Working Concious Contact with God

Discussions related to 12 Step Recovery and Treatment
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Working Concious Contact with God

Postby Bensober » Wed Feb 02, 2011 7:20 am

Being on Step Eleven, I have been in contemplation lately and been a while since I made a new post. My contemplation is a reading Page. 85 Big Book 3rd Edit. Right before the discussion on Step Eleven. Has to do with "not resting on our laurels"

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Postby Sermon » Wed Feb 02, 2011 3:52 pm

Great Topic!!!!!

The basic foundation of this new journey we seek.

Step 11, sought through prayer and meditation to improve our consious contact with God "as we understood him". Praying only for the knowledge of his will for us and the Power to carry that out.

When I think of this step I always have to refer back to the basic simple sentence in "We Agnostics" Acutally the last one in the chapter......

"When we drew near to Him He disclosed Himself to us!" Pg. 57 Big Book
It's so true for me as well... The further I go in recovery the closer I become to my higher power. Sometimes I don't feel as close but usually it's because I have somewhere down the way taken back my will or my ego has remanfested itself. (it has happened) or I become complacent in where I am and my spirit goes back to sleep... sadly said that has happened to me as well. With coming nearer to my higher power I can never get close enough. I have to remind myself that even though life has gotten alot better during the step process I have only scratched the surface of the Truth about my Higher Power. The steps only put me in a postion to allow God to flow in and through me. I have to, have to maintain this or my spirit will fall asleep again.

When it comes to prayer I've only just started to understand what I am actually doing. When I first got in the rooms I said the serienty prayer very often but didn't know what I was asking for. I had never felt true serienty.... Peace of mind...... I had no clue what that was. I would say it expecting a temporary fix for the problem that I was dealing with at that very moment. After being able to obtain true serienty for the first time in my life I've found that I can actually live in it. Serienty is not a weapon I pull out to deal with the world. It's a way of life I've obtained from working the steps and truely forgiving myself and others around me. It's what I must have for prayer to work for me. My prayers are not recited anymore, I actually understand what I am saying. I tend to talk to God now more as a friend rather than a Master. He loves me and I love him back. The father to son relationship has started to set in for me. Seeing God as my friend and not my master has helped. I can open up to him and talk to him honestly without holding back thinking I will be punished for my crazy thoughts. If I'm feeling frustrated it's not time for me to pray. I need to figure out what is going on with me, (emotional attachment to a situation, taken my will back from the care of God, what is it that I'm frustrated over) when I find it and I come back to my senses is when I've found that prayer works it's best. I'm able to focus on my prayer and what I'm doing allowing me to be able to become blessed with His grace.
It's what works for me.... :D

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Postby Bensober » Thu Feb 03, 2011 7:47 am

Thank You Sermon,
Just what the doctor ordered. It seems through refering to page 57 right before "When we drew near to Him He disclosed Himself to us" I found “But He has come to all who have honestly sought himâ€

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Postby Bensober » Wed Feb 09, 2011 7:26 am

Today I have an attitude of graditude. I once heard that “attitude is everythingâ€

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Postby sparklek » Wed Feb 09, 2011 12:22 pm

Excellent topic. As I sat in a apartment guarded by local men in Cairo to protect us from looters, I didn't know how I would remain sane. And yes, that included not drinking for me as I am never to arrogant to think it couldn't happen again. I remembered the words of my sponsor on skype before internet was shut down and she said, pray, meditate and be of service.

That's what I did. I hit my knees with the desperation of a drowning man at first but as the days went on, my readings and being of service to my coworkers in the building, began to bring a peace. My prayers became more constant and calm. I knew I was safe.

Step 11 is truly a life saver, especially in hard times. I am grateful for this experience because it taught me that with this program of action that leads me to my HP, I can find peace in ANY situation. It works, it really does :)

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Postby sunlight » Wed Feb 09, 2011 2:52 pm

Thanks Ben!

This is where "application of applied principles" comes in for me.

In prayer and meditation I am given the rest, guidance and strength I need to practice these principles in all my affairs. ( I don't think the technique matters as much as the intent to do God's will .)

If I don't go out and do that, and just lounge on my laurels, prayer and meditation seem to suffer & I'm not able to draw as close to God, since I haven't performed His work well.

Then step 11 gets pretty lackluster and it withers down to nothing & I'm left going :? :?:

But if I apply our principles to each situation and with each person I encounter, relying on the inspiration and intuition I've received in meditation, then I'm able to go to God with a clean heart, knowing I've done my best. When I empty myself in this way, I'm filled up even more!
I can't seem to apply the principles effectively without drawing close to God, and I can't draw close to God if I'm not practicing the princilples.

I exercise my will power applying our principles with goodwill ( God's will ) in my daily life.
As you said, Ben, I need to do it with an attitude of gratitude. But how can I not be grateful? I'm sober! What a priceless gift! :D

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Postby Dallas » Thu Feb 10, 2011 1:45 am

Some people make God's Will so complicated -- it's hard for me to imagine that they can ever really experience "happy, joyous & free."

What is "Will"? It's "Wants"... Just like when a person writes a Will, before they die... it's a statement of what they Want -- to happen after they die.

Since, God is LIFE and Living -- God's Will must be what He Want's -- while we're alive. :wink:

The Big Book tells me what "God wants"... (isn't what God wants -- the same as God's Will?)

pg 133, Big Book: "We are sure God wants us to be happy, joyous, and free."

God's Will -- for me -- is to be happy, joyous and free.

The rest of the BB, tells me how to "do God's will"... IF I take the right actions -- it will produce right attitudes in me -- that result in me being happy, joyous and free.

