Thursday, January 6, 2011

A sobering entry

My work has a book sale every year to raise money. The employees bring it whatever books they don't want anymore and all the money raised by selling them goes to charities. Because I'm a self-proclaimed bibliophile, I will attend any book sale. At last year's book sale, I was interested and intrigued by a book I found, One Day at a Time in Al-Anon. If you don't know what Al-Anon is, it's a support group for persons who live with, have family members, etc., that are alcoholics. One Day at a Time in Al-Anon is basically written like a daily devotional. I remember daily devotionals well from my childhood, as my grandmother always had one lying around her house. It usually had a somewhat cheesy picture of Jesus on the cover. The concept is simple: Each day the participant would read a Christian passage about a variety of topics, from piety to virtue. The idea is to remind yourself of your Christian faith and how you can better live your life through God. I remember I had a daily devotional at one point in time, but I don't remember consistently having one. I know that as of a month ago Mark's grandmother has one sitting on a table at her house - and it was marked to the current date - so I do know they are still used. Anyway, the reason why I bought the book - at the bargain basement price of fifty cents - was out of curiosity. I mean, who gets rid of their Al-Anon book? It just seems so odd to me. Anyway, I looked through the book a little - hoping to find some comments in the margin or name inside, to be honest - and I read some of the pages, too, but don't really want to keep it. I will place it in my Goodwill pile. Before I do, I will leave you with "Today's Reminder" from the book dated today, January 6th. "When things look blackest, it is within my power to brighten them with the light of understanding and gratitude. I realize how much depends on my point of view; my own wrong habits of thinking and acting must be corrected and only I can do that." And then then quote that you are supposed to repeat aloud, "Let me not expect easy solutions to my problems. Make me realize that many of my difficulties were created by me, by my own reactions to the happenings in my daily life. I ask only to be guided to a better way."

One Day at a Time in Al-Anon, Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc, NY, NY, 1988, p.6.

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