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 – October 1

Just For Today
October 1
Not Just A Motivation For Growth

“We learn that pain can be a motivating factor in recovery.”
Basic Text p.29

“Pain – who needs it!” we think whenever we’re in it. We see no good purpose for pain. It seems to be a pointless exercise in suffering. If someone happens to mention spiritual growth to us while we’re in pain, we most likely snort in disgust and walk away, thinking we’ve never encountered a more insensitive person.

But what if human beings didn’t feel pain-either physical or emotional? Sound like an ideal world? Not really. If we weren’t capable of feeling physical pain, we wouldn’t know when to blink foreign particles out of our eyes; we wouldn’t know when to stop exercising; we wouldn’t even know when to roll over in our sleep. We would simply abuse ourselves for lack of a natural warning system.

The same holds true for emotional pain. How would we have known that our lives had become unmanageable if we hadn’t been in pain? Just like physical pain, emotional pain lets us know when to stop doing something that hurts.

But pain is not only a motivating factor. Emotional pain provides a basis for comparison when we are joyful. We couldn’t appreciate joy without knowing pain.

Just for today: I will accept pain as a necessary part of life. I know that to whatever level I can feel pain, I can also feel joy.


Daily Reflections
October 1

It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe.

When I am in pain it is easy to stay close to the friends I have found in the programs. Relief from that pain is provided in the solutions contained in A.A.’s Twelve Steps. But when I am feeling good and things are going well, I can become complacent. To put it simply, I become lazy and turn into the problem instead of the solution. I need to get into action, to take stock: where am I and where am I going? A daily inventory will tell me what I must change to regain spiritual balance. Admitting what I find within myself, to God and to another human being, keeps me honest and humble.


Twenty-Four Hours A Day
October 1
A.A. Thought For The Day

A.A. will lose some of its effectiveness if I do not do my share.  Where am I failing? Are there some things I do not feel like doing?  Am I held back by self-consciousness or fear? Self-consciousness is a form of pride. It is a fear that something may happen to you.  What happens to you is not very important. The impression you make on others does not depend so much on the kind of job you do as on your sincerity and honesty of purpose. Am I holding back because I am afraid of not making a good impression?

Meditation For The Day

Look to God for the true power that will make you effective. See no other wholly dependable supply of strength. That is the secret of a truly effective life. And you, in your turn, will be used to help many others find effectiveness. Whatever spiritual help you need, whatever spiritual help you desire for others, look to God. Seek that God’s will be done in your life and seek that your will conforms to His. Failures come from depending too much on your own strength.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may feel that nothing good is too much for me if I look to God for help. I pray that I may be effective through His guidance.


As Bill Sees It
October 1
Troubles of Our Own Making, p.272

Selfishness–self-centeredness! That, we think, is the root of our troubles. Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation, but we invariably find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a position to be hurt.

So our troubles, we think, are basically of our own making. They arise out of ourselves, and the alcoholic is an extreme example of self-will run riot, though he usually doesn’t think so. Above everything, we alcoholics must be rid of this selfishness. We must, or it kills us!

Alcoholics Anonymous, p.62


Walk In Dry Places
October 1
Thinking about Blame.

Which is worse: blaming ourselves or others for things that go wrong?  A better question might be, Is anyone to blame?

We’re really better off, in 12 Step living, to begin dropping the idea of placing blame for our thinking altogether. Even is someone’s responsibility for a mistake or wrong is fully evident, we get nowhere by pointing the finger at him or her. What often happens, in fact, is that the person becomes defensive… just as we do… And retreats into denial or anger.

Another problem is that placing blame quickly becomes the sticky business of taking another person’s inventory. Let’s leave such matters to courts and prosecutions and focus instead on solving our own problems.

I’ll not waste time today thinking about who’s to blame. My focus will be on what can be done for general improvement.


Keep It Simple
October 1

Continued to take personal inventory
. . .First half of Step Ten

Step Ten tells us to keep looking at who we are. We ask ourselves, “Is what I’m doing okay?”

