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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.

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Daily Recovery Readings – July 10, 2014

Just For Today
July 10, 2014
A Positive Attitude

“That old nest of negativism followed me everywhere I went.”
Basic Text, p.135

A negative attitude is the trademark of active addiction. Everything that occurred in our lives was someone or something else’s fault. We had blaming others for our shortcomings down to a fine science. In recovery, one of the first things we strive to develop is a new attitude. We find that life goes a lot easier when we replace our negative thinking with positive principles.

While a negative attitude dogged us in our active addiction, all too often it can follow us into the rooms of Narcotics Anonymous. How can we begin to adjust our attitudes? By altering our actions. It isn’t easy, but it can be done.

We can start by listening to the way we talk. Before we open our mouths, we ask ourselves some simple questions: Does what I’m going to say speak to the problem, or the solution? Is what I’m going to say framed in a kind manner? Is what I have to say important, or would everyone be just as well off if I kept my mouth shut? Am I talking just to hear myself talk, or is there some purpose to my “words of wisdom?”

Our attitudes are expressed in our actions. Often, it’s not what we say, but the way we say it, that really matters. As we learn to speak in a more positive manner, we will notice our attitudes improving as well.

Just for today: I want to be free of negativity. Today, I will speak and act positively.

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Daily Reflections
July 10, 2014
TOWARD PEACE AND SERENITY

. . . when we have taken a square look at some of these defects, have discussed them with another, and have become willing to have them removed, our thinking about humility commences to have a wider meaning.
12 & 12, p.74

When situations arise which destroy my serenity, pain often motivates me to ask God for clarity in seeing my part in the situation. Admitting my powerlessness, I humbly pray for acceptance. I try to see how my character defects contribute to the situation. Could I have been more patient? Was I intolerant? Did I insist on having my own way? Was I afraid? As my defects are revealed, I put self-reliance aside and humbly ask God to remove my shortcomings. The situation may not change, but as I practice exercising humility, I enjoy the peace and serenity which are the natural benefits of placing my reliance in a power greater than myself.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day
July 10, 2014
A.A. Thought For The Day

We in Alcoholics Anonymous do not enter into theological discussions, but in carrying our message we attempt to explain the simple “how” of the spiritual life. How faith in a Higher Power can help you to overcome loneliness, fear, and anxiety. How it can help you get along with other people. How it can make it possible for you to rise above pain, sorrow, and despondency. How it can help you to overcome your desires for the things that destroy. Have I reached a simple, effective faith?

Meditation For The Day

Expect miracles of change in people’s lives. Do not be held back by unbelief. People can be changed and they are often ready and waiting to be changed. Never believe that human nature cannot be changed. We see changed people everyday. Do you have the faith to make those changes possible? Modern miracles happen every day in the lives of people. All miracles are in the realm of personalities. Human nature can be changed and is always being changed. But we must have enough faith so that we can be channels for God’s strength into the lives of others.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may have the faith to expect miracles. I pray that I may be used by God to help change the lives of others.

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As Bill Sees It
July 10, 2014
The Beginning of Humility, p. 191

“There are few absolutes inherent in the Twelve Steps. Most Steps are open to interpretation, based on the experience and outlook of the individual.

“Consequently, the individual is free to start the Steps at whatever point he can, or will. God, as we understand Him, may be defined as a ‘Power greater . . .’ or the Higher Power. For thousands of members, the A.A. group itself has been a ‘Higher Power’ in the beginning. This acknowledgment is easy to make if a newcomer knows that most of the members are sober and he isn’t.

“His admission is the beginning of humility–at least the newcomer is willing to disclaim that he himself is God. That’s all the start he needs. If, following this achievement, he will relax and practice as many of the Steps as he can, he is sure to grow spiritually.”

Letter, 1966

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Walk In Dry Places
July 10, 2014
Foolish Risks
Maintaining the New Way

There are only a few practices that really must be considered unacceptable for recovering people. AA even concedes, for example, that there’s nothing wrong with having lunch with a friend in a far if one’s house is in order.

Under no circumstances, however, should recovering people do anything that puts their sobriety at risk. The stakes are TOO HIGH. Recovery is to precious. The new life is to important.

What practices might come under the heading of risky? A dangerous one, common among young and old alcoholics alike, is returning to the old crowd that’s still drinking and drugging. It’s risky to associate with our former drinking lifestyles, and we’ll recognize this if we’re working our program.

