Lack of power, that was our dilemma. We had to find a power by which we could live, and it had to be a Power greater than ourselves. Obviously. But where and how were we to find this Power?
Well, that’s exactly what this book is about. Its main object is to enable you to find a Power greater than yourself which will solve your problem. That means we have written a book which we believe to be spiritual as well as moral. And it means, of course, that we are going to talk about God. Here difficulty arises with agnostics. Many times we talk to a new man and watch his hope rise as we discuss his alcoholic problems and explain our fellowship. But his face falls when we speak of spiritual matters, especially when we mention God, for we have re-opened a subject which our man thought he had neatly evaded or entirely ignored.
“Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”
The big book has two very interesting sentences, and they’re two of the key sentences in the Big Book. First of all, they don’t say that a Higher Power will be a sort of helper or useful assistant. They don’t say this Power will help you solve your problem or enable you to solve it.
They say that this Power will solve your problem. Furthermore, these two sentences say outright that the main purpose of the Big Book is to enable you to find this Power. From here through page 164, the Big Book doesn’t talk a great deal about alcohol anymore. Instead, it focuses on how to find the Power that will solve your problem.
The simple procedure for finding that Power begins on line 14 of page 47. You begin by asking yourself a question: Do you Believe, or are you willing to believe, in a Higher Power?
Let’s look at this question carefully. It is based on the concept of belief. Believing is the beginning of anything we accomplish in our life. Belief comes before purposeful action and is the seed of those actions. If we don’t believe something is possible, we usually won’t bother to try it. Believing comes first.
If you want to change, you have to first believe that you can change. That’s what Step Two is about. In Step One you admit that you have to make a change; in Step Two you believe that such a change is possible. If you don’t believe you can change, you won’t.
Many people confuse belief with faith. But faith and belief are very different. Belief comes before an action or decision; faith only comes afterward, as the result of an action or decision.
Suppose you’ve just moved to a new town where you don’t know anyone. One day your car starts to give you trouble, so you decide you’d better get it fixed. You knock on your neighbor’s door, introduce yourself, and ask her, “Do you know of a good mechanic in town?” She recommends a fellow named Mel, and tells you, “Mel does good work. I’ve been taking my car to him for years.” So you decide to take your car to Mel.
Now you’ve never met Mel, and you’ve only known the person who recommended him for about five minutes. But you decide to take your car to Mel because you believe that your neighbor is telling the truth and that she has reasonably good judgment when it comes to car mechanics. For the moment, at least, you also believe that Mel probably does do good work. You don’t have any faith in Mel yet, only belief. But this belief is enough for you to make a decision and take action.
Let’s say that Mel works on your car, fixes it correctly and promptly, and charges a fair price. You are pleased with his work, so you have another problem with your car a year or so later, you take it back to him for repair. This time, though, you’re going back to Mel on faith, not just on belief. You have faith that he can fix your car well, based on your actual experience.
We think a lot of people get into trouble with Step Two because they confuse belief and faith. They want or expect to have faith before they can start. But you can’t get faith before you start. You can only start with belief. Faith has to come later. First you believe; then you make decisions and take actions, if your decisions and actions work, you can begin to develop faith – then and only then. Belief is the cause of your actions; faith is their result. ( Taken from the book ” A Program for you.”)
“Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien,