Step Twelve Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
This chapter, which is called "Working With Others", gives us the part of Step Twelve that deals only with ways to carrying this message to other alcoholics. When WE work with others, OUR lives change. we don't help another alcoholic because THEIR sick, we help another alcoholic because WE are sick, and part of our program of recovery is that we need to be helping others.
Donna S grateful alcoholic from NJ
This part of Step 12 ( 2nd part) is where I start giving back more. I was told if I want to keep all that i have, i have to help another person. The people who were there to help me, did it so they could stay sober and humble. I may or may not be able to help them but they were certainly going to help me, if any gratitude was going to be about them, I should be grateful to them They did it out of the love of the fellowship not because they had to like them, I know if I don't try and help others, i will fall back into selfishness, being self-centered , all about me - taking, taking, taking... like I did all my life .
This chapter , which gives me more direction on how to sponsor.
When I was newer, I acted so much on defects... I didn't know I was, but I would go to meetings and judge others for not helping, for not giving back... who the heck am I? It was told to me to go read this chapter and reread it and to apply it for myself and NOT worry about what everyone else is doing, as that's on them. Its a hard one .... A guy at my home group just reminded me of how hard it is. Reminded me what i was like and what i don't want to be like, and when i went back to the next meeting he made amends to me. I offered what was shared with me like. someone said before, I cant give him something I don't have. Well I have had experience in this and we talked for 30 mins. I shared how I use to behave and pick out the ones who did nothing or helped no one and told him it isn't on him its on them. That as long as I AM doing what I need to do, then all is OK and I pray for those who are still sick and suffering.
When a new comer comes in the room, I give my # out and offer rides, if they need one. I listen and offer what worked for me and what didn't work for me and that what I did might not work for them. But what matters is they keep coming and find the solution and if they ask me to sponsor, I try the best to share My Experience, Strength & Hope and how I was taken through the Steps. It isn't easy and I learned not eveyone is cut out to sponsor. Helping others isnt just about sponsoring, its giving out your # , being there to listen, or giving rides. I learned also, I cant carry the drunk. If she/he does not want to stop drinking, don't waste time trying to persuade him and if someone decides they don't want what I have , I pray they find someone who can and wish them well.
I am not God and I don't have all the answers. I am just me and I worked hard to get where I am, and still work on my self everyday. I was a hopeless drunk and today I have SO MUCH HOPE.
So, as was told to me, if you want what I have and are willing to go to any length to get it, then I can offer the solution that was SO FREELY given to me!
To carry the message to the alcoholic who still suffers is not limited to the using alcoholic but also to the new or old timer that is going through a trying time.
Practical experience shows that nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics. It works when other activities fail. This is our twelfth suggestion: Carry this message to other alcoholics! You can help when no one else can. You can secure their confidence when other fail. Remember they are very ill.
Life will take on new meaning. To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends - this is an experience you must not miss. We know you will not want to miss it. Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.
-A.A. Big Book p.89
And our 5th tradition - Each group has but one primary purpose--to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
5th tradition long form - Each Alcoholics Anonymous group ought to be a spiritual entity having but one primary purpose - that of carrying its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
Thank u for listening Blessings and I am going to keep coming and learning.