Monthly Archives: February 2014

February 28

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Living Sober through the Psalms

Sober Thought of the Day
“Sir, if you were my husband, I would poison your drink.”
“Madam, if you were my wife, I would drink it.”
Exchange between Lady Astor and Winston Churchill —”

This psalm always makes me think of the choices I made when I was younger on who my friends were. I chose friends who were fun.  Today, I choose my friends more wisely. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 1:1-2, 3, 4 AND 6

R. (40:5a) Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.

Blessed the man who follows not
the counsel of the wicked
Nor walks in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the company of the insolent,
But delights in the law of the LORD
and meditates on his law day and night.
R. Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.

He is like a tree
planted near running…

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February 27

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Sober Thought of the Day
Scientists announced that they have located the gene for alcoholism. Scientists say they found it at a party, talking way too loudly. Conan O’Brien

When I think back at all the times I had a little too much to drink at work or important social functions, I cringe. What did I say? How did I say it? Was I a loud mouth? Did I slur? Not pretty. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 31:5-6, 14, 15-16

R. (17b) Save me, O Lord, in your kindness.

You will free me from the snare they set for me,
for you are my refuge.
Into your hands I commend my spirit;
you will redeem me, O LORD, O faithful God.
R. Save me, O Lord, in your kindness.

I hear the whispers of the crowd, that frighten me from every side,
as they consult together against me, plotting to take my life.
R. Save me, O Lord, in your kindness.

But my trust is in you, O LORD;
I say, “You are my God.”
In your hands is my destiny; rescue me
from the clutches of my enemies and my persecutors.
R. Save me, O Lord, in your kindness.

Today’s Saint
“To give, and not to count the cost to fight, and not to heed the wounds, to toil, and not to seek for rest, to labor, and not to ask for any reward, save that of knowing that we do thy will” ― St. Ignatius of Loyola

February 26

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Living Sober through the Psalms

Sober Thought of the Day
Alcoholics tend to think big and go to extremes. This kind of thinking coupled with perfectionism dooms us to failure. Moderation should be your byword. The Recovery Book, by Anthony Radcliff, MD

In meetings when someone mentions the tendency we have towards grandiosity, I always chuckle inside thinking of all my elaborate plans I had for the future. Yes, that’s me. Grandiose ideas but no follow through. In non-alcoholics I believe this personality trait is called being a “dreamer.”  When I find myself forging grand plans in my head, I now remind myself to slow down, everything in moderation, start small, time takes time. Number 9 

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 50:8-9, 16BC-17, 21 AND 23

R. (23b) To the upright I will show the saving power of God

“Not for your sacrifices do I rebuke you,
for your burnt offerings are before…

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February 25

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Sober Thought of the Day
When men and women pour so much alcohol into themselves that they destroy their lives, they commit a most unnatural act. Defying their instinctive desire for self-preservation, they seem bent upon self-destruction, working against their own deepest instinct. As Bill Sees It, pg 246

Alcoholism is like a cancer. With cancer our own cells turn against us, and so it is with alcohol to the alcoholic–as an organic brain disease our own mind tells us we are not sick and can drink like normal men. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 79:8, 9, 11 AND 13

R. (see 103:10a) Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.

Remember not against us the iniquities of the past;
may your compassion quickly come to us,
for we are brought very low.
R. Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.

Help us, O God our savior,
because of the glory of your name;
Deliver us and pardon our sins
for your name’s sake.
R. Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.

Let the prisoners’ sighing come before you;
with your great power free those doomed to death.
Then we, your people and the sheep of your pasture,
will give thanks to you forever;
through all generations we will declare your praise.
R. Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.

Today’s Saint
The great danger for family life, in the midst of any society whose idols are pleasure, comfort and independence, lies in the fact that people close their hearts and become selfish. Pope John Paul II

February 24

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Sober Thought of the Day
Recent scientific research has discovered new avenues of treatment by showing conclusively that addiction is a chronic physical disease that attacks the brain, damaging key parts of the limbic system and cerebral cortex. Healing the Addicted Brain

For a long time I knew I had a problem with drinking but I was unwilling to do what needed to be done in order to stop. Now that I am sober, I find it is easier to stay on this recovery track. I made the about face, the u-turn to head in the other better direction. Now life continues to flow best when I take action, keep moving away from that old life. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 27:1, 7-8, 8-9, 13-14

R. (1a) The Lord is my light and my salvation.

The LORD is my light and my salvation;
whom should I fear?
The LORD is my life’s refuge;
of whom should I be afraid?
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.

Hear, O LORD, the sound of my call;
have pity on me, and answer me.
Of you my heart speaks; you my glance seeks.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.

Your presence, O LORD, I seek.
Hide not your face from me;
do not in anger repel your servant.
You are my helper: cast me not off.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.

I believe that I shall see the bounty of the LORD
in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD with courage;
be stouthearted, and wait for the LORD.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.

Today’s Saint
“It is foolish to think that we will enter heaven without entering into ourselves.” Teresa of Ávila

A man who is eating or lying with his wife or preparing to go to sleep in humility, thankfulness and temperance, is, by Christian standards, in an infinitely higher state than one who is listening to Bach or reading Plato in a state of pride. CS Lewis

Febrary 23

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Sober Thought of the Day
Lapsing or relapsing is a process that begins a long time before the actual event. Because lapses and relapses don’t “just happen,” it is possible to identify the signs of impending trouble and head it off. If you learn how to spot the warning signs and make plans to act once you see them, you can stay on the road to recovery. Healing the Addicted Brain, Ch. 9

Sometimes a slip, or a relapse, can be headed off by utilizing a few of the tools available to us in recovery. Going to a meeting. Reading sobriety materials. Networking with sober people online. Talking with our sponsors. Praying. When we feel uncomfortable with things and we think a drink might be the solution, we can “play the tape” to remind us what the rest of the night will look like if we take that first drink. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 119:1-2, 4-5, 7-8

R. (1b) Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!

Blessed are they whose way is blameless,
who walk in the law of the LORD.
Blessed are they who observe his decrees,
who seek him with all their heart.
R. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!

