Who do you talk with about the angels? I talk with John Sorensen.
I have a mantra about angels. “Angels are welcome here.” Wherever I am. They’re invited to hang out. Joanne and I would serve them coffee and banana bread, if they’d like some. I know they would.
John Sorensen would clarify that mantra. ”God’s holy angels are welcome here.” He’s worried about the other ones. That’s the worry demon, he tells me. The worry demon brings clarification to the table. Banana bread entices demons, but it’s too comforting. I think the angels help make us invisible to the demons. John’s not so sure. That’s the doubting demon, I suppose, creeping around you, John Sorensen. And yet, Sorensen is certain that we’re not invisible to them. He cites appropriate scriptures that pinpoint their presence. He says he has scars to prove, and so do I. I blow the smell of banana bread at them, distracting them from their mission. John says I can’t make the demons disappear.
And I whisper to God’s holy one, “Angels are welcome here. I’ve got coffee, and Joanne’s got banana bread. Make us invisible. Surround us with your lucency, and make us disappear from the demons.”
There was a day when talking about angels would not be part of any agenda on my conversation list. Not too long ago. Twenty-five years, maybe. When Jenelle was a pip. Now angels appear in my conversations several times a year. They’re on my mind much more often than that. In my mornings. When I’m a bit too high on a ladder. When the traffic inches closer, and the air tightens my throat. In the nighttime when I’m holding Joanne’s hand and she falls asleep.
“Send me some angels,” I ask God. “Send as many as you can to Joanne.” Not that God isn’t enough. God is plenty. The angels, though, fill the atmosphere. I imagine their songs, their voices, and the warm waft of their wings. I imagine them guiding Joanne’s pickup down the pass. That’s not fog. That’s the angels slowing you down to a crawl, whooshing on your windshield. Protecting you from the demons shoving rocks into your path, and enraging drivers who fly past in anger.
The angels remind me of the saints, too. Not that the angels aren’t enough. They are plentiful. The saints, though, mix memories with expectations. They hearken. “I hear the distant hooves of many horses,” says Miriam Webster about hearken. The saints mill about, checking out from afar the nooks and crannies of the world they’ve left, maybe spending more time reviewing the constellations and what my ancestors would call the ether. I hear them traipsing about in the dimensions we can’t yet know about.
“Hey there, Mom,” I say out loud. I wonder how many angels she’s met. The demons can’t reach her, or any of the saints. That kingdom is at hand. At hand is where the angels are reaching for us.
And that’s not the world we’re waiting for. That’s the world we’re wading in. Angels lift us when it gets too deep. Whisk us away. Where the demons cannot see us.
Time to fix some coffee. The saints hearken, and the angels are here.