Program Prayers

On this page I have listed all the program prayers that I have collected over the years. I thought that it would be useful to post them all in one spot.

A Prayer for Inner Peace

Please help me to clear my mind and emotions of negativity and drama. Please uplift my thoughts to the level of true spiritual understanding, compassion and Divine Wisdom.

First Step Prayer

Dear Lord,
I admit that I am powerless over my addiction. I admit that my life is unmanageable when I try to control it. Help me this day to understand the true meaning of powerlessness. Remove from me all denial of my addiction.

Alternate First Step Prayer

My Creator,
Today, I ask for help with my addiction. Denial has kept me from seeing how powerless I am & how my life is unmanageable. I need to learn & remember that I have an incurable illness & that abstinence is the only way to deal with it.


Second Step Prayer

Heavenly Father,
I know in my heart that only you can restore me to sanity. I humbly ask that you remove all twisted thought & addictive behavior from me this day. Heal my spirit & restore in me a clear mind.

Step 2 Alternate Prayer
God, I pray for an open mind so I may come to believe in a Power greater than myself.
I pray for humility & the continued opportunity to increase my faith. I don’t want to be crazy any more.


Third Step Prayer

I offer myself to Thee
To build with me & to do with me as Thou wilt.
Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will.
Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness
to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy love & Thy way of life.
May I do Thy will always!

N.A. 3rd Step Prayer

Take my will & my life,
Guide me in my recovery,
Show me how to live.

Jewish 3rd Step Prayer

Grant me inner peace…, Let my body be completely subordinate to my soul & have no other will or desire but to follow the desire of the holy soul, which is to do Your will.

Let peace reign between my soul & my body. Let my body be sanctified & purified until it becomes united with the holy soul & I carry out all Your commandments & do everything You want of me, body & soul, willingly & with great joy.

Let my body & soul unite in love & peace to do Your will sincerely, until I attain complete inner harmony & am ready to order my prayer before You perfectly. Let my prayer rise before You like the incense & perfect sacrifices offered by those who are whole & perfect.

From the Fiftieth Gate (Reb Nosson’s prayers based on the teachings of Reb Nachman of Breslov)


Fourth Step Prayer

Dear God,
It is I who has made my life a mess. I have done it, but I cannot undo it.
My mistakes are mine & I will begin a searching & fearless moral inventory.
I will write down my wrongs, but I will also include that which is good. I pray for the strength to complete the task.

Fifth Step Prayer

Higher Power,
My inventory has shown me who I am, yet I ask for Your help in admitting my wrongs to another person & to You. Assure me, & be with me, in this Step, for without this Step I cannot progress in my recovery. With Your help, I can do this & I will do it.

Sixth Step Prayer

Dear God,
I am ready for Your help in removing from me the defects of character which I now realize are an obstacle to my recovery. Help me to continue being honest with myself &
guide me toward spiritual & mental health.


Alternative 6th Step Prayer

God, give me the courage and strength to know who I really am, to act accordingly in my life, and to refrain from diverting my time, energy, and interests into my character defects. (Drop the Rock: 2005)

Usefulness Prayer

God, please help me today to find the balance between my character defects and the principles of our program so as to be useful to You, other people and myself. (Drop the Rock, 2006)

Alternative 7th Step Prayer

God (or Higher Power), thank You for the gift of my recovery and for all the benefits in my life. Please allow me to be open and grateful for the bounty of friends, family, growth, and much more in my life. Please help me gain an awareness of those shortcomings that hinder my service to others, myself, and You. Please help me find a way to remove those character defects in my life, both the ones I’m currently aware of and those that I may gain awareness of later. Help me become who and what I may become, in order to give more. Amen. (Drop the Rock: 2005)

Seventh Step Prayer

My Creator,
I am now willing that you should have all of me, good & bad.
I pray that you now remove from me every
single defect of character which stands in the way
of my usefulness to you & my fellows.
Grant me strength, as I go out from here to do Your bidding.

