re learning to separate ourselves from the behavior of others. And we’re learning to take responsibility for our healing, regardless of the people around us.
Just as we may have believed that we’re unlovable, we can become skilled at practicing the belief that we are lovable. This new belief will improve the quality of our relationships. It will improve our most important relationship: our relationship with our self. We will be able to let others love us and become open to the love and friendship we deserve.
Today, God, help me be aware of and release any self-defeating beliefs I have about being unlovable. Help me begin, today, to tell myself that I am lovable. Help me practice this belief until it gets into my core and manifests itself in my relationships.

You are reading from the book Food for Thought.
Energize, Don’t Tranquilize
Food is nourishment for our bodies, not a drug. When we overeat, we sap our energy and dull our responses. Too much food makes us lazy and lethargic. We should eat for energy, not oblivion.
If we have been using food as a narcotic to temporarily deaden the pain of living, then we need to learn other ways to cope. Much of our pain is needless, brought on by egocentric fears and demands. If we accept the fact that we cannot change another person’s behavior, then we will not hurt ourselves by anger at what that person does.
At the same time, we will learn to remove ourselves from people and situations, which cause us unnecessary pain. We do not have to be martyrs! Abstinence gives us the energy to make positive changes.
A certain amount of pain, both physical and emotional, is unavoidable. Often, it accompanies growth. To tranquilize ourselves with food is to impede growth.
May I remember to eat for energy instead of oblivion.

Today I know that if I’m coming from good and love, then only good and love with happen. Today I know that what I give, I receive back. Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Touch the Eternal

My friend, a clerk in a local bookstore, and I were sitting on a bench one evening about twenty feet from the edge of the Pacific Ocean. A few stars and a tiny sliver of moon softly lit the sky. We were drinking coffee and staring at the sea. “I like the ocean,” my friend said. “I need to see it. It’s nature’s way of reminding us of eternity.

Sometimes, we zoom in on the details of our lives and all we can see is the small picture– the problems, issues, and specifics of what we need to do today. These moments are real. They’re the heart of our lives. It’s good to stay focused and attend to them, but sometimes we need to step back and see the big picture,too.

Visit places that remind you of eternity when you can. See the mountians. See the stars. Walk among the ancient redwoods. Stand at the ocean’s door. Let nature and life remind you of eternity in ways that speak to your soul.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Take care of yourself, no matter what

Some days, we wake up in the morning, and by the time we go to bed that evening, our life has twisted, changed in a way that we couldn’t predict and don’t want. Our worst fears have come true.

Life as we have known it will never be the same again. The problem isn’t just that this tragedy has come along and knocked our lives for a loop, although that alone would be enough. To complicate matters, we now know how vulnerable we are. And we wonder, in that vulnerability, if we can ever trust God, life, or ourselves again.

Many years ago, the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, a spiritually based program designed to help alcoholics recover, cautioned people not to base sobriety and faith in God on the false notion that any person is immune from tragedy. They knew that life would continue to be life.

You are not alone, in your joy or in your sorrow. You may feel that way for a while. But soon you’ll begin to see that many others have experienced, surrendered to, and transcended a similar misfortune or loss. Your pain is important. But you’re not being singled out. Don’t use your misfortune to prove that you were right all along– you’re a victim of circumstance, fate, and God.

“God must really love me,” a young man said one day after walking away from a motorcycle accident that should have been tragic.

God loves all of us, whether we walk away pain-free or not.

Keep taking care of yourself, no matter what.

God, transform my pain into compassion for others and myself.

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In God’s Care

Each time we sense the possibility of a new direction in our lives, we are being given a chance to grow.
~~The Promise of a New Day, May 11

Change is the one constant in our life and yet it causes us the most unrest. We forget that change is growth and is good; it insures our emotional and spiritual evolution. It promises us the blessings that are ours to collect on this special journey through life.

We can better develop our acceptance of change by systematically recalling instances in the past when change, whether minor or profound, ushered in new understanding, greater strength and confidence; where we were thus able to handle the role we’d been given to play.

God inteds that we enlarge our capacity to love, to serve, and to understand. The changes we experience are the stair steps to this greater capacity.

Today I’ll smile if a changing current for the good beckons, knowing that it’s God’s invitation to a richer life

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

Day By Day

Paying for freedom

Henry David Thoreau said, “The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.” The price we paid for using alcohol and other drugs was our freedom. We finally realized that it costs too much to feel oblivious. The price became so high that we could no longer barter with mood-altering chemicals for our time and freeedom. The chemicals had absolute control.

Unless we wake up and pay the price for freedom-which is spiritual growth- we will be a slave to chemicals until death. But if we turn our lives over to God, all the liberty we need is made available to us.

Am I paying the right price for my freedom?

Higher Power, help me always to remember that the cost of using chemicals in my life is much too high.

Today I will pay for greater freedom by…

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

Food for Thought

Energize, Don’t Tranquilize

Food is nourishment for our bodies, not a drug. When we overeat, we sap our energy and dull our responses. Too much food makes us lazy and lethargic. We should eat for energy, not oblivion.

If we have been using food as a narcotic to temporarily deaden the pain of living, then we need to learn other ways to cope. Much of our pain is needless, brought on by egocentric fears and demands. If we accept the fact that we cannot change another person’s behavior, then we will not hurt ourselves by anger at what that person does.

At the same time, we will learn to remove ourselves from people and situations, which cause us unnecessary pain. We do not have to be martyrs! Abstinence gives us the energy to make positive changes.

A certain amount of pain, both physical and emotional, is unavoidable. Often, it accompanies growth. To tranquilize ourselves with food is to impede growth.

May I remember to eat for energy instead of oblivion.

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The Weight of Objects
Clearing a Space for Change

We hold onto material objects because we think they make us feel secure, when in reality they are cluttering our lives.

In life, we tend to have an easier time acquiring possessions than we do getting rid of them. Just as we harbor emotional baggage that is difficult to let go of, our lives can tend to be filled with material objects that we may feel compelled to hold on to. Most people are not conscious of how much they own and how many of their possessions are no longer adding value to their life. They fiercely hold on to material objects because this makes them feel secure or comfortable. While it’s true that the ownership of “stuff” can make you feel good for awhile, it seldom satisfies the deep inner longings that nearly everyone has for fulfillment and satisfaction. It is only when we are ready to let go of our baggage and be vulnerable that it becomes possible to recognize the emotional hold that our possessions can have on us.

It’s not uncommon to hold on to material objects because we are attached to them or fear the empty spaces that will remain if we get rid of them. Giving away the souvenirs from a beloved voyage may feel like we are erasing the memory of that time in our life. We may also worry that our loved ones will feel hurt if we don’t keep the gifts they’ve given us. It’s easy to convince ourselves that unused possessions might come in handy someday or that parting with them will cause you emotional pain. However, when your personal space is filled with objects, there is no room for anything new to enter and stay in your life. Your collection of belongings may “protect” you from the uncertainties of an unknown future while keeping you stuck in the past. Holding on to unnecessary possessions often goes hand in hand with holding on to pain, anger, and resentment, and letting go of your material possessions may help you release emotional baggage.

When you make a conscious decision to fill your personal space with only the objects that you need or bring you joy, your energy level will soar. Clearing your personal space can lead to mental clarity and an improved memory. As you learn to have a more practical and temporary relationship to objects, positive changes will happen, and you’ll have space to create the life that you desire. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Conditioned as we are by our old ideas and old ways of living, it’s understandable that we tend to resist certain suggestions made to us when we first come to The Program. If that’s the cases, there’s no need to permanently reject such suggestions; it’s better, we’ve found, just temporarily to set them aside. The point is, there’s no hard-and-fast “right” way or “wrong” way. Each of us uses what’s best for himself or herself at a particular time, keeping an open mind regarding other kinds of help we may find valuable at another time. Am I trying to remain open-minded?

Today I Pray

May I be enlightened about the real meaning of an open mind, aware that my one-time definition of “open-minded” as “broad-minded” doesn’t seem to fit here. May I constantly keep my mind open to the suggestions of the solid many who came into The Program before me. What has worked for them may work for me, no matter how far-fetched or how obvious it may be.

Today I Will Remember

Only an open mind can be healed.

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One More Day

Nothing is unthinkable, nothing impossible to the balanced person, provided it arises out of the needs of life and is dedicated to life’s further developments.
– Lewis Mumford

Occasionally, we may be discouraged over the loss of an ability we’d always counted on. Accepting this loss often requires a major emotional adjustment.

Our lives need not be defined by our inabilities, but instead by our possibilities. If bogged down in negativity, we may truly become the disabled people that others see at first glance.

Marvelous opportunities for growth and joy often await us — through doors we can choose the open and pass through. Almost nothing is impossible if we want to get there badly enough.

I won’t use medical problems as excuses to bow out of life. Today, I will look for opportunities for challenge and growth.

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One Day At A Time

ETERNITY
“Every action of our lives
touches on some chord that will vibrate in eternity.”
Edwin Hubbel Chapin

When I first read this quote two thoughts came to mind. The first thought was that I owed it — to myself and to every compulsive overeater in the world — to recover from my disease. If I can recover from compulsive eating with the help of my Higher Power, then others will know that recovery is possible for them as well.

My second thought had to do with Bill W., Dr. Bob and all the other Twelve Step trailblazers. Did they realize that what they did in 1935 would have such a far-reaching impact on the world? Did they know that they would set in motion a program that would bring hope to addicted people everywhere? My guess is that they did not know, and that they probably would have scoffed at the very idea that they were starting a global recovery program that would empower millions.

I have written Edwin Chapin’s quote in my Big Book to remind me of those who went before me and of those who will come after. It is my tribute to the eternal value of the Twelve Step program.

One day at a time…
I will remember that the things I do today will have a lasting impact on the future.
~ Jeff

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

A.A. is not a plan for recovery that can be finished and done with. It is a way of life, and the challenge contained in its principles is great enough to keep any human being striving for as long as he lives. We do not, cannot, out-grow this plan. As arrested alcoholics, we must have a program for living that allows for limitless expansion. Keeping one foot in front of the other is essential for maintaining our arrestment. Others may idle in a retrogressive groove without too much danger, but retrogression can spell death for us. However, this isn’t as rough as it sounds, as we do become grateful for the necessity that makes us toe the line, for we find that we are more than compensated for a consistent effort by countless dividends we receive. – Pg. 311 – 4th. Edition – The Keys To The Kingdom

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

How long do we have to keep going to meetings? Until we want to go to meetings.

Grant me the will to keep going to meetings, until the day arrives that I want to go.

I Am Whole

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

I am free to be who I am.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

We are often surprised by who we can count on when the going gets tough. Someone we did not expect to come through might and others whom we thought we could count on may fall short of our expectations. We do not blame the ones that fall short and are grateful for the ones who go the extra mile.

I measure others by their best moments, not their worst.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Everyone needs to be loved…especially when they do not deserve it.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I know that if I’m coming from good and love, then only good and love with happen. Today I know that what I give, I receive back.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

After a few years sober a lady felt sorry for me and got me a job in sales. On the streets I used to sell a lot of things I didn’t have, so with a product and a business card it was a piece of cake.- Allen F.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 14

Turning Points
Every day I stand at turning points.
My thoughts and actions can propel me toward growth or turn me down the road to old habits and to booze.
Sometimes turning points are beginnings,
as when I decide to start praising, instead of condemning someone. . .
At other times turning points are endings,
such as when I see clearly the need to stop festering resentments or crippling self-seeking.
– Daily Reflections, p. 15

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

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

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

Powerless
“I had no problem admitting I was powerless over alcohol,
and I certainly agreed that my life had become
unmanageable.
I had only to reflect on the contrast between the plans I made
so many years ago for my life with what really happened
to know I couldn’t manage my life drunk or sober.
AA taught me that willingness to believe
was enough for a beginning.”
1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 550

Thought to Consider . . .
Life didn’t end when I got sober … it started.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A C T I O N = Any Change To Improve Our Natures

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

Like the Effect
from: “The Doctor’s Opinion”
“Men and women drink essentially because they like the effect produced by alcohol. The sensation is so elusive that, while they admit it is injurious, they cannot after a time differentiate the true from the false. To them, their alcoholic life seems the only normal one. They are restless, irritable and discontented, unless they can again experience the sense of ease and comfort which comes at once by taking a few drinks – drinks which they see others taking with impunity. After they have succumbed to the desire again, as so many do, and the phenomenon of craving develops, they pass through the well-known stages of a spree, emerging remorseful, with a firm resolution not to drink again. This is repeated over and over, and unless this person can experience an entire psychic change there is very little hope of his recovery.”
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, pages xxviii-xxix

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

“By our Twelve Steps we have recovered, by our Twelve Traditions we have unified, and through our Third Legacy — Service — we shall carry the AA message down through the corridors of time to come.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1951
“Services Make AA Tick”
The Language of the Heart

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

He Sold Himself Short – But he found that there was a Higher Power which had more faith in him than he had in himself. Thus, A.A. was born in Chicago. The day before I was due to go back to Chicago, a Wednesday and Dr. Bob’s afternoon off, he had me down to the office and we spent three or four hours formally going through the Six-Step program as it was at that time. The six steps were:
1. Complete deflation.
2. Dependence and guidance from a Higher Power.
3. Moral Inventory.
4. Confession.
5. Restitution.
6. Continued work with other alcoholics.
2001, Alcoholics Anonymous, page 266

“The less people tolerated us, the more we withdrew from society,
from life itself. As we became subjects of King Alcohol, shivering
denizens of his mad realm, the chilling vapor that is loneliness
settled down. It thickened, ever becoming blacker. Some of us
sought out sordid places, hoping to find understanding companionship
and approval. Momentarily we did—then would come oblivion and
the awful awakening to face the hideous Four Horsemen—Terror,
Bewilderment, Frustration, Despair.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, pg. 151~

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

“Where humility had formerly stood for a forced feeding on humble pie, it now begins to mean the nourishing ingredient which can give us serenity.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 74

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Why, at this particular point in history, has God chosen to communicate His healing grace to so many of us? Every aspect of this global unfoldment can be related to a single crucial word. The word is ‘communication among ourselves, with the world around us, and with God.
>From the beginning, communication in A.A. has been no ordinary transmission of helpful ideas and attitudes. Because of our kinship in suffering, and because our common means of deliverance are effective for ourselves only when constantly carried to others, our channels of contact have always been charged with the language of the heart.

Prayer for the Day: “Higher Power, help me discover what’s most important in my life. Help me learn patience, so that I can devote my resources to the important things.”

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 13th

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 13th

Daily Reflections

HUMILITY IS A GIFT, p.203

As long as we placed self-reliance first, a genuine reliance upon a
Higher Power was out of the question. That basic ingredient of all
humility, a desire to seek and do God’s will, was missing.
12 & 12, p.72

When I first came to A.A., I wanted to find some of the elusive
quality called humility. I didn’t realize I was looking for humility
because I thought it would help me get what I wanted, and I would
do anything for others if I thought God would somehow reward me
for it. I try to remember now that the people I meet in the course
of my day are as close to God as I am ever going to get while on
this earth. I need to pray for knowledge of God’s will today, and see
how my experience with hope and pain can help other people; if I can
do that, I don’t need to search for humility, it has found me.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Before alcoholics come into A.A., they are “flying blind.” But A.A.
gives them a directed beam in the A.A. program. As long as they
keep on this beam, the signal of sobriety keeps coming through. If
they have a slip, the signal is broken. If they swing off course into
drunkenness, the signal stops. Unless they regain the A.A.
directed beam, they are in danger of crashing against the
mountain peak of despair. Am I on the beam?

Meditation For The Day

Be expectant. Constantly expect better things. Believe that what
God has in store for you is better than anything you ever had
before. The way to grow old happily is to expect better things
right up to the end of your life and even beyond that. A good life is
a growing expanding life, with ever-widening horizons, an
ever-greater circle of friends and acquaintances, and an
ever-greater opportunity for usefulness.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may await with complete faith for the next good thing
in store for me. I pray that I may always keep an expectant
attitude toward life.

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As Bill Sees It

The Obsession and the Answer, p. 194

The idea that somehow, some day, he will control and enjoy his
drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The
persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates
of insanity or death.

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

Alcoholism, not cancer was my illness, but what was the difference?
Was not alcoholism also a consumer of body and mind? Alcoholism
took longer to do its killing, but the result was the same. So, I decided,
if there was a great Physician who could cure alcoholic sickness, I had
better seek Him at once.

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 30
2. A.A. Comes Of Age, p. 61


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Walk In Dry Places

Solving Problems is the Proof
Spiritual Guidance.
Although we try, it’s almost impossible for us to use logic to prove the existence (for nonexistence) of God. Our best proof of God’s activity in our lives has to come from personal experience.
That’s the message of the 12 Step movement: God has done for us what we could not do for ourselves. We cannot be responsible for setting simmering religious and doctrinal issues that have been around for centuries. We can find our own help by following the example of others in the 12 Step program.
When spiritual guidance brings answers and solutions, we don’t have to defend or justify our belief in our Higher Power.  What better proof do we need than evidence that the program does work?
I’ll follow my Higher Power today and then let the results speak for themselves. 


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

Keep It Simple

A brother may not be a friend, but a friend will always be a brother.  —Benjamin Franklin
Many of us come from families that aren’t very healthy for us. Many families have lots of love but aren’t able to show it. Maybe our parents argued or drank to much. When we share our recovery with them, they may not seem happy with us. They may be doing the best they can, but they don’t understand our new way of life.
We can have the love we wanted, but it might not come from our family. We can choose healthy friends to be our new “family.” Some friends may seem like the sister or brother we always wanted.
A sponsor can give us advice we never got from our parents. We can have a full, healthy “family life” after all.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me choose good friend who will help me to be the best that I can be.
Action for the Day:  The best way to have a friend is to be a friend. What will I do today to be a friend.

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Each Day a New Beginning

The trouble is not that we are never happy–it is that happiness is so episodical.  –Ruth Benedict
Happiness is our birthright. The decision to be happy is ours to make, every day, when confronted with any experience. Too many of us grew up believing that life needed to be a certain way for us to be happy. We looked for the right lover, the right job, and the right dress. We looked outside of ourselves for the key to happiness. In time, we even looked to alcohol, drugs, and food perhaps–to no avail.
Happiness lies within. We must encourage it to spring forth. But first we need to believe that happiness is fully within our power. We must trust that the most difficult circumstances won’t keep it from us when we have learned to tap the source within.
Life is a gift we are granted moment-by-moment. Let us be in awe of the wonder of it, and then revel in it. We can marvel at creation for a moment and realize how special we are to be participants. Happiness will overcome us if we let it. We can best show our gratitude for the wonder of this gift by smiling within and without.
That I am here is a wonderful mystery to which joy is the natural response. It is no accident that I am here.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

But in most fields our generation has witnessed complete liberation in thinking. Show any longshoreman a Sunday supplement describing a proposal to explore the moon by means of a rocket and he will say, “I bet they do it—maybe not so long either.” Is not our age characterized by the ease with which we discard old ideas for new, by the complete readiness with which we throw away the theory or gadget which does not work for something new which does?

p. 52

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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.
Today Max and I try to communicate what we feel rather than what we think.  We used to argue about our differing ideas, but we can’t argue about our feelings.  I can tell her she ought not to think a certain way, but I certainly can’t take away her right to feel however she does feel.  When we deal in feelings, we tend to come to know ourselves and each other much better.

p. 419

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Foreword

As A.A. now enters maturity, it has begun to reach into forty foreign lands.* In the view of its friends, this is but the beginning of its unique and valuable service.
It is hoped that this volume will afford all who read it a close-up view of the principles and forces which have made Alcoholics Anonymous what it is.

(A.A.’s General Service Office may be reached by writing:
Alcoholics Anonymous, P.O. Box 459,
Grand Central Station, New York, NY 10163, U.S.A.)

