Chat

In Loving Memory of Vic

Find A Meeting

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

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

Daily Recovery Readings – March 13

Just For Today
March 13
That One Special Person

“A sponsor is not necessarily a friend, but may be someone in whom we confide. We can share things with our sponsor that we might not be comfortable sharing in a meeting.”
—IP No. 11, “Sponsorship, Revised”

We’ve asked someone to sponsor us, and the reasons we have for asking that particular person are as many as the grains of sand on a beach. Perhaps we heard them share at a speaker meeting and thought they were funny or inspiring. Perhaps we thought they had a great car and we would get one by working the same program they work. Or maybe we live in a small town and they were the only person who had the time available to help.

Whatever our initial reasons for getting the sponsor we have, we’re sure to find that our reasons for keeping them are quite different. Suddenly, they’ll amaze us with some stunning insight, making us wonder whether they’ve been sneaking peeks at our Fourth Step. Or maybe we’re going through some sort of life crisis, and their experience with the same problem helps us in ways we never dreamed possible. We call them in pain, and they come up with a special combination of caring words that provide genuine comfort.

None of these remarkable feats on the part of our sponsor are mere coincidence. They’ve simply walked the same path before us. A Higher Power has placed that one special person in our lives, and we are grateful for their presence.

Just for today: I will appreciate that one special person in my life—my sponsor.

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

Daily Reflections
March 13
A WORLD OF THE SPIRIT

“We have entered the world of the Spirit. Our next function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness.  This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime.”
—ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

The word “entered” and the phrase “entered into the world of the Spirit” are very significant. They imply action, a beginning, getting into, a prerequisite to maintaining my spiritual growth, the “Spirit” being the immaterial part of me. Barriers to my spiritual growth are self-centeredness and a materialistic focus on worldly things. Spirituality means devotion to spiritual rather than worldly things, it means obedience to God’s will for me. I understand spiritual things to be: unconditional love, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, self-control and humility. Any time I allow selfishness, dishonesty, resentment and fear to be a part of me, I block out spiritual things. As I maintain my sobriety, growing spiritually becomes a lifelong process. My goal is spiritual growth, accepting that I’ll never have spiritual perfection.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day
March 13
A.A. Thought For The Day

We’ve got rid of our false, drinking selves and found our real, sober selves. And we turn to God, our Father, for help, just as the Prodigal Son arose and went to his father. At the end of the story, the father of the Prodigal Son says: “He was dead and is alive again, he was lost and he is found.” We alcoholics who have found sobriety in A.A. were certainly dead and are alive again.  We were lost and are found. Am I alive again?

Meditation For The Day

Gently breathe in God’s spirit, that spirit which, if not barred out of selfishness, will enable you to do good works.  This means rather that God will be enabled to do good works through you. You can become a channel for God’s spirit to flow through you and into the lives of others. The works that you can do will only be limited by your spiritual development. Let your spirit be in harmony with God’s spirit and there is no limit to what you can do in the realm of human relationships.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may become a channel for God’s spirit.  I pray that God’s spirit may flow through me and into the lives of others.

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

As Bill Sees It
March 13
Dependence–Unhealthy or Healthy, p. 72

“Nothing can be more demoralizing than a clinging and abject dependence upon another human being. This often amounts to the demand for a degree of protection and love that no one could possibly satisfy. So our hoped-for protectors finally flee, and once more we are left alone–either to grow up or to disintegrate.”

<< << << >> >> >>

We discovered the best possible source of emotional stability to be God Himself. We found that dependence upon His perfect justice, forgiveness, and love was healthy, and that it would work where nothing else would.

If we really depended upon God, we couldn’t very well play God to our fellows, nor would we feel the urge to rely wholly on human protection and care.

1. Letter, 1966
2. 12 & 12, p. 116

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

Walk in Dry Places
March 13
Believing In Justice
Justice

“What goes around, comes around,” is a popular saying. It’s often used to suggest that certain arrogant, unprincipled people will eventually receive their comeuppance. It conveys the idea that there’s a hidden justice at work in human affairs that assures all injustice will eventually be punished.

But if it works to punish, this hidden justice also rewards right actions, and this is more important in our working of the program. If we act from good motives, we’ll always find that our work is rewarded in some way. No alcoholic who performs a service in the fellowship goes unrewarded. Quite often the reward is simply a personal sense of well-being and growth in character, but these may be more important than money or recognition.

Justice is one of the cardinal virtues–a Godlike attribute that human beings strive to understand. Believing in justice is believing in the Hidden Power that orders justice in all things.

I’ll view my world today as something that is controlled and ordered by a Just Power. Reward and retribution are built into the scheme of things, but I’ll focus more on actions that bring the right kind of rewards.

