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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 – June 14

Just For today
June 14
Maintaining Our Faith

“If we maintain our spiritual condition daily, we find it easier to deal with the pain and confusion.”
Basic Text, p. 92

When we first began searching for a Power greater than ourselves, many of us got stuck in old beliefs or ideas. These ranged from the fear of a punishing or vengeful God to no belief at all. Some of us felt we had done such terrible things that a loving Power would never have anything to do with us. Others were convinced that the “bad” things that happened to us would not have occurred if a loving Power had actually existed. It took time, effort, open-mindedness, and faith to acquire a working belief in a loving Higher Power that would guide us through life’s challenges.

Even after we come to believe in a Power greater than ourselves, our old ideas can come back to haunt us. Major setbacks in our lives and the insecurity such events can trigger may give rise to the return of our old, inadequate ideas about God. When this happens, we need to assure ourselves that our Higher Power has not abandoned us but is waiting to help us make it through the hard times in our recovery. No matter how painful our loss may be, we will survive our setback and continue to grow if we maintain the faith our program has given us.

Just for today: I have worked hard to build my faith in a loving, caring Higher Power that will guide me through life’s challenges. Today, I will trust that Power.

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Daily Reflections
June 14
WHEN THE GOING GETS ROUGH

It is a design for living that works in rough going.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 15

When I came to A.A., I realized that A.A. worked wonderfully to help keep me sober. But could it work on real life problems, not concerned with drinking? I had my doubts. After being sober for more than two years I got my answer. I lost my job, developed physical problems, my diabetic father lost a leg, and someone I loved left me for another – and all of this happened during a two-week period. Reality crashed in, yet A.A. was there to support, comfort, and strengthen me. The principles I had learned during my early days of sobriety became a mainstay of my life for not only did I come through, but I never stopped being able to help newcomers. A.A. taught me not to be overwhelmed, but rather to accept and understand my life as it unfolded.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day
June 14
A.A. Thought For The Day

In A.A. we have to learn that drink is our greatest enemy.  Although we used to think that liquor was our friend, the time came when it turned against us and became our enemy. We don’t know just when this happened, but we know that it did because we began to get into trouble – jails and hospitals. We realize now that liquor is our enemy. Is it still my main business to keep sober?

Meditation For The Day

It is not your circumstances that need altering so much as yourself. After you have changed, conditions will naturally change. Spare no effort to become all that God would have you become. Follow every good leading of your conscience. Take each day with no backward look. Face the day’s problems with God, and seek God’s help and guidance as to what you should do in every situation that may arise. Never look back. Never leave until tomorrow the thing that you are guided to do today.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that God will help me to become all that He would have me be. I pray that I may face today’s problem as with good grace.

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As Bill Sees It
June 14
“Success” in Twelfth-Stepping, p. 165

“We now see that in twelfth-stepping the immediate results are not so important.  Some people start out working with others and have immediate success. They are likely to get cocky. Those of us who are not so successful at first get depressed.

“As a matter of fact, the successful worker differs from the unsuccessful only in being lucky about his prospects. He simply hits newcomers who are ready and able to stop at once. Given the same prospects, the seemingly unsuccessful person would have produced almost the same results. You have to work on a lot of newcomers before the law of averages commences to assert itself.”

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All true communications must be founded on mutual need. We saw that each sponsor would have to admit humbly his own needs as clearly as those of his prospect.

1. Letter, 1942
2. A.A. Today, p. 10

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Walk In Dry Places
June 14
True Satisfaction
Contentment

True satisfaction never comes from feeding addition. Nothing is ever enough. The only possible outcomes for those who do not seek recovery from their additions will be complete breakdown and untimely death.

St. Augustine explained why it’s impossible for humans to find true satisfaction in pursuing pleasure. “Thou hast made us for thyself and our hearts are restless until they repose in thee,” he wrote, with reference to the Divine.

As we come to understand that true satisfaction comes from the Spirit, we will, surprisingly, receive more satisfaction from the worldly things we use. We will begin to look upon our possessions for the service they give rather than as things that should make us happy. A new car should give us comfortable satisfactory transportation, but it cannot give us peace and true self-esteem. New clothes can please us, but they will not do anything for our spiritual depression.