*In 1998, A.A. is established in 150 countries. 

p. 18

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The chains of alcohol were to soft to feel till they were to hard to
break. –heard at a meeting

Pay attention to the little things. Sometimes the greatest rewards are
behind something small.
–unknown

The actions and comments of others can only “get to you” if YOU
allow them to.
–unknown

Love is caring for another human being and allowing them to be who
they are and make their own choices without any demand that they
meet yours.
–Vickie Dishner

Love is like a brilliantly glowing candle. If you step into its presence
and ignite your own candle from the flame, there is not less light, but
more.
We are not meant to hoard light, but to shine and share it by becoming
love in action.
–Mary Manin Morrissey

Newcomer or long-timer, we are all the same in our need for each other.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

DIGNITY

“To behave with dignity is
nothing less than to allow others
freely to be themselves.”
–Sol Chaneles

I believe that ultimately I can only be responsible for me. It is
impossible for me to live another person’s life. It is disrespectful to
assume the role of decision-maker for another adult human being.
People must have the freedom to grow and be themselves. Dignity is
affording people this freedom.

Today I can see how I continued to keep members of my family sick
by taking on a responsibility that was not mine. I can see how I was
not giving dignity to my family; I was unintentionally withholding
dignity from those I loved. People, especially family members,
must be given the freedom to express their hurts. They have a
responsibility to deal with their pain — because it is theirs!

I pray that I may give to others the dignity I desire in my own life.

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

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:16

Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, LORD, have
never forsaken those who seek you.
Psalm 9:10

I will give thanks to the LORD because of his righteousness and
will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High.
Psalm 7:17
Freely you have received, freely give.
Matthew 10:8


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

Daily Inspiration

Today is for living and giving because God’s presence is in each of us always. Lord, may I truly live a full life because I am aware that You are unceasingly blessing me.

To have a great day isn’t always doing what you like, but trying to like what you must do. Lord, today I will spruce up my attitude and have a great day no matter what my circumstances.

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NA Just For Today

Humility In Action

“If we are hurting, and most of us do from time to time, we learn to ask for help.”
Basic Text, p.80

Sometimes recovery gets downright difficult. It can be even more difficult to get humble enough to ask for help. We think, “I have all this time clean. I should be better than this!” But the reality of recovery is simple: whether we have thirty days or thirty years clean, we must be willing to ask for help when we need it.

Humility is a common theme in our Twelve Steps. The program of Narcotics Anonymous is not about keeping up appearances. Instead, the program helps us get the most from our recovery. We must be willing to lay bare our difficulties if we expect to find solutions to problems that arise in our lives.

There’s an old expression sometimes heard in Narcotics Anonymous: We can’t save our face and our ass at the same time. It isn’t easy to share in a meeting when we have a number of years clean only to dissolve into tears because life on life’s terms has made us realize our powerlessness. But when the meeting ends and another member comes up and says, “You know, I really needed to hear what you had to say,” we know that there is a God working in our lives.

The taste of humility is never bitter. The rewards of humbling ourselves by asking for help sweetens our recovery.

Just for today: If I need help, I will ask for it. I will put humility into action in my life.
pg. 203

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
When you have to make a choice and don’t make it, that is in itself a choice. –William James
There are times when it’s hard to make a decision. When we go to the fair, for instance, we may want to do more things than we have time for, so we don’t know what plans to make. Waiting to decide until we see what the fair has to offer is one choice. Not deciding because we’re afraid of what may happen is also a choice. We may find ourselves thinking so much about what could happen that we miss all the exciting things going on around us.
It’s necessary to keep in mind that any course of action is a decision, but no decision is irreversible. We are free to do what we decide, and are freed by the awareness that whatever we do is based on our own decision and no one else’s.
What important decisions shall I make without fear today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
If I were to begin life again, I should want it as it was. I would only open my eyes a little more. –Jules Renard
Spiritual and emotional growth is a process of raising our awareness. Reflecting on our growth as men, before this program and after, we see different levels of consciousness. Some of us might say we weren’t at all conscious of what it meant to be a man by the time we entered the adult world.
Now we are forming an awareness of manhood. We see ourselves more as recovering, caring, strong, vulnerable men in relationships with others. We have an increased sense that our actions make a difference as sons, as fathers, as husbands, lovers, and friends. Our increased understanding of ourselves makes it possible to fulfill our potentials for growth. It is not idle fantasy to imagine beginning life again because, in a sense, we have. In recovery, it seems we have begun life again, only with our eyes a little more open.
Help me live this day with all of my awareness.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The trouble is not that we are never happy–it is that happiness is so episodical. –Ruth Benedict
Happiness is our birthright. The decision to be happy is ours to make, every day, when confronted with any experience. Too many of us grew up believing that life needed to be a certain way for us to be happy. We looked for the right lover, the right job, and the right dress. We looked outside of ourselves for the key to happiness. In time, we even looked to alcohol, drugs, and food perhaps–to no avail.
Happiness lies within. We must encourage it to spring forth. But first we need to believe that happiness is fully within our power. We must trust that the most difficult circumstances won’t keep it from us when we have learned to tap the source within.
Life is a gift we are granted moment-by-moment. Let us be in awe of the wonder of it, and then revel in it. We can marvel at creation for a moment and realize how special we are to be participants. Happiness will overcome us if we let it. We can best show our gratitude for the wonder of this gift by smiling within and without.
That I am here is a wonderful mystery to which joy is the natural response. It is no accident that I am here.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
God as We Understand God
God is subtle, but he is not malicious. –Albert Einstein
Recovery is an intensely spiritual process that asks us to grow in our understanding of God. Our understanding may have been shaped by early religious experiences or the beliefs of those around us. We may wonder if God is as shaming and frightening as people can be. We may feel as victimized or abandoned by God as we have by people from our past.
Trying to understand God may boggle our mind because of what we have learned and experienced so far in our life.
We can learn to trust God, anyway.
I have grown and changed in my understanding of this Power greater than myself. My understanding has not grown on an intellectual level, but because of what I have experienced since I turned my life and my will over to the care of God, as I understood, or rather didn’t understand, God.
God is real. Loving. Good. Caring. God wants to give us all the good we can handle. The more we turn our mind and heart toward a positive understanding of God, the more God validates us.
The more we thank God for who God is, who we are, and the exact nature of our present circumstances, the more God acts in our behalf.
In fact, all along, God planned to act in our behalf.
God is Creator, Benefactor, and Source. God has shown me, beyond all else, that how I come to understand God is not nearly as important as knowing that God understand me.
Today, I will be open to growing in my understanding of my Higher Power. I will be open to letting go of old, limiting, and negative beliefs about God. No matter how I understand God, I will be grateful that God understands me.

I can go through anything a day at a time, a moment at a time with the faith and the knowledge that my Higher Power is guiding me to peace and security. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

See the Snow on the Desert

I drove through Arizona’s petrified forest, a land where dinosaurs once roamed, then headed across the painted desert. A light dusting of snow covered the sand and shrubs. I felt both awe and surprise at the scene nature had created.

Nature does many things. Tornados blow across the land. Hurricanes pound the shores. Bolts of lightning streak through the sky. Dust storms fill the air. Nature petrifies wood, turning trees into beautiful crystal rocks, glowing with brilliant red and orange fossilized patterns. Nature takes centuries to carve bridges out of stone, using only winds and rain and the flow of water from other rocks. And sometimes, she puts snow on the desert.

Many things happen in our lives. Some of them are probable, consequential. Some of them are flukes and seem to come out of the blue, from nowhere. All the events work into a pattern, helping to create us, create our path through life, create our destiny. Sometimes we’re influenced greatly by a traumatic storm. Other times seemingly chance occurrences can change the entire pattern and course of our lives.

We don’t have to understand everything. Maybe we aren’t supposed to. We don’t have to be prepared for all the storms. Sometimes the greatest learning occurs when we’re caught off guard, by surprise.

Weather the storms. Let them pass. Keep your balance, as best you’re able. Remember to be flexible and sway with the winds like the tall trees in the forest. Trust the flukes,too, those moments when it snows on the desert. Let destiny have its way with you.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Say it like it is

Acknowledge your pain. Then you can begin to identify the source of it, and in identifying, you can begin to heal. When we open ourselves to emotions, we don’t just get the good ones, like happiness or relief. Feelings are a package deal. We get the entire emotional range.

Pain and suffering are part of the experience of being alive. Things go wrong. Lovers leave us, parents and sometimes children die. We fall, we fail. Don’t hide from your pain. Don’t bury it under a shell of drugs, alcohol, or shallow achievement. If you hurt, then hurt.

Recognize what you’re going through. Then learn to tell it like it is.

God, help me acknowledge the pain in my life instead of trying to mask it with mood-altering substances or mindless busywork. Teach me to say what hurts. Show me what it is that I need to do to heal; then give me the strength to do that.

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

Food for Thought

Living from Within

We are often deluded into thinking that we will find our pattern for living from someone else. We look for models to imitate. Although we do learn from others, it is from within that our most sure guidance comes. Since each one of us is unique, there is no other human being who can give us an example to copy exactly.

OA recognizes individual differences and the need we each have to discover our true self. By sharing our experience, strength, and hope, we are able to develop our unique potential as individuals. We are each free to take from and give to the group, according to our own unique needs and abilities.

If we are to receive the strength, which our Higher Power wants us to have, we need to listen to the inner voice that tells us what is right for us at any given moment. The most sure guidance comes from within.

May I listen to Your voice.

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

In God’s Care

The real gift of love is self-disclosure.
~~John Powell

It’s natural to want to put our best face forward. We like people to see us as we want to be, not as we are. We prefer to be judged as witty, clever, kind, and perceptive, never as small-minded, selfish, weak, and critical.

Yet, it is not until we reveal our liabilities that people are truly able to see our assets. When we pretend to be without fault, we come off as phony. As we discover in doing the Fifth Step, the more we disclose our shortcomings, the more people are able to trust us.

So it is with God. God wants us without our pretenses, wants to hear our secret desires, our deep-seated grievances, our shameful thoughts. As we come clean, revealing our trueself, the barriers to love come down.

Today will not be afraid to reveal my weaknesses; self-disclosure opens the door to God’s love.

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Day By Day

Lacking power over others

When we look closely at our lives, we may realize that we have little power over others (as shocking as that may seem). Yet often our arrogance gets so blown out of proportion that we think our actions can get people high or keep them straight! Think of that!

We are so important to ourselves, we begin to think that we are that important to others. We seldom see that our affairs have about as much weight with others as theirs do with us – and that is often little.

Do I realize that I can manage no one?

Higher Power, help me realize that my power over others is actually slight and protect me from my own arrogance.

If I find myself trying to manage others today, I will…

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

Connection
The Truth of Interdependence by Madisyn Taylor

Earth is home to a web of living things that are connected to each other through a kaleidoscope of relationships.

Picking a leaf off the ground and contemplating it as an object in and of itself is very inspiring. Its shape and color, the way it feels in your hand, its delicate veins and the stem that once held it fast to the branch of a tree—all of these qualities reveal a leaf to be a miniature work of natural art. As we contemplate this small object more deeply and consider where it came from and what purpose it has served, we find that the leaf is one small but essential part of a system that harnesses the energy of the sun, plumbs the depths of the earth, and in the process brings into being the oxygen many living things rely on to live.

A leaf transforms the elements of its environment—sunlight, carbon dioxide, rain—into nourishment for its tree. This beautiful, nearly weightless, ephemeral piece of nature is a vital conduit to the branch that is a conduit to the trunk that is a conduit to the roots of the tree. The roots, in turn, draw nourishment from the earth to feed the trunk, the branches, and the leaves. The living beings that inhale the oxygen that comes from this process exhale the carbon dioxide that feeds the leaves through which the tree is fed. It is difficult to know where one cycle ends and another one begins.

One of the many gifts that nature offers us is a clear demonstration of the interdependence between all living things. The person who exhales the carbon dioxide, the clouds that produce the rain, the sun that gives light, the leaf that transforms all these things into sustenance for a tree—not one of these could survive without being part of this cycle.

Each living being is dependent upon other living things for its survival. When we look at the world, we see that this is not a place where different beings survive independently of one another. Earth is home to a web of living things that are connected to each other through a spinning kaleidoscope of relationships. We need each other to survive and thrive. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

These days, I go to meetings to listen for the similarities between myself and others in The Program — not the differences. And when I look for the similarities, it’s amazing how many I find, particularly in the area of feelings. Today I go to meetings thinking that I’m here not because of anyone Else’s addictions, but because of mine and , most importantly, what my addiction did to my spirit anybody. I’m here because there’s no way I can stay free of my addiction by myself. I need The Program and my Higher Power. Am I becoming less harsh in my judgments of others?

Today I Pray

May I stay alert as I listen, just one more time, to Jack or Jill or Fred or Sam or Martha go through his or her tale of woe or weal. May I find, when I listen with the whole-hearted attention I want to be able to give, that each has something to offer me to add to my own life-tale. May I be struck once again by our sameness. May each sameness draw us nearer to each others needs.

Today I Will Remember

In sameness, there is strength.

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One More Day

We often make self-defeating choices because we are unenlightened about our needs. We pick the opposite of what we really need because we don’t know what we need.
– Lila Swell

Sometimes we may repeatedly engage in self-defeating behaviors. Poor work habits can lead to being fired and being defeated again. Overeating causes obesity, health issues, and poor image, which may lead to fad dieting and more failure. Until lightening strikes, until we finally realize that we are defeating our deepest needs — spiritual and emotional — we plod along on the same path.

The direction of our behavior changes when we see what our needs are and that they are the same for everyone. we all need love, compassion, and the opportunity to love others, and we can satisfy those needs in healthy ways.

I’ll make positive choices for myself today.

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One Day At A Time

SERVICE
“I do not know what path in life you will take,
but I do know this:
If, on that path, you do not find a way to serve,
you will never be happy.”
Albert Schweitzer

Working the Twelfth Step means carrying the message of recovery to those who still suffer from our disease. To be a messenger of hope has to be the highest form of service we can provide to our fellow compulsive eaters.

Giving service means more than volunteering to set chairs up at a meeting, tidying up afterwards, or giving another person a ride to the meeting. Giving service means living a triumphant program every single day. It’s taking a telephone call from someone who’s having a rough day … and it’s making an outreach call even when I don’t feel like it. It’s not hiding my slips in abstinence, and it sure isn’t wallowing in my misery. It’s getting up and moving on. It’s presenting a positive view of the program.

We don’t recruit members to recovery; we attract them by our example. If I don’t put a positive face on my program, I can’t expect a fellow-sufferer to consider the Twelve Steps as a way to recover from the disease of compulsive overeating. I know this program works — and others won’t know it unless I show them that it does.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will serve by living a triumphant program.
~ JAR

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

We have been speaking to you of serious, sometimes tragic things. We have been dealing with alcohol in its worst aspect. But we aren’t a glum lot. If newcomers could see no joy or fun in our existence, they wouldn’t want it. We absolutely insist on enjoying life. We try not to indulge in cynicism over the state of the nations, nor do we carry the world’s troubles on our shoulders. – Pg. 132 – The Family Afterward

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Compulsive behavior is characterized by the need to be better than, sooner than, bigger then, more than. This creates pressure which creates stress, which for us creates danger! That is why we take the slogan ‘Easy Does It,’ seriously.

Help me to enjoy the journey, slow down and not expect five years of recovery in five weeks.

The Treasures Within

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

Spirit is with me always

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Speak when you are angry and you will make the best speech you will ever regret.

I never trust my tongue when my heart is bitter.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

You get sober not with your head, but with you feet.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

I can go through anything a day at a time, a moment at a time with the faith and the knowledge that my Higher Power is guiding me to peace and security.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

If I don’t stand for something, I’ll fall for anything. – Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 13

Step Seven
“Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.”
To get completely away from our aversion to the idea of being humble,
to gain a vision of humility as the avenue to true freedom of the human spirit,
to be willing to work for humility as something to be desired for itself,
takes most of us a long, long time.
– Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 73

Thought to Ponder . . .
Humility is not thinking less of myself, but thinking of myself less.

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

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

Triumph
“It is only at the moment when a member ceases to drink
that he asserts the right to
describe himself as an alcoholic. . .
What an unthinking world may look upon as defeat,
alcoholics in AA know as a triumph of the spirit,
a triumph of humility over false pride and self-centeredness. How few human beings ever have the courage
to stand up before their neighbors and, in humility,
describing themselves truthfully, to say:
‘This is what I really am.’ ”
1985AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age, p. 278

Thought to Consider . . .
Veni, vidi, velcro … I came, I saw, I stuck around.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A A = Adventurers Anonymous

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

Inexplicable
>From “Why? I Don’t Know”:
“I don’t attempt to explain with reason and logic why these things happen. When they happen, I just accept them. I feel perhaps that God, as I understand Him, found it necessary for me to suffer the pain and anguish of an addicted alcoholic and to go through the slow and, for me, difficult program of recovery in A.A. in order to be prepared and willing to do His will. I am grateful and thankful that God has given this to me. Perhaps it is because I take the Third Step every morning. My hopes and prayers are that each day I will be able to maintain this conscious contact with God. Kingsport, Tennessee, USA”
1973 AAWS, Inc.; Came to Believe, 30th printing 2004, pg. 70

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

“Nowadays my brain no longer races compulsively in either elation, grandiosity, or depression. I have been given a quiet place in bright sunshine.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958
“The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”
The Language of the Heart

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

“Continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment, and
fear. When these crop up, we ask God at once to remove them. We
discuss them with someone immediately and make amends quickly if we have harmed anyone. Then we resolutely turn our thoughts to someone we can help. Love and tolerance of others is our code.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 84

“Everybody knows that those in bad health, and those who seldom play,
do not laugh much. So let each family play together or separately as
much as their circumstances warrant. We are sure God wants us to be
happy, joyous, and free.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 132~

“Modem-to-modem or face-to-face, A.A.’s speak the language of the heart in all its power and simplicity.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. xxiv (Foreword to the Fourth Edition)

“Prayer is the raising of the heart and mind to God — and in this sense it includes meditation.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 102 (Step Eleven)

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

The idea that somehow, some day, he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.
Alcoholism, not cancer, was my illness, but what was the difference? Was not Alcoholism took longer to do its killing, but the result was the same. So, I decided, if there was a great Physician who could cure the alcoholic sickness, I had better seek Him at once.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, allow me to open my heart to You and my fellows and feel the connection between us.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 11th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 11th

Daily Reflections

A TURNING POINT, p.301

A great turning point in our lives came when we sought for humility
as something we really wanted, rather than as something we must
have.
12 & 12, p.75

Either the A.A. way of life becomes one of joy or I return to the
darkness and despair of alcoholism. Joy comes to me when my
attitude concerning God and humility turns to one of desire rather
than of burden. The darkness in my life changes to radiant light
when I arrive at the realization that being truthful and honest in
dealing with my inventory results in my life being filled with serenity,
freedom, and joy. Trust in my Higher Power deepens, and the flush
of gratitude spreads through my being. I am convinced that being
humble is being truthful and honest in dealing with myself and God.
It is then that humility is something I “really want,” rather being
“something I must have.”

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We in Alcoholics Anonymous do not try to chart the path for the
human soul or try to lay out a blueprint of the working of faith, as
one might plan a charity drive. We do tell the newcomer that we
have renewed our faith in a Higher Power. In the telling, our faith
is further renewed. We believe that faith is always close at
hand, waiting for those who will listen to the heartbeat of the
spirit. We believe there is a force for good in the universe and
that if we link up with this force, we are carried onward to a new
life. Am I in this stream of goodness?

Meditation For The Day

God will protect you from the forces of evil, if you will rely on
Him. You can face all things through the power of God which
strengthens you. Once God has set on you His stamp and seal of
ownership, all His strength will serve and protect you. Remember
that you are a child of the Father. Realize that the Father’s help is
always ready and available to all His children, so that they can
face anything. God will do all that is necessary for your spiritual
well-being, if you will let Him live His way.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may rely on God as I go through this day. I pray that I
may feel deeply secure, no matter what happens to me.

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As Bill Sees It

Carrying the Message, p. 192

The wonderful energy the Twelfth Step releases, by which it carries
our message to the next suffering alcoholic and finally translates the
Twelve Steps into action upon all our affairs, is the payoff, the
magnificent reality of A.A.

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

Never talk down to an alcoholic from any moral or spiritual hilltop;
simply lay out the kit of spiritual tools for his inspection. Show him
how they worked with you. Offer him friendship and fellowship.

