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THE PURITY PROJECT OF OKLAHOMA CITY PRESENTS

NEW ATTITUDES
MENTORING AND RECOVERY SERIES, WORKBOOK 6

By David Lowry, Ph. D.

New Attitudes is the sixth in a series of nine study manuals designed to assist those enrolled in faith-based recovery programs. These lessons were produced for The Purity Project by Dr. David N. Lowry.

Copyright © 2009 David Lowry. All rights reserved. Other Workbooks in this series: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Admitting Need Getting Help Letting Go Coming Clean Making Changes New Attitudes Repairing Relationships Maintaining Momentum Recycling Pain

The Purity Project of Oklahoma City—http://www.purityprojectokc.com

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Table of Contents ........................................................................................................................................... iii Introduction To Book 6 ................................................................................................................................. viii Celebrate Recovery's 8 Principles ............................................................................................................... ix The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous ............................................................................................... x Lesson 51 Gratitude...................................................................................................................................... 11 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 14 Psalm 106:1 (New International Version) ............................................................................................. 14 Philippians 4:6 (New International Version) ......................................................................................... 14 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (New International Version) ............................................................................... 14 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 14 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 15 Exercises in Gratitude ............................................................................................................................... 15 Five and Five ......................................................................................................................................... 15 Finding Gratitude in the Mundane ....................................................................................................... 15 The Rosary ............................................................................................................................................ 16 Lesson 52 Contentment ............................................................................................................................... 17 Submission Steps .......................................................................................... Error! Bookmark not defined. Step Reflection ............................................................................................. Error! Bookmark not defined. Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 20 Joshua 24:15 (New International Version) ........................................................................................... 20 Luke 4:5-9 (New International Version) ............................................................................................... 20 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 21 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 22 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 2—Selfishness .............................................................................. 22 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 22 Lesson 53 Forgiveness .................................................................................................................................. 23 iii

Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 24 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 24 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 25 Psalm 86:15 (New International Version) ............................................................................................. 25 Proverbs 22:24 (New International Version) ........................................................................................ 25 Ephesians 4:31 (New International Version) ........................................................................................ 25 Ephesians 4:26 (New International Version) ........................................................................................ 25 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 25 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 26 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 3—Anger and Rage ....................................................................... 26 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 26 Lesson 54 Humility ....................................................................................................................................... 27 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 28 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 28 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 29 Job 5:2 (New International Version) ..................................................................................................... 29 2 Timothy 2:24 (New International Version) ........................................................................................ 29 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 29 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 30 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 4—Resentment ............................................................................ 30 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 30 Lesson 55 Patience ....................................................................................................................................... 31 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 32 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 32 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 32 Lamentations 3:38-40 (New International Version) ............................................................................. 33 Philippians 2:14 (New International Version) ....................................................................................... 33

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Philippians 4:11 (New International Version) ....................................................................................... 33 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 33 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 34 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 5—Entitlement ............................................................................. 34 Lesson 56 Discipline ..................................................................................................................................... 35 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 36 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 36 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 37 Psalm 103:13-14 (New International Version) ..................................................................................... 37 James 3:2 (New International Version) ................................................................................................ 37 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 37 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 38 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 6—Perfectionism .......................................................................... 38 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 38 Lesson 57 Integrity ...................................................................................................................................... 39 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 40 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 40 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 41 1 Samuel 15:23 (New International Version) ....................................................................................... 41 Proverbs 17:10-12 (New International Version) ................................................................................... 41 Romans 13:3-5 (New International Version) ........................................................................................ 41 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 41 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 42 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 7—Rebellion and Authority .......................................................... 42 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 42 Lesson 48 Reflective ..................................................................................................................................... 43 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 44

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Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 44 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 45 Ecclesiastes 9:10 (New International Version) ..................................................................................... 45 Luke 9:59-62 (New International Version) ........................................................................................... 45 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 45 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 46 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 8—Procrastination ....................................................................... 46 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 46 Lesson 59 Honest .......................................................................................................................................... 47 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 48 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 48 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 49 Proverbs 30:8 (New International Version) .......................................................................................... 49 Colossians 3:9-10 (New International Version) .................................................................................... 49 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 49 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 50 A Look at Our Character Defects Part 9—Dishonesty .............................................................................. 50 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 50 Lesson 60 Tolerant ....................................................................................................................................... 51 Submission Steps ...................................................................................................................................... 52 Step Reflection ......................................................................................................................................... 52 Scripture Study ......................................................................................................................................... 53 Psalm 1:1-3 (New International Version) ............................................................................................. 53 Hebrews 12:1 (New International Version) .......................................................................................... 53 James 1:27 (New International Version) .............................................................................................. 53 Scripture Reflections ................................................................................................................................ 53 Recovery Wisdom ..................................................................................................................................... 54

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A Look at Our Character Defects Part 10—Becoming Entirely Ready ...................................................... 54 Recovery Reading ..................................................................................................................................... 54 Index of Appendices ..................................................................................................................................... 55 APPENDIX 1: Seventh Step Prayers .......................................................................................................... 56 APPENDIX 2: Selected Scriptures for Submission Steps ...................................................................... 57 APPENDIX 3: A Look at Our Character Defects ........................................................................................ 61 Part 1, Overview ................................................................................................................................... 61 Part 2, Selfishness ................................................................................................................................. 62 Part 3, Anger and Rage ......................................................................................................................... 63 Part 4, Resentment ............................................................................................................................... 65 Part 5, Entitlement ............................................................................................................................... 66 Part 6, Perfectionism ............................................................................................................................ 68 Part 7, Rebellion and Authority ............................................................................................................ 69 Part 8, Procrastination .......................................................................................................................... 70 Part 9, Dishonesty ................................................................................................................................. 71 Part 10, Entirely Ready ......................................................................................................................... 72

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INTRODUCTION TO BOOK 6
Whenever a major disaster strikes the land, the time comes when an important official, such as a governor or president, boards an airplane so that they might survey the exact nature and extent of the damage. The same is true for us. In order for us to heal we need to conduct our own type of “fly-over” so that we might objectively learn about the extent of the damage in our lives. In the previous step, we conducted a detailed moral and spiritual inventory. In STEP 5, we will look at some of the more common defects of character that greatly impacts our addictive and compulsive behaviors. We do this so that we might learn more about the exact nature of our wrongs; and, by doing so, become entirely ready to have God remove them. Just as we lived lives of denial about our addictions, we now must face that we have lived in denial about our character defects. If we wish to become whole, we must understand that it is just as important to understand our defects of character as our addictions! Character defects lead to compulsive behaviors and perpetuate them indefinitely. Unless we are willing to identify and work on our character defects, we are doomed to repeat our addictive cycles. In this series of lessons we will examine the defects of selfishness, anger and rage, resentment, entitlement, perfectionism, rebellion, procrastination and dishonesty. While there are many other defects that could be studied, our purpose is to get us thinking about some of the more common attributes that trip up most of us. We’ll conclude this series by offering some useful advice on overcoming our character defects.

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CELEBRATE RECOVERY'S 8 PRINCIPLES

R = REALIZE I'm not God. I admit that I am powerless to control my tendency to do the wrong thing and that my life is unmanageable. "Happy are those who know they are spiritually poor." E = EARNESTLY believe that God exists, that I matter to him, and that He has the power to help me recover. "Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted." C = Consciously choose to commit all my life and will to Christ’s care and control. "Happy are the meek." O = OPENLY examine and confess my faults to God, to myself, and to another person whom I trust. "Happy are the pure in heart." V = VOLUNTARILY submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects. "Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires." E = EVALUATE all my relationships. Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for harm I've done to others, except when to do so would harm them or others. "Happy are the merciful." "Happy are the peacemakers." R = RESERVE a daily time with God for self-examination, Bible reading, and prayer in order to know God and His will for my life and to gain the power to follow His will. Y = YIELD myself to God to be used to bring this Good News to others, both by my example and by my words. "Happy are those who are persecuted because they do what God requires."

