Step Five

Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being
the exact nature of our wrongs.

Leader's Share and Step Questions

STEP FIVE - “Admitted to God, to ourselves, one to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.”

SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLE: Integrity - defined as the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles’ moral uprightness. The state of being whole and undivided’ holiness.

FIFTH STEP PRAYER: God, My inventory has shown me who I am, yet I ask for. your help in admitting my wrongs to another person and to. You. Assure me and be with me, in this Step, for without this Step I cannot progress in my recovery, with you help, I can do this and I will do it.

It was difficult to admit my wrongs to myself. It was the most difficult part of Step Five. Denial can be blinding! How could I be expected to admit to myself those things I am blind to? I will often condemn in others the wrongs most deeply hidden within myself. I may be sorely aware of the deep shame, trouble, and pain I inflicted on my family when I was controlled by my addiction.. I was afraid to admit the exact nature of my wrongs because I didn’t understand how God could love someone who is so bad. I may be asking, How could God (or anyone) still love me? There is absolutely nothing I can do or confess to God that would cause him to stop loving me. I use different kinds of instruments to measure my life will often determine the kinds of problems I uncover. I can’t make accurate assessments if I use faulty guidelines. I may wonder why I am not progressing in the recovery program. I may need to look closel at the. Measuring devices I am using to uncover my problem areas. A plumb line is a length of string that has weight tied to the end. The same holds true in the spiritual realm. God’s word is my spiritual plumb line. I can’t change the spiritual laws revealed in the Bible. I should measure my life by the plumb line of God’s Word. It is important that I admit there is a problem and start rebuilding accordingly. When things don’t measure up, I was hiding because shame kept me hiding. Revealing my sins to someone else stirs up feelings of shame and the fear of being publicly exposed. God is a person to whom I can safely expose my secrets. My confessor needs to be someone who is not surprised by sin and will not waiting to condemn me. We need to be careful about whom I choose to confide in since shame can be a trigger for addictive behaviors. I go through the process of accepting the truth about my life and the consequences of my choices, as I go through the recovery process. I may feel that I have to earn forgiveness instead of receiving it. It is easier to forgive others who have hurt me then myself. I receive forgiveness by God’s word. I have to open my eyes to my true condition which happens in Steps One, Two and Four. It allows me the opportunity to repent, the changing my mind, and so that I was in agreement with God and ready to admit my sins. Forgiveness awaits me now if I only receive it. I have struggled with my conscience, and trying to make peace within my own heart. I have. Denied what I have done, found excuses, and tried to squirm out from beneath the full weight of my conduct. Being “good” is hard. I must stop rationalizing my sins and admit the truth. In Step Five, I set out to stop this internal struggle and admit that wrong is wrong. It is time to be honest with myself and God about my cover-ups and the exact nature of my wrongs. I have to admit to the pain that I caused others. There is no real freedom without confession. It is a relief to finally give up the weight of my lies and excuses. I will find internal peace and one step closer to recovery. I discovered that my wrongs were actually seeds. They grow and bear fruit. I have to deal with a crop of consequences and face the fact that self-deception doesn’t work to my advantage. I say good-bye to self-deception and hello to forgiveness and cleansing in Step Five.

My Introduction Is Taken From In My Own Words From The Twelve Step Devotionals From The Life Recovery Bible

