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A NECESSARY PRUNING
October 4, 2009

. . . . we know that the pains of drinking had to come before sobriety, and emotional turmoil before serenity. TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 94

I love spending time in my garden feeding and pruning my beautiful flowers. One day, as I was busily snipping away, a neighbor stopped by. She commented, “Oh! Your plants are so beautiful, it seems such a shame to cut them back.” I replied, “I know how you feel, but the excess must be removed so they can grow stronger and healthier.” Later I thought that perhaps my plants feel pain, but God and I know it’s part of the plan and I’ve seen the results. I was quickly reminded of my precious A.A. program and how we all grow through pain. I ask God to prune me when it’s time, so I can grow.

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AA Thought for the Day


October 5, 2009

Honesty

Only by discussing ourselves, holding back nothing,
only by being willing to take advice and accept direction,
could we set foot on the road to straight thinking, solid honesty,
and genuine humility.
- Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p.59



Thought to Ponder . . .

Honesty isn't an event -- it's a process.
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Keep It Simple

If you do not tell the truth about yourself, you cannot tell it about other people.
---Virginia Woolf
Working the Twelve Steps helps us learn the truth. As we struggle with Step Four, we learn the truth about ourselves. We learn even more about ourselves by doing Steps Eight and Ten. When  we admit the truth about ourselves, things come into focus. Big changes happen.
As a result, we can see other people more clearly. We see bad sides in people we thought were prefect. We see good sides in people we hated. We start to know that everyone has to work hard to find what’s right for them. No one knows all the answers.
In short, we begin to trust others also who also are looking for the truth.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me clearly see myself and others.
Action for the Day:  Today, I’ll think about how doing Step Ten keeps me clear about what’s going on in my life.
Avatar universal
October 06, 2009
Amends without expectations
Page 292


"Projections about actually making amends can be a major obstacle both in making the list and in becoming willing."


Basic Text p.38


The Eighth Step asks us to become willing to make amends to all persons we have harmed. As we approach this step, we may wonder what the outcome of our amends will be. Will we be forgiven? Relieved of any lingering guilt? Or will we be tarred and feathered by the persons we've harmed?

Our tendency to seek forgiveness must be surrendered if we expect to receive the spiritual benefits of the Eighth and Ninth Steps. If we approach these steps expecting anything, we're likely to be very disappointed with the results. We want to ask ourselves if we are pinning our hopes on gaining the forgiveness of the person to whom we are making amends. Or maybe we're hoping we'll be excused from our debts by some sympathetic creditor moved to tears by our hard-luck story.

We need to be willing to make our amends regardless of the outcome. We can plan the amends, but we can't plan the results. Although we may not be granted a full pardon by everyone to whom we owe amends, we will learn to forgive ourselves. In the process, we will find that we no longer have to carry the burdens of the past.


Just for Today: I will let go of any expectations I have on the people to whom I owe amends.

Avatar universal
We addicts were great at saying no. Our spouse asked us to help around the house and we said no and went drinking. Friends tried to care, but we said, “No, mind your own business!” Our parents or our kids begged us to stop drinking, but we said no.
We were also ask to say yes. We always said yes when asked if we wanted to have a drink or get high. Addiction really mixed us up. When we said no, we should have said yes. And when we said yes we should have said no.
In recovery, we do things better. We say yes when others ask for help. We say yes when somebody wants to give us love. We say  no to alcohol and other drugs. We finally answer yes and no the right way---the right way and at the right time for us.
Prayer for the Day:  Higher Power, help me to always say yes to You, even when I’m tired or angry.
Action for the Day:  In today’s inventory, I’ll ask myself if there are any ways I’m still saying no to my program and Higher Power.

Avatar universal
A.A. Thought for the Day

There is such a thing as being too loyal to any one group. Do I feel put out when another group starts and some members of my group leave it and branch out into new territory? Or do I send them out with my blessing? Do I visit that new offshoot group and help it along? Or do I sulk in my own tent? A.A. grows by the starting of new groups all the time. I must realize that it's a good thing for a large group to split up into smaller ones, even if it means that the large group - my own group - becomes smaller. Am I always ready to help new groups?

Meditation for the Day

Pray - and keep praying until it brings peace and serenity and a feeling of communion with One who is near and ready to help. The thought of God is balm for our hates and fears. In praying to God, we find healing for hurt feelings and resentments. In thinking of God, doubts and fears leave us. Instead of those doubts, and fears, there will flow into our hearts such faith and love as is beyond the power of material things to give, and such peace as the world can neither give nor take away. And with God, we can have the tolerance to live and let live.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may have true tolerance and understanding. I pray that I may keep striving for these difficult things
Avatar universal
A.A. Thought for the Day

Am I willing to be bored sometimes at meetings? Am I willing to listen to much repetition of A.A. principles? Am I willing to hear the same thing over and over again? Am I willing to listen to long-winded members go into every detail of their past? Am I willing to take it, because it is doing them good to get it off their chest? My feelings are not too important. The good of A.A. comes first, even if it is not always comfortable for me. Have I learned to take it?
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