Letting Go of Old Ideas: Steps 6 and 7

Step 6:  Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character

Step 7:  Humbly ask God to remove my shortcomings -Alcoholics Anonymous

This weekend I will be completing steps 6 and 7, which I outlined above.  When I first read through these steps, they seem like the simplest, most palatable of all the steps in the program.  Seriously, if you know that you possess a character defect, then why wouldn’t you want to get rid of it?  Why not just ask God to remove it?

Here is what I’m learning:  you can know you possess a character defect, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you really want it removed.  Case in point:  I have learned, through all of my recent self-examination, that I have a tendency to be self-righteous (REALLY!?! is now the thought of all my friends and family).  So… simple, right?  Admit it, ask God to remove it, and bam!  I am now the most humble person around.

Not so fast.  It is not that easy!  When I am in a moment when I know, I mean I really know, that I am right, it has proven exceedingly difficult not to beat that point into the ground.  And so, just like the definition of insanity suggests, I will continue to argue my “rightness” until I am blue in the face, and does it get me any satisfaction?  Generally, no.  Does it improve the situation I am trying to correct?  Almost never.  Does the lightbulb go off over the heads of those with whom I am debating, and do they finally accept and appreciate the wisdom that is me?  Sadly, I have never had such an experience, but damn if I don’t keep trying.

So, I guess somehow I will figure it out, but here’s what I do know at this point:  I can see a pattern of behavior, I can accept that I have a defect, but I have to really and truly want to have it removed before God is going to work with me.  So the new prayer is for God to get me entirely ready!

Posted on October 5, 2012, in Recovery and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. I have found that the defects I hold on to are the very ones I “enjoy”. I put quotes around that for the simple fact that I don’t really enjoy them, but my flesh desperately does as does my sick way of thinking. I pray that God grants you your wishes in removing your confessed “defects”. Enjoy your blog….. feel free to cruise mine as well. Keep coming back!



  2. Your introspection is so appealing to me. Despite having completed that step formally. I am still plenty “defected.” I do know that my errors or less-than behavior keeps me humble. It’s not that I don’t want to be more-perfect, it’s that I am human and therefore prone to error, regardless of my best intentions. At some level I have accepted that I will make mistakes, so will others and it’s all okay. For me 6 & 7 were less about creating perfection and more about me understanding the human condition. It was about forgiveness. Enjoying your journey.


    • themiracleisaroundthecorner

      No coincidence that I read this comment on a day where I have been accused of “not looking at myself enough…” It’s almost comical, I feel like I do nothing BUT introspection! Thanks, Lisa, I had to take a break from your book because I am in a book club and had to power through Harry Potter, but I am back, and am entranced by the section on re-framing… you actually believe there is another perspective out there besides my own!?! Hee Hee, thanks as always for your validation, I really needed it today!


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