Have you ever wondered if our guardian angels get frustrated with us?  I can think of a few times when they had to work overtime, but do they get to the point where they have to literally slap us?  I think I have biblical proof that they sometimes have to resort to harsh measures to get our attention.  Let’s look at one of the folks in the Bible that gives me lots of hope: Peter.  He knew how to mess up.  He had a PhD in messing things up.

There are times I can’t relate to him, like I have never tried to chop a person in half with my sword (as I don’t own a sword), but then again, I do have a tongue that can cut faster than any two edged sword could ever hope to.  And Peter liked to get out of the boat when he got excited…but as I have told you before, I don’t believe in getting out of the boat to learn to swim (but I have been in a couple of places where I was in over my head in trouble).

One story I find myself acting just like Peter did way too often is found in Acts 12:5–11 (NIV):

“So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him.  The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. ‘Quick, get up!’ he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists.  Then the angel said to him, ‘Put on your clothes and sandals.’ And Peter did so. ‘Wrap your cloak around you and follow me,’ the angel told him. Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision. They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him.

“Then Peter came to himself and said, ‘Now I know without a doubt that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches and from everything the Jewish people were hoping would happen.’”

Did you see it?  What I’m sure is an example of Peter’s guardian angel getting frustrated with him, there in verse 7.  We see the angel starting out with what should have been more than enough to wake anyone who was about to face a life and death situation in just a few hours.  When he appeared, a light shone in the cell. Yet Peter remains asleep—passed out to the point where the light of an angel appearing didn’t faze him. The angel actually had to strike Peter on the side and wake him up.  Imagine! Peter’s angel had to hit him to get him to wake up.

Isn’t that just like us sometimes?  Here we are, with everything on earth falling apart around us, yet we act like we are prisoners to this old world without any hope of escape.  The global economy is so tied together that if one country defaults, the whole thing can come crumbling down.  There are more hungry people in the world today than ever before.  The entire Middle East is one big war zone.  Drought, tornados, hurricanes, floods, all in the same year in just this country.  And the church is growing at a snail’s pace here in North America.

Are we going to be like Peter and have to be struck to wake up and see that our deliverance is at hand?  God is waiting to take us out of this old dungeon we find ourselves in, wondering why we choose to not be free of the chains of sin that He has already broken, and why we don’t put on His robe of righteousness that He freely gives us so He can lead us out.

He is waiting to take us through the pearly gates to everlasting freedom.  Are we so distracted by all the cares of everyday life that we are asleep to what is going on? I pray we see the light and not have to be “awakened” from our slumber by a slap from our guardian angel.

God is waiting to take us home—are we ready for Him to lead?

 A guest blog by Troy Peoples, associate VP for finance in the Mid-America Union.