“His life actually depends upon obedience to spiritual principles… he discovers a way of life he really wants to live… he finds he cannot keep this priceless gift unless he gives it away.” 12&12 p130
This really is a priceless gift. Not only sobriety, but recovery too. I love growing and learning in this program, and it happens when I’m doing loving things, thinking loving thoughts, and staying in gratitude. Just got back to Maui after a great trip with family in Santa Monica. I’m a very grateful guy. And, ILML! – James
A NOTE ON THE WORD OBEDIENCE
After writing today’s blog I realized the word obedience was really rubbing me the wrong way. Kind of like the word ‘Amen’ used to, often spoken at the end of the Serenity Prayer in meetings. It felt way to religious for me to say. To get over that one, I looked it up and discovered one definition of Amen was ‘I agree’. I never had a problem agreeing with the Serenity Prayer and never had a problem saying that word any more.
One of the reasons the word ‘obedience’ bothered me is that it feels like someone is trying to control me and tell me what to do. I hate that. You see I’m rebellious in nature. As it says on page 31, “defiance is the outstanding characteristic of many an alcoholic.”.
The truth is, often times I want to be in control and to be “right”, so that no one can blame me and say I’m ‘wrong’. I’ve done a lot of work on this type of thinking, and it’s not quite as prevalent as it used to be, but it still crops up way too often, especially when I’m spiritually disconnected.
So I looked up the etymology of the word ‘obedience’ this morning. It sent me to the word ‘obey.’ There I discovered one source fir the word was the Latin word ‘obedire’, which literally translated means to ‘listen to’. So my defiance is technically me saying “I don’t want to ‘listen to’ spiritual principles. No, wait, I actually do want to be guided by those principles.
Ok, so I found a way to get over my distaste for the word ‘obedience’. Now I can say (with a smile on my face) I want to be obedient to my wife, I want to be obedient to God, I want to be obedient to my kids. It still feels uncomfortable, but I’m smart enough to know that it was my contempt of the word prior to investigation that led me to judge it. I also know that I really do want to be a good listener, which technically means I want to be good at being obedient.
Thanks for your obedience to me today… :-)