An amazing passage in the Book of Isaiah in the Old Testament talks about angels surrounding and attending to God.
It says that they each have three pairs of wings, one set is used to cover their eyes from seeing God, one set protects their feet, and the third set is used to fly around in heaven. This description is quite typical of how angels are depicted in the Old Testament.
The reason I am saying this is because Jesus said in the parable about the lost sheep that the angels in heaven can see everything we do and have a ‘hotline’ straight to God in heaven.
Which for me, means that heaven, and therefore Jesus, cannot be very far away. I don’t know about you, but I find that thought very comforting.
The Parable of the Lost Sheep | Matthew 18:10-14
Jesus told the crowds that they should be kind to one another as the angels in heaven see everything.
He went on to say that if a shepherd has one hundred sheep, but one went astray that he would leave the ninety-nine to look for the one lost sheep.
When he found the lost sheep, he would be happier about it than keeping the ninety-nine who never went astray.
Likewise, our Father in heaven does not want to see any one of us lost from the fold – hope in Jesus is offered to everyone.
Reflection on the Parable of the Lost Sheep
As a little girl, I remember a trip to the seaside we made as a large family; my youngest brother was about 3 or 4 years old, I was probably about 8 years old. One minute we were all enjoying ourselves with candy floss, sea, and sand; the next minute, blind panic – my youngest brother had disappeared!
Mum and dad searched frantically for him for about half an hour, leaving the other children in the care of the eldest. The stress was tremendous on us all.
Then relief, he was found in the safe custody of a policeman; it appeared that he had just – wandered off.
Sheep are like children and likely to wander off as my young brother did. Once they are lost, there is little hope of, either sheep or children, returning home unaided.
There are usually several different messages contained in a parable. For me, amongst other things, this parable says that we are all like small children in God’s eyes. That we can make the most of our time on earth by placing our trust in Him, just as a child would trust a loving parent to keep them safe and not get lost.
Because regardless of how clever, famous, or highly educated we are; Jesus will teach us eternal truths that will keep us safe, well, and flourishing in this world – because he is our Good Shepherd – ever watchful and not too far away.
This is not hard for me to understand when I think of the scope and vastness of God’s creation and the much smaller worlds we create within our own mortal lives and I find great comfort in knowing that the angels of heaven are much closer than we generally realise.
How about you, could you trust in the angels to watch over you and protect you as you come closer to understanding the nature of Jesus and the great hope that he offers us?