Why didn’t we know this all along? Probably because we falsely believed that certain possessions would bring fulfillment. They can’t do that, but when we are thinking right, our appreciation of everything should increase.

I’ll not expect true satisfaction in this world, although I’ll get more out of it if I put things in right order.

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Keep It Simple
June 14

Time is nature’s way of keeping everything from happening at once.
—unknown

Time always seems to pass too slowly or too quickly for us. .We want the fun times to last longer. We want the boring or painful times to go faster. But times goes at just the right pace. Any faster, and we wouldn’t have enough time to learn as we go. Any slower, and we’d lose interest. In our program, we learn to respect the pace of time. We let go, and we let time go at it’s own pace. We call this patience.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, thank-you for patience. Help me look forward to the future without rushing. Help me live fully in the here and now. Help me make today a good one by doing Your will.

Action for the Day: I’ll list five ways I can use time to be more healthy—in body, mind and spirit. Which of these five things can I do today?

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Each Day a New Beginning
June 14

All of us have unique talents and gifts. No obstacle, be it physical, mental or emotional, has the power to destroy our innate creative energies.
—Liane Cordes

Believing this fully is difficult at times; for some of us, most of the time. But it is true. What each of us can contribute to the world is unlike every other contribution. Each talent is slightly different from every other talent. And they are all needed. We are all needed.

Creativity – any kind – writing, photography, cooking, childcare, weaving, managing, woodworking – nourishes the self that feels isolated and worthless. And as the self is nourished, it grows; it recovers.

Recovery means changing our lifestyle. It means reaching out to others and being there for one another. It means rejoining the human race by giving of ourselves. Our talents are the gifts the human race awaits, needs, in fact. Do we know our talents?

I will search out my secret dreams today. In them lie my talents. I will develop them. Help awaits me.

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Alcoholics Anonymous
June 14
Our Southern Friend

Pioneer A.A., minister’s son, and southern farmer, he asked, “Who am I to say there is no God?”

I am home again. I have lost the fellowship. Those that understand me are far away. The same old problems and worries surround me. Members of my family annoy me. Nothing seems to be working out right. I am blue and unhappy. Maybe a drink-I put on my hat and dash off in the car.

p. 216

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
June 14

Step Ten – “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

Although all inventories are alike in principle, the time factor does distinguish one from another. There’s the spot check inventory, taken at any time of the day, whenever we find ourselves getting tangled up. There’s the one we take at day’s end, when we review the happenings of the hours just past. Here we cast up a balance sheet, crediting ourselves with things well done, and chalking up debits where due. Then there are those occasions when alone, or in the company of our sponsor or spiritual adviser, we make a careful review of our progress since the last time. Many A.A.’s go in for annual or semiannual housecleanings. Many of us also like the experience of an occasional retreat from the outside world where we can quiet down for an undisturbed day or so of self-overhaul and meditation.

p. 89

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Xtra Thoughts
June 14

The memories of tomorrow depend on your attitude today.
–Dave Weinbaum

“Make sure the thing you’re living for is worth dying for.”
–Charles Mayes

“I have a special purpose!”
–Steve Martin

“When we become aware of our humility, we’ve lost it.”
–Anonymous

We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.
–Joseph Campbell

Injure others, injure yourself.
–Chinese Proverb

“I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. I will not refuse to do the something I can do.”
–Helen Keller

“I’ve never known a man worth his salt who in the long run, deep down in his heart, didn’t appreciate the grind, the discipline… I firmly believe that any man’s finest hour – this greatest fulfillment to all he holds dear – is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle, victorious.”
–Vince Lombardi

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
June 14
LIFE

“To be free is to have achieved your life.”
–Tennessee Williams

Yesterday’s tapes: I need a drink. I can’t exist without a fix. How will I get through the morning without taking something? Do people see me shake? Are people watching me? Where can I get money? The prison of addiction!

Today I am free because I took courage and asked for help. Today I am free because I still ask for help. Today I have learned to say “no” to the first drink and life is more comfortable and less painful.

Freedom is a precious spiritual gift that I work for on a daily basis.  God is involved – but so am I. The freedom from alcoholism is only guaranteed by the creative choices I make and in the choice is the freedom.