1. 12 & 12, p. 109
2. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 95

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Walk In Dry Places

The rewards of Truth
Seeking the Truth
The punishment of the liar is that he cannot believe anyone else, wrote one shrewd philosopher. This is another way of saying that we reap what we sow, or that we tend to judge others by our own actions.
But when we decide to be completely truthful, we are not immediately given the ability to discern whether others are lying or not. It’s more important for us to realize that others lies don’t have the power to hurt us permanently if we persevere in the program.
Some people would argue with this, pointing to lies that have hurt innocent people in the past.  But having no way of knowing all the facts of these cases, we cannot be the judge.
In our own experiences, we’ll find that God alone is the source of all truth and will give us the protection and care we need if we seek truthfulness in everything we do. Any fear of being victimized by living, we’ll learn, will melt away as we follow this conviction.
I’ll be as discreet as possible today, but I’ll also be truthful.  I’ll find that this alone will lessen any fear of being victimized by a liar.


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Keep It Simple

If you would be loved, love and be lovable.—Benjamin Franklin
We all want to be loved. and no matter how much we’re loved, we always want more.
How can we be lovable? What does the mean? Should we try to be perfect? Should we act cute and helpless? No, being lovable means that we act ourselves. We let others get to know us. When others love us, we enjoy it. We tell them. We let them know that their love isn’t wasted on us, that it’s important to us. We are lovable, and we are loved!
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me accept the love of others today. Help me be lovable.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list all the little things others do that show that they care for me.

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Each Day a New Beginning

I have listened to the realm of the Spirit. I have heard my own soul’s voice, and I have remembered that love is the complete and unifying thread of existence.  –Mary Casey
The act of loving someone else brings us together, closes whatever the gap between us. It draws us into the world of another, making richer the world we call our own. Love is the great equalizer.
We no longer wish to conquer or dominate those whom we love. And our love for one increases our capacity for loving others. Love heals another, and love heals ourselves, both giving it and receiving it.
Love from another acknowledges our existence, assuring us that we do count, that someone else values our presence. It is human to need these reminders, these assurances. But our need for them is lessened each time we acknowledge another person in our midst.
Where love is absent, people, even in a crowd, feel alone, forgotten, and unimportant. No doubt we can each recall times of quiet desperation moments of alienation. We must reach out to someone and send thoughts of love to someone who may need to be remembered. Our loving thoughts for persons close and far away always reach their destination. They do unify us.
Love is powerful. It can change the complexion of the universe. It will change the direction of my life.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

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

p. 51

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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.
Then, one day in A.A., I was told that I had the lenses in my glasses backwards; “the courage to change” in the Serenity Prayer meant not that I should change my marriage, but rather that I should change myself and learn to accept my spouse as she was.  A.A. has given me a new pair of glasses.  I can again focus on my wife’s good qualities and watch them grow and grow and grow.

p. 419

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Foreword

This starting expansion brought with it very severe growing pains. Proof that alcoholics could recover had been made. But it was by no means sure that such great numbers of yet erratic people could live and work together with harmony and good effect.

pp. 17-18

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There are no burdens when everybody lifts.
–unknown

When someone is impatient and says, “I haven’t got all day” I always
wonder, how can that be? How can you not have all day?
–unknown

Learn to say kind words, nobody resents them.
–unknown

Is not life a hundred times too short for us to bore ourselves?
–Friedrich Nietzsche

First mend yourself, and then mend others.
–Jewish Proverb

Always look at your moccasin tracks first before you speak of
another’s faults.
–Native American Proverb

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

CHANGE

“The foolish and the dead never
change their opinion.”
–James Russell Lowell

Part of my understanding of spirituality is that I will change. I will
change my mind, my attitude and my opinion. My understanding of
sobriety is that I will grow, grow in an understanding of myself,
grow in an understanding of God’s will for me, and grow in an
understanding of other people. Today I am not afraid to change my
thinking about life.

During my years as an addict I was fixed and rigid about everything.
I saw it as weakness to change my mind and opinions. Now I
understand that I was afraid of change, afraid not to have an answer,
afraid not to be seen as being “in charge”.

In treatment I learned how to understand spirituality as reality;
seeing things as they are, rather than how I wanted them to be. I
began to accept that life is about change and that truth is a
process that we evolve towards.

In my journey towards You may I have the willingness to change.

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

“Apply your heart to instruction, And your ears to words of knowledge.”
Proverbs 23:12

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I
have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more
abundantly.”
John 10:10

“As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our
transgressions from us.”
Psalm 103:12

“Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your
hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation
of Jesus Christ.”
1 Peter 1:13
“as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts,
as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy
in all your conduct.”
1 Peter 1:14-15


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Daily Inspiration

The presence of God in us puts a joy in our soul that is beyond our ability to explain. Lord, when I open my self to this joy, I am renewed and peaceful.

Let today’s difficulties make you better not bitter. Lord, guide me, protect me and work through me.

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NA Just For Today

Encouragement

“We share comfort and encouragement with others.”
Basic Text, p.95

Many of us have watched as babies take their first steps. The mother holds the child on its feet. The father kneels nearby with outstretched arms, encouraging the little one, his face flooded with devotion. The baby takes a few small steps toward its father. An older brother and sister cheer the tyke on. Baby falls down. Its mother, murmuring words of comfort, picks the child up and starts over again. This time, baby stays up until it is close enough to fall into the safety of its father’s arms. As newcomers, we arrive in the rooms of NA much like this small child. Accustomed to living a life crippled by addiction, full of fear and uncertainty, we need help to stand. Just like a child beginning its march toward adulthood, we take our halting first steps toward recovery. We learn to live this new way of life because others who have gone before us encourage and comfort us by telling us what worked-and what didn’t work-for them. Our sponsor is there for us when we need a push in the right direction.

Many times we feel like we can’t take another step in recovery. Just like a child learning to walk, we sometimes stumble or fall. But our Higher Power always awaits us with outstretched arms And like the child’s brothers and sisters shouting their encouragement, we, too, are supported by other NA members as we walk toward a full life in recovery.

Just for today: I will seek encouragement from others. I will encourage others who may need my strength.

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
Always think of what you have to do as easy and it will become so. –Emile Corie
How we think about the activities before us is very important. If we think cleaning the garage is hard, dirty, and no chance for fun, that’s just how it will feel. We’ll be tired before we even begin. However, if we approach it like a treasure hunt, expecting to rediscover some long-forgotten treasures, we’ll enjoy the task. In fact, it will feel like a game.
The thoughts we carry in our minds determine whether our tasks are fun or not. What good fortune it is that we can control those thoughts. If we approach an assignment for school or a job believing that we’re able to do it, that it’s not too hard for us, we’ll finish with ease. Our thoughts determine our successes. In this way, our lives are in our own hands.
How much better can I make my life today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
In playing, and perhaps only in playing, the child or adult is free to be creative. –D. W. Winnicott
There are so many activities called play, which have not really been playful. Organized sports for youth, which consumed some of us, are called play. The partying, which was connected with some of our addictions, is called play. Reckless and dangerous driving is called play. In recovery, some of us become intensely focused on doing what’s right, and we need a deeper understanding to take the spiritual leap into creative play
This leap takes a willingness to let go. Maybe we remember hurtful things happening when our guard was down. Creative play involves trusting that every activity doesn’t need a worthy goal, doesn’t need to be planned out. Pleasure, humor, lightness, and aimless passing of time are forms of openness to the spirit of God. It is experimenting, exploring, setting aside our ordered and planned approach to most of life, and accepting that what comes out will be all right.
God, help me see the possibilities for play in the moments of this day.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
I have listened to the realm of the Spirit. I have heard my own soul’s voice, and I have remembered that love is the complete and unifying thread of existence. –Mary Casey
The act of loving someone else brings us together, closes whatever the gap between us. It draws us into the world of another, making richer the world we call our own. Love is the great equalizer.
We no longer wish to conquer or dominate those whom we love. And our love for one increases our capacity for loving others. Love heals another, and love heals ourselves, both giving it and receiving it.
Love from another acknowledges our existence, assuring us that we do count, that someone else values our presence. It is human to need these reminders, these assurances. But our need for them is lessened each time we acknowledge another person in our midst.
Where love is absent, people, even in a crowd, feel alone, forgotten, and unimportant. No doubt we can each recall times of quiet desperation moments of alienation. We must reach out to someone and send thoughts of love to someone who may need to be remembered. Our loving thoughts for persons close and far away always reach their destination. They do unify us.
Love is powerful. It can change the complexion of the universe. It will change the direction of my life.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Bring Any Request to God
Bring any request you have to God.
No request is too large; none too small or insignificant.
How often we limit God by not bringing to God everything we want and need.
Do we need help getting our balance? Getting through the day?
Do we need help in a particular relationship? With a particular character defect? Attaining a character asset?
Do we need help making progress on a particular task that is challenging us? Do we need help with a feeling? Do we want to change a self-defeating belief that has been challenging us? Do we need information, an insight? Support? A friend?
Is there something in God’s Universe that would really bring us joy?
We can ask for it. We can ask God for whatever we want. Put the request in God’s hands, trusting it has been heard then let it go. Leave the decision to God.
Asking for what we want and need is taking care of ourselves. Trust that the Higher Power to whom we have turned over our life and will really does care about us and about what we want and need.
Today, I will ask my Higher Power for what I want and need. I will not demand – I will ask. Then I will let go.

Today I look within to find my truth. I ask a power greater than myself to guide me and show me the way and all I have to do is follow. It is that simple. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Clear the Path to Your Heart

I watched Old Faithful from my window. The geyser gurgled and spewed a low layer of steam. Then true to its name, Old Faithful erupted and sprayed thousands of gallons of steaming water into the air. Right on time.

A full range of gurgling emotions, reactions, and responses to life line the pathway to the heart. We need to feel them all– anger, hurt, sadness, irritations– in order to feel joy. To experience life and all its wonders, we must embrace all these feelings.

We need to experience the little anger as well as the big hurts, the painful wounds that life sometimes brings. To insist that we will only feel pleasant emotions means we’re blocking the pathway to the heart. We’re ignoring all the other gurgling emotions that need to be felt.

All our emotions are important; all need to be recognized. The energy of each needs to be acknowledged and released. This clears the way for love. All the emotions that precede love clear the heart, so it’s pure and free to feel joy.

Trust your emotions. All of them. You’re not off the path. They lead to the path you’re seeking. They are the journey to the heart. Let them flow freely. And sure as Old Faithful, your heart will come gleaming, shining through.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Stop building cases

You don’t have to build a big drama around your life. We may need to end a relationship or explore a new career. Instead of simply saying, This is what I’m going to do, we build a case.

Like a lawyer getting ready to go to court, we prepare our arguments. We take one feeling and build a hundred-page document around it, prepared to battle our case.

You can build cases if you want to. But usually, there’s a hidden feeling underneath all that case-building that’s asking to be cleared. It could be a tinge of guilt or fear. Or it could just be the belief that it’s not okay to clearly express ourselves, say how it feels to us, and do what we need to do to take care of ourselves.

Let go of the drama. Just say what you need and how it feels to you.

Be as simple and clear as you can in expressing yourself. If you find yourself building a case or creating a big dramatic scene, take a moment. Why are you making such a fuss.

God, help me keep it simple, especially when it comes to expressing myself.

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In God’s Care

We are only as sick as the secrets we keep.
~~Anonymous

We all have our secrets. Some of them we’re not about to tell anybody. God, of course, already knows them. There may be some things we consider so shameful that we can’t share them with anyone. But shame seperates us from God. It’s a way of saying we are too horrible, too different – it’s a form of false pride.

To hide something means we’re holding on to the shame. Not until we’re ready to admit to God, ourselves, and another human being the nature of our secrets can we be rid of our shame. But when we come to believe that we have nothing to fear from sharing our secrets, God will transform them into something useful and constructive. There is nothing we have ever done that can’t be used to help someone, ourselves included.

Today I will share my secrets with someone.

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Day By Day

Showing empathy

When we first got into recovery, most of us were quite unhappy. We were in pain; we were vulnerable. We were angry and impatient. We probably didn’t like ourselves very much and may not have liked other people much.

But what if others had treated us according to these feelings? Weren’t we forgiven? Accepted? (And if we weren’t, wouldn’t it have been better if we had been?) Today, we see that we are the same as everyone else who is struggling to achieve or maintain a drug-free life. If we treat everyone well, it will help us recover.

Am I practicing generosity and compassion?

Higher Power, help me to treat others as I would want to be treated.

Today I will be especially campassionate toward…

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Food for Thought

Goals and Ends

Most of us came into this program with a specific weight goal in mind. We thought that if only we could weigh an ideal number of pounds, all of our other troubles would miraculously vanish.

When we reach goal weight, we discover that we still have to live with ourselves and deal with our problems. If we have been developing a strong program as we have been losing weight, we have a basis on which to work for further emotional and spiritual growth.

Our emotional and spiritual goals are not static. Since we never achieve perfection, there is always opportunity for further progress. The beauty of the OA program is that it is a program for life; its possibilities are limitless. To know and do the will of our Higher Power is our ultimate goal as well as our immediate one.

May I remember that You are my goal today and always.

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The World in a Bright Light
Grateful by Madisyn Taylor

There is always something to be grateful for even when life is hard and times are tough.

Everyday is a blessing, and in each moment there are many things that we can be grateful for. The world opens up to us when we live in a space of gratitude. In essence, gratitude has a snowball effect. When we are appreciative and express that gratitude, the universe glows a bit brighter and showers us with even more blessings.

There is always something to be grateful for, even when life seems hard. When times are tough, whether we are having a bad day or stuck in what may feel like an endless rut, it can be difficult to take the time to feel grateful. Yet, that is when gratitude can be most important. If we can look at our lives, during periods of challenge, and find something to be grateful for, then we can transform our realities in an instant. There are blessings to be found everywhere. When we are focusing on what is negative, our abundance can be easy to miss. Instead, choosing to find what already exists in our lives that we can appreciate can change what we see in our world. We start to notice one blessing, and then another.

When we constantly choose to be grateful, we notice that every breath is a miracle and each smile becomes a gift. We begin to understand that difficulties are also invaluable lessons. The sun is always shining for us when we are grateful, even if it is hidden behind clouds on a rainy day. A simple sandwich becomes a feast, and a trinket is transformed into a treasure. Living in a state of gratitude allows us to spread our abundance because that is the energy that we emanate from our beings. Because the world reflects back to us what we embody, the additional blessings that inevitably flow our way give us even more to be grateful for. The universe wants to shower us with blessings. The more we appreciate life, the more life appreciates and bestows us with more goodness. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Someone once defined the ego as “the sum total of false ideas about myself.” Persistent reworking of the Twelve Steps enables me to gradually strip away my false ideas about myself. This permits nearly imperceptible but steady growth in my understanding of the truth about myself. And this, in turn, leads to a growing understanding of God and other human beings. Do I strive fro self-honesty, promptly admitting when I’m wrong?

Today I Pray

God, teach me understanding; teach me to know truth when I meet it; teach me the importance of self-honesty, so that I may be able to say, sincerely, “I was wrong.” along with, “I am sorry.” Teach me that there is such a thing as a “healthy ego” which does not require that feelings be medicated by mood-alters. May I — slowly, on my tightrope– move toward the ideal of balance, so I can do away with the nets of falsehood and compulsion.

Today I Will Remember

To keep my balance.

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One More Day

The biggest thing in our today’s sorrow is the memory of yesterday’s pain.
– Kahlil Gibran

Even though we intellectually know that a chronic illness will never go away, we emotionally offer ourselves a small glimmer of hope of recovery, of our lives going on as before.

We may spend some time reviewing life’s memories, closing out whole chapters, and dealing with how life used to be. Then we can open a whole new section of life that allows us to include pain and sickness as part of our days. We work in the frame of reference of today. This is today’s problem, and we can work it into our lives. Acknowledging that we are living a part of our lives differently from before will be our first step toward adjustment. We accept, we change, and we begin to create new joys in the present to ease our sorrow.

By altering my goals, I once again can move into the mainstream of life.

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One Day At A Time

HONESTY
“Our lives improve only when we take chances ~
and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves.”
Walter Anderson

After the initial shock and realization that I am a compulsive overeater, it transpired that in order to recover, I had to get honest. This was — and still is — a painful process for me, yet it is an essential step towards my recovery.

First I had to admit that I wasn’t in control of my life and that recovery couldn’t be achieved unaided. As with most revelations, this was an uncomfortable truth to behold. I was also prompted through honesty to stop blaming everyone else for my unwillingness to help myself. I had to find conviction in my actions and not just emptiness in my words.

I conceded that I am not as perfect as I would like to think. I make mistakes and sometimes slip from the path of recovery, but with honesty comes acceptance that I am only human. This disease would deceive me into thinking that I am a failure when in fact it’s my actions that have failed me. Like a magician who performs illusions for the crowd, this disease would have me think I have committed unforgivable sins. Honesty is the key to my recovery; it unlocks the chains that have imprisoned me for so long. It allows me to recognize my weaknesses and turn them into strengths. It turns simple existence into life ~ and inner-conflicts into outward serenity.

One day at a time…
I will be honest with myself.
~ Sue G.

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Upon therapy for the alcoholic himself, we surely have no monopoly. Yet it is our great hope that all those who have yet found no answer may begin to find one in the pages of this book and will presently join us on the high road to a new freedom. – Pg. xxi – 4th. Edition – Forward To Second Edition

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

There are no magic wands or burning bushes in our program. Just footwork and faith.

My footwork right now is to not use any mind-affecting chemical and go to a meeting today.

One Foot in Front of the Other

Today, all I have to do is live the next hour as well as I can. I will not get ahead of myself. I cannot be anywhere but right where I am. When I allow myself to be here now, to live in the present fully and freely, the rest of life takes care of itself. So few people live in the moment, that in itself will make me rare. That will make me someone I feel good about being and others can enjoy being around. When I am in the moment, the next right action reveals itself. When I align my will with the will of my Higher Power, I become one with diving purpose and I connect with the spirituality of life.

I surrender to the path

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

90 meetings in 90 days is not nearly enough. Tell newcomers to always catch a ride or give a ride to their daily meeting. This way they get a meeting on the way to the meeting, a meeting during the meeting, and a meeting on the way home. That makes 270 meetings in the first 90 days!

Who am I taking to a meeting tonight?

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Any failure will tell you-success is nothing but luck.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I look within to find my truth. I ask a power greater than myself to guide me and show me the way and all I have to do is follow. It is that simple.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Nobody’s any better than anyone else. We’re all just trying to stay away from a drink. The God that I was looking for, over here, over there; in some guy, the right motorcycle, the best tattoo. And all the time it was right here inside. And it’s hope, and I have it every day if I choose to look for it. And you have it too, you have it right inside of yourself. I know that sounds like an after school special like happy little Care Bears or something, but it’s really true. And you never have to drink again if you find that little light inside yourself. You are so set. It’s really excellent. Sobriety rocks. – Gail.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 11

Here-and-Now
The nondrinking alcoholic discovers in AA that you cannot Get Ahead until you learn to be Here.
We discover from our Serenity Prayer that one of the things we cannot change is time.
The Here-and-Now is the only reality, whereas in the unreal world of the drinking alcoholic
there was only yesterday-and-tomorrow.
– Came To Believe . . ., p. 113

Thought to Ponder . . .
Tomorrow, and all the tomorrows to come, are but extensions of right here, right now.

