If you are under the power of evil, and you want to get under the power of God, cry to Him to bring you over to His service; cry to Him to take you into His army. He will hear you; He will come to you, and, if need be, He will send a legion of angels to help you to fight your way up to heaven. God will take you by the right hand and lead you through this wilderness, over death, and take you right into His kingdom.
There was a church only a few blocks from where I lived in Missoula. I drove by it most days for three solid years. There were often invitations on the marquee inviting passersby to join them on Sunday; usually I ignored them. But the night of adversity changed my mind about that.
It was Sunday, December 27: Christmastide. As soon as the doors opened, I was there. There was beautiful music playing and excitement in the air. I had never been to a church like it before.
The service opened with a team of musicians leading the congregation in songs. Beautiful songs that I had never heard before. And then an invitation: “If you need prayer, come forward and one of our prayer team members will pray for you.” Before the invitation was finalized, I was on my way up.
I still remember the woman up front: As the band played on, she took me in her arms and asked what my request was. Before I could even open my mouth to speak, the tears came rushing out. She asked me a question or two and began praying for me. She invited me to surrender my broken, sinful life to the Lord Jesus Christ, and I confirmed with her the commitment I had made alone in my bedroom only hours before. Salvation had come. I was filled with peace. I continued to attend that church until I moved back to Minnesota that spring, but I never saw the woman again. In my head and heart after that I called her my “altar angel.” There is a depth of gratitude reserved for her which has never left me.
I met another “altar angel” last October at First Baptist Church in Rogers, Arkansas. Almost thirty years had passed since my first visit to the altar for prayer. It was another big and beautiful church. The praise team continued on with the songs of worship while the prayer team lined up to meet those who would come forward. I was the first one who responded. Only this time, my need and request was quite different. I approached the altar like my three–year–old granddaughter speeding down the street on her bicycle ... happy and free, with my heart filled with Bible verses and songs. Knowing that I am much loved by God, who has a wonderful plan for me.
My request was simple: that I would know God’s will for the next leg of life’s journey and that some meetings on my calendar would be blessed by God and reveal His perfect plan. Not only did she pray one of the most beautiful prayers that I have ever heard (once again with tear filled eyes while I was held in her embrace) -- she also told me she and her husband would continue to pray for me. OH LOVE! And when I get back to Arkansas again, I will be able to find her. Her contact information is in my phone. Her name is Sandy.
Thank you, God, for Sandy and all of the legions of “angels” who have helped me find and fight my way toward heaven. You do all things well!