Step 1: We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
“When you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipes, and other musical instruments, bow to the ground to worship King Nebuchadnezzar’s gold statue. Anyone who refuses to obey will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.” (Daniel 3:5-6)
This was a decree put out by the king of Babylon during a time when the children of Israel were in captivity there. During this time there were three Jews named Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, whom the king had put in charge of a province, who refused to bow down to the gold statue. Their place of influence and their defiance of the king’s order made them highly visible. So the king had them brought before him and he gave them a second chance to bow down to his god, which they refused, so he had them thrown into the fiery furnace. The king was so upset over their second refusal that he had the furnace cranked up to seven times its normal temperature. In fact, the fire was so hot that the guards who threw them in were singed by the heat and died, but the three men miraculously lived. Indeed they could be seen walking around in the fire unharmed, and much to everyone’s surprise, they were not alone in the fire. Another figure appeared with them in the furnace.
“Didn’t we tie up three men and throw them into the furnace?” The king demanded. “I see four men, unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed! And the fourth looks like a god!” The king was so amazed that after the three Jews were brought out of the fiery furnce and brought before him and he saw that their clothes were not even touched by the fire, in his amazement he made a decree: “If any people, whatever their race or nation or language, speak a word against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, they will be torn limb from limb, and their houses will be turned into heaps of rubble. There is no other god who can rescue like this!”
We all go through fires. Some of them are fires of testing. Some of them are circumstantial, some are our own doing, but no matter how we got there, we are never alone. That is the message of this story and the message of the twelve steps — whatever we go through, there is Someone there with us. The purpose of the twelve steps is to remind us of this. There is another man in the fire. God does not always save us from the fire; He joins us in it. There is always someone there with you. There is no other god who can rescue like this!
Remember the fire.