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

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

Anger
“It is a spiritual axiom that every time we are disturbed,
no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us.
If somebody hurts us and we are sore,
we are in the wrong also.
But are there no exceptions to this rule?
What about ‘justifiable’ anger?
If somebody cheats us, aren’t we entitled to be mad?
Can’t we be properly angry with self-righteous folk?
For us in AA these are dangerous exceptions.
We have found that justifiable anger
ought to be left to those better qualified to handle it.”
1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 90

Thought to Consider . . .
Anger is the hot wind that extinguishes the light of reason.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A N G E R = Any No Good Energy Rising

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

Gifts
From: “The Opening to the Spiritual World”
“This is the crux of the program and the crux of living: acceptance and action.
“The gift of understanding has allowed the simple messages from my parents, my teachers, and my church to take on new meaning and soundness. With the gift of serenity, I am ready and willing to accept what God permits to happen to me; with the gift of courage, to take action to change the things I can for the good of myself and others. The gift of wisdom has been given to me so that in personal relationships I may act intelligently and with love or, as it has also been expressed, with competence and compassion.”
1973, AAWS, Inc., Came to Believe, page 4

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

“It should be the privilege, even the right, of each individual or group to handle anonymity as they wish … Each individual will have to decide where he ought to draw the line — how far he ought to carry the principle in his own affairs, how far he may go in dropping his own anonymity without injury to Alcoholics Anonymous as a whole.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1946
“A Tradition Born of Our Anonymity”
The Language of the Heart

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

“Your job now is to be at the place where you may be of maximum
helpfulness to others, so never hesitate to go anywhere if you can
be helpful. You should not hesitate to visit the most sordid spot on
earth on such an errand. Keep on the firing line of life with these
motives and God will keep you unharmed.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 102~

“Some drinkers have excuses with which they are satisfied part of the
time. But in their hearts they really do not know why they do it.
Once this malady has a real hold, they are a baffled lot. There is
the obsession that somehow, someday, they will beat the game. But
they often suspect they are down for the count.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 23~

“Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 164 (A Vision For You)

“For us, if we neglect those who are still sick, there is unremitting danger to our own lives and sanity.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 151 (Tradition Five)

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

The wonderful energy the Twelfth Step releases, by which it carries our message to the next suffering alcoholic and finally translates the Twelve Steps into action upon all our affairs, is the payoff, the magnificent reality of A.A.
Never talk down to an alcoholic from any moral or spiritual hilltop; simply lay out the kit of spiritual tools for his inspection. Show him how they worked with you. Offer him friendship and fellowship.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, do not allow me to forget those who are still sick.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 10th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 10th

Daily Reflections

TOWARD PEACE AND SERENITY

. . . when we have taken a square look at some of these defects, have
discussed them with another, and have become willing to have
them removed, our thinking about humility commences to have a
wider meaning.
12 & 12, p.74

When situations arise which destroy my serenity, pain often
motivates me to ask God for clarity in seeing my part in the
situation. Admitting my powerlessness, I humbly pray for
acceptance. I try to see how my character defects contribute to the
situation. Could I have been more patient? Was I intolerant? Did I
insist on having my own way? Was I afraid? As my defects are
revealed, I put self-reliance aside and humbly ask God to remove
my shortcomings. The situation may not change, but as I practice
exercising humility, I enjoy the peace and serenity which are the
natural benefits of placing my reliance in a power greater than
myself.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We in Alcoholics Anonymous do not enter into theological
discussions, but in carrying our message we attempt to explain the
simple “how” of the spiritual life. How faith in a Higher Power can
help you to overcome loneliness, fear, and anxiety. How it can
help you get along with other people. How it can make it possible
for you to rise above pain, sorrow, and despondency. How it can
help you to overcome your desires for the things that destroy. Have
I reached a simple, effective faith?

Meditation For The Day

Expect miracles of change in people’s lives. Do not be held back
by unbelief. People can be changed and they are often ready and
waiting to be changed. Never believe that human nature cannot be
changed. We see changed people everyday. Do you have the faith
to make those changes possible? Modern miracles happen every
day in the lives of people. All miracles are in the realm of
personalities. Human nature can be changed and is always being
changed. But we must have enough faith so that we can be
channels for God’s strength into the lives of others.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have the faith to expect miracles. I pray that I
may be used by God to help change the lives of others.

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As Bill Sees It

The Beginning of Humility, p. 191

“There are few absolutes inherent in the Twelve Steps. Most Steps
are open to interpretation, based on the experience and outlook of the
individual.

“Consequently, the individual is free to start the Steps at whatever
point he can, or will. God, as we understand Him, may be defined as a
‘Power greater . . .’ or the Higher Power. For thousands of members,
the A.A. group itself has been a ‘Higher Power’ in the beginning. This
acknowledgment is easy to make if a newcomer knows that most of
the members are sober and he isn’t.

“His admission is the beginning of humility–at least the newcomer is
willing to disclaim that he himself is God. That’s all the start he
needs. If, following this achievement, he will relax and practice as
many of the Steps as he can, he is sure to grow spiritually.

Letter, 1966

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Walk In Dry Places

Foolish Risks
Maintaining the New Way
There are only a few practices that really must be considered unacceptable for recovering people.  AA even concedes, for example, that there’s nothing wrong with having lunch with a friend in a far if one’s house is in order.
Under no circumstances, however, should recovering people do anything that puts their sobriety at risk. The stakes are TOO HIGH.  Recovery is to precious. The new life is to important.
What practices might come under the heading of risky?  A dangerous one, common among young and old alcoholics alike, is returning to the old crowd that’s still drinking and drugging. It’s risky to associate with our former drinking lifestyles, and we’ll recognize this if we’re working our program.
Part of the honesty I’ll practice today is knowing my own motives for everything I do.

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Keep It Simple

Everybody knows that when they’re happy, than usually the people around them are happy.—George Harrison
Do we think we can’t be happy until others are happy? Then nobody is happy. Our unhappy friends won’t take our advice. They say,” Why should I do what you say? You are not happy either.” And we answer, “I’ll be okay when you’re happy.” We make them responsible for our happiness. What a mess!
We can only make one person happy—ourselves. How? By living as our Higher Power leads us. By working the Steps. By being grateful for the good things in our lives. By loving ourselves and others, just as we are.
And maybe when we’re happy, our friends will learn from us. They can be happy too. But only our friends can make themselves happy.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, as I do my part in Your plan today, help me feel connected to You and to life.
Today’s Action:  Today I’ll enjoy my happiness. I’ll look for three ways to share it with others.

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Each Day a New Beginning

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.  –Eleanor Roosevelt
We are competent women. We made a wise choice for ourselves when we decided to recover. Each day that we continue working this program our Spirits are strengthened. And our gifts will multiply.
Feeling inferior can become a habit. Being passive and feeling inferior go hand-in-hand, and they prepare us for becoming dependent on alcohol, pills, food, and people. We didn’t understand, instinctively, that we are just who we’re meant to be. We grew up believing we were not smart enough, not pretty enough, not capable enough. We grew up too distant from the source of our real strength.
How wonderful for us that we found the program! How lucky we are to have, for the taking, all the strength we’ll ever need to face any situation, to handle any problem, to resolve any personal relationship conflict. Feeling inferior can be only a bad memory. The choice is ours. The program promises a better life. The Steps promise the strength to move forward. Our friends promise us outstretched hands.
I will look forward to the challenges of today with hope and strength and know that I am able to meet them.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

Here are thousands of men and women, worldly indeed. They flatly declare that since they have come to believe in a Power greater than themselves, to take a certain attitude toward that Power, and to do certain simple things. There has been a revolutionary change in their way of living and thinking. In the face of collapse and despair, in the face of the total failure of their human resources, they found that a new power, peace, happiness, and sense of direction flowed into them. This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements. Once confused and baffled by the seeming futility of existence, they show the underlying reasons why they were making heavy going of life. Leaving aside the drink question, they tell why living was so unsatisfactory. They show how the change came over them. When many hundreds of people are able to say that the consciousness of the Presence of God is today the most important fact of their lives, they present a powerful reason why one should have faith.

pp. 50-51

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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.
But then as I drank more and more, the alcohol seemed to affect my vision:  Instead of continuing to see what was good about my wife, I began to see her defects.  And the more I focused my mind on her defects, the more they grew and multiplied.  Every defect I pointed out to her became greater and greater.  Each time I told her she was nothing, she receded a little more into nowhere.  The more I drank, the more she wilted.

pp. 418-419

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Foreword

With the publication of the book “Alcoholics Anonymous” in 1939, the pioneering period ended and a prodigious chain reaction set in as the recovered alcoholics carried their message to still others. In the next years alcoholics flocked to A.A. by tens of thousands, largely as the result of excellent and continuous publicity freely given by magazines and newspapers throughout the world. Clergymen and doctors alike rallied to the new movement, giving it unstinted support and endorsement.

p. 17

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Today, God, help me be open to the joy and good feelings available to me.
–Melody Beattie

This I know…
There is nothing, absolutely nothing, no circumstance, no trouble, no
test, that can ever touch me, until first it comes past God. If it has
come that far, it has great purpose. I may not understand at the
moment, but as I refuse to panic, as I lift my eyes to Him and accept it
as coming from God, as a blessing for my heart, no sorrow will disturb
me, no trial will disarm me, no problem will cause me to fret, and
absolutely nothing will make me drink. For I shall rest in the knowing
and joy of my Higher Power.
–unknown

Today I am learning to be gentle with myself. Today I can look in the
mirror and smile and know that I am okay just as I am. I am treating
myself softly today.
–Ruth Fishel

Progress always involves risk; you can’t steal second base and keep
your foot on first.
–Frederick Wilcox

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.
–Melody Beattie

I open my heart to the love that is God in greater measure than ever
before. I expand my capacity to give and receive love, to serve
and be served, to seek and trust the guidance revealed in my heart.
–Linda Watson

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by
people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at
all.
–Dale Carnegie

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

THOUGHT

“Thought makes the whole
dignity of man; therefore
endeavor to think well, that is
the only morality.”
— Blaise Pascal

I think that human beings are very imitative creatures; we imitate
clothes, hair styles, mannerisms and lifestyles. A man’s mind will
be influenced by what he listens to and what he reads. And what
we think is very important to sobriety.

Today I make an effort to examine my thinking and check it out with
a sponsor or in a support group. I know that my dignity in sobriety
is connected not only with what I do but also with my attitudes
and thoughts — when my thinking begins to go crazy, I know I am
in a dangerous place and I need to talk. God created me with the
ability to think, therefore, I need to safeguard the information I put
in my mind.

Let me learn to develop morality of mind.

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

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
2 Corinthians 12:9

“I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can
snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is
greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.”
John 10: 28-29

“On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in
a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.”
John 7:37


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Daily Inspiration

Set aside your concerns while you spend a little time in prayer and allow God to be the one who comforts you. Lord, I accept the gift of Your love because it makes me feel safe and secure.

Rejoice. This is the day the Lord has made. Lord, my days pass so quickly. May I have a generous heart and the time to see the needs of those around me.

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NA Just For Today

A Positive Attitude
“That old nest of negativism followed me everywhere I went.” Basic Text, p.135

A negative attitude is the trademark of active addiction. Everything that occurred in our lives was someone or something else’s fault. We had blaming others for our shortcomings down to a fine science. In recovery, one of the first things we strive to develop is a new attitude. We find that life goes a lot easier when we replace our negative thinking with positive principles.

While a negative attitude dogged us in our active addiction, all too often it can follow us into the rooms of Narcotics Anonymous. How can we begin to adjust our attitudes? By altering our actions. It isn’t easy, but it can be done.

We can start by listening to the way we talk. Before we open our mouths, we ask ourselves some simple questions: Does what I’m going to say speak to the problem, or the solution? Is what I’m going to say framed in a kind manner? Is what I have to say important, or would everyone be just as well off if I kept my mouth shut? Am I talking just to hear myself talk, or is there some purpose to my “words of wisdom?”

Our attitudes are expressed in our actions. Often, it’s not what we say, but the way we say it, that really matters. As we learn to speak in a more positive manner, we will notice our attitudes improving as well.

Just for today: I want to be free of negativity. Today, I will speak and act positively.
pg.200

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
What a man thinks of himself, that is which determines, or rather indicates, his fate. –Henry David Thoreau
Let us think of ourselves as made of dust, and allow us to be as proud of it as if it were true. For dust is everywhere. We see it in solemn rooms streaked by sun, dancing like fine angels in a cathedral light. It is the stuff of life. And it drifts down on fancy tables where the richest people eat. It cannot be denied a place. And it returns time and a time again like the seasons. It is one of the wonders of the world. And when no one sees or cares, it finds a secret corner in which to keep a solitary peace. It intends no harm. We find it at home on old leather books, the ones that preserve our noblest thoughts.
And from where we stand, it seems that even the stars are made of it. When we feel low, unworthy, or useless, let’s remember that these feelings are only a small but important part of us, that even great things are made of small parts, and that we, as whole beings, are always greater than the sum of these parts.
What feelings am I made of today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Fears are educated into us, and can, if we wish, be educated out. –Karl A. Menninger
Two of the problems common to men in this program are fear and lack of trust. Many of us have unconsciously enlarged our fears and returned to them again and again. Do we dwell excessively on fears? Are we too fearful about our health? Money? Jobs? Love? Jealousy? The future? What other people think?
Many of us are victims of our fears and anxieties. Fears in moderation are healthy signals to us. But we need to learn to be more trusting. We can simply open ourselves to the possibility that things will turn out well. We don’t need to be blind to the negatives – only have our eyes less fixed on them. No one can ever prove to us that it is finally safe to trust.
Fearfulness is the problem, not any one fear. Trusting our Higher Power, we set our tearfulness aside, even if a few particular fears remain.
Today, I will be open to learn about trust.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. –Eleanor Roosevelt
We are competent women. We made a wise choice for ourselves when we decided to recover. Each day that we continue working this program our Spirits are strengthened. And our gifts will multiply.
Feeling inferior can become a habit. Being passive and feeling inferior go hand-in-hand, and they prepare us for becoming dependent on alcohol, pills, food, and people. We didn’t understand, instinctively, that we are just who we’re meant to be. We grew up believing we were not smart enough, not pretty enough, not capable enough. We grew up too distant from the source of our real strength.
How wonderful for us that we found the program! How lucky we are to have, for the taking, all the strength we’ll ever need to face any situation, to handle any problem, to resolve any personal relationship conflict. Feeling inferior can be only a bad memory. The choice is ours. The program promises a better life. The Steps promise the strength to move forward. Our friends promise us outstretched hands.
I will look forward to the challenges of today with hope and strength and know that I am able to meet them.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Ending Relationships
It takes courage and honesty to end a relationship – with friends, loved ones, or a work relationship.
Sometimes, it may appear easier to let the relationship die from lack of attention rather than risk ending it. Sometimes, it may appear easier to let the other person take responsibility for ending the relationship.
We may be tempted to take a passive approach. Instead of saying how we feel, what we want or don’t want, or what we intend to do, we may begin sabotaging the relationship, hoping to force the other person to do the difficult work.
Those are ways to end relationships, but they are not the cleanest or the easiest ways.
As we walk this path of self-care, we learn that when it is time to end a relationship, the easiest way is one of honesty and directness. We are not being loving, gentle, or kind by avoiding the truth, if we know the truth.
We are not sparing the other person’s feelings by sabotaging the relationship instead of accepting the end or the change, and doing something about it. We are prolonging and increasing the pain and discomfort – for the other person and ourselves.
If we don’t know, if we are on the fence, it is more loving and honest to say that.
If we know it is time to terminate a relationship, say that.
Endings are never easy, but endings are not made easy by sabotage, indirectness, and lying about what we want and need to do. Say what you need to say, in honesty and love, when it is time. If we are trusting and listening to ourselves, we will know what to say and when to say it.
Today, I will remember that honesty and directness will increase my self-esteem. God, help me let go of my fear about owning my power to take care of myself in all my relationships.

Today I will share my strength, hope and experience with someone still in pain. I will serve as I power of example to someone who is willing to let go of her suffering. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Trust the Timing of Your Lessons

Too often our first inclination when we learn a lesson, gain a new insight, have an awareness, or glimpse a new truth is to judge and criticize ourselves– for not seeing it sooner, not knowing it before, or being in denial too long. That’s not necessary. It’s not appropriate. We’re not at fault because we didn’t have this awareness or understand this lesson until now.

We don’t need to see the truth one moment before we see it. Judging ourselves for not knowing sooner can close us off to what life has to teach us now. We’re here to learn our lessons, discover our truths, have our adventures.

Let yourself have your experiences. Allow yourself to learn what you learn when you learn it. Don’t judge yourself for not learning sooner. Be happy, grateful, and excited when your lesson arrives.

Trust your voice, that quiet inner voice, when it speaks to you of truth. Be grateful you can hear it, do what it tells you to do. Trust the timing of your heart.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Let the drama go

Actors in movies or on television often must exaggerate their feelings in order to create drama on the screen. If they are hurt, they cry with a special intensity. If afraid, they scream and cower in a corner or curl up on a sofa. They may grab a person trying to leave and beg for that person to stay. In rage, they may stomp around hollering in a dramatic storm.

We can learn to separate what we’re feeling from what we do. If we’re feeling fear, hurt, anger, or any other emotion, we need to experience the emotion until we become clear. Sometimes beating a pillow helps release our anger. But we don’t have to stomp around and slam doors. That’s letting our emotions control us.

You don’t have to revel in your emtions. And you can separate your behaviors– what you do– from what you feel.

Stop being a twentieth-century drama queen. It isn’t necessary anymore. We are more conscious than that now.

God, help me let go of the unnecessary drama in my life.

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Food for Thought

A Progressive Illness

It is the experience of recovering compulsive overeaters that the illness is progressive. The disease does not get better; it gets worse. Even while we abstain, the illness progresses. If we were to break our abstinence, we would find that we had even less control over our eating than before.

Continued abstinence is our only means of health and sanity. We well remember the misery and despair that we felt when we were overeating, and we do not want to feel that way again. Abstaining from one compulsive bite is a small price to pay for health and sanity.

When we find ourselves thinking thoughts, which in the past have preceded loss of control, we need to realize the great danger that lies in a relapse. The OA program has saved us from the destruction of compulsive overeating, but our disease is still alive. Our program needs to be foremost in our minds every day if we are to continue recovering.

Do not let me forget my illness.

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In God’s Care

God is in charge. ~~Daily Word

A basic truth in our life, about which we need never be concerned, is that we are in the care of a loving God – always. And we can feel and unquestioningly know this presence if we choose to acknowledge it. When we take a moment to reflect on our past good fortunes – that we found this program, that our relationships with others are on the mend, that we harbor deep-seated fear far less often – we can use them to bolster our faith that our Higher Power is here, now and will remain our constant, caring companion.

For some of us, faith in a greater Power comes easily. But many of us begin to have faith only through Acting As If. By quieting our mind, visualizing a loving presence, and breathing in the warmth and comfort, we can find the peace that is God. Through “practicing the presence,” we’ll strengthen our faith and ensure our peacefulness.

I can feel the peace I desire today through my own efforts to remember God.

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Day By Day

Avoiding criticism

Criticism is hard to take. If we don’t want to be criticized, we shouldn’t criticize others. At the same time, expressing concern in a loving way is not being critical.

We are entitled to our opinions, but we are not entitled to put other people down. Sharing our experience, strength, and hope is a way to help others, not to make them feel small.

Can I express loving concern? Can I share without making comparisons?

Higher Power, help me recognize when I am becoming critical; help me to be loving and humble.

Today I will praise…

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Finding Encouragement
Your True Inner Voice by Madisyn Taylor

The longer you listen to and believe your true inner voice, the stronger it will become.

Within each of us, there are numerous voices often that compete for our attention. It can be difficult to decide which one to listen to, particularly when their messages are all quite different, sometimes conflicting, and even alluring. One voice, however, is the speaker of truth. Among all your inner voices, your true inner voice is the one which encourages you, gives you hope, and pushes you to trust and believe in yourself. Conflict within oneself is often caused by dueling voices inside of each one of us. As we move through life, we get mixed messages from the various aspects of ourselves. Some of our voices, such as the naysayer or saboteur, can speak so loudly that they drown out the voice of truth. Listening to your true inner voice – often the voice of understanding, support, and self-assurance – can help lessen and even resolve internal conflict.

If you’re looking toward the future but your faith in your ability to succeed in life is wavering, you will benefit from finding and listening to your true inner voice. You can connect with it by remaining relaxed and alert, while listening carefully. If you have trouble distinguishing your true voice from the others, meditation may be helpful. You may hear many voices as you meditate, but the one you should pay attention to is the one that speaks to you with love, understanding, and compassion. It will bolster your spirits and urge you to go after your dreams. And it will never cause confusion, remind you of past mistakes, or cause you to doubt yourself.

