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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 3

Just For Today
August 3
Trusting People

“Many of us would have had nowhere else to go if we could not have trusted NA groups and members.”
Basic Text, p.81

Trusting people is a risk. Human beings are notoriously forgetful, unreliable, and imperfect. Most of us come from backgrounds where betrayal and insensitivity among friends were common occurrences. Even our most reliable friends weren’t very reliable. By the time we arrive at the doors of NA, most of us have hundreds of experiences bearing out our conviction that people are untrustworthy. Yet our recovery demands that we trust people. We are faced with this dilemma: People are not always trustworthy, yet we must trust them. How do we do that, given the evidence of our pasts?

First, we remind ourselves that the rules of active addiction don’t apply in recovery. Most of our fellow members are doing their level best to live by the spiritual principles we learn in the program. Second, we remind ourselves that we aren’t 100% reliable, either. We will surely disappoint someone in our lives, no matter how hard we try not to. Third, and most importantly, we realize that we need to trust our fellow members of NA. Our lives are at stake, and the only way we can stay clean is to trust these well-intentioned folks who, admittedly, aren’t perfect.

Just for today: I will trust my fellow members. Though certainly not perfect, they are my best hope.

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Daily Reflections
August 3
. . .TO BE OF SERVICE

Our real purpose is to fit ourselves to be of maximum service to God and the people about us.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 77

It is clear that God’s plan for me is expressed through love. God loved me enough to take me from alleys and jails so that I could be made a useful participant in His world. My response is to love all of His children through service and by example. I ask God to help me imitate His love for me through my love for others.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day
August 3
A.A. Thought For The Day

We in A.A. must remember that we are offering something intangible.  We are offering a psychological and spiritual program. We are not offering a medical program. If people need medical treatment, we call in a doctor. If they need a medical prescription, we let the doctor prescribe for them. If they need hospital treatment, we let the hospital take care of them. Our vital A.A. work begins when a person is physically able to receive it. Am I willing to leave medical care to the doctors?

Meditation For The Day

Each moment of your day which you devote to this new way of life is a gift to God. The gift of the moments. Even when your desire to serve God is sincere, it is not an easy thing to give Him many of these moments: the daily things you had planned to do, given up gladly so that you can perform a good service or say a kind word. If you can see Gods purpose in many situations, it will be easier to give Him many moments of your day. Every situation has two interpretations — your own and God’s. Try to handle each situation in the way you believe God would have it handled.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may make my day count somewhat for God. I pray that I may not spend it all selfishly.

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As Bill Sees It
August 3
Constructive Workouts, p. 215

There are those in A.A. whom we call “destructive” critics. They power-drive, they are “politickers,” they make accusations to gain their ends–all for the good of A.A., of course! But we have learned that these folks need not be really destructive.

We ought to listen carefully to what they say. Sometimes they are telling the whole truth; at other times, a little truth. If we are within their range, the whole truth, the half-truth, or no truth at all can prove equally unpleasant to us. If they have got the whole truth, or even a little truth, then we had better thank them and get on with our respective inventories, admitting we were wrong. If they are talking nonsense, we can ignore it, or else try to persuade them.  Failing this, we can be sorry they are too sick to listen, and we can try to forget the whole business.

There are few better means of self-survey and of developing patience than the workouts these usually well-meaning but erratic members so often afford us.

Twelve Concepts, p. 40

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Walk In Dry Places
August 3
Watch out for peer pressure
Maintaining Sobriety

It’s said that peer pressure often draws young people into alcoholism and drug addition. As adults following a recovery program, we also are susceptible to peer pressure.

At a cocktail reception, for example, some people may express mild pity that we’re having “only soft drinks,” as if we’re doing a form of penance. Or they may express exaggerated admiration for our success in recovery. Even this can make us feel different.

We need not be critical of such reactions. The fact is that we are somewhat different when we’re staying sober in situations where excessive drinking is normal.

We should not, however, make this our problem if others draw attention to it. This is peer pressure, but we should be mature enough to dismiss it.

Whatever situation I’m in today, if I know I’m on the right path, I’ll not be swayed by the opinions and comments of others. Their opinions cannot affect me if I know I’m doing the right thing.

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Keep It Simple
August 3

Alcoholism isn’t a spectator sport. Eventually the whole family gets to play.
—Joyce Rebeta-Burditt

One of the biggest lies addicts can tell themselves is, “I’m not hurting anyone but myself.”