Part of the honesty I’ll practice today is knowing my own motives for everything I do.

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Keep It Simple
July 10, 2014

Everybody knows that when they’re happy, than usually the people around them are happy.
—George Harrison

Do we think we can’t be happy until others are happy? Then nobody is happy. Our unhappy friends won’t take our advice. They say,” Why should I do what you say? You are not happy either.” And we answer, “I’ll be okay when you’re happy.” We make them responsible for our happiness. What a mess!

We can only make one person happy—ourselves. How? By living as our Higher Power leads us. By working the Steps. By being grateful for the good things in our lives. By loving ourselves and others, just as we are.

And maybe when we’re happy, our friends will learn from us. They can be happy too. But only our friends can make themselves happy.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, as I do my part in Your plan today, help me feel connected to You and to life.

Today’s Action: Today I’ll enjoy my happiness. I’ll look for three ways to share it with others.

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Each Day a New Beginning
July 10, 2014

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
—Eleanor Roosevelt

We are competent women. We made a wise choice for ourselves when we decided to recover. Each day that we continue working this program our Spirits are strengthened. And our gifts will multiply.

Feeling inferior can become a habit. Being passive and feeling inferior go hand-in-hand, and they prepare us for becoming dependent on alcohol, pills, food, and people. We didn’t understand, instinctively, that we are just who we’re meant to be. We grew up believing we were not smart enough, not pretty enough, not capable enough. We grew up too distant from the source of our real strength.

How wonderful for us that we found the program! How lucky we are to have, for the taking, all the strength we’ll ever need to face any situation, to handle any problem, to resolve any personal relationship conflict. Feeling inferior can be only a bad memory. The choice is ours. The program promises a better life. The Steps promise the strength to move forward. Our friends promise us outstretched hands.

I will look forward to the challenges of today with hope and strength and know that I am able to meet them.

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Alcoholics Anonymous
July 10, 2014
The Vicious Cycle

How it finally broke a Southerner’s obstinacy and destined this salesman to start A.A. at Philadelphia.

In June 1945, with another member, I made my first–and only–Twelfth Step call on a female alcoholic and a year later I married her. She has been sober all the way through and for me that has been good. We can share in the laughter and tears of our many friends, and most important, we can share our A.A. way of life and are given daily opportunity to help others.

p. 230

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
July 10, 2014

Step Eleven – “Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.”

Next came the expression of an aspiration and a hope for himself. He hoped, God willing, that he might be able to find some of these treasures, too. This he would try to do by what he called self-forgetting. What did he mean by “self forgetting,” and how did he propose to accomplish that?

He thought it better to give comfort than to receive it; better to understand than to be understood; better to forgive than to be forgiven.

p. 101

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Xtra Thoughts
July 10, 2014

Today, God, help me be open to the joy and good feelings available to me.
–Melody Beattie

This I know…
There is nothing, absolutely nothing, no circumstance, no trouble, no test, that can ever touch me, until first it comes past God. If it has come that far, it has great purpose. I may not understand at the moment, but as I refuse to panic, as I lift my eyes to Him and accept it as coming from God, as a blessing for my heart, no sorrow will disturb me, no trial will disarm me, no problem will cause me to fret, and absolutely nothing will make me drink. For I shall rest in the knowing and joy of my Higher Power.
–unknown

Today I am learning to be gentle with myself. Today I can look in the mirror and smile and know that I am okay just as I am. I am treating myself softly today.
–Ruth Fishel

Progress always involves risk; you can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first.
–Frederick Wilcox

It takes time for nature to change things into what they’re becoming.  It takes time for things to develop. Be patient with yourself and life.  Trust the process of growth.
–Melody Beattie

I open my heart to the love that is God in greater measure than ever before. I expand my capacity to give and receive love, to serve and be served, to seek and trust the guidance revealed in my heart.
–Linda Watson

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.
–Dale Carnegie

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
July 10, 2014
THOUGHT

“Thought makes the whole dignity of man; therefore endeavor to think well, that is the only morality.”
– Blaise Pascal

I think that human beings are very imitative creatures; we imitate clothes, hair styles, mannerisms and lifestyles. A man’s mind will be influenced by what he listens to and what he reads. And what we think is very important to sobriety.

