DR – August 8, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 8, 2018

Daily Reflection

“MADE A LIST . . .”

Made a list of all persons we had harmed, . . .

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 77

When I approached the Eighth Step, I wondered how I could list all the things that I have done to other people since there were so many people, and some of them weren’t alive anymore. Some of the hurts I inflicted weren’t bad, but they really bothered me. The main thing to see in this Step was to become willing to do whatever I had to do to make these amends to the best of my ability at that particular time. Where there is a will, there’s a way, so if I want to feel better, I need to unload the guilt feelings I have. A peaceful mind has no room for feelings of guilt. With the help of my Higher Power, if I am honest with myself, I can cleanse my mind of these feelings.

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

Big Book Quote

“I was to test my thinking by the new God-consciousness within. Common sense would thus become uncommon sense. I was to sit quietly when in doubt, asking only for direction and strength to meet my problems as He would have me. Never was I to pray for myself, except as my requests bore on my usefulness to others. Then only might I expect to receive. But that would be in great measure.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, Page 13

Keep It Simple

Adventure is not outside a man; it is within.—David Grayson

Sobriety. It’s an exciting adventure. It’s a spiritual adventure. We look inward. We find where our Higher Power lives: within us. We then reach outward. We share our joy with others. Not with words and preaching, but by trying to help others. Sobriety is faith turned into action.

Sobriety. It’s an adventure in coming to know one’s self. At times, we’ll have to face our fears. But we’ll also find just how much love we have for life.

Sobriety. It’s as if we’re on a trip. Our Higher Power holds the map. Our job is to listen. And we go in the direction we’re told.

Prayer for the Day:
I pray to be an adventurer. Higher Power, I pray to follow Your direction.

Action for the Day:
I’ll ask some friends to tell me about an adventure their Higher Power has taken them on.

Each Day a New Beginning

I’m a most lucky and thankful woman. Lucky and thankful for each morning I wake up. For three wonderful daughters and one son. For an understanding and very loving husband with whom I’ve shared 52 blessed years, all in good health.

–Thelma Elliott

Gratitude for what’s been offered us in our lives softens the harsh attitudes we occasionally harbor. Life presents us with an assortment of blessings; some bring us immediate joy; some invite tears; others foster fear. What we need help in understanding is that all experiences are meant for our good, all bless us in some manner. If we are able to see the big picture, we’d greet all situations, large and small, with a thankful heart.

It’s so very easy to wish away our lives, never finding satisfaction with our families, our jobs, and our friends. The more we find fault with life, the more fault we are guaranteed to find. Negative attitudes attract negative experiences; while positive attitudes lighten whatever burden we may be learning from.

The years pass so quickly. Our chances to enjoy life pass quickly too. We can grab what comes our way and be grateful. We are never certain that this experience offered now might not be our last.
Each morning I awake is blessing number one.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Life is a series of cycles; old memories resurface now so that you can move on later. This sentimental journey can be both a pleasant and challenging experience depending on your personal history. Acknowledging all those ancestors who walked before you enables you to understand who you are on a much deeper level. Spending time with family members honors your roots and gives you a chance to tell them you love them. Remembering your true nature heals your soul.

DR – August 7, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 7, 2018

Daily Reflection

A “DESIGN FOR LIVING”

We in our turn, sought the same escape with all the desperation of drowning men. What seemed at first a flimsy reed, has proved to be the loving and powerful hand of God. A new life has been given us or, if you prefer, “a design for living” that really works.

ALCOHOLIC ANONYMOUS , p. 28

I try each day to raise my heart and hands in thanks to God for showing me a “design for living” that really works through our beautiful Fellowship. But what, exactly, is this “design for living” that “really works”? For me, it is the practice of the Twelve Steps to the best of my ability, the continued awareness of a God who loves me unconditionally, and the hope that, in each new day, there is a purpose for my being. I am truly, truly blessed in the Fellowship.

