Tag Archives: trust

Fear Overcome by Trust

“Fear produces what it fears.  Therefore, when one begins to distrust life, when one begins to create within oneself mechanisms of distrust, then facts arise that confirm that it is justified to distrust.  In reality, trust in such cases is lodged in what is unreliable.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 3:III

This quotation builds on the law of attraction directly.  We draw to ourselves the distrust: “. . .facts arise that confirm that it is justified to distrust.”  It is so obvious that the law of attraction is real, for spiritual texts constantly confirm these ideas.  And I am more likely to give credence to the law of attraction if it is discussed in a spiritual text.

We are lodging trust in that which is “unreliable”—that is, not trustworthy.  We need to place our faith in something more substantial, and, for me, that represents placing faith in God Himself, the Force that Star Wars, the movie, showed so well.

We attract fear if we are not careful, if we let our minds dwell on that which is fearful.  Like attracts like, as we know.  If we have a simple but profound trust in life, our attitude gives us the best.

We don’t have to fear.  We can turn to God, to our faith, to sustain us in our focus on higher ideals.

Trust

“[T]oday I speak of trust.  Observe how the thought patterns of worries and concerns of all kinds seem to assault you again and again.  These concerns come, in fact, from beliefs contrary to trust.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 3:I

We would not worry so much if we trusted more.  If we trusted in God.  We do know that most of what we worry about never, ever, comes to pass.  How much better we could live if we dropped worry and replaced it with trust!

We can’t just determine to drop worry and concerns.  We need to edge these negative thoughts out of the mind with something more powerful.  The perfect alternative to worry/concerns is trust that a good God doesn’t mean us harm and, instead, is showering love on us just all the time.  He is, you know.  The bad things in life don’t come from God, but from our own misguided notions and ideas.  We use our free will to make for chaos, and chaos finds us.

Drop chaos when we drop worries and concerns.  Let trust in God, the first prerequisite for a teacher of God (according to A Course in Miracles), take their place.  Then, even if bad things happen, we won’t feel them nearly so much. 

We will have a faith in things ethereal and permanent that overshadow, and sometimes negate, the transient things of this world.

Silence of Our Heart

“[S]tay for a few moments in the silence of your heart as you experience the peace of your soul as you hear these words:  You are safe and sound.”  Choose Only Love bk.3, 2:III

This is a beautiful message attributed to Jesus.  He wraps us up in His love, cocoons us.   And we are open to knowing that we are safe and sound when we trust him to mean what he says.

I do trust Jesus.  And I trust that I am safe and sound.  The peace that envelops me is palpable.  And so it is for all of us.

Peace in our soul!  Yes!  We fear when we let the ego rule us, for the ego is steeped in fear.  Turn aside from the egotistical, and watch our experience of life improve.  We make enemies when we are in competition with each other rather than attempt to cooperate in our various tasks.  WE don’t appreciate seeing egotism in others, and they are the same as we.

How can we experience being safe and sound in a world that seems fraught with perils?  Is this “pie in the sky” thinking?  I think not.  We attract what we focus upon, and when we focus on Jesus’ reassurances, we are attracting safety.  He is right here with us, though we cannot understand how that might be.  His ability to focus his consciousness just anywhere is the secret of multiple presence.

And Jesus has companions who stay with us just all the time.  Do not we believe in guardian angels?  The angels are deeply involved, Sebastian has experienced, in these messages in Choose Only Love.

Trust is the first characteristic of a teacher of God, according to A Course in Miracles, the Manual for Teachers.  We will live so much better when we open our souls to trust in a Power that is in the world, but not of the world.

Focus on the words, “safe and sound,” as an affirmation today.  See if our day goes better. 

See if we aren’t led to trust Jesus more and more.

Trust

“Remember, my children:  The love that springs from my most Sacred Heart can make your being a new being, and it will do so as you trust in me and give me your love.”  Choose Only Love bk.2, 21:II

Now, unlike our quotation from yesterday, Jesus is asking for our love to be returned to him.  First he loves us, to show us what it is like, and then he asks for reciprocation.  There is nothing unusual in this.  Giving and receiving are the same, for we are one Self, one Christ, for all is One.

