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[fa icon="calendar'] Oct 11, 2018 12:24:33 PM / by John D. posted in integrity, rehabilitation, recovery community, shame, guilt, acceptance

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I received my three-month medallion on October 22, 1978. I was fifteen, sober and I was thrilled. To add to my excitement - weeks earlier I had scored tickets to see Bob Dylan at the St. Paul Civic Center on October 31, 1978. This would be the first time that Bob Dylan would play a concert in Minnesota in 16 years. The concert had sold-out immediately and I had managed to get tickets. I was stoked. I was three-months sober and I was going to see Dylan.

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Humility involves always being open to new learning.

[fa icon="calendar'] Oct 1, 2018 9:19:41 PM / by John MacDougall posted in integrity, abuse, god-conscious, faith-based recovery, rehabilitation

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When I was a boy, I eagerly read each issue of Mad Magazine. It’s fictional editor, Alfred E. Neuman, had a quote above the index of each issue. One of my favorites was “Some minds are like concrete: all mixed up and permanently set.” A Peanuts cartoon of that era had Lucy shouting “If you can’t be right, be wrong at the top of your voice.” I’m writing this newsletter during the Senate hearings on a Supreme Court nomination. It seems as if nearly everyone is sure that they know what happened at a high school party long ago: the nominee is guilty, or innocent, depending upon whom you ask. I’m not hearing the more humble opinion of “I don’t know, I wasn’t there.”

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Proof of Attendance at Meetings

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 13, 2018 10:10:06 AM / by John D. posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, AA, AA meetings

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There is a question that comes up repeatedly around the rooms of the program - what about these people the courts are sending here? What should we do with them?

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There is Hope in The Pain

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 29, 2018 9:30:00 AM / by Kara F posted in faith-based recovery, women in recovery, Recovery, spirituality

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Life is hard sometimes. When I entered the world of life in recovery, I thought it was about just not using and redeeming what I thought was my horrible, weak character. Years later, I now know that it is much more. Life, whether through addiction recovery or any other adversity, is about reaching a chapter of spiritual growth. So here’s the hard truth! Spiritual growth does not blossom through the easy, peasy moments. It is birthed through adversity and hardship. And nobody escapes life without adversity and hardship! Here’s the thing…life and people and circumstances are not out to get you, they are out to grow you!

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Evaluating Our Own Sobriety

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 22, 2018 9:30:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, 12 step program, 4th Step, 5th Step, 10th Step

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Alcoholism is a disease of self-deception. We can be taking all twelve steps, and still avoid the spiritual growth of the program. “Remember” the Big Book says, “that we deal with alcohol---cunning, baffling, and powerful! Without help it is too much for us. But there is One who has all power—that One is God. May you find Him now!” (p.58-59)

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Detachment with Respect

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 17, 2018 12:06:56 PM / by Sherry Gaugler-Stewart posted in healthy detachment, detachment with respect, alcoholism, alcoholic loved one, boundaries

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Slamming doors. Broken dishes. Arguments that the neighbors could hear clearly. Tears. Unkind words. And, conversely the resonant sound of hostile silence. The disease of alcoholism had wedged itself into the middle of our marriage.

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Garbage In - Garbage Out

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 8, 2018 9:30:00 AM / by John D. posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, Twelve Step programs, 12th step

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There’s an old phrase in computer programming that goes… “Garbage In – Garbage Out”. In other words, if I program a faulty code, I’m going to get a faulty outcome.

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Alcoholics Anonymous Has A “Safety Card” Because We Are Making Spiritual Progress

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 25, 2018 10:00:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, AA, AA meetings, The AA Safety Card

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The A.A. Big Book, on page 60, states “The point is, that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines. The principles we have set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection.”

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Digging the Hole

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 18, 2018 11:14:08 AM / by Sherry Gaugler-Stewart posted in Recovery, addiction, alcoholism, family recovery

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Watching someone you love struggle with addiction or alcoholism is extremely painful. I often liken it to watching someone dig a deep hole.

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Integrity

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 11, 2018 9:01:01 AM / by John D. posted in integrity, Alcoholics Anonymous, working the steps to recovery

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Recently during the U.S. Open a professional golfer swatted at his golf ball while it was moving. He knowingly did this in violation of the rules that govern golf. In a subsequent tournament another professional golfer took a drop with a golf shot that was controversial at best and which some of his fellow players characterized as cheating. Both of the situations were unfortunate and sullied the reputation of both players. It is said that golf doesn’t build character – it reveals it.

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