Daily Reflection Podcast
The Daily Reflection Podcast delivers hope, and inspiration through interviews with members of the recovery community through the lens of the Daily Reflection book. Each day, we ask a person in recovery to read the Daily Reflection for the day, and share how this relates to their program of recovery. The result is that we learn through their experience how they manage to get and stay sober. We are not affiliated with Alcoholics Anonymous or any recovery program.
#105 The Bondage of Resentments (Apr 15) - Will (Baltimore, MD)
Will didn't realize he was at risk of actual death but he did realize he was at serious risk of leading a miserable life. As a result of doing the steps and the program of AA, he lives a great life today.
THE BONDAGE OF RESENTMENTS
. . . harboring resentment is infinitely grave. For then we shut ourselves off from the sunlight of the spirit.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 5
It has been said, "Anger is a luxury I cannot afford." Does this suggest I ignore this human emotion...
#104 The Number One Offender (Apr 14) - Keegen V. (Reston, VA)
Keegen learned early on that resentment has no place in his sober world today so long as he focuses on others.
THE "NUMBER ONE OFFENDER"
Resentment is the "number one" offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have been spiritually sick.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 64
As I look at myself practicing the Fourth Step, it is easy to gloss over the wrong that I have done, because I...
#103 The False Comfort of Self-Pity (Apr 13) - Katie G. (Leesburg, VA)
When Katie hit bottom and entered recovery, she was in self-pity and feeling pretty broken. Luckily, the program and the fellowship became a place where everyone wanted her to succeed. Katie says that the people in AA loved her until she could love herself.
THE FALSE COMFORT OF SELF-PITY
Self-pity is one of the most unhappy and consuming defects that we know. It is a bar to all spiritual progress and can cut off all effective communication with our fellows because of its inordinate demands for attention and sympathy. It is a maudlin form of...
#102 Giving Up Insanity (Apr 12) - Dan B. (Flemington, NJ)
Dan came to Alcoholics Anonymous through the back door of Alanon. Once in AA recovery, he not only learned how to stay sober one day at a time, but also learned the value of service. Having served in various capacities, he shares his deep knowledge of the service structure of AA.
GIVING UP INSANITY
. . . where alcohol has been involved, we have been strangely insane.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 38
Alcoholism required me to drink, whether I wanted to or not. Insanity dominated my life and was the essence of my disease. It robbed m...
#101 A Word to Drop: "Blame" (Apr 11) - Jewlz W. (Neptune Beach, FL)
Jewlz was an alcoholic and an addict who blamed everyone else including her husband for her problems. It wasn't until she entered the program of recovery that she gained the ability to drop the word blame and acknowledge her part in the unhappiness in her life. Today, her relationship with her husband is the best it has every been thanks to Alcoholics Anonymous and her connection to God.
A WORD TO DROP: "BLAME"
To see how erratic emotions victimized us often took a long time. We could perceive them quickly in...
#100 Growing Up (Apr 10) - Alan a.k.a. Harratial (Summerville, SC)
Alan aka Harratial shares honestly about his challenges before becoming sober. He credits good sponsorship for introducing him to the program that's helped him in growing up, and learning to live a life where he can not only be successful but also be on the front lines of helping those in need of a new way of living.
The essence of all growth is a willingness to change for the better and then an unremitting willingness to shoulder whatever responsibility this entails.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 115
#99 Freedom from "King Alcohol" (Apr 9) - Kim M. (Frederick, MD)
Kim is relatively new in sobriety and she shares a powerful message of how the program and free a person from the prison of addiction.
FREEDOM FROM "KING ALCOHOL"
. . . let us not suppose even for an instant that we are not under constraint. . . . Our former tyrant, King Alcohol, always stands ready again to clutch us to him Therefore, freedom from alcohol is the great "must" that has to be achieved, else we go mad or die.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 134
When drinking, I lived in spiritual...
