I no longer had the power of choice

In my disease, I eventually "hit bottom". I discovered "pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization." I reached that mostly because I had fully realized through experience that I was truly powerless over lust and that, at the same time, I was losing my faith that God was there or was loving. I could not save myself and God either couldn't (because He wasn't there) or wouldn't (because He wasn't loving). I was in a state of hopelessness. It was exactly where I needed to be.

It was in this state of hopelessness and desperation that I had finally become humbled enough to just give up and let go of my own efforts and learn to humbly beg, "Please, will you remove this moment of temptation from me because I can't deal with it, and I really don't want to lust any more." (Incidentally, my own experience is that "being humbled" does not necessarily lead to "becoming humble." More often than not it led to further efforts on my part to escape the humiliation without ever becoming truly humble.)

Another influence was that I fell in love with the section of the SA White Book entitled "The Spiritual Basis of Addiction". It helped me see that, regardless of any external circumstances, I had continued to make certain choices that inevitably led to my state of complete powerlessness over lust and my addiction to it. My free will was integrally involved. And the God of my understanding apparently thinks my free will is of high enough value to Him that He will not remove it. And so ultimately I chose where I ended up. I chose the damage that I did to myself and others. (And today I do feel a deep sense of sadness when I see the results of the damage that I did. But these things are also covered by the amazing grace of the God of my understanding, a God who can redeem anything that is surrendered to Him.)

Where I ended up is summarized perfectly for me in one of our traditional meeting readings: "He or she has lost control, no longer has the power of choice, and is not free to stop." But I have stopped. So how is that possible? "God could and would if He were sought." 

It is impossible for me to stay sober. But I am sober. Obviously there is a Power greater than me who is doing something that I cannot do for myself. My work is to stay rightly connected with Him in complete surrender, and in doing that one thing, His power is worked in and through me to will and work for what He wants. "Thy will not mine be done."

How do I learn to connect rightly with Him? I work the Steps of the programme under the direction of an SA sponsor. And I do not separate that from my practice of my faith, but working the SA programme has made my faith real, in a way that it wasn't before. SA and the Steps gave me a "real life" experience of God that I had not had before. And that is why I can say that I am grateful for this addiction and for the "certain steps" of this programme that taught me how to connect rightly with God and others.

"... there is One who has all power - that one is God. May you find Him now."