I am still struggling to understand a strange occurrence that happened to me two weeks ago. I was working a new schedule at the community college where I have been employed for almost seven years. Due to offering 5-week terms to our students, my work schedule changes every 35 days. A few weeks ago, I was assigned to an early night schedule. I was only teaching one night class and could leave campus at 8 pm instead of the usual 10:30 pm. The college was in the third week of the new schedule when this strange event happened.
It started after I dismissed my evening class at 7:50 pm. I cleaned up my classroom and organized my file before leaving the school around 8:15 pm. I walked across the parking lot, got in my car, and started the engine. I drove away from the campus and was soon on the I 10 east heading towards Palm Desert. I have driven this route thousands of times before, but tonight something felt different.
At first, I couldn’t understand it. I just had a feeling that something had changed. It wasn’t a bad or uncomfortable feeling. In fact, it was a rather pleasant experience. I actually felt happy, peaceful, and comfortable. I had a feeling of renewal, of rejuvenation…and then suddenly I realized what was different.
Unlike the previous evenings, tonight at 8:30 pm, the sky still seemed incredibly bright. Yes, this was the very end of May. I know summer always offers long, sun-filled days. But this was the first night that I noticed how light the world still was after 8 pm. The world was still light like the quiet dusk of an early evening. It was an amazing, bright, and beautiful night.
Oh, my gosh, I suddenly thought, what if I had made a horrible mistake with the time and had dismissed my class early by accident! I was horrified for a moment and then laughed out loud. That was a stupid thought. I remembered every moment of the 2-hour history class that started at 5:45 pm. A quick glance at the dashboard clock confirmed the time of 8:45 pm. It was just a beautiful, shiny evening that made me feel deeply grateful…
…And then suddenly, the world went dark all at once as if it had been covered by a heavy, wool blanket. I watched in amazement as twinkly sparks of light suddenly began to peek through the darkness. I continued driving down the highway as the forthcoming stars and full round moon now guided my way home.
Then, to my surprise, I suddenly felt the presence of other beings though I was alone in the car. I smiled as I suddenly thought of angels pressing in the cramped space all around me. I felt my mind and spirit begin to float away, completely transcending the current moment. My breath became soft and steady as I drifted away with the angels….
…Oh, my gosh…no, wait….i was still driving down the highway!
I shook myself to pull back from this out-of-body moment and focused my attention back on the traffic. I asked the angels to guide and protect me and not to distract me as I drove up the Washington Street exit ramp. Luckily, I was able to stay connected with my driving until I had finally stopped the car in my apartment complex parking lot. I turned off the engine, grabbed my bag, and climbed out of the car. I walked up to the door of my apartment and opened it up. I stepped inside the inky blackness of my living room. I don’t leave a light on in my home. With my morning and night classes, I am usually away from home from 7 am to 10:30 pm. I don’t want to leave a light turned on from over 13 hours. I shuffled carefully over to my kitchen to turn on the ceiling light. I don’t have any lamps in my living room. I actually don’t have any furniture. Honestly, I sleep on an old army cot, but that’s okay. I feel blessed anyway and tonight proved it.
As I shuffled in the dark towards my kitchen, I suddenly screamed and jumped back! My dark studio apartment suddenly lit up like a fireworks display! Whit golden brilliant light began shooting all around the room as I looked on in wonder. After a minute or so, the display stopped as quickly as it had begun. I quickly ran to the kitchen but before I could reach the light switch a small but bright beam of light started glowing in the far corner of the living room. I stood in stunned silence as the light suddenly sailed over my head and into the opposite corner of the room where it suddenly disappeared and I was standing in darkness again.
Oh, my gosh…a shooting star! I suddenly thought. I love shooting stars…I have seen several of them over the last few years…
…Wait a minute…I suddenly realized I wasn’t outside.
I just saw a shooting star against the ceiling of my apartment. Now I flipped on the kitchen light and glanced around the apartment. Nothing was out of place and nothing could have created that amazing light image. Maybe it was just a passing car, I wondered. But my apartment sits back further from the road and is surrounded by a 62-inch brick wall. I’ve been in this apartment for 18 months and have never seen car headlights shine through my big front picture window. Also, the light was a brilliant golden white and not the dull haze of car lights shining through the windows of a house.
Though I felt a bit nervous because I could not identify the light source, I could only come to the conclusion that it was light from the Source, from the One, from the Universe, from God. As I got ready for bed that night, I thought about everything that had happened that night—the lightness of the night as I was driving home, watching the stars and the moon arrive, the transcendence of the moment, feeling the presence of angels, the light display in my apartment, and my very special shooting star. I knew than that life is blessed and that God and the angels are always surrounding us.