CRA Christians in Recovery (anonymous)

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Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
December 08, 2019 . . . Calling a defect a defect . . Page 358

"When we see how our defects exist in our lives and accept them,
we can let go of them and get on with our new life."
. . Basic Text, p. 35

Sometimes our readiness to have our character defects removed depends on what we call them. If misnaming our defects makes them seem less "defective" we may be unable to see the damage they cause. And if they seem to be causing no harm, why would we ever ask our Higher Power to remove them from our lives?

Take "people pleasing," for example. Doesn't really sound all that bad, does it? It just means we're nice to people, right? Not quite. To put it bluntly, it means we're dishonest and manipulative. We lie about our feelings, our beliefs, and our needs, trying to soothe others into compliance with our wishes.

Or perhaps we think we're "easygoing" But does "easygoing" mean we ignore our housework, avoid confrontations, and stay put in a comfortable rut? Then a better name for it would be "laziness," or "procrastination," or "fear."

Many of us have trouble identifying our character defects. If this is the case for us, we can talk with our sponsor or our NA friends. We clearly and honestly describe our behavior to them and ask for their help in identifying our defects. As time passes, we'll become progressively better able to identify our own character defects, calling them by their true names.

Just for Today: I will call my defects by their true names.
If I have trouble doing this, I will ask my sponsor for help.
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,164
4,826
113
65
lawton ok
MONDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2019 - REASONABLY HAPPY IN THIS LIFE
Audio for REASONABLY HAPPY IN THIS LIFE
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. (James 1:2-4 NKJV)
Life in recovery can be challenging at times. We have joy in the fact that we are no longer in the pit of our addiction, but we are on an unfamiliar path and need to learn new ways to cope with what is going on inside us. We have been the “experts” in surviving in our dysfunctional lifestyle, but now we are the “newbies” in coping with life in recovery. Thankfully, God has promised to be with us throughout the transition process.

Preserve me, O God, for in You I put my trust. You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (Psalm 16:1; 11 NKJV)

God called us out of darkness and invited us to walk in the light of His presence. Like any child learning to walk we may stumble as we take steps on this new but unknown path. God has promised to take us by the hand and guide us. He will never let go. Like a good Father God rejoices with us when we keep going and, when we stumble and fall, He encourages us to get up and keep going.
How happy are the people who know the sound of joy! They walk in the light of Your face, O Lord. They are full of joy in Your name all day long. And by being right with You, they are honored. (Psalm 89:15-16 NLV)

In addiction we were in utter despair. In our new life in recovery, we experience increasing joy as we persist through the trials we encounter. God is always calling us to fullness of joy in Him – reasonable happiness in this life and supreme happiness with God forever in the next.

Prayer: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Living one day at a time; enjoying one moment at a time; accepting hardship as the pathway to peace. Taking as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it, trusting that you will make all things right if I surrender to Your will so that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with you forever in the next. Amen
©2019 Partners in Hope
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
December 09, 2019 . . . Listening . . Page 359

"This ability to listen is a gift and grows as we grow spiritually
life takes on a new meaning when we open ourselves to this gift."

Basic Text, p. 107

Have you ever watched two small children carry on a conversation? One will be talking about purple dragons while the other carries on about the discomfort caused by having sand in one's shoes. We sometimes encounter the same communication problems as we learn to listen to others. We may struggle through meetings, trying desperately to hear the person sharing while our minds are busy planning what we will say when it's our turn to speak. In conversation, we may suddenly realize that our answers have nothing to do with the questions we're being asked. They are, instead, speeches prepared while in the grip of our self-obsession.

Learning how to listen - really listen - is a difficult task, but one that's not beyond our reach. We might begin by acknowledging in our replies what our conversational partner is saying. We might ask if there is anything we can do to help when someone expresses a problem. With a little practice, we can find greater freedom from self-obsession and closer contact with the people in our lives.

Just for Today: I will quiet my own thoughts and listen to what someone else is saying.
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,164
4,826
113
65
lawton ok
Spiritual distress in recovery
1 Peter 1:3-7, 3) Praise be to the God and Father of our LORD Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4) and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, 5)who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6) In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may
have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.

