Scrooge’s Step 7 Lesson


Thought for today:

The folklore of the “evil creditor” runs deep in our culture.  The hero must rescue the damsel in distress from the clutches of the evil villain who is threatening to foreclose on her mother’s mortgage if she doesn’t marry him…

No wonder that compulsive debtors who are actively debting are prone to panic.  Creditors have real – and imagined – power.

Under earning fooled us debtors into thinking that material satisfaction was the sole purpose of life. We thought that wealth and power were ends in and of themselves, and that idea led us to debt and a life of greed.  The truth is, wealth and power are only valuable inasmuch as we put them to good use.

A member shares:

“As I went through the holidays during my first year in DA, all I felt was self-pity and resentment.  I had lost or spent so much money, and creditors were chasing me.  I had nowhere left to borrow.

“My life seemed empty without debt.  What could fill this void in my life?  I was desperate to feel better, but I didn’t want to debt.

“My sponsor took me aside and told me to buy some toys, wrap them, and bring them to the children’s wing of the local hospital.  I was to give in secret, and not to tell anyone that I did this.  Oops!  Now it doesn’t count!  Gotta go!

“Seriously, generosity was an antidote to my self-pity.”

DA Step Seven:

Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Scrooge’s lesson:

In Dickens’ classic tale, A Christmas Carol, a ghost led the financier Ebenezer Scrooge to a future in which he saw his own death.  Struck by the fact that there were no mourners, he asked of the spirit, “Does no one celebrate this man’s life?”

Immediately, the spirit transported Scrooge  to a place where he could overhear the  customers of his accounting firm conversing.  Upon hearing of Scrooge’s death, they were celebrating, hoping their mortgages might be forgotten.

Scrooge was then taken to his home, which thieves had joyfully looted, taking his bed sheets and the shirt in which he was laid to rest.

Scrooge’s death was, indeed, cause for celebration.

Cynicism and greed had run Scrooge’s life.  Rather than risk rejection, he had excluded people entirely from it, withdrawing into the world of business, where his cold heart became a legend.

Scrooge sought to learn the lessons of the past, live the present to the fullest, and eventually became generous.  His business dealings became the heroic Step Seven variety.


Have I let go of cynicism and found heroism?

Meditation for today:

It takes effort to think generously.  When a solution benefits both parties in a negotiation, the result can be far greater than what “enlightened self-interest” alone can offer.

Kindness and keeping meticulous records are their own rewards.

Affirmation for today:

“I will seek rather to understand than to be understood.”

Recommended reading:

A Christmas Carol

Is seasonal depression a problem?

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