Driving past at nearly 55 miles per hour on this abnormally warm November morning, a burst of saturated color leapt out at my eye. The landscape behind him was desaturated and brown, but the familiar colors of his American Flag waved bright and bold, as he waved at each passing car along that one stretch of highway. I passed him, waving right back, but as I did that, I knew I needed to stop. Something inside me actually compelled me to stop.
When I was 19, I allowed myself to go through the recruitment process of enlisting into the US Army. After some aggressive recruiting, I decided I couldn't do it. I didn't have it in me. So every time I see a United States Service Member, I'm reminded of just how courageous and strong these men and women had to have been, in order to put their lives on the line, just so that I could live mine. Respect.
What stuck out me the most, in the words that he spoke however, was the line "My battle was 40 years ago." He said it so peacefully and his eyes were so kind as he spoke. I wanted to tell him, "I feel like my battle is always being fought", but I didn't have the words, but it was as if he knew.
As I walked away from our conversation, I had this eery sense of angelic presence. Call me crazy, but I texted a family member, asking if she'd seen this guy on the side of the road, since she'd driven it only a few minutes before me, and she hadn't seen him at all. His peace, his calmness, and the way his eyes looked as he spoke to me, gave me an incredible sense of calm myself. I know I'm probably stretching the limitations of my captive audience here, but as I thought about it, the idea of Jesus, hanging on a cross thousands of years ago came into my mind. He fought a battle for all of us too, much like this man had 40 years prior.
His name was Michael, also the name of the archangel who wrestled with Jacob in the Bible. Yep, you can call me nuts at this point, I'm ok with it, but when I walked away from this man, I felt a sense of peace that doesn't happen in normal interactions. It was as if there was much more to his knowing glances to me than just casual conversation.
#UntilWeMeetAgainProject Day 67.