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Old 12-30-2013, 10:21 AM   #31
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Join Date: Aug 2013
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December 31

You are reading from the book Today's Gift.
Finish each day and be done with it. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well. --Ralph Waldo Emerson
Two of the most useless phrases in the English language are "what if" and "if only." We waste so much time and energy thinking about what we might have done and wishing we had acted or reacted differently. We imagine how things might have turned out "if only . . ."
All of us make mistakes. To go back and wonder and wish about our yesterdays prevents us from living fully today. Each day is a fresh chance; a new beginning. We can only squeeze what we can out of the moment and let the drops fall where they may. Some will evaporate and some will form rainbows.
Can I forget about yesterday and start a fresh new day?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Dawns another year,
Open it aright;
Thou shalt have no fear
In its fading light.
--Joseph Krauskopf
New Year's Eve is a good time to reflect upon the closing year and set our direction for the year ahead. This day reminds us that every day of the year is lived just one at a time. Looking back, we can see a year's change in ourselves. We see the progress we have made as men on our journey. Perhaps we see how much stronger we are emotionally. Maybe we see relationships that have developed because of our growing ability to love. Certainly all of us have some things we regret and some changes we mourn. They too have their place today.
As we begin the coming year, let us review our relationship with each of the Steps. We may perceive aspects of our program that call for more attention. One or two particular Steps may speak to our needs at this time or may have been overlooked in this past year. On this last day of the year, we can again turn our lives and will over to the care of a loving God.
I look to the New Year with a renewed commitment to the Steps.

You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
In the process of growing to spiritual maturity, we all go through many adolescent stages. --Miki L. Bowen
Progress, not perfection, is our goal in this recovery program. And many days we'll be haunted by the feeling that we've regressed. We will display old behavior. We will feel unable to change, to go on, to make gains once again. But these periods will pass, and soon progress will be evident again.
We must be wary of our need for perfection. It's this need that makes normal progress seem not good enough. And yet, that's all we're capable of--and all we'll ever need to be capable of. The program, its Steps and the promises offered, provide the tools we have lacked, yet need to use in order to accept ourselves wholly and imperfectly.
Daily attention to our spiritual side will foster the spiritual and emotional health we long for. Prayer and meditation, combined with honest inventory-taking, can show us the personal progress needed, the personal progress made. However, we will falter on occasion. We will neglect our program some days. But it won't ever be beyond our reach. And each day is a new beginning.
Today is before me, and I can make progress. I will begin with a quiet prayer and a moment of meditation.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Affirming the Good
Fun becomes fun, love becomes love, life becomes worth living. And we become grateful. --Beyond Codependency
Wait, and expect good things - for yourself and your loved ones.
When you wonder what is coming, tell yourself the best is coming, the very best life and love have to offer, the best God and His universe have to send. Then open your hands to receive it. Claim it, and it is yours.
See the best in your mind; envision what it will look like, what it will feel like. Focus, until you can see it clearly. Let your whole being, body and soul, enter into and hold onto the image for a moment.
Then, let it go. Come back into today, the present moment. Do not obsess. Do not become fearful. Become excited. Live today fully, expressing gratitude for all you have been, all you are, and all you will become.
Wait, and expect good things.
Today, when I think abut the year ahead, I will focus on the good that is coming.

Today I have all the willingness... all the energy and all the guidance to continue to choose the path of peace and love and joy. --Ruth Fishel


Journey To The Heart

Honor the Ending

“How was your trip?” a friend asked, as my trip drew to a close.

I thought for a moment, then the answer came easily. “It had its ups and downs,” I said. “There were times I felt exhilarated and sure I was on track. Other days I felt lost. Confused. I’d fall into bed at night certain that this whole trip was a mistake and a waste. But I’d wake up in the morning, something would happen, and I’d see how I’d been guided all along.”

The journey of a year is drawing to a close. Cherish the moments, all of them, even the ups and downs. Cherish the places you’ve visited, the people you’ve seen. Say good-bye to those whose journey have called them someplace else. Know you can always call them back by thinking loving thoughts. Know all those you love will be there for you when you need them most. Honor the lessons you’ve learned, and the people who helped you learn them. Honor the journey your soul mapped out for you. Trust all the places you’ve been. Make a scrapbook in your heart to help you remember.

