A few minutes after meeting my new sponsor at his home, he sat me down at his dining room table, put a piece of paper, and a pencil in front of me. "Now what we're going to do is design you a higher power."
He sat next to me, faced the paper toward himself, wrote a line on it, and faced it toward me. The line read: "Has the power to keep me clean for a day when asked."
"That's all I require from your higher power," he said. "Throw on anything else you want."
Wow! Did my inflated intellect and barely subdued disease ever want to have fun with this! "What?" I said. "This piece of paper?"
He shrugged. "Pretend it's a teddy bear, a sunset, a favorite chair, Allah, Vishnu, or the keychain in your pocket if you want. But if you ask that piece of paper for the strength to keep you clean for a day, you will get another day away from the nightmare." Then came the big lesson, which I have mentioned in this blog several times before: "You don't have to believe in this shit for it to work. All you have to do is do it."
The search for a Higher Power and figuring out how to fit one into your life and recovery can be difficult, particularly among rabid god-haters such as I was. I wanted to take this nonsense, discount the whole thing, and throw it in the wastebasket. I didn't, though, because I told my sponsor I would do what he asked.
I don't think I personified my paper HP nor borrowed any of the available gods and goddesses from current and ancient religion. Unnamed and "up there" somewhere, I asked for another day clean. I not only got that next twenty-four hours clean, it was easy.
Since then I have added on a few things. They are in my mind since I lost that piece of paper a long time ago. My HP needs to be okay with me testing it. I needed to see it work in my life and in a manner I could understand. One time, looking for a parking place, and frustrated on that account, I came up with my first test. "Okay, give me parking places." I found a parking place, and the parking places I've gotten since are embarrassingly great. My HP listens to me and answers every prayer, sometimes with "No."
There are a number of other things I added to my list, but I do not need to know and understand my HP. What I need is to be clean one day at a time and grow in recovery. Every now and then I need direction on what to do. How it works, why it works, and so on are not my questions to answer.
Keep it simple.
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