Last October, we had a boisterous windstorm rip through the Tri-Cities that caused some roof damage to our home. The next day, I propped an aluminum extension ladder on the side of the house, climbed the rungs and gingerly walked to the peak of the roof, braving a hefty breeze along the way in order to replace a missing vent.
While pounding nails, I heard the ladder scrape sideways on the gutter and then topple to the concrete. I felt a surge of panic. I was stranded on the roof and had no idea how to get down. I was home alone.
But I stayed calm and uttered a quick prayer to God, “Please send me an angel to get me down.”
And by angel, I was thinking of another person coming to my rescue.
I finished my work and then stood to survey the neighborhood. There was no one in sight. I knew God was there to help me, but felt unsure as to what form that help was going to appear.
I considered jumping. But there were concrete pads and gravel garden beds around the entire perimeter of the house. There were no soft landing spots, and it looked like a long way down from way up there! I wanted to spare my legs.
So, I prayed again and remembered that God’s angels come in many different forms. One definition of angels I cherish was written by Mary Baker Eddy in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures that states, “Angels. God’s thoughts passing to man ... ” Page 581.
That’s what I needed, I knew — a good idea from God to get me down. So I prayerfully listened for the voice of wisdom within to speak.
When I got really calm in prayer, I saw a possibility I hadn’t seen before.
I eyed my wife’s pergola on the back patio. It was six feet from the roof line. Too far! I thought. But there was a small, two-pole decorative trellis in between.
I tested the wooden structure with my hand for strength, and it felt wobbly. Not good, I feared. But the voice within persisted and said there was a way to get down.
After studying the situation carefully, a plan to slither, reach, stretch, jump and leap from the roof formed in thought. Every move had to be perfectly executed, or I’d end up face down on the concrete slab, I knew. And I was not a gymnast! But the voice within assured me I could do it.
After silencing ego to be sure divine grace was leading the way and not blind human will, I followed through. And to my utter delight, I landed on my feet intact. I was so happy.
If you ever get stuck on a roof, or anywhere else in life, fear not. You’re not alone! God is there and able to help you. But as I learned, don’t outline how you think the help should appear. One inspired idea from above can meet the need.