If it is, then we take pride in the way we acting. If not, we change our behavior. Step Ten keeps us in the right direction.

Throughout time, wise persons have told us to get to know ourselves.  Step Ten helps us do this.

We become our own best friend. A true friend tells us when we’re doing right and when we’re messing up. Step Ten is our teacher. Even when we want to pretend we don’t know right from wrong, Step Ten reminds us that we do know. Step Ten is our daily reminder that we now have values—good values.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, Step Ten is a lot of work. Keep me working. Help me form a habit. Let this habit be called “Step Ten.”

Action for the Day: Today, I’ll continue to take a personal inventory.  I will list what is good about me today and what I don’t like.


Each Day a New Beginning
October 1

Women are often caught between conforming to existing standards or role definitions and exploring the promise of new alternatives.
–Stanlee Phelps and Nancy Austin

This is a time of exploring for many of us. Recovery means change in habits, change in behavior, change in attitudes. And change is seldom easy. But change we must, if we want to recover successfully.

We do have support for trying our new alternatives. We have support from our groups and our higher power. Perhaps we want a career or more education. Perhaps we want to develop a hobby or try a sport.

Sharing that desire and then looking for support guarantees some guidance. This program has given us a chance to start fresh– to become our inner desire.

We are only caught in an old pattern if we assent to it. The going won’t always be easy, but support and guidance are available and free if we but look for them.

Today I will consider my alternatives. Do I want to make a change?


Alcoholics Anonymous
October 1

– Alcohol’s wringer squeezed this author–but he escaped quite whole.

I’d had absolute faith in science, and only in science. “Knowledge is power,” I’d always been taught. Now I had to face up to the fact that knowledge of this sort, applied to my individual case, was not power. Science could take my mind apart expertly, but it couldn’t seem to put it together again. I crawled back to my analyst, not so much because I had faith in him, but because I had nowhere else to turn.

p. 385


Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
October 1

Tradition One – “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. Unity.”

To many minds all this liberty for the individual spells sheer anarchy.  Every newcomer, every friend who looks at A.A. for the first time is greatly puzzled. They see liberty verging on license, yet they recognize at once that A.A. has an irresistible strength of purpose and action.  “How,” they ask, “can such a crowd of anarchists function at all?  How can they possible place their common welfare first? What in Heaven’s name holds them together?”

pp. 129-130


Xtra Thoughts
October 1

“How things look on the outside of us depends on how things are on the inside of us.”
–Parks Cousins

I shall continue to believe. In hope there is faith, miracles do happen, in God I trust.

Time is my most precious resource, I choose to use it wisely and to cherish each moment, sober.

I have a choice, I do not have to accept unacceptable behavior.

Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising that tempt you to believe your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires some of the same courage that a soldier needs. Peace has its victories, but it takes brave men and women to win them.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

Some people make the future; most wait for the future to make them.
–Cited in The Best of BITS & PIECES

There is a choice you have to make, In everything you do. And you must always keep in mind, The choice you make, makes you.

You can preach a better sermon with your life than you can with your lips.


Father Leo’s Daily Meditation
October 1

“We are all here for a spell, get all the good laughs you can.”
– Will Rogers

When I first heard recovering alcoholics laughing, I thought I was in the wrong place. I was angry that they treated the disease so lightly.  Then slowly I began to see that laughter is part of joy — a deep joy that comes from personal healing. Laughter is spiritual because it is a positive response to life. It is the noise of optimism.

And there is so much in life to laugh about — not only the funny things we did, but also the “humor” that abounds in living. How funny is our self-righteousness! How amusing we are in courtship. How ridiculous we appear when we pretend to be serious and “in charge”.

Laughter is the conversation of angels.

Let me see the miracle of humor in the gift of life — and let me be prepared to share it.


Bible Scriptures
October 1

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Philippians 4:6

“Hatred stirs up dissension, but love covers over all wrongs.”
Proverbs 10:12

Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.
James 2:17


Daily Inspiration
October 1

Don’t give up because your best has not yet been achieved. Lord, take away my doubts and give me courage to accept my opportunities.

