"The Wondrous Origami Man"
(Author Unknown - from sam7757, helpothers.org)

12-28-2007 Church Within SOW Seeds Service - Story #473

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Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome again to Church Within's Story of the Week ["SOW Seeds”].

This week's SOW Seeds Story, contributed by: Diane Smith

Story of the Week
The Wondrous Origami Man
(Author Unknown - from sam7757, helpothers.org)

My friend, Gayla and I were traveling to Phoenix from Chicago. I misread the ticket, and we missed our flight. I was busy being upset about my failed plans when Gayla suggested we just fly wherever we want instead, since we had the time.

I think about missing my flight to Phoenix and going to San Francisco instead. It taught me a lot about being open to what is, not attached to what I want, and how things unexpected can happen. Long story but while Gayla and I were in San Fran, this strange thing happened. It made me think maybe I should start to trust the natural course of things more, instead of always thinking I know what is best and trying to control things.

Did I see an angel or God or Santa while in San Francisco? I don't know what he was, but he was not of this realm, I don't think. Here is the little story about someone I call Origami Man:

Gayla and I were sitting in a 1950s style diner in downtown San Francisco, waiting to be seated. A waitress walked by playing with a origami animal and showing her co-workers. We were seated, looked to our left, and across the aisle was an elderly man with a mischievous smile and twinkling eyes. He was watching a waitress nearby, as if waiting to ask something. As soon as she is free, he hands her an origami bird. He smiles, says nothing.

He almost could be homeless, but he is too well groomed, his jeans and sneakers clean, and he is wearing a "Crimson Tide of Alabama" sweatshirt under his leather jacket. I catch his eye, he smiles.

While we go about ordering breakfast, he removes a piece of square blue paper and makes some folds. In a moment, he slides across the aisle to our table, presents a sky blue origami crane to Gayla and smiles. He returns to his seat, saying nothing. We are all smiles, amused, intrigued and pleased at the unsolicited gift. Sometime during breakfast, we are bestowed another gift, a light grey frog.

He sits eating his waffles with whipped cream and strawberries, and waits a moment for another opportunity to shine his light towards another life. He says nothing, smiles and watches. As we get up to leave, the waitress presents our check, and I ask if she has his check. She does. I take it and pay for his breakfast. He thanks me on the way to the restroom, just in front of the cash register. He hands Gayla an origami cube fashioned with printed patterns of paper. I know he thanked me, but I am not sure he actually spoke. His smile and eyes transformed the moment into something unearthly. Suspended in time for a second, I paid and we left.

Not long after, but miles away, while riding a public transportation train to the Pacific Ocean beachfront, who boards the train and sits in front of us? Origami Man! He smiles, presents a beautiful origami box so small it should be used for the brightest gem, or some other large treasure of small size. He sits, waits his turn to enter another's life for just a second. A father with a typically squirmy 3 or 4 year old boy boards, sits and tries to quiet and entertain his son. Origami Man waits for what to him is the exact right moment, presents a finger puppet of paper to the boy, who now is happy, smiling and enthralled with the gift. Origami Man is pleased, I know, but he does not communicate verbally.

Once we say something, he answers, but we have no idea what he said. I don't know if it was the noise of the train, his voice, or our ears. I think we were not supposed to understand. Before he leaves the train, he touches the life of another little passenger. I have the idea he is not just getting off this train, but this planet as he exits. He visited to bring joy, smiles, maybe to remind himself what happens here in this realm. I don't know. But he leaves, and I am sure I have witnessed something extraordinary.

I think you had to be there to understand the magic in what I saw. Words are insufficient.

I do know this. Let yourself be open to what IS, not attached to what you want things to be and trust yourself. Magic can happen.

A few years later, I moved to a house that had a mold problem. Over the course of months, my material possessions became a health hazard for me. After moving to a new house, and destroying all my personal belongings, I was realizing the emotional attachment I had with my 'stuff' and missed it at the holidays.

I received a holiday card from Gayla. We had lost contact with each other, and she was not aware of my situation. In the envelope was the gray origami frog. He still sits in my living room to remind me of the threads that connect our experiences, and how life can amaze me if I let it.

The Prayer
Dear God,        
        Thank You for all of the lives that You touch us with.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Eternal Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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