A Miracle of Healing

“What is this but a miracle of healing? Yet its elements are simple. Circumstances made him willing to believe. He humbly offered himself to his Maker-then he knew.” (BB pg. 57)

I had an amazing experience last week that proves how much I’ve been healed during my time in Alcoholics Anonymous.

I was camping and hiking in Mount Shasta, California about 700 miles from home. I had just finished a great hike around a beautiful lake. It was late afternoon when I got back to my car to drive back to my campsite. My car started fine but wouldn't move. I sensed right away I had lost the transmission. Here I was stuck in the middle of nowhere, 60 miles away from the nearest repair place and rental car company. Yikes.

The miracle is that I did not react in fear, anger or self-pity throughout the whole experience. I calmly arranged for a tow truck, scheduled the repairs and found a ride back to my campsite. The old me would have spun out in fear, cursing the heavens for my bad luck. Instead I felt grateful I broke down in a beautiful, peaceful spot and not on the side of a noisy highway. The old me would have plunged into economic insecurity when I learned the new transmission was going to cost $5200. Instead I felt grateful I had the money. The old me would have been demanding to the point of rudeness to the people I called for help. Instead I was friendly, patient and understanding. The man who drank alone in his darkened apartment encrusted in self-centered fear twenty three years ago seems to have disappeared.

Wait. It gets better. The next morning the service guy called from the dealership and told me the transmission was covered by warranty. I had no idea. Needless to say I was thrilled. Then he told me the rental car was covered too. Wow.

My recovery is nothing I do and everything God does. More and more I feel like I'm being carried along by the river of life. I have the faith I’ll be given whatever I need to get through whatever life throws at me. I continue to have challenges but solutions appear effortlessly. I listen to my intuition, do the next indicated thing and try to stay out of outcome. Since I no longer worry, I no longer have to try and control people and events. Consequently, I go through life with a sense of ease and comfort and, like the promise says, I enjoy a new freedom and a new happiness.

A Great Way to Live

I had a 100% failure rate as a loving human being before earning my seat in Alcoholics Anonymous. Oh, I put on a good act and fooled some people (even myself) along the way, but my heart wasn’t in it. I couldn’t love you because I didn’t love myself. Yet, I expected you to love me anyways and when you didn’t, I swallowed another cupful of self-hate mixed with resentment.

I couldn’t figure out why my life had stopped working. I had no energy or enthusiasm for anything that didn’t help to change the way I felt. I went through the motions feeling completely empty inside. Because I wasn’t suffering major consequences, I had no clue I had a disease called alcoholism until a therapist pointed me toward treatment. I wasn’t convinced I was alcoholic, but I experienced what I know today was a moment of clarity.

I walked into my first AA meeting a few days later. I had never been a joiner because I didn’t want anyone to find out the ugly truth about me. If I had my way I would have hung out on the outside of the AA circle, but you guys wouldn’t let me. You pulled me right into the center of Alcoholics Anonymous against my will. There I discovered a God of my own misunderstanding and began my journey back to wholeness. I also discovered that I was not alone. Our drunk-a-logs are different, but the feelings we have about ourselves are exactly the same. I remember feeling like I had finally found my way home after a long painful journey.

I really wanted what you had and my bags were packed with willingness to do what you did. The men and women who came before me taught me by their actions, not their opinions. I learned the golden key to a beautiful life is not to be loved, but to love. I have to give it away to keep it. Fortunately AA provides me with unlimited opportunities to give back what was so freely given to me. It’s simply a great way to live.