The Christmas Angel -

“Father, is there where I am supposed to be?” asked Gabriel, “If so, I ask you to direct my path.”

It was a week before Christmas and he was standing in the middle of Mall Of America, the largest shopping mall in America. It was packed with people on a mission. They were everywhere. As he watched he witnessed a variety of emotions surface. He saw smiles and he saw lost tempers. What he saw the most of all was rudeness, and it upset him.

“What is wrong with these people? Don’t they understand the reason for the season?” he said while shaking his head with dismay and disgust.

“Gabriel,” the voice spoke into his ear.

“Yes, Father,” he answered.

“I need you to go to the other end of the mall. Once there, you will know why I need you.”

“Yes, Father, I will go,” he answered and took off on a brisk walk.

Working his way through the crowd, he reached his destination. Stopping where two aisles crossed, he stopped and began looking for who he was supposed to help.

“Here?” he softly spoke.

“Yes,” came the answer.

Gabriel began to scan the crowd. He knew the father wouldn’t summon him for no reason. Out of his eye, he saw her.

“Her?” he asked.

“Yes, she’s lost and terrified.”

Gabriel knew that he had to be careful. The little girl looked to be maybe five years old. He could see the frantic look on her face. She was sobbing and trembling. A grown man approaching a small child could be misinterpreted and an unwanted situation could arise.

“Father, guide me,” he asked while slowly nearing the child.

“Honey, where’s your mommy?” he gently asked.

Afraid, she backed up until her back was against the wall. The whole time she stared at him.

“Don’t be afraid. I won’t hurt you,” he offered, My name is Gabriel. What is yours?”

“Sally,” she whimpered through her tears.

“Sally. That’s a pretty name. Sally, where is your mommy?” asked Gabriel.

“I don’t know,” came the answer.

“Sally, do you want me to find her?”

The child vigorously shook her head yes and cried, “I want my mommy!”

“Can I hold your hand? Will you come with me? Maybe we can find her,” asked Gabriel.

Sally shyly held out her hand. Gabriel took it into his and knelt down beside her.

“Father, what do I do?” he asked.

The answer came quickly, “Her mother is searching for her. Go to the Lost and Found kiosk. You will find her there.”

Gabriel led Sally through the crowd. While doing so something miraculous happened. The crowd stepped aside so they could pass. It reminded him of Moses and the parting of the Red Sea. He had been there and watched it happen. It was something he never forgot. He knew that guardian angels were involved. He couldn’t help but think that the Father worked in mysterious ways.

Up ahead he could see the kiosk. He also saw a young woman who was hysterical. Security was trying to calm her down to no avail.

Bending down, he got Sally’s attention.

“Honey, is that your mommy?” he pointed.

Sally giggled, broke free, and raced to her mother.

Gabriel stepped aside and ducked into a store entrance. From there he watched her mother scoop her up into her arms and cry.

“Sally, where were you?” she cried.

Sally shrugged her shoulders.

“How did you find me?”

“ A man, he helped me.”

Alarmed, she asked, “What man? Where is he?”

Sally pointed back in the direction she had come from.

“What does he look like?”

Again Sally shrugged her shoulders.

“Did he hurt you? Did he touch you? Did he touch your bottom?”

Sally shook her head no.

“We’re going home,” said her mother while bundling her up in her heavy coat. They left the mall, got to their car, and left. On the way home her mother was curious.

“What did the man say?”

“He just asked me if I wanted him to find you.”

“Is that all?” asked her mother.

“He talked to his father. Mommy, nobody was there. He would nod his head and say yes. I don’t understand,” answered Sally.

Meanwhile, Gabriel found an unoccupied bench, sat down, and softly spoke.

“Thank you, Father. That went well. Please keep Sally safe.”

“They are on their way home. Sally told her mother about you.”

“She did?”

“Yes, and it has her mother wondering. She used to go to church and has slipped away. Sally told her about you talking to me has planted a seed. Your next assignment is to nourish that seed. I will direct your path.”

“Yes, Father, show me the way.”

That night he checked on Sally and her mother. Standing at the foot of Sally’s bed, he smiled and softly spoke, “She’s safe. Thank you, Father.”

Going into her mother’s bedroom, he stood at the foot of her bed and watched her sleeping form.

“How? How do I reach her?” he softly spoke.

The next day Sally and her mother were eating at a fast food restaurant.

“There he is!” pointed Sally.

“There who is? What are you talking about?” asked her mother.

“The man who found me!”

She watched as Gabriel entered the restaurant. He saw them and approached their table. Sally got up, grabbed his hand, and pulled him down beside her.

“Mommy, this is Gabriel,” she laughed.

“Gabriel, I want to thank you for what you did. I thought she was gone forever. I am curious. Why did you do it? Who are you?”

“You may not believe me. I was on a mission. I was sent to help someone. That someone was Sally,” he answered.

Taken back, she asked, A mission? Who sent you? And who is this “Father” Sally said you spoke to?”

“I think you know who He is. At one time you knew Him very well,” Gabriel answered.

“Are you trying to tell me it was God? Are you an angel?” she gasped.

Right before her eyes, Gabriel vanished into thin air. Startled, she looked at Sally.

“It’s all right, mommy. He whispered in my ear that God loves you and Merry Christmas.”

December 6, 2021