#98 An Inside Look (Apr 8) - Yalonda L. (Montgomery Co., MD)
It took completing the fourth step of the program for Yalonda to begin to discover herself in a new way. Through the process of recovery she gained an inside look and she describes this as part of becoming a better version of herself.
AN INSIDE LOOK
We want to find exactly how, when, and where our natural desires have warped us We wish to look squarely at the unhappiness this has caused others and ourselves By discovering what our emotional deformities are, we can move toward their correction.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p...
#97 A Wide Arc of Gratitude (Apr 7) - Tom G. (Fort Meyers, FL)
Tom believed his drinking, passing out and blacking out were all a part of normal drinking. It wasn't until he tried controlling his drinking that he realized how much of a problem he had. Today he finds his Wide Arc of Gratitude for the program, and for the members of AA that keep the program going.
A WIDE ARC OF GRATITUDE
And, speaking for Dr. Bob and myself, I gratefully declare that had it not been for our wives, Anne and Lois, neither of us could have lived to see A.A.&apos...
#96 A Lifetime Process (Apr 6) - Matt N. (Ashville, NC)
Matt boils his recovery down to something as simple as an incremental trust and a faith that he placed in little more than his sponsor... this man, Rob, told Matt how was he lived his life prior to reading the Big Book with his sponsor and what his life was like after. The only thing they could say with absolute certainty was that Matt's sponsor Rob, read the book with his sponsor Chris and from there, his life began to change for the better.
A LIFETIME PROCESS
We were having trouble with personal r...
#95 True Brotherhood (Apr 5) - Bill R. (Phila., PA)
Bill relates that he was largely focused on his own interests throughout his life which manifested in his alcoholism and in his relationships. When he found recovery, he was introduced to a program and fellowship that taught him to place the needs of others ahead of his own and in that he found a true brotherhood in humanity.
We have not once sought to be one in a family, to be a friend among friends, to be a worker among workers, to be a useful member of society. Always we tried to struggle...
#94 Crying for the Moon (Apr 4) - Ken B. (Philadelphia, PA)
Ken shares from the heart about his struggles with alcoholism, depression and the troubles associated with difficult relationship with his parents. Ken shares that the program of recovery has enabled him to become the man his wife had only dreamed of when he was actively drinking.
CRYING FOR THE MOON
"This very real feeling of inferiority is magnified by his childish sensitivity and it is this state of affairs which generates in him that insatiable, abnormal craving for self approval and success in the eyes of the world. Still a child, he cries for th...
#93 Accepting Our Humanness (Apr 3) - Bill H. (Philadelphia, PA)
Bill shares about the fact that he's wrestled with perfection in his personal relationships. Through the help of a higher power, and a program of recovery, Bill now has renewed hope for his relationships and for his life.
ACCEPTING OUR HUMANNESS
We finally saw that the inventory should be ours, not the other man's So we admitted our wrongs honestly and became willing to set these matters straight.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 222
Why is it that the alcoholic is so unwilling to accept responsibility? I used to d...
#92 Character Building (Apr 2) - Kathy R. (Jacksonville Beach, VA)
Demands made upon other people for too much attention, protection, and love can only invite domination or revulsion. . . .
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 44
When I uncovered my need for approval in the Fourth Step, I didn't think it should rank as a character defect. I wanted to think of it more as an asset (that is, the desire to please people). It was quickly pointed out to me that this "need" can be very crippling. Today I still enjoy getting the approval of others, but I am...
#91 Looking Within (Apr 1) - Missy G. (Ponte Vedra Beach, FL)
Missy started out with little care, or thought about what a fearless moral inventory was or even how it could help her. Over time, she grew in understanding and eventually has become accustomed to working the fourth step into her life in so many powerfully positive ways.
Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 42
Step Four is the vigorous and painstaking effort to discover what the liabilities in each of us have been, and are. I want to find exactly how, w...
#90 No One Denied Me Love (Mar 31) - Michael L. & Lee M.
Lee and Michael talk about the spiritual solution and the concepts behind today's Daily Reflection.
