Sunday, June 25, 2017

June 25, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

Sunday, June 25, 2017

June 25, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Sunday, June 25, 2017
Today, of all that I feel, gratitude is foremost - gratitude for grabbing the lifeline of AA, for the common sense to hold onto it, for the support, experience, strength and hope of all the people I have found here and, perhaps above all, for the gift of the chance to recover, to put all that pain, destruction, fear, self-pity and self-seeking behind me. And I will not reach into yesterday and bring its garbage into today but understand that my recovery is a day-to-day process regardless of how many 24 hours of sobriety I have been blessed with. And I will understand that the gratitude I feel today is the birth of humility - and it is in humility that I feel all the good there is to feel in being sober today. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2017

June 25, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Sunday, June 25, 2017
 
AA Thought for the Day
One of the most encouraging facts of life is that your weakness can become your greatest asset. Kites and airplanes rise against the wind. In climbing up a high mountain, we need the stony crags and rough places to aid us in our climb. So your weakness can become an asset if you will face it, examine it and trace it to its origin. Set it in the very center of your minds. No weakness, such as drinking, ever turned into an asset until it was first fairly faced.

Am I making my weakness my greatest asset?

Meditation for the Day
Whenever we seek to worship God, we think of the great universe that God rules over, of creation, of mighty law and order throughout the universe. Then we feel the awe that precedes worship. I, too, must feel awe, feel the desire to worship God in wondering amazement. My mind is in a box of space and time and it is so made that I cannot conceive of what is beyond space or time, the limitless and the eternal. But I know that there must be something beyond space and time, and that something must be the limitless and eternal Power behind the universe. I also know that I can experience that Power in my life.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may accept the limitless and eternal Spirit. I pray that it may express Itself in my life.

Hazelden Foundation

June 25, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

A Day at a Time
Sunday, June 25, 2017
 
Reflection for the Day
If ever I come to the complacent conclusion that I don't need The Program any longer, let me quickly remind myself that it can do far more than carry me through the anguish of living in the bondage of addiction. Let me further remind myself that I can make even greater strides in fulfilling myself, for The Program and the Twelve Steps is a philosophy - a way of life.
Will I ever out-grow my need for the Program?
 
Today I Pray
May my Higher Power lead me through the Twelve Steps, not just once, but again and again, until they become the guiding principles of my existence. This is no quickie seminar on improving the quality of my life; this is my life, restored to me through Divine Power and the friendship of my fellow addicts who, like me, are recovering in the best known way.

Today I Will Remember
Step by Step, from bondage to abundant life.

Hazelden Foundation

June 25, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Eye Opener
Sunday, June 25, 2017
 
The fortunes amassed by the Carnegies, the Mellons, the Fords and the Rockefellers have been largely diverted to the welfare of man generally, yet their pooled resources multiplied thousands of times would not accomplish the good that resulted from the heritage left us by the Poorest Man that ever lived.

The power of wealth as compared with the power of Love is puny to the point of being unworthy of comparison.

If your pockets are not lined with gold but your heart is, you can still be a power, not only for this generation but for those yet unborn.

Hazelden Foundation

June 25, 2017 - Good morning to what's going to be a beautiful and blissful Sunday


Saturday, June 24, 2017

June 24, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

Saturday, June 24, 2017

June 24, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Saturday, June 24, 2017
 
"Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs." - Step 5

"This (Step) is perhaps difficult - especially discussing our defects with another person. We think we have done well enough in admitting these things to ourselves. There is doubt about that. In actual practice, we usually find a solitary self-appraisal insufficient. ...We will be more reconciled to discussing ourselves with another person when we see good reasons why we should do so. The best reason first: If we skip this vital step, we may not overcome drinking. ...Trying to avoid this humbling experience, (members) have turned to easier methods. Almost invariably they got drunk." Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, Ch 6 ("Into Action"), pp 72-3.
Today, understanding that the purpose of Step Five is to unburden myself of the emotional baggage of guilt, fear, resentment and anger that will likely impair my recovery if I do not let go of that weight. I cannot expect to reap the program's full benefits if I cannot be unconditionally honest with myself and others by keeping bottled inside those events or feelings that might have contributed to my drinking - and hurt to others. Along with humility, Step Five requires courage. Failing to muster both honesty and courage to release what now hurts me will predictably impede my recovery. And, in letting go by confiding in another person, I may find fresh perspectives, useful direction and an unbiased opinion that what I think is so bad may not be as bad as I think. Today, I look for the honesty and courage to take Step Five and, hopefully, find reconciliation. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2017

June 24, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Saturday, June 24, 2017
 
AA Thought for the Day
Alcohol is our weakness. We suffer from mental conflicts from which we look for escape by drowning our problems in drink. We try through drink to push away from the realities of life. But alcohol does not feed, alcohol does not build, it only borrows from the future and it ultimately destroys. We try to drown our feelings in order to escape life's realities, little realizing or caring that in continued drinking we are only multiplying our problems.