I am not meant to keep secrets, even about my most shameful acts. God calls me to be connected, to bear one another’s burdens, and to open the eyes of my heart. Addiction is in opposition to God’s design because it thrives on secrets, sneaking and hiding food,drinks,hits or partners. My first reaction to “admitting to Godo, to ourselves, and to another human being” my own faults through the Fourth Step inventory, and God knows it all anyway, we don’t have to be vulnerable to another person.Pride and ego block my spiritual growth and keep me at a distance from God and others.Knowledge and understanding alone will never result in recovery. When I am in an isolated and protected space, recovery efforts are easily sabotaged, as I create and maintain plenty of room for destructive behaviors to continue. It is easy to keep the veil over my eyes and the eyes of others as I remain in the shadows of denial. My pride and shame become more ingrained when I avoid facing up to our actions or claiming who I really am. To work Step Five, I must reach another level of humility and willingness. To have God in all my parts of my heart and life, I must be able to admit my exact wrongs honestly and openly. By sharing my story of poor choices, poor relationships, and poor reactions to life (i.e., sin) I got a clearer picture of the behaviors I have sown that have led to the harvest of addiction. By being exact and specific, I can no longer fool myself about how badly my addiction and its consequences have affected my life and those of people around me. This confessional step initiates a new direction in my life as I begin living to please the Spirit and harvest everlasting life. Remember that the steps are not only about victory over addictive behaviors. I am also ridding myself of the block that keep me from being of service to God and others. I cleanse my heart of resentment, bitterness, fear and judgment and make room for the truly useful and good things God has for me. My character assets will be more readily apparent to me and more available to God. Who should this be to whom I will trust my moral inventory and trust to be part of my healing process? I need a sponsor who is more interested in my spiritual wholeness and my freedom and progress in recovery than in my individual transgressions. A sponsor must be able to lead us through the shame and the fear while assuring me that getting unstuck is worth the risk of being fully known. I can find a sponsor who has been through the Twelve Steps personally, and who can listen with compassion and acceptance not judgment. As I read my Step Four to my sponsor in Step Five, my sponsor help me to look even deeper “into the exact nature of my wrongs.” By admitting and examining the specifics of my sin as I work Step Five, I find a pathway to the deeper core problems that lead me to wrong-doing. As we know the truth about myself “the truth will set me free.” God will come down and take down the wall that stood between myself and others. I can face my past, mired in addiction, pain and shame, with a new attitude. A sense of humility and gratitude begins to form. I found that God doesn’t give up on me, and that his compassion is unending. Step Five moves me to freedom. Completion of this step, I may have a mixture of feelings, from relief to gratitude to confusion. I have now inventoried and disclosed my deepest moral and spiritual secrets. I have faced some difficult aspects of myself that I wanted to deny before. Adhering to this process is a surrender in itself. I must accept forgiveness from God and our sponsor. It is not always easy to simply accept forgiveness--not avoiding or refusing, but just receiving. I begin to see myself in better perspective. Working this step to the best of our ability builds humility and freedom, which continues to grow throughout the entire Twelve Steps

My Introduction is taken from the Twelve Step To A Closer Walk With God by Don Umphrey


AA Big Book, Into Action, (p. 72-76)
OA 12 Steps and 12 Traditions (p. 45-52)


We are willing to get new attitude, and to connect in a real relationship with our Creator. We admit certain defects and they are about to be cast out! This requires ACTION on our part. There is doubt about discussing defects with another person. The best reason first: If we skip this vital step, we may not overcome compulsive overeating. We have to complete our housecleaning, and lose our egoism, fear and humbled themselves. But they haven’t learned enough of humility, fearlessness and honesty, in the sense we find it necessary, until they told someone else all their life story. The overwater leads a double life. To the outer world he presents his stage character. This is the one he likes his fellows to see. His inconsistency is made worse by the things he does on his sprees. He trembles to think someone might have observed him. He is under constant fear and tension--that makes for more compulsive eating. Even psychologists agree that we seldom tell the whole truth! It is required to get well. We must be earnestly honest with somebody if we expect to live long or happily in this world. Find a honest person who you do trust to keep your anonymity. If not your Sponsor, a Pastor, a friend. We may do well to speak with someone ordained. We do not tell someone it would injure. The rule is we must be hard on ourself, but always considerate of others. We pocket our pride, and go to every dark corner in our lives and give this to God and another trusted person. We begin to feel the nearness of our Creator. We may have had certain spiritual beliefs, but now we begin to have a spiritual experience, for an hour often I arrive home we review what we have done. We thank God from the bottom of our heart that we know Him better. Carefully reading the first five steps we ask if we omitted anything. We are building an arch through which we shall walk a free man at last. Willingness is indispensable here, are we willing to let go every objectionable thing in our lives If not we pray for the willingness to do so to get our miracle. The willingness will and does come!


