The Holiness of the Beginning, Middle, and End Game of Recovery.
All can equally practice honesty and listening in recovery, whether we are new or old. Newcomers are the Lifeblood of The Program, Old Timers are the Skeleton, and HP is the Spirit. WE: God, You & Me. WE are a Fellowship of Equals. Alcohol doesn’t discriminate, and neither do WE.
Be drawn to listen.
WE. What a powerful word! We’ve all been down some dangerous roads and miraculously survived some tough times.
Most of us would, without recovery, be in a nuthouse, prison, or buried six feet under ChemLawn chemicals. Surviving drinking was, unbeknownst to me at the time, like ‘walking on water.’ I didn’t know I was witnessing spiritual experiences until I had a Spiritual Awakening and ‘looked back’ with new eyes of sobriety.
Do you remember the days when you didn’t think you could keep going and nights when you couldn’t stop crying? I do. I cried quietly so that no one could hear me. I didn’t know back then that ‘tears are holy water.’
It’s a WE PROGRAM. You are never alone. Replace the following “I Statements” with “WE Statements.”
Looking back, I realize that everything that happened, no exceptions, made me into the person I am now. I don’t regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. Although we admitted we were only as sick as our secrets, the great news was/is that ‘in The Rooms, we don’t shoot our wounded.’ WE love each other back to health!
I’m not saying it was easy, or I would ever want to go back and live it all over again (like resentments burning holes in my mind and heart), so I choose to cherish those memories. I can then celebrate the strong and amazing person I’ve become. If I can celebrate it in myself, I can celebrate it in you, too. We ‘Pass It On’ as Sponsors, as Motivational Healers that attract rather than promote recovery.
It took a long time and a lot of struggling to Let Go & Let God, and this meant getting out of my own way (Steps 4-10). Remember the joke, “everything I let go of had claw marks all over it? But eventually, I found ‘my’ way and discovered ‘my’ strength in Step 11.
Ironically, I had never really loved the person I was until I became the person I am. A wise woman in Al-Anon told me that The Program solely serves to help us discover who we are and then to be that and only that: who we are. Be who you are; everyone else is taken.
And that made all the difference.
Appreciating who I am, loving myself, and understanding the path that I’m on is something that I had to learn through time and experience. No one understands a Step until they take the next Step. I didn’t know I could survive Step 5, but Step 6 proved I could.
Forging the most robust steel requires a willingness to go to any lengths. Most of the harrowing life experiences that I’ve ever ‘known’ turned out to be all in my head (a ‘thinking problem’); my heart was wounded and bleeding everywhere. I had to, as Oprah said, “Make (my) wounds (my) wisdom.”
We beg you to plunge yourself ‘fearlessly’ (or at least FACE YOUR FEARS) in the hottest fires. These fires burn away everything you ARE NOT, leaving behind everything you ARE. “Ignis aurum probat, miseria fortes homines” Put another way, as a fiery furnace tempers gold, adversity tempers us, too. My desire to stay sober was stronger than my fear of revealing my sins and shortcomings. I figured if I drank because of my fear of going to ‘any lengths’, I would drink AND do again the things I was afraid to admit.
And that’s what my life had been- the flames of so-called failure followed by the learning the lessons and spiritually evolving, progressing. Acceptance brings freedom from bondage (problems). We seek spiritual progress, not spiritual perfection, ODAAT.
Difficulties made me who I am, and I’d never change a thing about the harsh road I’ve been privileged to travel. What didn’t kill me made me stronger.
Thanks to the profound alteration in my reaction to life, I no longer have days where everything goes wrong—life on life’s terms. Sure, there are times when I can’t seem to get it right, but that’s okay. That’s just part of life-
‘We don’t see life the way it is,’ the Talmud reads. ‘we see life the way we are.’ Put your God Glasses on, and you’ll have that profound alteration, too. I can choose to focus on what’s wrong or appreciate what’s right about my life. We have to let others love us as they are.
