By the grace of God I am what I am.
—1 Corinthians 15:10
Did you know there was an AA before AA? It was called the Washington Temperance Society; it was established in 1840, a century before AA.
It began with a group of six men who regularly drank together at Chase’s Tavern in Baltimore. Seeing the destructiveness of their addiction, they signed a pledge to drink no more.
They made it their purpose to reach out to others with a drinking problem. By 1843, membership was an estimated one million. Their motto was: “Let every man be present, and every man bring with him a man.”
That sounds like a winning formula that could fill our churches. Of course, it would only work if we saw ourselves as the same as those we brought—recovering sinners, saved by grace. That could prove to be a hard sell.
It’s easy to label someone,
until you walk in their shoes.