Saturday, June 18, 2011
Power and Responsibility
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.
We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small
Does not serve the world.
There's nothing enlightened about shrinking
So that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine,
As children do.
We were born to make manifest
The glory of God that is within us.
It's not just in some of us;
It's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we're liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.
I went to a meeting today and listened people talk about being powerless and their lives being unmanageable. I heard a lady with 29 years talk about how she is still "recovering" and struggling with wanting to drink and how she relies on human power (meetings) to stay away from that drink. There was a guy there who is brand new, it was his second A.a. meeting ever. I realize that these people were only speaking from where they are at, but I wonder if any of them stop to consider what kind of message they are carrying. I hear these people say "I know it works, but I don't know how it works." I wonder if they think that they are being humble. But I don't think they realize how irresponsible they are being. It is my responsibility to know how it works. I'm rather useless in Alcoholics Anonymous if I don't know how it works.
I thank God that when my ears finally opened and my eyes were able to see, that I encountered men who were not carrying that message. They told me that not only did I not ever have to drink again, but that they could show me precisely how they had recovered. They said I did not have to stay in a state of constant struggle, always fighting. They said that I could get well here. They told me that their lives made sense to them and that they could show me a way to live in which my life would make sense to me. At the time, my life didn't make sense to me or anyone else. These days, my life makes sense to me, I know what it is about, and I don't much care if it makes sense to anyone else.
It has been said that to whom much is is given, much will be asked. Early on I awakened to the responsibility I had been given, and at first it scared me and it disturbed me. Think about it, people put their lives in our hands on a daily basis, and that is an awesome responsibilty that I don't take lightly. So to sit and say that I'm still sick and struggling is not only playing small and being irresponsible, it is messing with what can be a life and death situation.
Why do people in A.A. carry the mesaage that denies the Power of God? Well, they are only expressing their own agnosticism. They are afraid, because although we say that lack of power can be a dilemma, power can be a dilemma too, if you don't know what to do with it. Because with power comes responsiblity. They would rather be powerless, unmamageable, irresponsible, and in the dark. They play small, thinking they are being humble, when really it is a false modesty. To quote the late Frank Mck., they are saying that they are less than what they are, they are saying that this program doesn't work. The Power is there, it has always been there. We just have to tap into into it. "We have recovered and have been given the Power to help others." That is what Power is for and to use it for anything else is a waste of spirit.
Posted by Jim at 3:03 PM