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

Keep It Simple
March 13

“God loves the world through us.”
—Mother Teresa

In Step Three, we turn our will and our lives over to the care of God. How do we feel God’s care, God’s love? We feel God’s care and love through how people treat us. Our Higher Power works through people who love us back to life. With time, we begin returning this care and love to others. We feel this warm love flow right through us and out to others. We’re kind without trying to be. We smile at others for no reason. We comfort those who hurt just by holding them.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, use me to make Your love real to someone today.

Action for the Day: Fear sometimes keeps me from loving. I’ll list three things I’m afraid will happen if I’m “to loving.”  I’ll share these fears with my sponsor.

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

Each Day a New Beginning
March 13

“People need joy. Quite as much as clothing. Some of them need it far more.”
—Margaret Collier Graham

Life is not without pain and travail. They are necessary to new awareness which prompts growth. And the gift of growth is joy. Pain and joy are thus intertwined. It is possible to feel only the burden of pain and not the exhilaration of joy, however.

Before seeking help to change our lives, many of us were heavily burdened by pain. But we were unable to open ourselves to the knowledge made possible by that pain. We were on a treadmill, accumulating painful experiences at every step, unable to capture the joy that was ever present.

We can have hope. Joy does await each of us today. We must open our eyes to it, just as we must open our hearts to one another. We must be willing to peel away the layers of pain to expose the core, the seedling of joy. And we need joy in our lives, just as surely as we need rest and a good diet. We need the light heart that joy fosters for a better perspective on the many experiences we’ll face today, and every day.

Recovery has given me this new option. It guarantees me that every hurdle will be lightened. The knowledge that joy is inherent, within every experience, is mine, now and forever.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous
March 13
HE LIVED ONLY TO DRINK

— “I had been preached to, analyzed, cursed, and counseled, but no one had ever said, ‘I identify with what’s going on with you. It happened to me and this is what I did about it.'” It was at this point that a woman who was a social worker on skid row and a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous sat me down in her office and told me her story–how she drank, what happened, and how she got sober. No one had ever done this before. I had been preached to, analyzed, cursed, and counseled, but no one had ever said, “I identify with what’s going on with you. It happened to me, and this is what I did about it.” She got me to my first A.A. meeting that same evening.

p. 449

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
March 13

Step Two — “Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”

Another crowd of A.A.’s says: “We were plumb disgusted with religion and all its works. The Bible, we said, was full of nonsense; we could cite it chapter and verse, and we couldn’t see the Beatitudes for the ‘begats.’ In spots its morality was impossibly good; in others it seemed impossibly bad. But it was the morality of the religionists themselves that really got us down. We gloated over the hypocrisy, bigotry, and crushing self-righteousness that clung to so many ‘believers’ even in their Sunday best. How we loved to shout the damaging fact that millions of the ‘good men of religion’ were still killing one another off in the name of God. This all meant, of course, that we had substituted negative for positive thinking. After we came to A.A., we had to recognize that this trait had been an ego feeding proposition. In belaboring the sins of some religious people, we could feel superior to all of them. Moreover, we could avoid looking at some of our own shortcomings. Self-righteousness, the very thing that we had contemptuously condemned in others, was our own besetting evil. This phony form of respectability was our undoing, so far as faith was concerned. But finally, driven to A.A., we learned better.

p. 30

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

Xtra Thoughts
March 13

“The solution is simple.
The solution is spiritual.”

“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.”
—Jim Rohn

“Happiness is not in our circumstances, but in ourselves.”
—John B. Sheerin

“Nothing is worth more than this day.”
—Goethe

“It is a sign of strength, not of weakness, to admit that you don’t know all the answers.”
—John P. Lougbrane

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

Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
March 13
BALANCE

“There are two ways to slide easily through life: To believe everything or to doubt everything. Both ways save us from thinking.”
—Alfred Korzybski

This statement is so true for me. I was so compulsive and obsessive not only about the things that I believed in but also about the things I didn’t believe in. I was extreme. Everything I did was exaggerated. I either raced through life at ten thousand miles an hour or was in neutral. Balance was absent.

Today I am developing balance in my life, more patience and more tolerance. I have discovered that my extremism was a mask by which I hid from life; I did not have to think, consider or ponder—I simply reacted.

Now I know that to believe in everything is to believe nothing; and to doubt everything is not to think. Life is “a many splendored thing” but it has a variety of options.

God of the many, help me to discover You in the myriad of thoughts that life produces.

