Spiritual Love

When I was new I often heard my grand sponsor share in meetings about the spiritual love we alcoholics have for one another. I knew you guys were loving me back to life, but it took quite a few years before I began to experience spiritual love.

The only love I knew back then was the sticky, romantic love that I saw in the movies — emotional, hormone driven, exciting. This love is held together by the unwritten promises we make to each other. If you put me first in your life and make me feel special, I’ll do the same for you. All my relationships, even well into recovery, were based on this exchange of benefits model. Most started sputtering after the romantic period and I remember feeling betrayed each time, like the woman didn’t keep her promise.

The love I feel for other alcoholics is born of compassion, not desire. You walked through hell and so have I. I’ve learned that spiritual love is impersonal, makes no demands and expects nothing in return. It does not play favorites. We are all equals in the rooms. Spiritual love does not begin or end with me. It flows through me out unto the world. The twelve steps opens the channel for spiritual love to flow out of me. It’s nothing I do and everything God does.

I experience spiritual love at almost every meeting I attend. I see the light come on in a newcomer’s eyes, I hear of broken families mended, I witness one of the people I’ve worked with begin to give it away to others. I'm surrounded by spiritual love in meetings. Now I'd like to do a better job of taking it to the street.