DR – February 26, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 26, 2021


Daily Reflection

NO ORDINARY SUCCESS STORY

A.A. is no success story in the ordinary sense of the word. It is a story of suffering transmuted, under grace, into spiritual progress.

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 35

Upon entering A.A. I listened to others talk about the reality of their drinking: loneliness, terror and pain. As I listened further, I soon heard a description of a very different kind—the reality of sobriety. It is a reality of freedom and happiness, of purpose and direction, and of serenity and peace with God, ourselves and others. By attending meetings I am reintroduced to that reality, over and over. I see it in the eyes and hear it in the voices of those around me. By working the program I find the direction and strength with which to make it mine. The joy of A.A. is that this new reality is available to me.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

“When working with a man and his family, you should take care not to participate in their quarrels. You may spoil your chance of being helpful if you do. But urge upon a man’s family that he has been a very sick person and should be treated accordingly. You should warn against arousing resentment or jealousy. You should point out that is defects of character are not going to disappear over night. Show them that he has entered upon a period of growth. Ask them to remember, when they are impatient, the blessed fact of his sobriety.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 100~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

When we came into A.A., we came to believe in a Power greater than ourselves. We came to believe in that Divine Principle in the universe, which we call God, and to whom we can turn for help. Each morning we have a quiet time. We ask God for the power to stay sober for the next twenty-four hours. And each night we thank Him for helping us to keep sober that day. Do I believe that each man or woman I see in A.A. is a demonstration of the power of God to change a human being from a drunkard to a sober person?

Meditation for the Day

I should pray for faith as a thirsty person prays for water in a desert. Do I know what it means to feel sure that God will never fail me? Am I as sure of this as I am sure that I still breathe? I should pray daily and most diligently that my faith may increase. There is nothing lacking in my life because, really, all I need is mine, only I lack the faith to know it. I am like a rich man’s child who sits in rags when all around me are stores of all I could desire.

Prayer for the Day

I pray for the realization that God has everything I need. I pray that I may know that His power is always available.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Twelve Step Programs

I was furious when I found myself at my first Al-Anon meeting. It seemed so unfair that he had the problem and I had to go to a meeting. But by that time, I had nowhere left in the world to go with my pain. Now, I’m grateful for Al-Anon and my codependency recovery. Al-Anon keeps me on track; recovery has given me a life.

—Anonymous

There are many Twelve Step programs for codependents: Al-Anon, Adult Children of Alcoholics, CoDa, Families Anonymous, Nar-Anon, and more. We have many choices about which kind of group is right for us and which particular group in that category meets our needs. Twelve Step groups for codependents are free, anonymous, and available in most communities. If there is not one that is right for us, we can start one.

Twelve Step groups for codependents are not about how we can help the other person; they’re about how we can help ourselves grow and change. They can help us accept and deal with the ways codependency has affected us. They can help us get on track and stay there.

There is magic in Twelve Step programs. There is healing power in connecting with other recovering people. We access this healing power by working the Steps and by allowing them to work on us. The Twelve Steps are a formula for healing.

How long do we have to go to meetings? We go until we “get the program.” We go until the program “gets us.” Then we keep on going and growing.

Selecting a group and then attending regularly are important ways we can begin and continue to take care of ourselves. Actively participating in our recovery program by working the Steps is another.

I will be open to the healing power available to me from the Twelve Steps and a recovery program.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

I have never for one instant seen clearly within myself. How then would you have me judge the deeds of others?

—Maurice Maeterlinck

We have been given the job of getting to know ourselves and dealing with our own craziness. We aren’t so good at it that we have spare time and energy left to make judgments about those around us. We are tempted to become absorbed in their behavior and choices, and it does feel like a welcome distraction from anxieties about ourselves. So we must learn to detach from the family members and friends that we are tempted to fix, or monitor, or judge.

Although we are very close, we are on separate paths in life. We were not born together, and we will not die together. We will make our family or our friendships and the world a little bit better by staying centered on our own sanity.

I pray for a clear separation between what is on my path in this program and what is on someone else’s path. Then we can make good bridges between us.


Elder’s Meditation

“The Great Spirit is the one that’s looking after us.”

— Jimmy Jackson, OJIBWAY

The only place our minds can find peace is when our focus is on the Creator. Daily we need to ask the Creator to direct our thinking. When we look at our brothers and sisters, we need to see the Creator in them. When we look at the trees, plants and the animals, we need to realize the Creator is within us. Our attention needs to be on the Creator. When we work, we do it for the Creator. When we are troubled, we need to pray to the Creator. When we are happy and joyful, we need to realize we are feeling the presence of the Creator. Thinking God thoughts will produce peace.

Oh Great Mystery, let me focus on You today.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Everyone has an opinion on everything, but the opinions that others have about you are out of your control. Someone will likely bring a concern about your lifestyle or your personal expression to you, but this concern is none of their business. The limiting beliefs and narrow-minded insistence of others will stand between you and emotional security if you allow it. You deserve to learn how to love your inner self without the negative input of others.

DR – February 25, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 25, 2021


Daily Reflection

In God’s economy, nothing is wasted. Through failure, we learn a lesson in humility which is probably needed, painful though it is.

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 31

How thankful I am today, to know that all my past failures were necessary for me to be where I am now. Through much pain came experience and, in suffering, I became obedient. When I sought God, as I understand Him, He shared His treasured gifts. Through experience and obedience, growth started, followed by gratitude. Yes, then came peace of mind—living in and sharing sobriety.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

“…we were at Step Three, which is that we decided to turn our will and our life over to God as we understood Him. Just what do we mean by that, and just what do we do?

The first requirement is that we be convinced that any life run on self-will can hardly be a success. On that basis we are almost always in collision with something or somebody, even though our motives are good. Most people try to live by self-propulsion.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 60~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Some people find it hard to believe in a Power greater than themselves. But not to believe in such a Power forces us to atheism. It has been said that atheism is blind faith in the strange proposition that this universe originated in a cipher and aimlessly rushes nowhere. That’s practically impossible to believe. I think we all can agree that alcohol is a power greater than ourselves. It certainly was in my case. I was helpless before the power of alcohol. Do I remember the things that happened to me because of the power of alcohol?