************************************************** *********
Bible Scriptures
March 13

“As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.”
—John 15:9-17

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
—John 10:10

“Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.”
—Philippians 2:4

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

Daily Inspiration
March 13

Take care of your own emotional and spiritual needs first and it will become natural to reach out lovingly to others. Lord, I depend on Your help in every situation.

Delighting in the happiness of others will make your heart too big for your body. Lord, help me set aside my jealousies and celebrate the blessings of others. Their blessings will then be a blessing for me too.

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

A Day At A Time
March 13

Reflection For The Day

All my life, I looked to others for comfort, security and all the other things that add up to what I now call serenity.  But I’ve come to realize that I was always looking in the wrong place.  The source of serenity is not outside, but within myself.  The kingdom is within me, and I already have the key.   All I have to do is to be wiling to  use it.  Am I using the tools of The Program on a daily basis?  Am I Willing?

Today I Pray

God  gave me the courage to seek out the kingdom inside myself, to find that well-spring within me which has its source in the never-ending, life-giving river of God.  May my soul be restored there.  May I find the serenity I seek.

Today I Will Remember

To seek the inner Kingdom.

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

One More Day
March 13

“The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes.”
—Frank Lloyd Wright

When we were younger, day and night were two separate entities.  Day was when we played and night was when we slept.  The distinction is not that sharp as we get older, especially if we have any problems with disturb our sleep.  Worry and pain have a tendency to make nights much longer — and lonelier.

What looked hopeless the night before can take on a whole new light in the morning.  It would be wonderful if we could learn to treat each new day with the same freshness we had as children.  We can learn, once again, to experience and to savor each each moment.  Once we separate the more likely we are to allow ourselves wonderful days again.

My expectations are that I will achieve the best of reach day has to offer.

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

One Day At A Time
March 13
LOVE

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, While loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
—Lao Tzu

As we explore our twelve step program and peel away the onion that is us, we find many parts of ourself that we had never known before. Those parts have always been there … we just weren’t aware of the importance of them. Suddenly, as though it were a lightbulb flashing, it hits us full in the face and we find ourself seeing what our deepest need in life is.

It took practically a lifetime to realize that my deepest need was to love and to be loved. How could I have lived so long and not realized that before? I am grateful that the twelve step program gave me the ability to feel love, perhaps for the very first time. I am also grateful that this beautiful way of living also gave me the ability to give love.

One day at a time …

I will keep my heart open for opportunities to love … and quietly but expectantly to be loved.

~ Mari

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

Elder’s Meditation of the Day March 13

“I went to a holy man and asked him for help. He told me to get on the Red Road. Pray to Wakan-Tanka (Great Spirit) to help you walk the Red Road.”
—Dr. A.C. Ross (Ehanamani), LAKOTA

All Indian traditions, customs and ceremonies help us answer three questions: who am I?, why am I?, and where am I going? Only on the Red Road can we find the answer to these three questions. When we can answer these three questions, we are on the Red Road. When we cannot, we have gone astray. That is why the Holy Men tell us to pray to the Great Spirit and to seek the Red Road. Why am I? My purpose is the serve the Great Spirit. Who am I? I am an Indian who walks the Red Road. Where am I going? My vision is to serve my people.

Great Spirit, when I know You, only then do I know me. Help me today to know You.

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

Journey to the Heart
March 13
Connect to Creativity

The more open and connected you are to the world around you, the more creative you will become.

You will become more creative in your own growth and in how you live your life. You will be more creative in problem solving in work and play. You’ll be more willing to try new things– whether it’s learning to play a flute, build a stone fence, ride a horse, or create a Japanese garden in your front yard. You’ll find yourself more open in solving problems with loved ones, trying less traditional approaches than you might have considered in the past. You’ll find yourself gaining insights, information, and healing from sources you may have previously overlooked. Your participation in all your activities will be less controlled and more spontaneous.

You will hear the universe prompting you more. You will imagine more. You will recognize the quiet voice of intuition, the voice of your heart. You will see possibilities. And because you are open to your heart, the guidance of your inner voice, you will know what to do, and when to do it.

The more connected you are to the universe, to life, to yourself, the more creative you will be.

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

Today’s Gift
March 13

“I never dreamed of so much happiness when I was the ugly duckling.”
—Hans Christian Andersen

The ugly duckling was not really ugly at all, he was just different. The other ducks teased and pecked and even bit him until the ugly duckling flew away. He wandered around for a year, and was treated as an outcast everywhere. In the spring, he saw a group of swans on a lake, and wanted very much to join them. As he swam out toward them, he was astounded to notice his reflection in the water–he was a swan! The other swans welcomed him warmly, and found him to be beautiful.

