Member: Sito T.
Location: Puerto Rico
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 07:29:26

Comments

I would like to start the week's dicussion talking about step 4. The problem I'm having is that I'm working it at a very slow pace and it seems I'm never going to finish. Any suggestions or experience sharing? If we are going to discuss the traditions, I have a question about tradition 4. What do you do when your home group wants to have administrative meetings always after a meeting instead of selecting a particular day. People that do not belong to the home group stay and listen to everything that's going on. I need help because I'm about to leave my group and join another one. Your comments are needed by this alkie.


Member: Sito T.
Location: Puerto Rico
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 07:37:02

Comments

Sorry folks for jumping the steps. I did Step three with my wife. I asked her to be a witness as I prayed to God that from now on I'll surrender my will to him. I do this on a daily basis in my prayers. I've read that Step Three has been summarized as: I CAN'T, GOD CAN, I THINK I'LL LET GOD.


Member: Kim V
Location: kvaughn@madison.main.nc.us
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 09:17:14

Comments

Kim V alcoholic. The topic is Step 3. Turning my will and life over to God as I understood him. Well I came to the conclusion 7 long years ago that my decision making skills were not very good. What I got out of staying in the drama, a example was worrying about things I had no control over yet trying desperately to control them and second guess their out come. This was me living in insanity. Today I practice letting God run the show. I have to remind my self that I no longer need to stay in the drama, that my life is not the lifetime channel. What will happen will happen anyway and I trust that if I just keep doing the next right thing that my higher power has got my back. This seems to work because here I am 7 years later and I have had some up's and down's but I haven't been dealt a hand that I couldn't deal with yet. Thanks for letting me share.


Member: Elizabeth E.
Location: Southeast USA
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 12:22:57

Comments

Real alcoholic named Elizabeth. Here you are again Sito! My summation of Step 3 is "things are not going to go "my" way! Step 3 was the stepping stone for me to go to Step 4. There use to be this guy in my home group that tells a story about Step 3 that I do not agree with-3 frogs sitting on the log, one made a decision to jump, how many jumped? The answer is none - he only made a decision! Well my first sponsor told me I would be the frog to jump by changing the way I do things. I stopped prostituting and stealing, I stopped cursing people out and stepping on their toes without apologizing. That was my part in turning my life over to a Higher Power. I ask my Higher Power on a daily basis to "lead and guide me in the way I should go" and he does it. The 3rd Step prayer is a powerful one! It is easy to memorize it, quote it-but can I apply it to my life on a daily basis? The spiritual realm is not a theory, it is a fact. If you are as alcholic as I am then you need the sunlight of the spirit on a daily basis, me, I need it perpetually! All the steps to me took some action (this is a program of action) because I couldn't think my way into right action. With right actions, my thinking gets straightened out! I suggest to my sponsees that they understand what they are doing when they turn their will and lives over to the care of God. Once I did that, my life is no longer my own. The father doeth the work. I play the role he wants me to play, he is the Father, I am the child. He is the employer, I am the employee. I must always rightly relate myself to the one who has all power. On most days, I do what I don't want to do and once it is done, I realize it was what I always wanted to do. Thanks.


Member: mike r.
Location: mount forest , ont .canada
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 20:55:49

Comments

I'm Mike a geatful recovering alcoholic,Step 3 for me was hard at first to do it took me the second time around to finally understand what I was missing. I had grouped a seventeen step study group and worked the steps together when it came to the third I had seven others as my witness as I prayed to God that from now on I'll surrender my will to him. I do this on a daily basis in my prayers. I've read that Step Three has been summarized as: I CAN'T, GOD CAN, I THINK I'LL LET GOD.