Look back for a moment. Reflect in peace. Then let this year draw to a close. All parts of the journey are sacred and holy. You’ve learned that by now. Take time to honor this ending– though it’s never really the end. Go to sleep tonight. When you wake up tomorrow, a new adventure will begin.

Remember the words you were told when this last adventure began, the words whispered quietly to your heart: Let the journey unfold. Let it be magical. The way has been prepared. People will be expecting you. Yes, you are being led.


More Language Of Letting Go

The adventure is in the trip

We were on our way to the drop zone when Chip turned to me.

“Let’s go to San Francisco and see a widgeon.”

“Widgeon?” I said. “Okay. Let’s go.”

“These are the rules,” he said, pulling off the highway and getting back on the exit ramp heading north. “We’ll stop at the house for a minute. But we can’t pack. We can only take with us what we have on us now. We’ll have to trust ourselves to get whatever else we need on the way.”

“Okay,” I said. “You’re on.”

I didn’t know what a widgeon was.

Four hours later, we were walking barefoot on Morro Beach, just south of Big Sur. A big rock, one that looked like the fossil remains of a dinosaur hunched over in the water, beckoned. So did the impending sunset. I still didn’t know what a widgeon was, but I was glad we were searching for one.

“You’d better call Andy,” I said, watching the waves crash against the dinosaur rock. “You guys were supposed to go climbing tomorrow.”

Chip took the cell phone I was handing him.

“I’ve got an idea,” I said. “Tell Andy to get on a plane, fly to San Francisco, wait for us to pick him up, then come with us to find a widgeon.”

Chip called Andy. Thirty-five mintues later, Andy called back. “I’ll be at the United gate at the San Francisco airport at 9:34. See you!” he said.

Chip and I looked at each other. It was 6:34. We were two hundred miles south of San Francisco and had already started traveling the One through Big Sur– a winding two lane highway that climbed high banks, offered a breathtaking view, and needed to be traveled slowly and cautiously.

Half an hour later, we looked at the odometer. We had gone twelve miles.

Chip turned east on a road the suddenly appeared. It was slightly bigger than a one-lane road, winding its way through the mountains that separated us from the interstate and a sixty-five mile per hour limit. He drove like a Daytona master. Forty-five minutes later, we had traveled another twelve miles.

Focus, focus, focus. Focus on the destination, not the journey. Just get there.

At 10:35, one hour past Andy’s arrival time, we pulled up in front of the baggage claim. A six foot, two inch Texas blond guy sat on a bench, reading a book. We honked. He looked up, waved, then lumbered over to the car and slid into the backseat.

“What’s a widgeon?” he said.

The next morning, we set out for Ace Aviation, the home of the widgeon. We didn’t know where it was, but we headed in what we thought was the right direction. Suddenly, Chip pointed to a sign. “Seaplanes!” We pulled off the road, and went in.

“Have you heard of Ace Aviation?” we wasked.

“Yup,” she said.

“Is there a widgeon there?” we asked.

“Yup,” she said.

“Will you tell us where it is?” we asked.

She did.

One hour later, we pulled into the parking lot for Ace Aviation. For the next hour, we fawned over widgeons– amphibious planes with a peculiar yet immediate and undeniable charm. The name painted on one widgeon read, “Da Plane.” It was the seaplane from Fantasy Island.

We found a hot springs motel on the lasr evening of the trip. Sitting in the outdoor hot tub, I found many things remarkable: the almost full moon in the sky, the calming effect of the water, and the toothpaste provided by the hotel. All along the trip, our wishes seemed to magically appear– from a restaurant on a desolate strip of beach, to a restroom in the middle of a forest, to a widgeon in a widgeon hospital.

I’ve said before; I’ll say it again. It’s good to have a destination, but the adventure is in the trip.