The more you listen to and believe in what your true inner voice is telling you about your value and your potential, the stronger that voice will become. And the more you disregard the voices that can interfere with your resolve to succeed, the quieter those voices will become. Saying no to the voices that are judgmental and make you feel ashamed will help you stop being critical of your failures and afraid of success. By finding and strengthening your true inner voice, you will be able to ignore internal conflict and pick out the one that speaks the truth. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

The Program is a road, not a resting place. Before we came to The Program — and, for some of us, many times afterward, — most of us looked for answers to our living problems in religion, philosophy, psychology, self-help groups, and so on. Invariable, these fields held forth the goals that were precisely what we wanted; they offered freedom, calm, confidence and joy. But there was one major loophole: They never gave us a workable method of getting there. They never told us how to get from where we were to where we were suppose to be. Do I truly believe that I can find everything that I need and really want through the Twelve Steps?

Today I Pray

May I know that, once through the Twelve Steps, I am not a plane surface. For life is not a flat field, but a slope upward. And those flights of steps must be taken over and over and remembered. May I be sure that once I have made them totally familiar to me, they will take me anywhere I want to go.

Today I Will Remember

The Steps are a road, not a resting place.

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

One More Day

It is costly wisdom that is bought by experience.
– Roger Ascham

Wisdom is gained in many ways. We can learn from others, if we’re willing. We can listen to the voice within — that inner sense of what can and should be done. Or we can — and quite often do — pay the price for that wisdom gained from experience.

Sometimes, we ignore the cautioning voices of well-meaning friends and of our instincts, and leap instead onto foolhardy or dangerous ground. It might have to do with family problems or finances or even our personal care. Often if we fail, we pay a great price — in terms of relationships, money, or health. But even our failures are not wasted if from them we gain the wisdom of caution and care.

I will try to listen and learn from others and thereby save myself some pain.

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One Day At A Time

SANITY
“Came to believe …
That a power greater than ourselves …
Could restore us to sanity.”
Step Two

What a powerful statement! There’s a power greater than me. At first glance it seemed so frightening. As I looked at my situation, it seemed impossible … who or what could be greater than I am? To be “restored” to sanity meant I must be crazy. After all, that is what insanity means. My Higher Power happened to be my sponsor and she was determined enough to be that power, if only until I opened the door to another.

One day when my ears were open and my mouth shut, these words came from another sufferer: “God can.” I thought to myself, “What?! What does ‘God can’ mean?” Later — when my body was clean and my mind receptive — those words came to mean a great deal to me. “God can” if I let Him. God can take away my compulsion to overeat. God can remove my desire for nicotine. God can take away my desire for booze. Yes, God can.

I no longer worry about what I can’t accomplish because I know that “God can.” So now when my day begins I think of what I can do right, and do it for today. That which I cannot do right — I just let God handle that. We make a pretty good team, God and me.

One Day at a Time . . .
I let my Higher Power restore me to sanity.
~ Danny

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

This thought brings us to STEP TEN, which suggests we continue to take personal inventory and continue to set right any new mistakes as we go along. We vigorously commenced this way of living as we cleaned up the past. We have entered the world of the Spirit. Our next function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness. This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime. – Pg. 84 – Into Action

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

What are the daily habits that you are forming right now to aid your recovery? Picking up this book is a good habit. If this doesn’t quiet your spirit, you pick up another program book; if that doesn’t work you must call a program person; if that doesn’t work, then you meet them in person. Our hourly habits form our daily habits which form our recovery.

I ask the Divine Forces to help me implement the changes I need in my hourly habits to aid my recovery.

Becoming Real

Today, I let go and become real. I know that by holding on too tightly, I squeeze the life out of myself and those around me. Recovery has taught me to value being authentic above being something or someone. Recovery is a process of facing and removing those obstacles that have been in the way on my road back to myself. It has been my willingness to risk and trust that my Higher Power will hold me that has brought me to life again. Now it is time for me to live each day as it comes and give some of what I have received. So many people have helped me along the way – it is also part of my recovery to share what I have learned, in case it might help someone else.

I am open to life and all it holds.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

If you have one hand in the fellowship and one hand in your Higher Power’s, you can’t pick up today.

I put my hand in my Higher Power’s by saying. ‘Thy will not mine be done;’ I put my hand in the fellowship by saying ‘I’ll be there, at the next meeting.’

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

As you sponsor others, remember this: If you are trying to recreate someone in your own image, then one of you will be redundant.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I will share my strength, hope and experience with someone still in pain. I will serve as I power of example to someone who is willing to let go of her suffering.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

Fellowship for long winded speakers: Alconon and on, and on.. – Ted H.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 10

Ego
I am still arrogant, egocentric, self-righteous, with no humility, even phony at times,
but I’m trying to be a better person and help my fellowman.
Guess I’ll never be a saint, but whatever I am, I want to be sober and in AA.
The word “alcoholic” does not turn me off any more;
in fact, it is music to my ears when it applies to me.
– Experience, Strength and Hope, p. 382

Thought to Ponder . . .
The ego seeks the destination; the soul seeks the journey.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
P R I D E = Personal Recovery Involves Deflating Ego.

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

Inventory
“A few months after I made my original trip to Akron
I was feeling pretty cocky,
and I didn’t think my wife was treating me with proper respect, now that I
was an outstanding citizen.
So I set out to get drunk deliberately,
just to teach her what she was missing.
A week later, I had to get an old friend from Akron
to spend two days sobering me up.
That was my lesson,
that one could not take the moral inventory
and then file it away;
that the alcoholic has to continue to take inventory every day
if he expects to get well and stay well.”
1976, Alcoholics Anonymous, pp. 293-4

Thought to Consider . . .
In order to recover we have to uncover.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F A I T H = Facing All In Trusting Him

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

Practice It
from: “His Spiritual Quest”
“As Dr. Bob himself said, I don’t think we can do anything very well in this world unless we practice it. And I don’t believe we do A.A. too well unless we practice it. We should practice acquiring the spirit of service. We should attempt to acquire some faith, which isn’t easily done, especially for the person who has always been very materialistic, following the standards of society today. But I think faith can be acquired; it can be acquired slowly; it has to be cultivated. That was not easy for me, and I assume that it is difficult for everyone else”
1980, AAWS, Inc., Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers, page 307-308

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

“My spiritual awakening has involved three major leaps: Save Me, Help Me, and Use Me.”
Essex Junction, Vermont, February 2000
“Save Me, Help Me, Use Me,”
AA Grapevine

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

“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~

“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~

“We know these suggestions are sometimes difficult to follow, but you will save many a heartbreak if you can succeed in observing them.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 111 (To Wives)

“All of its Twelve Steps are but suggestions.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 26 (Step Two)

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

There are few absolutes inherent in the Twelve Steps. Most Steps are open to interpretation, based on the experience and outlook of the individual.
Consequently, the individual is free to start the /steps at whatever point he can, or will. God, as we understand Him, may be defined as a Power greater or the Higher Power. For thousands of members, the A.A. group itself has been a Higher Power in the beginning. This acknowledgment is easy to make if a newcomer knows that most of the members are sober and he isn’t.
His admission is the beginning of humility at least the newcomer is willing to disclaim that he himself is God. That’s all the start he needs. If, following this achievement, he will relax and practice as many of the Steps as he can, he is sure too grow spiritually.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, let me take the suggestions given to me to my heart. Allow me to set down my ego in order to follow them.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 9th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 9th

Daily Reflections

I AM AN INSTRUMENT

Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
12 & 12, p.70

The subject of humility is a difficult one. Humility is not thinking
less of myself than I ought to; it is acknowledging that I do certain
things well, it is accepting a compliment graciously. God can only do
for me what He can do through me. Humility is the result of knowing
that God is the doer, not me. In the light of awareness, how can I take
pride in my accomplishments? I am an instrument and any work I
seem to be doing is being done by God through me. I ask God on a
daily basis to remove my shortcomings, in order that I may more freely
go about my A.A. business of “love and service.”

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Disillusionment and spiritual confusion mark our age. Many of us
have cast aside old ideas without acquiring new ones. Many men
and women are creeping through life on their hands and knees,
merely because they refuse to rely on any power but themselves.
Many of them feel that they are being brave and independent, but
actually they are only courting disaster. Anxiety and the inferiority
complex have become the greatest of all modern plagues. In A.A.
we have the answer to these ills. Have I ceased to rely on myself
only?

Meditation For The Day

Disillusionment and doubt spoil life. The doubting ones are the
disillusioned ones. When you are in doubt, you are on the fence.
You are not going anywhere. Doubt poisons all action. “Well. I
don’t know”–so you don’t know anything. You should meet life
with a “Yes,” an affirmative attitude. There is good in the world
and we can follow that good. There is power available to help us to
do the right thing; therefore we will accept that power. There are
miracles of change in people’s lives; therefore we will accept
those miracles as evidence of God’s power.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I will not be paralyzed by doubt. I pray that I may go along
on the venture of faith.

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

As Bill Sees It

The A.A. Way in the Home*, p. 190

Though an alcoholic does not respond, there is no reason why you should neglect his
family. You should continue to be friendly to them, explaining A.A.’s concept of
alcoholism and its treatment. If they accept this and also apply our principles to their
problems, there is a much better chance that the head of the family will recover. And
even though he continues to drink, the family will find life more bearable.

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

Unless a new member’s family readily expresses a desire to live upon spiritual principles,
we think he ought not to urge them. They will change in time. His behavior will usually
convince them far more than his words.

Alcoholics Anonymous
1. p. 97
2. p. 83

*Today, the initiation of the A.A. way of life in the home is the central purpose of the Al-Anon
Family Groups of which there are (as of 1984) over 22,000 throughout the world. These are
composed of wives, husbands, and relatives of alcoholics. In restoring families to the good life,
Alan’s success has been enormous.


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

Walk In Dry Places

What is the real cause?
Motivations.
Bringing her alcoholic husband home from a treatment center, a woman was dismayed when an argument ensued and he left the car in a rage.  She blamed herself and their argument when he finally arrived home, DRUNK.
Seasoned veterans of alcoholic games will quickly understand that the argument had no part in “causing” the alcoholic to drink. Instead, the argument was something he started as a means of getting away from his wife. He still wanted and needed to drink.
In dealing with our compulsive illnesses, we must separate our excuses from what’s really going on.  Arguments do not cause alcoholics to drink, but they can be used as convenient devices for getting our way.
I must take responsibility for my own behavior. If I have chosen sobriety, no person and no event can cause me to drink.

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Keep It Simple

First say to yourself what you would be: and then do what you have to do.  – Eptctetus
We often tell ourselves we want to be more peaceful, more in touch with our Higher Power. In other words, we want to become more spiritual. Acting as spiritual people is hard. Tho often, we choose the easy way. We make a nasty comment even if we know it’ll only make things worse.
We say we have a program for living. Are we living our program? We’ll find the answer in our behavior. Sober people act in sober ways. We attend meetings regularly. We study spiritual ideas. We work to bring joy to our lives and the lives of others. Just as we know a good friend by the way he or she behaves, we know a sober person by the way he or she behaves.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me be a person whose words and actions match up.
Today’s Action:  Today I’ll take an inventory of my actions to see if they are those of a sober person.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Of course, fortune has its part in human affairs, but conduct is really much more important.  –Jeanne Detourbey
It’s not infrequent that we are faced with a dilemma; what is the best action to take in a certain situation? We can be guided, rightly, in every situation if we but turn inward and let our conscience direct our behavior. We have often heard it said at meetings that when we long for a message from God we will hear it, either through our conscience or in the words of our friends. Thus we can never really be in doubt; our conduct can always be above reproach if we but listen.
Right behavior leads to fortunate opportunities for those who look for them. Behavior that we’re proud of seems to attract blessings in our lives. One’s good fortune is really God-given and in proportion to one’s willingness to act well toward others in all situations.
Simply, what goes around comes around. Our behavior comes back to us, manyfold. In our encounters with others today, we’ll have numerous occasions to decide about the best behavior for the particular circumstance. We must not forget that our behavior elicits the responses we receive.
I will invite blessings today. I will also shower blessings on my friends.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

On one proposition, however, these men and women are strikingly agreed. Every one of them has gained access to, and believe in, a Power greater than himself. This Power has in each case accomplished the miraculous, the humanly impossible. As a celebrated American statesman put it, “Let’s look at the record.”

p. 50

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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.
Acceptance has been the answer to my marital problems.  It’s as though A.A. had given me a new pair of glasses.  Max and I have been married now for thiry-five years.  Prior to our marriage, when she was a shy, scrawny adolescent, I was able to see things in her that others couldn’t necessarily see–things like beauty, charm, gaiety, a gift for being easy to talk to, a sense of humor, and many other fine qualities.  It was as if I had, rather than a Midas touch which turned everything to gold, a magnifying mind that magnified whatever it focused on.  Over the years as I thought about Max, her good qualities grew and grew, and we were married, and all these qualities became more and more apparent to me, and we were happier and happier.

p. 418

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Foreword

Nevertheless, the infant Society determined to set down its experience in a book which finally reached the public in April 1939. At this time the recoveries numbered about one hundred. The book was called “Alcoholics Anonymous,” and from it the Fellowship took its name. In it alcoholism was described from the alcoholic’s point of view, the spiritual ideas of the Society were codified for the first time in the Twelve Steps, and the application of these Steps to the alcoholic’s dilemma was made clear. The remainder of the book was devoted to thirty stories or case histories in which the alcoholics described their drinking experiences and recoveries. This established identification with alcoholic readers and proved to them that the virtually impossible had now become possible. The book “Alcoholics Anonymous” became the basic text of the Fellowship, and it still is. This present volume proposes to broaden and deepen the understanding of the Twelve Steps as first was written in the earlier work.

p. 17

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During the time of the darkest night, act as if the morning has already
come.
–The Talmud

The spiritual journey involves going beyond hope and fear, stepping
into unknown territory, continually moving forward. The most
important aspect of being on the spiritual path may be just to keep
moving.
–Pema Chodron

God is my life, I express health, God is my supply, I express
abundance, God is trust, I express faith.
–SweetyZee

No one gives me worry, nothing causes me fear, I release them, and
trust Gods outcomes.
–SweetyZee

I am steadfast in my loyalty to God and truth.
–SweetyZee

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

PESSIMISM

“There is no sadder sight than a
young pessimist.”
–Mark Twain

I meet so many young people who have “aged” because of their
drug addiction. They have lost that “spark” of youth that is both
creative and hopeful. They reveal in their eyes a “powerlessness”
that keeps them prisoners of lethargy. They don’t want to do
anything. They mumble rather than speak. They walk with no
purpose: young zombies! Addiction breeds pessimism.

Recovery is realizing that life need not be like this. True joy and
happiness comes with the experience of self, rather than the
confused experiences of chemicals. Reality is facing the pain and
problems in order to rediscover the dynamic spirituality of a
drug-free life. The “yes” to life begins with the “no” to drugs.
Happiness and confidence are discovered in the “yes” to life.

Let me see beyond the gloom to the promised sunrise of tomorrow.

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

“You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.”
Jeremiah 29:13

“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so
that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and
effective.”
James 5:16

“Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the
name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will
receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 2:38

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our
sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
I John 1:9


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

Daily Inspiration

We often don’t realize how heavy the weight of worry is and how much energy it requires until we are able to let go of it. Lord, I place my trust in You to clear my thinking, help me resolve my concerns and bring me to a place of peace.

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

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NA Just For Today

We Do Recover!

“….the time has come when that tired old lie, ‘Once an addict, always an addict,’ will no longer be tolerated by either society or the addict himself. We do recover.”
Basic Text, p.86

From time to time, we hear speakers share that they don’t really understand spiritual principles yet. They tell us that if we knew what went on in their minds, we’d be amazed at how insane they still are. They tell us that the longer they’re clean, the less they know about anything. In the next breath, these same speakers tell us about the profound changes recovery has made in their lives. They have moved from complete despair to unfailing hope, from uncontrollable drug use to total abstinence, from chronic unmanageability to responsibility through working the Twelve Steps of Narcotics Anonymous. Which story is true? Do we or don’t we recover?

We may think we demonstrate humility or gratitude by underplaying the change that recovery has brought to our lives. True, we do injustice to the program when we take credit for this miracle ourselves. But we do an equal injustice-to ourselves and to those we share with-when we don’t acknowledge this miracle’s magnitude.

We do recover. If we have trouble seeing the miracle of recovery, we’d better look again. Recovery is alive and at work in Narcotics Anonymous-in our old-timers, in the newcomers flooding our meetings, and most of all in ourselves. All we have to do is open our eyes.

Just for today: I will acknowledge the miracle of my recovery and be grateful that I’ve found it.
pg. 199

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You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
A mother is not a person to lean on, but a person to make leaning unnecessary. –Dorothy Canfield Fisher
A strong, healthy tree is one which is free to grow straight and tall. A weak tree often must lean against another for support. It is not that different with people. We are not healthy and strong when we must always lean on another to support us.
This doesn’t mean it isn’t healthy to accept help. But the best help we can get or give is that which enables us to do things without it. Sometimes we think we lose a relationship when others don’t need our help, or when we don’t need theirs all the time. The reverse is true. Only when we are each strong enough to stand on our own can we really share the kind of help, which allows both, helped and helper to be independent.
Have I been giving the right kind of help?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. –Herbert Spencer
We sometimes wish we could protect friends or loved ones from the consequences of their actions. We’d like to pick up the pieces after they’ve made a mess of their lives. Or we fail to look at the dark side of someone’s motives because we want only the best. Perhaps it is our controlling willfulness that tries to make things into what we want, rather than accepts things as they really are.
In our masculine recovery, a deeper love allows us to have a respectful distance from others. When we truly care about someone, we don’t snatch him or her out of his or her learning experience. When we allow our loved ones and friends to confront the natural consequences of their own actions, they learn and grow just as we do. We can be with a friend, but we are no one’s Higher Power.
Today, I will be respectful of others by letting them walk their path while I walk mine.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
Of course, fortune has its part in human affairs, but conduct is really much more important. –Jeanne Detourbey
It’s not infrequent that we are faced with a dilemma; what is the best action to take in a certain situation? We can be guided, rightly, in every situation if we but turn inward and let our conscience direct our behavior. We have often heard it said at meetings that when we long for a message from God we will hear it, either through our conscience or in the words of our friends. Thus we can never really be in doubt; our conduct can always be above reproach if we but listen.
Right behavior leads to fortunate opportunities for those who look for them. Behavior that we’re proud of seems to attract blessings in our lives. One’s good fortune is really God-given and in proportion to one’s willingness to act well toward others in all situations.
Simply, what goes around comes around. Our behavior comes back to us, manyfold. In our encounters with others today, we’ll have numerous occasions to decide about the best behavior for the particular circumstance. We must not forget that our behavior elicits the responses we receive.
I will invite blessings today. I will also shower blessings on my friends.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Overspending and Underspending
I used to beat my husband to death with my credit card. It makes me feel like I had some control, some way to get even with him. –Anonymous
I spent ten years buying everything for myself at garage sales. I didn’t even buy myself a new pair of shoes. The entire time I was depriving myself, my husband was gambling, speculating on risky business deals, and doing whatever he wanted with money. I learned that when I made a decision that I deserved to have the things I wanted, and made a decision to buy something I wanted, there was enough money to do it. It wasn’t about being frugal; it was about depriving myself, and being a martyr. –Anonymous
Compulsive buying or overspending may give us a temporary feeling of power or satisfaction, but like other out of control behaviors, it has predictable negative consequences.
Under spending can leave us feeling victimized too.
There is a difference between responsible spending and martyred deprivation. There is a difference between treating ourselves well financially and overspending. We can learn to discern that difference. We can develop responsible spending habits that reflect high self esteem and love for ourselves.
Today, I will strive for balance in my spending habits. If I am overspending, I will stop and deal with what’s going on inside me. If I am under spending or depriving myself, I will ask myself if that’s necessary and what I want.

Today I am learning to stop judging and comparing so that I can be with what is. I am learning to accept what is without the struggle of trying to decide whether it is right or wrong. –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Learn to Focus Your Energy

“I’ve come to this lodge for one reason,” the woman at Breitenbush Retreat in Willamette Forest said. “I brought my fiddle, and I’m not leaving until I can play a bluegrass tune. If I want to get out of here, I’d better learn to play.

There is a time to be open, almost unfocused, as we take in what the world, the universe, is showing us. There is a time to get out of our heads and quietly take the journey our hearts lead us into– following with the openness and wonder of a child.