Today I make an effort to examine my thinking and check it out with a sponsor or in a support group. I know that my dignity in sobriety is connected not only with what I do but also with my attitudes and thoughts — when my thinking begins to go crazy, I know I am in a dangerous place and I need to talk. God created me with the ability to think, therefore, I need to safeguard the information I put in my mind.

Let me learn to develop morality of mind.

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Bible Scriptures
July 10, 2014

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
2 Corinthians 12:9

“I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.”
John 10: 28-29

“On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.”
John 7:37

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Daily Inspiration
July 10, 2014

Set aside your concerns while you spend a little time in prayer and allow God to be the one who comforts you. Lord, I accept the gift of Your love because it makes me feel safe and secure.

Rejoice. This is the day the Lord has made. Lord, my days pass so quickly. May I have a generous heart and the time to see the needs of those around me.

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A Day At A Time
July 10, 2014

Reflection For The Day

The Program is a road, not a resting place.  Before we came to The Program — and, for some of us, many times afterward, — most of us looked for answers to our living problems in religion, philosophy, psychology, self-help groups, and so on.  Invariable, these fields held forth the goals that were precisely what we wanted;  they offered freedom, calm, confidence and joy. But there was one major loophole:  They never gave us a workable method of getting there.  They never told us how to get from where we were to where we were suppose to be.  Do I truly believe that I can find everything that I need and really  want through the Twelve Steps?

Today I Pray

May I know that, once through the Twelve Steps, I am not a plane surface.  For life is not a flat field, but a slope upward.  And those flights of steps must be taken over and over and remembered.  May I be sure that once I have made them totally familiar to me, they will take me anywhere I want to go.

Today I Will Remember

The Steps are a road, not a resting place.

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One More Day
July 10, 2014

It is costly wisdom that is bought by experience.
–  Roger Ascham

Wisdom is gained in many ways.  We can learn from others, if we’re willing.  We can listen to the voice within — that inner sense of what can and should be done.  Or we can — and quite often do — pay the price for that wisdom gained from experience.

Sometimes, we ignore the cautioning voices of well-meaning friends and of our instincts, and leap instead onto foolhardy or dangerous ground.  It might have to do with family problems or finances or even our personal care.  Often if we fail, we pay a great price — in terms of relationships, money, or health.  But even our failures are not wasted if from them we gain the wisdom of caution and care.

I will try to listen and learn from others and thereby save myself some pain.

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One Day At A Time
July 10, 2014
SANITY

“Came to believe …  That a power greater than ourselves …  Could restore us to sanity.”
Step Two

What a powerful statement! There’s a power greater than me. At first glance it seemed so frightening. As I looked at my situation, it seemed impossible … who or what could be greater than I am? To be “restored” to sanity meant I must be crazy. After all, that is what insanity means. My Higher Power happened to be my sponsor and she was determined enough to be that power, if only until I opened the door to another.

One day when my ears were open and my mouth shut, these words came from another sufferer: “God can.” I thought to myself, “What?! What does ‘God can’ mean?” Later — when my body was clean and my mind receptive — those words came to mean a great deal to me. “God can” if I let Him. God can take away my compulsion to overeat. God can remove my desire for nicotine. God can take away my desire for booze. Yes, God can.

I no longer worry about what I can’t accomplish because I know that “God can.” So now when my day begins I think of what I can do right, and do it for today. That which I cannot do right — I just let God handle that. We make a pretty good team, God and me.

One Day at a Time . . .
I let my Higher Power restore me to sanity.

~ Danny

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Elder’s Meditation of the Day – July 10

“Each soul must meet the morning sun, the new, sweet earth, and the great silence alone.”
–Charles Alexander Eastman, OHIYESA SANTEE SIOUX

Each morning a new sun for a new day arises. Each morning the sweet perfume from the Mother Earth spreads across the land. This combination of sun, earth, smell and quiet is a magic door for me to enter to kneel before the Grandfathers. The sacred time to commune with the Great Spirit.

Oh Great Spirit, I humbly stand before You along with the new sun, the Mother Earth and the smells of the morning. I ask You to direct my thinking today. Let me live in the silence. Teach me Your wisdom, Teach me to love my brothers and sisters. Let me respect the things You have made.

