DR – December 28, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 27, 2017:

Daily Reflection

Daily Reflections

SUIT UP AND SHOW UP

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

AS BILL SEES IT, p. 21

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

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

Big Book Quote

“Suppose we fall short of the chosen ideal and stumble? Does this mean we are going to get drunk. Some people tell us so. But this is only a half-truth. It depends on us and on our motives.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, Page 70~

Keep It Simple

If You Walk With Lame Men You’ll soon Limp Yourself. Seaman McManus

Before recovery, we kept company with people who were as sick as us, or worse. We got angry and made fun of people who were trying to improve their lives. They scared us. They were like mirrors that reflected how spiritually lost we were becoming. Now we walk in the crowd we avoided. Now we have values. We have spiritual beliefs. Living up to these values and beliefs can be hard. We need to be around people who live by their values. In recovery, we learn that we need others. Remember, the first word in Step One is we. We need good people in our lives. We need friends who will not tell us what we want to hear, but what we are doing wrong.

Prayer for the Day:
Sometimes I act like I need no one. Help me pick my friends wisely, for my life is at stake.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll pick one friend, and we’ll talk about how we can better help each other.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You’re a pleasure to be around today, unless someone pushes you too far. Your sensitivity to other people’s feelings endears you to them, increasing your popularity. However, your external sweetness hides your immovable inner core. You may appear to be flexible now, but your long-term goals are not up for negotiation. Your boundaries are much more solid than anyone realizes until they inadvertently intrude into your private territory. The strength of your convictions reveals the strength of your character.

DR – December 27, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 27, 2017:

Daily Reflection

PROBLEM SOLVING

“Quite as important was the discovery that spiritual principles would solve all my problems.”

~ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 42

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

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

Big Book Quote

“Our hope is that when this chip of a book is launched on the world tide of alcoholism, defeated drinkers will seize upon it, to follow its suggestions. Many, we are sure, will rise to their feet and march on. They will approach still other sick ones and fellowships of Alcoholics Anonymous may spring up in each city and hamlet, havens for those who must find a way out.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, Page 153~

Keep It Simple

Reading is to the Mind, what exercise is to the body.

Good ideas are the seeds that start our growth. We hear things at meetings. We listen to our sponsor.

Maybe we listen to program tapes. And we read. Reading is special because we do it when we’re alone.

We read in quiet times, when we can think. We can read as fast or as slow as we want.

We can mark special words and come back to them again and again. We’ll figure things out in our way, but we need help to get started. That’s why we read. It gives us good ideas to think about.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, speak to me through helpful readings and help me learn at my best pace.

Action for the Day: Reading is easier the more I do it. Today I’ll feel proud that I’ve read program ideas to get my mind thinking in a healthy way.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You hear what people are saying to you today, but you just can’t take their words all that seriously. Everyone seems to have expectations about what you should and shouldn’t do now, but you have your own ideas. Others may try to guilt you into being more responsible, while you’re more interested in pursuing pleasure. Instead of getting someone’s hopes up by making promises you can’t keep, invite your inner child out to play. Creativity is the highest form of expression.

DR – December 26, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 26, 2017:

Daily Reflection

ACCEPTING SUCCESS OR FAILURE

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

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 112

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

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

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

To be emotionally committed to somebody is very difficult, but to be alone is impossible. –Stephen Sondheim.

Let’s face it, relationships are hard to work! But we are lucky! Recovery is about relationships. We learn how to set limits. We learn how to listen to and talk to others. In Step One, we begin a new relationship with ourselves. In Step Two and Three, we begin a relationship with our Higher Power. In later Steps, we mend our relationships with family and friends. In our relationship with our sponsor, we learn about being friends. And our past relationships with alcohol and other drugs is being replaced by people and our Higher Power.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, thank-you for all the new relationships. Thank-you for teaching me how to feel
human again.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll make a list of all the new relationships I have now, due to my sobriety.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Your spontaneous actions are swift and bold today, leading others to admire your confidence. However, your behavior doesn’t tell the whole story now, since you could be overcompensating to hide your true emotions. But sharing your inner experience with those you trust reveals your authentic self. Ironically, you can simultaneously feel afraid while acting courageously. Fear is temporary; regret is forever.

