Allowing Magic In Our Lives

Allowing Magic In Our Lives

In these challenging times, we need to allow for the possibility of magic and wonder in our lives. Since the attacks on September 11, a quality of innocence and wonder has been missing from many people's hearts, not to mention the nation as a whole. Yet we each have the power within us to reclaim that sense of magic and awe about life.

Yesterday was Halloween and I had an eye appointment in downtown Santa Cruz. Driving there, I was listening to the news about the country and especially about the war and the challenge of anthrax and other acts of bioterrorism. I parked the car and was walking down the street, my thoughts absorbed in the news I had just heard. I noticed a group of mentally challenged people cleaning the street.

One young man with Down's Syndrome particularly caught my attention. He was sweeping with such earnest, apparently wanting to do a good job. While he worked, a woman dressed in a simple angel costume passed him by. The young man almost reverently stopped sweeping and asked the woman, "Are you an angel?"

The woman smiled, politely said yes, and kept walking. The man's face became transformed with awe as he triumphantly announced to his fellow workers, "I've just seen a real angel."

I happened to walk by him then and he pointed to the woman and said to me in a hushed tone, "That was a real angel and she walked right past me." I couldn't help being caught up in the magic that he was experiencing. Just a moment before I had been thinking about the news and noticing a woman about my age with a white dress and wings walking down the street. Now I was sharing a truly magical moment with a young man who had opened my eyes to other possibilities. I was beholding an angel.

We need to put our attention upon and seek out special moments and drink them in as our best medicine for these times. It's a matter of looking for them and knowing that this is as important if not much more important than keeping up with the news.

Because there is a tendency to be fearful of the world events right now, it is even more critical to open our hearts and eyes to wonder and surprise.

From the time I was a little girl I have dreamed of finding a homeless dog and magically helping it to find a wonderful home. My chance came several weeks ago when our family rescued a lost dog, which we found on the beach. We named the dog Lucy and she sure wasn't a prize for good looks. Our four golden retrievers barely tolerated this little fifteen pound mutt while our four cats were terrified of her. She didn't fit in our family and I knew we needed to find her a home. We placed ads in the local papers, hung lost dog signs at the beach and gave a description to the SPCA.

After ten days Lucy had gained weight and looked better, but not one call came for her. Our cats looked at me with pitiful glances, begging me to get rid of Lucy, as she chased yet another one around the house. I was beginning to despair that we could never find Lucy a home. This isn't the way I had dreamed it would be when I got my chance to rescue a dog. Our 12-year-old son commented that Lucy sure needed a magical moment.

Later that same day I mentioned to my 84-year-old mother, who lives next door, that I was afraid I would never be able to find Lucy a home. She thought for a moment and then commented, "My friend, Barbara, might want a dog. Her dog just died." My mother immediately called her friend and described Lucy to her.

Barbara didn't want a dog, but became excited, "My neighbor lost his dog ten days ago and I think she looked a lot like the dog you are describing. I'll walk over and ask him."

An eager call came an hour later and Barbara's neighbor drove to our house. "That's my dog!," the excited man rejoiced as he picked up his precious bundle. Lucy had run four miles from home losing her name tag on the way. Her owner had checked every animal shelter in the county, and somehow they had misplaced our listing. We stood there with tears running down each of our cheeks as we realized the unbelievable odds for this dog to be reunited with her owner. As he was driving away he thanked us for caring for Lexy, a name that was so close to the one we had given her.

Magic and miracles still abound in our world. We need to just be on the alert for them. When they happen to you or if you hear about them, drink them into your being and know that this sense of wonder and awe is the very thing we are needing most right now. You never know, you may even see an angel walking down the street.

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