Surrender and Self Examination (daily recovery reading)

My stability came out of trying to give, not out of demanding that I receive.

Thus I think it can work out with emotional sobriety. If we examine every disturbance we have, great or small, we will find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its consqquent unhealthy demand.
Let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these hobbling demands. Then we can be set free to live and love; we may then be able to Twelth step ourselves and others into emotional sobriety.
The language of the heart pg 238

Years of dependency on alcohol as a chemical mood-changer deprived me of the capability to interact emotionally with my fellows. I thought I had to be self-sufficient, self-reliant, and self-motivated in a world of unreliable people. Finally I lost my self-respect and was left with dependency, lacking any ability to trust myself or to believe in anything.
Surrender and self-examination while sharing with newcomers helped me to ask humbly for help.

Pg 207
Daily reflections
ISBN 0-916856-37-2

7 Wonders of the world

The Seven Wonders

I heard about a group of Geography students who studied the Seven Wonders of the World. At the end of that section, the students were asked to list what they each considered to be the Seven Wonders of the World.

Though there was some disagreement, the following got the most votes: Egypt’s Great Pyramids, the Taj Mahal, the Grand Canyon, the Panama Canal, the Empire State Building, St. Peter’s Basilica and China’s Great Wall.

While gathering the votes, the teacher noted that one student, a quiet girl, hadn’t turned in her paper yet. So she asked the girl if she was having trouble with her list.

The quiet girl replied, “Yes, a little. I couldn’t quite make up my mind because there were so many.”

The teacher said, “Well, tell us what you have, and maybe we can help.”

The girl hesitated, then read, “I think the Seven Wonders of the World are, to touch and to taste, to see and to hear . . . ” She hesitated a little, “and then, to run and to laugh and to love.”

It is far too easy for us to look at the exploits of man and refer to them as “wonders” while we overlook all that God has done, regarding them as merely “ordinary.”

May you be reminded today of those things which are truly wondrous!

– Author Unknown

Greed & Guilt

Greed and Grace

Author: Unknown

The old movie, “Stars in My Crown” is a story about a man who showed amazing grace in the midst of incredible greed.

Many years ago there was a movie titled, “Stars in My Crown.”

It told of an elderly black man who owned a little farm outside a southern town. Some very precious metal was discovered in that area, and suddenly there was pressure on him from many people to sell his land. But he would not sell. He wanted to stay exactly where he was. However, the people in the area would not take “no” for an answer.

They did everything they could to make him move. They burned down his barn, shot through his house one night, and eventually threatened to hang him by sundown the next day if he did not agree to sell.

The local Methodist minister heard about the trouble and went to visit the old man. At sundown of the next day, all the leading citizens of the community came to the farm dressed in their white hoods. They were ready to hang the black gentleman if he refused to sell. The farmer came out on the porch to meet them wearing his best clothes. He said that he was ready to die and that he had asked the minister to draw up for him his Last Will and Testament, which he wanted to have read at that time.

The minister read the will, and those present realized quickly the old man was giving everything to them. He willed the farm to the banker who seemed so hellbent on having it. He gave his rifle to another of the men there who had first learned to hunt with it. He gave his fishing pole to another. In fact, that old man gave everything he had to the people who were prepared to kill him. He killed them first with love and affection.
The impact was incredible.

Seeing goodness given in the face of such animosity was more than any of them could tolerate. One by one, in shame, they turned away, and the entire lynching mob disappeared. The minister’s grandson had watched everything from a distance, and as everyone departed, he ran up to his grandfather and asked, “What kind of will was that, Granddaddy?

The old minister answered, “That, my son, was the will of God.”

Ugly the Cat

Ugly The Cat

Everyone in the apartment complex I lived in knew who Ugly was. Ugly was the resident tomcat. Ugly loved three things in this world: fighting, eating garbage, and, shall we say, love.

The combination of these things combined with a life spent outside had their effect on Ugly. To start with, he had only one eye and where the other should have been was a hole. He was also missing his ear on the same side, his left foot appeared to have been badly broken at one time, and had healed at an unnatural angle, making him look like he was always turning the corner.

Ugly would have been a dark gray tabby, striped type, except for the sores covering his head, neck, and even his shoulders

Every time someone saw Ugly there was the same reaction. “That’s one UGLY cat!!!”