We need to trust in Jesus.  Trust is the most important attribute of the teacher of God, as we discover in A Course in Miracles.  We don’t understand trust, though, and it is this lack of understanding that hinders us all the time.  Ask for an understanding of trust.  It is our due, this understanding.  We can’t live well in this world without some understanding, because without it, it is as if we try to find our way through a maze.

Know that Jesus means us well.  He can spring a new being on the ashes of the death of the old, but only as long as we trust in him.  If we fear him, or think he is dissembling with us, we won’t make it Home.  Know that help is available, that help is here.  And then accept that help, loving the giver, who is Jesus himself.

We would like to be new beings in this world.  When we wake up to the world each morning with this intent, we are well on our way.

Talk to Jesus as though he were near.  Ask him the “how” of it.  He holds our hand as we walk along, as A Course in Miracles tells us.  He has the wherewithal to be with anybody at any time, though we don’t understand how this is possible.  Ask for the understanding, of this and of trust.

We will not be disappointed.

Seek to Attract Love

“You attract everything that happens in your life.”  COL bk.2, 17:III

This quotation, attributed to Jesus in Choose Only Love, is a firm affirmation of the law of attraction.  Taken on the surface, it doesn’t seem to make any sense.  Surely we don’t attract the awful circumstances with which many of us are faced this day?  On some level, we may.  But it is not the level of the personal self; if anything, if we can believe this assertion, it is on the level of the soul—a soul who sees more than our vision can give us while on earth.

If this is true, and I believe it is, then we need to put more time into attracting love in our lives.  The way to do this is to practice faith and trust in God, the kind of faith and trust in God that we saw emulated by Jesus in his life on earth.  He set the example that we all need, all must, follow.  When we follow faith and trust to their logical conclusion, we have to realize that a loving God has allowed the things that happen to us.  And this is because he has never for a moment contemplated removing free will from the gifts he gives to us.

Seek to attract more loving thoughts by accentuating faith and trust in God today.  The love will make all the difference.  The love will save us.

Jesus Trusts Us!

“My trust in you is greater than yours in me at the moment, but it will not always be that way. Your mission is very simple: You have been chosen to live so as to demonstrate that you are not an ego. I repeat that I do not choose God’s channels wrongly. The Holy One shares my trust and always approves my Atonement decisions, because my will is never out of accord with His.” (ACIM, COA ed., T-4.VIII.14:1-4)

Jesus trusts us! He sees us as a channel for good in this world, a channel for Atonement that is seconded by the Holy Spirit. Such reassurance that we are all on the right path. We all do want to be finished with the ego, and as long as we are careful not to reinforce the ego by egotistical/egoic thoughts and actions, we are hope personified. Jesus’ hope is for a new world, a world where the dreams are happy, brought to us by the Holy Spirit.

A Course in Miracles suggests that we are still caught by illusion, for dreams are not real. But the “happy dreams the Holy Spirit brings” can be enjoyed without guilt. We can stay a while on this beautiful earth, loving our fellow men and women, doing God’s work, and all will be well. No harsh judgment will assail us. We do create our own reality, and we discover how to do that when we listen to the Holy Spirit (as described in ACIM) or the Christ-Self (as described in A Course of Love).

Guidance is very, very important, for we cannot find our way back to God unaided. We are too lost in insanity. But a glimpse of sanity comes to us more and more as time passes. And ultimately, those glimpses will, in Awakening, merge into a dream that offers good days continuously. We can have a Heaven on earth. We just have to follow the rules, and guidance will elucidate those rules for us.

God Trusts Us

“Your experiences in their totality you call your life. Yet you have stood apart from these experiences—all of them. You can look back on your life and see its form. You could write an autobiography describing every expe¬rience you encountered between your earliest memory and the present moment and it would say nothing about you if it related the experiences only as physical events. Your experiences may, in their totality, be called your life, but they cannot be called you. You stand apart. And yet in your choice of, and response to your experiences were you revealed, because, in this way only, were you a creator.” (ACOL, D:Day36.3)

When we lived through eons previous to now, we lived our experiences and responded to them, making them what we would. In that sense, we were a creator, though what we made was all illusion, informed by the ego.

