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ACIM – Chapter 20 The Vision of Holiness V. Heralds of Eternity

1. In this world, God’s Son comes closest to himself in a holy relationship.  There he begins to find the certainty his Father has in him.  And there he finds his function of restoring his Father’s laws to what was held outside them and finding what was lost.  Only in time can anything be lost, and never lost forever.  So do the parts of God’s Son gradually join in time, and with each joining is the end of time brought nearer.  Each miracle of joining is a mighty herald of eternity.  No one who has a single purpose, unified and sure, can be afraid.  No one who shares his purpose with him can not be one with him.

2. Each herald of eternity sings of the end of sin and fear.  Each speaks in time of what is far beyond it.  Two voices raised together call to the hearts of everyone, to let them beat as one.  And in that single heartbeat is the unity of love proclaimed and given welcome.  Peace to your holy relationship, which has the power to hold the unity of the Son of God together.  You give to your brother for everyone, and in your gift is everyone made glad.  Forget not Who has given you the gifts you give, and through your not forgetting this, will you remember Who gave the gifts to Him to give to you.

3. It is impossible to overestimate your brother’s value.  Only the ego does this, but all it means is that it wants the other for itself, and therefore values him too little.  What is inestimable clearly cannot be evaluated.  Do you recognize the fear that rises from the meaningless attempt to judge what lies so far beyond your judgment you cannot even see it?  Judge not what is invisible to you or you will never see it –  but wait in patience for its coming.  It will be given you to see your brother’s worth when all you want for him is peace.  And what you want for him you will receive.

4. How can you estimate the worth of him who offers peace to you?  What would you want except his offering?  His worth has been established by his Father, and you will recognize it as you receive his Father’s gift though him.  What is in him will shine so brightly in your grateful vision that you will merely love him and be glad.  You will not think to judge him, for who would see the face of Christ and yet insist that judgment still has meaning?  For this insistence is of those who do not see.  Vision or judgment is your choice, but never both of these.

5. Your brother’s body is as little use to you as it is to him.  When it is used only as the Holy Spirit teaches, it has no function.  For minds need not the body to communicate.  The sight that sees the body has no use which serves the purpose of a holy relationship.  And while you look upon your brother thus, the means and end have not been brought in line.  Why should it take so many holy instants to let this be accomplished, when one would do?  There is but one.  The little breath of eternity that runs through time like golden light is all the same; nothing before it, nothing afterwards.

6. You look upon each holy instant as a different point in time.  It never changes.  All that it ever held or will ever hold is here right now.  The past takes nothing from it, and the future will add no more.  Here, then, is everything.  Here is the loveliness of your relationship, with means and end in perfect harmony already.  Here is the perfect faith that you will one day offer to your brother already offered you, and here the limitless forgiveness you will give him already given, the face of Christ you yet will look upon already seen.

7. Can you evaluate the giver of a gift like this?  Would you exchange this gift for any other?  This gift returns the laws of God to your remembrance.  And merely by remembering them, the laws that held you prisoner to pain and death must be forgotten.  This is no gift your brother’s body offers you.  The veil that hides the gift hides him as well.  He is the gift, and yet he knows it not.  No more do you.  And yet, have faith that He Who sees the gift in you and your brother will offer and receive it for you both.  And through His vision will you see it, and through His understanding recognize it and love it as your own. 

8. Be comforted and feel the Holy Spirit watching over you in love and perfect confidence in what He sees.  He knows the Son of God, and shares his Father’s certainty the universe rests in his gentle hands to safety and in peace.  Let us consider now what he must learn, to share his Father’s confidence in him.  What is he, that the Creator of the universe should offer it to him and know it rests in safety?  He looks upon himself not as his Father knows him.  And yet it is impossible the confidence of God should be misplaced.[1]

In today’s devotional reading, Jesus teaches us that we come closest to Sonship in our holy relationships.  When I learn to trust in you, I learn to trust in our mutual Father, our mutual Creator.  When I learn that as I show you mercy and grace so do I receive mercy and grace, the laws of God are restored to me.  When I see you as love and perfection in Christ, I see the love and perfection in my own Being and so we join and in our joining the joining of all the Sonship is brought nearer.  We can say then by healing the separation between you and me we enter the ark of peace – we meet the condition of God’s Kingdom, we have a unified purpose, we are one, and as we are one so we are one with all. 

So here we are in time, little old me and little old you singing of the end of sin and fear.  We sing of what is far beyond time – and what we sing calls to the truth in everyone for our spiritual hearts do beat as one.  As we bring each one of our special relationships to holiness, we are given power to hold the unity of Sonship together.  What you give to me and I give to you we give to the Brotherhood of Christ and we all walk in peace and gladness and we learn to have fun together again.  Instead of trashing each other, we uphold one another; instead of not talking to each other, we communicate, we enjoy one another, we share in good times, we share in the Godhood, the Sonship, the Brotherhood.  Nobody is trying to take the credit; nobody is trying to hoard the power; nobody is trying to be special or to distinguish themselves in any way for we are all the same in our love and devotion to God and to each other.  This is the way to peace and to everlasting joy – and it begins with the holy relationship right here and right now.

