DR – September 17, 2019

Daily Recovery Readings
September 17, 2019


Daily Reflection

FREEDOM FROM FEAR

When, with God’s help, we calmly accepted our lot, then we found we could live at peace with ourselves and show others who still suffered the same fears that they could get over them, too. We found that freedom from fear was more important than freedom from want.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 122

Material values ruled my life for many years during my active alcoholism. I believed that all of my possessions would make me happy, yet I still felt bankrupt after I obtained them. When I first came into A.A., I found out about a new way of living. As a result of learning to trust others, I began to believe in a power greater than myself. Having faith freed me from the bondage of self. As material gains were replaced by the gifts of the spirit, my life became manageable. I then chose to share my experiences with other alcoholics.

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


Big Book Quote

“Your job now is to be at the place where you may be of maximum helpfulness to others, so never hesitate to go anywhere if you can be helpful. You should not hesitate to visit the most sordid spot on earth on such an errand. Keep on the firing line of life with these motives and God will keep you unharmed.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 102~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Step One is, “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.” This step states the membership requirement of A.A. We must admit that our lives are disturbed. We must accept the fact that we are helpless before the power of alcohol. We must admit that we are licked as far as drinking is concerned and that we need help. We must be willing to accept the bitter fact that we cannot drink like normal people. And we must make, as gracefully as possible, surrender to the inevitable fact that we must stop drinking. Is it difficult for me to admit that I am different from normal drinkers?

Meditation for the Day

“Show us the way, O Lord, and let us walk in Thy paths.” There seems to be a right way to live and a wrong way. You can make a practical test. When you live the right way, things seem to work out well for you. When you live the wrong way, things seem to work out badly for you. You seem to take out of life about what you put into it. If you disobey the laws of nature, the chances are that you will be unhealthy. If you disobey the spiritual and moral laws, the chances are that you will be unhappy. By following the laws of nature and the spiritual laws of honesty, purity, unselfishness, and love, you can expect to be reasonably healthy and happy.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may try to live the right way. I pray that I may follow the path that leads to a better life.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

New Relationship Behaviors

We talk much about new relationship behaviors in recovery: allowing others to be themselves without over reacting and taking it personally, and owning our power to take care of ourselves. We talk about letting go of our need to control, focusing on self-responsibility, and not setting ourselves up to be victims by focusing on the other person while neglecting ourselves. We talk about having and setting healthy boundaries, talking directly, and taking responsibility for what we want and need.

While these behaviors certainly help us deal with addicted people, these are not behaviors intended only for use in what we call “dysfunctional relationships.”

These behaviors are our new relationship behaviors. They help us in stressful relationships. They can help us get through times of stress in healthy relationships.

The recovery behaviors we are learning are tools – healthy relationship skills – that help us improve the quality of all our relationships.

Recovery means self-care – learning to take care of ourselves and love ourselves – with people. The healthier we become, the healthier our relationships will become. And we’ll never outgrow our need for healthy behaviors.

.Today, I will remember to apply my recovery behaviors in all my relationships – with friends and co-workers, as well as in any special love relationship. I will work hard at taking care of myself in the troublesome relationships, figuring out which skill might best apply. I will also consider ways that my healthy relationships might benefit from my new relationship skills.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

Self-love, my liege, is not so vile a sin as self-neglecting.

—William Shakespeare

An important part of our lives is simply tending to our basic needs – sitting down daily to share a meal with loved ones, getting enough sleep, setting time aside for haircuts and polishing shoes, spending leisure time with friends. Paying attention to these things only when they become crises makes our lives unbalanced and crisis oriented. Many men have neglected themselves because they felt it was the mark of a tough guy. Others have been so lost in an addiction or so codependent that a respectful self-caring life was not possible.

As we regain our sanity, we find balance in the basics. Self-love allows us to be responsible for our care, and it puts us in a stronger position to help others, to be creative, and to assert our right to recovery.

Today, I will look after the essentials of my personal care and my family’s care before I take on other things.


Elder’s Meditation

“The old people must start talking and the young people must start listening.”

–Thomas Banyacya, HOPI

We are at a critical time in transferring cultural knowledge and spiritual ways. During the last few years the young people have not been interested in learning the old ways. The only place this knowledge is found is among the Elders. We must encourage the young to visit with the Elders. The adults need to think also about learning the culture. The Elders are getting old and soon will go to the other side. Each of us must pause and think about our individual responsibility to learn the culture and teach this to our young.

