As you know, everyone is talking about the future of our country and our economy. My reply is to say, “Are you doing so well with today that you should be focused on the future?” Whether we are discussing today or tomorrow, the answer is always the same . . . DO THE WORK THAT LIES BEFORE YOU! Practice love, peace, and forgiveness in your life and in all your relations and you can be certain of a better tomorrow. If you neglect today’s opportunities to rise into higher consciousness through love and forgiveness, you can be sure that you future will always be the same as the past—or worse.

Don’t expect your life to improve faster than you do. And don’t expect yourself to improve faster than your ability to love and forgive. When you refrain from a loving life, you keep yourself bound to the past and out of the moment—wherein peace is found.

Forgiveness Heals

Forgiveness heals us from the perception of being separate from God, which in turn accomplishes a mini version of our return Home. Of course if it’s true that your ego has no intention of letting you off the hook that easy, you can bet it will keep trying to keep you from healing and forgiving. The ego encourages a constant state of fear that screams, “Make them (people in the present) suffer for how I feel and for what was done to me (usually in the past).” But forgiveness sings, “Let it go!” Or, as A Course in Miracles puts it, say to those who have hurt you, “God is the loving with which I forgive you.”

Of course it’s always easier to forgive those whom you have deemed “deserving” of your forgiveness and have had the time to gradually choose to forgive them. But remember the real work comes from those who catch you off guard, when you’re not in the mood to forgive. These are the best people with which to practice healing. These are the folks who offer you your greatest advancements. Learn to laugh at the fact that you were caught unprepared and attempting to hide an issue. It may not be easy to see it this way at first but eventually it all comes together when you begin to see the reward of peace and joy that come from such opportunities as these. After all, when you truly forgive, you are coming closer to being as God than in any other moment, because to truly forgive means to see the light within yourself and others, as does God.

Conversely, the fear-based, ego part of your mind will always try to expose darkness in yourself or others. The mistakes that we all make are merely seen as temporary errors in God’s eyes but as unforgivable SINS in the eyes of the ego. Love forgives what fear condemns. Therefore love or forgiveness undoes whatever the ego is trying to accomplish through fear and hurt. The reason the ego needs to see it as such is to keep debts alive; Debts that will never allow us to be free. If we are released and forgiven, then the ego is released and ceases to exist, which it fights to prevent.

Letting Go of Unhealed Judgments

So be courageous enough to allow others off the hook for what you believe they did to you. Even if others have indeed hurt you by human standards, you can still let them off the hook so that you don’t remain in the hell of hurt with them. It may not happen today but once you get tired enough of the cycle of error, guilt, suffering, and payment—which usually only results in more error and the continuation of the same cycle—you will eventually choose to release all those whom you have imprisoned for their deeds. But why wait until you are exhausted from this process of condemning and pardoning? Learn to release everyone NOW! Each day, spend a moment thinking of someone new who you can release. Of course some of us say, “But I really just love everyone and hold no resentment of any kind.” To this I would have to say that if you had no unhealed hurt, you would ascend! It’s that simple! The truth is, even when you are capable of noticing the difference between the color of people’s skin or between victims and victimizers, it means your soul is still not clear of untrue, past perceptions, which originate in our unhealed judgments. God holds no such perceptions or judgments.

In the end, the only things that you actually forgive are the illusions or false perceptions you once held against yourself or others. In releasing such perceptions, your soul is restored to its original state of grace. In other words, you are released as you release others—“Forgiven are our debts, as we have forgiven others.” Furthermore, since it was your choice to release an old hurt, resentment or judgment and this resulted in forgiveness and healing, you could honestly say that you’ve healed yourself—just as you were the one who once condemned yourself. In other words, others may have hurt you but your lack of forgiveness condemned you to continue to suffer for this hurt.

A Forgiveness Exercise

Take a few minutes to think of someone who seems to have hurt you. Anyone who comes to mind is a good choice but if you feel you are not ready to forgive or heal with someone, then choose simpler examples. Prayerfully ask God to help you to see this person as He sees them. Then, imagine a spark of light beaming from this person’s heart and growing until it permeates every part of them. Then allow yourself to feel the incredible appreciation that person feels for your decision to release them and see the light in them. Now, allow yourself to recognize that the person you’ve just forgiven also represents a part of you that you’ve just forgiven. So let the light that you saw engulfing them, now begin as a spark in your own heart and let it grow until you too are engulfed in this peaceful, loving, light. Now give thanks to your new friend (a former enemy) for showing up in this exercise, now resulting in a better life for you both. Finally, give thanks to yourself for making the wise choice to practice love, peace, and forgiveness today. Forgiveness is the only way to be certain of a brighter future.