Member: LisaJ
Location: southern ca.
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 21:15:54

Comments

Hi, I'm Lisa J. when I worked the steps the first time, I was very afraid of step 3. To me, giving my life to the care of God meant that I had to change things and really give things to Him. Somehow, I thought that meant I had to get perfect and quick. An eskimo told me that all it really had to be, was a commitment to do the rest of the steps. So I did. Now it's quite a few years later and life has been hard lately. my mother has been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. She and I have always been close despite my disease. Sometimes I have to get as simple as God is or God isn't. and right now He is, and right now I'm okay. Step 3 for me is just that. God is and I'll let Him. Thanks for letting me share


Member: Cy H.
Location: Tx.
Date: 01 Jun 2003
Time: 22:53:35

Comments

Cy- Alcoholic, When I first got to AA I figured I had been so bad that God probably wouldn't have any thing to do with me.I used the group as my H.P. for awhile until I could let go of some of my old ideals.My group said don't drink no matter what so I did that, to me that was turning my will over to a power greater than myself because I wanted to drink to end the pain.But they said don't drink and it will get better. Guess what IT DID! That was the beginning of working step 3 for me and as time has gone by I now have a God of my understanding that loves me and has forgiven me. I think that is what as we understood him means, I didn't understand him very well when I got here but as in all things in this program, progress not perfection. Thanks.


Member: Carlc
Location: NM
Date: 02 Jun 2003
Time: 01:23:20

Comments

For the longest time I was a parrot and used to parrot all the nonsense I hear in AA. I use to parrot that mental ping pong of I turn my will over the I take it back, I wasnt turning nothing over to nobody but it sounded good. The third step has three parts 1st I had to be convinced that my way didnt work, second I had to make the decision that he was to be the pricipal, the director and my father, then I had to word this decision both with my mouth, and heart. I did and have never had to go back to do it again, it says we thought well before taking this step making sure we were ready to abandon ourselves utterly to HIM, but then I followed it up with a fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eight, and ninth steps. Today I do the maintenance steps which are the last three. I am a free man, but all I have is a daily reprieve, contingent on my relationship with my creator.


Member: Mike H
Location: Jackson MI
Date: 02 Jun 2003
Time: 07:19:40

Comments

Mike, alcoholic. I am a very controlling person and for me to surrender my will to a God of my understanding seemed nearly impossible. My sponsor asked me this question: When you go to meetings, do you try to do the suggestions the members give you? I said yes, some of them anyways. My sponsor then said: That is the beginning of step three. Progress not perfection. Thanks for letting me share.


Member: Scott R
Location: Nova Scotia
Date: 02 Jun 2003
Time: 07:44:31

Comments

Hello, I'm Scott and an alcoholic. Thanks for letting me listen. Letting go and letting God is a lot more difficult than deciding to do so. This is a daily decision for me. Sometimes I just don't want to let go. That is something I think I will have to work on from time to time - through attending regular in person meetings of AA, following the process Bill and Bob laid down for us and praying for willingness. Thanks.


Member: Craig L (dogmanor@yahoo.com)
Location: Aloha, Oregon
Date: 02 Jun 2003
Time: 10:58:55

Comments

My final relapse was my awakening to some truths in our AA principles. I desperately never wanted to experience that alcoholic hell anymore. Every day in detox I read from the big book and I often recited the suggested prayer for step 3, on my knees. I didn't know what I was doing, but I needed to do something. After graduating from detox LOL, I went to 2+ meetings a day for the first year. I never had a "burning bush" experience, but on the whole, my life has become more peaceful than not. Today whenever I start feeling tired and annoyed, I know I am trying to force my own views on the world and it's time to let it go.


Member: L-RAY
Location: SCOTLAND
Date: 02 Jun 2003
Time: 13:08:11

Comments

When i got to step 3 i had already admitted - and i believed in a power greater than me was present in my life, so a decision was made by me to turn it over to him as i was useless at running things and i knew god would run things a bit better than me! so i knelt and recited the 3rd step prayer! the story of the frogs -three sitting on a log one decided to jump off -how many left? 3 it only made a decision! Regards L-RAY


Member: The world according to Bikerbabe
Location: Hello from Hell?
Date: 02 Jun 2003
Time: 18:15:33