Great Spirit, help us to learn and remember the old ways.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Mending a small tear in a friendship today prevents a bigger tear tomorrow. Some of your close pals might feel like family, so conflicts with them can be deeply troubling. Acting swiftly to address a rift not only puts your mind at ease, but lets your friend know how much you value your connection. Stick to talking about your own feelings rather than blaming anyone else for failing to meet your expectations. The more you’re willing to share and listen, the faster you both can heal. Honest communication enables a relationship to endure through its ups and downs.

DR – September 16, 2019

Daily Recovery Readings
September 16, 2019


Daily Reflection

WE STAND—OR FALL—TOGETHER

“. . . no society of men and women ever had a more urgent need for continuous effectiveness and permanent unity. We alcoholics see that we must work together and hang together, else most of us will finally die alone.”

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 561

Just as the Twelve Steps of A.A. are written in a specific sequence for a reason, so it is with the Twelve Traditions. The First Step and the First Tradition attempt to instill in me enough humility to allow me a chance at survival. Together they are the basic foundation upon which the Steps and Traditions that follow are built. It is a process of ego deflation which allows me to grow as an individual through the Steps, and as a contributing member of a group through the Traditions. Full acceptance of the First Tradition allows me to set aside personal ambitions, fears and anger when they are in conflict with the common good, thus permitting me to work with others for our mutual survival. Without Tradition One I stand little chance of maintaining the unity required to work with others effectively, and I also stand to lose the remaining Traditions, the Fellowship, and my life.

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


Big Book Quote

“If a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were sufficient to overcome alcoholism, many of us would have recovered long ago.. But we found that such codes and philosophies did not save us, no matter how much we tried. We could wish to be moral, we could wish to be philosophically comforted, in fact, we could will these things with all our might, but the needed power wasnt there. Our human resources, as marshalled by the will, were not sufficient, they failed utterly.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 44~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Today, let us begin a short study of The Twelve Suggested Steps of A.A. These Twelve Suggested Steps seem to embody five principles. The first step is the membership requirement step. The second, third, and eleventh steps are the spiritual steps of the program. The fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and tenth steps are the personal inventory steps. The eighth and ninth steps are the restitution steps. The twelfth step is the passing on of the program, or helping others, step. So the five principles are membership requirement, spiritual basis, personal inventory, restitution, and helping others. Have I made all these steps a part of me?

Meditation for the Day

We seem to live not only in time but also in eternity. If we abide with God and He abides with us, we may bring forth spiritual fruit, which will last for eternity. If we live with God, our lives can flow as some calm river through the dry land of earth. It can cause the trees and flowers of the spiritual life – love and service – to spring forth and yield abundantly. Spiritual work may be done for eternity, not just for now. Even here on earth we can live as though our real lives were eternal.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may try to make my life like a cool river in a thirsty land. I pray that I may give freely to all who ask my help.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Revenge

No matter how long we’ve been recovering, no matter how solid our spiritual ground, we may still feel an overwhelming desire at times to punish, or get even, with another person.

We want revenge.

We want to see the other person hurt the way he or she has hurt us. We want to see life deal that person just rewards. In fact, we would like to help life out.

Those are normal feelings, but we do not have to act on them. These feelings are part of our anger but it’s not our job to deal justice.

We can allow ourselves to feel the anger. It is helpful to go one step deeper and let ourselves feel the other feelings – the hurt, the pain, the anguish. But our goal is to release the feelings, and be finished with them.

We can hold the other person accountable. We can hold the other person responsible. But it is not our responsibility to be judge and jury. Actively seeking revenge will not help us. It will block us and hold us back.

Walk away. Stop playing the game. Unhook. Learn your lesson. Thank the other person for having taught you something valuable. And be finished with it. Put it behind, with the lesson intact.

Acceptance helps. So does forgiveness – not the kind that invites that person to use us again, but a forgiveness that releases the other person and sets him or her free to walk a separate path, while releasing our anger and resentments. That sets us free to walk our own path.

Today, I will be as angry as I need to be, with a goal of finishing my business with others. Once I have released my hurt and anger, I will strive for healthy forgiveness – forgiveness with boundaries. I understand that boundaries, coupled with forgiveness and compassion, will move me forward.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

Sit loosely in the saddle of life.

