My dream: a hug and a vision of peace

I’m flawed.

I get angry and fly off the handle easily with little warning. I’m selfish and impatient. I hold grudges and write others off for the smallest of offenses. I can be mean and disagreeable. I curse and swear and would sooner run over you than let you sneak in front of me on my way to work.

I criticize and complain. I focus on myself instead of helping others. Despite my many flaws, I look up to find Mary, the mother of God, waving to me to come closer. I shake my head and squint my eyes. She’s dressed in a long robe and her arm is definitely motioning toward me. I have to be seeing things. This can’t be right.

No, it’s clear as day. She’s got a bright smile that wraps around her entire face and is pointing and waving to me. I take a hesitant step forward. I look behind me. Is she waving to someone else? No, there’s no one there.


Mistaken identity

This has to be a case of a mistaken identity, but yet, her smile amazingly gets even bigger, her hand gestures even more faster. I take another step and another. I’m like a little kid racing to sit on Santa’s lap, excited to see his hero, but fearful that Santa will say he’s been naughty. I hurry up and then slow down; hurry up again and then slow down once more. I’m dying to meet Mary, but  but scared to death on what she’ll say to me.

This is Mary; the woman who gave birth to Jesus Christ; the blessed virgin; the Madonna; the mother of God; the one and only Mary.

I watch her wave and remind myself that I’ve been reading about her since I was a little kid. When Michael, the archangel, came down and told her that her life as she knew it would be changing forever, she didn’t say no, she didn’t hide or runaway to the desert, she didn’t fight him. In today’s terms, she simply said, “You want me to jump? How high?”


Flaws and foibles exposed

And then there’s me, God tells me to jump and I’m that reluctant kid who hears his parents telling him to take out the garbage. I keep putting it off until they’ve asked me five or six times. I finally reply: “Yea, mom, I’ll take the garbage out right after the game.” Of course, it never gets done.

I wipe my eyes and Mary is still there, waving to me. I’m getting closer. She has time to run away, but she keeps at it. I start to wonder if it’s trick, but this is Mary we’re talking about, she doesn’t play tricks.

I’m 20 feet away, and then 15 and then 10. I’m cautious, but she’s not. She ignores my hesitant glances, bounds over to me, surprising me. She wraps her arms around me and gives me a long motherly hug. I feel the anxiety and fear lift from deep inside my heart.


Mary, mary

In my faith, Mary is an important figure. While betrothed to Joseph, the archangel Gabriel came to her and told her that she would become the Mother of Jesus, by the Holy Spirit. She gave birth to Jesus Christ, raised him, and then watched as he was crucified and three days later raised from the dead.

I’m dreaming of course.

I waken and Mary disappears like clouds in the sky, but to me anyway, the dream is real. The feelings are certainly real, they’re no less powerful or dull than if I saw Mary at the local grocery store. I ponder the dream for a long before I start my day. It’s a simple dream, but it sticks with me for days.

On difficult days, when it’s tough to turn on the television or surf on the web, when the news from Las Vegas, Nevada, or Puerto Rico or Mexico City, Mexico or anywhere in the world for that matter is extraordinarily depressing, I come back to the dream. It gives me solace, it gives me peace, it gives me hope of better days ahead.

I’m not sure what my dream means, but I definitely take it as a signpost, as a goal. It’s what I want most: When I die, I want to be greeted by Mary, wrapped in her arms, and for her say “come, come” and then for Jesus to appear and say, “Yes Brian, I have prepared a room for you.”

In the meantime, I’m quite comfortable living my life. When the time comes though, I can’t think of a better place to end up.


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