Mar 31, 2011

FROM THE DAILY OFFICE: ¨Prayers for Alcoholics and Addicts¨ by Josh Thomas

The 12 Steps as a Confession of Sin
1. I confess I am powerless over alcohol (add other substances here) – that my life has become unmanageable

2. I believe that God can restore me to sanity

3. I decide to turn my will and my life over to the care of God

4. I make a searching and fearless moral inventory of myself

5. I admit to God, to myself and to another human being the exact nature of my wrongs

6. I am entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character

7. I humbly ask God to remove my shortcomings

8. I make a list of all persons I have harmed, and am willing to make amends to them all

9. I make direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others

10. I continue to take personal inventory and when I am wrong promptly admit it

11. I seek through prayer and meditation to improve my conscious contact with God, praying only for knowledge of God’s will for me and the power to carry that out

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, I try to carry this message to other addicts, and to practice these principles in all my affairs.

Prayers for Alcoholics and Addicts
For Those in Immediate Danger*

Heavenly Father, save all in immediate danger due to addiction. We no longer trust ourselves or anyone else; but help us to trust you as our only way out. We beg for your help right now: to pick up the phone, to make the call, to let someone know, to admit the truth: that we have lost the war with alcohol and drugs. It is over, now, Lord, you are our last, best hope; our only one. We can’t even believe that you would stoop so low as to pick us up. Yet you are ever strong to save and eager to love us, despite our overwhelming sins and grief. Lord, by whatever means necessary, help us to surrender now to your loving power. Put aside our pride, heal our shame, calm our nerves, quiet our hearts and show us, O Lord of Power, that you will get us through this to new and better life, if only we are humble enough to ask in the Name of Jesus. Lord, we never knew we needed a Savior; but we do. Amen.

For Active Users*

O Lord, I’m still drinking and drugging. I don’t enjoy it or get high anymore, and I do see the consequences of using in my body, my finances and my relationships; but I tell myself I’m not ready to quit, that I don’t know how, that I’ve failed before, that maybe I’m beyond hope. I know other people succeed, so why can’t I? Lord, in my heart of hearts, I know I’m just afraid. But fear overwhelms me, and meanwhile I need this stuff. What if I reach out to you and you’re not there? Help me listen to your answer, Lord, help me do the things I should; I know I can’t go on this way, but I’m scared. And there’s one other thing, Lord: we’re taught to be self-reliant, to stand on our own two feet. I’m not doing that, I’m barely crawling these days, but I don’t know what it means to let go and let God. Please work with me, Lord, while you still can. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

For Those Contemplating Suicide*

Holy God, Giver of life, whose every creation is touched by beauty: Look with special favor on those in whom depression and loneliness have taken hold. Relieve them in your infinite mercy. Speak to them of your intimate love. Hold them in your bosom as a mother. Comfort them with the promise of contentment. Visit them in the person of new friends. Help them to ask for what they need; provide them with caring helpers and refresh them with possibilities. Save them, Lord, in their emergency, for our Savior and Messiah, a tempted man alone on a mountaintop, named Ya-hoshua, He Who Delivers. Amen.

Concerning Temptation*

O God, you offer us heaven, but for years I’ve chosen hell; my way is alcohol, while your Way is love. Help me get free of my trap, Lord, and onto your path. When I lead my life, I head for self-destruction and death; when I submit to you and take your direction, I find myself headed for fulfillment. Quiet the voice of temptation and pride in me, Lord; help me stop rebelling against my one true Master Jesus Christ, who died for my sins. Fill me with your Spirit and keep me in your presence. I need your healing, Lord; I won’t survive without it, but you are mighty to save. Amen.

For Recovery of Health (BCP p 458)

O God of heavenly powers, by the might of your command you drive away from our bodies all sickness and all infirmity: Be present in your goodness with your servant [N.], that (my) weakness may be banished and (my) strength restored; and that, (my) health being renewed, (I) may bless your holy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For Submitting to God’s Guidance (BCP p 833)

Almighty and eternal God, so draw our hearts to you, so guide our minds, so fill our imaginations, so control our wills, that we may be wholly yours, utterly dedicated unto you; and then use us, we pray, as you will, and always to your glory and the welfare of your people; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

For Discerning God’s Will (BCP p 832, Guidance 2)

O God, by whom the meek are guided in judgment, and light rises up in darkness for the godly: Grant us, in all our doubts and uncertainties, the grace to ask what you would have us to do, that the Spirit of wisdom may save us from all false choices, and that in your light we may see light, and in your smooth path may not stumble; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Thanksgiving for Recovery (BCP p 460)

O Lord, your compassions never fail and your mercies are new every morning: I give you thanks for giving me both relief from pain and hope of health renewed. Continue in me, I pray, the good work that you have begun; that I, daily increasing in bodily strength, may so order my life and conduct that I may always think and do those things that please you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For the Spirit of Giving and Service (Step 12) (BCP p 260)

Heavenly Father, whose blessed Son came not to be served but to serve: Bless all who, following in his steps, give themselves to the service of others; that with wisdom, patience, and courage, they may minister in his Name to the suffering, the friendless, and the needy; for the love of him who laid down his life for us, your Son our Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