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THE TWELVE STEPS OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

Step 1 - We admitted we were powerless over our addiction - that our lives had become unmanageable Step 2 - Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity Step 3 - Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God. Step 4 - Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves Step 5 - Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs Step 6 - Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character Step 7 - Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings Step 8 - Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all Step 9 - Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others Step 10 - Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it Step 11 Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God's will for us and the power to carry that out Step 12 Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to other addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs

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LESSON 51

GRATITUDE
No matter how terrible you think your present situation may be, rest assured that more than 5 billion people would trade places with you in an instant! According to census data, the world has an estimated population of near 6.8 billion people. Of these, 80 percent, or some 5.4 billion people, live on less than ten dollars a day. Two and a half billion people live on less than 2.5 dollars a day. Yes, the world can be a cruel and desperate place; even so, billions of people around the world would be willing to trade their problems for yours sight unseen! Think about this these things the next time you feel like murmuring or complaining. The truth is we have almost every reason to give thanks and almost none to complain. Gratitude Defined We define gratitude as a conscious way of living where one remains alert for opportunities of expressing appreciation, thankfulness and praise to God and others for the people places and things in their lives. Grateful people realize that every breath is a gift of the Lord and that all we have is a gift of His mercy and grace. A grateful person doesn’t take the kindnesses of others for granted. They notice the little things as well as big things. Gratitude lives with eyes wide open and constantly says “Thank You!” A grateful person has an awareness that blessings are everywhere around us. People without an attitude of gratitude take people places and things in their lives for granted. They hardly notice the great abundance about them. A grateful person doesn’t need to be reminded of their blessings—they notice them as they occur. They live in amazement as they experience the rich blessings of family, friends, relationships, work, health and spiritual blessings. And, as they experience these blessings, they cannot help but respond in thankfulness to their God and those about them.

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Gratitude is a new way of living Imagine a new life based in gratitude. The first thing in the morning as you wake up and open your eyes, you thank God for protecting you during the night and blessing you with sleep. You thank God for the bed you slept in and the roof that covers your head. As you bathe, you thank God for the clean water and soap—so many people don’t have these things you know. As you put on your clothes, you thank God for the fact that you have clothes to wear. You thank God for your education, work, and relationships. You thank God for the transportation you have; and, as you travel to your first appointment of the day, you thank Him for the beauty that you see around you. You thank God for each person he brings before you during the day and you thank him for the acts of kindnesses that others show you as well as the acts that you can show to others. As you go to bed, you thank God for another day of care and blessings. There are three ways we may receive something. Gratitude is an attitude we carry as we receive God’s wonderful gifts. Sadly, many people go through life unaware of the blessings God has given them. To hear them pray you’d think God never did a thing for them. They are always aware of needs that aren’t being met and focusing upon what they don’t have. These people take much of their life for granted—never stopping to say thank you. Like the ten lepers Jesus healed, only one of them returned to say thanks. The other nine were wrapped up in their own affairs. We can be like these people as well. Others receive with arrogance. They seem to expect good things to come their way. They blame God and act indignant if their lives don’t go as they think it should. Their prayers, if they pray at all, instruct God about how He should best go about meeting their needs. It’s as if they see God as some coin operated being who should do as they ask; but, a grateful heart and arrogance cannot exist in the same place. The third way we can receive God’s blessings is with awareness and thankfulness. This is what God desires of us. He wants us to become aware of the care he bestows on each of us. As we become more aware, we marvel at the completeness of God’s love for us. We stop taking things for granted. We marvel at His nature and the people places and things he brings before us. We feel blessed. We stop telling God how to bless us and start thanking him for what he’s done for us. Finding Gratitude in the Mundane What could be more mundane than a daily cup of coffee? Yet, for every cup of coffee there are any number of people, places and things that deserve our thanks. First

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we can thank God for the rain, soil, plants, growing season and coffee crop. We should also give thanks for the people who grew and cultivated the coffee on the plantations and farms. And, we can give thanks for others who worked long and difficult hours to create a product for us to enjoy. Further, we have untold thousands of people to thank for complex system of transportation that is to deliver our coffee to the store. Equally, we should be thankful for the personal means of transportation we used to go and buy our coffee. Finally, we owe a debt of thanks to God, our family, an educational system and our employers for all the skills and finances available to us that we might purchase our coffee. Yes, even in the mundane we have innumerable blessings to be mindful of. A grateful heart understands the power of contentment. It lives in the realization that it doesn’t need people, places, or things to make it happy. Instead, it finds pleasure in whatever circumstances the Lord may bring. As the Apostle Paul once said, “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” A grateful heart feels contentment because it understands the great abundance of physical and spiritual blessings it has received from God in his mercy and grace. Gratitude is based in a healthy perspective. It knows that everyone suffers trials; and, whatever trials we are going through, others have it worse—some much worse. It understands that even when we feel fear, pain and anxiety, we can say, as Psalmist David did, “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil—for thou art with me.” Gratitude understands that we are never abandoned by God. Grateful hearts have little room for murmuring, complaining, or thoughts of victimization. Gratitude is based in optimism. This optimism continues even when as we go through strenuous trials. As a refiner’s fire makes gold more valuable and pure, so we too, become more fit and useful as we pass through our difficult trials. Gratitude helps us understand that the things we once cursed and feared are the very things that make us strong once we pass through the fire. Gratitude helps us see God’s plan through our pain and suffering. It realizes that what appears to be an unanswered prayer today may become one of our greatest blessings tomorrow.

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SCRIPTURE STUDY PSALM 106:1 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Praise the LORD. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. PHILIPPIANS 4:6 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 1 THESSALONIANS 5:18 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS Write your answers in the Space below. 1. List five things these scriptures teach us about gratitude.

2. Think of something you are anxious about and describe what God wants you to do— based upon these scriptures.

USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice. Meister Eckhart: ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

EXERCISES IN GRATITUDE FIVE AND FIVE
  Go back to the discussion about gratitude and highlight 5 insights. Be ready to discuss them in group. Write five of your own personal insights about gratitude and be ready to discuss them in group. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5

FINDING GRATITUDE IN THE MUNDANE Refer back to the reading about Finding Gratitude in the Mundane. Think of an “ordinary blessing” that you are tempted to take for granted each day and explain the various aspects about it that we should be thankful Try and be detailed.

USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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THE ROSARY A Catholic rosary is a string of beads or a knotted cord used to count prayers while the eyes are shut or in a meditative mood. Typically a rosary will have 59 beads that are sectioned into 5 sets of 10 beads--leaving the remaining nine beads to hang down. The rosary can be a useful tool for counting blessings. Think about getting your own rosary—but for now—see if you can list 59 things you are grateful for. Try doing this exercise each day for a week.
1. 4. 7. 10. 13. 16. 19. 22. 25. 28. 31. 34. 37. 40. 43. 46. 49. 52. 55. 58. 2. 5. 8. 11. 14. 17. 20. 23. 26. 29. 32. 35. 38. 41. 44. 47. 50. 53. 56. 59. 3. 6. 9. 12. 15. 18. 21. 24. 27. 30. 33. 36. 39. 42. 45. 48. 51. 54. 57.

