What are good intentions but a choice to do what you can, alone, by yourself, against great odds? This is why good intentions so often fail to come to be at all, and why, when every effort has been made, the outcome seldom seems worth the effort. You cannot earn your way to heaven or to God with your effort or your good intentions. You cannot earn, and will not ever feel as if you have earned, the designation of a person of such worth that you are deserving of all that God would freely give. Give up this notion. (ACOL, C:P.19)
We have often seen ourselves as unworthy, unworthy in the sight of God. While Jesus seeks to dispel this error, he does note here that we cannot merit our way to heaven. We try to be good, but we will always fail, even in our own sight. Thus we have such good intentions, only to be thrown on the ground, totally dejected, when once again we have failed to live up even to our own hopes. We realize (or we need to) that we cannot effect salvation for ourselves. We can remove the barriers to the acceptance of love, but that is all. Yet removing the barriers is a great step forward, something that we can give ourselves—but not our ego—some credit for.
The Self acts to remove these barriers. We are guided by the inner Christ Self further to accept Jesus’s great promises for us. But we don’t try to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, an endeavor that is bound for failure.
We, in every instance that we can muster, follow the gentle whispers of guidance as to what we need to do and say next, even what to feel. We learn that this is enough. Always enough.
And Jesus’s way, pointed out in ACIM and ACOL, gets us home.
Is there anything else that we want? Just be patient in the gathering of this new era. Don’t get frustrated with yourself if Christ-consciousness doesn’t come when we wish. Jesus never intended for us to get frustrated and confused about our coming into our own as children of God, awakened children of God.