Meditation for the Day

The spiritual and moral will eventually overcome the material and unmoral. That is the purpose and destiny of the human race. Gradually the spiritual is overcoming the material in our minds. Gradually the moral is overcoming the unmoral. Faith, fellowship, and service are cures for most of the ills of the world. There is nothing in the field of personal relationships that they cannot do.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may do my share in making a better world. I pray that I may be part of the cure for the ills of the world.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Accepting Imperfection

“Why do I do this to myself?” asked a woman who wanted to lose weight. “I went to my support group feeling so guilty and ashamed because I ate half a cookie that wasn’t on the diet. I found out that everyone cheats a little, and some people cheat a lot. I felt so ashamed before I came to the group, as though I were the only one not doing my diet perfectly. Now I know that I’m dieting as well as most, and better than some.”

Why do we do this to ourselves? I’m not talking strictly about dieting, I’m talking about life. Why do we punish ourselves by thinking that we’re inferior while believing that others are perfect – whether in relationships, recovery, or a specific task?

Whether we’re judging others or ourselves it’s two sides of the same coin: perfection. Neither expectation is valid.

It is far more accurate and beneficial to tell ourselves that who we are is okay and what we are doing is good enough. That doesn’t mean we won’t make mistakes that need correcting; doesn’t mean we won’t get off track from time to time; doesn’t mean we can’t improve. It means with all our mistakes and wandering, we’re basically on course. Encouraging and approving of ourselves is how we help ourselves stay on track.

Today, I will love and encourage myself. I will tell myself that what I’m doing is good enough, and I’ll let myself enjoy that feeling.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

Every time I close the door on Reality, it comes in through the window.

—Ashleigh Brilliant

In the past, many of us closed the door on the reality of our abuse of others or ourselves. We gave explanations, but our words more often hid the truth than revealed it. The chaos in our lives was reality coming in the window. Many men have come into this program priding themselves on their honesty, but not aware of how dishonest they were with themselves.

Honesty is a pillar of spiritual awakening. There is no growth without it, and it begins with ourselves. We do not define the truth, we accept it, we surrender to it. The truth may not feel good; it can even be painful. This is the pain of birth – the rebirth of a real man. And the promise of this day is the reward of having our integrity and the peace of self-acceptance.

Today, I will surrender to the truth. I will accept the reality which presses for attention in my life.


Elder’s Meditation

“The Creator was responsible for the existence of everything, a part of the Creator’s spirit exists in everything and thus all things are connected.”

–Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

The Creator designed nature, people, and all things as an interconnected system. Everything is connected to each other. This connection exists in the Unseen World. The same way our body parts are all port of the body – the parts are separate but also connected. If a part of our body is in pain, the rest of the body recognizes this pain as its own. In other words, the pain of one is the pain of all. This is also true of every interconnected system. Because we are connected, we should respect and take care of our Earth and each other.

Great Spirit, let me treat everyone, today, as if they were You.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

New people are coming into your life, but you may still be feeling the sting from a past friendship that ended. You could be experiencing power struggles or financial issues that stem from people in the past overstepping or creating insecurity for you. Now, though, you know to set firm boundaries in order to help prevent this from occurring again, so remember your worth and don’t talk yourself out of a quality friendship just because you received less than what you deserved from somebody else.

DR – February 24, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 24, 2021


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 this 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.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

“Some people cannot be seen–we send them an honest letter. And there may be a valid reason for postponement in some cases. But we don’t delay if it can be avoided. We should be sensible, tactful, considerate and humble without being servile or scraping. As God’s people we stand on our feet; we don’t crawl before anyone.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, Page 83~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

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 me stay sober?

Meditation for the Day

Share your love, your joy, your happiness, your time, your food, your money gladly with all. Give out all the love you can 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.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Recognizing Feelings

Experiencing feelings can be a challenge if we’ve had no previous experience or permission to do that. Learning to identify what we’re feeling is a challenge we can meet, but we will not become experts overnight. Nor do we have to deal with our feelings perfectly.

Here are some ideas that might be helpful as you learn to recognize and deal with feelings:

Take out a sheet of paper. On the top of it write, “If it was okay to feel whatever I’m feeling, and I wouldn’t be judged as bad or wrong, what would I be feeling?” Then write whatever comes to mind. You can also use the favorite standby of many people in discovering their feelings: writing or journaling. You can keep a diary, write letters you don’t intend to send, or just scribble thoughts onto a note pad.

Watch and listen to yourself as an objective third person might. Listen to your tone of voice and the words you use. What do you hear? Sadness, fear, anger, happiness?

What is your body telling you? Is it tense and rigid with anger? Running with fear? Heavy with sadness and grief? Dancing with joy?

Talking to people in recovery helps too. Going to meetings helps. Once we feel safe, many of us find that we open up naturally and with ease to our feelings.

We are on a continual treasure hunt in recovery. One of the treasures we’re seeking is the emotional part of ourselves. We don’t have to do it perfectly. We need only be honest, open, and willing to try. Our emotions are there, waiting to share themselves with us.

Today, I will watch myself and listen to myself as I go through my day. I will not judge myself for what I’m feeling; I will accept myself.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

It doesn’t happen all at once…. You become. It takes a long time.

—Margery Williams

Our spiritual awakening is partly a process of becoming real. We’re moving from the external controls of image and others’ opinions to the internal controls of honesty, listening to our inner voice, and having true relationships. We are shedding the games that maintained our old style of life – “macho” or “hero” or “poor me.”

