Ricky!! had a post last night which prompted me to write this. If it can be of help to one person who reads it, it will serve its purpose.
When I entered the rooms of AA, I had virtually no history of religion or spirituality in my life. I was raised in the Methodist Church as a youngster, but didn't pay attention and had not been to church since age 17. Then came 32 years of drinking, smoking weed and partying.
When I saw the word "God" on the walls in AA, I almost got up and left. I would have nothing, nothing I tell you, to do with God and religion. But I remained seated and listened. I kept coming back because the people told me to. My partner told me to. And I felt comfortable there, despite seeing and hearing about "God."
Without a sponsor, I could accept Step 1. That's why I was there. I was powerless over alcohol and my life was becoming increasingly more unmanagable.
Without a sponsor, I eventually accepted Step 2. I needed a Higher Power in my life, they said. No God for this boy, but I heard that I could make the recovering alcoholics in the rooms of AA my Higher Power. OK, fine. That's what I did. I also continued drinking, heavily, between meetings. For months.
Without a sponsor, I ran into a road block at Step 3. I told those who would listen that there was NO WAY I could turn my life over to God. I had no God and did not want a God. I hated the hypocrisy of religion. How could I honestly accept God into my life when He allowed people to kill in His name? I read the Big Book of AA. And I continued to drink, more and more. I drank up to 18 hours each day. Seven days a week. But I kept coming back to meetings because I enjoyed them. My life continued to spiral downward, faster and faster. Soon, I was facing death if I continued to drink. My behaviour was sooooo out of control.
And because I kept coming back, I finally heard just what I needed to hear. One day, someone said...
"AA is not a religous program. It is a spiritual program. The difference is this; Religion is for people who do not want to go to Hell. Spirituality is for people who have been there."
Just what I needed to hear. Now I could envision my own God (as I understand Him) and he did not have to be anyone else's God. I did just that. Several days later, I asked my new God to help me. Please help me. When I did that, He literally took away the lifelong obsession and craving I had for alcohol. I have not had a drink since that day.
I departed Hell on September 5, 2003 and never need return.