II. SECTION 13. What is a Miracle?
Lesson 347 Anger must come from judgment. Judgment is the weapon I would use against myself, to keep the miracle away from me.
- Father, I want what goes against my will, and do not want what is my will to have. Straighten my mind, my Father. It is sick. But You have offered freedom, and I choose to claim Your gift today. And so I give all judgment to the One You gave to me to judge for me. He sees what I behold, and yet He knows the truth. He looks on pain, and yet He understands it is not real, and in His understanding, it is healed. He gives the miracles my dreams would hide from my awareness. Let Him judge today. I do not know my will, but He is sure it is Your Own. And He will speak for me and call Your miracles to come to me.
- Listen today. Be very still and hear the gentle Voice for God assuring you that He has judged you as the Son He loves.
In our seventh lesson in the understanding of miracles, Jesus teaches that in our human state, we are confused about what we really want. Our will, aligned with God’s Will, truly seeks the miracle of God’s mercy, joy, love, and peace. Our will, aligned with God’s Will, loves Creation and seeks wholeness, purity, and oneness with all that there is. And yet in our humanity, we seem to opt for separateness – you do your thing; I do mine. We cast one another in the crudest and most vile roles, condemning and dividing. We use others as scapegoats for our own mistakes – we allow our anger toward those we see as unrighteous, cruel and selfish keep the miracles which the world so desperately needs at bay.
Our minds are sick. We think we want discord, disunity, disruption. We would rather cherish our anger toward others than accept the miracle to keep and to share. We think that we want what anger gives to us, we think that anger will justify our judgment and unforgiveness. We think that anger will make us stronger, bigger, better, and closer to the righteousness of the God we think lives in bitterness and spite toward His wayward Creation, instead of the Loving Father who forgives and shows mercy.
It was my privilege several years ago to join a group of people who met each day to exercise. Total strangers to me, from the moment I first appeared in their lively group, I was made to feel welcome. The group members were not only open and willing to share their space, their time, their stories with me, but also showed an equal amount of interest in me and what I had to say. Often times we would linger after the session to talk, to share, to meet up for coffee, take a walk in the park, or visit a bookshop. Even though I was new in town and would only be there for about six months, I was invited to their house for get-togethers, warmly included in their plans outside our daily exercise, and made privy to special events going on in their hometown. When they found out that I had authored a novel, they all promptly read it, commented upon it, and hosted a fun book-signing event. It was not because I was a special case. I watched in absolute wonder as these people extended the same treatment to other new members, rich and poor, male and female, young and old.
I had never experienced such unmitigated warmth, friendliness, and non-judgment in my life. The sense of mutuality, freedom, and wholeness I experienced with the group members felt like a balm to my lonely soul.
When our time there was over, I fell into a sense of despondency and despair because as much as I loved and missed my family and friends back home, their warmth, acceptance, and sense of belonging seemed to come at a great price. Our relationships were based on judgment, jealousy, and a sense of jadedness. Someone’s happiness was another’s woe; someone’s achievement was another’s loss; someone’s sorrow was a chance to gloat and say, “I told you so!” Good times spent together were peppered with one story after the other of how wronged we had been, how hopeless and feeble-minded other people were, and the personal mission of everyone involved to never let one forget all the things he did wrong while being very much willing to forget everything he did right! Our get-togethers were fraught with decisions about who to include and who to leave out. Backbiting, mockery and ridicule, and catering to the changing moods and whims of the queen bee overcast a long shadow in what was otherwise a lovely family and friend group.
I became angry and spiteful toward the shortcomings and personal failings of my family and friends. I despised them for their lack of genuine love, their inability to be supportive and kind, their bad habits and atrocious manners. My mind was sick at the contrast between what I had experienced with a bunch of strangers and what happened at home with them. My mind, having no insight into itself, was unable to see how much easier it was to blame them instead of forgive them. My anger toward them caused my unwillingness to excuse their mistakes, their shortcomings, the hurtful things they did and said. While my heart yearned for God’s gifts of mercy, love, peace, and unity, my anger and judgment led to things being said and done that caused more division, hard feelings, and loneliness.
We believe that our judgment toward others will save us. If someone makes us feel bad, gives us the cold shoulder, is jealous of our joys and inflicts intentional harm upon us, it only seems wise to respond in kind. To forgive them seems impossible (as well as teaching them that it is okay to be unappreciative, unfaithful, and spiteful). By holding on to past slights, lies, and brutishness that only serve to tell the human side of our shared story, we spend years of our lives denying the miracle of love, camaraderie, and good times.
Let our judgment and its dire results teach us our need for unity, for mercy, for love. Within our closest and most intimate relationships, in the books we read, the movies we watch, the newsreels we depend upon to keep us informed, the mind of Christ frees us from the madness which allows no insight, which projects all of its own delusions and mistakes unto others. We learn first of our own need for forgiveness, then we learn to forgive and offer healing to others so we can keep it for ourselves. Instead of judgment against Creation, we extend the miracle for Creation. We leave judgment to God, for He judges us, one and all, as His beloved Son.
 A Course in Miracles. Workbook for Students. Lesson 347. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992) p. 477.
Audio credit: www.eckiefriar.com