Take a moment. Review where you’ve been this past year. Be grateful for all you’ve experienced and the people who have come into your life. Search your heart. Let go of any resentments. Take a moment and reflect on your successes. Be grateful for them; be grateful for all the ordinary moments,too. Take a look at your goal list. Some things have taken place. Other things may not have materialized yet. Don’t give up yet. Let go. Tomorrow, you can make a new list.

God, thank you for this year. Clear my heart so I can start yomorrow with a clean slate.


New Year's Resolutions: The Two Lists
A Message from DailyOM Co-Founder Scott Blum

I was fortunate to spend time with an enigmatic man named Robert during a very special period of my life. Robert taught me many things during our days together, and this time of year reminds me of one particular interaction we had.

"Now that you are becoming more aware," Robert said, "you need to begin to set goals for yourself so you don't lose the momentum you have built."

"Like New Year's resolutions?" I asked.

"That's an interesting idea," he smirked. "Let's do that."

By then I was used to his cryptic responses, so I knew something was up because of the way his eyes sparkled as he let out an impish laugh.

"Tonight's assignment is to make two lists," Robert continued. "The first is a list of all the New Year's resolutions you WANT to keep, and the second is a list of all the New Year's resolutions you WILL keep. Write the WANT List first, and when you have exhausted all of your ideas, then write the second list on another sheet of paper."

That night I went home and spent several hours working on the two lists. The WANT List felt overwhelming at first, but after a while I got into writing all the things I had always wanted to do if the burdens of life hadn't gotten in the way. After nearly an hour, the list swelled to fill the entire page and contained nearly all of my ideas of an ideal life. The second list was much easier, and I was able to quickly commit ten practical resolutions that I felt would be both realistic and helpful.

The next day, I met Robert in front of the local food Co-op, where we seemed to have most of our enlightening conversations. "Tell me about your two lists," Robert said as the familiar smirk crept onto his face.

"The first list contains all the things I SHOULD do if I completely changed my life to be the person I always wanted to be. And the second list contains all the things I COULD do by accepting my current life, and taking realistic steps towards the life I want to lead."

"Let me see the second list," he said.

I handed him the second list, and without even looking at it, he ripped the paper into tiny pieces and threw it in the nearby garbage can. His disregard for the effort I had put into the list annoyed me at first, but after I calmed down I began to think about the first list in a different light. In my heart, I knew the second list was a cop out, and the first list was the only one that really mattered.

"And now, the first list." Robert bowed his head and held out both of his hands.

I purposefully handed him the first list and held his gaze for several seconds, waiting for him to begin reading the page. After an unusually long silence, he began to crumple the paper into a ball and once again tossed it into the can without looking at it.

"What did you do that for?!" I couldn't hide my anger any longer.

Robert began to speak in a quiet and assured voice. "What you SHOULD or COULD do with your life no longer matters. The only thing that matters, from this day forward, is what you MUST do."

He then drew a folded piece of paper from his back pocket and handed it to me.

I opened it carefully, and found a single word floating in the middle of the white page:

"Love." Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

God grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change; COURAGE to change the things I can; and WISDOM to know the difference — living one day at a time; enjoying one moment at a time; accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it: Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His will; that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with him forever in the next. Amen.

Today I Pray

May I look back at this past year as a good one, in that nothing I did or said was wasted. No experience — however insignificant it may have seemed — was worthless. Hurt gave me the capacity to feel happiness; bad times made me appreciate the good ones; what I regarded was my weaknesses became my greatest strengths. I thank God for a year of growing.

Today I will Remember

Hope is my “balance brought forward” — into a new year’s ledger.


One More Day

Afflictions are not really a good gift — neither they nor their consequences. However, if afflictions do come, it is well that we convert them into afflictions of love. Herein lies the power of man.
–Chaim Nachman Bialik

All around us we hear cries of “Happy New Year,” and we wonder if this next year is going to be happier than last year was. Carrying the burden of chronic pain or a chronic illness is far more demanding than most people can imagine;. It can overwhelm our days.

We alone have the power to convert that pain, loneliness, and any feelings of guilt into external expressions of ourselves, such as helping others. It’s almost impossible to be completely wound up in ourselves when we are doing for others.

I feel positive thoughts about this New Year. My goal is to reach out to at least one person each day.
"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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