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Light of a New Dawn

“Yeah, Merry Christmas! Right! I don’t think so!” he muttered to himself as he entered his house slamming the door behind him with a loud bang. He angrily removed his coat and cap throwing them on the living room couch before flopping tiredly into his old worn recliner chair. He reclined the chair and closed his eyes.

This had been the worst year of his life. A year of turmoil, lies, chaos and strife. It had all taken an unimaginable toll on his life. His beautiful wife of over thirty years had died of Covid because he had believed the lies that the disease was a hoax. Because of it, he had refused to be vaccinated and refused to let her receive the vaccine. She had contracted the disease and died within a few days. Their son and daughter blamed him for her death and weren’t communicating with him. Leaders that he had believed in who spoke of making the country better for all peoples, especially people of color, had spoken such toxic rhetoric that it had brought out such angry demonstrations both for and against people of color. He feared wearing the face masks that had been ordered to be worn by everyone. He feared racial profiling would view him as some kind of criminal with the mask on and might shoot him. He was scared to even go out of his home to the grocery store after dark. To make matters worse, he had been laid off from his job for over nine months, a job that he had worked for over twenty-five years. He felt as if he was in a never-ending dark tunnel from which he would never exit. Tiredly, he dozed off to the ticking of the clock on the fireplace mantle.

He felt a feathery kiss on his cheek and slowly opened his eyes. There was a glow of multicolored lights in the room which confused him. He turned to see his wife decorating their old flocked Christmas tree. It couldn’t be; she was no longer with him and yet he was looking at her. She turned, smiled at him and continued decorating the old tree. She had loved Christmas and decorating the tree was her favorite thing to do. He looked around, but the room seemed shrouded in clouds.

“Am I dead?”, he inquired in confusion.

“Of course not, dear. It’s not your time,” she replied as she continued hanging ornaments on the tree.

“Why are you decorating that tree?’, he asked somewhat angrily.

“It’s Christmas time and the celebration of the good times of life,” she answered.

“Stop! I have nothing to celebrate! You’re no longer with me here to celebrate the good times!”, he screamed angrily trying to choke back tears.

“Of course, I’m still with you, just in a different form of Spirit. I’m still here in your memories of our life together and all of the happy times that we had while I was in my physical form,” she said to him.

“Those are just memories! I can never touch you again, or hold your hand, or hear your laughter! I’ll never hear you sing Christmas carols off key again!” he said through tears.

“That’s true for now, but you still have some things to do in physical form. You still have our beautiful children to assist on the path of life and there will soon be grandchildren for you to hold and love,” she told him as she stood back to admire the tree.

“The children hate me! They blame me for you no longer being here!” he cried.

“Like you, they, too, feel a loss, but they will forgive you. They love you. And I’m still here, just in a different form of Spirit. You know that Spirit is all that there is and has many forms. We were taught that and have always believed that. Spirit is who and what we are and will always be. This is the Truth of who I am and who you are. You know that in your heart,” she expressed to him.

“Life is so bad! Hate and chaos is everywhere! The world is so dark!”, he told her hopelessly.

“That’s the outer world! Stopping looking outside of you for the peace, love and good that you want to see in your life. Go back to what you know. Return to the spiritual practice that we were taught. Get quiet and feel the presence of Spirit within you. State your belief of good and love every day. Prayer works and has always worked for us. We prayed through too many difficult times for you not to know and recognize that truth. Turn within and know the Good that is still ahead for you. Promise me that you will embrace all that Spirit has in store for you! Promise me!”, she said as her form began to merge into the cloudiness.

“I promise! I promise!”, he said as he tried to keep her there with him.

He awoke with a start. The room was cold. He looked around for the Christmas tree, but it wasn’t there. She had been there; he could still feel her presence. He stood and walked to the window and opened the heavy drapes covering it. The sun was starting to rise. It looked as if it would be a beautiful day. For him, it would be a new day, a new start to his life’s journey. He had promised her; he had always kept his promises to her.

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