from "Daily Reflections" by A.A. Members for A.A. Members

Posts tagged ‘Twelve-Step Program’

The Best for Today

The principles we have set down are guides to progress. ~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 60

Just as a sculptor will use different tools to achieve desired effects in creating a work of art, in Alcoholics Anonymous the Twelve Steps are used to bring about results in my own life. I do not overwhelm myself with life’s problems, and how much more work needs to be done. I let myself be comforted in knowing that my life is now in the hands of my Higher Power, a master craftsman who is shaping each part of my life into a unique work of art. By working my program I can be satisfied, knowing that “in doing the best that we can for today, we are doing all that God asks of us.” 

 

The Upward Path

Here are the steps we took. . . . ~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 59

These are the words that lead into the Twelve Steps. In their direct simplicity they sweep aside all psychological and philosophical considerations about the lightness of the Steps. They describe what I did: I took the Steps and sobriety was the result. These words do not imply that I should walk the well-trodden path of those who went before, but rather that there is a way for me to become sober and that it is a way I shall have to find. It is a new path, one that leads to infinite light at the top of the mountain. The Steps advise me about the footholds that are safe and about chasms to avoid. They provide me with the tools I need during the many parts of the solitary journey of my soul. When I speak of this journey, I share my experience, strength and hope with others. 

An Unsuspected Inner Resource

With few exceptions our members find that they have tapped an unsuspected inner resource which they presently identify with their own conception of a Power greater than themselves ~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pp. 569-70

From my first days in A.A., as I struggled for sobriety, I found hope in these words from our founders. I often pondered the phrase: “they have tapped an unsuspected inner resource.” How, I asked myself, can I find the Power within myself, since I am so powerless? In time, as the founders promised, it came to me: I have always had the choice between goodness and evil, between unselfishness and selfishness, between serenity and fear. That Power greater than myself is an original gift that I did not recognize until I achieved daily sobriety through living A.A.’s Twelve Steps. 

Begin Where You Are

We feel that elimination of our drinking is but a beginning. A much more important demonstration of our principles lies before us in our respective homes, occupations and affairs. ~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 19

It’s usually pretty easy for me to be pleasant to the people in an A.A. setting. While I’m working to stay sober, I’m celebrating with my fellow A.A.S our common release from the hell of drinking. It’s often not so hard to spread glad tidings to my old and new friends in the program.

At home or at work, though, it can be a different story. It is in situations arising in both of those areas that the little day-to-day frustrations are most evident, and where it can be tough to smile or reach out with a kind word or an attentive ear. It’s outside of the A.A. rooms that I face the real test of the effectiveness of my walk through A.A.’s Twelve Steps. 

Powerless

We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable. ~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 21

It is no coincidence that the very first Step mentions powerlessness: An admission of personal powerlessness over alcohol is a cornerstone of the foundation of recovery. I’ve learned that I do not have the power and control I once thought I had. I am powerless over what people think about me. I am powerless over having just missed the bus. I am powerless over how other people work (or don’t work) the Steps. But I’ve also learned I am not powerless over some things. I am not powerless over my attitudes. I am not powerless over negativity. I am not powerless over assuming responsibility for my own recovery. I have the power to exert a positive influence on myself, my loved ones, and the world in which I live.