Years ago I photographed a stained glass dome on a dark, rainy day. But because of the nature and design of the glass, even poor light made the dome come alive. Since then, I use the phrase
Be the Light
as a way to remind people that a little light goes a long way, especially in a place of darkness.
Recently I met a dear woman named Karen, whose example of what it means to “Be the Light” is a shining example to us all.
To See the Light, Keep Your Eyes Open
Karen saw that her employee, Woody (not his real name), was in failing health, and his illness showed up in his mind more than his body. Woody would yell, curse, and even kick things at work. Woody’s coworker offered him compassion, and Karen did even more: she structured his role and hours so he could keep working—but out of the line-of-sight of any customers.
During a rare, lucid moment, Woody told Karen, “I worry about my dog, Angel. Who’s gonna care for her if something happens to me?”
To Share the Light, Use Your Heart
Karen put Woody’s heart at peace by assuring him that if it ever came to that, she would care for Angel.
Time passed. Woody’s mind declined more. Then, after a long weekend, Woody didn’t show up for work. Those who discovered Woody’s old body found an equally old dog lying by his side.
After the service, Karen made good on her promise, and she went looking for Angel. Her first stop was the closest pound.
To Be the Light, Spare an Angel
Karen had never seen Woody’s dog before, but when she stood before a skinny, old, sad-eyed dog with its head rested on its front paws, she knew she had found Angel. Scared and grieving, Angel had not eaten since she had been brought in. When Karen took Angel out of her cage, she noticed the overwhelming smell of death clinging to the animal. Karen surmised that Angel had lain for four days with Woody until his body was found.
On her way home, Karen knew she was doing right in fulfilling her promise to Woody, but she worried about how her own two little Shih Tzus would get along with Angel. So she prayed.
Within moments of letting Angel into her house, Karen knew that Angel had come home. The two small dogs encircled Angel inviting her to play. Angel immediately and happily joined in. She had found a new family, because another angel named Karen determined to be the light for an old man named Woody and an equally old dog named Angel.
To Spread the Light, Hold It High
Look around. In every direction are Angels…people and creatures left in a place of darkness. Now look at the mirror. There’s another Angel looking back at you. Be an Angel to another Angel. To spread the light, be willing to hold the light for another. Ask yourself, “What can I do today to create the kind of world that I want to live in?