In Loving Memory of Vic

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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 23

Just For Today
August 23
Decision Making

“Before we got clean, most of our actions were guided by impulse. Today, we are not locked into this type of thinking.”
Basic Text p. 87

Life is a series of decisions, actions, and consequences. When we were using, our decisions were usually driven by our disease, resulting in self-destructive actions and dire consequences. We came to see decision making as a rigged game, one we should play as little as possible.

Given that, many of us have great difficulty learning to make decisions in recovery. Slowly, by working the Twelve Steps, we gain practice in making healthy decisions, ones that give positive results. Where our disease once affected our will and our lives, we ask our Higher Power to care for us. We inventory our values and our actions, check our findings with someone we trust, and ask the God of our understanding to remove our shortcomings. In working the steps we gain freedom from the influence of our disease, and we learn principles of decision making that can guide us in all our affairs.

Today, our decisions and their consequences need not be influenced by our disease. Our faith gives us the courage and direction to make good decisions and the strength to act on them. The result of that kind of decision making is a life worth living.

Just for today: I will use the principles of the Twelve Steps to make healthy decisions. I will ask my Higher Power for the strength to act on those decisions.


Daily Reflections
August 23

Can we bring the same spirit of love and tolerance into our sometimes deranged family lives that we bring to our A.A. group?

My family members suffer from the effects of my disease. Loving and accepting them as they are – just as I love and accept A.A. members – fosters a return of love, tolerance and harmony to my life. Using common courtesy and respecting other’s personal boundaries are necessary practices for all areas of my life.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day
August 23
A.A. Thought For The Day

“We who have accepted the A.A. principles have been faced with the necessity for a thorough personal housecleaning. We must face and be rid of the things in ourselves that have been blocking us. We therefore take a personal inventory. We take stock honestly. We search out the flaws in our make-up that caused our failure.  Resentment is the number one offender. Life that includes deep resentment leads only to futility and unhappiness. If we are to live, we must be free of anger.” Am I free of resentment and anger?

Meditation For The Day

Keep in mind the goal you are striving for, the good life you are trying to attain. Do not let little things divert you from the path. Do not be overcome by the small trials and vexations of each day. Try to see the purpose and plan to which all is leading. if, when climbing a mountain, you keep your eyes on each stony or difficult place, how weary is your climb. But if you think of each step as leading to the summit of achievement from which a glorious landscape will open out before you, then your climb will be endurable and you will achieve your goal.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may realize that life without a goal is futile.  I pray that I may find the good life worth striving for.


As Bill Sees It
August 23
Freed Prisoners, p. 234

Letter to a prison group:

“Every A.A. has been, in a sense, a prisoner. Each of us has walled himself out of society; each has known social stigma. The lot of you folks has been even more difficult: In your case, society has also built a wall around you. But there isn’t any really essential difference, a fact that practically all A.A.’s now know.

“Therefore, when you members come into the world of A.A. on the outside, you can be sure that no one will care a fig that you have done time. What you are trying to be–not what you were–is all that counts to us.”


Walk In Dry Places
August 23
Planning for others.
Letting Go.

There are times when we think we see perfectly what others ought to be doing. It pains and disturbs us when loved ones….. our children, perhaps… do not heed our advice. In planning for others, we can easily fall into the trap of enabling. An enabler is a person who supports others in an unhealthy addiction or dependency.

We must not plan the lives of others, no matter how dear they are to us or how attached we become to them. They must have the freedom to live without obligation or the belief that they could not have succeeded without our help. Freedom of choice is a precious right that includes the freedom to make mistakes.

I’ll release any tendency I have to plan for others. At all times, my responsibility is to keep on the right track and let others be free.


Keep It Simple
August 23

Where there is no vision, a people perish.
—Ralph Waldo Emerson

Working our program teaches us to see things more clearly. We learn to look at who we really are. At first, we’re scared to see ourselves. But it turns out okay, even though were not perfect.

