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bluidkiti
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September 12

Daily Reflections

I AM RESPONSIBLE

For the readiness to take the full consequences of our past acts, and to
take responsibility for the well-being of others at the same time, is the
very spirit of Step Nine.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 87

In recovery, and through the help of Alcoholics Anonymous, I learn
that the very thing I fear is my freedom. It comes from my tendency
to recoil from taking responsibility for anything: I deny, I ignore, I
blame, I avoid. Then one day, I look, I admit, I accept. The freedom,
the healing and the recovery I experience is in the looking, admitting and
accepting. I learn to say, "Yes, I am responsible." When I can speak
those words with honesty and sincerity, then I am free.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

"What draws newcomers to A.A. and gives them hope? They hear the
stories of men and women whose experiences tally with their own. The
expressions on the faces of the women, that undefinable something in
the eyes of the men, the stimulating atmosphere of the A.A.
clubroom, conspire to let them know that there is haven at last. The
very practical approach to their problems, the absence of intolerance
of any kind, the informality, the genuine democracy, the uncanny
understanding that these people in A.A. have is irresistible." Have I
found a real haven in A.A.?

Meditation For The Day

"If thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light." The eye
of the soul is the will. if your will is to do the will of God, to serve Him
with your life, to serve Him by helping others, then truly shall your
whole body be full of light. The important thing is to strive to attune
your will to the will of God, a single eye to God's purpose, desiring
nothing less than that His purposes be fulfilled. Try to seek in all
things the advance of His kingdom, seek the spiritual values of honesty
and purity, unselfishness and love, and earnestly desire spiritual
growth. Then your life will emerge from the darkness of futility into
the light of victory.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that my eye may be single. I pray that my life may be lived in
the light of the best that I know.

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

As Bill Sees It

Satisfactions of Right Living, p.254

How wonderful is the feeling that we do not have to be specially
distinguished among our fellows in order to be useful and
profoundly happy. Not many of us can be leaders of prominence,
nor do we wish to be.

Service gladly rendered, obligations squarely met, troubles well
accepted or solved with God's help, the knowledge that at home or
in the world outside we are partners in a common effort, the fact
that in God's sight all human beings are important, the proof that
love freely given brings a full return, the certainty that we are no
longer isolated and alone in self-constructed prisons, the surety that
we can fit and belong in God's scheme of things--these are the
satisfactions of right living for which no pomp and circumstance, no
heap of material possessions, could possibly be substitutes.

12 & 12, p.124

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

Walk In Dry Places

Handle the Old tapes with care.
Releasing the Past.
A large number of recovering people have a tough time coming to terms
with the abuse and abandonment of childhood days. Sometimes we play
those "old tapes" while reliving the past in a mood of self-pity and resentment.
This is destructive.
We cannot completely erase the past, but we can turn it over to our friends and
our Higher power. Our goal should be to transform past experiences into constructive examples.
We can start by reminding ourselves that all unhappy experience is a product
of the world's sickness and ignorance. Far from being unusual, our misery
was a common thing that we're only now beginning to overcome.
We can also practice God's forgiveness, remembering that real forgiveness
is humanly impossible. We should resist the temptation to tell others about
our past sufferings in order to gain sympathy. At all times, the old tapes must
be handled with care.
Whatever happened in the past cannot affect me today unless I let it.
I'll play the old tapes only when it can be done constructively.

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

Keep It Simple

When angry, count to ten before you speak: if very angry, a hundred.
---Thomas Jefferson
Sometimes we just want to yell. Maybe a family member or a friend messed
up, and we want to “set them straight.” Start counting. Maybe we got chewed
out at work and we want “to get even.”
Start counting.
We get drunk on anger. We may feel powerful when we “set someone straight.”
But like an alcohol high, an anger high last only a short time and can hurt others.
We must control our anger. This is why we count.
Cool down. Think out what you need or want to say. Use words that you’ll not be
ashamed of later. Learning how to respect others when we’re angry is a sign of recovery.
Prayer for the Day : Higher Power, teach me to respect others when I’m angry.
Action for the Day: Today, when I feel angry I’ll count. I’ll work at not controlling other with my anger.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