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LESSON 52

CONTENTMENT
Sadly, we live in a world where, for many, the worth of others is measured by the people we know, the possessions we have, and the jobs that we do. This performance driven mentality requires us to meet the high expectations of others and sends the message that our worth is based only in the level of our accomplishments. We pay a high price for all of this. We find ourselves working to please and meet the high expectations of others while having little or no margin in our lives to do the things we want to do. Our personal debt is at an all time high as we strive to buy more and more things. Our stress is through the roof while our relationships falter at unprecedented rates. The use of antidepressants to calm our fears and anxieties has never been more prevalent. We were not meant to endure all of this stress and many of us have sought escape in all the wrong places. A life like this robs us of all contentment. Contentment Defined Contentment may be defined as a serenity of spirit when we can be satisfied with who we are and the things they have—despite our personal situation. It is not based upon having everything we want; rather, it’s a state of harmony which exists when our desires are in balance with what we have. When we are contented, we live in a state of ease, instead of anxiety. We are freed from the slavery of senseless striving based in a sense of lack and inadequacy. The truly contented understand that happiness is not based upon other people places or things; instead, they do their best to practice a healthy stewardship of the gifts and abilities God has given them. They place their faith in God and believe that he will take care of their needs. This frees them from these anxieties and the belief that everything is up to them and allows them to channel their energies to sharing and caring for others. We live in a world of stress and drama. A first step to regaining contentment is to notice any time that harmony leaves your life. A sign that this is happening is discontentment and the feeling that your life

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isn’t what it ought to be and should be more than it is. We start by daily monitoring the signs of unnecessary stress and drama. Some stress is good for us; but, unnecessary stress takes away from our inner harmony, outer productivity and lessens the quality of our relationships with others. Some obvious signs that our harmony is disturbed include quarreling, complaining, anger and rage. When we notice negative emotions, such as anxiety, fear, depression, sadness and so forth, and cannot get rid of them, we can be certain that our lives have fallen out of harmony. Once we notice this, we will then need to determine which thoughts and behaviors are responsible for our pain. Why don’t we have contentment? The simple answer is that we are looking in the wrong places for our happiness and we have been deceived to think that who we are and what we have isn’t enough. As a result we try and fill the holes of our hearts with things that can never satisfy. Here are some common reasons why we don’t have contentment. Holes in the heart cannot be fixed with money, people, places or things. While deep down, we know this is true; there is often a wide chasm between what we know and our actions. We life in a consumption driven society that constantly says we must buy things to be happy. The abuse of credit and debt has never been higher as people become accustomed to living beyond their means. Debt robs us of our contentment and leads us into a form of slavery. Long ago, the scriptures wisely reminded us that “A man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Besides the constant striving for possessions, we live in a society where pornography is rampant and women are constantly objectified for financial gain. Our culture portrays casual sex as a norm and tries to convince us that we’ll find happiness and fulfilling relationships with it. Sadly, for those of us who bought into these lies, we’ve learned that sex outside of its proper context leads to devastating consequences—including sexual addictions—that only destroys our relationships and robs us of the peace and contentment that could have been ours. Others seek happiness through their jobs. But our jobs are only the means given us to provide for the needs of ourselves, our families and others. Jobs were never designed to fill our innermost needs. Truthfully, most jobs are designed to get the most work possible out of us—no matter the personal cost—so that others might profit and benefit. We have sin in our lives.

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As stated in earlier lessons, sin is missing the mark with our lives or transgressing what God says is right. The bible says that “the wages of sin is death;” and, contentment dies when we suffer from the guilt, shame and blame associated with sinful living. We are suffering the consequences of our poor choices. Every cause has an effect and there is a consequence for every action. Our choices are important because we must live with the consequences of them—many times long after we have changed our ways. For instance, if we don’t watch our spending, we may have to spend many years working to be free of debt. We fill our lives with too many things. It is easy to become over stimulated with work, school, family, friends, church, activities and events around us. For many of us, the temptation is great to fill every moment of our lives to the point where we have no time for rest or relaxation. According to researchers, most people do not get enough rest and their body and minds suffer from lack of repair! The bible reminds us to “be still and know that I am God.” We live beyond our means. It is hard to have contentment when we are in debt over our heads and cannot pay our bills. Financial strain is one of the biggest contributors of divorce and is consistently listed as one of the top five causes for disagreements in marriage. We aren’t content to live with reasonable limitations. Somehow we want to believe that we can have anything we want, accomplish anything we choose and become anything we wish. Perhaps we could were our ambitions in line with our gifts, talents and personal situations; but so often, this mythos of the American Dream only leads us to a never ending striving for things beyond our reach and drives us to base our worth only on our accomplishments. The truth is, we live in a world of limitations that we have little or no control over. While we should not remain complacent or content with being mediocre; we must learn to find contentment when we have done our best—no matter what the outcome may be. Our contentment needs to be based in doing the best we know to do with the resources we have in the moment trusting that God will work all things for good to those who love him.

Happiness with your life situation We can become content
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Don’t confuse contentment with these things Happiness Giving up Denial of real needs No ambition or drive Doing the best we can versus a never ending striving Refusal to make needed changes in our lives

How to Develop Contentment Take the focus off of your self God First Others second Reframe negative situation Practice gratefulness Keep your life in perspective Learn what you really need

SCRIPTURE STUDY JOSHUA 24:15 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD." LUKE 4:5-9 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION)

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The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, "I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. So if you worship me, it will all be yours." Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.'" _______________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. We’ve been discussing the idea of setting aside selfishness and volunteering to make changes that God wants us to. What do these scriptures teach us about this? 2. List 5 “Gods beyond the river” and “kingdoms of the world” that you have been following. 3. How do these false gods compare to the LORD that Joshua and Jesus speak of? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM Great achievement is usually born of great sacrifice, and is never the result of selfishness. Napoleon Hill _______________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 2—SELFISHNESS
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 2. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING Life’s Healing Choices; p. 139 - 148 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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LESSON 53

FORGIVENESS
Once upon a time there was a man working in the fields who was suddenly bitten by a poisonous snake. Rather than calling out for help, the man became very angry and started chasing after the snake so that he might kill it. In his rage and physical exertion his heart began beating so quickly that it pushed the poison even deeper into his body. Rage kills! Many of us are like this man. We’ve chased after all kinds of snakes without realizing the deadly outcomes. Anger darkens the mind to reason and causes us to rationalize harmful behaviors such as physical, emotional and verbal abuse. It gives the devil a foothold into our life and drives the poison even deeper into our soul. Anger is a violence directed against ourselves and others. As we do the work of recovery and learn more about why we turn to anger, it may surprise us to discover that most of our anger isn’t about others. True, we may carry anger towards others for the way we’ve been treated; but, just as much of our anger is rooted in our sadness, hurts, fears and frustrations about the way we live and treat ourselves. As we become more skillful in living and keeping our side of the street clean, we’ll come to see that feelings of anger can be a useful barometer to alert about a part of our life that needs attention. In this lesson we will look reflect on Godly ways of handling our anger that doesn’t harm ourselves or others.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

STEP REFLECTION STEP 5 states that, “We admitted …the exact nature of our wrongs.” As you think back over the lists you generated in STEP 4, 1. How does anger and rage factor into your problems? 2. Another form of anger is depression—which many professionals say is “anger turned inward” (we want to be careful here because not all depression is anger related!). Have you suffered from depression? Can you see links between anger and the things you’ve been depressed about? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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SCRIPTURE STUDY PSALM 86:15 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. PROVERBS 22:24 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, EPHESIANS 4:31 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. EPHESIANS 4:26 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) "In your anger do not sin" Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. Why do you think God is so concerned about anger? Why should he care? 2. List ten things you could do to become “slow to anger.” USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM Anybody can become angry, that is easy; but to be angry with the right person, and to the right degree, and at the right time, and for the right purpose, and in the right way, that is not within everybody's power, that is not easy. (Aristotle, Greek Philosopher) ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 3—ANGER AND RAGE
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 3. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING Life's Healing Choice; Choices; Choice 5; Please read the testimonials on p. 149 - 164 IN THE SPACE BELOW, WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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LESSON 54

HUMILITY
The biblical story of Cain and Able is more than a bible story about the first recorded murder. It clearly describes what happens when we hold on to anger and resentment.
But Abel brought fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The LORD looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast. Then the LORD said to Cain, "Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it." Now Cain said to his brother Abel, "Let's go out to the field." And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him. Genesis 4:4-8 (New International Version)

