Saturday, November 20, 2010

Those Boston Angels


It took an entire week to travel to the East Coast for a variety of drama performances. We were in the scariest and most dangerous part of Boston setting up for a performance that evening. While my family and the "Bish" went out to get some dinner, I stayed in the old building behind the set, carefully applying layers of makeup which would transform me into 99-year old Sarah.

A little later, I heard the heavy front doors open and slam shut, footsteps, whisperings.  I sat still, listening intently.  It wasn't the Bish, or my family.  Those doors were supposed to have been locked.  I instinctively knew something was wrong.   Whoever it was, wasn't supposed to be there.

Darkness and fear flooded the room. I began to pray. As time stretched along with the shouts of the intruders, I felt the prayers of angels joining mine . . . Then suddenly there was a terrified yell, running feet and the big metal double doors slammed shut.

Blessed silence.

I bent my head to thank God--I sensed the glory of the angels' garments scudding in bright streams across the floor.  It was breath-taking.  We kneeled together there, worshiping God, thanking Him for watching over me, this place, my family and our friends.

The evening’s performance was touched by the power of God. Later that night we finished striking the set, packing everything into the big trailer.  The  Bish and a few others joined us to rest and talk after a big job well-done.

Then I noticed the small boy perusing the empty auditorium, awe written all over his face.  “What is it?” I asked.

“I was wondering,” said he, question marks all over his face.  “Who are all these people standing around dressed in white?”  I was dumbstruck. 

They were the angels.  The ones God had sent to do His bidding.  Those Boston Angels, watching over us, keeping us from harm.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Triumph Over Evil


 It is time for another angel story.  This wonderful story of  an encounter with pure evil vanquished by God's power and love comes from Melinda.  She is a courageous young woman who's life inspires me. Here is Melinda's amazing Story:

My husband was out of town, and except for the two dogs I was alone in our old two story home. Prior to this night, I had been being drawn to religious things, books, churches, things connected with God. I guess one could say I was definitely "seeking" as I really did not know Him.

I was tired and fell asleep downstairs on the sofa. I woke up about 4:00 a.m., and decided I better get upstairs to bed as I had to get up early to go to work.
 I could not fall asleep right away. I lay there and the dogs were soon snoring lightly beside me. They were large dogs, one a lab mix, the other a husky mix. They took up most of the bed, so I felt protected with my dogs around me.

I was almost asleep when I swear I saw a dark form come in through my bedroom window. My heart pounded and my logic tried to figure it out. I wondered if I could call for help without anyone hearing the phone. I tried to think of what I could use for protection.
  Oddly enough, I noticed the windows were closed and my protective pups had not awakened.  They were not barking, but still slept soundly beside me.  

Yet I still had the overwhelming feeling that someone, or something was hiding behind the bedroom door.  I wondered if what I felt was real--My brain went into overtime...playing out all types of scenarios and possibilities. I remember even thinking maybe this was one of those alien abductions. After all wasn't that how they were always described?

Then with an incredibly quick motion a big, dark, black, thing leaped onto my chest. I refused to believe it was real....yet I could feel its weight on my chest...the sheer pressure of the thing.

I was afraid to move--afraid to open my eyes.  Though I felt fully awake, I still thought I might be dreaming.  I knew I had to determine if what was happening was real. I was trembling.  I decided if I could reach out and TOUCH the thing through the covers, then it must be real. I slowly moved my right arm and hand to touch what felt like a thigh across my chest. To my horror I felt something SOLID!

I couldn’t help it, my eyes popped open. Big mistake! I was consumed with terror as I stared into the most evil looking eyes I have ever seen.  The more fear I felt, the heavier the thing became. It seemed its strength grew from my fear.  Another part of my mind noted my dogs still remained still and sound asleep beside me on the bed!

I did not know what to do. I was so afraid.
  As the thing grew heavier and heavier, I realized I was having a harder and harder time breathing. I KNEW I could die right there in my bed and no one would be the wiser—and who would believe such a story?  I, myself barely believed it was real, yet it was happening to me.

