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Old 10-03-2019, 09:34 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Aloha Friday! Daily Readings for Oct 4


Daily Reflections

A NECESSARY PRUNING

. . . . we know that the pains of drinking had to come
before sobriety, and emotional turmoil before serenity.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 94

I love spending time in my garden feeding and pruning my
beautiful flowers. One day, as I was busily snipping away,
a neighbor stopped by. She commented, "Oh! Your plants are
so beautiful, it seems such a shame to cut them back." I
replied, "I know how you feel, but the excess must be
removed so they can grow stronger and healthier." Later I
thought that perhaps my plants feel pain, but God and I
know it's part of the plan and I've seen the results. I
was quickly reminded of my precious A.A. program and how
we all grow through pain. I ask God to prune me when it's
time, so I can grow.

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

Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Am I critical of other members of A.A. or of new prospects?
Do I ever say about other members: "I don't think they're



sincere, I think they're bluffing, or I think they're taking
a few drinks on the quiet?" Do I realize that my doubtful
and skeptical attitude is hurting those members, if only in
my attitude toward them, which they cannot help sensing? Do
I say about new prospects: "They'll never make the program,"



or do I say: "They'll only last a few months?" If I take
this attitude, I am unconsciously hurting those
prospects' chances. Is my attitude always constructive and
never destructive?

Meditation For The Day

To be attracted toward God and a better life, you must be
spirit-guided. There is wonderful illumination of thought



given to those who are spirit-guided. To those who are
material-guided, there is nothing in God or a finer life to
appeal to them or to attract them. But to those who are



spirit-guided there is strength and peace and calm to be
found in communion with an Unseen Lord. To those who believe
in this God they cannot see but whose power they can feel,
life has a meaning and purpose. They are children of the
Unseen Lord, and all human beings are their brothers and
sisters.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may be spirit-guided.
I pray that I may feel God's presence and power in my life.

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

As Bill Sees It

Recovery Through Giving, p.275

For a new prospect, outline the program of action, explaining how
you made a self-appraisal, how you straightened out your past, and



why you are now endeavoring to be helpful to him. It is important
for him to realize that your attempt to pass this on to him plays a
vital part in your own recovery. Actually, he may be helping you
more than you are helping him. Make it plain that he is under no
obligation to you.

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

In the first six months of my own sobriety, I worked hard with
many alcoholics. Not a one responded. Yet this work kept me
sober. It wasn't a question of those alcoholics giving me anything.
My stability came out of trying to give, not out of demanding that I
receive.

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, p.94
2. Grapevine, January 1958

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

Walk In Dry Places

Deserving Success
Achievements
It's said that alcoholics sometimes snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
Some of us, deep down inside, don't really think we deserve success. We



might be discouraged by feelings of guilt or low self-esteem, or perhaps
we don't want to become targets of envy or competitive attacks.
We need to practice acceptance of our current situation, always believing
that we do have a right to achievements that match our talents and experience,
indeed, such achievements may only be possible now that we're sober and
thinking rightly.
Some people think that our occupations and our program are separate matters.
But the very last idea in the 12 Steps is to practice our principles "in all our affairs."
If we take the view that any useful work is a form of service, we'll find opportunities
to be beneficial to everyone. With that attitude, we will also realize that we deserve success.
I ‘ll know today that I have a right to do well in any legitimate activity for which I am qualified.

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

Keep It Simple

Your three best doctors are faith, time, and patience.---From a fortune cookie
Only a short time ago, we were very sick. Getting sober made us so much better.
At first, when we stopped drinking and using other drugs, we thought we were fixed.
Then we began to see that we were not all that well.



No doctor can fix us. To get well, we need to keep living by the Twelve Steps and
the slogans of our program. We need to keep on trusting that our Higher Power
will heal us. One Day at a Time, day after day, we get stronger and happier.
And it never has to stop. Each day, we know ourselves a little better.
Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, You are my best doctor. Help me remember that.
Action for the Day: Today, I’ll do what the “doctor” suggests. I will talk with
my sponsor about Step Ten today.

