Saturday, December 31, 2016

Do Not Forget the HOW in 2017

Happy New Year!
Very early in AA I learned about the importance of HOW – to be Honest, Open-minded and Willing. I remember asking questions of members in the fellowship about bosses, children, family members, and questions about how to handle myself. For some inexplicable reason (that I now attribute to my higher power), the questions and issues I discussed were done often in an embarrassingly honest and open way. I didn’t embellish or minimize. Then, I really listened to the answers I got. Rather than trying to explain how different I was and offering all sorts of reasons their suggestion(s) did not really apply to me, I took their experiences seriously and was willing to apply their suggestions to myself.
It worked. I made better decisions, thought through issues in a more reasoned manner, acted in better ways and, voilà, got better results. As I progressed in the development of my sobriety, I watched as others, many of whom had real severe issues with being uncomfortably honest and open with people, did the same thing and began getting better. Their level of comfort in honestly sharing improved, as did their issues or questions – and the answers they received improved as well.
A Course In Miracles (ACIM) encourages us to do much the same. In the most recent issue (Jan/Feb 2017) of The Holy Encounter, Beverly Hutchinson McNeff, the co-founder of the Miracle Distribution Center, wrote an article entitled “Make This Year Different…” In part it reads:
“ A Course in Miracles invites us to ‘make this year different by making it all the same.’ It asks us to let all our relationships be made holy for us. This is its advice on how to make the year different from all others: to consistently allow the Holy Spirit to heal our relationships for us.
“You may think: ‘What are you talking about? All my relationships are just fine.’ But let’s remember, we wouldn’t be here if we were truly healed. We can all benefit by allowing the Holy Spirit into our minds and letting Him do the work.
“So this year instead of resisting healing by saying I can’t do it … it’s too hard … I’m not spiritual enough … there’s nothing to heal…. Let’s just invite Him in. Let’s step back from what we think we know and become comfortable with the presence of God, the presence of love that only wants our happiness and healing.
Mots of the time we don’t know why we’re unhappy, depressed, or anxious. Don’t let that stop you from inviting in the Holy Spirit’s presence. He knows how to help even if you don’t. Your understanding is not necessary for Him to work; only your willingness is.” [Miracle Distribution Center, Anaheim, CA, [] p.11]
I don’t know about you, but I think this is a pretty good New Year’s resolution.
As I’ve stated before, “I have to understand, on a visceral level, who the “Me” or “I” really is when I am speaking or thinking. The “I” that says to myself, “I really need a newer, more reliable car” is a different “I” than the one that says to Spirit, “I can’t do this anymore; help me perceive things the way You see them.”
Although these messages are mostly for me, thanks for listening to me and getting to know me – warts and all. As always, feel free to forward this message to your friends, family, and those accompanying you on your spiritual journey.

#4 Dec 2016
Copyright 2016

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