I wish, on some days, that someone was with me while I was alone, to ask me what I am thinking about… not because it is anything important or profound… but because sometimes I miss having someone around to tell. Today, driving home, I was watching the sunrays coming through the clouds. There has been the promise of rain and the clouds finally arriving give the hope that it will in fact rain. As I drove, I thought about what it would be like to be in one of those rays of sun. I see them falling in straight lines from the sky, and often wonder where they land – like I do when I see a rainbow… what if I were in one of those sunrays? Could I be so lucky? Likely not… I don’t have much luck with things like that – it is more likely to be on the edge watching, and appreciating anyone who could be a part of that experience…
Seeing the sunlight through the clouds made me think also of how we (generally) tend to associate those rays with that of an image of the divine, of God in particular. I am sure with some research I could find out why – there are probably countless references to radiant light in the Bible alone, let alone the associations that we have created ourselves… I can remember one of the first times that I, personally, began making the association. Well, when I consciously made the connection.
Once was when I was a small child. I remember being 5 or so and sitting in church on a Sunday morning. It was an old country church that sat (and still sits) at the crossroads of a then dirt road and highway (now I think all the roads are paved) – an old Anglican Church. I sat and watched the sun pour in through the stained glass windows, mesmerized by the colours that the glass gave the light, and the streams that were created with the dust particles that floated in the air. It felt at the time that beauty itself had stepped into the pew beside me – and I decided that it must be God who had come to listen to the music too. From that day onward, I connected those kinds of moments with someone/ something greater than myself – though I will admit, as I got older I have thought less and less of being next to God, like he was a playmate coming to sit near me but more aware of how God touches the life and lives around me. How God is in and around all things, all people, including me… A shift in perspective that came with age, I suppose.
The sunrays through the clouds today, reminded me of that same hope and comfort… the kind that exists without philosophy or ideas or labels, it just is… It has come to represent for me, the hope of my childhood, which I have never lost – that feeling of comfort sitting there with God in the pew as a five year old… innocent, happy and surrounded by something beautiful. Most of all, the rays of light reminded me of the kind of beauty that can only be experienced. It can’t be recreated or reproduced the same way. You just have to be there, and breathe it in. I think that is why I wished to be inside the ray of light, as much as I wish to have someone next to me to share that thought with at the time.
In the end, it is a comfort that somewhere, perhaps almost everywhere at any time, there is that possibility to see the rays of light from the sun – and that connection is a brilliant one.
November 15, 2007