Sunday, April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

Sunday, April 22, 2018
Today’s thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Misery is optional

We may have learned to be miserable, but we can choose to unlearn it. Though we can’t control what happens to us, we can determine how we will interpret and react to what happens. We can moan about the things we don’t like, using them as excuses for self-pity (“poor me”), or we can implement the Serenity Prayer, accepting what we can’t change and changing what we can.

In the past, we often made ourselves miserable by over-doing things. Now, how often do we continue to invite misery by thinking we ought to be able to control other people? What part do unrealistic expectations play in the creation and continuation of our misery?

When we’re hurting, we need to do something about it. A physical hurt may require a doctor; an emotional pain may call for a therapist or friend, and spiritual distress may indicate the need for more prayer and meditation, closer contact with a Higher Power. We can accept responsibility for our feelings, become willing to go to any lengths to get well, and choose not to be miserable.

Responding with misery is not on my list of options for today.
You are reading from the book:
This book is now out of print and no longer available to purchase. Inner Harvest by Elisabeth L. © 1990 by Hazelden Foundation

April 22, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Sunday, April 22, 2018

Today, stop running from regret, shame, guilt, loss and all other anguish that my drinking caused. I must  come to terms and reconciliation with all of it. By taking each step with absolute honesty and the will of my Higher Power, I will look instead to the lessons to be learned from my actions that eventually pooled together to create the pain I may still carry. Regret and shame might be eased by the single strongest amend I can make: by not drinking today. I can release guilt by learning from the mistakes that bred it, and the sense of loss might be less if I can be grateful that I even had what I lost and accept that I might not have been ready to be responsible for what I had - and lost. Today, I work on easing any pain - not by confronting it but finding the comfort in it. But, in the end, if I deny or do not allow myself to feel and deal with the hurt, the good might not feel as good as it might otherwise. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2018

April 22, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Sunday, April 22, 2018

AA Thought for the Day
People believe in AA when they see it work. An actual demonstration is what convinces them. What they read in books, what they hear people say doesn't always convince them. But when they see a real honest-to-goodness change take place in a person, a change from a drunkard to a sober, useful citizen, that's something they can believe because they can see it. There's really only one thing that proves to me that AA works.

Have I seen the change in people who come into AA?

Meditation for the Day
Divine control and unquestioning obedience to God are the only conditions necessary for a spiritual life. Divine control means absolute faith and trust in God, a belief that God is the Divine Principle in the universe and that He is the Intelligence and the Love that controls the universe. Unquestioning obedience to God means living each day the way you believe God wants you to live, constantly seeking the guidance of God in every situation and being willing to do the right thing at all times.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may always be under Divine Control and always practice unquestioning obedience to God. I pray that I may be always ready to serve Him.

Hazelden Foundation

April 22, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Eye Opener
Sunday, April 22, 2018

When we take the first drink, we invite the dead certainty of physical illness, untold sorrows, shame and degradation. That first drink has built more hospitals, jails, poorhouses and insane asylums than any other cause. All the drinks that follow are simply compounding the felony.

There are some people that can drink intelligently, but these people avoid difficulties. We are not in that class, and experience has proven it. Years of sobriety will not enable us to join that class and, again, experience has proven it. Why do you persist in trying, what are you trying to prove? That you are the exception to the rule? If you are the exception, you automatically become a freak.

Hazelden Foundation

April 22, 2018 - Good morning to a serene and peaceful Sunday with faith and hope


Saturday, April 21, 2018

April 21, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

Saturday, April 21, 2018
Today’s thoughts from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation are:

Don’t sweat the small stuff, and remember, it’s all small stuff.
*****

Drinking didn’t cause my problems, living did.
*****

The practicing alcoholic is the only person in the world who can lie in the gutter and still look down on others.

*****
AA meetings are the jumper cables God uses to get love flowing from one alcoholic to another.
You are reading from the book:
My Mind is Out to Get Me by Dr. Ron B. © 1994 by Hazelden Foundation

April 21, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Saturday, April 21, 2018

Today, I am okay! I will not let the debris of my alcoholic past, its regrets and uncertainty about my future clutter my mind with neglect of today. If I cannot simply be and feel okay today, I have a weak foundation for any tomorrows. But I will not let worry about tomorrow impair me today. If today I do not drink, then I am more alive than I ever was when I was drinking. If I can make and keep today okay, then I am making some progress. Hopefully today's progress will stretch into another 24 Hours and being okay will turn into something better. Today, I am okay. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2018

April 21, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Saturday, April 21, 2018

AA Thought for the Day
After we've been in AA for a while, we find out that if we're going to stay sober, we have to be humble people. The men and women in AA who have achieved sobriety are all humble people. When I stop to think that but for the grace of God I might be drunk right now, I can't help feeling humble. Gratitude to God for His grace makes me humble. When I think of the kind of person I was not so long ago, when I think of the person I left behind me, I have nothing to be proud of.

Am I grateful and humble?

Meditation for the Day
I must arise from the death of sin and selfishness and put on a new life of integrity. All the old sins and temptations must be laid in the grave and a new existence rise from the ashes. Yesterday is gone. All my sins are forgiven if I am honestly trying to do God's will today. Today is here, the time of resurrection and renewal. I must start now, today, to build a new life of complete faith and trust in God and a determination to do His will in all things.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may share in making the world a better place to live in. I pray that I may do what I can to bring goodness a little nearer to the earth.

