There is a peace that Christ bestows on us.
“Father, the peace of Christ is given us, because it is Your Will that we be saved. Help us today but to accept Your gift, and judge it not. For it has come to us to save us from our judgment on ourselves” (ACIM Lesson 305 2:1-3).
How often have you said, “Today’s lesson could not be more timely and perfect?” Well, today, for me, this is extra true. Thus, today’s musings on Lesson 305 come with an appropriate story that took place just a little while ago in the wee hours of the morning.
I shot up in bed at 3:30 a.m. with the realization that I had lost my checkbook. A booklet of checks that never leaves my house, because I never need it, took a jaunt with me yesterday to renew my lease for this upcoming year. I had a bag with me but for some reason I did not put the checkbook in the bag nor my folder with my new-signed lease agreement. I returned home yesterday at 5:00 p.m. and my mind must have been elsewhere, as I had my folder with me but I didn’t think twice about the checkbook. I didn’t even think once about it, to be honest.
I went about my evening. I finished up a house clean, took a shower, and walked to dinner with my partner. I came home, read a book, and off to bed I went. It was not until after 3:00 a.m. that I started to stir. My mind began to flood with thoughts and my body felt the heat of the rapid fire of my brain. It was one of those early mornings where my mind was already off and running, waiting for me to get up and catch up. Amid the myriad of thoughts, from what to do throughout the day to a trip looming on my horizon, there was one thought that struck out that had me sit straight up in the bed, “I lost my checkbook!”
I jumped up, turned on the light, and went to the box where I usually keep my checkbook. It was not there. I went the folder with my lease agreement. Not there either. I went to my bag. Not there. I went to my desk, the kitchen counter, and everywhere in between. This thin booklet of “precious” paper that never leaves her guard stand was not in the house.
By this point, it was just after 3:30 a.m. My landlord’s office is just down the street from where I live. I had to retrace my steps, right then and there. I could not wait for daybreak. Thus, I woke up my partner to let him know I was heading into the night with my headlamp to retrace my steps down the street to the front door of the landlords office and that I would be back shortly. And into the wee hours of the morning I went but to find nothing but the stillness and silence of a city still asleep.
On the sidewalk across from my building I searched with a mixture of anxiety and calm. I knew there was peace all around me but my mind was putting forth an appealing case to “freak out.” My credit card had just gotten hacked exactly 24 hours before. Yes, in the middle of the night, as the time the credit card company texted was just after 3:00 a.m. the morning before. My mind started to list all the to-do’s that would make loosing my checkbook a hassle. And in true form, my mind wanted to let me know I was the one to blame. GUILT!!! However, for a brief moment, I looked at my home from across the street. A different view than usual, as typically I am sitting on my porch looking out onto this sidewalk, not the other way around. I looked at the other lights on in my building as well. I wondered who else was up with me and what motivated them to do so. Then, my gaze went up to the sky, the peaceful sky with one star catching my particular attention. It was big and bright. It was beautiful. I thought it lucky because it hadn’t lost its checkbook. Ha ha. Even the star offered its condolences in its peaceful presence but I was still unnerved. I went back home, defeated.
It was around 4:00 a.m. now and time for my morning meditation. As I went to the cushion, I wondered, “How was I going to be peaceful about this matter until my landlord’s office opened later in the morning? There are hours between now and then.” Do you ever have those moments when you wonder how you are going to make it through the coming moments, hours, days, or weeks? This was one of those.
I sat on my cushion and the silence in my home mirrored that of the street below. Everything was still except my mind, which made my heart beat fast, which made my body sweat, which made sitting in stillness quite the effort, until something changed. I let all thoughts and feelings about my checkbook dilemma rise up. One after the other I recognized it, fear by fear. I saw the worry. I saw the hassles. I saw the judgment I placed on myself about loosing such an item. I even pondered for a moment how this could be someone else’s fault. Oh yes, the mind loves the blame game.
Now, mind you, at this point, I still have yet to know if it is fully, “lost.” It still could be sitting on a desk just down the street, peacefully enjoying the view of life from someone else’s room. Maybe my checkbook needed a little vacation from me. I knew at this moment I, too, was needing a vacation from these thoughts and myself. But then, as I was sitting in meditation, a Course quote from the review in Lesson 58 came to mind,
“Once I have accepted my holiness, nothing can make me afraid” (ACIM Lesson 58 Review #4. 2:4).
And there it was, in the remembrance of my holiness, the peace of Christ was bestowed upon me. I began to shift from the actor in the play to the observer of thoughts. As I felt my holiness, I became separate from my inner dialogue and united with my Higher Self. I watched as the thoughts washed over, with none of them disrupting my peace. I could see their falsehood. I could see their brevity. They were not the truth. The only truth was the unchangeable peace that was bestowed upon me.
“Who uses but Christ’s vision finds a peace so deep and quiet, undisturbed and wholly changeless, that the world contains no counterpart. Comparisons are still before this peace. And all the world departs in silence as this peace envelops it, and gently carries it to truth, no more to be the home of fear. For love has come, and healers the world by giving it Christ’s peace” (ACIM Lesson 305 1:1-4).
In the beginning, I wondered how I was going to make it to daylight hours. The answer, in my holiness, that was how. That is always the answer. I just had to pause and allow it to arise. How blessed are we that this peace is available to us always. And how blessed are we that we are given lessons in our lives showing us this is so.
After my meditation, I continued with my morning. I did what I needed to do to start my day but my peace was not taken away. In my holiness, I need not be afraid. Later in the morning, I did find my checkbook sitting happily on my landlord’s desk, obscured by its surroundings, thus easily forgotten. And together, we walked home on the sidewalk where just hours earlier I had scoured looking for it with the dim light of my headlamp. The city was now awake, the sun shining brightly, and the outer world alive and changing. Yet, my inner world was peace, peace, and perfect peace. This is the vision of Christ.
Thank you for your attention to this story. In it, may you find those crevices where you can insert your experience of how Christ’s peace is always eloquently bestowed upon you. Let today be a graceful reminder to you of the birthright of the living peace that is yours. Namaste.