Interesting question, indeed! The Course “works” when we work it! When we take the time to do the practice and I am not just talking about showing up for a study gathering or listening to audios online. Although those are very helpful tools for our practice, the real healing benefit comes in when we get our hands dirty so to speak, meaning as those thoughts come barging into our mind. Barging? Yes, you know the ones. The conflict with the loved one or the guy at work, the bill that came in for your kid’s orthodontist visit, the teenage dramas, or what that person said in your study group last week!
These are THE TIMES to practice the Course. The Course is not just an intellectual study. Do you really want to find peace? Or, do you want to complain about your life situation and all the worries? If you want peace, then use those times to do the work. And yes, it does take a little work on our part by our own willingness of giving up that which we do not want.
Sure, it’s hard. We want to keep ourselves attached to being right or righteous. We want everyone to look at us in admiration. We want the pedestal or we want the victimhood. What does this really serve us in the long run? It just keeps us further and further delayed. It keeps peace at a distance. I will only be peaceful WHEN….. The gift is that we can have SERENITY NOW! And, not quite in the way that George’s dad tried to in Seinfeld. We don’t have to shout for peace, but we do have to offer our willingness for peace.
Today’s lesson on the calendar just happens to be, “Today I will judge nothing that occurs.” (W-243) If I judge nothing that occurs than peace will be mine. Simplicity it is, but not always experienced that way. What if you tried it out on just one occurrence today? This lessons states “I will not think that I already know what must remain beyond my present grasp.” That is the beauty of the realm of peace, being in the “I DON”T KNOW”.
Let me give you an example, personal finances around here always seem to be a touchy issue. It is perfect fodder for the Holy Spirit to work with. Several days ago we had a conflict because of fear due to the military taking so long to reimburse Paul for his travel pay from his 8 weeks of training. It was difficult because it meant we had over 3 weeks without a paycheck. (MiraclesOne is not quite to the point where it sustains us 100%) So there it was. Paul is left brained and I right brained and in the world we approach looking at the columns of income and expenses differently. Not right or wrong just differently.
I had to step away because I did not wish to get caught up in the fear, worry and anxiety that my dear husband was putting forth. I did get rolled up in illusion for a little while but then made the decision to step away and drive up to the local plaza. There I prayed to the Holy Spirit. I truly want to feel joined in working this out with Paul and with You. I don’t know how to do that in this moment as I am swept away with emotion. Help me to come to this all from a place of peace. I was guided to return and to share with Paul what would help this right brain to understand and talk about it from a clearer place. We made that agreement and a day or so later we rejoined.
This time it was different. I suggested that we open with prayer to the Holy Spirit. I try to do this regularly with decisions and experiences. Sometimes it is easy to forget, yet this time I insisted. I held the spreadsheet that Paul created in my hand and simply prayed.
“Holy Spirit, I offer this meeting to You. The numbers on this sheet of paper are not good or bad, they are just numbers on a page. I know that they are meaningless. Help me to turn this over to You. “
At this point I turned the page over in my hand to the back side which was blank.
“I offer to You Holy Spirit, this side that is blank, I know that we are open to Your Ideas and Wisdom on how to fill this sheet. Write Your Wisdom on this sheet today. We trust in You as we want only Peace. Thank You. Amen.”
And there was the prayer. The meeting over the finances went much more smoothly. The tension and stress from the other day, at least on my end was not felt. I felt that I was able to come to it with a more sense of peace and openness.
If I approach my daily life like this on all things that disturb my mind by just taking the time to join with our Friend and Confidant, the Holy Spirit, then peace will take over my mind. Peace is not out there, not when the numbers match or the bills are paid. Peace is found within my mind when I am ready to bring the illusions to the Truth, the darkness to the Light and the fear to Love.
So, does the Course work? You Betcha!