—Robert Louis Stevenson

Sitting loosely in the saddle is an image of detachment for us. Detachment doesn’t mean we stop caring. It means we have an inner wisdom telling us what we can control and what we cannot. When we go to meetings and hear fellow members struggling with temptations to return to old behaviors, we need to detach. When family members or friends are engaged in an addiction, we need to sit loosely in the saddle by caring, but not protecting them from the results of their behavior. Sometimes close friends will be “off base” in the way they talk to us. We practice detachment by not being reactive to the person but being responsive to the inner message of what kind of men we wish to be.

We can’t control another person’s behavior toward us. Our inner security will never come from how someone else behaves. The most helpful thing we can do for someone is to listen and care; then we need to be ready to let go of the outcome.

I will accept the limits of my control over others. I will care and let go.


Elder’s Meditation

To me, the wisdom the Elders have to manifest is in teaching people how to live in harmony and balance with each other and the Earth.”

–Sun Bear, CHIPPEWA

You cannot give away what you don’t have. You need to give away what you have in order to keep it. Our Elders have lived their lives with a lot of trial and error. They have experienced how to do things well and they have experienced what didn’t work for them as they grew old. They know things about living that we don’t know. So, through the years the Elders have gained wisdom. They usually have a whole different point of view because of all their experiences. There are two ways to learn. Someone tells us what they did and we do the same thing or someone tells us what they did and we choose not to do it. Both of these paths will help us to live.

My Creator, teach me about choices and decisions and consequences. Put an Elder in my life to guide me.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Greet everyone you encounter without judgment. However, someone new in your life might remind you of another individual who once hurt or disappointed you. But you’re likely a very different person with altered circumstances now. Nevertheless, you can accept the help you need if you are willing to change your mind, especially with respect to your profession. A closed fist must open up to receive gifts, and your heart will benefit from the same practice. Be unguarded and claim the support you deserve. Natural mystic Bob Marley wrote, “Being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure.”

Milestone: One Year of Sobriety

After ten years of sobriety and in a throngs of a powerful relapse, I knew there was only one solution. All those years of knowledge and understanding of what could be were begging me to surrender. But I just couldn’t do it alone. Either I was going to die a drunk or I was going to live by getting back to Alcoholics Anonymous. I wanted to live; I feared death.

When I finally got honest with myself, I knew I had enough. Despite one of my drunken stupors, I made a quick decision at 4 a.m. to walk to Elmira, New York from Van Etten, NY to seek shelter and help for my alcoholism. I had no plan – I just packed a bag and began to walking unknown of my future.

Eight hours later after traveling back roads in Chemung County, NY, for more than twenty miles I ended up at Catholic Charities. They couldn’t promise me a bed at the shelter for the night, but recommended I see a chemical dependency program, Trinity of Chemung County. I did what I was told beginning another walk across town.

When I arrived at Trinity, I had no appointment. The lady behind the counter looked at me simply saying, “We’ll get the help you need. Just have a seat”. I spent most of the day there, talking to their staff. They started putting calls in to inpatient treatment centers but didn’t get any quick replies. I spent the night in a shelter and was driven back home by a Peer Advocate the next day, whom I’m in contact with today.

The following week, I was coming back from the gas station after purchasing a 12 pack of Budweiser. I was stopped in my tracks at the crossing of a small river. “You can’t do this. You’re killing yourself. Be done with it.” I remember those words distinctly but didn’t know where they came from – or did I and I actually listened? I took that twelve pack a threw it in the river. When I got home I had a call from Dick Van Dyke (DVD) Addiction Treatment Center in Ovid, NY, they had a bed for me – the next day.

I entered the doors of DVD on September 14, 2018.

What’s the last year been like?

As I experienced with my first sobriety – my whole life has changed. I’m no longer the hopeless soul wandering through life not knowing who I am, where I’m going or my purpose in life. But how did I achieve this?

1.) One Day At A Time

In early sobriety, just not drinking one day was something I struggled with – we all do! Drinking destroyed my life and everything around me. I was on a progressive suicide mission to death every single day. I have to remind myself how I got to where I am today. When I didn’t drink one day at a time, little things got better at first – no hang over, I didn’t have 100 voices talking in my head, I wasn’t alone. I started to appreciate all the little things in my life – I am living life. But that was only a start.

