Lesson 168
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Only the Laws of God Prevail
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
  CH 15 "THE PURPOSE OF TIME" 
VII. THE HOLY INSTANT AND LAWS OF GOD
      
61 In the holy instant, the laws of God prevail, and only they have meaning. The laws of this world cease to hold any meaning at all. When the Son of God accepts the laws of God as what he gladly wills, it is impossible that he be bound or limited in any way. In this instant, he is as free as God would have him be. For the instant he refuses to be bound, he is not bound.        
         
              ON LINE: ACIM.OE.TX.CH 15.VII         AUDIO: TEXT CH 15, VII   
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A COURSE IN MIRACLES
DAILY LESSONS
SonShip Workbook
L e s s o n  168
Your grace is given me. I claim it now. 
<AUDIO><VIDEO>
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio 

* IAMBIC PENTAMETER
    
   God speaks to us. Shall we not speak to Him?
   He is not distant. He makes no attempt
   to hide from us. We try to hide from Him,
   and suffer from deception. He remains
   entirely accessible. He loves
   His Son. There is no certainty but this,
   yet this suffices. He will love His Son
   forever. While his mind remains asleep,
   He loves him still. And when his mind awakes,
   He loves him with a never-changing Love.
 
   If you but knew the meaning of His Love,
   hope and despair would be impossible,
   for hope would be forever satisfied;
   despair of any kind unthinkable.
   His grace His answer is to all despair,
   for in it lies remembrance of His Love.
   Would He not gladly give the means by which
   His Will is recognized? His grace is yours
   by your acknowledgment. And memory
   of Him awakens in the mind which asks
   the means of Him whereby its sleep is done.
 
   Today we ask of God the gift He has
   most carefully preserved within our hearts,
   waiting to be acknowledged. This the gift
   by which God leans to us and lifts us up,
   taking salvation's final step Himself.
   All steps but this we learn, instructed by
   His Voice. But finally He comes Himself
   and takes us in His arms, and sweeps away
   the cobwebs of our sleep. His gift of grace
   is more than just an answer. It restores
   all memories the sleeping mind forgot;
   all certainty of what love's meaning is.
 
   God loves His Son. Request Him now to give
   the means by which this world will disappear,
   and vision first will come, with knowledge but
   an instant later. For in grace you see
   a light that covers all the world in love,
   and watch fear disappear from every face
   as hearts rise up and claim the light as theirs.
   What now remains that Heaven be delayed
   an instant longer? What remains undone
   when your forgiveness rests on everything?
 
   It is a new and holy day today,
   for we receive what has been given us.
   Our faith lies in the Giver, not our own
   acceptance. We acknowledge our mistakes,
   but He to Whom all error is unknown
   is yet the One Who answers our mistakes
   by giving us the means to lay them down,
   and rise to Him in gratitude and love.
 
   And He descends to meet us as we come
   to Him, for what He has prepared for us
   He gives and we receive. Such is His Will
   because He loves His Son. To Him we pray
   today, returning but the words He gave
   to us through His Own Voice, His Word, His Love: 
 
   "Your grace is given me. I claim it now. 
    Father, I come to You. And You will come  
    To me who asks. I am the Son You love. "
 
        ~ The Original Handscript Notes
   

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ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections 
ACIM Edmonton, CA
LESSON 168
Your grace is given me. I claim it now.
 
Sarah's Commentary

We are speaking to God directly in this Lesson as we affirm, "Your grace is given me. I claim it now." (W.168) We are told, "God speaks to us," (W.168.1.1) so why would we not speak directly to Him? Of course, it is His presence in our right minds that is communicating with us all the time. "He is not distant." (W.168.1.3) His presence is with us in every moment. Grace is an aspect of God's Love, which can be recognized and received by us because it has already been given and is already in us and with us. All we need do is return to the place in our minds where He is. If ideas leave not their source, we have never left Him. We are in Him and He is in us.
 
This Lesson assures us, over and over, how much God loves us. Jesus assures us again and again that God's Love is the only certainty there is. "There is no certainty but this, yet this suffices." (W.168.1.8) His love is forever and always accessible, always present, continually speaking to us, never changing, and never distant from us. No matter what we think we have done and how guilty or how lost we feel in this world of illusion, the truth is---God is always with us. There is no vengeance and no punishment possible from a loving God Who knows only love and knows His Son. If we really knew how much we were loved, we could never despair. It is not a love from some impersonal, inattentive God. It is not a neutral force, a universal power, nor a void. "And He descends to meet us, as we come to Him." (W.168.6.1) When we experience love, it is the closest we come to Heaven on earth.
 