This is just another way we don’t see how important we are to others.  During our using, love was a burden. When anyone showed love for us, we turned away. They hurt. And we hurt.

In recovery, when ready, we try and help our families heal. We listen as they speak of how our illness has hurt them. We comfort them as they tell their stories. Remember, our illness hurt them. Remember, our recovery will help them heal.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me face the pain my illness has brought to others. Let me know their pain. Let it help me stay sober.

Action for the Day: I will list all persons my illness has hurt. I will say a prayer for them, even if they have harmed me.

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Each Day a New Beginning
August 3

All that is necessary to make this world a better place to live is to love-to love as Christ loved, as Buddha loved.
—Isadora Duncan

To be unconditionally loved is our birthright, and we are so loved by God. We desire just such a love from one another, and we deserve it; yet, it’s a human quality to look for love before giving it. Thus many of us search intently for signs of love.

Too many of us are searching, rather than loving. Truly loving another means letting go of all expectations. It means full acceptance, even celebration of another’s personhood. Not easy, but so rewarding, to ourselves as well as to the one who is the focus of our love.

Love is a balm that heals. Loving lightens whatever our burdens. It invites our inner joy to emerge. But most of all, it connects us, one with another. Loneliness leaves. We are no longer alienated from our environment. Love is the mortar that holds the human structure together. Without the expression of love, it crumbles. This recovery program has offered us a plan for loving others, as well as ourselves. Love will come to us, just as surely as we give it away.

Each and every expression of love I offer today will make smooth another step I take in this life.

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Alcoholics Anonymous
August 3

This physician, one of the earliest members of A.A.’s first black group, tells of how freedom came as he worked among his people.

I knew I wasn’t capable of keeping the bulk of the money myself, so I gave it to a white fellow who owned the bar I frequented. He kept the money for me, but I worried him to death for it. Finally, I broke the last one hundred dollar bill the Saturday before I left. I got out of that bill one pair of shoes, and the rest of that money was blown. I took the last of it to buy my railroad ticket.

p. 242

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
August 3

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.”

The best intentioned of us can fall for the “two step” illusion. Sooner or later the pink cloud stage wears off and things go disappointingly dull. We begin to think that A.A. doesn’t pay off after all. We become puzzled and discouraged.

p. 113

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Xtra Thoughts
August 3

Life is a gift … open it every day.
–Unknown

When I live in the past, I live in regret.  When I live in the future, I live in fear.  When I stay in the NOW, everything’s always okay.
–Joan T.

Be grateful for spiritual community. None of us are smart enough or sufficiently sensitive to notice every subtle sign that something is amiss before it becomes a large problem. Through community, through those who hold the energy that keeps us awake, we can tune in and ask God for guidance. No individual knows everything, but God does. Spiritual community reminds us that we are connected.
–Mary Manin Morrissey

“I don’t want to get to the end of my life and find that I just lived the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well.”
–Diane Ackerman

Courage, it would seem, is nothing less than the power to overcome danger, misfortune, fear, injustice, while continuing to affirm inwardly that life with all its sorrows is good; that everything is meaningful even if in a sense beyond our understanding; and that there is always tomorrow.
–Dorothy Thompson

There is no personal history or past experience that is bigger or more powerful than the great God that resides within us.
–Mary Manin Morrissey

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
August 3
UNDERSTANDING

“Man — a being in search of meaning.”
– Plato

Today I am on my way. With my sobriety has come a desire to understand — understand life, understand me, understand my relationships and understand God. Meaning — what is true? What is noble? What is spiritual? These are important to me today.

I no longer wish to hurt, damage, ridicule, destroy, fight, lie or cheat in my life. I’ve had enough of being negative. I’ve had enough of being lost and isolated in my arrogance. I’ve had enough of standing on the outside of life, feeling resentful and afraid.

Sobriety, for me today, involves my search for meaning — knowing full well that my understanding will always be imperfect and I can never comprehend fully. The ultimate answer is in living with confusion. I am not God . . . but I still intend to reach for the stars.

Lord, my cry for self-awareness is answered in the journey and not the destination.

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Bible Scriptures
August 3

“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.”
James 3:17

“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
Hebrews 4:16

“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
II Corinthians 10:5

“Keep on loving each other as brothers. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.”
Hebrews 13:1-2

“Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels.”
II Timothy 2:23

“Do everything without complaining or arguing.”
Philippians 2:14

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Daily Inspiration
August 3

Begin every day as if it were your very first because you really are always at the beginning. Lord, thank you for the constant ability to stop any offensive behaviors that I have and the gift of being forgiven and being able to forgive myself.