7) These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith-of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire-may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Prayer:
God grant me courage in my spiritual distress. Use my struggles to bring about a healing to my relationship with you.


Recovery is a spiritual journey. Unfortunately, we are sometimes poorly prepared for the twists and turns this journey will take. We are caught by surprise when we experience spiritual distress as part of the recovery process.

The struggle to face past pain~ or to address addiction and Codependency~ leads to an honest examination of all life. We ask difficult and searching questions about God and about our faith. The spiritual distress that comes from this struggle can be confusing and frightening.

But spiritual distress is not an indication of spiritual failure. It is more likely a sign that God is growing in us a new capacity for a relationship with him. Times of distress are often the first step toward spiritual healing and growth. They are often times when we realized acutely our desire to know and to be known by God. When we protest God's absence, we are expressing our deep longing for closeness with God. When God seems silent, we learn how much we need to hear his voice. When God seems distant, we realize afresh our strong desire to experience his presence. Spiritual distress may actually serve to prepare our heart to hear and receive from God.

During recovery we uncovered some major struggles in our relationship with God~ anger, pain, doubt, longings. If we hide ourselves from these thoughts and feelings when they surface, we may be running away from some of the most important healing that we can experience.

~~Dale and Juanita Ryan​
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,164
4,826
113
65
lawton ok
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 10, 2019 - SERVICE WORK
Audio for SERVICE WORK
From the time of creation, it has been God's plan that humans provide support and care for one another. In recovery circles we call this service work. The freedom from pain and active addiction we have in this day of sobriety and the support that we’ve received from God and others is now the gift we can offer to others as they begin their journey with God in recovery.


My brothers and sisters, God chose you to be free. But don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do what pleases your sinful selves. Instead, serve each other with love. (Galatians 5:13 ERV)



What does it mean to be of service in recovery? It means that we make ourselves available to help someone. It can be as simple as smiling and offering a welcoming hand as someone enters a meeting or picking up our phones and texting someone to let them know we are thinking about them. It can mean answering a call from someone who is going through a trying time and taking time to really listen to what they are concerned about. It can be making a pot of coffee, stacking a chair, running an errand, doing an hour of child-care – the list is endless.


Sometimes the biggest obstacle to our serving is the lack of recognition we get for doing something. It's hard to continue doing something that is tedious or may not be convenient if no one seems to notice or appreciate what we are doing. We can be encouraged by the fact that whatever we do to help someone or serve a community is noticed by God and He will honour us.

Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me. God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. (John 12:26, Hebrews 6:10 NIV)

Prayer: Heavenly Father, in gratitude for all You have done for me I want to reach out and serve You and those You love. Help me to take the opportunity to serve You today. Amen

©2019 Partners in Hope
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
Thank you, Bob :) I do not really know the last time I drank or used drugs... I do know the last time I used was in November of 2010 (I have evidence attesting to that fact on my camera card), and it has been much longer since I had a drink... the important thing is that one day at a time over the last nine years I have not picked up either. We are told that our sobriety is a daily reprieve contingent upon the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Nine years seemed a bit more important to me because my first time through, I relapsed after eight years... I heard a speaker at a convention say that relapse around that time is often due to the fact of not having surrendered to God, and wow, yeah, I was not a Christian at that time, I was seeking but lost.

My pastor's wife, who presented my cake to me at the meeting, said to me after the meeting that what struck her the most with my story was how patient God was with me, for He revealed Himself to me in a number of ways over a period of time that eventually made it virtually impossible for me to deny any more that the Truth I was seeking was embodied in the Person and Love of Jesus Christ. It took a lot for me to lay down my opposition to Him, but yes, He was patient with me, and long suffering, just as Scripture says :)

 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
Thank you for sharing your wonderful testimony. :love:
You are welcome, Bob. I hope it was not confusing for me to say, "I do not really know the last time I drank or used drugs" and then give a date of November of 2010 :oops::giggle: What I meant to say was, I do not know the exact date :)
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
December 11, 2019 . . . Misery is optional . . Page 361

"No one is forcing us to give up our misery." . . Basic Text, p. 29

It's funny to remember how reluctant we once were to surrender to recovery. We seemed to think we had wonderful, fulfilling lives as using addicts and that giving up our drugs would be worse than serving a life sentence at hard labor. In reality, the opposite was true: Our lives were miserable, but we were afraid to trade that familiar misery for the uncertainties of recovery.

