ACIM Workbook Lesson 317 – for Sunday, November 13, 2011
“And all my sorrows end in Your embrace, which You have promised to Your Son, who thought mistakenly that he had wandered from the sure protection of Your loving Arms. (WB459)”
1 – God and Jesus Embrace Us
The embrace of God is similar to the oft-quoted passage from A Course of Love, in which Jesus embraces us. Both are meant to offer comfort and love. We would ourselves want our sorrows to end, but to have that happen means that we must cooperate with God’s plan. We have never actually separated from God, though we live in a dream world (before we awaken) that says that we are separate from Him. We need to be flexible, to follow guidance, to relax into the day rather than to fight against it. If our thought or action makes us feel bad, then surely there is another way to live. We can ask. That is all that we really need to do to live a better life, one in which we rise above difficulties and disappointments in this world. We also rise above the tragedies of this world, recognizing that they are illusion. This does not mean that we do not offer comfort to our brothers and sisters, as we would ourselves wish to be comforted. Offer others the embrace, symbolically and, if appropriate, actually. We will not be sorry for having done so.
2 – Follow in the Way Appointed
If we follow in the way appointed, we are following the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Later on, in A Course of Love, we are living the elevated Self of form, and we turn inward for our guidance in the time of Christ-consciousness. But for now we are studying ACIM, and guidance in ACIM is from the time of the Holy Spirit. We seek Him always. And He will never disappoint us. The way that we will follow will be joyful. We will know peace. And the egoism, and egotism, that overcame us for eons will just dissipate. What a blessing that indeed will be!
3 – Our Sorrows End
If our sorrows end in the embrace of God, then we are at home in Him. This is a very great promise, and one that we would do well to remember in our darkest moments. And we may have more dark nights of the soul. Our evolutionary pathway is not a straight line (from Neale Donald Walsch’s Conversations with God). The way to Awakening is often a kind of spiral. We see glimpses that revelation gives us, but we do not live the ending. But the ending is sure, and it will come quickly when we are ready. Once we have seen the real world–the world of peace and happiness–consistently, it is only a matter of a short while before we will know awakening. God Himself takes this step, when He knows that we have been made ready. Because we have been so prepared by A Course in Miracles, the light that is turned on in the dream will not frighten us anymore. We will awaken gently and with peace.
I would sense Your embrace today. Thank You for this reassurance. We so often forget that You are always with us, carrying us when times are difficult. Help me to do my part to ease the burdens of my brothers and sisters, and help me to know what to say to them when they are struggling. If they are open to faith, give me the words to say. I know that the Holy Spirit’s guidance is always true. Help me to discern accurately.
An embrace is such a comforting gesture. May I rest easy as I walk through this day, knowing that I am a part of You, and that You wish me well always.
If times seem tough, let me retreat to an inner sanctuary, in quiet, where I can feel the embrace that Jesus tells us about today.