None of this means that we then lack the capacity to set boundaries, say a healthy "no," or stand up for ourselves when we need to. Quite the opposite: Since love aligns us with the thoughts of God, it aligns us with the thoughts of God, it aligns us with our personal power. Where there is total love, there is no guilt. Where there is no guilt, there is no obstruction to true and honest communication.
What truly serves one person's good serves the good of all. We don't have to decide whether to love others at the expense of ourselves or ourselves at the expense of others, because utlimately we are all one. There are no separate needs, for there are no separate beings except in illusion. Understanding that paradox gives us a healthy sense of our own individuality, for it gives us a sense of ourselves based on love and not defensiveness. A healthy self-love is not narcissistic but self-extending. We are all waves in the same ocean and sunbeams of the same sun. Only in illusion are we separate, and we pray to transcend illusion. We pray to be able to perceive our oneness with others, with God, and within ourselves.
The idea that someone is supporting us when they foster our belief in another person's guilt is false. All minds are joined. That is the meaning of the Sonship. Whatever thoughts we hold toward others we are holding about ourselves as well. It is only in relinquishing our focus on another person's guilt that we can know the joy of our own innocence. From that place, we can say a very powerful "no" when necessary. We can tell them not to call anymore. Love is not weakness, but wisdom. God's answer is always loving, but the loving answer is not always "yes."
Relationships are the central issue in a peaceful, powerful life. The following prayer may help us get on the ladder to heaven, help us stay there and help us climb.
Show me the light at the center of my brothers and sisters.
Show me the light at the center of myself.
Show me the light at the center of the world.
Where I see guilt, show me innocence.
Where I focus on mistakes, show me how to
focus on efforts at good.
Help me have faith in the goodness of others.
Help me have faith in Your spirit within me.
Thus may darkness be cast out.
May I cleave to the light that is my heart.
This is my prayer.
May I see the light in everyone. Amen.
Relations pertains to family and friends ~ family members can be your friend and friends can be just as close as a family member or relative ought to be. Sometimes our relations are only friends. What is the purpose of being a friend if we don't take seriously the responsibility of supporting someone? Support systems means just that: that members of the system support one another. Of course we value independence, and friendship is not meant to undermine that value in ourselves or others. But still, in the strongest of personalities, in the most blessed of lives, there are times when a person emotionally falls down. Where are we then, if not for our friends? Who else can we depend on, to lend the resources of kindness and strength to help us get back up? Friendship should not be taken lightly. It is as sacred a commitment as any other; our friends are sent by God, for us to help them and for them to help us.
We live in meanspirited times. People instinctively attack. There is often more criticism leveled against success than failure, more suspicion of excellence than of mediocrity. We do not live in a friendly society. A friend assumes our innocence. A friend applauds our desire to play big in life. A friend supports our efforts to live according to spiritual purpose. A friend is always ready to help us forgive. A friend forgives us when we need forgiveness.
A friend will see us at our worst, as well as at our best, but his love will not waver when we have failed to show our most positive features. A friend will not close his heart when we have made a mistake. A friend will not condemn us but will compassionately support our return to a state of grace. Friends will try to refrain from criticism, because it hurts the friendship and it hurts the soul.
The conscious prayer is not "Dear God, send me more friends" but rather "Dear God, make me a good friend." Do I appreciate my friends or do I take them for granted? Do I let them know how grateful I am? Do I actively, verbally support them in their endeavors? Do I give to my friends, or do I do more taking?
Family isn't always blood. It's the people in your life who want you
in theirs. The ones who accept you for who you are. The ones who
would do anything to see you smile, and who love you no matter what.