LIVING ITThe spiritual life is not a theory. We have to live it.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 83When new in the program, I couldn’t comprehend living the spiritual aspect of the program, but now that I’m sober, I can’t comprehend living without it. Spirituality was what I had been seeking. God, as I understand Him, has given me answers to the whys that kept me drinking for twenty years. By living a spiritual life, by asking God for help, I have learned to love, care for and feel compassion for all my fellow men, and to feel joy in a world where, before, I felt only fear.
A Stumble on Step 8
When I read Step 8, it sounds so simple. I have found that in reality, it is not. There are all these circumstances.
My biggest problem when I was drinking and using was not that I stole or became violent or even abusive, although some claim that I did.
If so, my abuse I would describe as pointing out someone’s true faults in a manner that was funny, usually to no one else than me.
Case in point.
I have said I was sorry for my behavior during my many periods of relapses, binges or periods of drunken debauchery. Quick background check. I have been sober for 10 years, …….this time. I knew I had a problem almost 40 years ago and tried various remedies until I made the commitment to AA. And that has worked, so far. Good enough.
I have apologized to many. Acceptance and forgiveness has varied by degrees.
I have a few people left on this list, that I do not know how, or what can be done to remedy those situations.
I said what I said. The subject was not made up. However, the people on the other end, people on the list took the opportunity to teach me a lesson. And maybe I had it coming.
However, in teaching me that lesson, the people involved committed a number of transgressions, well actually, crimes as well. We cannot get to that place to either accept or reject any apology I might make because to get there, requires a review of what was done by both parties. Otherwise, what would I be apologizing for.
It is incredibly sad really. There was a time when we all got along well. Unfortunately, greed is a very clever sin and can arise in anyone, anytime. Especially, if the teachers of the lesson are holding purse strings of the deal.
You may ask, why not let it go, all of you. What’s done is done. Well, not quite. One of the crimes to get me was some serious tax fraud. There are not statutes of limitations on tax fraud. So, everyone stays reluctant to make the amends or settle the disagreements.
I suppose just one of those things.
I can accept that this is Fate’s makeup for getting away with all the things I did under the influence. The families I put in jeopardy while drinking and driving for instance. And I do get by. I was hurt but not crushed.
Still, as I write this column each year, in this month. I do look at the people still on this list. I guess I pray for them, but not always in the best of mind. Certainly, not like I did for my buddy Mike, who passed away last month.
I dunno. Step 8. It sounds so simple yet remains so complicated.
Contributed by John M.
For all of our new members, for any of our old-timers…
Pick up the phone.
You know there are many online meetings with easy access available to you,
including our own Step 2 Men’s Group.
But if you can’t or if you won’t…please, please call anyone you know in A.A.
BEFORE you decide to quit going to meetings.
Call anyone you know in A.A. BEFORE you take that first drink.
If don’t know anyone in A.A. call me…
Call me 24/7/365 BEFORE you decide. Please.
Mark W. 916-601-6864
The GSR Says!
GENERAL SERVICE REPORT FOR July, 2023
Come one come all to the CCF Picnic of Alcoholics Anonymous 2023.
The picnic will be held August 20th at Elk Grove Park from 9AM to 4:00PM. Elk Grove Park is located at 9950 Elk Grove Florin Road, Elk Grove, CA.
There will be multiple cash prize raffles including a Big Screen TV, fabulous gift baskets, and
Tickets are going for $5 for 7 tickets or $1 each.
Tickets are available at the Central Office, Area Meetings, and at the Picnic. Need not be present to win.
For questions please contact:
Elora J. 916-549-0543, or
Cyndi G. 916-968-3212
Thank you for allowing me to be of service.
A.A. member Dave Mc. curates a few selected readings from a variety of A.A. related publications each month.
“Having so considered our day, not omitting to take due
note of things well done, and having searched our hearts
with neither fear nor favor, we can truly thank God for the
blessings we have received and sleep in good conscience.”
12 Steps & 12 Traditions, pg. 95
Contributed by Dave Mc.
August Birthdays… IF They Make It!
August 6th… Steve B. celebrates 17 years
August 9th… Ryan F. celebrates 7 years
August 9th… Mike D. celebrates 6 years
August 12th… Jeff E. celebrates 38 years
August 25th… Craig G. celebrates 8 years
August 27th… Rudy R. celebrates 20 years
If your birthday has been missed…. fill out the birthday form.