For Dependence on God Alone (Steps 1, 2 and 3)*

I give myself over to your care and direction, O Lord. You are the One I trust, and you have been strong to save me. Help me respond to your love according to your will. You give the orders now, Lord, and I will take them, one day at a time. I am here to serve you and not myself; at your direction I will serve my fellow alcoholics and all others with whom I come in contact. You are a kind Master who gives me unlimited freedom; let me return again and again to ask what I can do for you. I have found in my new freedom that serving you is the greatest job a human being can ever have, as those who lose their lives for your sake will gain them in eternity. Thank you for every direction you give me; make me open more and more to hear your Word. Keep me from the sin of elevating my own desires instead of your Son Jesus, who now reigns on high with you and the Holy Spirit, one God in perfect fellowship. Amen.

For a Fearless Moral Inventory and Making Amends (Steps 4, 5, 8 and 9)*

Give us grace, Good Lord, to make a fearless moral inventory of our faults, sins and offenses against you, our neighbors and ourselves. Give us the courage to be honest; give us resolve as we confront these painful truths. Make us mindful that recovery depends on the clarity and fullness of our thinking. And once we know our faults, O Lord, move us to take decisive action to rectify our mistakes, to ask for forgiveness of all whom we have harmed and to pay our every debt, except where to do so would cause a further harm; that at the last we may approach your divine majesty with our accounts and lives in balance; through Jesus Christ, who is ever quick to forgive and strong to save. Amen.

For Removal of Resentments*

O Lord, forgive us our resentments, as we forgive those who keep old quarrels with us. Blot out distorted memories of those we thought had harmed us, for now we know we were not thinking. Help us let go of all angers and irritations, that we may find the grace to let you direct our lives. Make us humble, Lord, for we have learned that lives of self-propulsion inevitably end by running out of gas. Amen.

For the Spirit of Tolerance (Step 12)*

Heavenly Father, you alone are the Judge of our souls: Help me to embrace with a spirit of tolerance all those I meet, knowing that however we differ in background, beliefs or conception of you, I am not their better; I am a lowly sinner whom you have saved from certain death. Help me to find what is good and holy and true in each human being I encounter, holding fast your Son’s teaching that I shall love the Lord my God and my neighbor as myself; with the aid and comfort of your Holy Spirit. Amen.

Prayer for Continued Recovery*

Holy God, it has now been (period of time) since you began the miracle of recovery in my body, mind and spirit: Great is your power and holy is your Name. Continue that work today, Lord, and give me a meek heart with which to respond to your great love. Give me strength when I face temptation; give me power when I can do some good; give me joy in the gift of this new life; give me health that I may labor in your vineyard; and give me peace when work is done, that I may glorify your Son Jesus, who opens to me the gates of eternal life. Amen.
Prayer for Restoration of Families & Friendships*

Holy God, you have knitted us together as solitary persons into families, and given us the gift of friends we love: help us to restore these relationships so dear to us. We did not wish to cause our loved ones harm, O Lord; but we made wrong choices willfully, and did cause hurts and disappointments. We neglected our responsibilities and got caught beyond our power to make things right. Now let us seek those spiritual repairs which grace alone enables; make us grateful for every hour spent with those we care for; and grant that we can be useful to them in sober joy, that we can be intimate once more; through Jesus Christ, the great forgiver. Amen.

For Growth in Fellowship (Step 12)*

Lord, we know that in recovery, we can’t go it alone; we need people more than ever, for their wisdom, their guidance and their acceptance. You have given us a fellowship, as well as work to do; bless our meetings, that they may spread your healing power to encompass us with joy. Help us look after one another with sensitive care, avoiding all gossip and self-seeking, that we may yield with readiness to the Healer in our midst, your Son Jesus, our most blessed Savior. Amen.

For Restoring Finances & Career*

Lord, I pretty much wrecked everything with my drinking and using. I plunged headlong down the path of separation that leads to death. I couldn’t stop myself, Lord; it took a miracle, when I had no right to even think of one. And then I cried, Lord, I can’t function without you; hear my prayer. To my amazement, you heard and understood, though I lay at the bottom of the mountain, torn and bleeding, half delirious. You picked me up and wiped my face and forgave my sin; then you sent me on my way, to do the same for others. So now I have a job, a calling, a career; I don’t know how to live, but I do know how to pick people up and wipe their faces. I ask you humbly for stronger muscles, more washcloths, and money for food and shelter; that in my new vocation I may learn to prosper over time, that I may share your abundance with those who need me. Let me be your servant, Lord; you’ve already given me my pay. Amen.

Prayer of Rejoicing (BCP p 451)

Now there is rejoicing in heaven; for you were lost, and are found; you were dead, and are now alive in Christ Jesus our Lord. Abide in peace. The Lord has put away all your sins.

Compiled by Josh Thomas
Original prayers marked by asterisk* are © Josh Thomas 2006-2010, All Rights Reserved. HERE
All others from the Book of Common Prayer (BCP) 1979

·  Thanks to The Daily Office, sidebar
·  Thanks to Josh Thomas
·  Thanks to the Book of Common Prayer

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