Aug. 17, 2014 – Step by Step

serenity prayer 8Step by Step
Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014

“A lot of lost dreams, empty futures and crazy things of the past went through my mind. One night, I was struck with the memory of a line Alan Ladd used in ‘Shane,’ a movie that I’d worked on. He told a villain, ‘The trouble is, old man, you’ve lived too long.’ How that line echoed through my mind! I knew why I identified. It was MY line, the story of MY life. I’d lived too long and become a loser, dependent on booze. Well, at least I could drink myself to death. Real soon. Then everyone would be sorry for me.” – Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, 1976, “They Stopped in Time,” Ch 3 (“Those Golden Years”), p 333.

Today, let me not ask if I have lived too long or too briefly but if I am predestined to “drink myself to death” and exit the world with everyone feeling “sorry” for me. Is this the legacy for which I have lived my entire life? If I want and expect better, and whether I am sober or drinking today, AA has given me the tools to build the legacy that will remain after I am gone. And the Program promises better than being remembered as the “poor soul” who wasted a lifetime and died an alcoholic’s death. Through AA, I can craft my legacy to be someone who rose from an alcoholic’s gutter and re-crafted himself as a person who sobered up and sought to help the person who became helpless and hopeless. But I cannot think in terms of my memory after the day I am no longer here; my memory is built 24 Hours at a time. Today, I focus on what my legacy is now. And our common journey continues. Step by step. – Chris M., 2014

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