Now we know something better. We are truly creating true reality, and in this our experiences and our responses to them create in a way that has been denied us previously. Now God can trust us more, knowing that nothing we create will put the universe in jeopardy. Formerly, He had to restrict us, because otherwise we might have made something bad that would be lasting. This does not contradict free will, which we have always had. But, as A Course in Miracles says, we had an imprisoned will, and in this we destroyed our true freedom.

Now we are walking into a new day. The light illumines the environment ever more brightly. We see with a vision that is not of this world. And in the seeing, we create anew. Indeed, we are prompted to create a new world entirely.

The “you” that we have been, now and previously, stood apart from our experiences that were viewed as physical events. It is in our responses that we truly become distinct. And our responses now are ever better. This is why God can trust us now. He knows that we will create well in a state of mind and heart that has not be accessed previously.

Dear God,
I would walk into the sunlight today, with You, with my new vision. I would see things that have been denied me before. I can see most clearly when I am relaxed and mellow. I ask You to move toward my personality with relaxation and mellowness today.
I do have some control over how I respond. I am not an automaton. I do have free will, and Your will and mine are actually identical. I certainly won’t fight You any longer; that attitude was gone a long time ago.
Be with me for a mellow, relaxed, and perfect day. Thank You.
Amen.

When We Trust, We Sing

“All, all you are doing here is accepting your relationship to the unex¬plainable. Acceptance is the creator of invisibility, the creator of the spacious Self. God has been described as the “all knowing” for God is the relationship. Relationship is the known. The unknown, like the unexplainable, becomes known through the relationship of acceptance.” (ACOL, D:Day14.11)

We need to accept where we are in life, a Self, indeed a Christ-Self newly come out to play. Our little, personal, and egoic self kept the true Self under wraps for so long and for so deeply in our psyche that we didn’t know the Christ-Self even existed.

We know it now. We know the Christ-Self exists. And this Self, newly taught by the tenets of A Course of Love, is drawing on a larger Self Who is indeed God in relationship to the All. It is that relationship of everything to everything that allows even God Himself to know Himself. This theological constraint may not be easily understood, but Jesus has tried his best. All is like nothing when there is only a Whole; it is the discrete parts that allow one part to know another, and these discrete parts are in relationship one to the other.

There is much we don’t know about the cosmos, even much we do not know about ourselves and our place in the cosmos. We have to trust, which is another way of saying “accept.” And Jesus is very big on acceptance.

We accept with our minds as well as our hearts. We don’t check our intellect at the door. If something seems awry, perhaps we are accepting awry, some remnant of the ego, some fear, some worry. The things that Jesus would have us accept are golden in nature, golden and pure.

His way is best. Give it a try.

Prayer

Dear God,

I am much impressed with You today. My long-time faith in a God I couldn’t know is being replaced with a God Whom I can know intimately. And well. And this changes everything.

Walk with me today so that I discover a little more of you. I am confident that that little more will take me singing through this day.

Amen.

A Small Amount of Trust Is All It Takes

“Those who are seen as loveless and alone in the world are those you find to be the objects of your pity. Yet you do not realize that this is the state your ego has you endlessly striving to achieve. Your ego would have you believe that only when you need no one to achieve all you desire, only when you are satisfied with what you are and with what you can do on your own, only then will your autonomy and your learning be complete, for this is all your learning has been for. The goal of this world is for you to stand on your own, complete within yourself. This goal will never be reached, and only when you give up trying to reach it can you begin to learn anything of value. You are complete only within God, where you endlessly abide. Striving to be that which you can never be is the hell you have created… .” (ACOL, C:1.13)

This passage is so clear, so right on the point about our insane desire for arrogant independence.

Our world teaches for self-autonomy. We mature from childhood to adulthood, striving to be free of our parents in the rupture that occurs when we are teens. We think that if we can just make our own decisions, we will be happy.

A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love teach the exact opposite of this. They teach that dependence on internal guidance, not of self-will, but either the Holy Spirit or the inner Christ Self, will allow us to live best. We can never actually be independent anyway. Our autonomy is hollow, for it never takes us to an end that can keep us satisfied.

Guidance is different. When we trust ever so little, we quickly find that the choices that we make that seem providential are actually what we really want. Things turn out better. And we are happier.

It takes just this small amount of trust to start us on the pathway to better living. Allow guidance to give us the nod for what we say, do, even think.