Resentment is the discontent and anger we feel towards other people and situations as we hold on to our memories of past hurts and disappointments. Instead of forgiving, releasing and moving on; we carry grudges and replay our perceptions of unfair events over and again in our mind. As we do this, we create barriers between us, God and others. Instead of trusting that God will make all things right, we internalize our anger and frustration until it erupts into a boiling rage. As with Cain, so with us; sin is crouching at the door. In this lesson we will look at the futility of resentment and look for ways of ridding ourselves of painful grudges that we’ve been carrying.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION STEP 6 says that “We are ready to have God remove all these defects of character.” Perhaps one of the biggest defects of character for many of us is resentment. Resentment is defined as “a feeling of anger and of deep and bitter ill will.” 1. Review your list of resentments from STEP 4. How are you doing with this list? Have you been able to make any positive changes in this area lately? Why or why not? 2. Make a list of five things you think your resentment towards other people, places or things have brought you. 3. Why do you think we hold on to our resentments? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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SCRIPTURE STUDY JOB 5:2 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Resentment kills a fool, and envy slays the simple. 2 TIMOTHY 2:24 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) And the Lord's servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS As you think about your present life situation, 1. What do you believe is the meaning of Job 5:2 and provide a personal example from your own life. 2. How would your life be better if you didn’t have your resentments? 3. For those who desire to be “the Lord’s servants,” how does setting aside the things mentioned in 2 Timothy 2:24 make us a better servant? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die. ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 4—RESENTMENT
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 4. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING A Hunger for Healing; Please read p. 85 – 93 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 55

LESSON 55

PATIENCE
All of us have beliefs about how we should treat others and how they, in turn, should treat us. The problem is that it’s easy to feel let down when others don’t meet our expectations. Let’s face it; people don’t always act towards us as we think they should. Our relationships can sour rather quickly if we give into frustration and impose our thinking about what’s good, bad, right and wrong on others. It’s one thing to have expectations that are based upon contracts or mutually agreed goals and values; but, another thing entirely if we expect others to measure up to some high and arbitrary standard carried about in our minds. Entitlement is the belief that we are due something from another whether or not we have done something for them. For instance, when we do someone a favor, most of us expect a “please and thank you.” But if we stop and think about it, none of us are necessarily entitled to courtesy just because we have decided to do something nice or kind. It’s always a good thing if others say “thank you”—but we’re not entitled to a courteous response just because of what we’ve done. In situations like these, as well as numerous others, we must learn to separate the things we do, and the reasons we do them, from the outcomes that follow. Our job is to do the next right thing because it is the right thing to do—not judge others for what they do or do not do for us. In this lesson we will learn to spot attitudes of entitlement that each of us carry within.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION 1. As we go through recovery, it is easy to become impatient about our character defects; but according to STEP 5, God is the one who removes our character defects. He will remove it in his perfect timing provided we are “entirely ready for him to remove it.” In the meantime we must be careful lest we fall into murmuring and complaining—which is just another form of entitlement thinking—or the belief that we deserve good things in our lives because WE are working on our problems. Entitlement thinking is the false notion that we deserve good things because of who we are and what we do that is outside the bounds of reality. Everyone does this to some extent; but, when you factor in our tendency to live in denial; you have a person who thinks they deserve far more from other people and things than what reality would dictate. 2. Think back over your recovery period (not just the one you are in right now) and list your ten biggest complaints or murmurings that you’ve made about people, places or things. 3. As you look back over your thinking, what are five entitlements that have clouded your thinking?

USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE. SCRIPTURE STUDY

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LAMENTATIONS 3:38-40 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that both calamities and good things come? Why should any living man complain when punished for his sins? Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the LORD. PHILIPPIANS 2:14 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Do everything without complaining or arguing, PHILIPPIANS 4:11 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. List three reasons why we should not complain for the punishment of our sins. 2. From scripture, it is clear that God does not like complainers. The Israelites were doomed to wonder in the wilderness for 40 years as a result of their complaints against God. a. List five reasons why you believe that God dislikes complaining. b. What is the relationship between complaining and entitlement? 3. The antidote to complaining is contentment. List five differences between contentment and complaining. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM You can complain because roses have thorns, or you can rejoice because thorns have roses. (Tom Wilson—Ziggy) ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 5—ENTITLEMENT
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 5. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

A Hunger for Healing; Please read p. 107 - 114 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 56

LESSON 56

DISCIPLINE
“Are you kidding?” “Me a perfectionist?” “Have you seen my desk, my car, or my house?” Like many people, I used to think that perfectionism had more to do about paying attention to small details such as keeping an immaculate house, or organizing my time. But perfectionism isn’t necessarily about those things. Perfectionism is a character flaw that keeps us from trying our best because we have a fear of failure. It’s the procrastination that occurs as we wait for just the right time or circumstance to do something—a time or circumstance that never comes! Perfectionism is the frustration that says if we can’t do something just the way we want to—we shouldn’t even do it at all. Perfectionism is the all or nothing attitude that despises the process of recovery and expects a quick fix instead of slow and steady progress. It’s the critical nature we resort to when things don’t happen as we expect. As a character trait, perfectionism takes the joy out of living as we endlessly critique the things that we and others have done that aren’t as they should be. A perfectionist has a hard time giving or receiving compliments—because in their minds, there is always something that could be improved. Perfectionism takes away our optimism and spirit of adventure to try something different and new. In the end, perfectionism stifles our ability to make progress in recovery and makes those around us feel that whatever they do isn’t ever good enough for us. Simply put, perfectionism is another one of our doomed-to-fail attempts to control the lives of ourselves and others. It takes time to overcome a spirit of perfectionism. With God’s help, we can learn to take captive those thoughts that are constantly critiquing our lives and those about us. As we progress through recovery, we find the antidote is to learn that God loves us just the way we are. As Philip Yancey says, "There is nothing we can do to make God love us more and there is nothing we can do to make God love us less." In this lesson, we’ll begin to notice those areas of our lives where we try to control ourselves and others through the character defect of perfectionism.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION One of the character defects we need help with is perfectionism. Perfectionism is expecting more of people, places, things and ourselves than is reasonable. 1. List five things you thought was reasonable to expect of yourself over the years that you now understand is/was unreasonable? 2. List five things you thought was reasonable to expect of others over the years that you now understand is/was unreasonable? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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SCRIPTURE STUDY PSALM 103:13-14 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust. JAMES 3:2 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check. ___________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. List five things these scriptures teach us about perfectionism—or our tendency to expect more of ourselves and others than is reasonable. 2. List five bible characters that disobeyed God—yet are held as examples of faithfulness. 3. What is the difference between being the best person we can versus perfectionism? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM Gold cannot be pure, and people cannot be perfect. ~Chinese Proverb ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 6—PERFECTIONISM
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 6. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING A Hunger for Healing, p. 115 - 129 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 57

LESSON 57

INTEGRITY
What is it about human beings that make us so resistant to obeying authority? It seems we hate being told what to do or how to live our lives—even when it’s clearly in our best interest. We speed knowing the most common form of highway death is speed related. We ignore advice from our doctors about diet, exercise and rest. We constantly criticize our leaders and those for whom we work. The most common reason why so many people fail to succeed in recovery, or remain recovered, is an unwillingness to continue with accountability—an unwillingness to submit to spiritual authority. The sin that drove man from the Garden of Eden was rebellion to God’s authority. When we speak about rebellion, we are not talking about legitimate resistance towards those who would cause us harm or defying authority so that we might follow the commands of God. We define rebellion as our resistance, or unwillingness, to follow legitimate laws and/or allow others to exert legitimate authority over us. It is our unwillingness to submit to the higher spiritual and moral commands of God. Rebellion is based in the idea that we know what is best for ourselves and that we are a law unto ourselves. The truth is, God has created multiple levels of authority that we must follow if we expect to live happy lives. God created family and parents who serve as our early guides and authorities. He created governments and has given them the authority to make laws—even those which we think are silly. He has created officials and rulers to enforce and judge those who break the laws—and we are to be accountable to them. God has created work and expects us to provide quality service for the pay we receive. Finally, God created spiritual laws that impact the way we live our daily lives as well as church authorities—such as pastors and church leaders—who oversee their flock. Character defects are the consequences that result when we deny the legitimate authority that God has placed in our lives. The consequences of these defects are clear to those of us in recovery and include blame, shame, guilt, sorrow, and lives that are filled with wreck and ruin. In this lesson, we’ll come to realize that God has created these authorities to be a blessing in our lives; and, as we become more responsive to his authority, we’ll find that a new set of consequences begins to play out that sets us free of the past and pain.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION As we turn our lives over to the will of God so that he might remove our imperfections, we must be willing to surrender our tendency to be rebellious towards authority. Rebellion can be defined as resistance, opposition, or defiance towards God or a legitimate human authority. Rebellion is not always obvious—sometimes it is carefully hidden. Rebellion can infect our thinking and attitudes as well as our behaviors. It is God’s will that lines of authority exist in our lives, families, jobs, schools, churches, communities and nations. God expects us to obey legitimate authority and the only time we are to ignore it is when it directly contradicts the commands of God. 1. List an example of a rebellion moment or event in your own life for each of the areas listed below: a. Personal life b. Family c. Job d. School e. Church

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f.