Most of us go through times when we feel different from those around us. These are painful and lonely times, but it doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with us. Like the ugly duckling, we will come into a time when we will be loved. All the pain and loneliness we have felt will help us fully appreciate the acceptance when we find it.

How can I treasure the ways I am different from others today?

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

The Language of Letting Go
March 13
Clarity and direction

In spite of our best efforts to work our programs and lean on God’s guidance, we sometimes don’t understand what’s going on in our life. We trust, wait, pray, listen to people, listen to ourselves, and the answer still does not come.

During those times, we need to understand that we are right where we need to be, even though that place may feel awkward and uncomfortable. Our life does have purpose and direction.

We are being changed, healed, and transformed at levels deeper than we can imagine. Good things, beyond our capacity to imagine, are being prepared and brought to us. We are being led and guided.

We can become peaceful. We do not have to act in haste or urgency just to relieve our discomfort, just to get an answer. We can wait until our mind is peaceful. We can wait for clear direction. Clarity will come.

The answer will come, and it will be good for us and those around us.

Today, God, help me know I am being guided into what’s good about life, especially when I feel confused and without direction. Help me trust enough to wait until my mind and vision are clear and consistent. Help me know that clarity will come.

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

More Language Of Letting Go
March 13
Say whatever when it’s out of your hands

We cannot control everything that happens to us. But we can control our response to those things. We cannot control the feelings of others—their fear, their power trips, their issues. All that we can choose is how we want to respond.

Maybe you have been wronged. Maybe you have had a dream taken from you due to the actions of another. What are you going to do about it? You can give up and give in, or you can make the best of the situation, move on if you can, or make a life where you are.

Say whatever.

Learn to live and let live.

You can start over, again and again, if necessary.

God, give me the strength to stand up when the actions or thoughts of others drag me down. Help me practice right thought and right action. Help me walk the path that is set before me, no matter what it may bring.

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

Touchstones Meditation For Men
March 13

“Victory is won not in miles but in inches. Win a little now, hold your ground, and later win a little more.”
—Louis L’Amour

How much fuller each day feels when we can be patient and accept the inches we have progressed. Yet, we are aware of large problems which require miles of progress. We may want others in our lives to change quickly, we may be impatient with a work situation, or we may feel angry about an addiction.

Perhaps the spiritual message to us is we need to surrender to time. We are on the road moving in the direction of recovery. The forces of progress are at work. Our growth now may come in learning patience and trusting this process. Looking back we might see a mile of progress. It was made an inch at a time.

Today, I will accept my progress. There are many rewards already.

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

DailyTAO
March 13
DISCOVERY

Seize the mountain spirits,
Make them divulge their secrets.
Only with strength is there discovery.

The scriptures say that the mountains contain the answers. Generations of seekers have gone into the wilderness and have encountered spirits both benevolent and terrible. Though the possibility of great discovery is mixed with the threat of misadventure, we must all go into the mountains to seek these answers.

We should understand that these mountains represent the unknown aspects of our own minds. Meditation is a process of discovery, of slowly exploring how you function as a human being. Through walking in the vastness of this land, you can resolve the problems of your psyche and seek the treasures buried in your soul. Like actual mountain exploration, this process is not without danger. Failure means falling into insanity and obsession. Success is to find treasures without comparison anywhere in the world.

People ask, “Is meditation necessary?” If you want to explore the innermost parts of your mind and ascertain who you really are, there is no more ideal method. Mere introspection is not deep enough, and psychological counseling will not necessarily bring you face to face with all parts of yourself. Only the depth and solitude of meditation can help you learn everything. Discoveries are there. We need only enter the mind to find them.

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

DailyZen
March 13

I found my way up
Yoshino’s precipice-hung
Path and into its
Past, seeing there the blossoms
I sought that spring ages ago.

—Saigyo (1118-1190)

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

Food for Thought
March 13
No More Diets

OA is not another diet club. Abstinence is not something we go on for a while, until we achieve a desired weight goal, and then go off. We are through with diets. In the past, they may have worked for a time, but sooner or later we became bored with them, quit, and regained the weight we had lost.

OA is a program of recovery. We discover that what we eat is not the most important thing in our lives. Each day we plan what is necessary for the nourishment of our bodies, and then we are free to forget about food and go on with our living.

Instead of following a diet for a certain length of time, we maintain abstinence from compulsive overeating every day of our lives so that we may feel good and function effectively. We work the program, live the Twelve Steps, and enjoy each day as never before. We are recovering.

Thank You for the gift of recovery.

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

In God’s Care
March 13

“Inspirations never go in for long engagements; they demand immediate marriage to action.”
—Brendan Francis

God speaks to us in many ways at many times. If we are spiritually alert, we will know it when it happens. A stray thought occurs; we overhear a bit of conversation; a passage in something we are reading suddenly stands out—and we know we have connected. A feeling of assurance and peace comes over us.

