Lesson 103 2021

Lesson 103

God, being Love, is also happiness.

1. Happiness is an attribute of love. ²It cannot be apart from it. ³Nor can it be experienced where love is not. ⁴Love has no limits, being everywhere. ⁵And therefore joy is everywhere as well. ⁶Yet can the mind deny that this is so, believing there are gaps in love where sin can enter, bringing pain instead of joy. ⁷This strange belief would limit happiness by redefining love as limited, and introducing opposition in what has no limit and no opposite.

Jesus is just telling us that God is Love and happiness is an attribute of love and since God is everywhere without limit, we have love and happiness everywhere without limit. Why is it that we do not feel love and happiness at all times? We deny love and happiness. We think that someone does not love us or we think that something is happening that prevents our happiness. We are choosing not to love or to accept love and we choose not to be happy, then tell ourselves that it is not our choice but that this lack is caused by others. 

Recently, I had an experience of this. I thought that something I did in the past had damaged a very special relationship. I cannot change the past so I came to terms with the unhappy situation and accepted it as it was. Each time I talked to this person, I would detect a reservation in his words, and sometimes I would hear proof of his anger and resentment. Or so it seemed.  

Then, a few days ago, I discovered that this whole interpretation of the situation was just a story in my mind. He didn’t feel that way at all. I thought I had forgiven myself but obviously, I had not and I was projecting my perceived guilt onto him and seeing him as the unforgiving party in this relationship. As Jesus says, I but do this to myself. Jeez. But I am glad to have discovered my error so that the Holy Spirit can heal my mind. I am entitled to miracles so I accepted it gladly. 

What gets in the way of love and happiness are our stories. Some stories play out as an attack and the other person really means to attack. But we always have the option of seeing their intended attack as just the call for love that it is. We cannot feel unloved unless we choose to feel that way. If we feel unworthy of love, it would not matter if the whole world adores us, we would be unaware of their regard. We would think they were being disingenuous.  

If I feel unloved by someone, I turn inward to see what unloving thoughts in my mind need to be healed. And then, once in a while, I miss my cue as I did recently with this dear one. But I learn from my errors and so I don’t expect to miss another cue. I ask Holy Spirit to help me see what needs healing in my mind. 

2. Fear is associated then with love, and its results become the heritage of minds that think what they have made is real. ²These images, with no reality in truth, bear witness to the fear of God, forgetting being Love, He must be joy. ³This basic error we will try again to bring to truth today, and teach ourselves: 

⁴God, being Love, is also happiness.
⁵To fear Him is to be afraid of joy. 

⁶Begin your periods of practicing today with this association, which corrects the false belief that God is fear. ⁷It also emphasizes happiness belongs to you, because of what He is. 

We have a deep and often denied belief that God is fear rather than love. We think that He is, at best, dual in nature, sometimes loving and sometimes scary. As Course students, we insist that we no longer believe in the god of our past and that we don’t fear Him, but I suspect that there is the unconscious belief that God judges us and finds us wanting and that having torn ourselves from Him, we can expect retaliation.  

This is why we walk the earth in fear and desperate for someplace to project our guilt. This is why we have so much suffering and inevitably death. And this is why Jesus placed so many happiness lessons in the Course. It is why he keeps telling us that we are entitled to miracles and that we love God and he loves us. If we already believed that, we would not need A Course in Miracles.  

Jesus is not telling us that we can study hard and practice harder and that we will eventually become the Son of God that He created. He is telling us that we already are that and we have obscured this knowledge with the stories that we live life after life. All we have to do to live as His Son is to accept the simple truth of our nature.  

That is why he encourages us to take these lessons seriously. We can feel loved and we can love others because having been created in the image and after the likeness of our Creator Who is Love. We can be happy for the same reason. This is true for us no matter what story is occurring in the illusion.  

3. Allow this one correction to be placed within your mind each waking hour today. ²Then welcome all the happiness it brings as truth replaces fear, and joy becomes what you expect to take the place of pain. ³God, being Love, it will be given you. ⁴Bolster this expectation frequently throughout the day, and quiet all your fears with this assurance, kind and wholly true: 

⁵God, being Love, is also happiness.
⁶And it is happiness I seek today.
⁷I cannot fail, because I seek the truth.

Today, let us dedicate ourselves to happiness. No matter how the ego thought system interprets the dreamy world of our imagination, we cannot fail to find happiness if that is our goal. We cannot fail because we seek the truth. Instead of placing our faith in the ego interpretation, let us trust what Jesus says is true. We know how to have faith, we just misplaced it and today we will correct that error. We will place our faith in that which is true. 

(ACIM, W-103.1:1–3:7)