Local Community

g. Nation/Government USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

SCRIPTURE STUDY 1 SAMUEL 15:23 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, he has rejected you as king." PROVERBS 17:10-12 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) A rebuke impresses a man of discernment more than a hundred lashes a fool. An evil man is bent only on rebellion; a merciless official will be sent against him. Better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs than a fool in his folly. ROMANS 13:3-5 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. What do each of these scriptures teach us about legitimate human authority? 2. List three areas of your life where you struggle with either the authority of God or man. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM The wisest have the most authority Plato ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 7—REBELLION AND AUTHORITY
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 7. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING The Steps We Took; p. 73 - 86 WRITE TWO INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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LESSON 48

REFLECTIVE
Satan wants to destroy every good thing that God has planned for us. When God created us, he had a special plan for our lives. His plan is an exciting one that is meant to transform us and bring about the fruit of the Spirit. It unfolds as we learn more about how we should walk daily with the Lord. Satan’s plan is to distract, discourage, and sidetrack us from the good things that God has in store for us. One of his best tools for accomplishing this is the spirit of procrastination. Procrastination is more than putting off small things like a doctor’s check-up, or some other thing that we may dread doing. It’s mistakenly based in the idea that we’ll do the right thing tomorrow instead of today. It’s all the things we do and don’t do instead of taking some positive action. Instead of seeking help for our hurts and habits, we give ourselves permission to wait while we turn our minds to something else. Procrastination keeps us from reaching our goals; and sadly for some, tomorrow never comes. In this lesson we will stress the importance of developing a new attitude of “Do it Now!” so that our lives may move into the balance that God has in mind for us.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION One of the more useless habits that many of us develop is procrastination—or the constant delaying of making important decisions or doing things that we need to do. It is said that W. Clement Stone, a famous American who built a life insurance company worth millions of dollars, used to have his employees recite over and over again at the beginning of each day this motto, “Do it Now!” Think about things you have been putting off and remember that one of the more helpful habits you can adopt is: “DO IT NOW!” Even if you can’t completely finish something that needs to be done, there is no reason why you can’t do something to help move you closer to your goal. 1. How long did you delay before seriously seeking help for your hurt, habit or hang-up? 2. List five important things that procrastination has keep you from achieving. 3. List five ideas that might help you fight procrastination. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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SCRIPTURE STUDY ECCLESIASTES 9:10 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) 10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the grave, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom. LUKE 9:59-62 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) He said to another man, "Follow me." But the man replied, "Lord, first let me go and bury my father." Jesus said to him, "Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God." Still another said, "I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say good-by to my family." Jesus replied, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God." ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. What do these scriptures teach about procrastination? 2. What important thing does Jesus warn against in Luke 9: 59-62? 3. What role, if any, does procrastination play in Jesus warning in Luke 9: 59-62? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM The best way to get something done is to begin. ~Author Unknown ________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 8—PROCRASTINATION
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 8. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING The Steps We Took; p. 87 - 96 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 59

LESSON 59

HONEST
We have a lot of words to describe dishonesty! Act, acting, baloney, bear false witness, bogus, bull, B.S., bunk, cheat, coloring, , concoction, deceit, deception, delude, delusion, doctor, double-dealing, duplicity, embellish, equivocation, exaggeration, facade, fable, fabrication, fairy tale, fallacy, falsehood, false pretenses, forgery, fraud, , guile, half-truth, hatch, hoodwink, hyperbole, insidiousness, insincerity, invent, kid, lead astray, lie, lip-service, make-believe, make up, manipulate, mendacity, misconstruction, misleading, misrepresentation, overstatement, perjury, perversion, pretense, prevarication, pull one's leg, quackery, rationalization, sham, spin, story, strategic misrepresentation, stretch, subterfuge, tamper with, terminological inexactitude, underhandedness, untruth, varnish, warp, weasel, white lie, whopper, and yarn—to name but a few! In the early stages of recovery, one of the things that surprise many of us is the degree that we became comfortable with dishonesty. The lives of addicts are strewn with lies. We lied to others about our involvement with addictive behaviors and we lived double lives as we tried to appear normal while hiding what we were doing. We lied to ourselves and said that what we were doing wasn’t so bad. We lied again as we said we’d quit after we participated in our addiction just one more time. We told lie after lie to ourselves, God and others. We did not know how habitual lying had become. Of all the qualities necessary for a full recovery, the ability to become scrupulously honest is one of the most important and difficult to achieve. Unless we are honest with ourselves—we will live in denial about our true condition. If we cannot be honest, we cannot change. Honesty is built a day at a time. It is a learned behavior. When we live honest lives, we will not be ashamed for others to see and know what we are doing—even in private. Honesty is the foundation for rebuilding the trust we may have lost with others and regaining our self-respect. In this lesson we’ll remind ourselves about the importance of scrupulous honesty and look at areas of our life that may need additional improvement.

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SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION All of us know the old saying that “Honesty is the best policy;” but, for those of us caught in addictions and compulsive behaviors, we have been anything but honest. We have told numerous lies to ourselves and others to cover our tracks and hide the behaviors for which we are ashamed. The submission step in this lesson reminds us that we must learn to be entirely honest if we are to be entirely ready for God to remove our defects. 1. List five lies that you’ve told yourself regarding your hurt, habit or hang-up. 2. List five lies that you’ve told others regarding your hurt, habit or hang-up as a means of covering up your behavior. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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SCRIPTURE STUDY PROVERBS 30:8 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. COLOSSIANS 3:9-10 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. When is it hardest for you to tell the truth? Under what circumstances do you find yourself either shading the truth or being dishonest? 2. What is the main idea Paul is trying to get us to see in Colossians 3: 9-10? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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RECOVERY WISDOM
Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” Thomas Jefferson

________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 9—DISHONESTY
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 9. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING The Steps We Took; p. 97 – 106 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 60

LESSON 60

TOLERANT
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:13 New International Version)

I don’t know about you but I’m very glad that God does not allow any temptations to come our way except the common ones. For me, the common temptations are hard enough! Imagine what life could be like were God to allow the devil to tempt us in ways we could not possibly withstand! In this series of lessons we’ve looked at some of the more common defects of character such as: selfishness, anger and rage, resentment, entitlement, perfectionism, rebellion, procrastination and dishonesty. While these defects of character can easily get the best of us, God says his power is more than enough to help us overcome them. Now we are ready, in the words of STEP 5, to “voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in our lives and to humbly ask him to remove our character defects.” Except in rare situations, God does not remove our defects instantaneously. Instead he uses a slow and steady process of gentle transformation that works as we submit to his will and allow new habits to replace the old. In this final series lesson, we will learn more about this submission process and how to be an active part of it.

