Friday, January 16, 2009

Angels In The Outfield

Anyone who has read my blog for a while knows I am a skeptic. I envy folks who have strong faith. (Say, envy is one of the seven deadly sins, isn't it?) Anyway, people either have faith or they don't. It's not something we can wish for ourselves. Somewhere along the way, we either lose faith, or we never had it. I think I am sort of a combination of both. And yet, things keep happening to me -- strange things.

Last fall I had another mystifying experience that -- well -- mystified me. I work in a very noisy office, in fact, some days the noise level is so high I have to leave for a few minutes to get my sense of calm. But something very odd happened one day. I looked over at one of my co-workers, and she was reading some papers on her desk. She looked very focused and was concentrating on something. I looked back at my computer screen. Just then, through all the noise and cacophony in our office, it suddenly got very quiet and still, and a voice said, "No, don't look away, look back..." So I turned back to my co-worker and I felt something was not right, so I asked her if she was okay.


And then all h*ll broke loose. We ran to get one of the doctors from the clinic, who examined our co-worker and said she was having a stroke. The doctor asked me to call an ambulance, and our co-worker was in the hospital within 20 minutes, receiving the clot-busting medication she required. I went to visit her later, and the neurologist said our quick actions saved our co-worker's life. If we had left her sitting at her desk, she would have suffered severe damage. She apparently had a minor heart problem which caused her heart to beat with an irregular heart beat. This in turn released a clot which went to her cerebelum. It was just an anomaly that can happen to an otherwise healthy, fit woman like my co-worker.

My co-worker came to visit me at work the other day. She is 100% well, she has had no residual effects of her stroke. She's a pretty woman, and she looked healthier and more fit than I had seen her look before. It was wonderful to see her.

My co-worker (friend...) is a woman of faith, and she believes God worked through me to save her life. I don't know. But I do know that something tapped me on the shoulder that day and told me not to look away. And the strangest thing was the quiet -- through all the noise, everything became quiet. "No, no, no, don't look away."

Faith -- you either have it or you don't. For me, the jury is still out.


Tess Kincaid said...

I would most definitely call myself a woman of faith.

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy."

Hamlet, Act I, Scene 5

T.M. Curzon-Manners said...

Hello there, I found your blog through Tony at Bench.
I love the Harbor Template you've used, I have it as a secondary blog, my quiet place to work out stuff that I'm writing. Your looks wonderful with all the artwork and particularly the header - did you paint that?

I just read the post about Angels and couldn't help wondering how sometimes we are put in the right place at the right time etc...

I'm going to add you to my people of interest list and will pop back again soon.

Very glad to have found you, take care.

Anonymous said...

Dear Jo, I am so pleased you won a Blog of note so that you randomly arrived in my blogspace and I 'found' you. You are a skilful word magician and how lucky are we who enter the worlds you create.
I love the unexpected magic of life. The mysteries that unveil themselves slowly or suddenly must be the reason we want to live life despite the horrors.
My aunt just had a stroke scare (she lives in Vanvouver and I'm here in Cambridge) but quick thinking on the part of her colleague scooped her up safely too. I think she's going to be okay.
A lucky magic sort of weekend for you,

Anonymous said...

Faith? Try it. You'll like it. Makes life really easy when you just let it all go. It all turns right anyway.

SaraghA said...

We tend to forget that we're natural beings, and that we have "sixth senses" and highly tuned instincts just like every other animal. Some people are more in tune, some people emanate more powerful energies... sounds floofy but it's really just the natural way of things (at least that's what I'd like to believe).

I totally think that there is a greater energy that we're all a part of; one that signals us and responds to our actions. I have my doubts as to whether that greater energy is a man with a beard on a throne in the clouds someplace. Juz sayin'.

Jan said...

Maybe it's your intuition working? It's a lovely story topped with a healthy sprinkling of skepticism. I love it.

It's good Blog of Note featured you. Otherwise, it might have taken me a long time to "discover" your blog.

Deb said...

I am a woman of faith as well, although I do not go to church.
Your post gave me chills. Some would say that "goose bumps" are the sign of the Holy Spirit. I believe that.
Very good post, Jo. You post reminds of me of many stories such as yours. Hmm...check out my post for tomorrow. You'll get the "goose bumps".

roxanne s. sukhan said...

I Believe. But question also. Seriously, I hear that tiny voice a lot. Yet, not a day goes by that I don't doubt and question.

I am inclined to think of faith as a process, not a thing.

Nicole said...

Beautiful. I have faith that sometimes requires a boost... It's been given that "boost"

Sockrma18 said...

I believe with all my heart and soul that what you experienced that day was God. Faith is a very thin line to cross...the decision to believe or not believe is really only taking a tiny step one way or the other but can really make all the difference in everything. You can't always see Him and that is what is hard for people....but He is there. Just keep searching and you will find the answer you are looking for.

Great blog, btw. I'll be back!

