A Cup of Tea
a witness of Elizabeth Clare Prophet and the ascended masters by Susan Harrow

      I do not remember the day or the hour. But I will never forget the words she spoke to me. Those words will follow me into other galaxies. Those words are etched upon my soul and recorded in my heart.
      It was a day in California. There were many days there that all seem to have slippped together into a pocket folder of memory. I assisted Mother in her household, mostly providing meals. And always wondering why I had been requested to take the task—being unskilled altogether in the art of cooking.
      And things needed to be just so. There were Mother's preferences, of course, but then also the refinement of my soul in the process. If you ignore the details, you don't always produce food that is filled with love and perfection. When there are many details at the same time, the mind must give up and the heart must take over. A fine theory in retrospect, but it's not always easy to find the joy in the midst of the discipline.
      All kinds of situations came my way. Cooking here, cooking there. Cooking on the spur of the moment. Doing this and doing that while the vegetables burned. Mastering the art of being everywhere at once and having everything under control, but often not being the master.
      It was a testing and a trying but I knew it was for the betterment of my being. I knew I had found the dharma (the teaching) and the sangha (the community). I knew I had found the Buddha (the guru, the enlightenment) who would lead me forward on my path. But sometimes I wanted to do well just to get approval. Sometimes I disliked myself a lot when I didn't get it. But the lesson seemed to be to keep on trying. No matter what.
      Sometimes the food wasn't hot enough, there was too much or too little. Sometimes the vegetables were overcooked and I had to start over. Sometimes there was no time to start over and the opportunity was lost. Would that I had found more joy but often I found the serious nature of the testing was the serious nature by which I viewed my life and my path. Serious because I have always sensed that this lifetime around, there is a lot at stake.
      So it was a day like many others, cooking and serving. The meal had concluded and in some way had been a disaster. The details are gone from me. But I recall the feeling of utter hopelessness that beset me. Once again I had failed. I had made a mess of things. Oh woe! Would I ever make the grade? Be good enough? Be the master of this humble task? And the last duty was to serve tea to Mother in her office before I left. I dreaded it. Having made quite a fool of myself during the serving of the meal, I just wanted to go away quietly. Not to be.
      The office was large and deep in wood and flagstone floor. Long were the windows and rich the seats of leather. Old England come again. Mother sat in serious contemplation at her deep dark desk. All within me hesitated. Yet I entered to take the drink, hoping that the exploits of my day would not be commented upon. Hoping that silence would release me no matter how uncomfortable the silence. But more often God holds surprises, gifts in golden packages on days when they are least expected. As I deposited the tea before her, Mother looked up from her work. I braced myself to receive comment on the sorry state of my being.
      "You know," she said, "that I will always love you...." Her heart, as often, opened like a flower, and love flowed to me in that moment that is still stored within me for all its grace and power. I am sure my tears fell. I am sure I could not speak. I do not remember being able to do so. I just remember that for all that I had done or not done, for all eternity's weaving of my path with the path of the ascended masters and the Messenger, to have come to a moment such as this was worth more than all the rewards the world could ever offer.
      There are many memories, but this is one of the fondest. Fond not just because I felt loved and appreciated in that moment. Fond because those words fly with me throughout my life. Fond because those words are true. Fond because this kind of love is the love of eternity. Where souls have met and been flung afar. When souls have met again and remembered who they are.
      And so to our beloved Mother with all my heart I say, "You know that I will always love you."