It's possible to be miserable in recovery, too, though it's not necessary. No one will force us to work the steps, go to meetings, or work with a sponsor. There is no NA militia that will force us to do the things that will free us from pain. But we do have a choice. We've already chosen to give up the misery of active addiction for the sanity of recovery. Now, if we're ready to exchange today's misery for even greater peace, we have a means to do just that-if we really want to.

Just for Today: I don't have to be miserable unless I really want to be.
Today, I will trade in my misery for the benefits of recovery.
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,164
4,826
113
65
lawton ok
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 11, 2019 - KNOW-IT-ALL
Audio for KNOW-IT-ALL
Most of us have a face come to mind when we are asked to think of someone who is a "know-it-all." Know-it-alls are some of the most annoying people to be around because they often have a lot to say and try to push their ideas until folks agree with what they are saying.

What if our face is the one that comes to mind for others when they are identifying a "know-it-all?" Could that be possible? In what ways?

People knew God, but they did not honor him as God, and they did not thank him. Their ideas were all useless. There was not one good thought left in their foolish minds. They said they were wise, but they became fools. People wanted only to do evil. So God left them and let them go their sinful way. And so they became completely immoral. (Romans 1:21-22, 24 ERV)

Every word or action done in self-will is an expression before an all-knowing God that we know better than He does. What must our words and actions sound like in God's ears? All of us would have to plead guilty if God is picking out those who have lived as a "know-it-all."

Too bad we don't leave behind our "know-it-all" ways and attitudes when we come into recovery. Recovery is a journey where we become willing to humble ourselves and admit that we can't do life on our own, and in fact, have all sorts of character defects that only God can remove. In what way do we need to humble ourselves today, let one more "know-it-all" idea go, and just surrender ourselves to God's forgiveness and healing?

I pray that God will open your minds to see his truth. Then you will know the hope that he has chosen us to have. You will know that the blessings God has promised his holy people are rich and glorious. (Ephesians 1:18 ERV)


Prayer: Heavenly Father, Forgive me for the many times I’ve acted as though I know better than You do. Give me the grace to walk with You in humility and learn a better way of life. Thank You for being willing to teach me. Amen
©2019 Partners in Hope
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,164
4,826
113
65
lawton ok
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2019 - STOP PROCRASTINATION IN ITS TRACKS -TAKE ONE STEP
Audio for STOP PROCRASTINATION IN ITS TRACKS -TAKE ONE STEP
It is one thing to talk about rebuilding our lives; it is quite another to do so. God is interested in our steps to change and will support them. By taking things one day at a time, one step at a time, even tasks that seem overwhelming become possible. The first step is always the most difficult, the next step almost as hard, to keep going almost impossible. However, if we focus on the task before us and do the next right thing, we can trust God to empower us each step of the journey.

The Lord shows us how we should live, and he is pleased when he sees people living that way. (Psalm 37:23 ERV)

Often our struggle is not deciding whether we should do something but in doing it now. We may have acknowledged our need to follow God and commit ourselves to do what He has said, yet hesitate to act when God reveals His will to us, not realizing that now is the time to obey. Sometimes we get caught up in the "paralysis of analysis" as we think about all the possibilities – both positive and negative – that surround our situation. We connect to the pain and disappointment of difficulties in the past. We worry about troubles in the future. We wonder how the whole situation can work out from where we are now to where we need to get to. We get caught up in seeking solutions to our problems with only our limited human knowledge.

