There is no doubt that I made a royal mess of my life and it is equally clear I need spiritual help if I am to fulfill my potential as a human being. I want to depend totally and completely on my higher power. I really do. But the decision Step Three asks us to make is a bit much, don’t you think?
Step Three asks me to decide to turn all my thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes (my will) and all my actions, interactions, and reactions to people, places and things (my life) over to a Higher Power that I’m just beginning to believe in. Jeez, no wonder I sometimes feel like I have my fingers crossed behind my back when I’m saying the Third Step Prayer!
Specifically, I’m having very little success at turning over other people. Oh, I let my Higher Power handle all the little children (except my wife’s god daughter) and most old folks, but I have trouble letting go of everyone in between, especially those people close to me like my wife, parents-in-law, colleagues, friends and members of my AA group.
If I turn these people over, my Higher Power is just going to allow them to do what they do and be who they are. But what if I don’t agree with what they want to do? What if they don’t love, respect and appreciate me the way I think they should? What if they figure out they don’t need me to “help” them? What then?
The solution of course is to keep applying the Steps in my life in order to achieve the emotional sobriety that Bill talked about in his essay. Only then can I let go of my dependency on people and place my dependency where it belongs—with my Higher Power.
I’ve made very little progress toward emotional sobriety, but I have stopped giving the finger to stupid drivers here in China after I found out they don’t really know what it means.