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Unsuspected inner resource

'Willingness, honesty and open mindedness are the essentials of recovery. But these are indispensable." (BB p.568)

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“Willingness, honesty and open mindedness are the essentials of recovery. But these are indispensable.” (BB p.568) It was only by keeping an open mind that I eventually found my Higher Power - or maybe it showed itself to me.

It was a big deal for me to come to believe in a Higher Power. I was brought up in a specific religion but at age 22, I lost faith when my mother died tragically of cancer, and it seemed my God had forsaken me and my family. So, it wasn’t easy to unthink 50 years of atheism and that isn’t what actually happened. Instead, after 50 years of alcohol addiction, I started going to meetings as often as I could and the evidence all around me was undeniable. What people were feeling, showing and saying - it was crystal clear that the AA Programme was working for them. My wonderful sponsor suggested that I start by just being open to the possibility there might be a Higher Power and not shutting out the possibility. As I followed the Programme, read the Big Book and listened, it became ever harder to think otherwise.  

It wasn’t long since the Covid lockdowns had eased and it seemed as if everyone was struggling with some big issues. Winter was approaching - those cold dark evenings when comfort was needed.  I remembered how I used to bluff my way through various difficult situations. Next day I thought, what if I bluff my way to a Higher Power - talk to it, let it guide me and see what happens?  

After all, I had already admitted I was powerless over alcohol and I couldn’t do this by myself - I did need a greater Power to restore me to sobriety.  As the days and weeks went by, I began to ask ‘it’ for help to keep me from drinking and to cope with the emotional rollercoasters - and it worked. 

Through other people I began to understand that it can be an emotional realisation, rather than analytical thinking.  At every meeting I felt (and still feel) a powerful, strong energy, or force for support, wrap around me in the room. As if ‘something’ is there, helping, taking care of us all.  Gradually I began to feel that this is everyone's higher consciousness / higher selves, looking after us.  Bit by bit I noticed my own “unsuspected inner resource”.  

And that’s how I came to be aware of my Higher Power, it’s inside me and beside me, and it really has the power to transform me. The evidence is clear, in that I’ve been able to follow the Programme and stay sober for over a year, and to feel restored. As someone said to me, “Put your sail up and let ‘it’ direct you."  My ongoing challenge is to submit to my Higher Power. I so need ‘the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; and the courage to change the things I can’ on a daily basis. I need to act, to find ways to help others. I need to do more.  

Nothing here is original. None of my recovery has come from me, it's all come from my Higher Power, the Programme, my sponsor, from fellow alcoholics - and with a generous helping from SHARE.  I'm so grateful.  SHARE connects me to everyone through all our Higher Powers. I love reading it every month and hope what I’ve learned through the Fellowship may be of some help to someone.

CARA, Hampshire