Comments

Well Howdy: ya'all..... STEP ONE... i drank too much and i couldn't stop STEP TWO....i believed there was some way to stop STEP THREE... i turned my efforts at stopping over into not relying soley on my efforts at stopping cause it wasnt' stopping me ""gee wiz! STEP FOUR.... took a lookie lue..at what was eatin me up all the time so that i hated life and wanted to die... or check out via drugs STEP FIVE.. i looked, i admitted it full out to me and someone else... and god' well he was watching anyhow... so he didn't need my lip service. STEP SIX...was ready to try and 'love life and live instead of 'hate life and die.. STEP SEVEN... asked my higer power for help again..no doubt cause of he shear shock and awe' at the kind of ninny i was being, although i was still so proud... ha ha ha STEP EIGHT... put into action "the exact opposite of my 'act in step 4'... whooo hooo eeeeeeee. Thats the toughest part....bikerbabe just got a shiver down her back,,,eehhhhiiii!! STEP NINE..smartened up abruptly when noticing im returning to my previous 'act. ya sure!(enter smug look here)). STEP 10....continued to look at my 'act' in the hope that i will smarten up where need to so i don't end up hatin life and wanting to die again..in fact alkies drinking to slowly kill themselves is insanity in itself.. might as well just off yourself instantly... that would make more sense no? STEP 11....always pray about stuff and look for my connection to my higher power for good orderly ideas as to what the heck i should do next..that might be sensible... rather than silly and fear based ideas and decisions; all the day long... STEP 12.... having come to want to live and love life,,, hope others will see that and have hope they can have it too... if they want it..


Member: nikki/mike
Location: philly
Date: 03 Jun 2003
Time: 18:12:21

Comments

hmmmmmmm sence i already admitted alchol kicked my u know what! and needing a power greater then myself why not let him direct my thinking and my actions. Tell u what havent tried to break in my neighbors house or u no what in the closet or wondering why someone put clothes in the hamper oops i mean toilet get it .its amazing what life's about u know because it's not about me no more.


Member: Teresa B.
Location: Elkhart IN
Date: 04 Jun 2003
Time: 00:15:06

Comments

Hi everyone, I'm Teresa, alcoholic. Sheesh is this a good step for me today. I'm one of those laid off tech workers, going on a year and a half. Had a good prospect at a great company, got the call that I made it into the top three (they quit reading after 130 resumes, for one position), but yet again, no joy, someone else got the position, So, I sat and felt honest feelings and talked honestly with God how sad and frustrated I felt. Then I called my husband and let him know the news and that I would be at the noon meeting. Then I went to the meeting and vented some more. Then, at 4:00 pm I went to a first interview at a not-for-profit agency in a nearby city. And the whole time, I haven't had a drink, right up to now, 11:10 pm, Tuesday evening. So, in this situation, step three tells me all I can do is turn my will and my life over to the care of the God of my understanding. Asking for a knowledge of His will and the power to carry that will out. And yet again, it seems to be His will that I get another job rejection. <Charlie Brown Sigh> So I say the Serenity Prayer again. For me, the hardest thing about step three is that I'm not always going to get the answer to a particular problem quickly, much less at all. And my stinkin' thinkin' SO wants an answer RIGHT NOW!!!! ARRGGHH!!!! Thanks for being here for me...


Member: D-flat
Location: Fargo
Date: 04 Jun 2003
Time: 18:37:00

Comments

yes!! i made a decision,, i didnt make it by my choice,, what i mean to say,, my life was over at the end of my drinking life,,it was dead,, and i got to the point of total surrender,,I wanted to stay sober!!! not for the cops , not to get a women back, not for my job ,, nothin except i wanted my life ,i wanted to live,, so when this guy i barely knew suggested we get on our knees, i knew what that was for, for my life! I believe if i ever find myself in heaven it will be from backing away from hell!!!!


Member: Susan O
Location: Florida
Date: 04 Jun 2003
Time: 21:07:11

Comments

Step 3 The third step gave me a focus for living . Before step three, my focus shifted around from my fears, to my resentments, to "where is that darned waitress, I want another drink!" That kind of messy thinking made my life unmanageable; it made my mind unmanageable. Step three made it possible for me to become centered in positive values and begin to live more conciously.


