April 21 — Eye Opener (1950)
The churches in their quarrels over purely sectarian issues have done much to divert attention from the primary purpose of religion, which is spirituality.
Some pastors take a more critical attitude toward the neglect of church duties than they do toward moral transgressions.
AA should be kept free of all controversial questions. We have but one purpose, and that is to help the suffering alcoholic. Ours is a way of life; not a way of worship.
April 21 — Big Book Quote
“For most normal folks, drinking means conviviality, companionship and colorful imagination. It means release from care, boredom and worry. It is joyous intimacy with friends and a feeling that life is good. But not so with us in those last days of heavy drinking.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, PG. 151
April 21 — Walk In Dry Places
The Good that I do
Why do we hold back when we’re offered the opportunity to help others or to do something unusually kind? Why is it that many people are reluctant to give of themselves unless rewarded with recognition or praise?
We may hold back because we do not understand that any good action always brings its own reward. Despite Shakespeare’s timeless saying, the good we do is not “interred with our bones”… it does survive, now and in the future.
We’ve learned in Twelve Step programs that it’s not really satisfying to work only for recognition and praise. There also has to be a confident feeling that our efforts are contributing to a large good with a worthwhile purpose. That’s what makes AA so special to people who are completely devoted to it… we know that anything done for AA makes the world a better place.
We should also know that those who can help others are fortunate, well-favored people. Others may want to help, but lack the tools. We have the tools to give the help that changes lives—- and the world.
“The good that I do today is a treasure I’ll always possess. I need not fear the act of letting my higher self take over and guide me.”
— Mel B
Stools & Bottles — Day 21
Twenty-First Daily Reminder —
After a few months of unhappy sobriety, a disgruntled AA member left his group and resumed drinking. He openly left his group and resumed drinking. He openly opposed certain spiritual parts of our program, labeling them “opium for the masses” and rowed that AA could not run his life. He won his point but by drinking lost his job, wife and home.
Daily Inventory —
Could he have been rebelling against the provisions of Step Six and Seven? With regard to self-discipline, what are the functions of these steps?
Suggested Meditation —
The sign of outward depression in an alcoholic is only the shadow of the real oppression within. He is a very sick person ruled by a strong obsession which says, “I want to be free. I want to think and to drink as I please. I refuse to part with my character flaws — AA or no AA.” Such freedom only adds to our alcoholic bondage. Such spiritual rebellion is mental drunkenness–another slavery for us.
Spiritual Contact —
Our Father, illuminate our defects of character. Help us to enforce self-discipline. Grant us a willing desire to fully accept Steps 6 and 7.
Daily Physical Audit —
Modern medicine emphasizes diet as a powerful factor of healthful living. It claims we eat too much bread, fats and sugar at the expense of proteins, carbohydrates, mineral salts and vitamins which support body growth and repair. Chemical reaction in the alcoholic’s body is impaired by lack of proper food. Our diet should be well balanced and fortified with ample vegetables, fruits and meat.