Recently, I learned that a woman I knew from high school died. She left behind both parents, a son, two grandchildren, and a sister and brother-in-law who all adored her. Plus, she was valedictorian of my class. This has got me thinking about my own legacy. I have loving parents and a brother, and a wonderful new sister-in-law, but I don’t have a traditional legacy like children or a business.
I do have a spiritual legacy. Part of my own personal spirituality is that I believe angels walk among us. Believing this, I know that when we need them, they are there. I often share a story that when I was having a particularly bad day, a woman in a yellow coat waved and gave me a big smile as I crossed the crosswalk. It was simple and quick — 1 maybe 2 seconds, but it changed the rest of the day. I knew she was an angel. At a crowded bus stop, a young man gave up his seat for me. He started talking about the fun things he had done the day before. It filled my heart with such joy – I could tell he was an angel too. Recently, I was in the grocery store. The omicron variant of covid-19 was raging, and it was very cold that day. I looked across the meat aisle, and there was an older man who just seemed so happy and joyful. His blue eyes sparkled like the ocean. There, by the grace of God, was another angel.
These brief encounters just make my heart sing. That is how I know that something extraordinary has just occurred. I want you to know that all of these things will happen to you as you are going along a particularly hard route of your life. The little things — a smile, a handshake, an offer of a seat, will make you realize that God is watching over you and that you have truly seen an angel.
My philosophy, that angels are among us, is one of the parts of my legacy. I believe that we are all held in the arms of God. And, when we really need it, the angels are there to show us that we matter. I’ve told this philosophy at church pot luck dinners, while drinking coffee with a friend, and in various classes. I’m not sure I will be remembered personally years from now, but it is more important to me that the philosophy of angels around us endures, than that people remember me.