I other day I was at a meeting when I heard someone say, “I not working with anyone. I need to work on me. I need to take care my sobriety, my health, my needs, afterall this is a selfish program.”
But what does our Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous say about that?
Page 20, paragraph 1:
“Our very lives, as ex-problem drinkers depend upon our constant thought of others and how we may help meet their needs.”
Page 97, paragraph 2:
“Helping others is the foundation stone of your recovery. A kindly act once in a while isn’t enough. You have to act the Good Samaritan every day, if need be. It may mean the loss of many nights’ sleep, great interference with your pleasures, interruptions to your business. It may mean sharing your money and your home, counseling frantic wives and relatives, innumerable trips to police courts, sanitariums, hospitals, jails and asylums. Your telephone may jangle at any time of the day or night. ”
“For if an alcoholic failed to perfect and enlarge his spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, he could not survive the certain trials and low spots ahead.”
Page 62, paragraph 2:
“Selfishness, self-centeredness! That, we think, is the root of our troubles.”
Page 62, paragraph 3:
“So our troubles, we think, are basically of our own making. They arise out of ourselves, and the alcoholic is an extreme example of self-will run riot, though he usually doesn’t think so. Above everything, we alcoholics must be rid of this selfishness. We must, or it kill us!”
I always remember when I hear someone say, “This a selfish program”, the words from the Joe and Charlie steps series:
“When I take care of God’s business, God takes care of me.”
For years I tried to stay sober and clean on my will power and my need to stop and could not. It was not until I started putting the needs of others ahead my own that things changed. When I focus my energy on helping the other person stay sober, God takes care of my sobriety. It took a tremendous leap of faith to practice this principle but, for many years now this has been my experience.