In place of the old phony surface, we are developing a real relationship with ourselves. We are becoming more aware – of emotions, of need for rest, of violations of our values. Sometimes change comes in a flash of insight or a moment of sudden, piercing awareness, but more often it comes a little bit at a time. As we work the Steps, as we are true to our inner voice, as we keep returning to conscious contact with our Higher Power, as we get closer to our friends, we become more real to ourselves.

As I grow, I see that I was always real. I was just looking at the outside.


Elder’s Meditation

“But each of us must find out for himself or herself what their gift is, so that they can use it in their life.”

–Jimmy Jackson, OJIBWAY

The old people say, everyone has a song to sing. This song is the reason we are on this earth. When we are doing what we came on this earth to do, we know true happiness. How will we know our song? Pray. Ask the Great Mystery, “What is it you want me to do during my stay on earth?” Ask. He will tell you. He will even help you develop yourself to accomplish His mission.

Great Spirit, help me find my song and let me sing it.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

A balance of power in a key relationship in your life will make itself known, if it hasn’t already — this could be a romantic relationship, a business partnership, a best friend, or a worst enemy. The control and freedoms that you each have become obvious today, and you will need to be honest with yourself in order to keep moving forward. Be wary of getting obsessed with people that you love or of getting revenge against a nemesis; it’s healthier to let go than to hold on too tightly.

DR – February 23, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 23, 2021


Daily Reflection

MYSTERIOUS PARADOXES

Such is the paradox of A.A. regeneration: strength arising out of complete defeat and weakness, the loss of one’s old life as a condition for finding a new one.

— A.A. COMES OF AGE, p. 46

What glorious mysteries paradoxes are! They do not compute, yet when recognized and accepted, they reaffirm something in the universe beyond human logic. When I face a fear, I am given courage; when I support a brother or sister, my capacity to love myself is increased; when I accept pain as part of the growing experience of life, I realize a greater happiness; when I look at my dark side, I am brought into new light; when I accept my vulnerabilities and surrender to a Higher Power, I am graced with unforeseen strength. I stumbled through the doors of A.A. in disgrace, expecting nothing from life, and I have been given hope and dignity. Miraculously, the only way to keep the gifts of the program is to pass them on.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

“Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, Page 30~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Besides our jobs, our families, our friends, and our sobriety, we have something else that many of us found through A.A. That’s faith in a Power greater than ourselves to which we can turn for help: faith in that Divine Principle in the universe which we call God and which is on our side as long as we do the right thing. There have been many days in the past when, if we had taken an inventory, we’d have found ourselves very much in the red, without sobriety, and therefore without jobs, families, friends, or faith in God. We now have these things because we’re sober. Do I make one resolution every day of my life to stay sober?

Meditation for the Day

Love the busy life. It is a joy-filled life. Take your fill of joy in the spring. Live outdoors whenever possible. Sun and air are nature’s great healing forces. That inward joy changes poisoned blood into a pure, healthy, life-giving flow. But never forget that the real healing of the spirit comes from within, from the close, loving contact of your spirit with God’s spirit. Keep in close communion with God’s spirit day by day.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may learn to live the abundant life. I pray that I may enjoy a close contact with God this day and be glad in it.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Strength

We don’t always have to be strong. Sometimes, our strength is expressed in being vulnerable. Sometimes, we need to fall apart to regroup and stay on track.

We all have days when we cannot push any harder, cannot hold back self-doubt, cannot stop focusing on fear, cannot be strong.

There are days when we cannot focus on being responsible. Occasionally we don’t want to get out of our pajamas. Sometimes, we cry in front of people. We expose our tiredness, irritability, or anger.

Those days are okay. They are just okay.

Part of taking care of ourselves means we give ourselves permission to “fall apart” when we need to. We do not have to be perpetual towers of strength. We are strong. We have proven that. Our strength will continue if we allow ourselves the courage to feel scared, weak, and vulnerable when we need to experience those feelings.

Today, God, help me to know that it is okay to allow myself to be human. Help me not to feel guilty or punish myself when I need to “fall apart.”


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

A man who studieth revenge keeps his own wounds green. —Francis Bacon

Where do we direct our energy? Are we spending time and thought on how we have been wronged? on the unfairness of life? Those who consume their resources in this way have few left for growth and development. Their wounds stay open for years, and they block the healing.

What will we need to set aside our resentments and hateful attitudes? Perhaps we have been passively waiting for the other guy to make amends. That only puts our enemies in charge of us. It would be better if we could say, “I am going to move on. The change that is needed for me to heal will come from within me. I will not put my happiness in another’s hands.” More than revenge, we want a life worth living – for ourselves and the ones we love. We can give our energies to that.

Lift from me the desire for revenge. Replace it with the fullness of a healed life.


Elder’s Meditation

We’ve got to learn what’s going on today in the world, and we’ve got to get an education so we can survive.”

–Jimmy Jackson, OJIBWA

Indian people have the ability to adapt. In these modern times, we Native people must walk two roads. We must get educated so our people don’t lose. We need lawyers, doctors, nurses, foresters, scientists, educators, carpenters, welders. These skills are needed to help the people. While we are learning we need to remember to keep our culture, learn our dances, sing our songs, learn to speak our own language and maintain our culture for future generations.

Great Spirit, let my education never lack the meaning and value of Indian spirituality.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You can trust your body to be honest with you even when your mind is uncertain. Listen to what your gut is trying to tell you and feel the emotions that you’re feeling without judgment. If you sense something is off within an important relationship, don’t simply gloss over this feeling in order to move on with what you were doing. Yoga or meditation can help you get more in tune with your body and this physical intuition — let it lead you to what you’re looking for.

DR – February 22, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 22, 2021


Daily Reflection

GUIDANCE

. . . this means a belief in a Creator who is all power, justice, and love; a God who intends for me a purpose, a meaning, and a destiny to grow, however . . . haltingly, toward His own likeness and image.