The trouble is that we might acknowledge this contact only briefly, and then it slips away. The time to act passes. The favor we could have done; the advice of support we could have offered; the help we could have given or received—all are missed opportunities.

When God speaks, we must do more than listen.

Today I will act when inspired.

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

Faith’s Check Book
March 13
Despise Not Thy Youth

“Then said I, Ah, Lord God! behold I cannot speak; for I am a child. But the Lord said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.”
—Jeremiah 1:6-7

Jeremiah was young and felt a natural shrinking when sent upon a great errand by the Lord; but He who sent him would not have him say, “I am a child.” What he was in himself must not be mentioned but lost in the consideration that he was chosen to speak for God. He had not to think out and invent a message nor to choose an audience: he was to speak what God commanded and speak where God sent him, and this he would be enabled to do in strength not his own. Is it not so with some young preacher or teacher who may read these lines? God knows how young you are and how slender are your knowledge and experience; but if He chooses to send you, it is not for you to shrink from the heavenly call. God will magnify Himself in our feebleness. If you were as old as Methuselah, how much would your years help you? If you were as wise as Solomon, you might be equally as willful as he. Keep you to your message, and it will be your wisdom; follow your marching orders, and they will be your discretion.

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

This Morning’s Meditation
March 13

“Why sit we here until we die?”
—2 Kings 7:3.

DEAR reader, this little book was mainly intended for the edification of believers, but if you are yet unsaved, our heart yearns over you: and we would fain say a word which may be blessed to you. Open your Bible, and read the story of the lepers, and mark their position, which was much the same as yours. If you remain where you are you must perish; if you go to Jesus you can but die. “Nothing venture, nothing win,” is the old proverb, and in your case the venture is no great one. If you sit still in sullen despair, no one can pity you when your ruin comes; but if you die with mercy sought, if such a thing were possible, you would be the object of universal sympathy. None escape who refuse to look to Jesus; but you know that, at any rate, some are saved who believe in Him, for certain of your own acquaintances have received mercy: then why not you? The Ninevites said, “Who can tell?” Act upon the same hope, and try the Lord’s mercy. To perish is so awful, that if there were but a straw to catch at, the instinct of self-preservation should lead you to stretch out your hand. We have thus been talking to you on your own unbelieving ground, we would now assure you, as from the Lord, that if you seek Him He will be found of you. Jesus casts out none who come unto Him. You shall not perish if you trust Him; on the contrary, you shall find treasure far richer than the poor lepers gathered in Syria’s deserted camp. May the Holy Spirit embolden you to go at once, and you shall not believe in vain. When you are saved yourself, publish the good news to others. Hold not your peace; tell the King’s household first, and unite with them in fellowship; let the porter of the city, the minister, be informed of your discovery, and then proclaim the good news in every place. The Lord save thee ere the sun goes down this day.

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

This Evenings Meditations
March 13

“Then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark.”
—Genesis 8:9.

WEARIED out with her wanderings, the dove returns at length to the ark as her only resting place. How heavily she flies—she will drop—she will never reach the ark! But she struggles on. Noah has been looking out for his dove all day long, and is ready to receive her. She has just strength to reach the edge of the ark, she can hardly alight upon it, and is ready to drop, when Noah puts forth his hand and pulls her in unto him. Mark that: “pulled her in unto him.” She did not fly right in herself, but was too fearful, or too weary to do so. She flew as far as she could, and then he put forth his hand and pulled her in unto him. This act of mercy was shown to the wandering dove, and she was not chidden for her wanderings. Just as she was she was pulled into the ark. So you, seeking sinner, with all your sin, will be received. “Only return”—those are God’s two gracious words—”only return.” What! nothing else? No, “only return.” She had no olive branch in her mouth this time, nothing at all but just herself and her wanderings; but it is “only return,” and she does return, and Noah pulls her in. Fly, thou wanderer; fly thou fainting one, dove as thou art, though thou thinkest thyself to be black as the raven with the mire of sin, back, back to the Saviour. Every moment thou waitest does but increase thy misery; thine attempts to plume thyself and make thyself fit for Jesus are all vanity. Come thou to Him just as thou art. “Return, thou backsliding Israel.” He does not say, “Return, thou repenting Israel” (there is such an invitation doubtless), but “thou backsliding one,” as a backslider with all thy backslidings about thee, Return, return, return! Jesus is waiting for thee! He will stretch forth His hand and “pull thee in”—in to Himself, thy heart’s true home.

 

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

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