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Journey To The Heart
July 10, 2014
Trust the Timing of Your Lessons

Too often our first inclination when we learn a lesson, gain a new insight, have an awareness, or glimpse a new truth is to judge and criticize ourselves– for not seeing it sooner, not knowing it before, or being in denial too long. That’s not necessary. It’s not appropriate. We’re not at fault because we didn’t have this awareness or understand this lesson until now.

We don’t need to see the truth one moment before we see it. Judging ourselves for not knowing sooner can close us off to what life has to teach us now. We’re here to learn our lessons, discover our truths, have our adventures.

Let yourself have your experiences. Allow yourself to learn what you learn when you learn it. Don’t judge yourself for not learning sooner. Be happy, grateful, and excited when your lesson arrives.

Trust your voice, that quiet inner voice, when it speaks to you of truth. Be grateful you can hear it, do what it tells you to do. Trust the timing of your heart.

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Today’s Gift
July 10, 2014

What a man thinks of himself, that is which determines, or rather indicates, his fate.
—Henry David Thoreau

Let us think of ourselves as made of dust, and allow us to be as proud of it as if it were true. For dust is everywhere. We see it in solemn rooms streaked by sun, dancing like fine angels in a cathedral light. It is the stuff of life. And it drifts down on fancy tables where the richest people eat. It cannot be denied a place. And it returns time and a time again like the seasons. It is one of the wonders of the world. And when no one sees or cares, it finds a secret corner in which to keep a solitary peace. It intends no harm. We find it at home on old leather books, the ones that preserve our noblest thoughts.

And from where we stand, it seems that even the stars are made of it. When we feel low, unworthy, or useless, let’s remember that these feelings are only a small but important part of us, that even great things are made of small parts, and that we, as whole beings, are always greater than the sum of these parts.

What feelings am I made of today?

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The Language of Letting Go
July 10, 2014
Ending Relationships

It takes courage and honesty to end a relationship – with friends, loved ones, or a work relationship.

Sometimes, it may appear easier to let the relationship die from lack of attention rather than risk ending it. Sometimes, it may appear easier to let the other person take responsibility for ending the relationship.

We may be tempted to take a passive approach. Instead of saying how we feel, what we want or don’t want, or what we intend to do, we may begin sabotaging the relationship, hoping to force the other person to do the difficult work.

Those are ways to end relationships, but they are not the cleanest or the easiest ways.

As we walk this path of self-care, we learn that when it is time to end a relationship, the easiest way is one of honesty and directness. We are not being loving, gentle, or kind by avoiding the truth, if we know the truth.

We are not sparing the other person’s feelings by sabotaging the relationship instead of accepting the end or the change, and doing something about it. We are prolonging and increasing the pain and discomfort – for the other person and ourselves.

If we don’t know, if we are on the fence, it is more loving and honest to say that.

If we know it is time to terminate a relationship, say that.

Endings are never easy, but endings are not made easy by sabotage, indirectness, and lying about what we want and need to do. Say what you need to say, in honesty and love, when it is time. If we are trusting and listening to ourselves, we will know what to say and when to say it.

Today, I will remember that honesty and directness will increase my self-esteem. God, help me let go of my fear about owning my power to take care of myself in all my relationships.

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More Language Of Letting Go
July 10, 2014
Let the drama go

Actors in movies or on television often must exaggerate their feelings in order to create drama on the screen. If they are hurt, they cry with a special intensity. If afraid, they scream and cower in a corner or curl up on a sofa. They may grab a person trying to leave and beg for that person to stay. In rage, they may stomp around hollering in a dramatic storm.

We can learn to separate what we’re feeling from what we do. If we’re feeling fear, hurt, anger, or any other emotion, we need to experience the emotion until we become clear. Sometimes beating a pillow helps release our anger. But we don’t have to stomp around and slam doors. That’s letting our emotions control us.

You don’t have to revel in your emtions. And you can separate your behaviors– what you do– from what you feel.

Stop being a twentieth-century drama queen. It isn’t necessary anymore. We are more conscious than that now.

God, help me let go of the unnecessary drama in my life.

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Touchstones Meditations For Men
July 10, 2014

Fears are educated into us, and can, if we wish, be educated out.
—Karl A. Menninger

Two of the problems common to men in this program are fear and lack of trust. Many of us have unconsciously enlarged our fears and returned to them again and again. Do we dwell excessively on fears? Are we too fearful about our health? Money? Jobs? Love? Jealousy? The future? What other people think?

