Angel Implicated in Jail Break (repost)

This is a repost from 2005, but perfect for the day!

Today is the Feast of Saints Peter & Paul. I love today's first reading detailing Peter's jail break …

On the very night before Herod was to bring him to trial,
Peter, secured by double chains,
was sleeping between two soldiers,
while outside the door guards kept watch on the prison.
Suddenly the angel of the Lord stood by him
and a light shone in the cell.
He tapped Peter on the side and awakened him, saying,
"Get up quickly."
The chains fell from his wrists.
The angel said to him, "Put on your belt and your sandals."
He did so.
Then he said to him, "Put on your cloak and follow me."
So he followed him out,
not realizing that what was happening through the angel was real;
he thought he was seeing a vision.
They passed the first guard, then the second,
and came to the iron gate leading out to the city,
which opened for them by itself.
They emerged and made their way down an alley,
and suddenly the angel left him.
Then Peter recovered his senses and said,
"Now I know for certain
that the Lord sent his angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod
and from all that the Jewish people had been expecting."
(Acts of the Apostles Chapter 12)
I love how unaware Peter is of the whole escape plan. There he is, sleeping through his captivity. An angel wakes him up with a tap on the shoulder, "Psst. Peter. Get up. Put on your shoes and your coat and follow me." Peter's still kind of asleep but he follows along groggily - who is he to argue? Plus he's still kind of asleep. It's only later, when he finds himself alone but freed of his captivity that Peter realizes what happened.

I think I love this story so because it's so real. How often do we find ourselves chained by the trials of our own lives, but unable (or unwilling) to do anything about it. We find ourselves sleeping through life, until those moments when God wakes US up with that familiar tap on the shoulder. "Psttt….. Susan. Wake up". Hopefully we go along, groggily, and it's only later that we realize our chains are gone. Kind of like Peter.

I love the fact that our church was started by dolts like Peter. How many times did the guy mess up? How many times was he forgiven? And what was he able to accomplish? Gives you hope, much more so than if this whole thing had been started by a bunch of perfect guys. If they could stumble along, so can we.

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