"To say, "Of myself I can do nothing" is to gain all power. And yet it is but a seeming paradox. As God created you, you have all power." - ACIM
"There is nothing my holiness cannot do." - ACIM
I want to be clear about this, because this is an often misunderstood matter. It's a question of who does what, who has the power, and who should get the credit. Is God the miracle worker? Are we? Both?
First of all, let's tackle this term "of myself". Of yourself, you have and are nothing. This does not mean you do not exist. It means that what you are, YOU did not put there. You did not create yourself. What you have did not come from you. You did not originate it - it wasn't "of" (from) you. But this DOES NOT in any way mean that you HAVE NOTHING or that you can do nothing. Far from it.
For example, children do not create themselves. Of themselves, they did not give themselves life. But they have life. They have life because their creator SHARED their life with them. Their parent EXTENDED life and GAVE life to them, creating them as a standalone life joined with the parent's life. The child is not devoid of life or incapable, but what they have was inherited.
God extended his own will to us to create us. He shares the Kingdom with us. He put everything he HAS into us. He invested us with HIS POWER. His light is our light. His love and joy are shared with us. It's in us. We didn't put it there, but you sure as heck HAVE it. We are HOST TO GOD but this doesn't mean "only God exists and we do not".
God does not create weak beings who can do nothing. God creates POWERFUL beings of light. In fact, unlimited, holy beings who can do literally ANYTHING. They are fully equipped to CREATE. They are unlimited. They have been GIVEN the ABILITY to accomplish anything.
In fact, God has established his children as CO-CREATORS, which does NOT mean that God is the only one doing the creative act. It's not just God sitting there creating "through His children with His children doing nothing at all. His children MUST collaborate, MUST be included, MUST share, MUST exercise free will, and MUST CHOOSE to co-create with and like the father. BOTH of them produce creative ACTS together in collaboration.
God created the sonship, and the sonship is fully equipped with the ability to ADD TO the Kingdom. They create additional beings - "children of my will". But they create them WITH their brothers, AND with God. This doesn't mean any individual part of the Kingdom "does all the work". EVERY part of the Kingdom does all the work. Even the Holy Spirit participates in co-creation. So who gets credit? They all do.
So when we say that of ourselves we can do nothing, we have to be very careful not to imply that we do the OPPOSITE of doing something. Because it is absolutely NOT TRUE that we "do nothing" or that God is "the doer" through us, excluding us from the process. Without us God CANNOT act through us.
This is why ACIM says "Love goes out because of what it is, but you are needed that it can begin" and why "Love cannot enter where it's not welcome." YOU have to participate, not merely in an act of getting out of the way and allowing, but ACTIVELY WILLING in accord with God's will.
God has GIVEN YOU His power, making you a powerful co-creator with a powerful mind. That means there is stuff you can do. Not only is there stuff you can do, there is nothing you cannot do. You are unlimited in your power. YOUR power. But YOUR power is ALSO HIS. You don't OWN it exclusively, but you DO own it.
The point Jesus is making is not that you can't do anything or that God does everything. He's making the point that your symbiotic relationship with God means that anything you CAN do is BECAUSE you and God are working TOGETHER in unison. You are sharing in God's power. You are extending HIS love, AS your own. How could you even experience the ability to love another if you could not YOURSELF be capable of loving? YOU love others, along with God.
We need to be careful, indeed, not to believe that our power is "of ourself". This is an ego belief that everything we are and can do is because we independently have superpowers that do NOT depend on God, or that are not shared or accessible to all. It would be egoic and arrogant to claim that everything we do, we do WITHOUT God. We would be merely bragging at our prowess with our limited "skills."
This is why Jesus deferred "ownership" of miraculous acts to the Power of God through Him. But he did not mean that HE Himself had no power or did not participate or merely sat on the sideline and watched. Jesus's mind was powerful. HE was a powerful miracle worker. It's just that in terms of WHO does the act or WHO makes it possible, ownership is SHARED with God. Of Himself Jesus HAD nothing and WAS nothing. He was not OF Himself, He was an extended creation of God. But he definitely HAD power and DID acts. HIS mind was miraculous.
