I’ve always preferred to be in love than to fall in love. Oh, sure, falling in love is exciting. But it’s also terrifying. (There’s a fine line between exciting and terrifying). It takes time and exposure to a person to know if you can trust them. And in the beginning your feelings for this stranger far outstrip your knowledge of them. If you feel early on that you can trust them it is an illusion based on your trust for someone of whom they unconsciously remind you. In other words, when you fall in love you risk getting hurt. And this makes it stressful.
It is the same when one first becomes aware of Truth. Can this wonderful experience be trusted? Of course it is stressful when you begin a spiritual path. Oh, sure, it’s exciting at the beginning, too. You are so hungry for the experience. You are so hungry for books and teachers and anything that will bring the experience to mind. But don’t underestimate your distrust. This is why when you step away from those moments and books and teachers you are in doubt. You swing back to the uncomfortable, but familiar, personal thought system (ego) and its world. It seems safer to return to familiar pain than to risk an unfamiliar pain if the Truth turns out to be untrustworthy.
As trust is learned to be justified in a relationship, love deepens, and stress falls away. It is the same with your relationship with the Awareness of Truth (Holy Spirit). But here’s the difference: With people there is always a limit to trust. What we really learn with others is where we can and cannot trust them. For example, you may learn that your partner can be trusted to be there for you emotionally. But he or she cannot be trusted to handle the finances. Is that a deal breaker for the relationship? It depends on you and your values. We all prioritize our values. In all of our relationships with people we unconsciously and consciously weigh our values against what the other has to offer in the relationship. No one is perfect. No one is going to fill all of our needs or meet all of our values. We let in those who meet the needs and values we hold highest.
But with the Awareness of Truth in your mind there is no need to limit trust. It is wholly trustworthy. However, coming from human relationships and their relative trustworthiness, it takes a long time to accept this. It seems too good to be true that there is Something wholly trustworthy. And in the world of relativity anything that seems too good to be true is not true. Students so often ask me why this process to peace takes so long. Well, because it all comes down to trust. That’s why in the Teacher’s Manual A Course in Miracles lays out the process as the “Development of Trust”.
I found it helpful along the way, when I saw that I was not willing to let in the Awareness of Truth, to acknowledge that I just didn’t trust It enough yet. It did not matter that I wanted to trust. Trust isn’t something that can be forced. It cannot be faked. I either trusted or I did not trust. There’s no middle ground. No matter how much I wanted to trust the proof that I did not trust was in my unwillingness to let in the Awareness of Truth. Accepting this unwillingness reminded me that I was not at the mercy of some outside power. The block was in me; nothing outside of me was withholding peace from me. Accepting this, at least, empowered me.
Trust grows through exposure to the trustworthiness of that which you want to trust. That’s why the path to peace is a two-pronged approach: Let in the Awareness of Truth. And if you cannot, find and undo your blocks to letting in the Awareness of Truth. This takes time.
I found it helpful to not only acknowledge my lack of trust to myself but also to the Awareness of Truth. “I know You’re here. But I just don’t trust you. Here’s why…” This way I at least kept the lines of communication to It open.
Want support on the path to peace? read "You Don't Have to Go It Alone".
Learn about one-on-one mentoring, how to send a donation for this blog, and about the books The ACIM Mentor Articles, The Plain Language A Course in Miracles, 4 Habits for Inner Peace, and Releasing Guilt for Inner Peace at www.acimmentor.com.