Chat

In Loving Memory of Vic

Find A Meeting

Need to get to a meeting and speak to someone right away? Below is a list of online meetings and resources to help you find a meeting and fellowship.

+ Alcoholics Anonymous Online Meeting Finder
+ Overeaters Anonymous Meeting Finder
+ Narcotics Anonymous Meeting Finder
+ Al-Anon Online Meeting Finder

Daily Recovery Readings – August 19

Just For Today
August 19
First Things First

“We apply effort to our most obvious problems and let go of the rest. We do the job at hand and, as we progress, new opportunities for improvement present themselves.”
Basic Text, p. 54

It’s been said that recovery is simple? All we’ve got to change is everything! That can seem a pretty tall order, especially when we first arrive in Narcotics Anonymous. After all, not many of us showed up at our first meeting because our lives were in great shape. On the contrary, a great many of us came to NA in the midst of the worst crises of our lives. We needed recovery, and quick!

The enormity of the change required in our lives can be paralyzing. We know we can’t take care of all that needs to be done, not all at once. How do we start? Chances are, we’ve already started. We’ve done the first, most obvious things that needed to be done: We’ve stopped using drugs, and we’ve started going to meetings.

What do we do next? Pretty much the same thing, just more of it: From where we are, we do what we can. We walk the path of recovery by picking up our feet and taking the step that’s right in front of us. Only when that’s been accomplished must we concern ourselves with what comes next. Slowly but surely, we’ll find ourselves making progress down the path, visibly drawing closer each day to becoming the kind of person we’d like to be.

Just for today: I will walk the path of my recovery by taking the step right in front of me.

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

Daily Reflections
August 19, 2014
A FRAME OF REFERENCE

Referring to our list [inventory] again. Putting out of our minds the wrongs others had done, we resolutely looked for our own mistakes.  Where had we been selfish, dishonest, self-seeking and frightened?
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 67

There is a wonderful freedom in not needing constant approval from colleagues at work or from the people I love. I wish I had known about this Step before, because once I developed a frame of reference, I felt able to do the next right thing, knowing that the action fit the situation and that it was the correct thing to do.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day
August 19
A.A. Thought For The Day

“People of faith have a logical idea of what life is all about. There is a wide variation in the way each one of us approaches and conceives of the Power greater than ourselves. Whether we agree with a particular approach or conception seems to make little difference.  There are questions for each of us to settle for ourselves. But in each case the belief in a Higher Power has accomplished the miraculous, the humanly impossible. There has come a revolutionary change in their way of living and thinking.” Has there been a revolutionary change in me?

Meditation For The Day

Worship is consciousness of God’s divine majesty. As you pause to worship, God will help you raise your humanity to His divinity. The earth is a material temple to enclose God’s divinity. God brings to those who worship Him a divine power, a divine love, and a divine healing. You only have to open your mind to Him and try to absorb some of His divine spirit. Pausing quietly in the spirit of worship, turn your inward thoughts upward and realize that His divine power may be yours, that you can experience His love and healing.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may worship God by sensing the eternal Spirit. I pray that I may experience a new power in my life.

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

Each Day Is A New Beginning
August 19

…to have a crisis and act upon it is one thing. To dwell in perpetual crisis is another.
—Barbara Grizzuti Harrison

Exaggerating the negative element in our lives is familiar behavior for all too many of us. But this obsession is our choice. We can stop at any moment. We can decide to let go of a situation that we can’t control, turn it over to God, and be free to look ahead at the possibilities for happiness.

Perhaps we can learn to accept a serious situation in our lives as a special opportunity for growth first of all, but even more as an opportunity to let God work in our lives. We learn to trust by giving over our dilemmas to God for solutions. With patience, we will see the right outcomes, and we will more easily turn to God the next time.

Crises will lessen in number and in gravity in direct proportion to the partnership we develop with our higher power. The stronger our dependence on that power, for all answers and all directions, the greater will our comfort be in all situations.

Serenity is the gift promised when we let God handle our lives. No crisis need worry us. The solution is only a prayer away.

I will take action against every crisis confronting me – I will turn to God. Each crisis is an invitation to serenity.

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

As Bill Sees It
August 19
Privileged to Communicate, p. 231

Everyone must agree that we A.A.’s are unbelievably fortunate people; fortunate that we have suffered so much; fortunate that we can know, understand, and love each other so supremely well.

These attributes and virtues are scarcely of the earned variety.  Indeed, most of us are well aware that these are rare gifts which have their true origin in our kinship born of a common suffering and a common deliverance by the grace of God.