We also begin to see others more clearly. We see good in people we don’t like. And we see faults in people we thought we’re prefect. But we don’t judge people anymore. Nobody is perfect. Just as our program friends accept us as we are, we learn to accept others.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, sometimes I don’t like what I see. Help me to believe Your way will for me. Help me have a vision.

Action for the Day: I will use my new way of seeing thing to avoid trouble today.


Each Day a New Beginning
August 23

Were our knowledge of human relationships a hundredfold more reliable than it is now, it would still be foolish to seek ready-made solutions for problems of living in the index of a book.
—Mirra Komarovsky

The problems each of us experience have within their own parameters the solutions most fitting. And we each must discover those solutions, understand their appropriateness, and absorb them into the body of information that defines who we are and who we are becoming.

We learn experientially because only then is our reality significantly affected. Others’ experiences are helpful to our growth and affirm how similar is our pain, but each of us must make our own choices, take responsible action in our own behalf.

How fortunate that we are now in a position to make healthy decisions about our relationships! No longer the victim, we have the personal power to choose how we want to spend our time and with whom. Through active participation in all our relationships, we can discover many of the hidden elements in our own natures and develop more fully all the characteristics unique to our personhood. Our growth as recovering women is enhanced in proportion to our sincere involvement within the relationships we’ve chosen.

I can inform myself about who I am within my relationships. Therein lie the solutions to my problems.


Alcoholics Anonymous
August 23
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.

During my first few months in Akron. I was quite sure that I never wanted to see my hometown again. Too many economic and social problems would beset me there. I would make a fresh start somewhere else. After six months of sobriety, I saw the picture in a different light: Detroit was the place I had to return to, not only because I must face the mess I had made there, but because it was there that I could be of the most service to A.A. In the spring of 1939, Bill stopped off in Akron on his way to Detroit on business. I jumped at the suggestion that I accompany him. We spent two days there together before he returned to New York. Friends invited me to stay on for as long as I cared to. I remained with them for three weeks, using part of the time in making many amends, which I had had no earlier opportunity of making.

p. 252


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
August 23

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.”

This all meant, of course, that we were still far off balance. When a job still looked like a mere means of getting money rather than an opportunity for service, when the acquisition of money for financial independence looked more important than a right dependence upon God, we were still the victims of unreasonable fears. And these were fears which would make a serene and useful existence, at any financial level, quite impossible.

p. 121


Xtra Thoughts
August 23

Action may not always bring happiness; but there is no happiness without action.
–Benjamin Disraeli

Even if you are on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.
–Will Rogers

First keep the peace within yourself, then you can also bring peace to others.
–Thomas A. Kempis

There is only one you for all time. Fearlessly be yourself.
–Anthony Rapp

I can repeat the past, or I can create new and better experiences.

Today I will take enough time to do something good for myself only.  I will buy myself a gift or spend worthwhile time doing something pleasant and fulfilling. I have enough time today and I deserve this time for myself.
–Ruth Fishel

“Children stand more in need of example than criticism.”
–Joseph Joubert

What is not love is fear. Anger is one of fear’s most potent faces.  And it does exactly what fear wants it to do. It keeps us from receiving love at exactly the moment when we need it most.
– Marianne Williamson

The spiritual path is not one of attainment, but return.
–Alan Cohen


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
August 23

“There is no sort of work that could ever be done well if you minded what fools say.”
– George Eliot

Part of the risk in my recovery is arousing the displeasure of others. I know that I cannot please all the people — and yet my disease tells me that I must! For years I missed life’s opportunities because I listened to negative and frightened people. Today I choose to shout my “yes” to life, and I ignore the fools. The fools are rarely friends. Rather, they seek to keep me in the same prison as themselves. If they truly loved me, they would encourage me to be imaginative and creative.

Today I have a joyride “letting go and letting God” because God is a great risk-taker!

I pray that I may always listen to the advice of others, but never miss my power of decision.