Humility — from a plaque on Dr. Bob’s desk.

Perpetual quietness of heart.
It is to have no trouble.
It is never to be fretted or vexed, irritable or sore;
to wonder at nothing that is done to me,
to feel nothing done against me.

It is to be at rest when nobody praises me,
and when I am blamed or despised,
to have a blessed home in myself
where I can go in and shut the door
and kneel to my Father in secret and be at peace,
as in a deep sea of calmness,
when all around and about is seeming trouble.

Original Seventh Step Prayer as used by Dr. Bob

Dear God,

I am coming to You on my knees in all humility to humbly ask You to forgive all my past wrongs and to remove all my defects of character.

I want to start a new life today, and I ask You to help me do so and to keep helping if I keep asking.

In Step Three, I turned my will and my life over to Your care.

Thank You for taking complete control of my life, and thank You for this opportunity to wipe my slate clean and start my life anew.

In Steps Four, Five and Six I have completed my moral inventory and admitted to myself and another person the exact nature of my wrongs. I now admit these wrongs to You, God.

I am entirely ready to ask and pray now that You please remove from me every single defect of character. Specifically, I ask You to remove the following shortcomings listed in my Fourth Step moral inventory:  (Read aloud here those defects from your list.)

Thank You, God, for this opportunity for a new beginning in my life and a chance to be a part of the solutions in life instead of the problems. Please grant me wisdom, knowledge and strength as I go out from here to do Your work and live the Victorious Life (I say God-Centered Life) You designed for me.

Thank You, God, for the steps which will make Your plan for my life clear to me. Thank You and praise Your Name. (You can substitute hallelujah or any other personal phrase you may prefer from your individual faith).  Amen.

Step 7: I ______________ have humbly asked God to remove my shortcomings.

Eighth Step Prayer

Higher Power,
I ask Your help in making my list of all those I have harmed. I will take responsibility for my mistakes & be forgiving to others as You are forgiving to me. Grant me the willingness to begin my restitution. This I pray.


Ninth Step Prayer

Higher Power,
I pray for the right attitude to make my amends, being ever mindful not to harm others in the process. I ask for Your guidance in making indirect amends. Most important, I will continue to make amends by staying abstinent, helping others & growing in spiritual progress.


Tenth Step Prayer

I pray I may continue:

  • To grow in understanding & effectiveness;
  • To take daily spot check inventories of myself;
  • To correct mistakes when I make them;
  • To take responsibility for my actions;
  • To be ever aware of my negative &self-defeating attitudes & behaviors;
  • To keep my willfulness in check;
  • To always remember I need Your help;
  • To keep love & tolerance of others as my code; &
  • To continue in daily prayer how I can best serve You, My Higher Power.


Eleventh Step Prayer

Higher Power, as I understand You,

I pray to keep my connection with You open & clear from the confusion of daily life.
Through my prayers & meditation I ask especially for freedom from self-will, rationalization & wishful thinking. I pray for the guidance of correct thought & positive action. Your will, Higher Power, not mine, be done.

Step 11 Prayer

Lord, make me a channel of thy peace — that where there is hatred, I may bring love — that where there is wrong, I may bring the spirit of forgiveness — that where there is discord, I may bring harmony — that where there is error, I may bring truth — that where there is doubt, I may bring faith — that where there is despair, I may bring hope — that where there are shadows, I may bring light — that where there is sadness, I may bring joy.

Lord, grant that I may seek rather to comfort, than to be comforted — to understand, than to be understood — to love, than to be loved. For it is by self-forgetting that one finds. It is by forgiving that one is forgiven. It is by dying that one awakens to Eternal Life.  (AA 12 &12; 99:3)

Twelfth Step Prayer

Dear God,

My spiritual awakening continues to unfold. The help I have received I shall pass on & give to others, both in & out of the Fellowship. For this opportunity I am grateful.
I pray most humbly to continue walking day by day on the road of spiritual progress.
I pray for the inner strength & wisdom to practice the principles of this way of life in all I do & say. I need You, my friends & the program every hour of every day. This is a better way to live.

