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Working Step 6

Original article can be found on the Castimonia site here

Step 6: We were entirely ready to have God remove our defects of character. “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” (James 4:10)

In working step 6 I need to come to an understanding of God and who He is in my life. I also need to be able to re-word step 6 as follows: We were entirely ready to have God, not me, remove our defects of character. In adding those two simple words, I have come to understand that it is God, not me, who will remove my defects of character. There is nothing I can do to help this other than be entirely ready.

Understanding that there is a difference between wanting and being entirely ready is very important. In the past, I wanted God to remove my defects of character, but I was not entirely ready. I had grown up using these defects of character to protect myself, to survive. Some of these defects of character such as lack of patience, anger, and control helped get me through college and early on into my career as an engineer. I would use these defects of character to my advantage, not realizing that they would be part of my demise and are at the root of why I would act out constantly with my sexual addiction, my rage, alcohol, or drug use.

In order to understand my acting out behavior, I have to understand that my “malady has roots” and these roots are my character defects. I can cut down the tree of “sexual addiction” on my life, but if I don’t cut out the roots, then the tree will continue to grow. Side note, I actually experienced this recently when I tried to cut down a tree in my back yard. Although, I cut it down, it was still partially connected to the roots, as I had to leave the roots in because they were so deep. Within a few days, green leaves were growing on what was left of the tree, laying on the ground. Then, after removing the actual tree, the roots started sprouting new stems with leaves. With enough time, a new tree would have grown in the old tree’s place. I finally had to kill the roots in order to ultimately kill the tree. So too, must we identify and kill these roots, or have our higher power do it. We have to be entirely ready to have God remove the roots of our addiction, for if we do not, then the “addiction tree” will continue to grow!

When we are entirely ready to have God remove these defects of character, when we have finally had enough of our acting out in various ways, when we have finally said enough is enough, and been truly entirely ready to have God remove negative character traits which use to keep us alive, we can move on to Step 7.

In working this step study, I read from two different books, The Twelve Steps for Christians and the SAA Green Book.

Take what you like and leave the rest.

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