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Light Wash

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Step 7: Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.


I have a habit of checking how clean a drinking glass really is by holding it up to the light. A glass that looks so clean when out of the bright light can actually be very dirty, covered in fingerprints and all sorts of marks—it’s not fit to drink from. It makes me think of my character flaws and shortcomings and how well-hidden they can be.

From the outside, I can appear so clean and pristine in subdued light. I say, “Look at me . . . no flaws that I can see. I’m just fine, thanks, God.”

But he insists I be held up to his light. I reluctantly agree, and all is revealed—the stains, the marks, the prints upon my soul, the habits, and the defects all glaring in clear light. It is shocking to see me as I really am, not as how I think I am.

But the great news is that Step Seven is all about humility. We humbly ask God to remove our shortcomings: to wipe us clean, wash us in his truth, and cleanse us of shortcomings that are ruining our lives. If we humbly ask, we receive—it works every time.

If I want my metaphoric glass kept clean and sparkling, I go to God in humility and ask him to remove those stains upon my character. He never fails me.

Of course, the odd smear will keep appearing now and again on my glass, but now I know what to do about it and how to contact the source of all the help I need in the cleaning process. What a blessing! Thank you, God and OA!

— Paulette N., New Zealand

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