When my Spirit Guides told me to write a book, I asked, "Where do I start?"
They replied, "Write down the 'Godlove' story."
This is that story, which is now the Preface of the book.
Did you ever ask for a sign — a simple clue, wink, nod, or maybe just a coincidence that would give you hope? Perhaps you didn’t even ask for a sign, but nevertheless, one jumped out in front of you? This is a story about one of those days.
I now get some sort communication every single day. I am not psychic (or are we all psychic?), but I wish I were. Life would be a lot easier with a direct line to the other side. This story goes back to a time when I really needed some hope. Between my desperate state and an unexpected surprise, it made for a rather memorable day. I still count that day as one of my greatest blessings.
It all began on a cold, drizzly, late fall day in western Wisconsin. In retrospect, it started well before then, but don’t all our stories go back further than we care to mention? Anyway, this part of the story started that cold day.
I drove 12 miles to a state park, coincidentally named Hoffman Hills Recreation Area, as in my last name. Synchronicity was already kicking in. This 700-acre preserve consists primarily of tree-covered rolling hills, a few wetlands, and a prairie full of tall, beautiful grasses. With the temp in the low 40s, the drizzle was not far from turning into snow. This weather was perfect for my favorite piece of clothing, a mossy-green Gore-Tex jacket. It was a pullover type with an ample hood that fit well over my stocking cap. This shell, combined fleece underlayer, kept me dry and warm as I was hiking up and down the hills. If only we had a similar jacket to protect us from life.
I had relocated to the area a few months earlier, not long after my divorce. Actually, it was my ex-wife’s divorce — she was the one who wanted it. I thought moving to a new town might be just what I needed, even though it meant only seeing my two boys every other weekend. The move wasn’t what I had hoped for, as I was working about 70 hours per week for what, at the time, I would have called a narcissistic asshole. Now I would call him “just another pointer in life.” People play the roles that we ask of them. I was so full of anger after the divorce, though, that any change was worth trying. I didn’t realize that the pay raise I took with the new job would go straight to my ex-wife in the form of maintenance and child support. Talk about a kick in the shorts — working twice as hard for less money and not being near my boys. Did I mention my boss?
When I wasn’t working, I was studying A Course In Miracles, a voluminous spiritual course that required much commitment. I was a voracious reader of spiritual books after my divorce. Being raised Catholic, I always had a strong belief in God. One thing puzzled me, though. How could a kid do all the right things in life, end up on his face, and then not have God provide any assistance? You might say I was seeking God, even though I wasn’t quite sure what I would say when I found Him.
Perhaps the best thing about hiking in cold, lousy weather is that you won’t bump into many people. That day, I had all 700 acres to myself... sort of. I don’t know why more people don’t hike in that weather. It’s a beautiful time of year in the northern states. A stillness covers nature, yet there is a palpable energy. I think a little moisture in the air makes the energy that much stronger. And the smell of the leaves is something you can’t find on a Caribbean island.
I got out of my Pathfinder and left it alone in the parking lot. After a short, flat walk, the trail ascended as it meandered into the woods. These words crossed my mind: Look for the sign. Was this a thought? Probably. My mind often buzzed like a beehive with its non-stop activity. This was likely just another random thought. I played along, though, hoping it was a meaningful piece of communication. These messages rarely turned out to be anything in the past, but when you’re desperate, you cling to anything. I’ve yelled out for God, angels, Spirit Guides... hell, even a ghost would do: anyone to acknowledge that there is more to all of this. These efforts produced little in the way of concrete evidence. Maybe it was curiosity, hope, or just nothing else to do, but I decided to follow this particular thought that day. The thought would periodically repeat itself. Funny that I say, “repeat itself.” Was it repeating itself, or was I?
A while later, I did come to a sign. It was a short, wooden marker about a foot and a half tall that said something like: “this is an oak tree... blah, blah, blah.” The kind of sign you expect to see in state parks. Surely, this couldn’t be what I was looking for. If so, that would be a pretty lousy joke on the part of the Universe. I wasn’t feeling very humorous at this stage in my life.
Progressing down the path, I heard, Look for the sign, again. A few more similar park signs appeared, but I began to conclude that I was trying too hard to believe in something that wasn’t real. About 15 minutes after giving up on my thoughts, I reached the back peak of the park.
A large observation tower appeared ahead. The oil-treated lumber stretched 60 feet into the sky. At the base was a large sign with bright yellow letters carved into the brown painted planks. Could this be the sign?! My excitement spiked. It was really the last possibility. I began to read the name of the tower in bold print at the top of the sign, and then gradually moved on to what proved to be nothing more than meaningless information, at least as far as my search was concerned. By the time I was done reading, my hopes had dwindled again. I couldn’t believe I fell for another one of these tricks of the mind.
Again, I heard the message, with more vigor than ever, Look at the sign! It was then I noticed a plaque on the ground. One of the contributors to the tower had the last name “Hoffman-Godlove,” which I interpreted as “God loves Hoffman.” I instantly began to cry. At this moment, I knew that I was not alone. I had never heard of anyone having the last name “Godlove.” What were the odds that this was the first time?
I climbed to the top of the tower, wiping away my stream of tears. Once there, I stood slightly shaking, taking in this experience and the incredible view above the canopy of trees. My faith had exploded in size — so much so that I figured I could step off the tower and God would take care of me. Maybe I could even levitate. Worst case, life had been pretty sucky for much of the past 20 years and I would get to go to heaven. I had become tired of the struggle. My better wisdom came over me, though, and I decided I should be thankful for today’s gift and begin my journey home.
Since then, a never-ending stream of events has confirmed to me that we are never alone. Not only that, but there is a loving, joyful, humorous, eager presence that is begging to work with us. We have so much potential, and the wisdom our Guides share can make life truly magical.