DR – December 25, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 25, 2017:

Daily Reflection

AT PEACE WITH LIFE

Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities. “How can I best serve Thee—Thy will (not mine) be done.”

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 85

I read this passage each morning, to start off my day, because it is a continual reminder to “practice these principles in all my affairs.” When I keep God’s will at the forefront of my mind, I am able to do what I should be doing, and that puts me at peace with life, with myself and with God.

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

Big Book Quote

“Our description of the alcoholic, the chapter to the agnostic, and our personal adventure before and after make clear three pertinent ideas:

(a) That we were alcoholic and could not manage our own lives.
(b) That probably no human power could have relieved our alcoholism.
(c) That God could and would if He were sought.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, Page 60~

Keep It Simple

To love is to place our happiness in the happiness of another.–Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibnitz.

Not that we’re getting well. We feel the need for love more than ever. We tried to avoid love by using chemicals to feel good. But it didn’t work. Addiction cut us off even more from people. How do we fill our needs for love? We can think about this fact: People give us love all the time. Only we just haven’t seen it. Every time someone comes to a meeting to get well with us, that is love. Love isn’t all-or-nothing.

Little gems of love are all over. Watch them. Enjoy them. Give them to others.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, love comes from You. Help me see it, and give it.

Action for the Day:
I’ll look three persons in the eye today and send them love in my smile.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Someone may rain on your parade today, but a delayed start won’t necessarily dampen any of the fun. You desperately want to maintain a sunny attitude, but hiding your feelings is not as easy as it sounds, especially when you’re with people who can see through your defensive tactics. Taking a risk in revealing your vulnerability requires courage, but standing up for your beliefs is good for your soul.

DR – December 24, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 24, 2017:

Daily Reflection

A “SANE AND HAPPY USEFULNESS”

We have come to believe He would like us to keep our heads in the clouds with Him, but that our feet ought to be firmly planted on earth. That is where our fellow travelers are, and that is where our work must be done. These are the realities for us. We have found nothing incompatible between a powerful spiritual experience and a life of sane and happy usefulness.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 130

All the prayer and meditation in the world will not help me unless they are accompanied by action. Practicing the principles in all my affairs shows me the care that God takes in all parts of my life. God appears in my world when I move aside, and allow Him to step into it.

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

Big Book Quote

“The minute we put our work on a service plane, the alcoholic commences to rely upon our assistance rather than upon God. He clamors for this or that, claiming he cannot master alcohol until his material needs are cared for. Nonsense. Some of us have taken very hard knocks to learn this truth: Job or no job — wife or no wife — we simply do not stop drinking so long as we place dependence upon other people ahead of dependence on God.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 98~

Keep It Simple

We must all hang together or we will hang separately.  —Ben Franklin

We didn’t get ourselves sober. And we don’t keep ourselves sober. Our program does this. That is why the Twelfth Step is important. We must be willing to give service to our program whenever it’s needed. When a friend calls and say he or she feels like using, we don’t say we’re sorry. We get our friend and take him or her to a meeting. Our survival depends on this kind of action. We are to carry the message. We carry the message by deeds, not words. We are part of a fellowship based on action. A fellowship guided by love. It is not words that keep us sober–it is action.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me be ready whenever there’s a need. Help me be ready to put my self-will aside. Give me strength.

Action for the Day:
I will think of my group members. Who could use a supportive call or visit? I will call or visit those who need my help.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Your emotions can impact the plans you are making today for better or worse. If you are feeling safe and secure, you will go out of your way to spread your good will far and wide. However, negativity causes your perspective to narrow, diminishing your range of activity and tempering your goals. Thankfully, you can positively influence your day and the lives of those around you by observing your thoughts and developing those which focus on love rather than fear.

DR – December 23, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 23, 2017:

Daily Reflection

RECOVERY, UNITY, SERVICE

Our Twelfth Step—carrying the message—is the basic service that AA’s Fellowship gives; this is our principal aim and the main reason for our existence.

— THE LANGUAGE OF THE HEART, p. 160

I thank God for those who came before me, those who told me not to forget the Three Legacies: Recovery, Unity and Service. In my home group, the Three Legacies were described on a sign which said: “You take a three-legged stool, try to balance it on only one leg, or two. Our Three Legacies must be kept intact. In Recovery, we get sober together; in Unity, we work together for the good of our Steps and Traditions; and through Service—we give away freely what has been given to us.”