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

Each Day a New Beginning

Ambiguity means admitting more than one response to a situation and allowing
yourself to be aware of those contradictory responses. You may want something



and fear it at the same time. You may find it both beautiful and ugly. --Tristine Rainer
Flexibility is a goal worth the striving. It eases our relations with others, and it
stretches our realm of awareness. Letting go of rigid adherence to what our
perceptions were yesterday assures us of heightened understanding of life's
variables and lessons.
Being torn between two decisions, feeling ambivalent about them, need not
create consternation, though it often does. Hopefully, it will encourage us to
pray for direction, and then to be responsive to the guidance. And we must
keep in mind that no decision is ever wrong. It may lead us astray for a time,
but it will also introduce us to uncharted territories, which offer many opportunities
for flexibility.
Contradictory responses, our own and also ours in relations with others, keep us
on our toes, lend an element of excitement to our lives, and push us to think
creatively about our perceptions. Growth and change are guaranteed.
I will be in tune with myself today. I will let my perceptions guide me.

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

Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition

Chapter 6 - INTO ACTION

Our design for living is not a one-way street. It is as good for the wife as for the husband. If we can forget, so can she. It is better, however, that one does not needlessly name a person upon whom she can vent jealousy.

pp. 81-82

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

Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition - Stories

SAFE HAVEN - This A.A. found that the process of discovering who he really was began with knowing who he didn't want to be.

I went home and called a friend I had seen at the local mall a week earlier. I hadn't talked to her for a couple of years, but I had noticed how different she looked and behaved. As we spoke, she said she hadn't had a drink for over a year. She told me about a group of friends who were helping her stay sober. I lied to her and claimed I hadn't had a drink myself for quite some time. I don't think she believed me, but she gave me her phone number and encouraged me to call if I would like to meet her friends. Later, when I worked up the nerve to call her, I admitted that I had a drinking problem and wanted to stop. She picked me up and took me to my first A.A. meeting.
p. 455

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

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Five - "Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs."

This practice of admitting one's defects to another person is, of course, very ancient. It has been validated in every century, and it characterizes the lives of all spiritually centered and truly religious people. But today religion is by no means the sole advocate of this saving principle. Psychiatrists and psychologists point out the deep need every human being has for practical insight and knowledge of his own personality flaws and for a discussion of them with an understanding and trustworthy person. So far as alcoholics are concerned, A.A. would go even further. Most of us would declare that without a fearless admission of our defects to another human being we could not stay sober. It seems plain that the grace of God will not enter to expel our destructive obsessions until we are willing to try this.

pp. 56-57

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

Yesterday is history, tomorrow, but a mystery...
Today is a gift, that's why we call it the present.

Like an ability or a muscle, hearing your inner wisdom is strengthened by doing it.
--Robbie Gass

"If the eyes are looked upon as the windows to the soul...
then a smile must be the doorway the heart."
--unknown

"Listen or thy tongue will keep thee deaf."
--American Indian Proverb

When someone intentionally hurts me, I know, they are also hurting themselves, probably
more. Let go, and love them anyway.
--Shelley

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

Father Leo's Daily Meditation

LIFE

"I am not afraid of tomorrow,
for I have seen yesterday and I
love today."
-- William Allen White

Today I have confidence in my life and I am experiencing consistency in my behavior and
attitude. In recovery, things follow a natural progression and life is more like a series of
curves than sharp peaks. As an addict, my life was forever going up and down, ecstasy
followed by gloom; the "best ever" followed by depression; always black and white --- no
grays.

Today I have some balance and consistency. Things are connected and grow in the
process of change. Sudden happenings and quick changes scare me because they are
symptomatic of yesterday's disease and are not consistent with the spiritual life I seek.
Today I have the peace of knowing that tomorrow will be something like today --- and I
am happy.