Thereby we are privileged to communicate with each other to a degree and in a manner not very often surpassed among our nonalcoholic friends in the world around us.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

“I used to be ashamed of my condition and so didn’t talk about it. But nowadays I freely confess I am a depressive, and this has attracted other depressives to me. Working with them has helped a great deal.”*

1. Grapevine, October 1959
2. Letter, 1954
*Bill added that he had no depression after 1955.

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

Walk In Dry Places
August 19
Inventory is now
Personal Inventory.

In the early days of AA, the dramatic accounts of drinking escapades seemed to show honesty. Taking personal inventory often included telling others about bizarre behavior connected with drinking.

We know today that inventory ought to continue on a daily basis, even though years have passed since our last drink. We’ve learned through painful experiences that in sobriety we can still display many of the shortcomings that plagued us as practicing alcoholics.

It can also be a trap to focus on our past wrongs rather than today’s faults. We may be using this focus on the past to avoid being honest about where we stand today. Let’s remember that inventory is always now. Taking inventory of the past won’t help us with today’s shortcomings.

I won’t use a discussion of my past wrongs as a subterfuge to keep from being honest about today’s wrongs. I’ll continue to take personal inventory and admit wrongs as they come up.

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

Keep It Simple
August 19

The future is made of the same stuff as the present.
— Simone Weil

We found we didn’t need magic to recover—we needed a miracle! Now we are walking miracles.

Part of our miracle is that we see how important today is. We can’t change our future unless we change today. So we live One Day at a Time. By living today well, we make our future better. There is comfort in knowing that the program will be there. Hope we’ll be there.

Old-timers say sobriety is easy if we go by one simple rule: don’t drink and go to meeting.

Life can get simpler; they don’t change much. Staying sober will be easier for us over time.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me keep my sobriety simple. Help me accept the rules of life.

Action for the Day: I will list three things that will be there for me tomorrow and the next day, because I’m working on them today.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous 
August 19
The Man Who Mastered Fear

He spent eighteen years in running away, and then found he didn’t have to run. So he started A.A. in Detroit.

Here, while I was in a hospital bed, men with clear eyes, happy faces, and a look of assurance and purposefulness about them came to see me and told me their stories. Some of these were hard to believe, but it did not require a giant brain to perceive that they had something I could use. How could I get it? It was simple, they said, and went on to explain to me in their own language the program of recovery and daily living that we know today as the Twelve Steps of A.A. Dr. Bob dwelt at length on how prayer had given him release, time and time again, from the nearly overpowering compulsion to take a drink. It was he who convinced me, because his own conviction was so real, that a Power greater than myself could help me in the crises of life and that the means of communicating with this Power was simple prayer. Here was a tall, rugged, highly educated Yankee talking in a matter-of-course way about God and prayer. If he and these other fellows could do it, so could I.

p. 250

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
August 19

Step Twelve – “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

A.A. has many single alcoholics who wish to marry and are in a position to do so. Some marry fellow A.A.’s. How do they come out? On the whole these marriages are very good ones. Their common suffering as drinkers, their common interest in A.A. and spiritual things, often enhance such unions. It is only where “boy meets girl on A.A. campus,” and love follows at first sight, that difficulties may develop. The prospective partners need to be solid A.A.’s and long enough acquainted to know that their compatibility at spiritual, mental, and emotional levels is a fact and not wishful thinking. They need to be as sure as possible that no deep-lying emotional handicap in either will be likely to rise up under later pressures to cripple them. The considerations are equally true and important for the A.A.’s who marry “outside” A.A. With clear understanding and right, grown-up attitudes, very happy results do follow.

pp. 119-120

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

Xtra Thoughts
August 19

“Lost time is never found again.”
–Benjamin Franklin

Forget past mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you’re going to do now and do it.
–William Durant

When you have read the Bible, you will know it is the word of God, because you will have found it the key to your own heart, your own happiness, and your own duty.
–Woodrow Wilson (1856 – 1924)

“It doesn’t matter which side of the fence you get off on sometimes.  What matters most is getting off. You can not make progress without making decisions.”
–Jim Rohn

All that is necessary to make this world a better place to live is to love….to love as He loved.
–Isadora Duncan

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one getting burned.”
–Buddha

Whatever my problem today, I will let God have it. A solution is in the making. I’ll see it just as quickly as I can let go of the problem.
–unknown

We know what we are, but know not what we may be.
–Shakespeare

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
August 19
DECISION

“When you see a snake, never mind where he came from.”
– W. G. Benham

So many alcoholics have died looking for “the problem” that made them drink. The wife, family, neighborhood or unemployment was why they thought they got drunk. They died seeking a reason.  Alcoholics Anonymous clearly states that alcohol is the problem for alcoholics.