My Twelfth Step Prayer

God, allow my words, thoughts and deeds to reflect Your will. Grant me the Compassion and Strength to help the suffering, the Resources to fill their needs, and the Courage, Insight and Wisdom to guide them until they may walk with You on their own. Let me never lose sight that I was once in need and I am by Your Grace enjoying the fruits of my sobriety. Let my life be my gift to You for the many blessing You have given me. Amen. (Bill L., 1999)

Ruth’s Prayer

Thank You, dear God, for another day,
The chance to live in a decent way,
To feel again the joy of living
and happiness that comes from giving.
Thank You for friends who can understand
and the peace that flows from Your loving hand.
Help me to wake with the morning sun,
With the prayer today, “Thy will be done.”
For with Your help I will find the way.
Thank You again, dear God, for AA.



Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
[For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.]

A Step Poem

I took Step One, began to moan
I can’t do this one on my own.
I took Step Two, began to pray
Restore me God, please now, today.
I took Step Three, gave up my will
maybe God could love me still?
I took a Fourth, I looked inside
Nothing more would I hide.
And on the Fifth, I said aloud
“I’ve done some wrong, and I’m not proud.”
I took Step Six, and got prepared
To lose the defects, I was scared.
Now I’m at Seven, take them away
My God, for this I do pray.
And on Eight, the list was long
Amends to make for all the wrongs.
I took Step Nine, put down my pride
Amends made, I will not hide.
Step Ten I take, each day I pray
I make amends along the way.
And on Eleven I pray to know
Each day His Will, which way to go.
I take Step Twelve, I’m like a bird
To others now, I spread the word….

Set Aside Prayer with Variations

Dear God please help me to set aside everything I think I know about (people, place or thing) so I may have an open mind and a new experience.  Please help me to see the truth about (person, place or thing). AMEN.”

This is the one we used for the BBA:

“God please enable me to set aside everything I think I know for an open mind and a new experience. Please help me see the Truth about myself, my recovery, You and the Twelve Steps.”

Step 10:

Please help me face and be rid of the things in myself which have been blocking me from You, other people and myself.  When I am wrong, please help me to admit my mistakes and make amends for any harms promptly. Please help me to think less of myself and more often of others. Please show me how You would have me be.

Step 11:

Please, grant me the disciple to continue to seek Your will though prayer and meditation, and grant me the power to carry it out. May I listen to the still quiet voice inside and seek only to grow in understanding and effectiveness.

Prayer for All 12 Steps (by Shira)

Dear God,

Thank you for the gift of abstinence that You have given me today. I admit that I am powerless over my compulsive eating behaviors. When I tried to manage everything on my own, it did not work. My life is unmanageable when I try to control it.

Just for today, please help me to understand the true meaning of my powerlessness. Remove from me all denial of my disease. Please eliminate my obsession to take substances from outside to comfort me on the inside.

My Creator, bless me with an open mind so that I may stay teachable. I know in my heart that only You can restore me to spiritual wholeness. I humbly ask that you remove all twisted thoughts from me this day. Heal my spirit and lead me on the path of Truth.

I am surrendering my life to You. Today, I turn my will (my thinking) and my life (my actions) over to You. For, You are the All-Powerful Creator, who provides me with my every need at every moment.

Thank you, God, for this opportunity for recovery and spiritual renewal.

In Steps 4, 5 and 6, I completed my moral inventory and admitted to myself, and another person the exact nature of my wrongs.

Now, I admit these wrongs to You, God.

I beseech You to forgive all my past wrongs and to remove from me every single defect of character.

Specifically, I ask You to remove the following shortcomings: (Read aloud the defects from your list.)