No matter how we acted we felt isolated, alone and part. Now there is a positive action which we can take--to end the isolation, which is the fifth step. Our fourth-step inventory brought us new insights and understandings. We feel ready to move quickly with step five. We want to be free of resentments, guilt, and shame rooted in the past, and we realize that sharing the details of our past with another human being is an is an important step toward freedom. We will no longer have anything to hide. Step Five starters with our Higher Power. Without our Higher Power’s help, we are incapable of complete honesty about our mistakes we have made. It is human nature to cling to the illusion that we have done no wrong. We practice integrity with God’s help. We face the reality of our mistakes, see the part we ourselves have played in creating our misfortunes and the futility of continuing to blame others for our compulsive overeating and our unmanageable lives. In step five we learned a new way of life. We will acknowledge our wrongs instead of seeking to hide them from ourselves and others. A humble admission of our mistakes to God is our first step in this direction. We willingly open our hearts so that a life-changing power can come in and heal us. We gain new hope by admitting to ourselves who we are and what we’ve done. We start to feel that we can be forgiven and begin life anew with a clean slate. We are humbled without being humiliated by doing our fifth step with another human being. In talking honestly with another person than ourselves, we begin to feel a sense of relief. Someone knows all about us and still accepts us unconditionally. We begin to forgive ourselves. In taking step five we prove ourselves capable of accomplishing a difficult task and strong enough to be completely honest with another human being. Step five, by helping us to know and accept ourselves makes helping us to know and accept ourselves makes it possible for us to change and recover. It is important that we choose a trustworthy and understand person. Anyone who is recovering in a twelve-step fellowship and who has completed the fifth step herself or himself is usually a good choice, or therapist or religious counselor. We ask for God’s guidance. Step five is usually our first attempt to fully open our hearts to another human being. We need to discuss the “exact nature” of those wrongs. This means we will need to talk about WHY we did the things we did. What feelings led to our actions, and what did we feel afterward? Are we jealous? Have we been resentful because of our thwarted desire to control another person? Then we discuss how these negative feelings and actions have affected us materially, emotionally and spiritually. Most of us find out that fear is at the root of many of our damaging emotions and actions. We learn that fear usually stem from our inability to trust our basic need will be met. If we are to recover, must learn to trust other people and entrust our lives to a Power greater than ourselves.

For all of us learning this kind of trust has been a gradual process, taking a long time. Can we trust that this person won’t use this knowledge to hurt us? Determined to get we. We willingly take the risk. When we do, a miracle happens. Sometimes, the step process of doing fourth and fifth step brings, to our awareness more than character defects. Some say we uncover old traumas: experiences of being abandoned, abused, sexually molested or raped are far more common among us than anybody would like to believe. We have spent our lives running from them and eating to cover up the pain. Until we begin to deal with them, some of us found that our abstinence was not strong or steady, or we continued to feel unhappy, even while we were abstaining and working the steps. We need a continued involvement with the twelve steps and OA for continued abstinence and recovery. As we complete step five, we may feel many emotions, among them humility, elation and relief. We have often feel nearer than ever before to our Higher Power and more loving and trusting of other people. The fruits of having faithfully completed step five may be apparent immediately or gradually, but they will appear. Having taken step five , we are free at last. The great burden of our past mistakes has been lifted from us. We find we can face each day and each challenge as it comes. Honesty is a key factor in our recovery from compulsive eating, and so we will want to develop his trait. The best ways to do so is to continue working the twelve steps. Step six through twelve will show us more actions we can take to bring about the necessary changes in our lives.


How do I react/respond to the truth that God does not give up on me?

Have my moral and values been in line with God? Explain?

With whom will I share my inventory? What are my reasons for this choice? I’m sharing my inventory with another what did I learn about: fear, trust, honesty and acceptance?

Have you set an appointment for completing Step Five by sharing my Step Four Inventory?

What I learned from Step Five?

Gail W.

Step One
Step Two
Step Three
Step Four
Step Five

WTS Home
The Twelve Steps
Recovery Home

© Copyright 1995 ~ 2016 THE RECOVERY GROUP All rights reserved