Hands embracing the sun
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The car in front of me was still at the stop sign. Its left-turn signal was blinking. One car after another passed through the intersection, with lots of room between each of them.

At last the car moved. I followed it through the intersection and, a moment later, stopped behind it again. The driver was not in a hurry. There were no cars in front of him, but he was going very slowly. I was late for my appointment. "He must be senile," I fumed.

The road widened, and I passed as soon as I could. When I did, I looked over to see the driver. It was Herb, my friend!

I was delighted to see him. I waved, and he waved back. Everything changed because I saw something I hadn't seen before—the driver was my friend.

Reverence is like that. It is seeing something you haven't seen before. You recognize friends wherever you look.

The lean man closed the door to his old truck. It was the end of autumn, and the truck was stacked high with firewood for me. Slowly, he walked toward me and put out his hand.

"Good day," he said. "Your firewood will cost more this year."

I didn't expect that news. I didn't like it, either, but there was nothing I could do. Winter was coming, and I had waited too long to buy my wood.

"Stack it there," I told him, pointing to the empty woodshed.

"My nephew will do that," he said, nodding to the boy in his truck. "I'll be back."

I felt angry.

Next: How this boy changed her perspective
The boy began to stack the wood. I noticed how carefully he placed each piece.

"Do you like working for your uncle?" I asked, making conversation.

"Yes," he said without stopping.

"Why?" I asked.

"This will pay for my school clothes," he said. Then he smiled directly at me.

"We don't have any money."

I melted. Suddenly, I liked being with him, and I liked his uncle too. I wasn't angry anymore. I saw something I hadn't seen. Before, I saw people selling wood. Afterward, I saw an uncle and his nephew working to buy school clothes. I saw friends.

Reverence is like this, too. It is seeing beneath the surface. When you see with reverence, you see everyone as a beautiful friend, even if he is driving slowly, like Herb, or doing something you might not like, such as raising the price of your firewood.

When you see with reverence, you see holiness in everything.

Holiness is like the ocean. What you see with your five senses is like the waves in the ocean. There are so many waves that you never see them all. Some are large, and some are small. All of them have different shapes and different ways of moving. All of them change in their own ways and disappear into the ocean in their own ways. Each one is unique.

Reverence is loving the ocean.

Gary Zukav is the author of Spiritual Partnership: The Journey to Authentic Power. This article is from his book, Soul Stories.

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