No person is your enemy, no person is your friend, and every person is
your teacher. --Florence Scovel Shinn
We can open ourselves to opportunities today. They abound in our lives.
No circumstance we find ourselves in is detrimental to our progress. No
relationship with someone at work or at home is superfluous to our development.
Teachers are everywhere. And as we become ready for a new lesson, one will appear.
We can marvel at the wonder of our lives today. We can reflect on our yesterdays
and be grateful for the lessons they taught. We can look with hopeful anticipation
at the days ahead--gifts, all of them. We are on a special journey, serving a special
purpose, uniquely our own. No barrier, no difficult person, no tumultuous time is
designed to interrupt our progress. All experiences are simply to teach us
what we have yet to learn.
Trusting in the goodness of all people, all situations, all paths to progress will
release whatever our fears, freeing us to go forth with a quicker step and an
assurance that eases all moments.
The Twelve Steps help us to recognize the teachers in our lives. They help us
clear away the baggage of the past and free us to accept and trust the will of God,
made known to us by the teachers as they appear.
I am a student of life. I can learn only if I open my mind to my teachers.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition

The Doctor's Opinion

If any feel that as psychiatrists directing a hospital for alcoholics we appear somewhat sentimental, let them stand with us a while on the firing line, see the tragedies, the despairing wives, the little children; let the solving of these problems become a part of their daily work, and even of their sleeping moments, and the most cynical will not wonder that we have accepted and encouraged this movement. We feel, after many years of experience, that we have found nothing which has contributed more to the rehabilitation of these men than the altruistic movement now growing up among them.

p. xxviii

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

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.

Finally my father had to send a doctor out from my home town who managed to get me back there some way and I was in bed about two months before I could venture out of the house. I stayed about town a couple of months more and returned to resume my practice. I think I must have been thoroughly scared by what had happened, or by the doctor, or probably both, so that I did not touch a drink again until the country went dry.

p. 175

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

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

When men and women pour so much alcohol into themselves that they destroy their lives, they commit a most unnatural act. Defying their instinctive desire for self-preservation, they seem bent upon self-destruction. They work against their own deepest instinct. As they are humbled by the terrific beating administered by alcohol, the grace of God can enter them and expel their obsession. Here their powerful instinct to live can cooperate fully with their Creator's desire to give them new life. For nature and God alike abhor suicide.

p. 64

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

"Pray to God, but keep rowing to the shore."
--Russian Proverb

The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.
--Flora Whittemore

One never knows what each day is going to bring. The important thing
is to be open and ready for it.
--Henry Moore

"Lord, make me a channel of thy peace--that where there is hatred, I
may bring love--that where there is wrong, I may bring the spirit of
forgiveness--that where there is discord, I may bring harmony--that
where there is error, I may bring truth--that where there is doubt, I
may bring faith--that where there is despair, I may bring hope--that
where there are shadows, I may bring light--that where there is
sadness, I may bring joy. Lord, grant that I may seek rather to
comfort than to be comforted--to understand, than to be
understood--to love, than to be loved. For it is by self-forgetting that
one finds. It is by forgiving that one is forgiven. It is by dying that one
awakens to Eternal Life. Amen."
--12 & 12, p. 99

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

Father Leo's Daily Meditation

SELF-LOVE

"To love oneself is the
beginning of a life-long
romance."
-- Oscar Wilde

Today I am able to say that I love myself. To love myself is to love
God and the world in which I live. I cannot befriend, hug, help or
create without first having a relationship with myself. Without me,
there is no meaning to my life. I am the most important thing in my
life. This is not said to be conceited but is an aspect of self-love. It
reveals a healthy pride and respect for my life. And it feels good.

For years I thought that to love "self" was wrong and sinful, a
misuse of energy and time. What people thought about me was so
important; what people said about me was a constant worry. And the
more I looked out of myself for meaning, the more lost, isolated
and confused I became. Then I heard that God loved me and he
wanted me to love me. Today I live and love through me.

O God who created me to love, let me begin with me.

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

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie
down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores
my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will
fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort
me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love
will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of
the LORD forever.
Psalm 23

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

Daily Inspiration

No one has the power to take your happiness or keep you from being happy and at peace unless you allow it.
Lord, help me remember that I am sustained and supported by Your love for me who wants only for my safety
and goodness.

Enthusiasm keeps the mind young and the spirit growing.
Lord, may I always see wonder in the ordinary happenings of my day.

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

NA Just For Today

New Horizons

"My life is well-rounded and I am becoming a more comfortable version of myself, not the neurotic, boring person that I thought I'd be without drugs."

Basic Text p.262

Is there really life without drugs? Newcomers are sure that they are destined to lead a humdrum existence once they quit using. That fear is far from reality.

