III. Atonement and Miracles, P 9
9 Miracles are selective only in the sense that they are directed towards those who can use them for themselves. Since this makes it inevitable that they will extend them to others, a strong chain of Atonement is welded. However, this selectivity takes no account of the magnitude of the miracle itself, because the concept of size exists on a plane that is itself unreal. Since the miracle aims at restoring the awareness of reality, it would not be useful if it were bound by laws that govern the error it aims to correct.
One time I was very angry with my boyfriend. I had just discovered he was lying about something important to me, and to make it worse, we were at the home of a couple I barely knew with a group of his friends. I was shocked by his revelation and had no privacy in which to work it through. I certainly didn’t feel like playing volleyball with everyone else.
I noticed that the couple whose house we were visiting were not playing volleyball either. They were doing something inside, so I decided to introduce myself. At least it was quiet and peaceful in the house. I was still reeling from the sense of betrayal and was filled with conflicting emotions so I was especially drawn to the peace.
I liked the couple and we began to have a nice visit. Somehow we got on the subject of spirituality, and I shared some on my path as a Course student. They had never heard of A Course in Miracles but were very interested and decided on the spot to get the book. As I talked about my favorite subject I relaxed and let go of the anger I had been holding onto, and I thought how nice it would be to have someone to study with since at that time I was still very isolated in my study.
Later when I left, I marveled at how even in my anger and frustration, the Holy Spirit used me. All it took was for me to be willing to set aside my own self-interest long enough to be a vessel. In doing so, I was also giving my permission to be healed, because, of course, my joy at being used so, trumped my anger and need to be right. It just snapped me right out of it.
I had no way to know that this couple was going to be the next link in the chain of Atonement, and I still don’t know how that worked out in the bigger picture, where the chain went from there because I was to never study with them, as we went our separate ways. I also had no idea that I could be of service at a time when I was absolutely ignoring everything I learned from the Course. At that time, I still believed I had to be deserving in order to serve.
These people were virtual strangers to me. I did not set the meeting up. I did not go into their house to proselytize. It had never occurred to me that they would be interested in A Course in Miracles. I was not prepared to talk about the Course. I was angry, confused, conflicted and unable to think straight. I certainly wasn’t feeling spiritual, or behaving in a way that fit my description of spiritual.
What I learned that day, the gift I took from that encounter, was the realization that all Jesus needs from me is a moment of willingness. He doesn’t need my vision; he brings the vision. He doesn’t need a perfectly healed teacher; he heals me as I teach. I learned that day about surrender. I was too upset and my mind too confused to make plans and try to control the situation, and that was perfect.
Certainly, I would never have guessed that he needed so little from me. It took a lot longer for me to realize this is always true and to let go of the arrogance of believing he needs more. But I absolutely realized that I can see so little of the plan that it can’t be my job to know who needs the miracle, or who is ready for it, where it might most effectively be applied. I still take over in a hundred little ways but when I catch myself I easily and gladly let go of the reins. I know better now.