Salvation is my only function here.
Salvation and forgiveness are the same. They both imply that something has gone wrong; something to be saved from, forgiven for; something amiss that needs corrective change; something apart or different from the Will of God. Thus do both terms imply a thing impossible but yet which has occurred, resulting in a state of conflict seen between what is and what could never be.
Truth and illusions both are equal now, for both have happened. The impossible becomes the thing you need forgiveness for, salvation from. Salvation now becomes the borderland between the truth and the illusion. It reflects the truth because it is the means by which you can escape illusions. Yet it is not yet the truth because it undoes what was never done.
How could there be a meeting place at all where earth and Heaven can be reconciled within a mind where both of them exist? The mind that sees illusions thinks them real. They have existence in that they are thoughts. And yet they are not real, because the mind that thinks these thoughts is separate from God.
What joins the separated mind and thoughts with Mind and Thought which are forever One? What plan could hold the truth inviolate, yet recognize the need illusions bring, and offer means by which they are undone without attack and with no touch of pain? What but a Thought of God could be this plan, by which the never done is overlooked, and sins forgotten which were never real?
The Holy Spirit holds this plan of God exactly as it was received of Him within the Mind of God and in your own. It is apart from time in that its Source is timeless. Yet it operates in time, because of your belief that time is real. Unshaken does the Holy Spirit look on what you see; on sin and pain and death, on grief and separation and on loss. Yet does He know one thing must still be true; God is still Love, and this is not His Will.
This is the Thought that brings illusions to the truth, and sees them as appearances behind which is the changeless and the sure. This is the Thought that saves and that forgives, because it lays no faith in what is not created by the only Source it knows. This is the Thought whose function is to save by giving you its function as your own. Salvation is your function, with the One to Whom the plan was given. Now are you entrusted with this plan, along with Him. He has one answer to appearances; regardless of their form, their size, their depth or any attribute they seem to have:
Salvation is my only function here. God still is Love, and this is not His Will.
You who will yet work miracles, be sure you practice well the idea for today. Try to perceive the strength in what you say, for these are words in which your freedom lies. Your Father loves you. All the world of pain is not His Will. Forgive yourself the thought He wanted this for you. Then let the Thought with which He has replaced all your mistakes enter the darkened places of your mind that thought the thoughts that never were His Will.
This part belongs to God, as does the rest. It does not think its solitary thoughts, and make them real by hiding them from Him. Let in the light, and you will look upon no obstacle to what He wills for you. Open your secrets to His kindly light, and see how bright this light still shines in you.
Practice His Thought today, and let His light seek out and lighten up all darkened spots, and shine through them to join them to the rest. It is God’s Will your mind be one with His. It is God’s Will that He has but one Son. It is God’s Will that His one Son is you. Think of these things in practicing today, and start the lesson that we learn today with this instruction in the way of truth:
Salvation is my only function here. Salvation and forgiveness are the same.
Then turn to Him Who shares your function here, and let Him teach you what you need to learn to lay all fear aside, and know your Self as Love which has no opposite in you.
Forgive all thoughts which would oppose the truth of your completion, unity and peace. You cannot lose the gifts your Father gave. You do not want to be another self. You have no function that is not of God. Forgive yourself the one you think you made. Forgiveness and salvation are the same. Forgive what you have made and you are saved.
There is a special message for today which has the power to remove all forms of doubt and fear forever from your mind. If you are tempted to believe them true, remember that appearances can not withstand the truth these mighty words contain:
Salvation is my only function here. God still is Love, and this is not His Will.
Your only function tells you you are one. Remind yourself of this between the times you give five minutes to be shared with Him Who shares God’s plan with you. Remind yourself:
Salvation is my only function here.
Thus do you lay forgiveness on your mind and let all fear be gently laid aside, that love may find its rightful place in you and show you that you are the Son of God.
Salvation and forgiveness are the same. Forgiveness is how I am saved. I could need salvation through forgiveness only if I believed the impossible could occur, that the Son of God could need to be forgiven – could need salvation.The thought that this could happen is corrected by a Thought of God which teaches us to overlook or look through what cannot be true. This Thought, the Holy Spirit, looks with us on sin and pain and grief and knows they cannot be true. Only if I ask for His help will the Holy Spirit look with me at my darkened thoughts and help me see that what God did not create cannot exist and have consequences. It is up to me to choose His help.
Because forgiveness has such a different meaning that I have ever given it, and because I am so attached to the old meaning, I have to remind myself what I mean now when I say forgive. I cannot make something real and then forgive it. So forgiveness is recognizing that nothing happened. There is only innocence. Of course, there are times when I want to scream out that something certainly did happen! In the illusion actions were taken, but what meaning could they have that I did not give them? There is another way to see this, and if I ask the Holy Spirit to show me that other meaning, he will.
