“It is possible to reach a state in which you bring your mind under my guidance without conscious effort, but this implies a willingness that you have not developed as yet. (T30)”
Affirmation: “reach a state in which you bring your mind under Jesus’s guidance”
1 – Contradiction?
This passage occurs at the beginning of A Course in Miracles. It suggests that following our guidance must be a willful thing, and that we choose to follow guidance by conscious effort. Yet we are also told that much of the learning of the Course can be effortless. Is this a contradiction?
2 – Progression in ACIM
No, because there is a progression here that we would be wise to understand. In the beginning of our study, we cannot just turn our wills over to Jesus without choosing to do so. It is noteworthy that in these beginning passages, Jesus says that it is “my guidance,” and later on in ACIM, he stresses following the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We are not yet, at this point early on, ready for the more theoretical aspects of the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Later on we are ready. Then we can truly move effortlessly to make decisions with our minds and our spirits.
3 – Jesus as an Accompanying Friend
It is very possible to see Jesus as our friend who accompanies throughout our day and all of our rounds in it. Norman Vincent Peale also recommends that we adopt this attitude. Is it a fallacy? Actually I draw on my faith when I believe that Jesus can clone himself, and be anywhere at once. His mission is to save our souls, and he does so by being on call when we place “one unequivocal call” (from the Text of ACIM) to him. This assurance is much desired on a personal note by me. I like the fact that the Beloved of God is willing to spend time with me–and with all of us, upon the asking. I like the fact that he guides our decision making. He does not want to make our decisions for us, though, as he pointed out, in interior monologue to Mari Perron (scribe of A Course of Love). We make our decisions in consultation with the Holy Spirit (when following ACIM) and in consultation with the inner Christ Self (when following A Course of Love). We are never left bereft of guidance. And I personally have needed to know what to do and say in my life. I have wanted that guidance, though sometimes (in my weakest moments) I have chafed against it. I have sometimes felt, when sensing intuition, that I was in a straitjacket, that I had to do what the guidance indicated. I don’t have to do so, but long experience has shown me that I am happiest when I follow guidance. And the fact that that guidance comes with Jesus’s hand in mine is a very loving attitude that improves my day.
4 – Personal Experience
I have sensed, as time has gone on, that I do not struggle so much to know what guidance is telling me. Words come into my mind, but from a place a bit beyond me, giving me guidance. I test out this form of guidance, for if anything is harmful to anybody, it is of the ego and best left alone. But, by and large, the guidance that I get through unconscious turning over my mind to God is sure. It is benevolent. And kind. This progression is much sought after by me, but it was a long time coming. Surely all of us can can await the time that we bring our minds under guidance without conscious effort. In the meantime, we can use our intuition, which is a form of guidance, to know what and how to respond in our world.
5 – Jesus as Helper
We need to realize that Jesus in all likelihood gets a great deal out pleasure out of helping us. I don’t see it as a burden to him, but the fulfillment of his mission–begun years ago, and if we read Edgar Cayce, honed through many reincarnations before he became the man Jesus. (I neither encourage not reject reincarnation. Let your guidance tell you what you believe.) If I felt that I were burdening Jesus by encouraging the sense that he is near, I would be loathe to do it. But his fellowship is one of the great blessings of my life, and I welcome his help in the decisions that I am called upon to make.
May I bring my mind under the guidance of Jesus and the Holy Spirit. May this form of intuition be something that will bless others in my world as well as myself.
I realize that this need not be hard. Indeed, surrendering to guidance can be effortless. Help it to be effortless in me today.
I would lead a good life today, though I know that good intentions are not enough. Give me governance over my temper. May I be good to the people whom I encounter today. May I feel Your Presence, and may Your Presence inform me about what and how to think, say, and do. Thank You.