Thought for today:
A fearless personal inventory takes courage. During it we often discover that the motive for our actions is fear of losing something: We fear not getting enough money, sex, love, admiration of friends, society’s praises, achievement, and so on.
Fear leads to character defects of pride, anger, lust, envy, laziness, greed and gluttony.
We are not alone in our fears. Humanity’s history is full of selfish motivations. And we are not alone in the character defects either. If there is a name for something we have done, then it must have been done by someone else before!
Our instincts came about for self-preservation, but clearly our instincts can go too far when fears run amuck. At some point suffering arises. But is there any escape?
A member shares:
“My sponsor told me I needed to either take the Fourth Step or I would probably go back to debting again. I saw others in the program not take it and return to debting, so I decided to take it.
“My anger came out in my Fourth Step. The people I was angry at most were the creditors I had borrowed from. I blamed them for harassing me and causing my insomnia.
“When I shared this with my sponsor in the Fifth Step, I discovered that I lived in fear of these people. My anger was rooted in fear of bondage to my debt.
“My sponsor suggested humility was the answer to my grief and anguish with my creditors. Even though creditors seemed to pick fights, if I did not attach myself to their fight, I would not suffer anger.
“In my Fourth Step inventory, and in sharing my Fifth Step with my sponsor, I learned to offer the gift of truth to my creditors. I shared with them my Spending Plan, and showed them how my debt repayments fit into it.
“I learned that placing my needs first was something that my creditors could understand, even if they sometimes tested the limits. (At one point they questioned how I could afford to go to a movie when i owed them money, and my answer was, it was part of my entertainment category, and I needed to have quality time.)
“I learned to respect who I was, and the other person. I also learned that when you are genuine with people, they know it, and they often respond with understanding.”
DA Step Four:
Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
DA Step Five:
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
Escape from self:
Yes, there is an escape, and with courage we will find the away out! Humility is the escape. It is the result of hard work, looking at oneself, and letting go of pride. In time, it becomes a habit that leads to prosperity.
Do I have the courage to change the person I am into one that doesn’t need to debt any more? Am I willing to see how my defects of character want to run my life?
Meditation for today:
If anger compels you to action, ask yourself what you fear will happen. Knee-jerk reaction from anger is always destructive, and can rarely be taken back.
We can usually find alternative actions, though, if we have the courage to look for them.
Affirmation for today:
“Today if I find any anger in me, I will use its energy to pursue more reasonable actions.”
“The light of love guides my heart through any fear that may visit me today.”
A Currency of Hope: The basic text of Debtors Anonymous.
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