Dare to Be Happy
By Rev. Daniel Tipton*

Bite-Sized Inspiration


We lie to ourselves every day. Isn't that what ACIM is telling us? "Stop lying to yourself". When I think about it, who am I kidding? Certainly, I am not fooling God. In fact, I am only fooling myself. Isn't that a little insane? How appalled are we when we catch somebody lying to us? Yet, we deceive ourselves on a regular basis. ACIM is teaching is to stop kidding ourselves. This is not a condemnation. It also tells us we can laugh at ourselves a little. When we are "kidding", it's like we are joking. Laugh at the little idea the ego made up and remember the unwavering truth of our nature: we are as God created us.


Symbolically, Adam (man) believed the first lie, which was from the serpent (ego). He then fell into a deep sleep from which he is yet to awaken. We are hypnotized by our own lies. It's time to wake up.


"When the "lies of the serpent" were introduced, they were specifically called "lies" because they are not true. When man listened, all he heard was untruth. He does not have to continue to believe what is not true unless he chooses to do so. All of his miscreations can literally disappear in "the twinkling of an eye" because they are merely visual misperceptions. Man's Spiritual eye can sleep, but a sleeping eye can still see. What is seen in dreams seems to be very real. The Bible mentions that "a deep sleep fell upon Adam," and nowhere is there any reference to his waking up." (OrEd.T.2.13)



Assertiveness is a trait I would like to foster and ACIM is giving me the foundation of truth from which to stand upon. With ACIM behind is, we can speak our minds, knowing we have God's full support. Yet, I am afraid of saying the wrong thing or hurting somebody's feelings. I am in school to be a counselor and I find that assertiveness is actually helpful to people, most of the time. We do not help people by reserving our truth out of fear. In fact, we may have something to say that a person has been dying to hear for a long time. How many times have I walked away from a conversation, wishing I had said what I really wanted to say, probably what was needed to be heard by both of us. Putting those "controversial" words out there is certainly scary, but what's the worst that can happen? On the other hand, what's the best that can happen? The potential would certainly be increased. Let's do something crazy and speak our minds a little more...correction: speak our hearts a little more. Speaking from the heart is an act of love. The result may not always be what we want or expect, but it's not our job to decide that anyway.

 "There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you." -Marianne Williamson


My praying for mastery of fear has been meaningless. This is why I have run into so many problems in my relationships.



In my opinion, "Okay" is one of the more enlightened responses we can make. “Okay” is acceptance. If we can respond to all things in life this way, no matter how exciting or terrifying, we are on the right path. “Okay” signifies that we are not judging the situation, but accepting and waiting for guidance on the next step. “Okay” has many uses in this culture, but I certainly don't mean it here in the passive or sarcastic sense. When we use “Okay” in the spiritual sense, it is an affirmation of letting go.

The dictionary defines it as: all right; proceeding normally; satisfactory or under control. It symbolizes trust. When we trust in God, isn't every thing “all right” and “proceeding normally”? A teacher of mine often used this in response to many of my stories. Whether they were the most exciting tale or heart-breaking sob story, he often responded with “Okay”, and little else. The ego does not like such a neutral response, yet I believe ACIM is asking to say it much more. If we can learn to say “Okay” to all of the dramatic circumstances of life, we are well on our way to peace.

The Guilt of Distantiation:

I've often struggled to get myself out of bad situations. I used to feel that I was giving up or abandoning something. I read something in the text that gave me some peace. In chapter 2, section 2, it gives us some basic rules. It has some definitions for flight and distantiation.

30 Flight can be undertaken in whatever direction you choose, but note that the concept itself implies flight from something. Flight from error is perfectly appropriate.

31 Distantiation can be properly used as a way of putting distance between yourself and what you should fly from.” (OrEd.T.2.30-31)

In my past, I have had to take flight from or distance myself from situations such as relationships or jobs. However, my guilt kept me in those situations even when they felt awful. I was afraid to leave for fear of abandoning a lesson God would have me learn. This thing is however, I had created those situations out of nothing. I made the decision to partake, and I was free to leave. Sometimes, we have to distance ourselves from or leave somebody or something, and there is nothing wrong that. In fact, when I left my job, I felt better in a matter of minutes (after waiting for months in fear). ACIM calls this a positive use of denial. Just as we are to deny the error in our minds, we can deny the worldly situations created by our minds. This may require the physical act of removing our bodies from a situation.

“Withdrawal is properly employed in the service of withdrawing from the meaningless. It is not a device for escape, but for consolidation. There is only One Mind” (OrEd.T.2.27)



*Rev. Daniel Tipton is a member of Course in Miracles Society and resides in Omaha, NE. He is currently working on a masters degree in Counseling at UNO; he is one of the founding members of the new Miracle Cell Men's TeaDaniel Tiptonm and he was recently ordained as a Community Miracles Center
minister after completing the 2 year ACIM Ministerial Program . Rev. Daniel was one of the assisting reverends at the 2013 ACIM Conference in Chicago. 


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