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Recovery Gifts - Diabolic Alcoholic

 

 

Alcoholics and Addicts – Helping Them the Old School Way

With God’s Power: Compassionate, Sustained, Personal Action

 

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Page 5

Now that’s good fruit. It’s a commodity whose worth far exceeds a dry drunk produced by abstinence and meeting attendance. The Good Book ideas also dealt effectively with the Adversary’s temptations, threats, and power—actions that were aimed at death, idolatry, rejection of the Word, fear, shame, disease, sin, guilt, anger, dishonesty, and a host of very explicit transgressions. The Good Book offered rules of the road that would necessitate obedience, love, service, and the glorification of Yahweh the Creator and Jesus Christ His son. It offered the whole armour of God that would enable victory over the wiles of the Devil. It mapped out the means for becoming a child of the living Creator—a beloved child whose needs were met, love was empowered, fear could be cast out, and mind and body could be made sound and whole—in fact already had been by the accomplishments of Christ (1 Peter 2:24).

 

Still More Change

 

Is that all there is?

 

I don’t think so. While it may not be the province of the Christian in A.A. to proclaim all the promises, defenses, and rules for victory, it is important to point to the fact that God’s will is specifically directed—and in A.A.’s  Big Book itself—at obedience, love, kindness, patience, truth, honesty, loveliness, peace, gentleness, goodness, meekness, temperance, joy, tenderheartedness, forgiveness, service, fruitful labor, purity, unselfishness, and a host of other principles laid out in the three main early A.A. books deemed essential for victory—James, the Sermon, and 1 Corinthians. If so, you can and should say so. That’s fact, and that’s A.A. history.

 

Looking at the Total Field of Challenge

 

Let’s close with the many things that burden newcomers coming into the rooms of recovery. Burdens due, in large part, to the fact that their excesses have totally corrupted their lives: Lack of personal hygiene and bodily health. Lack of education and loss of employment. Miserable job performance. Overwhelming debt. Business and financial loss. Tax errors, omissions, and outright fraud. Divorce. Child custody and support issues. Accidents, injuries, and deaths. Injuries. Physical sickness and debilitation. Criminal actions and records. Family and friends lost, harmed, or snubbed. Sexual misconduct and misdeeds. Court dates ignored or missed. Warrants outstanding. Drivers licenses, vehicle registrations, tickets, and insurance ignored or violated. Teeth in disrepair and without dental hygiene. Mental illness and depression. Prescription drug dependencies. Delayed withdrawal resulting in forgetfulness, confusion, idle chatter, shaking, and  pain. A host of other damaged items like the liver, the throat, and the nose.

 

The burdens are not solved by social workers, government agencies, churches, counselors, treatment programs, lawyers, doctors, dentists, therapists, clergy, scientists, pills, clinics, classes, grants, or research. They are almost unbelievably overwhelming. Or at least they seem so at the human level and to human reasoning.

 

But with God, nothing is impossible. However, despair lurks, frightens, and impedes. And the quickest and most readily available solution is to cut and run, ignore the problems, watch them pile up, and drink or die. That is where the Christian in A.A. can offer God’s Big Book to those who want to learn and believe it. The Christian need not undertake the role of pastor, teacher, apostle, prophet, or evangelist—although he may well have these capabilities. But he can bring the light of truth to the darkness of fear and despair; the availability of deliverance to the bondage of evil; the faith in God and of Jesus Christ to those who have no hope or faith or promise of a way out.

 

It is not enough to herd people into meetings, hurry them through the 12 Steps, tell them they are recovered but not cured, and turn them loose. Nor is it enough to expect them to sit in meetings and expound their self-centered pain for an eternity. Nor is it enough to call their other problems “outside issues” and ignore them. And simply let the mentally ill stay depressed, the  irresponsible ignore their accountability and duties, allow foul language and idolatry and ignorance to rule meeting talk, focus on self instead of rehabilitation of the whole person, ignore God and His Word, believe the current theory that actions change thinking rather than the fact that right thinking guided by God can change actions and life. That right thinking is aided and abetted by good education, wholesome jobs, wholesome recreation, wholesome family life, good health, mental soundness, physical fitness, good nutrition, appropriate rest and sleep, good relationships, and a program for real spiritual deliverance and growth in fellowship with the Creator.

 

It won’t and seldom does happen in treatment—not even in long term rehabilitation programs. Fellowship with God, with His son Jesus Christ, and with other believers goes a long way toward mending the fences and heading into the abundant life that glorifies and serves our Creator. But it requires leadership, dedication, a program, and hands-on experience and effort. I’ve personally seen most of the problems and have even experienced many myself. I have watched the fellowship stand idly by in apathetic self concern. I’ve also watched God act effectively in the lives of those who sought and obeyed Him. And I submit that this platter is enough to feed hungry helpers for as long as they wish. Moreover, it probably assures that they will be blessed to the uttermost by their own altruistic concerns and efforts. That’s what a Christian can do in A.A. today and never even utter a controversial peep in an idolatrous meeting.

 

Gloria Deo

 

END

 

Dick B., PO Box 837, Kihei, HI 96753-0837; dickb@dickb.com; http://www.dickb.com/index.shtml

copyright 2007 Dickb.com

Reprinted with permission from Dick B.

 
     
 
         
     
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