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

Big Book Quote

“Though we work out our solution on the spiritual as well as an altruistic plane, we favor hospitalization for the alcoholic who is very jittery or befogged. More often than not, it is imperative that a man’s brain be cleared before he is approached, as he has then a better chance of understanding and accepting what we have to offer.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctor’s Opinion, pg. xxvi~

Keep It Simple

True enjoyment comes from activity of the mind and exercise of the body.—Humboldt

In recovery, we work at taking better care of ourselves. We care for our mind and our body.
Often, during our drinking and drugging, we ignored our mind and body. We probably ate poorly, and we pushed our body to the limit.

But now, we are to recover. . .totally! We are to care for our mind and body as we care for our spirit. Our illness is an illness of mind, body, and spirit. So let’s care for all three. In recovery, we learn to care for and love all of who we are.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me care for my mind and body as I recover. You love all of me. Help me to respect and care for all of me.

Action for the Day:
I will write down how much time I’ve spent caring for my mind and body in the past two weeks. Is it enough?

Each Day a New Beginning

To have one’s individuality completely ignored is like being pushed quite out of life. Like being blown out as one blows out a light. –Evelyn Scott

We need to know that we matter in this life. We need evidence that others are aware of our presence. And thus, we can be certain that others need the same attention from us. When we give it, we get it. So the giving of attention to another searching soul meets our own need for attention as well.

Respectful recognition of another’s presence blesses her, God, and ourselves. And we help one another grow, in important ways, each time we pay the compliment of acknowledgment.

We’re not sure, on occasion, just what we have to offer our friends, families, co-workers. Why we are in certain circumstances may have us baffled, but it’s quite probably that the people we associate with regularly need something we can give them; the reverse is just as likely. So we can begin with close attention to people in our path. It takes careful listening and close observation to sense the message another soul may be sending to our own.

I will be conscious of the people around me. I shall acknowledge them and be thankful for all they are offering me.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Keeping things as simple as possible is pure medicine for you. An acute sensitivity toward disturbances can cause you to freeze up now, leaving you uncertain how to react. Indulging in self-pity because people don’t seem to understand you will only set you back today. Be brave and walk with acceptance and forgiveness. Ironically, what you need from others you can find within. The key to freedom is in your hands, so use it to set the past free.

DR – August 6, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 6, 2018

Daily Reflection

DRIVEN

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.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62

My selfishness was the driving force behind my drinking. I drank to celebrate success and I drank to drown my sorrows. Humility is the answer. I learn to turn my will and my life over to the care of God. My sponsor tells me that service keeps me sober. Today I ask myself: Have I sought knowledge of God’s will for me? Have I done service for my A.A. group?

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

Big Book Quote

“But my friend sat before me, and he made the pointblank declaration that God had done for him what he could not do for himself. His human will had failed. Doctors had pronounced him incurable. Society was about to lock him up. Like myself, he had admitted complete defeat. Then he had, in effect, been raised from the dead, suddenly taken from the scrap heap to a level of life better than
the best he had ever known!”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, pg. 11~

Keep It Simple

Fear of people and economic insecurity will leave you. . . ~Alcoholics Anonymous

We don’t have to fear people. They can’t wreck our spirit. We don’t have to fear money problems. We won’t have to starve to death. Our Higher Power will lead us on a safe path through life.

Our Higher power wants us to be safe, happy, and wise. Our Higher power wants us to feel loved.

We’ll learn to trust our Higher Power. And we’ll learn to trust the happiness we find in our new way of life. People may still hurt us, but there will be much more love to carry us through.

Prayer For the Day:
Higher Power, I know You protect me and care for me. Help me stop worrying.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll list four fears I have. I will talk with my sponsor about how to turn these over to my Higher Power.

Each Day a New Beginning

They sicken of the calm, who knew the storm. –Dorothy Parker

Variety in experiences is necessary for our continued growth. We mistakenly think that the “untroubled” life would be forever welcome. It’s the deep waves of life that teach us to be better swimmers.

We don’t know how to appreciate the calm without the occasional storm that pushes us to new limits of ourselves. The calm following the storm offers us the time we need to become comfortable with our new growth. We are ever changing, refining our values, stepping gingerly into uncharted territories. We are forever in partnership in these new territories, let us not forget.