My alcoholism is a disease – there is no cure. While I have not had a drink in a while, it’s just locked up, arrested, and in solitary confinement in the back of my brain just waiting to get back out. Hence, the wording “cunning, baffling and powerful”. If I’m not doing something every day for my sobriety, then I’m in trouble. When I was drinking did anything else matter – weather, my job, friends, family, transportation, etc.? I did want I needed to do, hurt anyone I needed to hurt to get my alcohol. Today, my sobriety comes first in all matters. From my own experience, if I don’t, I’m going to repeat my past which leads back to point one – don’t forget how I got here!

2.) We can’t do this alone! Get involved in your sobriety.

When I came into Alcoholics Anonymous I was hard headed. I didn’t want people to TELL ME what to do. Sometimes I still am a stubborn ass! When people made me go to an AA meeting, I didn’t know what to expect. They told me to come to another after – I still wasn’t sure this whole thing was going to work. But after going to meeting after meeting, I did see something tangible in the rooms – people are happy without drinking? HOW?

I had to listen. Today, I still have to listen to each and every word each person says at a meeting. There is a message for me somewhere – there always is. When I heard “How It Works” over and over, the 12 Steps over and over, and finally the Promises over and over I got a small glimpse of what things could be.

I had to do what they said to do – without question. They said, “Go to meetings, get a Sponsor, go through the Steps and help another alcoholic”, “This is a program of action”, “You have to work for it!”. So I followed their instructions: went to meetings, got a home group, got a coffee commitment, got a Sponsor, went through the Steps and now I’m helping other alcoholics achieve sobriety. It’s truly an amazing life.

3.) Honesty, open-mindedness and willingness

These three words were drilled in me by my first Sponsor. First, you have to be honest with yourself. Do you want to live or do you want to die? We all have two choices – life or death. But also become honest with those around you. If you want to drink, say it. If you’re having a bad day, let someone know. If you’re not honest with the people around you and yourself, how is anyone going to help you? Remember – we can’t do it alone!

If you want to live we have to change what we do. How are we going to change what we do unless we listen to how people other people have changed their lives? Meetings accomplish this as we share our experience, strength and hope with others. It’s a reminder, every day, of where I could go if I drink or where I could be if I don’t drink. We don’t tell people what to do but its heavily “suggested” based on our own experiences. Now the had part.

Actually doing what someone told me, against every fiber in my body, was the hardest thing. But something different happened. It wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be. Often many times when I did what someone else told me to do – it worked! I began to experience the same things they described.

As typical my posts never stay on topic . . . oh well. I could just go on and on – perhaps another day. I hope you can see my enthusiasm in my own sobriety.

A new way of life is possible. Try it!

DR – September 15, 2019

Daily Recovery Readings
September 15, 2019


Daily Reflection

A NEW LIFE

Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. . . . Life will mean something at last.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 152

Life is better without alcohol. A.A. and the presence of a Higher Power keeps me sober, but the grace of God does even better; it brings service into my life. Contact with the A.A. program teaches me a new and greater understanding of what Alcoholics Anonymous is and what it does, but most importantly, it helps to show me who I am: an alcoholic who needs the constant experience of the Alcoholics Anonymous program so that I may live a life given to me by my Higher Power.


Big Book Quote

“As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 87~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

“We all realize that we know only a little. God will constantly disclose more to all of us. Ask Him in your morning meditations what you can do today for the person who is still sick. The answers will come, if your own house is in order. See to it that your relationship with God is right and great events will come to pass for you and countless others. Give freely of what you find in A.A. But obviously, you cannot transmit something, which you haven’t got. So make a life study of A.A.” Am I always looking for ways of presenting the A.A. program?

Meditation for the Day

“In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” Confidence means to have faith in something. We could not live without confidence in others. When you have confidence in God’s grace, you can face whatever comes. When you have confidence in God’s love, you can be serene and at peace. You can rest in the faith that God will take care of you. Try to rest in God’s presence until His life power flows through you. Be still and in that stillness the still, small Voice will come. It speaks in quietness to the human mind that is attuned to its influence.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may find strength today in quietness. I pray that I may be content today that God will take care of me.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Getting Through Hard Times

We are sturdy beings. But in many ways, we are fragile. We can accept change and loss, but this comes at our own pace and in our own way. And only God and we can determine the timing.

—Codependent No More

Hard times, stressful times, are not all there is to life, but they are part of life, growth, and moving forward.

