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zym

Working the Higher Power in the Program

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I am new to this site and have reach out to a few of the people on the site. I would like to give back what was so freely given to me, and of course hope to receive much from the over whelming numbers of persons here, we have a grand collective and I thing our experiences will help many so I would like to start with the Higher Power issue that so many have struggled with.

There is some thing out there, I think many of us can agree we would most likely be dead if it weren't for some strange unexplainable thing that seem to keep happening to use just in the nick of time.

I can look back on my life and see many times things that just came out of left field that did not fit any logical explanation.

Some times we just ignore it, and other times we try and laugh it off, not ever finding a way to put it together in our minds.

But here we are still alive and dealing with it. What ever it is.

I never knew Unconditional; Love before I came in to the program and all the persons that reached out to me were the first to show me that is was possible.

through them I began to see how God worked in peoples lives, and I wanted to be that way too..

and as I did a transformation in my thinking began to happen.

A clarity and sometime an epiphany, would bring me into an awareness that God was working in my life, and I was beginning to experience the saying:

that if I put 100% in to my one step towards God , than God would make up the other steps to reach him.

Lets start here and see where this goes.

-- zym

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I had already found God by the time I started working the steps. However, as you mentioned, I can recall many times in my life when it seemed like someone/something reached out and changed the course. I of course thought it was coincidence. But when the coincidences got to a point that I could no longer just blow them off as coincidence - I finally surrendered. Isn't that what it's all about? Now that I have reclaimed my faith after more than 30 years of running in the other direction, I can see that God was working in my life. He was so faithful even when I was not.

-- biscuitous

 

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i was in no way shape or form to keen on the idea of God . i spent a good portion of my life hating and blaming him for things that happened.(usually things that were my own fault)

i remember my first meeting i heard people talking about God. and i just smiled didn't say a word and walked off. i wasn't ready for that yet. but i started talking to people about it and alot of the response was that at that at that point in my recovery all i had to do is be willing to beleive in a power greater than myself. just willing.

that at that point i could do.

prior to my doing my forth step i was on the verge of another relapse.i talked to my sponcer told him what my plans were and he asked if i would pray with him. and i did, i prayed this time like my life depended on it, but there was only 3 words going through my head "please help me".i beleive that was the first time i honestly took the 3rd step . during my 4th and 5th step alot was revealed to me in that area. alot of what i pushed onto Gods shoulders was anger towards me and fear alot of fear. that i couldn't be loved not even by God.

it was at this point my mind and more importantly my heart was open to a new relationship with God.i was entirely ready to have him take from me those things that had me bound to self. again i got on my knees with my sponcer and came to him with trust and fath that i could start to live once again with his help that he could remove those things from me.

i know that it was only with his strength that i started to outgrow fear, anger, lust. that i'm able to make the ammends that i make today without self-centered or self-seeking motives. and that without him i could never be of service to others. i owe God so much and he is still giving me blessings.

now do i beleive you have to beleive in God to stay sober. this program works in over 150 countries not all beleive in God. and at first i didn't want to either. but i do beleive that some faith in a power greater than you is not only nessesary its vital. this is my story not everyone is gonna have the same concept of a higher power. mine is ever changing the more our relationship grows. but for alot of us it started with simple willingness

"most emphatically we wish to say that any alcoholic ( or addict )capable of honestly facing his problems in the light of our experience can recover, provided he does not close his mind to all spiritual concepts. he can only be defeated by an attitude of intollerance or beligerant denial.

we find that no one need have difficultywith the spirituality of the program. Willingness , honesty and open-mindednessare the essentials of recovery. but these are indespensible."

"There is a principle that is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance--that principle is contempt prior to investigation." Herbert Spencer Spiritual Experience Big Book pg.568

-- biggybiggs74

 

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Thanks guys this is a good start.

I have seen so many that come in the program and leave before they have a chance to experience this part of it,

It is not about being brain washed or giving up you. It is about becoming the you, that you, that you have been protecting all these years and not feeling it was safe out side in the world to show.

Once I began to let my real self out, and connect with that which I was alway connected to , just not willing to notice it.

My life transformed in to a Happening that has yet to stop.

I love my life now and see me and every one in it as one big family struggling to make sence out to things that just are to big some time to make sence out of...lol

and that is OK.

-- zym

 

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When I made up my mind to do step 3 - it was "as I don't understand Him". There is no way I could even begin to comprehend a being of that magnitude. So - I put the blinders on, and gave myself to Him on faith alone. This is one thing I do not need to understand, I know He exists by His acts in my life. I need no proof or understanding. This works for many of us, whether it be Allah, God, Jesus or other percieved manifestation of this Almighty being. I know of several in recovery with many years behind them - and I truly feel for them. They are not enjoying the quality of spiritual life they could (and it shows). I can't change them, but I can wish them well.

