“. . .[S]ickness is an election; a decision. It is the choice of weakness, in the mistaken conviction that it is strength. (M-5.I.1)”
Affirmation: “I would not choose sickness today.”
1 – Sickness, Pain, and Suffering
Now we study a section of the Manual that deals, on a deep level, with sickness, pain, and suffering. The ideas in this section are unequivocal; they represent an Ideal (an interpretation, not stated in ACIM). We are human, and we cannot accept all of these ideas at face value; we are too weak, not yet risen to the position that the Self occupies.
2 – Sickness = Our Decision
But the more that we can entertain ideas such as these, that sickness is a decision of our minds, and a decision that can be changed, the more we follow Jesus. Is he not the great healer?
3 – Busy Lives and Sickness
Do we not sometimes recognize that we will not allow ourselves to stop from our busyness, our much too busy lives, unless we get sick? Do we not realize that we sometimes entertain such ideas, just as a way to legitimately stay home from work? I think that we all can identify with what Jesus is telling us in A Course in Miracles, at least on this level. We do have some control that even we, not yet risen to his level, can see.
4 – We All Choose Sickness
In this section of the Manual, Jesus places sickness as a decision that we all make from time to time. We think that sickness gives us something that we want, and therefore we think that it is strength rather than the weakness that he declares sickness to be.
5 – Tiny Bits of Time to Rest
May we take the tiny bits of time today that we have to rest, so that we are not tempted to allow sickness as a legitimate way to avoid work. May we open our minds, ever so little, to the idea that it is ourselves who welcome sickness into our lives, by our own decision. And may we make the opposite decision today, the decision to stay healthy, or to invite health back into our lives, if we have already chosen sickness.
May I not be tempted today to choose sickness, when actually I just need some time to rest. We are all so busy much of the time. We think that we cannot take a timeout without a plausible excuse, and we think that sickness is a plausible excuse.
May I realize that this kind of thinking is akin to the insanity that the ego always leads us into. I would thank You today for knowing that sickness is a decision, made on some level which I cannot always comprehend. My Self is beyond my little, personal self that gets into trouble with the ego. I would ask for Your blessing today so that I might know the Self better.
Be with me in the tiny illnesses that sometimes come my way. I ask for the patience to heal, the patience to get the recuperation going. Your Way is always the way of peace, quiet, and calm. And it is these very things that keep sickness from being a part of my life. I know that sometimes there are exceptions to this view of sickness, but help me to realize that my decision is the primary factor. This places me under Your Providence, and gives me the strength to stay well.