Just the thought of religious zealots, for instance, used to elicit a negative response in me. I felt attacked by them and wanted to attack back. I placed them in the same category as bigots and felt the need to put them in their place with a few well-chosen words. Being a good Course student, I would reign in my feelings and try to forgive them for their ignorant and destructive behavior. There… it was hard, but I forgave the fools. OK, I am being facetious, but at one time that really was my understanding of forgiveness, and the ego tries to drag me back there.
Here is my process now. I notice the negative response; a desire to attack, or even just a knot in my stomach, or a pain above my eye. Then I ask the Holy Spirit to look at this situation with me. I let myself feel what I feel with Him at my side. I then ask the Holy Spirit to show me another way to see this. I may not be able to visualize that other way, but I know that attack has not brought me peace and so it is a failing strategy. I am willing to be corrected. If I am not entirely willing, I bring Him whatever willingness I have knowing He will add His certainty to it.
If I argue the point, “But, he did….or she said….” I go back to the Holy Spirit with this. What saves me from remaining in the endless loop of attack/defend is that forgiveness is all-inclusive. Nothing is ever left out of forgiveness. There is never a case where forgiveness does not apply. Forgiveness tells me that my brother is innocent; that I am innocent. This is always true. Nothing can make this a false statement.
In the illusion, everything shifts and changes and there is nothing I can grab hold of that doesn’t eventually alter in form and meaning. It feels so good to find these nuggets of gold in the Course which gives me some one thing I can rely on. My brother is innocent. I am innocent. No matter what. If we are innocent, there is nothing to forgive. Forgiveness recognizes that nothing has happened.
The Holy Spirit looks at my illusions and simply knows they are not the Will of God and so they are not true, thus I am saved from them. This is my model. The single most helpful thing I can do for anyone else is to not believe in their illusion.
My message from Holy Spirit
Me: Holy Spirit, I know that my brother is innocent, but when I write that nothing has happened, I feel a tug in the pit of my stomach like it is not true.
Holy Spirit: Do you feel a tug that it is not true or a tug that you don’t want to let your brother off the hook? Blame is how you keep guilt in place, though you think it is how you keep it at bay. You believe if you really looked at your guilt it would eat you alive. When you stand judgment on your brother or on yourself, you think you usurp the power of God, and so the guilt is built even stronger within your mind, seeming more powerful than God Himself, and therefore an effective deterrent to His love. Who, thinking he has usurped God, can face his Creator without fear? And so the wall of guilt, with bricks of sin, held in place with mortar of rage, fear, and doubt, grows ever higher and ever thicker until it seems immovable.
This is not so. Your wall of guilt will not keep God out; only your desire to be separate causes a seeming separation. When you bring your wrong-minded thoughts to Me for correction, the light of My love shines through them as if they were not there. I will show you they are nothing, and you will gladly discard them yourself. God only loves you and does not hold your evil deeds against you. There is no need to hide from Him. God does not force you to return to Him but offers a love so gentle and so complete that you are compelled to join Him.
My message to Holy Spirit
What I know for sure is that as I continue to bring You my mistaken thoughts, I am experiencing the results of a changed mind. I am in such joy over this that I am finding it easier and easier to release my most cherished grievances. I love You and I appreciate You so much.
I no longer doubt the need to forgive. I am completely convinced. And this is the mystery because even though I feel certain that I don’t want to hold attack thoughts or project blame, I still do it sometimes. Jeez. Maybe that is the reason I love this sentence from the Lesson.
God still is Love, and this is not His Will.
I was thinking about my son who is experiencing some challenges and I felt sad for him and for myself. I reminded myself that God is still Love, and this is not His Will. Immediately I felt the darkness receding from my mind. What is not God’s Will cannot exist. I had just momentarily gotten sucked into the story again. The story as a classroom is in our best interests, and I can accept it as simply a classroom if I detach from it a bit. Regardless of what seems to be happening in this story of Myron and her son, what is actually happening is an opportunity for each of us to allow our minds to be healed of untrue beliefs and in this individual healing, there is a healing of the Sonship. We are saving the world, my son and me.
I cannot have grievances in my mind. Of this, I am certain. I’ve learned to recognize attack thoughts even when they are subtle. For instance, if I am offended by someone’s attitude toward my spiritual concepts, this is an attack. If I tell myself I am not offended, but I feel separated from that one, if I feel something less than love for that one, then I have a grievance against them. If I say that I forgive and yet, I avoid that one I have not forgiven. I am still holding a grievance. Facebook is a great place to check for grievances. Did I just unfriend someone? Did I just block someone?
I have learned that grievances, attack, defend, judge, these are all different words for the same thing. It is funny, really, that since I came to realize that I absolutely cannot have grievances in my mind, I have become excruciatingly aware of how many I do have. But that is good. I have made a habit of expressing my gratitude every time I discover one. It is another opportunity to bring us all to salvation. It is my function to see these grievances and to realize how much I want to be free. It is my function to forgive and free us all.