We hear a lot about angels in the Bible. At Christmas time, we are especially reminded of their presence in our lives: Gabriel appears to Zechariah to announce the birth of John the Baptist. Gabriel again appears to Mary to announce the birth of Jesus. Then after the birth of Jesus "an angel of the Lord" appears to Shepherds to announce the Messiah's birth. Though angels don't show up on every page of the Bible, their work is mentioned frequently enough to let us know that they are at work in our world. But the angels that are on my mind today are not the true celestial beings whose work is both mysterious and grand; rather it is those who are "angel like" in that often they work behind the scenes but bring great blessing to those who are the objects of their favor. Today I'm thinking of people like you and me, who have the opportunity to be "angels" for the sake of others...
In the church I presently pastor, I am privileged to know several "angel type" of people. One is a lady, April, who every year organizes our Angel Tree (in our case a wreath) for children in the care of DHS. I was worried this year as we put up our wreath and April attached the cards describing the needs, hopes, and wishes of the children assigned to us. With the covid-19 crisis our attendance at public services of worship is very small and many of our faithful members are "sheltering in place" in order to avoid catching (or spreading) the virus. I was worried, when it was announced that it was time to "adopt" children and do our angel shopping, that we would not have enough participants to meet the needs of all of the children assigned to our church. But amazed I was as within three days of the announcement all of the names had been adopted. and "angels" were busy at work shopping to make Christmas special for some children who desperately need Christmas to be a special time.
So what about you? Is there someone for whom you can be an "angel" during this Advent season? My guess is that if we only look around we will find many who need an angel in their life during this Christmas season. Christmas, in the Bible, is the time when angels seem to appear. That means it's probably time for us to be "angel-like" as well.
May God bless us all!
Dr. Allen Schneider is a United Methodist pastor and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist presently serving the Sapulpa and greater Tulsa communities.