“Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”
Attributed to St. Francis, who lived into the early 13th century, this quote may resonate quite deeply for 21st century people in recovery. How so?
Before entering recovery, our priorities steered clear from self-care, healthy relationships and keeping obligations – all the things that a rational person finds quite necessary. Instead, we drove headlong into unmanageable and self-indulgent behavior, abusing ourselves and others, leaving the road behind us strewn with wreckage.
Hence, especially in early recovery, the emphasis on putting ”first things first”. We get sober. We attend meetings, and work with a sponsor. We nurture ourselves back to physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Some of us start seeing a doctor regularly, others begin a regular spiritual practice or learn to prepare healthy meals.
Once we do what is necessary to become healthy again, much more becomes possible. And, I dare say from my own experience, and from what I hear in the rooms, what we once declared “impossible” is somehow within our grasp.
“If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through…”
If you're interested in the Recovery Retreat in Assisi, next May 2019, please send me a private message. Thank you, Paul Kimmerling.
(This statue of a meditating St Francis is near the San Damiano convent, in Assisi. This historic complex is on our retreat itinerary.)