ESG News & Events

Posted in Sharing


HOPE is the laughter where once there was none, reposes the gloom of the glowering glum…

HOPE is the newcomer succumbed to submission, who’s journey is launched with an honest admission…

HOPE is the promises we read in our book, good will for the painstaking measures we took…

HOPE is the rooms where we humbly share, hands held as one as we close with a prayer…

HOPE is the big book covered in blue, it’s primary purpose still tried and true…

HOPE is a power far greater than me, wiser and stronger than I’ll ever be…

HOPE is the new life we’ve all come to find, 12 simple steps, one day at a time.

Gordon R.

Posted in Sharing

The deal that God makes with us Alcoholics/Addicts

A drunk is walking home, feeling sick and hurt. He is at that magic moment of surrender.

On his way he sees God and notices He has something in his hand. The drunk asks “What’s that?” God responds “This is sobriety”. The drunk said “Oh man, I need that! Geez, I need sobriety. How much does that cost?” as he only understands buying things. God returns with “How much do you have?” The drunk says “I have about 20 dollars.” God responds “All right, for you, sobriety costs 20 dollars.” The man, trying to back out of says, “If I give you all twenty dollars, I won’t be able to buy any gas for my car.”

God responds “Oh! so you have a car? I’m sorry, but sobriety is going to cost you your car.”
“Whoa, whoa!” Says the man. “If I give you my car, how am I going to get to my job?”

“You have a job?!” Exclaims God. “No, no, no. Sobriety is going to cost you your job.”
The drunk responds “But, if I give you my job, how am I to pay for my house?” House!!

You have a house!?” God says with surprise. “I thought you lived in a cardboard box under the bridge! Your file is completely out of date! Sobriety is going to cost you your house.”

The man responds “If I give you my house what about my wife and kids?”

“A family! That’s right, you have a family! Yes, yes. Sobriety is going to cost you your family.

The drunk responds “But if I give you all that, what good is my life?”

God states “That’s right. Sobriety costs you your life.”

The alcoholic, because he is at that magic moment of surrender is willing to give his God his money, and his car, and his job, and his house, and his wife and his kids, and his life and for that God gives him sobriety.

Then God looks him deep in the eyes and says:

“All right. I’m going to give you your money back but, it’s not your money anymore, it’s my money. I’m going to let you spend it for me.”

“I’m going to give your car back but, it’s not your car anymore, it’s my car. You get to drive it for me.”

“I’m going to give you your job back but, it’s not your job anymore, it’s my job. You get to work at it for me.”

“I give your house back but, it’s not your house anymore, it’s my home. But, you get to live in it for me.”

“I give your family back to you but, it’s not your family anymore, it’s my family. You get to take care of them for me.”

“I give your life back but, it’s not your life ever again. But, you get to live it for me.”

That’s the deal a loving God makes with us in the 3rd step.

Pham C.

Posted in Sharing

12 Steps in Reverse

Everyone is always talking about the 12 Steps in A. A. Another way of thinking about it are the 12 Mis-Steps of A. A. Here they are:

  1. Start missing meetings for any reason, real or imaginary.
  2. Become critical of the methods used by other members who may not agree with you in everything.
  3. Nurse the idea that someday, somehow, you can drink again and become a controlled drinker.
  4. Let the other fellow do the 12th Step work in your group. You are too busy.
  5. Become conscious of your A. A. seniority and view every new member with a skeptical, jaundiced eye.
  6. Become so pleased with your own views of the program that you consider yourself an “elder statesman.”
  7. Start a small clique within your own group, composed only of a few members who see eye-to-eye with you.
  8. Tell the new member in confidence that you yourself do not take certain of the 12 Steps seriously.
  9. Let your mind dwell more and more on how much you are helping others rather than on how much the A. A. program is helping you.
  10. If an unfortunate member has a slip, drop him at once.
  11. Cultivate the habit of borrowing money from other members; then stay away from meetings to avoid embarrassment.
  12. Look upon the 24-hour plan as vital to new members, but not for yourself. YOU have outgrown the need of that long, long ago.

C. L.
Chicago, Illinois
The Grapevine March 1947
Vol. 3 No. 10

Posted in Sharing

Sunlight of the Spirit

There comes a time we all must say…
as we look into the mirror
“There’s got to be a better way…
to release me from my fear”

We admitted we were powerless…
and we’d go to any length.
Those simple words empowered us…
provided hope and gave us strength.

