I have a friend who is also a Christian and who is totally against Alcoholics Anonymous. He says that AA’s focus on an unnamed Higher Power is the same as saying that Buddha or Mohammad are equivalent to Jesus. I argue that they’re not the same, as AA is not a religion but a program of recovery.
He doesn’t come right out and say it, but I think that he also thinks that I’m somewhat of a hypocrite for defending AA, when I don’t go to meetings myself. He might have a point if I hadn’t tried AA in Gettysburg, but I did. It wasn’t for me. If there were worthwhile meetings available to me I might go, but that just wasn’t the case with the ones I attended here.
That’s beside the point, because AA isn’t for everybody. Every person’s program has to be his or her own program, and we have to go with what works for us. Still, whether or not the program is what a person needs or not, the program still does not present itself as an alternative to Christianity, nor does it demean Christianity by referring to a Higher Power other than God.
The AA embrace of a Higher Power is used to help those in recovery understand that there is a larger will in the Universe. As much as Christians might not like to hear it, AA can’t embrace the Christian God, because that might turn sufferers off and keep them from seeking out any potential help the program can offer.
For me, however, even though I was a Christian long before I ever stepped into the rooms of AA, it was in those rooms, and not in a church, that the force of the phrase “Thy will be done” clicked for me.
And it did click. “Thy will be done” is absolutely the single most important phrase in my philosophy and the central tenet that guides how I live my life. I have every faith that everything that happens in my life is God’s will.
Furthermore, my past experiences have taught me that God gives me more when it’s His will that I have tough lessons than He does when life is going on without a hitch.
Take my DUI accident from April 2004 for instance. Many people would have had trouble believing that a dude would receive some of his greatest blessing by t-boning a moving cop car while drunk; still, that’s exactly what happened.
I caught some of you off guard a little bit there, didn’t I? You’re like, “Wait a minute. Is Paul telling us that he drove into the side of a moving cop car when he was drunk?” Yes, that’s exactly what I’m telling you.
I drove into the side of a moving cop car while I was drunk, and I can’t think of many greater blessings that God could have given me. Of course I didn’t realize it at the time, but you’d better believe I’m thankful now that that happened then.
How’s that for a happy Thanksgiving?