Narcotics Anonymous opens the door to a new way of life for our members. The only thing we lose in NA is our slavery to drugs. We gain a host of new friends, time to pursue hobbies, the ability to be stabley employed, even the capacity to pursue an education if we so desire. We are able to start projects and see them through to completion. We can go to a dance and feel comfortable, even if we have two left feet. We start to budget money to travel, even if it's only with a tent to a nearby campsite. In recovery, we find out what interests us and pursue new pastimes. We dare to dream.

Life is certainly different when we have the rooms of Narcotics Anonymous to return to. Through the love we find in NA, we begin to believe in ourselves. Equipped with this belief, we venture forth into the world to discover new horizons. Many times, the world is a better place because an NA member has been there.

Just for today: I can live a well-rounded, comfortable life-a life I never dreamt existed. Recovery has opened new horizons to me and equipped me to explore them.

pg. 266

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

You are reading from the book Today's Gift.
No yesterdays are ever wasted for those who give themselves today. --Brendan Francis
We often find ourselves yearning for tomorrow. We get carried away thinking about the next day's big game or camping trip. We find ourselves daydreaming about how much fun we'll have with friends or what animals we'll see in the park.
The next day comes and perhaps the excitement about the game diminishes because our friends can't make it or the camping trip is canceled because of bad weather. We feel cheated and begin regretting the missed opportunities of yesterday.
When we find ourselves concentrating only on tomorrow, we need to stop and look around. We'll begin to notice the joke a friend is telling, or the bird flying overhead. We will begin appreciating the joys of the moment.
When we live in the moment, we have no expectations about the next moment, and without expectations, we can't be disappointed, only surprised.
What is delightful about this moment right now?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Not all fights are bad; in fact they are preferable to disciplined serenity. --William Atwood.
A good relationship includes some disagreement. Anger and disagreement, when we express them respectfully, are important ways of renewing communication and breaking through the walls that sometimes built up. No relationship can tolerate constant fighting. But, when we don't agree with someone, we owe it to that person to speak up and follow through to resolution. We can promise ourselves and the other person that we will stay in the relationship through the disagreement. It is because we care that we fight.
In any relationship we care about, there will be differences. When we avoid all confrontations, our relationships go stale because all emotional issues are avoided. Carefulness and over control undermine love because they don't give it room to breathe, but disagreement and anger expressed in honest and respectful ways will help love grow.
Today, I pray for the courage to acknowledge my disagreements and angry feelings with others and to deal with their feelings toward me.


You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
No person is your enemy, no person is your friend, and every person is your teacher. --Florence Scovel Shinn
We can open ourselves to opportunities today. They abound in our lives. No circumstance we find ourselves in is detrimental to our progress. No relationship with someone at work or at home is superfluous to our development. Teachers are everywhere. And as we become ready for a new lesson, one will appear.
We can marvel at the wonder of our lives today. We can reflect on our yesterdays and be grateful for the lessons they taught. We can look with hopeful anticipation at the days ahead--gifts, all of them. We are on a special journey, serving a special purpose, uniquely our own. No barrier, no difficult person, no tumultuous time is designed to interrupt our progress. All experiences are simply to teach us what we have yet to learn.
Trusting in the goodness of all people, all situations, all paths to progress will release whatever our fears, freeing us to go forth with a quicker step and an assurance that eases all moments.
The Twelve Steps help us to recognize the teachers in our lives. They help us clear away the baggage of the past and free us to accept and trust the will of God, made known to us by the teachers as they appear.
I am a student of life. I can learn only if I open my mind to my teachers.


You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Healing
We should learn not to grow impatient with the slow healing process of time. We should discipline ourselves to recognize that there are many steps to be taken along the highway leading from sorrow to renewed serenity... We should anticipate these stages in our emotional convalescence: unbearable pain, poignant grief, empty days, resistance to consolation, disinterestedness in life, gradually giving way . . . to the new weaving of a pattern of action and the acceptance of the irresistible challenge of life.
--Joshua Loth Liebman
Recovery is a process. It is a gradual process, a healing process, and a spiritual process - a journey rather than a destination.
Just as codependency takes on a life of its own and is progressive, so recovery progresses. One thing leads to another and things - as well as us - get better.
We can relax, do our part, and let the rest happen.
Today, I will trust this process and this journey that I have undertaken.


Each step I take today makes me feel better and better. Today I know that I have all that I need to do exactly what must be done and go exactly where I need to go. --Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart

Energize Yourself

Don’t tell yourself you have no energy. You are energy. Learn to energize yourself.

Get up. Move around. Play some invigorating music. Stretch your arms, stretch your legs. Move your body around. Get out and walk.