NO ONE DENIED ME LOVE
On the A. A. calendar it was Year Two. . . . A newcomer appeared at one of these groups. . . . He soon proved that his was a desperate case, and that above all he wanted to get well . . . [He said], "Since I am the victim of another addiction even worse stigmatized than alcoholism, you may not want me among you."
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 141-42
I came to...
#89 Our Group Conscience (Mar 30) - Aminda L. (Phila., PA)
Aminda found the rooms of AA after going to a rehab. Recovery was an obvious need in her life. Unity and Service on the other hand were elements she learned about and incorporated into her life over time.
". . . sometimes the good is the enemy of the best"
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS COMES OF AGE P- 101
I think these words apply to every area of A.A.'s Three Legacies: Recovery, Unity and Service! I want them etched in my mind and life as I "trudge the Road of Happy Destiny" (A...
#88 Trusted Servants (Mar 29) - April B. (Ashburn, VA)
April shares her experience, strength and hope around AA's third legacy of Service, and the legacy of Unity. She also suggests the idea that service doesn't have to be grandiose and can be as simple as reaching out to another member of the recovery community.
They are servants. Theirs is the sometimes thankless privilege of doing the group's chores
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 134
In Zorba the Greek, Nikos Kazantzakis describes an encounter between his principal character and an old man busily...
#87 Equality (Mar 28) - Tim A. (Phila., PA)
Tim A. shares his deep knowledge of A.A. history and traditions. At seven years of sobriety, Tim's impact can already be felt both locally and globally. He has started a secular meeting in his home city and has worked tirelessly to help the Code4Recovery project change the way meetings are found, and accessed around the world.
SEPIA (South Eastern PA Intergroup Assoc.): https://aasepia.org
Our membership ought to include all who suffer from alcoholism Hence we may refuse none w...
#86 A.A.'s Freedoms (Mar 27) - Ken R. (Beulaville, NC)
Ken's drinking was out of control from the time he started drinking in his early teens. He got a glimpse of what sobriety looked like when he met his good friend, Luis L., in the Navy but continued to drink for years. Today Ken has no regrets, doesn't lie and lives a life of which he's proud.
Check out Luis L.'s Episode from earlier this year.
We trust that we already know what our several freedoms truly are; that no...
#85 The Teaching is Never Over (Mar 26) - Thomas M. (Florida)
Thomas hit bottom early in life. When he came into the program of recovery, he dove deeply into the history and identified so strongly with our founding members. Today, Thomas shares that knowledge with us and explains why, although he's recovered, he's still learning and the Teaching is Never Over.
THE TEACHING IS NEVER OVER
Abandon yourself to God as you understand God. Admit your faults to Him and to your fellows. Clear away the wreckage of your past Give freely of what you find and join us. We shall be w...
#84 A Full and Thankful Heart (Mar 25) - Ashley C. (Phila., PA)
Ashley found her life too much to handle with the pressures of starting a career and a growing problem with addiction. She went to an in-patient rehab and entered the program of recovery and learned of the possibility of a full life filled with gratitude, love and service.
A FULL AND THANKFUL HEART
I try hard to hold fast to the truth that a full and thankful heart cannot entertain great conceits. When brimming with gratitude, one's heartbeat must surely result in outgoing love, the finest emotion that we can ever know.<...
#83 Active Not Passive (Mar 24) - Derek A. (Phila. PA)
Derek was caught in a cycle of addiction continually making promises to himself about quitting that he knew he couldn't keep. Today, he talks about the gratitude he has for the freedoms he enjoys in recovery.
ACTIVE, NOT PASSIVE, p. 92
Man is supposed to think, and act. He wasn't made to God's image to be an automation. As Bill Sees It, p. 55
Before I joined A.A., I often did not think, and reacted to people and situations. When not reacting I acted in a mechanical fashion. Aft...