But there also comes a time to aim our attention and focus our energy on what we want to accomplish. Instead of floundering with scattered thoughts and possibilities, we choose one, then act on it. We stay in step with the natural rhythm, but we’re pulling our scattered attention together and focusing it as part of that rhythm.

To do that, we may have to work through or push away inner distractions. Moving through our inner obstacles enables us to accomplish our goal– whether that’s a task, a particular piece of work, or learning to play the fiddle.

Is there something you want to do? Is your heart urging you to learn something, accomplish something, go somewhere, do something? Make it a goal. Focus your energy. Learn to stay focused until you reach that goal.

Put yourself in the cabin and don’t let yourself out until it’s done.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Stop being a sponge

You don’t have to be an emotional sponge, picking up every feeling around you. Learn to distinguish whether what you’re feeling belongs to you or to somebody else.

Linda has a grown son. Whenever her son is going through a difficult time, Linda takes her son’s emotions on, as if those feelings belonged to her. She’ll talk to her son on the phone for a while. He’ll express himself intensely and powerfully about how he really feels about everything in his life. After all, Linda’s his mom. It’s safe to tell her how he really feels, even if he can’t tell anyone else. Linda may feel fine when she begins talking to her son. But by the end of the conversation, Linda doesn’t feel that good anymore. She may feel angry, upset, or worried– or whatever her son was feeling before he talked to her.

Sometimes we soak up other people’s feelings because we forget to protect ourselves. Often, we do this because of the depth of feeling we have for this person. The remedy for this is the same as it is when we’re dealing with our own emotional stuff. We recognize what we’re feeling. We give that feeling its due. Then we let it go. We squeeze out the sponge.

Sometimes, it just takes the act of recognizing that we’ve taken on another person’s emotions to clear those emotions out. If we strive for awareness, we’ll begin to recognize when the feelings we’re feeling aren’t our own.

Children are often open and unprotected. If we’re going through a lot of feelings around them, they may absorb our emotions,too. It’s important to share our feelings with others and let people talk about their feelings to us. But we need to pay attention. If we’ve picked up someone else’s emotions, we need to let those feelings go.

God, help me know that part of being close to people and loving them means I sometimes take on their feelings. Show me how to protect myself so I can keep my heart open to the people I love without taking on their feelings.

Activity: As children, we may have absorbed emotions from our parents. These emotions can linger with us long into adulthood, shaping our beliefs and our general attitude toward life. These emotions can be tricky. We think they’re our own, but they’re not. They belong to someone else. Ask your Higher Power to show you whether you’ve absorbed any emotions from your parents or other people in your life. Then stay open to the responses you get to this prayer. If any emotions or memories begin popping into your consciousness, go to your journal and write about them. Just document the scene or memory that comes to mind. Then release the emotions. Set them free and let them go. Carrying around someone else’s feelings doesn’t help the other person and it doesn’t help us. You deserve to be free and clear.

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Food for Thought

Tension or Hunger?

How often have we eaten because of tension, rather than hunger? Accepting our need for three measured meals a day with nothing in between establishes a sensible pattern, which satisfies our need for nourishment. When we are tense, we can find ways of relaxing which do not harm our body by making it fat.

Learning to relax the stomach muscles helps get rid of tension hunger. Often when we have eaten too fast because of tension, our stomach continues to send hunger signals after the meal. There has not been enough time for the digestive process to register satisfaction. We can consciously relax the muscles so that the feeling of emptiness will go away.

The best cure for tension is a growing faith in our Higher Power. If we are willing to trust Him in the little things of each day, as well as the big events of our life, we will be able to relax and cultivate serenity.

Dissolve my tension and feed my hunger, I pray.

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Cause for Celebration
Honoring Everyday Life by Madisyn Taylor

Use the good china everyday as today is all that matters.

We all know someone who keeps plastic covers on his or her couch in order to protect it. The irony is that many of these people may live their lives without ever having actually made contact with their own furniture! This is a poignant and somewhat humorous example of the human tendency to try to save things for special occasions, as if everyday life weren’t special enough to warrant the use of nice things. Many of us have had the experience of never wearing a particular piece of clothing in order to keep it nice, only to have it go out of style in the meanwhile.

It’s interesting to think of what it would mean to us if we let ourselves wear our nicest clothes and eat off the good china on a daily basis. We might be sending ourselves the message that every day we are alive is a special day and a cause for celebration, and that we are worth it. There is something uplifting about treating ourselves to the finest of what we have. It is as if we rise to the occasion when we wear our best clothes and set the table beautifully, as if for a very special guest. We are more mindful of where we place things, what we are eating, and who is with us. Using the good china, eating in the dining room, and taking the plastic off the sofa might be an invitation to be more conscious of the beauty and grace inherent in our everyday lives.

If there are things you’ve stashed away for a special occasion—a bottle of special wine, a gorgeous pair of shoes, an antique lace tablecloth—consider taking them out of their hiding places and putting them to use tonight, just because you are alive now to enjoy them, and that’s a great cause for a celebration. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

When we make only superficial changes in ourselves, and give only lip service to The Program, our progress is slow and the likelihood of relapse great. Our regeneration must take the form of a true spiritual rebirth. It must go very deep, within each character flaw replaced by a new and positive quality. Am I being completely honest with myself in uncovering the faults which hamper my spiritual growth? Am I beginning to replace them with positive qualities?

Today I Pray

May God’s protective hand lead me out of the darkness of my deepest fear — that I could return to being what I do now want to be. Please, God, give me courage to make an honest appraisal of myself. Please help me cultivate my positive qualities and begin to be free of my fears.

Today I Will Remember

I must be reborn in the Spirit.

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One More Day

Should I, after tea and cakes and ices, Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
– Thomas Stearns Eliot

Some people call it “dancing around the issue.” After all, if there is a problem to face, we may become embarrassed when it’s time to talk about it. We try so hard to balance the emotional framework of our lives that we hardly want to be the one to bring up what seems to be a taboo topic. What we think, we don’t always state; what we intend, we don’t state clearly; and what we need, we rarely ask for. Our half-truths and mixed messages don’t result in honest communication.

Drug use? Manipulative behavior? Eating disorder? Financial problems? The only way to begin to face a problem is to admit that there is one, to talk about it, and to decide together what steps can be taken to help.

Today, I will face a problem honestly.

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One Day At A Time

CONTROL
“I offer you this prayer for all the difficult relationships in our lives:
God, grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change,
The courage to change the person I can,
And the wisdom to know that person is me.”
Rev. Mary Manin Morrissey

My disease tells me that my life would be so much better if people would only do what I tell them to do. If they would listen to me, I could solve all their problems, fix their lives, and everybody would be happy. Why can’t they see that our relationships would be better if they’d just do what I say, and not what I do? Don’t they realize that I know more than they do about how to run their lives?

Well, luckily for the people in my life, this disease lies. I DON’T know what’s best for them. Because I have a disease of compulsion, I don’t even know what’s best for me. If I had known what was best for me, my life would not have been in shambles like it was before I found the Twelve Steps of recovery.

I had to come to the realization that my life had become unmanageable. Only then could I find a Higher Power to restore sanity to the crazy drama that had become my life ~ and to grant me the serenity which accompanies sanity. Now I realize the only person I can control is myself. I can’t make other people change into what I want them to be, nor can I make them do what I think is best for them. Since I’ve begun letting my Higher Power restore me to sanity, I no longer want to be a control freak. I can’t even fathom trying to run another person’s life. I have enough on my hands just living my own life; I don’t have the strength, knowledge or wisdom to live someone else’s. I will always be grateful to my Higher Power for helping me to realize that.

One day at a time…
I will live my own life and allow others to live theirs.
~ Jeff

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

Speaking at a dinner given by John D. Rockefeller Jr. to introduce Alcoholics Anonymous to some of his friends, Dr. Harry Emerson Fosdick remarked:
‘I think that psychologically speaking there is a point of advantage in the approach that is being made in this movement that cannot be duplicated. I suspect that if it is wisely handled – and it seems to be in wise and prudent hands – there are doors of opportunity ahead of this project that may surpass our capacities to imagine.’ – Pg. 572 – 4th. Edition – Appendix V – The Religious View On A.A.

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

Whether serious and conservative or eager and flighty, newcomers often feel no necessity for embracing recovery. REMEMBER, millions have gone before you. You don’t have to embrace the 12 steps but embrace something that works for recovery.

I embrace a program of recovery, not my self will, but a program I trust with clean and people that I can see!

Spiritual Transformation

Today, I see that to change my life I have to change myself. Nothing less than a spiritual transformation will allow me to experience my current life as an alive, serene and whole person. When I say that I would like world peace, first I will understand that without inner peace there will be no world peace. One of the ways in which I can serve the cause of humanity is to be, within myself, a genuinely spiritual person – respecting all sects and creeds, but standing on my own as a conduit of higher truth, recognizing that each person has equal access to that knowledge. I will look for truth today within myself rather than outside. I will not wait for peace to be handed to me as some sort of prize for good behavior but will do the inner work needed to achieve it.

I seek truth within myself.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

A main theme in most spiritual traditions states that the best way to get what you want is to provide it for another. If you want serenity, make it peaceful and serene for another. Do you want a feeling of safety? Provide a safe place for another. Do you want to understand what has happened? Help another to understand.

I teach best what I most need to learn.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

The slogans work much better when you decorate your life with them rather than decorating the walls with them.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I am learning to stop judging and comparing so that I can be with what is. I am learning to accept what is without the struggle of trying to decide whether it is right or wrong.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

I’m getting younger in AA. When I came in I was an old man of thirty, I couldn’t walk across the alley. Now at seventy I’m running marathons. – Waggy Bill.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 9

Acceptance
And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today.
When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation
— some fact of my life — unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity
until I accept that person, place, thing, or situation
as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.
– Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 417

Thought to Ponder . . .
My serenity is directly proportional to my level of acceptance.

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

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

Attitude
” ‘Then I woke up.
I had to admit that AA showed results, prodigious results.
I saw that my attitude regarding these
had been anything but scientific.
It wasn’t AA that had the closed mind, it was me.
The minute I stopped arguing,
I could begin to see and feel.
Right there, Step Two gently and very gradually
began to infiltrate my life.
I can’t say upon what occasion,
or upon what day I came to believe
in a Power greater than myself,
but I certainly have that belief now.
To acquire it, I had only to stop fighting
and practice the rest of AA’s program
as enthusiastically as I could.’ ”
1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 27

Thought to Consider . . .
Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
A A = Altered Attitudes

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

My Solution
From: “AA Taught Him to Handle Sobriety”
“Bewilderment, fear, and resentment moved into my life. And yet my ability to lie outwardly and to kid myself inwardly
grew with every drink I took. Indeed, I had to drink now to live, to cope with the demands of everyday existence. When I
encountered disappointments or frustrations – as I did more and more frequently – my solution was to drink. I had
always been oversensitive to criticism and was acutely so now. When I was criticized or reprimanded, the bottle was
my refuge and comfort.”
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, page 555

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

“I saw that fear was a character defect, so I modified my Seventh Step Prayer. After ‘remove every single defect of
character,’ I added, ‘and every unreasonable fear.'”
Brea, California, July 2010
“Unreasonable Fears,”
No Matter What: Dealing with Adversity in Sobriety

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

“Helping others is the foundation stone of your recovery. A kindly
act once in a while isn’t enough. You have to act the Good Samaritan
every day, if need be.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 97~

“We have no desire to convince anyone that there is only one way by
which faith can be acquired. If what we have learned and felt and
seen means anything at all, it means that all of us, whatever our
race, creed, or color are the children of a living Creator with whom
we may form a relationship upon simple and understandable terms as
soon as we are willing and honest enough to try.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 28~

“Acceptance is the key to my relationship with God today. I never just sit and do nothing while waiting for Him to tell me
what to do. Rather, I do whatever is in front of me to be done, and I leave the results up to Him; however it turns out,
that’s God’s will for me.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 452 (3rd Edition)

“These conclusions did not require action; they required only acceptance.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 34

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

Though an alcoholic does not respond, there is no reason why you should neglect his family. You should continue to be friendly to them, explaining A.A.s concept of alcoholism and its treatment. If they accept this and also apply our principles to their problems, there is a much better chance that the head of the family will recover. And even though he continues to drink, the family will find life more bearable.
Unless a new members family readily expresses a desire to live upon spiritual principles, we think he ought not to urge them. They will change in time. His better behavior will usually convince them far more than his words.
*Today, the initiation of the A.A. way of life in the home is the central purpose of the Al-Anon Family Groups, of which there are (as of 1980) about 16,000 throughout the world. These are composed of wives, husbands, and relatives of alcoholics. In restoring families to the good life, Al-Anons success has been enormous.

Prayer for the Day: “Higher Power, help me live in accordance with spiritual principles. Only then can I approve of myself.”

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 8th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 8th

Daily Reflections

AN EVER-GROWING FREEDOM, p.198

The Seventh Step is where we make the change in our attitude
which permits us, with humility as our guide, to move out from
ourselves toward others and toward God.
12 & 12, p.76

When I finally asked God to remove those things blocking me
from Him and the sunlight of the Spirit, I embarked on a journey
more glorious than I ever imagined. I experienced freedom from
those characteristics that had me wrapped up in myself. Because
of this humbling Step, I feel clean. I am especially aware of this
Step because I’m now able to be useful to God and to my fellows. I
know that He has granted me strength to do His bidding and has
prepared me for anyone, and anything, that comes my way today. I
am truly in His hands, and I give thanks for the joy that I can be useful
today.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We in Alcoholics Anonymous do not enter into theological
discussions, but in carrying our message we attempt to explain the
simple “how” of the spiritual life. How faith in a Higher Power can
help you to overcome loneliness, fear, and anxiety. How it can
help you get along with other people. How it can make it possible
for you to rise above pain, sorrow, and despondency. How it can
help you to overcome your desires for the things that destroy. Have
I reached a simple, effective faith?

Meditation For The Day

Expect miracles of change in people’s lives. Do not be held back
by unbelief. People can be changed and they are often ready and
waiting to be changed. Never believe that human nature cannot be
changed. We see changed people everyday. Do you have the faith to
make those changes possible? Modern miracles happen every day
in the lives of people. All miracles are in the realm of personalities.
Human nature can be changed and is always being changed. But we must
have enough faith so that we can be channels for God’s strength into
the lives of others.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have the faith to expect miracles. I pray that I
may be used by God to help change the lives of others.

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As Bill Sees It

Experimenters, p. 189

We agnostics liked A.A. all right, and were quick to say that it had done miracles. But we
recoiled from meditation and prayer as obstinately as the scientist who refused to
perform a certain experiment lest it prove his pet theory wrong.

When we finally did experiment, and unexpected results followed, we felt different; in
fact, we knew different; and so we were sold on meditation and prayer. And that, we
found, can happen to anybody who tries. It has been well said that “Almost the only
scoffers at prayer are those who never tried enough.”

12 & 12, p. 97

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Walk In Dry Places

God’s will for us.
Spiritual Guidance.
“I was afraid God would want me to do something unpleasant, like go off to become a monk,” a young man said at a 12 Step meeting. “That’s why I had a hard time seeking God’s will for me.”   This sort of comment is heard now and then at meetings. It reveals a belief that God is a harsh taskmaster who delights in imposing difficult conditions on us.
The truth is that God’s purpose is to help us be more of what we ought to be, which is always something better than what we’re experiencing now. Few people are ever called to be monks, but those who do are pleased with their choice and devote themselves to it.
We must always be interested in finding God’s direction in our lives. It will turn out to be something far better than anything we could have planned.
I need not fear God’s direction in my life. It’s actually what I need in order to reach my true place.

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Keep It Simple

Pain can’t be avoided. It’s as natural as joy.  – Unknown
We got into a lot of trouble trying to avoid pain. We used alcohol and other drugs to avoid pain. We didn’t want to accept pain as a fact of life.
We can’t avoid pain, but now we have the program. The program teaches us how to talk about our pain. The program teaches how to turn over our pain to our Higher Power.
We don’t have to be alone when we face pain. We have friends to go to. Before, when we hurt, we ran to alcohol or other drugs.
Now, when we hurt, we run to the comfort of our sponsor and our program friends.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me accept pain as part of life.  Help me remember that You are always there to help me with my pain. I’m not alone.
Today’s Action:  Today, I’ll list three painful events in my life. I’ll talk with a friend about them.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Women like to sit down with trouble as if it were knitting.  –Ellen Glasgow
How often we turn minor challenges into monumental barriers by giving them undue attention, forgetting that within any problem lies its solution! However, the center of our focus must be off the problem’s tangle if we are to find the solution’s thread. The best remedy for this dilemma is the Serenity Prayer.
We cannot change our children, our husbands or partners, not even the best friends who we know love us. But with God’s help we can change the attitude that has us blocked at this time. A changed attitude, easing up on ourselves, lessening our expectations of others, will open the door to the kind of relationships we seek, the smooth flowing days we long for.
We need not take life so seriously. In fact, we shouldn’t take it so seriously. We can measure our emotional health by how heartily we laugh with others and at ourselves. The 24 hours stretching before us at this time promises many choices in attitude. We can worry, be mad, depressed, or frustrated, or we can trust our higher power to see us through whatever the situation. So, we can relax. It is our decision, the one decision over which we are not powerless.
I will be in control of my attitude today. I can have the kind of day I long for.


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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

In our personal stories you will find a wide variation in the way each teller approaches and conceives of the Power which is greater than himself. Whether we agree with a particular approach or conception seems to make little difference. Experience has taught us that these are matters about which, for our purpose, we need not be worried. They are questions for each individual to settle for himself.

p. 50

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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.
For years I was sure the worst thing that could happen to a nice guy like me would be that I would turn out to be an alcoholic.  Today I find it’s the best thing that has ever happened to me.  This proves I don’t know what’s good for me.  And if I don’t know what’s good for me, then I don’t know what’s good or bad for you or for anyone.  So I’m better off if I don’t give advice, don’t figure I know what’s best, and just accept life on life’s terms, as it is today–especially my own life, as it actually is.  Before A.A. I judged myself by my intentions, while the world was judging me by my actions.

pp. 417-418

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Foreword

After three years of trial and error in selecting the most workable tenets upon which the Society could be based, and after a large amount of failure in getting alcoholics to recover, three successful groups emerged–the first at Akron, the second at New York, and the third at Cleveland. Even then it was hard to find twoscore of sure recoveries in all three groups.

pp. 16-17

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All time spent angry is time lost being happy.
–Mexican Proverb

Do what you can, for who you can, with what you have, and where you
are.
–Anonymous

Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you
can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people
you can, as long as ever you can.
–John Wesley

Most of us are just about as happy as we make up our minds to be.
–Abraham Lincoln

“One’s destination is never a place but rather a new way of looking at
things.”
–Henry Miller

Superfluous wealth can buy superfluities only. Money is not required
to buy one necessity of the soul.
–Henry David Thoreau

“No one has ever done anything too bad to be forgiven.”
–Ruth Sheppard

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

ART

“There is no must in art because
it is free.”
–Vasily Kandinsky

Now I understand why the religious people of the past persecuted
the artist. Now I understand why so many artists moved away
from religion and grew beyond it. The artist is always searching
for that which is different, that which cannot be contained or
codified; that which is free: Spirituality. As a drinking alcoholic I
found it necessary to control my life; control my thoughts and
behavior; control each and every situation — and it was depressingly
exhausting. Today sobriety enables me to risk that which is new and
different. Sobriety allows me to experiment and take risks in God’s
world. Sobriety is being free. I am discovering more of me in what
yesterday’s artists wrote and produced. The “musts” of yesterday
have been replaced by the shoulds and needs today. I am free to
listen and consider the person because he is a person and not
simply because of his credentials.

Supreme Artist, let me hear You in the whisperings of Your creatures.

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Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you.
1 Peter 5:6-7

You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
Galatians 3:26

You are from God, little children, and have overcome; because
greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.
1 John 4:4

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one
comes to the Father except through me. If you really knew me, you
would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and
have seen him.”
John 14:5-7


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Daily Inspiration

Keep your mind open to the possibility that things can turn out even better than expected. Lord, I trust in You and graciously accept all blessings that You send to me.