Please bless those I hurt and change any part of me that allowed me to hurt them.

May I forgive others, just as I would want to be forgiven.

Grant me the willingness to rise about my emotional drives and take responsibility for my actions.

Just for today, Lord, I am humbly asking to be Your servant.

Please grant me the wisdom, knowledge and strength as I go out from here to do Your work.

Please keep my motives pure and bless me with the willingness to think less often of myself and more often of others.

May I live the God-Centered Life You designed for me as a sane, sober and serene person.

Thank you God for this beautiful opportunity and for the steps which will make You plan for my life clear to me.

Please bless our fellowship so that many more can be helped as I was helped.

Thank you and Praise Your Name.

By Shira 2017

Steps 1, 2 & 3 Prayer

Dear God:

Here I am, so grateful to You for the gift of abstinence that You have given me today.

You and I both know how utterly powerless I am over food and over this compulsion.

I have put things into my mouth to make me feel better, to no avail.

My life has become unmanageable over my effort to control my life with food.

I am powerless over food, and over the people, places and things in my life.

I am powerless over everything.

When I try to exert my will over them, I make a complete mess of things.

I believe with all my heart and with all my soul that You, and only You, can restore me to sane, balanced, healthy, and productive living.

You have so graciously proven that to me, over and over, with each and every abstinent day I have enjoyed.

You are the All-Powerful Creator, who provides me with my every need at every moment.

Please grant me the gift of abstinence today because I am ready today, with your help, to care for it with a heart filled with gratitude and love.

I am putting my whole self in Your hands today, to do with me what You will.

I pray for You to bless me with the clarity to discern whatever is the next right thing for me to do in each and every situation You place me in today.

God, please stay by my side, as You have done each day.

Support me, I beg of you. It is only with Your Infinite Power and love that I can achieve what You desire.

Guide me and show me Your will for me.

Just for today, Lord, I am humbly asking to be Your servant.

Grant me clarity and strength so that I am able to do so in abstinence.

Bless our fellowship that many more can be helped as I was helped.

By Shira and Deborah

Willing and Trying to be Abstinent

To be abstinent is about willingness, not struggle. If you are willing to be abstinent, this is a state of great humility.

If you are trying to be abstinent, this is a state of confusion.

willingness for abstinence means that you don’t know how to do it but are willing to learn.

Trying to be abstinent implies you should be able to do it, but are struggling with it. Willingness to be abstinent involves acceptance.

Trying to be abstinence involves condemnation.

Willing to be abstinent you are open to receive.

Trying to be abstinent, you are closed to guidance.

If you have been trying to give up the old ways and have condemned yourself for failure to do so, simply be willing to learn how the old ways may be replaced with ways of peace.

If you are trying to be abstinent you will fear failure.

If you are willing to be abstinent, even failure may be used as a teaching device.

If you are trying to be abstinent you will fear not being able to be abstinent.  You will judge yourself a failure.

If you are willing to be abstinent, no setback becomes a problem for you know you will be shown.

If you are trying, you are attempting to be abstinent by yourself.

If you are willing to be abstinent you are asking for guidance.

Trying to be abstinent places the responsibility on you.

Willing to be abstinent places the responsibility on God.

Willingness to be abstinent is, in a sense, a prayer.

Trying to be abstinent is an act of separation from your higher power.  When you try, there is resistance.

When you become willing, there is acceptance.

If you are trying to be abstinent, everything is interference.

If you are willing to be abstinent, everything is of assistance.

The freely made choice to be abstinent is the most important decision you make each day, because it speaks for your willingness to be abstinent each day.

Abstinence is a voluntary restraint from indulging a desire or appetite for certain bodily activities that are widely experienced as giving pleasure.  Not engaging in the problematic behavior connotes increased self-control in the hope of improved social interactions and personal help as a consequence.

We are dealing with a very serious illness and with a very beautiful solution.

Author unknown.