We will not be disappointed. We will walk a better pathway, one that will ultimately create a new world.

May We Be Faithful—Honest, Trusting, Gentle, Joyous, Tolerant

“True faithfulness, however, does not deviate. Being consistent, it is wholly honest. Being unswerving, it is full of trust. Being based on fearlessness, it is gentle. Being certain, it is joyous. And being confident, it is tolerant. (M15)”

1 – Dense Passage

This is a dense passage, dense with meaning. It builds upon the definition of faithfulness we read yesterday, and it is extols consistency in our image of the idea.

2 – Honesty

We have read elsewhere that honesty is actually consistency of thought and deed–nothing contradicts our inner beliefs and nothing that we do externally contradicts what we feel inside.

3 – Trust

Trust is mentioned again, as it was yesterday. We must place our trust in the Word of God to set all things right.

4 – Gentleness

Gentleness leads to fearlessness, because we are not always looking toward our backs to see who might betray us.

5 – Joy

When we are certain about the course that our lives will take, in love, we can feel joy.

6 – Tolerance

And then, finally, when we are tolerant we can live with the strength of confidence in our choices.

7 – Promises

Nowhere else in the Course are so many promises packed in so short a span of phrases.

8 – Strengths of the Manual

This is one of the strengths of the Manual, which can lead some readers to choose this shorter part as the one with which they begin. Jesus does not counsel against this, leaving it to the reader to choose the parts first that speak to him or her the most.

9 – Faithfulness

“Faithfulness, then, combines in itself the other attributes of God’s teachers. It implies acceptance of the Word of God and His definition of His Son. (M15)”

10 – Faith

We so often misread the concept of faith and faithfulness. In the Bible, we learn that faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

11 – “On Faith”

Growing up, we may have rejected taking things “on faith,” because perhaps this implied to us that we were to leave our minds behind, let our intellect go. While this is probably a false conception, even when based on biblical teachings, this conception is totally antithetical from the spirit and words of A Course in Miracles.

12 – ACIM’s Take on Faith

In ACIM, we are not ever required to take anything on blind faith. We are led, step by step, to knowledge that we can accept with our intelligence even working overtime (unless this intelligence is overly informed by our egos). We are led to realize that nothing in faith need contradict reason, a tenet of St. Thomas Acquinas. We are led gently to pathways of faith. We are not ever chastised if we are not yet ready to a given concept. The Holy Spirit is eminently patient with us.

13 – Defenselessness

“Toward Them [God and God’s Son] it looks, seeking until it finds. Defenselessness attends it naturally, and joy is its condition. And having found, it rests in quiet certainty on That alone to Which all faithfulness is due. (M15)”

This use of the term “Them,” capitalized is a bit confusing in ACIM. It does mean God and God’s Son (and Daughter), as a careful reading will let us know. We do seek God; we do seek our real Selves, the Christ Self deep within us (a tenet of A Course of Love).

14 – Quiet Certainty

We do rest in “quiet certainty,” a wondrous concept. All of us thrive on certainty in this ever-changing world. Most of us don’t take kindly to change that barrels us forward at breakneck speed (though some of us thrive on the thrill of it all). Quiet certainly is calmer, and in this stressful world we often want calm.

15 – Peace of Mind and Joyous Living

Faithfulness to our curriculum in A Course in Miracles will bring us peace of mind and joyous living. This is ACIM’s promise, and the vast number of students of ACIM will attest that the books live up to their promise.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I can remember all parts of this great promise as I walk through the day. Forgive my limitations. Help me now to drive these ideas deep into my mind, so that they are there in my subconscious when I need them.

Help me to be tolerant of my own limitations. I know that in this world I will have limitations, but Your promises are sure, and I can depend upon the guidance of the Holy Spirit as I walk through the day.

Amen.

Steps on the Way toward Awakening

1 – Period of Undoing

“First, they must go through what might be called ‘a period of undoing.’ This need not be painful, but it usually is so experienced. (M10)”

At this point in the development of trust, the movement toward Awakening, we find that many of things in which we placed great value are, very suddenly, no longer in our lives. We may experience substantial grief at this point.

This period of undoing may occur relatively early in one’s life. College is an awakening experience, in another sense, and the changes that one undergoes are not always happy. We may lose touch with our treasured friends from high school, college may be much tougher than high school, and all in all we experience identity crises as the old props of home and family are removed.

