My nervous condition comes and goes. It went away for a long period of time and that was great. We started functioning again more like we had before but, as I said, it was difficult then because there was these issues on the Board. I seriously entertained the idea of quitting this organization and starting a new A Course In Miracles organization at that time, because it was so hard to function in that conflict environment. Every time I asked for guidance from the Holy Spirit about that, I got the same guidance which was, "This is a temporary situation. It may last for years, but it's temporary. Once you get through this situation, the fact that the Community Miracles Center has this history and this longevity, and has gotten through these things will be invaluable. There is no way you can even calculate how important and how valuable that will be. So just do the best you can and get through it." Which is what I did.
A Course in Miracles says, "Yet God can bring you there if you are willing to follow the Holy Spirit through seeming terror, trusting Him not to abandon you and leave you there." (OrEd.Tx.18.87) Going through periods of severe anxiety when you don't sleep – that's going through seeming terror, but I did have A Course in Miracles through all of my subsequent nervous episodes and this line became a line that carried me through more dark nights of the soul than I possibly care to remember. The Holy Spirit was carrying me through the seeming terror, and I knew that Holy Spirit would not abandon me and that we would get through all of those things.
He continued, "Sometimes suffering occurs for reasons that we just can't understand until it is eventually revealed to us by God. In those times of great sorrow and unspeakable pain we are to remain steadfast in faith." He started rubbing his arms and legs and said, "I am 89 years of age and sometimes I feel my own aches and pains, but like Job, I am joyful and filled with love for God. I know that aches and pains, and even the body itself, are just tricks of the devil to separate me from God. I am joyful in spite of the pain for God is true and just."
He looked up at the ceiling, closed his eyes for a moment, and his whole body suddenly shook as if he experienced a jolt of electricity. He opened his eyes, pointed at me, and said, "Did you feel that?" I didn't answer, but he definitely had my full attention. His eyes opened wide as he declared, "That is confirmation of the truth. I am sometimes told things. Your pain and suffering like Job's, will provide you spiritual strength to follow through with God's will and the mission He has for you. Listen with your ears and your heart, and it will soon be clear. Don't give up, and don't waste this moment, not now. Circumstance didn't bring you here by accident; we have been awaiting your arrival."
For me the Course was a practical way of living through the negative emotions we have: anger, non-forgiveness, sometimes there's hatred, or sometimes there's resentment. Sometimes there is a feeling that we're entitled, and other people are not doing their obligation to meet our sense of entitlement. Things like these would come up when I read the Course. Sometimes I'll spend hours on just one paragraph, because I have to make sense of it. And not only that, what I would do is I would try and sense if I was aligned with what the Course was saying. Many times if we only read the Course quickly, we just gloss over it. We get to the end of a line, and then the next line, and the next paragraph, and the next chapter, and so on, and we give ourselves a pat on the back for having finished the Course. We haven't finished the Course unless we have really gotten at least one paragraph or one sentence completely, entirely. We must look at the one paragraph and say, "Okay, I'm in alignment with it." When we are in alignment with what the Course says, then I think we have really begun our journey.
I think Tony mentioned that we will never be at the end of our journey while here. Once we feel we have come to a sense of peace, there's still work to do. There's an alchemy that has to happen. So if you think that some part of your journey has completed, you are not at the end yet. Peter was saying earlier today that you are in a better place than you were before. I feel that way. I feel I am at a place of greater peace of mind than before.
Another challenging situation I have in my life, as many of you are also aware, is being a football coach at my high school. The script I had written for this was that I was going to become coach and bring back a winning tradition to my high school. So my first year as coach we were three wins and eight losses. In my second year we were one win and ten losses. (laughter)
That's a pretty nasty script if you want to listen to the ego, which I heard a lot. I heard it from my own inner dialogue. I heard a lot of suffering and critical thoughts within, and at times I heard it from the fans in the stands who were not happy for various reasons. I mean this is kind of funny, but I was thinking about it one time we were playing a game against Capuchino High School that is located in San Bruno, not too far away. We literally, for that game, had just eighteen players, which is the minimum legal number. You have to have at least eighteen players to play the game, and that's precisely all that we had. We were playing in their field. I got this total feeling like I was in a war zone, because during the game we were having so many guys hurt and injured that I got to the point where I was afraid to look behind my shoulder and see those injured guys sprawled on the field.