Gina wrote:After a while in the program, I want more out of life than just not drinking, more than just existing, I want to live and be free. So anyway, thanks for the reminder that it is that simple.
For me, that's what keeps me coming back.
The fear of drinking is a good motivator to help me do what I need to do to recover -- to take the 12 Steps, then to practice the 12 Steps as a Design for Living, and to actively be busy trying to help another alcoholic, and keeping connected with AA.
But, fear is a poor motivator when it comes to daily living. It will zap the life out of all that life has to offer. That's why the 12 Steps is such a beautiful treatment for alcoholism. It treats the alcoholism so that, if it is continued, there won't be another drink.
If my sober life didn't get better and better and better -- eventually, I'll return to alcohol. It's that simple. We can read of a guy that this refers to in Chapter 11, Vision for you, in the BB.
In AA, I often hear of "my will" as if it's a taboo or something. Like we're always supposed to be focused on "God's will."
While that sounds spiritually and saintly wonderful -- I don't believe God intended for us to live this way. If he did, then why would he return our will back to us -- overhauled, in Step 10?
If we deny ourselves the luxury of having "desires of the heart" that are healthy for us... then we are in denial of our "human-ness."
It's healthy to want better when we're willing to do the work to have the better. And, it's unhealthy to accept compromise -- when we could make some changes, that will result in the better.
I believe that God, Good and Life... are Synonymous with each other.
Once I discovered, by reading in our Big Book, what God's will for me was... I saw that it was what I wanted all along.
Alcoholics Anonymous, page 133 wrote:We are sure God wants us to be happy, joyous, and free. We cannot subscribe to the belief that this life is a vale of tears, though it once was just that for many of us. But it is clear that we made our own misery. God didnâ€™t do it.
What is "our will"? It's our "wants". In Step 3, we make a decision to turn our wants and our life of to God's care. Then, we vigorously launch into action to make good on our decision... by taking Steps 4 through 9.
Then, in Step 10, God returns "our will" to us.
Thus, we have taken a personal house cleaning of our lives and now it's time to move on to re-creating our lives with our "healthy wants... of a life that is happy, joyous and free."
In Step 4, we were identifying some of the things that were blocking us from "having a happy, joyous, free and sober life of goodness." In Steps 4-9, we worked to remove those things. Then, in Steps 10-12, we continue to remove the blockage, and also to remove any new blockage that comes up.
That's why I love AA and the 12 Steps, and God. They work together to bring about "what I wanted all along." And, for me, this is why I say "I found in AA... what I was looking for in the bottle!" And, if I found what I was looking for -- then why would I ever want to go back to what doesn't work?
Yes. It takes time to change and to change our lives. But, if we're just waiting for life to change (or others to change)... and not taking the actions that we need to take to bring about the change that we desire... we're living in false hope.
Am I working to have the things that I pray for? For me, that's the key. And, if I am working for it -- and, it's not happening yet -- and train loads of troubles come my way -- I can serenely say "this is alright for the moment. I'm sober. I'm breathing. And, I'm taking actions" and now, just like a farmer waits for his crop to grow so he can harvest it ... I must wait. But, if I haven't been working to have the things that I pray for, by taking actions, by making changes in myself and changes in my life... in the end, I'll discover the wait was not worth waiting for.