Purpose: To experience the happiness that is God's Will for you; to understand that infecting others with your happiness is how you fulfill your part in the global plan for salvation.
Longer: Every hour on the hour, for five minutes (if you cannot do this, at least do the alternate).
- Repeat the idea. "Then realize your part is to be happy" (7:3); not to make noble sacrifices, just to be happy.
- The rest is a meditation exercise in which you try to find the joy that God placed in you. Look deep within you. Sink down and inward to find the Christ in you, the source of joy. As you sink, you will pass by all of your "little thoughts and foolish goals" (8:5). Don't let them hold you back. You might even ask yourself, "What little thought has power to hold me back?" Or you might simply remember that your one intent is to reach that inexhaustible well of joy at the center of your being; your one intent is to reach the Christ in you. Seek Him with confidence. "He will be there. And you can reach Him now" (9:1-2). Throughout the exercise, keep looking deep within for that bottomless well of joy.
Frequent reminders: In between hourly practice periods.
Repeat the idea, remembering that by doing so you are answering your Self's call to you. As usual, I recommend repeating it in this fashion now, so you can see the benefits it brings.
God does not have "a plan for my life." He has His plan, and I am a part of it. There are not billions of separate plans for billions of separate individuals. There is the one Will of God, and each of us has an essential part in it. Part of what is being undone by salvation is "the mad belief in separate thoughts and separate bodies, which lead separate lives and go their separate ways" (1:2). Every one of us has the same purpose, the same function, and in that we are united.
Part of the healing of my own mind is the recognition that the other person does indeed share the same purpose with me, and in his reality, wants the same thing. If I look at his ego, I see separate interests—and that may be all that he or she is seeing. But when I give up my interpretation and allow the Holy Spirit to interpret for me, I see that the other person's fear, which is manifesting as attack, is really a call for love and is really a witness to the belief in love within their mind. The result of this is that I see the other person does not need to change to be one with me; they already are one with me! I have a hidden ally in their mind. I have their own secret agreement with me on a common goal.
The part God has "saved for me" (2:1) in His plan is designed to restore me to happiness, because happiness is His Will for me. There is something in us—the ego, of course!—that tells us it is wrong to want perfect happiness. But if perfect happiness is God's Will, then to think I don't deserve it is to oppose God's Will!
For God's Will to be complete, my joy must be complete, for His Will is perfect joy for everyone! If everyone I meet encounters a face shining with joy, they will hear God calling to them in my happy laughter (2:6).
I am essential to God's plan; my joy is essential to His plan (3:1). So, today, let me choose the joy of God instead of pain. "Without your smile, the world cannot be saved…all laughter can but echo yours" (3:3-4).
So my job today, and every day, is to be happy. I cannot be happy if I attack, or judge, or blame, or condemn. I cannot be happy unless I accept; unless I forgive as the Course teaches, looking past all the ego's illusions to see the happy truth in everyone: they want love just as I do.
We teach through our happiness. We call all minds to let their sorrows go by our "joy on earth" (4:2). This is plainly speaking about a manifest joy, one visible on our face through a smile and happy laughter. "God's messengers are joyous, and their joy heals sorrow and despair" (4:3).
A good affirmation for the day would be "My joy heals."
The part we all have in God's plan is to demonstrate, by our perfect happiness, that God wills perfect happiness for all who will accept it as a gift from Him.
Sadness is a choice, a decision to "Play another part, instead of what has been assigned to you by God" (5:3). It is the ego's mad desire to be independent of any power except its own. When I clamp down on my happiness I fail to show the world what God wills for us all, and thus I fail to recognize the happiness that is already, always mine.
"Today we [I] will attempt to understand joy is our [my] function here" (6:1). Nothing has to change to make this possible. I can be perfectly happy right now, because happiness does not depend on anything outside of my mind. Getting upset with anything or anyone does not change it; only happiness heals. Only happiness brings lasting change.
We mistakenly think at times that our happiness somehow enables the error and sin of others. If someone is being cruel and I continue to be happy, it seems to condone cruelty. However, to be upset at cruelty does not heal it; it makes it real. It is far more joyous, and far more healing, to see in the cruelty a groundless fear that masks an appeal for help, that shows by its very obscurity that within that person is a longing she or he shares with me; a longing for God, a longing for His gift of happiness. My happiness in the face of cruelty teaches that the grounds for the cruelty do not exist. It does not attack the symptom of cruelty; it undoes cruelty's source. To be happy is not to lose out, to sacrifice, or to die (7:7). It is to live forever.
It is our little thoughts and foolish goals that hold us back from happiness (9:3-5). Our mind has chosen to make something more important than happiness, and what that means in deep, metaphysical terms is that we have made something more important than Christ or God. If we look, He is in us. "He will be there"; that thought is repeated twice (9:1; 10:1). The Christ is in me, waiting to be acknowledged as myself. That is the only true source of happiness, and we all have Him already.
My job today is to be His messenger, and to "find what He would have you give" (10:4). To find happiness in myself and give my happiness to others: that is the reason I am here, that is why this day exists for me. I am essential to God's plan for the salvation of the world. Without my smile, the world cannot be saved (3:3).