[ Miracles ]
After the fall
My first recocognition of the angels that God places about us occurred when I was on a bush walk in the Waitakere Ranges in the west of Auckland, New Zealand.
It had been raining and the track (path) I was following had turned to mud, so I was walking outside the track. To my right side I noted that the ground disappeared just a foot or so of where I was walking and dropped off the side of the rugged hills.
Then something like a root across my path happened to throw me off balance and instantly I was past the point of recovery. All I could see was the space beyond the cliff that I was about to fall over.
"It's curtains for me!" I thought. "There is nothing I can do to save myself. I'm a goner." I was resigned to this.
Suddenly something lifted me upright and back onto balance! There was no one there and I know that no physical contortion or manouvre of mine could have been responsible. I was simply past the point of regaining my footing or balance.
When I got over the shock, I realised that it had to be an angel. I believed in angels, of course, because the Bible tells us of them. But now I believe with a 'knowing' and not just mere mental assent.
This is not the only such encounter in my life.
On another occasion, I was standing on top of a boundary retaining wall, trimming trees which were hanging over into our yard. This wall rises about 5 feet above the back of our yard, which slopes down from the wall.
I got a little careless while working and lost my balance. I began to fall. Five feet is not that far, you might say. But it is when you have a bad back, as I do. The slightest jar is extremely painful and can put me in bed for days. That was, of course, my uppermost concern at that moment.
During this instant, the words of a song based on scripture came to mind: "As the mountains are 'round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is 'round about His people." I knew immediately I would not be hurt.
I landed on top of a small pile of branches, on my back, with my arms and legs sticking up in the air -- like an insect that has been turned upside down. The branches were actually cradling me so firmly in that position, I could not move.
My wife, Colleen, came rushing up. I asked her to turn me around, as my head and shoulders were in a downhill position. Colleen managed to turn me so that I could get my balance and helped me struggle to my feet.
I tried a few cautious movements. Not a twinge. I couldn't believe it. But I could!
In that moment of falling, God had told me He was with me and I would not be harmed. Praise God. I know I did not just think of the song in that moment. It was God speaking to me.
Auckland, New Zealand