I. Holy Week
1. This is Palm Sunday, the celebration of victory and the acceptance of the truth. Let us not spend this holy week brooding on the crucifixion of God’s Son, but happily in the celebration of His release. For Easter is the sign of peace, not pain. A slain Christ has no meaning. But a risen Christ becomes the symbol of the Son of God’s forgiveness on Himself, the sign He looks upon himself as healed and whole.
2. This week begins with palms and ends with lilies, the white and holy sign the Son of God is innocent. Let no dark sign of crucifixion intervene between the journey and its purpose; between the acceptance of truth and its expression. This week we celebrate life, not death. And we honor the perfect purity of the Son of God, and not His sins. Offer your brother the gift of lilies, not the crown of thorns; the gift of love and not the “gift” of fear. You stand beside your brother, thorns in one hand and lilies in the other, uncertain which to give. Join now with me and throw away the thorns, offering the lilies to replace them. This Easter I would have the gift of your forgiveness offered by you to me and returned by me to you. We cannot be united in crucifixion and in death. Nor can the resurrection be complete till your forgiveness rests on Christ, along with mine.
3. A week is short, and yet this holy week is the symbol of the whole journey the Son of God has undertaken. He started with the sign of victory, the promise of the resurrection, already given him. Let him not wander into the temptation of the crucifixion and delay him there. Help him to go in peace beyond it, with the light of his own innocence lighting his way to his redemption and release. Hold him not back with thorns and nails when his redemption is so near. But let the whiteness of your shining gift of lilies speed him on his way to resurrection.
4. Easter is not the celebration of the cost of sin, but of its end. If you see glimpses of the face of Christ behind the veil, looking between the snow-white petals of the lilies you have received and given as your gift, you will behold your brother’s face and recognize it. I was a stranger and you took me in, not knowing who I was. Yet for your gift of lilies you will know. In your forgiveness of this stranger, alien to you and yet your ancient Friend, lies his release and your redemption with him. The time of Easter is a time of joy, and not of mourning. Look on your risen Friend, and celebrate his holiness along with me. For Easter is the time of your salvation, along with mine.
Let us celebrate Easter everyday for we celebrate not the death of Christ as the cost of sin, but the resurrection of Christ as the end of sin. While this may seem at first to be a strange twist on our original interpretation of the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ, let us remember that God is our Father and we His Son, the Christ, for Jesus as Christ stands for the Sonship of God. Whatever the ego has planned for our fleshly bodies is an attempt to kill us, to strip us of our divinity, to humiliate us and make us grovel and plead to die another day and in another way. When we brood upon the crucifixion and use the cross as a means to keep people guilty and enslaved to thoughts of sin, shame, and sacrifice, we are denying salvation to Christ. We are denying the Fatherhood of God and the Sonship of Christ His Son.
Our salvation rests upon our willingness to see each other as sinless, spotless, and pure. Our salvation rests upon our holy faith and trust in one another as we would have holy faith and trust in God our Father. Until we recognize and teach the God in me and the God in you could not allow the ego to triumph over any part of Creation – we continue to dream the mad dream and crucify the Christ. We continue to believe that our little mounds of flesh and our strutting little egos can perform deeds that would earn our way back to the Love of God or keep us apart from the Love of God. When we believe that our flesh is sinful and deserves to be shamed, humiliated, and sacrificed as a means of pleasing God, we deny God’s love and devotion to us. We accept the ego’s religion that calls for bloodshed, for punishment rather than correction.
It is not worthy of the Sonship to celebrate sin and death, for the Sonship was created in love, purity, and life everlasting. For the next eight days we will study Chapter 20, The Vision of Holiness. Each day we will uncover what holiness is and what holiness is not.
Today in your personal devotions think of Jesus as standing for each one of us. There He was in the flesh being welcomed into Jerusalem with waving fronds, happy faces, warmth, and goodwill. The crucifixion was no picnic for Jesus. He was born in flesh just like you and me. He wanted people to like him and be nice to him just like we yearn for friendship and are disheartened by ill-will. His desires, his body, his blood was no different than yours or mine. He did not have a halo over his head. His message of God’s love and devotion to Creation exposed all the ego’s lies and enraged the ego’s blind followers. Fear, thoughts of sin and shame, a belief in a bloodthirsty God twisted Christ’s message but could not destroy it. As we come to know Christ, we come to know ourselves as God’s Son. When I see Christ in you, you see Christ in me. This is not something to which we can pretend. This is not something we can make happen with our desire to be a good person, to win friends and influence people. This is a conscious decision we make to awaken, to know truth, to seek God, to lay down our egos and return to the oneness and wholeness of His Kingdom. It is Easter anytime of year when flesh can no longer define us and fear of God can no longer defeat us or keep us away.
 A Course in Miracles. Chapter 20 The vision of holiness. I Holy week. Foundation for Inner Peace, Second Edition (1992).
For daily 2021 Workbook lessons visit www.i-choose-love.com courtesy of Linda R.
Audio credit: www.eckiefriar.com