All the children were warned not to touch him, the adults threw rocks at him, hosed him down, squirted him when he tried to come in their homes, or shut his paws in the door when he would not leave. Ugly always had the same reaction.

If you turned the hose on him, he would stand there, getting soaked until you gave up and quit. If you threw things at him, he would curl his lanky body around your feet in forgiveness.

Whenever he spied children, he would come running, meowing frantically and bump his head against their hands, begging for their love.

If you ever picked him up he would immediately begin suckling on your shirt, earrings, whatever he could find.

One day Ugly shared his love with the neighbor’s dogs. They did not respond kindly, and Ugly was badly mauled. I tried to rush to his aid. By the time I got to where he was laying, it was apparent Ugly’s sad life was almost at an end.

As I picked him up and tried to carry him home, I could hear him wheezing and gasping, and could feel him struggling. It must be hurting him terribly, I thought.

Then I felt a familiar tugging, sucking sensation on my ear. Ugly, in so much pain, suffering and obviously dying, was trying to suckle my ear. I pulled him closer to me, and he bumped the palm of my hand with his head, then he turned his one golden eye towards me, and I could hear the distinct sound of purring.

Even in the greatest pain, that ugly battled scarred cat was asking only for a little affection, perhaps some compassion.

At that moment I thought Ugly was the most beautiful, loving creature I had ever seen. Never once did he try to bite or scratch me, try to get away from me, or struggle in any way. Ugly just looked up at me completely trusting in me to relieve his pain.

Ugly died in my arms before I could get inside, but I sat and held him for a long time afterwards, thinking about how one scarred, deformed little stray could so alter my opinion about what it means to have true pureness of spirit,
to love so totally and truly.

Ugly taught me more about giving and compassion than a thousand books, lectures, or talk show specials ever could, and for that I will always be thankful. He had been scarred on the outside, but I was scarred on the inside, and it was time for me to move on and learn to love truly and deeply. To give my total to those I cared for.

Many people want to be richer, more successful, well liked, beautiful, but for me…
I will always try to be Ugly.

Author Unknown

A Little Boys Heart

A LITTLE BOY’S HEART

It was one of the hottest days of the dry season. We had not seen rain in
almost a month. The crops were dying. Cows had stopped giving milk. The
creeks and streams were long gone back into the earth. It was a dry season
that would bankrupt seven farmers before it was through.

Everyday my husband and his brothers would go about the arduous process of
trying to get water to the fields. Lately this process had involved taking
a truck to the local water rendering plant and filling it up with water.

But severe rationing had cut everyone off. If we didn’t see some rain
soon…we would lose everything. It was on this day that I learned the
true lesson of sharing and witnessed the only miracle I have seen with my
own eyes.

I was in the kitchen making lunch for my husband and his brothers when I
saw my six-year old son, Billy, walking toward the woods. He wasn’t
walking with the usual carefree abandon of a youth but with a serious
purpose. I could only see his back. He was obviously walking with a great
effort…trying to be as still as possible.

Minutes after he disappeared into the woods, he came running out again,
toward the house. I went back to making sandwiches; thinking that
whatever task he had been doing was completed. Moments later, however, he
was once again walking in that slow purposeful stride toward the woods.
This activity went on for an hour: walk carefully to the woods, run back
to the house.

Finally I couldn’t take it any longer and I crept out of the house and
followed him on his journey (being very careful not to be seen…as he was
obviously doing important work and didn’t need his Mommy checking up on
him). He was cupping both hands in front of him as he walked; being very
careful not to spill the water he held in them…maybe two or three
tablespoons were held in his tiny hands. I sneaked close as he went into
the woods.

Branches and thorns slapped his little face but he did not try to avoid
them. He had a much higher purpose. As I leaned in to spy on him, I saw
the most amazing site. Several large deer loomed in front of him.

Billy walked right up to them. I almost screamed for him to get away. A
huge buck with elaborate antlers was dangerously close. But the buck did
not threaten him…he didn’t even move as Billy knelt down. And I saw a
tiny fawn laying on the ground, obviously suffering from dehydration and
heat exhaustion, lift its head with great effort to lap up the water
cupped in my beautiful boy’s hand.