When your world turns upside down and everything seems so frightening, thank God for His unchanging and constant love. Lord, Your love is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. In You I am safe and cared for.

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A Day At A Time
August 3

Reflection For The Day

The Twelve Steps were designed specifically for people like us — as a short cut to God.  The Steps are very much like strong medicine which can heal us of the sickness of despair, frustration and self-pity.   Yet we’re sometimes unwilling to use The Steps.  Why?  Perhaps because we have a deep-down desire for martyrdom.  Consciously and intellectually, we think we want help;  on a gut level, though, some hidden sense of guilt makes us crave punishment more than relief from our ills.  Can I try to be cheerful when everything seems to be leading me to despair?  Do I realize that despair is very often a mask for self-pity?

Today I Pray

May I pull out the secret guilt inside that makes me want to punish myself.  May I probe my despair and discover whether it is really an imposter — self-pity with a mask on.  Now that I know that the Twelve Steps can bring relief, may I please use them instead of wallowing in my discomforts.

Today I Will Remember

The Twelve Steps are God’s Stairway.

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One More Day
August 3

Somewhere along the line of development we discover what we really are, and then we make our real decision for which we are responsible.
–  Eleanor Roosevelt

Many of us have begun to reexamine our lives and our values.  Am I proud of how I act?  Of what I do?  Will this decision be in my best interest?  Do I have strong, interacting relationships?

A likely result of this might be that we fool ourselves less now and that we don’t try to fool others.  The discovery of what we really are and of what is important to us urges us toward greater honesty.  We are freer to make amends to friends and family members for things we’ve said or done. We hesitate less in asking for help and in telling others when we feel wronged.  best of all, we’ve rid ourselves of our old victim mentality and have taken responsibility for our lives.

I will begin happily to make responsible decisions today.

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One Day At A Time
August 3
WORKING IT

“For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.”
Aristotle

When I walked into my first Twelve Step meeting I had absolutely no idea what was going on. I knew nothing about the program, the Steps, or how to work them. But I listened, asked questions, and I learned.

One of the most important lessons I learned was that I couldn’t just sit around waiting for recovery to take place. I couldn’t just ask God for help and do nothing else. I had to put feet to my prayers, as they say. I had to do something. So … slowly, with the help of my sponsor, I took the first Step. And then the second.

I found that I could talk a good game around program folks because I’d learned the lingo. But the saying, “you’ve got to walk the talk” tells me that I have to do it. I can’t just speak my recovery into existence. I found I didn’t have recovery until I began working the Steps. It was only when I started “the doing” that the real learning — and the real recovery — began.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will take what I learn about recovery and put it into practice … I’ll work the program.

~ jar

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Elder’s Meditation of the Day – August 3

“Always remember you are Indian – do things to make your people proud.”
–Joe Coyhis, STOCKBRIDGE-MUNSEE

All our choices and decisions will reflect on our people. We need to assume the accountability of honoring people. We must remember to conduct ourselves in a sacred way.
Sometimes this is hard. But we must remember we have the assistance of the Spirit World, and we have the principles and values by which we should live, written in our hearts. The Creator will help us develop into a strong people if we just learn to depend upon Him.

Great Spirit, lead me on the path of the Red Road.

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Journey To The Heart
August 3
Learn to Be Present

“I haven’t been able to give you much materially,” he said. “Not jewelry, diamonds,gold. But the gift I’ve given you, what I had to offer, is staying fully present for you.”

Presence is a gift– staying fully present for friends, family, ourselves, our lives. Staying in the moment, with our hearts open, will change other people’s lives and ours.

So often we’ve learned, out of habit or fear, to be only partially present, partially conscious, for ourselves, others, and our lives. We aren’t certain what we’re feeling; our attention and energy are diverted to the next place, the next person. We’re there, kind of.

There’s another way, a better way. One where we keep our hearts open and know what we feel. We take the risk of being vulnerable enough to share who we really are and to allow others to do the same. We become fully present for each moment and each person on our path.

Yes, there are times when it isn’t safe to be open, when the energy of a circumstance isn’t right for us. But that usually reveals a lesson and dictates a choice. It may be time to learn, time to leave, time to feel, time to choose.

Learn to release all that stands in the way of you and the present moment. Learn to let go of all that blocks you from being fully present for yourself and others.

Give the gift of presence to yourself and to the world.

