By Moshe Ross — A dear friend of ours was roofing her home last week, fell off the ladder, smashed her ribs on a concrete pier below, and bounced to the ground.

A dear friend of ours was roofing her home last week, fell off the ladder, smashed her ribs on a concrete pier below, and bounced to the ground. Lying there, she looked to her left and to her right, and 18 inches to each side of the pier she'd hit was another pier, each with a metal blade several inches high for securing a column, sticking up on top. In the following days, as the rib pain faded away, she found that a lower back ache which she'd endured for years had now completely vanished.

Yesterday, in the backyard, hanging wash on a wooden drying rack, I was thinking meanly of someone, and a splinter stabbed into my finger.

Today, another dear friend was searching downtown for his son who was in deep trouble, when a stranger walked up and led him to his son.

When our friend was spared that blade, and even received a healing, we might think that God arranged the whole demonstration. Actually, God doesn't do something bad to someone in order to do something good. Humanity sees catastrophes, and God can tweak them right in the moment.

When I had an unloving thought, God was kind enough to warn me off, and Its invisible intention was translated into that splinter.

When the unknown angel appeared and guided our friend, it revealed that salvation is already and always here, showing us a way. At God's end, this meeting is eternally present, even while at our end we're working it out with many a steep and bleeding step.

With all these perils and miraculous rescues, there is something very important for us to see: God never does bad things to anyone. The Holy One is the only life, witnessing and experiencing our griefs from within us, and It is only helping us along.

We dream that we are separated and exiled, and we have entered into terrible situations here on the earth. As in these examples, we fix them by learning to find their spiritual meanings, redeeming their hidden value and bearing them forward through the unexpected changes that the future will unfold. We can transmute them into new wisdom, into more generous affection. That means we do an enormous amount of work.

This is a spiritual universe, not material, composed of metaphors like a series of plays, with a vastly long running time. As in these examples, we start to turn and see how things really are, and we adroitly translate the invisible activity of the Sacred and mesh it into all the pictures and dramas of our lives. But we can only do this to the extent that we're ready to let these currents flow into us. While sufferings drag on, we are unveiling things just as fast as we can.

So in all this world there is no blame. We cannot blame the eternal substance of love that we call God. When at last we open the door, we find that love was here with us in the room the whole time. We cannot blame ourselves and we cannot blame our neighbor, as "with every mistake we must surely be learning."

There is no blame at all, let us drop it now. Our coming into this world was needful. Our trials aren't inflicted on another, for we are the very Beloved One who has entered this world. Where there was blame, sing praise.

Peace, love and joy.

Moshe Ross (488-2571) lives and teaches in Ashland.

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