We long for challenge even in the midst of the calm that blesses us. Our inner selves understand the journey; a journey destined to carry us to new horizons; a journey that promises many stormy seasons. For to reach our destination, we must be willing to weather the storms. They are challenges, handpicked for us, designed to help us become all that we need to be in this earthly life.

The mixture of the calm with the storm is not haphazard. Quite the contrary. My growth is at the center of each. I will trust its message.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

It is nice to have a private cave to retreat to when things get too hectic, and right now that is your haven. Journaling, reading, or planning for the future is time well spent. As you take a step back, clarity emerges. External pressure or guilt can cause you some stress if you feel it is your responsibility to make sure others are happy. Instead of reacting over-emotionally, you can center yourself in the knowledge that in order to have something to give, you need to give to yourself first.

DR – August 5, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 5, 2018

Daily Reflection

LISTENING DEEPLY

How persistently we claim the right to decide all by ourselves just what we shall think and just how we shall act.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 37

If I accept and act upon the advice of those who have made the program work for themselves, I have a chance to outgrow the limits of the past. Some problems will shrink to nothingness, while others may require patient, well-thought-out action. Listening deeply when others share can develop intuition in handling problems which arise unexpectedly. It is usually best for me to avoid impetuous action. Attending a meeting or calling a fellow A.A. member will usually reduce tension enough to bring relief to a desperate sufferer like me. Sharing problems at meetings with other alcoholics to whom I relate, or privately with my sponsor, can change aspects of the positions in which I find myself. Character defects are identified and I begin to see how they work against me. When I put my faith in the spiritual power of the program, when I trust others to teach me what I need to do to have a better life, I find that I can trust myself to do what is necessary.

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

Big Book Quote

“If God can solve the age-old riddle of alcoholism, He can solve your problems too.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, To Wives, Page 116~

Keep It Simple

You’re only human, you’ve suppose to make mistakes.  —Billy Joel

Listen to the kind voice inside. Listen to the voice that tells you you’re good enough. Listen to the voice that tells you it’s okay to make mistakes—you’ll learn from them. Listen to the voice that tells you to go to your meeting even though it’s cold outside and you’re tired. Listen and
let this voice become more and more clear. Listen, and welcome it in your heart. Talk with the voice.

Ask it questions and seek it out when you need a friend. This voice is your Higher Power. Listen as your Higher Power speaks to you. Listen as your Higher Power tells you what a great person you are.

Prayer for the Day:
I pray to the gentle, loving voice that lives in me. Higher Power, You’ve always been kind to me.
You’ve always loved me. Help me to remember You’re always there—inside me.

Action for the Day:
I will take time from my busy day to listen and talk with the loving voice that lives inside me.

Each Day a New Beginning

The bottom line is that I am responsible for my own well-being, my own happiness. The choices and decisions I make regarding my life directly influence the quality of my days.

–Kathleen Andrus

There is no provision for blaming others in our lives. Who we are is a composite of the actions, attitudes, choices, decisions we’ve made up to now. For many of us, predicaments may have resulted from our decisions to not act when the opportunity arose. But these were decisions, no less, and we must take responsibility for making them.

We need not feel utterly powerless and helpless about the events of our lives. True, we cannot control others, and we cannot curb the momentum of a situation, but we can choose our own responses to both; these choices will heighten our sense of self and well-being and may well positively influence the quality of the day.

I will accept responsibility for my actions, but not for the outcome of a situation; that is all that’s requested of me. It is one of the assignments of life, and homework is forthcoming.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You can be stubborn for better or for worse. Figuring out which principles are worth upholding and which to relinquish can heal rifts in your relationships. People tend to push your buttons and if you let them, time and energy can be wasted focusing on the wrong concerns. Whatever goes around comes around. Rest assured that if others do you wrong, it is their loss. Knowing who is worth your love and who isn’t is priceless.

DR – August 4, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 3, 2018

Daily Reflection

SEEDS OF FAITH

Faith, to be sure, is necessary, but faith alone can avail nothing. We can have faith, yet keep God out of our lives.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 34

As a child I constantly questioned the existence of God. To a “scientific thinker” like me, no answer could withstand a thorough dissection, until a very patient woman finally said to me, “You must have faith.” With that simple statement, the seeds of my recovery were sown!

