Like all the remaining Steps, Step Three calls for affirmative action, for it is only by action that we can cut away the self-will which has always blocked the entry of God— or, if you like, a Higher Power—into our lives. Faith, to be sure, is necessary, but faith alone can avail nothing. We can have faith, yet keep God out of our lives. Therefore our problem now becomes just how and by what specific means shall we be able to let Him in? Step Three represents our first attempt to do this. In fact, the effectiveness of the whole A.A. program will rest upon how well and earnestly we have tried to come to “a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.”
This may be why for me, the whole AA program was not effective and I drank again and again and again in AA. Because I did have faith. I believed that the program worked for those people who said it worked for them. But when it came to actually turning my will and my life over, I didn’t do it well enough or completely enough to stay sober.
I think it’s a fairly simple proposition. What it means to “turn it over” in this context is to work the rest of the steps. I had to also follow suggestions well enough to get some sober time. I had to go to meetings, I had to call people before I drank, things like that. But my own mind would change sufficiently until I put a concerted effort into all of the steps. That’s what “turning it over” means to me.