Here for example, Jesus explains that ownership to God does not mean "God gets all the credit and we get none". To Him, ownership is about SHARING, meaning that ALL created beings HAVE the power to USE as they see fit. And while God DOES deserve "full" credit, He is not the ONLY one who deserves credit. Omitting credit from yourself omits it from one of God's extensions, which in turn omits it from God.
"It is yours BECAUSE it belongs to Him, for ownership is sharing to Him."
This makes sense because anything created is FULLY given EVERYTHING that its creator has. Through extension, what is God's IS YOURS. This is YOUR INHERITANCE!!! Which means you are a divine, holy, powerful, creative being, because God has created you to be this. It's just that your power isn't yours ALONE, exclusive to you, special, different, or something that God doesn't ALSO SHARE. God has equipped and enabled to you to be miraculous WITH him.
So what we need to say more clearly perhaps is, what we have did not come from ourselves. Of (from) ourselves, we have and are nothing. There is nothing IN us that WE put there. We didn't create ourselves. God made everything that WE can do possible. God gave us the power TO perform miracles, because HE is miraculous and is involved in the miracle. "Miracles are a universal blessing from God". Yet WE are powerful miracle workers as well.
We should be very careful not to transition from the ego position of "everything I have is mine alone", to "I have and do nothing. And we should be careful not to transition from "I believe I am powerful" to "I have no power". It is in fact the EGO that thinks this way, jumping to what seem to be opposites. To go from one state of exclusivity to another, because it does not understand inclusive thinking.
It is NOT an improvement to switch from the ego position of "I exclusively have power" to "God exclusively has the power". That is NOT correct. That's an ego conclusion. God does not think this way. God thinks INCLUSIVELY. We need to transition from "I exclusively have power" to "WE SHARE ALL POWER WITH GOD."
It would be ridiculous to say Jesus, a Son of God, had NO power. Jesus was immensely powerful and strong minded with an undivided constructive will, aligned with God's will, working in unison with the Holy Spirit. His own mind was miraculous BECAUSE he shared His mind with God. It's fine to have the humility to not "claim exclusive ownership" of miracle working, but this does NOT mean Jesus himself had no power or ability.
In order for a "separate God" to work through us, and for us to be a passive conduit, which is also NOT how it works, you'd have to be NOTHING. You are not nothing. You become loving in order that love can move through you. This means still that YOU have to be loving. This is why you are NEEDED by love so that it can go out. On its own it is blocked if you do not cooperate. God sends the love, you must RELAY it by ALSO loving like and with God, amplifying the signal. Your will must ACT and be INCLUDED, FREELY.
"Miracles are expressions of love" and "All expressions of love are maximal" and "Miracles are everyone's right but purification is necessary first" is telling us that miracle can only function "through you" with YOU being miracle minded and miraculous, by YOU entering a state of WILLING TO LOVE in a maximal and powerful way, SO THAT you are OPEN to RECEIVE love from God, acknowledge the love that is IN you because God put it there, and in turn willingly EXPRESS it as miracles. YOU have to be miraculously minded AND maximally loving in order to perform them. If YOU are not, YOU are not "doing your part", and then the miracles do not happen because "something has gone wrong" (ie you are blocking love).
We need to drop the idea that we merely "step aside". Yes we need to get our EGO out of the way, but not our SELF. We need to get our selfishness out of the way, but not our soul. We need to BE very loving in order to BE miraculous. And WE MUST have miracle mindedness in order to perform miracles. But miracle mindedness does not mean "a mind that cannot do anything." It means a mind that cannot do anything WITHOUT God, and CAN do EVERYTHING WITH God.
By being open to receive and admit and aknowledge and allow God to work THROUGH us, it does not mean that WE aren't doing something. That again is ego exclusive thinking. "God or me" is EGO thinking. "God AND me" is divine thinking. "God does it all" is TRUE, but NOT if you make that exclusive. "God does it all and no one else does anything" is an ego conclusion. You are a CO-CREATOR, not just a medium.
