Another Encounter with Angels

There was a storm; 
it’s now been a few years since.
The rain was coming down fast!
The rain was fierce!

The car, as I remember, 
was either green or blue –
depending on who you asked.
I had driven it across at least three states, I think.

But the car worked.
It brought me from place to place.
I was happy and grateful
for the freedom it gave.

Now, back to the storm – 
the rain overwhelmed the sky.
The afternoon sun shone,
like the moon at night.

Sitting at a red light on a busy road; 
I was the first in line.
As I concentrated on trying to see, 
I was only able to think about Time.

Suddenly, while resting at the red light,
The car decided to stall!
Panic covered me in stillness 
like a blanket protecting me from the cold.

Seconds kept ticking by, 
slower than snails could run.
Suddenly I realized that nothing lit up.
I had not stalled. The battery was gone.

I began to pull from memory 
skills I had been taught: 
“Breathe, Anna, breathe.” 
That was all I thought.

Honking car horns invaded my brain.
Thoughts were spinning, confusing, panicking.
Finally, it became clear.
I was not going anywhere.

That’s when the angel came.
She knocked on my window,
standing in the pouring, drenching rain. 
As though it didn’t bother her in any way. 

Using the handle, 
I rolled my window down.
She just smiled at me.
Then she offered to help.

Barely able to think for myself,
this angel looked at my car
then she clearly said,
“I think your car battery is out.”

Following her instructions,
I placed the car into gear
so that she and her friends 
could push the car as I steered.

They delivered me to safety
inside an empty parking lot across the street.
My angels looked drenched to the bone.
But I didn’t have a drop on me.

The rain did not let up.
My messengers never stopped.
I turned to thank them with all my heart,
but they had already taken off.

Broken Heart

My heart broke when I heard the news; a friend who was dear to me is gone. A friend I will never again see. A friend whose laughter now floats through the breeze.

But, I have been thanking God, literally, all day. I had heard about my friend’s passing while surrounded by love. The kind of love that mends broken hearts.

I walked through my front door a few hours ago, surprised to find a slight sense of peace.

My heart still aches, but I am grateful too.

I had the opportunity to know this friend. To laugh with him and to share stories with him.

Then my gratitude struck like lightning, hitting me more direct.

I am grateful that I have an apartment. A home. My home.

I have only lived here for one month, but it’s beginning to feel like more.

My home has given me the chance to live; to really live.

I have a chance to allow emotions to come forward and be a part of my life.

There’s excitement about decorations and filling this space with memories.

Then there’s grieving the loss of a friend and feeling my heart as it’s breaking.

And then there is the love from friends and family. The kind of love that endures all seasons. The kind of love that mends hearts. The kind of love that strengthens and grows as it is shared.

So, tonight I share my brokenness. I share the pain. I share the gratitude. I share the love as my heart begins to mend yet again.

Harmony

I sit still and watch a flower blossom as it soaks in the afternoon sun.
The white of its petals is a drastic contrast to the heaviness in my heart.
But the longer I sit, the longer I breathe, and the longer I see the beauty.

The flower reaches deep into the earth.
The ground is providing all her nourishment where she rests.
I envy her Peace and her Balance.

Taking another look, the Spirit breaths across my consciousness.
I remember that I also have access to Peace.
I also have access to Balance.

The petals and I sit side-by-side, breathing.
We share our secrets.
Together, we grow in harmony.

A Second Angel

As I have said before, I have encountered angels – each one dressed in their unique way.

Some have familiar faces to me because I connect to them every day.

Others pass by in fleeting moments since I spend so little time with them.

These experiences occur to my surprise but definitely never by accident.

There once was a whole day I needed to spend in a local laundry mat.

With a broken washing machine at home, our family of five went through a lot of clothes!

Lunch at the neighboring pizza joint seemed a logical resting place.

I walked into an empty dining room.

It sat waiting patiently for the customers who would never come.

A friendly waitress came over with a large and genuine smile.

I only glanced quickly, afraid of what I might see behind my own masked face.

Unsuccessfully, I tried to hide my forearms.

But the open wounds called out loudly against my skin.

