12-Step slogans: Pithy little phrases of recovery wisdom.
The 12 step program teaches us to “Let go, and let God” – a very popular and well known slogan on the lips of almost every 12-Stepper. ‘Letting go’ means something different to each person who tries to live out its philosophy. And ‘letting God’ means something different as well.
At the very least, “letting go” means that we give up our struggle with addiction, and stop trying to recover on our own – all by ourselves. We’re letting go of our own ideas, and our own efforts to live successful lives. No one in the program who has successfully gained his/her sobriety would dare continue on their own. (You alone must do it, but you must not do it alone.)
And “letting God” is a reference to Higher Power. Simply, it is a reference to step Three: “Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over the care of God.” It is an act of complete surrender. We have made a decision to trust God – and to trust the program.
Somewhere hidden in the 12-Step program and the program literature – the big book and other 12-Step literature – is hidden this little phrase: P.U.S.H. which stands for “Pray Until Something Happens.”
But what does this phrase mean, exactly? At first glance it seems kind of counter-intuitive. Do we pray or do we take action? Here’s what I think:
P.U.S.H. helps to define what ‘let go and let God’ means. In other words, we must learn to pray if we are to completely and properly surrender.
If we are to turn our lives over to the care of God, we will need to pray. If we are going to recover successfully, we are going to do it by praying. Prayer is the important ingredient that helps us reach our recovery goals.
Do you want to reach your goals? Don’t forget to P.U.S.H!