I thought about all the things I would be leaving behind...worrying about my dogs and what would happen to them...all my "stuff" and what everyone would have to do, going through it all.

All these thoughts ran like lightning through my mind, as this darkness, this frightening creature-force-being-presence grew stronger and stronger. I could not move any anything except my eyes and they were still locked into that terrifying gaze.

I decided to shut my eyes and NOT acknowledge its presence... I refused to feed its strength by giving it more of my fear.  But the terror seemed overwhelming.  I suddenly realized I needed  help if I was going to survive.

I began to pray to God.
  I prayed for His help--I asked for His forgiveness of all the things I had ever done wrong...I told God, I did believe in Him and in His power and protection.  I said, I could not battle this evil thing without His strength.

Then unbelievably the ceiling of my bedroom rolled back like a scroll.  The corners of the room were held open by shining angels. I remember they looked right at me....such brilliant light all around them, illuminating their faces and bodies. In that instant, I also felt the presence of God.

Such bright light and peace....I could FEEL His presence and smile...His love...His protection. I lay there, the weight of the thing still pressing me down.  Yet I was filled with the most incredible sense of peace I have ever felt in my life. I was so relieved....was so assured all would be well and taken care of if anything did ever happen to me.  If I died that moment, I no longer cared.  I smiled...I clearly remember that smile coming across my lips....and being surrounded by that extraordinary warm, bright light. As God’s peace surrounded me, the evil being grew weaker and its weight began to lift.

I watched as the thing became a mere puff of black smoke which quickly rolled up and out of the top of the ceiling where the angels were. In an instant....the angels let go of the scroll and the glory of God and the angels vanished and my ceiling became a ceiling again.

It has been a long time since I’ve told this story to anyone. Because of my experience that night I have never been the same.
  I know God watches over me and over those I love.  And I am incredibly grateful for His Presence in my life.

You can find Melinda's wise and insightful blog at Breathe!!  Please drop by with an encouraging comment for this remarkable young woman.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Invisible Wall


We were on tour, well on our way to California, where we had two weeks of drama performances scheduled.

It was late when we arrived in Grants Pass at the Super 8 Motel. My husband pulled the van and trailer in front to sign in, while the children and I waited in the van.   Through the big double glass doors, we could see him talking to the clerk inside.

Suddenly a small red car screeched into the parking lot, slamming to a stop next to us. A bony young man, with longish hair slicked back behind his ears, jumped out the passenger side door.

He did not see us through the tinted windows of our van, but we saw him. It was obvious something was not quite right. His eyes were open so wide the whites of his eyes glittered around his pupils. There was a weird clacky, jerky energy about his movements.

The man stood with clenched fists, his knees flexed. Then to our astonishment he ran full tilt at the double doors. And bounced off them. My husband and the clerk, talking and laughing inside, didn't seem to see or hear him. The thin man gave the doors a dirty look, clenched his teeth and tried again.

The kids and I watched open mouthed, as he flung himself toward those glass doors over and over again. It was as though there was a thick invisible wall which wouldn't let him pass. Hidden inside the van the kids and I stifled our laughter. He would stop, look baffled, then in a kind of frenzy try to shoulder his way through. But the doors would not give way.

Finally the man stopped, grinding his jaw from side to side. Seething with frustration he glared at the door, shouted a few choice expletive deleteds, spun on his heel, ran back to the car and sped spitting gravel around the corner to the parking lot behind the building.

Later I asked my husband if he noticed anything. But he and the clerk had been oblivious to the drama at the double doors. After we'd settled into our room, I discovered I'd left a small suitcase in the van. Normally I would have gone out by myself, but I felt so uneasy I was compelled to ask Alan to go out with me. We took time to put anything out of sight a thief might want. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed that red car sitting in the shadows of the trees at the back edge of the parking lot.

The next morning we awoke to the sound of sirens. The Motel was swarming with policeman. Someone had smashed in the windows of every car parked around our van and trailer. The robbers had stolen stereos, luggage, and money. They took whatever they could pick up, tear out and take away. But our van and trailer were untouched.

