Over the years there have been many reported encounters with angels, and such accounts are often astounding. Here are a few I lifted from the internet this morning: a mother is comforted when a stranger phones from the scene of a car accident involving her daughter. Afterwards, a paramedic assures her that no stranger was present at the accident. A fire-fighter hears a voice telling him to get out of a smoke-filled room, moments before it bursts into flame. A destitute family meets a new neighbour who brings them a warm dinner, but who vanishes the next day.
Stories like these can be used to appreciate the awesome ministry that the angels perform. But what about us today, here and now? Well, Scripture says that God has made us “a little lower than the angels” (Hebrews 2:7), so, one might argue, that we are not very different from them. We may not have wings, but we still have a job to do. The word ‘angel’ means ‘messenger’, and our faith teaches us that we too are called to be messengers of the Gospel.
Now that doesn’t necessarily mean we should go down to Lymington High Street and start preaching or handing out leaflets about the Catholic faith; but then again it might. Just as God has assigned specific duties to the angels, he has also called us to do some work for him.
And so how do we discover our own angelic calling in this world? Well, we do so by learning to hear the still, small voice of God speaking to us above the hubbub of our daily lives; by spending time in his presence so that we can get to know him. If we do this, we will become more attentive to the needs of others. By getting to know God better, we will grow into genuine messengers of the Gospel. And we will do more than simply deliver the message—we will be the message.