The Power of Our Visions
By Rich C., Debtor
Many years ago, our programs founder, John, decided that one day he would find a way to control his finances. Eventually he formed a small group of similarly challenged people who shared the common desire of finding a solution to their financial problems. John’s vision to heal his personal finances has since grown into the program of Debtors Anonymous with hundreds of meetings healing thousands of lives all over the world. One man with one vision ends up impacting thousands. That is the power of our visions.
When I first arrived in DA in 1983, there were maybe ten DA meetings in existence. We didn’t have literature, sponsors, experience, or visions. I was well versed in ego-driven fantasy and illusion, but not vision. I was trying to survive day to day and didn’t spend much time thinking about what I wanted out of life other than having a lot of money. Before I came to DA I just felt like a failure – a vision just wasn’t on my radar.
It was around 1985 that I first heard of visions meetings where debtors worked to fulfill the dreams that would define their lives. This piqued my curiosity, so I attended a few visions meetings where I heard people sharing about their vision to be an actor, musician, or artist. I didn't have a vision like that. As a matter of fact, I didn't have a vision at all. I ended up deciding that my vision was just to have a vision.
In seeking my vision, I encountered two problems. First was that I was trying to find a label I could tack on myself. I thought a vision had to be something that everyone would understand, and you would then become, but that didn’t work for me. I couldn’t find a label that didn’t feel limiting. Second, I kept coming up with “wishes” that created a swirl of confusion. I had to separate my “wishes” for a vacation, healed relationships, and a new car from my vision. I wanted my visions to create defining moments in my life.
One day someone read something that I immediately knew would be my vision. I heard a man read that by working the 12 Steps we would end up living a life of love and service. Living a life of love and service felt so right that it became my vision. It was a feeling and an action. It wasn’t a concrete thing, and it fit me perfectly.
Not only did my vision not need a specific label, but not having a label left room for a lot of options and eliminated nothing. DA had given me solvency, serenity, and peace but it was in my vision that I found hope for a deeply rich and spiritually centered future. A future that would nourish my soul.
Then one day, as I was reviewing the 11th Step, it was like a door opened and I became aware of new possibilities in the step I hadn’t been aware of before.
The first part of the 11th Step reads, “Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God….” I realized it was through meditation that I strengthened my intuition, and it is my intuition that is my channel for my conscious contact with God. My intuition was my avenue for communicating with my higher power – and for my higher power to communicate with me – and it was meditation that was growing that conscious contact.
The second part of our 11th Step says “... praying only for knowledge of His will for us….” Now I know God’s will for me is to be a whole and complete human being who is happy, joyous, and free. But in that moment, I also realized that God’s will for me is to seek and fulfill my vision and that my vision was a gift from God.
The last part of the 11th Step reads “…and the power to carry that out.” To fulfill God’s vision for me, I have to become the person God wants me to be – a well-adjusted, spiritually centered, harmonious human being. I prayed for the power to maintain my body, mind, and spirit. I prayed for the power to keep healing the defects that distorted my intuition. I prayed to be entirely willing to follow God’s evolving vision for me.
As I was working the 11th Step, my vision evolved again. While living a life of love and service remains the overriding theme for my vision, I began to see writing grow to be a more prominent part. Today my vision has expanded to being a writer who writes in support of God’s will for me and who is also a person who is always available to support God’s will for you and God’s will for the world.
I believe we debtors are all intuitive, intelligent, and creative people brought together by a common symptom. If we strengthen our intuition, heal our defects, and grow our relationship with our higher power, we will all become the people God intended us to be, fulfilling the visions God has given us.
Our visions may seem small or large, they may be seen or unseen, but working to fulfill our visions can take what looks like just a small gathering of financially challenged friends to spreading healing to thousands of people around the world. We each may be only one person with a single vision, but by working toward our visions we can change the world. That’s what happens when we do the footwork and leave the results up to God.