Often times that which we find difficult is that which teaches. Lord, may I always be able to see the good that comes from even my trials.


A Day At A Time
October 1

Reflection For The Day

We can be surrounded by people and still feel lonely.  We can be all by ourselves and still feel happy and content.  What makes the difference?  We feel lonely if we look to other people for something they really can’t provide.  None else can give us peace of mind, an inner sense of acceptance, and serenity.  And when we find ourselves alone, we needn’t feel lonely.  God is with us;  His presence is like a warm shawl enfolding us.  The more we’re aware of ourselves as beloved by God, the more we’re able to feel content and secure — whether we’re with others or when alone.  Am I experiencing a sense of God and His love at all times and in all places?

Today I Pray

May I understand that we each have our own kind of loneliness — whether we are young and friendless, old and kept waiting by death, bereft, left, running away, or just feeling out of it in a crowd.  May my loneliness be eased a bit by the fact that loneliness is, indeed, a universal feeling that everyone knows first hand — even though some lives seem more empty than others.  May I — and all the lonely people — take comfort in the companionship of God.

Today I Will Remember

Shared loneliness is less lonely.


One More Day
October 1

Solitude is not measured by the miles of space that intervene between a man and his fellows.
–  Henry David Thoreau

Solitude is the time we choose to be alone, but it becomes loneliness when we believe we have no choice.  When we are lonely, we feel trapped in a web of isolation.

Lonely people are caught in a trap with only themselves for company.  There can be a difference between loneliness and aloneness — or solitude.

We are finding ways to create solitude from loneliness.  We strive to fill our lives with meaningful experiences such as work, family, hobbies, and relationships with friends.  As we enrich our lives with these activities, our alone time becomes solitude — a peaceful time to withdraw from the world and into thoughts, prayers, and meditation.

A moment of solitude today can enrich and replenish me.


One Day At A Time
October 1
The Fear of Failure

“It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that things are difficult.”

I was full of excuses: “I can’t start a food plan. Won’t it be the same as a diet? I’m a free spirit! I don’t like such restrictions! If I can’t do something perfectly, why should I even start? I do it perfectly, or I don’t do it at all! I have gone too far to ever go back to being anywhere near healthy. I don’t have time to plan my Food. I am young. I have plenty of time to worry about taking off the weight!”

These were my favorite excuses. Underlying all the excuses was the fear of failure. I did not know that true failure comes about by not ever having tried. My life circumstances never got better by ignoring my problems with food. Ignoring my condition began to complicate every aspect of my life.

This moment I have a choice. I dare to choose in the next few moments even one small thing that I can do to make my life better or more healthful.

One day at a time…
If I cannot think of anything, I will pause and ask my Higher Power to help me learn to choose.

~ January K.


Elder’s Meditation of the Day – October 1

“So don’t be afraid.
What we left behind,
leave it back there.
Try to do some good.
Let’s try to take a step,
try to think something good.”
–Wallace Black Elk, LAKOTA

Every day is a new day. Sometimes we make mistakes.
We do not need to carry these mistakes along with us.
Take the lessons and leave the mistakes behind.
Look forward to today.
Today we can do something good.
Today we can have good thoughts.
Today we can think kind, uplifting thoughts about ourselves.
Today I will think good about …

My Creator, today I ask You to direct my thoughts.


Journey To The Heart
October 1
Are You Ready, Willing, and Able?

Have you cleared the path you want to travel? Are you ready, willing, and able to do whatever it takes to have what you want?

Decide what you want. Be as clear as you can be. Say it. Write it. Share your idea with a friend. Then ask yourself if you are ready, willing, and able to do what it takes to have what you want. Ask yourself the question as often as you need to.

Watch how you feel when you say what you want. Look for objections, blocks from within, obstacles on your path. Look closely at yourself, your fears, your angers, your resistance. Let your feelings come up, acknowledge them, then let them go. One after another remove the blocks until the path you want to travel is clear. Remove the obstacles until you can clearly see your vision and your voice is strong and clear. I’m ready, willing, and able to have what I want and it’s in my highest good.

