“You who hold your brother’s hand also hold mine, for when you joined each other you were not alone. Do you believe that I would leave you in the darkness that you agreed to leave with me? In your relationship is this world’s light. And fear must disappear before you now.” (T-18.III.4)
In the Living Miracles community there is emphasis on joining and collaboration. In ACIM the words join and joining are found hundreds if not thousands of times. Jesus talks about joining in prayer and joining in decision making. I have felt resistance to the concept of “joining,” particularly in decision making with a brother. I asked the Holy Spirit, what is this “joining”? What is the purpose of this joining?
“Healing is a thought by which two minds perceive they are one and become glad. This gladness calls to every part of the Sonship to rejoice with them and lets God go out unto them and through them.” (T-5.I.1.1.)
“The atonement is a lesson in sharing which is given to you because you forgot how to do it.” (T-9.IV.3.1)
It is the joining and the experience of truth revealed in sharing with a brother that shows the illusion false and opens the mind to new perception. The source of love that is hidden can be revealed in this way, by the two joining is bringing together what seemed separate to ask for God’s will, their own Devine will to recognize each other as the same, equal Sons of God.
“Even the joining, then, is not enough, if those who pray together do not ask, before all else, what is the Will of God. From this Cause only can the answer come in which are all specifics satisfied; all separate wishes unified in one.” (S-IV.3.1)
Joining is a celebration of what is most holy. God’s holy sons honoring what is true – they are joined always and forever – One in light and One in truth. It is a re-enforcement of the choice to remember light or darkness and the beauty that can be found when brothers join together to step toward heaven. It recognizes that brothers share this light as all brothers are equal. All brothers have the power to say yes to light in this moment (the right mind and Holy Spirit), to make the choice to stand in light and that by offering light to each other they can remember that there is only one Light and one Son.
“The Atonement can only be accepted within you by releasing inner light. (T-2.III.1)
This offering between brothers is a gentle invitation to the beauty of the now and shows that darkness is impossible.
“But forget not that your relationship is one, and so it must be that whatever threatens the peace of one is an equal threat to the other. The power of joining its blessing lies in the fact that it is now impossible for you or your brother to experience fear alone, or to attempt to deal with it alone.” (T-18.V.6.3)
I’ve realized that when I’ve been in a state of fear I allowed my mind to agree to the illusory belief I am separate.
“Fear seems to live in darkness, and when you are afraid you have stepped back. Let us join quickly in an instant of light, and it will be enough to remind you that your goal is light.” (T-18.III.2.5)
I can choose to return the power of the mind to the Holy Spirit in any moment and one of the most helpful gifts provided by Jesus is the reminder to join with a brother. The more I step forward to join (pray to ask God’s will together or just recognize that we are joined in mind) with a brother (and deny that I am separate) over time there is only the recognition of trust and gratitude for this shared gift and the peace that comes from knowing minds are joined. It is as though any thought of fear becomes the signal to remember what is already joined. This joining has been a beautiful way to feel the ever present stillness and hear the gentle, precious voice of the Holy Spirit within it. And in that thought of joining in light love pours out in deep waves. Welcoming joining is a gentle boat ride into presence.
“Now can you say to everyone who comes to join in prayer with you:
I cannot go without you, for you are a part of me.
And so he is in truth. Now can you pray only for what you truly share with him. For you have understood he never left, and you, who seemed alone, are one with him.
The ladder ends with this, for learning is no longer needed. Now you stand before the gate of Heaven, and your brother stands beside you there. The lawns are deep and still, for here the place appointed for the time when you should come has waited long for you. Here will time end forever. At this gate eternity itself will join with you. Prayer has become what it was meant to be, for you have recognized the Christ in you.” (S-VII.8.)