Michael said...

My jury has been out to lunch for ten years now...

Firefly the Travel Guy said...

This week you have had a couple of very interesting posts. I know I have said so, but the super natural and mysterious really interest me and the more I get to know you, the more interesting I find you.

Laura Doyle said...

Well...I never lose faith in God. Ever. But I also don't subscribe to religion...Christian, Buddhist, or otherwise. To me, God is not religion and vica versa. Something much bigger and deeper. You can be a skeptic or have ideas of your own that belong to your heart and still have faith. Sounds to me like you already do. : )

Mary Ellen said...

You're right, Jo, faith is a fickle thing sometimes. I don't know what the answer is to mine, even during a period in my life when I walked away from the church, that faith still nagged at me until I couldn't stay away. It's difficult to explain and so easily dismissed by some as nonsense, but it's helped me through some of the most difficult times in my life.

BTW, I just tagged you for a meme on my blog. Don't feel like you have to do it, I won't be hurt if you don't. Not all bloggers care to do them and I understand that.


Anonymous said...

Faith is simply the act of seeing. Seeing with your physical eyes and recognizing a spiritual truth. This is why Jesus spoke in parables. Just as it is with the farmer, flower or with the centurians authority, so it is in the spirit. Walking by faith is simply walking according to what we see to be true in the spirit. Of course, our vision and our understanding of what we see is limited, so we do not see fully. This is why our life here is a journey not a destination. Where ever your faith was before, you would have to say that it has grown a little by this experience.

Nancy said...

You can have "faith" and not be religious. I believe we have "guides". They can be called God, angels, higher self, etc. You are becoming in touch with what is always there. Gary Zukov believes we are evolving into multi-sensory beings. You might like his book "The Seat of the Soul".

Anonymous said...

Faith, u either have it or you don't
ur post made me shiver, a good kind. wow beautiful.

Scoobyloves2004 said...

Hello Jo,

I found your blog, as most here have, under the "blog of interest". I have really enjoyed reading everything about you. Sometimes I feel like i've know you forever, that is from your wonderful writing style. You really should consider writing a "life story" novel. You have an incrediable (sorry if I spelled that wrong) way of using words to create a picture in my mind. I also love your art work! Your blog is beautiful and I look forward to reading more! Kinda makes my little blog seem boring, hahaha!

Julie said...

I too found your blog through the 'blogs of interest' and I'm so glad that I did. This post gave me chills and a boost to my faith. I think the important thing to remember is that faith doesn't mean you don't have doubts, it just means you choose to believe in the invisible (God, in my case) despite those doubts. Thanks for the great post- I so enjoyed reading it!

Patsy said...

Jo, as usual, you wrote about something which made me think. I wrote it for you and for others here:


Patsy said...

Jo, I think that people can come faith even though they have been atheists for year. I think that this often happens after some great tragedy or trauma, like after losing a loved one. In that sense I have yearned to be able to believe. Pastor Don finally said to me, “Lorna, I can't prove it to you. It's a matter of faith.” But I do think that events can cause a person to believe. -Lorna

Leilani Tresise said...

the Quiet... ur harmony with ur surroundings....what a beautiful story!!!

Anonymous said...

Faith is only one word we use to express our awareness that we are spiritual beings.
Awareness? All in due time.

nomore said...

Once i'd been experienced it same...on the subway stations a certain passenger.....God? ...."ESP" tapped me it as same as you did, as soon he fell down.....Oh, I could not forget it yet.....I assertion myself....really it was a experience of ESP......

Donnetta said...

I have it. Sometimes I don't know what to do with it. But it's there. D

Country Girl said...

Dearest Jo, how can you possibly not have faith after that? Plus, the pope knows you.

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Deedee said...

Hi Jo, Love your musings! I believe faith is a gift - as such, it is offered to you, but you will not experience it unless you decide to accept it. In most things I tend to be a skeptic, but like Fox Mulder of the XFiles, I want to believe. As far as my spiritual faith however, it has never failed me. I have seen too much evidence to think otherwise. Glad I found you. Enjoy your journey! - Deedee

Anonymous said...

Wow. Josie, that's an amazing story! I'm so very glad to see your busy blog. It's like coming into my favorite diner.

Leslie: said...

I remember your telling me about that incident, Josie, and I do believe that some"one" or some"thing" made you look up. You know my faith is very strong, even though it's been tested over and over again many times.

Jamie and Heather Darger said...

I think everyone has is simply how your interpret it.

I stumbled onto you blog...there is some great, provoking, reading here...

larkspur said...

Your co-worker believes God worked through you to save her life. Maybe... God worked through her to save your life.

kenju said...

I found your blog by accident. I most certainly believe that God/Supreme Being/Something from Above/Karma acted through you to save that woman. The secondary effect was to make you think about what happened and why it happened. I hope you will call the jury back in and listen to their verdict.

The Pink Cowboy said...

