I plan to add the 12 steps to this blog. They have helped dozens of people heal, in my life and personal experience. Including myself. I have had the honor of using them to help others, and watching healing take place is a tremendous honor. Some think it’s a cult because they have not talked to a Christian who is involved in it. Almost all the Christian criticism of the program was done by people not involved in helping others heal. Those that stay outside can only hear gossip and rumors. If you want to know more, watch these posts!
So many poorly-taught Christians have told me that AA is an evil cult. Before you agree with those people, let’s look at the source of these 12 steps. I will go through each step, and I will also go deeper into each one. In my eyes, these steps are an organized way of doing things that over the centuries have helped people achieve and maintain balance in their lives! AA merely put these together as an outline for people to heal and recover from their dependency.
- Step 1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Step 2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Step 3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Step 4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Step 5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Step 6. Were entirely ready to have God remove our shortcomings.
- Step 7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Step 8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Step 9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Step 10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
- Step 11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Step 12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
Soon, I will have posts about each step. I will share other sources for these steps, showing their validity as seen in other spiritual programs, even those that don’t recognize these 12 gems from the God that we understand! Oh, in case that phrase “as we understand Him” bothers you, realize that you don’t know everything there is to know about God! None of us do. It’s humbler to use that phrase. Also, for those that hate God, and that hatred got them into trouble, it puts healing before it reveals the source.
Similar Christian Programs!
The top row is the title of their book, and the author is in the second row. The first 3 columns are from an obvious Christian view. The others have a strong Christian basis and are more anonymous about it. They do so because they believed that healing was a higher priority than dealing with the God they may be angry at. Once healed, they would be told about the source for their healing.
|Spirit of the Disciplines||Celebration of Discipline||Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life||AA & 12 Steps & 12 Traditions||Oxford Group|
|Dallas Willard||Richard Foster||Donald Whitney||Bill W.||Sam Shoemaker|
|Solitude||Solitude||Solitude||Steps 4, 10|
|Silence||(included in Solitude)||Silence|
|Service||Service||Serving||Steps 8, 9, 12||Restitution|
|Prayer||Prayer||Prayer||Steps 7, 11|
|Fellowship||(meetings)||Work with other sufferers|
|Submission||Submission||Steps 3, 6, 9||Dependence on God|
|Guidance||(Sponsorship)||Work with other sufferers|
|Step 4||Moral Inventory|
|Steps 1, 2||Deflation of pride|
This is not a list of all the Christian Disciplines. There is Discipling, Humility, Honesty, and more. Remember that the purpose of any of these is to grow closer to the heart of God, by experiencing what He experienced. Taking our eyes off ourselves, and looking at things from a new point of view. Seeing things more through His eyes, doing things more with His hands, loving others as He does.
Some of you are familiar with disciplines from other religions, as Christianity is not the only one to see their value. If you want to see how they compare, contact me and that will help me to make that a higher priority project.
Which of these are you called to do? Which of these have you neglected? Which have helped you to grow? Which have you avoided? Only you can answer that, and the answer will be more accurate if you ask God to help you!
Please comment and/or respond to what you heard inside of you as you read this! Let’s share!