The way to your dreams, the way to make your visions come alive is by taking a journey inside your soul. Are you ready, willing, and able to have what you want? Do you believe it when you hear yourself say it? When you do, the road will be clear, and you’ll be ready to travel the path you desire.


Today’s Gift
October 1

Perhaps nature is our best assurance of immortality.
—Eleanor Roosevelt

Everything in nature contributes to something else – like the hundred-year-old tree that stood tall until a wind storm. The protection it gave to thousands of birds and squirrels it now gives to insects and fungi. As it slowly decays, it nourishes the ground, and from the enriched soil grows several other trees. We human beings are part of this eternal cycle, our ideas and actions enriching those around us and influencing generations yet to come. Being part of this vast plan gives us comfort, and faith that everything that happens is meant to be. Our hearts fill with joy with the knowledge that we are needed; just as every tree is needed.

How do I fit into nature’s plan today?


The Language Of Letting Go
October 1
Be Who You Are

In recovery; we’re learning a new behavior. It’s called Be Who You Are.

For some of us, this can be frightening. What would happen if we felt what we felt, said what we wanted, became firm about our beliefs, and valued what we needed? What would happen if we let go of our camouflage of adaptation? What would happen if we owned our power to be ourselves?

Would people still like us? Would they go away? Would they become angry?

There comes a time when we become willing and ready to take that risk. To continue growing, and living with ourselves, we realize we must liberate ourselves. It becomes time to stop allowing ourselves to be so controlled by others and their expectations and be true to ourselves – regardless of the reaction of others.

Before long, we begin to understand. Some people may go away, but the relationship would have ended anyway. Some people stay and love and respect us more for taking the risk of being whom we are. We begin to achieve intimacy, and relationships that work.

We discover that who we are has always been good enough. It is who we were intended to be.

Today, I will own my power to be myself.


More Language Of Letting Go
October 1
Say I see

I was out at the drop zone one day soon after I’d begun skydiving, when the idea occurred to me. I know, I thought, I’ll get a cabin out here, on a little hill with a hot tub, fireplace, and lined inside with scented cedar wood.

Wouldn’t it be nice, I thought, to live high up on a hill and look down at night at the twinkling lights, overlooking the city and the lake?

I didn’t think much more about it, until the cold, rainy season started. Then, despite all my efforts to repress the dream of the cabin, it just popped up and sprang right out from inside of me.

I called my friend Kyle and asked him if he was busy. He said no. So I asked him if he had some time to go driving around with me.

“I just want to check out the area,” I said. “Let’s see if the cabin’s there. Let’s just drive to where my intuition takes me.”

We drove down highway fifteen when an exit approached. Taking the exit felt like the thing to do. We turned off and started driving west. I looked at me right and suddenly felt an urge to drive up the hill. So we followed the road, driving by one house after another. Finally, at the end of the road, there was a small cabin at the top of a hill. The outside was covered with rough-sawn cedar. A brick fireplace covered the front of the house. A hot tub sat in the backyard. And a for sale sign was posted in the frontyard.

There are other pieces to this story. Chip got in on the dream. At some point we stopped calling it “the cabin,” and it became the Blue Sky Lodge. Pat and Andy came along and helped make the dream real. It was going to be a comfortable place for people who liked to do things in the air. We’d have extra beds available. It wouldn’t be a hotel, but it was open to any guest who wanted to spread his or her wings and learn how to fly.

We camped at the lodge during construction. Everything took longer than we thought, but eventually it turned into the place of our dreams.

There’s a pool table, a dartboard, a whimsical guest room called the down room, a comfy guest bedroom, a living room with a messive stone fireplace and a big-screen TV. Then there’s the Blue Room, a master bedroom with blue plaid material on the walls. It houses the biggest, most comfortable bed in the world– the Cloud Bed– and my desk.

