A.A. also helps us to hang onto sobriety. By having regular meetings so that we can associate with other alcoholics who have come through that same door in the wall, by encouraging us to tell the story of our own sad experiences with alcohol, and by showing us how to help other alcoholics, A.A. keeps us sober. Our attitude toward life changes from one of pride and selfishness to one of humility and gratitude. Am I going to step back through that door in the wall to my old helpless, hopeless, drunken life?
Meditation for the Day
Withdraw into the calm of communion with God. Rest in that calm and peace. When the soul finds its home of rest in God, then it is that real life begins. Only when you are calm and serene can you do good work. Emotional upsets make you useless. The eternal life is calmness and when you enter into that, then you live as an eternal being. Calmness is based on complete trust in God. Nothing in this world can separate you from the love of God.
Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may wear the world like a loose garment. I pray that I may keep serene at the center of my being.
I have found through working the steps that I had a pride and ego problem. Me? Have a problem like that? Of course not. But as I soon got closer to the Third Step in the Big Book and 12X12 I realized it was so true. Releasing ego is not a simple step but it is a step that I can work on in my life on a 24 hour period. If I find myself getting defensive or feeling some type of guilt and refusing to face it, I’m full of ego. When I feel these feelings today I know there is some type of step work I must do to get through the process of releasing my ego and then letting go. When I’m aware of my character defects I can work on them. So when I find myself feeling selfish, self centered, self seeking, self pity, I most likely use the third step prayer to follow with letting go. This is not easy but with practice it become 2nd nature. I had to be willing to want to change because I was desperate enough. Besides, it’s really not just all about us. We must help another alcohol to truly be free. I love the zeal that new comers have when they have finally gotten it. You see a new freedom and happiness in them and they have no idea they have made changes. So with ego comes much practice learning that you are NOT the center of attention and not always is everything about you so dont take it too personal if you are a new comer around the tables.
Early on in my sobriety I was going to meetings and I wasn’t much of a talker. I would just sit and listen to the people talk and then all of a sudden I heard them speaking about situations I had been in and I thought “How do they know this about me”, “Did they call my family and get all this information on me”?
I was convinced that they were speaking to my family and friends and they were sharing all this information in the meetings when in fact they were speaking from their experiences, strength, and hope. So remember if you are a new comer, dont worry, no they did not contact your family or friends, they are just sharing from what they have experienced. Now you can relate.
Sometimes I find that doing the right thing is hard. A I had a bit of a disagreement with a new comer last week and right in the middle of the meeting I corrected her. Then of course I had gotten the response I did not want but by that time I really did not care. I knew I was in the wrong for cross talking but I just had this feeling come over me and I could not control my erge to correct her. I get discouraged when I hear someone has been coming around the table’s for 2 years and all they have to talk about is others. The woman shared that she worked at a gas station in a small town and that she knew who had drinking problems, who was on probation, and who was in AA and continued to share how she would proceed to tell them since they have a problem they did not need the alcohol. Well this made my blood biol since this woman had 2 years of sobriety and takes it upon herself to point out others problems at her job. Who gives any of us the right to harm people in this way? I caught the woman after the meeting and asked her why she would do this and she proceeded to tell me it was her job to tell them that they have a problem.
First off if I have worked most of the steps I would not be in a place to point others flaws out to them. I have no need to look at you and judge you, matter fact I have compassion in my heart for you no matter what situation. Remember folks when we get to the point that we look at others backyards and not our own we start to fall back into our old ways and out old thinking which leads us to relapse. The best ACTION to take is to live by example. Attraction NOT promotion. I can not fix you but I can show you how my life has changed through working the steps. Dont get comfortable in taking others inventory because it really is a dangerous place to be.
Stay Humble, Compassionate, and focused on you.
NOTE: I wrote this post a few months ago over the summer of 2013 but never finished it. Since editing this post today the woman soon went back out and has not returned back to the tables. My thoughts are, I will keep her in my prayers and have the compassion for her that she could not show towards others.