Thank You for the spiritual gift of consistency.

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

Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; His love endures forever.
Psalm 106:1

Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my sighing. Listen to my cry for help,
my King and my God, for to you I pray. In the morning, O LORD, you hear my
voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation. Psalm 5:1-3

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

Daily Inspiration

When you lose your temper, you lose. Lord, help me to be patient with those around me,
but most of all, help me be patient with myself.

Apply God's promises to your daily lives and speak to Him from the depths of your heart.
Lord, the more time I spend with You, the stronger You make my faith and the more blessings
You place in my life.

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

NA Just For Today

Page 290

"When we first begin to enjoy relief from our addiction, we run the risk of assuming control of our lives again. We forget the agony and pain that we have known."

Basic Text, p.50

Many of us have been "thirty-day wonders." We were desperate and dying when we showed up at our first NA meeting. We identified with the addicts we met there and the message they shared. With their support, we were finally able to stop using and catch a free breath. For the first time in a long, long time, we felt at home. Overnight, our lives were transformed; we walked, talked, ate, drank, slept, and dreamed Narcotics Anonymous.

Then, Narcotics Anonymous lost its novelty. Meetings that had been a thrill became monotonous. Our wonderful NA friends became bores; their uplifting NA talk, drivel. When our former friends called, inviting us back for some of the old fun, we kissed our recovery goodbye.

Sooner or later, we made our way back to the rooms of Narcotics Anonymous. Nothing had changed out there, we'd discovered-not us, not our friends, not the drugs, not anything. If anything, it had gotten worse than ever. True, NA meetings may not be a laugh riot, and our NA friends may not be spiritual giants. But there's a power in the meetings, a common bond among the members, a life to the program that we cant do without. Today, our recovery is more than just a fad-it's a way of life. We're going to practice living our program like our lives depend on it, because they do.

Just for Today: I'm no "thirty-day wonder" The NA way is my way of life, and I'm here for the duration.

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

You are reading from the book Today's Gift.
The reason why birds can fly and we can't is simply that they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings. --James M. Barrie
As children, we are taught to act and think with confidence. If we have faith that something wonderful can happen, it will bring us joy. Confidence gives us the will to succeed. Without faith, we invite despair. Faith lets us win by teaming us with love and hope. When things are going well, faith encourages growth. During hard times, faith falls upon trust for added strength and inspiration. It takes such a small amount of material things to have faith. Once, a four-year-old girl found a penny and showed it proudly to a stranger. The man scoffed, "What do you expect to buy with a penny?" The child with faith replied, "I can buy a wonderful wish at a wishing well with it."
What can I have faith in today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
Anxiety is that range of distress, which attends willing what cannot be willed. --Leslie H. Farber
There are hundreds of ways in which men try to will things that cannot be willed. We will to sleep; we will to have others like us; we will to have sexual virility. In all these things, the force of our will does not work because what we want is not controllable. They come to us as an outcome of many factors - when the situation is right - when we have become ready for them.
When we could not let go, when we did not know how to turn our life and our will over to the care of God, we became more and more anxious. Then we turned to our addictive or codependent escapes from anxiety and willfulness. It is the folly of our age to try to take charge of everything. We are following a more peaceful and more successful way. We are doing our part and receiving the benefits that come to us.
The will of my Higher Power has a loving purpose and is far wiser than I.


You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
If I love with my Spirit, I don't have to think so hard with my head. --Peggy Cahn
Love smoothes all ruffles. All situations are calmed, all tension is eased. The expression of love is a balm on all wounds, particularly our own. Feeling love toward the people in our lives today will boost our spirits; our personal difficulties will lessen. We'll discover resolution. The answers we've been searching for become known to us when we concentrate less on our problems and more on the gift of love we can give to the travelers we encounter today.
The solutions to our problems are seldom found in our heads. They burst forth from our hearts. We suddenly seem to know what to do. Perhaps someone else's words or behavior will trigger the inspiration we've longed for. We can let our concern today be on the moment and the experience. We can let its power wash over us, and in the wake we'll find the answers we search for.
When we're brittle, cold to others, we close off whatever messages are being directed to us. Our love for others softens us; making it possible for the words and ideas we await to permeate us.
If I am in need today, if I have a problem that wants a solution, I will reach out to others with love. They'll hand me my answer in return.


