“Sixth Step Prayer:
I am ready for Your help
in removing from me the defects of character
which I now realize are an obstacle to my recovery.
Help me to continue being honest with myself and
guide me toward spiritual and mental health.”
This is the step that separates the men from the boys. Four and Five ask us to look at our defects and share them with someone else. But we still need to find the willingness to remove our defects of character. You’d be surprised how many of us cling to our faults, including me. They often serve a purpose, sometimes twisted or mysterious. The pain from our defects is at least familiar to us, and removing them can be unsettling. Step Six is about readiness, willingness.
My partner and I have a farm. We till the soil, add fertilizers, coffee grounds. We ready the earth for growing in the spring. That’s what Steps 4-6 do. They ready us for a kind of personal revolution, a change in ourselves. Change is very hard work. We are what we are for a reason. And letting go of our faults, which serve some function, can be hard. But I ask myself as I prepare to take this step if I need these defects anymore. Do I need them to be happy? No! Do I want to be happier? Yes! Then it’s time to shed some of my self-protective armor.
It might be that glass (or six) of wine at the end of the day. It might be our stubbornness, our need to be right all the time. It might be the misplaced guilt we cling to telling us it’s our job to save our loved one.
I pray for the willingness to let go of whatever is getting in my way and preventing me from being happy. I want to be the best I can be.