Part 1 Undoing the Way We See Things Now
I am not a body. I am free. For I am still as God created me.
- (193) All things are lessons God would have me learn.
A lesson is a miracle which God offers to me, in place of thoughts I made that hurt me. What I learn of Him becomes the way I am set free. And so I choose to learn His lessons and forget my own.
I am not a body. I am free. For I am still as God created me.
Morning and Evening Meditation
Today we open our practice with the theme of Review VI: I am not a body, I am free. I am still as God created me. Referring to Lesson 193, we learn that God wills nothing except our happiness, that our happiness be undisturbed, forever expanding, and without limit in Him. This is the Will of God. The mere fact that this is God’s Will guarantees that this is not only possible, but that it is done.
Last night James and I ate dinner with our dear friends, Roger and Peggy. On the way to their house, we started to discuss some of the troubling issues that keeps our news media afloat. Before we became too deeply ensnared into a conversation that had no earthly resolution, we quickly reminded ourselves of the beautiful day that we were experiencing. The sky was clear and deep with a wordless blue; the sun was shining; we had had a productive day. We were driving through abundant farmland and then through shaded woods. We had a good bottle of wine in the cooler, a six pack of Mexican beer, and four individual tubs of ice cream to share with our friends. In other words we had absolutely no good reason to concern ourselves with that which is not real, true, virtuous, or of good report. So instead of talking about that which could only disturb our peace and steal our joy – we talked about that which is true and beautiful and lets the light of Heaven through. Our ride there was fun, we arrived with light hearts and untroubled minds, and we were set to enjoy a wonderful evening of good food, conversation, and fellowship with one of our favorite couples.
Our evening could not have been nicer. Roger and James manned the grilled corn and boiled the lobsters. Peggy and I set the picnic table, dished the slaw and cantaloupe, and made a rich dill and cotija cheese topping for the grilled corn. We drank champagne and strawberries, sipped at a delicious white wine, and we talked about all our exciting (to us) house projects. Peggy has just finished designing and turning her old bathroom into a dream bathroom with gleaming new tiles, chrome, and glass and her artistic touches. We had just finished pouring the cement pad for our kitchen patio which runs the length of our house in back.
However, later as we sat curled up on the papasan chairs, the conversation turned toward worldly events that brought no spirit of joy or peace to the blissful evening. We forgot our lesson idea for today; we forgot our resolve to know that all things that happen or seem to happen in the world are lessons that God would have us learn in forgiveness. Instead of reflecting God’s loving kindness in our words and thoughts, instead of practicing forgiveness and seeing the circumstances differently, we allowed the outside world to become real to us. We forgot that we could simply practice forgiveness and see the whole thing differently. We forgot that the peace of God is what we really want, and instead we thought we wanted defense, we thought we wanted attack and counterattack.
Jesus tells us that to all that speaks of terror, answer thus: “I will forgive, and this will disappear.” To every apprehension, every care, and every form of suffering, these words will dissipate any disturbance to our happiness. These words hold the key to Heaven’s gate! These words bring the Love of God the Father down to earth and raises the consciousness of the whole earth heavenward. Every time something comes up to make us quiver in our shoes, raise our voices in outrage and indignation, point our fingers in blame and shame, say mean, condemning words against others – we are to practice forgiveness and make it disappear. We are to train our minds to hold nothing but the reality of God.
Every single thing that happens in our lives is a lesson in forgiveness. There are no trivial events that have no purpose and no meaning. We allowed our minds to be bullied by the fears and worries of a media that is intent on disturbing the peace, creating wars and discord, making people afraid of one another in order to be more easily controlled by the dark prince of this world. When we refuse to let the bad news alarm us and practice forgiveness, we literally undo all effects and intentions of harm and ill will. This does not just work for us, but it benefits everybody.
Good news does not sell in this world. While the media would have us believe that our differences tear us apart, Jesus teaches us that we are one with one another, that our differences are only superficial, temporal, and a lie.
Today we discussed our lapse into engaging in temptation, into making the illusion real, into letting our minds be disturbed by the lies of the separation. Just as we nipped our own conversation in the bud on our way to visit our friends, so could we have nipped the conversation with them in the bud. When whoever started the first jabs in that direction, one of us could have easily refused to take the bait. “Let’s talk about the goodness of God!” we could have said. Life is full of love, health, goodwill, truth, peace, joy, and good times. There is no end to the goodness of God and His love and devotion towards us. When we focus our attention upon God’s goodness and truth, we encourage others to do the same. We raise the standard – we offer forgiveness and undo all that would steal our joy and upset our well-being.
This is God’s Will for you and for me. Every single thing is a lesson that we are to learn and to learn well. James and I learned an important lesson last night. It does not bring us happiness to spout off judgments and condemnation about the upsets of the world, the dastardly deeds of the unrighteous, the outrageous acts of rabble rousers. It is not God’s Will for us to hold anger or mean thoughts toward others in our minds, it is not God’s Will for us to come up with surefire ways in which to defend our bodies, our country, our belief system. It is God’s Will that we are happy, secure, and that our peace has no end. The only way to experience this is through our minds as one with the mind of Christ.
When we can take all the thoughts that we have about something that hurts us, frightens us, lays us low and turn them into a lesson from God in forgiveness, in undoing the wrong, in setting things right – we experience miracles. Our minds are transformed. We realize that we are not a body. We are free of all that would bind us and confine us and scare the living daylights out of us. We are still as God created us – His Son, loved, safe, secure forever.
 A Course in Miracles. Workbook for Students. Lesson 213. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).
Audio credit: The Friar Patch at http://www.eckiefriar.com