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 51

As I began to understand my own powerlessness and my dependence on God, as I understand Him, I began to see that there was a life which, if I could have it, I would have chosen for myself from the beginning. It is through the continuing work of the Steps and the life in the Fellowship that I’ve learned to see that there is truly a better way into which I am being guided. As I come to know more about God, I am able to trust His ways and His plans for the development of His character in me. Quickly or not so quickly, I grow toward His own image and likeness.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

I have seen hundreds of families set their feet in the path that really goes somewhere; have seen the most impossible domestic situations righted; feuds and bitterness of all sorts wiped out. I have seen men come out of asylums and resume a vital place in the lives of their families and communities. Business and professional men have regained their standing. There is scarcely any form of trouble and misery which has not been overcome among us.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, Page 15~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Now we can take an inventory of the good things that have come to us through A.A. To begin with, we’re sober today. That’s the biggest asset on any alcoholic’s books. Sobriety to us is like goodwill in business. Everything else depends on that. Most of us have jobs, which we owe to our sobriety. We know we couldn’t hold these jobs if we were drinking, so our jobs depend on our sobriety. Most of us have wives or husbands and children, which we either had lost or might have lost, if we hadn’t stopped drinking. We have friends in A.A., real friends who are always ready to help us. Do I realize that my job, my family, and my real friends are dependent upon my sobriety?

Meditation for the Day

I must trust God to the best of my ability. This lesson has to be learned. My doubts and fears continually drive me back into the wilderness. Doubts lead me astray, because I am not trusting God. I must trust God’s love. It will never fail me, but I must learn not to fail it by my doubts and fears. We all have much to learn in turning out fear by faith. All our doubts arrest God’s work through us. I must not doubt. I must believe in God and continually work at strengthening my faith.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may live the way God wants me to live. I pray that I may get into that stream of goodness in the world.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Solving Problems

I ask that You might help me work through all my problems, to Your Glory and Honor.

—Alcoholics Anonymous

Many of us lived in situations where it wasn’t okay to identify, have, or talk about problems. Denial became a way of life – our way of dealing with problems

In recovery, many of us still fear problems. We may spend more time reacting to a problem than we do to solving it. We miss the point; we miss the lesson; we miss the gift. Problems are a part of life. So are solutions.

A problem doesn’t mean life is negative or horrible. Having a problem doesn’t mean a person is deficient. All people have problems to work through.

In recovery, we learn to focus on solving our problems. First, we make certain the problem is our problem. If it isn’t, our problem is establishing boundaries. Then we seek the best solution. This may mean setting a goal, asking for help, gathering more information, taking an action, or letting go.

Recovery does not mean immunity or exemption from problems; recovery means learning to face and solve problems, knowing they will appear regularly. We can trust our ability to solve problems, and know we’re not doing it alone. Having problems does not mean our Higher Power is picking on us. Some problems are part of life; others are ours to solve, and we’ll grow in necessary ways in the process.

Face and solve today’s problems. Don’t worry needlessly about tomorrow’s problems, because when they appear, we’ll have the resources necessary to solve them.

Facing and solving problems, working through problems with help from a Higher Power, means we’re living and growing and reaping benefits.

God, help me face and solve my problems today. Help me do my part and let the rest go. I can learn to be a problem solver.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that they are difficult.

—Seneca

When we reach a stressful time in our lives, our vision gets narrow. We fail to see the options and possibilities we have. If we give ourselves over to our worries and fears, our sight closes down even further. Finally, we reach the point of blindness to reality and to all the support around us. In our fearful blindness we say with conviction, “This is too difficult! There is nothing I can do.”

The spiritual man strives to keep one eye on the horizon, even in a worrisome situation. He breaths deeply so he does not tighten up or closes off his exchange with the world. He returns to the relationship he has with his Higher Power, trusting the process to carry him through, and he opens his eyes to quietly take in the possibilities before him.

Close to my Higher Power, I have a place of calm in the midst of difficulty and see the possibilities and dare to act upon them.


Elder’s Meditation

“In the Indian way, we are connected to that flower if we understand its spirit, the essence of its life.”

–Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

Everything on our Earth is alive. Every rock, every plant, every animal, every tree, every bird, every thought is alive. This is true because everything is made by the Great Spirit and the Great Spirit is alive. We need to slow our lives down each day and realize, consciously, that this is true. First we need to realize it, second, we need to acknowledge it, third, we need to appreciate it and, finally, we need to go on.

Great Spirit, let me see life through Your eyes. Today let me be alive.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

What you believe mentally and what you feel emotionally are in harmony, and this synchronicity opens up the floodgates to bring you good luck. While some Cancers will enjoy meeting a new friend or even a group of friends, others will simply receive the power of good fortune and positive situations that work out in your favor. It’s a good time to initiate a risky conversation or to ask for a raise, especially if you’re able to do so with humility and authenticity.

DR – February 21, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 21, 2021


Daily Reflection

I’M PART OF THE WHOLE

At once, I became a part—if only a tiny part—of a cosmos. . . .

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 225

When I first came to A.A., I decided that “they” were very nice people — perhaps a little naive, a little too friendly, but basically decent, earnest people (with whom I had nothing in common). I saw “them” at meetings—after all, that was where “they” existed. I shook hands with “them” and, when I went out the door, I forgot about “them.”

Then one day my Higher Power, whom I did not then believe in, arranged to create a community project outside of A.A., but one which happened to involve many A.A. members. We worked together, I got to know “them” as people. I came to admire “them,” even to like “them” and, in spite of myself, to enjoy “them.” “Their” practice of the program in their daily lives—not just in talk at meetings—attracted me and I wanted what they had. Suddenly the “they” became “we.” I have not had a drink since.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

“The basic principles of the A.A. program, it appears, hold good for individuals with many different lifestyles, just as the program has brought recovery to those of many different nationalities. The Twelve Steps that summarize the program may be called los Doce Pasos in one country, les Douze Etapes in another, but they trace exactly the same path to recovery that was blazed by the earliest members of Alcoholics Anonymous.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Foreward To Third Edition, Page


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

I go to the A.A. meetings because it helps me in my business of keeping sober. And I try to help other alcoholics when I can, because that’s part of my business of keeping sober. I also have a partner in this business and that’s God. I pray to Him every day to help me to keep sober. As long as I keep in mind that liquor can never be my friend again, but is now my deadly enemy, and as long as I remember that my main business is keeping sober and that it’s the most important thing in my life, I believe I’ll be prepared for that crucial moment when the idea of having a drink pops into my mind. When that idea comes, will I be able to resist it and not take that drink?