Not everybody, of course, goes through this stage at this point in life. There are many variations.

2 – Period of Sorting Out

“Next, the teacher of God must go through ‘a period of sorting out.’ This is always somewhat difficult because, having learned that the changes in his life are always helpful, he must now decide all things on the basis of whether they increase the helpfulness or hamper it. (M10)”

Once the props have been removed, we need a new stasis of personality, a new way to accept the life that we have been given. One important made in the Manual, in this passage, is that we have here learned that all changes are always helpful. This is akin to the biblical injunction, “All things work together for good to them that love God, to them that are the called according to His purpose.” This quotation meant a great deal to me when I was going through this step.

We do not have to fret. We will come through this mixed up period and be the stronger for it.

3 – Period of Relinquishment

“The third stage through which the teacher of God must go can be called ‘a period of relinquishment.’ If this is interpreted a giving up the desirable, it will engender enormous conflict. (M10)”

Sometimes we have to give up something that seems, at the point, very precious to us. We may be asked to follow God’s will, as we perceive it, without reassurances that all is well. God sometimes withdraws and lets us make our own decisions. While guidance is very much a part of this step, it does not mean that we understand the “why” of what we are being asked to say and do. I think very often we don’t. We follow blindly, if we stay true to the pathway. We know what we are to do, but we may not fully want to do it, not yet realizing that God’s will for us is always our real will (ACIM tenet).

4 – Period of Settling Down

“Now comes ‘a period of settling down.’ This is a quiet time, in which the teacher of God rests a while in reasonable peace. Now he consolidates his learning. (M10 – M11)”

We do have periods of respite on this gentle path to Awakening. This identifies such a time. We are told, shortly after this passage, that we will go on from here with “mighty companions.” This seems to indicate help from the Other Side, whether angels or not is not clear. We may be helped by Teachers of teachers, those who have gone on to beyond this life to help those of us still left behind (ACIM tenet).

We need these quiet times, for without them the way would be too arduous, and we might drop out—choosing to make our way blindly, without listening to the Holy Spirit. We might lose our way on the path to Awakening. There are no guarantees.

5 – What Do We Really Want?

“And now he must attain a state that may remain impossible to reach for a long, long time. He must learn to lay all judgment aside, and ask only what he really wants in every circumstance. Were not each step in this direction so heavily reinforced, it would be hard indeed! (M11)”

This is the real disappearance of the ego, in my understanding. What one really wants is not egoistic things of this world, yet the call of the ego has been strong in us, and we relinquish the things of this world with some struggle.

What do we really want? Ah, that is the question. We do want the peace of God, and we cannot have this on a sustained basis as long as the ego is strong in strife.

6 – Period of Achievement

“And finally, there is ‘a period of achievement.’ It is here that learning is consolidated. Now what was seen as merely shadows before become solid gains, to be counted on in all ‘emergencies’ as well as tranquil times. . . .This is the stage of real peace, for here is Heaven’s state fully reflected. From here, the way to Heaven is open and easy. In fact, it is here. Who would ‘go’ anywhere, if peace of mind is already complete? (M-11.”

I think I can say without ego that the first part of this passage is where I am now—but not the second part of the passage. I can see my learning being consolidated, even as I write my blog. Part of my “solid gains” can be seen in difficult times, “emergencies.”

I have not yet reached the state of real peace, with Heaven’s state fully reflected. I still have difficult days part of the time. I still forget all my learning sometimes, especially when stressed.

It seems to me, from where I sit, that the final half of this passage, the “period of achievement,” identifies the state in which one has been awakened or enlightened.

7 – Recapitulating

Affirmation: “Help me to ask what I really want in every circumstance.”

This passage explains one of the steps on the way to Awakening. It sounds easy, but the playing out of the passage is hard indeed. To lay all judgment is not easy, as the ego thrives on judgment. And the ego it is that we need to lay aside.

But Jesus assures us that we have “heavily reinforced” help to lay all judgment aside. This is a great blessing. This help comes from the Holy Spirit. In addition, Jesus himself has said that he is always with us. We have only to ask for help, and it will be forthcoming.

