From the BlogMeet Ron

Some more from Chuck D.

There is no method or discipline or system of any kind that can ever command the spirit to be present. 
–Tom Sampon

A person in the process of growth and recovery asks the question, “How shall I develop a relationship with my Higher Power?” The first answer is usually, “You can decide to be open to the spiritual messages that come your way.” Some experiences in life can be mastered and directed, as in performing a task or going on a trip. We can have other experiences only by being receptive. They come our way, as in the growing of a friendship or the unpredictable events on a trip.
To be receptive, we must not be so busy with what we can control that we fail to notice all the experiences, which are there for us. Our senses need to be open to see what is around us and hear what is in the air. We must breathe in the beauty and pain of life. When there is a message in our experiences, let us read it and not demand it fit our narrow, logical minds.

Today, I pray that I will be open to receive the spirit on its own terms.
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Separating from Family Issues

We can draw a healthy line, a healthy boundary, between our nuclear family and ourselves. We can separate ourselves from their issues.

Some of us may have family members who are addicted to alcohol and other drugs and who are not in recovery from their addiction.

Some of us may have family members who have unresolved codependency issues. Family members may be addicted to misery, pain, suffering, martyrdom, and victimization. We may have family members who have unresolved abuse issues or unresolved family of origin issues.

We may have family members who are addicted to work, eating, or sex. Our family may be completely enmeshed, or we may have a disconnected family in which the members have little contact.

We may be like our family. We may love our family. But we are separate human beings with individual rights and issues. One of our primary rights is to begin feeling better and recovering, whether or not others in the family choose to do the same.

We do not have to feel guilty about finding happiness and a life that works. And we do not have to take on our family’s issues as our own to be loyal and to show we love them.

Often when we begin taking care of ourselves, family members will reverberate with overt and covert attempts to pull us back into the old system and roles. We do not have to go. Their attempts to pull us back are their issues. Taking care of ourselves and becoming healthy and happy does not mean we do not love them. It means we’re addressing our issues.

We do not have to judge them because they have issues; nor do we have to allow them to do anything they would like to us just because they are family.

We are free now, free to take care of ourselves with family members. Our freedom starts when we stop denying then issues, and politely, but assertively, hand their stuff back to them – where it belongs – and deal with our own issues.

Today, I will separate myself from family members, l am a separate human being, even though I belong to a unit called a family. I have a right to my own issues and growth; my family members have a right to their issues and a right to choose where and when they will deal with these issues. I can learn to detach in love from my family members and their issues. I am willing to work through all necessary feelings in order to accomplish this.
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Know when to compromise
Sometimes compromise is important. Sometimes it’s better to give in to someone else’s wishes in order to have fun as a group or as a couple, or for the benefits of the team. Sometimes compromise is dangerous. We need to guard against compromising our standards to gain the approval or love of someone else.

Decide when you can, and when you cannot compromise. If it’s not harmful and you are ambivalent about a decision, then compromise. If it could lead to breaking your values, compromise isn’t a good idea.

Is it okay to have lunch with an attractive colleague if you’re married? Possibly, but not if lunch will lead to dinner, which then leads to more time spent together, culminating in an affair. Is it okay to go to the bar with friends after work? Maybe, but not if it leads to one rationalized decision after another until you have broken your commitment to stay sober.

Remember that what may be an acceptable compromise for one person might not be acceptable for you. Know your limits, know your values, and be aware of the dangers that can come from compromising them.

God, help me be aware of my limits. Give me the strength not to compromise the values that I need to help me on my path.
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