July 31, 2013 – Step by Step


Step by Step
Wednesday, July 31, 2013

“The old (drinking) pattern reasserted itself, but it was no longer once every six months. The intervals grew shorter. The binges were longer. They were harder to get off. …
“That type of drinking is not pleasant. It is no longer enjoyable. You no longer get the kicks. It is desperation drinking. I was drinking to keep away the shakes …I was drinking to try to hold on to a job, to try and hold on to my home, to try to hold on to my wife, to try to hold on to my sanity.” – Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, 1976, Part III (“They Lost Nearly All”), Ch 8 (“Desperation Drinking”), p 514.

Today, I muster the honesty to accept the possibility that I have a problem if drinking is my answer to any desperation I feel, be it for a situation I desperately want not to face, or the talk with my spouse, partner or employer, the constantly ringing telephone that I will not answer because someone might be calling about my drinking or some problem it has caused. If drinking is my solution to any problem in my life, let me hear the voices of experience that my solution has become a crisis bigger than the problem I’m avoiding by drinking. And if I have not drank for any significant number of 24 Hours, chances are I now cannot remember the problem I drank to avoid. But, in so doing, I and I alone created one of the most critical crises that was far worse than any problem I faced sober. Today, alcohol will not be my solution to any problem that I may encounter; my answer is in the Twelve Steps. And our common journey continues. Step by step. – Chris M.,2013

 

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July 31, 2013 – Twenty-Four Hours a Day


Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Wednesday, July 31, 2013

AA Thought for the Day
This leaves only one day – today. Anyone can fight the battles of just one day. It is only when you and I add the burden of those two awful eternities, yesterday and tomorrow, that we break down. It is not the experience of today that drives us mad. It is the remorse or bitterness for something which happened yesterday or the dread of what tomorrow may bring. Let us therefore do our best to live but one day at a time.

Am I living one day at a time?

Meditation for the Day
Give God the gift of a thankful heart. Try to see causes of thankfulness in your everyday life. When life seems hard and troubles crowd, then look for some reasons for thankfulness. There is nearly always something you can be thankful for. The offering of thanksgiving is indeed a sweet incense going up to God throughout a busy day. Seek diligently for something to be glad and thankful about. You will acquire in time the habit of blessings. Each new day some new cause for joy and gratitude will spring to your mind and you will thank God sincerely.

Prayer for the Day
I pray for a truly thankful heart. I pray that I may be constantly reminded of causes for sincere gratitude.

Hazelden Foundation

 

July 31, 2013 – A Day at a Time


A Day at a Time
Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Reflection for the Day
One of the most serious consequences of the me-me-me syndrome is that we lose touch with practically everyone around us – not to mention reality itself. The essence of self-pity is total self-absorption, and it feeds on itself. Rather than ignore such an emotional state – or deny that we’re in it – we need to pull out of our self-absorption, stand back, and take a good honest look at ourselves. Once we recognize self-pity for what it is, we can begin to do something about it.

Am I living in the problem rather than the answer?

Today I Pray
I pray that my preoccupation with self, which is wound up tight as a Maypole, may unwind itself and let its streamers fly again for others to catch and hold. May the thin, familiar wail of me-me-me become a chorus of us-us-us, as we in the fellowship pick apart our self-fullness and look at it together.

Today I Will Remember
Change me-me-me to us-us-us.

Hazelden Foundation

 

July 31, 2013 – The Eye Opener


The Eye Opener
Wednesday, July 31, 2013

In our drinking days, we were ready to take a poke at anyone who suggested we couldn’t handle our “likker.” It was a very sore spot with us, as we all kidded ourselves into believing that our over-indulgence was a well-guarded secret when, actually, we knew it was not.

Upon our entrance in AA, we soon made a public confession of our alcoholism and, to our surprise, we lost some of the sense of stigma and we could learn to laugh at our affliction and at ourselves. Our sense of guilt was lessened by our acknowledgment of its existence.

Hazelden Foundation

 

July 31, 2013 – Today’s Gift from Hazelden


Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Today’s thought from Hazelden is:

May you live all the days of your life.
Jonathan Swift

Indeed life is much like a game – both a deadly serious one and one that demands laughter, relaxation, and the ability to play. Either way, life demands attention.

There is much of life that is truly exciting and fascinating – are we watching for it? There is hilarity and humor – do we see it? There is that in life which is touching and full of heroism – are we open to seeing it?

All these are not only present in some general, nebulous way about life, but about our lives! Right here where we live, in our lives today, there will be the hero and the goat, there will be disappointment and reason for wild celebration, there will be the beautiful and the horrible. The soap opera is not out there; it is right here with us, in us, all around us. The task is to be present in our own lives, to get our heads out of others’ reality, and to find the enormous meaning and vitality of our own.

Life is precious. Today, I will not take my life for granted.

From the book:

Days of Healing, Days of Joy by Earnie Larsen and Carol Larsen Hegarty

Days of Healing, Days of Joy by Earnie Larsen and Carol Larsen Hegarty. © 1987, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation

 

July 30, 2013 – Step by Step


Step by Step
Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Today, I must realize that the character defects I identified in my Fourth Step probably existed before my drinking days and that alcohol simply developed them to their destructive zenith. My Sixth and Seventh Steps of first admitting to God and then asking that He remove my defects assume paramount honesty in my recovery program for I am likely to be challenged to release defects that have had a lifetime to take root more than those that those that developed in my drinking days. And if my defects are lifelong, simply stopping drinking will not give me the recovery and quality of sobriety for which I am thirsty. Today, I am an alcoholic and abstaining from drinking is not enough. I consider myself a part of the AA program; today, as I talk the talk, I will walk the walk. And our common journey continues. Step by step. – Chris M., 2013

 

July 30, 2013 – Twenty-Four Hours a Day


Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
AA Thought for the Day
The other day we should not worry about is tomorrow, with its possible adversities, its burdens, its large promise, and perhaps its poor performance. Tomorrow is also beyond our immediate control. Tomorrow’s sun will rise, either in splendor or behind a mask of clouds, but it will rise. Until it does, we have no stake in tomorrow, for it is as yet unborn.

Do I still worry too much about tomorrow?

Meditation for the Day
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Faith is not seeing, but believing. Down through the ages, there have always been those who obeyed the heavenly vision, not seeing but believing in God. And their faith was rewarded. So shall it be to you. Good things will happen to you. You cannot see God, but you can see the results of faith in human lives, changing them from defeat to victory. God’s grace is available to all who have faith – not seeing, but believing. With faith, life can be victorious and happy.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may have faith enough to believe without seeing. I pray that I may be content with the results of my faith.

Hazelden Foundation