Have you ever met an Angel? Really – I mean it. Sometimes God uses the strangest people, Seriously!
Let me start at the beginning. Have you ever been “kicked out” or shunned at a church? Me too. And more people that I know too. So what happens to all of us that God has chosen, yet man doesn’t want to use? Well for a while we stay home. Pout, complain, and have ourselves a pity party. Mine was about 4-6 months as I recall. And then God starts the “wooing” back.
You start dreaming about serving again. You start singing random praise songs in the shower. But, once again, due to rejection and fear, you tell yourself, “NO, I am never doing that again!” And life goes on for a while. Still ignoring your calling you just “go to work, and come home.”
Then God sends an Angel your way. Yeah, really. Only he doesn’t look like an Angel at the time. You know, no wings, no harp, no singing. It was New Years Day morning and very cold with lots of snowdrifts in Wisconsin. My husband, Bob, and I went outside to go to work and there was a very drunk man in our driveway passed out on a snow bank. Yep, passed out cold.
I went inside and got him a blanket and cup of coffee while my husband tried to get him up. He was breathing, but he wouldn’t wake up. So we called the ambulance. And that of course, sent a call to the Police Department. Well, at that time we lived on a very busy road, but when the sirens came, he woke up! He started shaking, tried talking and just wrapped up in the blanket and started drinking coffee. Then the ambulance came and they brought him to the hospital. I thought ok, problem solved, off to work we went to fix some tv or computer or something.
When we got home I went back to life as usual, or so I thought. A few months later, in the Spring, a very familiar old guy was riding his bike by our house collecting cans. Now we had 2 recycle bins outside with all the Diet Coke cans from 2 adults and 4 kids. He asked if he could have the cans for recycling. “Of course,” we said, “and come back soon, we always had a lot of cans.” And then he asked the strangest question. He asked, “Hey are you going to church? Because they are building an elevator. And I’m collecting cans to help them build it.” My husband and my response, “No, we are not going to church!”
God is so patient. Guess what, that old guy came back 2 more times in the next two or three weeks. And guess what he said each time, “Hey are you going to church? Because they are building an elevator. And I’m collecting cans to help them build it.” Yep. Really.
Ok, I know I am stubborn and hard-headed. But, by the third time I got it. And so did my husband. We went back to church – a new church where we could use the gifts that God has given us. And we forgave the people who had hurt us – whether they forgave us or not. We had to let go of the rejection, and the hurt, and pray for them. That God would bless them and multiply them.
And you know what? After we went back to church we never saw that man again. No more men in the snow bank, no more men collecting cans. Really. I don’t know if it was the same guy or not. I guess I doesn’t matter. To me he was an Angel. He showed me what I would end up like if I turned away from God – a drunk in the snow bank. And God used him to tell us what to do next. Go back to church and serve. Yep, touched by an Angel!
And today Bob and I serve. And we are happy – because we are “going to church because they are building an elevator (to Heaven). And we are collecting cans (people) to help them build it.”