In a moment of distraction, she looked away, and when she turned back again, he was gone. The daily invisible had become visible to a precious saint of God for a few moments. Prayer request granted!
Without technical assistance, an angel was able to locate a man named Paul in the midst of a storm (Acts 27:23-24); direct Joseph in the protection of Mary and the young boy Jesus (Matt. 2:13); and suddenly awaken my husband, a thousand miles away, to cover me and our children with prayer at the very moment a tornado was moving toward our house.
The presence of angels was reassuring to Jacob when he was concerned about facing his estranged brother (Gen. 32:1-2).
Both Peter and Paul, when in isolating circumstances—one deep in prison, one lost on a raging sea—were visited by an angel (Acts 12:3-8; 27:21-24). Did the angel find these men in their dire circumstances, or was the angel already there keeping watch over them?
All these incidents had one thing in common: There was more involved than what men could see with their physical eyes. Angels were there, ready to fight, to comfort, to deter, to rescue, to aid, to reassure, to deliver, to keep and to preserve. Think about it! Those involved did not know it, but angelic assistance was at the ready, just waiting to be revealed.
We are never out of range of God and His angels. In a dream, Jacob saw the angels coming and going between heaven and earth on a ladder (Gen. 28:10-12).
A ladder is for quick access. It can be set up anywhere. So the angels can come to us wherever we are, as they are coming and going from the throne room of the presence of God. What a connection!
Our daughter, Teri, discovered this truth firsthand. She spent many years at home alone with her children, Shane and Shannon, while her husband, Steve, traveled in evangelistic ministry. She found that nights can be very lonesome, especially in times of distress.
In just such a time, Teri ended her day with tearful prayers. Drifting off to sleep, she was jolted awake by the sound of footsteps on the small deck at the back of her mobile home. Fear came first, followed by a calming peace.
The footsteps did not stop at the deck but came on into the kitchen, through the dining room, through the living room and down the hall to her bedroom. Teri realized God had sent an angel to comfort and protect her and her family. She fell into a peaceful sleep.
As long as Steve continued to travel, the angel returned occasionally, following the same path—outside on the deck, through the house and into Teri's bedroom. Whenever she heard him, Teri's worries would subside, and she would fall asleep in peace.
We live in a material world of things we can see, touch and sense in our physical beings. But just beyond a tissue-thin veil is the spiritual world where angels are very real and very busy.
Occasionally the physical eyes are opened to see the reality of an angel, but often angels do their work undetected by the human eye. Oh, what an awesome sight would confront us if we could see as Elisha's servant saw (2 Kings 6:15-17)!
I am convinced we would behold an almost unbelievable number of angels going and coming between the two worlds. And in our immediate surroundings we would see many angels watching, listening, observing, guarding, guiding, moving like the wind at the impulse of God's commands concerning us and our prayers.
We may feel very detached from the ethereal world in which the angels live, but we are so easily connected. Prayer is our line of communication from the material world in which we live to that invisible realm in which God and His angels dwell. If you review all the incidents of angelic involvement, whether biblical or contemporary, you will discover that prayer is usually the catalyst for enlisting the assistance of angels.
All our prayers are to be directed to God, never to angels. Not only is there a scriptural warning against worshiping angels (Col. 2:18), but prayers to angels would be useless because angels receive commands from God alone and move only according to His word.
I am convinced there is no way to separate angelic activity from the workings of God. Abraham, Daniel, Cornelius and the Jerusalem church all prayed to God, and He answered by way of an angel each time.
There is no record of specific prayer by Paul on the ship (Acts 27:23-24) or Mary at the annunciation (Luke 1:26-27), but as anyone who prays knows, prayer is much more than uttered words. Sighs, groans and searchings of the soul are heard by God as prayer (Rom. 8:26), and angels can be sent in answer. Abraham's prayer dispatched an angel to Lot (Gen. 18:22-19:29). Hezekiah's prayers resulted in a destroying angel being sent into the midst of the Assyrian army (2 Kings 19:15-19, 35).
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