Today, as I practice my recovery – cutting back the weeds of alcoholism – slowly I am letting those early seeds of faith grow and bloom. Each day of recovery, of ardent gardening, brings the Higher Power of my understanding more fully into my life. My God has always been with me through faith, but it is my responsibility to have the willingness to accept His presence.

I ask God to grant me the willingness to do His will.

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

Big Book Quote

“Doubtless you are curious to discover how and why, in the face of expert opinion to the contrary, we have recovered from a hopeless condition of mind and body. If you are an alcoholic who wants to get over it, you may already be asking What do I have to do?”

It is the purpose of this book to answer such questions specifically. We shall tell you what we have done.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, Page 20~

Keep It Simple

Let him that would move the world, first move himself.—Socrates

Before recovery, most of us were big talkers. The Twelve Steps are for doers, not talkers. In the Steps we find action words: admitted, humbly asked, made direct amends, continued to take personal inventory. All these words speak of action, of doing. Recovery is about action. It’s for doers. An action may be very simple. Such as going to a meeting early to set up chairs. Or it could be helping a neighbor. The program teaches that spirituality active, we grow and change.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, give me movement. Give me spiritual movement. Help me be a doer, not just a talker. Teach me to work my program.

Today’s Action:
Today, I’ll remember the words actions go together.

Each Day a New Beginning

Let me tell thee, time is a very precious gift of God; so precious that it’s only given to us moment by moment. –Amelia Barr

Where are our minds right now? Are we focused fully on this meditation? Or are our minds wandering off to events scheduled for later today or tomorrow perhaps? The simple truth is that this moment is all God has allowed right now. It’s God’s design that we will live fully each moment, as it comes. Therein lies the richness of our lives. Each moment contributes to the full pattern that’s uniquely our own.

We must not miss the potential pleasure of any experience because our thoughts are elsewhere. We never know when a particular moment, a certain situation, may be a door to our future. What we do know is that God often has to work hard getting our attention, perhaps allowing many stumbling blocks in order to get us back on target.

Being in tune with now, this moment, guarantees a direct line of communication to God. It also guarantees a full, yet simple life. Our purpose becomes clear as we trust our steps to God’s guidance. How terribly complicated we make life by living in the past, the present, and many future times, all at once!

One step, one moment, and then the next step and its moment. How the simple life brings me freedom!

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

At the core of your needs lies a partner who truly listens. If you experience rejection or lack of interest, you can easily slide into a state of silence, refusing to share what is going on inside your heart. The healthiest strategy could be to give it time and focus on your independence today. The truth is it’s better to be alone than to be disappointed. The process of rediscovering who you really are is not over yet, and relationships are a large part of that process. Clarity, like love, often arrives when you stop looking for it.

DR – August 3, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 3, 2018

Daily Reflection

. . .TO BE OF SERVICE

Our real purpose is to fit ourselves to be of maximum service to God and the people about us.

ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 77

It is clear that God’s plan for me is expressed through love. God loved me enough to take me from alleys and jails so that I could be made a useful participant in His world. My response is to love all of His children through service and by example. I ask God to help me imitate His love for me through my love for others.

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

Big Book Quote

“Follow the dictates of a Higher Power and you will presently live in a new and wonderful world, no matter what your present circumstances!”

Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 100

Keep It Simple

Alcoholism isn’t a spectator sport. Eventually the whole family gets to play.

—Joyce Rebeta-Burditt

One of the biggest lies addicts can tell themselves is, “I’m not hurting anyone but myself.”

This is just another way we don’t see how important we are to others.

During our using, love was a burden. When anyone showed love for us, we turned away. They hurt. And we hurt.

In recovery, when ready, we try and help our families heal. We listen as they speak of how our illness has hurt them. We comfort them as they tell their stories. Remember, our illness hurt them. Remember, our recovery will help them heal.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me face the pain my illness has brought to others. Let me know their pain.
Let it help me stay sober.

Action for the Day:
I will list all persons my illness has hurt. I will say a prayer for them, even if they have harmed me.

