Backyard Angel

A guardian angel was the answer to her prayer.

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- Posted on Nov 26, 2010

Guardian angel protects husband

"Think I'll do a little yard work," my husband, Gary, announced. It was early Monday morning, and I caught myself grinning as I opened the cupboards to get out the ingredients to make pancakes while Gary got to work outdoors. I could relax and enjoy myself knowing Gary would be around the house a few more hours. 

But it would be time for him to leave for work soon enough. Gary was a foreman at a plant with lots of big, dangerous machinery, so ever since we got married I said the same prayer when he left the house each day: "Please, Lord, surround Gary with your angels." 

Now that we'd moved an hour outside of town, Gary's commute involved a stretch of highway notorious for wrecks. Lately I found my mind wandering back to worries about Gary's safety all day long. We had more space and privacy than ever at our new home, but we were farther from family and friends. All this newfound quiet time was feeding my anxieties. Did I no longer trust that God was hearing my morning prayer?

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-Rob Carter,  Nyack Hospital's Director of Pastoral Care

I stirred the pancake batter and looked out at Gary digging in the yard. Another man stood there with him. Who could that be? I wondered. He had dark curly hair and was wearing jeans. And for some reason I got the distinct feeling that this man knew Gary well. Our neighbors were so spread out that no one ever just dropped by. 

I took my eyes off the guys for a moment, just long enough to wipe my hands on my apron. When I glanced back up the other man was nowhere in sight. 

I went into the yard and walked over to Gary. "Who was that?" I asked. 

"Who was who?" Gary asked.

"The man who was standing here beside you a second ago."

"There's nobody out here but me and the birds," Gary said.

"But someone was standing right next to you. You must have seen him."

"If a man had been out here with me I most definitely would have seen him or at least heard him. But the fact is, there was no man here with me."

No man? I went back into the kitchen, not quite sure what to make of this mystery. All during breakfast my mind kept returning to the incident. The man had seemed so real, and even seemed to know my husband. But Gary was right: If a man had been there with him, surely he would have known it. Perhaps I really was letting my anxiety get the best of me. I decided to say my morning prayer and leave Gary in God's capable hands. No more constant worrying for me.

A few days later I walked in the door to find a message on our answering machine. "Mrs. McCullough, please come down to the hospital. Your husband's been in an accident." Turned out there'd been another wreck on that highway.

"The policeman told me I shouldn't have been able to walk away," Gary said. "I guess those angels you pray for to watch over me really do their job."

I hugged Gary tight, and was finally convinced that there was no man in the yard that day after all. On a busy stretch of highway, working with dangerous machinery or even just digging in the yard, Gary had angels beside him. 

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