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if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disrespect

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:56 am
by KrisF
Hello, I'm a grateful member of AA and my higher power is God. Someone asked this question last night and although i've been sober for some time, I didn't know how to answer it... perhaps you guys can help. Question: "If the Bible says that God gave us free will, why does AA tell us to do God's will?"
I know for me my will always got me in trouble and I also believe God (or higher power) watched over me and led me to AA. But this question still kinda confuses me. I'd appreciate your wisdom in answering.
Thanks!

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:49 am
by Duke
I think the simple answer is that if we don't freely choose to take loving action (God's will), it doesn't mean anything.

My first thought or instinct of what to do is not always loving or even nice sometimes. If I hadn't made the commitment to do my best to conform my will to my higher power's, I'd likely make some pretty self and other destructive decisions. I don't want to do that anymore.

So, I let the principles of the program guide me. For me, that's doing God's will.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:56 am
by Layne
A friend of mine that is in the program likes to say it is because God wants volunteers, not draftees. Our free will means we can choose to do his will or we can choose to not do his will.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:14 am
by avaneesh912
Question: "If the Bible says that God gave us free will, why does AA tell us to do God's will?"
For me, I still have my free will. Just that AA suggests that it is aligned with a higher purpose. Not for selfish self-centered motives. If I did, I will go back to the old way of living.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:50 am
by clouds
This often appears to be a stumbling block for a lot of us, I know I wrestled with it from time to time.

Free will implies that if we just use it, we could stop drinking!
I saw from my experince that my will was not always 'free'. It was chained up by my desire to drink which basically kept any good will I had in prison, unable to act.

I'm not so sure any more what role human will plays in actions and nonactions. Maybe everything is God's will.

Just wanted to write something to say you might benefit from taking it easy on yourself and turning everything over to God.

Its fortunate you have a belief in a Higher Power. So maybe go with that for now, focusing on step work.

I read step three with another member and we read the entire step three pages in th Bog Book one sentence at a time, one sentence each day, discussing it and reflecting on that one sentence for 24 hours. After completing it and then taking step three together with the suggested prayer, it changed both of our whole level of spiritual growth in AA.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:39 am
by Mike O
Theological discussion aside, just to keep it simple, for me "free will" didn't work. I ended up with an unmanageable life. I came to A.A. who suggested that I try doing "God's will" instead. It's working.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:44 am
by Roberth
Hello KrisF, My name is Robert and I am a Los Angeles area alcoholic. Why does AA tell us to do God's will? I can’t speak anyone else but my alcoholism led away from what can best be describe as my spiritual journey. I had to get away from the what's in it for me thinking.
It took me awhile to learn new ways of doing things but with the help of the fellowship I am doing that.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:43 pm
by Spirit Flower
because my best thinking got me here!

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:33 pm
by ezdzit247
Question: "If the Bible says that God gave us free will, why does AA tell us to do God's will?"
Hi Kris and welcome.

"If the Bible says that God gave us free will, why does AA tell us to do God's will?"

The question, as it is posed, has two logical fallacies--a concealed unstated premise, i.e. it falsely assumes that the Bible doesn't tell us to do God's will, and a red herring, i.e. it falsely assumes AA is a program that "tells" us to do anything.

Is the someone who asked this question a newcomer?

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:45 pm
by tomsteve
Spirit Flower wrote:because my best thinking got me here!
doesnt get any simpler than that!

why do Gods will?
mine gets me drunk.

ill answer a question with a question:
why not do Gods will?

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:56 pm
by Noels
KrisF wrote:Hello, I'm a grateful member of AA and my higher power is God. Someone asked this question last night and although i've been sober for some time, I didn't know how to answer it... perhaps you guys can help. Question: "If the Bible says that God gave us free will, why does AA tell us to do God's will?"
I know for me my will always got me in trouble and I also believe God (or higher power) watched over me and led me to AA. But this question still kinda confuses me. I'd appreciate your wisdom in answering.
Thanks!
Hi Kris and welcome to e-aa :D The answer to this question in my experience will vary from person to person. I will, however, share my personal belief with you. Please remember that its my personal view and not AA's or another person's view. I'd say there's 4 parts to your question from where I stand so lets deal with them separately -

Firstly, "If the Bible says that God gave us free will" - I went to Sunday school and attended different religions in my younger years. Since then ive left religion behind and consider myself as spiritual. To me, religion binds whereas spiritual sets you free. So I don't go completely on what the Bible says. I compare my personal experiences with God with the Bible and accept what feels right to me.