Instead of the usual look of fear that I had become accustomed to receiving, the waitress offered me no questions or concerns – not one empty “I’m sorry” or “Oh, dear…”

I dared to look up into her eyes and I saw something…something that I am unable to find words to describe.

It was a look of knowing…knowing something deep…

A look of peace and a graceful mind.

I noticed the bracelet wrapped around her wrist as she passed me a soda.

A compliment slid from my mouth; a comment on the jewelry’s ability to bounce the sunlight off its face.

She graciously thanked me, giving tribute to the friend from where the bracelet came.

A few moments later, my soda was drained.

It turned into an empty glass that just kept staring back at me.

Was this glass half-empty or half-full?

My mind kept wandering until the angel reached over to refill.

For a moment, time stopped spinning.

It was just a brief pause, but the silence created space so that I can recall this experience for the rest of the time:

The angel asked me to hold out my hand.

I would never have been able to imagine why.

She unclasped the bracelet from her friend and placed it on my arm.

I don’t remember the rest of lunch.

I don’t even know what happened the rest of that day.

But I still have the bracelet tucked safely away.

The clasp can no longer hold the glass stones together.

Yet, the sunlight still bounces off it.

I pull out my angel when I need a reminder:

a reminder of God shining through His children.

I decided long ago about that glass before me.

It was neither half-full nor half-empty.

It was only an object for an angel to hold as she passed on her spirit to me.

My First Messenger

Angels,

Spirits,

Messengers.

They travel between Heaven and Earth.

Sometimes they are seen walking among us, while other times, the wind cradles them by.

It was the Christmas season when I fleetingly met my first Messenger.

It happened in what I thought was an unlikely place.

But what do I know of such things?

It was years ago in a crowded mall.

I felt alone and isolated even with my mom’s attention and love walking through the jungle with me.

Hunger began to take over my gut.

Well, it was late in the day.

So, I sat down with meek anticipation in a sea of plastic, white tables that were filled with fellow passengers.

I waited for mom as she stood in line to purchase our hurried dinner.

The loneliness drained my endurance while I sat in my depressive state.

I scanned the food court impatiently – so many people, so much commotion!

They bustled through the labyrinth, immersed in the joy and anxiety while looking at the epic deals they procured on gifts for friends and family.

My inanimate gaze fell upon one woman, her table standing diagonal from where I flopped.

A smile emerged from my muscle memory – it was honestly genuine.

To my surprise, she returned the gift.

I noticed her eyes transforming into Light!

I had no choice but to turn away in fright.

Minutes later, with my mouth full of rice, this same Messenger stopped by the table.

Again, her smile filled my vision but, I could not turn away this time.

“Thank you,” she said with loving esteem.

However, I did not understand.

She further explained what she gathered from my smile – the strength to finish the tiresome search for dolls and toys to wrap for her grandkids arriving later that night.

Her message has stayed with me to this day.

I have slowly come to recognize what she meant.

There’s a shining power within a smile – it carries healing and restoring grace.

A smile can emanate through any disturbance and shine brighter than any sun on any given day.

Remember to smile.

Look everyone you meet in their eyes.

See their humanness.

See their struggles.

Share grace.

Share love.

Share life.

Because we only have today.

What Door?

 Three doors are before me.
 I can only travel through one.
 Or I can choose to stay stuck
 and sink into the mud.
  
 I notice a gold latch 
 that opens a door in the earth.
 Is there a staircase beneath?
 Is it dark or unclean?
  
 Sparks revel a door above.
 A rope hangs with anticipation.
 Does this entrance have an exit?
 Do I want to find out?
  
 The last frame stands solid. 
 It’s straight in front of my eyes.
 So many questions… 
 Not enough time...
  
 Falling into the ground
 would be the easiest choice.
 No more questions or temptations.
 Just a finite course.
  
 If I dare to go up, 
 I would be left afloat 
 to search endlessly through clouds 
 of doubt and lost hope.
  
 What about this framework?
 It stands right in front of me.
 Is there another side?
 Do I have enough faith to proceed?
  
 My feet are planted hard and straight.
 My heart pumps fast before it skips a beat.
 Butterflies circle my stomach as I think:
 Is someone out there laughing at me?
  
 It takes all my strength 
 to stretch a trembling hand forward. 
 I grab the heavy handle
 and take another step forward;