When they say this, they aren't saying "its a punishment", even though that's what I'm interpreting it as - some kind of unfair treatment. By saying its a lesson, it lets me know I have something to learn.
But it also lets me know, that this isn't something that they're trying to hide from me. They're not being assholes and concealing the answer to the lesson. It's totally available, and I'm aware somehow that the only reason I'm having the lesson is because *I* need to change in some way. There's something about my perception that is faulty, or something is unforgiven, or some healing is needed.
At the same time, I get this feeling like, there is a prize... a gift... there's something valuable that is 'mine' but its hidden from me, like a buried treasure or something. I can have it, and there's nothing stopping me from having it, other than that I need to learn the lesson. It's not a lesson in punishment or how I need to suffer. So then this makes it feel more like a challenge.
Also knowing it's a lesson helps me to not see it as 'against me' or 'unwanted' like I was before. If its just a lesson then things are happening for a reason, and there's just something I don't accept or don't realize/recognize yet. This sort of makes it almost an exciting challenge to find out what it is that I'm not 'getting' yet. This then sends me on a journey of discovery to look within and investigate what's really going on here. It's a call to do some radical honesty and inquire within.
And actually it's not like Jesus or Holy Spirit are mean school teachers who put up walls or reprimand you or anything. They are actually willing to HELP, with the lesson. But it entails a certain amount of willingness on my part. I can even ask them for guidance and they can provide some.. sort of like clues... because they don't often just outright reveal the 'answer' or solution or truth. But they're there to help as much as I'm willing to learn. Ultimately, how quickly I learn the lesson is up to me.
See we each have our own curriculum and like ACIM says, we get to decide when to learn - ie we can delay or be willing - but we don't necessarily set what the curriculum contains. And usually when lessons come along they are always unwanted at first. That's why they happen, lol. But they're there to help. They're nudges toward God. So if something seems to have gone wrong I need to become willing to at least accept that this is trying to help me somehow, and that I need to open up to something because I've made some mistakes. I need to learn the lesson. It's not there to torture me but to free me. My mighty companions just want the best for me.
Thanks Jesus/Holy Spirit.