#82 ... And No More Reservations (Mar 23) - Josh B. (Fairfax, VA)
When Josh initially got sober, he held onto the reservation that at some point he'd be able to drink successfully. It wasn't until he began to grasp the concept of staying sober just for one day at a time that he was able to continue his journey in the program.
. . . AND NO MORE RESERVATIONS
We have seen the truth again and again: "Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic.". . . If we are planning to stop drinking, there must be no reservation of any kind, nor any lurking notion that someday...
#81 No More Struggle (Mar 22) - BJ R. (Sterling, VA)
BJ was raised to be tough and to look out for number one. This led to a lot of conflict in his life. Summing up his story, BJ will tell you that he drank, fell down a lot and went to prison. However, today he lives a life in which he's sober, and proud to be able to be of service helping the next sick and suffering alcoholic.
NO MORE STRUGGLE. . .
And we have ceased fighting anything or anyone— even alcohol.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84
When A.A. found me, I t...
#80 Material and Spiritual Well-being (Mar 21) - John D. (Centreville, VA)
Fear ruled John's every waking, and even his unconscious moments. He'd often wake to find himself in a panic. He found a recovery program that taught him not only how to take one day at a time but also how to build a successful life where he's able to be usefully whole and help others.
MATERIAL AND SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING
Fear... of economic insecurity will leave us.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84
Having fear reduced or eliminated and having economic
circumstances improve, are two different things. When
#79 Love and Tolerance (Mar 20) - Janet L. (Greenville, PA)
Janet began drinking and using substances at an early age to deal with the pain and confusion of abuse. She struggled for years before finding a program of recovery that taught her to forgive, and eventually love herself. Today, her code is Love and Tolerance.
Love and tolerance of others is our code.
— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84
I have found that I have to forgive others in all situations to maintain any real spiritual progress. The vital importance of forgiving may not be obvious to me at first sight, but my studies tell me that eve...
#78 Prayer: It Works (Mar 19) - Lee M. & Michael L.
On today's episode, Lee and Michael discuss the role of prayer, how it works for them and some of the key prayers taught as part of the program of recovery.
"When I'm in my head I'm thinking about what I want, what I can get, or what I'm about to lose. But when I pray; when I align myself to this higher level of consciousness, I'm in a place of love and what I want to be in service to others and I think about how wh...
#77 Real Independence (Mar 18) - Greg H. (Purcellville, VA)
Greg came into AA initially as a result of legal issues. He went back out, casually thinking he could make it back at any time, and soon found out otherwise. After a DUI and some jail time, Greg surrendered and learned the meaning of Real Independence.
The more we become willing to depend upon a Higher Power, the more independent we actually are.
— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 36
I start with a little willingness to trust God and He causes that willingness to grow. The more willingness I ha...
#76 Mysterious Ways (Mar 17) - Liz H. (Phila., PA)
Liz shares details of her spiritual journey and self-discovery. After attempting to find solutions in various substances, she always returned to alcohol until she finally realized, the solution has always been a relationship with her higher power.
. . . out of every season of grief or suffering, when the hand of God seemed heavy or even unjust, new lessons for living were learned, new resources of courage were uncovered, and that finally, inescapably, the conviction came that God does "move in a mysterious way His wonders to perform." TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p...
#75 As We Understand Him (Mar 16) - Ilir T. (Wyoming, DE)
Ilir shares candidly about his experience as someone who has studied and practiced several faith traditions. His unique background and experience provide hope for those struggling with the concept of a higher power.
AS WE UNDERSTAND HIM
My friend suggested what then seemed a novel idea. . . . “Why don’t you choose your own conception of God?” That statement hit me hard. It melted the icy intellectual mountain in whose shadow I had lived and shivered many years. I stood in the sunlight at last. It was only a matter of being willing to believe in a Powe...