Many of us are victims of our fears and anxieties. Fears in moderation are healthy signals to us. But we need to learn to be more trusting. We can simply open ourselves to the possibility that things will turn out well. We don’t need to be blind to the negatives – only have our eyes less fixed on them. No one can ever prove to us that it is finally safe to trust.

Fearfulness is the problem, not any one fear. Trusting our Higher Power, we set our tearfulness aside, even if a few particular fears remain.

Today, I will be open to learn about trust.

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Daily TAO
July 10, 2014
Fields

Worship by cultivating nine fields:
Diet. Herbs. Clothing. Recitation.
Movement. Meditation. Creativity. Teaching.
And most important: Compassion.

Worship is not a matter of making an obeisance to a god. It is a matter of achieving godlike qualities in yourself. This is done through the cultivation of nine areas:

Diet should be moderate, healthy, and of living foods. If you want to be sustained, eat things that themselves sustained life.

Learn to use herbs, for they heal and maintain health.

Be moderate in your clothing; wear natural fibers. What you wear is an expression of your state of mind.

Recitation includes prayer, song chanting, and finally the practice of silence. What you say becomes reality.

Stretch, move and exercise every day. The universe moves; so too should the energy within your body.

Meditate every day – once in the morning and once in the evening, if possible. Only then will you attain tranquility and triumph over your dilemmas.

Be creative. Thus we contribute, and thus we elevate our souls.

Acquire a good education. Treasure what you learn, and preserve it so that it may be passed on to others. Never be selfish with what you know.

Above all be compassionate. This is a stand against all evil, and it opens your spirit.

People ask, “How can I worship properly?” Cultivate these nine fields.

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Food for Thought
July 10, 2014
A Progressive Illness

It is the experience of recovering compulsive overeaters that the illness is progressive. The disease does not get better; it gets worse. Even while we abstain, the illness progresses. If we were to break our abstinence, we would find that we had even less control over our eating than before.

Continued abstinence is our only means of health and sanity. We well remember the misery and despair that we felt when we were overeating, and we do not want to feel that way again. Abstaining from one compulsive bite is a small price to pay for health and sanity.

When we find ourselves thinking thoughts, which in the past have preceded loss of control, we need to realize the great danger that lies in a relapse. The OA program has saved us from the destruction of compulsive overeating, but our disease is still alive. Our program needs to be foremost in our minds every day if we are to continue recovering.

Do not let me forget my illness.

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In God’s Care
July 10, 2014

God is in charge.
~~Daily Word, November 10, 1987

A basic truth in our life, about which we need never be concerned, is that we are in the care of a loving God – always. And we can feel and unquestioningly know this presence if we choose to acknowledge it. When we take a moment to reflect on our past good fortunes – that we found this program, that our relationships with others are on the mend, that we harbor deep-seated fear far less often – we can use them to bolster our faith that our Higher Power is here, now and will remain our constant, caring companion.

For some of us, faith in a greater Power comes easily. But many of us begin to have faith only through Acting As If. By quieting our mind, visualizing a loving presence, and breathing in the warmth and comfort, we can find the peace that is God. Through “practicing the presence,” we’ll strengthen our faith and ensure our peacefulness.

    I can feel the peace I desire today through my own efforts to remember God.

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Day By Day
July 10, 2014
Avoiding criticism

Criticism is hard to take. If we don’t want to be criticized, we shouldn’t criticize others. At the same time, expressing concern in a loving way is not being critical.

We are entitled to our opinions, but we are not entitled to put other people down. Sharing our experience, strength, and hope is a way to help others, not to make them feel small.

Can I express loving concern? Can I share without making comparisons?

  Higher Power, help me recognize when I am becoming critical;  help me to be loving and humble.

    Today I will praise…

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DailyZen
July 10, 2014

A person who is truly cultivating the path does not notice the faults of the world; instead, he or she constantly notes their own faults and thereby comes into conformity with the path. If one then notices the faults of others, it is as if those faults are one’s own…If one is a person of virtue, in your heart you will not look down on others but will practice universal respect.

People without virtue consider themselves to be great, and in their hearts they constantly slight other people. If one is truly unmoving, one will not notice the faults of those you see or any of their good and bad actions or proper and improper conduct. This is because true nature is unmoving.