You have commanded that your precepts
be diligently kept.
Oh, that I might be firm in the ways
of keeping your statutes!
R. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!

I will give you thanks with an upright heart,
when I have learned your just ordinances.
I will keep your statutes;
do not utterly forsake me.
R. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!

Today’s Saint
Hope is practiced through the virtue of patience, which continues to do good even in the face of apparent failure, and through the virtue of humility, which accepts God’s mystery and trusts him even at times of darkness. Faith tells us that God has given his Son for our sakes and gives us the victorious certainty that it is really true: God is love! It thus transforms our impatience and our doubts into the sure hope that God holds the world in his hands and that, as the dramatic imagery of the end of the Book of Revelation points out, in spite of all darkness he ultimately triumphs in glory. Pope Benedict XVI, God Is Love

February 22

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Sober Thought of the Day
In all times of emotional disturbance or indecision, we can pause, ask for quiet, and in the stillness simply say: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. Thy will, not mine, be done.” 12&12, page 41

The Serenity Prayer is a helpful tool in recovery. Repeating it over and over in my head helps quiet the noise in there. Pondering each simple line of the prayer can put circumstances into context. What or whom am I trying to change who cannot be changed by my efforts? How much time have I wasted worrying about what others should think or what others should do. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 23:1-3A, 4, 5, 6

R. (1) The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
With your rod and your staff
that give me courage.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

You spread the table before me
in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Only goodness and kindness follow me
all the days of my life;
And I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
for years to come.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Today’s Saint
The principal act of courage is to endure and withstand dangers doggedly rather than to attack them. St. Thomas Aquinas

February 21

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Sober Thought for Day
It’s been said in meetings that if you think you had a high bottom, you may have a low bottom in your future. AA Grapevine

What does it mean to hit rock bottom? When it comes to alcohol and drug addiction, “hitting rock bottom” means that the user comes to a place where he decides he does not wish to continue living the way he is living, and hopefully, is now ready to make changes. Addiction is the only illness where the patient remains oblivious to the fact she needs medical attention. Dr David Karol Gore

If we think we have a pretty “high” bottom, in the back of our minds we might still be thinking, “Maybe it wasn’t that bad, afterall.” So, we may rationalize after a period of time in sobriety that we can make another attempt at controlled drinking. The problem is, and this played out in my own life, that the disease is progressive. And when I went back out there to try again, it was very difficult to get sober again once the train was set in motion. It took a few months to get rolling, but I was right back where I left off and then went further down. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 138:1-2AB, 2CDE-3, 7C-8

R. (3a) Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.

I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart,
for you have heard the words of my mouth;
in the presence of the angels I will sing your praise;
I will worship at your holy temple
and give thanks to your name.
R. Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.

Because of your kindness and your truth;
for you have made great above all things
your name and your promise.
When I called, you answered me;
you built up strength within me.
R. Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.

Your right hand saves me.
The LORD will complete what he has done for me;
your kindness, O LORD, endures forever;
forsake not the work of your hands.
R. Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.

Today’s Faith Alcohol consumption in moderation is not immoral. But we should avoid the abuse of alcohol just as we should avoid the abuse of any food, drug, or other substance. “The virtue of temperance disposes us to avoid every kind of excess: the abuse of food, alcohol, tobacco, or medicine” (CCC 2290).

“The word “virtue” is used as a synonym for goodness or sobriety or some likable personality trait, but the Church uses the term in a much more precise way. Virtues are special graces given by God to the soul for the accomplishment of particular objectives. They inhere in the soul and are subject to strengthening or weakening.” Catholic Answers Staff

February 20

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Living Sober through the Psalms

Sober Thought for the Day
“The attainment of greater humility is the foundation principle of each of AA’s Twelve Steps, for without some degree of humility, no alcoholic can stay sober at all.  ”Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 70

I don’t learn humility in my head, through knowledge and study, or through reading about it.  Humility is fostered in my heart. An alcoholic living a sober life, and all that entails, is living a life of humility because in order to stay away from the drink, I have to remember who I am–an alcoholic. I have a flaw, a defect. I’m not perfect. That I cannot drink like other people is something I need to remind myself of each morning. Piling up days in sobriety can very easily lead me to complacency where I forget how alcohol affected me so many days, weeks, months or years ago. Daily I…

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February 19

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Living Sober through the Psalms

Sober Thought for the Day
Joy at the release of a lifetime of frustration knew no bounds. AA Big Book, The Family Afterwards

The joy of living is the theme for AA’s 12th Step and Action is its keyword. 12&12, page 106

If I’m living my life one day at a time, doing the next right thing, treating others in my path with respect with gratitude to God for this gift of sobriety, then each day will be overflowing with Joy, no matter what the circumstances of my life at the time may be. Number 9

Psalm of the Day
Responsorial Psalm PS 34:4-5, 6-7, 16-17, 18-19

R. (18b) From all their distress God rescues the just.

Glorify the LORD with me,
let us together extol his name.
I sought the LORD, and he answered me
and delivered me from all my fears.
R. From all their distress God rescues…

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