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

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NA Just For Today

The “G” Word

“It is important for you to know that you will hear God mentioned at NA meetings. What we are referring to is a Power greater than ourselves that makes possible what seems impossible.”
IP No.22, “Welcome to NA”

Most of us come to Narcotics Anonymous with a variety of preconceptions about what the word “God” means, many of them negative. Yet the “G” word is used very regularly in NA, if not constantly. It occurs 92 times in the first 103 pages of our Basic Text, and appears prominently in a third of our Twelve Steps. Rather than sidestep the sensitivity many of us feel toward the word, let’s address it head on.

It’s true that Narcotics Anonymous is a spiritual program. Our Twelve Steps offer a way to find freedom from addiction through the help of a spiritual Power greater than we are. The program, however; doesn’t tell us anything about what we have to think about that Power. In fact, over and over again, in our literature and our steps and our meetings, we hear it said, “the God of our understanding” – whatever that understanding may be.

We use the word “God” because it’s used in our Basic Text and because it communicates most effectively to most people a basic understanding of the Power underlying our recovery. The word, we use for the sake of convenience. The Power behind the word, however, we use for more than convenience. We use that Power to maintain our freedom from addiction and to ensure our ongoing recovery.

Just for today: Whether I believe in “God” or not, I will use the Power that keeps me clean and free.

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You are reading from the book  Today’s Gift.
Hurry, hurry has no blessing.  –Swahili Proverb
In a busy family there is a lot of activity. We sometimes feel imprisoned by all the work, school, extracurricular activities, housework, meetings, and special events. In the press to do it all, we may lose our peace because of the hurry. We rush to eat; we rush to work; we rush to get there on time. Much of this cannot be helped. But hurry has no blessing, as the proverb goes. We can create quick tempers and a lot of frustration if we try to hurry too much.
When we allow enough time to slow things down, we give ourselves a chance to enjoy what we’re doing, and to develop along spiritual lines. Inner peace depends on our keeping a balance in all the things we do. Only then can we feel the joy that comes from having enough time to do things quietly and smoothly, and value the inner peace that comes when we do not hurry.
How can I take my time today and enjoy myself?

You are reading from the book  Touchstones.
He was shut out from all family affairs. No one told him anything. The children, alone with their mother, told her all about the day’s happenings, everything…. But as soon as the father came in, everything stopped.  –D. H. Lawrence
Many of us men are on the outer edge of our family circles. The closeness between our children and our wives often seems more comfortable, more intimate than our relationships with them. Perhaps it’s similar to the closeness we had with our mother while our father was outside. It is painful to us and probably not entirely our own fault. We were taught that our main job was outside the home – supporting our family by earning a living. But it is up to us to change the situation.
Many of us learned from our own father that grown men stay aloof from emotional relationships, but this has hurt our relationships and alienated us from the people we most care for. Learning to know our feelings and how to express them helps us move into the family circle of intimacy.
Today, I will let go of my aloofness with my family so they can know me better.

You are reading from the book  Each Day a New Beginning.
Women like to sit down with trouble as if it were knitting.  –Ellen Glasgow
How often we turn minor challenges into monumental barriers by giving them undue attention, forgetting that within any problem lies its solution! However, the center of our focus must be off the problem’s tangle if we are to find the solution’s thread. The best remedy for this dilemma is the Serenity Prayer.
We cannot change our children, our husbands or partners, not even the best friends who we know love us. But with God’s help we can change the attitude that has us blocked at this time. A changed attitude, easing up on ourselves, lessening our expectations of others, will open the door to the kind of relationships we seek, the smooth flowing days we long for.
We need not take life so seriously. In fact, we shouldn’t take it so seriously. We can measure our emotional health by how heartily we laugh with others and at ourselves. The 24 hours stretching before us at this time promises many choices in attitude. We can worry, be mad, depressed, or frustrated, or we can trust our higher power to see us through whatever the situation. So, we can relax. It is our decision, the one decision over which we are not powerless.
I will be in control of my attitude today. I can have the kind of day I long for.

You are reading from the book  The Language of Letting Go.
Going with the Flow
Go with the flow.
Let go of fear and your need to control. Relinquish anxiety. Let it slip away, as you dive into the river of the present moment, the river of your life, your place in the universe.
Stop trying to force the direction. Try not to swim against the current, unless it is necessary for your survival. If you’ve been clinging to a branch at the riverside, let go.
Let yourself move forward. Let yourself be moved forward.
Avoid the rapids when possible. If you can’t, stay relaxed. Staying relaxed can take your safely through fierce currents. If you go under for a moment, allow yourself to surface naturally. You will.
Appreciate the beauty of the scenery, as it is. See things with freshness, with newness. You shall never pass by today’s scenery again!
Don’t think too hard about things. The flow is meant to be experienced. Within it, care for yourself. You are part of the flow, an important part. Work with the flow. Work within the flow. Thrashing about isn’t necessary. Let the flow help you care for yourself. Let it help you set boundaries, make decisions, and get you where you need to be when it is time. You can trust the flow, and your part in it.
Today, I will go with the flow.

Today I’m looking within to discover what I am holding on to from the past. Today I am willing to let go of all old anger and resentments that keep me stuck in tension and pain.  –Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Sometimes the Road Gets Rough

Don’t be dismayed when you come to a pothole, a detour, a stretch of rough and rocky road. Don’t be surprised. Slow down a little. Be patient. It’s not the whole journey. It’s not the way it’ll always be. But it is part of your journey,too, part of your journey to your heart and soul. Even when we’re living with joy and freedom, we continue to learn, grow, feel, experience. And the road can still get rough.

Happiness doesn’t mean feeling gleeful all the time. Happiness doesn’t mean the road we’re traveling is always smooth. Happiness means feeling all we need to feel. And accepting each part of the journey, even the changes of course and direction.

Feel all your feelings. Feel your fear and frustration about slowing down, then settle in for the ride. You may not be going as fast as you’d like, but the journey hasn’t stopped. You’re not doing anything wrong. You are going slower, but you’re still moving forward.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Dump it

Sometimes, we don’t have one clear feeling to express. We have a bunch of garbage we’ve collected, and we just need to dump.

We may be frustrated, angry, afraid, and sick to death of something– all in one ugly bunch. We could be enraged, hurt, overwhelmed, and feeling somewhat controlling and vengeful,too. Our emotional stuff has piled up to an unmanageable degree.

We can go to our journal and write this whole mess of feelings out, as ugly as it looks and as awkward and ungrateful as it feels to put it into words. We can call up a friend, someone we trust, and just spill all this out over the phone. Or we can stomp around our living room in the privacy of our own home and just dump all this stuff out into the air. We can go for a drive in our car, roll the window down, and dump everything out as we drive through the wilderness.

The important idea here is to dump our stuff when it piles up.

You don’t always have to be that healthy and in control of what you feel. Sometimes, dumping all your stuff is the way to clean things out.

God, help me understand that sometimes the only thing preventing me from moving forward in my life is hanging on to all the stuff that I really need to dump.

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Food for Thought

Stronger or Weaker?

Every time I say no to the craving for just one small, extra bite, I become stronger. Every time I give in, I weaken myself and make it harder to say no the next time.

Abstinence from compulsive overeating is made up of many small decisions. We gradually acquire the knowledge of what we can handle and what we should avoid. This knowledge applies to situations and attitudes as well as food. As we work our program and make the right decisions, we gain strength.

Since none of us is perfect, we do not need to become discouraged when we make mistakes. We are learning how to live, and our failures teach us more than our successes. Growth is slow, but if we keep coming back to OA and the program, we will see results beyond our wildest expectations. OA gives us the strength to become new people.

For growing stronger, we thank You.

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

Do unto Others
The Golden Rule by Madisyn Taylor

When we honor others by following the golden rule, we honor ourselves too.

All over the world, there exists a simple precept that, when followed, has the power to end conflict and banish strife. It is the Golden Rule, a key concept in many philosophies and spiritualities that admonishes us to “do unto others as we would have them do unto us.” Its meaning is clear: treat others only in ways that you would want to be treated. However, the golden rule is not always easy to follow. It can be a challenge to honor others as we wish to be honored. Yet, when we do so, we bestow a gift of loving kindness on our fellow human beings. And, in honoring others, we honor ourselves.

It is as uncomplicated a tenet as one could wish for. When we live by it, harming another person becomes nearly impossible. The Golden Rule is rooted in pure empathy and does not compel us to perform any specific act. Rather, it gently guides us to never let our actions toward others be out of harmony with our own desires. The Golden Rule asks us to be aware of the effect our words and actions may have on another person and to imagine ourselves in their place. It calls on us to ask ourselves how we would feel if what we were about to do were directed toward us. And yet this rule invites us to do more than not harm others. It suggests that we look for opportunities to behave toward others in the same ways that we would want others to act toward us. Showing compassion, being considerate of others, caring for the less fortunate, and giving generously are what can result when you follow the Golden Rule.

Adhering to the Golden Rule whenever possible can have a positive effect on the world around you because kindness begets kindness. In doing so, you generate a flow of positive energy that enfolds everyone you encounter in peace, goodwill, and harmony. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

When we speak with a friend in The Program, we shouldn’t hesitate to remind him or her of our need for privacy. Intimate communication is normally so free and easy among us that even a friend or sponsor may sometimes forget when we expect him to remain silent. Such “privileged communications” have important advantages. For one thing, we find in them the perfect opportunity to be as honest as we know how to be. For another, we don’t have to worry about the possibility of injury to other people, nor the fear of ridicule or condemnation. At the same time, we have the best possible chance to spot self-deception. Am I trustworthy to those who trust me.

Today I Pray

I pray for God’s assistance in making me a trusted confidant. I need to be a person others will be willing to share with. I need to be an open receiver, not just a transmitter. Today I pray for a large portion of tried-and-sureness, so that I may be a better and more receptive friend to those who choose to confide in me.

Today I Will Remember

Be a receiver.

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One More Day

They do me wrong who say I come no more, / Fear every day I stand outside your door.
– Walter Malone

Opportunity doesn’t just knock once, it’s there all the time. Perhaps we just don’t see it because we’re frightened to try new things. Or we may be complacent. One of the ways we know we are really making capable, mature decisions is when we become willing to open the door to opportunity again.

Occasionally, when a person retires, he or she may expect life to become automatically wonderful — all the time in the world and nothing in particular to do. It may take a little time for us to adjust. Opportunity is always there, waiting. We can learn to open our own doors.

I can renew my energies by becoming eager to burst forward, to pursue leisure-time efforts, to work with others.

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One Day At A Time

~ ACTION ~
“He does not believe who does not live his belief.”  Thomas Fuller

It’s an old axiom that actions speak louder than words. Our Twelve Step program is one of action, no matter how much we want to avoid working the Steps. The Big Book states that IF you want what we have, you will do what we did. That also means the opposite … if you don’t want what we have, don’t do it. The insanity of this disease is expecting a different result by continually doing the same old thing. Sanity is giving up what didn’t work and daring to try something new.

One day at a time …
I am going to trust that obedience to the program will, in time, restore me to sanity.
~ Jeremiah ~

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

3. – Our membership ought to include all who suffer from alcoholism. Hence we may refuse none who wish to recover. Nor ought A.A. membership ever depend upon money or conformity. Any two or three alcoholics gathered together for sobriety may call themselves an A.A. group, provided that, as a group, they have no other affiliation. – Pg. 563 – 4th. Edition – The Twelve Traditions ( The Long Form )

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

The slogans may sometimes annoy us in their simplicity. But repetition is an important learning tool. Think of the repetition that alcohol, cocaine, marijuana and depressants bring. Now you can understand the necessity of slogans to counteract the repetition of addiction.

As I go into this next hour of a clean and sober day, may I welcome the repetitions of recovery.

Having Fun

Today, I will have fun. What’s the point of all the work I do in recovery if my life doesn’t become lighter and happier? Even though I am working through deep issues, there is no reason why I can’t have some enjoyment in the process. Fun is when I relax and let things happen – when I can laugh at myself and other people – when I don’t take everything in life so seriously. It is when I can enjoy a seemingly meaningless conversation just for its own sake. Fun is when it doesn’t have to be all my way – when the heavy load is removed, when my meter is turned off and I just goof around in the moment. Fun is something I don’t have enough of for a number of silly reasons. Today I see that there is no reason not to enjoy myself.

I can let go and have fun.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

It doesn’t pay to argue with ‘slippers’ about the proper way of getting clean and sober. Why should people who are still drinking and drugging tell those who are sober why it can’t be done! We learn not to get in a pissing contest with a skunk. (or should we say drunk!)

The only thing I need to tell a drunk is how I got sober. I can’t tell him or her how they will get sober, because I don’t know.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Remember what you have left, not what you have lost.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I’m looking within to discover what I am holding on to from the past. Today I am willing to let go of all old anger and resentments that keep me stuck in tension and pain.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

To an alcoholic, changing drinks is like changing cabins on the Titanic. – Unknown origin.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 8

Humility
On his desk, Dr. Bob had a plaque defining humility:
“Perpetual quietness of heart.
It is to have no trouble. It is never to be fretted or vexed, irritable or sore;
to wonder at nothing that is done to me, to feel nothing done against me.
It is to be at rest when nobody praises me, and when I am blamed or despised,
it is to have a blessed home in myself where I can go in and shut the door
and kneel to my Father in secret and be at peace, as in a deep sea of calmness,
when all around and about is seeming trouble.”
– Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers, p. 222

Thought to Ponder . . .
Humility comes before honor.

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

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

Resentment
“It is plain that a life which includes deep resentment
leads only to futility and unhappiness.
To the precise extent that we permit these,
do we squander the hours
that might have been worth while.
But with the alcoholic, whose hope is the maintenance
and growth of a spiritual experience,
this business of resentment is infinitely grave.
We found that it is fatal.
For when harboring such feelings we shut ourselves off
from the sunlight of the Spirit.
The insanity of alcohol returns and we drink again.
And with us, to drink is to die.”
1976AAWS, Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 66

Thought to Consider . . .
We are prisoners of our own resentments.
Forgiveness unlocks the door and sets us free.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F E A R = Frustration, Ego, Anxiety, Resentment

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

Humility at Work
Tradition Twelve: “Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.”
“As this tide offering top public approval swept in, we realized that it could do us incalculable good or great harm.
Everything would depend upon how it was channeled. We simply couldn’t afford to take the chance of letting self-
appointed members present themselves as messiahs representing A.A. before the whole public. The promoter instinct
in us might be our undoing. If even one publicly got drunk, or was lured into using A.A.’s name for his own purposes,
the damage might be irreparable. At this altitude (press, radio, films, and television), anonymity – 100 percent
anonymity – was the only possible answer. Here, principles would have to come before personalities, without
exception. “These experiences taught us that anonymity is real humility at work. It is an all-pervading spiritual quality
which today keynotes A.A. life everywhere.”
1981, AAWS, Inc., Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 187

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

“I’m becoming so secure in AA, I’ve even discarded the cute, funny, phony me my civilian friends used to know. I don’t
have to dance with a rose in my teeth; I can just dance. And I don’t have to be the only girl at the picnic who can swing
Tarzan-style from a rope into the river. I can swim calmly, like the forty-year-old mother of four I am.”
Houston, Texas, June 1976
“Growth,”
Emotional Sobriety

*~*~*~*~*^ 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~

“Let families realize, as they start their journey, that all will not
be fair weather. Each in his turn may be footsore and may straggle.
There will be alluring shortcuts and by-paths down which they may
wander and lose their way.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 122~

“But there exists among us a fellowship, a friendliness, and an understanding which is indescribably wonderful.”
-Alcoholics Anonymous p. 17 (There is a Solution)

“With clear understanding and right, grown-up attitudes, very happy results do follow.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 119 (Step Twelve)

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

We agnostics liked A.A. all right, and were quick to say that it had done miracles. But we recoiled from meditation and prayer as obstinately as the scientist who refused to perform a certain experiment lest it prove his pet theory wrong.
When we finally did experiment, and unexpected results followed, we felt different; in fact, we knew different; and so we were sold on meditation and prayer. And that, we have found, can happen to anybody who tries. It has been well said that ‘Almost the only scoffers at prayer are those who never tried it enough.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, thank you for the desire to grow and understand myself and others.

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 7th

Bsober Listen

Bsober & Listen-Daily Recovery Readings July 7th

Daily Reflections

. . . AND LETTING GO OF IT

. . . primarily fear that we would lose something we already possessed
or would fail to get something we demanded. Living upon a basis
of unsatisfied demands, we were in a state of continual
disturbance and frustration. Therefore, no peace was to be had
unless we could find a means of reducing these demands. The
difference between a demand and a simple request is plain to
anyone.
12 & 12, p.76

Peace is possible for me only when I let go of expectations. When
I’m trapped in thoughts about what I want and what should be
coming to me, I’m in a state of fear or anxious anticipation and
this is not conducive to emotional sobriety. I must surrender–over
and over–to the reality of my dependence on God, for then I find
peace, gratitude and spiritual security.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

We had become hopelessly sick people; spiritually, emotionally,
and physically. The power that controlled us was greater than
ourselves–it was John Barleycorn. Many drinkers have said: “I
hadn’t gone that far; I hadn’t lost my job on account of drink; I
still had my family; I managed to keep out of jail. True, I took too
much sometimes and I guess I managed to make quite an a$$ of
myself when I did, but I still thought I could control my drinking. I
didn’t really believe that I was an alcoholic.” If I was one of these,
have I fully changed my mind?

Meditation For The Day

Painful as the present time may be; you will one day see the reason
for it. You will see that it was not only testing, but also a
preparation for the life-work which you are to do. Have faith that
your prayers and aspirations will someday be answered.
Answered in a way that perhaps seems painful to you but is the only
right way. Selfishness and pride often make us want things that
are not good for us. They need to be burned out of our natures.
We must be rid of the blocks which are holding us back, before we
can expect our prayers to be answered.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be willing to go through a time of testing. I pray that
I may trust God for the outcome.

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As Bill Sees It

To Survive Trials, p. 188

In our belief, any scheme of combating alcoholism which proposes wholly to shield the
sick man from temptation is doomed to failure. If the alcoholic tries to shield himself he
may succeed for a time, but he usually winds up with a bigger explosion than ever. We
have tried these methods. These attempts to do the impossible have always failed.
Release from alcohol, and not flight from it, is our answer.

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

“Faith without works is dead.” How appallingly true for the alcoholic! For if an alcoholic
fails to perfect and enlarge his spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, he
cannot survive the certain trials and low spots ahead. If he does not work, he will surely
drink again, and if he drinks, he will surely die. Then faith will be dead indeed.

Alcoholics Anonymous
1. p. 101
2. pp. 14-15


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Walk In Dry Places

What should I have said or done?
Second thoughts
After an intense discussion, we might rehash what we said and wish we’d said something else.  Perhaps some brilliant remark occurs to us long after the conversation has ended.
We can say only what comes to us at the time of the discussion.  Our best preparation for any such discussion.... however important…. is to place the matter in God’s hands, seeking the highest good for everyone involved.
It may be that the brilliant thoughts coming to us later would have actually been inappropriate. After all, important discussions also involve exchanges of strong feelings that influence the meeting. If our feelings are in line with the high principles of the program, the discussion should go well. In such cases, we will probably say what we’re supposed to say.
I’ll do my best today without trying to second-guess every word or action. 


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Keep It Simple

Be brave enough to accept the help of others
Often is the past, we acted like we didn’t need anyone. It takes courage to let others help us.
As we get better, our courage grows. We invite people into our lives. We help others, and we let others help us.
We will learn to let others help us if we work our program. Why? Because we need others to stay sober. When we have a problem, we talk about it in our group. When we need a shoulder to cry on, we call a friend or our sponsor. Over time, our relationships become one of the biggest rewards of recovery.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me see my need for others as a test—a test to see if I’ll be brave enough and wise enough to ask for help when I need it.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll list four times in my life when I needed help but didn’t ask for it. I’ll tell a friend about how these times would have been different if I had asked for help.