One of the chief gifts of my life has been to know that I will have no message to give, unless I recover in unity with A.A. principles.

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

We not only need to be willing to give, but also to be open to receiving from others.
—from On Hope

Many of us took so much from others during our addiction that now we may not want to ask for anything.

We may be afraid to ask for help, so our needs go unmet. In fact, many of us would rather give than receive. In recovery, we need to understand the difference between taking and receiving. Giving to others is important. So is receiving from others. As we grow spiritually, we learn to accept gifts. The gift of sobriety teaches us this. We need to accept the gifts the world gives us without shame. We are entitled.

God loves us and will give us much if we’re willing to receive it.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me be receptive to Your gifts. Help me see and believe that I’m entitled to all the happiness of the world.

Action for the Day:
I’ll think of what a friend has given me. I’ll thank this friend.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You might consciously limit your activities today, especially if you’re running into situations that seem like the universe is out to get you. But there’s no valid reason to support your notion that you’re a target. Shifting the blame alleviates your stress for a while, but it doesn’t fix anything. It’s never wise to assume the role of a victim when you had a hand in creating the circumstances. Those who start fires can’t complain when they get burned.

DR – December 22, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 22, 2017:

Daily Reflection

PRINCIPLES, NOT PERSONALITIES

The way our “worthy” alcoholics have sometimes tried to judge the “less worthy” is, as we look back on it, rather comical. Imagine, if you can, one alcoholic judging another!

THE LANGUAGE OF THE HEART, p. 37

Who am I to judge anyone? When I first entered the Fellowship I found that I liked everyone. After all, A.A. was going to help me to a better way of life without alcohol. The reality was that I couldn’t possibly like everyone, nor they me. As I’ve grown in the Fellowship, I’ve learned to love everyone just from listening to what they had to
say. That person over there, or the one right here, may be the one God has chosen to give me the message I need for today. I must always remember to place principles above personalities.

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

It is possible to be different and still be right.–Anne Wilson Schaef

Each of us is special. In some ways we’re all different. It’s a good thing too. We’d be bored if we were all the same. Sometimes though, we try to hide the special things about us. We don’t want to be “different.”

But the ways that we’re different makes us special. Others have a knack of fixing things. Some of us make beautiful art. Others are great with kids. Our Higher Power made us as different, as unique, as beautiful snowflakes.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me use my special gifts the way You want me to. Help me be thankful that You have given me something special to share with others.

Action for the Day:
I’ll think of one thing about me that’s special. I’ll talk with my sponsor about it.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Performing the simplest tasks requires extra effort today. You might even feel as if you’re not making any progress at all as mental Mercury stands still in your 6th House of Work. Thankfully, you can still be productive in spite of the awkward pace. Instead of intensifying your frustration by trying to concentrate on one thing at a time, cut yourself some slack and take short breaks throughout the day. Ironically, the change of tempo might be all you need to find your center and regain your focus.

DR – December 21, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 21, 2017:

Daily Reflection

LISTEN, SHARE AND PRAY

When working with a man and his family, you should take care not to participate in their quarrels. You may spoil your chance of being helpful if you do.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 100

When trying to help a fellow alcoholic, I’ve given in to an impulse to give advice, and perhaps that’s inevitable. But allowing others the right to be wrong reaps its own benefits. The best I can do—and it sounds easier than it is to put into practice—is to listen, share personal experience, and pray for others.

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

Don’t give your advice before you are called upon.   ~Desiderius Erasmus

If someone wants your advice, the person will ask for it. That’s one reason why in Twelve Step programs we don’t go around trying to talk people into joining. But people will ask us for advice. They’ll see how we’ve changed, and they’ll want what we have. All we have to do is tell them where we found it–in AA, NA or another Twelve Step group. We don’t tell them what to do. We tell them our own story–what it was like, what happened, and where we are now. And we invite them to join us.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me carry the healing message of the program to these who ask for advice.

Action for the Day:
I’ll make a decision to spend time with the next person who ask for my help.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You might believe that your positive outlook can turn a stressful day into one filled with fun and games. However, the Sun’s current visit to your 7th House of Relationships shines the spotlight on people who make demands of your time. Unfortunately, altering your attitude will not necessarily change the dynamics of the present situation. Trusting your intuition today could lead you down the scenic route when it’s much wiser to take the shortest one. Honesty saves time.

