The giving of one’s time, money and gifts can look like the Spirit’s giving, but if there is a thought of getting something in return, be it praise, acceptance or brownie points in heaven, then the giving mechanism is of the ego. The giving mechanism from Spirit is involuntary, and as we allow Spirit to give through us, our whole lives become an expression of giving with no expectation of getting anything in return.
From all appearances, Bernie is the ultimate “Mr. Nice Guy.” He seems to give selflessly to everyone around him and seems to be in a perpetual state of peace and happiness. Peace, from the perspective of people in the world, means not rocking the boat and not saying what is on one’s mind so as not to hurt “others.” True peace is experienced when we are willing to follow the prompts given by Spirit without regard to how our words and actions will be perceived by “others” on the screen. Our lives may actually become more chaotic as we take the steps given to us by Spirit to unwind from old beliefs, thought patterns, and ways of doing things.
In this movie, Bernie is paired up with an outspoken, stubborn woman who challenges him to be direct and say what he needs to say. The more that Bernie gets pushed, the more his face of innocence cracks under pressure. Without Spirit’s guidance in dealing with deep feelings of rage and self hatred when they surface, it seems too scary to allow oneself to be in situations or relationships that bring out the worst in us. Wanting true peace above all else and not desiring the drama anymore is the little willingness spoken about in "A Course in Miracles" that can show us that there is a better way.