Second part, "God gave us free will" - To me, God created me to Its likeness which makes me "Love" at my core since God to me is "Love". Since God to me is all that is - positive and negative, everything and nothing, It can only experience Itself through Its creation which includes me. Therefore God gave me freedom of choice - to enable It to experience both negative and positive through me. Here it would help to remember that the opposite of Love is Fear and since God is Almighty I cant comprehend that Fear can exist in "Almighty" therefore the only way to experience Its completeness (also the negative which is fear) is through me. However, knowing that my core is Love (me being a part of Love/God who Created me), God knows that regardless of what I choose to do, I will automatically return to the core which is Love/God - from where I originated.

Third part, "Why does AA tell us" - AA doesn't tell me to do anything. AA suggest I follow a tested and proven program for recovery from alcoholism tried and tested by many alcoholics before me.

Last part, "to do God's will" - Here as individuals we need to establish what "God's Will" mean to each of us first. Since I believe I come from God and am made in God's image and God does not make mistakes, "God's will" to me firstly means to learn to love myself exactly as I am which include the positive as well as the negative of me which then becomes who I am. Once ive accepted and love unconditionally who I am, I am ready to accept that I am Love since I come from God who is only Love. Therefore, I then exercise my freedom of choice to choose "the next loving action available to me" rather than the "human-taught negative action" because effectively I am only Love and where there is Love, there can be no Fear which is the negative of Love thereby returning to my core which is Love.

I hope this help rather than cause further confusion. As I said, its my personal take. The best would be to just sit quietly, experience everything around, within, above and below and you are destined to find the answer for yourself.

Nite nite, xxx Noels

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:49 pm
by Alex1
From the Big Book page 89:

Every day is a day when we must carry the
vision of God's will into all of our activities. "How
can I best serve Thee--Thy will (not mine) be done."
These are thoughts which must go with us constantly.
We can exercise our will power along this line all we
wish. It is the proper use of the will.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:22 pm
by Brock
Maybe because of my age I really don't like the idea of abbreviating words into letters, this LOL or IMHO, (which I saw here and had to Google for the meaning), such things I find of no value. But a clue on Jeopardy a couple nights ago was 'what does WWJD mean,' turned out to be 'what would Jesus do,' and that was one I find some value in. One of the lines in the book I have found most useful is - “As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action.” (Then we could ask ourselves WWJD.)

I don't personally believe my higher power has the time to give me all the answers when I pause and ask, I think the act relaxes me enough for the answer which I have inside to reach my brain, and prevents me from making rash and hasty decisions, instead I can make decisions more like those God or Jesus would like. Another reason I like this WWJD idea, is he was cool and loving most of the time, but when someone did real crap he got upset, like kicking down the stalls the money changers set up at the temple. So it gives me a little leeway to get upset now and then, no wonder another of my favorite lines in the book is “we are not saints,” young people could abbreviate that to WANS.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:30 am
by positrac
Free will got me into AA and has allowed me to stay sober one day at a time for a long time. Free will is trusting my God and knowing that God has my back. I am allowed to take the controls anytime I want and when I do it normally means I will crash and burn because my skills outside a certain area are not mature enough to handle what lie ahead for me as I blindly press forward.

Free will IMHO is not some bad thing as much as it is a boundary of what I can do and what I shouldn't do. If I walk that razor thin line too long I will fail due to my ego.

GOD could be explained as Good Orderly Direction and thus turning over our will could yield more positive results in time for those who balk at God and or Jesus, or whatever religion.

Re: if God gave free will to us, why do his will? (no disres

Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:34 am
by Noels
Thanks Posi and Brock. I like your posts. Nice and understandable.
mwah xxx