Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Thursday 8/20/09 "SERENITY AND PEACE"


"SERENITY AND PEACE"

"WE WILL COMPREHEND THE WORD SERENITY
AND WE WILL KNOW PEACE."
("Alcoholics Anonymous", pp. 83 & 84 - 3rd 9th step promise)


The words "serenity" and "peace" as they applied to me personally were extremely elusive till I was over 40 years old and had been in Alcoholics Anonymous over a year.

Prior to sobriety, did I comprehend the world serenity? No! no way! I believed there was serenity happening when no calamity was rocking my emotionally sensitive world and when things were going my way. I think I thought I was experiencing serenity each time I "fell in love" - that rush of good feeling.

Did I know peace? I understood about "peace to the world", but of "peace within" I had very little understanding. I was usually on an emotional roller coaster - elated and flying high with a new love or a momentary success at work or devastated, depressed, and having thoughts of suicide.

The years I have spent working the 12 steps has illuminated for me what serenity means. Serenity for me is having the ability to stay calm even when all around me is chaos. Serenity is being able to maintain a tranquil composure when others are angry, upset, disturbed. As the "Serenity Prayer" says, if I can accept the things I cannot change, I probably have some serenity.

I have peace within myself today. I accept myself as I am. If there is something that needs changing, I ask for the willingness and ask God to remove it. Then I do my part. I recognize my talents and gifts and give thanks to God for them. In relationships with others, I have freedom from quarreling and disagreement with others. I can state my position, hear another out, then leave it be. There are more harmonious relationships.

Serenity and peace are a direct product of faith and trust in God. It is a product of keeping my life turned over to God. The more I stay in step three and in the present, the more of these qualities I have.

Do I have serenity and peace at all times? Of course not. I am not a saint, but I do my best to grow along spiritual lines. The longer I focus on strengthening my relationship with God, the more serenity and peace I experience.

I wish all you bloggers peace and serenity,
Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Jen D. Rodriguez)

12 comments:

Steve E. said...

SO many men--
so little TIME.....

Mike Golch said...

Great posting.

vicariousrising said...

I spent a lot of my pre-sobriety energy trying to keep my life as drama-free as possible. But it was not a life I would mistake for peaceful or full of serenity. In fact, in many ways it was an avoidance of living altogether, including the drinking to escape my painful reality.

When I began to be able to handle those pesky situations that used to baffle me without feeling as if I were sticking my finger in an electrical socket, I finally understood the meaning of serenity.

Now that I think about it, I could use a little more of that center about now. I don't think I've been doing quite enough of the things that I usually do that help me find that place within myself lately.

Tall Karen said...

These have all been such inspiring reminders of the gifts we receive when we work the 12 Steps. Thank you for sharing your experiences.

Madison said...

Perfectly written. And when you know what living with no peace whatsoever feels like, God is all the more appreciated. I'm going to send this blog to friends.

Gin said...

I'll take a little of that please. And then I'll pass it on just
the way you have. :-)

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

I wish you peace and serenity that is overflowing today!

Cat said...

That step three - staying in the present has proven the hardest for me so far, I find I slip and have to bring myself back to it, but I figure practice makes perfect...

wolfie185 said...

Love the Lotus flower which is a spiritual symbol of peace for me. Great post once again I can really relate. During my 10 year relapse I searched everywhere and in many things to find the peace and serenity I had found in AA, but I refused to put the bottle down, I was deep in my addict and denile. Once back in recovery the peace and serenity slow started to come back and it was via the 3rd step, I had spiritual experience when I reread "We Agnostics" I was reminded of how important the God of my understanding was and also that it was the God of my understanding and a personal God. Like you I am not perfect at practicing this step at all times, but my tolerance for pain is less all the time so I go to this step when the pain hits, God usually throws in a reminder too. Yesterday I had to do a big God grant me the serenity PLEASE because I am powerless over my daughter and her decisions, between reaching out to another alcoholic in recovery and some footwork the serenity returned. To me serenity and peace are the greatest blessings of steps 3 and 11, the tools that help me deal with life on lifes terms which in turn give me the defense against the first drink.
Thanks again for your inspiration, I have been passing your post along also.

Mama Zen said...

A measure of serenity is the greatest gift that I have ever received.

Paula said...

I am more often in contact with my HP by now. It does help however often I slip. Thanks for reminding me. Hugs across the pond

Syd said...

When my insides feel no upheaval and my mind doesn't race then I'm in a place of peace and serenity. Thanks for sharing your understanding.