There are people in life who believe there are no coincidences. I was never one of them. Well, I wasn’t until recently. What happened to me was sort of big. Real big, but hardly tangible, and, worse, I have no way of substantiating what happened. It was, one might say, a leap of faith. And here is where some readers will inevitably say Ok, I’m getting off at the next stop. That next stop may be the period that follows this sentence. Or this one.
So, here’s the thing. I have always had a fascination with angels. It all began when I was a little boy. I don’t remember the age now. I might have been six years old or seven years old. It doesn’t matter. My mother had these little ceramic angel figurines. Cherubs, they were. When I was boy I had a recurring dream that I met those angels beneath the kitchen table. They were bigger in my dreams, the angels I mean. Maybe as big as me when I was little. In my dream we talked. Sadly, I no longer remember the content of the conversations. But then who among us remembers the dream conversations of their youth? Anyway, talking to life-size angels beneath your mother’s kitchen table was weird. What was more weird was how I got to the kitchen. In my dreams, I floated down their stairs (L-shaped) in our old house in Camden, NJ. Even as a boy, I thought it odd that my feet never touched the steps; likewise, I hovered several inches over the floor of the dining room that led to the kitchen where I would come to rest before the table beneath which the angels huddled. Then I would duck down beneath the table and join the celestial pow-wow already in-progress.
When I visited Roman Catholic churches, I was always fascinated by the angels. Statues, wood carvings, paintings on vaulted ceilings and what have you. There was something about their faces that always intrigued me. Angels found their way into my art. They even took up a big portion of my first novel which I self-published some years ago. The name of that novel was The Last Dark Place, a tale about Satan charged with finding the first soul ever created in order to prove his worth and get back into Heaven. Weighty for the first time out? Sure. But at heart my novel was a comedy story. If you want, check out the book yourself and see for yourself.
Some time after 2000 and maybe 2007 I dabbled with letter-writing. I found a web site, or maybe it was in one of the many books I had read about angels, that suggested a person might want to write a letter to an angel, a specific angel, and ask for whatever it is you wanted in life. Not money, power, prestige, or anything like that. Simple things. Little things like peace of mind, someone getting over an illness, or help with grieving the loss of a loved one. I chose Michael. Once I wrote the letters, may be a half-dozen in all over the course of several months, the directions said seal each one in an envelope and tuck them away. Later, it was ok to open them. I moved around in that time, carrying the angel letters with me. Southern Jersey to Philly, Philly to central Jersey, and then here where I live in Havertown, PA. I recently opened those six letters. Everything I asked for came true. Sure, I am still as poor as the day is long, and my emotions experience peaks and valleys just like every other human being on the planet. What matters is that I asked for things of spiritual value, for peace in my life, for love, for simple things that are worth more than monetary or material things.
Since opening those letters I thought often of the archangel Michael, what he meant to Christianity, to the Roman Church; how he vanquished Satan; but more importantly what he meant to me. A couple of years ago I went to pick up my son at school. I was thinking about Michael. I even told my son about him, how we can call on St. Michael to protect us (from bad dreams which was my son was experiencing at the time). So, there I was at my son’s school and I look up. There’s a single cloud in an otherwise blue sky in the shape of an angel. I took a photo of it because I thought it was cool. I even posted on my facebook page.
I am no longer convinced of the randomness of life, but I am human and I still do have doubts about matters of spirituality, etc. For me, I think there are energies greater than us at play. Maybe they are angels, maybe not. Maybe I’ve met them and maybe not. What’s the old saying from the bible about entertaining angels unaware?
A long time ago I used to be freaked out by things I cannot explain. Last week I experienced a lucid dream in which a bright light in the shape of a man was standing beside my bed. At first, I thought it was the sun coming through the blinds; but then I remembered my windows were to my right and the light man was standing beside my bed on the left. I felt no alarm, no reason to be afraid.
That experience reminded me of those dreams I had as a boy, meeting angels beneath the kitchen table. Over the past few days since that incident I thought about angels, their role in our lives. Maybe that was why when a young woman walked into the place I work and told me she wanted to purchase a silver chain for a pendant she had I didn’t think it was a coincidence. The young woman showed me the pendant. It was St. Michael the Archangel. Strange as it may sound, I was waiting for that young woman and her pendant. I can’t explain it. Validation? Maybe, maybe not. All I do know is that I am leaning less toward coincidence, and a little more toward things happening for a reason. In our day and age there are no more burning bushes, no celestial wheels spinning in the sky the way they did for Ezekiel. No, angels work on smaller scale now. Even Michael, whose name in Hebrew means “One who is like God,” doesn’t get to flex that much anymore. Small doses, as they say. At least it works for me.