We are connected in incredible ways. When we are grounded in that reality then we are open to perceive things that are intangible. You responded quickly because something "seemed" wrong.

Miss_Nobody said...

Hi, i just found your blog a few days ago through the blogs of note thing and every post of yours has been a great read :) Glad i "found"you! You SO deserve to be a Blog of Note :D
My faith mostly keeps oscillating,but sometimes something somewhere swerves it to the right direction.I really don't know whther this is the right kind of feeling to have,i guess i just need to grow up.

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Russell said...

Your co-worker is so lucky you were there!

I am not sure how I feel about faith. I have a strong dislike of organized religion, however I certainly respect any person's right to worship as they wish.

Sometimes I feel like I can feel the presence of spirits as I walk through abandoned places or in the outdoors, such as the woods.

I work with a guy who is really into Jesus. Everything is Jesus this or Jesus that. He is one of the most narrow minded, cruelest and ignorant people I have ever met. I think if Jesus walked into the room this guy would tell him to leave since Jesus was, as far as I know, not gainfully employed the last three years of his life and accepted charity.

My co-worker would find that very disagreeable! But if it makes people feel better, well, that's there business.

I enjoyed your post! I am not sure if you will see this response as I am something like the 129th person to comment! Heh!!

Take care.

Anonymous said...

Have you considered that when Christ admonished his disciple to "be wise as serpents and gentle as doves" He baptized non-confrontational skepticism as the prefered Christian mindset!

Anonymous said...

Like Russell,(Heh!) I don't like organized religion. The older I get..and the more I rsearch the various religions...the less I like them. You are a caring, sensitive, spiritual person. And proof(in my opinion) that we don't need to belong to a church to be special in God's eyes.

PinayJf said...

As you have said your friend is a woman of faith, God is watching over her..."faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" Hebrews 11:1

Private said...

You are a great writer. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Anonymous said...

Where does one go in their darkest hour if they have no faith. How does one go on living and retaining their sanity in this world of madness and human suffering if they have no faith. How does one see the glass as half full if they have no faith. How does one remain optimistic in the face of adversity if they have no faith. Faith is a life jacket in a sea of darkness...and, yes, Angels are all around us.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

You might not believe, but you were used as an instrument that day. Just as Captain Sully was an instrument when he put that plane in the river. We can all be used as instruments...Believe it or not. said...

I agree 100% with your co-worker! God used you to save her life!

Helen Mac said...

I doubt if anyone will ever read this it's so far down the page. I don't believe in God but I am spiritual. There is more in the universe than organised religion. In fact there IS the universe. I do believe in Angels. They are everywhere. I'll write about it in my blog one day as I have a story desperate to get out.

ODCFkids said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Edward Yablonsky said...

Them issue is what prompted this faith and I can sy I agree wi9th one post that this nudge is a tiny step and in this age, a slect few, for whatever reason, still hear the still small voice of God which is not the roar or the miracles or the "kavod presence" great mass presence of the ancient past.

Duncan Mitchel said...

Jo, I've been meaning to comment on this post for some time.

My first reaction to your saying that you wish you had faith was: Faith in what? Is there some specific religion you'd like to belong to? I'm really serious, and curious. I don't think of "faith" as something that stands alone, free-floating, without an object. So, faith in what?

I'm an atheist, and I haven't noticed that believers have anything I don't. I've watched many of them go through long dark nights of the soul. I've read the Book of Job and A Grief Observed and other accounts of what their gods will do to them to test them or just for the hell of it, and I don't really think I'm missing anything. (I found A Grief Observed especially sad for Lewis's desperate struggle to recover his belief that his wife's suffering and death was actually evidence of his God's love.) I don't think that "having faith" would help me when things get rough, because it doesn't reliably seem to help those who do have faith. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. I can do that quite well without faith.

Some believers have told me that the world is gray and ugly if you don't have faith. I disagree. I find the world quite beautiful much of the time, though I'm well aware of the ugly parts of it. Human connections matter to me. I find life endlessly interesting, and I'm one of the happier people I know. So I'm baffled when I encounter fellow-atheists who tell me that they envy believers for what they have. I can't deny that they feel that way, but I don't envy believers anything. I guess that's just me.

One final thought: I used to enjoy annoying some of my friends who were into Eastern religions (as I am, to some extent) by quoting to them the Zen master who said, "Now that I'm enlightened, I'm just as miserable as ever."

Edward Yablonsky said...

Faith is defined as the evidence of events not yet beheld and the expectation of their realization by seeing beyond the moment. Faith can be and should be based on reason and a knowledge of the past which was attended by a roar of miracles beyond the human senses and then this present and the paucity of what appears to us as miraculous events.They are really the outworkings of a higher law unknown in the present but revealed in the future. Faith starts where explanations fail.I have heard of the expression, "the still small voice of Gof" to explain or rationalize this loss of the miraculous, really this hiding of the face of God from all of us.

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