Sometimes we get discouraged on this path. We think we will never make it. We believe God is somewhere "out there" and distant from us. Yet here is our invitation to just say yes to God and to express the willingness to know Him and hear Him. "His grace is yours by your acknowledgment." (W.168.2.5) Jesus tells us that the gifts of God's love and grace are in our hearts, preserved there always, and just ". . . waiting to be acknowledged." (W.168.3.1) These come to us through forgiveness, which is learned. Grace is the result of forgiveness.
 
This Course provides us with the process in which we learn, step by step, how to undo the makings of the ego so we can hear God's Voice. In the undoing of the ego thought system of sin, guilt, and fear, we can find our way out of our despair, so the joy that is our natural state is restored. It is up to us. We are the commanders of this journey. Jesus is our big brother and our model and the Holy Spirit is our Guide. We are the only ones who can decide how much we will take in of the message Jesus is teaching. It is up to us as to how much we will allow His guidance to be heard. We are in charge of the process. We are the ones who must take the steps along the way, being guided by the Holy Spirit, until God takes the final step. "But finally He comes Himself, and takes us in His Arms and sweeps away the cobwebs of our sleep." (W.168.3.4) Only then is our memory restored to what our sleeping mind has forgotten and will not know until we are fully awake in God.
 
"Our faith lies in the Giver, not our own acceptance." (W.168.5.2) We don't need to worry about our limitations and our hesitation, but we need only focus on our faith in God's ability to give us His gifts. How does this happen? It happens by acknowledging our mistakes and being willing to bring them for Correction so there is an open space where truth can enter uncluttered by our egoic thoughts.
 
Our acceptance is bounded by mistakes, but perfection is not being asked of us. Yes, we need to look honestly at our mistakes, but to God, mistakes are unknown, and forgiveness is the means we are given to lay them down. Over and over we are assured, in this Lesson, how much God loves and accepts us and does not see our mistakes. In fact, God only knows us to be safely at home---the home we never left. When we awaken from this dream, we will know this too. "Today we ask of God the gift He has most carefully preserved within our hearts, waiting to be acknowledged." (W.168.3.1) All we are required to do is to open to the gift that has always been there. Keeping it concealed is to continue to decide to do it all on our own, while the gift that would satisfy all our hopes is awaiting our acceptance. Our part is to claim the gift. We are entitled. There is no need for any kind of entreaty to God. We don't have to beg or beseech God, but only to accept. All that is needed is our consent. His gifts are freely given, awaiting our acceptance. It is about our willingness to say and mean, "Father, I come to you." (W.168.6.7)
 
At times, the complexity of this world, with all its seeming issues, choices, and problems, can feel overwhelming. As I sat in meditation today and turned my thoughts over as they came into my mind, I felt such deep gratitude for this path and for my mighty companions. The light of the Holy Spirit is in our minds, inviting us into His tenderness. Here we can rest in confidence of His love and in this beautiful silent place where Jesus tells us the world cannot intrude. It is the sweet serenity of Heaven where we feel nothing but rest in the Heart of God. It has been given us and needs only to be received. This message is given over and over in this Lesson.
 
David Hoffmeister writes: "The world of business ends in quiet. The world of distractions ends in single-pointed awareness. The world of sadness ends in joy, and the world of sorrow ends in happiness and laughter! What but the Heart of God offers eternal gifts such as these? Being aware of the silence offered freely without price or condition, why wait for circumstances to change before embracing It?"
 
Why indeed? There is no need to try to find ways to redeem ourselves. We need not try to make amends, make excuses, blame anyone, numb ourselves, nor hope for death as a release from guilt. "Forgetfulness and sleep and even death become the ego's best advice for dealing with the perceived and harsh intrusion of guilt on peace. Yet no one sees himself in conflict and ravaged by a cruel war unless he believes that both opponents in the war are real." (T.13.XI.1.1-2) (ACIM OE T.13.IV.35) All we need do is claim the grace that is given us now.
 
Later David says, "There is no true change in the world. It is a closed system of denial and the vain attempt to deny the Love of God. Yet anyone sincerely seeking truth cannot long be deceived about the unsubstantial nature of this world. Be glad the world is not real, for nothing of the world can ever offer the eternal Love of God. Be happy to lay the foolish business of the world aside in exchange for Inner Stillness. Sink deep into your mind and open to the experience that has been waiting for you all along. For Love waits on welcome, not on time and it is but your welcome that will bring love into awareness. There is no reason to wait for it, or read about it, or strive for it. It is here Now for the Asking. Ask and ye shall be Given."
 
All we need to do is return to the place in our minds where He is. We are the ones who chose to leave, and now we take the steps to return. We do so with willingness to look at the ego and keep bringing it to the light. We take time in silence to commune with God and to reflect on the importance of what we are doing on behalf of our happiness.
 
