From Alcoholics Anonymous Page 43

Once more: The alcoholic at certain times has no effective mental defense against the first drink. Ex- cept in a few rare cases, neither he nor any other human being can provide such a defense. His defense must come from a Higher Power.
My experience has been I need Jesus to get, and to stay sober. There is no other defense. 

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Disaster In A Treatment Center

Buffalo Valley Treatment Center
Buffalo Valley Treatment Center

I was in my 4th Treatment Center, Buffalo Valley in Lewisburg, TN.  Buffalo Valley had two houses where the patients were housed.  The first was where the staff had offices, and patient rooms were upstairs. The second house was two doors down and housed only patients.  Because of my history with relapse, it would have been smart of me to request the main house close to staff. However being a chronic alcoholic, and in the mental state that I was, I would have never made such a request.  Across from the houses were a Super Rama Grocery Store, and a Dollar Store.  I made it about two weeks into treatment, and the Super Rama started calling my name.  We were warned from day one if we left the property, we would be asked to leave treatment.  Throwing all reason to the wind, I bolted across the street with a backpack, straight into the Super Rama and over to the beer isle.  Once inside I really don’t remember seeing anyone.  No store clerk, no other shoppers, all I saw was my next drink.  I know it was only beer, but when you are an alcoholic in the middle of the madness, beer is just fine. We weren’t allowed to have money at the center, so I loaded up my backpack.  I was just about to exit the front door when I hear, “Excuse me miss?”  No response from me so she says it again.  In the excitement I somehow trip on one of those big red Rug Doctor machines.  I struggle with the dumb thing for what seems like forever, then finally break through and scramble out the door.  I take off in a run, the opposite direction of the treatment center.  Then I glance behind me and there she is.  The Super Rama clerk is making tracks right behind me. Oh no, what is she going for clerk of the month?  It’s only beer, just let me go.  I knew I was sunk because she was built like a runner, and at that time I was built like Bud Light.  I had to think fast so I swing my backpack around front and start throwing the beers over my shoulder, meanwhile still trying to keep pace.  I can’t believe I’m still in front of her, and then it’s over.  I hear sirens coming from somewhere but I don’t see anything. This point I have crossed a field and headed across a street.  Halfway across the street, the police car appears seemingly out of nowhere.  I run smack in front of it, and the officer slams on the brakes.  The policeman gets out of his car and the clerk runs up out of breath. She tells him that I have stolen beer from the store.  I show him my empty backpack and tell him she is crazy.  There’s definitely a crazy person in his presence, but unfortunately for me, it is not the clerk.  After a short look through the field, the officer returns with the evidence.  I am handcuffed a half block away from Buffalo Valley and taken to jail.  I was charged with theft of the beer, and for throwing them over my shoulder, attempted assault on the clerk.  Whatever the charges, I’m sure I deserved them and more.  I wish I could say things ended there and I was able to get sober, but I just kept adding to the story.

Cole Remembers

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Cole Remembers

My 18  year old son wrote this paper about his life as a child with an alcoholic Mom. This was shared from his heart.   He gave me permission to post. I am so proud of what God is doing in his life.  Please read , as Cole Remembers.

