Happy New Year!
Since January 2021, this writer has been producing material for your reading pleasure. To kick off 2023 and wrap up 2022, let’s talk about both serious and comedic ‘history’ (even if we have to laugh to keep from crying) and celebrate the prospects of the daily reprieve contingent upon the maintenance of a spiritual condition.
A#1: Never forget where you came from.
But don’t beat yourself up over it.
There’s a Silver Lining in every difficulty, or so The Promises tell us.
“If we are painstaking about this phase of our development we will be amazed before we are halfway through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook on life will change, fear of people and economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves. Are these unrealistic promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will materialize if we work for them.”
Each and every one of us is just an arm’s length away from the next drink. Remembering where we came from makes me want to talk a little bit about Steps 1 and 10.
Generally, we think of Step 10 as the admission of being “wrong”. Have you ever been wrong about something when at first you thought you were 100% right? But wasn’t Step 1 also a huge admission about being a ‘wrong’? Probably most of us thought there was no way we were the dreaded “A-Word”. Admitting we were powerless over alcohol was a spiritual experience that led to a spiritual awareness/motivation to the working of the remaining steps. But each step we have worked has been infused with the power of God or whatever you call your Higher Power. That something greater than ourselves restored us to sanity in this is true each and every day of our sobriety, God willing and we continue to work the steps.
No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we can take what happened in our lives and give it UNSURPASSABLE MEANING BY ‘PASSING IT ON’. Our ‘Powerlessness’ became our power.
Everyone's traumatized during their life at some time or other, but some people act that trauma out on others.
In all of my years free or in the monastery (prison...lol…yes, I was in prison before sobering up), I've never understood how a fellow human being could look into the eyes of a depressed or traumatized human being, and not have their heart break with compassion for that person.
Seeing people's hearts wax cold is beyond my comprehension experientially. I can say, yeah, they are traumatized. Yeah, something happened to them and I wonder what could have made them like that (so cold, fearful, or even hateful). For years, I have said that healed people heal people, and this because I heard Joyce Meyers say that 'hurting people hurt people'.
But even on my worst day, the REAL Timothy never attacked someone out of one of those emotions. The EGO Timothy has done some things, though, and I suspect trauma made remembering who I really am difficult. Anger seethed in my heart and mind to the near-boiling point on many an occasion. But how do we fix it? Is there anything to 'fix?'
Look into the eyes of your fellow when they are sharing at a meeting. Look deeply. You will see YOU if you look long enough. See their true essence, their Origins, the part of them that has innocence beyond trauma. This is the part of us that goes toward the light when we pass, leaving everything else behind, and experiences unsurpassable Conscious Love.
On 8/19/90 at my first meeting in Roach Hall (the Stillwater Alano Club) I heard some really good suggestions, one being to 'Look for the good'.
So, I started looking for Messages from God in everything. IMO, if we look FROM the good, we'll SEE the good IN others. I heard someone say that the Talmud reflects on what we see comes from who we are; we don't see life the way it is, but see life the way we are. Buddha said something similar. When the student is ready, the teacher appears. I'm in charge of what I say and you're in charge of what you hear.
HOWEVER, If I have turned my will and life over to the care of God (as I understand God), then I can truly say that I am not in charge of what I say or hear. God is.
That being said, an old friend in sobriety (Baron...RIP) used to say, "If you don't like something I say, take it up with God. God's the reason I'm alive."
Every good thing I have in my life came from the wisdom of others, almost without exception, because God opened my surrendered mind and heart. We didn't quit. We surrendered.
Let’s make it a WE life. It's a WE Program. Let's not shoot our wounded. Practice this principle in all your affairs, and you’ll look down and see you’ve been walking on the water of Grace for a long time. And on the hard days, pray, and laugh when you can.
The last couple of years has been hard on so many of us, but when things look down, try the UP look. Remember that when you are not at peace, it’s probably because of your reaction to a situation more than it is the situation itself. I’ve seen a few people along the way who were happy despite really difficult circumstances. They showed me the way. Just say THANK YOU.
RBA Board of Trustees Minutes
Monday November 14th , 2022
Meeting Opened at 7:05 PM
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:
Norton L., Cherisse K., Chaz, Trinnie, Bill M., Jerry F., Jeff S., Steve P.,
Joe R., and Darryn also attended as a guest at this point, pending the resignation of another Board Member dealing with a health situation.
2.Building and Maintenance Report
Jerry Z. was unable to make the meeting. One item of note was the heater
installed in the women’s bathroom. It was mentioned that it hopefully
would look to be a more permanent installation with the wiring in the
walls, etc. I (Steve) volunteered to follow up with Jerry on this.
3. Financial Report
The financials from October 31st , 2022 as presented by Joe R. were
4. Old Business
The minutes from the October Board Meeting were reviewed and
5. New Business
a. Children’s Christmas Party Update
b. Christmas Eve Dinner Update
c. Election of New Officers was completed with duty descriptions by
current position holders explaining the most important tasks of each title
before nominations began. The new board members were whole
heartedly welcomed and new officers were unanimously approved and
congratulated as follows:
Cherisse: Board President
Trinnie (Trunette): Vice President
Jerry F: Treasurer
Steve P: Secretary
Joe R. will be posting these names with other pertinent information in the
glass case in the hallway for members to view as desired.
d. Snow Removal: Joe R. is working on this and perusing quotes and
Referrals in order to select the right person for the job.
A Karaoke machine was anonymously (or its cost) donated to the
Fellowship Committee. Lots of future fun and events to come!
The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 PM after the Lord’s Prayer.
RBA Board Secretary