Friday, 15 December 2017

Daily Dose Of Emmet Fox

“As you grow in true spiritual power and understanding you will actually find that many outer rules and regulations will become unnecessary; but this will be because you have really risen above them; never, never, because you have fallen below them. This point in your development, where your understanding of Truth enables you to dispense with certain outer props and regulations, is the Spiritual Coming of Age. When you really are no longer spiritually a minor, you will cease to need some of the outer observances that formerly seemed indispensable; but your resulting life will be purer, truer, freer, and less selfish than it was before; and that is the test.” 

― Emmet Fox, The Sermon on the Mount: The Key to Success in Life 
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DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrecovery

DOING ANYTHING TO HELP

Offer him [the alcoholic] friendship and fellowship. Tell him that if he wants to get well you will do anything to help.

~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 95 

I remember how attracted I was to the two men from A.A. who Twelfth-Stepped me. They said I could have what they had, with no conditions attached, that all I had to do was make my own decision to join them on the pathway to recovery. When I start convincing a newcomer to do things my way, I forget how helpful those two men were to me in their open-minded generosity.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc
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JUST FOR TODAY #essentialsofrecovery

The Joy of Sharing

“There is a spiritual principle of giving away what we have been given in Narcotics Anonymous in order to keep it. By helping others to stay clean, we enjoy the benefit of the spiritual wealth that we have found.”

~ Basic Text pg. 47 


Time and again in our recovery, others have freely shared with us what was freely shared with them. Perhaps we were the recipients of a Twelfth Step call. Maybe someone picked us up and took us to our first meeting. It could be that someone bought us dinner when we were new. All of us have been given time, attention, and love by our fellow members. We may have asked someone, “What can I do to repay you?” And the answer we received was probably a suggestion that we do the same for a newer member when we were able.

As we maintain our clean time and recovery, we find ourselves wanting to do for others the things that someone did for us, and happy that we can. If we heard the message while in a hospital or institution, we can join our local H&I subcommittee. Perhaps we can volunteer on the NA help line. Or we can give of our time, attention, and love to a newcomer we are trying to help.

We’ve been given much in our recovery. One of the greatest of these gifts is the privilege of sharing with others what’s been shared with us, with no expectation of reward. It’s a joy to find we have something that can be of use to others, and that joy is multiplied when we share it. Today we can do so, freely and gratefully.

Just for today: I have been given much in my recovery, and I am deeply grateful for it. I will take joy in being able to share it with others as freely as it was shared with me.

© 1991 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services Inc
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TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY #essentialsofrecovery

A.A. Thought for the Day

Service to others makes the world a good place. Civilization would cease if all of us were always and only for ourselves. We alcoholics have a wonderful opportunity to contribute to the well-being of the world. We have a common problem. We find a common answer. We are uniquely equipped to help others with the same problem. What a wonderful world it would be if we took our own greatest problem and found the answer to it and spent the rest of our lives helping others with the same problem in our spare time. Soon we would have the right kind of a world. Do I appreciate my unique opportunity to be of service?

Meditation for the Day

Today can be lived in the consciousness of God’s contact, upholding you in all good thoughts, words, and deeds. If sometimes there seems to be a shadow on your life and you feel out of sorts, remember that this is not the withdrawal of God’s presence, but only your own temporary unwillingness to realize it. The quiet gray days are the days for doing what you must do, but know that the consciousness of God’s nearness will return and be with you again, when the gray days are past.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may face the dull days with courage. I pray that I may have faith that the bright days will return.

© 1954, 1975, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation
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AS BILL SEES IT #essentialsofrecovery

Page 170

Whose Will?


We have seen A.A.’s ask with much earnestness and faith for God’s explicit guidance on matters ranging all the way from a shattering domestic or financial crisis to a minor personal fault, like tardiness. A man who tries to run his life rigidly by this kind of prayer, by this self-serving demand of God for replies, is a particularly disconcerting individual. To any questioning or criticism of his actions, he instantly proffers his reliance upon prayer for guidance in all matters great or small.

He may have forgotten the possibility that his own wishful thinking and the human tendency to rationalize have distorted his so-called guidance. With the best of intentions, he tends to force his will into all sorts of situations and problems with the comfortable assurance that he is acting under God’s specific direction.

~ TWELVE AND TWELVE, PP. 103-104

© 1967 by Alcoholics Anonymous ® World Services, Inc
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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrecovery

Watching our boundaries.