Meditation for the Day

I will be more afraid of spirit unrest, of soul disturbance, of any ruffling of the mind, than of earthquake or fire. When I feel the calm of my spirit has been broken by emotional upset, then I must steal away alone with God, until my heart sings and all is strong and calm again. Uncalm times are the only times when evil can find an entrance. I will be ware of unguarded spots of unrest. I will try to keep calm, no matter what turmoil surrounds me.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that no emotional upsets will hinder God’s power in my life. I pray that I may keep a calm spirit and a steady heart.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Living in the Present

The present moment is all we have. Yes, we have plans and goals, a vision for tomorrow. But now is the only time we possess. And it is enough.

We can clear our mind of the residue of yesterday. We can clear our mind of fears of tomorrow. We can be present, now. We can make ourselves available to this moment, this day. It is by being fully present now that we reach the fullness of tomorrow.

Have no fear, child, a voice whispers. Have no regrets. Relinquish your resentments. Let Me take your pain. All you have is the present moment. Be still. Be here Trust.

All you have is now. It is enough.

Today, I will affirm that all is well around me, when all is well within.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

The readiness is all. —William Shakespeare

Our concept of control was flawed. This program leads us into a New World. Here we meet the fact that we are powerless to change some aspects of ourselves. But we can become ready to be changed. That makes all the difference. When we accept this truth, we are already changed and we are more in line with nature and the universe.

We can’t make ourselves less perfectionistic, but we can become ready to let go of our demand for perfection. We can’t force family harmony into our lives, but we can become more ready to be harmonious. We can’t make a lasting love appear for us on command – we can become ready for such a relationship when the opportunities appear. Do we yearn for some change? How might we ready ourselves to receive it?

Today, I will try to become ready for the help and change I most need in my life.


Elder’s Meditation

“Every thing or living being that exists in this world, be it trees, flowers, birds, grasses, rocks, soil of the earth, or human beings, has its unique manner of existence – its essence, its spirit that makes it what it is. That is what is meant by connectedness.”

–Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

Scientists are finally realizing what the Elders have taught for thousands of years – everything is connected. Because everything is interconnected, whatever you do to any one thing, you do to everything. If you poison any part of the earth, the poison eventually affects everything else. If you poison the plants, the birds will eat the plants, which poisons the birds. The birds are eaten by humans which poisons the humans. The humans will have babies who could be deformed because the plants were poisoned. We must learn to live in harmony with the earth. We must learn to think good things. Every good thought is felt by everything, which causes everything to be happy.

Creator, let my thoughts only be good thoughts.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

There is some truth that you’re trying to keep from looking at, but your rose-colored glasses are preventing you from understanding it for what it is. If you’re rationalizing your way into hesitation or procrastination, understand that you’ll have to face the music eventually. There’s nothing more useful than real awareness and you know this. Embrace the good, the bad, and the ugly and see your situation for what it is so that you can respond accordingly.

DR – February 20, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 20, 2021


Daily Reflection

THE GIFT OF LAUGHTER

At this juncture, his A.A. sponsor usually laughs.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 26

Before my recovery from alcoholism began, laughter was one of the most painful sounds I knew. I never laughed and I felt that anyone else’s laughter was directed at me! My self-pity and anger denied me the simplest of pleasures or lightness of heart. By the end of my drinking not even alcohol could provoke a drunken giggle in me.

When my A.A. sponsor began to laugh and point out my self-pity and ego-feeding deceptions, I was annoyed and hurt, but it taught me to lighten up and focus on my recovery. I soon learned to laugh at myself and eventually I taught those I sponsor to laugh also. Every day I ask God to help me stop taking myself too seriously.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


Big Book Quote

“A word about sex relations. Alcohol is so sexually stimulating to some men that they have over-indulged. Couples are occasionally dismayed to find that when drinking is stopped the man tends to be impotent. Unless the reason is understood, there may be an emotional upset. Some of us had this experience, only to enjoy, in a few months, a finer intimacy than ever. There should be no hesitancy in consulting a doctor or psychologist if the condition persists. We do not know of many cases where this difficulty lasted long.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 134~


24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Liquor used to be my friend. I used to have a lot of fun drinking. Practically all the fun I had was connected with drinking. But the time came when liquor became my enemy. I don’t know just when liquor turned against me and became my enemy, but I know it happened, because I began to get into trouble. And since I realize that liquor is now my enemy, my main business is keeping sober. Making a living or keeping house is no longer my main business. It’s secondary to the business of keeping sober. Do I realize that my main business is keeping sober?

Meditation for the Day

I can depend on God to supply me with all the power I need to face any situation, provided that I will sincerely believe in that power and honestly ask for it, at the same time making all my life conform to what I believe God wants me to be. I can come to God as a business manager would come to the owner of the business, knowing that to lay the matter before Him means immediate cooperation, providing the matter has merit.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may believe that God is ready and willing to supply me with all that I need. I pray that I may ask only for faith and strength to meet any situation.


The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Setting Our Own Course

We are powerless over other people’s expectations of us. We cannot control what others want, what they expect, or what they want us to do and be.

We can control how we respond to other people’s expectations.

During the course of any day, people may make demands on our time, talents, energy, money, and emotions. We do not have to say yes to every request. We do not have to feel guilty if we say no. And we do not have to allow the barrage of demands to control the course of our life.

