A Decision Isn’t Enough
“Without a searching and fearless moral inventory, most of us have found that the faith which really works in daily living is still out of reach." –Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, Step 4
In Step 3 we made a decision to turn our life and will over to the care of a Higher Power. But that was just a decision. Real growth takes work.
A whole lifetime run on self-will, in which all our time and energy was spent satisfying our basic instincts, doesn't magically change overnight. Driven by unconscious and conscious resentments and fears, we've taken wrong actions that have harmed others, and blocked any chance of a relationship with the God of our understanding.
At the workshop on Saturday, January 9, I’ll share a simple and repeatable process for taking 4th-Step inventory that will lead us to the truth about ourselves, and free us from the fears and resentments that dominate our thinking.
“Though we may at first be startled to realize that God knows all about us, we are apt to get used to that quite quickly. Somehow, being alone with God doesn’t seem as embarrassing as facing up to another person.” –Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, Step 5
When Bill Wilson writes, he generally chooses his words with care, and when I first read the word embarrassing in that sentence from the Twelve and Twelve, I wondered why he was trying to make us alcoholics (and other compulsive folk) feel worse about ourselves than we already did. He seemed to be recommending embarrassment, for crying out loud.
I mean, haven’t we substance and relationship abusers had enough embarrassing experiences? Mine included knocking over bar tables on my way to the restroom and having to respond to repeated questions about my personal hygiene. I for one, am aiming to get embarrassments like that out of my life for good.
So what is Bill W. getting at with the use of this loaded word? And how does it relate to our basic problem? (Hint: Our basic problem isn’t alcohol, food, gambling, drugs, debt, the alcoholic, or any of the other impetuses that get us into the rooms.)
I’ll see if I can figure out what Bill is talking about when we meet on Saturday, January 9.