What we do with hard times, or hard energy, is our choice.

We can use the energy of hard times to work out, and work through, our issues. We can use it to fine-tune our skills and our spirituality. Or we can go through these situations suffering, storing up bitterness, and refusing to grow or change.

Hard times can motivate and mold us to bring out our best. We can use these times to move forward and upward to higher levels of living, loving, and growth.

The choice is ours. Will we let ourselves feel? Will we take a spiritual approach, including gratitude, toward the event? Will we question life and our Higher Power by asking what we’re supposed to be learning and doing? Or will we use the incident to prove old, negative beliefs? Will we say, “Nothing good ever happens to me… I’m just a victim… People can’t be trusted… Life isn’t worth living”?

We do not always require hard energy, or stress, to motivate us to grow and change. We do not have to create stress, seek it, or attract it. But if it’s there, we can learn to channel it into growth and use it for achieving what’s good in life.

God, let my hard times be healing times.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

When people are loving, brave, truthful, charitable, God is present.

—Harold Kushner

For many of us, our spiritual awakening began when we first heard our Higher Power might be our group. We learned that God may exist in the connections between people in our group just as well as within each individual. As we members exchange care and help with each other, as each struggles to achieve complete honesty and wrestles bravely with old temptations, God is truly in our midst. Closeness flourishes because we felt so alone but then found friends who suffered in similar ways. It is an expression of a spirit beyond our rational control.

When we ask another member to listen to us, we contribute to the strength of this spirit. When we give someone a ride to a meeting or spread the word about this program to other suffering men and women, we make a contribution and receive its benefits. Even now, if we need a renewal of confidence in God’s presence in our lives, we can telephone another member and just talk. We will quickly sense the spirit.

Today, I am grateful to feel God’s presence in my life and within the people around me.


Elder’s Meditation

“Knowledge is a beautiful thing, but the use of knowledge in a good way is what makes for wisdom. Learning how to use knowledge in a sacred manner, that’s wisdom to me. And to me, that’s what a true Elder is.”

–Sun Bear, CHIPPEWA

We grow in wisdom by developing ourselves according to the four directions of the Medicine Wheel – emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. Let’s say we started drinking and drugging in our teenage years. Our emotional development will stop, but we will grow older physically. We could then develop into an immature adult. As adults we might be acting like we were teenagers. Once we stop drinking or drugging, our emotional development will begin again. We need to grow and nurture ourselves in all four directions. We need to involve the Great Spirit’s guidance in our development. That’s the only way we become wise individuals and live our lives in harmony and in a sacred way.

Oh Great Spirit, guide my thinking today. Let me walk in a sacred way on the Red Road. Let me be a learner of lessons and give me Your greatest gift – wisdom!


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You might care too much about what others think now, especially regarding your career. It’s invaluable to be respected by those you serve and support. But you’re swerving off track if you’re performing for praise, high traffic on your social media, or a golden seal of approval from someone you admire. The best kind of reward is the appreciation you earn for giving your most sincere effort and raising the bar of excellence. At the end of the day, the person who must be most pleased with your work is you.

DR – September 14, 2019

Daily Recovery Readings
September 14, 2019


Daily Reflection

PEACE OF MIND

Do we lay the matter before our sponsor or spiritual adviser, earnestly asking God’s help and guidance — meanwhile resolving to do the right thing when it becomes clear, cost what it may?

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 86-87

My belief in a Higher Power is an essential part of my work on Step Nine; forgiveness, timing, and right motives are the other ingredients. My willingness to do the Step is a growing experience that opens the door for new and honest relationships with the people I have harmed. My responsible action brings me closer to the spiritual principles of the program — love and service. Peace of mind, serenity, and a stronger faith are sure to follow.

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


Big Book Quote

“Helping others is the foundation stone of your recovery. A kindly act once in a while isnt enough. You have to act the Good Samaritan every day, if need be.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 97~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

“How does A.A. grow? Some of us sell A.A. as we go about. Little clusters of twos and threes and fives keep springing up in different communities, through contact with the larger centers. Those of us who travel drop in at other groups as often as we can. This practice enables us to lend a hand to new groups, which are springing up all over the land. New groups are being started each month. A.A. is even spreading outside the United States and is slowly becoming worldwide. Thus we grow.” Am I doing all I can to spread A.A. wherever I go?

