Be Vigilant Only for God and His Kingdom

So as students of A Course in Miracles we have to make this fundamental decision – we have to choose that we want joy (which is the Kingdom of Heaven) and we have to turn to the teacher who knows how to bring us there. That is what we have to do. This happens naturally when we embrace a serious spiritual path, the one that is ordained for us personally. It’s not about saying no to the other valid paths, or disparaging them, but about saying yes to the one that is laid out for us by God.

When we say yes, we are given help. Jesus becomes available in a tangible way. Lately I imagine him as a long-distance friend – one I don’t see because he lives in another country, but with whom I maintain a deep and thoughtful two-way contact. This personal relationship is critical to my practice and understanding of A Course in Miracles. But, just like friendship necessarily varies from one relationship to the next, your own experience of Jesus will be different.

Jesus points us to the Holy Spirit and urges us to accept “him” as our teacher. This pointing can take the place of prayerful directives, clarity in reading the text, or a combination thereof. The Holy Spirit is symbolic. When we pray to the Holy Spirit we are praying to that part of our mind that a) knows its wholeness in God and b) sees the separation alive in another part of our mind and, by virtue of its capacity to see and know our whole mind, heal it.

We are participants in that healing process. This section and its subsections outlines the essence of how we participate. We reverse our understanding of what it means to give. We teach peace in order to learn it. And finally, we adopt a position of vigilance in favor of God. This is another way of restating another Course adage: what is it for (T-17.VI.2:1-2)? Everything that we experience – images, events, people – are opportunities to choose the Holy Spirit as our teacher. They are chances to wake up to the Kingdom of Heaven. If we are always looking for Heaven – if we are always on the alert for signs of Love and the Joyful Peace that attends God – then we are more likely to see those things.

This is a corollary to projection. We project what we don’t want and thus see it – and attack it – in others. I’m not an insensitive parent, that other person is. But projection – a dubious tool employed by the ego to maintain the illusion of separate bodies and separate experiences – can be used by the Holy Spirit too. That’s what happens when we take him as our teacher. Rather than project fear or guilt, he extends love. So where the ego finds evidence of the separation, the Holy Spirit points out signs of Heaven’s peaceful glory. To have this, we simply have to invite him in.

Well, maybe it’s a bit more complicated. We have to invite him – but of course he is already there, because he is part of us in a real way. He is our right minds. What we really have to do – and what this section calls on us to do – is be vigilant on his behalf. Seek God and you will find him. Knock and the doors will open. There are no maps and no mysteries and no secret handshakes. Those who seek Heaven will remember they are already there.

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