I was at a fellowship meeting last night and I had the great blessing of attending that meeting with my wife and her mother who was visiting from out-of-town. The meeting speaker was my daughter. All told, we had three generations present in the room, three generations that God has blessed up with a combined total of 86 years of sobriety.
The topic my daughter chose for her talk was fear. It was as if she had put her finger on the issue that involves the real essence of our program. She quoted the section of the book the big book of Alcoholics Anonymous that talks about fear, how we write those fears down, that the solution to those fears is putting God at the center of our life. The truth of her words struck me profoundly.
The keystone of the spiritual arch we build in our fellowship is having God in the center of our life, it’s the focus of everything that we do. This was the spiritual inspiration for the writing of the book of Alcoholics Anonymous and for the creation of our fellowship. The co-founders pamphlet quotes Dr. Bob on P 52 saying that the spiritual principles of our fellowship came from the Bible – specifically three sections – The Sermon on the Mount (Matthew chapters 5 through 7) , first Corinthians Chapter 13 which is the Apostle Paul’s dissertation on love (commonly read at weddings) and the entire book of James.
In contemplating the topic of fear, I’m also reminded of the emphasis on Psalm 91 which was also a mainstay of the early fellowship. I believe that there are two very powerful tools to be used in conjunction with the working of a thorough written fourth step and the steps that follow are careful study of study of Psalm 91 and of first Corinthians chapter 13.
The indisputable fact is that fear cannot inhabit the heart of a person if the center of person’s heart is God and God’s love for them. One cannot serve two masters. Therefore, whenever fear grips me it is a self-centered fear. This fear is often summed up in the phrase we hear in meetings “losing something I’ve got or not getting something I want”. If I’m acting in love towards others from practicing the principle of service to my fellow-man and I’m loving them as Christ loves all of us beyond our comprehension, then I am immediately relieved of my self-centered fear because I’m focusing on the love of another person. God is love and God’s love dispels all fear.
The Big Book that says on page 62 that the keystone of our recovery is placing God at the center of our lives. It is only by having this God and love centered attitude towards life that He removes our fears at once.
That has been true for me and will remain true as long as I’m willing to practice that love towards others in and out of our fellowship.