DR – December 20, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 20, 2017:

Daily Reflection

THE REWARDS OF GIVING

This is indeed the kind of giving that actually demands nothing. He does not expect his brother sufferer to pay him, or even to love him. And then he discovers that by the divine paradox of this kind of giving he has found his own reward, whether his brother has yet received anything or not.

TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 109

Through experience with Twelfth Step work, I came to understand the rewards of giving that demands nothing in return. At first I expected recovery in others, but I soon learned that this did not happen. Once I acquired the humility to accept the fact that every Twelfth Step call was not going to result in a success, then I was open to receive the rewards of selfless giving.

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

Big Book Quote

“Thus was I convinced that God is concerned with us humans when we want Him enough. At long last I saw, I felt, I believed. Scales of pride and prejudice fell from my eyes. A new world came into view.”

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

Keep It Simple

There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.

—Edith Wharton

Our Higher Power is the candle. And our hearts, like a mirror, reflect a warm, loving glow.

But when we used alcohol and other drugs, we tired to be the candle. We wanted to have control. Many of us acted like this to hide how out of control we felt. We never thought we could be happy by admitting we were out of control.

In recovery, we accept that it’s okay to be the mirror. We accept that our Higher Power is the candle that guides us. We want to be the mirror that reflects how much our Higher Power loves us.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, thank-you for the light and warmth You give me.

Action for the Day:
Tonight, I’ll light a candle and place it in front of a mirror. I’ll study how they work together to light the room.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You’re eager to cash in your chips today, especially if you see a fast way to make money. Although the financial odds might be in your favor, the question is how much are you willing to risk. Weigh the pros and cons of your current choices, but keep in mind that your chances for success increase in proportion to your investment of time and energy. Fortune favors the bold but only when you don’t push your luck.

DR – December 19, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for December 19, 2017:

Daily Reflection

UNDERSTANDING THE MALADY

When dealing with an alcoholic, there may be a natural annoyance that a man could be so weak, stupid and irresponsible. Even when you understand the malady better, you may feel this feeling rising.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 139

Having suffered from alcoholism, I should understand the illness, but sometimes I feel annoyance, even contempt, toward a person who cannot make it in A.A. When I feel that way, I am satisfying my false sense of superiority and I must remember, but for the grace of God, there go I.

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

Big Book Quote

“Many doctors and psychiatrists agree with our conclusions. One of these men, staff member of a world renowned hospital, recently made this statement to some of us, “What you say about the general hopelessness of the average alcoholics plight is, in my opinion, correct. As to two of you men, whose stories I have heard, there is no doubt in my mind that you were 100% hopeless, apart from divine help. Had you offered yourselves as patients at this hospital, I would not have taken you, if I had been able to avoid it. People like you are too heartbreaking. Though not a religious person, I have profound respect for the spiritual approach in such cases as yours. For most
cases, there is virtually no other solution.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 43~

Keep It Simple

The truth is more important than the facts. –Frank Lloyd Wright.

Before recovery, we relied on false facts about addiction. We said things like, “I can quit anytime I want.” “If you had my family, you’d drink too.” The truth is, we were out of control. We couldn’t manage our lives. We were sick. We were scared. When others pointed out this truth to us, we denied it. Honesty, the backbone of our program, is about truth. We even start our meetings with the truth about who we are. “Hi, my name is ___________, and I’m an alcoholic,” or “Hi, my name is _______________, and I’m a drug addict.” The truth frees us from our addiction. The truth heals us and gives us comfort.

It’s like a blanket on a cold winter night.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me be an honest person. I pray for the strength to face the truth and speak it.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll list 3 ways I have used facts in a dishonest way.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

It might seem as if your work is never done, but if you continue to concentrate on fulfilling your current obligations, you will soon begin to see the fruits of your labor. You might believe that someone close to you is being particularly critical of your work, causing you to doubt recent choices. However, you do not have the luxury of questioning the forces that brought you to this present moment. Throw away your rearview mirror and focus on the road ahead. It doesn’t matter what you did or didn’t do yesterday; it only matters what you do today.