Glen Cole Payne
Prayers Work
I believe that Prayers work. This has been a belief I have had for many years. My mom was an alcoholic for the first 7 years of my life, it was very bad. she had been kicked out of 12 treatment centers by the time I was 7. This year changed my life for ever. My dad and I loaded up the truck and were going to leave her knowing she would drink herself to death. There was nothing we could do, my dad just wanted to protect me now. We were in the truck about to get on the highway when I bowed my head and prayed for the first time on my own. We were about 5 minutes into driving on the highway when, till this day I don’t know why, I asked my dad to give her one more chance. He decided to turn around, when we got there she was drunk and we took all the bottles and she finally admitted she wanted help. Here I am 10 years later and my mom has 10 years sobriety now and leads a jail ministry and leads celebrate recovery at our church. It wasn’t a smooth road but we made it that’s for sure. During that time my dad had to close his record label and here he is with a 7yr old and a drunk wife and he has no job. Things were tough. He didn’t know what to do and honestly no one did. she would get a month sober then she would drink again but we didn’t give up we kept praying. All my dad’s side of the family didn’t want to be around her, they hated her for what she did. Honestly I can’t blame them. She had changed our whole family and it wasn’t in a good way. There was one thing that always kept me strong that was knowing God had my back no matter what. Im so blessed to have learned that at a young age. Everyone says I grew up way too fast but this struggle made me a stronger person.
My mom was 7 years sober when we found out she had breast cancer. I felt so helpless i thought to myself God why my mom? Why my family? But he had a plan for us. We went to the best cancer doctor in TN and we got a game plan. It was out of my hands I found myself in a dark hole again. Thats when I started praying hard for not only her but for my family. We had just gotten on our feet, why knock us back down? This was a challenge I can’t take on it’s all up to God and the doctors. My dad always said “you don’t know if you don’t at least try.” We were praying like crazy and in the back of my head I knew we would be ok and she would beat it. 6 months in to it she lost her hair and that destroyed her she had the prettiest blonde hair and it was gone overnight. This hurt me so bad seeing her in pain and all I can do is pray. Yet again i’m still feeling so helpless and sad. I just kept praying and next thing I knew we were at family dinner when we got the call that she was cancer free. God came through again. He has blessed me so much. I believe prays work because all I have been through. I hope everyone realizes prayers work. Whether they are 7yrs old or 70yrs old I hope they experience the comfort of a prayers as I did. Feeling sorry for myself didn’t change a thing but me doing the only thing I could did. Even if you don’t believe in God if something happens and you’re in a dark hole try Praying God heard mine he will hear yours too. Its at least worth a try whether it’s a 10 second or 10 minute prayer I believe prayers work I hope someday you do too.

Homeless Shelter and The Obsession of the Mind

Obsession of the Mind……Powerful!

Flyingsober.com

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During my alcoholic tornado my family and friends had decided they were through enabling me.  I ended up at the Nashville Rescue Mission.  I was suppose to stay 30 days in the shelter and then I could transfer over to The Hope Center which was a program for women with Drug and Alcohol Problems and entailed Bible based studies for 6 months.  I had been at the shelter about 2 weeks, when standing out in the back courtyard, I had an idea.  You have to understand at this sick part of my life, I was obsessed with alcohol and how to get it about 90% of the time.  I was not allowed to leave the shelter, or I would be kicked out of the program.  So here I am standing in the courtyard and suddenly the thought comes to my mind that I could probably slip away real easily, run…

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Alcoholics Anonymous and The Sermon on The Mount

How much do you know about Recovery and The Twelve Steps?  Did you know this?

imageThe Sermon on the Mount had a different history in early A.A. Both Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob, founders of Alcoholics Anonymous said several times that Jesus’ sermon on the mount contained the underlying philosophy of A.A. As A.A.’s own literature reports: “He [Dr. Bob] cited the Sermon on the Mount as containing the underlying spiritual philosophy of A.A.” (DR. BOB and the Good Oldtimers. NY: Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc., 1980, p. 228). Dr. Bob had no hesitancy about reading from the Bible and reading from it this sermon at meetings. An A.A. Grapevine article states that at a meeting led by Dr. Bob, Dr. Bob “put his foot on the rung of a dining-room chair, identified himself as an alcoholic, and began reading the Sermon on the Mount” (DR. BOB, supra, p. 218). Dr. Bob pointed out that there were no twelve steps at the beginning, that “our stories didn’t amount to anything to speak of,” and that they [A.A.’s “older ones”] were “convinced that the answer to their problems was in the Good Book” (DR. BOB, supra, p. 96). Clarence Snyder pointed out as to Dr. Bob: “If someone asked him a question about the program, his usual response was: ‘What does it say in the Good Book?’” (DR. BOB, supra, p. 144). Bob said quite clearly: “I didn’t write the Twelve Steps. I had nothing to do with the writing of them” but that “We already had the basic ideas, though not in terse and tangible form. We got them as a result of our study of the Good Book” (DR. BOB, supra, pp. 96-97). He also said the older members were convinced that the answer to their problems was in the Good Good.” Dr. Bob stressed over and over that the “the parts we found absolutely essential were” the Book of James, the Sermon on the Mount, and 1 Corinthians 13 (e.g. DR. BOB, supra, p. 96). In the Foreword he wrote to Dick B., The Good Book and The Big Book, Dr. Bob’s son “Smitty” pointed to the importance of James, the Sermon, and Corinthians; and I heard Smitty repeat his statement at several large A.A. history meetings, including one at A.A.’s San Diego International Convetion in 1995. Dr. Bob’s sponsee Clarence Snyder, got sober in February of 1938 and later became the AA with the greatest amount of sobriety. Clarence often echoed Dr. Bob’s words about the Bible and the three essential parts. Also, in a talk given to AAs in Glenarden, Maryland, on August 8, 1981, Clarence said: “This program emanates from the Sermon on the Mount and the Book of James. If you want to know where this program came from, read the fifth, sixth, seventh chapter of Matthew. Study it over and over, and you’ll see the whole program in there” (Glen Cove, NY: Glenn K. Audio Tape #2451).

