Saturday, April 16, 2011
An interesting topic came up at a discussion meeting the other night. Step 11 states "Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understand Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out." The topic centered around the part "...praying only for His knowledge for us...", with the focus on the operative word only. Does this imply that it's suggested that we shouldn't pray for others?
Let's look at a situation close to home. Recently many of us prayed for Patrick's Mom. Was that wrong according to Step 11? Can't I pray for the health and happiness of my children and grandchildren? Why do I have to limit my prayers to only knowledge of God's will for me?
Now having been through the previous 10 steps it's obvious to me that my will sucks. My will is what got me into trouble in the first place. Praying for knowledge of God's will and the power to carry that out is critical to my recovery. Jim just mentioned in a recent comment the GV article by Tiebold which tied together surrender, ego, and hitting bottom as being interrelated into a critical requirement for sobriety. So there no problem with that part.
But what's wrong with praying for others, too? There were some interesting answers to the question (and a lot of weaseling) during the meeting. I have my own answer, but would be interested in what you guys have to say on the matter. This isn't a closed book exam, so feel free to refer to Kushner or the 12 and 12. Neatness counts, and points will be taken for spelling and grammar.