God, my memory is the key to today’s freedom; may I continue to remember.

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Bible Scriptures
June 14

“Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits, who forgives all your inquiry, who heals all your diseases.”
Psalm 103:1-3

“For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:38-39

“I will praise You, O LORD, among the peoples, And I will sing praises to You among the nations.”
Psalms 108:3

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Daily Inspiration
June 14

To be successful in the projects you undertake today, you must believe in yourself and your abilities even if you are walking on new ground. Lord, guide me in my endeavors and open my mind to new solutions if things aren’t going as I have planned.

The smallest kindness is worth more than the greatest intention. Lord, help me not to overlook the opportunities that I have to enrich the lives of others or think I am too busy to reach out with a word or even a smile.

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A Day At A Time
June 14

Refection For The Day

Somewhere along the lines as we become more involved in The Program, we reach a sharp awareness of the growth-value of honesty and condor.  When this happens, on of the first things we’re able to admit is that our past behavior has been far from sane or even reasonable.  As soon as we can make this admission — without shame or embarrassment — we find still another dimension of freedom.  In my gradual recovery, am I expectant that life will become richer and even more serene?

Today I Pray

May I know, even as I take that mighty First Step, which may be the first really honest move I have made in a long time, that honesty takes practice.  My old, deluded, head-tripping self is as different from the honest self that I must become as night is from day.  May I realize that it will take more than just one gray dawn to change me.

Today I Will Remember

Honesty takes practice.

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One More Day
June 14

Do not sit long with a sad friend, When you go to a garden, do you look at the flowers?  Spend more time with roses and jasmines.
–  Jelahuddin Rumi

Sometimes we slip over the boundary line of a close friendship.  Up to that point, it may have been a real union, a true meeting of the minds.  But then we might not only share our thoughts and our problems, but that on each other’s problems as if they were our own.  We may become obsessed with finding answers for our friends.

Just as we don’t focus on the weeds in our garden, we can’t see only the negative aspects of our friends’ lives.  We can be supportive, but we serve our friends and ourselves best when we let them confront their own problems.

I will remember that friends can comfort each other, but cannot carry the other’s burdens.

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One Day At A Time
June 14
PEACE

“If you do not find peace in yourself, you will never find it anywhere else.”
–Paula A. Bendry

No outside reality can bring me peace. In the past, I tried to find it in many things, including relationships, ownership, and my vocation. But none of these externals brought me real peace. I had the opportunity of having all of them stripped away by a crisis in my life. I had surgery and got an infection that required a long period of recovery and resulted in disability. Many of my relationships ended, my income was reduced drastically, my capacity for ownership was decreased greatly, and I could no longer work. Although it was a painful lesson, it has been good for my spiritual condition.

I have been forced to look inside myself and realize that true peace and joy are found within. It is not about externals. Once I realized that, I found a relationship with my Higher Power that was deeper and more intimate than before, and the peace in my life settled inside of me in even greater measure.

One day at a time…
I will look inwardly for the peace that I long for.

~ Carolyn H.

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Elder’s Meditation of the Day – June 14

“The basis of knowledge is the fire, rock, water, and green. But when that power was given to man, he used it to twist his own mind. Tunkashila gave man just one drop of that wisdom.”
–Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA

All of Nature has the wisdom to follow the Natural Laws. All of Nature knows how to live in harmony and use this wisdom in a good way, with exception of the human being. Often we misuse this wisdom. Wisdom always remains with those who use it in the proper way. Nature has used this wisdom well, so now we need to go to Her so we humans can relearn and change our lives. May we start doing this today, before it is too late.

Creator, let me be open to the lessons that Nature can teach me.

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Journey To The Heart
June 14
Learn the Power of Respect

I watched as my journey unfolded this spring. Each place I visited gave me a lesson. People would show up at the right time and place with exactly the words I needed to hear. Sometimes the lesson would be announced loudly, clearly. Sometimes an awareness would surface softly when I least expected it, when I was beginning to wonder if any lesson or purpose was there at all. Everything I saw and experienced ultimately reinforced my trust in God, the universe, and the power of my heart to lead me on. After all, I had taken this trip on just a moment’s notice with no itinerary, and a magical adventure had unfolded. By the time the journey ended and I pulled into the driveway at home, I had learned more than just to trust the process, I had learned to respect it.

