ACIM Workbook Lesson 249 – for Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Affirmation: “Forgiveness ends all suffering and loss.”
“Forgiveness paints a picture of a world where suffering is over, loss becomes impossible and anger makes no sense. Attack is gone, and madness has an end. What suffering is now conceivable? What loss can be sustained? The world becomes a place of joy, abundance, charity and endless giving. It is now so like to Heaven that it quickly is transformed into the light that it reflects. And so the journey which the Son of God began has ended in the light from which he came.
“Father, we would return our minds to You. We have betrayed them, held them in a vise of bitterness, and frightened them with thoughts of violence and death. Now would we rest again in You, as You created us. (WB418)”
The passage for today paints a lovely, indeed a glorious, picture of what life on earth is meant to be. It is a picture of Heaven on earth. And all that we need to do is forgive ourselves, and our brothers and sisters, and, of course, Jesus himself (our “elder brother,” according to the Text, because he has walked the whole pathway and can show us the way). What joy it is to know that even the need for forgiveness is an illusion, but a necessary one that takes us out of the mad world in which we have resided. It is an illusion that leads to no more illusions. In this world, indeed, we do need to forgive, as much for ourselves as for anybody else. And then we will be healed.
The picture that is painted is akin to the “happy dreams that the Holy Spirit gives.” We need these happy dreams so that we will not be afraid of Awakening. If we were completely lost in madness, and the light were turned on prematurely, we would be frightened. The Text compares what would be our fright to a light turned on while someone is dreaming in sleep. When the person recognizes that the dream is over, he is not afraid of the light. We need not be afraid of the light of Awakening.
Awakening is not a goal to be sought. If so, it becomes one more goal that takes on egoistic implications. We need to let the ego wither away, doing nothing to enhance the tarnished goals of this world. God will quietly show us Awakening when He deems that we are ready. If the way seems long, we are on the pathway, and we know the conclusion. The conclusion is sure. (These are paraphrases from the Text.) We will be at home in God.
I will be alright today if I remember that forgiveness solves all my problems. At any time in my life that I would sense loss or suffering, I need only ask wherein have I failed to forgive? When the answer comes, then I am to act to remedy my mistake, and then all will be well again. May I count on You to help me, because I am so often frail and weak, and I so often forget the simple truths that You would point out in A Course in Miracles.
I would put suffering and loss behind me. I sometimes wonder if this is too good to be true, but then I look at my life now and compare it to the life before I studied ACIM. There really is no comparison. And the times that I have forgotten its tenets, then I have found myself falling on my face. May I not fall on my face anymore, beginning today.
Thank You for Your felt presence in my life. And thank You for the presence of Jesus, who promised to hold our hand as we walk through this world.