Alan Neale

Writer • Speaker

“Twelve Steps to Freedom. Class #3 Steps 4-5: Checking Inventory”. Sunday October 9 2016, The Reverend Alan Neale. Trinity Church, Newport, RI 02840

Trinity Church
Newport, RI

Sunday October 9 2016
“Twelve Steps to Freedom”
#3 “Steps 4-5: Checking Inventory”

steps-4-5-and-scriptureChapter 5 HOW IT WORKS (AA pp. 58-60)
Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path. Those who do not recover are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program, usually men and women who are constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves. There are such unfortunates. They are not at fault; they seem to have been born that way. They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty. Their chances are less than average.
There are those, too, who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest.
Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.
If you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it—then you are ready to take certain steps.
At some of these we balked. We thought we could find an easier, softer way. But we could not. With all the earnestness at our command, we beg of you to be fearless and thorough from the very start. Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas and the result was nil until we let go absolutely.
Remember that we deal with alcohol—cunning, baffling, powerful! Without help it is too much for us.
But there is One who has all power—that One is God.
May you find Him now!
Half measures availed us nothing. We stood at the turning point. We asked His protection and care with complete abandon.

Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as
a program of recovery:
We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
Came to believe that a Power greater than our¬selves could restore us to sanity.
Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him
Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Many of us exclaimed, “What an order! I can’t go through with it.’’ Do not be discouraged. No one among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles. We are not saints.
The point is, that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines. The principles we have set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection.

The completion of the 4th and 5th Steps leads to an identification with the program of AA and identification with its members and goals.

The process of self-reflection is not meant to be only negative but also to affirm the positive.

The naming of demons before another is a powerful way to contain and decrease their power.


Next Week – October 16 Steps 6-7: Marks of Freedom