Bible Scriptures
August 23

The Lord watches over you…..  The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
Psalm 121 : 5

“Judge not according to the appearance.”
John 7: 24

“Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.”
Psalm 51:12

“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”
I John 4:12


Daily Inspiration
August 23

Life has a way of working itself out if you simply make the best of this moment, one moment at a time. Lord, You have given me this moment. Grant me the wisdom to live it in a way that will make a difference for me and for those around me.

No one has ever asked of God and not received an answer. Lord, bless me with quiet resolve to hear You and wisdom to accept Your Will.


Elder’s Meditation of the Day – August 23  

“They also learned, and perhaps this was the most important thing, how to look at things through the eyes of the Higher Powers.”
–Fools Crow, LAKOTA

Our eyes can only see our beliefs. Our beliefs cause us to make assumptions, draw conclusions, and cause confusion. Our five senses are very limiting. The Creator has a way of allowing us to see or know in the spiritual world. This is called the Sixth Sense. The Sixth Sense is like a radar system; our personal radar system. It will help us “see” opportunities and help us avoid disaster. This Sixth Sense is controlled by God. We must learn to listen to it. We must learn to trust it. We must learn to act on it even if our head says differently. We must learn to look at things through the eyes of God.

My Creator, guide me today. If my eyes cause confusion, let me close them and see through Your eyes. If my ears hear confusion, let me listen to my heart. Let me let You guide me.


Journey To The Heart
August 23
The Spiritual Exoerience Is You

“When I look at people now, I don’t see issues,” he said. “I see souls.”

The man said he had a spiritual experience. Actually, he said he had four. He didn’t go to the mountains, or the ocean, or the desert to have them. He had his four spiritual experiences in the same place– in the parking lot outside a Shell gas station in Portland, Oregon. “The car filled with light. I filled with light. My heart just opened up and I forgave everyone I was resenting,” he conitnued. “Even my ex-wife.”

We don’t have to search for spiritual experiences. We are the spiritual experience– a spiritual being having a human life. Look at the people around you. Now look again and see souls. See them having many kinds of spiritual experiences in the form of human life.

When you look for holy ground, look down. That’s where your spiritual experience takes place. Right where you’re standing, wherever you are now.


A Day At A Time
August 23

Reflection For The Day

I heard someone in The Program once read, “Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get well, regardless of anyone.  The only condition is that he trust in God and clean house.”  That is what Step Seven means to me –  that I’m going to clean house and will have all the help I need.  Do I realize, by taking the Seventh Step, that I’m not really giving up a thing, but, instead, getting rid of whatever might lead me back to my addiction and away from the peace of mind?

Today I Pray

May I know that if I should give up that key word “humbly,” which combines all in one — my humility, my awe, my faith, I would once again be taking too much on my shoulders and assuming that the Power in my own.  May God in His wisdom make His will mine, His strength mine, His goodness mine.  As He fills me with these Divine gifts, there can be little space left in me for looming defects.

Today I Will Remember

Trust in God and clean house.


One More Day
August 23

So never let a cloudy day ruin your sunshine, for even if you can’t see it, the sunshine is still there, inside of you, ready to shine when you will let it.
–  Amy Michelle Pitzele

Amazing  words of wisdom sometimes spring from the mouths of children.  This wrote these words, which are the last stanza of a poem about understanding change.  Life seen through the eyes of a child can be serenely simplistic.  Where does a child get that kind of wisdom and that depth of understanding?

We can struggle to keep the child in us alive.  We, too, can recognize that even when the cloudy days come, the sunshine is still there, ready to beam at a moment’s notice.

Today, my own personal sun will shine within me, no matter what the weather is outside.


One Day At A Time
August 23

“Accept that all of us can be hurt, that all of us can – and surely will at times – fail.  Other vulnerabilities, like being embarrassed or risking love, can be terrifying, too.”
–Dr. Joyce Brothers

The prospect of failing ~ or worse yet, “ Being A Failure” ~ was a crippling monster which held me in its cold and unforgiving stranglehold. If I thought I could not do a thing perfectly, I would not do it at all. If I didn’t know the “Right” way to act or to be, I was paralyzed. One day my therapist shocked me by suggesting I make a mistake on purpose. She wanted me to practice giving myself permission to make mistakes and to survive the experience.