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Each Day a New Beginning

. . . that is what learning is. You suddenly understand something you’ve understood all your life, but in a new way.  –Doris Lessing
As we are changed by our experiences, that which we know also changes. Our experiences foster growth and enlightenment, and all awarenesses give way to new understandings. We are forever students of life blessed with particular lessons designed only for us. There is joy in knowing that learning has no end and that each day offers us a chance to move closer to becoming the persons we are meant to be.
To understand something more deeply requires that we be open to the ideas of others, willing to part with our present opinions. The program offers us many opportunities to trade in the understandings we’ve outgrown. Throughout our recovery we have discovered new interpretations of old ideas. And we will continue to expand our understanding.
Every situation, every person, every feeling, every idea has a slightly different hue each time we encounter it. The wonder of this is that life is forever enriched, forever fresh.
Each moment offers me a chance to know better who I am and to understand more fully the real contribution that is mine to make in this life. I will let the anticipation of my changing ideas excite me.

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Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition

WE AGNOSTICS

Instead, we looked at the human defects of these people, and sometimes used their shortcomings as a basis of wholesale condemnation. We talked of intolerance, while we were intolerant ourselves. We missed the reality and the beauty of the forest because we were diverted by the ugliness of some its trees. We never gave the spiritual side of life a fair hearing.

p. 50

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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.
Shakespeare said, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.”  He forgot to mention that I was the chief critic.  I was always able to see the flaw in every person, every situation.  And I was always glad to point it out, because I knew you wanted perfection, just as I did.  A.A. and acceptance have taught me that there is a bit of good in the worst of us and a bit of bad in the best of us; that we are all children of God and we each have a right to be here.  When I complain about me or about you, I am complaining about God’s handiwork.  I am saying I know better than God.

p. 417

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Foreword

The basic principles of A.A., as they are known today, were borrowed mainly from the fields of religion and medicine, though some ideas upon which success finally depended were the result of noting the behavior and needs of the Fellowship itself.

p. 16

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The way in which we think of ourselves has everything to do with how
our world sees us.
–Arlene Raven

Don’t believe everything you think.
–unknown

“Put love first. Entertain thoughts that give life. And when a thought
or resentment, or hurt, or fear comes your way, have another thought
that is more powerful — a thought that is love.”
–Mary Manin Morrissey

“Keep your face to the sunshine of His love and the shadows will fall
behind you.”
–unknown

Take a walk with God. He will meet you at the Steps.
–unknown

It’s easier to tear a hole than to mend one.
–Russian Proverb

Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.
–unknown

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation

RELIGION

“Doubt isn’t the opposite of
faith; it is an element of faith.”
–Paul Tillich

That part of me that does not know is vibrant in spirituality.
Problems are part of what it is to be human and an element of
doubt is essential. With the doubt comes the growth. However, as
a younger man I was told that it was a sin to doubt; God demanded a
steadfast faith and doubt could have no part of faith! I remember
going to confession and feeling guilty and ashamed about my doubts —
but I did doubt and doubt has always played a part in my life. In some
ways I think that my religious doubts have been the most creative part
of me — certainly they have enabled me to grow and build a bridge of
understanding with others.

Master, hear, through the doubts, my love of You.

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

Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass. Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret it only causes harm.
Psalm 37:7-8

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under
the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge
and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.
Psalm 81:1-2

Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.
James 4:10

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always
abounding in the work of the Lord, for as much as ye know that your
labor is not in vain in the Lord.
1 Corinthians 15:58
Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors.
Proverbs 8:34


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Daily Inspiration

Talking about how busy you are only adds stress to the stress you already feel. Lord, help me complete the tasks of my day and avoid taking on more than I can handle.

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

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NA Just For Today

God In Each Other

“One aspect of our spiritual awakening comes through the new understanding of our Higher Power that we develop by sharing another addict’s recovery.”
Basic Text, p.51

We’ve heard it said that we often see God most clearly in one another. We see the truth of this when we practice our Twelfth Step. When we carry the recovery message to another addict, we sense the presence of a Power greater than ourselves. And as we watch the message take hold, we realize something else.

It’s the message that brings recovery, not the messenger. A Higher Power, not our own power, is the source of the change that begins when we carry the message to a still-suffering addict. As the message does its work, transforming the life of another addict, we see a Higher Power in action. We watch as acceptance and hope replace denial and despair. Before our very eyes, the first traces of honesty, open-mindedness, and willingness begin to appear. Something’s happening inside this person, something bigger and more powerful than either of us. We’re watching the God we’ve come to understand at work in someone’s life. We see the Higher Power in them. And we know with greater certainty than ever that this Higher Power is in us, too, as the force driving our recovery.

Just for today: As I carry the message of recovery to other addicts, I will try to pay attention to the Power behind the message. Today, as I watch other addicts recover, I will try to recognize the God in them so I can better recognize the God in myself.

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

You are reading from the book Today’s Gift.
I found words to every thought I ever had, but one. . . . –Emily Dickinson
What kinds of thoughts can’t be put into words? We feel lost in space, mind-boggled by how small and big the stars are. We are sure and unsure about death, its blank and steady stare. Or we have done something that makes us feel both good and bad. Sometimes we hate someone we love, but we aren’t sure what hate is, or love. We are scared of crowds and afraid of being abandoned, always alone. Sometimes we just want to laugh and cry, and when words fail we expect someone to know what our silences mean.
What are some ways I try to express my feelings without using words?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Those who are mentally and emotionally healthy are those who have learned when to say yes, when to say no, and when to say whoopee! –Willard S. Krabill
We men have fallen into many difficulties because of poorly defined personal boundaries. Some of us never learned to say no to our mothers and felt invaded or ruled by them. Or we never truly said no to our fathers – never went through a teenage rebellion to establish ourselves as adults. Others have gotten stuck saying no and have never learned to yield and say yes.
Boundary problems have been part of the difficulty in many areas of our lives. We’ve told ourselves we have no right to our yes or no, or we’ve said we’re strong enough to sacrifice for someone else, or we’ve welcomed the escape from ourselves in discarding our choice. Not saying no when we needed to or not saying yes when we wanted to has led many of us into doctors’ offices, courts, jails, lost jobs, divorces, and bad marriages. Now the inner voice of our Higher Power is showing us our limits and encouraging us to stand up for them.
I am learning to know myself by defining my boundaries and choosing when and when not to cross them.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
. . . that is what learning is. You suddenly understand something you’ve understood all your life, but in a new way. –Doris Lessing
As we are changed by our experiences, that which we know also changes. Our experiences foster growth and enlightenment, and all awarenesses give way to new understandings. We are forever students of life blessed with particular lessons designed only for us. There is joy in knowing that learning has no end and that each day offers us a chance to move closer to becoming the persons we are meant to be.
To understand something more deeply requires that we be open to the ideas of others, willing to part with our present opinions. The program offers us many opportunities to trade in the understandings we’ve outgrown. Throughout our recovery we have discovered new interpretations of old ideas. And we will continue to expand our understanding.
Every situation, every person, every feeling, every idea has a slightly different hue each time we encounter it. The wonder of this is that life is forever enriched, forever fresh.
Each moment offers me a chance to know better who I am and to understand more fully the real contribution that is mine to make in this life. I will let the anticipation of my changing ideas excite me.

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Getting It All Out
Let yourself have a good gripe session. From: ” Woman, Sex, and Addiction” — Charlotte Davis Kasl, Ph.D.
Get it out. Go ahead. Get it all out. Once we begin recovery, we may feel like it’s not okay to gripe and complain. We may tell ourselves that if we were really working a good program, we wouldn’t need to complain.
What does that mean? We won’t have feelings? We won’t feel overwhelmed? We won’t need to blow off steam or work through some not so pleasant, not so perfect, and not so pretty parts of life?
We can let ourselves get our feelings out, take risks, and be vulnerable with others. We don’t have to be all put together, all the time. That sounds more like codependency than recovery.
Getting it all out doesn’t mean we need to be victims. It doesn’t mean we need to revel in our misery, finding status in our martyrdom. It doesn’t mean we won’t go on to set boundaries. It doesn’t mean we won’t take care of ourselves.
Sometimes, getting it all out is an essential part of taking care of ourselves. We reach a point of surrender so we can move forward.
Self-disclosure does not mean only quietly reporting our feelings. It means we occasionally take the risk to share our human side-the side with fears, sadness, hurt, rage, unreasonable anger, weariness, or lack of faith.
We can let our humanity show. In the process, we give others permission to be human too. “Together” people have their not so together moments. Sometimes, falling apart – getting it all out – is how we get put back together.
Today, I will let it all out if I need a release.

Today I let go totally and give God the space to do His work. –Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart

Recognize the Signs

Sometimes, the universe gives us warnings.

I was driving down a local highway in New Mexico, a safe distance behind the car in front of me. Suddenly, the driver slammed on his brakes to avoid a huge puddle, a flood of water in front of him. I stopped short, but the car behind me was following too closely and rammed into the rear of my Jeep.

I got out and inspected the damage. My car was fine. The woman who rammed me had dented her bumper. No one was harmed. I got back in my Jeep, thinking it was over. But as I drove off, I began to wonder. Something about the incident still nagged at me.

Several weeks later, I was driving down a fast-moving two-lane highway. Behind me was a large truck loaded with cars. In front of me were several cars. In front of the cars was a school bus. The traffic was moving at at least fifty-five miles an hour.

Suddenly, I saw the brake lights from the cars ahead. The school bus had stopped to let a child disembark. I pulled to a stop behind the car in front of me. Then I remembered the lesson from the accident a couple of weeks ago: sometimes I can stop safely, but the driver behind me can’t.

I looked out my rearview mirror. The truck loaded with cars was frantically trying to stop. I pulled my car off the road onto the shoulder, giving him an extra car length. He screeched to a stop, right behind the car ahead of me. Had I not noticed, not pulled out, we’d all have been piled up. And the children in the bus…

Sometimes accidents happen without warning, but sometimes the universe gives us a nudge, a little sign. We don’t have to become paranoid, we don’t have to think every event means something, but we can trust ourselves to recognize a sign when we see one.

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

More Language Of Letting Go

It will get better

Sometimes things need to feel worse before they get better. Feelings are one of those things.

When a feeling comes to the surface, it presents itself boldly. Usually the feelings being stirred up are ones we label unpleasant– fear, hurt, rage, guilt, shame or deep sorrow and grief. They will feel intense, for a while. Some feelings take a moment to come to the surface and clear. Other feelings take more time.

Feeling the emotion that intensely means it’s finally clearing out of your system. Even though it may feel like it, it’s not really getting worse. It’s healing, it’s getting better. You’re cleaning out that old wound. To do that, you have to reopen it, but just for a little while. But finally, after you do that, it will truly heal.

What do you need to do with feelings? Acknowledge them. Feel them. Give each one its due. They like to be honored that way. Once you identify and feel them, then they’ll go away. And each time you do this, the pond becomes clearer and cleaner, until finally the water is pure.

Notice how you react to yourself when a feeling comes up that needs attention and care. Do you spend as much time resisting the feeling as you actually do feeling the emotion? Do you expend more energy than necessary worrying that the feeling won’t leave, that you won’t be able to handle it, or that the feeling will take over your life? Consciously and deliberately relinquish your resistance to your emotional world. In March we learned to say whatever as part of speaking the language of letting go. Now practice saying whatever in love to your feelings.

God, give me the courage to face what I feel now, and what I felt before and didn’t have the resources to feel. Help me trust that this process will help me feel better than I did before.

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Food for Thought

Life Is Opportunity

Each morning when we wake up, we thank our Higher Power for another day of abstaining. Each hour that is given to us is a chance to grow and learn and serve. We can believe that God has a plan for every day that he gives us and that He will reveal the plan step by step as we listen for His guidance.

If we are too intent on carrying out our personal ideas and projects, we may miss the directions that come from God. We need to remain open and flexible so that He may use us as He chooses.

Considering the time and tasks that we have as opportunities to serve saves us from self-centered worry and anxiety. We do not have to be compulsive about our work and activities. God knows our capabilities and will not give us more than we can handle. He is always ready to direct our efforts when we turn to Him.

Thank You for the opportunity to live and serve today.

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A Self-Created State
Worry

Worry is an extension of fear and can also set you up for attracting that which you don’t want in your life.

We have all had the experience of worrying about something at some point in our lives. Some of us have a habitual tendency to worry, and all of us have known someone who is a chronic worrier. Worry is an extension of fear and can be a very draining experience. In order for worry to exist, we have to imagine that something bad might happen. What we are worrying about has not happened yet, however, so this bad thing is by definition a fantasy. Understood this way, worry is a self-created state of needless fear. Still, most of us worry.

One reason we worry is because we feel like we’re not in control. For example, you might worry about your loved ones driving home in bad weather. There is nothing you can do to guarantee their safe passage, but you worry until you find out they have reached their destination unharmed. In this instance, worry is an attempt to feel useful and in control. However, worrying does nothing to ensure a positive outcome and it has an unpleasant effect on your body, mind, and spirit. The good news is that there are ways to transform this kind of worry so that it has a healing effect. Just as worry uses the imagination, so does the antidote to worry. Next time you find that you are worrying, imagine the best result instead of anticipating the worst outcome. Visualize your loved ones’ path bathed in white light and clearly see in your mind’s eye their safe arrival. Imagine angels or guides watching over them as they make their way home. Generate peace and well-being instead of nervousness and unease within yourself.

Another reason we worry is that something that we know is pending but are avoiding is nagging us—an unpaid parking ticket, an upcoming test, an issue with a friend. In these cases, acknowledging that we are worried and taking action is the best solution. If you can confront the situation and own your power to change it, you’ll have no reason to worry. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

What wonderful things could happen in my life if I could get rid of my natural impulse to justify my actions. Is honesty so deeply repr4essed under layers of guilt that I can’t release it to understand my motives? Being honest with ourselves isn’t easy. It’s difficult to search out why I had this or that impulse and, more importantly, why I acted upon it. Nothing makes us feel so vulnerable as to give up the crutch of The Alibi, yet my willingness to be vulnerable will go a long way toward helping me grow in The Program. Am I becoming more aware that self-deception multiplies my problems?

Today I Pray

May God remove my urge to make excuses. Help me to face up to the realities that surface when I am honest with myself. Help me to know, as certainly as day follows sunrise, that my difficulties will be lessened if I can only trust His Will.

Today I Will Remember

I will be willing to do His Will.

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One More Day

Smiles form the channels of a future tear.
– Lord Byron

We have often watched smiles turn to laughter and laughter back to tears. At a family reunion, we hear the joyous sounds of people chattering away, trying to catch up in five minutes for twenty lost years.

People who have Parkinson’s disease sometimes complain that their faces don’t match the emotions they want to express. The mask of the illness slows down normal movement of facial muscles. Even more tragic is the person who doesn’t feel emotion. No laughter and no tears.

We are fortunate to be able to express our emotions, to show contentment and unhappiness. So what if today’s laughter becomes tomorrow’s tears? We know we’ll laugh again — and cry again. Our past experiences give meaning to the present.

I will accept all my emotions as an affirmation of my life. Changing emotions are a part of normal living.

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One Day At A Time

FEAR
“Few persons live up to the faith which they really have.
Unreasoned fear is a master intellectual fraud
practiced upon the evolving mortal soul.”
The Urantia Book

“Unreasoned fear” was my main problem for most of my life. I lived with a myriad of fears which seemed to be too awesome and terrible to face. I love the fact that since finding this recovery program, I no longer have to live in fear. What wondrous freedom I found in the realization that unreasoned fear is “intellectual fraud!”

One slogan I recall about fear says: “Future Events Appear Real.” That is the first one that really helped me to realize that most of my fears were not based on what was real. By working the Steps of this program I have managed to stop attempting to live in a future filled with fear. When I focus on just being here now — living in this moment only — I don’t have to run from fear.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will stay in this moment. I will look at the people and things that are here right now and enjoy what my Higher Power has given me.
~ Steph

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AA ‘Big Book’ – Quote

When you have carefully explained to such people that he is a sick person, you will have created a new atmosphere. Barriers which have sprung up between you and your friends will disappear with the growth of sympathetic understanding. You will no longer be self-conscious or feel that you must apologize as though your husband were a weak character. He may be anything but that. Your new courage, good nature and lack of self-consciousness will do wonders for you socially. – Pg. 115 – To Wives

Hour To Hour – Book – Quote

It is necessary in the beginning to be clean from dry drugs and dry from wet drugs, but it is not all we want to obtain. We want wholeness and we want growth. This comes from living each hour according to the principles we are learning.

My Spiritual Source demonstrates that clean and dry is not my only goal–but growth is.

Dreaming Dreams

Today, I will dream dreams. There is nothing wrong with having a couple of dreams for myself if they are realistic and don’t remove me from life too much. To work toward a dream can be a constructive use of my talents and energies. It can give me a positive focus. If my dreams are wild and I am not willing to do the work necessary to realize them, they will only frustrate me and lower my self-esteem. If, however, I am able to dream what makes sense for me and work to put it within my reach, it can be a real process of growth and challenge. My energy and enthusiasm can help me move through blocks, and my commitment can show me that love and effort can be their own reward.

I can stretch myself.

– Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor – Book – Quote

Deal with the small stuff or it will deal with you. Do not allow the small stuff to pile up on the camel’s back. Take each situation that bothers you and deal with that as one unit, not as the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

When I feel it, I deal with it and then can heal from it.

“Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book” – Book

Do your Third Step every morning and turn your will over to the care of the God of your understanding. At night, take a Tenth Step to see how God’s doing.

Time for Joy – Book – Quote

Today I let go totally and give God the space to do His work.

Alkiespeak – Book – Quote

A man was walking on a beach after a storm. Thousands of starfish were stranded on the shore. He saw a boy throwing starfish back into the ocean and asked the boy why. The boy replied: ‘The tide’s going out, the starfish will die in the sun. The man said; ‘But there’s so many of them, what difference can it make? The boy threw another starfish and said : It’ll make a difference to that one.’ Anon.

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AA Thought for the Day

July 7

“If”
Alcoholism respects no ifs. It does not go away, not for a week, for a day, or even for an hour,
leaving us nonalcoholic and able to drink again on some special occasion,
or for some extraordinary reason — not even if it is a once-in-a-lifetime celebration,
or if a big sorrow hits us, or if it rains in Spain or the stars fall on Alabama.
Alcoholism is for us unconditional, with no dispensations available at any price.
– Living Sober, p. 63

Thought to Ponder . . .
Nothing is so bad that a drink won’t make worse.

AA-related ‘Alconym’ . . .
A A = Absolute Abstinence.

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

Ready?
“We shall need to make a brand new venture
into open-mindedness.
We shall need to raise our eyes toward perfection,
and be ready to walk in that direction.
It will seldom matter how haltingly we walk.
The only question will be
‘Are we ready?’ ”
Bill W.
1952AAWS, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 68

Thought to Consider . . .
Feed your faith and your doubts will starve to death.

*~*~*AACRONYMS*~*~*
F A I T H = Facing All In Trusting Him

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

Perspectives
From: “Preface”
“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.”
2001, AAWS, Inc., Alcoholics Anonymous, page xii

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

“Many of us think today the main problem of Alcoholics Anonymous is this: How, as a movement, shall we maintain our humility — and so our unity — in the face of what the world calls a great triumph? Perhaps we need not look far afield for an answer. We need only adapt and apply to our group life those principles upon which each of us has founded his own recovery.”
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., October 1947
“Traditions Stressed in Memphis Talk”
The Language of the Heart

*~*~*~*~*^ 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~

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

“We sit in A.A. meetings and listen, not only to receive something ourselves, but to give the reassurance and support which our presence can bring.”
-Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 110

Misc. AA Literature – Quote

In our belief, any scheme of combating alcoholism which proposes wholly to shield the sick man from temptation is doomed to failure. If the alcoholic tries to shield himself he may success for a time, but he usually winds up with a bigger explosion than ever. We have tried these methods. These attempts to do the impossible have always failed. Release from alcohol, and not flight from it, is our answer.
‘Faith without works is dead.’ How appallingly true for the alcoholic! For if an alcoholic fails to perfect and enlarge his spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, he cannot survive the certain trials and low spots ahead. If he does not work, he will surely drink again, and if he drinks, he will surely die. Then faith will be dead indeed.

Prayer for the Day: “Higher Power, grant me the wisdom to know the difference between what can be changed and what I must accept. Please help me gratefully accept the life I’ve been given.”