When I was a member of a Catholic Monastery, we ran a retreat center for all of the various "Anonymous" groups. Our facilities could hold up to 65 visitors. Each week, we would have a whole new set of people come to get away from their regular routines to find the support they needed to help them "restore themselves to sanity" (Step 2) and to "turn their will and lives over to the CARE of God" (Step 3). All day/night long, they would have a marathon of meetings where a tremendous amount of Healing took place, through the fellowship of the Anonymous programs.
The "Guardian" of my monastery (the head monk) was an admitted Alcoholic and actively participated in the AA program. As Guardian, it was his role to instruct the younger "monks-in-training" to learn about and progress in the Spiritual Life. Although there are incredibly important "Doctors of the Church" who were experts in Spirituality (my favorites... St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross and St. Thérèse of Lisieux), it was our Guardian's belief, after having been a monk for over 50 years, that the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous was the most powerful, practical approach to growing in the Spiritual Life! Although it was not required of us to learn about and attend meetings, he highly encouraged us to do so. He would say, "If you don't want to do our monk schedule, you can go to the meetings for fun." Well... even though I have never done drugs or have been drunk in my life, I decided to check it out, and I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! The 12 Step can bring about PROFOUND HEALING and either introduce people to Spirituality or Reconnect people to it.
These Steps can be followed by anyone, regardless if they are an addict or not. The first step saying "our lives had become unmanageable" can mean for the non-addict, that their lives had become a jumbled puzzle that was too hard to figure out how they got there and what to do next. To the addict, only they can fully understand how unmanageable it has become. Where the word "Alcohol" or "Alcoholic" is used in ANY/ALL of the Anonymous literature, just replace those words with what you're struggling with... Crystal Meth, Cocaine, Food, Gambling, Marijuana, Narcotics, Nicotine, Sex etc.
The 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous
12 Step Anonymous Programs
Please email me at Paul@MeetYourAngels.com if you want me to help you work the Steps and provide you with Life Coaching and/or Spiritual Direction... My own approaches to help you reconnect to your Spirituality and HEAL the past wounds and traumas that you're still carrying with you. In your email, please share your circumstances and what type of help you need. Until then... PEACE and LOVE Always - Paul
These "Important Messages" from your Angels can be viewed at random times when you feel you need to clarity in your situation. These messages are ETERNAL, so it doesn't matter what day you it was posted/recorded... Just ask your Angels which message(s) they want you to listen to, and choose any of these videos to watch.
OK... What is going on here???!!!
Yesterday afternoon (Friday), I went down to visit my friend "Alex" at the crisis home and he is doing well. THANK YOU to everyone who has sent your well wishes and kind thoughts his way!!! Earlier in the week I visited him, and I shared the story about finding another one of my homeless friends that I was worried about in a neighborhood I have never been in. (See "A Needle in a Haystack" Part 1.)
With all this stuff going on in my life, I have been thinking about how fortunate I am to have my life and all the goodness and blessings I have. I have been thinking a lot about all these homeless friends of mine (hundreds over the years) and how much I truly love them. So many non-homeless people "miss out" because they are afraid of the homeless and bypass potentially WONDERFUL friends with HUGE hearts!!! All they need is to be treated with DIGNITY, RESPECT and LOVE and you will have a friend for life!
One friend in particular, Ryan, was 17 or 18 when I first met him. He was the smartest of all the kids out there on the street and he always made sure everyone else ate before he did. He was sort of a "Guardian Angel" for all his other street friends. Ryan is schizophrenic and what is called a "Tweeker"... a crystal meth addict. He loved music, so I gave him a guitar which he would play night and day to support himself. Over the two years I knew him, he declined rapidly and his paranoia became pretty bad mostly due to his drug addiction. One day he disappeared and it has been 4 years since I have seen him. I have asked the street gang off and on if any of them have heard from him, and I would get news once in awhile about what was going on with him. I guess he went to the police in the town I knew him in (Oceanside) and he "narked" about all of the various drug dealers in the city. He was instrumental in cleaning up a lot of the drug traffic that was going on. BUT, when you are a nark, your life is in danger, so he had to leave. He went to Oregon to his father's place for a little bit, but eventually moved to San Diego which is about 45 minutes from Oceanside.
Ryan will always be one of my favorite street friends because of the good he has done for so many people. It is hard to see because he has such a good heart and is so thoughtful when it comes to OTHER people, but he just can't seem to love HIMSELF enough to get clean. BUMMER! I have thought so much about him all this week after finding my other friend Joey.
So, after my visit with Alex yesterday, I was driving home and decided to go back to the same restaurant I had stopped in earlier in the week where I bumped into Joey. As I'm driving up trying to find a parking place, I look ahead on the corner and THERE WAS RYAN!!! It had been 4 years since I had seen him, but I recognized him IMMEDIATELY!!! I honked my horn and waved to him to come over and I said, "Hey Ryan, it's Tall Paul from Oceanside... Remember me?" He said, "Holy Sh#T!!! PAUL... How's it going... Oh My God... I can't believe it!!!" Well... That made two of us!!! Here I was in this neighborhood that I had only been in once before and here I find ANOTHER NEEDLE IN A HAYSTACK!!!