‘Happiness is a Choice’ is one of our Slogans. And I choose happiness every time. Learn the Slogans (Ugh, I used to hate most of them…lol!). Become Shoguns of the Slogans.
We’ve gone down a hard road with many twists and turns, but everything we endured prepared us to become who we are today.
I wouldn’t change a thing about where I’ve been or what I’ve done. The things I did wrong were wrong, and that’s a harsh reality, but what I DO with it is what recovery offers. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we see it can benefit others. Our lives may have been or may still be an elegant mess, and maybe we’re still the holders of beautifully broken hearts, but all those cracks in our souls are but ‘Calls to Love.’ Grief is Praise of Love. PASS IT ON! Love every one of the breaks or cracks because that will always be how the light gets out.
RBA Board of Trustees Minutes
Monday April 11, 2022
Meeting Opened at 7:04pm
Opened with the Serenity Prayer and AA Traditions One and Two. Our mission is to manage the property, finances and 501C3 for the RBA.
1. Members Present:
Joe R., Bill M., Cherisse K., Jeff S., Roger B., Norton L., Rik L., Kate M., Trunette
Jerry Z., Maintenance
2. Building & Maintenance Report (Jerry Z.):
Jerry provided maintenance updates. One urinal in the men’s restroom continues to clog periodically. Jerry plans to clear this blockage in coming days but will also work towards a more permanent fix in the future. Jerry cleaned the parking lot and filled numerous cracks in the asphalt. He plans to finish scaping and painting the deck area in coming weeks. Jerry fixed the doors and drawers in the kitchen, so they now shut properly. He plans to contact Berry Coffee regarding one of the warmers on the machine that is not functioning properly. Jerry also intends to paint the entry way and doors during April.
3. Financial Report:
The financials from March were approved. There were few extraordinary expenses, yet we experienced another month of negative cash flow. The board decided against a credit card for library purchases being as our vendors are willing to invoice us for purchases, and the invoices can be paid by check.
4. Old Business:
The minutes from the March board meeting were approved. Redesigned signs were posted regarding RBA’s pet policy as discussed during the March meeting. Other recurring business items will be discussed in the new business section.
5. New Business:
A few miscellaneous items were resolved during the month of March. The President, Treasurer, and Bookkeeper agreed on a scope of services for the bookkeeper position. Theses services were outlined in a letter that details the requirements of the job along with the tasks that are specifically excluded from the position. Additionally, the club received the property tax bill for 2022, which shows a $0.00 balance due as expected. An application was submitted for property tax exemption in December of 2021, but no response was received indicating this application was processed. The board will continue to follow up with the taxing authority, but our exception remains in effect for 2022.
The Gopher State Roundup was discussed. Kate M. has been coordinating planning activities and has enlisted help from members. She has ideas for food to serve at the event and has posted signup sheets for people to help with this and other tasks. A budget was agreed upon.
Roger provided updates on the Annual Banquet. The venue has been reserved and a check has been provided for deposit and fees. Tickets have been distributed, and Roger is asking for unsold tickets to be returned in the next board meeting so they can be redistributed before the event. The caterers, who have been pleasant to work with, have agreed to a preliminary count. Roger and Bill M. are arranging for a main speaker and a few honorees to speak during the event. Cherisse has agreed to lead the countdown. Kate, Dana Jo, Cherisse, and Trunette plan to arrive at the venue early to help with decoration and setup. Squad 5A has a few extra tickets for those who wish to attend but cannot afford this due to hardship.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:44pm following The Lord’s Prayer.
The Annual Banquet will be held on Saturday, May 21rst at the Creekside Community Center. See your board rep for banquet and raffle tickets. Signs have been posted around the club presenting the raffle prizes.
RBA has reserved hospitality suite 216 for the Gopher State Roundup taking place on Memorial Day weekend, May 27-29. Stop by and say hi, or sign up to help with the event at the club.