I vividly recall intentionally dropping a gum wrapper on the ground and leaving it there. The Fearful Perfectionist inside of me screamed, “Pick it up! You never litter! This is wrong!” Yet I also heard a whisper welling up from within: “It will be alright. Just let it go.”

As part of my Recovery, I am exploring with brutal honesty the mistakes I’ve made in my life: the ways and the people that I’ve failed. Though doing so is embarrassing, humbling, and frightening, I am surprised to find a budding sense of relief. My attempts to avoid Failure never made me Perfect; rather, they caused me to be more entrenched in my pride, insecurities, fears, and stunted growth. A young girl I know is an expert skater. I asked her how she learned, and her answer stopped me in my tracks: “Mostly by falling down.”

One day at a time…
I will practice accepting my failures as necessary steps towards my healing. I will remember that the word “practice” honors the fact that we gain our progress by making attempts, failing, and learning from our mistakes.

~ Lisa V.


Today’s Gift
August 23

Whenever you fall, pick something up.
—Oswald Avery

There was once a very active boy who fell and broke his leg. He could run again in the spring, the doctors said, but only if he stayed in bed for an entire month and kept his leg still. At first the boy fought the rule, but he found that the more he thought about things he couldn’t do, the more tired and angry he felt.

His parents put in a phone by his bed and friends called every day. He’d never much liked talking on the phone, but he felt better when they called. He wrote letters and got replies, and was surprised at what fun it was. Usually, he didn’t have time to write letters.

He learned to play chess and began to enjoy reading. His days were slower and quieter than he’d been used to, but he learned a month really isn’t a very long time. When spring came, he was running again, a little more joyfully than before.

When we can learn to accept our troubles, we find, like the boy, that they are just packages in which new growth and discoveries are wrapped.

If something unexpected slows me down today, what joys might I find at the slower pace?


The Language of Letting Go
August 23
Self Care

When will we become lovable? When will we feel safe? When will we get all the protection, nurturing, and love we so richly deserve? We will get it when we begin giving it to ourselves.
—Beyond Codependency

The idea of giving ourselves what we want and need can be confusing, especially if we have spent many years not knowing that it’s okay to take care of ourselves. Taking our energy and focus off others and their responsibilities and placing that energy on to our responsibilities and ourselves is a recovery behavior that can be acquired. We learn it by daily practice.

We begin by relaxing, by breathing deeply, and letting go of our fears enough to feel as peaceful as we can. Then, we ask ourselves: What do I need to do to take care of myself today, or for this moment?

What do I need and want to do?

What would demonstrate love and self-responsibility?

Am I caught up in the belief that others are responsible for making me happy, responsible for me? Then the first thing I need to do is correct my belief system. I am responsible for myself.

Do I feel anxious and concerned about a responsibility I’ve been neglecting? Then perhaps I need to let go of my fears and tend to that responsibility.

Do I feel overwhelmed, out of control? Maybe I need to journey back to the first of the Twelve Steps.

Have I been working too hard? Maybe what I need to do is take some time off and do something fun.

Have I been neglecting my work on daily tasks? Then maybe what I need to do is get back to my routine.

There is no recipe, no formula, no guidebook for self care. We each have a guide, and that guide is within us. We need to ask the question: What do I need to do to take loving, responsible care of myself? Then, we need to listen to the answer. Self-care is not that difficult. The most challenging part is trusting the answer, and having the courage to follow through once we hear it.

Today, I will focus on taking care of myself. I will trust myself and my Higher Power to guide me in this process.


More Language Of Letting Go
August 23
Celebrate the gift of friendship

Celebrate the gift of friendship.