Do more than trust the process, the journey you’re on. Become so awestruck by it that you respect it,too. Respect your feelings and the timely manner in which they surface, heal, and lead you into new discoveries. Respect your experiences, the places you’ve been, the scenarios you’ve been through. Respect the way you’ve gained gold and jewels, the treasures of the soul, from each one.

Respect the darker moments, the more difficult times when you’re uncertain and don’t know what to do next. Respect the timing as your life and journey unfolds. Don’t murmur about why such and such has to be the way it is. Don’t limit how your growth can happen.

Learn to respect the path of others. Learn to respect your own.

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Today’s Gift
June 14

Fear not that life shall come to an end, but rather fear that it shall never have a beginning.
–J. H. Newman

Our fears lock us up if we let them. They can prevent us from tasting adventure, from experiencing new wonders. We are often terrified of unknowns and fret about what might happen if we try something new. We worry if new people will like us – if we’ll fit in.

It is natural to be cautious about the unknown, and anything new is just that. But we can keep our caution from becoming fear by taking action, with the faith that we never encounter anything we can’t handle in some way.

Unknowns are merely joys we haven’t met. We hold the keys to our own cages and can free ourselves when we use our courage and inner strength to overcome our fears.

What new joy can I discover beneath my fear today?

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The Language of Letting Go
June 14
Letting Go of Timing

“When the time is right, child.” When the time is right. How often have we heard those words – from a friend, a sponsor, our Higher Power?

We want things so badly – that job, that check, a relationship, a possession. We want our life to change.

So we wait, sometimes patiently, sometimes anxiously, wondering all the while: When will the future bring me what I long for? Will I be happy then?

We try to predict, circling dates on the calendar, asking questions. We forget that we don’t hold the answers. The answers come from God. If we listen closely, we’ll hear them. When the time is right, child. When the time is right.

Be happy now.

Today, I will relax. I am being prepared. I can let go of timing. I can stop manipulating outcomes. Good things will happen when the time is right, and they will happen naturally.

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More Language Of Letting Go
June 14
Your attitude is contagious

“I like skydiving with Todd,” Pat said. “He’s got such a good attitude. When you’re in the air with him, no matter what happens, you just get the feeling that everything’s okay.”

Being relaxed is contagious. Just as someone who’s miserable, frightened, and negative can affect the people around him or her, being relaxed, clear, and humbly confident can affect the people we touch,too. Have you ever known anyone like that– someone with a sense of humor, someone who’s surrendered, full of joy, and at peace with himself or herself? This is someone who not only knows things are going to be okay– that person knows things are okay now.

Today, if you are going to spread anything, let it be joy and goodwill.

God, help me lighten up. Make my joy contagious.

Activity: Today, watch yourself as you go through your day. If you were a neutral observer of yourself, how would you describe yourself? What words would you use? Which words would you like to use to describe yourself? Watch your interactions with other people– people you know and strangers, such as clerks in stores and banks. Don’t judge yourself, just observe. Awareness is the key. Become aware of who you are, how you respond to other people, and how they react to you. Decide what attitude you’d like to share with the people in your world.

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Touchstones Meditations For Men
June 14

The turning point in the process of growing up is when you discover the core of strength within you that survives all hurt.
—Max Lerner

When we consider all of the troubles and crises in our lives and all of the scrapes we’ve gotten into, we might feel overwhelmed. With what we have gone through, it seems miraculous for many of us to be here today. When we stop feeling sorry for ourselves and when we stop complaining about the unfairness of it all, we may get a new insight: “I have survived!”

We see the strength and persistence, which brought us through the toughest times we have known. Even when some of us did not know it, we were being carried along by our Higher Power. We can draw strength from that knowledge. We can remind ourselves today that, knowing what we have lived through with the help of our Higher Power, we can deal with anything to come.

I am grateful to my Higher Power for help in surviving the hard times in life.

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Daily TAO
June 14
Master

Deception occurs when you are divided,
Truth appears when you are whole.
Uniting male and female brings illumination,
The real master is perfect light.