Alcohol is the problem! A statement that is so simple yet so profound in its healing. Today thousands upon thousands are choosing not to die by not taking the first drink. To see the problem clearly and honestly is the beginning of wisdom. O.A., ACoA, N.A., G.A., Al-Anon and others have used these simple principles with profound results. Do I see the snake?

Teach me to avoid those things that cause me pain and destruction.

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

Bible Scriptures
August 19

“For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
Proverbs 2:6

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground–everything that has the breath of life in it–I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.
Genesis 1:26-30

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

Daily Inspiration
August 19

Begin each day with the certainty that today is the best day of your life and watch what happens. Lord, I celebrate my life and give thanks for everything because for everything there is a reason.

Make today the best day of your life. Lord, I have been greatly blessed not only by what I have, but by those burdens that I have been spared.

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

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – August 19

“If we keep everything in balance, we are in harmony with ourselves and are at peace.”
–Fools Crow, LAKOTA

As within, as without, our present thought determines our future. If we want peace outside ourselves, we must first have peace inside ourselves. It’s not what is going on but how we are looking at what is going on.

We need to keep ourselves in balance. We must be careful to not get too hungry, angry, lonely. or tired. We must know the times – time to work, time to rest, time to play, time to sleep, time to pray, time to lighten up, time to laugh, time to eat, time to exercise. There is a saying “The honor of one is the honor of all.” This means when we work with all, we need to also work on one. We need to take care of ourselves. You cannot give away what you don’t have.

Great Spirit, let me walk in balance today. Remove from me resentment, self pity, and self seeking motives. Let me love myself so I can love my neighbors.

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

Journey to the Heart
August 19
Your Destiny Is Now

The train seemed to move endlessly toward the horizon as I drove along beside it. To me, trains symbolize destiny. For a long time, the concept of destiny confused me. I wondered how to find my destiny. I hoped I had one. I wondered what it would feel like when I got there. But destiny doesn’t bewilder me anymore. I enjoy seeing trains.

Destiny isn’t some distant place, or a peak of fame and fortune. Destiny isn’t one moment in our lives, one time when we shine for all the world to see. Those moments are nice, if they come. But there’s more destiny than that.

Destiny is now. Destiny is each moment of our lives, shining through, linking together, like the endless cars on the train. Destiny means embracing each moment, being present for it, cherishing it because it is our now. Whether it holds exhilaration, discovery, sadness, tough decisions, or tender love, each moment is our destiny. Those moments of destiny link together in an endless chain to become our lives.

Let yourself live and be in each moment, with each person, learning each lesson along the way. Destiny isn’t someplace we go. Destiny is where we are.

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

One Day At A Time

August 19
ANGER

“Anger is only one letter short of danger.”
Eleanor Roosevelt

Before I began to work the program anger was a dangerous emotion for me. Anger was my excuse to react negatively without thinking. I let anger cause me to judge others, say or do hurtful things, turn away from my Higher Power, and to overeat.

I came to realize that I felt angry even when there were other emotions brewing on a deeper level. I felt angry when I was actually feeling afraid, embarrassed, hurt, tired, forgetful, or stressed out. As I work the Twelve Steps, I welcome my Higher Power’s guidance in feeling my true feelings; in accepting myself and the situations in my life; in acting on life — rather than reacting; and in having the compassion to understand myself and others. By doing this I no longer fear anger and I no longer find it a danger in my life.

Turning to my Higher Power, I use the Serenity Prayer and the Twelve Steps to process anger in healthy ways. When I feel angry at myself, I give myself a break! I treat myself with kindness, acceptance and forgiveness.

One Day at a Time . . .
When I feel angry, I wait before I act.

~ Lynn

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

One More Day
August 19

The past should be culled like a box of fresh strawberries, rinsed of debris, sweetened judiciously and served in small portions, not very often.
–  Laura Palmer

Many of us may dwell in the past, telling ourselves  our yesterdays were better than our tomorrows will ever be.  Living in “what was” can be dangerous, for we may be less adaptable to life’s changes.

Fond memories are healthy when they remind us how our lives are formed and shaped by our experiences.  Memories reveal our development into the productive people we are today.  Life does get better every day because we have both the joys of the present and some sweet memories of the past.  We not only survive, we regain happiness and our peace of mind by living for today and by appreciating all the today’s and yesterdays.

I will not live in the past, but instead will look to each day as new and promising.