We do not have to spend our life reacting to others and to the course they would prefer we took with our life.

We can set boundaries, firm limits on how far we shall go with others. We can trust and listen to ourselves. We can set goals and direction for our life. We can place value on ourselves.

We can own our power with people.

Buy some time. Think about what you want. Consider how responding to another’s needs will affect the course of your life. We live or own life by not letting other people, their expectations, and their demands control the course of our life. We can let them have their demands and expectations; we can allow them to have their feelings. We can own our power to choose the path that is right for us.

Today, God, help me own my power by detaching and peacefully choosing the course of action that is right for me. Help me know I can detach from the expectations and wants of others. Help me stop pleasing other people and start pleasing myself.


Touchstone – Men’s Meditation

That’s what happens when you’re angry at people. You make them part of your life.

—Garrison Keillor

Communication can be so tricky. You enunciate clearly, and yet your message still seems to come across garbled today. The issue may simply be rooted in the lack of a bridge between you and the audience you are trying to reach. When people with two different mother tongues try to find common ground, words might not land the way you each expect. When you speak of higher-level concepts — like freedom or love — all interpretations are meaningful. Nevertheless, be explicit as possible to get your point across.

Our problems with anger and our problems in relationships go hand in hand. Some of us have held back our anger, which led to resentment of our loved ones. Some of us have indulged our anger and become abusive. Some of us have been so frightened of anger that we closed off the dialogue in our relationships when angry feelings came out.

Some of us have wasted our energy by focusing anger on people who weren’t really important to us. Do we truly want them to become so important? Yet, perhaps the important relationships got frozen because we weren’t open and respectful with our anger. It isn’t possible to be close to someone without being angry at times. We let our loved ones be part of our lives by feeling our anger when it is there and expressing it openly, directly, and respectfully to them – or by hearing them when they are angry. Then, with dialogue, we can let it go.

I will be aware of those people I am making important in my life and will grow in dealing with my anger.


Elder’s Meditation

“When a community does something together, that community is very happy, jovial, connected, and unified.”

— Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

The Indian People have always been able to adapt. If the hunting changed, we found new hunting grounds. If the earth changed, we moved to a better place. If the river changed course, we followed the river. But with every change, we kept our Indianness and spirituality. Our culture and spirituality have always been our strength. Our culture and spirituality taught us to live in harmony. We must change with the times, but we must maintain our culture and spirituality, always living in harmony.

Great Spirit, You have taught us to survive. Let me always maintain my Indianness.


Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Trust how you feel, because it will get you much further than talking yourself out of what you’re sensing. Your intuition is leading you toward a better spiritual path and, although you feel uncertain of where you’re going, you know that this is worth trying. Move in silence for now and allow others to wonder what it is that you’re doing when it comes to both spiritual and financial pursuits — your ability to keep a secret and follow your gut instinct can lead you to a valuable gift.

DR – February 19, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 19, 2021

Daily Reflection

I’M NOT DIFFERENT

In the beginning, it was four whole years before A.A. brought permanent sobriety to even one alcoholic woman. Like the “high bottoms,” the women said they were different; . . . The Skid-Rower said he was different . . . so did the artists and the professional people, the rich, the poor, the religious, the agnostic, the Indians and the Eskimos, the veterans, and the prisoners. . . . nowadays all of these, and legions more, soberly talk about how very much alike all of us alcoholics are when we admit that the chips are finally down.”

— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 24

I cannot consider myself “different” in A. A.; if I do I isolate myself from others and from contact with my Higher Power. If I feel isolated in A.A., it is not something for which others are responsible. It is something I’ve created by feeling I’m “different” in some way. Today I practice being just another alcoholic in the worldwide Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Big Book Quote

“If there be divorce or separation, there should be no undue haste for the couple to get together. The man should be sure of his recovery. The wife should fully understand his new way of life. If their old relationship is to be resumed it must be on a better basis, since the former did not work. This means a new attitude and spirit all around. Sometimes it is to the best interests of all concerned that a couple remain apart. Obviously, no rule can be laid down. Let the alcoholic continue his program day by day. When the time for living together has come, it will be apparent to both parties.”

Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, Page 99

24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Many things we do in A.A. are in preparation for that crucial moment when, walking down the street on a nice sunshiny day, we see a nice cool cocktail lounge and the idea of having a drink pops into our minds. If we’ve trained our minds so that we’re well prepared for that crucial moment, we won’t take that first drink. In other words, if we’ve done our A.A. homework well, we won’t slip when temptation comes. In preparation for that crucial moment when I’ll be tempted, will I keep in mind the fact that liquor is my enemy?

Meditation for the Day

How many of the world’s prayers have gone unanswered because those who prayed did not endure to the end? They thought it was too late, that they must act for themselves, that God was not going to guide them. “He that endureth to the end, the same shall be saved.” Can I endure to the very end? If so, I shall be saved. I will try to endure with courage. If I endure, God will unlock those secret spiritual treasures that are hidden from those who do not endure to the end.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may follow God’s guidance, so that spiritual success shall be mine. I pray that I may never doubt the power of God and so take things into my own hands.

The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Our Path

I just spent several hours with someone from my group, and I feel like I’m losing my mind. This woman insisted that the only way I would make progress in my program was to go to her church and succumb to her religious rules. She pushed and insisted, and insisted and pushed. She’s been in the program so much longer than I have. I kept thinking that she must know what she’s talking about. But it didn’t feel right. And now I feel crazy, afraid, guilty, and ashamed.

—Anonymous

The spiritual path and growth promised to us by the Twelve Steps does not depend on any religious belief. They are not contingent upon any denomination or sect. They are not, as the traditions of Twelve Step programs state, affiliated with any religious denomination or organization.

We do not have to allow anyone to badger us about religion in recovery. We do not have to allow people to make us feel ashamed, afraid, or less than because we do not subscribe to their beliefs about religion.

We do not have to let them do it to us in the name of God, love, or recovery.