Watch children play. They seem to have an unlimited supply of energy. Remember what it was like to be a child. You had an unlimited supply of energy then. Most of us still do.

Yes, we do get tired from time to time, particularly with the schedules many of us have. And there are time in our life when less energy is available to us, such as during times of deep grief or during illness when our body is using its energy to heal a physical problem. And sometimes other people and their problems drain us. But sometimes we drain ourselves,too.

If you don’t feel your energy, perhaps something is blocking it. You may be experiecing some resistance to what you’re trying to do. Maybe an old emotion or belief is clogging your circuits. Maybe you’ve been sitting too long crunched up in your chair, blocking your own circuits. Maybe you’re telling yourself you have no energy so loudly that you’ve begun to believe it.

Clear your circuits. Push through whatever’s blocking you. Then get up, move around, connect to life. Learn to energize yourself.

*****

more language of letting go
Look at the roles you play

In his book Ethics for a New Millenium, the Dalai Lama spoke of the idea that most of us aren't a static personality. There isn't just one side to us; we play many roles in life.

I am a recovering alcoholic and a recovering codependent. I am a mother. I am a writer. I am someone's girlfriend. I am a sky diver. I am a business person, a negotiator, a woman. In each of these roles, my personality expresses itself differently. I use different talents and traits.

What are all the different roles you play in your life? Most of us are aware that we're one person at work, somewhat different at home, and sometimes a lot different when we play. Some of us tend to feel guilty about this. "Oh, if they only knew what I was like at home, they'd never respect me as a boss," one man said.

Take the time to get to know all the different parts of yourself. Honor and respect each one. Each has an important role to play in your life. When we're trying to move forward, take a moment. Make certain that all of your I am's are working together for your best.

You don't have to behave the same at home as you do at work. You get to be a mother, and a wife,too. Honor and respect all the different roles you play in life, understanding that each one has its own important place.

Then remember to practice the principles we're striving to live by in everything we do.

Our roles might change, but the ideals and values we live by don't.


God, help me honor and accept all my past and present I am's. Help me leave enough room to create new sides or parts of myself,too.

Activity: Take some time to write in your journal about all the different roles you play in your life right now. Describe each role as accurately as you can. The next time you get stuck, consult each one of these personalities. For instance, the worker in you may want to make a particular decision about moving forward in your career, but the parent self may have some objections. Understand every part of your personality and learn to make decisions that benefit the whole.

*****

Walking With Awareness
Mindful Walking

Many of us take the benefits of walking for granted. Each day we limit the steps we take by driving or sitting for long periods of time. But walking even a few blocks a day has unlimited benefits – not only for our health, but our spirit as well, for as we walk, we connect with the earth.

Even when walking on concrete, the earth is still beneath us, supporting us. Walking lets our body remember simpler times, when life was less complicated. This helps us slow down to the speed of our body and take the time to integrate the natural flow of life into our cellular tissue. Instead of running from place to place or thinking about how much more we can fit into our day, walking allows us to exist in the moment.

Each step we take can lead us to becoming more mindful of ourselves and our feelings. Walking slows us down enough not only to pay attention to where we are in our body, but also to our breath. Taking time to simply notice our breath while we walk, through the length of our inhales and exhales, and becoming attuned to the way in which we breathe is taking a step towards mindfulness. When we become more mindful, we gradually increase our awareness of the environment around us and start to recognize that the normal flow of our thoughts and feelings are not always related to where we are in the present moment. Gradually we realize that the connection we have with the earth and the ground beneath our feet is all that is. By walking and practicing breathing mindfully we gain a sense of calm and tranquility -- the problems and troubles of the day slowly fade away because we are in the ‘now’.

The simplicity and ease of a walking practice allows us to create time, space and awareness of our surroundings and of the wonders that lie within. Taking a few moments to walk each day and become more aware of our breath will in turn open the door for the beauty of the world around us to filter in. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

“At certain moments.” wrote Coleridge, ” a single almost insignificant sorrow may, by association, bring together all the little epics of pain and discomfort, bodily and mental, that we have endured even from infancy.” The Program doesn’t teach us to pretend that hardships and sorrow are meaningless. Grief really hurts, and so do other kinds of pain. But now that we’re free of our addictions, we have much greater control over our thinking. And the thoughts we choose to spend time on during any given day can strongly influence the complexion of our feelings for that day. Am I finding different and better ways of using my mind?

Today I Pray

May I thank God for the pain — however insignificant -0- that magnetizes my succession of old hurts into one large one that I can take out and look at, and then discard to make room for new and present concerns. May I thank God for restoring my sensitivity to pain after the numbness of addiction.

