Reflection for the Day Now that we’re sober and living in reality, it’s sometimes difficult to see ourselves as others see us and, in the process, determine how much progress we’ve made in recovery. In the old days, the back-of-the-bar mirror presented us with a distorted and illusory view of ourselves; the way we imagined ourselves to be and the way we imagined ourselves to appear in the eyes of others. A good way for me to measure my progress today is simply to look about me at my friends in The Program. As I witness the miracle of their recoveries, I realize that I’m part of the same miracle – and will remain so as long as I’m willing.
Am I grateful for reality and the Divine miracle of my recovery?
Today I Pray May God keep my eyes open for miracles – those marvelous changes that have taken place in my own life and in the lives of my friends in the group. May I ask no other measurement of progress than a smile I can honestly mean and a clear eye and a mind that can, at last, touch reality. May my own joy be my answer to my question, “How am I doing?”
Today I Will Remember Miracles measure our progress: Who needs more?
In your AA talks, you may have the eloquence of a Patrick Henry but, if your AA work stops there, you are only fooling the new man temporarily. He will soon get wise to the fact that you are but a phonograph – nice to listen to but of no use to anyone beyond this one function.
Beautiful sentiments need lovely actions or they have but little value. Lovely actions speak for themselves.
AA Thought for the Day What am I going to do today for AA? Is there someone I should call up on the telephone or someone I should go to see? Is there a letter I should write? Is there an opportunity somewhere to advance the work of AA which I have been putting off or neglecting? If so, will I do it today? Will I be done with procrastination and do what I have to do today? Tomorrow may be too late. How do I know there will be a tomorrow for me? How about getting out of my easy chair and getting going?
Do I feel that AA depends partly on me today?
Meditation for the Day Today look upward toward God, not downward toward yourself. Look away from unpleasant surroundings, from lack of beauty, from the imperfections in yourself and in those around you. In your unrest, behold God’s calmness; in your impatience, God’s patience; in your limitations, God’s perfection. Looking upward to God, your spirit will begin to grow. Then others will see something in you that they also want. As you grow in the spiritual life, you will be enabled to do many things that seemed too hard for you before.
Prayer for the Day I pray that I may keep my eyes trained above the horizon of myself. I pray that I may see infinite possibilities for spiritual growth.
Anger dwells only in the bosom of fools. — Albert Einstein
Anger can be a healthy emotion, provided we don’t wallow in it or attack other people. When we express anger honestly and without reservation, we can prevent walls of resentment from building up and blocking us off from the intimacy that we strive for in our relationships.
When we allow anger to fester in our heart, we surrender our peace of mind and lose our sense of purpose and self-worth. When we harbor anger rather than openly and respectfully expressing it, we no longer hear our inner spirit. Thus we are cut off from our innate wisdom to guide us in our actions.
We’re often drawn to people who express their feelings honestly. This style of communicating serves as an invitation to build a relationship with them based on trust. From this trust we learn to open ourselves to God’s love for us as we are.
Today I will feel my anger, express it when necessary, and then let it go so that I can deepen my trust of other people and of God.
Reflection for the Day Someone once said that the mind’s direction is more important than its progress. If my direction is correct, then progress is sure to follow. We first come to The Program to receive something for ourselves, but soon learn that we receive most bountifully when we give to others. If the direction of my mind is to give rather than to receive, then I’ll benefit beyond my greatest expectations. The more I give of myself and the more generously I open my heart and mind to others, the more growth and progress I’ll achieve.
Am I learning not to measure my giving against my getting, accepting that the act of giving is its own reward?
Today I Pray May I not lose sight of that pillar of The Program – helping myself through helping others in our purpose of achieving comfortable sobriety. May I feel that marvel of giving and taking and giving back again from the moment I take the First Step. May I care deeply about others’ maintaining their freedom from chemicals, and may I know that they care about me. It is a simple – and beautiful – exchange.
Today I Will Remember Give and take and give back again.
By the very nature of our AA work, we often are exposed to the worst in the new man on our first contact with him. Too frequently, we pronounce judgment at once, and all our future work is prejudiced by that first impression.
Think back a little – you weren’t a lily yourself when you sought AA.
AA Thought for the Day How seriously do I take my obligations to AA? Have I taken all the good I can get out of it and then let my obligations slide? Or do I constantly feel a deep debt of gratitude and a deep sense of loyalty to the whole AA movement? Am I not only grateful but also proud to be a part of such a wonderful fellowship, which is doing such marvelous work among alcoholics? Am I glad to be a part of the great work that AA is doing and do I feel a deep obligation to carry on that work at every opportunity?
Do I feel that I owe AA my loyalty and devotion?
Meditation for the Day If your heart is right, you world will be right. The beginning of all reform must be in yourself. It’s not what happens to you, it’s how you take it. However restricted your circumstances, however little you may be able to remedy financial affairs, you can always turn to your inward self and, seeing something not in order there, seek to right it. And as all reform is from within outward, you will always find that the outward is improved as the inward is improved. As you improve yourself, your outward circumstances will change for the better. The power released from within yourself will change your outward life.
Prayer for the Day I pray that the hidden power within me may be released. I pray that I may not imprison the spirit that is within me.