DR – January 29, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 29, 2018:

Daily Reflection

THE JOY OF SHARING

Life will take on new meaning. To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends—this is an experience you must not miss. We know you will not want to miss it. Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 89

To know that each newcomer with whom I share has the opportunity to experience the relief that I have found in this Fellowship fills me with joy and gratitude. I feel that all the things described in A.A. will come to pass for them, as they have for me, if they seize the opportunity and embrace the program fully.

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

Big Book Quote

“More than most people, the alcoholic leads a double life. He is very much the actor. To the outer world he presents his stage character. This is the one he likes his fellows to see. He wants to enjoy a certain reputation, but knows in his heart he doesn’t deserve it.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 73~

Keep It Simple

An alcoholic spends his life committing suicide on the installment plan.
–Laurence Peter

None of us woke up one morning and found we had suddenly turned into an addict. We got to be one by practice. And we practiced often. We ignored our families–we left work early–and went drinking and drugging. Daily, we chose chemicals over anything else. Likewise, getting sober is no accident. We work the program. At meetings, we’re reminded to help others. We all get sober on the installment plan. A day at a time. We got sick one day at a time; we recover one day at a time.

Prayer for the Day:
Today, with my Higher Power’s help, I’ll be happier, more honest, more sober. Sobriety is like a good savings account. Higher Power, help me to put in more than I take out.

Action for the Day:
I’ll go over my Step One to remind myself it’s no accident I’m an addict.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You are thrilled when people acknowledge your contributions at work and at home. However, in the absence of positive feedback now, you could fabricate complete sob stories about your shortcomings or epic tales of your conquests. Entertaining fantasies is a double-edged sword. You can imagine wonderful things about yourself and then set a course to manifest these dreams. Or, you could amplify your concerns into worst-case scenarios. Corrie ten Boom wrote, “Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.”

DR – January 18, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 18, 2018:

Daily Reflection

WOULD A DRINK HELP?

By going back in our own drinking histories, we could show that years before we realized it we were out of control, that our drinking even then was no mere habit, that it was indeed the beginning of a fatal progression.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 23

When I was still drinking, I couldn’t respond to any of life’s situations the way other, more healthy, people could. The smallest incident triggered a state of mind that believed I had to have a drink to numb my feelings. But the numbing did not improve the situation, so I sought further escape in the bottle. Today I must be aware of my alcoholism. I cannot afford to believe that I have gained control of my drinking — or again I will think I have gained control of my life. Such a feeling of control is fatal to my recovery.

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

Big Book Quote

“We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: ‘Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic.’ Commencing to drink after a period of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.”

Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 33

Keep It Simple

The reality is that changes are coming….they must come. You must share in bring them.

–John Hersey

Change. It’s scary. It’s hard. It’s needed. Sometimes it feels bad. But one thing is for sure: it keeps on happening. Just when our life seems settled, it changes. We can’t stop life. We can’t stay this age forever. The world changes. Life moves on. There are always new things to do and learn. Changes means we’re always beginners in some ways. We need to ask for wisdom and courage. We get it by listening, by praying, by meditating. When we ask, our Higher Power will teach us to be part of good changes.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me believe that Your plans call for good changes.

Action for the Day:
Today I’ll think about the changes in my life. I’ve lived through a lot. I’ll be okay when more changes come, with God’s help. I can keep on growing.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Something is shifting in your heart that enables you to be more accepting of those you love. Although you may need to clean up a mess you helped to create during a recent emotional storm, you’re ready to look ahead rather than cling to the past. But don’t be too quick to assume that your newfound openness will automatically fix all your relationship problems. You are still a creature with feelings and recognizing them when they surface is necessary for the healing process to continue. Forgiveness starts with you.

DR – January 13, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 13, 2018:

Daily Reflection

IT DOESN’T HAPPEN OVERNIGHT

We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition.

~ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 85

The most common alcoholic fantasy seems to be: “If I just don’t drink, everything will be all right.” Once the fog cleared for me, I saw — for the first time — the mess my life had become. I had family, work, financial and legal problems; I was hung up on old religious
ideas; there were sides of my character to which I was inclined to stay blind because they easily could have convinced me that I was hopeless and pushed me toward escape again. The Big Book guided me in  resolving all of my problems. But it didn’t happen overnight — and certainly not automatically — with no effort on my part. I need always to recognize God’s mercy and blessings that shine through any problem I have to face.