The spiritual experience we will find as a result of recovery and the Twelve Steps will be our own spiritual experience. It will be a relationship with God, a Higher Power, as we understand God.

Each of us must find our own spiritual path. Each of us must build our own relationship with God, as we understand God. Each of us needs a Power greater than ourselves. These concepts are critical to recovery.

So is the freedom to choose how to do that.

Higher Power, help me know that I don’t have to allow anyone to shame or badger me into religious beliefs. If they confuse that with the spirituality available in recovery, help me give their issue back to them. Help me discover and develop my own spirituality, a path that works for me. Guide me, with Divine Wisdom, as I grow spiritually.

Touchstone

He who has a why to live can bear with almost any how.

—Friedrich Nietzsche

Our sense of purpose in life is not fixed in concrete. It changes from youth through all the stages of life. Often in the transitions to a new growth stage we are most confused. In the chaotic life created by our own addictive or codependent thinking, all meaning collapses around us. At these times we wonder, “What is the point?” “Does anything really matter?”

We receive a why for our existence by participating in the whole of this world. We are sons, or fathers, or husbands, or brothers, or friends to very specific people – and to the rest of our community, extending to all of creation. Our sense of purpose may change when life circumstances change. We get married, for instance, and then say, “Now what?” Or a child is born, or a parent dies, or we become disabled. Each time we may be confronted again with the questions. Being open to contact with our world, keeping our barriers down so we stay in touch, restores our awareness of purpose.

May I continue to respond to the changing phases in life – and be open to the renewal of purpose, which is here for me.

Elder’s Meditation

The Old Man said,`you are both ugly and handsome and you must accept your ugliness as well as your handsomeness in order to really accept yourself.”

— Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

My Grandfather told me one time that any person who is judgmental to another is also judgmental to themselves. If we want to be free of being judgmental, we need to first work on how judgmental we are to ourselves. If we quit judging ourselves and start accepting ourselves as we are, we will start accepting others as they are. Then we will experience a level of new freedom.

Great Spirit, let me accept myself as I am – honoring both my strengths and my weaknesses.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You could be very tempted to spend your hard-earned money today. It looks like other people might be pressuring you to spend more than you were expecting on entertainment or gifts, so you need to exercise restraint if you know that you need this money for something else. However, you may have enough squirreled away for an event like this. The events of today are highly influenced by your ability to manage your assets and know how much you have to share with others.

DR – February 18, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 18, 2021

Daily Reflection

OUR PATHS ARE OUR OWN

. . . there was nothing left for us but to pick up the simple kit of spiritual tools laid at our feet.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 25

My first attempt at the Steps was one of obligation and necessity, which resulted in a deep feeling of discouragement in the face of all those adverbs: courageously; completely; humbly; directly; and only. I considered Bill W. fortunate to have gone through such a major, even sensational, spiritual experience. I had to discover, as time went on, that my path was my own. After a few twenty-four hours in the A.A. Fellowship, thanks especially to the sharing of members in the meetings, I understood that everyone gradually finds his or her own pace in moving through the Steps. Through progressive means, I try to live according to these suggested principles. As a result of these Steps, I can say today that my attitude towards life, people, and towards anything having to do with God, has been transformed and improved.

Big Book Quote

“The very practical approach to his problems, the absence of intolerance of any kind, the informality, the genuine democracy, the uncanny understanding which these people had were irresistible.”

Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, A Vision For You, Page 160

24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

After I became an alcoholic, alcohol poisoned my love for my family and friends, it poisoned my ambition, it poisoned my self-respect. It poisoned my whole life, until I met A.A. My life is happier now than it has been for a long time. I don’t want to commit suicide. So with the help of God and A.A., I’m not going to take any more of that alcoholic poison into my system. And I’m going to keep training my mind never even to think of liquor again in any way except as a poison. Do I believe that liquor will poison my life if I ever touch it again?

Meditation for the Day

I will link up my frail nature with the limitless Divine Power. I will link my life with the Divine Force for Good in the world. It is not the passionate appeal that gains the Divine attention as much as the quiet placing of the difficulty and worry in the Divine Hands. So I will trust God like a child who places its tangled skein of wool in the hands of a loving mother to unravel. We please God more by our unquestioning confidence than by imploring Him for help.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may put all my difficulties in God’s hands and leave them there. I pray that I may fully trust God to take care of them.

The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Being Right

Recovery is not about being right; it’s about allowing ourselves to be who we are and accepting others as they are.

That concept can be difficult for many of us if we have lived in systems that functioned on the “right/wrong” justice scale. The person who was right was okay; the person who was wrong was shamed. All value and worth may have depended on being right; to be wrong meant annihilation of self and self-esteem.

In recovery, we are learning how to strive for love in our relationships, not superiority. Yes, we may need to make decisions about people’s behavior from time to time. If someone is hurting us, we need to stand up for ourselves. We have a responsibility to set boundaries and take care of ourselves. But we do not need to justify taking care of ourselves by condemning someone else. We can avoid the trap of focusing on others instead of ourselves.

In recovery, we are learning that what we do needs to be right only for us. What others do is their business and needs to be right only for them. It’s tempting to rest in the superiority of being right and in analyzing other people’s motives and actions, but it’s more rewarding to look deeper.

Today, I will remember that I don’t have to hide behind being right. I don’t have to justify what I want and need with saying something is “right” or “wrong.” I can let myself be who I am.

Touchstone

Love can be its own reward.

—Arnold Label

The feeling of attachment, of being related, of caring about someone, is what life is all about. Before recovery, we may have feared we could not love anyone. When we feel love, we may also feel cheated because our affections aren’t returned, as we want them to be. Or we may think relationships are just too complicated and painful. It’s true that relationships are difficult at times. The only thing more difficult is having none.

In this quiet moment, let’s reflect on our relationships. Close attachments to both men and women are essential to our progress. Without them, we would not be in recovery. We don’t need to say to our friends, “What have you done for me?” We can feel an inner fullness and satisfaction, knowing we have relationships we truly care about and we are accepted as we are. That alone is a remarkable reward.

