February 24 — Daily Reflection
A THANKFUL HEART
“I try to hold fast to the truth that a full and thankful heart cannot entertain great conceits. When brimming with gratitude, one’s heartbeat must surely result in outgoing love, the finest emotion that we can ever know.”
—AS BILL SEES IT, p. 37
My sponsor told me that I should be a grateful alcoholic and always have “an attitude of gratitude”—that gratitude was the basic ingredient of humility, that humility was the basic ingredient of anonymity, and that “anonymity was the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.” As a result of his guidance, I start every morning on my knees, thanking God for three things: I’m alive, I’m sober, and I’m a member of Alcoholics Anonymous. Then I try to live an “attitude of gratitude” and thoroughly enjoy another twenty-four hours of the A.A. way of life. A.A. is not something I joined; it’s something I live.
February 24 — Twenty-Four Hours A Day
A.A. Thought For The Day
When we came to our first A.A. meeting, we looked up at the wall at the end of the room and saw the sign: “But for the Grace of God.” We knew right then and there that we would have to call on the grace of God in order to get sober and get over our soul-sickness. We heard speakers tell how they had come to depend on a Power greater than themselves. That made sense to us and we made up our minds to try it. Am I depending on the grace of God to help keep me sober?
Meditation For The Day
Share your love, your joy, your happiness, your time, your food. Give freely with a glad, free heart and hand. Do all you can for others and back will come countless stores of blessings. Sharing draws others to you. Take all who come as sent by God and give them a royal welcome. You may never see the results of your sharing. Today they may not need you, but tomorrow may bring results from the sharing you did today.
Prayer For The Day
I pray that I may make each visitor desire to return. I pray that I may never make anyone feel repulsed or unwanted.
February 24 — As Bill Sees It
The Answer in the Mirror, p. 225
While drinking, we were certain that our intelligence, backed by willpower, could rightly control our inner lives and guarantee us success in the world around us. This brave philosophy, wherein each man played God, sounded good in the speaking, but it still had to meet the acid test: How well did it actually work? One good look in the mirror was answer enough.
My spiritual awakening was electrically sudden and absolutely convincing. At once I became a part—if only a tiny part—of a cosmos that was ruled by justice and love in the person of God. No matter what had been the consequences of my own willfulness and ignorance, or those of my fellow travelers on earth, this was still the truth. Such was the new and positive assurance, and this has never left me.
1. 12 & 12, p. 37
2. Grapevine, January 1962
February 24 — Eye Opener (1950)
We alcoholics know that one drink is too much and a barrel isn’t enough. That first drink starts the compulsion to drink.
Suppressing desires can become a habit just as their satisfaction does. Each time we Say “NO,” we weaken the old habit and strengthen the new.
The efforts to satisfy our desires led us to the excesses that brought about our alcoholism. So let us follow the advise of John Stuart Mill and “learn to seek our happiness by limiting our desires, rather than attempting to satisfy them.”
February 24 — Big Book Quote
“We do not want to be the arbiter of anyone’s sex conduct. We all have sex problems. We’d hardly be human if we didn’t.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, PG.69
February 24 — Walk In Dry Places
We’re told again and again that we have to be selfish about our own recovery, but this seems to be in conflict with the fact that selfishness is the root of our problem. How can selfishness be both good and bad?
The selfishness we need for recovery is a devotion to self-improvement, rather than the selfish indulgence that made us sick. One is a giving of ourselves, the other is frantic taking that leads to destruction. The person who seeks self-improvement is competing only against his or her former self. The sick brand of selfishness, on the other hand, is usually involved in unhealthy competition with others.
There is an easy way to test whether our selfishness is the right kind. If our conduct leads to long-term happiness and higher self-esteem, it is probably right. If it harms us or others, something is wrong. We can correct this by getting back to the basics of the program and pursuing self- improvement rather than self-indulgence.
“Just for today, I will take part only in that which will obviously benefit everyone. I will not put my own concerns ahead of others; but at the same time, I will not let others take advantage of me.”
— Mel B
Stools & Bottles — Day 24
Twenty-Fourth Daily Reminder —
An AA member with several years of sobriety and a record of active service moved to another city and attached himself to the local group. Working upon the basis of AA seniority, he tried to assume authority and rule the group. Failing in this, he broke their unity and later got drunk himself.
Daily Inventory —
Is AA run? Do our members rule? Where is AA’s authority? How is it expressed? Bo we rule by force or lead by example?
Suggested Meditation —
A fellowship of sick persons, who are recovering from the effects of alcoholism, cannot be legislated back to health. They should be led by understanding alcoholics who have arrested their illness by 12 Step living and are willing to share their experiences with others. Our only authority is God’s Will activation the conscience of our group–His voice speaking through AA to the alcoholics who still suffer.
Spiritual Contact —
Our Father, may our examples of serenity and happy sobriety attract to us the alcoholics who still suffer. Make us realize the value of service.
Daily Physical Audit —
Good health is our best safeguard against disease. Some people inherit it while others must fight to acquire it. The alcoholic, regardless of his former status, has placed himself in the second category. Recovery from alcoholism now confronts us with two real problems. The first one is to regain our health. The second is to maintain it. Willingness to admit and treat our illness and physical defects is an important asset to recovery.