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

Today’s Gift
August 19

A tree grown in a cave does not bear fruit.
—Kahlil Gibran

A tree planted in a cave would soon be stopped short in its growth. There would be no room for it to grow tall or blossom. It would only grow so far and then would grow no bigger.

Fear can be like a cave. We sometimes become fearful for the same reason we might enter a cave, looking for protection. But fear protects us from the new ideas and behavior we need in order to grow. Fear can keep us huddling inside it, watching life’s opportunities pass by. When fear threatens to enclose us, we can take a deep breath and begin to do what we are afraid of doing. The cave will fade away as we step out into the sun, fresh air, and storms that are a part of growing.

What fear can I overcome today?

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

Touchstones Meditations For Men
August 19

The most exhausting thing in life is being insincere.
—Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Many of us grew up in situations that required us to be constantly on our guard. We became so keenly attuned to the people around us and how to please them or avoid their anger that we lost contact with our inner messages. Rather than developing skills for drawing upon our inner resources, we developed skills for looking outward and reacting to whatever confronted us. This method of survival may have been necessary in the past while we were under stress, but it doesn’t allow us any rest or the possibility of simply following what we know and feel is right.

We are learning to know what we think and feel and to express it, even if it isn’t always what others want to hear. We can be spontaneous now because we have room for mistakes in our lives. Our relationships are more reliable, and we have more energy from sincerity than from always striving to make a good appearance.

Today, it is more important for me to be sincere than to be on my guard.

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

More Language Of Letting Go
August 19
Enjoy and share the gifts

My friend was talking on the phone to his sister one day. They had a little sibling rivalry going on, but it was the good, motivating kind.

“I’m going to Asia,” he said.

“Well, I’ve been to Africa and helped build a hospital there,” she said.

They bantered back and forth about the places they’d been and where they hoped to go next. Then they decided that you got points only for how cool the trip had been– and what you learned and what you did with the experience after you were there.

“You helped build that hospital for kids. You get a lot of points for that,” he said. “But you don’t get any points for Denmark. All you did was change planes. You didn’t even look around and enjoy the sights. We’ll have to talk again, in a few years, and see how many points we each have.”

It’s been said before, but it’s important enough to say again: It’s not just where you go; it’s what you do with it that counts. Are you having great experiences, but keeping them to yourself? Are you bothering to get out of your chair and see the sights in your world, or are you staring at your TV? Are you trudging your path, but not gleaning any insights along the way? Are you doing anything of value with what you’ve learned, even if it’s sharing your experience, strength, and hope with a close friend?

How many points do you have for really cool trips?

Part of saying thanks is sharing our lives with the world. The other part is learning to enjoy our lives, ourselves. Live and love and learn and see things; then pass those things on.

Don’t just say thanks. Demonstrate your gratitude for life by living as fully as you can.

God, help me commit to doing something of value and service with the gift of my life, even if that means simply enjoying what I’m experiencing right now.

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

Daily TA0
August 19
Order

Build your life brick upon brick.
Live a life of truth,
And you will look back on a life of truth.
Live a life of fantasy,
And you will look back on delusion.

The good of today is based upon the good of yesterday. That is why we should constantly be attentive to our actions.

Take frugal people as an example. They recycle the scraps from their cooking into compost piles. They eat at home rather than in restaurants. They do not waste water. They shop carefully. They do not spend their money on frivolities. This is exactly the type of care we need for spirituality.

We should not fritter our efforts away on amusements; rather, we should concentrate on endeavors most important to us. We should not randomly gather information; rather, we should try to order it into a comprehensive whole, thereby compounding our abilities to our own advantage. We should not carelessly tell lies, because we will then be divorced from the truth we seek.

Whether our lives are magnificent or wretched depends upon our ordering of daily details. We must organize the details into a composition that pleases us. Only then will we have meaning in our lives.

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

Daily Zen
August 19

The water of the mind, how clear it is!
Gazing at it, the boundaries are invisible.
But as soon as even a slight thought arises,
Ten thousand images crowd it.
Attach to them and they become real,
Be carried by them, and it will be difficult to return.
How painful to see a person trapped
In the ten-fold delusions.

– Ryokan (1758-1831)

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

Food For Thought
August 19
Highs and Lows

Abstaining from compulsive overeating does not guarantee that we will always be on an even keel emotionally. We continue to have ups and downs, and often we feel emotional distress even more keenly when we are no longer using food as a narcotic.

Part of our program involves the striving for balance and perspective. Experience teaches us not to get carried away by either elation or depression. These are moods, which will not last, and we prefer to base our actions on the rational decisions, which we make in times of quiet reflection.

