Step Seven

Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Dear Fellow Travelers,

Step Seven Essay

Once again into the breach rode the magnificent 400. Guns to the right, guns to the left, still onward rode the 400.

Dear God,

Here and now we start yet another step that will lead us to victory, so people may know that You may and will grant us serenity, should we but ask, and are willing to allow You to remove our defects. Much like the 400 mentioned above we know the odds are very much against us, yet we continue this journey. Here we humbly askYou to remove these defects of character that drag us through life as drunken men, caring not for our families, nor ourselves. Here then we not only know of our weakness and failures, we have listed them and given them to You and another human being. During steps four, five and six, we acknowledged who and what we are and now we surrender all toYou, and only You may make the changes we now pray for.

Remember way back in step three when what we understood was not what we read? So many thought that making the decision was indeed surrendering to and giving You our will and our lives to do with as You would. Nope. Not so. This step seven is the beginning of the end of our slavery to the diseased mind of compulsive any and everything. This then is how we learn to become saints knowing that we will not become so. On page 76 of the AA BB is a prayer we might say now:

"My Creator, I am now willing that You should have all of me, good and bad. I pray that You remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my being of usefulness to You and my fellows. Grant me the strength as I go out from here to do Your bidding. Amen."

For those of you who are not ready to make this pact with your higher power I suggest going over even if briefly steps 4, 5, and 6. We are at the place where the promises of the program begin to come true. Now if only lip service has been done by the reader and nothing happens, do not blame the program. Look in the mirror and ask the face in the glass if honesty has in fact been with you along the way. Have you decided that some of these steps were and are optional, and a partial victory is better than none. My prayer is that not one person falls by the wayside, as we have come a long way to now be in seeing distance and feeling God's grace course through us. To know we will still face life with all its ups and downs, births, illness, death and so very many difficultes. We will know our rightful place in all things, God forever on call, and no matter what, a sense of well being and serenity.

Here we face the fact that unless we approach step seven as if it is merely a continuation of step six - and the key to step seven is humility - we are powerless over our disease and over people, places, things and situations. That only by humbly asking the God of our understanding to give us the grace and strength to do the next right thing will we stand victorious as our disease is cast aside. One day we will be able to see that some degree of humility is in each step we take to be free of our compulsion to overeat, drink, drug, gamble, well just about everything. We must become teachable so we are ready when the teacher arrives. This then is where we let go and begin to let God. Be prepared to have defects once removed to sneak up and bite your butt. Chances are you have softened up in the spiritual department and are receiving a wake-up call.

By now, if we have been thorough, a serenity will enter all our affairs, and life in general will show a vast improvement. Long before we know it the people around us begin to remark about the way we have changed. Then one day we sink back into old harmful behaviors. Fear not! Just call on your HP and give service to your fellows. Service to the program, especially by sponsoring, is one of the best ways to keep that which has been so freely given to us - Give it away or lose it. We will make mistakes and pay for them, as that is the way of life. It matters not how many times we fall but how many times we fail to get back up. This is not an adventure for sissies but a long journey for the chosen few. The rest of the trip is doing the next right thing.

Like a splinter which needs to be removed or tooth that needs to be pulled, our defects must also be taken away. In some cases they served a purpose but now must go as they stand in the way of our God-given right to serenity. To those still plodding along may I say atta boy, keep on keepin' on. Let me know your thoughts on step seven or whichever step you are on. Humility orders me to admit I need you, all of you, much more than you need me. AND WHY NOT……….Danny


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