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Old 09-07-2017, 06:58 AM   #10
bluidkiti
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September 10

Daily Reflections

RECOVERY BY PROXY?

They [the Promises] will always materialize if we work for them.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS p. 84

Sometimes I think: "Making these amends is going too far! No one
should have to humble himself like that!" However, it is this very
humbling of myself that brings me that much closer to the sunlight of
the spirit. A.A. is the only hope I have if I am to continue healing and
gain a life of happiness, friendship and harmony.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Here are answers to the question of how a person can live without
liquor and be happy: "The things we put in place of drinking are more
than substitutes for it. One is the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous.
In this company, you find release from care, boredom, and worry. Your
imagination will be fired. Life will mean something at last. The
most satisfactory years of your existence lie ahead. Among other
A.A.s you will make lifelong friends. You will be bound to them with
new and wonderful ties." Does life mean something to me now?

Meditation For The Day

Do you want the full and complete satisfaction that you find in serving
God and all the satisfactions of the world also? It is not easy to serve
both God and the world. It is difficult to claim the rewards of both. If
you work for God, you will still have great rewards in the world. But
you must be prepared to sometimes stand apart from the world. You
cannot always turn to the world and expect all the rewards that life
has to offer. If you are trying sincerely to serve God, you will have
other and greater rewards than the world has to offer.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not expect too much from the world. I pray that I
may also be content with the rewards that come from serving God.

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As Bill Sees It

Alone No More, p.252

Alcoholism was a lonely business, even though we were surrounded
by people who loved us. But when our self-will had driven
everybody away and our isolation became complete, we commenced
to play the big shot in cheap barrooms. Failing even in this, we
had to fare forth alone on the street to depend upon the charity of
passers-by.

We were trying to find emotional security either by dominating or by
being dependent upon others. Even when our fortunes had not totally
ebbed, we nevertheless found ourselves alone in the world. We still
vainly tried to be secure by some unhealthy sort of domination or
dependence.

For those of us who were like that, A.A. has a very special meaning. In
this Fellowship we begin to learn right relations with people who
understand us; we don't have to be alone any more.

12 & 12, pp. 116-117

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Walk In Dry Places

Watch those feelings
Feelings.
In AA's early years, there was very little talk about "feelings' or "emotions."
The phrase "getting in touch with your feelings" had not been popularized, yet
the AA pioneers knew that bitter and resentful feelings were destructive, while
warm and optimistic feelings enhanced sobriety.
Now we know that feelings are extremely are extremely important for groups as
well as individuals. We know that some AA groups can give off feelings that make
them more attractive than others. Some groups are considered "cold," while
others are "warm." Such differences are rooted in the feelings of each member
of the group.
How can we be sure that our feelings will make our groups warm and inviting to
others? We can "tune" our feelings by looking at our attitudes. If we are truly
dedicated to our principles and want to share them with others, the feelings we
project will be welcoming. Whatever we really feel will be expressed in our daily
affairs and in our group activities.
I'll check my attitude today for good feelings as I go about my work and activities.
These feelings will, in turn, send out signals that everyone can understand and appreciate.

************************************************** *********

Keep It Simple

If you want a thing done “right,” you have to do it yourself.---Anonymous
We addicts can be very picky. We think there’s only one way to do things. It’s our way,
But we call it the right way. When we think like this, three things happen. First, we put
down other people. Second, we end up doing all the work. Third, everyone feels bad.
The other person feels hurt that we don’t respect him or her. And we feel angry
because we “had” to do all the work.
We need to know that there are many ways to do things. It’s okay when others don’t
do things our way. Their way probably works just fine for them. If they want your
advice they’ll ask for it.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me accept other people and their ways.
Action for the Day: Today, I’ll watch how other people do things. Maybe I’ll
learn a better way to do some things.

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Each Day a New Beginning

It isn't for the moment you are struck that you need courage, but for the long uphill
climb back to sanity and faith and security. --Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Most of us are on a long uphill climb at this moment. It is a climb we are making
together, and yet a climb we can't do for each other. I can reach out my hand to you,
and you can grasp my hand in return. But my steps are my own, just as you, too, can
only take one-step at a time.
For brief periods we skip, even run, along the uphill path. The rocks and the occasional
boulder momentarily trip us up. We need patience and trust that the summit is still
achievable. We can help one another have patience. We can remind one another to trust.
We look back at the periods that devastated us so long ago. And now we are here.
We have climbed this far. We are stronger, saner, and more secure. Each step makes
easier the next step--each step puts us on more solid ground.
I may run into some rocks or even a boulder today. I have stepped around them
in the past. I will do so again.