I appreciate the joys my relationships bring.

Elder’s Meditation

“Laughter is a necessity in life that does not cost much, and the Old Ones say that one of the greatest healing powers in our life is the ability to laugh.”

–Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

Laughter is a good stress eliminator. Laughter causes healing powers to be distributed through our bodies. Laughter helps heal relationships that are having problems. Laughter can change other people. aughter can heal the sick. Laughter is spiritual. One of the greatest gifts among Indian people has been our ability to laugh. Humor is natural to Indian people. Sometimes the only thing left to do is laugh.

Great Spirit, allow me to laugh when times get tough.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Gossip is circulating, but your participation is a choice. Sometimes it’s impossible to avoid being in the presence of intriguing tales about the people you know. However, even if you didn’t mean to learn anything, it’s your responsibility to make sure that this information doesn’t spread from you once you’ve heard it. It’s also possible you could witness an embarrassing moment for someone else, but don’t jump to conclusions or immediately tell your friends — you wouldn’t want the same done to you.

DR – February 17, 2021

Daily Recovery Readings
February 17, 2021

Daily Reflection

THE LOVE IN THEIR EYES

Some of us won’t believe in God, others can’t, and still others who do believe that God exists have no faith whatever He will perform this miracle.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 25

It was the changes I saw in the new people who came into the Fellowship that helped me lose my fear, and change my negative attitude to a positive one. I could see the love in their eyes and I was impressed by how much their “One Day at a Time” sobriety meant to them. They had looked squarely at Step Two and came to believe that a power greater than themselves was restoring them to sanity. That gave me faith in the Fellowship, and hope that it could work for me too. I found that God was a loving God, not that punishing God I feared before coming to A.A. I also found that He had been with me during all those times I had been in trouble before I came to A.A. I know today that He was the one who led me to A.A. and that I am a miracle.

Big Book Quote

“My friend suggested what then seemed a novel idea. He said, ‘Why don’t you choose your own conception of God?’

That statement hit me hard. It melted the icy intellectual mountain in whose shadow I had lived and shivered many years. I stood in the sunlight at last.

It was only a matter of being willing to believe in a Power greater than myself. Nothing more was required of me to make my beginning.
I saw that growth could start from that point.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Bill’s Story, pg. 12~

24 Hours a Day – The Little Black Book

Thought for the Day

Alcohol is poison to the alcoholic. Poison is not too strong a word, because alcoholism leads eventually to the death of the alcoholic. It may be a quick death or a slow death. When we go by package stores and see various kinds of liquor all dressed up in fancy packages to make it look attractive, we should always make it a point to say to ourselves so we’ll never forget it: “That stuff’s all poison to me.” And it is. Alcohol poisoned our lives for a long time. Do I know that since I’m an alcoholic all liquor is poison to me?

Meditation for the Day

I must somehow find the means of coming nearer to God. That is what really matters. I must somehow seek the true bread of life, which is communion with Him. I must grasp for the truth at the center of all worship. This central truth is all that matters. All forms of worship have this communion with God as their purpose and goal.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may meet God in quiet communion. I pray that I may partake of the soul food that God has provided for me.

The Language of Letting Go – Codependency

Acceptance

Our basic recovery concept that never loses its power to work miracles is the concept called acceptance.

We do not achieve acceptance in a moment. We often have to work through a mirage of feelings – sometimes anger, outrage, shame, self-pity, or sadness. But if acceptance is our goal, we will achieve it.

What is more freeing than to laugh at our weaknesses and to be grateful for our strengths? To know the entire package called “us” – with all our feelings, thoughts, tendencies, and history – is worthy of acceptance and brings healing feelings.

To accept our circumstances is another miraculous cure. For anything to change or anyone to change, we must first accept others, the circumstance, and ourselves exactly as they are. Then, we need to take it one step further. We need to become grateful for our circumstances or ourselves. We add a touch of faith by saying, “I know this is exactly the way it’s supposed to be for the moment.”

No matter how complicated we get, the basics never lose their power to restore us to sanity.

Today, God, help me practice the concept of acceptance in my life. Help me accept others, my circumstances, and myself. Take me one step further, and help me feel grateful.

Touchstone

It takes more courage to reveal insecurities than to hide them, more strength to relate to people than to dominate them, more “manhood” to abide by thought out principles rather than blind reflex. Toughness is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles and an immature mind.

—Alex Karras

In our culture, being a man often means being tough, having sexual prowess, and not showing feelings. We realize in this life of recovery that those are silly and immature myths, even though we see them repeatedly on TV, on billboards, and in newspapers.

When we are told these things repeatedly, it makes an impact on us. So we need to hear from each other that this is not the way we wish to live. We don’t admire these attitudes, and we don’t believe the stories. Truly courageous men know themselves. They have been around enough to have depth to their souls, to let themselves love, and to feel the pain of life.

Today, I am grateful to know and share my feelings and to have genuine relationships with those I love.

Elder’s Meditation

“Silence and self-control permeate the entirety of our lives.”

–Larry P. Aitken, CHIPPEWA

The Creator gave us all the Red Road and on this Red Road we are required to think and act in a spiritual way. To make sure I conduct myself according to the Red Road, I must make sure I develop my self discipline. Self control works best when we pray for the courage and power to do the will of the Great Spirit. We are here on the earth to do the will of the Great Spirit. Sometimes, we must battle ourselves to do this.

Great Spirit, help me to have my self- control guided by spiritual ways.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

The people around you are suddenly emotionally reacting to each other and you’re caught in the midst of it. It may feel like old power dynamics are battling with new ones. While it’s a meaningful gesture to try to play the role of mediator, the intense energy will likely block any attempts at peace on your part. You might rather hold down the fort and avoid incoming stress by laying low and trying to pick up the pieces another day.