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Lesson 60

SUBMISSION STEPS Voluntarily submit to any and all changes God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove my character defects.(CELEBRATE RECOVERY: STEP 5) Matthew 5:6 “Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.” We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. (STEP 5 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. (STEP 6 OF THE 12 STEPS) James 4:10 “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings. (STEP 7 OF THE 12 STEPS) 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” STEP REFLECTION The lessons in this series are about becoming entirely ready for God to remove any and all defects of character that he sees. We have studied a few of the most prominent including: selfishness, anger and rage, resentment, entitlement, perfectionism, rebellion, procrastination and honesty. Of the character defects we have studied thus far, 1. Which two of the character defects mentioned above cause you the most trouble? 2. How might you use the STEPS you’ve studied thus far to help you overcome these defects of character? USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 60

SCRIPTURE STUDY PSALM 1:1-3 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers. HEBREWS 12:1 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. JAMES 1:27 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION) Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. ________________________________________ SCRIPTURE REFLECTIONS 1. How do each of the scriptures above help us become “entirely ready” for God to remove our defects of character? 2. Using the three scriptures listed above; write a short statement stating what the bible expects of you in order to become “entirely ready” for God to remove your defects of character. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE.

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Lesson 60

RECOVERY WISDOM
Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. (Ecclesiastes 12:13)

________________________________________ WHAT DOES THIS SAYING MEAN TO YOU? GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF HOW IT WORKS IN YOUR LIFE.

A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 10—BECOMING ENTIRELY READY
GO TO APPENDIX 3 AND COMPLETE PART 10. FEEL FREE TO WORK AHEAD IF TIME PERMITS.

RECOVERY READING A Hunger for Healing; please read p. 96 - 106 WRITE THREE INSIGHTS YOU RECEIVED FROM TODAY’S READINGS. 1. WRITE THE PAGE NUMBER AND QUOTE, 2. THEN EXPLAIN THE INSIGHT YOU RECEIVED. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE

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Appendices

INDEX OF APPENDICES
APPENDIX 1: Seventh Step Prayers.............................................................................................................. 43 APPENDIX 2: Selected Scriptures for Submission Steps .............................................................................. 44 APPENDIX 3: A Look at Our Character Defects ............................................................................................ 48

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Appendix 1

APPENDIX 1: SEVENTH STEP PRAYERS

AA Seventh Step Prayer (from page 76 of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous) My Creator, I am willing that You should have all of me, good and bad. I pray that You now remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to You and my fellows. Grant me strength, as I go out from here to do Your bidding. Early Version of the Seventh Step Prayer Dear God, I am coming to You on my knees in all humility to humbly ask You to forgive all my past wrongs and to remove all my defects of character. I want to start a new life today, and I ask You to help me do so and to keep helping if I keep asking. In Step Three, I turned my will and my life over to Your care. Thank You for taking complete control of my life, and thank You for this opportunity to wipe my slate clean and start my life anew. In Steps Four, Five and Six I have completed my moral inventory and admitted to myself and another person the exact nature of my wrongs. I now admit these wrongs to You, God. I am entirely ready to ask and pray now that You please remove from me every single defect of character. Specifically, I ask You to remove the following shortcomings listed in my Fourth Step moral inventory: (Read aloud here those defects from your list.) Thank You, God, for this opportunity for a new beginning in my life and a chance to be a part of the solutions in life instead of the problems. Please grant me wisdom, knowledge and strength as I go out from here to do Your work and live the Victorious Life You designed for me. Thank You, God, for the steps which will make Your plan for my life clear to me. Thank You and praise Your name. Amen. Celebrate Recovery Prayer for Making Changes Dear God, thank You for Your forgiveness. Now I am ready and willing to submit to any and all changes You want to make in my life. By Your grace, I am ready to face it and deal with the defects one by one. I have defects that have hurt me and defects that have hurt others. I’ve lived with some of these defects for so long that they have become a part of who I am. I have tried by my own power to fight against my defects and have failed over and over. I now ask that by Your power and the power of Your Holy Spirit that You transform my mind, my heart, and my actions. I need Your help in knowing where to start. I cannot handle all my defects at once. I can only face them one at a time. Show me, Lord, where should I begin? Help me as I look over my inventory list. Which character defect is the most damaging to my life? Where do I need to start? I am ready to follow Your lead. Amen.

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Appendix 2

APPENDIX 2: Selected Scriptures for Submission Steps Joshua 24:15 (New International Version) But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD." 1 Samuel 15:23 (New International Version) For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, he has rejected you as king." Psalm 1:1-3 (New International Version) Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers. Psalm 86:15 (New International Version) But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. Psalm 103:13-14 (New International Version) As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.

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APPENDIX 2: Selected Scriptures for Submission Steps

Proverbs 17:10-12 (New International Version) A rebuke impresses a man of discernment more than a hundred lashes a fool. An evil man is bent only on rebellion; a merciless official will be sent against him. Better to meet a bear robbed of her cubs than a fool in his folly. Proverbs 22:24 (New International Version) Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, Proverbs 30:8 (New International Version) Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Job 5:2 (New International Version) Resentment kills a fool, and envy slays the simple. Ecclesiastes 9:10 (New International Version) Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the grave, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom. Lamentations 3:38-40 (New International Version) Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that both calamities and good things come? Why should any living man complain when punished for his sins? Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the LORD. Micah 6:8 (New International Version) He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you?

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APPENDIX 2: Selected Scriptures for Submission Steps

To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Luke 4:5-9 (New International Version) The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, "I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. So if you worship me, it will all be yours." Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.'" Luke 9:59-62 (New International Version) He said to another man, "Follow me." But the man replied, "Lord, first let me go and bury my father." Jesus said to him, "Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God." Still another said, "I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say good-by to my family." Jesus replied, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God." Romans 13:3-5 (New International Version) For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. Ephesians 4:31 (New International Version) Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Ephesians 4:26 (New International Version) "In your anger do not sin" Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, Philippians 2:14 (New International Version) Do everything without complaining or arguing,

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APPENDIX 2: Selected Scriptures for Submission Steps

Philippians 4:11 (New International Version) I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. Colossians 3:9-10 (New International Version) Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 2 Timothy 2:24 (New International Version) And the Lord's servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Hebrews 12:1 (New International Version) Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. James 1:27 (New International Version) Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 3:2 (New International Version) We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check. James 4:10 (New International Version) Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

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Appendix 3: A Look at Our Character Defects

APPENDIX 3: A LOOK AT OUR CHARACTER DEFECTS PART 1, OVERVIEW Character Defect Check List* (A List of Things I Might Need to Work On) Acceptance Aggression Alibis Anger Arrogance Avarice Belligerence Closed-mindedness Courage Dependency Entitlement Envy Faith Fear Forgiveness Grandiosity Gratitude Greed Guilt Honesty Humility Impatience Intolerance Jealousy Laziness Loneliness Lust Perfectionism Possessiveness Pride Procrastination Profanity Punctuality Rebellion Responsibility Resentment Self-Centeredness Selfishness Sexual Infidelity Stubbornness Willfulness Willingness

*Copyright © 2004 by The Steps Foundation (www.stepsfoundation.com) 1. Look at the list and circle 10 of the defects you most recognize. 2. From your list of ten, narrow your list to the top five defects you think deserve the most attention for you. 3. Briefly describe what each of these defects has cost you over the years. USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED TO WRITE MORE