If you plant goodness, you will harvest faithful love. Plow your ground, and you will harvest with the Lord. He will come, and he will make goodness fall on you like rain. (Hosea 10:12 ERV)

Effective rebuilding of our lives involves action. It involves following through on what we have been told will work and taking steps based on the advice of responsible and trusted advisors, even when we are not even sure of the outcome. Our life and will must be turned over to God. He knows possibilities we don't. He has solutions and connections that we cannot now see. He will guide us to the right people and the right places at the right time. It’s time to make a move today!

We must not get tired of doing good. We will receive our harvest of eternal life at the right time. We must not give up. (Galatians 6:9 ERV)

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to take the next step I need to take with You today. I want to keep things simple and just do the next right thing that You show me. Amen

©2019 Partners in Hope
 

Bingo

Well-known member
Feb 9, 2019
2,201
1,663
113
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 12, 2019 - STOP PROCRASTINATION IN ITS TRACKS -TAKE ONE STEP
Audio for STOP PROCRASTINATION IN ITS TRACKS -TAKE ONE STEP
It is one thing to talk about rebuilding our lives; it is quite another to do so. God is interested in our steps to change and will support them. By taking things one day at a time, one step at a time, even tasks that seem overwhelming become possible. The first step is always the most difficult, the next step almost as hard, to keep going almost impossible. However, if we focus on the task before us and do the next right thing, we can trust God to empower us each step of the journey.

The Lord shows us how we should live, and he is pleased when he sees people living that way. (Psalm 37:23 ERV)

Often our struggle is not deciding whether we should do something but in doing it now. We may have acknowledged our need to follow God and commit ourselves to do what He has said, yet hesitate to act when God reveals His will to us, not realizing that now is the time to obey. Sometimes we get caught up in the "paralysis of analysis" as we think about all the possibilities – both positive and negative – that surround our situation. We connect to the pain and disappointment of difficulties in the past. We worry about troubles in the future. We wonder how the whole situation can work out from where we are now to where we need to get to. We get caught up in seeking solutions to our problems with only our limited human knowledge.

If you plant goodness, you will harvest faithful love. Plow your ground, and you will harvest with the Lord. He will come, and he will make goodness fall on you like rain. (Hosea 10:12 ERV)

Effective rebuilding of our lives involves action. It involves following through on what we have been told will work and taking steps based on the advice of responsible and trusted advisors, even when we are not even sure of the outcome. Our life and will must be turned over to God. He knows possibilities we don't. He has solutions and connections that we cannot now see. He will guide us to the right people and the right places at the right time. It’s time to make a move today!

We must not get tired of doing good. We will receive our harvest of eternal life at the right time. We must not give up. (Galatians 6:9 ERV)


Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to take the next step I need to take with You today. I want to keep things simple and just do the next right thing that You show me. Amen

©2019 Partners in Hope
"Amen"..............:)
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
December 12, 2019 . . . Fear Of Change . . Page 362

"By working the steps, we come to accept a Higher Power's will....
We lose our fear of the unknown. We are set free."
. . Basic Text, p. 16

Life is a series of changes, both large and small. Although we may know and accept this fact intellectually, chances are that our initial emotional reaction to change is fear. For some reason, we assume that each and every change is going to hurt, causing us to be miserable.

If we look back on the changes that have happened in our lives, we'll find that most of them have been for the best. We were probably very frightened at the prospect of life without drugs, yet it's the best thing that's ever happened to us. Perhaps we've lost a job that we thought we'd die without, but later on we found greater challenge and personal fulfillment in a new career. As we venture forth in our recovery, we're likely to experience more changes. We will outgrow old situations and become ready for new ones.

With all sorts of changes taking place, it's only natural to grab hold of something, anything familiar and try to hold on. Solace can be found in a Power greater than ourselves. The more we allow changes to happen at the direction of our Higher Power, the more we'll trust that those changes are for the best. Faith will replace fear, and we'll know in our hearts that all will be well.

Just for Today: When I am afraid of a change in my life,
I will take comfort from knowing that God's will for me is good.
 

