Lesson 122: Forgiveness offers everything I want.
Imagine, you open up a magazine and see an ad, with no gimmicks, no terms or conditions, nor any small print or asterisk to signify any exclusions or blackout dates, that asks you the following?
“Do you want happiness, a quiet mind, a certainty of purpose, and a sense of worth and beauty that transcends the world? Do you want care and safety, and the warmth of sure protection always? Do you want a quietness that cannot be disturbed, a gentleness that never can be hurt, a deep abiding comfort, and a rest so perfect it can never be upset?” (ACIM Lesson 122 1:4-6)
Would you not wonder where to buy such a product? Would you not say a resounding, “YES,” to each one of those questions? Do these words not offer everything your palate has been craving for?
If we have not yet been sold on the power of forgiveness, we sure will be by the end of our practice lessons today. The words used, alone, in the first two paragraphs are alluring enough, as the Cosmic Saleswoman promises the miracles of this salving balm: sparkles in your eyes, decrease wrinkles on the forehead, better sleep with the sweetest of dreams, and a day that is just a easeful as your night’s rest. It is like being told the ingredients to the elixir of eternal life.
“[Forgiveness] sparkles on your eyes as you awake, and gives you joy with which to meet the day. It soothes your forehead while you sleep, and rests upon your eyelids so you see no dreams of fear and evil, malice and attack. And when you wake again, it offers you another day of happiness and peace. All this forgiveness offers you, and more” (ACIM Lesson 122 2:2-5).
I don’t know about you, but this is what I have been searching for my whole life. Yet, wait just a minute…this means I must forgive everyone, including myself. And really mean it! This is a clue into how we all tend to pray to God, in general. We are fairly directive in our requests, we say, “God, I have narrowed it down to choice #1 or choice #2. What do you think?” Like God needs us to narrow down anything? Like we can limit a limitless God? We ask for guidance and answers yet we still try to maintain some essence of control rather than giving God carte blanche.
I believe this is the same with forgiveness as we attempt to leave stragglers behind. Those are the ones we find ourselves saying, “God, do I really have to forgive this person? And even that person? God, you know how bad he or she hurt me.” However, as we saw from the ad above, there are no exceptions or hidden terms and conditions. Thus, there cannot be any exclusion on who or what we forgive. If so, those are the little pinkies left out of heaven and even a pinky out of heaven means there is still separation. Are you ready to go ALL in?
“Here is the answer! Would you stand outside while all of Heaven waits for you within? Forgive and be forgiven. As you give you will receive. There is no plan but this for the salvation of the Son of God” (ACIM Lesson 122 6:1-5).
We cannot cherry pick what or who does or does not go to heaven. We are all Children of God and all guaranteed this paradise, regardless of what appears to be happening (or have happened) in human form. We have never left our perfection, we have only been reminding each other of it. In truth, this means we owe our fellow Miracle Makers a “Thank you,” rather than an “I forgive you.”
“Changelessly [God’s plan for salvation] stands before you like an open door, with warmth and welcome calling from beyond the doorway, bidding you to enter in and make yourself at home, where you belong” (ACIM Lesson 122 5:3).
We our born of a love that is all-inclusive, and it is that love that continues to surround us. It is only our veil, our perception, and our notion to limit our experience, that is left as a divider rather and the nothingness it is. When this veil is lifted, we can truly see our brothers and sisters in their light.
“God wills salvation be received today, and that the intricacies of your dreams no longer hid their nothingness from you” (ACIM Lesson 122 7:6).
This work truly comes from the inside. As you look within to your heart and your light, you will see directly to the light of others. If you look at your brothers and sisters through the lens of the world, first, you will be met with resistance and numerous reasons to hold grudges. That is why we look within first. That is why we are learning to live from the inside out.
“Let not your gifts recede, throughout the day, as you return again to meet a world of shifting change and bleak appearances. Retain your gifts in clear awareness as you see the changeless in the heart of change; the light of truth behind appearances” (ACIM Lesson 122 13:3-4).
Do you need more convincing? Do you still believe there must be another way to peace? My dear brothers and sisters, if you take a moment to feel your heart, you will understand that forgiveness is the only way. It a course everyone will eventually have to take.
But the way need not be hard. Once more if, we come from the light within, we can truly feel that in releasing another from our bondage, we release ourselves. This is the tipping point. This is the crux in the road that shortens our journey Home.
“Begin in hopefulness, for we have reached the turning point at which the road becomes far easier. And now the way is short that yet we travel. We are close indeed to the appointed ending of the dream” (ACIM Lesson 122 10: 2-4).
Let today be the day that you fully See that “Forgiveness offers everything [you] want.” The Cosmic Saleswoman has, indeed, given you the elixir of eternal life, with no terms and conditions, no blackout dates, and no exceptions. Won’t you leave all your gimmicks behind and join Her in love? Allow yourself to fully receive what it is that you have always wanted, knowing that it is through forgiveness that this is so.
“Forgiveness offers everything I want.
Today I have accepted this as true.
Today I received the gifts of God”
(ACIM Lesson 122 14:3-5).