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PART 2, SELFISHNESS DEFINITION: Selfishness is acting in a way that disregards our obligations to others. It’s behaving in a way that disregards the consequences of our behaviors on others. It’s a willingness to do anything to satisfy our personal whims. When we are selfish, we seek to glorify ourselves, put our ambitions before others, ignore the rights of others and constantly evaluate what is good according to the benefit it brings us. Our selfishness dehumanizes others and makes them feel used and less than valuable. The bible offers a three-fold cure for selfishness: God first, others second, treat others as you want to be treated. 1. Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. I Corinthians 10:31 2. Give each other more honor than you want for yourselves. Romans 12:10 3. Do to others what you want them to do to you. Matthew 7:12 A very good way to work on ridding ourselves of selfishness is to practice Other Centered Communication. We do this by talking very little about ourselves and listening—really listening-to the things that others tell us while doing our best to focus upon their wants and needs. Other ways of practicing Other Centered Communication includes: 1. Keeping in mind our desire to make a meaningful connection with others with no thought of reward or benefit, 2. Asking others about their lives instead of beginning a conversation by talking about ourselves, 3. Avoiding interruptions or behaviors that show impatience when listening, 4. Avoiding talking about our personal lives unless asked—and even then very sparingly, 5. Avoiding the temptation to turn the conversation back to ourselves, 6. Avoiding “autobiographical” references (i.e. “Oh yeah, that reminds me when I did such and such..”), 7. Avoiding trivial disagreements and the need to be right in our discussions. 8. Avoiding communication that promotes fear, guilt, shame, blame, coercion, threat, justification or punishment. 9. Being willing to affirm as well as give credit and praise whenever possible, 10. Our willingness to avoid making judgmental statements (Avoid “you statements.”). 1. As you read the definition of selfishness, which aspect gives you the most trouble? 2. List three selfish acts that you have been guilty of this past week. 3. Which three things in the Other Centered Communication list bothers you most when others communicate with you? 4. Which things listed above are you most guilty of?
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APPENDIX 3: A Look at Our Character Defects

PART 3, ANGER AND RAGE The purpose of this section is to learn two helpful principles for handling our anger and rage based upon teachings presented by The Peacemakers. (www.peacemaker.net) The first principle is based upon an understanding of the Slippery Slope. As the chart below indicates, there are two extreme ways of handling conflict in our lives. We can either engage in escape or attack responses—neither of which are effective ways of dealing with our conflicts. For many of us, these are the only two response we know. What we must learn to do is make peacemaking choices—those responses found in the middle. Study each of them for a moment.

1. Describe a time when you should have used the peacemaking response of Overlooking. 2. Describe a time when you should have used the peacemaking response of Reconciliation. 3. Describe a time when you should have used the peacemaking response of Negotiation. 4. Describe a time when you should have used the peacemaking response of Mediation (seeking advice from an emotionally healthy outside third party). 5. Describe a time when you should have used the peacemaking response of Arbitration (seeking an outside expert whose decision will be considered as binding). 6. Describe a time when you should have used the peacemaking response of Accountability (having someone hold you accountable for keeping your agreements).

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The second peacemaking principle is known as the PAUSE Principle. The following information is taken from the peacemaking site at www.peacemaking.net. Even when you manage to resolve personal offenses through confession and forgiveness, you may still need to deal with substantive issues, which may involve money, property, or the exercise of certain rights. These issues should not be swept under the carpet or automatically passed to a higher authority. Instead, they should be negotiated in a biblically faithful manner. As a general rule, you should try to negotiate substantive issues in a cooperative manner rather than a competitive manner. In other words, instead of aggressively pursuing your own interests and letting others look out for themselves, you should deliberately look for solutions that are beneficial to everyone involved. As the Apostle Paul put it, "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others" (Phil. 2:3-4; see Matt. 22:39; 1 Cor. 13:5; Matt. 7:12). A biblical approach to negotiation may be summarized in five basic steps, which we refer to as the PAUSE Principle: Prepare (pray, get the facts, seek godly counsel, develop options) Affirm relationships (show genuine concern and respect for others) Understand interests (identify others' concerns, desires, needs, limitations, or fears) Search for creative solutions (prayerful brainstorming) Evaluate options objectively and reasonably (evaluate, don't argue) If you have never used this approach to negotiation before, it will take time and practice (and sometimes advice from others) to become proficient at it. But it is well worth the effort, because learning the PAUSE principle will help you not only to resolve your present dispute but also to negotiate more effectively in all areas of your life. 1. Describe how you might apply the PAUSE principle to some situation—either past or present.
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APPENDIX 3: A Look at Our Character Defects

PART 4, RESENTMENT The primary reason why we resent others is because we feel we have been victimized by them. It’s a normal and natural feeling to avoid those who have hurt us; but, like so many things, we can go overboard if we allow our emotions to get the better of us. In fact, it’s entirely possible that our negative emotions can cause more harm to ourselves and others than the original harm that was done to us. At some point, we must come to understand that we only cause ourselves additional harm and suffering if we hold on to anger, nurse grudges, or seek avenues of revenge. The only way out of our misery is to begin the process of peacemaking—even with those who have done unspeakable harm to us. Here is an overview of the process. 1. We make a list of people who’ve harmed us. 2. We admit the pain that they have caused us without making excuses for their behavior or offering quick forgiveness. If we feel hurt, we allow ourselves to feel it. 3. In prayer, we ask God to forgive us for relying upon our negative emotions to sooth us instead of him. 4. We affirm that God says he is the only one who is to avenge our wrongs. 5. Reminding ourselves that God has forgiven us for harms that we have caused ourselves and others, we realize we must begin the journey of forgiveness. 6. We ask that God make us ready and bring us to a point where this will be possible—if not now, then at some future point. 7. We admit to the futility of holding on to resentments because it keeps us in pain and causes us to act out as a form of self-medication. 8. We realize that forgiveness is a process that takes time, but we commit to stay in the process as long as it takes so that we may become whole. 9. We remind ourselves that resentful attitudes serve only to isolate us while reconciliation leads to wholeness and loving community. 10. We allow God to guide us into healthy ways of living and relating. _________________________________________________________  Write the name of a person you need to begin the process described above.

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APPENDIX 3: A Look at Our Character Defects

PART 5, ENTITLEMENT Entitlement is a “something for nothing attitude.” You can spot an entitlement attitude when you hear someone saying words and phrases like these: “They owe me,” “You’d think that so and so would do such and such,” or “I deserve this or that.” Entitlement is a form of control where we have the egocentric expectation that people should treat us in certain ways because of: who we think we are; the important things we believe we have done; or because of things we have done for others. It is the idea that material things should be ours for the same reasons. At its worst, an entitlement attitude takes the form of criminal behavior such as shoplifting, stealing or the illegally downloading of music and videos we haven’t purchased. Other examples of entitlement attitudes include unreasonable expectations that we “should”: 1. receive yearly raises regardless of the shape of the economy or what we have done, 2. receive raises at work, or perhaps get good grades in school, not because of the quality of our work, but because, in our mind, we’ve worked very hard, 3. always be treated with kindness and respect from others, 4. expect others to always be polite, 5. receive good service in every circumstance, 6. expect others to be appreciative because we have done something for them, 7. never expect that a bad things will happen to us when we work hard or do what we’ve been told, 8. expect that others will overlook our deficiencies and mistakes, 9. expect that others will accept our apologies and amends when we say we are sorry, and 10. receive help or sympathy from the government or others whenever we are going through a rough time in our life. Doubtless, many other things could be listed. 1. 2. 3. 4. List five examples from your life where you felt a sense of entitlement. List five reasons why an entitlement attitude is not helpful for our recovery. Which three of the items listed above are the biggest entitlement gremlins in your life? Take the entitlement quiz on the next page.

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ENTITLEMENT QUIZ Please answer the questions below using the following scale:
1 Strongly Disagree 2 3 4 5 6 7 Strongly Agree

Do not spend too much time on any one item. Also please respond in terms of how you really feel as opposed to how you think you should feel. Try to avoid using the neutral response if possible.
_____ 1. _____ 2. _____ 3. _____ 4. _____ 5. _____ 6. _____ 7. _____ 8. _____ 9. _____ 10. _____ 11. _____ 12. _____ 13. _____ 14. _____ 15. I deserve respect from others. I demand good service in a restaurant. My closest friends owe me loyalty. I expect fairness from others. I'm owed a good-paying job for my abilities. People should treat me the way I treat them. When I do something nice for someone, I expect them to do something nice for me I deserve a "thank you" when I hold a door open for someone or let someone ahead of me in traffic. People should listen to what I have to say. I often feel "owed" for things I have done. Other people have told me I expect too much. All in all, I deserve a good life. I am entitled to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." I find myself getting angry inside when others don't do things for me they said they would. My children owe me cooperation and obedience for all the sacrifices I have made for them.

