Specific Actions

“… a continuing series of spiritual awakenings.” – Drop the Rock

When I’m in that wonderful place of God consciousness, I feel invincible from fear, disappointment and anger. I’m at peace. That spiritual energy is always available to me, but to tap into it I need to take specific actions.

I start on my knees out of bed, thanking the universe for the abundance of gifts laid at my feet. I read from inspirational books, journal my gratitude and send out these texts. Thank you for allowing me to include you in my spiritual journey. ILML!

- James Q.

Eradicate Negativity

“… whenever one is free from negativity, one enjoys peace and harmony.” S.N. Goenka, Attitudes of Gratitude in Love

Goenka, a teacher of meditation, stated that this is the law of nature. I believe it. The sense of fullness I feel in life, my insistence on being happy and in gratitude, is conditional upon my ability to spot and eradicate negativity that adversely is affecting me. Like a week in my garden, If I can’t pull it from the ground (roots and all), I can simply choose to see what is beautiful about it. This practice and philosophy is fundamentally why ILML!

- James Q

My Invisible Friend

“When I become willing to act on faith, God helps me create miracles for myself and assist others in creating their own” Hope For Today

It took me 10 years in recovery to finally abandon my intellect and embrace a God of my un-understanding, and thank God I did. Life is so much easier and more comfortable since I resigned from the debating committee. With faith in my invisible spiritual friend, I’ve opened myself up to believing in miracles, and because of that, I’m manifesting them every day. Surrendering and trusting source rocks my world! ILML

- James Q

The Human Experience

“It is plain that a life which includes deep resentment leads only to futility and unhappiness… For when harboring such feelings we shut ourselves off from the sunlight of the Spirit.” AA

It matters not whether the resentment is big or small, anger, frustration or disappointment over anything takes away from my ability to bask in the sunshine of happiness prevents me from celebrating this amazing opportunity to partake in the human experience – being me, James, for one more day. Though this may sound corny, it’s true. I’m so grateful that ILML!

- James Q

A Channel of Love

“… the more we give what we want to receive, the more we increase the chances we’ll get what we want.” Attitudes of Gratitude in Love

Today, I’ll surrender all expectations that others will give me what I want. Instead, I’ll look for opportunities to be patient, tolerant and kind to others, especially those that seem unable to do that for me or themselves. And when I’ll find them, I’ll do what I can to be a channel of love. In this way I’ll invite more joy into my, and everyone else’s, day. ILML!

- James Q

Quiet Mind, Open Heart

“I’ve heard some people condense the activities of spiritual life into these words: quiet the mind; open the heart… I think of anything that quiets the mind as meditation and anything that opens the heart as prayer.” Hope for Today

What a wonderful reading today. Breathing deeply quiets my mind. Pulling weeds quiets my mind. Getting on my knees after waking or before retiring quiets my mind. Smiling and laughing opens my heart. Playing guitar opens my heart. Being of service in recovery opens my heart. Without even realizing it I’ve discovered that I meditate and pray all the time. How awesome! ILML

- James Q

Stay out of Dis-Ease

“… when you nail someone on their “stuff”, they’re going to get angry… wounded, they are going to attack you… all of your stuff is going to come up!” – Until Today

This ping pong of blame, self-pity and victimization can keep us in a perpetual state of hopelessness. It doesn’t matter if it starts with me blaming them, or them blaming me, all of it invokes needless suffering.

If I spot their defects and it’s not directly hurting me, I’m better off pausing & not giving my opinion. If it hurts, I’m best to simply say “that made me feel _____”, and then detach, moving onto activities that connect me with gratitude and love.

If they really love me, they’ll acknowledge my hurt (eventually), and if they don’t, I may need to assess, with my sponsor, whether it’s heathy to continue being around that person.

The program tools provide me with the opportunity to stay out dis-ease. And when I practice them, ILML!

- JamesQ

The Secret Sauce

“Today I choose to be gentle with myself and to love unconditionally while detaching from the past”.
- Hope For Today

Resentment, frustration and disappointment blocks my ability to love my life. 100% of mine comes from the past, whether from my childhood or just 5 minutes ago. And 100% of my fear, which is another impingement on happiness, is centered in the future.

So the secret sauce to life loving for me is letting go of past hurts and staying out of future fear. It’s only when I do this that I am able to see the beauty in a flower, feel the magical restorative power of the sun on my face, or smile at the sound of a child’s laugh.

This moment called now is where loving life exists in all its splendor and I, for one, insist on basking in it! ILML!

- JamesQ

The Pendulum

“When I let go and let God, I’m more apt to find a place of compassion… the pendulum that swings back and forth between the black-and-white of obsession and indifference finds balance in the peaceful colors of serenity”. – Hope For Today

My uncomfortable feelings mostly come from obsession or passive-aggressive victimized pouting due to detaching with resentment.

In the first case, I have a hope that turns to an expectation as my excitement levels increase. I so badly want to get, fix, or stop something, that, without even realizing it, a disproportionate amount of focus shifts from my balanced life of program, service, work, and hobbies to one thing that dominates my thoughts. This obsession eventually leads to discomfort as my spiritual priorities are pushed aside. And serenity slips away.

In the second case, I am upset about something and, in my attempt to work my program I decide to detach. The problem is that I’m not detaching with love so my higher power is not part of the picture. And without my higher power I’m left with my lower power’s guidance. Sure I’ll detach from that sick person or situation, they or it is so mules send up who would want to be attached to that! But this is my life, and in some way I am attached to them or it. Poor me. Poor me. Pour me another drink. Right?

So what’s the solution? Let go and let God. For me it’s about bringing God into the situation. Obsession or discomfort, in either case the love that envelopes my heart when I reach out to my higher power will balance me, allowing me to step back from the situation and see it with clearer eyes. I can ease my obsession by gently refocusing on my program. I can ease my anger or frustration by gently refocusing on compassion and gratitude.

If I practice awareness of the moment when I start creeping into obsession or anger, and then breath while saying “Let Go and let God”, over and over, I will slowly start to feel better. These behaviors will then, once again, remind me how lucky I am to have the life I do, how lucky I am, and how much ILML!

- JamesQ

Smiling to Strangers

“Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” – Mother Theresa

Although I personally am not religious, I’ve become quite open minded to anyone and everyone who speaks on love, gratitude and happiness. From every walk of life I seek their words out and practice them.

A smile. So simple and yet it has the power to spread love and kindness to others without even saying a word. Which opens up the opportunity to then spread those positive feelings to so many more. Today I will practice smiling to strangers and, hopefully, it won’t creep them out :-) ILML!

- JamesQ