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

Big Book Quote

“…with us, to drink is to die.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 66~

Keep It Simple

The junkie can never start to cure himself until he recognizes his true condition.
—-
Malcoln X

Now we know what the problem is. Now we can do something about it. The truth of our problem is, we can’t handle alcohol or other drugs. They handle us. They control us. The Steps ask us to face the truth.

And the truth sets us free. What a wonderful gift! We feared the truth, but now it’s our friend. It’s a relief.

Facing the truth means we’re honest. And honestly is our best friend in recovery. It’s like a cozy fire on a winter’s night. Honesty is how we get well. It’s also what will keep us well. Do I truly believe I can’t use alcohol or other drugs?

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me know that I must work this program with care and respect.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll make two list, On one list, I’ll write ways I work on my program. On the other list, I’ll write way I play with my program. And I’ll put my energy into working the program.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You might be thrilled to discover that you’ve wandered far outside of your comfort zone today, even if you’re unsure how you got there. You’re often quite content to play it safe, but you’re itching to do something different now. However, conflict arises if you’re with someone who wants to continue the adventure after you reach a point when you’re ready to go home. Don’t be too quick to relinquish control if it means ignoring your preferences. A compromise is possible but only if you feel that your desires are acknowledged.

DR – January 4, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 4, 2018:

Daily Reflection

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.

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

Big Book Quote

“To be doomed to an alcoholic death or to live on a spiritual basis
are not always easy alternatives to face.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, Page 44~

Keep It Simple

He who is swift to believe is swift to forget.-—Abraham Joshua Herschel

Life is full of questions. Many people tell us they have the answers. We have to be careful of who and what we believe. Other people’s ideas may not fit us. The program doesn’t tell us much about what to believe. It teaches us how to believe. How well the program works for us depends on what we believe and how well we live it. When we face all the facts, we can really believe. We believe we are powerless over our addiction. We believe we must and can change some things in our lives. We believe we can trust a Higher Power to care for us. When we choose to believe, we want to choose the best beliefs we can. And once we believe, we must not forget.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me know You, and help me know the truth.

Action for the Day:
Today I’ll think about my First Step. Do I truly believe I’m powerless over my disease?

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

It might feel as if people are judging you harshly before they even know your intentions. However, there is no reason to try to convince anyone that your plan is valuable today. If you are confident in your ability to see the big picture and to bring generalities down to earth, then you don’t need any input from others at this time — especially if you know it will be negative. There’s no reason to complicate your life when it’s already on track to success.

DR – January 3, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 3, 2018:

Daily Reflection

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.

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

Big Book Quote

“…I would enter upon a new relationship with my Creator; that I would have the elements of a way of living which answered all my problems. Belief in the power of God, plus enough willingness, honesty and humility to establish and maintain the new order of things, were the essential requirements.”

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

Keep It Simple

Never play leapfrog with a unicorn. —Unknown

As we work Step One, we accept that alcohol and other drugs are poison to us. We accept our limits. This means we know that hanging around our using “buddies” can remind us of “the good old days.” Hanging around “slippery places” means we could “slip” back into our old ways. This isn’t testing our sobriety; it’s being reckless with it. So let’s accept our limits. Everybody has limits. When we know our limits, we protect our recovery against the people and places that pull us from our spiritual center. This is what true acceptance means.

Prayer for the Day:
I pray for true acceptance. Higher Power, help me to stay away from slippery places. I will protect the gift You’ve given me.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll list the people and places that are risky for me to be around. I will share this list with my sponsor, my group, and my sober friends.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

A blast of certainty encourages you to take a calculated risk today. However, you may question the accuracy of your perceptions if someone wonders about the efficacy of your plan. In fact, you might be so sensitive now that even constructive criticism could send your attitude into a tailspin. Trust your intuition over someone else’s advice. Although other people’s opinions matter, they can’t make accurate judgments on the direction of your life. Caroline Myss wrote, “The more you ask for proof, the less likely you are to receive any.”

DR – January 2, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 2, 2018:

Daily Reflection

FIRST, THE FOUNDATION

Is sobriety all that we can expect of a spiritual awakening? No, sobriety is only a bare beginning.

