“It is but you who gave heaven the purpose of giving you something to look forward to, a reward for a life lived according to your own rules, a reward to be gained by some and not by others, a pinnacle of achievement that will prove your rightness and your success after you are gone. Love you give the same purpose, but bid it do the job of rewarding you here and now. It, like heaven, is your proof that you are good and worthy, special and to be rewarded for your specialness.” (ACOL, C:14.23)
We have viewed both heaven and love wrongly, in the past. We are coming to see that heaven is something to enjoy here and now, in this world even. The same with love. But not as a reward of a life well-lived. We are not looking for “reward” at all; this is an old way of thinking, an egoic way of thinking.
We don’t need rewards to assure us that we are living as we ought to live. We don’t need to place heaven in the afterlife, and we don’t need to see the love that we enjoy here and now as evidence that we are good people.
All of the quotation for today is a false understanding that we have had ourselves. Jesus would lead us beyond this falsity to something infinitely better—a heaven here and now, a love that is not merited but a gift of God.
Some of us got these ideas from our religion, religion which placed heaven beyond us, in the realm after death. And works were believed by many to allow one to merit the love of our fellow beings on this earth. So we came by these beliefs honestly. But now is the time to leave such beliefs behind.
Heaven can be here and now. Love can be here and now, unmerited. We don’t have to “do” to merit anything at all—heaven or love. We need simply to “be,” and this being is the greatest gift that we can offer to God, to our brothers and sisters, and to ourselves.
The way is clear now. Let us walk the pathway with confidence.