I found a parking spot and we talked for about an hour and a half. He looked really good, but he is still homeless. Still on drugs. Now he is selling drugs. I told him how much I missed him and how I always admired how he took care of everyone out there on the streets and how I always thought that he had so much potential to do good. I told him that I loved him and that my other friends Jessie and Cindy also love and believe in him. I KNOW I was touching him in a long forgotten way... the streets are hard and he needed to hear that there are people still out there that believe in him! I gave him my number and invited him to go with me sometime to my camper that I keep out in the desert. I think he needs to get away and get some fresh air and really think things over about life. He said he is so tired of all the drugs and the way of life and he wants to stop someday soon. He may never stop, but at least I KNOW that HE KNOWS now that I LOVE HIM and BELIEVE IN HIM. I feel good because I WASN'T AFRAID to tell him how I was feeling. He may never be ready to get help, but at least he knows without a doubt that he is LOVED, and that's all that matters. He has someone now to turn to if and when he is ready to get help.
How often do you tell your family and friends just how much you LOVE and BELIEVE in them???!!! We forget how important this is... we all need to hear this so don't be afraid to tell them how you think TODAY!!!
I don't know what it is about that restaurant in that little neighborhood that God and the Angels keep sending me to, but I'm going to keep going back whenever I'm in the neighborhood!!! MIRACLES have happened this week there... The MIRACLE of Joey and the Miracle of Ryan. Both "Tweeker" Drug Addicts. Both homeless. Both have no direction in life. BOTH AMAZING, LOVING, SELFLESS PEOPLE Who I am PROUD to call my FRIENDS!!!
Thank you God for the Gift that these friends are to me!!!
Have you ever tried to find a "Needle in a Haystack???!!!"
I have a very good friend, "Joey", who is 19 years old and homeless (most of the time). I care for him a great deal because he has such a great heart and he is truly a fascinating person to hang around. He wants to make a difference in this life, but he is sort of lost in the typical street-kid waste your time routine. He is a GENIUS and an "Indigo Child" in my opinion. (Do a search on the web if you don't know what an Indigo Child is). I usually hear from him once or twice a month, but I haven't heard from him in about 8 months or so. Needless to say, I have been VERY WORRIED about him! He moved out of the area, but not too terribly far away that we couldn't meet up once in awhile or at least get a phone call or email from him.
SO... Joey has been on my mind a great deal lately, most likely because of all the time I have been spending with my friend Alex who is trying to get into a drug rehab program and who is currently in the "Crisis Home." Joey is also a drug user/addict. I emailed him about a month ago and he didn't respond. Yesterday I emailed him again, and still no response. We've never had an argument, so he couldn't be mad at me, so what the heck??? Where did he dissappear to???!!! Joey is my "Needle in the Haystack."
Tonight I went to visit Alex at the crisis home and he is doing GREAT!!! I spent 1.5 hours with him without one argument or any stress... A TRUE RECORD!!! WOW.
So, afterwards I had an inspiration to leave my normal route home, and I went to dinner in San Diego and went to a bookstore to browse around. I parked about 2 blocks away from the bookstore, so I had a nice little walk to get some fresh air. As I'm walking out of the bookstore, guess who is walking by... JOEY!!! WOW again!!! He saw me and gave me a big hug... he says he lost my number and has been thinking about me. He hadn't checked his email in a long time (kinda hard to do when you're homeless because you have to go to the library usually). I gave him my number and we're going to meet up again real soon.
According to Yahoo... San Diego has a population of 1.2 million people (http://sg.travel.yahoo.com/guide/americas/usa/san_diego/). What are the chances that I would bump into Joey tonight???!!! I TOTALLY BELIEVE that the Angels brought us together. THERE ARE NO COINCIDENCES... These are all carefully orchestrated moves that the Angels have planned out. Their strategy is PERFECT! Our job is to cooperate with it. I NEVER, EVER eat in San Diego in the area I was driving through. I HAVE NEVER met Joey in that part of town... we have always met in my area which is 30 miles away. If I hadn't walked to the bookstore and left when I did, I would have never bumped into Joey.
Pinch Me... I can hardly believe how AWESOME the Angels are to me!!! I feel SO MUCH BETTER now that I know that Joey is OK!!! YIPPY!!!
(Read PART 2 of this story)
For those of you who have called me recently, you know that I am SWAMPED because a friend of mine is dealing with drug addiction and emotional issues. I have been helping him get to doctor's appointments, "Anonymous" meetings, and most recently, to the psychiatric emergency hospital and a "crisis home." (That just is just the tip of the iceberg of what I have been doing for him).
In my "free time"... ha ha ha... I am trying to call my Angel clients for Angel Card Readings etc. MANY of you are in the healing profession or are being called to be in the healing profession, yet you (we) are trying to deal with our present stressful situations not exactly in the right way. We tend to give, give, give and find little time for ourselves. The Angels want me to remind you (us) that "If you don't take care of yourself, how can you possibly take care of the people that you love and depend upon you for your healing energy?"
This gentle reminder encourages us to slow down, breathe and tackle one problem at a time!!! YES, we are supposed to help these people who God brings into our lives, but we must take time to care for our own needs, OR, more importantly, let other people take care of us when we need it!
Back to my drug addict friend... he is a young (20 year old) Healer... so filled with love for everyone else... yet he has completely neglected himself to the point that he can't help ANYONE any more, ESPECIALLY himself. He is now dependent upon me and his parents to help him make even the most basic decisions, and he is FIGHTING against the fact that he NEEDS our help. He doesn't want to "owe" anyone and hates to ask for anything even though he knows we are his only solution. IT IS OK TO ASK FOR, AND TO RECEIVE HELP FROM OTHERS!!! God put us here together to help each other out.
When you LOVE someone, there is NO OWING... no cost... ONLY LOVE. We help because we LOVE. No conditions are placed on it. PERIOD.
So... Take care of yourself, ask for help if you need it, so that you can be healthy for not only yourself but for everyone who depends on you!!!