Aug. 17, 2018 – Readings in Recovery: Today’s Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

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Friday, Aug. 17, 2018

Today’s thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Reflection for the Day
Looking back, I realize just how much of my life has been spent in dwelling upon the faults of others. It provided much self-satisfaction, to be sure, but I see now just how subtle and actually perverse the process became. After all was said and done, the net effect of dwelling on the so-called faults of others was self-granted permission to remain comfortably unaware of my own defects. 

Do I still point my finger at others and thus self-deceptively overlook my own shortcomings?

Today I Pray
May I see that my preoccupation with the faults of others is really a smokescreen to keep me from taking a hard look at my own, as well as a way to bolster my own failing ego. May I check out the “why’s” of my blaming.

Today I Will Remember
Blame-saying is game-playing.

You are reading from the book:

A Day at a Time (Softcover) by Anonymous

A Day at a Time © 1989 by Hazelden Foundation

Aug. 17, 2018 – Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

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Step by Step

Friday, Aug. 17, 2018

“A lot of lost dreams, empty futures and crazy things of the past went through my mind. One night, I was struck with the memory of a line Alan Ladd used in ‘Shane,’ a movie that I’d worked on. He told a villain, ‘The trouble is, old man, you’ve lived too long.’ How that line echoed through my mind! I knew why I identified. It was MY line, the story of MY life. I’d lived too long and become a loser, dependent on booze. Well, at least I could drink myself to death. Real soon. Then everyone would be sorry for me.” – Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, 1976, “They Stopped in Time,” Ch 3 (“Those Golden Years”), p 333.

Today, no asking if I have lived too long or too briefly and if I am predestined to “drink myself to death,” exiting the world with everyone feeling “sorry” for me. Is this the legacy for which I have lived my life? If I want and expect better, and whether I am sober or drinking today, AA has given me the tools to build the legacy that will remain after I am gone. And the program promises better than being remembered as the “poor soul” who wasted a lifetime and died an alcoholic’s death. Through AA, I can craft my legacy to be someone who rose from an alcoholic’s gutter and re-crafted himself as a person who sobered up and sought to help the person who became helpless and hopeless. But I cannot think in terms of my final legacy. It is built 24 Hours at a time. Today, I focus on what my legacy is now. And our common journey continues. Step by step. – Chris M., 2018

Aug. 17, 2018 – Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

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The Eye Opener

Friday, Aug. 17, 2018

As startling as this may sound to some members, AA has no first-, second- or third-class memberships. A sober member is in good standing if he has been dry for twenty-four hours or twenty-four months.

Of course, no one means to discriminate, but some of us just naturally gravitate to a certain person or group of persons within the group. The “low-bottoms” are just as guilty as the “high-bottoms” in this respect. After all, we were all drunks and all of us smelled the same when we came in.

Hazelden Foundation

Aug. 17, 2018 – Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

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A Day at a Time

Friday, Aug. 17, 2018

Reflection for the Day

The Fourth Step suggests we make a searching and fearless moral inventory – not an immoral inventory of ourselves. The Steps are guidelines to recovery, not whipping posts for self-flagellation. Taking my inventory doesn’t mean concentrating on my shortcomings until all the good is hidden from view. By the same token, recognizing the good need not be an act of pride or conceit. If I recognize my good qualities as God-given, I can take an inventory with true humility while experiencing satisfaction in what is pleasant, loving and generous in me.

Will I try to believe, in Walt Whitman’s words, that “I am larger, better than I thought; I did not know I held so much goodness …”?

Today I Pray

When I find good things about myself, as I undertake this inner archaeological dig, may I give credit where it is due – to God, who is the giver of all good. May I appreciate whatever is good about me with humility, as a gift from God.

Today I Will Remember

Goodness is a gift from God.

Hazelden Foundation

Aug. 17, 2018 – Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Friday, Aug. 17, 2018

AA Thought for the Day

“To one who feels he is an atheist or agnostic, a spiritual experience seems impossible, but to continue as he is means disaster. To be doomed to an alcoholic death or to live on a spiritual basis are not always easy alternatives to face. But we have to face the fact that we must find a spiritual basis of life – or else. Lack of power is our dilemma. We have to find a power by which we can live, and it has to be a power greater than ourselves.”

Have I found that power by which I can live?

Meditation for the Day

Sunshine is the laughter of nature. Live out in the sunshine. The sun and air are good medicine. Nature is a good nurse for tired bodies. Let her have her way with you. God’s grace is like the sunshine. Let your whole being be enwrapped in the Divine spirit. Faith is the soul’s breathing in of the Divine spirit. It makes glad the hearts of human beings. The Divine spirit heals and cures the mind. Let it have its way and all will be well.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may live in the sunshine of God’s spirit. I pray that my mind and soul may be energized by it.

Hazelden Foundation

Aug. 16, 2018 – Readings in Recovery: Today’s Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

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Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018

Today’s thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Forming new habits

We form habits and then these habits begin to form us. For so long we had such self-destructive ways of being: We were self-centered, angry, and critical people, and so we behaved selfishly, angrily, and judgmentally in the world.

To stay clean and sober we must develop new habits, new patterns of living. We must give up old hangouts, old friends, old attitudes, and ideas. It seems this is the only way to form new habits – for example, kindness, love, and honesty – on which our program is based.

What habits do I want to develop?

Higher Power, Help me to form new habits to replace the old ones that nearly destroyed my life.

You are reading from the book:

Day by Day – Second Edition by Anonymous

Day by Day © 1974, 1998 by Hazelden Foundation