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Part 1

Undoing The Way We See Things Now

Lesson 71

Only God’s Plan for Salvation Will Work

You may not realize that the ego has set up a plan for salvation in opposition to God’s. It is this plan in which you believe. Since it is the opposite of God’s, you also believe that to accept God’s plan in place of the ego’s is to be damned. This sounds preposterous, of course. Yet after we have considered just what the ego’s plan is, perhaps you will realize that, however preposterous it may be, you do believe it.

2. The ego’s plan for salvation centers on holding grievances. It maintains that if someone else spoke or acted differently, if some external circumstance or event were changed, you would be saved. Thus the source of salvation is constantly perceived as outside yourself. Each grievance you hold is a declaration, and an assertion in which you believe, that says, “If this were different, I would be saved.”94 The change of mind which is necessary for salvation is thus demanded of everyone and everything except yourself.

3. The role assigned to your own mind, then, is simply to determine what, other than itself, must change if you are to be saved. According to this insane plan, any perceived source of salvation is acceptable, provided that it will not work. This ensures that the fruitless search will continue, for the illusion persists that although this hope has failed, there are still grounds for hope in other places and in other things. Another person will serve better, another situation will offer hope.

4. Such is the ego’s plan for your salvation. Surely you can see how it is strict accord with the ego’s basic doctrine, “Seek but do not find?” For what could more surely guarantee that you will not find salvation than to channel all your efforts into searching for it where it is not?

5. God’s plan for salvation works simply because, by following His direction, you seek for salvation where it is. But if you are to succeed, as God promises you will, you must be willing to seek there only. Otherwise your purpose is divided, and you will attempt to follow two plans for salvation which are diametrically opposed in all ways. The result can only bring confusion, misery, and a deep sense of failure and despair.

6. How can you escape all this? Very simply. The idea for today is the answer. Only God’s plan for salvation will work. There can be no real conflict about this, because there in no possible alternative to God’s plan that will save you.

7. Let us practice recognizing this certainty today. And let us rejoice that there is an answer to what seemed to be conflict with no resolution possible. All things are possible to God.96 Salvation must be yours because of His plan, which cannot fail.

8. Begin the two longer practice periods for today by thinking about today’s idea, and realizing that it contains two parts, each making equal contribution to the whole. God’s plan for your salvation will work, and other plans will not. Do not allow yourself to become depressed or angry at the second part; it is inherent in the first, and in the first is your full release from all your own insane attempts and mad proposals to free yourself. They have led to depression and anger, but God’s plan will succeed. It will lead to release and joy.

9. Remembering this, let us devote the remainder of the extended practice period to asking God to reveal His plan to us. Ask Him very specifically:

What would You have me do?

Where would You have me go?

What would You have me say, and to whom?

     Give Him full charge of the rest of the practice period, and let Him tell you what needs to be done by you in His plan for your salvation. He will answer you in proportion to your willingness to hear His Voice. Refuse not to hear. The very fact that you are doing the exercises proves you have some willingness to listen. This is enough to establish your claim to His answer.

10. In the shorter practice periods, tell yourself often that only God’s plan for salvation will work. Be alert to all temptation to hold grievances today, and respond to them with this form of today’s idea:

Holding grievances is the opposite of God’s plan for salvation.

And only His plan will work.

     Try to remember the idea for today some six or seven times and hour. There could be no better way to spend a half a minute or less than to remember the source of your  salvation, and to see it where it is.[1]

[1] A Course in Miracles Complete & Annotated Edition

Personal Notes:

“Only God’s plan for salvation will work” The ego’s plan for salvation centers on holding grievances, which only lead to the fruitless ongoing search of failed illusions. The thought of holding on to a grievance is to accept the false voice of who I am, who my brother is, the false voice of being limited. Holding on to grievances is the opposite or God’s plan for salvation. I choose to hear one Voice the Voice of God my Heavenly Father and Creator. I am confident Only God’s plan for salvation will work. All things are possible with God. Salvation must be mine because of His plan, which cannot fail. I release all my own insane attempts to free myself because God’s plan will succeed, it will lead to release and joy. I ask my Heavenly Father very specifically: What would You have me do? Where would You have me go? What would You have me say and to whom? I am confident He will answer. Only God’s plan will work. I pray for all my brothers, sisters, and myself for continued guidance, wisdom, discernment, protection, and illumination of purpose in The Way, The Truth, The Life in Christ Jesus, Amen. Thank you for sharing with me. Walk in Love my friend!

God is Love

Love is God

I choose Love

Footnote 94. A grievance is a complaint about a perceived wrong or hardship suffered—something that makes me unhappy. Without this hardship, I believe, “I would be saved” from this unhappiness. A grievance therefore is a statement that “If this were different, I would be happy—I would be saved.”

Footnote 96. Matthew 19:26 (RSV): “But Jesus looked at them and said to them, ‘With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” In the original statement, what is possible with God is for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God, even though this is harder than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle. In the Course’s version, what is possible with God is getting out of the conflict of feeling torn between two competing plans for salvation—God’s and the ego’s. Perhaps this sheds light on the original saying. Perhaps the difficult thing that God made it possible for the rich man to do was to stop serving two masters: “God and mammon” (Matthew 6:24 [RSV]).

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