Meditation for the Day

“Lord we believe. Help Thou our unbelief.” This cry of the human heart is an expression of human frailty. It signifies the soul’s sincere desire for progress. As a person feels the existence of God and His power, that person believes in Him more and more. At the same time, a person is more conscious of his falling short of absolute trust in God. The soul’s progress is an increasing belief, then a cry for more faith, a plea to conquer all unbelief, all lack of trust. We can believe that that cry is heard by God and that prayer is answered in due time. And so our faith grows, little by little, day by day.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that with more power in my life will come more faith. I pray that I may come to trust God more each day.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

What’s Good for Me?

When we are soul searching, be it for the smaller or larger decisions we face during the day, we can learn to ask, is this good for me?… Is this what I really want?… Is this what I need?…Does this direction feel right for me?…or am I succumbing to the control and influence that I sometimes allow others to have over me?

It is not unhealthy selfishness to question if something is good for us. That is an old way of thinking. To ask if something is good for us is a healthy behavior, not to be ashamed of, and will probably work out in the other person’s best interests too.

We shall not wander down a selfish path of self-indulgence by asking if a thing is good for us. We shall not stray from God’s intended plan, God’s highest good, by asking if a thing is good for us. By asking ourselves this simple question, we participate in directing our life toward the highest good and purpose; we own our power to hold ourselves in self-esteem.

Today, I will begin acting in my best interests. I will do this with the understanding that, on occasion, my choices will not please everyone around me. I will do this with the understanding that asking if a thing is good for me will ultimately help me take true responsibility for my life and my choices.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

When a person drowns himself in negative thinking he is committing an unspeakable crime against himself.

—Maxwell Maltz

Negative thoughts can rule our lives as compulsively as an addiction. The feelings of power we get from holding a dismal and gloomy outlook deprive us of the positive and pleasant parts of life. Some of us have said, “If I expect the worst, I won’t be disappointed. If I think the worst about myself, no one else can cut me down.” It is like taking a driving trip and looking only for trash and garbage in the ditches, ignoring the beauty beyond. Indeed, what we see may be real, but it is a very limited piece of the picture.

When we have relied on negative thinking, it feels risky to give it up. We cannot do it in one day. We can begin by imagining ourselves with a more open attitude toward the world and ourselves. Then we can try it out as an experiment in little ways, with no commitment. Finally we reach the point where we can take a risk and entrust our Higher Power with the outcome.

Today, I will experiment with hopeful and positive thoughts about what happens.


Elder’s Meditation

“Follow the Old One’s advise.”

–Tom Porter, MOHAWK

The Old One is called by many different names – Grandfather, The Four directions, Father Sky, Mother Earth. We should seek the advice of the Old One to help us build our vision. He will put inside of our mind and heart the vision that we are to follow. This vision is recognizable by the feeling that it has with it. This feeling is hard to describe. It feels right, it feels calm, it feels joyful, it feels warm, it feels sacred. The Old One has a way of letting us know it really is His advice. Listen carefully!

Grandfather, I’m listening.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Polishing your expertise and knowledge nets positive results. The Pisces Full Moon brightens your 9th House of Higher Learning, motivating you to enroll in a class or catch up on materials in your field. Keying in on the details, whether through reviewing actual case studies or creating your own scenarios, empowers your ability to apply your newfound wisdom in practical ways. The more information you have at your fingertips, the more others will call on you and your skills.

DR – September 13, 2019

Daily Recovery Readings
September 13, 2019


Daily Reflection

REPAIRING THE DAMAGE

Good judgment, a careful sense of timing, courage and prudence – these are the qualities we shall need when we take Step Nine.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 83

To make amends can be viewed two ways: first, that of repairing damage, for if I have damaged my neighbor’s fence, I “make a mend,” and that is a direct amend; the second way is by modifying my behavior, for if my actions have harmed someone, I make a daily effort to cause no further harm. I “mend my ways,” and that is an indirect amend. Which is the best approach? The only right approach, provided that I am causing no further harm in so doing, is to do both. If harm is done, then I simply “mend my ways.” To take action in this manner assures me of making honest amends.

