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A supernatural side to things

In previous posts I have described how I was a sceptic and agnostic most of my life, but I also mentioned at the beginning of this story how in my late 50s and 60s incredible events happened which finally led me to belief in Jesus Christ and the Resurrection. These events are so unusual and unbelievable that it is with some trepidation and hesitation that I tell them. I know I will get slated by both believers and unbelievers, by the latter because most have no firm belief in the supernatural anyway and by the former because they will think I am lying or it is ‘the work of the devil.’

If people think like that, so be it, I can only tell what happened and let people make up their own mind. At the very least, what happened to me and my wife shows that there is a supernatural side to things, something, in my opinion, that makes the Resurrection much more likely.

stick in hall

The stick in question

The first fall of the stick

It is Monday 21st July, 2008. Margaret and I had been married for six years. Long before we met the second time in consequence of her dream, Margaret had been taking notes of what was happening in her life. She hoped one day to write a book about her life. After the dream and the rather strange way we met we would both talk about writing a book about our experiences, but it never came to anything.

This day in 2008 we were sitting at dinner as usual in the dinette area when we heard a clatter outside in the hallway. I went out to investigate. A stick for opening the loft door and which hung from a nail in the wall had fallen to the floor. There was no wind or anything that could have made it fall. It had been hanging there since the house was built sixteen years previously and it had never fallen before.

We were both puzzled and I was seriously dismayed. What could it mean? I had read about manadh in Gaelic, manadh being a physical manifestation, warning of something bad going to happen, usually a death.

The second fall of the stick

It was the second fall of the stick that really brought it home to us, especially to me. Margaret didn’t seem to be so worried.  It happened on the Monday exactly one week after the first fall of the stick. We were in bed and about to fall asleep when we heard the clatter in the hall. I went to check. The stick had fallen again.

To have fallen once was bad enough, but twice, this was serious. What caused the stick to fall? Was someone or something trying to give us a message? Remember, for years I was an agnostic and even a materialist. This really shook me up. According to the materialist and naturalistic account of things, things like this just did not happen. They could not happen, and yet in our experience they did.

I remembered what I had written in a poem many years before at the age of forty: ‘What I wanted was a trumpet, a fire, / which would prove there was something intelligent / beyond the veil. / The world / or God (whatever kind of being it is) / doesn’t work like that. Nothing but silence … .’ Was this at last the deafening silence being broken?

Clearing the loft and writing a book

The fallout from the fall of the stick was twofold. I started clearing the loft and we started writing a book about our experiences. The loft was full of books and papers from the past and it was prudent, I thought, not to leave it to others to clear up my mess should anything happen to me. I really took the manadh seriously.

We asked each other what we had been discussing the first time the stick fell. Margaret remembered that I had said to her, ‘Perhaps we should write a book about our experiences.’ That was the prompt which made us write the book Island Conversion where we tell of how we first met. My part of the book became also an apologia for my newly acquired faith in Jesus Christ. The book took about two years and while I was writing it equally strange events took place which were incorporated into the book.

The things that happened finally convinced me that Christ is not just a historical relic but a living reality. The fall of the stick and other events which I will recount fill me with amazement. In my agnostic years I could never, ever have imagined that such supernatural events could happen. The spiritual realm is much closer to us than we believe or imagine.