I heard Him say while on my knees…
“I’ll guide you down this road”
A place we pay no dues or fees…
Love and Tolerance is our code.

So much pain we had to feel…
we had to set it free.
Our Higher Power helped us heal…
and restored our sanity.

So give to Him your flaws and fears…
He’ll remove the dark obsession.
The things you lost you once held dear…
soon return to your possession.

We had to come a long long way…
from where we used to be.
There was a price we had to pay…
A priceless entrance fee.

Take my hand come walk with me…
We’ll trudge this road together…
The Road to Happy Destiny…
a spiritual endeavor.

We find a new design to live…
a change in attitude.
We freely give all we can give…
A life of gratitude.

Say to Him “Thy will be done”
You will know it when you’re near it…
A better life is sure to come…
In the Sunlight of the Spirit.

Gordon R.

Posted in Sharing

A King named Alcohol

There is a King named Alcohol…
He rules throughout the land
All he rules will surely fall…
Under the influence of his command

Behind the gates of insanity…
Is where his kingdom lies
The scorch of all humanity…
The king of your demise

Sip by sip he slithers in…
And soon he takes control
Drip by drip he will begin…
To rape you of your soul

He leaves behind a destructive path…
He spreads misery and pain
All he rules soon feels his wrath
Darkness follows this Kings rein

This evil King of whom I speak…
Does not discriminate
The young the old the strong the weak…
Fall prey for him to take

Recoil from gifts this King brings…
The most cunning King of all
More baffling and powerful than all the other Kings…
This King named Alcohol.

Gordon R.

Posted in Sharing

Fear and Faith

I was standing in the darkness alone and full of fear… I was overcome with sadness as my eyes began to tear.

Fear had cast its shadow, of sorrow and despair…
Driven by a hundred forms, fear was everywhere.

Fear had paralyzed me, fear had froze me in my tracks…
I was mesmerized, demoralized, I was slipping through the cracks.

Fear was like a cyclone swirling, whirling, in my head… The fabric of our existence, an evil and corroding thread.

My self reliance failed me, so I called upon my faith… I asked my higher power to rid me of this wraith.

At once I had commenced, to feel an inner strength… The courage and the faith to go to any length

Fear was now a fancied foe who fought a futile fight… For faith had flung a fatal blow, as darkness soon returned to light.

The faith that I was seeking was with me all the way… I all but had forgotten, all I need to do is pray.

Gordon R.

Posted in Sharing

Acceptance vs Tolerance

In AA we are taught, acceptance is the key
That opens up the door, to our sobriety
Accept that we have lost control, not sure if we can mend
But who wants to admit the fact, we fight it to the end?

As we approach our bottom, still holding on to hope
Tomorrow will be different, no more booze, no pills no dope
Then tomorrow comes, nothing has changed, it’s still the same old script
We’re high again, we know despair, it’s got us in its grip

Some of us hard drinkers had a moment when we knew
The gig was up, our cupboard bare, we were the lucky few
Who found the rooms with folks like us, to show what we could be?
If we would just accept this fact, a chance to set us free

Accept we did, we could not keep pretending any more
All hope was gone, we cried out for the life we had before
We made a firm commitment to regain what we had lost
From years of alcohol abuse, ‘twas time to pay the cost

But there were times at meeting when we struggled to accept
What other members had to say, we wanted to protest
Yet, we knew the meeting’s not the place to voice our disapproval
Or try to see them chastised or suggesting their removal

Tolerance for others does not have to mean acceptance
We have the right to disagree, no need for acquiescence
When offended by their actions or the thing they chose to share
Call them aside at meetings end and get your feelings aired

A member called another out for what was on his shirt
A slogan that he did not like, his feelings to exert
A hush descended on the room, most members were unsure
If they should tell this fellow he was acting like a boor

At meetings end a member did approach this other speaker
Explained the meetings not the place to vent like he’s a preacher
Suggested that when he’s upset by someone’s words or actions
Once the meetings done there’s time to convey your reaction

That member in the corner adds his atheistic views
And most the others members feel his thinking is confused
But because he’s staying sober and he keeps on coming back
We tolerate his opinion, just not accept it as a fact

We’re not required to accept all other members say
Yet, we need to practice tolerance, keep our animus at bay
After all we’re only human, with our assets and our flaws
And when someone irritates us, that’s the time to take a pause

Larry R.