“The desire to be of service changes our relationship to the world. It’s not just in NA that we are loving and giving. We connect to the love that surrounds us by practising loving actions, and being open to receiving the same.” – Journey continues pg.242
Keeping what we have
While service at meetings can be as simple as packing away the chairs at the end of a meeting, helping wash up the cups, or simply showing up; there are many ways to help our fellow addicts as well as ourselves by giving back through service.
Why do Service?
Here are some reasons as described by addicts around the Western Cape as to what they got out of doing service from a group level, area level and even regional level. All acts of service help keep us clean, learn new responsibilities and ultimately fulfil our primary purpose – to spread the message to the still-suffering addict.
- ‘Service has helped me connect with others and given me a better understanding of unity.’
– AM, (3 years clean)
- ‘Before I came into NA I had broken my mind and my body. I basically didn’t believe in anything at all, I was an empty shell with no connection to anyone or anything. I joined Phoneline early in my recovery and remember the first time I got a call. The person was explaining to me how they felt and it was basically how I had felt. I explained to them about NA and how it helped me and I remember the relief of the person. I felt for the first time in my life that I might have something to give someone. Service has given me life, connection and a purpose again’
– RR, (5 years clean)
- ‘Service has made me feel connected to something bigger than myself. I feel part of when I do service. It makes me grateful that I can give back to a fellowship that has changed my life.’
– RW, (2 years and 11 months clean)
- ‘The biggest lessons that I learnt in my term as WCASC Chair was that of humility and anonymity… It really doesn’t matter what I think or feel, I simply need to do the next right thing, knowing that a loving God will ultimately, always be in charge.’
– RJ, (8 years clean)
- ‘Through translating NA literature I developed a deeper understanding of the literature and the program which helped me in my recovery.’
– J M (9 years clean)
- ‘Service is the most important way in which I get to practice “principles before personalities” in the fellowship. When I have to work together with a group of fellow addicts in order to get some work done, I really get to practice this tradition. At the same time, it is probably the most valuable way to prepare me to “practice these principles in all our affairs” when I am in the workplace or elsewhere in the world outside of the context of the rooms.’
– NP (years clean)
- “Service introduced me to people I would never have met. Gave me the courage to speak up and have a voice.”
– AJ (years clean)
- “Service committee meetings and giving back are as important to my recovery as attending normal meetings. Being part of a team and the sense of being of value gives me a great feeling of achievement and determination. Knowing that what I’m doing in service is playing at least a small part in helping someone that is as desperate for help as I was in active addiction and early recovery. early re Getting to make great friends in service, is such an added bonus too ”
– SC (2 years clean)
“Service is not a position in a committee or group; it is a posture in the heart. It’s a way of life we can practice in all our affairs.” – Journey continues pg.242