Step Six

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Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

It’s easy to get the wrong impression about this step. “Ok, if you’re God, make me better!” This is a step in the process that is worthy of taking some time to truly understand.

Even if we have admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs, we may not yet be ready to accept the help that God offers, mainly because while we may want the help, we want it on our terms.

Complete surrender

“Entirely ready” implies that we have completely surrendered to the will of God, that His leading and direction are exactly our agenda. The problem is we have a free will and even after all the honesty of Step Five; we still may have some residual ego to deal with. People often criticize Christians for being “cafeteria Christians,” meaning that they will accept the Word of God if and only if they agree with it. Step 6 says we agree with God’s assessment of our condition and will put up no resistance to His lead. Addiction renders us helpless. We have lost our control, our ability to moderate and we can’t do the recovery process solo.

We don’t necessary like the word defect. I’m ready to let God intervene, but defect? That’s a little harsh. Psalm 139 is an example of the writer opening up and being entirely ready to have God to the work when he writes, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”

Nothing is Hidden

We have already searched ourselves, so there is nothing hidden, nothing left out and we are ready to move forward and experience the freedom and healing that overcoming addiction can bring. There is no fear of discovery. There is nothing to prevent us from being open and honest with ourselves and others. If we have made the decision that only a power greater than us can restore us to sanity, and we have turned ourselves over to the care of God, as we understand him, then we have put our trust and faith in that relationship. You know the path your life has been on. You know the damage it has caused, and you long for health and stability. You’re on your way. You have a partner working with you.

“I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail” (Lamentations 3:19-22).

Accepting Major Changes

Step 6 is preparation for major change in our lives. We have done it our way and now we are going to allow God to take over and reshape us. I say that I’m willing, but am I really willing, or is this another game? If we have honestly left ourselves in the care of a loving and compassionate God then why would someone fail in this step? Fear might creep in at this point, fear that God is either too busy to look after us, or perhaps too distant to care. We fall victim to the same kind of thinking that led Eve down a path to destruction in the Garden of Eden. The serpent placed some doubt in her mind, questioning the goodness and provision of God. It didn’t take much for the deception to take hold, as Eve, with her human nature, was a willing, albeit unwitting, accomplice.

This is about truly trusting God to provide. In this case provide a way out, a means to “save us from ourselves.” We have already tried to clean ourselves up and were met with failure. Now it is time to tap into the power of God, let go of the steering wheel and allow Him to drive the car.

If you have totally surrendered to God you have completed Step 6 and you are ready for Step 7.

and Finally Remember:

"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened."
- Matthew 7:7-8

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