You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Faith and Money
Sometimes, there is not enough money to make ends meet, much less afford any luxuries.
People may tell us to do a budget, and we chuckle. The expenses we need to pay for survival surpass the income.
We look at the situation; shake our heads, and say, "No way."
Many of us have had to live through these situations. This is not the time to panic; this is not the time to despair.
Panic and desperation will lead to bad judgment and desperate moves. This is the time to substitute faith for fear. This is the time to trust God to meet our needs.
Take life one day and one need at a time. Use your survival skills positively. Know your possibilities are not limited by the past or by your present circumstances.
Examine any blocks that might be stopping the flow of money in your life. Do you have an attitude, an issue, a lesson that might be yours to change or learn?
Maybe the lesson is a simple one of faith. In Biblical times, it is said that Jesus walked on the water. It is said His followers could, too, but the moment they let fear take over, they sank.
During financial hard times, we can learn to "walk on water" with money issues. If we make out a budget, and there's not enough money to survive and pay legitimate expenses, do your best, then let go. Trust your Source to supply your needs. If an emergency arises, and there is no cash to meet the need, look beyond your wallet. Look to your Source. Claim a Divine supply, an unlimited supply, for all that you need.
Do your part. Strive for an attitude of financial responsibility in thought and action. Ask for Divine Wisdom. Listen to God's leadings. Then let go of your fears and your need to control.
We know that money is a necessary part of being alive and living; so does our Higher Power.
God, bring any blocks and barriers within me concerning money to the surface. Help me take care of myself financially. If money is tight, I will dispel fear and learn to "walk on water" concerning finance issues. I will not use this attitude to justify irresponsibility. I will do my part, including letting go of fear and trusting you to do the rest.


Today I can wait until all negative and hostile feelings lose their power over me before I say or do anything. I can take the time to breathe in peace and love, no matter what is going on in my life. --Ruth Fishel

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

Journey To The Heart
October 4
Let the Miracle of Acceptance Find You

I found this miracle in a small church in New Mexico. The Sanctuario do Chimayo is famous for its healing powers and miracles. The ground under the church, some say, is particularly holy and powerful. Crutches– evidence of the healing miracles people experienced there– line the walls of the church’s back room.

Four years ago, a friend had sent me to the Sanctuario to find my miracle. It was three months after my son died. I didn’t know what miracle could possibly fix my situation. Now, sitting in the back of the chapel, I knew. I didn’t have any crutches to hang on the wall, but the miracle of acceptance had healed my heart and changed my life.

We may search for miracles that change our situation so we don’t have to deal with the loss or feel the pain. Sometimes we get that miracle. Our circumstances change. But sometimes the miracle we get changes us. If the situation is too difficult, the loss to painful to accept in one leap, take smaller steps. Accept what you’re feeling today. Accept who you are today. Accept what you think today.

Look for your miracles. Hope for the best. But when you can’t change what you’re going through, let the simple, quiet, daily miracle of acceptance find you.

*****

more language of letting go
Value your dreams

I always wanted to be a writer. Long ago I talked to God about it, then asked God to bring it to pass if that dream was from Him. Or Her. Within twenty-four hours, I had my first writing assignment from a community newspaper. I got paid five dollars a story, and I've been writing ever since.

Sometimes, we get a vision of ourselves doing something. We might get an inkling or even have a dream where we see ourselves doing something in the future. We might get a feeling that we're about to become pregnant. Or we might have a dream in which we see ourselves moving into a new home. We might be driving by a neighborhood one day and get a special feeling that it would be right for us to live there.

