“Where there has been wrong, the program teaches us the spirit of forgiveness.” Basic Text, p. 12
In NA, we begin to interact with the world around us. We no longer live in isolation. But freedom from isolation has its price: The more we interact with people, the more often we’ll find someone stepping on our toes. And such are the circumstances in which resentments are often born.
Resentments, justified or not, are dangerous to our ongoing recovery. The longer we harbor resentments, the more bitter they become, eventually poisoning us. To stay clean, we must find the capacity to let go of our resentments, the capacity to forgive. We first develop this capacity in working Steps Eight and Nine, and we keep it alive by regularly taking the Tenth Step.
Sometimes when we are unwilling to forgive, it helps to remember that we, too, may someday require another person’s forgiveness. Haven’t we all, at one time or another, done something that we deeply regretted? And aren’t we healed in some measure when others accept our sincere amends?
An attitude of forgiveness is a little easier to develop when we remember that we are all doing the very best we can. And someday we, too, will need forgiveness.
Just for today: I will let go of my resentments. Today, if I am wronged, I will practice forgiveness, knowing that I need forgiveness myself.