************************************************** *********

Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition

The Doctor's Opinion

We believe, and so suggested a few years ago, that the action of alcohol on these chronic alcoholics is a manifestation of an allergy; that the phenomenon of craving is limited to this class and never occurs in the average temperate drinker. These allergic types can never safely use alcohol in any form at all; and once having formed the habit and found they cannot break it, once having lost their self-confidence, their reliance upon things human, their problems pile up on them and become astonishingly difficult to solve.

p. xxviii

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Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition Stories

Doctor Bob's Nightmare

A co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. The birth of our Society dates from his first day of permanent sobriety, June 10, 1935.
To 1950, the year of his death, he carried the A.A. message to more than 5,000 alcoholics men and women, and to all these he gave his medical services without thought of charge.
In this prodigy of service, he was well assisted by Sister Ignatia at St. Thomas Hospital in Akron, Ohio, one of the greatest friends our Fellowship will ever know.

I conducted myself so creditably that I was able to secure a much coveted internship in a western city, where I spent two years. During these two years I was kept so busy that I hardly left the hospital at all. Consequently, I could not get into any trouble.
When those two years were up, I opened an office downtown. Then I had some money, all the time in the world, and considerable stomach trouble. I soon discovered that a couple of drinks would alleviate my gastric distress, at least for a few hours at a time, so it was not at all difficult for me to return to my former excessive indulgence.

p. 174

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Six - "Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character."

In A.A. meetings all over the world, statements just like this are heard daily. It is plain for everybody to see that each sober A.A. member has been granted a release from this very obstinate and potentially fatal obsession. So in a very complete and literal way, all A.A.'s have "become entirely ready" to have God remove the mania for alcohol from their lives. And God has proceeded to do exactly that.

p. 64

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Today, I will be open to growing in my understanding of my Higher
Power. I will be open to letting go of old, limiting, negative beliefs
about God. No matter how I understand God, I will be grateful that
God understands me.
--Melody Beattie

We are enrolled in a full time, informal school called, "Life." Each day
of this school, we have the opportunity to learn lessons. We may like
the lessons or hate them, but they are part of the curriculum. The
greatest lessons we learn are about love and fear, that every action is
either an expression of love, or a call for love. And the great blessing
is that every lesson repeats itself until we learn it.
--Mary Manin Morrissey

I have all the time in the world to do God's Will for me today. I trust
that my Higher Power is filling me with all the energy that I need for
these 24 hours.
--Ruth Fishel

Those who withhold forgiveness only withhold it from themselves."
--Paul Ferrini

Happiness is an inside job.
--Unknown

Do you want to be happy or do you want to be right?
--Gerald Jampolsky

***********************************************

Father Leo's Daily Meditation

NEIGHBORS

"The good neighbor looks beyond
the external accidents and
discerns those inner qualities that
make all men human and,
therefore, brothers."
-- Martin Luther King, Jr.

As a drunk I said cruel things about other people. My prejudices hid
my fears and insecurities. I condemned in others what I saw in myself.
I deflected attention from me by the name-calling others: sick
manipulations. "Neighbor" was only a word that I could spell and
interpret, useful for religious homilies or pretentious innuendoes but
not something I really experienced.

Today I am able to be the "good neighbor" to many people, known and
unknown. My recovery has brought people into my life. Relationships
mean something; friends are important; the world is one. Black, Asian,
Hispanic -- all add a variety to my life that enable me to get in touch
with buried feelings of my "difference". In the stranger I discover
something of myself; the foreigner has become both friend and
neighbor.

God, I never cease to be amazed at the mystery and variety that is
"me".

************************************************** *********

But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already
has?"
Romans 8:24

"One man pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; another pretends to
be poor, yet has great wealth."
Proverbs 13:7

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Daily Inspiration

If a person or a situation causes you to feel insecure, you have forgotten who you really are.
Lord, You are my Father. I am Your child. How can I ever feel like less.

God gives abundantly to those who pass His gifts on to others.
Lord, let Your blessings flow in to me and then out from me. I will neither be selfish nor let
my gifts stagnate.

************************************************** *********

NA Just For Today

More powerful than words
Page 264

"We learn that a simple, loving hug can make all the difference in the world."

