Thursday, March 11, 2010

Sponsorship 3...

One of the things that I've found myself least successful at is "...sponsoring others into AA service..."  I've been active in AA service at many different levels - from group to Area, as well as sponsorship itself - for at least 23 of the past 26 years.  Far from the drudgery that many people understand "service" to be, I've found it a vital and continuing part of my growth in recovery.  It's seldom been painless, but, as the way of my life has often gone, I couldn't have gotten from there to here over any other road.  It has been drudgery at times, but my life's most fast friends today are all folks who I got connected with through AA service gigs.

It's puzzling to me why so few people get engaged in some level of AA service.  I heard my wife (also in AA) make a statement today that "...It used to be that you took your AA service commitments very seriously and, as a part of that, you learned to take yourself less seriously.  Today the sentiment largely seems to be that I have to take myself seriously and that the only service I will do is what's fun and easy for me."

Evidence of her belief: our local District is hosting a "game night" to promote AA unity and fun.  Used to be the only thing we did as a District were things that directly furthered the causes and purposes of AA.


I don't think they are "wrong" for having a fun event - or even having a fun event sponsored by an AA District.  What I marvel at is that, among my current slate of sponsees, so few (about 1/2) can seem to make time in their busy, recovered, lives to do 12-step work, PI work, take meetings into jails or anything that gets in the way of their busy, recovered, lives.

The fact that I see my life and my program in almost the opposite terms - I do what I do as a consequence of and often because of my commitment to AA - and they choose another path sometimes feels like I've failed them and the program.

On the other hand, I'm sober today and so are they.

I guess AA works.

I hope so.


dAAve said...

I could have written the same words. Yes, it's interesting, isn't it?

Syd said...

I hear excuses all the time from sponsees and members about why they can't do something like get to a meeting or do any kind of service work. "It is just too much trouble, I'm too tired, I'm feeling down, I'm too busy, etc." I don't see much commitment to a program that has given them so much. I have come to expect little of others. But am glad that I feel allegiance and responsibility to do what I can to be of maximum service in this fellowship.

Steve E said...

Yep, AA seems to work, no matter what I do or think.

I've accepted lots of commitments over the years, but being a first-time GSR...already after only my fourth meeting, I feel a stronger connection, more understanding, with those who are in District service than those who are not.

Don't know why that is. Maybe a defect--whenever I like a situation, there has got to be something wrong with ME--grin!


Mary Christine said...

I have recently (for the last 15 years) been a part of a group that cannot find anyone to be AGSR, or several other key roles. I never saw anything like it.

chitowngreg said...

It's too bad a lot of people don't seem to appreciate as much today the responsibility to give back and it's importance to their program. I also see it vary quite a bit by meeting. I've got some meetings that are booked out with speakers and chairs for the next three months and others that have trouble getting someone to agree to unlock the door! Have a good weekend!!