There’s a wonderful old gospel tune that goes something like this: "This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine (repeated several times) then: "Hide under a bushel–No! I’m gonna let it shine (more repeats)." This refers to Matthew 5:15, Mark 4:21 and Luke 11:33, where Jesus says, "No one takes a lamp and puts it in a cupboard or under a bucket (in the King James version, it’s a "bushel," hence the song lyrics), but on a lamp-stand, so that those who come in can see the light."

Whenever I watch the horrible happenings on the evening news, I always wish I could do something to help–that I had a degree in nursing or midwifery, so that I could rush over to Haiti or wherever and actually aid people. I’ve even considered going back to school and getting that training, but like almost everyone else, I’m helpless, so I just send what money I can.

I want to be a light, but since I don’t have the ability to do it, I simply watch in frustration. Recently, we had an occasion to see what a light people can be to others while doing something relatively "ordinary"–in this case, driving Whitley to the doctor.

I haven’t yet conquered my fear of Los Angeles freeways, so we live in a neighborhood where we can walk everywhere, and Whitley does the driving.

Recently, he hurt his back and couldn’t even sit comfortably, much less drive. In fact, he had to be flat on his back most of the time.

He talked on the phone to our doctor and I walked to the drugstore to get the meds he prescribed, but eventually, Whitley had to get in the car and drive to get an MRI and then see a specialist. I could have called a cab, but he needed to have a seat that reclined (which the passenger seat in our car almost does–it goes way back), so I didn’t know what to do.

I called a friend who offered to drive. This rather enigmatic man works as a healer, but his main function for us was to be a light. He drove Whitley and me to the doctor, waited while he had his appointment, then drove us home–all the time regaling us with fascinating stories that kept our minds off the pain. He didn’t even want our thanks.

He helped heal me too, because I was also in pain–in emotional pain–due to an incredibly hurtful email I’ received from someone I’d considered to be a friend. While this was a small hurt compared to Whitley’s physical one, it was real, and our friend helped heal that too, just by showing that he considered me to be a nice person and liked me just fine.

It made me realize that we can be a light just by doing an ordinary kindness now and then. We don’t have to travel abroad to do it: There are plenty of chances right here at home, if we’re just open to them.

I’m going to try to copy my friend’s example and take that bucket off the lamp a little more often.

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  1. The actual fact of the
    The actual fact of the matter, Anne, is that your friend was able to help you because you don’t have a bucket over your light–you only think you have one in place. If you were indeed hiding your light, he wouldn’t have been able to reflect it back to you and Whit.
    And since when does being able to send even a small amount of resources to a region that needs it count as “helpless”? 😉

  2. If you receive negative
    If you receive negative attention from people you consider friends, on some level, they probably never considered you a friend in the first place. I, personally, have had this happened to me where “friends” in my life where I live that I thought were okay one day decided it was okay to be evil and cruel towards me the next day and without any reason as to why. I’ve cut those people out of my life forever, in real life and on Facebook, which I no longer use for that very reason. I have no idea why your friend would be so hurtful towards you in an e-mail but a true friend would look beyond their own ego and see through the misunderstandings that might have been instead of lashing out aimlessly.

  3. What a lovely story, Anne.
    What a lovely story, Anne. Thank you.

  4. We love you, Anne, and send
    We love you, Anne, and send healing to both you and Whitley.

  5. I have been interviewed by
    I have been interviewed by Anne as a contactee. I even saw negative comments about her interview style after our interview was posted. (I am here under the guest pass that we all get after our interviews, although I am also a subscriber. I want to be completely anonymous because I am very private about my contact experience.) I want to say this: talking to Anne was one of the loveliest, most energizing experiences I have ever had. After the interview was over, I was literally floating! The kindness, concern, wisdom and knowledge that came out of that woman were just very, very special to me. And then I read some jerk complaining that she “talked too miuch” and talked over me. She talked over me because I was having such a hard time getting it out, and she was literally mothering me along in the gentlest, sweetest way you can imagine. Talk about support!

    She’s wonderful. Period. End of rant.

  6. I have to agree
    I have to agree wholeheartedly with the prior comment. If ANYONE has anything negative to say about Anne Strieber, I would have to consider the source of that negativity. I know Anne personally, and she is one of the loveliest human beings I have ever met. Her courage, dedication and perseverance is stellar, and her devotion to her life partner radiates from her in his presence. I am sometimes shocked at the behavior of some people in this field (I am to assume that the person who sent the nasty e-mail is involved in this phenomenon), as I feel there is some sort of jealousy or competitiveness tied to some and they lash out without even thinking about what their true purpose is here. I really look up to Anne, and her work ethic as well, and I hope to someday be able to come close to the things that she has accomplished in her research and support of all the other experiencers who have reached out to her. Thank you, Anne!

  7. Hmmm ain’t human nature a
    Hmmm ain’t human nature a wonderful puzzlement.
    I would never consider you an insecure person so it must be that you are very very sensitive….the good side of that is your being able to “feel” the people you connect with…the not so good side is the slightest pain especially emotional is devestating.
    I think it was Edgar Cayce who said that we enter heaven holding the hand of someone we have helped on earth…think how many hands you have and are holding 🙂
    From where I sit…you are shining just fine, lady. V.

  8. Anne, thank you for this new
    Anne, thank you for this new Anne’s Diary. Life can be such a challenge at times. Thank God for family and WONDERFUL friends.

    ….This Little Light Of Mine …..

  9. It’s so wonderful when we
    It’s so wonderful when we have the chance to be a “light” for someone else. With her diaries and contactee interviews, Anne has been a light for me.

  10. Why, I love Anne to death.
    Why, I love Anne to death. Shouldn’t it go without saying? But I’m also the ‘jerk’ referred to above…

    I’m a paid subscriber to the website, and as such, I like to hear interviews that don’t make me: a) cringe; b) swear; c) both. Given the understandable eagerness of contactees to come out of the closet and tell their stories with all the force of an avalanche — hearing someone interrupt more or less constantly and say ‘Yes, I’ve heard all that before’ or worse, disagree — makes me cringe and swear.

    I think the subscriber interviews with contactees should be venues for them to tell their stories in whatever manner they wish with minimal interference or guidance from the questioner. They aren’t promoting books. They aren’t advancing interpretations. They’re telling stories around the campfire. They should be allowed to let ‘er rip.

    80% of the subscriber interviews Anne has done leave me feeling shortchanged. Granted, the commenter above may be so desperately grateful that she’s willing to overlook anything, but as a listener, I’d like some minimal standard of presentation to be respected. A thirty-minute show shouldn’t be, say, ten minutes blather.

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