The Power of an Explosive New Affection

The Power of an Explosive New Affection


A few years ago, I read a book, the theme of which was hiding from love. When I entered SA, I discovered—like many addicts—that I had been hiding from love my whole life. For me that’s seventy years which is no short time. A friend in SA who means a lot to me, shared that he too was hiding from love, but that God was working powerfully in his life to change him from the inside out. Slowly, a new desire for real loving connection with people began replacing his old tendency to keep away from people.

Recovery is about making the real connection—first with my Higher Power, then with members in my local fellowship. Discovering God’s love is key as I learn to conquer my anxiety and fears with His love. A book of my faith tradition says, “that perfect love casts out fear.” Someone called this “the power of an explosive new affection.” That is the uniqueness and power of the SA program because the 12 Steps are a God-given program in which the grace of God flows.

Last year at our Sunday Oxford meeting, I decided to do an experiment and search the PDF-version of the White Book to see how many times it uses certain keywords. Below are the results, applied to the subject “hiding from love,” which may surprise you.

Note: The numbers are the number of times each word appears in the White Book:

What is the source of true love? God x 222 times; our Higher Power x 4; Creator x 2, and Maker x 1.
The hope in recovery is I need a real spiritual connection to God because in addiction I am loveless: I x 948 times; Us x 451; Me x 253; You x 111; Men x 13, and Women x 15.
But why do I hide from love? Because of: Lust x 217 times; Sex x 125; Addiction x 54; Acting out x 31; Lost and Pride x 15, and Sin x 1.
Let’s look at a portrait of my hiding. It’s because of: Unforgiven guilt x 27 times; Fantasy and resentment x 17 each; I’m lost and dying x 15; I fail and full of pride x 12; I give up and face death x 7; I’m guilty x 6; I have loss, shame and remorse x 4, and sin x 1.
What then are the powerful SA steps to love? I surrender x 99 times; It starts inside x 70; I begin to feel it x 68; I begin to change x 64; through union x 57; making amends x 50; working the steps x 32; so I grow x 24; discover x 19; have faith x 16; admit x 15; so I cried x 9; I will confess x 7; commit x 3, and not give up and it works x 2.
Finally, sobriety is loving God, myself and others: Love x 51 times; I rest x 34; I call x 33; I experience new joy x 17; Faith x 16; Sanity x 15; Grace and peace x 13; I grow and support x 11, serve x 9; am happy x 6; blessed x 4, and listen and give away x 3.

I decide NOW to stop hiding from love and discover the power of God’s infinite love. After all, He made me in His love for Himself hence He loves me. In His mercy He has led me to SA, the program of recovery, and the amazing power of the fellowship. I want to discover daily the power of His love and share it in daily service with my spouse, children, fellow SA members, and those suffering outside my meeting room. With His love, I can grow in lasting sobriety; without it, I will remain full of self, fantasy and lust, and a never-ending cycle of acting out. I will hate myself and resent others. With His love comes real freedom; without it is bondage, guilt, shame, and misery.

I invite you to do a search yourself for a PDF-copy of the White Book and check my tally. Will you join me today in surrendering our broken hearts, and work our programs so our Higher Power’s fountain of eternal and life-changing love will explode in our hearts? Then anxiety, fear, and resentment will find no place in our hearts anymore, but only God’s self-giving love.

Paul T., New South Wales, Australia

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