This passage represents a stumbling block to many. This is where we get stuck in our pathway to Awakening. We must recognize that the way may be long, and that there may be setbacks along the way. But the glorious end is certain.

“This is the stage of real peace, for here is Heaven’s state fully reflected. From here, the way to Heaven is open and easy. In fact, it is here. Who would ‘go’ anywhere, if peace of mind is already complete” (M11)”

This passage represents the ultimate achievement in matters of salvation. The passage tells us that peace of mind is possible even in this world, and that therein lies Heaven.

The theology underlying the Course is not always easy to follow. But here we have a definite stand that Heaven is possible of achievement even in this world. And this is a grand promise indeed.

The way to Heaven is “open and easy,” and, in fact, it is “here” now. What more glorious release could we wish to have? This is a goal worth striving for, and Jesus’s promise is that we shall know Heaven even here, once we have walked the pathway that the Course sets out.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

I long for Heaven on earth. Jesus has promised it to me, and I claim his promise.

May I have the peace of mind that gives Heaven to me, even in this world. I thank you in advance for the fulfillment of this glorious promise.

Amen.

Be Like the Little Children

Sunset_Foggy_Weather_Pourville - monet“Your learning must take on a new focus.  Be like the little children and inhale the world around you in order to make it part of your Self.  Be like the little children, and learn in order to claim your learning for your Self.  Learn who you are through each experience rather than learning in order to find out who you are or what your contribution will eventually be.  (A Course of Love, 30.3)”

Affirmation:  “I would think of a childlike response to the world today.”

Reflections:

1 – Echo of the New Testament

This passage echoes the New Testament, of course.  And here Jesus is using the analogy of little children to teach us a new way to learn, and it is through observation (though he does not say so at this point).  We need to “inhale” (a strange word) the world that surrounds us in order to learn through each experience that we have.  It is the process, rather than the end result, that Jesus emphasizes in today’s passage.

2 – Being Supersensitive

How might we inhale the world?  How might we observe?  We can indeed become supersensitive to the world in which we find ourselves, and supersensitive to the daily experiences on our daily round.  Neither of these suggestions is difficult.  But we need to get beyond a focus on the end result of what we are seeing (observing), just to experience–period.  Then the observation that we make will be learning in a new way, the new that has been presaged in A Course of Love.

3 – The Present

Often we settle down into a book or a web site, and concentrate with all our might on the message that it might contain.  But we also have an eye to the future, what we will get out of this message that will transform us, or somehow make us better.  This is not living in the present, and many religious leaders counsel living in the present as much of the time as possible.  Always the present is the only time that there is, but, oh, how hard it is for us to recognize this very simple truth.

4 – Observation

Observation of the outer world, focus on our experiences in it–both will eventually take us to the present, and to our home in God.  May we leave aside preoccupation with past and future today as we dwell in the only place that there truly is, the present.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I spend time today thinking of what it means to think as a little child.  I recognize that this is not an exercise in immaturity, but the height of rationality and good sense.  But I don’t usually think this way.  Perhaps I need to trust You ever more, and trust is a prime attribute of little children.  They normally have trust in their parents, and I can transfer that same kind of trust to You as my heavenly Parent.

I do not fully understand trust.  Guide my thoughts today so that I come to comprehend better.

Amen.

Being Sure of God

“There is a trust that goes beyond proof and beyond the need for any witnessing at all.  van gogh - stilllife - fruitThis is the trust of knowing.  Knowing is of the heart, and holds a consistency and certainty that the dawn of innocence does not contain.  (A Course of Love, 28.5)”

Affirmation:  “I would ‘know’ today.”

Reflections:

1 – Knowing vs. Perceiving

Jesus has longed for us to know since he first mentioned these words in A Course in Miracles.  There he contrasted “knowing” and “perceiving,” and indicated that only in knowing is there permanence.  Perception was what we had projected from within, and it is illusion, for we are living in a dream.  Elements of the real world do surface, though, when we live from knowing.  Knowing is of God, and it something for which we are now ready.

2 – Intuition

Listen to your heart.  Sometimes this heartfelt message is sensed as intuition, but not always.  There are many ways that the heart can come to understand.  Inspirational words of others are yet another source.  And, of course, scripture–whether of the Bible, other holy books, or the latest perennial philosophy of ACIM and ACOL.

