March 5, 2011

March 5: What, Defects Removed?

(Adapted for personal use from Courage to Change in Alanon.)

When I first started working the Steps, the thought of having my character defects removed made me very nervous. I thought I would end up like a chunk of Swiss cheese, full of holes. I don't like Swiss cheese!  But I wanted to get better and I was assured that the Steps were the key to my recovery, so I went forward in spite of my reservations. I had to take the risk and act on faith before I could receive the gifts my Higher Power held out to me.

When I finally made time for Step Four, 
I found that every single defect of character had been hiding an asset. I didn't lose myself at all. Instead, as I let go of the things I didn't need, I made room for my strengths, skills and feelings to become more fully a part of my life. I take comfort in this, because it reminds me that everything I need is already present. My Buddhist in a book says the same thing!

Another thing--those shortcomings. Nowhere in Steps Four through Seven do we ask God to take away the things we do not need. Only by doing the Steps would I find out if I would get relief from my shortcomings. 

"God knows exactly what I need and has already given it to me. My job is to keep it simple and ask for God's help in relieving me of the extra stuff--the shortcomings that keep me tied down."

"Before sunlight can shine through a window, the blinds must be raised." American proverb

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