When I was a little girl, I envisioned splendid images of God and his kingdom in the sky. I believed that if I squinted through my eyelashes and pretended I wasn’t looking that I could catch a glimpse of him floating by on a cloud, surrounded by white-winged angels. I would lie for hours in the fresh summer grass, staring up into the sky until I could feel the slow turning of the earth beneath me. In my child’s mind, I never quite caught that vivid peek of God, but as an adult I realize those were the moments a Higher Power was most fully present to me. In that dreamlike state where waking and sleep merge, when vision blurs and yet becomes crystal clear. The place of being held by the earth, gazing longingly into the sky and being completely content for timeless hours.
Without nearly as much conviction as believing I could catch God through the window of my eyelashes was the notion that somewhere beneath my feet lay a fiery pit tended by a man with red horns, pitched fork and tail. I also imagined that if I dug a hole through the center of the earth, I would end up in China. Much more time was spent fantasizing about the delight and joy of ending up in a faraway little girl’s backyard than worrying about falling into a fiery pit. How could the same earth, soil and grass that cradled my cloud-watching self, also cover such a nasty place in the midst of the earth? I preferred to think of the magical tunnel that connected me to my foreign soul mate.
As an adult, my heart returns to cloud watching and earth pondering. What does lie below? My heart believes it offers a place to be grounded and held. We can be cradled and nurtured in love or we can be captive to fear with worries about what waits to pull us down. And above? Both adult and child know that is the space filled with infinite possibility. The dreamlike state where waking and sleep merge, when vision blurs and yet becomes crystal clear. The place where the most lovely of all things are made manifest.
photo © h3images
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