I will never see your worth until all I want for you is peace.  As long as my ego would want something other than peace from you, I will try to judge your worth; I will always judge you on how good you are to me, how prompt you are in responding to my calls and texts; how diligent you are at returning favors and repaying loans.  I may judge your worth on your beauty or your fitness level.  I may judge your worth on how generous you are with your time, money, or effort.  But no matter how I judge you and how much you are worth, it will never come close to your true worth.  Because your worth is not mine to judge. 

I will only know your worth when all I want for you is peace and when this is all I want for you, peace will come to me and then I will see your worth for all that I would give you is mine.  You are the reflection than of all I would want for myself.  You are there for me and I am there for you to share all that is love and peace and joy.  Here is your worth and mine. 

All I can do is love you then.  For how could I look on the face of Christ and judge you?  If I look at you and do not see the face of Christ, I am choosing not to see.  I am choosing to judge.  I am keeping myself from receiving God’s Gift through you.  Again, Jesus emphasized this is a choice we make – we see with the Vision of Christ or we see with the judgment of the perceptual world.  It is one or the other.

In paragraph five Jesus tells us to move past the use of bodies.  Our minds do not need the body to communicate.  Our eyes that see bodies serve no purpose in the holy relationship.  As long as we are using our bodies’ senses to judge one another and to communicate with one another, we are not bringing the means and the end into line.  We are not using the holy instant consistently or faithfully.  The holy instant is the means to communicate – there we bring our holy minds in perfect communion without the cumbersome interference of flesh.  I do not have to hop in my car and come to see you to communicate what I have to say to you. I do not have to pick up my phone or write a text.   I can meet with you by simply summoning you with my higher mind, the Mind of Christ.  There we meet in the unity of Spirit which does not cater to the flesh or ego demands that would interfere in our special relationship.  This holy instant as Jesus calls it in our Course is available at all times and for all matters.  It is the breath of eternity that runs through time, a golden light which is always there. 

Each holy instant is not a different point of time because it never changes.  All the goodness in each other is there right now.  Nothing that we see as the past is there, nothing we would project into the future is there – the holy instant is everything we are and ever will be.  Jesus tells us that the loveliness of our relationship is there in the holy instant as the means and as the end.  Everything is already done, already given, already accomplished. 

As we contemplate the holy instant, let our mind be expanded past the perceptual world of time and space and separation.  Let us see the Vision of Christ in which the world is forgiven, sparkling, and glimmering in peace and love and joy – no thought of sin, no thought of disharmony, no thought but the beautiful Mind of God.   

In paragraph seven, Jesus asks us if we could ever evaluate a gift like this or exchange it for another?  When we bring our special relationships to the holy instant the laws of God come back to our mind.  And when we remember the laws of God, the laws that held us bound to pain and death are forgotten – they have no place in our holy mind. 

You are the gift; not your body but the Son of God which is obscured by your identification with your body.  This is who we are to each other – God’s Gift to each other, God’s plan of salvation in that I find Christ in you and you find Christ in me.  It is our faith in Christ within each one of us that we see Christ in each other and recognize Christ in each other and love each other as Christ loves us. 

Be comforted, Jesus says.  He knows that our minds are distraught, attempting to learn and make sense of what feels so alien to us.  Holy Spirit watches over us in love and perfect confidence in what He sees.  We know this to be true.  Each of us who have come this far in our studies have come to know the certainty and peace of our Holy Being.  We may look upon ourselves as warring, irresponsible, cheaters, and lovers of darkness but this is not how our Father knows His Son.  It is impossible that the confidence of God should be misplaced.  We are far more than the ego has tempted us to believe about who and what we really are.  We are as God created us – Loving Keepers of the universe He has entrusted us in perfect safety and peace. 


[1] A Course in Miracles. Chapter 20 The vision of holiness. V Heralds of eternity. 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

Filed under: ACIM, Teaching and Learning

About the Author

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Coming up on sixty, my love for God, home and hearth, my husband and family fueled my decision to devote the rest of my life only to pursuits which brought love, joy, peace, and purpose. I am a writer, seeker, student, and teacher with experience professional and otherwise from waitressing to teaching the English language in China, Taiwan, and Singapore. I hold a BA in Psychology from Bloomsburg University, which took nearly 30 years to attain while I squeezed courses in between raising my children, journaling, relationships, work, and an assortment of escapades, some of which I would rather forget! An ongoing passion for reading, writing, adventure, food, and fun, eventually led me to the love of my life, James, whom I met in 1996 and married in 1997. Our life together has been an exciting journey of work and travel, spiritual awakening, and domestic bliss ever since. Although we have experienced the tragic loss of family members and friends through death and estrangement, we have managed to turn our special relationship into a holy one by the grace of God and an acute and growing awareness of “there must be a better way!” In 2006, I published my first novel, Luella’s Calling, and am currently working on my second, Grover Good and the Stone Chateau. From 2013 through 2018, I worked as a Prevention Education Specialist for Transitions, a local domestic violence sexual abuse victim’s service agency. My work there, fueled by a lifelong enthusiasm for teaching, led me to obtain an MS in Education from Scranton University. In 2018, I resigned to accompany James on his work travels while focusing on my calling to study and teach A Course in Miracles. To that end, I dedicate the rest of my days to writing, sharing, and teaching the message of salvation found within the Course pages. Thank you for your interest in this blog. As I do not respond to comments on the posts, if you care to contact me, please email me at eckief@yahoo.com.

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