I was sitting in a meeting one night when a guy brought up a topic. He asked what keeps us coming back. Why come and do the same thing over and over again day after day and how do we keep that exciting? It’s the same big book, and the same twelve steps. Doesn’t it ever lose its luster? Does the excitement or the miracles go away? How am I supposed to grow and learn while working the same twelve steps for the rest of my life? Hmmm. I like to think pretty highly of myself at times like we prideful alcoholics tend to do. I like to know it all. So when he asked that I immediately thought, “Oh so silly. That’s easy.” But as I started putting together what I would say in my head, I realized I didn’t really have a good answer. Sure I could spout off some things about how wonderful AA is and I come back to help others, which is true, but I didn’t feel it. I realized I had no real heartfelt answer to that. Yeah? Why keep coming back? The same people saying the same things week after week sounds more like a death sentence than a design for living. Uh oh. I was in trouble with those thoughts. Needless to say, that question stuck with me for a long time. It bothered me that I didn’t have a clear cut answer for it. I thought and thought about it.
And yes, the glorious day came with my miracle. I had my spiritual experience to help me understand just why I come back day after day, week after week, month after month.
I was in a meeting and I heard something shared that I hadn’t heard in a while. I had heard it before, but the cool thing was, it meant something different to me because I was in a different spot in my life and my recovery. That’s why I keep coming back. I change and grow in my life and my spirituality. Concepts mean different things to me depending on my current situation. And there is no way I could collectively remember all the cool things I hear in AA. As new ideas come in, old ones get pushed out. Then someone brings it up again and I go, “Oh yeah!” It’s neat.
Here’s an answer to that question as told by a well known man in my community that has like 30 years of sobriety. He said, “That damn book (referring to the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous) they keep putting new stuff in it!” He always finds something new every time even after some 30 odd years in the program.
The saying “more will be revealed” also has real meaning for me. I grasp a concept, then every year or two, I realize more about that concept. My recovery gets deeper and more meaningful. And the coolest thing is-it just happens! I don’t “super study” a concept or anything, spiritual experiences just happen. And they happen on a regular basis too. I love it. It is something you must not miss.
I do it because it works.
I do it because I love a life of recovery.