I continue to read “Fearless Giving” by That R Ashcraft and it occurs to me that it is similar to the Course prayer which states:
“I am here only to be truly helpful.
I am here to represent Him Who sent me.
I do not have to worry about what to say or what to do, because He Who sent me will direct me.
I am content to be wherever He wishes, knowing He goes there with me.
I will be healed as I let Him teach me to heal.”
By anchoring my intentions in giving rather than getting, I eliminate fear.
Now, this is not a new concept for me, but like all ideas that I am trying to embody fully, it is helpful to approach them from a new perspective. Ashcraft says, “Fear arise from its intimate mental association with ‘getting’ and ‘having.’ And it arises particularly from its relationship to ‘not having enough’ or having something ‘taken’ from us. We then begin to have feelings that say ‘we don’t’ want to risk what little we have already, do we?’”
As I daily notice the places where fear/ego rises up to warn me of impending danger, I notice that it is always associated with the depleting of resources. I feel the need to protect what I have. I don’t give the homeless guy a few bucks because I have an electric bill due in a few days. I don’t pay for lunch out with a client (I let him pay) because he is willing and my account balance is low. I don’t pay off the entire balance on my credit card because I want to make sure there will be enough left over to pay the mortgage. I mentally calculate constantly.
The mental gymnastics are often relentless. No wonder I feel stressed out!
Now, I will say that studying A Course in Miracles has helped tremendously because I have a lot more faith than I used to. But I still find myself hedging my bets, you know, in case God isn’t paying attention and doesn’t come through for me. Particularly when I can’t “see” how the pieces can come together.
I’m only a third of the way through the book, and frankly even that arouses a certain amount of anxiety, like I’m going to fail, like I am too stupid or defective or some other derogatory adjective to be able to master this piece.
I breathe into Spirit. I return to the Course because that calms me down.
Today’s lesson — I am never upset for the reason I think. It always goes to fear.
The Course says, “When you associate giving with sacrifice, you give only because you believe that you are somehow getting something better, and can therefore do without the thing you give. “Giving to get” is an inescapable law of the ego, which always evaluates itself in relation to other egos. It is therefore continually preoccupied with the belief in scarcity that gave rise to it.”
So, today, as I attempt to shift my thinking into what I want to give rather than what I want to get, I work on noticing the many ways that fear eclipses my giving impulses. Because my mantra is “teach only love,” I use that as my backdrop for giving rather than worrying about the money.
I definitely still have work to do.
Namaste, my friends, Namaste.