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The Angel Mikel

posted Aug 30, 2011, 8:53 AM by Jeff White   [ updated Aug 30, 2011, 8:56 AM ]
     A comment was made recently that what differentiated "that none shall perish" from other organizations was that it had nothing to offer those who participate in it.  No audio lessons or written studies.  This set me to pondering. 

Is this a failure on my behalf?

     My response to that comment, in a George Castanza-esque delayed fashion, is, "Thank you."

Why?  Because of the angel Mikel.  Let me explain.

     There are many people I love in this world.  My family, my friends, my wife.  If you asked me to give the honest reasons, I am ashamed to say that many of them are selfish.

"Why do you love that person?"

"Because she's always there for me.  She loves me despite my flaws.  She always defends me.  He worked hard to provide for me.  He taught me valuable lessons.  She led me to Christ.  I love being around her.  And so on."

     Even though some of the reasons related directly to how much I valued their character, integrity or work ethic, they all were tied to something I agreed with or gained from.

     But God had a new lesson to teach me.  He wanted me to love from His perspective.

     On my doorstep, one day, arrived His messenger.  She wasn't much to look at.  Malnurished, sickly, ratted hair, pull-ups, dirty clothes, tear stained, exhausted.  She was capable of breaking my things, drawing on my walls, making messes.  She was surrounded by drug-world drama, family drama, legal drama, emotional drama.  She required late night rescue missions and public battles in broad day light.  She would sneak into my bed at night, curl up next to me, fall asleep, then pee on me.

     Once, in the midst of this rocky beginning, I returned with her from a rescue.  This one was rough.  The police had broken it up before I arrived, but the damage was done.  She hadn't slept or eaten.  She was shaken.  She was petrified.

     I brought her home.  I opened the car door and scooped her up into my arms.  She squeezed my neck, laid her head on my shoulder and didn't let go.  For five hours she wouldn't let go.

     There is a lot of time to think when you're stuck on the couch in the living room with a child latched on to you.  Much of the time she slept, but her grip never loosened and I couldn't bear to break it.

     There was no reason to love her.  She could offer nothing in return.  She would cost me time, money, possessions, freedom.  But I loved her.  She didn't have my blood coursing through her veins.  She didn't have my eyes or hair or expressions or laugh or personality.  But I loved her.  She was not my responsibility.  But I loved her.

     I arose from the couch with a kink in my neck and an arm that was numb, but with new resolve.  I would lay down my life for this child.  Not because I had to, or ought to.  I wanted to.

     So back to "that none shall perish." 

We have nothing to offer you. 

We enlist those on whom God has poured countless hours of Bible teaching, gifts and American blessings and we give them an avenue to lay down their lives.  Thousands of children will be led to righteousness, thousands of pastors will be trained, thousands of women will not be forgotten,  thousands of needs in thousands of churches will be met, and none will have anything to offer you in return.  But you can love them.

     It's a funny thing when you content yourself with receiving your reward in heaven alone, forsaking the hope of it now.  You get both. 

Mikel's smile alone can melt me.
by Logan Carnell