Personal relationships


Setting boundaries in personal relationships is how we manage actions that could otherwise get out of control. One firm boundary in AA, for example, is maintaining other members’ anonymity, as well as our own. We are always overstepping boundaries if we disclose another’s AA membership without permission.

It’s wise, too, not to expect the easy familiarity of the meetings to carry over into all other activities. One member who was employed by another AA member apparently wondered why his boss was so easygoing and cordial at AA meetings and so remote and businesslike in the factory. It made perfect sense, however; their relationship in the plant was different from their AA relationship and required another set of boundaries.

We can protect ourselves and others by being careful to establish proper boundaries for all relationships. This means that what’s appropriate for one setting may not be for another.
I’ll check to be sure that I’m observing proper boundaries, for myself and others. I must not violate others’ rights any more than I want my own violated.
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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrecovery



An ass is beautiful to an ass, and a pig to a pig.

~ English proverb

When we see someone drunk and out of control, can we see the beautiful person inside them? If we can’t, who will? Step Twelve reminds us that we have to help the alcoholic or other drug addict who suffers.

This task has been given to us because we, most of all, should be able to look past the drunkenness and see the person. We were there. We know what it’s like to be trapped in a world without meaning. If these memories have faded, we may need to go back over Step One. We may find ourselves angry with the practicing drunk or other drug addict. This is a sign that we have gotten too far from our past. Remember, “But for the grace of God…”

Prayer for the Day:

Higher Power, Help me remember my past and what it’s like now. This helps me care about the person who still suffers.

Action for the Day:

Today, I’ll respect my illness. I’ll look for the beauty inside every drunk and other drug addict.

Copyright © 1988 by Hazelden Foundation
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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrecovery

POVERTY

“The poor you always have with you.”

— Jesus (John 12:8)

Whoever said that life was going to be easy? A great number of people are placed in circumstances that are beyond their control and they die in helpless poverty. The poor are always with us. I cannot understand this dilemma and I have few answers for most of the world’s suffering. However, I have a faith in God’s love being realized beyond the grave for everyone.

But many of “the poor” are spiritually destitute by their own making. They choose to live lives that are consistently destructive and they refuse to change. Alcoholics and drug addicts are committing suicide by their lifestyle! I know because for years I was one. This produces a spiritual poverty that need not remain. This is a poverty that can be overcome. Recovery is finding the hidden treasure that is within.
Let me find Your treasure in the loving care I give myself.
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrecovery

Reflection for the Day

Some people are such worriers that they feel sorry about the fact that they have nothing to worry about. Newcomers in the Program sometimes feel, for example, “This is much too good to last.” Most of us, however, have plenty of real things to worry about—old standbys like money, health, death, and taxes, to name just a few. But the Program tells us that the proven antidote to worry and fear is confidence—confidence not in ourselves, but in our Higher Power. Will I continue to believe that God can and will avert the calamity that I spend my days and nights dreading? Will I believe that if calamity does strike, God will enable me to see it through?

Today I Pray

May I realize that the worry habit—worry that grows out of broader, often unlabeled fears—will take more than time to conquer. Like many dependent people, I have lived with worry so long that it has become my constant, floor-pacing companion. May my Higher Power teach me that making a chum out of worry is a waste of my energy and fritters away my constructive hours.

Today I Will Remember

Kick the worry habit.

© 1989 by Hazelden Foundation
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrecovery


ACCOMPLISHMENT


The central fact of our lives today is the absolute certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish those things for uswhich we could never do by ourselves.

~ Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous 

The one thing that I am absolutely certain of today is that our Creator, God, lives in my heart and works miracles in my life daily. The biggest miracle, I believe, is having an awareness of Him, and knowing that He is in control of all that happens in my life. His power is infinite. If I were not aware of God, then I don’t believe I could work this program. It is the realization that God can accomplish anything that is helping me to work daily toward achieving my goal of continued abstinence and a changed attitude regarding food.

I cannot change what’s in my heart, but God can. I cannot, of myself, break lifelong habits, but God can motivate me to change. I cannot forgive myself all the pain I’ve inflicted on myself and others, while suffering from this disease, but God can soften my heart, and help me to forgive by letting me know that He forgives me. There is nothing that I can’t accomplish when I take God’s hand and let Him lead me.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will let God guide me into an ever-deepening relationship with Him so that I may accomplish the great feat of arresting my compulsion to overeat.

~ Joycelyn 
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Today's Gift

Promises that you make to yourself are often like the Japanese plum tree – they bear no fruit.