Each Day a New Beginning

All that is necessary to make this world a better place to live is to love – to love as Christ loved, as Buddha loved. –Isadora Duncan

To be unconditionally loved is our birthright, and we are so loved by God. We desire just such a love from one another, and we deserve it; yet, it’s a human quality to look for love before giving it. Thus many of us search intently for signs of love.

Too many of us are searching, rather than loving. Truly loving another means letting go of all expectations. It means full acceptance, even celebration of another’s personhood. Not easy, but so rewarding, to ourselves as well as to the one who is the focus of our love.

Love is a balm that heals. Loving lightens whatever our burdens. It invites our inner joy to emerge. But most of all, it connects us, one with another. Loneliness leaves. We are no longer alienated from our environment. Love is the mortar that holds the human structure together. Without the expression of love, it crumbles. This recovery program has offered us a plan for loving others, as well as ourselves. Love will come to us, just as surely as we give it away.

Each and every expression of love I offer today will make smooth another step I take in this life.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Your stomach is your soft spot and it will nudge you to adjust your rhythm if you’re feeling uncomfortable. You hope to have enough time to manage everything that is on your plate, but some annoying disturbances can draw you deep into moodiness today. Expressing your frustration is not a bad idea, but it requires a lot of energy. Be strategic and you will get your point across. Take a timeout tonight, turn off the phone and open a book instead. Create the space you need to replenish your soul.

DR – August 2, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings
August 2, 2018

Daily Reflection

WE BECOME WILLING . . .

At the moment we are trying to put our lives in order. But this is not an end in itself.
— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 77

How easily I can become misdirected in approaching the Eighth Step! I wish to be free, somehow transformed by my Sixth and Seventh Step work. Now, more than ever, I am vulnerable to my own self-interest and hidden agenda. I am careful to remember that self-satisfaction, which sometimes comes through the spoken forgiveness of those I have harmed, is not my true objective. I become willing to make amends, knowing that through this process I am mended and made fit to move forward, to know and desire God’s will for me.

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

Big Book Quote

“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, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pg. 19

Keep It Simple

. . . and because willing to make amends to them all. —Second half of Step Eight.

We have made our list of persons we’ve harmed. Now we look at how willing we are to make amends. We might find that we aren’t ready and willing to make amends to everyone. Maybe they have wronged us more than we have wronged them. Maybe we’re afraid they’ll get angry with us. Maybe we’re afraid they’ll put us in jail.

We get ready to make amends by listening and talking to others in our group—and to our sponsor. We pray for help to be willing to make amends.

Becoming willing does not just happen.

We have to work at it. We need to be willing to let go of the past.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me become willing. Help me see my part. I know “my part” is the only part I can change.

Action for the Day:
I will take time to go over my list. To whom am I not ready to make amends? I will take time to read the Serenity Prayer.

Each Day a New Beginning

Though we be sick and tired and faint and worn–Lo, all things can be borne!
–Elizabeth Chase Akers

What bothered us most a year ago? A month ago? Even a week ago? It’s probably that whatever it was, we were obsessed with it, certain that our futures were ruined, that there was no reasonable solution. It’s also probable that we feared we simply couldn’t survive the complexity of the situation. But we did. And we always will be able to survive any and all difficulties. We are never, absolutely never, given more than we can handle. In fact, we are given exactly what we need, at any given time.

We have many lessons to learn. Fortunately, we have the structure of the Twelve Steps to guide us through the lessons. We need mainly to remember what we are powerless over, that there is a power greater than ourselves, and that life will become simple; we’ll need no extra homework when we’ve turned it over to the care of God.

Whatever my problem today, I will let God have it. A solution is in the making. I’ll see it just as quickly as I can let go of the problem.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You take on your responsibilities today as a challenge with a sense of solidity, firmly grounded in yourself. Issues at work or at home normally have you tiptoeing around those you sense carry some deep frustration. But if you accept that you tend to take matters personally when it is not, it is easy to see things for what they are now. There’s no reason to allow other people’s dramas to drain your positive energy. A Polish proverb states, “Not your monkeys, not your circus.”