We might get a hunch about a career-oriented event.

Some people think these little hunches or dreams are our soul's way of remembering what it came here to do.

We see a flash: a dream, vision, or special feeling of what's coming next. Maybe your dreams about what you want and what you'd like are more important than you think.


God, show me what you want me to do and experience in life. Then give me enough consciousness to relax and see what you're pointing out.

Activity: Have an I see page in your journal. As you go about the days ahead, pay special attention to the dreams that pop into your head. Nighttime dreams are important. It's good to write in your journal about those,too. Often they give us clues. But what I'm talking about here are our daytime dreams and feelings-- those things we think we want or can see ourselves doing. Have you buried any dreams from childhood or adulthood, things you really wanted to pursue but forgot along the way? Tell yourself it's time to remember. Then let it go. Pay attention to what pops up into sight. Write it down, even if it's just a sentence or two. Then let the dream go again. Don't try to control the future. It will happen of its own accord.

*****

Culling Out the Weeds
Mind Over Matter

The power of the mind is a curious thing, because it is so powerful yet so difficult to control sometimes.

The power of the mind is a curious thing, because it is so powerful yet so difficult to control sometimes. We find ourselves thinking a certain way, knowing that this thought may be creating trouble for us yet we find it difficult to stop. For example, many people have the experience of getting sick at the same time every year or every time they go on a plane. They may even be aware that their beliefs impact their experiences, so continue to think they will get sick and then they do.

Sometimes we need to get sick in order to process something or move something through our bodies. But often we get sick, or feel exhausted, because we don’t make the effort to galvanize the power of our minds in the service of our physical health, which is one of its most important functions. We really can use it to communicate to our bodies, yet we often regard the two as separate entities that have little to do with one another.

Knowing this, we have the power to create physical health and mental health, simply by paying attention to the tapes running in our minds. Once we hear ourselves, we have the option to let that tape keep running or to make a new recording. We harness the power of the mind in our defense when we choose supportive, healing words that foster good health and high spirits. All we need to do is remember to tend the field of our mind with the attentive and loving hand of a master gardener tending her flower beds, culling out the weeds so that the blossoms may come to fruition.

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

A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

We are powerless over our addictions; that admission brought us to The Program, where we learn through unconditional surrender that there is victory in defeat. After a time, we learn in Twelfth Step work that we’re not only powerless over our own addiction, but over the addictions of others. We cannot will another person to sobriety, for example, any more than we can hold back the sunset. We may minister to another person’s physical needs; we may share with him, pray with him, and take him to meetings. But we cannot get inside his head and push some sort of magic button that will make him — or her — take the all-important First Step. Do I still sometimes try to play God?

Today I Pray

may I understand my all-too-human need to be the boss, have the upper hand, be the final authority — even in the humbling business of my own addiction. May I see how easy it would be to become a big-shot Twelfth Stepper. May I also see that, no matter how much I care and want to help, I have no control over another’s addiction — any more than someone else has control over mine.

Today I Will Remember

I cannot engineer another’s sobriety.

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

One More Day

The bitter and the sweet come from the outside, the hard from within, from one’s own efforts.
– Albert Einstein

Too often we expect to have lives in which only happy events occur and no one is ever hurt. Instead of tears and sadness, we expect only happiness. In doing this, we do not face life realistically. By ignoring all the problems around us — our own and others’ as well — we skim the surface of life.

When we face reality, we begin our real journey. A life well lived is not one of constant happiness and joy. More often, it is the life as lived by someone who has known intense pain and extreme disappointment. Our negative experiences give us that opportunity to be strengthened within.

All my experiences give me a chance to grow.

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

Food For Thought

Friendship

Through this program, we learn that we have choices. Not only can we choose what we will eat and what we will do, but also we can choose our friends. As we become honest, unaddicted people, we are able to relate to each other on a level of mutuality and admiration rather than out of dependency and fear. We gain the self-confidence to choose those with whom we enjoy spending time and sharing, rather than slavishly catering to anyone who will notice us.