Get a piece of paper and a pen. Now write down:

1. The name of a good friend.

2. A lesson that you have learned from him or her.

3. Something about the friend that makes you smile.

4. Your friends favorite meal. (This might take a little research.)

5. An activity that he or she enjoys.

Now, pick up the phone. Call your friend and invite him or her to a celebration with you. Do the activity that he or she enjoys: go for a walk, go to a ballgame, sit at home and watch videos, whatever this person likes to do best. Than prepare your friend’s favorite meal or take your friend out to eat at the restaurant he or she likes best. Tell your friend specifically, and from your heart, the lesson he or she helped you learn.

Then tell your friend what he or she does that makes you smile. Tell your friend the things that you genuinely appreciate about her or him– those things that make your friend uniquely who she or he is.

Friendship is another important gift from God. Don’t just tell your friends how much they mean in your life. Show your friends how much you care with an act of gratitude.

God, thank you for making each of us unique. Thank you for my friends.


Touchstones Meditations For Men
August 23

Just because a man lacks the use of his eyes doesn’t mean he lacks vision.
—Stevie Wonder

It has been easy for many of us to meet our limitations with self-pity. Maybe we think being a real man means always being strong, capable, good looking, and in charge. If we have a handicap, like blindness or a learning disability, we may have thought we were less masculine or less worthy.

All of us have handicaps. Some are greater than others, and some are more visible than others. These handicaps confront us with our powerlessness. We do not find our finest human qualities until we have met our limitations and accepted them. A new side of our strength develops when we accept our powerlessness and yield to it rather than trying to take charge of it. We develop greater vision when we stop feeling sorry for ourselves about our handicap and surrender to its truth. We then see our kinship with all men and women who struggle with their limitations.

Today, I will set aside self-pity and remember to be grateful for the lessons my limitations have taught me.


Daily TAO
August 23

Job pressures are overwhelming.
Responsibilities are heavy.
When I close my eyes,
The demands of others are all I see.

Sometimes responsibilities can become so great you cannot keep your mental equilibrium. Your attention is scattered. Feelings of frustration lead to tremendous unhappiness. Your insides ache. You don’t get enough sleep, you eat poorly,and you quarrel with others.

The sages may breezily pronounce all of this to be the folly of humanity. The are undoubtedly right, but the words of the sages are too lofty when we are scrounging in the dust for our survival. Many of us must face these pressures, at least for the moment. Even if we would like a way out of the madness, we will not be able to forsake society all at once.

When one is under stress, awareness of Tao is impossible. If you are fighting on the battlefield, or fighting in the office, or fighting in your home, or fighting in your mind, there is no such thing as being with Tao. If you are involved in this type of life, then you must content yourself to face your problems bravely – until you can do nothing other than renounce it.

Every moment you are with your problems, you are not with Tao. The best you can do is to remember our stress is not absolute reality.


Food For Thought
August 23

When my inside looked at your outside, I overate. Envy of what others seemed to be and of the possessions they had was a prime trigger for overeating, turning to food to compensate for an apparent lack. No amount of food can satisfy envy.

Why is it that the other person seems so much more fortunate, or talented, or happier than we? We are painfully aware of our own inadequacies and quick to envy whoever appears to “have it together.” Looking at the outside image or mask is deceptive, however, and prevents us from seeing that underneath is a fellow human being beset with problems and difficulties just as we are.

Who we are, where we are, and what we have is God’s gift to us. What we do with ourselves is our gift to God. The more we seek to do His will, the less we envy our neighbor’s abilities and possessions. The peace of mind we receive through this program fills us with such gratitude that there is increasingly less room for envy.

Take away my envy, I pray.


Faith’s Check Book
August 23
Love and Seek True Wisdom

I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.
(Proverbs 8:17)

Wisdom loves her lovers and seeks her seekers. He is already wise who seeks to be wise, and he has almost found wisdom who diligently seeks her. What is true of wisdom in general is specially true of wisdom embodied in our Lord Jesus. Him we are to love and to seek, and in return we shall enjoy His love and find Himself.