No one is ineligible to know higher truth. When concentration, energy, and thinking are scattered, we cannot break out of ignorance. The diversity and contradictions of existence confuse us, and appearances deceive us.

Do we need a master to help us in this struggle to know the truth? In the beginning we do. What is not often said is that the human master is but a temporary and imperfect manifestation of the ultimate truth. Without a master, you cannot make a beginning. If you never look beyond the person, you will never attain the entirety. A good master leads you to the true master within. Only that master, who is your own higher self, can adequately answer all questions.

Once you unite all elements within yourself, metaphorically referred to as the uniting of male and female, the light that dispels darkness appears. Just as all colored light together make colorless light, so too does the combination of all our facets result in the integration of our polarities. When this happens, you will “see” a light in your meditations. This light brings knowledge. That is why it is called the true master.

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In God’s Care
June 14

The bird of paradise alights only upon the hand that does not grasp.
~~John Berry

In time we’ve come to understand that we are only responsible for ourselves. Many of us have had to rediscover this many times. How often we’ve fooled ourselves into thinking that we know what’s best for others, better even than they know for themselves. Perhaps the most meaningful lesson any of us has learned is that every person’s perspective has value and validity for that person. When we withdrow our opinions as to who people should be, we loosen our grasp and give ourselves the opportunity to know people for who they are. We are then free to truly know ourselves and share what we learn with others.

Holding tightly to the past – the known – can shut us off from God’s invitations to grow. Our openness to the unfamiliar, whether ideas or people or new opportunities, will enrich us imeasurably.

I will loosen my grip today and enjoy people for who they are.  I will regard all that is new and unfamiliar as God’s invitations to grow.

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Day By Day
June 14
Going to meetings

Many of us have many problems: financial, legal, and emotional. If we asked fellow members for advice, they might well say, “Go to a meeting.” Going to meetings is not just something we do in our spare time. Meetings are a way to find answers, get support, and generally maintain our recovery.

What kind of advice is that – “go to a meeting” – for practical problems? But it works! For other people, this would not work; but for those of us in recovery from chemical dependency, it is the beginning of solutions to our problems. Meetings are not “spare time”; they’re critical “life time.”

Am I making the most out of meetings?

God, help me develop faith in the fellowship and deep respect for meetings.

Today I will make plans to attend the meeting at…

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Food for Thought
June 14
Positive Addiction

Since we seem to have addictive types of personalities, we can make this characteristic work for us, rather than against us. We can develop life-enhancing habits – positive addictions.

The OA program is an example of positive addiction. We become habituated to writing down a food plan, attending meetings, making phone calls, and working the program. We replace the negative addiction to compulsive overeating with a positive commitment to abstinence.

Other activities, which we perform regularly take on the character of positive habits. Exercise is a healthy routine. Hobbies and creative self-expression can be habitual parts of our daily schedule. Whenever we choose a life-enhancing activity and perform it regularly until it becomes an ingrained habit, we are using our addictive tendency to build ourselves up rather than tear ourselves down.

Thank You, Lord, for positive addictions.

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Faiths Checkbook
June 14
He Constantly Abides

“For the LORD will not forsake His people for His great name’s sake; because it hath pleased the LORD to make you His people”
(1 Samuel 12:22).

God’s choice of His people is the reason for His abiding by them and not forsaking them. He chose them for His love, and He loves them for His choice. His own good pleasure is the source of their election, and His election is the reason for the continuance of His pleasure in them. It would dishonor His great name for Him to forsake them, since it would either show that He made an error in His choice or that He was fickle in His love. God’s love has this glory, that it never changes, and this glory He will never tarnish.

By all the memories of the LORD’s former lovingkindnesses let us rest assured that He will not forsake us. He who has gone so far as to make us His people will not undo the creation of His grace. He has not wrought such wonders for us that He might leave us after all. His Son Jesus has died for us, and we may be sure that He has not died in vain. Can He forsake those for whom He shed His blood? Because He has hitherto taken pleasure in choosing and in saving us, it will be His pleasure still to bless us. Our LORD Jesus is no changeable lover. Having loved His own, He loves them to the end.

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