Friends in OA have a special bond, since we share a common problem and a common solution. By putting principles before personalities, we avoid dependency and childish demands. Though we love and support each other, we do not cling together, since we are each dependent on a Higher Power. Our friends give us the gift of themselves, which shows us who we are.

Thank You for friendship.

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

One Day At A Time

SHAME

”It is not the criminal things that are hardest to confess,
but the ridiculous and the shameful.”
Jean Jacques Rousseau

I had a very strange childhood filled with lots of emotional and physical neglect. Combine that with moving about once a year and being deemed as "unacceptable" by each new community we moved into, and how could I help but feel a great sense of shame about everything about me?

As an adult I left home and became a well-respected part of a new community. I have lived in the same nice house, with a beautiful yard, and had well kept-children. In spite of all the evidence to the contrary, internally I was still that "unacceptable" child. I had not told anyone about my childhood because I felt it to be a shameful secret. I thought that much of my adult unhappiness was deserved because I truly believed that even though no one knew the truth about me, deep down I really was still unacceptable.

Since coming to TRG, I have been releasing something far more important than the 60 pounds of weight I have lost. I have begun to release the shame, the sense of being unacceptable, and the sense of being unworthy and unlovable. I have shared my secrets with wonderfully-loving, accepting people. By sharing my secrets I am releasing my pain. My request that my name not be revealed at the end of this meditation, though, clearly states that I still have work to do. TRG, the program, and the steps are offering me the means to recovery and I will gratefully accept the offer!

One day at a time...
I will remember that the old false self-perceptions are no longer relevant in my life. I am learning new ways of self-acceptance and new ways of self-nurturing that will serve me far better.
~ Karen A.

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

AA 'Big Book' - Quote

Since the home has suffered more than anything else, it is well that a man exert himself there. He is not likely to get far in any direction if he fails to show unselfishness and love under his own roof. We know there are difficult wives and families, but the man who is getting over alcoholism must remember he did much to make them so. - Pg. 127 - The Family Afterward

Hour To Hour - Book - Quote

At times, while traveling this road, we find it easier to just agree with everyone now, and do our own thing later. It's called 'just talking the talk.' This means we are not serious about our new life and can quickly travel to our next high. We tell these people that a belly full of booze and head full of program is a miserable way to live.

Let the next thing I say be straight from my heart and not just something I think the person in front of me wants to hear.

Guilt

I will tolerate the pain of watching. When I see someone I care about locked in this disease, I want to run and help. I want to tell them what to do to get better. But time and again, this hasn't worked. In fact, it usually blows up in my face. My only job is to stay on my own path. I cannot help anyone who doesn't want my help. If someone wants what I have they will also want to find it in their own way. I cannot really teach anyone anything I think. I cannot really save anyone. Especially those close to me. My feelings of disgust at their blindness and frustration with their seeming unwillingness to get with the program color my message. And so often, I help because I feel so much survivor's guilt. What I really want to do is run the other way but I feel too guilty to do that. What I really want is the family I lost to this disease or the family I never had but that is gone. Today, I will allow myself to have what I have, to live well, to follow my own path of recovery.

- Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor - Book - Quote

It's easy to see the difference between ourselves and assholes, unless, at the moment, we're the *******.

I have got to get out of my own way.

"Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book" - Book

Today, take care of yourself. Tomorrow you can worry about them.

Time for Joy - Book - Quote

Today I am developing a world of peace for myself, both inside and out.

Today I know I am always only one breath away from peace, one prayer away from serenity.

Alkiespeak - Book - Quote

I looked around the room and I could not figure out what it was that you had which was so hot I should be willing to go to any lengths to get. Some of you had nice jewelry - and if your rings were loose and you held my hand during the Lord's Prayer.. they were mine. - Patti O
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