3 – Innocence

When we have first known innocence, and known that it is of ourselves, we have loosed the hold of the ego on ourselves.  This is where ACIM took us.  We have not sinned, but have merely made mistakes that we would correct, and which we would forgive in ourselves.

4 – Jesus

But we have traveled beyond simple innocence now.  We know that the innocence is a fact, but we also know many other things.  Jesus has taken us by the hand, and through the reading of A Course of Love, he is leading us to full equality with him.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I be sure of You today.  I have had faith for a long time, and I do not leave my mind at the door when I pray.  I know in a way that I did not when I was younger.  Thank You for this certainty, for this truth of knowing that You are with me always.

May my trust be expanded.  Trust has been a bit of a problem for me, and I would not have it so.  Trust is the bedrock of our salvation, and I would trust completely and wholly that You are with me all the time.  Thank You for the trust that is growing within me.

Amen.

Living a Life of Love

1217335673_paul-cezanne-wallpaper-the-sea-at“You are ready now, and all that will prevent you from living a life of love is unwillingness to do so.  There is only one remaining source of such unwillingness.  Your willingness will now depend on whether or not you trust.  Do you trust these words?  Do you trust in God?  Can you trust in your Self?  (A Course of Love, 27.21)

Affirmation:  “I am willing to live a life of love today.”

Reflections:

1 – Trust

Trust is the bedrock of the Teacher of God’s life (from the Manual of A Course in Miracles).  Nothing else good, on a permanent basis, can really come to us until we trust, in God and in our Self.

2 – Better Living

We are reassured that we are ready now for that better living.  This is akin to Helen (co-scribe of ACIM) and her remark to Bill (co-scribe) that she would help him find another way.  And in A Course of Love, the work that was begun in ACIM comes to fruition.  We see Jesus not any longer as just our teacher, but as our heartfelt companion.  This is not so different from traditional Christianity.

3 – Life of Love

We are willing to live a life of love.  Only doubt that it can be so would prevent us from so living.  And we can banish doubt from our minds by a concentrated will to do so.  If pursued by doubt, turn to your heart, which does not seek for proof.  Ask internally what your heart really knows.

4 – The Heart Will Answer

And you will be answered.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

May I live that life of love that is indicated herein.  May I trust enough to do so.  I feel ready, sometimes, for a continual life of love, and I thank You for those times that I feel so blessed.  Extend those times to be a continuous thread throughout my life.  May today be the beginning of the rest of a life of love.

I wish to be able to express love in a way that can be accepted.  Guard my tongue if I am saying the wrong thing, based on thinking the wrong kinds of thoughts.  Help me to be of assistance to those in my circle.  May I listen to what my heart is telling me, and with that heartfelt messages will arrive, guiding my thinking, my words, and my actions.  I fully believe this, and I thank You for the assurances that You give me constantly.  May I always be ready to accept Your assurances of love and peace and hope and tranquility.

Amen.

Trust

“All that is required to gather this new evidence is to trust in your own heart.  Are you willing to believe what your heart would tell you?

“This exercise should take no time nor break your stride or the flow of your conversation.  All it asks you to do is to become aware of spirit and to allow this awareness to abide within you.  (A Course of Love, 13.6 – 13.7)”

Affirmation:  “May I trust in my own heart today.”

Reflections:Van-Gogh_Bedroom_Arles

1 – The Mind

If we stop giving our mind so much attention, if we put our mind into neutral, we are then more likely to listen to the spirit within.  We are also more likely to pay attention to the spirits of others, rather than the personality that is so dominated by the mind when it is in egoic mode.  When we pay attention to the spirit in ourselves and in others, we are attuned to our hearts.  And that is a very good place to be.

2 – Turn to the Heart

Jesus would have us turn to the heart increasingly.  That is the primary theme of these first pages of the original volume of A Course of Love.  (Later, he will emphasize the union of mind and heart, into “wholeheartedness.”)

3 – Intellectual Truths?

The heart does not demand intellectual truths.  The mind, when it is dominated by the ego, does so often want intellectual truths.  But the ego is never satisfied; no proof is ever sufficient.  And so we bring our intellectual doubts to the table of God, and we doubt Him.

