Step Twelve

Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps,
we tried to carry this message to compulsive eaters,
and to practice these principles in all our affairs.







Leader's Share and Step Questions


Phyllis here; chunkie, drunkie, junkie...clean, sober, abstinent since May 20, 1972

12th Step prayer
Dear G-d, My spiritual awakening continues to unfold. The Help I have received I shall pass on and give to others, both in and out of the fellowship. For this opportunity I am grateful. I pray, most humbly to continue walking, day by day, on the road of spiritual progress. I pray for the inner strength and wisdom to practice the principles of this way of life in all I do and say. I need you, my friends and the Program every hour of every day. This is a better way to live.

Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to compulsive eaters, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

And so, we have worked our way to step 12. Step 1---show Up, Step 2--- Look Up; Step 3----Give up; Steps 4 and 5----'fess up; Step 6 and 7----Straighten Up; Steps 7 and 8----Make Up; Steps 10 and 11----Keep Up; Step 12---Suit Up, Show Up, and Speak Up.

In the 12th Step, for me, it is an opportunity to turn around and look down the road I traveled to get here. I will keep going because this is the life changing path I've been searching for. The action it suggests is the daily effort to live an entirely new way of life. I know what the message is and now, I will carry the message. The best way to do this is by living the message! But, you need to get the message, that's why it is the 12th Step. We now have the glow we saw in the fellowship when we first entered. It is going from powerlessness in step 1 to powerful in step 12. The "gift" that keeps on giving is key to better understanding and living without a price tag.

AA 12x12: " Can we bring the same spirit of love and tolerance into our sometimes deranged family lives that we bring to our OA group? Can we have the same of confidence and faith in these people who have been infected and sometimes crippled by our own illness that we have in our sponsors? Can we actually carry the OA spirit into our daily work? Can we meet our newly recognized responsibilities to the world at large? And can we bring new purpose and devotion to the religion of our choice? Can we find a new joy of living in trying to do something about all these things?
How shall we come to terms with seeming failure or success? Can we now accept and adjust to either without despair or pride? Can we now accept poverty, sickness, loneliness, and bereavement with courage and serenity? Can we steadfastly content ourselves with the humbler, yet sometimes more durable, satisfactions when the brighter , more glittering achievements are denied us?" The BOOK says, "yes!'

Lots to ponder here. Reread the steps again and again. The problems of life, which we could not face, are assisted by a Higher Power, as we understand Him, and we change our ideas into assets, sources of growth and comfort for ourselves and others. If there is willingness to "practice these principles in all our affairs", it seems that life is not as troublesome, and by G-d's grace take them and turn them into demonstrations of faith. AA 12x12

OA 12x12. Let's return to the Step. The central factor in this spiritual awakening has been our decision to trust a Higher Power with every aspect of our lives. One day at a time, we have been given a new set of skills which enable us to clear from our lives everything which might interfere with our trust in this Higher Power. We are no longer afraid of food because it does not control us. We have been given new ways of coping and new practices.

This is not the end of the journey, but the beginning. There is no graduation. It is meant for me to share my recovery with others, no matter which step they may be on. Service is carrying the message. Whether it is a hug that you give, or a phone call or meeting you attend, simple words of encouragement we speak come back to us. We share the miracles we have seen and experienced. We hold a newcomer's hand and say, "keep coming back" We stay and carry the message of abstinence, the most important service I can give. I have had the privilege of leading meetings and retreats throughout the country, Canada and some small places hardly noticeable when you are driving, and I always ask G-d to put the right words in my heart and help me tell them what they asked for. Believe me when I say that at the end of a retreat, coupled with tiredness and loss of my voice, I have always felt renewed and joyous for the gift I have been given.

We have learned the principles of the Program: 1-honesty, 2-Hope, 3-Faith, 4-courage, 5-integrity, 6-willingness, 7-humility, 8-self discipline, 9-love, 10 perseverance, 11-spiritual awareness, 12-service.

OA 12x12: "Those of us who live this program don't simply carry the message, we are the message. Each day that we live well, we are well and we embody the joy of recovery which attracts others who want what we've found in OA. We are always happy to share our secret: the 12 Steps, which empower us to live well and be well, one day at a time."

The complete Serenity Prayer
G-d grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change; Courage to change the things I can, and Wisdom to know the difference. Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardship as the pathway to peace. Taking, as He did this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His will, that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.

When I was first asked to volunteer for this opportunity to share Program, I felt I don't know how I will do it--I don't have lots of time, people do not want to hear from this "old lady", bla, bla, bla., same old thing, etc. I must tell you that I have been overjoyed to do this weekly and looked forward to sharing about the thing I love best....Program. It is a miracle every time I share, even though I have done it so many times before, that I am delighted to share my enthusiasm about recovery. I've been doing this for 40 years and love every minute of it. How many people can say that? It has given me my love, my family, a career that I loved, a home in paradise,abstinent food on the table, a day at a time, and certainly not to be forgotten, much better health than anyone in my family. No one has lived this long! I had so much material that I wanted share, questions, answers, poems, slogans, etc. Another time, perhaps.

I have been deeply touched by the responses I have received and enjoyed your sharing. It has been both humbling and exciting, realizing there are thousands of people, like myself, working one day at a time to be abstinent. That is the keystone.

You, too, can become an oldtimer. Don't Eat and Don't Die.

Yes, I will continue to be here as long as my HP deems it so and should I be lucky enough, when I am called, I will save you a seat at the "meeting" up there. Keep coming back. I did!

In fellowship and love, G-d bless,

Phyllis







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