[Please note: ACIM passages quoted in this article reference the Foundation for Inner Peace (FIP) Edition.]
Picture your life as you currently think of it: your home, your family and friends, your customary activities, your place of employment. Think of your status, your achievements, your health, and your bank account.
Now realize that this life is only a shadow of your real life, not your real life in Heaven, but here on earth.
We will now try to imagine this real life, which cannot be seen with your eyes.
Picture yourself on a path, a straight path which stretches endlessly toward the horizon.
On either side of the path is a forest one could easily get lost in.
This is the path to God, and far off in the distance you see the path end at the gate of Heaven, behind which glows a light of unearthly beauty and radiance, the light of God.
Your life is not one of movement within the world or within society, but one of movement (or lack thereof) along this path.
When you forgive, you take a step forward.
When you truly desire the goal of God, you step forward.
When your mind is on auto pilot, thinking the same old thoughts, even if your outer life takes a giant step forward, you stand still.
When you give way to a grievance or to fear, you step off the path and begin wandering in the trackless woods.
When you experience a miraculous shift in perception, you are lifted up and fly forward, sometimes for miles. Imagine that occurring. Feel what that would be like.
When you perform an act of genuine love toward another (see this happening), you are again lifted up and fly forward.
Your life is only about one issue: reaching the goal of God. Nothing else matters.
Success takes only one form: progress toward that goal. No other kind of success is real.
Thus, progress on this journey is often at odds with what you call progress in your outer life.
“Some of your greatest advances you have judged as failures,
and some of your deepest retreats you have evaluated as success.” (T-18.V.1:6)
This sounds like a solitary journey, but it is not.
The further you travel, the more you realize that you are not alone.
You only seemed alone because of the bubble of your self-concern.
In truth, throngs of people are traveling with you.
Look around, and see them walking happily with you. All of you are walking together toward the light of God, joyous with anticipation.
Certain ones around you are meant to help you. When you stumble, they give you their hand and lift you up so you can keep walking.
Others, you are meant to help. When they feel weak, you let them lean on you so they can continue. When they wander off the path, you lovingly call them back.
Still others are meant to be your mighty companions, with whom you always walk hand-in-hand, sharing the journey together.
Try to let it sink in that this is your real life. This is the only thing really going on here.
“We walk to God. Pause and reflect on this.
Could any way be holier, or more deserving of your effort, of your love and of your full intent?
What way could give you more than everything, or offer less and still content the holy Son of God? We walk to God.” (W-pI.155.12:1-5)