Written By Dara Griffin
STEP 3: “WE MADE A DECISION TO TURN OUR WILL AND LIVES OVER TO THE CARE OF GOD AS WE UNDERSTOOD HIM”
God, I offer myself to Thee — to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy Way of life.
This is the prayer people say when they decide to turn their will and lives over to the care of God or a higher power of their understanding. This could be a massive spiritual revelation for some folks as if getting through the first two steps was not a challenge of its own because people who decide to come on into the program know it is not an easy task and a lot of work is ahead of them. This decision seriously is life or death for people. Or it could be oh please don’t throw me in jail your honor. Or yes mommy and daddy I am doing AA look at me but on the inside that person is playing a devious character fantasizing about his past drinking and waiting for his/her chance to pounce. This disease that forms in the limbic system of the brain, and is also responsible for all your other addictions/impulse decision making whether it be food, digital stimulation, sex, shopping, gaming, sports, love or whatever gives you a thrill that makes you feel good. What I’ve realized throughout this process is that your God is what you make of it. It could be the God portrayed in the Bible, Torah, Quran, Bhagavad Gita, or whatever other text your creed worships. Even if it is some sort of inter-dimensional extra terrestrial being, or you are a self proclaimed atheist/agnostic you have that freedom to help yourself in this long process to decide to do whatever it takes for the individual to not drink or use.
This step helps you prepare for Step 4 because it forces you to take a deep spiritual dive into your past to dig out your character defects, sexual interactions or secrets you swore you would take to the grave with you. Now with the guidance of your new God of your understanding to help you through this tough time you have a chance to reach the light at the end of the tunnel. You also can use this God not only for the steps but for your everyday daily life to pray. Whether it is for a person who relapses in the program in which you care deeply about (which is a common occurrence), if a loved one is sick, an important job interview is coming up, or even personal struggles you may have from time to time. Just know that God will always be there for you. For people that do not believe in God or have a tough time with that concept you should be willing to give it a chance. This program is not a religious cult, it is a program that is based upon spirituality. This part of your life is a good time to come in with an open mind and give new ideas some thought and effort portrayed through action. If you have reached Step 3 in this part of your life, your past thinking and behaviors have led you to a point of desperation or your life being unmanageable, it is also good to know that you are not alone in this process there are millions of people with this same disease. The people you meet at meetings who have put years into this program and have had lives beyond their imagination are willing to share their story and pass their knowledge off to another person who was not able to get where they are without Step 3. A majority of people who take yearly chips often credit their sobriety to their higher powers or God and that is the solution to their everyday life in order to maintain inner peace and happiness that no one can take away. With all of this being said Step 3 is where the energy shifts in an individual and is continuously sailing onward across the rigid sea to the shores of unknown land where they will reach the gates that will open them up to the road of happy destiny.
““I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had no where else to go. My own wisdom and that of all about me seemed insufficient for that day.””
— Abraham Lincoln