10. Wisdom

10. “And the WISDOM to know the difference”   The definition: “Wisdom n. the quality of judging soundly concerning what is true or false”.   This drawing is difficult to describe in terms of the Serenity Prayer alone. In the Twelve Steps of recovery, the insanity which all addicts and alcoholics suffer can be traced to “a lack…

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11. Know

11. “And the wisdom to KNOW the difference.”   As I have mentioned repeatedly here, the words of the Serenity Prayer were familiar and simple ones. I instinctively knew (or thought I knew) what each word meant. I prayed the prayer thousands of times, perfectly content that I understood what I was saying. But the 1934 Webster’s…

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12. Difference

12. “And the wisdom to know the DIFFERENCE.”   The definition: “Difference n. the quality of being partly or totally unlike in nature, form, or quality”   In this instance, the imagery became my central focus, since the text held no surprises for me. I carefully crafted an illustration that you cannot see here. It consisted of…

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1. Powerless

1.  POWERLESS   When I decided to try the Twelve Step program, it became clear I didn’t really know anything about them. So I was relieved when Step One appeared to be so self-explanatory. It asked me to admit that I was powerless over my problem, and that was not hard for me. I had…

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2. Restore

2. Restore

2. RESTORE   ​​​​​​​Step Two reads as follow: “Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.” Some Steps were hard to understand but the wording of this Step was straightforward. The phrase “Power Greater than myself,” was a familiar one, so I wasn’t surprised to see it in this…

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3. Decision

Decision

3. DECISION “Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God.” Back in the 1930s, the definitions of common words were sometimes difficult to understand. My best evidence of that is found in a 1934 Webster’s Dictionary. One example is the word “Decision”. I myself might have defined…

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4. Inventory

Inventory

4. INVENTORY Step Four consists of a short sentence, but it sounded like a big deal to me when I first read it: Made a searching and moral inventory of ourselves. I did not know exactly what this meant, but as a still-suffering addict, I did not like the sound of it. I was in…

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5. Admit

Admit

5. ADMIT Every Step puzzled me at first. I might think I understood a given Step, then my sponsor or the literature would offer an important insight and I realized I didn’t understand it very well at all. The same was true when I looked up words in the Webster’s Dictionary that was published back…

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6. Ready

Ready

6. READY         Poor little Step Six. The short, short step. I sometimes see it and Step Seven clumped together in certain literature. It is as if taken alone, the Step is not worth much so it settles for an undignified “Buy One Get One Free” deal. Step Six reads as follows: “We…

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