Bingo

Well-known member
Feb 9, 2019
2,201
1,663
113
December 12, 2019 . . . Fear Of Change . . Page 362

"By working the steps, we come to accept a Higher Power's will....
We lose our fear of the unknown. We are set free."
. . Basic Text, p. 16

Life is a series of changes, both large and small. Although we may know and accept this fact intellectually, chances are that our initial emotional reaction to change is fear. For some reason, we assume that each and every change is going to hurt, causing us to be miserable.

If we look back on the changes that have happened in our lives, we'll find that most of them have been for the best. We were probably very frightened at the prospect of life without drugs, yet it's the best thing that's ever happened to us. Perhaps we've lost a job that we thought we'd die without, but later on we found greater challenge and personal fulfillment in a new career. As we venture forth in our recovery, we're likely to experience more changes. We will outgrow old situations and become ready for new ones.

With all sorts of changes taking place, it's only natural to grab hold of something, anything familiar and try to hold on. Solace can be found in a Power greater than ourselves. The more we allow changes to happen at the direction of our Higher Power, the more we'll trust that those changes are for the best. Faith will replace fear, and we'll know in our hearts that all will be well.

Just for Today: When I am afraid of a change in my life,
I will take comfort from knowing that God's will for me is good.
"Amen".........:)
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
I will be taking a nine year cake at my home group in NA tonight :D
I was super anxious last week at this time about taking my cake in AA.
I am not experiencing any anxiety about this one :D Yay! :)
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
28,390
6,875
113
December 13, 2019 . . . Membership . . Page 363

"There is only one requirement for membership, the desire to stop using."

Basic Text, p. 9

We all know people who could benefit from Narcotics Anonymous. Many people we encounter from all walks of life-our family members, old friends, and co-workers-could really use a program of recovery in their lives. Sadly, those who need us don't always find their way to our rooms.

NA is a program of attraction, not promotion. We are only members when we say we are. We can bring our friends and loved ones to a meeting if they are willing, but we cannot force them to embrace the way of life that has given us freedom from active addiction.

Membership in Narcotics Anonymous is a highly personal decision. The choice to become a member is made in the heart of each individual addict. In the long run, coerced meeting attendance doesn't keep too many addicts in our rooms. Only addicts who are still suffering, if given the opportunity, can decide if they are powerless over their addiction. We can carry the message, but we can't carry the addict.

Just for Today: I am grateful for my decision to become a member of Narcotics Anonymous.
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,164
4,826
113
65
lawton ok
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2019 - WISDOM VERSUS POWER
Audio for WISDOM VERSUS POWER
Some of us who have lived a long time in addiction often feel like there’s not much to live for, and that opportunities to do well have passed us by. Today we are encouraged to recognize how much influence we can have and how much good we can do even though we may not have a lot of money or prestige.

Once I saw what people really think of wisdom. It happened when a powerful ruler surrounded and attacked a small city where only a few people lived. The enemy army was getting ready to break through the city walls. But the city was saved by the wisdom of a poor person who was soon forgotten. So, I decided that wisdom is better than strength. Yet if you are poor, no one pays any attention to you, no matter how smart you are. Words of wisdom spoken softly make much more sense than the shouts of a ruler to a crowd of fools. (Ecclesiastes 9:13-17 CEV)

As long as God gives us life and breath, He has something good that He wants to accomplish through us. When we are faithful to use the opportunities and talents we have been given to help support ourselves and others, God’s great plan is carried forward.
We don’t have to push and shove to get ahead. In fact, words spoken softly make much more sense than shouts and threats. While it may seem that no one is paying attention, our responsibility is to simply offer the truth that God gives us and leave the outcome with Him. Each of us will have to give account for the opportunities God gives us.

Each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (Romans 14:12, 2 Peter 3:18 NIV)



In the first Bible quote above, the people in the community may have forgotten the poor man’s contribution when things settled down, but God didn’t and here we are thousands of years later receiving encouragement from the record of what he did. We don’t know the long-term influence of our obedience to God’s plans and purposes, but everything done for God will last.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank you for all you have taught me in both good and difficult circumstances. Help me to learn from Your principles for life and grow wise, so I can offer wisdom to others. Amen

©2019 Partners in Hope