I heard a young man was filling out a job application for work in a department store. On the first page he put down all the necessary information about himself including past employment. Then he turned the application over. The first question on the back was, “Have you ever been arrested?” The man checked the box marked, “No”. On the next line was the word, “Why?” Meaning if he had been arrested what was the reason. The young man wrote, “because I’ve never been caught.” That young man was me.  Until I could learn to catch myself saying and doing unloving things, I could not change.

I went through the better part of my life on auto-pilot, totally unaware of my words and deeds. I lied, cheated and stole. I judged, criticized and condemned most everyone on the planet. I rationalized, justified and minimized my actions because, in my mind, I was a pretty good guy. Only in the past few years have I realized that the self centered fear behind my actions separated me from you, God and everything good in the world. It’s no wonder I ended up in extreme isolation suffering a loneliness that I believe only an alcoholic truly understands.

It was in this painful state that God graced me with a moment of clarity that led me to Alcoholics Anonymous. I felt at home for the first time in my life and the obsession was removed on the first day. I wanted what you had so I did what you did. Slowly I began to change.

I’m no saint, but today even the perfectionist in me must admit that I have changed in some deep meaningful way. Today I look people in the eye when I'm talking with them. I’m quicker to forgive because I understand that, like me, people don’t have a choice but to do what they do. I don’t always have to flip off a driver who does something stupid. Mostly my life feels peaceful and serene. I often catch myself feeling happy for no particular reason. I realize God is doing for me what I could not do for myself.

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