Manual for Teachers: Section 16 . . HOW SHOULD THE TEACHER OF GOD SPEND HIS DAY? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . page 40 paragraph 2

Section 16

HOW SHOULD THE TEACHER OF GOD SPEND HIS DAY?

page 40, paragraph 2

HOW SHOULD THE TEACHER OF GOD SPEND HIS DAY?

HOW SHOULD THE TEACHER OF GOD SPEND HIS DAY?

HOW SHOULD THE TEACHER OF GOD SPEND HIS DAY?

1. But what about those who have not reached his certainty? ²They are not yet ready for such lack of structuring on their own part. ³What must they do to learn to give the day to God? ⁴There are some general rules which do apply, although each one must use them as best he can in his own way. ⁵Routines as such are dangerous, because they easily become gods in their own right, threatening the very goals for which they were set up. ⁶Broadly speaking, then, it can be said that it is well to start the day right. ⁷It is always possible to begin again, should the day begin with error. ⁸Yet there are obvious advantages in terms of saving time. (ACIM, M-16.2:1-8)

Two Levels

A Course In Miracles seems always to be speaking to me on two levels. It talks to me about how things are going to be, and also on how things are now. Having an idea of the ultimate goal of the Course is very helpful no matter where I am in this process. It lets me know where I am going, and when I am not there. There have been times in my study when I made some significant shifts and for a time became convinced that the journey was over, only to realize that I am still sleeping, just not so deeply as before.

In the first paragraph we are given a snapshot of how things will be, and now we are going to look at ways to help us get to that place. Jesus is going to suggest a routine we can use to further help us train our unruly minds. At the same time, He is warning us not to make the routine itself the goal. I used to have that tendency myself. I was so uncertain, and I wanted something to do that would guarantee me of success; something I could do because doing was what I was used to, and what I believed in.

Self-Pressure

I bet I wasn’t the only one who fell into the trap of thinking that the key to salvation was remembering to do the lesson every hour on the hour, and forgetting or being late to remember was a sign of failure. The process became the point for me, and I lost sight of the true goal. I don’t know how many times I quit doing the lessons because I didn’t do them “right.” I can laugh at it now because if I had done them faultlessly, it would probably have meant I didn’t need them. Instead of seeing the lessons as a means to discipline my mind, I saw doing them perfectly as the goal.

Flexibility

Jesus is asking us to set up some routines in the interest of saving time, but he is saying that we should hold these routines lightly. What works one day may not work another, and this is ok. We can adjust the routine. An integral part of my routine is to spend some time writing. All the time I write I am speaking to and listening to the Holy Spirit. Then I post my writings. Once this is done I move on to whatever is coming next.

Fear

For the longest time I caused myself so much stress because I was afraid that I would oversleep and not have time to do the writing. Or I was afraid I would not have an internet connection and not be able to post. I was afraid that I would not hear that Voice and so not have anything to say. I was afraid I would mistake the voices and listen to the ego instead.

Gentleness

Here is what I understand now. The routine of writing with the Holy Spirit is for the purpose of centering myself in the morning. It is the way I remind myself of my purpose. It is the way I learn and teach at the same time. But even if I am, for some reason, unable to do this in the morning, I can still center myself, anchor myself to my purpose. I can still learn and teach. The routine is helpful, but it isn’t the point and it can change when I need it to.

Making the routine happen is just another way for the ego to think it is in control. Now I allow it to happen and if it doesn’t, I assume that it doesn’t need to. Lord, what a relief! Since I came to this realization, my routine of writing in the morning shifted from being stressful to being something I look forward to. I love my time with the Holy Spirit. If it doesn’t happen, then I will wait to see how I will be with the Holy Spirit in a different way.

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