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step one part three

Welcome back faithful reader. Its been a busy week and I am to tired to work on the campaign or clean house and the rabbit ears only get in the Christian channel tonight, its encouraging me to tell people about Jesus. I do want to talk about God. I’ve been excited about my literacy project of breaking down the 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) into simple, concrete English, with hearing references removed. Its my second pass at the subject, the first in writing and I feel its going well. Glad to have good feedback from my sister Brenda who is steeped in recovery. As a full disclaimer I am not, I am a treatment person not a recovery person but knowing the steps is a good thing for everyone. I feel like a good translator in that I haven’t agreed with everything personally but am trying to capture the spirit of the test which is powerful and has more beauty then I first gave it credit. (I prefer the AA Big Book for sheer literary power).

Anyway I was talking to Chris about the project as an NA guru and genuinely good guy I appreciate his input and I was telling him I had to throw out Higher Power when I was getting down to concrete English and explained God was concrete but Higher Power is abstract. He said “OK, just so you tell him God is other people”. Early recovery people identified Higher Power to make it more accessible which is cool and essential for a lot of folks. But when people believe it just makes it easier to stick to the more real “God”. Its early so I hope to finish the first step tonight and still give my DVD player one more shot at playing a movie.

If we think we are our problems and don’t see our problems are part of being sick we won’t be able to see things right. Addicts are overly sensitive to what is going on. We can’t leave things alone. We have problems because we want to know stuff and fight for stuff but we believe things that are not true. We forget how confused we were when we started to use drugs. Forgetting stuff, confusion, and having trouble doing stuff is normal when we first stop using drugs even if we used to be good at stuff. We get back into life when we stop being confused.

What we see and how we feel is still controlled by drugs when we first get clean. People in NA say, “Give it up to God”. “Take it easy”. “Keep coming until God heals you.” “Keep coming back”. Things like this help us not to be selfish and to accept life as it is.

Recovery helps us live. Recovery is like food. We get into trouble when we don’t let people be free. Addiction keeps us from seeing that what we do makes what happens to us. Recovery is looking at the world as it is. We stop fighting and life is fun and interesting. We can finally be happy because it seems real. Not looking at the world as it is keeps us sick. Only if we admit we are powerless over drugs and give it up to God can we feel better. People who plan on using drugs and won’t admit they are powerless over drugs will keep on lying to themselves. Some people are not addicts and they should get help somewhere else. Addicts can learn about recovery at NA.

Addiction has been around a long time but recovery is pretty new. At first it seems normal and right. In meetings we see other addicts who have stopped using drugs. Then we have doubt and think it is to good to be true. We are trapped because we are afraid to change. Doing drugs makes us think bad things about people, gets our feelings hurt and tells us we can’t be better. Everyone in NA goes through this. We give things to God and then go back and act like we used to. If we don’t want to use drugs we figure out what is going on before we use drugs. If we stop wanting to be clean we will use drugs. If we use drugs we have to  get back in recovery.

What we say and what things mean to us makes us do stuff. When we give things to God we don’t have to act on our desires. Going to meetings and hanging out with addicts makes us stop thinking like a drug user. We can look at things in a new way because we are living different. In recovery we try to be sane. Early in recovery we do what people suggest because our thinking is crazy. We need to trust more. We have to accept other people to be in recovery. Then we start calling anything that keeps us from God “crazy”. If we feel bitter about the past we have to make it better. We have to separate fixing ourselves from trying to fix other people. We have to have peace about the past.

Peace can’t come from other people but they can help us have peace. We are a tool of God when we care about other people. We feel like we are connected to people again. Being sane is letting God do things we cannot do. When we run away we take our problems with us. To really escape we have to change.

When we change better things happen to us and we learn new ways to do things. One person said, “We are thankful for this step it means hope, commitment, honesty and freedom. We have to understand this step to understand NA. Knowing God is important in NA. NA makes us free to learn.

If you have problems you can call someone in NA for help. Try not to get discouraged or feeling like you are not doing enough. Ask questions to more then one person. Talk to everyone and learn from everyone. How you understand this step and NA is up to you. You have to own it for it to work.

Every step has helped us understand better and we want it to be great for you. If you get angry or depressed or want to be a rebel, pray, go to a meeting, make list of things you are thankful for, or call someone. Thank you for joining us in recovery. We love you totally with no exceptions.

 

 

 

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