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


Big Book Quote

“If a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were sufficient to overcome alcoholism, many of us would have recovered long ago. But we found that such codes and philosophies did not save us, no matter how much we tried. We could wish to be moral, we could wish to be philosophically comforted, in fact, we could will these things with all our might, but the needed power wasnt there. Our human resources, as marshalled by the will, were not sufficient, they failed utterly.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 44~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

“No one is too discredited, nor has sunk too low, to be welcomed cordially into A.A., if he or she means business. Social distinctions, petty rivalries and jealousies are laughed out of countenance. Being wrecked in the same vessel, being restored and united under one God, with hearts and minds attuned to the welfare of others, the things which matter so much to some people no longer signify much to us. In A.A., we have true democracy and true brotherhood.” Has A.A. taught me to be truly democratic?

Meditation for the Day

When you call on God in prayer to help you overcome weakness, sorrow, pain, discord, and conflict, God never fails in some way to answer the appeal. When you are in need of strength for yourself or for the help of some other person, call on God in prayer. The power you need will come simply, naturally, and forcefully. Pray to God not only when you need help, but also just to commune with Him. The spirit of prayer can alter an atmosphere from one of discord to one of reconciliation. It will raise the quality of thought and word and bring order out of chaos.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may bring peace where there is discord. I pray that I may bring conciliation where there is conflict.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Times of Reprogramming

Recovery is not all-tiresome, unrewarded work. There are times of joy and rest, times when we comfortably practice what we have learned. There are times of change, times when we struggle to learn something new or overcome a particular problem.

These are the times when what we’ve been practicing in recovery begins to show in our life. These times of change are intense, but purposeful.

There are also times when, at a deep level, we are being “reprogrammed.” We start letting go of beliefs and behaviors. We may feel frightened or confused during these times. Our old behaviors or patterns may not have worked for us, but they were comfortable and familiar.

During these times we may feel vulnerable, lonely, and needy – like we are on a journey without a road map or a flashlight, and we feel as if no one has traveled this ground before.

We may not understand what is being worked out in us. We may not know where or if we are being led.

We are being led. We are not alone. Our Higher Power is working His finest and best to bring true change in us. Others have traveled this road to. We will be led to someone who can help us, someone who can provide the markers we need.

We are being prepared for receiving as much joy and love as our heart can hold.

Recovery is a healing process. We can trust it, even when we don’t understand it. We are right where we need to be in this process; we’re going through exactly what we need to experience. And where we’re going is better than any place we’ve been.

Today, God, help me believe that the changes I’m going through are for the good. Help me believe that the road I’m traveling will lead to a place of light, love, and joy.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

Mothers give sons permission to be a prince but the father must show him how…. Fathers give daughters permission to be princesses. And mothers must show them how. Otherwise, both boys and girls will grow up and always see themselves as frogs.

—Eric Berne

Relationships with our fathers have been central in shaping our characters. We catch ourselves saying what we heard our fathers say, or doing something we know they did. Many of us have had pain and resentments in these relationships. We wanted more time than they gave us, or we longed for praise but got criticism, or we were never sure we measured up to them.

Some of us can change our relationships with our fathers. We can do it, not by asking them to be different, but by being our full adult selves with them. This new experience is the doorway to a new aspect of our selves. Many of us cannot change our relationships with our fathers, but being with our sons and daughters in ways that nurture their growth is another chance to redo for ourselves what we missed.

My father’s importance to me is a fact I must surrender to. I will take what he has given me and grow with it.


Elder’s Meditation

“The most important thing you can do during the course of the day is to pray.”

–Joe Coyhis, STOCKBRIDGE-MUNSEE

There are many things we do during the day that are important. There are many places we have to go and there are many things to accomplish. The old ones say, the most important thing we can do is remember to take the time to pray. We should pray every morning and every evening. In this way we can be sure that the Great Spirit is running our lives. With the Great Spirit we are everything but without Him we are nothing. All Warriors know their greatest weapon is prayer. To spend time talking to the Creator is a great honor.

Great Spirit, thank You for listening to my prayers.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

People are more receptive to what you have to say and how you say it today. Your undeniable charm and colorful way with words allow you to effortlessly smooth over hard edges whenever they crop up. However, you need to be crystal clear about your boundaries. You can feel so much for a person and their predicament that you become overly accommodating. Healthy limits enable you to be a compassionate caretaker without burning yourself out. Novelist Mohsin Hamid wrote, “Empathy is about finding echoes of another person in yourself.”