Basic Text, p.91

Perhaps there have been times in our recovery when we were close to someone who was in great pain. We struggled with the question, "What can I do to make them feel better?" We felt anxious and inadequate to relieve their suffering. We wished we had more experience to share. We didn't know what to say.

But sometimes life deals wounds that can't be eased by even the most heartfelt words. Words can never express all we mean when our deepest feelings of compassion are involved. Language is inadequate to reach a wounded soul, as only the touch of a loving Higher Power can heal an injury to the spirit.

When those we love are grieving, simply being present is perhaps the most compassionate contribution we can offer. We can rest assured that a loving Higher Power is working hard at healing the spirit; our only responsibility is to be there. Our presence, a loving hug, and a sympathetic ear will surely express the depth of our feelings, and do more to reach the heart of a human being in pain than mere words ever could.

Just for Today: I will offer my presence, a hug, and a sympathetic ear to someone I love.

************************************************** *********

You are reading from the book Today's Gift.
Give to the world the best you have and the best will come back to you. --Madeline Bridges
Sometimes we feel lazy or bored, and then we don't do our best work. Maybe our writing becomes hard to read, or we miss a porch when delivering newspapers. Perhaps we are daydreaming instead of listening closely to what a friend is trying to tell us. When we are not really paying attention to our activities or the people around us, we'll likely miss out on something important because we do receive in equal measure what we give. And this truth works in every aspect of our lives.
When we treat our friends, our families, even people we don't know well with kindness, we'll experience kindness in return. Our own actions and attitudes toward others are what we can expect from others as well.
How can I increase the kindness in the world today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
It is not a question of how a husband and wife can be equal and alike. But rather, it is a problem of how a couple can be equal and different. --Pierre Mornell
In seeking closeness with loved ones, we have often made the mistake of looking only for similarities. Although common ground helps understanding, we must learn how to get close to others by "borrowing their eyes and ears." We expand our understanding of others by accepting that what we see, hear, think, and feel will not be exactly what anyone else does. We can deepen our relationships by exchanging our experiences with others.
We don't have to agree on everything. Simply learning about each other's differences and letting each other know that we hear and understand will create a feeling of intimacy.
I will be receptive and appreciate differences in those I love.


You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
It isn't for the moment you are struck that you need courage, but for the long uphill climb back to sanity and faith and security. --Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Most of us are on a long uphill climb at this moment. It is a climb we are making together, and yet a climb we can't do for each other. I can reach out my hand to you, and you can grasp my hand in return. But my steps are my own, just as you, too, can only take one-step at a time.
For brief periods we skip, even run, along the uphill path. The rocks and the occasional boulder momentarily trip us up. We need patience and trust that the summit is still achievable. We can help one another have patience. We can remind one another to trust.
We look back at the periods that devastated us so long ago. And now we are here. We have climbed this far. We are stronger, saner, and more secure. Each step makes easier the next step--each step puts us on more solid ground.
I may run into some rocks or even a boulder today. I have stepped around them in the past. I will do so again.


You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Self-approval
Most of us want to be liked. We want other people to think of us as nice, friendly, kind, and loving. Most of us want the approval of others.
Since childhood, some of us have been trying to get approval, trying to get people to like us and think highly of us. We may be afraid people will leave us if they disapprove of our actions. We may look for approval from people who have none to give. We may not know that we're lovable now and can learn to approve of ourselves.
In order to live happily, to live consistently with the way our Higher Power wants us to live, and to tap into a way of life that is in harmony with the universe, we need to let go of our extreme need for approval. These unmet needs for approval and love from our past give others control over us today. These needs can prevent us from acting in our best interest and being true to ourselves.
We can approve of ourselves. In the end, that's the only approval that counts.
Today, I will let go of my need for approval and my need to be liked. I will replace them with a need to like and approve of myself. I will enjoy the surprise I find when I do this. The people who count, including myself, will respect me when I am true to myself.

Peace is flowing through me everywhere today, pouring all over my mind and my body... releasing all my tensions and anxiety... emptying me of all my negativity and fear.... I am being filled with peace and love and serenity. --Ruth Fishel

*****

Journey to the Heart
Laugh Often

"When I woke up the other morning, the blahs were back," a friend said. "I switched on the television. An old movie, a comedy, was on. At first I thought it was a waste of time to get involved in it. Within half an hour, I was laughing out loud. By the time the movie was over, I felt good."

