From the March 2003 magazine.

A Born-again Lets Go

He knew just how God should help him --Step Three - Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

Step Three describes a yielding of the will, which is difficult for anyone, especially a willful alcoholic, to do. I clung tenaciously to my own ideas on how to address my alcoholism, remaining "in control," while at the same time pushing away the very thing that could alleviate my misery. I was a born-again Christian who had confessed only to himself and to God that he was an alcoholic. I sought to hide that dark fact from everyone else, but as my drinking worsened, I hid it with increasingly less success. More than once I embarrassed family and friends by being intoxicated. So I drank alone; silent, depressed, and riddled with guilt.

The chapter on Step Three in the "Twelve and Twelve" describes my predicament: "We can have faith, yet keep God out of our lives. Therefore our problem now becomes just how and by what specific means shall we be able to let Him in?" I was willful in specifying those means by which I knew just how God should help me. I would simply and earnestly pray my way to sobriety. By God's grace, this prayer for a quick fix went unanswered. I became despondent. God and I both knew that I was an alcoholic. Couldn't he follow through on this business about grace and the power of prayer?

-- Tom S.

Spokane, Washington

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