We are up to the most beautiful, hopeful chapter in the big book, if you ask me. A Vision for You on page 151. Once again, do your exercise to cross out alcohol/alcoholic and write food/COE/etc to make it really meaningful for you, with your disease and recovery.
It starts out so profoundly, talking about what we got from overeating - a social thing, a way to stimulate creativity. I don't know that this was the case for me. Speaking for myself, I isolated when I ate. What is it that the OA 12x12 says, "We procrastinated, we hid and we ate." Yes, that describes me. But those four horsemen of terror, bewilderment, frustration and despair. I knew those four horsemen intimately.
The early days of a diet - "I don't miss it at all". But like the boy whistling in the dark, I feared the day when the horrible cycle of binges would resume. It always did.
And now we see the 12th step promises on page 152 -the substitute for the stupor of overeating. I am released from care, boredom and worry, my imagination is truly on fire, and life means so much to me today, that I love waking up to see what each day will bring. I almost committed suicide in my final month of overeating. So I cling to these promises.
I love how we really do get to meet new friends. I have so many people in my life today that would just not be there, if I did not find OA. I'll see friends from all over the world soon as I go to Albuquerque as a delegate to the World Service Business Conference. I never would have had the opportunity to hug people that I call friends, from England, New Zealand, Belgium, Israel and New Jersey! LOL. I'm only teasing about New Jersey! But you understand what I'm saying here? I have friends that are lawyers, teachers, nurses, accountants, mothers, engineers, cashiers, waitresses ... I never would have been able to call these people friends, were it not for OA.
The age of miracles is truly upon this abstinent food addict.
This stays a reality for me, as long as I stay away from the first bite (page 154). If I do not eat a cookie, I cannot eat a whole bag. If I do not eat a slice of pizza, I cannot eat a whole pie. Or two. Or three. I've done that.
This is all about having a spiritual experience. It is absolutely necessary to sustain this recovery. Will power doesn't work where food is concerned for us. I am taking a treatment for food addiction (page 157). I'm not here because of political aspirations or some kind of popularity club. I'm here because I never want to live that sick life again. Never. Part of my 'treatment' is to carry the message.
I have to admit, when I was invited to lead this 12 week step study with you, I was apprehensive. Where would I find the time? Who cared about how I took the steps? What if nobody showed up? But here it is in this chapter, I've got to carry the message if I want to keep this recovery that was given to me as such a beautiful gift.
So read this chapter, and see how OA grew, one person helping another. And think about how the twelfth step will work in your life.
Here are some questions to consider:
Are you having a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps?
How do you try to carry the message?
How do you practice the principles in all your affairs?
What is God disclosing to you right now?
Is your own house in order?
Are you trying to transmit something you haven't got?
Have you abandoned yourself to God?
Have you admitted your faults and cleared away the wreckage of your past?
What does trudging that Road of Happy Destiny mean to you?
May God bless you and keep you until next week! We'll do a review of all the steps next week, our last week. I hope you are as enriched by this study as I am. It has been a true honor to read your stepwork. Thank you for helping me to stay abstinent first, absolutely.