Not my will, but Thine, be done.
The quote talks about the courage it takes to risk letting go of my will, and the trust I need to Let Go and Let God. When I stopped long enough to take a good, hard look at my own life, I could see where my will had not gotten me where I wanted to be, or even close to it. The bottom line was that I had nothing to lose and everything to gain. I had to turn my will and my life over – every day, and sometimes several times during any given day. I was so used to expecting the worst in life, that it took a while to trust the process of recovery. One thing about trusting God – He is always there. It took a while for me to learn to trust the Program and to trust myself, once again. My faith in God was tested, and each and every time God came through. I simply had to stop “doing” and start letting my life unfold as God wills it. Faith works, recovery works, and the God of my understanding certainly works!!!
The longer I remain in the Program, the more willing I become to make amends to those I have harmed. It was not always an easy task, and facing those I had truly harmed took courage and a good, hard, honest look at my behavior towards others – and myself. I had to work at not beating myself up, and remind myself that I still had the opportunity to make amends. Then I had to let those negative feelings go as it would do no good to constantly berate myself . What was needed was the realization and acceptance of the love God had for me, in spite of my poor behaviors and misdeeds. If God can love me for who I am, then there is no reason why I should not love me, too. It makes me feel good when I am kind, generous, and responsible. Good behavior brings on good feelings, and good feelings encourage me to behave better towards others. Simply put: Improved behavior generates positive self-esteem.
Today, I can claim my character defects without going completely to pieces. I know that through the recovery process I have made progress in my life. I know that having faith in the Program and in my Higher Power are the things that have enabled me to accept my part in my fallacies, and to know that help is always available. I have been liberated from the helpless condition I arrived in because I’m living the steps in my life. I work to ensure that even those “minor” flaws such as laziness, and self-righteousness don’t turn into the shortcomings and character defects of times past. I never have to drink again, and I never have to cheat and steal to make my life worth living. I can and do hold my head up high. I dare to look others in the eye, and I dare to walk into the rooms without a cloak of fear, anger or pride. Just for today I have been liberated from the heaviness of all those negative behaviors. Today I soar!!!
I choose to have faith on a daily basis. I believe in the Spirit of the universe. I choose to believe. I see faith in action around the tables and in the rooms of A.A. I hear about faith in the shares and stories told by others in the Program. Faith is a choice I make every day. My life feels better when I choose to have faith. Sometimes, the very best I can do is – nothing. Letting go and letting God could be the best decision I make today. Just sitting back and waiting until the path is clear, the message is understood, until I feel strong as well as humble – these are things I can do. I need to allow God time to answer prayers, to gently lead me to the higher path, to discover the spirit within me – rather than rushing about trying desperately to find the “right” answer, the best solution for me – these are things I can do, these are things that work in my recovery. One Day At A Time!!!
I trust in my faith – God leads me to a “higher” place – when I let Him. My past mistakes and failures are over, now I need to forgive myself for these “errors” and get on with living a life of faith and service to others. A.A. is called a “we” program for a reason – it helps us see beyond our own personal problems. Life is not always about me, me, me! By being of service to others, quite often I find solutions to my problems in the process of helping others. I need others in my life, and the Program certainly provides me the opportunity for that. Working with others helps both me and them. I have been a sponsor and quite often the “teacher” becomes the “student” when working the Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. In the process of helping others, I help myself. Faith in a Higher Power enables me to open my mind to the possibility of healing through spiritual guidelines. Anythings possible, right?
Taking a few moments to pray, out of a busy day, can help us to slow our pace down to a healthy level. I use meditation, prayer, and every once in a while I look at what I can change in my life to decrease the stress. Is there anything I can eliminate? Maybe taking 15-20 minutes alone, would be of some help? I try to reduce my stress level by accepting the idea that my life is being guided by my Higher Power, and turning my life over to the care of God means that I accept the idea that I am no longer in charge of the world. I don’t have to spend hours trying to find a solution, my solution will come from a Higher level. Two days ago was our anniversary. We’ve been together 22 yrs through the good, and very bad times. I am so blessed to still have family in my life. We will be headed to the ocean to paddle board(my daughter in laws gift to me)and enjoy the company, create new memories, and share a few meals. This would NOT have happened if I was still drinking. The promises come true, if I work diligently to find purpose, and continue on the path of recovery-One Day At A Time!!!
I try to work the Program to the best of my ability, and being of service to others has certainly been helpful in bringing a little humility into my life. Peace and serenity are mine through prayer and meditation. I have learned to set boundaries with others and no longer tolerate poor behavior towards me. I can speak up when needed, and quite often do. In recovery I have learned to love myself and others. Today, I treat me as well as I treat others – after all I am no more and no less deserving of love, deserving of respect and deserving of a better life – God has gifted me.