How hard is too hard?

For years I resisted the idea of adding a Saturday night large group experience to our NSC calendar.  It felt TOO HARD for me to think about speaking both times. It seemed to me that my weekend would be totally taken over by the relentless consistency of attending Saturday night and Sunday morning meetings.  But there were compelling reasons to do so and I believed that I could, even wanted to, do hard things for the cause that NSC fights to support. It was an adjustment. Sometimes it is hard. But it is so worth it.  In the summer, with vacations and all, our attendance fluctuates wildly and sometimes our team is tempted to go to one service. But we look around and realize that if we did that someone would be left out. And we notice that some people come every single stinking week and that means that they are doing a hard thing.  WE CAN DO HARD THINGS.


After we wrap our mind around and accept the belief that when the purpose matters even if the action is hard, we do it anyway, an interesting thing happens.  Suddenly, what I feared would be hard doesn’t feel hard at all. AA talks about this effect in its 12 promises. In that document, AAers are promised things like:  amazement in the process, new freedom, new happiness, no regrets, serenity and peace, loss of self-pity, self-seeking and selfishness, fear and insecurity will slip away.  All these beautiful gifts are the by-product of doing the next right thing, day after day after day. It isn’t so much a big grand gesture as it is having the grit to stay present to the work in a relentlessly consistent manner.


Resilient people learn how to get clear about the definition of HARD. You know what is really hard?  Losing your kid to an overdose. Being homeless. Finding out your spouse has been cheating on you. Discovering that your best friend embezzled from your business and you are going to lose everything. Jail time.  DUI’s. Divorce. That stuff is hard.


People going through extremely hard times deserve to have a place to come to for solace.  Ultimately, what I learned is that having two meetings every weekend is more about privilege and purpose and meaning than it is about convenience.  


What conveniences are you holding onto that are actually holding your back?