ACIM Lesson 297 Forgiveness is the only gift I give.
Forgiveness is the only gift I give.
1. Forgiveness is the only gift I give, because it is the only gift I want. ²And everything I give I give myself. ³This is salvation’s simple formula. ⁴And I, who would be saved, would make it mine, to be the way I live within a world that needs salvation, and that will be saved as I accept Atonement for myself.
2. Father, how certain are Your ways; how sure their final outcome, and how faithfully is every step in my salvation set already, and accomplished by Your grace. ²Thanks be to You for Your eternal gifts, and thanks to You for my Identity.
Giving Is Receiving
Jesus is bringing together several ideas that he has emphasized throughout the Course. First and foremost, forgiveness is the only gift I give because it is the only gift I want. Forgiveness is how we save the world and return Home and I receive it through giving it. As Jesus has told us more than once, giving is receiving and what I give, I receive. Therefore, I try to always only give what I truly want to receive. When I slip up and give fear or guilt, I ask the Holy Spirit to correct my error and I choose again.
My Guide to Choosing Again
My guide to choosing again and doing so without guilt comes at the end of Chapter 5 in the Text.
6. Decision cannot be difficult. ²This is obvious, if you realize that you must already have decided not to be wholly joyous if that is how you feel. ³Therefore, the first step in the undoing is to recognize that you actively decided wrongly, but can as actively decide otherwise. ⁴Be very firm with yourself in this, and keep yourself fully aware that the undoing process, which does not come from you, is nevertheless within you because God placed it there. ⁵Your part is merely to return your thinking to the point at which the error was made, and give it over to the Atonement in peace. ⁶Say this to yourself as sincerely as you can, remembering that the Holy Spirit will respond fully to your slightest invitation:
⁷I must have decided wrongly, because I am not at peace.
⁸I made the decision myself, but I can also decide otherwise.
⁹I want to decide otherwise, because I want to be at peace.
¹⁰I do not feel guilty, because the Holy Spirit will undo all the consequences of my wrong decision if I will let Him.
¹¹I choose to let Him, by allowing Him to decide for God for me.
If you would like to read about a specific instance in which I used this passage to move from fear to peace, click here.
Accepting the Atonement
In this lesson, Jesus also reminds us that we make salvation ours as we accept the Atonement for ourselves. In fact, he says this very clearly in several places that accepting the Atonement is our function. 5. The sole responsibility of the miracle worker is to accept the Atonement for himself. (ACIM, T-2.V.5:1) The Atonement is God’s Plan for our salvation and this plan is carried out through forgiveness. To clarify, I tend to think of forgiveness as letting go. As an example, if I am angry, I forgive it and let it go. Another example would be if I think someone is guilty, I forgive the belief in guilt and let it go.
Let’s Not Dawdle Here
And finally, Jesus reminds us that our salvation is certain because it is of God. Every step is already set and accomplished through His grace. We had thought to create our own identity. Now we can be grateful that our identity is established by God in our creation. The outcome is certain and I don’t want to dawdle in the illusion any longer. My feet are firmly on the Path and I will not be distracted from it.
Forgiveness is what we are to do here. If you would like to learn more about forgiveness and how to practice it in your life, I offer a course through Pathways of Light. I offer this course one on one and in groups. If you are interested, click here to learn more.
If you would like to access Pathways of Light Insights on this lesson click here.
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