Our business is to seek Jesus early in life. Happy are the young whose morning is spent with Jesus! It is never too soon to seek the Lord Jesus. Early seekers make certain finders. We should seek Him early by diligence. Thriving tradesmen are early risers, and thriving saints seek Jesus eagerly. Those who find Jesus to their enrichment give their hearts to seeking Him. We must seek Him first, and thus earliest. Above all things Jesus. Jesus first and nothing else even as a bad second.

The blessing is that He will be found. He reveals Himself more and more clearly to our search…. Happy men who seek One who, when He is found, remains with them forever, a treasure growingly precious to their hearts and understandings.

Lord Jesus, I have found Thee; be found of me to an unutterable degree of joyous satisfaction.


This Morning’s Readings
August 23

“The voice of weeping shall be no more heard.”
—Isaiah 65:19.

THE glorified weep no more, for all outward a causes of grief are gone. There are no broken friendships, nor blighted prospects in heaven. Poverty, famine, peril, persecution, and slander, are unknown there. No pain distresses, no thought of death or bereavement saddens. They weep no more, for they are perfectly sanctified. No “evil heart of unbelief” prompts them to depart from the living God; they are without fault before His throne, and are fully conformed to His image. Well may they cease to mourn who have ceased to sin. They weep no more, because all fear of change is past. They know that they are eternally secure. Sin is shut out, and they are shut in. They dwell within a city which shall never be stormed; they bask in a sun which shall never set; they drink of a river which shall never dry; they pluck fruit from a tree which shall never wither. Countless cycles may revolve, but eternity shall not be exhausted, and while eternity endures, their immortality and blessedness shall co-exist with it. They are for ever with the Lord. They weep no more, because every desire is fulfilled. They cannot wish for anything which they have not in possession. Eye and ear, heart and hand, judgment, imagination, hope, desire, will, all the faculties, are completely satisfied; and imperfect as our present ideas are of the things which God hath prepared for them that love him, yet we know enough, by the revelation of the Spirit, that the saints above are supremely blessed. The joy of Christ, which is an infinite fulness of delight, is in them. They bathe themselves in the bottomless, shoreless sea of infinite beatitude. That same joyful rest remains for us. It may not be far distant. Ere long the weeping willow shall be exchanged for the palm-branch of victory, and sorrow’s dewdrops will be transformed into the pearls of everlasting bliss. “Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”


This Evening’s Readings
August 23

“That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith.”
—Ephesians 3:17.

BEYOND measure it is desirable that we, as believers, should have the person of Jesus constantly before us, to inflame our love towards Him, and to increase our knowledge of Him. I would to God that my readers were all entered as diligent scholars in Jesus’ college, students of Corpus Christi, or the body of Christ, resolved to attain unto a good degree in the learning of the cross. But to have Jesus ever near, the heart must be full of Him, welling up with His love, even to overrunning; hence the apostle prays “that Christ may dwell in your hearts.” See how near he would have Jesus to be! You cannot get a subject closer to you than to have it in the heart itself. “That He may dwell”; not that He may call upon you sometimes, as a casual visitor enters into a house and tarries for a night, but that He may dwell; that Jesus may become the Lord and Tenant of your inmost being, never more to go out.
Observe the words—that He may dwell in your heart, that best room of the house of manhood; not in your thoughts alone, but in your affections; not merely in the mind’s meditations, but in the heart’s emotions. We should pant after love to Christ of a most abiding character, not a love that flames up and then dies out into the darkness of a few embers, but a constant flame, fed by sacred fuel, like the fire upon the altar which never went out. This cannot be accomplished except by faith. Faith must be strong, or love will not be fervent; the root of the flower must be healthy, or we cannot expect the bloom to be sweet. Faith is the lily’s root, and love is the lily’s bloom. Now, reader, Jesus cannot be in your heart’s love except you have a firm hold of Him by your heart’s faith; and, therefore, pray that you may always trust Christ in order that you may always love Him. If love be cold, be sure that faith is drooping.

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