Daily Recovery Readings
November 2, 2020
KEEPING OPTIMISM AFLOAT
The other Steps can keep most of us sober and somehow functioning. But Step Eleven can keep us growing, . . .
— THE LANGUAGE OF THE HEART, p. 240
A sober alcoholic finds it much easier to be optimistic about life. Optimism is the natural result of my finding myself gradually able to make the best, rather than the worst, of each situation. As my physical sobriety continues, I come out of the fog, gain a clearer perspective and am better able to determine what courses of action to take. As vital as physical sobriety is, I can achieve a greater potential for myself by developing an ever-increasing willingness to avail myself of the guidance and direction of a Higher Power. My ability to do so comes from my learning—and practicing—the principles of the A.A. program. The melding of my physical and spiritual sobriety produces the substance of a more positive life.
Big Book Quote
The basic principles of the A.A. program, it appears, hold good for individuals with many different lifestyles, just as the program has brought recovery to those of many different nationalities. The Twelve Steps that summarize the program may be called los Doce Pasos in one country, les Douze Etapes in another, but they trace exactly the same path to recovery that was blazed by the earliest members of Alcoholics Anonymous.
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Foreward To Third Edition, Page
24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book
Thought for the Day
I have faith. That thing that makes the world seem right. That thing that makes sense at last. That awareness of the Divine Principle in the universe, which holds it all together and gives it unity and purpose and goodness and meaning. Life is no longer ashes in my mouth or bitter to the taste. It is all one glorious whole, because God is holding it together. Faith – that leap into the unknown, the venture into what lies beyond our ken, that which brings untold rewards of peace and serenity. Have I faith?
Meditation for the Day
Keep yourself like an empty vessel for God to fill. Keep pouring out yourself to help others so that God can keep filling you up with His spirit. The more you give, the more you will have for yourself. God will see that you are kept filled as long as you are giving to others. But if you selfishly try to keep all for yourself, you are soon blocked off from God, your source of supply, and you will become stagnant. To be clear, a lake must have an inflow and an outflow.
Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may keep pouring out what I receive. I pray that I may keep the stream clear and flowing.
The Language of Letting Go – Codependency
The Grief Process
To let ourselves wholly grieve our losses is how we surrender to the process of life and recovery. Some experts, like Patrick Carnes, call the Twelve Steps “a program for dealing with our losses, a program for dealing with our grief.”
How do we grieve?
Awkwardly. Imperfectly. Usually with a great deal of resistance. Often with anger and attempts to negotiate. Ultimately, by surrendering to the pain.
The grief process, says Elisabeth Kubler Ross, is a five stage process: denial, anger, bargaining, sadness, and, finally, acceptance. That’s how we grieve; that’s how we accept; that’s how we forgive; that’s how we respond to the many changes life throws our way.
Although this five-step process looks tidy on paper, it is not tidy in life. We do not move through it in a compartmentalized manner. We usually flounder through, kicking and screaming, with much back and forth movement – until we reach that peaceful state called acceptance.
When we talk about “unfinished business” from our past, we are usually referring to losses about which we have not completed grieving. We’re talking about being stuck somewhere in the grief process. Usually, for adult children and codependents, the place where we become stuck is denial.. Passing through denial is the first and most dangerous stage of grieving, but it is also the first step toward acceptance.
We can learn to understand the grief process and how it applies to recovery. Even good changes in recovery can bring loss and, consequently, grief. We can learn to help others and ourselves by understanding and becoming familiar with this process. We can learn to fully grieve our losses, feel our pain, accept, and forgive, so we can feel joy and love.
Today, God, help me open myself to the process of grieving my losses. Help me allow myself to flow through the grief process, accepting all the stages so I might achieve peace and acceptance in my life. Help me learn to be gentle with others and myself while we go through this very human process of healing.
Touchstone – Men’s Meditation
Honesty is stronger medicine than sympathy, which may console but often conceals.
We owe our brothers and sisters in this program our honest feedback. And we need the same honesty from them. There are times in meetings when it would be easiest to give someone sympathy and privately mutter to ourselves, “He isn’t facing the bitter truth.” That sympathy avoids a confrontation, but it doesn’t give the healing medicine of honesty. In the same way, we may long, at times, for someone to give us warm strokes, and what they give instead is a bitter pill.
The most important thing we have to give one another is the truth of what we see and hear. We don’t have to tell them what to do. We don’t have to have all the right answers. But we do have the obligation to speak up about how things look to us. And we need to listen without defensiveness when others are honest with us.
Today, I will say what I see and hear. I will listen to other people’s honesty with me.
“Praying is what has brought us old people through life. We’ve all gone through hard times. We’ve all done our share of bad things. But through our prayers and faith in the Creator we get together again and we try hard to live right.”
–Paula Weasel Head, BLOOD
As we go through life we find ourselves on track one day and off track the next day. We gain consistency through prayer. Prayer is our connection to the Great Spirit. Prayer is our channel for knowledge and wisdom. Prayer is how we keep our sanity. The Elders say we should walk in prayer.
Great Spirit, teach me to walk in prayer. Help keep my faith strong.
Daily Horoscope – Cancer
Today might be the type of day that makes you want to curl up and read a good book or take a nap. Either way, while your energy may not be as high as normal, your intuition will be elevated and, because you are more self-focused right now, you may learn something that was hidden from you before. Write down your dreams if you have them during this time, because they may reveal important information about your innermost thoughts and feelings toward yourself.