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Today’s Gift
August 3

Creativity is so delicate a flower that praise tends to make it bloom, while discouragement often nips it in the bud.
—Alex Osborn

A garden of flowers blooming is a beautiful sight to see. Through the green leaves surrounding a tulip we see hints of yellow or pink or red. Each day the flowers greet us with their radiant color. Yet, a sudden frost would wilt and fade the flowers.

Each time we create something new with our talents we are like a young flower opening. Whether we draw or write or sew or play a musical instrument, all creativity has this in common. Appreciation from those around us is like sunshine for the flowers. Harsh criticism, however, is like the cold air – it wilts and deadens our desire to create.

We all need warm encouragement for our endeavors, and we can give as well as receive it. In this way, creativity can bloom in our homes and our friendships, bringing a garden full of color and delight into our lives.

What encouragement can I offer to someone near me?

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The Language of Letting Go
August 3
Owning Our Power in Relationships

So much of what I call my codependency is fear and panic because I spent so much of my life feeling abused, trapped, and not knowing how to take care of myself in relationships.
– Anonymous

No matter how long we have been recovering, we may still tend to give up our power to others, whether they be authority figures, a new love, or a child.

When we do this, we experience the set of emotions and thoughts we call “the codependent crazies.” We may feel angry, guilty, afraid, confused, and obsessed. We may feel dependent and needy or become overly controlling and rigid. We may return to familiar behaviors during stress. And for those of us who have codependency and adult children issues, relationships can mean stress.

We don’t have to stay stuck in our codependency. We don’t have to shame or blame ourselves, or the other person, for our condition. We simply need to remember to own our power.

Practice. Practice. Practice using your power to take care of yourself, no matter who you are dealing with, where you are, or what you are doing. This is what recovery means. This does not mean we try to control others; it does not mean we become abrasive or abusive. It means we own our power to take care of ourselves.

The thought of doing this may generate fears. That’s normal! Take care of yourself anyway. The answers, and the power to do that, are within you now.

Start today. Start where you are. Start by taking care of who you are, at the present moment, to the best of your ability.

Today, I will focus on owning my power to take care of myself. I will not let fears, or a false sense of shame and guilt; stop me from taking care of myself.

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More Language Of Letting Go
August 3
Push against the wind

One day at the drop zone, I began working with a new skydiving coach, John. We were on the ground, rehearsing the moves we were going to make during free-fall time. He knew that I was having trouble controlling my body during free fall.

John noticed something about me, then suggested we try an exercise.

We stood up.

He pushed me, on the shoulder.

Instead of pushing back, I let my body go where he pushed it. I was practicing nonresistance., the skill I had acquired in martial arts. He pushed me again. Again I demonstrated nonresistance. I let my body naturally move in the direction it was pushed. This act of not resisting had served me well, both on the mats and off the mats. Not resisting people when they wanted to argue–learning to say, “Hmmm,” instead of engaging in battle– kept my life and environment calm. Not resisting when problems or experiences came into my life enabled me to go with the flow and be calm and centered enough to tackle these problems much more efficiently than if I was resisting them.

I explained this to John.

“Nonresistance is good to practice many times in your life,” he said. “But sometimes you need to fight back. You need to assertively push against what’s pushing on you if you want to get where you want to go. Pushing against the wind– directing your body assertively– is what you need to do if you want to learn to fly.”

Practicing nonresistance is good in our lives. Surrendering is an invaluable tool. Both these activities take us immediately into the flow of life. When we’re relaxed, we tune into God and our inner selves. Once we surrender, we automatically know what to do next, and when to do it.

But sometimes we need to assert ourselves,too. Surrendering and practicing nonresistance don’t mean we turn into pieces of paper being blown about by every wind. Sometimes we need to push against the resistance coming our way.

That’s how we assert ourselves, that’s how we guide and direct our course. That’s how our Higher Power guides and directs us,too.

We’ve learned to surrender. Now it’s time to learn to assert ourselves,too. Have you surrendered so much that you’ve stopped asserting and expressing yourself? Assert yourself. Make the moves your heart leads you to do. Know where you want to go and what you want to say.

Once you’ve admitted powerlessness, learn to connect with your power. Learn when it’s time to practice nonresistance, and learn when it’s time to push against the wind.

God, help me align with your power in my life. Teach me to express and assert that power as I go through my day.

