Step Three

“Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.”

    A friend once told me that you can’t fix a spiritual problem with a physical solution. This friend was telling me how he had tried to address the emptiness and loneliness in his life with alcohol and promiscuity. After years of trying to find solace in these things, he realized that instead of them providing him relief, they were only making the problem worse. But he didn’t know why. 

    In Step One, the addict comes to the realization that he or she has no power over their lust and that because of it they can no longer manage their own life. In Step Two, they realized that there was something bigger than them in the world and then believed that it can restore them to sanity. In Step Three, in light of the realization, the addict moves from belief to dependance and trust. 

    Let’s be honest here; dependance on the self (whether it was taught or forced upon for survival) is what landed the addict where they are. It’s the thinking that says, “If my needs are to be met, I’m the only one I can trust to meet them.” It’s very isolating.

The best antidote for isolation is community. It’s communing with others and communing with God. 

    There are two prayers often associated with Step Three.

“God, I offer myself to Thee - to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, The Love, and Thy Way of life. May I do Thy will always!” (Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 63)

~ and ~

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. They will, not mine, be done.” (Twelve and Twelve, p. 41)

    The first prayer, is often given in the presence and with the guidance of a sponsor who can help the addict examine their motives for offering it and can bear witness to the commitment and provide accountability for it. The second prayer, the Serenity Prayer, helps the addict to remember that surrender and dependence don’t just happen in the past and future. They happen in the present moment! It’s a reminder that you can only take on 24 hours at a time (sometimes it’s 24 minutes or seconds!). 

    Both of these prayers help people fighting sex addiction or porn addiction and non-addicts remember that they can’t achieve anything (sobriety, recovery, intimacy, health, wisdom, etc) on their own. It takes surrender of their addictions, attachments, and dependancies, as well as belief in something bigger than themselves, and finally dependance on God to make it through each day with their whole lives and soul intact. 

    How do you practice depending on God or your higher power daily? Tell me in the comments below.

And, if you have more questions about this post or any in this series, check out my website to find out how to set up an appointment for us to meet!