Lesson 324• November-20

I merely follow, for I would not lead.


Practice Instructions

See complete instructions in separate document. A short summary:

  • Read the commentary paragraph slowly and personally.
  • Pray the prayer, perhaps several times.
  • Morning and evening: Repeat the idea and then spend time in Open Mind Meditation.
  • Hourly remembrance: Repeat the idea and then spend time in Open Mind Meditation.
  • Frequent reminders: Repeat the idea and then spend a quiet moment in meditation.
  • Response to temptation: Repeat the idea whenever upset, to restore peace.
  • Read the "What Is" section slowly and thoughtfully once during the day.

Commentary

Learning to follow my inner guidance is a big part of doing the Course. That guidance is the Voice for God, the Holy Spirit. It is part of me and part of God. In the end all is one, but while I think of myself as separate I will experience that Voice as a separate voice, calling me back home: "Your loving Voice will always call me back, and guide my feet aright" (1:5).

Father, I need to learn that I am not on my own, and that Something or Someone has planned "the way I am to go, the role to take, and every step in my appointed path" (1:2). As Lesson 321 reminded me: "I have neither made nor understood the way to find my freedom" (W-pII.321.1:4). In fact, You have set the way, and the Holy Spirit is simply the Voice that speaks for You. So, then, let me follow "One Who knows the way" (2:1). What a relief it is to have this One to trust! When walking through a dark jungle with twisted and confusing pathways, what a comfort to know I have a Guide Who knows every detail of the path. Because of Him, "I cannot lose the way" (1:3).

Today let me remember that every step of my journey has been set by You. As I look back with You, I know that this is true: nothing I have ever done has ever been anything but for my own good; it has all worked together perfectly to get me exactly where I am now. Even my wanderings were perfectly designed to teach me the falsity of the illusions I was following. What I thought were detours away from You were really lessons bringing me closer to home, and I am grateful for them all. Let me now look to the future with the confidence imparted by that knowledge: I cannot lose the way. Every person, every event, and every circumstance of my life today can be, if seen with vision, a step towards home, a means of finding my way back to You.

If I wander today, Father, bring me back. I thank You for the blessed relief of knowing that I do not have to figure it all out. It's been figured out for me. I can let the day unroll in whatever way it does, trusting that it is all perfectly planned by You to bring the memory of You most rapidly to my mind.

"I would not lead." I don't want to be known as a leader of others. I don't know the way for myself; how can I know for anyone else? Some of my brothers may follow me; in fact You will bring them to me for that purpose. But all I am doing is following Your Voice; if anyone follows me in this path they are not following me, but You. Let me always remind them of that and never make anyone dependent upon me.

"We cannot stray except an instant from His loving Hand" (2:2). To Jesus, six billion years is "a tiny tick of time" (T-26.V.3:5) that is nothing in comparison to eternity, so small that "not one note in Heaven's song was missed" (T-26.V.5:4). To us it seems we stray much longer than an instant. A mathematical example that comes to mind is this: When we divide one number by another, we are, in a sense, comparing them. One hundred divided by ten is ten; that means that compared to ten, one hundred is ten times bigger. The interesting thing about the number zero is that any number, compared to it mathematically, is infinite. If you imagine being able to divide a line into points with zero width, there are an infinite number of such points in the line, whether it is an inch long or a mile long.

The "tiny tick of time" is like zero. Eternity is infinite, and compared to it, all of time is literally nothing. There is no comparison. The time we spend in wandering, which seems so long to us, is nothing more than an instant, an infinitesimal piece of nothing, a fragment of a dream. We've all experienced dreams that seemed to last for hours or days, yet happened in a few seconds of "real" time. And that is all this time is:

Time is a trick, a sleight of hand, a vast illusion in which figures come and go as if by magic. Yet there is a plan behind appearances that does not change. The script is written. (W-pI.158.4:1-3)

There is a plan behind the appearances, and that is what I can rely upon today. Following the Holy Spirit, I know that the ending is sure. He "guarantees a safe returning home" (2:4). I may feel really messed up and confused, but I just can't really blow it! I've got a perfect Guide, and He is going to stick with me until I reach the end and fall once again into my Father's Arms.

I merely follow, for I would not lead.

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