Daily Reflections: December 29

THE JOY OF LIVING 

“. . . Therefore the joy of good living is the theme of A.A.’s Twelfth Step.”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, up. 115

A.A. is a joyful program! Even so, I occasionally balk at taking the necessary steps to move ahead, and find myself resisting the very actions that could bring about the joy I want. I would not resist if those actions did not touch some vulnerable area of my life, an area that needs hope and fulfillment. Repeated exposure to joyfulness has a way of softening the hard, outer edges of my ego. Therein lies the power of joyfulness to help all members of A.A.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Daily Reflections: December 28

SUIT UP AND SHOW UP

“In A.A. we aim not only for sobriety–we try again to become citizens of the world that we rejected, and of the world that once rejected us. This is the ultimate demonstration toward which Twelfth Step work is the first but not the final step.”
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 21

The old line says, “Suit up and show up.” That action is so important that I like to think of it as my motto. I can choose each day to suit up and show up, or not. Showing up at meetings starts me toward feeling a part of that meeting, for then I can do what I say I’ll do at meetings. I can talk with newcomers, and I can share my experience; that’s what credibility, honesty, and courtesy really are. Suiting up and showing up are the concrete actions I take in my ongoing return to normal living.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Daily Reflections: December 27

PROBLEM SOLVING 

“Quite as important was the discovery that spiritual principles would solve all my problems.” 
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 43

Through the recovery process described in the Big Book, I have come to realize that the same instructions that work on my alcoholism, work on much more. Whenever I am angry or frustrated, I consider that matter a manifestation of the main problem, within me, alcoholism,. As I “walk” through the Steps, my difficulty is usually dealt with long before I reach the Twelfth “suggestion,” and those difficulties that persist are remedied when I make an effort to carry the message to someone else. These principles do solve my problems! I have not encountered an exception, and I have been brought to a way of living which is satisfying and useful.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Daily Reflections: December 26

ACCEPTING SUCCESS OR FAILURE

“Furthermore, how shall we come to terms with seeming failure or success? Can we now accept and adjust to either without despair or pride? Can we accept poverty, sickness loneliness, and bereavement with courage and serenity? Can we steadfastly content ourselves with the humbler, yet sometimes more durable, satisfactions when the brighter, more glittering achievements are denied us?”
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 112

After I found A.A. and stopped drinking, it took a while before I understood why the First step contained two parts: my powerlessness over alcohol, and my life’s unmanageability. In the same way, I believed for a long time that, in order to be in tune with the Twelve Steps, it was enough for me “to carry this message to alcoholics.” That was rushing things. I was forgetting that there were a total of Twelve Steps and that the Twelfth Step also had more than one part. Eventually I learned that it was necessary for me to “practice these principles” in all areas of my life. In working all the Steps thoroughly, I not only stay sober and help someone else to achieve sobriety, but also I transform my difficulty with living into a joy of living.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Daily Reflections: December 18, 2018

HONESTY WITH NEWCOMERS

“Tell him exactly what happened to you. Stress the spiritual feature freely.”–ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pg. 93

The marvel of A.A. is that I tell only what happened to me. I don’t waste time offering advice to potential newcomers, for if advice worked, nobody would get to A.A. All I have to do is show what has brought me sobriety and what has changed my life. If I fail to stress the spiritual feature of A.A.’s program, I am, being dishonest. The newcomer should not be given a false impression of sobriety. I am sober only thought the grace of my Higher Power, and that makes it possible for me to share with others.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Daily Reflections: December 17, 2018

A PRICELESS REWARD
“. . . Work with other alcoholics. . . . It works when other activities fail.”
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pg. 89

“Life will take on new meaning,” as the Big Book says (p. 89 ). This promise has helped me to avoid self-seeking and self-pity. To watch others grow in this wonderful program, to see them improve the quality of their lives. Is a priceless reward for my effort to help others. Self-examination is yet another reward for an ongoing recovery, as are serenity, peace and contentment. The energy derived from seeing others on a successful path, of sharing with them the joys of the journey, gives to my life a new meaning.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Daily Reflections: December 14, 2018

REACHING OUT 

“Never talk down to an alcoholic from any moral or spiritual hilltop; simply lay out the kit of spiritual tools for his inspection. Show him how they worked with you.” –ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 95

When I come into contact with a newcomer, do I have a tendency to look at him from my perceived angle of success in A.A.? Do I compare him with the large number of acquaintances I have made in the Fellowship? Do I point out to him in a magisterial way the voice of A.A.? What is my real attitude toward him? I must examine myself whenever I meet a newcomer to make sure that I am carrying the message with simplicity, humility and generosity. The one who still suffers from the terrible disease of alcoholism must find in me a friend who will allow him to get to know the A.A. way, because I had such a friend when I arrived in A.A. Today it is my turn to hold out my hand, with love, to my sister or brother alcoholic, and to show her or him the way to happiness.

From the book Daily Reflections
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.