Praise Him all ye angels!
When I was around sixteen or seventeen, I used to have nightmares of being pursued by a "Godfather" type figure who seemed intent on harming me. C.S. Lewis wrote that many people don't believe in God simply because they do not want to have another Father. But then it hadn't occurred to me that my inability to trust in God was rooted in the fact that I had no real father. Nor did the fact that the nightmare "Godfather" might be the same Person I referred to in my prayers as "God, Father in Heaven."
But one night I was reading the Bible and lying in bed when I suddenly saw a being standing near or on or in the wall. To say I was surprised is an understatement. I instantly knew it was an angel although the being was a far cry from what one would typically see on greeting cards. He had no feathers, no wings. He had a human form but not really, he was made up of light. It was as if someone had taken a fine-point pencil or chiseling tool and drawn a pencil sketch on the wall. Except that instead of dark still lines, what I saw was living moving light, a fine-featured being finely-etched like a drawing but quite real. The being wore a crown and except for a smile did not seem to move. And it is this smile that I will always remember.
It was a smile that seemed to say he understood everything about me- good and bad- yet loved me anyway. I don't think I can adequately describe the feeling of intimacy and personal attachment that this person seemed to feel for me. It was as if we were old friends, as if he had always been there with me and would always be there with me. Here was a being to whom I was completely known and completely loved. A being with complete good humor and a sweet conspiratorial kindness in his eyes. All I could do was smile at him, as if to say, "Oh, it's you!".
The funny thing was that this angel did not say anything. He didn't tell me any great spiritual truths about my life or the world. But his very presence showed me that there was a world where good and love and God existed. During the following years, I have endured several trials. During these times I have asked myself, "How could God allow this to happen to me if He still exists?" I have asked God to send his loving angel to me several times to comfort me. That request has not been granted and the angel has never reappeared. But, with the help of the Bible, this visitation has healed my past fatherlessness and has been a healing balm to the lovelessness of my earlier life. Whenever I am about to fail under the strain of the trials in my life, I remember the sweet sweet smile of that being from another country. The memory of a person I have yet to truly meet has stayed with me. And every thing in me longs for that wonderful loving country that is and has always been my Home.
1Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the LORD from the heavens: praise him in the heights.
2Praise ye him, all his angels: praise ye him, all his hosts.
3Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light.
4Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens.
5Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.
6He hath also stablished them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass.
7Praise the LORD from the earth, ye dragons, and all deeps:
8Fire, and hail; snow, and vapours; stormy wind fulfilling his word:
9Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars:
10Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl:
11Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth:
12Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children:
13Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.
14He also exalteth the horn of his people, the praise of all his saints; even of the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the LORD.