Abdias stood beside Gabriel watching the life unfold before him. The outlines were fuzzy at first, but Abdias concentrated, using the skills the Father had given him, until finally he viewed the woman clearly.
“I see you’ve practiced — well done! The seeing will come easier in time,” Gabriel assured him. “The Father has equipped you for the tasks set before you.”
Abdias closed his eyes for a moment, touching the woman’s feelings. “She is confused and sad. Lonely. Much weight of darkness fills her soul.” He opened his eyes. “Who is the tall boy in the picture she holds?”
“That was her son. He has passed on.”
“Our Father holds him now and has welcomed him to his heavenly home?” Abdias asked.
Gabriel set his shoulders and a great sadness entered eyes timeless beyond measure. “He did not enter in at the gate. The Father reached out His hand and he would not see it. In the end, her son chose eternal pride and the cold darkness beyond our borders.”
“Then he will not greet her when she dies?” So much of this was new to the young angel trying to puzzle out his purpose.
“He may,” said Gabriel with a frown. “And more’s the pity, for she once sought our Father with a true heart. Her resentments become a stumbling block corrupted by the lies of the enemy, and she forgets to turn to the Father for healing. Watch...and wait, for she is your mission. Tell me what you see.”
Abdias’s shining brow knit as he worked to maintain the picture. “She cries as one with no hope. A man stands behind her. His hands are on her shoulders and there is pain in his eyes. Her husband?” Gabriel nodded, and his apprentice continued. “She has thrown off his hands and looks at him with such anger it frightens me. But the tears don’t stop. She blames him — not for the death, but the waywardness that led to it. She hurts for the emptiness between them and the years the man sought evenings with his friends and the bottle instead of being a support for her to lean on. She blames him that she struggled so long alone, so that now when he finally wants to reach for her, his touch opens the pain inside her.” The young angel looked puzzled.
“You see well. Yes, Abdias, the man stands there now willing to try — but it may be too late. He did not hear the bitterness of her soul in the long nights past. Now, uncleansed by God, it has grown into a deep resentment she is unwilling to surrender.”
“She hurls angry words at him. He answers with sarcasm. She leaves him standing alone. He looks like he has lost his own heart. She feels as if she has. She is in agony to the point of breaking, but she keeps driving away. She stayed only because the son loved the father?”
Gabriel sighed. “She stayed because she loved her husband beyond life. Then she stayed because of a promise. Then because she would not secure her own happiness at the expense of her child’s. Now she weeps because she stayed and he is lost — and she weeps because she has left and she is lost.”
“She is in misery,” said Abdias.
“Go to her. Hold her up and strengthen her while she is willing to accept the love of the Father and the help He sends,” Gabriel advised him. “Pray for her that God may heal her heart and light the path He sets before her. And be that light, where you may, without revealing your presence.”
“With a good will, brother. And her husband?” asked Abdias.
“He is not your task. Pray to God for strength and wisdom to do your task well.” Gabriel folded his hands, bowing his glorious head to honor the Father. It reminded Abdias of the Father’s posture as He hurt for the wounds of mankind...as He watched the wounds mankind gave His son as they led him to die.
“The Father grieves for her pain and separation.” Abdias stood watching another moment, awed at such great love.
“Yes, my brother. That is why He sends humans to strengthen and encourage one another. That is why He gave His only son. And that is why He sends you now. Be of good courage — the world wounds, but the Father loves His children. And He has overcome the world.”
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