Day 85 – Step Work
You will continue to make mistakes as you interact with others, but a commitment to step 10 is a commitment to take responsibility for mistakes. If you examine your thoughts and actions each day and resolve them, negative thoughts and feelings will not increase until they threaten your abstinence. You no longer have to live in isolation from the Lord or others. You will have strength and faith to face difficulties and overcome them. You can rejoice in your progress and trust that practice and patience will ensure continued recovery.
Will you strive for spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection, humbly and faithfully, as you practice step 10, one day at a time? Describe how you feel about this.
Yes, I will strive for this. I like how it talks about progress and not perfection. I want to submit my will and my life over to God and let Him direct me for good. I want to have the faith and humility to do this. I know it takes time. I know it takes practice, and I know I can only do things one day at a time.
I look forward to today and will not let negative feelings or emotions bring me down.
Participate in priesthood interviews as part of your commitment to self-appraisal; continue to strengthen your relationships with other Church members
We can all remember a time when we were afraid to look honestly at our own behaviors. Trying to avoid such moments was one reason many of us limited our involvement in the Church. However, as we progressed through this program of rigorous honesty, we began to understand the value of self-appraisal.
What negative thoughts and feelings have you experienced in your church activity?
Honestly, I don’t know that I’ve had many if any negative thoughts about church activity. I think part of this is a “must be seen as” issue – a pride issue where I don’t want people to think I’m not doing well. But I’m grateful that today I’m in an honest place of recovery.
Will you apply step 10 to any negative thoughts and emotions that arise as you progress in your church activity and spiritual development?
Yes. I feel a few negative thoughts today because a couple contacts I have decided to work with a competitor instead of me. However, I can’t take that personally. All I can do is look forward, be my best, and do what I can to focus on positive feelings.
I’m grateful for the recognition of the negative thoughts – this is something I never did before.
Now we no longer fear the opportunities for self appraisal that come through activity in the Church. We are able to appreciate the truth of this teaching of Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin of the Quorum of the Twelve:
“Worthiness interviews, sacrament meetings, temple attendance, and other Church meetings are all part of the plan that the Lord provides to educate our souls, to help us develop the healthy habit of constantly checking our bearings to stay on the path of faith. Regular spiritual checkups help us navigate life’s highways and byways. . . .
“. . . We can all . . . benefit by looking deep inside our hearts during reverent moments of worship and prayer and asking ourselves this simple question, ‘Am I true?’ “The question becomes more powerfully useful if we are completely honest with our answers and if it motivates us to make repentant course corrections that keep us on the path of faith” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1997, 20; or Ensign, May 1997, 17).
Do you feel more at ease as you consider on-going worthiness interviews in the church? Please describe how.
Yes. I feel very open and willing to do whatever it takes to stay honest with myself and others.
Have you learned the value of being accountable to others? Explain.
Yes. Working with a sponsor has been so helpful. I hope to continue to return and report to someone, for I feel this is best for me, at least for now. When I know no one is watching (or caring), I tend to slide back into my comfort zone, which actually isn’t comfortable at all – it’s depressed, shamed, and ultimately addictive.
As you participate in these opportunities for self evaluation, you will find yourself growing in love for brothers and sisters in the fellowship of the Church.
Examine your thoughts, words, and deeds daily; immediately set right any wrongs
Step 10 represents acceptance of the truth that you must continue to live by spiritual principles. If you stray from them, repent immediately and ask God at once to restore your peace through His Spirit. Honesty and humility can strengthen you. You will become more conscious of Heavenly Father’s presence in your life as you call on Him to help you stay spiritually clean. You will learn to value progress and to forgive imperfection in yourself and others. You will lose the desire to be at odds with anything or anyone. Self-appraisal becomes a way of life as you let go of fears and overcome temptations one day at a time.
Do these promised blessings inspire and motivate you to start practicing step 10?
Yes. I’m excited to repent immediately, to recognize feelings, and to stay close to the Spirit.
Will you work for, and watch for them to materialize in your life?
I will and I want to.
KEY PRINCIPLE: Seek through prayer and meditation to know the Lord’s will and to have the power to carry it out.
As we studied and practiced the steps of recovery, we became familiar and comfortable with a life based on humility and acceptance of God’s will. Gone were the angry, confused times when, if we prayed at all, we prayed either in an attitude of stubborn self-will or whimpering self-pity. We began to live so our lives reflected the prophetic counsel of President Ezra Taft Benson: “The constant and most recurring question in our minds, touching every thought and deed of our lives, should be, ‘Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?’ (Acts 9:6.) The answer to that question comes only through the Light of Christ and the Holy Ghost. Fortunate are those who so live that their being is filled with both” (“Jesus Christ—Gifts and Expectations,” Ensign, Dec. 1988, 2).
In step 11, we made a lifelong commitment to seek one day at a time to know the Lord’s will and to have the power to carry it out. Our greatest desire was to improve our abilities to receive guidance from the Holy Ghost and to conduct our lives accordingly. This desire was such a great contrast to the attitudes we had when we were lost in our addictions.
Describe the “contrast” between your life in active addiction and your life now.
Wow, it’s hard to even compare them. I feel so happy now. I feel so much less contention. Becky and I hardly ever fight. Not that we always agree, but our willingness to listen to the other person and try to understand them is so different now.
I’m grateful for the feelings of peace and comfort I have from the Spirit now. I’m grateful to be living in recovery. I’m grateful to have the desires to pray in the moment of temptation and not look at another woman to lust after her or “check her out.”
I feel there is more I can do.
I feel there is more I want to do.
But I’m willing to continue practicing and improving as best I can.
Are you able to make a “lifelong commitment” to this way of life, one day at a time? Describe how it feels to do so.
Absolutely! Today is day 378 for me in recovery. I don’t want to change the direction I’m facing. I want to continue to live one day at a time; I want to help others. I want to feel the Spirit. I want to be free from my addictive past.
I’m grateful for these feelings today!