Endigar 641 ~ Honesty with Newcomers

From the Daily Reflections of December 18;

Tell him exactly what happened to you. Stress the spiritual feature freely.   (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 93)

The marvel of A.A. is that I tell only what happened to me. I don’t waste time offering advice to potential newcomers, for if advice worked, nobody would get to A.A. All I have to do is show what has brought me sobriety and what has changed my life. If I fail to stress the spiritual feature of A.A.’s program, I am being dishonest. The newcomer should not be given a false impression of sobriety. I am sober only through the grace of my Higher Power, and that makes it possible for me to share with others.

 

END OF QUOTE

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Burning pulpit 10

“This is what I did,” is more powerful than “This is what you should do.”  There is such an irresistible human tendency to want to preach, particularly when we are stressing the spiritual feature of our stories.  In my first time in rehab, that was one thing that the counselors would attempt to train into us.  She would stop us when we started to preach or cross talk, and told us to relate what happened to ourselves and how that impacted our lives.  This allows the listener to take what they feel applies to them.  It also encourages the listener to begin opening up about their own lives and challenges us to become active listeners.  Comparing experience is so much more useful than trying to think and decide for someone else how they are to live their lives.  So lets burn the pulpit and share our stories around its fire.

(Photo: Bush Wiebe)

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