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 8

Practicing the A.A. program is like building a house. First I had to pour a big, thick concrete slab on which to erect the house; that, to me, was the equivalent of stopping drinking. But it’s pretty uncomfortable living on a concrete slab, unprotected and exposed to the heat, cold, wind and rain. So I built a room on the slab by starting to practice the program. The first room was rickety because I wasn’t used to the work. But as time passed, as I practiced the program, I learned to build better rooms. The more I practiced, and the more I built, the more comfortable, and happy, was the home I now have to live in.

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 isn’t enough. You have to act the Good Samaritan every day, if need be.”

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

Keep It Simple

..our lives had become unmanageable.  ~ Second half of Step One.

The First Step tells us a lot about our addiction. We were out of control. Our addiction was in control. Addiction managed everything. It managed our relationships. It managed how we behaved with our families. As Step One says, “…our lives had become unmanageable.” But we pretended we managed our lives. What a lie! Addiction ran our lives–not us. We weren’t honest with ourselves. Our program heals us through self-honesty. We feel better just speaking the truth. We are becoming good people with spiritual values. Our spiritual journey has begun.

Prayer:
Higher Power, I give YOU my life to manage. When I’m faced with a choice, I’ll ask myself, “What would my Higher Power choose for me?”

Action:
Today, I’ll be honest with a friend about how unmanageable my life had become.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Although you thought things were slowing down, the pace picks up today when unforeseen events require you to shift into crisis management mode. There may be a growing resistance to your ideas from those closest to you, and it’s unwise to rock the boat. If someone in your immediate environment wants to take charge, let them. You will be more effective working behind the scenes or supporting others now. The most successful leaders know when to follow another’s lead.

DR – January 1, 2018

Daily Recovery Readings for January 1, 2018:

Daily Reflection

“I AM A MIRACLE”

The central fact of our lives today is the absolute certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.

ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 25

This truly is a fact in my life today, and a real miracle. I always believed in God, but could never put that belief meaningfully into my life. Today, because of Alcoholics Anonymous, I now trust and rely on God, as I understand Him; I am sober today because of that! Learning to trust and rely on God was something I could never have done alone. I now believe in miracles because I am one!

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

Big Book Quote

“For a brief moment, I had needed and wanted God. There had been a humble willingness to have Him with me — and He came.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, Page 12~

Keep It Simple

We admitted we were powerless over alcohol…–First part of Step One.

In Step One, we accept our powerlessness over alcohol and other drugs. But we are powerless over many parts of life. We are powerless over other people. We are powerless over what our HP has planned for us. Before recovery, we only believed in control. We tried to control everything. We fought against a basic truth, the truth that we are powerless over much of life. When we accept this truth, we begin to see what power we do have. We have the power to make choices. When we’re lonely, we have the power to reach out to others. We have power over how we live our own lives.

PRAYER:
HP, help me to know that it’s You who is running my life. Help me to know that power comes from accepting I am powerless.

ACTION:
I am powerless over much of life. Today, I’ll look to see how this is true. I’ll look to see what I really have control over and what I don’t.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Sometimes, you must speak your mind even if you know your words will run into resistance from others. However, you might decide to keep your feelings to yourself for a while longer. Unfortunately, what starts out as common sense could turn into an excuse. Overcoming your own fear may require an act of faith, but the powerful Cancer Full Moon floods your 1st House of Self, making it more difficult to hide your emotions. Rumi wrote, “Tear off your mask. Your face is glorious.”

DR – December 31, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 30, 2017:

Daily Reflection

DAILY RESOLUTIONS

The idea of “twenty-four-hour living” applies primarily to the emotional life of the individual. Emotionally speaking, we must not live in yesterday, nor in tomorrow.

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 284

A New Year: 12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes — a time to consider directions, goals, and actions. I must make some plans to live a normal life, but also I must live emotionally within a twenty-four-hour frame, for if I do, I don’t have to make New Year’s resolutions! I can make every day a New Year’s day! I can decide, “Today I will do this . . . Today I will do that.” Each day I can measure my life by trying to do a little better, by deciding to follow God’s will and by making an effort to put the principles of our A.A. program into action.

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

Big Book Quote

“Remember that we deal with alcohol, cunning, baffling, powerful! Without help it is too much for us. But there is One who has all power that One is God. May you find Him now!”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, Page 58~

Keep It Simple

May you live all the days of your life’–Jonathan Swift.

Tonight, at midnight, a New Year will begin. None of us know what the New Year will hold. But we can trust ourselves to hold on to the spirit of recovery as we go through the year. As a New Year is about to begin, we can rejoice in our new way of life. We can give our will and our life to our HP. By doing these things, we’ll be ready for the New Year.

