“The phrase “God As We Understand Him” is perhaps the most important expression to be found in our whole AA vocabulary. Within the compass of these five significant words there can be included every kind and degree of faith, together with the positive assurance that each of us may choose his own. Scarcely less valuable to us are those supplemental expressions – “A Higher Power” and “A Power Greater Than Ourselves.” For all who deny, or seriously doubt a deity, these frame an open door over whose threshold the unbeliever can take his first easy step into a reality hitherto unknown to him – the realm of faith.
“In AA such breakthroughs are everyday events. They are all the more remarkable when we reflect that a working faith had once seemed an impossibility of the first magnitude to perhaps half of our present membership of three hundred thousand. To all these doubters has come the great discovery that as soon as they could cast their main dependence upon a “higher power” – even upon their own AA groups – they had turned that blind corner which had always kept the open highway from their view. From this time on – assuming they tried hard to practice the rest of the AA program with a relaxed and open mind – an ever deepening and broadening faith, a veritable gift, had invariably put in its sometimes unexpected and often mysterious appearance.
“We much regret that these facts of AA life are not understood by the legion of alcoholics in the world around us. Any number of them are bedeviled by the dire conviction that if every they go near AA they will be pressured to conform to some particular brand of faith or theology. They just don’t realize that faith is never a necessity for AA membership; that sobriety can be achieved with an easily acceptable minimum of it; and that our concepts of a higher power and God as we understand Him afford everyone a nearly unlimited choice of spiritual belief and action.”
-Bill Wilson, AA Grapevine, April 1961
Here is a talk by Gina and her experience with fear and faith.