— Frances Marion


The resolve to fulfill commitments we make to ourselves and others may be lacking until we learn to rely on the wisdom and strength offered by our higher power–strength that will make us confident in any situation; wisdom that will insure our right actions. What is difficult alone is always eased in partnership.

We promise ourselves changed behavior, new habits, perhaps, or a positive attitude. But then we proceed to focus on our liabilities, giving them even more power, a greater hold over us. We can practice our assets, and they’ll foster the promises we want to keep.

No longer need we shame ourselves about unfulfilled promises. Whatever our desires, whatever our commitments, if for the good of others and ourselves, they will come to fruition. We can ask for direction. We can ask for resolve, and each worthy hope and unrealized promise will become reality.

My assets, when strengthened through use, pave the way for God‘s help. Any promise can bear fruit when I make it in partnership with God.

From the book:
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THE EYE OPENER #essentialsofrecovery


Faith is a fundamental requisite of success in retaining our sobriety — faith in God, faith in the Program, and faith in ourselves.

It can be likened to swimming: Every normal person can swim, if he has faith in the laws of buoyancy and allows himself to be submerged enough. Those people who cannot swim are those who are afraid of the water and try to raise themselves above it.

Faith in the laws of Nature and in yourself enables you to swim, and a like faith in God, the Program and yourself, will enable you to achieve our way of living.

Copyright Hazelden Foundation
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Daily Tao / 349 Water #essentialsofrecovery

Drops.
Water cleanses,
Gathers in the earth.
Tender. Invasive. Subtle.
Emerges a shining river.
When small, it is weak.
When great, it tumbles mountains,
Rendering great cliffs
Sand.


Classic wisdom says that there is nothing weaker than water, yet when united, it can become a titanic force. Like a tidal wave. Or a river that cuts through gorges. This is called the yielding overcoming the hard.

Let’s look at it another way. Water does not overcome because it yields. It overcomes because it is relentless. It perseveres and does not give up. It is constant. Rock can block water. Rock can even hold water in a lake for thousands of years. Why can’t the yielding overcome the hard then? Because it cannot move. It cannot work its magic of being relentless.

Just as water must be able to express its true nature in a relentless way, so too must we simultaneously and relentlessly express our true natures if we are to be successful in life. Otherwise, we will find ourselves hemmed in by the hard walls of reality, and we will never be able to break through.

But how do we acquire such perseverance? We start small. As drops.
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DAILY ZEN #essentialsofrecovery

A person of the Way fundamentally
Does not dwell anywhere.
The consistent action of
People of the Way is
Like the flowing clouds
With no grasping mind;
Like the full moon reflecting universally,
Not confined anywhere.
Thus have we heard:
The mind that
Embraces the ten directions
Does not stop anywhere.

- Hung–Chih (1091-1157)
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Thursday, 14 December 2017

Daily Dose Of Emmet Fox #essentialsofrecovery

IS THAT YOUR HAT?

Why has not your prayer been answered? Perhaps it has. Strangely enough, it often happens that we receive an answer to our prayer and do not recognize it. Some of us have had demonstrations in our possession for weeks or months and have not known it. This mistake is caused by outlining. We have unconsciously decided that the demonstration must take a particular form, and because that form does not appear, we think we have failed. Actually we probably have an even better demonstration than we expected, but for the moment we are blind to it.

If a boy prayed for a man’s hat (because he thought it would look well on him or make him grown up) he would not get it; since divine Wisdom knows that he could not wear it. He would get a good hat of the sort that would be useful to him. We often pray for things for which we are not really prepared; but if we pray scientifically this will not matter, since Creative Intelligence will send us the thing that we really need.

Seek God for His own sake, for the joy of being with Him, and demonstrations will take care of themselves.

I will be glad in the Lord (Psalm 104:34).

© 1931 by Emmet Fox
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DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrecovery

REACHING OUT

Never talk down to an alcoholic from any moral or spiritual hilltop; simply lay out the kit of spiritual looks for his inspection. Show him how they worked with you.

~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 95

When I come into contact with a newcomer, do I have a tendency to look at him from my perceived ingle of success in A.A.? Do I compare him with the large number of acquaintances I have made in the Fellowship? Do I point out to him in a magisterial way the voice of A.A.? What is my real attitude toward him? I must examine myself whenever I meet a newcomer to make sure that I am carrying the message with simplicity, humility and generosity. The one who still suffers from the terrible dis- ease of alcoholism must find in me a friend who will allow him to get to know the A.A. way, because I had such a friend when I arrived in A.A. Today it is my turn to hold out my hand, with love, to my sister or brother alcoholic, and to show her or him the way to happiness.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc
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