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Touchstones Meditations For Men
August 3

To live a spiritual life we must first find the courage to enter into the desert of loneliness and to change it by gentle and persistent efforts into a garden of solitude.
—Henri J. M. Nouwen

Knowing our loneliness and admitting it to us is the beginning of a spiritual path for many men. Today we are on a spiritual journey. We already have the means to translate the pain of our loneliness into a deeper spiritual dimension. Most men in this program came in deeply aware of their feelings of isolation. Now, with the companionship of our Higher Power, we can spend time alone and use it for spiritual growth. As we develop a relationship with ourselves and deepen our knowledge of our Higher Power, our loneliness transforms into solitude.

In this quiet moment today, we can be more accepting of ourselves than we were in the past. We admit loneliness has caused us pain, but now we can see that it also can lead us to our deeper self where we find serene solitude. This change is a movement into the spiritual world.

Thanks to God for the solitude I have found in my life.

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Daily TAO
August 3
Decline

      Fog chills heaven to gray.
      Nights come earlier.
      Everyone knows decline,
      But few discern its border.

Although it is summer and there are many warm months to come, it is possible to sense the heavens are already turning downward. Nearly imperceptibly, the fruit is ripening the trees and the nights are lengthening once again. It is too early to talk of autumn, and yet the next season is on its way.

Why do we never prepare for decline? We all realize it is a valid phenomenon – we know about the fall of empires, the aging of heroes, the lessening of our own skill – but we are not always aware of its approach. We often realize too late we are in a period of decline, and so we are unprepared. It takes a wise person to perceive the moment when things begin to change.

Summer does not fade away in a day. Our actions must accord with the times. Just as the decline of summer is gradual, so too should our actions be commensurate with the pace of change. Even though decline may be approaching, we must gauge how quickly or how slowly events are moving. If we are too hasty – like someone who notices the first cool breeze and immediately dons winter clothing – we will be overreacting. It is important to think of decline as something natural and inevitable. Therefore there should be no emotional values attached to it. It simply happens, and that is all.

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In God’s Care
August 3

Only trust, perfect trust can keep one calm.
~~God Calling, May 10th

For many of us, developing trust as we work our program has been painstakingly difficult. Perhaps we grew up in families where trust was betrayed. Many of us experienced friendships and marriages that turned sour when we learned our companion had not been trustworthy. And we, too, often failed to lie up to the trust someone special had placed in us.

Learning to trust that our Higher Power cares for us, always, will relieve our anxious moments and restore our trust. In time we will come to know that when we’re with God, all is well.

The calm of knowing our well-being is guaranteed comes when we willingly relinquish our frenzied attempts to control all the events in our frenzied attempts to control all the events in our life. One way we can learn to do this is by practicing quietness and breathing in calmness each time we feel anxiety over an outcome. This will allow us to trust – a bit more every day – that God is at the helm and our life is on course.

   I will be calm as often as possible today, and a peaceful, trusting feeling will fill me up.

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Day By Day
August 3
Preserving and affirming our lives

Some people seem to have no problems using mood-altering durugs, but for us, they are highly destructive. When we used drugs, we lost our lives – physically and spiritually – and barely regained them through the Twelve Step program.

We who are chemically dependent, must never use them again – or we risk relapse to full-blown addiction. Our path is one of total abstinence through the program.

Am I preserving and affirming my life?

    Higher Power, help me to preserve my life by staying clean and sober.

    I will affirm my life and practice my program today by…

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Food For Thought
August 3
Speaking from the Heart

Through the OA fellowship, we offer each other mutual support. Since we believe that the Higher Power works through the group, what one of us is prompted to say is probably just what another member needs to hear.

Sometimes we are reluctant to speak of what is in our heart for fear of being embarrassed, belittled, or betrayed. We are so accustomed to masking our true feelings that we often lose touch with them. In OA, we are assured that what we say will be received in a spirit of acceptance and love. We do not need to be afraid of revealing our deeper selves.

It is a healing experience to belong to a group, which is dedicated to honest communication with a minimum of game playing. When we make a genuine attempt to describe where we are in our program, we are met with a warm and supportive response. Our Higher Power opens the way for meaningful communication and mutual love.

Open our hearts to You and to each other.

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Daily Zen
August 3

After realizing the Dharma body,
There is not a thing;
Original self-nature is the innate Buddha
The five skandhas-the empty comings
And goings of floating clouds;
The three poisons- the vacant appearing
And disappearing of water bubbles.