Today I Will Remember

I can thank God for restoring my feelings.

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

One More Day

There is no more certain sign of a narrow mind, or stupidity, and of arrogance, then to stand aloof from those who think differently from us.
– Walter Savage Landor

We all carry some opinions and beliefs formed long ago, with no thought as to how they continue to affect us. We may be inflexible to beliefs or ideas that differ from ours. Because of this we might be intolerant of other people, especially those who seem different from us.

Our beliefs and actions toward other people may come from fear — a fear of the unexpected, of the unknown, or of being wrong. Wee may resist examining the rules and beliefs governing our lives because we’re not totally sure of them. Opening ourselves to new ideas is easier if we remain ourselves that we don’t have to accept the ideas, just the people.

I can fearlessly open myself to new ideas and new people.

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

Food For Thought

Carrying the Message

We do not keep our program unless we give it away. Our participation in meetings is a means of sharing with others what OA has given us. We are genuinely interested in newcomers, because they remind us of where we came from and because they give us an opportunity to strengthen our own program by sharing what we have received.

Sometimes we carry the message by providing transportation for someone who otherwise would not get to a meeting. Sometimes we give of ourselves by simply listening when a newcomer needs to talk. Practicing the OA principles in all areas of our life is carrying the message, even to those who are not compulsive overeaters.

Abstinence and the OA program now occupy the central place in our lives, the place which was once held by food. Following the will of our Higher Power means that we carry the message as He directs us. We are willing to be used in whatever way God moves us to give away our program.

May I serve You by carrying the message.

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

One Day At A Time

LOVE
“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line.
You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”
Lucille Ball

It took me a long time to learn what love truly means. I thought love included pleasing others, saying “yes” when I meant “no,” swallowing my true feelings and putting myself last. What I didn’t know is that I was practicing resentment, anger, fear, jealousy and everything but love. I could not love others because I did not love myself.
Then I decided to take care of myself first. I considered no one but me, took care of myself, (or so I thought) while actually alienating myself from those close to me. I ate compulsively to tame the self-loathing I felt inside. And I loathed myself because I did not treat myself with real love and kindness.

Today I know that loving myself must come first. If I love myself, I am better able to love everyone in my life because I do things from a place of honesty. If I treat myself with respect, I treat others with respect. Everyone wins when I love myself enough to accept myself, flaws and all.

One day at a time ...
I will ask my Higher Power for the
ability to accept and love myself for where I
am this day, knowing I am a work in progress like a
tree that grows from self-care and nurturing.
~ Melissa

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

AA 'Big Book' - Quote

The terms 'spiritual experience' and 'spiritual awakening' are used many times in this book which, upon careful reading, shows that the personality change sufficient to bring about recovery from alcoholism has manifested itself among us in many different forms. - Pg. 567 - 4th. Edition - Appendices II - Spiritual Experience

Hour To Hour - Book - Quote

Complete involvement in this new way of life will keep you from falling through the cracks. If you stay in the middle of us, you won't fall off the edge.

As I follow those before me, newcomers will follow behind me and I will always be in the middle of the path of progress.

The Experience of Pleasure

I will build my capacity for experiencing joy and serenity. What good is earning a living if I don't enjoy my life, what good is recovery if I don't become grateful for the life I am saving, namely mine. Today I recognize that it is the simple pleasures that bring me the greatest joy. Waking up and feeling good. Enjoying the weather, a friend, a cup of tea. When I allow myself to live my life rather than chase after what I think my life should be or reject the good that is around me a mysterious thing happens. Life is enough. The space around me just sort of fills up with something, an energy, a sensation of being alive, a presence that fills in what previously felt empty. I look around and know it is enough.

- Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor - Book - Quote

Friends and loved ones don't always behave as we expect them to. But this is a good thing. If friends and loved ones were absolutely predictable, that would mean they are not changing and if they are not changing, they are not growing.

I don't have to change friends if I understand that friends change.

"Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book" - Book

Keep the focus on yourself, but once the picture is taken, move on.

Time for Joy - Book - Quote

Each step I take today makes me feel better and better.

Today I know that I have all that I need to do exactly what must be done and go exactly where I need to go.

Alkiespeak - Book - Quote

If a newcomer calls at 2 am, I say: 'Your answer's on page 63 of the Big Book.' - I don't know what's on page 63, but this guy will start reading and if his answer's not there, he'll think; 'Well he must have given me the wrong page.' and keep reading until he finds his answer. - Serenity Sam.
__________________
"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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