Although the body of deluded people does not move in meditation, when they open their mouths they talk about everyone’s good and bad actions and become estranged thereby from the path. Hence the immovability created by looking at the mind or looking at purity during still meditation produces obstacles on the path.

– Patriarch of Ts’ao-ch’i Mountain

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Faith’s Check Book
July 10, 2014
Love the Church

Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favor her, yea, the set time, is come. For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favor the dust thereof. (Psalm 102:13-14)

Yes, our prayers for the church will be heard. The set time is come. We love the prayer meetings, and the Sunday school, and all the services of the Lord’s house. We are bound in heart to all the people of God and can truly say,

There’s not a lamb in all thy flock

I would disdain to feed

There’s not a foe before whose face

I’d fear thy cause to plead.

If this is the general feeling, we shall soon enjoy times of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. Our assemblies will be filled, saints will be revived, and sinners will be converted. This can only come of the Lord’s mercy; but it will come, and we are called upon to expect it. The time, the set time, is come. Let us bestir ourselves. Let us love every stone of our Zion, even though it may be fallen down. Let us treasure up the least truth, the least ordinance, the least believer, even though some may despise them as only so much dust. When we favor Zion, God is about to favor her. When we take pleasure in the Lord’s work, the Lord Himself will take pleasure in it.

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This Morning’s Meditation
July 10, 2014

“Fellow citizens with the saints.”
—Ephesians 2:19.

WHAT is meant by our being citizens in heaven? It means that we are under heaven’s government. Christ the king of heaven reigns in our hearts; our daily prayer is, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” The proclamations issued from the throne of glory are freely received by us: the decrees of the Great King we cheerfully obey. Then as citizens of the New Jerusalem, we share heaven’s honours. The glory which belongs to beatified saints belongs to us, for we are already sons of God, already princes of the blood imperial; already we wear the spotless robe of Jesu’s righteousness; already we have angels for our servitors, saints for our companions, Christ for our Brother, God for our Father, and a crown of immortality for our reward. We share the honours of citizenship, for we have come to the general assembly and Church of the first-born whose names are written in heaven. As citizens, we have common rights to all the property of heaven. Ours are its gates of pearl and walls of chrysolite; ours the azure light of the city that needs no candle nor light of the sun; ours the river of the water of life, and the twelve manner of fruits which grow on the trees planted on the banks thereof; there is nought in heaven that belongeth not to us. “Things present, or things to come,” all are ours. Also as citizens of heaven we enjoy its delights. Do they there rejoice over sinners that repent—prodigals that have returned? So do we. Do they chant the glories of triumphant grace? We do the same. Do they cast their crowns at Jesu’s feet? Such honours as we have we cast there too. Are they charmed with His smile? It is not less sweet to us who dwell below. Do they look forward, waiting for His second advent? We also look and long for His appearing. If, then, we are thus citizens of heaven, let our walk and actions be consistent with our high dignity.

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This Evening’s Meditation
July 10, 2014

“And the evening and the morning were the first day.”
—Genesis 1:5.

THE evening was “darkness” and the morning was “light,” and yet the two together are called by the name that is given to the light alone! This is somewhat remarkable, but it has an exact analogy in spiritual experience. In every believer there is darkness and light, and yet he is not to be named a sinner because there is sin in him, but he is to be named a saint because he possesses some degree of holiness. This will be a most comforting thought to those who are mourning their infirmities, and who ask, “Can I be a child of God while there is so much darkness in me?” Yes; for you, like the day, take not your name from the evening, but from the morning; and you are spoken of in the word of God as if you were even now perfectly holy as you will be soon. You are called the child of light, though there is darkness in you still. You are named after what is the predominating quality in the sight of God, which will one day be the only principle remaining. Observe that the evening comes first. Naturally we are darkness first in order of time, and the gloom is often first in our mournful apprehension, driving us to cry out in deep humiliation, “God be merciful to me, a sinner.” The place of the morning is second, it dawns when grace overcomes nature. It is a blessed aphorism of John Bunyan, “That which is last, lasts for ever.” That which is first, yields in due season to the last; but nothing comes after the last. So that though you are naturally darkness, when once you become light in the Lord, there is no evening to follow; “thy sun shall no more go down.” The first day in this life is an evening and a morning; but the second day, when we shall be with God, for ever, shall be a day with no evening, but one, sacred, high, eternal noon.

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