Step Eleven provides a strong foundation for spiritual development of our AA program. As it is noted in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, “The spiritual life is not a theory. We have to live it.” Since prayer and meditation are our principle means of gaining conscious contact with God, these are essential components for living a successful and joyful life in recovery.
In the months of my early sobriety I was determined to have a life without drinking. I attended several meetings a week, got a good sponsor and began working the twelve steps. Sometimes I felt as though I was gaining ground, that I too had arrived. At other times, however, I felt that I was falling back into the anger, fear, and judgment of a chaotic mind that I had developed after many years of drinking.
At that time there was an old timer who attended meetings around town who spoke reverently about the benefits of practicing step eleven. He admonished AA’s to work the step each morning and evening “Practice prayer and meditation every day! And if you do, amazing things will happen in your program”.
One weekend I decided that it was time to take up the challenge. I came to both the Saturday and Sunday AA meditation meetings that weekend. The results were amazing. I could literally feel my thinking slow down as I meditated in silence with the group. Soon, I began practicing Step Eleven at home on a daily basis and in time discovered that I was receiving the gift of a quiet head.
Further, in through working the step morning and night I could feel a growing presence of my higher power. Acquiring a better conscious contact with the God of my understanding, I would have days that flowed smoothly without the conflict, judgment and chaos that had plagued me for years. It was though I was moving onto a new spiritual threshold, and the blocks I had placed upon myself, mainly my fearful head, had been removed. I felt that I could now cross this threshold a free man.
This was followed by exciting and fruitful years in the fellowship. I became involved in AA service and carried the message of the program including the spiritual dimension of the program I had found in working step eleven. Although the journey has not completely without troubles or worries, my relationship with my higher power has always been more than sufficient to see me through. I have been able to experience the joy of the promises made in the Big Book and my spiritual path grow and flow onto the “broad highway.”
It strikes me at how much has changed in my life over the last several years in the program. Many of the peo-ple, places and things are quite different. Upon reflection, one source of my life that remains constant and lasting is the relationship with my Higher Power. As I work Step Eleven this only seems to grow and become more alive.
Step Eleven has brought me into a growing communion with my Higher Power. It has taught me to pray only for the knowledge of his will for me and the power to carry that out. The tools of meditation and prayer continue to bring me safely through times of stress or conflict. I firmly believe that his answers flow through the grace of the silence.
~ Eleventh Step Meditation Group
Saturdays 3:30pm & Sundays 3:00pm
Alano Club, Murray