-- denniss

 

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Marry X-mass to every one, I agree that there are those out there that just aren't ready to let go of there control ( In there minds) over every thing, But lets face it we did not come in to this program willing and able as well, and it takes some longer, and some times it take just the wright words in the order at the wright time to click some thing in them to finally look where they had not looked before.

And I love seeing those moments in people. wow does it not just send chills up your spine when some one gets it after resisting for so long.

I know for me it was a real kick in the pants that woke me up, and I was a hrad case.

Yet I can't deny that when it happened i began to experience mind body and soul changes that did not fit any rational, logical frame work i had at the time, and that is how it is....

Coming in here we have some really screwed up ideas about life, right down to our concepts of right and wrong, and for me every thing had to change and it did, some with a fight a little kicking and a soft scream...lol

So i have faith and I continue to share in meeting and life the little miracles in my life so that another may relate and open up just enough to ask ...( what did you mean by that)...lol and the door is open . all is left is the walking.. :)

Blessing to all and Stay True To The Journey

-- zym

 

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I find that one of the biggest challenges in working the 12th step, is the day to day stuff that comes up in our life's.

If we have been in the program for a long time, we develope a comfort zone and we can easily fall back on letting God handle every thing and start doing things our self, relying on our selfs and forgetting to have faith that what is in front of us is nothing more that an opportunity to shear with God our life's journey.

After 20 + years I saw that happen to me and I had to take a seat and look hard at my self once again and admit I slowly took over my life and did every thing my way....lol...which we all know is most-likely not God way.. :)

-- zym

 

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Someone recently said to me (referring to my recovery group) that these 'secular organisations' were ok but did not address the spiritual component of addiction. I was laughing about this for some time because recovery has been the most complete spiritual experience I have ever had. And I have been a practicing christian for 35 years.

My difficulty is that although I knew from the start that God accepted me as I am, I soon discovered that the people in the churches could not. So I have spent a lot of time pretending to be something I am not so I could stay in those churches. I did try living as a christian outside of that and no way did that work.

I am grateful for those churches in that they provided me with safe places to be in and a framework for my life which held my addiction back and contained it but on the other hand there was no recovery in that.

It is in recovery that I have seen the attitudes of people match the attitude of God towards me in complete acceptance. Even so when I reached Step 2 I had some serious issues to work through as I rethought what I believed about God and I included in my Higher Power the human Body of Christ - the church (and it is a very broad church).

The same person also told me that she considered the concept of a Higher Power is dangerous because people might encounter the wrong god. In my experience I have found that those who search for God will find Him, after all He's that big and He's searching for you too so how can you miss Him.

Apologies to all those who have a Higher Power who is not God, but even then I get the feeling that your Higher Power and mine have an awful lot in common.

Cara

 

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Religious organizations can be good things, and most of them mean well. But (always a but for some reason) for me, comparing a religion with the spiritual aspects of recovery is comparing a ferrari and a volkswagon bug. God is within me every day if I so choose to allow him to work in my life. I don't need someone to tell me how to act, the difference betwwen good and bad, what clothes I have to wear when I show up or why i'm going to h*ll if I don't do it their way.

The idea of encountering the wrong "God" is interesting. If you are seeking "God" (or HP as it may be) it is much akin to picking up the phone and dialing a friends number. Unless you are numerically challenged, you are going to get your friend.

I was seeking One with the ability to help me in my quest for sanity and peace. I wasn't 100 percent sure what I needed from Him. In fact, I didn't understand Him at all. But I didn't need to (and don't now). I dialed, He answered.

Dennis

 

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The 12th Step is not about Religion, and it never was, it is about the one simple fact that there is something out there that if we direct our lives towards It', Him, She, what ever,.. We will experience a change in our thinking, feeling, and perceiving, of not just us, but our surroundings and every thing.

 

The whole world takes on a new look through new eye of Understanding, we are going through a transformation in mind, Body and Spirit. the struggles may still exist in life, but they don't seem as tough any more. We KNOW there IS a Higher Power at work in our lives. it is a Fact not a hope. for those of us that make it to the 12th step... having worked the Program Thoroughly and Honestly. there is no question.

 

Acceptance has been one of the trade marks of our communitee and a reason that many find God here, because they are no longer waering the clock of guilt that many churches put on a person.

 

We find a new way of life and happiness, Guilt and Shame are destructive and have no place in recovery.

 

If you are still working through step 2,3,4, Take a long look at the persons that reach out to you in this program and ask for nothing in return, these are Addicts of all kinds that walked in here with high levels of survival skills, not trusting and no skill at truly being there for some one else.

 

But some how and in a way that make no-sense to us in the beginning, they show us love, Unconditional love. It is proof that a Higher Power is working through other to reach us and show us just how big It' really is.

 

-- zym

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