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HERE'S TO YOUR HEALTH

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This week's HTYH is a continuation of Scott's story: The greatest of the seven deadly sins, (false-pride, greed, lust, envy, sloth, anger, gluttony), is "False Pride" because it leads to self-justification, always spurred by fear, conscious, or unconscious, it is the breeder of most human difficulties--the chief block to spiritual growth. What dark twist in our Characters is blocking us from the sunlight of the Spirit? Am I a phony people pleaser, who cares more about his designer clothes, material possessions and money, than having a healthy relationship with God? Am I grateful for my blessings, or do I take my family, friends, and God for granted. If we're neglecting spirituality and not being grateful, or fearing the loss of what we have, or fearing we won't get what we want--why should we be surprised that our lives suck?

If we trust in God then we should accept things exactly as they are instead of wishing they were our way. Are we like the criminal safe cracker who wrongly believes that society has wronged him? Are we not more concerned about our resentments, our self-pity, or ourselves than God? Selfishness—self-centeredness! That we believe is the root of our troubles. Driven by a thousand forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation, but we invariably find that at some time in our past we have made decisions based on self that later placed us in a position to be hurt.

So our troubles, we think, are of our own making, they arise out of ourselves, and the alcoholic is an extreme example of a self-will run riot, although he or she doesn't think so. Above everything, we must be rid of our selfishness, or it will kill us. God makes selflessness and a life based on altruism possible through the program of Alcoholics Anonymous. We cannot be entirely free without God's aid. Many of us had moral and philosophical convictions galore, but we could not live up to them even though we would have liked to. Never could we reduce our self-centeredness, or wish it away by our own unaided power—We had to have God's help.

This is the how and why of it. First of all, we had to stop playing God. That didn't work. Next we decided that hereafter the God of our understanding was going to be our new Director. He is the Father and we are His children. This new concept was the keystone to a new and triumphant arch through which we passed to freedom and all sorts of remarkable things followed. We had a new Employer who was all--powerful, and He provided what we needed, whenever we kept close to Him and performed His work well. Established on such a footing we became less and less interested in ourselves--our little plans and designs. More and more we became interested in seeing what we could bring to the table and contribute to life. As we felt new power flow in, as we enjoyed peace of mind, as we discovered we could face life successfully, as we became conscious of His presence, we began to lose our fear of yesterday, today, tomorrow, or the hereafter. We were reborn into the sunlight of the Spirit.

We can resent and deny God's existence if we want to. God gave us freewill and He will not take it back even if we use it to destroy ourselves, or others, but nevertheless, evoked, or not, God is there--closer than our hands and feet. His will is our peace. The choice is ours to make and nobody can make it for us.

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John Barleycorn
About This Author
The phantom writer of the column "Here's to Your Health". This writer is an active member of Alcoholics Anonymous and therefore must maintain anonymity.
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