Honesty

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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A.A. 12-Step Christian Parallels: Steps 1-6Premium Content

A.A. 12-Step Christian Parallels from Rev. Samuel M. Shoemaker, Jr.

Steps One through Step Six

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 him 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

There are many persuasive instances where one can find almost exact parallels between the language Bill Wilson used in the Big Book and the language Shoemaker used in his many Christian books, articles, and pamphlets.

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What’s the Hardest Thing You’ve Had to Do?Premium Content

What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to do?

Have you ever wished you could gracefully get out of a situation? That’s how I felt when I arrived at my last speaking engagement.

The small church invited me to their men’s group, the sort of experience I usually anticipate and enjoy. I love the opportunity to connect and share in an intimate setting.

But that night I wanted to escape. The elevator was broken; ten imposing steps stood between me and the meeting room.

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Sins Of RighteousnessPremium Content

What’s the ultimate sin?

I’ve always figured sin was sin, none any better or worse than others. I’ve always wondered about folks who seem to categorize sins and set themselves apart as though there’s something admirable about belonging to a better class of sinner.

If you’re a regular reader, you know that my small group is studying The Prodigal God by Timothy Keller. Last night we discussed Keller’s assertion that one sin underlies all of our other sins and our righteousness—in his words, “the sin of seeking to be our own Savior and Lord.”

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It's All About ChoicesPremium Content

Life... it’s all about choices. What to study, where to work, who to marry, what to buy, where to live, what to think, what to do…The list is endless of the possible choices we have to make each and every day of our lives.

The idea of choice is not new. Long before the world was every created, choices were already being made. God always has been. He has always existed (it’s a thought we will never comprehend this side of Heaven.) God, the Great I Am, is the “author” of choices. He’s made trillions of choices - likely even more. Perhaps His like of having choices is why He gave us the option of choosing, ourselves.

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Backsliding

There is a danger in what my grandmother used to call "backsliding." I don't hear the term much these days. In fact, to be honest, sin in the life of the Christians isn't addressed much these days. We talk about self esteem and relationships and getting our finances in order. I rarely hear a preacher talk from the pulpit about the things in our lives that we shouldn't be doing. And perhaps our preachers should begin to preach such things with boldness. There seems to be great weakness within the American Church today. We would benefit from such great preaching.

Hebrews 6:1-6 NASB

Identifying ValuesPremium Content

Like many of us on the path to recovery I was the ultimate party girl as a teenager. When I reached my late teens-early twenties friends started saying things like, "you're fun when you've had a few but not when you've had a few too many." Eventually, my friends stopped asking me out to the bars with them. Once in while a brave heart would invite me along and then proceed to "keep an eye on me" throughout the night. They feared I would do something atrocious to embarrass them or I would do something incredibly stupid to hurt myself. These people really loved me and genuinely wanted to enjoy my company. They were ever so hopeful this time would be different. It rarely, if ever, was. At the age of 21 I was introduced to crack cocaine and I incorporated that into my partying as well.

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Are You Self-righteous without even Realizing It?

It is easy to go along in life thinking that we're okay. I know that there are times in my life when I deceive myself, thinking that I'm okay and following when the Lord when, if I were to be truly honest, I would know that isn't true. But the deception is so comfortable. It's much easier to convince myself that everything is okay between me and God then to come into His presence and ask His opinion.

Hebrews 4:12-13 NKJV

Attitude AdjustmentPremium Content

Have you ever said something brilliant or even stupid and wondered where on earth those words came from? Want to hear something amazing? Your heart is connected to your mouth. Thoughts and experiences stored in your heart come out of your mouth and directly impact your life and the life of others.

But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart. Matthew 15:18 (The Message).

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What is Your Heart Attitude?Premium Content

I am a fairly deceived and deceitful woman. Oh, it's not that I go about lying day after day. I do my best to be as honest as possible. But I think that I often deceive myself by lying about my own heart condition. Rather than spending time in prayer (who has time these days?) seeking God's will, I make my own decision, ask God to bless it, and then blissfully go on my way thinking that His "stamp of approval" (through my request) solves it all. And I think I'm not alone in this, but rather am surrounded by many. There are things that I think American Christians do, thinking we are doing the "right" thing, when what we are doing is actually rebellious and self-centered. We give . . . a little. We pray . . . a little. We respect . . . a little. We have compassion . . . a little.

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