Have I got control over my unstable emotions?

Meditation for the Day
When I let personal piques and resentments interfere with what I know to be my proper conduct, I am on the wrong track and I am undoing all I have built up by doing the right thing. I must never let personal piques interfere with living the way I know God wants me to live. When I have no clear guidance from God, I must go forward quietly along the path of duty. The attitude of quiet faith will receive its reward as surely as acting upon God's direct guidance. I must not weaken my spiritual power by letting personal piques upset me.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may not let myself become too upset. I pray that I may go quietly along the path I have chosen.

Hazelden Foundation

June 24, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

A Day at a Time
Saturday, June 24, 2017
 
Reflection for the Day
The primary purpose of The Program is freedom from addiction; without that freedom, we have nothing. But that doesn't mean I can say, for example, "Sobriety is my only concern. Except for my drinking, I'm really a super person, so give me sobriety, and I've got it made." If I delude myself with such specious nonsense, I'll make so little progress with my real life problems and responsibilities that I'll likely return to my addiction. That's why The Program's Twelfth Step urges us to "practice these principles in all our affairs."

Am I living just to be free of chemical dependence, or also to learn, to serve and to love?

Today I Pray
May I relish and be grateful for my sobriety, which is where all good things begin. But let me not stop at that and give up trying to understand myself, the nature of God and of humanity. Freedom from dependency is the first freedom. May I be certain that there are more to come - freedom from tight-mindedness, from the unrest of bottled-up feelings, from over-dependence on others, from a Godless existence. May The Program which answered my acute needs also answer my chronic ones.

Today I Will Remember
Sobriety is just a beginning.

Hazelden Foundation

June 24, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Eye Opener
Saturday, June 24, 2017
 
The poor old drunk has ever had to face the wrath of the law and an indignant world. Lectures, threats, jail sentences, booby hatches and asylums have proven to be but waste of words, efforts and public funds. Nothing - absolutely nothing - worked.

AA tried a revolutionary ministration of sympathy and understanding. It recognized his condition as an illness, threefold in its nature, and that the only medication that would prove effective must treat his physical, mental and spiritual disorder at one and the same time.

Hazelden Foundation

June 24, 2017 - Good morning to a beautiful and relaxing Saturday and weekend


Friday, June 23, 2017

June 23, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

Friday, June 23, 2017

June 23, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Friday, June 23, 2017
 
" ...(W)e 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.
'Half measures availed us nothing. We stood at the turning point. We asked His protection and care with complete abandon." - Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, 1976, Ch 5 ("How It Works"), pp 58-9.

Today ..."with complete abandon." If I stand "at the turning point," I am there because the ideas, methods, ploys and "half measures" I used to control or stop my drinking didn't work. And because I haven't come up with a better idea, what is there to lose by surrendering "with complete abandon," surrendering to the First Step, that "(I am) powerless" and to a power greater and stronger than alcohol - and stronger than myself? Moving in the program "with complete abandon" is no "easier, softer way," certainly. But holding onto what I have tried and has failed is guaranteed to make my way progressively harder, maybe eventually fatal. Today, I surrender "with complete abandon." And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2017

June 23, 2017 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Friday, June 23, 2017
 
AA Thought for the Day
No chain is stronger than its weakest link. Likewise, if you fail in the day-by-day program, in all probability it will be at your weakest point. Great faith and constant contact with God's power can help you discover, guard and under-gird your weakest point with a strength not your own. Intelligent faith in God's power can be counted on to help you master your emotions, help you to think kindly of others and help you with any task that you undertake, no matter how difficult.

Am I master of my emotions?

Meditation for the Day
You need to be constantly recharged by the power of the spirit of God. Commune with God in quiet times until the life from God, the Divine life, by that very contact, flows into your being and revives your fainting spirit. When weary, take time out and rest. Rest and gain power and strength from God, and then you will be ready to meet whatever opportunities come your way. Rest until every care and worry and fear have gone and then the tide of peace and serenity, love and joy, will flow into your consciousness.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may rest and become recharged. I pray that I may pause and wait for the renewing of my strength.

Hazelden Foundation