Red beams line the cedar wood ceiling. Chip has a desk in the foyer, and there’s video cameras and regular cameras and computers on top of it. And there’s books and CDs and flight bags and parachutes and helmets and climbing ropes lying around the house.

The Blue Sky Lodge is really about learning that your dreams can come true.

Whether your dreams for yourself come to you in bits and pieces, over a period of time, or whether you practice visualization to see and focus on your dreams yourself, dreams are just another way of God communicating with us.

She’s saying, “Look at what you can have.”

An important part of the language of letting go is learning to say, “I see what I can have, who I am, where I am, and what I have right now.”

God, help me become aware.


Touchstones Meditation For Men
October 1

It was football time, apple time, harvest time, hunting time, and school time. Footsteps quickened. It was exciting to be in transition. It seemed more like the beginning of something than like the end of it.
—Paul Gruchow

Some days seem filled with the exciting energy of change. They are like walking on a bridge from one time period to the next. In the fall, our senses are filled with messages of change. Trees tell us it is happening. So do football games, and the cool chill in the morning air.

As summer wanes and winter approaches, we may need to grieve for what we leave behind before greeting what comes next. The changes we experience in recovery bring similar responses. We grieve the loss of our old friends, the bottle, the food binge, the romantic thrill, or the excitement of gambling or spending. We are able to grieve our losses because we accept them. We have chosen them. Now we move to the next season of our lives.

As I experience the circle of seasons outside me, I am grateful for the ongoing flow of change within.


Daily TAO
October 1

There are no ancients before me,
No followers behind:
Only the vastness of heaven and earth
On this mountain terrace.
Though heaven may know the ultimate,
Joy or sorrow is our own will.

We stand alone in this life. No one lives our life for us. Neither drug nor sorcery can remove us, even for a moment, from our own life. We can deny it, but it is useless: We are here alone, to engage every precious moment according to our wills.

The precedents of the ancients may be helpful, but in the end they are only references. The thought of those who will follow after us is likewise merely a consideration. What matters is being, pure being.  Accept who you are. Be who you are.

If there are gods in the heavens, maybe they know the future. As a human being, I can only say that the future is yet to be made. Let us go forth and make it, but let us make it as beautifully as we can. The degree of elegance is determined by our will and the perfection of our own personalities. Therefore, do not sigh over misfortune or adversity.  Whether you are happy or sad is entirely up to you.


Daily Zen
October 1

When you look, it is formless;
When you call, it echoes.
It is the great Dharma commander,
Transmitting the sutras
Through precepts of mind.

As saltiness in water,
Transparency in color,
Surely it is there,
But its form is invisible;
The Mind King is also thus,
Residing in the body.

– Master Fu (497-569)


Food For Thought
October 1
Being True

Without rigorous honesty, we do not recover from compulsive overeating. We need to be honest about what we eat and honest about how we feel. In the past, we covered up pain with sugar frosting and tried to drown our inadequacies in carbohydrates. The time has come to deal with truth.

Alone, we are not perceptive enough to see the truth, nor strong enough to bear it. It is through our Higher Power and the OA fellowship that we are able to become true to the best that is in us. We admit that we have been living falsely, and we turn over our muddled lives so that God may straighten them out. His spirit is truth, and the light of that truth is what we need for our recovery.

Our Higher Power shows us how to be true step by step, as we are ready to progress. Each day we become more in touch with our real selves and each day our strength increases. Being true sets us free from compulsive overeating and free from the false values, hopes, and expectations, which have inhibited us.

Lead me into truth.


Faiths Checkbook
October 1
A Covenant He Remembers

He hath given meat unto them that fear him: he will ever be mindful of his covenant.
(Psalm 111:5)

Those who fear God need not fear want. Through all these long years the Lord has always found meat for His own children, whether they have been in the wilderness, or by the brook Cherith, or in captivity, or in the midst of famine. Hitherto the Lord has given us day by day our daily bread, and we doubt not that He will continue to feed us till we want no more.

