I was at a meeting this weekend, and an excerpt from "As Bill Sees It" was read. A quote from a letter written by Bill W. in the mid-sixties ends with, "I have realized that I am but a student of this spiritual program, rather than the teacher I thought I was."

In the last few days a number of things have happened in my life which have brought me back to this reality. From the tragic events in Mumbai to finding out that a sponsee is using again, complicated by the frustrations of trying to quit smoking again, I have been reminded of what my place is in this puzzle. Please know that I am not comparing the magnitude of these things, I am just saying that they all occupy space in my head.

I have no control over people, places, or things. I have no control over my first thought; I have no control over other people’s sobriety. I have control over my second thought, and my actions if I continue to work a program.

The 12th step says, "Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs." That is my job. Results are not my job. My job is to be there for other addicts, and to live a decent life.

The chaos that surrounds us is not reduced when we live a sober life; our reaction to them becomes reasonable. The pain of terrorist attacks, sponsees drinking, and any other wreckage of my past or present are all a part of G‑d’s plan. Today I chose to live in G‑d’s will.

May G‑d rest the souls of all who perished last week. May G‑d help those still suffering from this disease to get the help they need.