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Small, Unobserved Service

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In the Big Book it advises, “Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick” (Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th ed., p. 164).

My ego tells me I need to do something spectacular, like curing cancer, so everyone can see wonderful me. But since I don’t have the time to cure cancer, I might as well do nothing, right? Wow, what an egotistical diseased mind.

So, what can I do daily to help the fellow who is still sick? How about I assist with set-up or shutdown of meetings? Talk to members who linger after the meeting and may have questions? Answer the phone when a fellow is calling and may be on the verge of eating compulsively? Attend sponsorship workshops and consult with my sponsor so I can feel more confident in sponsoring? How about I plant seeds of public information (without preaching) when someone says I look great instead of just thanking them?

OA members are not the only people who need service. How about I assist someone who is struggling with packages or reaching for an item high on a store shelf? How about instead of shrinking in my chair when people ask for volunteers or assistance, I take a step in that direction to see where I may fit?

There are so many daily opportunities to help others in small, unobserved ways that still make a difference that we could fulfill our call to service several times a day. My charge is, instead of a nightly review to recall where I could have been of service, to have those experiences in real time. This will not only benefit me, but the persons in the line of that service who may have thought there was no one out there who cared enough to assist or hear them. It may not matter to everyone, but it will matter to that one, and one at a time is more than enough.

— Edited and reprinted from Looking Up newsletter, TriCounty Intergroup, January 2019

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