As to the higher and greater blessings of the covenant of grace, He will never cease to supply them as our case demands. He is mindful that He made the covenant and never acts as if He regretted it. He is mindful of it when we provoke Him to destroy us. He is mindful to love us, keep us, and comfort us, even as He engaged to do. He is mindful of every jot and tittle of His engagements, never suffering one of His words to fall to the ground.

We are sadly unmindful of our God, but He is graciously mindful of us. He cannot forget His Son who is the surety of the covenant, nor His Holy Spirit who actively carries out the covenant, nor His own honor, which is bound up with the covenant. Hence the foundation of God standeth sure, and no believer shall lose his divine inheritance, which is his by a covenant of salt.


This Mornings Reading
October 1

“Pleasant fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved.”
—Song of Solomon 7:13.

THE spouse desires to give to Jesus all that she produces. Our heart has “all manner of pleasant fruits,” both “old and new,” and they are laid up for our Beloved. At this rich autumnal season of fruit, let us survey our stores. We have new fruits. We desire to feel new life, new joy, new gratitude; we wish to make new resolves and carry them out by new labours; our heart blossoms with new prayers, and our soul is pledging herself to new efforts. But we have some old fruits too. There is our first love: a choice fruit that! and Jesus delights in it. There is our first faith: that simple faith by which, having nothing, we became possessors of all things. There is our joy when first we knew the Lord: let us revive it. We have our old remembrances of the promises. How faithful has God been! In sickness, how softly did He make our bed! In deep waters, how placidly did He buoy us up! In the flaming furnace, how graciously did He deliver us. Old fruits, indeed! We have many of them, for His mercies have been more than the hairs of our head. Old sins we must regret, but then we have had repentances which He has given us, by which we have wept our way to the cross, and learned the merit of His blood. We have fruits, this morning, both new and old; but here is the point—they are all laid up for Jesus. Truly, those are the best and most acceptable services in which Jesus is the solitary aim of the soul, and His glory, without any admixture whatever, the end of all our efforts. Let our many fruits be laid up only for our Beloved; let us display them when He is with us, and not hold them up before the gaze of men. Jesus, we will turn the key in our garden door, and none shall enter to rob Thee of one good fruit from the soil which Thou hast watered with Thy bloody sweat. Our all shall be Thine, Thine only, O Jesus, our Beloved!


This Evenings Reading
October 1

“He will give grace and glory.”
—Psalm 84:11.

BOUNTEOUS is Jehovah in His nature; to give is His delight. His gifts are beyond measure precious, and are as freely given as the light of the sun. He gives grace to His elect because He wills it, to His redeemed because of His covenant, to the called because of His promise, to believers because they seek it, to sinners because they need it. He gives grace abundantly, seasonably, constantly, readily, sovereignly; doubly enhancing the value of the boon by the manner of its bestowal. Grace in all its forms He freely renders to His people: comforting, preserving, sanctifying, directing, instructing, assisting grace, He generously pours into their souls without ceasing, and He always will do so, whatever may occur. Sickness may befall, but the Lord will give grace; poverty may happen to us, but grace will surely be afforded; death must come but grace will light a candle at the darkest hour. Reader, how blessed it is as years roll round, and the leaves begin again to fall, to enjoy such an unfading promise as this, “The Lord will give grace.”

The little conjunction “and” in this verse is a diamond rivet binding the present with the future: grace and glory always go together. God has married them, and none can divorce them. The Lord will never deny a soul glory to whom He has freely given to live upon His grace; indeed, glory is nothing more than grace in its Sabbath dress, grace in full bloom, grace like autumn fruit, mellow and perfected. How soon we may have glory none can tell! It may be before this month of October has run out we shall see the Holy City; but be the interval longer or shorter, we shall be glorified ere long. Glory, the glory of heaven, the glory of eternity, the glory of Jesus, the glory of the Father, the Lord will surely give to His chosen. Oh, rare promise of a faithful God!

Two golden links of one celestial chain: Who owneth grace shall surely glory gain.

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>