Angels? I am convinced an Angel stood in front of those double glass doors to prevent something terrible from happening that night. Angels walked with my husband and me to the parking lot and back. They instructed us to tuck away anything a thief might want. They stood guard over our van and trailer.

I often wonder what that young man must thought, as he kept bouncing off that invisible wall of protection God had placed in front of the double glass doors of the Motel.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Woodland Protector

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I think I was around 12 when it happened. My siblings and I, along with our cousins were all set to go down to Deer Valley. It was a favorite place of ours, where the mud flats created from the bubbling spring formed next to a stream where huckleberries grew on a giant log bridge span. We would build forts from fragrant fir and cedar branches. We gloried in exploring the surrounding woods.
                       
But this day was different. We stood in the sunshine at the road at the top of the trail and a darkness seemed to fall over the forest. Each of us, as we'd start toward the trail to Deer Valley, felt an uneasy fear and a curious reluctance to go down that trail and would turn back. It was as though there were an invisible wall through which we could not pass.

Finally we gave up trying. For all seven or eight of us to agree to that was a bit of a miracle in itself! But we did and we all trouped back to the house where we played games in the big circle lawn instead.

Later we talked about what happened--it was then we realized we'd all had the same strange uneasy feelings. We had all felt an invisible wall had been erected at the top of the trail. It was as though an angel barred our way, to keep us out of harm's way.

Years later Mom told me about a car chop shop located just a few yards from the trail to Deer Valley. Police had stormed the woods and several people had been arrested. It was functioning right around the time we were kept from going down into the woods. The criminals had a sophisticated operation going, they'd even cut down trees and put a driveway into the wooded area so they could not be seen.

For years I've wondered what terrible danger we would have dealt with that day if we hadn't been stopped in our tracks. Though sometimes I get really curious, I thank the Lord for protection from the danger we never had to face.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Sissy's Prayers


We were returning from five-day trip to Spokane.  We had an eight hour drive ahead of us.  But near Noon, we noticed the heat of the engine was rapidly rising to the critical line.  We were able to add coolant before any damage was done--we were SO close to blowing the engine--we could hear the radiator bubbling and blowing.

A couple hours later, after lunch with friends, we were on the road again--but somehow we missed our cutoff and we were lost.  As we were finding our way, a woman in the lane next to us pulling a trailer of her own, nearly took us off the road.  She was holding her cell phone to her ear--she didn't seem to notice how close she'd come to becoming another statistic.

We arrived home safely.  Ah, it was so good to be home!

This morning I called Sissy to see how she was doing.  I was astonished when she asked if something had happened around Noon and then again around 2 p.m.?  I was speechless.  She'd had a heavy heart and a need to pray for us right when we were in danger.  So amazing--a beloved Sister's prayers--the powerful intervention of angelic forces.

I caught one of those angels in the skies--can you see her?  She followed us all the way to Oregon.  All the while she flew alongside, I was reminded we were traveling safely in God's hands.  Little did I know Sissy's prayers were winging their way to heaven.  Her heart was with us as we drove that long road home.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Angel Unhinged



This Angel Story was sent by my delightful Sister Clytie. Here is the story in her own words.

When I was first married, I drove a 1972 Datsun 2000 Roadster hard-top convertible. I rarely drove with the top down, because it entailed a great deal of work to get it off and stored. One of the hinges actually had to be removed with a crowbar, although the other side was so loose, it would sometimes fall down at odd times, with a loud "BAM!"

I frequently drove to Pendleton, Oregon, to visit my husband's grandparents - a four hour trip. On one occasion I was traveling by myself through the Columbia Gorge, my little car fully loaded for the weekend trip. I was tired, and the trip was long and boring, with no stereo or radio to divert my attention...

Suddenly, a loud "BAM!"

I woke up, realizing I had drifted off to sleep and was swiftly heading toward a very steep embankment, a vertical rock wall in front of me! I was shocked awake and shakily headed my little car back to the highway. I took the next exit and sat for a while.

