Monday, December 29, 2008

It's a Miracle!

There are a lot of articles and books, written about miracles that happen every day. Many call it “karma.” (That sounds like such a 60’s term, but I think it is making a comeback!) Others just chalk it up as being a “God Thing.” It seems to me that as I get older, and grow in my spirituality, I see events in a different light than before. I believe that much of what happens to me is part of a larger master plan. Even though I don’t always make the best decisions, those decisions were supposed be made either as a step forward or as an unpleasant learning experience. Events that I look back on with regret are no longer thought of as mistakes.

We all know that sometimes, things happen with absolutely no logical explanation for them. They can be good for us, or, they can be bad for us…but good for someone else. Those of us who have been lucky enough to witness such events have been touched by what I believe is a power greater than anything we could ever comprehend...God. I have a friend who has witnessed a few such events that may be considered miracles. With her permission, I would like to share them with you.

When Lydia was in high school, she was involved in a car accident while crossing a street between two neighborhoods in her parents’ Impala (oh, so 60’s). She was broadsided on the driver’s side by a Corvette travelling way over the speed limit. Upon impact, the seat belt snapped open and she could feel her body being thrown to the passenger side of the car. Her hands, however, never left the steering wheel until the car came to a stop. Lydia ended up sitting on the passenger side of the front seat. She sat there dazed and motionless until a policeman appeared at the window. He asked her where the driver of the vehicle was. She told him that she was the driver. He gave her a funny look and then went to check on the other car.

The front end of the Vet was buckled and there was a crack in the windshield caused by the passenger. He had one heck of a headache. The driver was unhurt. The car Lydia was driving was totaled, but she did not have a scratch on her. If the seatbelt had not snapped open, Lydia would have sustained major injuries. She didn’t know why she held on to the steering wheel, but by doing so, it kept her from being thrown against (or even through) the passenger window. She thanked God for keeping her safe.

On another occasion, while Lydia was driving about 40 miles per hour down a two lane street, she looked away from the road for a second to pick up something from the car floor. When she looked up, she was about 50 feet behind a stopped school bus. There was not enough time to see if there was a lane next to her. She believed she was going to run into the bus so she slammed on the brakes to try to ease the impact. She felt the steering wheel turning to the right, but she was not making it happen! The car ended up on the shoulder next to the bus. Lydia knew that she had not turned the steering wheel, but there she was…unscathed. The bus and the car were untouched. Once again, she was spared from what could have been a very messy accident. She felt strongly that this was another case of divine intervention.

These experiences are very small events in a world of daily miracles. They happen to us, or someone we know, and then begin a chain of events that affect others. If you have had an experience that you believe to be a miracle, you may affect a life simply by sharing it. Your story is welcome here.

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Ring (no, not that ring)

“Are you sitting down?” her mother asked.

“Well, I am now!” replied Lisa, excited as a child on Christmas morning.

“It’s real, and it’s worth Four Thousand Dollars! The center stone is 1¾ carats surrounded by 18 diamond chips. Can you believe it?” asked her mom.

“Oh…my…goodness! No, I cannot believe it!” screamed Lisa. She fell back in the chair and gazed at the ceiling. “I’m the luckiest girl in the world right now!” she shouted. Several days earlier, Lisa had found a sparkly-kind-of-brooch-thing on the ground, and figured it was just junk jewelry. Never in a million years did she think this could be the real thing!

Whenever Lisa would walk anywhere outside, she always kept one eye on the ground in case there were rocks, holes, or something slippery. Years earlier, when she was on her honeymoon, she fell flat on her face while crossing the street. Normally, that wouldn’t have been a problem, but it was downtown San Francisco, and there were witnesses everywhere. She was walking a few feet behind her husband, Jack, and as she fell, she made a sound similar to that of a professional football player who had just received an unexpected helmet thrust to his mid-section.

Jack, being the concerned and loving husband that he was, continued walking as though nothing had happened. Lisa picked herself up, brushed the concrete bits from her face, and finished crossing the street. From that day on, Lisa was always aware of her surroundings, especially on the ground. So, when something sparkly caught her eye, she gave it her full attention so as not to trip on it. She scooped it up and put it in her pocket.

“I’ll ask mom if she thinks it’s worth anything,” she said to herself. Her mother’s neighbor was a jeweler who worked out of the house. If her mom didn’t know, she could ask her neighbor. Lisa dropped off the brooch the next weekend when she went to visit her parents. She forgot about it until her mother called her a week later.

Now, something that expensive made Lisa very uncomfortable. When she was three years old, Lisa was playing with her mother’s wedding ring (a family heirloom) in the front yard. She came into the house later without the ring and her mother asked her about it. Being only three, Lisa, had no idea where the ring was. Mom walked outside and began to scour the front yard. She found nothing, but did notice some workers cementing a fence between the houses.

“No, she couldn’t have dropped it over there…” her mother thought and then sighed in despair. The ring was gone, never to be seen again. Lisa had been reminded of this event many times as she was growing up. She felt horrible about it, but reminded herself that she was only three years old at the time and shouldn’t be held responsible for the loss.

On another occasion, Lisa had accidently thrown out the anniversary ring given to her by Jack. After the two of them climbed into the apartment dumpster and looked in every nook and cranny, between every piece of paper, and inside anything that could open and close, they sadly agreed that it was gone, never to be seen again.

Lisa thought that she might be able to finally redeem herself for her childhood mistake, by giving this gem to her mom. She secretly spoke to her dad about having something made using the stones. The next door neighbor, the jeweler, could make the piece. Dad and Lisa decided on a custom gold band ring, with the big stone in it. The jeweler shaped the top of the ring into a “V” and the stone was placed at the bottom of the “V”. It was a very unique design and Lisa hoped that her mom would like it. Her mom loved it! Lisa felt relieved that her mother liked the ring, and for the first time in her life, she felt that she had made up, in a sense, for the loss of the family ring so many years ago.

Today, the ring sits in a bank deposit box and is safe from anyone, three years to 63 years old, who could accidently throw it out, or drop it into a cement fence being built between houses.

This is a true story. The names have been changed to protect the stupid and the innocent.