When the water was gone, Billy jumped up to run back to the house and I
hid behind a tree. I followed him back to the house to a spigot that we
had shut off the water to. Billy opened it all the way up and a small
trickle began to creep out. He knelt there, letting the drips slowly fill
up his makeshift “cup”, as the sun beat down on his little back.

And it came clear to me. The trouble he had gotten into for playing with
the hose the week before. The lecture he had received about the importance
of not wasting water. The reason he didn’t ask me to help him. It took
almost twenty minutes for the drops to fill his hands.

When he stood up and began the trek back, I was there in front of him.
His little eyes just filled with tears. “I’m not wasting”, was all he
said. As he began his walk, I joined him…with a small pot of water from
the kitchen. I let him tend to the fawn. I stayed away. It was his
job. I stood on the edge of the woods watching the most beautiful heart I
have ever known working so hard to save another life. As the tears that
rolled down my face began to hit the ground, they were suddenly joined by
other drops…and more drops…and more. I looked up at the sky. It was
as if God, himself, was weeping with pride.

Some will probably say that this was all just a huge coincidence. That
miracles don’t really exist. That it was bound to rain sometime. And I
can’t argue with that…I’m not going to try. All I can say is that the
rain that came that day saved our farm…just like that actions of one
little boy saved another.

Author Unknown

Acceptance – Never give up on LOVE

The Song of Solomon, Chapter 8, Verse 7, reminds us, “Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot wash it away.” In other words, no matter what happens, love will stand. We often forget this when we are hurt or disappointed by someone we love. We may strike out or say things which we later regret, because under our hurt and anger, there is love. Even when the time comes to end a relationship, under the pain, fear, confusion, there is love.
If you love someone, do not deny it. You can be angry or hurt or even ready to move on, but let the love come through your words and actions. If you are leaving someone, do it with love. Be mindful not to allow shame, guilt, or anger to drown out the love you have shared. If you are being left be someone, stay in love. A departure of the person does not mean the end of love. Like water, love must flow. It changes forms. The tides of love must change. Always remember the way love brought you into a situation, because that same love will get you out of a situation.

The healing flow of love moves through me at all times.

Page 272
Faith in the Valley
Iyanla Vanzant

Prayer to self – Freedom, Thought

Dear Self
Free your mind from the dead things
you wanted to do but allowed yourself to believe
you weren’t good enough, smart enough, young or old
enough to do.
Free your heart from the fear that someone
can stop you or harm you.
Free yourself from self-imposed limitations
of age, colour and gender.
Free your body from the harmful things you love
even when you know they are
absolutely no good for you.
Freedom is the key.
You must not let anything or anyone confine or define you!

Freedom is a state of mind.

Page 118
Faith in the Valley
Lessons for Women on the Journey to Peace
Iyanla Vanzant

Criticism – I praise myself for big and little things. (Louise L Hay – Meditations to heal your life)

I praise myself for big and little things.

I am a wonderful being. I used to scold and criticise myself because I believed it would help me improve my life, and yet, criticism has not imporved me over the years.
In face, criticism seems to make it much harder to change and progress.
So, as I listen to my inner dialogue and find that I am being critical, telling myself that I’m not good enough or that I’m doing something wrong, I recognize the old patterns of childhood, and I immediately begin to speak lovingly to my inner child. Instead of tearing myself apart, I choose to nourish myself with praise and approval. I know I am on the way to becoming consistently loving.

Page 53
Meditations to heal your life
by Louise L Hay

Cast your burdens on Him

Cast Your Burdens On Him

To every one on earth
God gives a burden, to be carried down
The road that lies between the cross and crown.
No lot is wholly free;
He giveth one to thee.

Some carry it aloft,
Open and visible to any eyes;
And all may see its form and weight and size.
Some hide it in their breast,
And deem it there unguessed.

Thy burden is God’s gift,
And it will make the bearer calm and strong;
Yet, lest it press too heavily and long,
God says, “Cast it on Me,
And it shall easy be.”
And those who heed His voice,
And seek to give it back in trustful prayer,
Have quiet hearts that never can despair;
And hope lights up the way
Upon the darkest day.
Cast your burdens on the Lord and he’ll bear them for you.
Have a wonderful weekend and be blessed by all you see and do.

You are so special

Happiness keeps You Sweet,
Trials keep You Strong,
Sorrows keep You Human,
Failures keeps You Humble,
Success keeps You Glowing,
But Only God keeps You Going!
You are so special!