– Yung Chia Hsuan Chueh

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Faith’s Check Book
August 3
The Right to Holy Things

But if the priest buy any soul with his money, he shall eat of it, and he that is born in his house: they shall eat of his meat.
(Leviticus 22:11)

Strangers, sojourners, and servants upon hire were not to eat of holy things. It is so in spiritual matters still. But two classes were free at the sacred table, those who were bought with the priest’s money and those who were born into the priest’s house. Bought and born, these were the two indisputable proofs of a right to holy things.

Bought. Our great High Priest has bought with a price all those who put their trust in Him. They are His absolute property—altogether the Lord’s. Not for what they are in themselves, but for their owner’s sake they are admitted into the same privileges which He Himself enjoys, and “they shall eat of his meat.” He has meat to eat which worldlings know not of. “Because ye belong to Christ,” therefore shall ye share with your Lord.

Born. This is an equally sure way to privilege. If born in the Priest’s house we take our place with the rest of the family. Regeneration makes us fellow-heirs and of the same body, and, therefore, the peace, the joy, the glory, which the Father has given to Christ, Christ has given to us. Redemption and regeneration have given us a double claim to the divine permit of this promise.

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This Morning’s Readings
August 3

“The Lamb is the light thereof.”
—Revelation 21:23.

QUIETLY contemplate the Lamb as the light of heaven. Light in Scripture is the emblem of joy. The joy of the saints in heaven is comprised in this: Jesus chose us, loved us, bought us, cleansed us, robed us, kept us, glorified us: we are here entirely through the Lord Jesus. Each one of these thoughts shall be to them like a cluster of the grapes of Eshcol. Light is also the cause of beauty. Nought of beauty is left when light is gone. Without light no radiance flashes from the sapphire, no peaceful ray proceedeth from the pearl; and thus all the beauty of the saints above comes from Jesus. As planets, they reflect the light of the Sun of Righteousness; they live as beams proceeding from the central orb. If He withdrew, they must die; if His glory were veiled, their glory must expire. Light is also the emblem of knowledge. In heaven our knowledge will be perfect, but the Lord Jesus Himself will be the fountain of it. Dark providences, never understood before, will then be clearly seen, and all that puzzles us now will become plain to us in the light of the Lamb. Oh! what unfoldings there will be and what glorifying of the God of love! Light also means manifestation. Light manifests. In this world it doth not yet appear what we shall be. God’s people are a hidden people, but when Christ receives His people into heaven, He will touch them with the wand of His own love, and change them into the image of His manifested glory. They were poor and wretched, but what a transformation! They were stained with sin, but one touch of His finger, and they are bright as the sun, and clear as crystal. Oh! what a manifestation! All this proceeds from the exalted Lamb. Whatever there may be of effulgent splendour, Jesus shall be the centre and soul of it all. Oh! to be present and to see Him in His own light, the King of kings, and Lord of lords!

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This Evening’s Readings
August 3

“But as He went.”
—Luke 8:42.

JESUS is passing through the throng to the house of Jairus, to raise the ruler’s dead daughter; but He is so profuse in goodness that He works another miracle while upon the road. While yet this rod of Aaron bears the blossom of an unaccomplished wonder, it yields the ripe almonds of a perfect work of mercy. It is enough for us, if we have some one purpose, straightway to go and accomplish it; it were imprudent to expend our energies by the way. Hastening to the rescue of a drowning friend, we cannot afford to exhaust our strength upon another in like danger. It is enough for a tree to yield one sort of fruit, and for a man to fulfil his own peculiar calling. But our Master knows no limit of power or boundary of mission. He is so prolific of grace, that like the sun which shines as it rolls onward in its orbit, His path is radiant with lovingkindness. He is a swift arrow of love, which not only reaches its ordained target, but perfumes the air through which it flies. Virtue is evermore going out of Jesus, as sweet odours exhale from flowers; and it always will be emanating from Him, as water from a sparkling fountain. What delightful encouragement this truth affords us! If our Lord is so ready to heal the sick and bless the needy, then, my soul, be not thou slow to put thyself in His way, that He may smile on thee. Be not slack in asking, if He be so abundant in bestowing. Give earnest heed to His word now, and at all times, that Jesus may speak through it to thy heart. Where He is to be found there make thy resort, that thou mayst obtain His blessing. When He is present to heal, may He not heal thee? But surely He is present even now, for He always comes to hearts which need Him. And dost not thou need Him? Ah, He knows how much! Thou Son of David, turn Thine eye and look upon the distress which is now before Thee, and make Thy suppliant whole.

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