Had an interesting experience the other day at work. Kenji called me over by name to help him with some sort of paperwork issue, the lady he was helping asked me inquisitively, “Is your name Isaac?” I’m always a little concerned when people ask questions like that, especially in the way she asked, it was a little more intense than usual. I told her that yes, my name is indeed Isaac, she grasped my hand and went on a prolonged, sermon like monologue that went on for some time. It was a bit circuitous, but she did have a point of some sort… It went something like this.
She was the first person I have ever met that venerated Sarah. Don’t remember her? Sure, Abraham gets all the attention, but Sarah was his wife. Here’s the story for those of you not quite up on your Old Testament studies. Essentially, Abraham wanted a male heir, but try as they might, Abe and Sarah couldn’t conceive. Abraham eventually had a son with a concubine, he named his son Ishmael. Some time later, God told Sarah that she would indeed conceive, despite the fact that she was 99 at the time (people lived to incredible ages in the Old Testament). She laughed when she heard this, and the name Isaac is derived somehow from that act of laughing… Isaac went on to become the patriarch of all 12 tribes of Israel and was the offical heir to Abraham. Interestingly, Abe sent Ishmael and Ishmael’s mother away. Abraham worried about his first son and God told him not to worry, that He would make a nation unto him as well as to his son Isaac. Muslims trace their spiritual roots back to Ishmael.
In any case, this woman in the store related all of this (minus the Ishmael stuff) to me and then she pulled out a pendant she was wearing around her neck, it was a Sarah and Isaac pendant! She went on to tell me that the name Sarah relates to light somehow and she had incorperated this into her photography. Just as light enters into the camera, illuminating the darkness, God illuminated Sarah and blessed her with a child. In the customer’s mind, she was capturing the divinity in all of her subjects at the very moment of the shutter opening. She then looked into my eyes and said “I see God in you, Isaac was a blessing from the light of God.” Gotta say that was some serious goose bump material there.
She was one of those people that I couldn’t tell if she was nuts or not. Part of me thought she was bonkers, but she was awfully sincere throughout her talk, you could tell she really believed what she was saying. I also had a gut level feeling about her that I have only had several times before. I’ve never told anyone this before, but I do feel that I have come into contact with, if not angels then certainly agents of God. People that are there to test my Christian mettle and see how I do. I’ll leave those stories for another time but suffice it to say that I felt compelled to listen to what she had to say. I do feel as though I learned something from her but that it’ll take some time to sink in and really understand what she had to say.
Everyone else thought she was nuts, I dunno, maybe she was. Some experiences don’t make any sense and yet they are very powerful. The trick is to be open to them, and I’m trying hard to do that.