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Fraser Trevor Fraser Trevor Author
Title: We say things we think will make the program look good instead of being honest about our recent mistakes and how God carried us through.
Author: Fraser Trevor
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This is an animated GIF of a 10x10 Nurikabe puzzle that I created with a Java program, and my solution for it. 170x170, 89 frames, 0.5 s ...
This is an animated GIF of a 10x10 Nurikabe pu...
This is an animated GIF of a 10x10 Nurikabe puzzle that I created with a Java program, and my solution for it. 170x170, 89 frames, 0.5 s delay between most frames, with 3s delays on both the initial and final states, and a quick fadeout from final back to initial. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I’m reminded of my Grandma’s friend who always had to have a perfectly clean car or else she wouldn’t be “a good testimony to the pagans.”
Religious people have been making this mistake for thousands of years. They try to look holy instead of being honest and letting God help them out.
We make the same mistake when we think we’re supposed to look like the solution instead of living the solution. We say things we think will make the program look good instead of being honest about our recent mistakes and how God carried us through.
That’s what newcomers need. They don’t need a bunch of old timers that got one thing right a long time ago. They need people who are willing to demonstrate how this program can be applied to real problems in their lives.
If all we ever share about is how God got us sober all those years ago, people who pull six months together will think that’s all the program is good for—God gets you dry, and then you’re on your own.
In order to keep the program alive, we have to share what God is doing for us today.
And in order to be honest about your current relationship with God, you have to have a current relationship with God.
If that relationship isn’t expanding into new areas in my life, if I’m not turning over new resentments and fears and making new amends, if I’m not reaching out in new ways to make conscious contact, then I don’t have anything fresh to share about, and so I fall back on the same stories about what God did for me once upon a time.
Those are good stories. Important stories. Maybe even my most important stories. But they are not current. If I rely on them too long, they lose their vitality completely.
After my conversation with the woman who relapsed, I was reminded of a guy from my home group who practiced this better than I think I’ve ever seen since. When he chaired a meeting, he’d read a bit of the book, and he’d read it nice and slow. You could see it working on him when he read, like he was taking in each word and letting it speak to him. Suddenly, something would hit him, and he’d chuckle: “Uh oh. It got me again,” he’d say. Then he’d share about how what we’d just read applied to something in his recent experience.
He’d tell us about his family life, his resentments, his frustrations at work, his temptations and his pains, never losing sight of God’s role in the story. He would tell us how he got into a fit of self-will and self-pity, and how God lovingly pulled him out of it again. “I can’t go anywhere alone,” he once told me, referring to his relationship with God, “I need a chaperone.”
He was actively developing his relationship with God and consistently saw his current struggles in the book. When he opened his life to the book, God would show him something he needed to share.
Honesty like that runs deep. It carries a message with the necessary “depth and weight.”
So many of us get stuck on the surface. On alcohol.
Then we get together in meetings where we share a solution to alcohol, but not a solution to life. And people start feeling that maybe they’d better not talk about that problem their having, or the fact that they want to drink.
Last night, we read over the beginning of “More About Alcoholism,” and I had to laugh out loud. The book got me.
The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker….
Here’s how my “current” version read: The idea that somehow, someday, he will control his wife is the great obsession of every spiritually sick husband. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing…
See, I copped a pretty big resentment against my wife yesterday. And the persistence of the illusion that I was right was truly astonishing. It’s hard for me to believe that anyone, could be as deluded and as bull-headed as I was yesterday.
What a jerk.
Thank God for prayer and inventory…
Guess I’d better tell that story soon. Just to stay current.
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