February 1

HOPE MONTH: DAY 1: “I don’t think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains.” ― Anne Frank

There is a reason that this young lady has been a beacon of HOPE for several generations. She was, in the face of real tragedy, hopeful, inspiring and full of God.

That is in direct contradiction with addicts’ frame of mind. Most addicts are negative, self-seeking, selfish, self-centered and whiney. All of these are very unpleasant and unattractive qualities that we work to recover from.

Hope is the thing that we must grab hold of and walk with every day. That negativity and whining must be eliminated for us to truly claim recovery. There is NOTHING we are entitled to, except for us to live with the results of all we did before we got here.

GRACE is what we receive, at the end of a long run of damaging, hurtful, selfish, ugly, dishonest living, we get to this place and receive gifts the like of which we did NOTHING to earn. That is what Grace means, unearned gifts from a benevolent and gracious Universal Power. We get to embrace the kind of work we might have been doing all along, but didn’t.

We get this amazing opportunity to “rub out” the shit we created for the first part of our lives. Where we demanded and took and stole and lied and cheated because we cared only for ourselves and be damned to all else.

And we are inspired to believe we can actually become viable, useful and giving members of a social order we did nothing to enhance. That is HOPE. We have none, because our actions brought none to our door. But, an amazing gift of Grace comes along and some of us, (actually, the vast majority), will say NO thanks…I got this!

All we need to do is the work to turn our really shitty attitudes around and get grateful for all the blessings we don’t have coming; but receive anyway. Wow!

And it isn’t that we get this stuff because we stop being drunken assholes and become dry assholes. It is because we start giving back to the world our good, before we get it. We don’t wait to be rich to learn to share. We learn to share and THEN we get rich…in love, in peace, in contentment, in so many ways. But, we have to do this work to get the gifts.

We are all inspired by those who are doing and believing the good stuff. They teach us how to be the people we always knew we could be. We are mostly just too self-involved to be those good people. We are given these teachers so we can do what they do. Not talk about it in meetings and pretend we are grateful, but to do it without having to be told. To do it because we are truly walking the path of gratitude and Grace.

And THEN we learn to see life differently. Only after we have done things in the state of Grace do we receive the full state to live within. It is not that we get and then give. We give and then receive. It is all the exact opposite  of what the Ego tells us. Don’t listen to that, just do the right stuff and then the right stuff comes. I love this!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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