DR – September 12, 2019

Daily Recovery Readings
September 12, 2019


Daily Reflection

I AM RESPONSIBLE

For the readiness to take the full consequences of our past acts, and to take responsibility for the well-being of others at the same time, is the very spirit of Step Nine.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 87

In recovery, and through the help of Alcoholics Anonymous, I learn that the very thing I fear is my freedom. It comes from my tendency to recoil from taking responsibility for anything: I deny, I ignore, I blame, I avoid. Then one day, I look, I admit, I accept. The freedom, the healing and the recovery I experience is in the looking, admitting and accepting. I learn to say, “Yes, I am responsible.” When I can speak those words with honesty and sincerity, then I am free.

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


Big Book Quote

“We are careful never to show intolerance or hatred of drinking as an institution. Experience shows that such an attitude is not helpful to anyone. Every new alcoholic looks for this spirit among us and is immensely relieved when he finds we are not witch-burners. A spirit of intolerance might repel alcoholics whose lives could have been saved, had it not been for such stupidity.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 103~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

“What draws newcomers to A.A. and gives them hope? They hear the stories of men and women whose experiences tally with their own. The expressions on the faces of the women, that indefinable something in the eyes of the men, the stimulating atmosphere of the A.A. clubroom, conspire to let them know that there is haven at last. The very practical approach to their problems, the absence of intolerance of any kind, the informality, the genuine democracy, the uncanny understanding which these people in A.A. have is irresistible.” Have I found a real haven in A.A.?

Meditation for the Day

“If thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.” The eye of the soul is the will. If your will is to do the will of God, to serve Him with your life, to serve Him by helping others, then truly shall your whole body be full of light. The important thing is to strive that your will be attuned to the will of God, a single eye to God’s purpose, desiring nothing less than that His purposes be fulfilled. Try to seek in all things the advance of His kingdom, seek the spiritual values of honesty and purity, unselfishness and love, and earnestly desire spiritual growth. Then your life will emerge from the darkness of futility into the light of victory.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that my eye may be single. I pray that my life may be lived in the light of the best that I know.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Healing

We should learn not to grow impatient with the slow healing process of time. We should discipline ourselves to recognize that there are many steps to be taken along the highway leading from sorrow to renewed serenity… We should anticipate these stages in our emotional convalescence: unbearable pain, poignant grief, empty days, resistance to consolation, disinterestedness in life, gradually giving way . . . to the new weaving of a pattern of action and the acceptance of the irresistible challenge of life.

—Joshua Loth Liebman

Recovery is a process. It is a gradual process, a healing process, and a spiritual process – a journey rather than a destination.

Just as codependency takes on a life of its own and is progressive, so recovery progresses. One thing leads to another and things – as well as us – get better.

We can relax, do our part, and let the rest happen.

Today, I will trust this process and this journey that I have undertaken.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

Not all fights are bad; in fact they are preferable to disciplined serenity.

—William Atwood

A good relationship includes some disagreement. Anger and disagreement, when we express them respectfully, are important ways of renewing communication and breaking through the walls that sometimes built up. No relationship can tolerate constant fighting. But, when we don’t agree with someone, we owe it to that person to speak up and follow through to resolution. We can promise ourselves and the other person that we will stay in the relationship through the disagreement. It is because we care that we fight.

In any relationship we care about, there will be differences. When we avoid all confrontations, our relationships go stale because all emotional issues are avoided. Carefulness and over control undermine love because they don’t give it room to breathe, but disagreement and anger expressed in honest and respectful ways will help love grow.

Today, I pray for the courage to acknowledge my disagreements and angry feelings with others and to deal with their feelings toward me.


Elder’s Meditation

“If you get troubled, go and sit by the river. The flowing water will take your troubles away.”

–Joe Coyhis, STOCKBRIDGE-MUNSEE

Sometimes we get mixed up and we don’t know what to do. Go to the river or creek. Take your sage and tobacco; sit and be still. Talk to the water, offer tobacco and the healing water will take your problems downstream. Give thanks.

Great Spirit, heal my mind today, let me see love.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Treat your time as a precious resource and schedule your day accordingly. You run the risk of putting the cart before the horse with a chore or task today. You are unlikely to be operating from a sense of mindlessness, but you’re ambitious and confident about what you can tackle now. Your enthusiasm is motivating to everyone around you, but moderation in thought and deed is the real secret to your success. You might either need to scale back your efforts or get a second opinion on your plan of attack before plowing ahead. Promise less, deliver more.