I went to pick up my son from Boy Scouts tonight; pretty routine. Except when I tried to pull into the school parking lot, two Security Guards stopped me, and started quizzing me...why was I here, what was I doing, etc. I told them, and then I said, "Why are YOU guys here? You aren't usually. What's up?"
They said there was a political rally going on, for a Congressional Candidate. "Ah, so you're here to protect him", I said. "Her", the guard corrected me. And then it dawned on me. "Wait", I said, is it Marianne Williamson? It IS Marianne, isn't it? WOW." I've seen all the yard signs, but I haven't been paying much attention.
She pioneered a meals on wheels group for AIDS patients, has ministered at many churches, and heads up various organizations working to end poverty, promoting peace, and political empowerment. Newsweek named her one of the 50 most influential Baby Boomers. She has also made statements about God and our relationship to Him that were so profound that they were falsely attributed to Gandhi. And this is mostly off the top of my head. On a personal level, she helped me many times in the past when I was struggling to deal with issues I didn't understand, life situations that had left me angry, or confused, or depressed. She was always kind and patient and wise and incredibly on target. Sometimes I expected her to grab me by the shoulders to shake some sense into me. But of course, she never did. And even though I argued with her sometimes, I have come to see, with clarity, the truth in what she said, )
"Why don't you go in and take a peek?" The guard said. "Oh, I wish I could, but I have to get my son", I said, feeling a little sad. I walked around the back of the school to the Cafeteria. The Scoutmaster was supposed to give my son a quiz, but he was busy yakking away. Through the windows, and across the lawn, I could see the rally going on in the other building. "I'll be back in 10", I told my son, and I dashed across the grass. The door in front of me was the side door leading to the stage. It was open. I stepped in.
If I tell you that I was instantly transported to another time and place, you might think I was exaggerating, but I'm not. In front of me, on the stage, was a big banner that said "Marianne Williamson for Congress."
There was an incredible band playing, and a Gospel singer with a powerful voice was belting out "Let there be peace on earth". There were lots of video and still photographers buzzing around, clicking away. That part was like every political rally I have ever been to. But the part that was different was how happy everyone seemed. Everyone who caught my eye smiled at me. Not in a pretentious, or cultish type of way. A genuinely joyful type of way. As the singer began reaching the crescendo, someone grabbed my hand, and everyone held hands, and raised them high, and sang along.
And then Marianne herself walked up to the stage, to say goodnight and thank you, and vote tomorrow, and the rest was a blur. It had been so long since I'd seen her! Because life and you know, kids, get in the way.
I was shocked to see how young and beautiful she looked, even more so than in the past. She is really doing something right, I thought.
I stood mesmerized as I watched her walk down, smiling and shaking hands and taking picture after picture with everyone who asked.
And then I looked at my watch, and my 10, well actually 15 minutes was up. I ran out the door and back across the grass. Back to the cafeteria, where my son had finished his quiz, and the Scoutmaster was still yakking.
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