Member: Patty B
Location: Austin
Date: 05 Jun 2003
Time: 00:14:23

Comments

Turning over my will wasn't a real decision exactly. I mean I didn't have much choice at this point in my drinking career. Like so many have shared already it was do this or die. I could see so clearly after a few days of sobriety that I was headed straight into the bottom of a bottle and I'd never come back out. I can't believe all the reasons this drunk can give herself for drinking. But by turning my will and my life over to the care of my God, I know today I was sober, so tomorrow I will still be alive. I can't blame the legality of alcohol for why I am a drunk, I can't blame the glamorization and even humorous references to being drunk that is plastered all over the airwaves and throughout my life. I don't give a damn about the frogs, really, that just keeps bringing to mind those damned Bud commercials and frankly they lost their charm early on, ya know? But so did the drinking..it's hard to feel the charm when you're screaming at your kid to hurry and get out of the tub and get into bed just so I could take that friggin' bottle out into the open, by myself, and mix it with whatever the heck was around. My God has a quieter, more joyful and sweet life for me now. And I'm eager to start the next 24 hours..so I'll say goodnight and see y'all tomorrow!


Member: Jen
Location: NJ
Date: 05 Jun 2003
Time: 09:08:16

Comments

Maybe I just don't understand the concept of letting go. I'm not a big believer. Yes, I used to go to church as a kid. Then lost all faith. Can't seem to get it back. I don't really understand what people mean by letting go to God. If you just don't believe in God, how do you let go? If there are others out there who feel this way, or once felt this way, tell me how it all changed for you. My sponsor says to just keep trying every day. Just keep praying everyday. But I feel like a hypocrite doing that when I can't seem to believe.


Member: Sam J
Location: Southeast
Date: 05 Jun 2003
Time: 17:22:05

Comments

I am an alcoholic and my name is Sam. I just want to say that I can certainly identify with Jen. I spent 11 years between my first AA meeting and getting sober. The last 3 years without attending any AA meetings at all. I had came to doubt the existence of God so I didn't have help during those years from God. I've seen many people temporarily use the AA group as their higher power. However, I also refused to do this because those people could stay sober and I could not so therefore I envied and hated them. There was no way I would listen to them. This left me on my own and therefore hopeless. I know this is a 3rd step discussion but I need to mention what happened to me in the 1st step that made me want to take the 3rd step. After staying totally away from AA for 3 years I returned in October of 1975. I would go to meetings with good intentions and stop on the way home and have a few drinks. I thought, "Oh Hell! It's going to be the same old failure again. I noticed that some of the people in the group seemed to have a degree of peace and serenity and they said that they believed in something called a Higher Power. I was suffering so that I was willing to try anything. That's when I said my first prayer. (If you can call it that.) I simply asked, "If there is such a thing as a God, will you please help me?" I realized the following day that the terrible compulsion to drink had been removed. That is when I became anxious to take the 3rd step as best I could. Always before, when the compulsion hit me I drank. I couldn't fight it. When that compulsion was removed I knew without a doubt that there is a God. The compulsion to drink has not returned to this day (which I am very grateful for). I have always felt that if it returned I would get drunk. (I always did before). Therefore, I hang close to the AA program and try to work the steps in the hope that maybe the compulsion won't return. Thanks so much for letting me share. I wish each of you the very best.Sam


Member: Carlc
Location: NM
Date: 05 Jun 2003
Time: 19:40:05

Comments

For anyone having trouble with the 3rd step, you have two things you can do, go back to the second step or go drink, if you think you are doing such a wonderful job of running your life why would you want to turn it over to a Higher Power? If you dont want to let go of your old ideas DONT but dont whine about it. I never needed God for anything until I was as willing as the dying can be, as long as we think we can do our will why do we need God? AA has become group therapy, a rap session, a whiners club, and all sorts of other public gatherings that masquerade as AA.


Member: Bikerbabe
Location: Hellishelping
Date: 05 Jun 2003
Time: 22:49:58

Comments

GET'EM....CARL... rrrrr UUUUUFFFFFFF! ! ! OH WEEE..... HONEY YOUR HOT! WHAS SUP NIGGA? YOU ANGRY BOUT SOMETHIN? Bikerbabes angry too..cause there's another black fly kickin it right next to my carrots... ((what say buddy boy.... should i whack the sucka? get mad everyone... come on.. rrruuufffff! ! arrr arrr ar ar ar.....we can always do a step 4 No?