#74 The God Idea (Mar 15) - Edwin M. (Granby, MA BWO Rwanda)
As a student, a scientist, an immigrant, and a child of refugees, Edwin's experience includes tragic loss and unfathomable family trauma. He shares beautifully on his journey of recovery, gaining the tools he needs to stay sober, help others and continue feeding his curiosity on faith traditions. His is truly an inspiring story. To anyone struggling with the concept of a higher power, Edwin will tell you to "make your higher power whatever works for you to help you get through the struggles."
THE GOD IDEA
When we saw others solve their problems by...
#73 The Keystone (Mar 14) - Chris P. (Reston, VA)
Chris P. returns to the show to share on the concept of Step 3 as the Keystone - the Arch through which we pass to freedom. Chris takes a moment to read the 3rd step prayer, encouraging newcomers that may be listening to join him.
He is the Father, and we are His children. Most good ideas are simple, and this concept was the keystone of the new and triumphant arch through which we passed to freedom. ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62
A keystone is the wedge-shaped piece at the highest part of...
#72 A World of the Spirit (Mar 13) - Tim K. (Flemington, NJ)
Early in recovery, Tim had no patience for spirituality. He admits that he confused spirituality with organized religion. Today, after coming into the program of recovery, he's got a higher power and a spiritual practice that helps him find gratitude daily.
A WORLD OF THE SPIRIT
We have entered the world of the Spirit. Our next
function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness.
This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84
The word "entered" . . . and the phrase "entered into
#71 A Day's Plan (Mar 12) - Donal H. (Reston, VA)
Donal was angry every day, searching for a solution to his drinking problem and full of resentment. What he found in the program of AA is a life he genuinely wants to live.
A DAY'S PLAN
On awakening let us think of the twenty-four hours
ahead. We consider our plans for the day. Before we
begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially
asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest
or self-seeking motives.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 86
Every day I ask God to kindle within me...
#70 Good Orderly Direction (Mar 11) - Heidi P. (S. Hadley, MA)
Heidi's first G.O.D. was the gift of desperation. She credits that G.O.D. with getting her into the program. When she thinks about aligning her will with the will of a higher power, she simply asks herself... "how do I align my will with the force of good?"
GOOD ORDERLY DIRECTION
It is when we try to make our will conform with God’s that we begin to use it rightly. To all of us, this was a most wonderful revelation. Our whole trouble had been the misuse of willpower. We had tr...
#69 Today, It's My Choice (Mar 10) - Jill M. (Frederick, MD)
Jill lived most of her life fueled by self-will, fear and ego. This led her to get completely sidetracked. Today, her choice is to let God in and as a result, she counts herself among the blessed to be a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous.
TODAY, IT'S MY CHOICE
. . . we invariably find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a position to be hurt.
ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 62
With the realization and acceptance that I had played a...
#68 Surrendering Self-Will (Mar 9) - Jean L. (Gramby, MA)
Unable to stay sober for many years, Jean shares a powerful story that includes multiple relapses, and a final surrender of self-will to the program of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 34
No matter how much one wishes to try, exactly how can one turn his own will and his own life over to the care of whatever God he thinks there is? In my search for...
#67 Turning It Over (Mar 8) - Michael H. (Phila., PA)
Michael found recovery early after living a completely selfish life. Today he credits being open minded and coming into the rooms of AA as the best gift he's given himself.
TURNING IT OVER
Every man and woman who has joined A.A. and intends to stick has, without realizing it, made a beginning on Step Three. Isn’t it true that in all matters touching upon alcohol, each of them has decided to turn his or her life over to the care, protection, and guidance of Alcoholics Anonymous? . . . Any willing newcomer feels sure A.A. is...
#66 The Key of Willingness (Mar 7) - Susan D. (Maple Glen, PA)
Susan shares about the importance of willingness. Even the tiniest crack of willingness can be enough to open the door to a complete change. Today, Susan turns to her Higher Power daily to ask that she be relieved of the bondage of self and then maintains that through connections in the program and fellowship.
THE IDEA OF FAITH
Do not let any prejudice you may have against spiritual terms deter you from honestly asking yourself what they mean to you.
— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 47
The idea of faith is a very la...