As a combat veteran and retired military chaplain, I have often reflected on the way humans cry out to God when facing crisis.
When things are going well it is easy to forget our need for God.
When things are desperate, when life is uncomfortable, or seems unfair, we may find ourselves in a dark place where the presence of God seems to disappear.
We wonder, “Is God really with me in this space?”
During those long, moonless nights, God often sends us His messengers.
The word “angel” literally means “messenger.” Millions of humans have believed in supernatural beings that are sent from God for millennia. These heavenly beings are still active today and I’ve got miracle stories I could tell! Just ask me some time.
I also believe that humans can be messengers for God to each other. We can deliver His hope during times of desperate need.
This Christmas, Hope Haven staff became “angels” when they delivered hope to 468 Rwandan families who were not sure they would have a Christmas meal.
Can you imagine the desperation you would feel as a parent if you were unable to properly celebrate the holiday with your family? How would it feel to know that your children would watch others celebrating over a special meal without being able to enjoy one themselves? It would be heart wrenching.
It is possible that one of those parents prayed God would provide a miracle this Christmas—and He did!
God led our team to surprise each one of these 468 needy Hope Haven families with 5kgs of rice, 5kgs of corn flour, 1 liter of cooking oil, and 1 package of salt. These simple ingredients laid the foundation for a solid Christmas celebration meal and they were elated!
Scripture relates the story of the Prophet Gideon as his people cried to the Lord in the midst of their anguish.
God’s chosen people had walked away from God, and it appeared that God had walked away from them.
After they were delivered into the hands of their enemies, the trauma was palpable. In the midst of their pain, they cried, “God—send me an angel!” And God did. The following verses proclaim that “the angel of the LORD appeared to Gideon.” And the Prophet received a clear call: “Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you” (Judges 6:13-14)?
What an incredible honor to be sent as a messenger of God.
Are we willing to respond to that call, to go where no one else wants to, maybe where no one else can, to salve the deepest pains of human experience?
What would it take for you to be an “angel” to someone in need this week?