Step 7

A.A. 12-Step Christian Parallels: Steps 7-9Premium Content

Steps Seven through Step Nine

We have many times documented the frequent statements by A.A. co-founder Bill Wilson that his friend Rev. Sam Shoemaker was the major source of the Big Book ideas and Twelve Steps.1 In 1955, Newsweek named Shoemaker one of the ten greatest preachers in the United States.2 Shoemaker was known as a great communicator, and was described by his associate Rev. W. Irving Harris as a "Bible Christian."3

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Humility is a Two-way StreetPremium Content


Submission
In John 13, Jesus washes the disciples’ feet. It’s a well-known story, a frequently referenced model for Christ’s attitude of humble service to others. But there’s another side to the story.

Foot-washing requires a foot to wash.

In the story, Peter initially refuses to allow his friend and teacher to perform such a menial, degrading task. Jesus replies that submission isn’t optional—it’s an essential element in the interaction.

I don’t think that’s an accident. You can’t force someone to receive an expression of intimacy. If it’s a true act of humble service, the one whose feet are washed must submit.

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Time for a Heart CheckPremium Content

And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. Hebrews 9:27-28

Years ago I had my then preschool-age granddaughter with me when I made a stop at the cemetery to deliver some flowers. My granddaughter was naturally curious about what sort of place a "sembletery" was, so I did my best to explain. As we read a few markers and headstones, I told her what the dates meant, and we figured the ages of a few of the deceased.

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Twelve Steps to Power

Note: This is one of Sam Shoemaker's most helpful articles which shows how "the program" so effective for alcoholics can work for all of us.

One of the most remarkable phenomena of our time is the growth of the movement called Alcoholics Anonymous. My interest in it is personal as well as objective, for the men who set it in motion first found the spiritual experience which changed their lives in my own church, though the first actual group of Alcoholics Anonymous was formed in Akron, Ohio.

Character Defects - Steps 6 and 7Premium Content

Matthew 5:44 KJV
However, I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you.

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

Step 7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

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Step 7 and Humility

Step 7: Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Jesus said:
Matthew 18:3-4 KJV
"Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven."

Without true, honest, heartfelt humility we can not recover; We can not enter the kingdom of heaven.

Step 7 NotesPremium Content

These are quotes on Step 7 from various sources:

When ready, we say something like this: "My Creator, I am now 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. Amen." We have then completed Step Seven.
-A.A. Big Book p.76

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