The Twelve Steps – a Spiritual Journey: Step Six: Readiness
Written by Chris Jordan, the President of Overcomers Outreach of Canada.
We have finally reached the halfway point of our spiritual journey through the Twelve Steps. Before we look at Step #6, let’s review the first five:
- We admitted we were powerless over our sin or addiction – that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
So far we have said, “I can’t, but God can, so I will – surrender my life to Him!” We then made an inventory (a list of all of our wrongs), then confessed them to God, ourselves, and someone else. Now we come to step #6:
“Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”
It’s one thing to become aware of all of our sins, mistakes and failures. And it’s another thing still to share that with another human being. But now we must also be ready and willing to allow God to get rid of all that junk that’s inside of us. The Biblical basis for this step is found in James 4:10: “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.”
Notice however that we’re not talking about trying to lift ourselves up. We are humbling ourselves before the Lord, and as we take that small step, He will do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. “To expect action in Step Six is a mistake. Step Six purposely calls for no action on our part. It is a time for an internal change of heart and mind.” (Meditations for the Twelve Steps – A Spiritual Journey).
This truth is so clearly laid out in this Scripture: “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” (Romans 12:2, NLT). Step Six is such a great example of this Bible verse in action! It is about recognizing that I can’t change myself, but God can transform me as I allow Him to change my thinking.
One of the best ways of doing this is by reading the Bible. God’s Word will help us to renew our minds. It will help us to discover how much God loves us, and teach us more about the good plans and purposes that He has for our lives! If you haven’t started reading the Bible for yourself, I want to encourage you to begin to do so today.
Sixth Step Prayer:
“Dear God, I am ready for your help in removing from me the defects of character that 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.” Amen! (Prayers for the Twelve Steps – A Spiritual Journey).
Visit www.overcomersoutreach.ca for more information.