Awake

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(3:45 a.m.)  I wake with moonlight streaming across my face. The moon crests over the peak of the garage roof and sends its light through the open window next to my bed. I hear frogs and crickets, and a few night birds. There is a brisk wind blowing through the trees. The house is still and dark. My family rests securely in their sleep. I lie there, still, listening, alert, peaceful, and not tired. Suddenly an abrupt and stark awareness rises to consciousness: I am happy. It is not the pleasure of taking comfort in this peaceful moment; it is something deeper, something that has been beneath the surface for a long time, and only in this moment have I become acutely aware of it in this visceral way. I am happy, but not because of any particular situation or circumstance except one: I am loved and I know it. I am loved by the people around me, yes, but it is more than that. I am also loved by the moonlight coming in through the window, the frogs singing in the pond, the crickets chirping in the tall grass, the wind quickly rustling through the trees, the trees themselves, breathing in the dark and purifying the night air, and the entire living liturgy of creation given by the One who loves me through them, with them, and in them,…right now. I realize I have always been loved this way and just refused to see it, and my blindness was the cause of an awful lot of wasted time and trouble, for me and for the people who love me. But not anymore. Now I am home. It is 3:45 a.m. and I am happy, loved, and completely awake. There isn’t anything else to know.

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