Remember to laugh. No matter what our circumstance, where we are, what's going on, laughter is important. It's essential. Laughter changes our face. It changes our outlook. Some even suggest it changes our biochemistry.

Lighten up. Joke a little. Laugh at yourself. Laugh at life. The truth need not always be grim, serious business. Often, the truth we've been so serious about finding can only be found when we laugh.

Learn the power of humor. It will take you a long way. And it will help the road you travel be more fun.

*****

more language of letting go
Be who and where you are

One day when I was new to recovery from chemical dependency, I looked around at my living situation, my job, my relationships. Nothing felt right. A chronic sense of being in the wrong place at the right time was overriding everything I did. My life felt like an ongoing series of errors.

I had heard talk about a brilliant therapist, one who was particularly effective in getting to core issues. Whatever was going on in my core, I wanted it to be resolved.

The problem was that this therapist lived way out in a rural area. I didn't have a car. I'd need to take the bus. He saw people only during the week. I worked nine-to-five, Monday to Friday. And his fees, althought well-deserved, were high for my budget.

I saved enough money to pay for a session. Then I made an appointment. I was so excited.

The big day arrived. I started my series of bus rides (I had to transfer three times) at 5:00 PM, when I finished work. By 7:30 that evening. I arrived at the estate where this therapist lived and worked. I was exhausted but elated when I finally sat down across from this teddy bear of a man who had helped so many people progress in their lives.

In elaborate detail, I began spilling out what was going on in my life. I explained that I was recovering, trying to do the right things, going to my support groups, making my amends to people I had hurt-- but nothing felt right. A chronic sense of uneasiness plagued my life, no matter what I did.

He listened to what I said. Then he leaned back in his chair.

"Melody," he said calmly, confidently.

"Yes?"

" You're right where you need to be."

Session ended.

I gathered my things, walked the two blocks to the bus stop, and rode the several buses back to my small cubicle of an apartment in South Minneapolis. The lesson stayed with me for life. When nothing in our lives feels right, sometimes the answer isn't doing more or searching frantically for the miracle we need. The miracle comes when we accept, believe, and trust that who we are right now is who we need to be.

Save yourself the time, the money, and the trip.

Be your own guru.

God, thank you for where I am today. Help me trust that when I need to be someplace else, you'll naturally move me to that place.

*****

A World in Confusion
Cultivating Inner Clarity by Madisyn Taylor

When the world is in chaos, we can still have our own inner peace and maintain a sense of calm in sea of unrest.

People who maintain their sense of calm when things around them are in a state of flux and confusion are always wonderful to be around. We feel calmer just being near them, as if they have activated our own sense of inner peace. From them we learn that we can be calm, even when everything around us is in turmoil, because we know that no matter what happens, this inner sense of calm will help us to function well. Often, times of confusion are the times that enable us to find that part of ourselves that knows how to cope, and how to be a light to others in the storm.

If we allow ourselves to be thrown off balance by every piece of disturbing news that comes our way, we may be relying too much on our emotions. On the other hand, our thoughts may also be unreliable at times like these, as they chatter on endlessly about what might happen next. If our feelings and thoughts activate one another in a hectic way, then we become caught up in the confusion that surrounds us. However, if we can locate the stillness at the center of our hearts, we can find composure in almost any situation. In addition, we provide a safe place for our friends and family, who are also prone to taking on the confusion of a world in flux.

It helps to remember that we don’t need to completely understand what’s happening right now, nor do we need to be able to predict the future. Most of us just want to find our way to being at peace with whatever happens, and we can find this peace inside. Cultivating our inner clarity with meditation, journaling, and reading words that inspire us, will lead us to that place inside us that’s already there, just waiting. Published with permission from Daily OM

*****

A Day at a Time

Reflection for the Day
Years ago, Dr. Alfred Adler prescribed this remedy for depression to a patient: “You can be healed if every day you begin the first thing in the morning to consider how you can bring a real joy to someone else. If you can stick to this for two weeks, you will no longer need therapy.” Adler’s “prescription,” of course, is not much different than the suggestion that we work more intensively The Program’s Twelve Steps to rid ourselves of depression.

When I am depressed, do I keep my feelings to myself? Or do I do what friends in The Program have suggested that I do?

Today I Pray
May I turn myself inside out, air out the depression which has been closeted inside me, replace it with the comfortable feeling that I am cared about by real friends, then pass along that comfort to others caught in the same despair.

