I was raised in a large Irish Catholic family, and received my early education in a Catholic grammar school. My mother was a devout Catholic, and instilled a love of the Blessed Virgin and the Baby Jesus into us from birth. As a Baby Boomer and product of the 50’s, I never questioned my religion. The nuns filled our heads and our hearts with God. We memorized prayers, attended Mass every Sunday, prayed the Stations of the Cross during Lent, sang in the choir, read Bible History – we were inundated with religious education.
I succumbed at an early age to the hypnotic power of incense, chant and religious rituals…I read tales of early Biblical saints and prophets, and marveled at the close relationship they enjoyed with God – holy men like Moses, Abraham, Isaac, Samuel – who actually spoke with God! I developed a deep envy towards these men – I wanted the gift of communion with God.
But these were modern times – there hasn’t been a recorded incident (that I knew of) of God speaking to someone in centuries…and I wondered why.
Why had God gone silent?
Does He no longer care about us?
Does He think we don’t need to hear from Him anymore?
Is there no one worthy?
This nagged at me all my life. I began to question the religious teachings. Were those stories of God’s prophets made up? Did God actually speak to them or was it some hoax perpetrated on us to keep us in line?
After a short stint in a cloistered convent, a failed marriage, and a promising career that ended badly, I sank into a 7-year-long major depression. I felt abandoned and alone. I didn’t lose faith in God; I became angry – I ranted – I cried – I begged – I asked for a sign that He was there – that He heard me – that He cared. Through 7 years I stared into the blackness and wondered why I was here. I no longer knew who I was. I had defined myself as wife, programmer, manager – without these titles I felt empty and useless. I found myself at age 40 with no direction, no future and no hope.
(When I mentioned to my mother that I was angry at God she was horrified. She was of the generation that didn’t dare question God, much less become angry with Him. Sometimes I wondered how she developed such a deep devotion to God – certainly nothing in her religious upbringing lent itself to a personal relationship with God – her education painted a picture of an angry, vindictive God, and fire and brimstone punishment for sin. I wish now that I had asked her about it while I had the chance.)
But angry I was, and I bombarded heaven with requests for some type of communication. Looking back, I see the humor in this…I wanted God to speak to me. I can only imagine what my current circumstances would be if I had told my therapist that God was communicating with me! I’d probably still be fighting to get released from a mental institution!
I never did receive that coveted verbal communiqué with God. But I started to become aware of ‘poignant moments’…events that seemed peculiar; strange phenomena that nudged at my consciousness; synchronistic occurrences that defied explanation. Sometimes I didn’t recognize the significance of these events until later…then their timeliness and wondrous nature became clear in hindsight. Now if only I could learn to recognize them in the moment as they occurred!
Sometimes the events appeared to be miraculous; sometimes very routine. At times an event appeared to have a negative consequence, only to discover later that it was a blessing in disguise. I finally had to face the fact that these poignant moments occurred on a frequent basis, and that the more I recognized and acknowledged them the more they occurred. And voila! Finally I came to understand that these poignant moments – these synchronistic events – these mysterious, unexplained phenomena – were the communication I had asked for – pleaded about – cried for – demanded – and life took on a whole new meaning. I wasn’t alone. I had never been abandoned. God was still present. He did speak to us – in 21st Century language. Certainly God understands that anyone who claims to have verbal conversation with Him will not be taken seriously…in fact will be pitied and ridiculed or shunned as having a ‘God complex’ – and He fashioned a harmless method to commune with us…through signs and synchronicity.
And our loving God doesn’t restrict His messages to a select few…everyone can participate. People have only to be open and willing to dialog – to be receptive and trusting, and of course be willing to believe.
I decided that other people would have stories to relate also; that these true stories of everyday people with a spirit connection could have an impact. Perhaps someone out there who was wrestling with those same feelings of abandonment might read a particular story that would touch them and help them in their struggle. That is my hope.