To start off, I feel better today so I’m really grateful for that!
I’m not 100% at full strength and my cough hasn’t gone away, but I don’t feel like I have a fever.
I had the opportunity last night to talk with my sponsee after his first week in the program. He had had one slip up, which I talked about how serious it is that he has 100% abstinence if I will have to drop him and he’ll have to start all over again.
He had questions about this, which I was ok with. His questions pertained to what being “ready” means since I told him that if he couldn’t abstain from his addiction, then I would have to let him go and he would have to come back when he was ready to fully commit.
As I thought about this concept later and talked with Beck, I got more insight, which I shared with him this morning:
One thing I thought of last night after we talked had to do with your question about why the program cuts people off if they aren’t “ready.”
The main reason is because, for most of us, we’ve been making promises to someone like our bishop, our self, our parents, or whoever, that we’re going to stop – today was the last time. But, as we all know, that never happens (or it hasn’t happened in our efforts to “white-knuckle-it” in the past).
This program is different. For addicts who are truly ready to turn their life and will over to God and to His Son Jesus Christ, they are ready to do whatever it takes.
This program is what can be different for you. As you apply the principles and warnings of this program, you can find that change of heart you’re looking for because you’re willing to do whatever it takes to rid your life of your addictions.
In connection with that, per your journal entry last night about the girl you mentioned, here is a snippet from the outline of the program:
7. A note about relationships: It is not wise to make any changes in your relationship status during this process. If married or in a committed relationship, stay that way if at all possible. Give your recovery time to work and help change things for the better. SHOW them by your example, what the program can do. If single or uncommitted, stay that way, and don’t do any serious or romantic dating during our work together. Until recovery is achieved, both you and those you date are in serious jeopardy. Socializing and group settings are encouraged but pairing off or starting an intimate relationship would be inappropriate at this time. Be honest and be considerate with those you associate with. Trust in the Lord and be patient with this process!
Please make sure you review the Outline of details you committed to when we started.
It was great to talk to you yesterday. I have confidence in your ability to turn your life and will over to God and let Him direct you for good. I know He is there for all of us and wants us to break these chains of addiction.
Thanks Grant! Have a great day!
I don’t want to be too hard on him, but I do know that being direct and straight forward was what I needed in order to be where I am today. Becky’s boundaries, Brandon’s straightforwardness, and my own realization of what I was about to lose – caused me to do things different than I’d ever done in the past.
I sent this email just now to my accountabilibuddy:
I’m not 100% yet but am feeling better today. Thanks.
I had a good call yesterday with my sponsee, talked about how important it is to remain abstinent or I’ll have to drop him, and reviewed his answers from week one.
I worked on my spreadsheets today as well and will be consistent this week in filling them out now that I can actually think 🙂
Besides being sick, everything else is going well. Today is day 402 in recovery, I did go to the step meeting on Thursday even though I was pretty ill, and I was happy to be there. I learned that one of the guys in our group just signed up for the ArpSupport program, so I’m excited for him.
Sponsorship is a great thing too. It’s a good reminder of where I’ve been and where I don’t want to go back to.
I’ll look forward to your emails this week and would even be happy to chat on the phone for a bit if you’d like. Let me know. Thanks Brandon. Here’s my work:
As I study Alma 26 today, one of the things that Ammon talks about is that the natural man can’t understand God’s ways. When I cross-referenced “knoweth” I found this scripture in 1 Cor. 2:11 (9–16):
9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
10 But God hath revealedthem unto us by his Spirit: for the Spiritsearcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
14 But the natural manreceiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he knowthem, because they are spirituallydiscerned.
15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
I liked a few parts of that scripture. First, “…the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”
This reminds me of what was discussed in Sunday School yesterday. Christ had recently gone to “meat” with one of the Pharisees, Simon. It seemed the intent of the Pharisees was to entrap Christ or catch him saying something that would prove he wasn’t the Son of God as he was professing to be.
While they were there, a woman came in unto him, who was a sinner and probably known throughout the town as a sinner. She bowed down before the Lord, she washed his feet with her tears, she gave him ointment, and she kissed his feet – all signs of respect and love.
As the Pharisees watched this, they said in their hearts – “Surely this guy isn’t a prophet: if he was he’d know that this woman is a sinner and he’d cast her out.”
Christ knew the thoughts and intents of their hearts and proceeded with this lesson:
40 And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on.
41 There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred apence, and the other fifty.
43 Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.
44 And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head.
45 Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet.
46 My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment.
47 Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are aforgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.
48 And he said unto her, Thy sins are aforgiven.
49 And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that aforgiveth sins also?
This is such an interested parable. It reminds me of what is often said in the meeting about how we are grateful for our addiction because it’s helped us come to know God and His Son is such a different way. Or, in other words, “[our] sins, which are many, are fogiven; for [we] loved much…”
I’m so grateful for recovery and for the power of the Atonement in my life today. I’m grateful to be a sponsor and be helping someone else who I identify with.
I’m grateful how sponsorship reminds me of where I’ve been and of the fact that I never want to return there again.
I’m grateful how sponsorship is a way to serve others while at the same time protecting myself from my addictions.
I’m grateful that I feel better today and that I’m going to be able to get caught up on work that I’ve had to put off last week.
I love my wife.
I love my kids.
I love the Savior and His teachings.
I want to share what I’ve learned about recovery with anyone who will listen.
I want to be as Ammon, an instrument in the hands of God.
I know that I am nothing; as to my own strength, I am weak…
I’m grateful, today, for that understanding.