Only after I had calmed down did I think to fix the hinge that woke me up. But it was already hitched!!! Astonished I looked at the other hinge - the one I needed a crowbar to undo, and there it was, hanging down ... undone. I had to use all of my force to push it closed again!

How did this happen?   I can only imagine an angel saw me falling asleep and flicked the hinge with an agitated finger to wake me up. I don't have any other explanation. In the entire time we owned the car the hinge on that side, only fell down that one time.

I, for one, am deeply grateful to God for His protection of my sister as she drove that lonely road. I think about what my life would be without Clytie in it, and I am bereft. There is something so wonderful and beautiful about the sweet relationship between sisters.

You can visit Clytie and her wonderful blog at Random Hearts

Friday, July 9, 2010

Dangerous Encounter


True life can sometimes be stranger than fiction. In the late 1990's we lived in Oregon, near Highway 99, which runs through Newberg and McMinnville. I loved to go to McMinnville to a restaurant which made their own luscious donuts.

One morning, I went to pick up a raft of those fragrant beauties to serve a work party we were having at our home later that morning. Odd thing--I even remember what I was wearing--a jean dress with red roses hand-painted on the scoop-necked bodice.

I was in line with a group of customers waiting to be served. I laughed and joked with some of them--they loved the donuts, too. A man came in to stand at the end of the line. He was slightly built, wore jeans, a plaid shirt and a light colored windbreaker.

I made my purchase, walked out to the van, got inside--turned to settle the bag of donuts on the seat beside me, glanced out the driver's side window and screamed. The man stood with his face so close to the van window, I could see the pupils contracting in his icy blue eyes. He must have followed behind me within inches, as I left with my purchases.

I was going to open the door, but instead my fingers hit the door locks. I was shocked because that wasn't what I'd intended to do. At first I flushed with embarrassment. But then I realized I was shaking.

Taking a deep breath. I rolled the window down a fraction and said, "I'm sorry, you startled me. Can I help you?"

Without any expression he said, "You are a very attractive woman." His voice had a curious monotone--no inflection to his tone, no warmth in his face.

In fact, the man's eyes were glacial. I replied shakily, "My husband would thank you." He said something else I can't remember and I told him I had to leave. My hands shook so I could hardly put the key into the ignition.

He stood watching me, as I backed the van away from the curb. I was shivering. His eyes had been devoid of any feeling--they were empty, dead--like looking into the eyes of a shark. I felt like I'd made contact with some kind of monstrous darkness. I knew a supernatural presence had kept me from opening that van door and I never forgot that strange encounter.

A few years ago, I picked up one of those true crime books at our local used bookstore. It was the story of the Green River Killer--a hideous monster of a man who had preyed upon women for years, murdering them in cold blood. He had finally been caught.

I turned to the pictures in the middle of the book and screamed. It was him. It was that man who had frightened me so badly at the donut shop. He wore the same plaid shirt, the same thin windbreaker.  His eyes were the same.  In her book, the author wrote that around the time of my encounter, the man and his unsuspecting wife often traveled I-5 and Highway 99 to various swap meets.

I firmly believe an angel guided my fingers to lock the doors of the van that day. How I thank God for His protection. I shudder to think what could have happened without His supernatural intervention.

Angels--our God-given protectors. I wonder how many times we walk through our lives, unaware of their protection and guidance?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Angel in the Airport


Naomi and her 18-month old grandchild were waiting in the airport lobby.  They were there to greet a loved one who'd been away for some time.

Naomi watched the tiny child as she played.  She looked away for an instant.  When she looked back her grand baby was missing!

She could not see the little girl anywhere--she searched in every nook and cranny, asked everyone if they'd seen the little girl, but no one had.  Fear pushed it's ugly head into her heart and panic began to reign.

She closed her eyes and began to pray.

Suddenly there was a gentle tap on her shoulder.  Naomi opened her eyes to see an short elderly lady in a pastel flowered dress, looking into her eyes.