Member: Melanie
Location: Akron, Ohio, USA
Date: 06 Jun 2003
Time: 01:19:22

Comments

Hello, friends. I'm Melanie, an alcoholic. JEN:: I can relate. In Step 2, I came to believe that there might be a God and of course He could restore me to sanity(could, not necessarily would.) But step 3 is another issue all together. I did several things to turn my will and life over. First, I started to pray on a regular basis. I felt dumb talking to the air that way, but I was told "Fake it 'til you make it." Try talking to God like a person. Being casual about it helped me. I started to try to live the way my idea of God would want me to live. I used the "four absolutes"(from an A.A. produced pamphlet): honesty, unselfishness, purity and love. These I adopted as basic rules for life(to the best of my ability.) I sought the advice of others in the program and even followed some of it. I tried to continue to work the steps. I just kept doing these things and slowly I have become a woman of faith. The evidence of God's hand in my life is what made me believe. I return to step 3 when the road is bumpy. It reminds me that God looks out for me when I try to live well. And I return to Step 3 when I remember to give thanks. When life is great, look for the God in it. You'll need the practice for when things don't seem so great. Love All!


Member: Mary V.
Location: CT
Date: 06 Jun 2003
Time: 11:45:34

Comments

I think of the 3rd step as making the decision to let go of my selfish self-will and be willing to change. In the Big Book, it tells us that once we make that decision me must "at once" move on to the house cleaning steps or else we'll lose what we've gained so far. I missed that part when i did my 3rd step and I procrastinated on a 4th step for several months... and the result was misery. Once I moved forward into the rest of the steps, I regained a sense of hope.


Member: Jimmy
Location: Detroit
Date: 07 Jun 2003
Time: 00:28:21

Comments

CarlC, dude yo the man!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Get down on it!!! You rough wit those punks---I's likes it yo-yo-------------


Member: ClaudiaH
Location: CO
Date: 07 Jun 2003
Time: 01:16:26

Comments

It would be great to do Step 3 once and be done with it, but that doesn't seem to work for me. I need to take this step on a daily, sometimes hourly, and just now, on a minute by minute basis. Right now my Mom is in the hospital, getting weaker and looking more vulnerable by the day. I don't understand, but I'm not supposed to. What I can do is minute by minute, remember that God is in charge. That keeps me out of the past and the future and lets me deal with current things one at a time. I don't have to like what is happening. All my feelings are OK. When I can accept God's love, care, guidance, strength and support for each moment as it comes, I can remember that I am a child of God. I can cry when I need to, scream when that helps, and even laugh at my own absurdities in my attempts to coerce the Doctors, nurses or God into healing her. It helps. I thank God and AA that I am sober and able to truely be here for my mother, and oddly enough, for myself. I can experience all of this and find joy here as well as pain. Thanks for letting me share.


Member: Attention
Location: my comment on step 13
Date: 07 Jun 2003
Time: 04:36:19

Comments

Carl c is my current and all time freekin hero... Yoo hoo carl.. i love ya baby... yu da best!.....20 years sober...(enter bow and curtsey here) Wow.. i really cant get over it.. i really cant... hey carl... you could kinda 13th step me with that much time in couldn't ya honey? im only 7 myself...


Member: Glen C.
Location: Chilliwack, BC
Date: 07 Jun 2003
Time: 05:23:52

Comments

My name is Glen and I am an alcoholic. Step three is a turning point for me; an absolute essential. Without God, I cannot be in recovery. Today, and everyday, I turn my will and my life over to His care, and then I let go and let God run my life. I go to about six meetings a week, and so far I am healing and recovering.


Member: Kathy F.
Location: Texas
Date: 08 Jun 2003
Time: 00:05:20

Comments

I'm Kathy, an alcoholic. I remember feeling like Jen when I reached step three; I had no idea what to pray to or how to let go. My sponsor told me to read the third step in the 12&12 for a week. She suggested I avoid trying to define the higher power and instead accept it simply as a power greater than myself as described in step 2. Then she told me to think about what it would mean for me to let go of my way of doing things and my way of thinking, and to write down my thoughts. We talked about what I wrote. Soon I realized that my will was misdirected and my way of life did not work. So my sponsor suggested I get quiet and either say the prayer in the big book or use whatever words I wanted that signified I was willing to change and allow a power greater than myself to lead me. She told me not to bother putting away the pencil and paper because I was going to need it right away.