The Resentment That Almost Killed Me

img_2038While walking through my recovery, a very important step was to write down all the people, places and things that I had a resentment to.  I was to write, in columns, the who, where, or what, why I had the resentment, what effect it had on my life, and what my part was, if any.  I found that in most cases I played a part in the resentment.  Once the work was done, I was to share it with someone I trusted.  During  process, I learned something that would change my life forever.  I learned that on of the most important keys in recovery from my alcoholism, was to put myself on my resentment list.

In that very moment a light bulb went on for me. Oh dear Lord, this is why I have relapsed with alcohol over and over again. This is what has kept me from surrendering my will to you. In facing the past, I would have to face the pain of just how much I hated myself for what I had done. I hated that person in the mirror. I actually had gotten to a place where I didn’t look in mirrors anymore. I found that the hate for myself, my guilt and shame, were at the root of my continuing to turn to the bottle even when I knew it was killing me. I would pick up a drink in an instant, just to not have to feel that pain. I think at times that kind of pain, the soul crushing kind, can drive people to consider suicide…..IF…and this is a huge IF…it is handled alone.

I also started to realize in this moment, that I wasn’t alone.

Psalms 118:5
In anguish I cried out to The Lord and he answered by setting me free.

For many alcoholics like me, by the time we discover that there is a solution to our alcoholism, the damage has already been done. Our husbands have suffered, our children have been neglected, our parents have cried until there are no tears left. Here we sit trying to get sober, but all the while trying to bear the guilt and shame of the past, all alone. So there I was with the name Lori Payne staring back at me, under the column labeled Who. The Who was me. It looked something like this.

Who:                                Lori Payne

What they Did:             Became an Alcoholic

How it effected Me:    Ruined my life

My part:                         Stayed in Denial, allowing the Disease to take over

There it was. Staring me in the face. I finally knew what had caused me to continue to pick-up a drink after knowing how bad it was destroying my life, and the lives of those unfortunate enough to be caught up in it. I could not handle the pain of my own shame and guilt. I would rather pick-up a bottle and all that entails, than feel the pain of my brokeness. Broken dreams, broken lives, broken hearts. When I looked at my son, I saw the years I had lost. The years he had lost. When I saw my husband I thought how could he ever truly love me again. He might love me again, but he would never see me as a wife to be adored, a wife to love as Christ loved the church. No, that kind of love was gone.
Let me tell you something from experience. When hate lives in your heart, you are doomed for brokeness. When the hate is for yourself, YOU will eventually destroy YOU.

It came time for me to share my inventory, something that I had done before.  This time when I shared about resenting myself, the pain came, the tears flowed, my guts hurt.  I began to list the awful things that I had done.  The shame and guilt poured out of me like vomit.  I went on and on for several hours with my sponsor.  I shared how I had driven drunk with my child in the care.  I shared stories of being drunk at family weddings, funerals, church.  But I think the worst pain was when I realized just how long my drinking had lasted.  I had lost time with loved ones that I could never get back.  Hurt that couldn’t be undone.  Babies that were never born.  Memories that were gone forever.  I wept.  I wept for me, I wept for my family, I wept for what could have been.

Then Jesus came.  He showed up just when I thought the pain would be too much.  Peace started to come over me.  It was exactly like my friends in recovery had shared with me.  My sweet Jesus would carry the load with me, if I would just turn to him.  Something happened to me that day.  Jesus showed up and carried my sin and shame.  For the first time in my life, I started to feel free.  I finally knew with every ounce of my heart and soul that Jesus loved me.  I knew that I wouldn’t ever have to feel alone again, I had Jesus.  He died on the cross, not just for everyone else, he died for me.  That day I began to live.

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