Contact with OA friends during periods when we are either high or low helps to put our emotions in perspective. By expressing what we feel, we are better able to deal with it. Some of us tend to make calls when we are up and others of us reach for help when we are down. Ideally, we will make contact both times so that we may strengthen each other and learn not to be overwhelmed by mood swings.

May I remember that You can control my highs and my lows.

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

Faith’s Check Book
August 19
Reward for the Righteous

So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous: verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth.
(Psalm 58:11)

God’s judgments in this life are not always clearly to be seen, for in many cases one event happeneth alike to all. This is the state of probation, not of punishment or reward. Yet at times God works terrible things in righteousness, and even the careless are compelled to own His hand.

Even in this life righteousness has that kind of reward which it prefers above all others, namely, the smile of God, which creates a quiet conscience. Sometimes other recompenses follow, for God will be in no man’s debt. But, at the same time, the chief reward of the righteous lies in the hereafter.

Meanwhile, on a large scale, we mark the presence of the great Ruler among the nations. He breaks in pieces oppressive thrones and punishes guilty peoples. No one can study the history of the rise and fall of empires without perceiving that there is a power which makes for righteousness and, in the end, brings iniquity before its bar and condemns it with unsparing justice. Sin shall not go unpunished, and goodness shall not remain unrewarded. The Judge of all the earth must do right. Therefore, let us fear before Him and no more dread the power of the wicked.

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

This Morning’s Readings
August 19

“He shall stand and feed in the strength of the Lord.”
—Micah 5:4.

cHRIST’S reign in His Church is that of a shepherd-king. He has supremacy, but it is the superiority of a wise and tender shepherd over his needy and loving flock; He commands and receives obedience, but it is the willing obedience of the well-cared-for sheep, rendered joyfully to their beloved Shepherd, whose voice they know so well. He rules by the force of love and the energy of goodness.

His reign is practical in its character. It is said, “He shall stand and feed.” The great Head of the Church is actively engaged in providing for His people. He does not sit down upon the throne in empty state, or hold a sceptre without wielding it in government. No, He stands and feeds. The expression “feed,” in the original, is like an analogous one in the Greek, which means to shepherdize, to do everything expected of a shepherd: to guide, to watch, to preserve, to restore, to tend, as well as to feed.

His reign is continual in its duration. It is said, “He shall stand and feed”; not “He shall feed now and then, and leave His position”; not, “He shall one day grant a revival, and then next day leave His Church to barrenness.” His eyes never slumber, and His hands never rest; His heart never ceases to beat with love, and His shoulders are never weary of carrying His people’s burdens.

His reign is effectually powerful in its action; “He shall feed in the strength of Jehovah.” Wherever Christ is, there is God; and whatever Christ does is the act of the Most High. Oh! it is a joyful truth to consider that He who stands to-day representing the interests of His people is very God of very God, to whom every knee shall bow. Happy are we who belong to such a shepherd, whose humanity communes with us, and whose divinity protects us. Let us worship and bow down before Him as the people of His pasture.

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

This Evening’s Readings
August 19

“Pull me out of the net that they have laid privily for me: for Thou art my strength.”
—Psalm 31:4.

OUR spiritual foes are of the serpent’s brood, a and seek to ensnare us by subtlety. The prayer before us supposes the possibility of the believer being caught like a bird. So deftly does the fowler do his work, that simple ones are soon surrounded by the net. The text asks that even out of Satan’s meshes the captive one may be delivered; this is a proper petition, and one which can be granted: from between the jaws of the lion, and out of the belly of hell, can eternal love rescue the saint. It may need a sharp pull to save a soul from the net of temptations, and a mighty pull to extricate a man from the snares of malicious cunning, but the Lord is equal to every emergency, and the most skilfully placed nets of the hunter shall never be able to hold His chosen ones. Woe unto those who are so clever at net laying; they who tempt others shall be destroyed themselves.

“For Thou art my strength.” What an inexpressible sweetness is to be found in these few words! How joyfully may we encounter toils, and how cheerfully may we endure sufferings, when we can lay hold upon celestial strength. Divine power will rend asunder all the toils of our enemies, confound their politics, and frustrate their knavish tricks; he is a happy man who has such matchless might engaged upon his side. Our own strength would be of little service when embarrassed in the nets of base cunning, but the Lord’s strength is ever available; we have but to invoke it, and we shall find it near at hand. If by faith we are depending alone upon the strength of the mighty God of Israel, we may use our holy reliance as a plea in supplication.

“Lord, evermore Thy face we seek: Tempted we are, and poor, and weak; Keep us with lowly hearts, and meek. Let us not fall. Let us not fall.”

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>