"Don't be afraid," said the old woman, with a kindly twinkle.  "Look just over there, your grand baby is playing behind those planted palms."

Naomi could not see the child, but even so, dashed to the potted plants.  There hidden from view behind the pots, sat the baby playing quietly.  Naomi gasped and caught the child up in her arms.

She turned to thank her benefactor. 

But the little old woman was gone.  There was no way she could have vanished so completely in the short time it had taken to run to the child.  When Naomi described her to people in the lobby--asking if they'd seen her--no one had.  No one remembered a woman of that description even talking to her.

An angel?  I think so.  They often appear as human as you or I--yet they vanish in a twinkling of the eye.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Miracle for Sissy

I think the best way to begin this blog would be to start with my family's own incredible miracle story.

Friday, December 4, 2009, 5:30 a.m.: My younger sister Clytie had been rushed by ambulance to the hospital.  She'd suffered a major stroke.  When I arrived, Sissy's right side was paralyzed and she could barely speak.  A few hours later, the doctors had done everything they could--it was a waiting game. Clytie would get better, worse, then better, then worse--the last numbing wave was the most frightening.

I was rubbing Sissy's right foot when I realized she wasn't feeling the pressure of my fingers.  I looked at her right hand and it was starting to curl against her side.  I felt so scared for her.  The nurses tested her responses--she could not lift her leg, or her arm and she could not speak.

I walked to the head of the bed and put my hand on her hair.  She had closed her eyes and was so still.

I began to pray.  As I did, I felt God telling me to put my other hand on her head and pray for her healing.  I fought the idea for a moment--what if this command was just my imagination?  But I obeyed.

As I prayed my hands became hot--like an oven.  It was the strangest thing--I could feel the heat radiating down from my palms.  My prayer was that God's healing power would pour down through Clytie's body like warm oil, sweeping the numbness from her body.  In my mind's eye, I watched the hurt places in her brain reconnecting and sparking.  I stood there praying for the longest time.  When I was done, I smoothed her hair and looked down into her dear face.

Clytie opened her eyes and said, "Aren't you getting bored standing there with nothing to do?!"

I said, "Of course not, I've been praying for you."  Suddenly it hit me.  Her speech wasn't slurred!  I said, "Sissy, I think something amazing just happened!"

Just then with an expression of astonishment, Clytie lifted her right hand--the one she couldn't move before.  She started wiggling her fingers.  She curled her toes. She felt her face.  The numbness had left her body.

All the ICU doctors and nurses were astonished at her complete recovery.  The occupational therapist called  Clytie a rock star!  The physical therapist told me privately that an instantaneous full recovery like my sister's is exceedingly rare.  Sissy and I listened with glee as the poor neurologist tried to find words to explain.  He finally stuttered, "...Sometimes things happen that we just can't explain."  Clytie was slated to spend five days in ICU, but she was doing so well they didn't know what to do with her.  So they sent her home.

But that's not the end of the story.  

A week later Clytie had a follow-up appointment.  The receptionist came out, looked around the waiting area, then went back into her office.  A few moments she was back, glancing across the room with a puzzled look on her face.  She returned to her office.  Then she was back, looked at the paper in her hands, then at my sister.  She said, "Clytie?"  As my Sister gathered her things to go into the examining room, the receptionist apologized.  She had been looking for someone in a wheelchair!

The doctor did a myriad of tests.  When she was done, she told Clytie, "You are a walking miracle.  You shouldn't even be here right now."  She said, "I don't know what it is you have yet to do, but you are here for a reason."  Then with tears in her eyes, the doctor embraced my sister.

A miracle for Sissy.  It really happened.  Neither Clytie, nor I, nor our family will ever be the same.  I pray this true-life story touches your heart with a new sense of hope.  Miracles still happen, because GOD IS STILL GOD.  Don't give up.  Look up.

If you would like to visit Clytie and her wonderfully inspirational blog, you'll find her at Random Hearts.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Angel Stories

I hope to have Angel Stories up and running next week sometime!  God bless you all!  Thanks for your patience!