Today I Will Remember
The only real despair is loneliness

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Food For Thought

Listening

As we learn to listen to our Higher Power, we also learn to listen with more awareness to others and ourselves. Being willing to spend time alone, in quiet, is essential to listening. We often fear silence and being alone, and we escape into distractions and busy work.

Prayer is not so much telling and asking as it is listening. Prayer in this sense may be practiced continually during the day. By taking Step Three, we are giving up our will and becoming receptive to the will of our Higher Power. We focus less on our egotistical concerns and more on God, as we understand Him. That understanding grows through listening.

By listening, we become aware of needs, feelings, and responses within ourselves, which we had previously ignored. Knowing ourselves better, we are more direct and honest with others and more responsive to them. The communication which develops with our Higher Power is on a level deep enough to relate us more meaningfully to everyone around us.

I will listen today to Your voice.

*****************************************

One Day At A Time

FAITH
“Faith has to work twenty-four hours a day
in and through us, or we perish."
The Big Book, page 16

The Big Book states that if we are rigorously honest we will receive release from our addictive compulsions. Working the Steps is what keeps us honest. I didn’t believe this with my whole heart and I lived within my disease. My sponsor told me to just “do it” and see what happened; to “act as if it were true.”

What is faith? It is the belief that if we stay close to our Higher Power we will be where we need to be. It is the guarantee that we do not walk through this world or this disease alone. Faith requires commitment to a belief that is greater than what we can see, hear, taste or smell. It’s knowing that there is a God who loves us as we are, and Who will journey through this life with us. And faith requires that we act on that knowledge. That is faith.

I did the Steps and the compulsion was removed. A miracle? Absolutely! I had faith that the program would work. Putting the faith to work by diving into the Steps released me from the grips of the disease, one day at a time. The beauty of the program is faith in a Higher Power who will walk us through one hour, one day and one miracle at a time.

One day at a time...
I will act as if there is a God who loves me.
~ Sara H.

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AA 'Big Book' - Quote

Faced with alcoholic destruction, we soon became as open minded on spiritual matters as we had tried to be on other questions. In this respect alcohol was a great persuader. It finally beat us into a state of reasonableness. - Pg. 48 - We Agnostics

Hour To Hour - Book - Quote

Another part of learning good hourly habits is to take time for physical exercise. This is part of the balance of our new lives. We need activity for the well-being of the body and for self-discipline. We can walk, swim, jog, take up sports, aerobics, dance, or even yoga--just as long as we are consistent and somehow active.

Give me the self-discipline to maintain some type of physical activity in my clean and sober life-style.

Managing Added Stress

Stress affects my body and my mind. When I am under stress, I tend to do the same thing more intensely, but less efficiently. Stress undermines my state of health and makes me feel stuck in non productive, compulsive routines. I lose my spontaneity. Stress chemicals do everything from lock in the storage of fat cells to making my hair and nails brittle. Stress adds nothing to my day and it takes away a lot. Today when I feel stressed I will use my stress busters. I will take a walk or exercise, use my breathing to calm and quiet my nervous system, listen to music, take a warm bath or sit quietly by myself and meditate. I know what works best for me to get back into a relaxed space. Sometimes it's just collapsing in front of my favorite show. But the key is, I will notice when I am stressed and do something to counter it before it spins out of control. Today, I will take responsibility for my own state of calm.

- Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor - Book - Quote

In the words of Father Joe Martin, 'You can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. But you sure as hell can make them thirsty!'.

Just living my new, free life is often enough to make others 'thirsty' for recovery. I don't always have to carry the message; I am the message.

"Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book" - Book

Replace 'What ifs' with 'What is'.

Time for Joy - Book - Quote

Peace is flowing through me everywhere today, pouring all over my mind and my body . . . releasing all my tensions and anxiety . . . emptying me of all my negativity and fear . . . .

I am being filled with peace and love and serenity.

Alkiespeak - Book - Quote

I think God's job is to keep the planets from hitting each other, He's busy enough with that. I don't think He takes a lot of time wondering if I'm going to have a parking space at the meeting. - John L.
__________________
"No matter what you have done up to this moment, you get 24 brand-new hours to spend every single day." --Brian Tracy
AA gives us an opportunity to recreate ourselves, with God's help, one day at a time. --Rufus K.
When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. --Franklin D. Roosevelt
We stay sober and clean together - one day at a time!
God says that each of us is worth loving.
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