Jul. 14, 2016

Unaware of Angels

I love the song, “Holy Ground.” The words say, “We are standing on Holy Ground and I know that there are angels all around.” I believe it.

When I was 18 years old, I read a book by Dale Evans Rogers wife of famous cowboy singer Roy Rogers. Do you remember Roy Rogers and Dale Evans? Remember his horse Trigger? Dale Evans Rogers was born in Uvalde, Texas. Imagine that.

In her book, “Angel Unaware,” Dale Evans Rogers shares the intimate story of hers and Roy’s daughter, Robin, who was born with Down’s Syndrome. Because of Robin’s life, Dale Evans Rogers began a lifelong crusade that improved the lives of countless special needs children. The book is written referencing the verse found in Hebrews 13:2 “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” Robin’s life brought her parents closer to God despite their struggle. Dale always credited Robin for being one of God’s little angels.

A very good friend and I had a serious discussion regarding the reality of angels when her 12-year-old son was struck by a car traveling at a high rate of speed down their country road. The child’s body was violently tossed into his own front yard directly in front of the kitchen window where his mother was working. She tells the story of how a woman suddenly appeared and provided CPR to her dying child. My friend’s son did not make it, but as the ambulances and EMTs began to arrive she looked up to thank the stranger for her loving assistance. The lady was nowhere to be found, which wouldn’t be a big deal in a big city; however, my friend lived in rural Alabama. This was not a crowded scene. The “angel” appeared from out of nowhere and returned just as she had arrived.

My friend tells the story of how the woman seemed strangely out of place dressed in frumpy jeans and an oversized shirt. My friend distinctively remembers the woman having a long braid in her hair that she kept tossing back over her shoulder as she provided aid to the child. The braid served as a distinctive trait keeping the woman’s image fresh in my friend’s mind. It was as if God wanted to make certain my friend knew that someone was there to support her as her child lay dying in their front yard. The memory brings her great comfort knowing her child received immediate attention but his life ended just the same. The experience occurred 30 years ago.  

A close friend of our family lost a child due to cancer a few years back. The mother found comfort in referring to her child as her “angel” trying to sort through her grief. She found solace in this belief considering the child’s life was so short on earth. Her short life changed her family forever.

Dale Evans Rogers, like this mother, believed God provided this special “angel” to teach us all about love and loss. While life is not fair, God is always faithful.

Many years ago, there was a major car accident on Pasadena Boulevard by what was then Kmart. A friend of mine was not involved in the wreck, but stopped to help since the car directly in front of him was seriously damaged. The damaged car was ready to explode into flames. My friend shared how the scene was chaotic before the emergency personnel arrived. People were running around totally disoriented not really knowing what to do. My friend shared how a man came walking up on what was then a lonely stretch of road. The stranger approached the fiery vehicle tapping the driver’s side window breaking it into his hands. As the bystanders worked together to free the man from the burning vehicle, the helpful man seemed to disappear into the night.

Do angels come in the form of children? Can an angel of God appear in rural Alabama wearing jeans and an oversized shirt pushing her braided ponytail out of the way while she administers care to a critically-injured child in an effort to support a hysterical mother? Could God send an angel in the form of a man to a lonely stretch of road on a dark, dangerous night in an effort to save a human life?

Many of us like to say, “God works in mysterious ways,” but do we really believe it?  How many acts of God are we missing because we fail to recognize them as His intervention or because God chooses to keep His army invisible?

These questions prompt more questions. Why does God intervene at certain times but doesn’t act during other times of equal despair? The mystery of God, faith, and the spiritual realm remain intact despite today’s scientific advances. Faith isn’t based on our feelings or scientific fact. Faith is based on our belief, our trust, and our obedience to an all-powerful God capable of doing anything He wants anytime He wants.

As we stand on Holy Ground knowing we are in God’s presence, be aware. There just might be angels all around.

*The book "Angel Unaware: A Touching Story of Love and Loss" by Dale Evans Rogers is available through Amazon (pictured here).