The Day I Met My Guardian Angel

We all have people that come into our lives that bring meaning and memories. There are some, though,  whose presence is so impactful that it cannot be denied that your meeting was no happenstance. I have one such person. Of all the hours in my life I’ve lived, the one hour I spent with her was one of the most pivotal hours of my life.

I have no idea her name. It’s odd that I don’t know the name of one of the most impactful people in my life. When we met, I was 17-years old and had just been hit with some pretty hard things in life. I was very angry with God and had decided that I was done with church and if God was gonna turn His back on me, then I was going to return the favor. Here I was a bitter, angry, lost teenager and I found myself one weekend at a family reunion. Family reunions are notoriously painful when you are a teenager. Nevertheless, there I was in a small town in Kansas sitting around with a bunch of people I shared the same DNA with and wishing I was anywhere but there. My cousins who would normally have made it somewhat bearable, were MIA and so I was left to slip into a boredom-entranced coma.

I remember I was standing near the kitchen area of the building we were in and I was just casually looking around. In the back of the room, I noticed an elderly woman sitting at a big circular table all by herself and, immediately, I felt drawn to her. I didn’t feel drawn to her because I felt like she was all alone in the back and I felt sorry for her. No, it was different. I just felt compelled to go sit near her. So, I made my way to the lonely table in the back with the one elderly lady sitting there. I didn’t recognize her, but heck, I didn’t recognize half the people in the room. I sat down across from her and didn’t say a word–not a “Hi” or a “My name is Amy.” I said nothing and just waited for her to speak.

“When I was a young girl, I doubted God,” was the first thing out of her mouth to me. Is that not completely and totally odd? She skipped right past all the typical niceties of normal conversation and just got right to the point. I was hooked and for the next hour or so we were in our own little bubble. During our entire conversation not a single person (until the very end) bothered us, came and sat down to chit-chat, or even came close to invading this “space” around us. In fact, as I’ve looked back on it over the years, I don’t even remember hearing background noise.

“What do you mean?” I asked her and that was about the only thing I said for our entire conversation.  She did the rest of the talking.

“Well, growing up I lived out on a farm. We had lots of wide open space and my daddy raised cattle. We went to church when we could, but mostly I just didn’t believe in Him. We were pretty poor and never got much for Christmas, usually just an orange or apple, some nuts, and candy. So, one Christmas, I decided to test God and I asked for a Bible. I knew my parents couldn’t afford one, so I told God that if He gave me a Bible for Christmas, I’d believe in Him. Christmas passed and I didn’t get a Bible, which of course, confirmed to me that He wasn’t really real. One day, though, changed my mind forever. I was out in my daddy’s field and I was just out there daydreaming and all of a sudden I could feel the ground shake. I couldn’t see anything, ’cause I was standing on the downside of a hill. I walked up to the top of the small hill and what I saw coming at me scared me straight to the bone. My father’s cows were stampeding. They were headed straight towards me and there was nowhere for me to run. I was completely frozen.  Then, strangely, I started praying to God. I prayed that He would stop this herd from running over me. I told Him I didn’t want to die and asked if He could please stop them. Well, those cows just kept running straight towards me and I just kept praying. I could see that those cows were not going to stop, so I closed my eyes and braced myself for the pain. I could hear their hoof beats getting closer and closer. I felt the earth trembling under my feet. I could hear that they were nearly upon me and then, just like that, they stopped. I slowly opened my squinted eyes and to my amazement, those cows were stopped in a line about 10 feet in front of me. I stared at them, they stared at me, and then they turned around and walked away.

At that moment, I dropped to my knees and I yelled out, ‘God, if you are really there, show me!’
Instantly, I felt something take the back of my head and push it down into the ground. Then I heard a voice say, clear as day, ‘I am here.’ It was the most amazing experience of my life and from that point on, I never doubted that there was a God again. Don’t you ever doubt God. You will need Him in this life.”

She went on and talked some more about growing up on a farm and being a Kansas girl. I sat there entranced. I wanted to share with her that I was angry with God, but I think she knew that somehow. At one point during our conversation, my mother came over and sat down beside me. My mom did not look at the elderly lady, did not smile and say, “Hi,” as she does with everyone she meets. No, she sat there for a minute or two, said something to me that I don’t recall, and got up and walked away. This may not seem significant, but it is, because my mother knows no strangers. My mom would NEVER walk up to a table and not at least acknowledge the others there. I remember thinking when she walked away that she had been rude for not at least saying hello.

As our conversation was winding down, I told her that I really liked talking to her and I loved hearing her story. She smiled and said that she enjoyed “visiting with me, too.” As I started to walk away from the table she said, “Oh yes, one more thing. Do you remember how I prayed for a Bible for Christmas?”

“Yes,” I said back.

“Well, I got one in my stocking the following Christmas and I still have that Bible to this very day. It’s a good book.”  I smiled and said goodbye to her and walked over to find my grandma.

I found my grandma in the kitchen and went over to her and said, “Grandma, who is that lady I was talking to at the back table in the corner there? How are we related?”

“What lady, Hon?” was my Grandma’s reply.

“The lady right back there,” I turned and pointed to the table, but she was gone. I looked the room over and over to find her, but she wasn’t there. I assumed she went to the restroom, but I never saw her again for the whole reunion. I asked my grandma if she had seen me sitting at the back table and she said she had, but she didn’t recall me sitting with anyone. I asked my mom if she recognized the lady that I was sitting with at the table and to my astonishment, my mom did not remember anyone sitting at that table with me.

I don’t know if she was a true angel sent down from heaven or if she was just a very special lady here on Earth. Whatever the case, what she said to me, stirred my heart. I knew that we were supposed to meet and I was supposed to hear what she had to say. After the reunion, I didn’t just jump right back into my faith with full fervor, but everything she said weighed on my heart and mind. Had my mom or dad tried to steer me back on course I think I would have bucked it, being that I was 17 and stubborn. The message coming from this simple, sweet old lady, was delivered in a way that my soul could hear. She made me really ponder my life without God and I knew she was right–I would need Him in this life.

 

Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here.

Ever this day be at my side; to light and guard, to rule and guide.

4 comments

    • Amy Thomas says:

      Many times in my life, I’ve thought back to her. God always knows just what we need. It really showed me that even though I was mad at Him, he was still reaching out for me.

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