In the Big Book chapter titled “Bill’s Story,” Bill talks about his day when his friend Ebbie visited him and made the “suggestion” that Bill choose his “own conception of God.”  He further writes “It was only a matter of being willing to believe in a Power greater than myself.”  This was further underscored by the fact that through the Program of A.A., alcoholics were getting, and staying sober – this was a “power greater” than the alcoholic.  This “power” did for me what I could not do for myself.  I had tried all sorts of methods to quit the insanity of drinking, all to no avail – until I reached the rooms of A.A.  There was power in the collective group, there was power in the individuals who had remained abstinent, and many claimed and gave credit to a “Higher Power.”  Being able to define this “power”  for myself, I think, made the idea of spirituality more palatable – at least it did for me.

At first I thought that A.A. had a religious quality to it, I was grateful to find that was not the case, in the true sense of the word.  There is a difference between spiritual and religious.  Religions, as a rule, encourage conformity of it’s members to certain behaviors, certain rules and certain beliefs.  Spirituality, on the other hand is more in line with how I treat others and myself.  It’s about living and working the Spiritual Principles, not about how I dress.  It’s about being of service to others, not about how often I attend church.  It’s about leaning to love others, not about expecting love from others.  Spirituality is about loving God, knowing He has a plan for my life . . . my job is to suit up and show up, remain willing and keep an open mind.