By Brenda Satrum
Ever met an angel? How would you know?
In the Bible, when angels show up, their first words are always, “Do not be afraid.” I wonder if that’s because angels can be wildly frightening (unlike the fluffy lady on our Christmas tree or Valentine’s cherubs) or because we’re so easily frightened?
The word angel, or angelos in the Greek from which we receive it, means “messenger.” Biblical angels bring messages from God to people: “Don’t be afraid,” they say, “God is working out his purposes, and you’re part of the story – this will turn out well!”
On Christmas Eve this year, I dared tell Trinity’s worshipers that God still sends angels. He sent one to me last month.
My husband and I have applied for jobs at a remote retreat center off Lake Chelan. It’s a location and a ministry dear to our hearts and we’re honored to be finalists in the interview process – and we can’t take the dog.
Ouch. Katy’s our perfect puppy. A 6-year-old border collie, she’s beautiful and energetic, silky-soft and smart. She’s the only dog we ever hoped to own; we planned to love her birth to death. We give Katy a nice yard, 3 to 13 miles a day, and seasonal brushing. She has less parasites than most humans. Whatever home receives her, I want it to be as nice for her as ours. So I fret.
I wrote in my prayers one morning: “God, let me give over – even take from me – all that might prevent me from being with you wherever you go. And let your joy fill me as I do.” Later, as Doug and I started up Mount Peak, I said, “If we need to find a home for Katy, we should put her picture up here; she might have a friend who’d like her.” On we hiked.
Soon we saw a guy jogging toward us. From a distance he yelled, “I want your dog!”
He drew near. “Really?!” we asked. “Are you serious? What are your qualifications?” Turns out, the night before he’d been on that very section of the trail telling his fiancée that the only dog he’d ever own again was a border collie. He used to run a pet store and says he loves Jesus, too. We gave him our number.
If we settle our fuzzy puppy into this man’s home, it’ll be a miracle. But even if not, an angel in jogging shorts met us on Mount Peak, saying, “Don’t be afraid. God is working out his purposes, and you’re a part of the story; this will turn out well.”
May God’s messengers meet you daily and may you have eyes to see, ears to hear and a heart open to receive good news.