Add all of the numbers of your fifteen responses, then divide that total by fifteen. The number you are left with will show you on the scale how convinced you are that you are "entitled" to certain things.

If you score from one to four, you really are not expecting much from other people in the way of gratitude, approval, and response. As such, you probably won't be disappointed in life when such responses aren't forthcoming. If you score from five to seven, you are probably a person who is carrying a lot of internal anger over the fact that not enough people give you what you feel entitled to. If this is the case, you need to readjust your expectations. You need to remind yourself that you are "owed" nothing for all you do and that people have the perfect freedom to fly in the face of what you want. You need to remember that the challenge is to do things for people because it's healthy or mature or "right", not because you can earn "green stamps" that you can cash in whenever you want. Painful as it is, you are not entitled. Don't let that truth get too far away from you in life. The preceding excerpt is from a book called "The Truths We Must Believe" by Dr. Chris Thurman.

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PART 6, PERFECTIONISM
Perfectionism is a character flaw that keeps us from trying our best because we have a fear of failure.  As far as your recovery is concerned, what people or things are you most afraid of failing?

Perfectionism is the all or nothing attitude that despises the process of recovery and expects a quick fix instead of slow and steady progress.  How does the statement above apply to your present life situation?

A perfectionist has a hard time giving or receiving compliments—because in their minds, there is always something that could be improved.  How would others describe your ability to give and receive compliments?

Perfectionism takes away our optimism and spirit of adventure to try something different and new.  Would others describe you as optimistic and adventuresome? Why or why not?

Perfectionism stifles our ability to make progress in recovery and makes those around us feel that whatever they do isn’t ever good enough for us.  Think of three times where you may have communicated to another that what they did for us was not good enough. 1. 2. 3. Perfectionism takes the joy out of living as we endlessly critique the things that we and others have done that aren’t as they should be. It’s the critical nature we resort to when things don’t happen as we expect.  What five people or things that you find yourself constantly criticizing—out loud or in your mind? 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Philip Yancey says, "There is nothing we can do to make God love us more and there is nothing we can do to make God love us less."  How does this statement above apply to your present life situation?

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PART 7, REBELLION AND AUTHORITY Rebellion is our resistance, or unwillingness, to follow legitimate laws and/or allow others to exert legitimate authority over us. Rebellion is an attitude that we know what is best for ourselves and that we are a law unto ourselves.
 Do you show resentment towards authority through complaints or sarcasm? In what ways have disobeyed legitimate authority?

God created families and tells children that they should honor their father and mother. Later he instructs husbands and wives to submit to one another.
 In what ways have you fallen short of obeying these commands?

God created governments and has given them the authority to make laws—even those which we think are silly.
 How should we show respect for laws and governments that we disagree with?

He has created officials and rulers to enforce and judge those who break the laws—and we are to be accountable to them.
 List three things we can say or do to show a Godly attitude towards those who rule and enforce the law?

God has created work and expects us to provide quality service for the pay we receive.
 List three things we can say or do to show a Godly attitude towards those who oversee our daily work?

God created spiritual laws that impact the way we live our daily lives as well as church authorities—such as pastors and church leaders—are expected to oversee those whom they serve.
 List three things we can say or do to show a Godly attitude towards those who are expected to oversee our spiritual lives?

Character defects are the consequences that result when we deny the legitimate authority that God has placed in our lives.
 What defects of character in your life can you trace back to rebellion to authority? See if you can think of at least three.

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PART 8, PROCRASTINATION Question: How do you eat an elephant? Answer: One bite at a time. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Question: How does one reach the goal of a recovered life? Answer: Do the next right thing, then the next right thing, then the next right thing… Procrastination is all the things we do and don’t do that cause us to be sidetracked from the good things that God has in store for us.  What fun things sidetrack you from doing what ought to be done?

What dysfunctional things sidetrack you from doing what ought to be done?

Procrastination is mistakenly based in the idea that we’ll do the right thing tomorrow.  In your life, what negative consequences resulted from this attitude?

When we procrastinate, we delay seeking help for our hurts and habits.  In what areas of your life have you delayed seeking help?

We need to replace procrastination with an attitude of “Do it Now!” For each item below, describe a step you could take to improve your life.       Health Education Achievement at Work Improving a relationship Overcoming a bad habit or attitude Growing spiritually

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PART 9, DISHONESTY Addiction and lying go hand in hand. Dishonesty becomes our second nature. Because we are ashamed of what we’ve been doing, we lie when others ask us about our behaviors and we go to great lengths to cover our tracks. Because we feel certain that the consequences of our actions could cost us greatly (i.e. loss of a job, divorce, loss of respect, etc.) we become experts at living a double life—until one day it all crashes in upon us. Perhaps the worst lies we tell are those that we tell ourselves. Some of these include: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. No one will ever know, What people don’t know won’t hurt them, I’m not really so sick, an addict, etc., I’m not hurting anybody but myself, I’m going to do this one last time.

The danger of all of this is that lying becomes second nature to us after a while. If we persist, we become constitutionally unable to tell the truth on a consistent basis and we’ll begin to lie about other things in our lives as well. We’ll find that we lie--even when telling the truth would have no negative consequence. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. What kinds of things did you do to hide your addiction? How were you dishonest in word and deed? Who did you lie to? What were the lies you told? Did you lie when it didn't even matter to your consequences? Were you in a habit of lying?

Now that you are in recovery, 1. What are you still being dishonest about? 2. Who are you lying to? 3. Are you being dishonest about the effects of the disease on your life and the lives of significant others? 4. Are you being dishonest with yourself and/or others about the damage caused by your disease?
An excellent article to read is Guide to Eliminating Deception and Dishonesty - How to Get Real in Addiction Recovery by Peggy L. Ferguson, Ph.D.

http://www.selfgrowth.com/articles/guide_to_eliminating_deception_and_dishonesty_how_to_get_real _in_addiction_recovery.html (underscores between each word)

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PART 10, ENTIRELY READY Sample Termination Letter
from www.prodigalsonline.com

This is an exercise we have found to be both thought provoking and fun. We will write a termination letter to a selected character defect. It may be one that we have studied or one of your choosing. The purpose of this exercise is to examine the relationship we have had with our individual character defects and compare their "job performance" with the new character we have discovered in Jesus. In previous steps we examined our character defects and have come to grips with the work our defects have done for us. Beside the cost of wages, that we give our character defects in the form of time, energy and emotional attention, there are the hidden costs all employers must be aware of. The hidden costs of insurance, vacation and the impact the employee will have as it interacts with other employees. As you write this termination letter, ask yourself these questions: 1. What has this character defect done for me? 2. Has this character defect given me what I wanted from it? Has it gotten me what it promised to get me when I asked it to help me? 3. Am I getting good value for the wages I pay this character defect? Is the benefit I get from this character defect worth the time and energy I give it? 4. If this character defect was a person standing in front of me, asking for a raise, would they get it? Would I give it more time and attention? 5. What are the hidden costs I incur because of this character defect? 6. Am I proud to be associated with this character defect? Am I OK comfortable being seen in public with this character defect? 7. Since I do a lot of work at home, does this character defect get along with my family? Is he someone that my family likes and gets along with? If not, is the work my defect does for me outweigh the cost my family pays? When we are able to look honestly at our character defect we see what they have cost us in all areas of our lives. With this righteous indignation in our hearts we sit down and write a letter describing why we hired our character defect in the first place, what it "did" for us and what it cost us. Then we introduce it to the new character trait we have hired to replace it, giving examples from our lives of what our new character employee has done for us. And why the old character defects services will no longer be needed. Have fun, tell your character defects off, and have security throw them out of your office. Then get back to work with the rest of your questionable character employees. Let them know their days are numbered. And don't forget to do a frequent office walk through to see if they have snuck back in to cause problems with the other workers. Remember they have the office keys.
USE THE BACK OF THIS PAGE IF YOU NEED MORE ROOM TO WRITE.

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