We really want to celebrate your AA anniversary because your birthday made ours possible!
Thanks everybody and apologies to you if you were missed or incorrectly noted.
“Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.“
“Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional. We define professionalism as the occupation of counseling alcoholics for fees or hire. But we may employ alcoholics where they are going to perform those services for which we might otherwise have to engage non-alcoholics. Such special services may be well recompensed. But our usual A.A. Twelfth Step work is never to be paid for.“
Paid Staff Help Make 12 Step Work Possible
The eighth tradition makes it clear that A.A. may employ professional secretaries and other professional staff members. Their job is not to DO Twelve Step work; but to make Twelve Step work possible. “Our Twelfth Step is never paid for, but those who labor in service for us are worthy of their hire.” (12×12, Page 171)
There is a difference between doing twelve step work for pay and working for a master’s degree as a counselor in the field of alcoholism and being of service in a hospital where more and more newcomers first find sobriety. Professional counselors do their counseling job and THEN go to A.A. meetings and carry the message “for free and for fun” just like the rest of us. Their job is not a substitute for working an A.A. program.
We must always remember that we cannot do the work of carrying the message to the still suffering alcoholic if we don’t have people in our various service centers assisting us in the logistics of US carrying out our primary purpose. We see that our few paid workers are performing only those service tasks that our volunteers cannot consistently handle. Primarily these folks are not doing Twelfth Step work. They are just making more and better Twelfth Step work possible.
We give freely what has been given freely to us.
The spiritual principle behind the eighth step is “willingness and love” to work the steps. The eighth tradition takes that idea one step further and teaches me that to have good relationships with other people, I must be “zealous” in carrying the message. Otherwise my message is suspect. In our meditation, let us examine the sate of our “zeal” in our relationships with God, A.A., mates and work. Let us begin with the state of our “zeal” in carrying the message to the sick and suffering alcoholic.
From an idea by George T.
Our Trusted Servants Continue to Be:
The current Step 2 Men’s Group meeting schedule is Monday, Wednesday & Friday at Tim’s (3809 J St), Tuesday & Thursday online, Saturday in the park is “Daily Reflections” and Sunday is our Rogue meeting in the park. Each gathering is one hour. Great job men!
- Monday: Tim C.
- Tuesday: Mark W.
- Wednesday: John M.
- Thursday: Sean F.
- Friday: Jon B.
- Saturday: David K.
- Sunday: Mark C.
Want to add your name to the “Back-up-Help-Substitute Secretary List”? Just contact Group GS, John M., Treasurer Mark W. or any of our other Secretaries and let them know!
I was tending to one of my beloved character defects, procrastination, a few months back and ended up creating a drag & drop 12 Steps app instead of finishing a client project. I was reminded of the fruits of my procrastination in a meeting recently and thought I’d share it. It’s quite self-explanatory – drag the steps into their correct positions. If you have nothing better to do, give it a shot.
My First Meeting
Please be “of service.” If you’ve never contributed a “My First Meeting”, please help to keep this column going…we need you! What do you remember most of your first meeting? It can be one sentence; it can be up to two paragraphs. Could be funny, poignant or strictly “clinical”. Write what you want…you might have enjoy writing it!
Step 2 Men’s Group Believes…
“Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”
We’d never presume that the 12 Steps are not clear. Nor would we imply that they need ‘improvement’. However…for purposes of assisting to keep the meeting pointed in an important direction each day, the ‘Step 2 Men’s Group Statement’ is read as follows:
Step 2 Men’s Group is founded on the belief that spirituality is essential to our sobriety. Our group is non-religious, but we do not oppose anyone’s religious beliefs. We believe that respect for others and their beliefs is essential to our spiritual development. Accordingly we ask that avoid criticism of others or of their religion or lack of religion, their race, ethnicity, national origin, age, sexual orientation, physical appearance, trade or profession, length of sobriety, or personal beliefs. Our goal is to further our spirituality, our sobriety and our personal development, not to confront or belittle others. Always remember to be kind to others.
Extra Special Thanks Dept:
Thanks to our General Secretary, John M. for “A Stumble on Step 8“, Dave Mc. for “Mouse’s Corner”, our GSR, Mark Q for his report, and our Treasurer Mark W. for all your contributions. We’re still waiting for YOU gentle reader…Why don’t YOU contribute a short “something?” Any length, most any AA related topic. Reply now and it will get included next month!