4 – Heed the Heart

This is no way to live.  If the heart seems to be telling us something, we would do well to heed what it is saying.  We intuitively know that God exists, and that He loves us, and when we live this faith, we live truly–we don’t simply walk through our days like automatons.

5 – Use the Day Wisely

May we spend today looking for the spirit in ourselves and others, and may we pay attention to what our heart is trying to say to us.  If we can sustain this endeavor, we will indeed have used the day wisely.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Help me to trust my heart today.  It will soon be time to meld the mind and the heart into wholeheartedness, but for today I will listen to my heart.  I will see what it has to tell me, and I will heed.

This does not mean that I will do foolish things.  We do not need to let emotions run amuck.  That would not be worthy of ourselves or our concept of God.

Be with me today as I seek to be ever mindful of Your blessings.  You have given me much.  Help me to give back.

Amen.

How Should the Teacher of God Spend His Day?

“How Should the Teacher of God Spend His Day?  To the advanced teacher of God this question is meaningless.  There is no program, for the lessons change each day.  Yet the teacher of God is sure of but one thing; they do not change at random.  Seeing this and understanding that it is true, he rests content.  He will be told all that his role should be, this day and every day.  And those who share that role with him will find him, so they can learn the lessons for the day together.  (M-16)”

Affirmation:  “My lessons do not change at random.”

Reflections:

1 – Assurance of Guidance

This passage once more assures us of guidance.  And that guidance is described as being from the Holy Spirit, or Universal Inspiration.  We need to consider very carefully the ways in which guidance can come to us.  In reality the ways are numberless, but it is also possible to categorize some of the more obvious ways in which guidance comes to us.

2 – Intuition

The primary quality for many of us is an internal feeling, which may be described as intuition.  We just have an inner knowing of the right next step to take.  We do not often see a whole pathway stretch out before us; normally we are given the route in a step-by-step fashion.  And we are given that route at the moment that we need to take it.  By what way could it happen otherwise, without confusion?  If the Holy Spirit showed us an end far in the future, would we not fret that we are unable to fulfill the often grand ideas that He has for us?

3 – Reading

Sometimes the guidance comes through reading, especially inspirational reading.  A Course in Miracles is an obvious choice, but I do not counsel opening the book at random and seeking for magical answers.  Jesus warns us about magical thinking, and we can be led very much astray by techniques that partake of randomness.  I believe that it is far better to read bits of ACIM meditatively, and to wait for the guidance to emerge full in one’s thoughts.  Of course, we are human and we do make mistakes.  So we must ask ourselves if anyone would be hurt by the thought or action that we contemplate.  Love is the central theme, along with forgiveness, and nothing borne of love or forgiveness is likely to lead us astray.  This is not romantic love, though, but a settled good feeling toward our brothers and sisters.  Romantic love often speaks to the emotions, and emotional reactions can easily be of the ego.

4 – Period of Quiet

A period of quiet at the beginning and end of the day is almost mandatory.  If we do not subscribe to this idea, there are other ways that the Holy Spirit can reach us.  But sometimes we can avert suffering by listening to Him ahead of time.  When we have been quiet, taking in His counsel, we are less masochistic.  And masochism is at the heart of many of the things that go wrong in our lives.  Not for all of us, but for some.

5 – Devote the Day to God

So, let us devote this day to God.  Let us follow His way with a dedication that we ask Him to give us.  And, at the close of the day, be sure to thank Him for guiding throughout the day.  If the day was not optimal, ask for a better tomorrow.  And seek to spend a few minutes in contemplation over what went wrong and why.  Over time, more days will go right than wrong.  This is my experience, though not stated directly in ACIM.

Prayer:

Dear Father/Mother,

Guidance has been much on my mind today, and perhaps that is not a coincidence.  Indeed, Jesus says in A Course in Miracles that there are no accidents in salvation.  That is reassuring, even as it prompts me to be careful what I think and pray about.

Help me to follow my intuition today.  I am posting this blog late in the day, because I got an inkling of feeling that I ought to wait, to post later in the day today.  Why?  I do not know.  But I do think that maybe I will come to know.

Help my brothers and sisters who need help with their little as well as their large problems.  Give them (and me) the assurance of what to do to live a sane and joyous life.  I know that joy is the hallmark of my contact with You.  And I thank You for that.

Amen.