1. I have to stay sober -- to be free.
2. I have to take healthy actions -- to be happy.
3. When I'm taking healthy actions -- I experience joy -- a "joyousness" in what I'm doing.

Dr. Bob, & Jesus kept it simple: What's God want you to do? He wants you to love one another. And, you can melt it all down stir it up in a pot, and ask: "Is it love or not?" If it's Love -- it's God's will.

AA taught me that Love is a Verb. Not a noun. Love is not "some thing" that I have -- it's "some thing" that I DO. Love is Doing -- regardless of having. If I do Love -- I'll be happy.

Bill W., went on to explain in Step 10, in the Big Book -- that "after all, God gave us brains -- to use." :lol:

He also went on to write: "Every
day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s
will into all of our activities. “How can I best serve
Thee—Thy will (not mine) be done.â€

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Postby Dallas » Thu Feb 10, 2011 1:51 am

btw: God likes peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, too! I came to love pb&j sandwiches so much... and ate so many of them, that now... I can't eat them like I used to! But, while I could... me & God sure loved chomping them down!

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Postby Bensober » Fri Feb 11, 2011 7:18 am

Peanutbutter, oragejuice, mayonase, yougurt (flavor of your choice), dates, protine powder, ice, in a blender…grind, liquify…doubledareya!!! UmmUmmmChewyGood!

Yes! LIVE! LIVE!…LIVE!…I had a aunt who died of stress related illnesses. She was a strong church go’er and she prayed all the time out loud and in public because the “devilâ€

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Postby Dallas » Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:21 pm

Amen -- brother Ben...
Shot a rooster
and killed a hen! :lol: :lol: :lol:

When I was a kid I was being raised in one of those rigid "devil's out to get you" environments -- and God was pissed at me! :lol:

Who wouldn't drink and go nuts if the devils out to get them and what God has in store for them is even worse. :lol: :lol:

I'd walk into a church, look up at the statue or the picture and think...
"Dang! That's what happened to the One He loved! What do you suppose they'll do with me????"

Then, in school -- I heard:
"Do this and do that -- and you can expect this"

And, when I did this and did that -- I always got "that!" :lol:

The "Amen Ben" quote above was something us bad kids used to say at church outtings. :lol: Had no idea what it meant back then other than it sounded funny.

I freaked out when I first came to AA and heard "Hey... why don't you come up w/ your own conception of God -- and let it be one that works for you instead of destroys you?"

I thought for sure that God would be ticked off at that one!

I was taught "you're just supposed to believe this, believe that, and not ask questions or God will smack you for asking questions! Mind your Elders, (which was anyone older than me)... do as your told, don't ask questions" -- and "NEVER under any circumstance discuss 'what goes on in the family -- outside the family! "

So, I rebelled. I got defiant. I figured I was going to burn in hell anyway... after the devil was finished w/ me -- so I might as well turn it on and party as hardy as I could as long as I could -- rebelling against anything and everything that 'I was supposed to do or be'. I was Born To Lose -- and a Born Loser -- so... I was going to win, take, cheat, steal, fight and do whatever I had to do to get whatever I could get -- before my final hand was dealt!

When my perception started to change was when I was finally dying the last time... I couldn't drink and I couldn't not drink. To drink would kill me and to not drink was killing me.

So, I got on my knees and said a simple prayer: "God, whoever you are -- please don't hate me for praying -- and don't hate me because I'm dumb and don't know who or which God to pray to -- or if there is one of you or a hundred of you... I'm trying to reach that God that helps those drunks in AA... and I'm going to die if I can't find Him/Her. Please help me find that God -- and I'm willing to go to any lengths at all to not drink again -- ever -- even if not drinking kills me."

It took some time and I began to discover "A Loving God" that cares about me and cares about us.... and, as I was going through my 12 Steps, something started happening to change my mind about God and Religion and Religious Folks. I discovered that even their God -- the One I thought that was out to get me -- was a Loving God, too -- and that myself and some others that I grew up w/ had it wrong about Him.

On my 4th Step List -- and on my 8th Step List, and in my 9th Step... God was at the top of my list.... I had included God in my inventory... top of list for resentments. By the time I got finished w/ 4/5/6/7 -- I saw that God would always be at the top of my amends list. That I would NEVER be able to make full and complete and direct amends to God, and to those that I had harmed & hurt -- because of their belief's in God. So, they had to be on my amends list, too....

Who am I... that I could ever even faintly comprehend or define God... other than to know that "He Is" and "He Is A Loving God -- and He cares about us." And, that's the most I can ever know about God.

But, I don't think it's about "knowing about God" -- I thinks it's all about "knowing God." I don't have to know about God to know God. Just like my neighbor next door or across the street... I don't have to "know about" my neighbor -- to "know my neighbor." I don't have to "know about" a stranger to know that the stranger is one of God's kids -- and regardless if the stranger is as dumb as me or not -- God Loves the stranger just as much as He loves any of us!

So, I steer clear of religion. Other people are more qualified to figure out religious stuff. I'm not qualified. The only thing I'm qualified to do is to try to help someone -- and to do it -- because that's what God want's me to do.

His will is real simple for me...
1. Stay sober.
2. Help others.
3. Be happy, joyous and free -- because that's what He wants for me.

Regardless of what I'm doing -- even if it's out on a lake in a boat -- I can keep my eyes open to notice "Is there someone out here I can be of help too?" And... "if I catch some fish... do I throw them back or see if someone on the bank that's not catching fish would like to have the fish I caught?"

Works for me.... :lol:


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