PRAYER:
Higher Power, I pray that I’ll start the New Year safe in Your loving arms. I pray that I’ll keep working my program.

ACTION:
Tonight, at midnight, I’ll say the Serenity Prayer. I will think of all the others who have read this meditation book and who will join me in this prayer. We are a recovering community.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You’re eager to work on your objectives for the year ahead, but your rebellious attitude could stop your process in its tracks. You don’t mind when friends or relatives encourage your participation in a group activity, but everyone gets on your nerves today by demanding you have your resolutions ready to share. Once you feel like you’re pushed too far, there’s no easy way back and your only viable choice is to opt out. Fortunately, displaying your “Do Not Disturb” sign tells others to leave you alone long enough to process your feelings and reenter the game when you see fit.

DR – December 30, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 30, 2017:

Daily Reflection

ANONYMITY

Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 562

Tradition Twelve became important early in my sobriety and, along with the Twelve Steps, it continues to be a must in my recovery. I became aware after I joined the Fellowship that I had personality problems, so that when I first heard it, the Tradition’s message was very clear: there exists an immediate way for me to face, with others, my alcoholism and attendant anger, defensiveness, offensiveness. I saw Tradition Twelve as being a great ego-deflator; it relieved my anger and gave me a chance to utilize the principles of the program. All of the Steps, and this particular Tradition, have guided me over decades of continuous sobriety. I am grateful to those who were here when I needed them.

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

Big Book Quote

“We feel as though we had been placed in a position of neutrality safe and protected. We have not even sworn off. Instead, the problem has been removed. It does not exist for us. We are neither cocky nor are we afraid. That is our experience. That is how we react so long as we keep in fit spiritual condition.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, Page 85~

Keep It Simple

Keep It Simple.—AA slogan

Addiction messed up our thinking. We know that from taking Step One. We forgot things. We had blackouts. We made excuses, and we even started to believe them. We were mixed up. We couldn’t figure things out. We decided to get high and forget about it. Now our minds are clear. We can keep thinking clearly if we work our program and Keep It Simple. Don’t drink or use other drugs. Go to meetings. Work the Steps. Be yourself. Ask for help. Trust your Higher Power. Two thoughts will always mess us up if we let them in. They are “Yes, but…” and “What if?” Don’t let them in. Keep It Simple.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, thanks for recovery. Help me stay sober and clean today.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll take one thing at a time and Keep It Simple.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

There is a lot of mental activity cooking behind your bright eyes, but you won’t likely share many of your thoughts today. People around you appear pleasant, but it seems as if they are containing their emotions and expect you to do the same. You can feel the dissonance between your inner restlessness and your outer restraint. Your self-imposed silence drives your attention inward and revitalizes your fantasy life. Enjoy the show for now; you’ll have a chance to talk about it soon enough.

DR – December 29, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 27, 2017:

Daily Reflection

THE JOY OF LIVING

. . . therefore the joy of good living is the theme of A.A.’s Twelfth Step.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 125

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.

Big Book Quote

“Those having religious affiliations will find here nothing disturbing to their beliefs or ceremonies. There is no friction among us over such matters.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, Page 28~

Keep It Simple

Many people are living in an emotional jail without recognizing it.  — Virginia Satir.

Our disease was our jail. We felt so bad that we were sure we must have done something awful. But we didn’t cause our disease. We have done nothing to deserve our disease. We aren’t responsible for the fact that we have a disease. But we ARE responsible for our recovery. We have been granted probation. The terms of our probation are simple: don’t drink or use other drugs, and work the Steps. If we follow these simple rules, we’ll be free. And it will be clear to us that only a Power greater than ourselves could give us this freedom.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me to stay free. For this next twenty-four – hour period, take from me any urge to drink or use other drugs. With Your help, I’ll be free.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll think about my disease. I am not morally weak. I have a dangerous illness. What can keep me free from my disease?

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

People are a source of common sense now and they help you stay grounded. Although you appreciate the intentions of those close to you, you may also feel oddly constrained by their comfortable presence. You cherish the familiarity and constancy of a dependable relationship, but might withdraw emotionally if you believe your options are being unnecessarily limited. Rather than thinking about next week or next year, you’re considering longer term goals that conflict with your current situation. However, there is no reason to exclude anyone, especially someone who could prove to be your greatest ally in the end.