We need to acknowledge that we didn't give ourselves the power to heal. But we do have it, and we need to acknowledge that also. We need to admit we cannot heal WITHOUT God, but this does not mean that WE do not do anything. Our function is to SHARE in the state of power. And that means WE have to be powerful, healed, whole beings of love and light, which in their own right are very capable.
"Teachers of God will take over the world because of their strength."
"Now must you share His function" "You share His function only by judging as HE does"
"You cannot see the Holy Spirit, but you can see His manifestations. And unless you do, you will not realize He is there. Miracles are His witnesses, and speak for his Presence. What you cannot see becomes real to you only through the witnesses who speak for it. For you can be AWARE of what you cannot see, and it can become compellingly real to you, as its presence becomes manifest ***THROUGH you***. ***Do His work, for you SHARE in His function.*** As your function in Heaven is creation, so ***your*** function on earth is healing. God shares His function with you in Heaven, and the Holy Spirit ***shares His*** with you on earth."
Your function is not "be passive". It's not to "just let God work through you". God CAN'T work through you unless YOU DO SOMETHING AS WELL. Your function is to be a miracle worker, a DOER, to DO HIS work WITH Him. To SHARE His function, not to have Him do all the function. Your mind's condition is VITAL and IMPORTANT in the equation of how miracles happen. Your WILLINGNESS is absolutely required. Your power to love is mandatory. You choosing to DO miracles WITH Him makes them possible.
This is not about giving God 100% credit and giving us zero. That is false humility and false thinking. We must give God 100% credit AND give ourselves 100% credit. This flies against ego thinking. What we can do did not come from us, but we nevertheless are powerful beings. Thinking it is ours exclusively IS ego. Thinking we have NO power is ALSO ego and is NOT true humility. The children of God are not puppets. YOUR strength, shared with Him, enables miracles to happen. Miracles express from YOUR mind. YOU are the miracle worker.
"What the Holy Spirit enables you to do is clearly not of this world." (a shared state of collaboration)
"The creative power of both God AND His Creations is limitless" (God's children have unlimited power)
"It was only my DECISION that gave me all power in Heaven and earth. My only gift to you is to help you make the same decision FOR YOURSELF." (Each of us HAS all of the power of heaven to use as we see fit)
"All power and glory are yours because the Kingdom is His." (YOU deserve glory, not just God. The ONLY problem is you claiming the glory without sharing it)
"By teaching the power of the Kingdom of God Himself, He teaches you that ALL POWER IS YOURS." (see, ALL power is yours. YOU are powerful - it's just that it's not ONLY you that's powerful)
"You who perceive yourself as weak and frail, with futile hopes and devastated dreams, born but to die, to weep and suffer pain, hear this: ***All power is given unto you in earth and Heaven. There is nothing that you cannot do.***" (There is nothing YOU cannot do because all power has been GIVEN to you).
"Having been restored to your original state, you naturally become part of the Atonement yourself. You now share MY inability to tolerate the lack of love in yourself and in everyone else, and ***MUST join the GREAT CRUSADE*** to correct it. The slogan for this Crusade is "Listen, Learn, and ***DO***." This means:
Listen to MY Voice, Learn to undo the error, and ***DO something*** to correct it.
***The first two are not enough. The real members of MY party are ACTIVE workers.***
***The power to work Miracles BELONGS to you.*** I will create the right opportunities for you to do them. But ***you must be ready and willing to do*** them, since you are already able to. Doing them will bring conviction in the ***ability***. I repeat that you will see Miracles through your hands through MINE (shared function). Conviction really comes through accomplishment. Remember that ability is the potential, Achievement is its expression, and Atonement is the Purpose."
EGO: I have the power, God does nothing. I gave myself this power, it's special and exclusive.
HOLY: God and I share all power and together we can do anything. What I have God has, and we perform miracles together.