Do you ever have a day where everything doesn’t go your way? Your dog wakes you up barking, you spill your tea all over the counter (and clean dishes), traffic is awful, work is super busy, you’re in a bad mood… the list goes on. You open up your web browser and go to jftna.org and read the daily meditation. Just for today… Finally, a sigh of relief. Then, halfway through the day, your moment of clarity and relief is gone. You are stressed again. Can’t I catch a break?!
I recently finished my 7th Step with my sponsor. “We humbly asked him to remove our shortcomings.” I finally realized, when I have those bad days it is one of two things: I haven’t prayed to God or I am acting out on my character defects. Normally it is a combination of both. The 7th Step taught me that I’m not perfect. As my sponsor likes to me remind me, I am human. God is perfect. He can remove my pain and give me joy. All I have to do is ask.
The 6th Step was pretty painful, listing all my defects of character. Procrastination, Perfectionism, and Projecting, to name a few. I am so thankful the Steps go in order, or else I would still be stuck at Step 6 having a pity party for myself. Boo-hoo. Step 7 lets you humbly ask God to remove all this pain and replace it with the positive spiritual principle. I can finally say, “God, I need you. Please remove this hurt and show me how to live!” Unfortunately, with this Step it’s not that simple. God may remove a shortcoming, then it can pop back up in a few weeks. I have to practice patience and trust in God’s timing. If I act out on one of my defects, I can say, “Okay, I made a mistake. Let’s try to learn from this and not do it again.” I can pray and once again ask God to remove it. Next time, hopefully, I can pause, ask for help and respond with the opposite spiritual principle. It is progress, not perfection, right?
Prayer: God, please help remove my defects of character and replace them with the opposite spiritual principle. Give me the patience to trust in your timing. Help me live out your will and help others. Amen.