"and the other, to accept spiritual help. This we did because we honestly wanted to, and were willing to make the effort."
For me, grace is the fact that we were given the tools so that we could make the effort.
As I see it, sobriety is not so much a gift from God, as it is a hard won achievement with the help of the tools provided by God.
If it were any other way -- God only picked certain alcoholics to be sober. And, He was selective and only picked a few drunks to give them sobriety. And, if I were one of them -- that would be too much fuel for my Ego that separates me from a God of my own understanding.
I may have lost the choice of drink -- but, because of the gift of the tools, I have a choice to stay sober -- if I use the tools.
If I use the tools that God has provided, the 12 Steps and the Fellowship, I never have to drink again nor worry about drinking again.
If I don't use the tools and the Fellowship -- it doesn't matter how much God loves me, nor how long I've been sober -- as an alcoholic, even God can't keep me sober if I don't use the tools that He gave me to use.
It's a program consisting of a spiritual tool kit and actions and a Fellowship. It isn't a big comfortable couch and action. It isn't actions with no tools. It isn't tools without a Fellowship. It takes all three: the tools, the actions and the Fellowship to make up the spiritual tool kit.