Hazelden Foundation

April 21, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

A Day at a Time
Saturday, April 21, 2018

Reflection for the Day
Can I be wholeheartedly grateful for today? If so, I'm opening doors to more and more abundant good. What if I can't be thankful for the "rain" that has fallen in my life - for the so-called bad times? What then? I can begin by giving thanks for all the sunshine I can remember, and for every blessing that has come my way. Perhaps then I'll be able to look back over the rainy periods of my life with new vision, seeing them as necessary; perhaps then, hidden blessings I've overlooked will come to my attention.

Am I grateful for all of life - both the sunshine and the rain?

Today I Pray
May I be grateful for all that has happened to me, good and bad. Bad helps to define good. Sorrow intensifies joy. Humility brings spirituality. Disease turns health into a paradise. Loneliness makes love, both human and Divine, the greatest gift of all. I thank God for the contrasts which have made me know Him better.

Today I Will Remember
I am grateful for the whole of life.

Hazelden Foundation

April 21, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Eye Opener
Saturday, April 21, 2018

The churches in their quarrels over purely sectarian issues have done much to divert attention from the primary purpose of religion, which is spirituality.

Some pastors take a more critical attitude toward the neglect of church duties than they do toward moral transgressions.

AA should be kept free of all controversial questions. We have but one purpose, and that is to help the suffering alcoholic. Ours is a way of life; not a way of worship.

Hazelden Foundation

April 21, 2018 - Good morning to a super Saturday and weekend with confidence


Friday, April 20, 2018

April 20, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

Friday, April 20, 2018
Today’s thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Taking Care of Ourselves

It’s healthy, wise, and loving to be considerate and responsive to the feelings and needs of others. That’s different from caretaking. Caretaking is a self-defeating and, certainly, a relationship defeating behavior – a behavior that backfires and can cause us to feel resentful and victimized – because ultimately, what we feel, want, and need will come to the surface.

Some people seem to invite emotional caretaking. We can learn to refuse the invitation. We can be concerned; we can be loving, when possible; but we can place value on our own needs and feelings too. Part of recovery means learning to pay attention to, and place importance on, what we feel, want, and need, because we begin to see that there are clear, predictable, and usually undesirable consequences when we don’t.

Be patient and gentle with yourself as you learn to do this. Be understanding with yourself when you slip back into the old behavior of emotional caretaking and self-neglect.

But stop the cycle today. We do not have to feel responsible for others. We do not have to feel guilty about not feeling responsible for others. We can even learn to let ourselves feel good about taking responsibility for our needs and feelings.

Today, I will evaluate whether I’ve slipped into my old behavior of taking responsibility for another’s feelings and needs, while neglecting my own. I will own my power, right, and responsibility to place value on myself.
You are reading from the book:
The Language of Letting Go © 1990 by Hazelden Foundation

April 20, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Friday, April 20, 2018

Today, small steps instead of an "easier, softer way" - giant leaps toward the goal of recovery. Alcoholism and its physical, emotional and spiritual diseases developed over time, and their solution is likely to take as much if not more time. But impatience is a characteristic of most alcoholics, and it cannot be allowed to tempt us to take the short route through the steps toward sobriety. Failing to give full and complete attention to each step may set us up for frustration and disappointment - and together they put us at risk for a slip or relapse. Today, wisdom of patience in taking the steps one by one and understanding that it is through working them that we earn what we pursue. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2018

April 20, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Friday, April 20, 2018

AA Thought for the Day
The satisfaction you get out of living a sober life is made up of a lot of little things, but they add up to a satisfactory and happy life. You take out of life what you put into it. So I'd say to people coming into AA: "Don't worry about what life will be like without liquor. Just hang in there and a lot of good things will happen to you. And you'll have that feeling of quiet satisfaction and peace and serenity and gratitude for the grace of God."

Is my life becoming really worth living?

Meditation for the Day
There are two paths, one up and one down. We have been given free will to choose either path. We are captains of our souls to this extent only. We can choose the good or the bad. Once we have chosen the wrong path, we go down and down, eventually to death. But if we choose the right path, we go up and up, until we come to the resurrection day. On the wrong path, we have no power for good because we do not choose to ask for it. But on the right path, we are on the side of good and we have all the power of God's spirit behind us.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may be in the stream of goodness. I pray that I may be on the right side, on the side of all good in the universe.

Hazelden Foundation

April 20, 2018 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

A Day at a Time
Friday, April 20, 2018

Reflection for the Day
"If a person continues to see only giants," wrote Anais Nin"it means he is still looking at the world through the eyes of a child." During this 24-hour period, I won't allow myself to be burdened by thoughts of giants and monsters - of things that are past. I won't concern myself about tomorrow until it becomes my today. The better I use today, the more likely it is that tomorrow will be bright.

Have I extended the hand of caring to another person today?

Today I Pray
God, may I please grow up. May I no longer see monsters and giants on my walls, those projections of a child's imagination. May I bury my hobgoblins and realize that those epic dream-monsters are distortions of my present fears. May they vanish with my fearfulness, in the daylight of my new serenity.

Today I Will Remember
I will put away childish fears.

Hazelden Foundation