Let us make this a new and holy day. We open ourselves up to His Love and His embrace, as "He comes Himself, and takes us in His Arms and sweeps away the cobwebs of our sleep." (W.168.3.4) To allow this is to do the work of forgiveness by releasing all that stands in the way of our recognition of who we are. "Your grace is given me. I claim it now. Father, I come to You. And You will come to me who ask. I am the Son You Love." (W.168.6.5-9) It is a day of surrender. There is nothing to lose and nothing we are giving up in opening to grace and surrendering to love. It is our heart's desire and what we have always wanted. Nothing is lost except the illusory self we think we are---the one who suffers and feels despair and homelessness. It is not only for us, but for the world, because when our mind is healed, the Sonship is healed along with it. This is not a journey for myself alone, where only my healing is important. No, it is in concert with caring and compassion for all.
 
"Your home has called to you since time began, nor have you ever failed entirely to hear. You heard, but knew not how to look, nor where. And now you know. In you the knowledge lies, ready to be unveiled and freed from all the terror that kept it hidden. There is no fear in love. The song of Easter is the glad refrain the Son of God was never crucified. Let us lift up our eyes together, not in fear but faith. And there will be no fear in us, for in our vision will be no illusions; only a pathway to the open door of Heaven, the home we share in quietness and where we live in gentleness and peace, as one together." (T.20.II.8.5-12) (ACIM OE T.20.III.12)
   
Love and blessings, Sarah
PAUSED FOR WEEKEND 
A Course in Miracles
TEXT
ACIM Original Edition
Chapter Fifteen

The Purpose of Time

   Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio

VII. The Holy Instant and the Laws of God 
      
58 All separation vanishes as holiness is shared. For holiness is power, and by sharing it, it gains in strength. If you seek for satisfaction in gratifying your needs as you perceive them, you must believe that strength comes from another, and what you gain he loses. Someone must always lose if you perceive yourself as weak. Yet there is another interpretation of relationships which transcends the concept of loss of power completely.
 
59 You do not find it difficult to believe that, when another calls on God for love, your call remains as strong. Nor do you think that, by God's answer to him, your hope of answer is diminished. On the contrary, you are far more inclined to regard his success as witness to the possibility of yours. That is because you recognize, however dimly, that God is an idea, and so your faith in Him is strengthened by sharing. What you find difficult to accept is the fact that, like your Father, you are an idea. And like Him, you can give yourself completely, wholly without loss, and only with gain.
 
60 Herein lies peace, for here there is no conflict. In the world of scarcity, love has no meaning, and peace is impossible. For gain and loss are both accepted, and so no one is aware that perfect love is in him. In the holy instant, you recognize the idea of love in you and unite this idea with the Mind that thought it and could not relinquish it. By holding it within itself, there was no loss. The holy instant thus becomes a lesson in how to hold all of your brothers in your mind, experiencing not loss, but completion. From this it follows you can only give. And this is love, for this alone is natural under the laws of God.
 
61 In the holy instant, the laws of God prevail, and only they have meaning. The laws of this world cease to hold any meaning at all. When the Son of God accepts the laws of God as what he gladly wills, it is impossible that he be bound or limited in any way. In this instant, he is as free as God would have him be. For the instant he refuses to be bound, he is not bound.
 
62 In the holy instant, nothing happens that has not always been. Only the veil that has been drawn across reality is lifted. Nothing has changed. Yet the awareness of changelessness comes swiftly as the veil of time is pushed aside. No one who has not yet experienced the lifting of the veil and felt himself drawn irresistibly into the light behind it can have faith in love without fear. Yet the Holy Spirit gives you this faith because He offered it to me and I accepted it. Fear not the holy instant will be denied you, for I denied it not. And through me the Holy Spirit gave it unto you, as you will give it. Let no need that you perceive obscure your need of this. For in the holy instant, you will recognize the only need the aspects of the Son of God share equally, and by this recognition you will join with me in offering what is needed.
 
63 It is through us that peace will come. Join me in the idea of peace, for in ideas minds can communicate. If you would give yourself as your Father gives His Self, you will learn to understand selfhood. And therein is love's meaning understood. But remember that understanding is of the mind and only of the mind. Knowledge is therefore of the mind, and its conditions are in the mind with it. If you were not only an idea and nothing else, you could not be in full communication with all that ever was. Yet as long as you prefer to be something else, or would attempt to be nothing else and something else together, the language of communication, which you know perfectly, you will not remember.
 
64 In the holy instant God is remembered, and the language of communication with all your brothers is remembered with Him. For communication is remembered together, as is truth. There is no exclusion in the holy instant because the past is gone and with it goes the whole basis for exclusion. Without its source, exclusion vanishes. And this permits your Source and that of all your brothers to replace it in your awareness. God and the power of God will take their rightful place in you, and you will experience the full communication of ideas with ideas. Through your ability to do this, you will learn what you must be, for you will begin to understand what your Creator is and what His creation is along with Him.
   
    ~ The Original Handscript Notes

 
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