"And joy and peace are my inheritance."
Longer: every hour on the hour; 5 minutes
* Begin with: "I seek but what belongs to me in truth. And joy and peace are my inheritance."
* Then clear a holy place in your mind before God's altar where His gifts can be accepted. First, lay aside all the gifts you placed on the altar, as substitutes for His, gifts that are just conflicts made of illusions. Then, seek God's gifts of joy and peace. These are the gifts that have always been yours, will always be yours, and are yours now. Have confidence you can receive them today. Wish for nothing else.
Shorter: as often as you can
Remind yourself: "I seek but what belongs to me in truth. God's gifts of peace and joy are all I want."
What could be of more value than these? If I lived in a palace, had unlimited wealth, and the partnership of the most perfect mate in the world, and had not peace of mind and joy, I would still be poor. If I lived in a hovel with peace of mind and joy, I would be rich.
And I can have these things; they are my right because of what I am. Joy is my divine right. Peace is my divine right. They are within reach of everyone, regardless of background, regardless of education, regardless of income. Today, in the times I pause to remember, this is what I want to remember. I open myself with gratitude to God Who gave me these gifts; I honor Him by enjoying them. I honor Him by being joyful and peaceful in these five minute periods, and I will not forget in between.
I recall a seminar I did years ago in which we engaged in deep self-searching, attempting to ferret out some of the lies we had been telling ourselves, the negative, self-depreciating thoughts that dragged down our lives. We then distilled these down into what seemed, for each individual, the fundamental lie we were telling ourselves about ourselves. Next, we were asked to take that lie and reverse it, turn it into an affirmation. And finally, we walked about the room, introducing ourselves to one another, and stating our "eternal truth."
I will never forget one woman, although I forget her name so I will simply call her Carol. She walked up to me, looked me directly in the eyes, and smiled a radiant smile. "Hi!" she said. "I'm Carol, and my joy heals."
And you know what? It did. Right in that instant. Something clicked within my mind, and I have never forgotten her, never forgotten her joy. She had discovered a truth about herself. Joy heals! When I am joyful, those around me are healed. Haven't you ever noticed that about other people who are joyful, truly joyful? Their joy heals you. What could be of more value than joy such as that?
Peace heals, too. One peaceful person in a room full of agitated individuals can bring calm to everyone. I choose to be that person today, because it is my right. I settle down in each practice time and "clear a place within [my] mind before His altar" (4:2). I clear that place to receive the eternal gifts, the joy and peace God wants to give me. "Nothing else belongs to us in truth" (4:4). None of the other things I think I want belong to me in the way that joy and peace belong to me. These are "possessions" that bless the world, instead of taking from it. No one loses because I have joy and peace; everyone gains.
I already have these gifts! "I seek but what belongs to me in truth." Joy belongs to me; peace belongs to me. Thank You, God. Thank You.
Copyright © 1996, The Circle of Atonement, Sedona,
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